SEEING double is scarcely attractive, but it’s obviously a lot more preferable than going blind or facing a blank wall. Luck could cease being tough if we would learn the trick of looking at two things with equanimity. Such sense of balance entails, it seems, a way of leveling the gaze at the interplay of both challenge and opportunity.

Chancy at best, thus our future appears to be. Not ours to see, as one popular song points out in light of the usual tendency at the start of the year to squint up ahead. It’s a wilderness out there as far as uncertainties go.

Cold comfort, especially when one ends up red-hot in the face of a reckless presumption. See the satiric comeuppance, for instance, of a 41-year-old man from Minneapolis who supposedly mocked eco-activists’ talk of climate change and winded up in the hospital after the so-called polar vortex hit him.

Seriously, now that Midwest America and nearby states endure subzero weather—with its “coldest temperatures in almost 20 years” that pack “life-threatening wind chills”—there’s hell to pay for playing flippant or downright dismissive of the way things are about our endangered planet. Woe to those who don’t see what’s coming.

Gone with the storm. Thus the lack of concrete policies leaves only the triteness of tragedies as countless lives remain disposable in our own calamity-prone country.

Where we have long gnashed our teeth and yawned at our leaders’ lip service about becoming visionaries for our sake, a bit of innocence endures. That happens when a public official attempts to overcome our sense of helplessness by connecting the dots of awareness, rhetoric, and action.

Do better than dream. Whip us all wide awake. Or so that was what Cebu Gov. Hilario Davide III intended when he talked about disaster preparedness in the last working day at the Capitol in 2013.

“The calamities that we faced this year posed a big challenge and an opportunity for us,” he emphasized what every politician must internalize and extend as an outlook of public trust.

And while it’s well and good for authority to prod us citizens into propping up the government we deserve—a solid structure of trust in times of our vulnerabilities—the blueprint for such reciprocity of responsibility need to illustrate clearly not just its dimensions but more importantly the details of wrapping it up.

In the aftermath of the typhoons last year, Davide mentioned his programs in education and health as well as agricultural rehabilitation and food security. What remained missing, however, was how his efforts could be linked to a national framework—if there’s any that the people can work with in clear-cut terms of preparation and protection—to create, enhance, and sustain our capacity to diminish, brace for and recover from sundry disasters.

Dangers could define us despite our wishes ever so devout for our individual and collective wellbeing. Or, we could defy it once and for all, but only when the preparedness we can muster no longer leaves us ready to rage and roll our eyeballs.

(geemyko@gmail.com)