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Pushing Those Damn Windmills: A Moment With Bill Reflection

Updated on October 24, 2013

The Opening Chapter of My New Book

I am a poet trapped in a prose-writer’s body. I am the long-haired, unwashed, higher-than-a-seagull bong-tokin’ coffee shop muse, staring out over the audience, bongos playing in the background, as I read my latest series of beatnik-inspired tripe.

I am a windmill-tilting, self-righteous sonofabitch, perched precariously on a soapbox hoping the wind does not topple me, and I am the shy little kid in 5th grade who couldn’t buy a date and refused to admit he was sensitive.

Toss a dollar in my jar and I’ll expound on the latest political bullshit or tell you the secret of life, but really, man, it all boils down to love, baby, love, and yes it’s free and yes it’s easy and with it comes that peaceful, easy feeling flying with the Eagles and floating with the Stones.

I am the Piano Man in verse, no accompaniment necessary and applause is not expected.

My parents never saw it coming. How could they? They gave me a damn fine childhood and really my friends, thank God they are both dead now so they don’t have to witness the results. “Toby, you have to go to college, take business courses, and learn how to make money. It’s the only way to make it in this world.”

So sayeth my father when I was sixteen, and so off to the good Catholic university like a good Catholic boy, majoring in Marketing, toss in an Economics degree to keep the old man happy, and then off into the cruel world to conquer and pillage.

Fast forward a few decades and there I sat in Fred’s Java Jive in Portland, Oregon, preparing to read to the masses (all fifteen of them) and hoping to make enough tips to buy me a pack of smokes. How do you like them beans, Dad?

I know where my folks were coming from. They were children of the Great Depression and that shit will stay with you a lifetime. Dad left high school his sophomore year and rode the rails in search of scut-work so he could send money back to his folks. A job was sacred to him, and the memory of eating fried rats in the rail yards, hoping the yard bull wouldn’t crack his skull with a 2x4 well, like I said, that shit will stay with you.

So he wanted the best for his son, and the best equated to a great-paying job, a home, family and two cars in the proverbial garage. Shit, man, I hitchhiked to the Java Jive, and the last car I owned was a Geo Tracker with 250,000 miles on it…broke down outside of Des Moines and is now somebody’s flower pot out behind a barn.

Still, I think Dad would approve of the message I deliver nightly. It might be a silent approval but he would approve nonetheless because hey, he’s the one who filled my head with this shit, the compassion and empathy and looking out for the little guy….words preached at the dinner table and modeled a thousand times during my childhood.

There’s the nod from Burt the manager; time to get to work.

“Hello Portland! My name is Toby King and I’m going to tweak your nerve endings a bit tonight. If you have any valium then take them now. You’re going to need it.”

A river changes course in time; so, too, will society.
A river changes course in time; so, too, will society. | Source

The reason I write about social change

Fiction or Truth? Who Really Cares?

When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves.

Viktor E. Frankl

Like my friend Toby King, I am a writer.

Like my friend Toby King, I am also a coffee shop poet of sorts, a throwback to the 50’s and 60’s when beatniks ruled the original grunge scene and expounded on the ills of society, trying to raise awareness and breathe some life into the consciousness of mankind.

Now more than ever! Those are my thoughts whenever I start to doubt what I am doing as a writer. Does anyone really care? Is there still a heartbeat in the Statue of Liberty or is she just so much copper and steel? Do our elected leaders really believe in the words of the Declaration of Independence? Have they even read the Constitution? Do those who preach from the pulpit on Sundays understand that a week is seven days long?

Now more than ever!

As upset as I get with the politicians, it is not them that I write to. As pissed off as I get at the rich, it is not for them that I construct these essays. I have very little hope for anyone who inhabits the West Wing, nor do I hold out much hope for those who have a corner office with the initials CEO stenciled in bold.

I do, however, have hope for the common folk, and it is to them that I send these messages.

I do not believe our greatest evil is homelessness or hunger, greed or violence. I do not believe our ills can be traced back to a particular date or event. No, I believe the greatest obstacle preventing our advancement as a species in the year 2013 is the twin-headed monster of complacency and apathy.

And so I write!

I write to raise awareness one person at a time, and maybe when my days are done and my last word has been written, I will have reached a fair sampling of our society and will have made a difference.

Believe in change and change will happen
Believe in change and change will happen | Source

The Power of the Arts

The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance.

Aristotle

There have always been splinter groups within the Arts who have taken up the social yoke and decried injustice. Painters, sculptors, musicians, poets, those lonely voices in the wilderness who refused to slink away quietly in the night. They continued throughout our history to speak out against wrongs, to scream with their words, notes and brushstrokes about the subjects that were disturbing and yet needed a voice.

Who will speak for the downtrodden if not the writers? Who will light the torch of change if not the musicians? The Arts have always been firmly grounded in the pulse of society, beating the same beat as those who came before them, those who refused to accept that status quo and who railed against the unfairness of it all.

And so I write!

I could write recipes, but recipes cannot feed my soul. I could write how-to articles, but how-to articles will not mend the psyche of this country. No, I leave those articles for writers better suited for those endeavors. I have my calling; I have chosen my path in this literary world and I am happy with it.

Source
Three writers who believe in social change; will you join us?
Three writers who believe in social change; will you join us? | Source

Sit with me and let's chat about life

Is It a Waste of Time?

I refuse to believe that. My most viewed social commentary has garnered about 10,000 views to date. I know craft writers who get that many views in a week, so compared to them I have been a dismal failure….or have I?

How else are we going to make change in this world? There must be, in every society, some who are willing to shout from the rooftops. There must be, in every society, those who risk failure in order to advance a social agenda one person at a time.

Change takes time. We are a world of 7.1 billion people. One does not affect great change overnight when dealing with those numbers. With hundreds of nations you do not legislate change. Massive social change must begin in tiny increments and spread forth like the runners of a strawberry plant.

And so I write!

And perhaps, one day in the not-so-distant future, another writer will pick up my works, and read them, and find inspiration in them, and his words will form into instruments of change….or a young activist, weary of the corruption and greed, will read my words and find his own soapbox of change to stand upon, and the legacy will have been passed on.

Yes, I am a windmill-tilting, self-righteous sonofabitch, and I send out a peaceful, easy feeling of love to all of you, in hopes that you will pass it on again and again and again.

2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Raising awareness one person at a time.”

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    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      mylinda, quirks I have; sometimes lacking in common sense. LOL Thank you!

    • mylindaelliott profile image

      mylindaelliott 4 years ago from Louisiana

      It sounds like a plan to me. Everyone has their quirks. Some of us more than others.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      And I love it, Deb! It need not be for anyone else to hear or know about...kindness does not keep a score card; there is no final tally at the end of life's game. There is just kindness for the sake of kindness, just as there is only love for the sake of love.

      Thank you for being you.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      And I passon in my own way: here's $--for a Christmas tree that you can show your kids. Here's $--to help what was stolen out of the break room. I'm still trying to do what I have to do in order to give $---a month to someone just barely making it with a full time job and a child. The rules of the job say that I can't do it in my present capacity, but I am working on a solution…it is happening. All I ask in return is that these individuals help someone deserving when they no longer have to account for every penny that they have to make. Together, for every one that I reach, I will show others the way to help more that need it. And such is my silent way. It s between ten and me, nobody else.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      drbj, nothing saddens me as much as the fact that people don't care. I can accept death; I can even accept war and part of our human DNA....what I can't accept is apathy. And I never will!

      And you won't either; maybe that's why I respect you? Well, just one of the reasons.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 4 years ago from south Florida

      I do believe, Sir Bill, that you hit the nail square on the head with your pinpoint assessment of the rationale behind humanity's failure to address the major problems in the world: as you stated: 'the twin-headed monster of complacency and apathy.' It has become a 'I got mine ... I don't really care about yours' world.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Love it, Rasma! With teammates like you how can we fail? Thank you for your kind words my friend.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up and awesome. As always Bill you are the inspiration which keep us going and believing. I am prepared to make a difference along with you and others. Passing this on.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Anna....my kick ass mode? I love it....yes I was. About once a week I turn from mild-mannered writer to kick ass crier against injustice. I can't do it all the time or I'd be one depressed writer. LOL Thank you for your kind words my friend and have a wonderful weekend.

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 4 years ago from Scotland

      This was in your kick ass mode again :)

      Brilliant, inspiring and I think the outreach of your work is yet to see fruition.

      You strive to make a difference and we can all feel the real emotion in your words. Without belief there is no hope. You are sharing that precious belief and catalysing hope.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eddy, some lessons take us longer to learn than others. I, too, have learned to trust my heart; it is inherently good and as long as I listen to it my life is filled with wonders.

      blessings and love always

      billy

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Yes they have, vkwok. and as long as that is the case I will keep on writing them. Thanks for the visit.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Brilliant as always Billy .By this day I have learnt to trust my heart and inner feelings ;through this my life has become positive and far richer than before.

      Voting up and sharing my dear friend.

      Eddy.

    • vkwok profile image

      Victor W. Kwok 4 years ago from Hawaii

      Stories have always had a great influence on the audience. Great hub, Bill.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      MYWIKISTEP....you said it better than I could...art and poetry can make us a better world. I will always believe that. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Incredible indeed, Ann! People just don't want to get involved. In a case like that I'm sure quite a few of the "watchers" were afraid of being hurt if they intervened, but I'm also sure some just couldn't be bothered with it...and I'll never understand that. :) Thanks for sharing that.

    • profile image

      MYWIKISTEP 4 years ago

      Hello Bill, Art and poetry can make us a better world.

      If we trusted our hearts and inner feelings, we would then express all what we need to have.

      Great!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 4 years ago from SW England

      My daughter went to London for a day course yesterday. She got off the coach at Victoria Station and before her were a couple of lads fighting on the ground, one punching the hell out of the other who had been met by him off the coach. The 'puncher's' wife stopped the other wife from intervening! The worst part was that the police took about half an hour to arrive and everyone else just stood around, watching and shaking their heads! My daughter was amazed and shocked. Incredible! Ann

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, there are days when I think society as a whole is just lost. I can't make sense of what I witness on a daily basis and I just want to throw my hands in the air and give up. But giving up isn't in my DNA, so the fight continues. :) It's easier fighting knowing that there are others out there,like you, who are doing what they can to stem the tide. :) Thank you!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 4 years ago from SW England

      Wise words as always. I always come back to education, education, education. Without that we are lost. Your words should be studied at GCSE level if not before. That way more people could be reached more quickly. Yes, apathy is a great disease. I'm usually an optimist but it's difficult to be so. Ann

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ginger, thank you so much. The nuns that taught me English so very long ago probably did not think I had a gift; boy did we ever surprise them. LOL I appreciate you; have a great weekend.

    • ExpectGreatThings profile image

      ExpectGreatThings 4 years ago from Illinois

      You have such an amazing gift for painting vivid pictures with words! I'm so thankful you are not apathetic. Keep fighting; some of us are listening :) - Ginger

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks again Mike; I will remove it as per your wishes. Have a great weekend and thank you for caring so much.

    • CloudExplorer profile image

      Mike Pugh 4 years ago from New York City

      I love repetition only when its done right and mostly in poetic format, but yours is that kind I love. You damn right you're a poet Bill. I can sense it in every word you scribe onto the screen, its like poetry in motion but in a prose format.

      You know something, you really do have a way with words that encourages others bro, that uplifts the human spirit from its once sour, depressive, sad and lonely existence for those who fell victim.

      Your words are empowering indeed bro, keep writing, keep generating powerful thought provoking themes that charge up crowds of viewers to do something with their lives.

      Bro you truly are a world leader in your own right, now all you need to do is run for president of the globe :) "Just kidding Bill" You never know Bill, it might happen one day, especially if each and every word you've ever written can have such a cause and effect to even help save humanity if it reaches enough people.

      All you have to do is believe in it more then anything else, and my good friend Bill I think that the potential for it to happen shall also come to pass.

      Great Hub bro, as many of your others are, motivational and awe inspiring. I like how it started out, and the climax the most. Thumbs up and sharing everywhere I can.

      Sorry about the my first comments typos, if you can remove it for me, that would be smooth. this comment is a much more correct and clear cut version. Powerful stuff Bill, thanks bro for sharing this article with us all, have a lovely day.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Joe, you've done it again. This comment is brilliant....man what a show you and I could put on at the Java Jive....open mike night, buddy, and we are dazzling the crowd and giving them a jolt no coffee could ever deliver.

      I'll keep doing my thing, you do yours, and together maybe we can wake up a few people to the realities of this life.

      Aloha brother

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mike, thank you so much. I have a hard time with such praise but I know you mean it from the heart and I am humbled by it. If all writers would join forces, what a powerful movement it would be. That's how change will happen, brother; when enough individuals form together and demand change. Until that day happens, I'll keep shouting from the wilderness in hopes that someone hears me.

      Thank you buddy; have a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Martin, you are indeed doing remarkable things my friend. Keep on keeping on as long as you can.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      writingowl, you said it perfectly. If we have a gift it must be used for good. Thank you for that reflection.

    • hawaiianodysseus profile image

      Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      You...and Toby...are the new Populists, and I love it, man, I love it! Please consider me near the front of the line when the book comes out, buddy, because it would thrill me to read it and pass on word about it to my family, friends, and in reviews to the general public.

      I'm in slack-jawed awe at how a prolific personal essayist who excels in nonfiction can switch baseball caps and pen compelling fiction. Good buddy, you are one talented billybuc...kinda like a repressed schoolteacher who sat around giving and giving and giving to a generation and a fraction of kids...and the System...and The Man...only to be liberated in a moment of tossing a ring of keys at a principal "just doing [my} job, Bill..." and then, like volcanoes I have known, erupting with all these passionate literary responses to anyone and everyone who ever flipped you b.s.!

      You go, my friend, and you rock us all at the open mike cafes and bars and dives. Keep on resurrecting Dylan (and I mean that figuratively because rumor has it he's still alive, though barely kickin' it with Mr. Tambourine Man), and keep on feeding our habit, word junkies that we are...because, quite frankly, my friend...we're all angry and fed up and looking for a way to express ourselves. You give us hope by showing us ways we can do so without getting locked up.

      Awesome, Bill! Thanks for giving us another Oz peek at the man behind the writer.

      Aloha, and have a fabulous weekend, Bill! Go, Hawks!

      ~Joe

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you for this. I have been fortunate to be put in situations to inspire others. Even now, as the curtain closes, I am doing remarkable things. (As you are one of my fans, you know.)

    • thewritingowl profile image

      Mary Kelly Godley 4 years ago from Ireland

      Very well said from another poor soul who strayed from the well trodden path. Or as my better half likes to say about me, 'you don't run with the flock.' As writers we have a gift and its up to us to speak out about the countless injustices in this world because as you say, those voices need to be there if only to save hope and individualism from total extinction. Voted up.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I know you do, Faith, and maybe if we cry enough of them they will create a river of change. That is my hope and that is my goal.

      blessings and thanks always

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mr. Happy, you got that right my friend. Change comes slowly...ever so slowly...but it does happen. Thank you and I'll keep pushing.

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 4 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Hey,

      thanks for pushing those wind mills!

      It was a tough push from the coal engines on trains to electric ones so, it will take a bit to give up on our oil addiction. It will come though.

      All the best! : )

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      I believe in change too, and that it truly can happen, when every person believes it and does something each day to make this world a little bit better place in which to live. Our government is not going to do it, but each and every one of us can, one person at a time. I cry real tears with you dear Bill. Powerful poem!

      Hugs, Faith Reaper

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, I think education is just a symptom or byproduct of the problem you mentioned. To a certain extent, I blame technology for the desensitization you mentioned......the demise of the traditional family unit has also added to this situation.....and along came an epidemic of complacency and apathy, and I'm fairly well convinced fear is a huge part of this equation. Society is a mess my friend, and I know nothing else for me to do other than to continue to raise awareness.

      Thank you as always, and blessings to you

      bill

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 4 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      I don't believe that a lack of education is the problem in today's world, partly maybe. I think we have lost our humanity, some where along the way, we have become immune to the suffering of others, we've become desensitised to injustice and pain, and that scares me.

      So My friend, just keep shouting from that soapbox of yours and tell it like it is, because if you don't, who will?

      You are as inspirational as ever.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      John, whether it be prose or poetry, standing up to injustice is a noble undertaking. Bravo to you for caring enough to use your gifts in that vein. Thank you so much for your compassion and your kind words.

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      John Hansen 4 years ago from Queensland Australia

      You have a great gift Bill, and I applaud you on using it to make the world a better place. Your writing is inspiring and full of wisdom. I believe all writers (well most) attempt to use their words to repair injustice, promote what they see as right, and influence or entertain others. In most of my writing I try to convey a message or point out an injustice. It may be more subtle and is usually conveyed in verse, but it is my little way of trying to right injustice or at least put my point accross. Again, well done, and I hope your novel is a great success.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genna, thank you so much. I love those words...."this is now one of my favorite hubs"...it means I'm not growing stale in my writing. Thank you for your kindness and I share your beliefs that the Arts can go a long way towards curing our ills.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      I was captivated, intrigued, amused and involved (in other words, “hooked”), right out of the gate, with your “opening chapter.”

      “The Power of the Arts” is the miracle of humanity. I truly believe that the arts have the potential to cure man’s greatest malady – that of indifference – and can work towards educating and inspiring us all in effecting positive social change. Your superb hubs reach out to us in such a way.

      You are not alone, Bill. Many of us share in this belief, which can be illuminated through the power of the written word: “Sancho! My armour, my sword!” We shall defend this honor to the end. This is now one of my favorite hubs, Bill. Simply excellent!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Nell, thank you so much. I am proud to be a member of the writing community. Some of my best friends are here and I love every minute that I spend with them...and God bless us all for being crazy enough to be writers. LOL

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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Always inspiring Bill, and your poem in the video was amazing, yes its the writers and the others in the art movement who are the ones who step outside the norm and tell it like it is, and thank goodness for that, wonderful as always, voted up and shared, nell

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Gypsy, you need not go on. :) I just stand back and shake my head at what I'm seeing in society today...and then I get so upset I write about it. LOL Thank you!

    • Gypsy Willow profile image

      Gypsy Willow 4 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

      Great inspiring article Bill. Parents always want the best for their children and the advice was meant from the heart. I fear for my grandchildren as the world appears on a downward spiral. Texting will ruin language and spelling skills. Why write when your device can do it for you. Need I go on?

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Larry, I echo your concerns about education. I am no longer a teacher because of those concerns. I simply could not work under those conditions any longer; not and hold my head high.

      Thank you for your kind words my friend. I believe in the power of the written world; some of the great changes in society found humble beginnings in the words of the disgruntled. :)

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      larry Kitzmann 4 years ago

      Bill, writers such as yourself matter today more than ever. In a culture that passes off sound bytes as political philosophy, where tweets become talking points in depth analysis and serious reflection is most assuredly needed. Writers have a way of influencing both the individual and the masses in ways often not imagined by the writer. When used as a positive force good writing shows us a future that could be and just as importantly how we may achieve that future. As a former teacher though I must say I am afraid that students are no longer taught to read critically if at all. Be it through privatization or business sponsorship schools are becoming little more than propaganda factories for different groups turning out students with little or no sense of history or a common narrative. It would seem the sole purpose of education is to prepare one for the work force just to keep the machine humming along. OK enough of my sermonizing. Simply keep up the good work Bill as you most assuredly make a difference as witnessed by the many comments you get each and every day. As always take care my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much meganthomason. I appreciate it.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lots of patience, Carol, and I am slowly learning patience although it is painful at times. :) I hope you are having a great day my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Brandi, if we eliminate complacency in this country then most of our social ills will go away.

      Thank you!

    • meganthomason profile image

      Megan 4 years ago

      SO insightful! Thanks for another great article :)

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      So many changes except sometimes I think we stand still. We live in a tumultuous world with lots of entitled people..(you know that is my big thing)...The world does change a person at a time...it just takes patience.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image

      CraftytotheCore 4 years ago

      You nailed it Bill! Complacency. That's it.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jackie, if that is true, and I believe you, then I am one happy writer. I love motivating and encouraging people, so thank you for your kind words.

      your friend

      bill

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      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      You make us feel we can do anything, Bill, and whether we move on your pep talks or not is up to us. I would say though whether we jump right in on your ideas or not, you are planting seeds that could go anywhere. We don't just read and move on, we take your ideas with us, as much in our hearts as our minds.

      ^ as always

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dee, great point and I thank you for it. Change begins individually and then branches outward. Thank you for that thought.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, DDE....it is a power we writers have; I hope more writers come to understand that fact, that there is power in their words.

    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 4 years ago

      I do love to reading what you write. And, you are so right.....change does take time. If we find a way to change ourselves....the situation will naturally change. Great message. Oh, I like looking at windmill. There is a peace about them.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Pushing Those Damn Windmills: A Moment With Bill Reflection, the power to write and to keep on writing great hub and always a helpful message sent across to all writers.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Kim! That's what I was shooting for and it is nice to have someone recognize that. :)

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Awww, thanks Marlene! I am deeply touched by your words....truly. If you and your husband ever find yourself up this way, we insist you stop and say hello and have dinner on us.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I can hear it, Mark, and I know you can as well. Keep singing buddy and thank you!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DJ, what a beautiful comment and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You have shown wisdom today with your words, as you always do.....I have no plans on stopping. I guess as long as I can punch these keys I'll be shouting from the mountaintops....and knowing, because of this comment, that I am making a difference.

      Thank you for this gift, DJ!

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      ocfireflies 4 years ago from North Carolina

      Bill,

      So powerful and reminiscent of that beatnik sound, that sound for change, blowing in the wind and the night music died...

      Voted up and shared my friend.

      Kim

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      Marlene Bertrand 4 years ago from Northern California, USA

      So, the verdict is in, Bill. You are my inspiration to write. You have shown me the power writers have in helping the world become a better place. By the way, your camera is probably feeling fortunate to have you as an owner because you are taking some amazing photos.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Jeff! Every day is good for me and I wish you the same.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, that might slow the process for sure...if we can only find more of those teachers and students.

      I wish there were a way to measure the IQ of the nation and compare it to the IQ of fifty years ago...might be some interesting results to those tests. :)

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      kidscraft, you make a difference as well my friend. We all have a unique talent; all we need is desire to make that talent a helpful tool to aid others....writers bring beauty into the world, as do artists....teachers, craftsmen...and on and on. We can all make a difference and it starts today!

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      Mark G Weller 4 years ago from Lake Charles, LA.

      There's a song in your heart......

      You can hear it if you listen......

      As it echoes through the branches high above the family tree.....

      Mark

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      JThomp42 4 years ago

      Great article once again Bill. "Wake up people." Have a great day my friend!

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      DJ Anderson 4 years ago

      Great article, Bill. You feel that your agenda is to wake the people from the despair of complacency and apathy. And, no doubt, you feel the task is overwhelming. So many of us want the same for our country and for the

      generations that will follow.

      Keep in mind that sometimes our mission might be to simply break the ground a bit and drop the seeds of thought. Yes, it can be more than a bit frustrating as we watch our government sit in their tufted leather

      chairs, with their high salaries, and argue about issues, where frankly they don't seem to have a clue. We watch in disbelief as they have made us an unstable country, all the while down sizing the military powers

      that can defend this country from invasion.

      I am not suggesting that you stop singing from the highest hill. I am

      suggesting that results from the work done now, may not be seen in our

      lifetime or even our children's lifetime. But, I do believe in every word that you write. And, I do believe that your words will go on to inspire

      generations after us.

      You must follow your passionate heart and write your insightful articles to keep awareness in the forefront. That could be your calling. Yes, it could be as simple at that. You could simply be the messenger.

      So, plow those rows straight and cover those seeds with rich soil.

      And, don't forget to pray for a rain (reign) of knowledge, compassion

      and true justice.

      Bill, knowing success can sometimes mean you realize you are right where you are suppose to be, doing exactly what you are suppose to be doing.

      Thanks for all that you do,

      DJ.

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      Old Poolman 4 years ago

      Bill, I too avoid conspiracy theories like the plague, but this education issue just smells wrong. I'm not sure when the decline started, or if it was intentional, but it is real.

      Union apprenticeship programs used to turn out some highly skilled workers into the labor market. I'm not positive, but I believe these are very limited these days.

      With a concentrated effort, it would take about three generations to create a population that can barely read or write. I'm actually wondering if we haven't reached that level now.

      Of course there will always be those darn teachers who insist on really teaching, and those students with a thirst for knowledge. That alone could make the dumbing down process more difficult.

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      kidscrafts 4 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

      I think when our parents pushed us to study in a field that didn't interest us was for sure not because they wanted to destroy our lives but more to have a better life than they did. It's for sure not fun to have to do it but I think it's a question of when they were born and what they went through and the thinking of that time. Guess what... I wanted to study in art and create things for kids and I had to go in sciences because as an artist I would starve... I now I do what I wanted to do. It's nice that with time we can permit ourselves to do what we like because it's where we might shine the most!

      In your case, you make a big difference; you make us think and some of us act. In my case, I try to make a difference in the world of kids and the environment. What a richness to think that we all have a talent and that with that talent we can help some part of the society. I have that dream that if we would all use a fraction of that talent we might be able to achieve those dreams because little things add up and end up making a big difference!

      Thank you for reminding us all to think :-)

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you so much, Janine...and I admire you....and ain't HP just great? :)

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, I have never been much for conspiracy theories, and twenty years ago I would have laughed at your "dumbing down" statement, but I'm beginning to think there is some truth in it. I don't know if it is government that is behind it or corporate America, but someone wants us to be stupid and complacent and we are following the lead quite nicely.

      I'm with you buddy; education and good old fashioned values are the key.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, if your parents know who I am then I've hit the big time. :) Thank you for your kind words; I hope everyone understands the impact they can have on this world. :)

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Donna, thank you for that gift. That is a beautiful thing for you to tell me this Thursday morning. I am grateful and happy that I have helped you. Pass it forward my friend.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eric, I'll go fishing with you any old day. Get the rods and reels and I'll meet you down by the river. :) Thanks as always my friend.

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      Janine Huldie 4 years ago from New York, New York

      I have no doubt Bill you have made a difference and will still continue to do so. Seriously, so proud of you and can't say enough how much admire you. Thank you, as always, my friend just for being you!

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      Old Poolman 4 years ago

      Bill, perhaps the single thing that has gotten us into the sorry state of affairs we see today is our decline in education.

      You write beautiful hubs with subtle messages sprinkled throughout what you write. And sometimes not so subtle messages.

      Sadly, those who could benefit the most from your writing will never read it because the can't or won't read. We should be ashamed of the large numbers of high school graduates who can't read, write, or do simple math problems.

      So how can we make the necessary changes when we have so many that never read, and only watch TV Reality shows? A huge percentage of our population can't name their elected representatives. Some can't even give you the name of our Vice President.

      I actually believe the dumbing down of America was intentional. It is much easier to control the uniformed than the educated.

      In my mind, a good starting place to begin change would be to make sure high school students can at least read at an 8th grade level before they are allowed to graduate.

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      You do make a difference in this world, Bill. So many people look up to you, turn to you for advice and comfort and hang on your every word. You have something to say that we need to hear. If you really think about it, your words are already travelling the globe with followers from all over the world reading, commenting and sharing your articles. Shoot, even my parents know who billybuc is! :-)

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      Donna Kay Bryan 4 years ago

      Bill, Thank you for being a continual source of inspiration. You probably don't realize it, but so many times just when I've feet downtrodden, your words have picked me up. You have most definitely made a difference in my life over the last year, and I'm just one person. With all the people that you have touched through your words, I believe that you have made a huge impact on this world. What a blessing you are!

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      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      And so it is. Again I just drop by to say howdy and see if you want to go fishing and not catch anything and maybe get some tea ---- and there you go inspiring me to go do something good with the day. Alright, alright I will do something good today. Give my regards to Toby.