A new series of articles from publisher Bruce Maples

Bruce Maples
Bruce Maples

We all know what the expression “hair on fire” means – a figure of speech indicating that some circumstance or situation has someone extremely agitated. The web site Using English says it is an idiom: “If something sets your hair on fire, it excites you or catches your attention urgently.”

In light of the firehose of political news that causes us to give each story or issue about ten minutes before we move on to the next, I've decided that certain topics deserve more than that. So, I'm starting a series I'm calling “The Hair-on-Fire Series.”

The topics

What topics qualify to be addressed in this series? To explain, let me share with you a task-management grid that I've used in teaching time management. It illustrates two factors related to most tasks: importance and urgency.

Important Not Important
Urgent 1 – Both Important
and Urgent
3 – Urgent,
Not Important
Not Urgent 2 – Important,
Not Urgent
4 – Not Urgent,
Not Important

For this series, I’ll be addressing topics in quadrant 1 – things that are both very important and very urgent.

Two topics I already know will be in this series are the climate crisis and the attacks on our democracy. Both are existential threats, and both are being relegated to ongoing headlines and small stories, without the necessary aspect of “Look here, pay attention – this is not business as usual!”

An up-front disclaimer

One note before we begin this series: It is entirely possible that in my goal of getting people to pay attention, I may overstate the crisis. It is possible that it won’t turn out as bad as my articles will suggest, or that enough people pay attention that the tide is turned and the crisis averted. (And this is my wish, certainly.)

But, it is also possible that things may actually become even worse than the articles point to. Some crises follow a pattern of developing slowly over time, then suddenly getting much worse very quickly. The climate crisis, for example, seems to be following this pattern.

So, before you dismiss me as merely some wild-eyed prophet of doom (or as “just some blogger from Louisville,” as a particular state official said), take a moment to consider:  what if I’m right? Then do your own research to see if my take is wild-eyed or realistic.

And one more thing

While this introductory article has a Public status, the articles themselves will be set to Members-Only. It's our paying members that keep this site up, and that make it possible for me to write about these things.

So, if you want to read these articles, either to learn more about these topics and why I think they are important, or just to see what I have to say, then you need to become a Member. You can do that here.

And Members, feel free to share the articles using the links at the top of the page on the web site. (Click the “read online” link at the top of the email, if you are reading this in your email client.) If you think something is particularly important, feel free to copy it and email it to others, so they can read the whole thing. Perhaps they will decide that reading these is worth the cost.

The list of articles

As I write these, I'll come back here and add them as a link. So, you can use this post to make sure you don't miss any.

And finally – thanks for reading. Even more, thanks in advance for taking these things seriously enough to take action in whatever way you can. That is, after all, the point.


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Bruce Maples has been involved in politics and activism since 2004, when he became active in the Kerry Kentucky movement. (Read the rest of his bio on the Bruce Maples Bio page in the bottom nav bar.)