I work at a super market. Cashier. The environment is friendly and laid-back, except for those days before Thanksgiving and the Super Bowl. While buying their weekly meal deals and postage stamps, these sleepy denizens of my small town aren't really thinking about what's going on outside of the county. And I, being the eccentric wonderer that I am, ask nearly everyone that comes through my lane their opinion of what's going on in the world at the moment.
Recently, it's been a lot of, "Have you heard about the protests in Egypt?" Most people have no idea what I'm talking about. Out of the probably 200 people that bought their bread and butter from me, only 2 or 3 had any idea of what I was talking about. As I glued myself to facebook every night, I saw a severe lack of posts about anything really related to current events. What was the deal here? I checked local and national news outlets; all of them had excellent coverage, both on t.v. and the internet.
My conclusion was that the people around me just weren't caring enough. Even after a provocative facebook post, only 3 people responded and could accurately discuss the riots with me. The people around me were so absorbed by football and ice cream sales that they couldn't even bother noticing that their fellow human beings were fighting for their rights and lives in another country, not too terribly far away. What happens when the riots are in Europe? In South America? When they start in our own country? It's all a little too close to a mixture of 1984 and Brave New World for me. Part of our country is still in this sedated mindset that revolves around college sports and alcohol and partying and casual sex; most pop songs embody clubbing and forgetting about your troubles by drowning them in hard liquor and hormones. The older populace, my parents included, is wondering when the world will start to burn with the unquenchable flames of Hell. When will the economy balance out? When will the government stop intruding? When will you get a hair cut?
Over all, I'm sensing that the newest raise in gas prices will bring some attention to the problem. Due to all the rioting in Egypt, the Suez Canal that transports so many of our goods, including oil, has been delayed. I noticed that my favorite shady gas station, yesterday a bargain at $3.94 a gallon, has joined the rest of the city to hit $4.01. Sure, that's only 7 cents, but knowing my customers, they will notice it immediately. I've had a man literally scream at me over a 29 cent coupon for some peanuts; if that's enough to get someone riled up, surely the gas prices will, and hopefully bring some much needed attention to the state of the global economy.