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Holding It All Together-Headlines

By Amy McCollom
I am not happy with average, expected, or ordinary. I was born with a desire to know more, see more, hear more, learn more. I guess that’s why I like to read, especially the articles that are not considered “mainstream.” I like reading smaller headlines and articles, off-the-beaten-path books, and I have found some really interesting gems. I don’t like to fill my head with the headlines of the day if all that is said is negative. Everything you take into yourself affects you in some way.

Some news headlines are so startling I don’t know whether to laugh, scream, cry, run, or what. They do their job, I suppose; they get me to read the story, at least in part. Here is one I saw this week that I couldn’t wrap my head around:

Scientists think they figured out when the Sun will explode and kill us all
Don’t worry, it’s not anytime soon. I did read the article. But there are other things to fill your worry-pocket besides fears of when the sun will explode. Like sharks. Sharks are scary. You can worry about sharks if you swim in the ocean at night, especially during a full moon. According to another headline I read: Sharks pretty much turn into werewolves under a full Moon. 

I didn’t read that article, I have to admit. I already know sharks can be snappy happy, and a full moon brings out the werewolf in all of us. I know I howl at a full moon. That’s where they got the name lunatic; the moon can drive you crazy. 

Polar bears, those big white fluffy Coca Cola- drinking Christmas bears; who doesn’t love polar bears?! Apparently, scientists in northern Russia were heading out to do research on them and couldn’t find them in their normal spot. Turns out, the polar bears had moved on, hence the headline: Polar bears took over an abandoned island and moved into empty houses.

They were just cruising by the empty island when a polar bear stuck his head out the door of one of the houses, letting the scientists know of the bear colony’s new forwarding address. By the way, polar bears aren’t that cuddly and will probably eat you if you tried to cuddle them.

Animal stories always get my attention. I thought this next headline was a joke at first, but it wasn’t:

Truck Carrying 100 Monkeys Involved In Crash 
It happened in Pennsylvania, and apparently the monkeys were heading to a lab when it crashed and overturned, releasing the monkeys. Most of the monkeys were captured and contained. There is still 1 monkey on the loose, for which there is an ongoing search. Residents in the area were warned not to try and capture the monkey themselves because it could be aggressive because it is scared. I hope they find it; I know monkeys don’t have very much fur and aren’t suited for winters in Pennsylvania. 

My aunt and uncle had a monkey, named Danny, when I was a kid. He definitely could be aggressive when he wanted to be. He had some pretty wicked teeth and bit my cousins a few times. Other times, he was very funny and liked drinking beer and grabbing cigarette smoke out of the air and rubbing it all over his body. My aunt used to dress him up in baby clothes and take him to town with them. He was one of the family. He definitely needed a coat in the winter.

I love a feel good story, as I think we all do. This last one I read made me smile, and also taught me something. You know those great big plastic jugs filled with cheese balls that you get at the big box stores? We need to be more careful with what we do with those when we are done with them. Perhaps we should break them up before putting them in our trash can, or find a way to repurpose them. After reading this story, I don’t think I will be buying those big jugs anymore: After a weekend search on Lookout Mountain, a dog with a jug stuck on his head is now safe.

This poor dog. Who knows for sure how long he had this jug stuck on his head, without being able to see clearly, breath well, eat, or drink. I know that dog must have been very, very afraid. A mail carrier first noticed the dog while she was delivering mail, and she snapped a picture of the poor animal, after trying to catch him to pull off the jug, with no luck. 

After seeing the picture that the mail carrier posted on social media, a dog rescue group got involved and arranged a rescue team of over 35 people to try and catch the dog to help it. It was a few hours before the animal could be caught and wrestled down and relieved of the jug from it’s head, but finally the mission was accomplished. The dog was freed from the jug and taken to the rescue center for care and treatment until decisions and ownership can be decided. The dog is doing well, and is expected to be just fine after the incident. I love a happy ending. But those jugs can be dangerous. So can bongo drums. One of my kids got a bongo drum stuck on his head one morning and I almost had to call the fire department to get it off. But he too was wrestled to the ground and relieved of the predicament he got himself in, and recovered fully from the incident. Another happy ending.

So in a world that wants to broadcast gloom and doom, maybe try reading between the lines, look for other headlines that attract your interest, and always look for a happy ending. There will always be bad news, but it can wait. I’m the author of my own life story, and like I said, I like happy endings. Take control of what you let into your head rather than letting it take control of you.

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