Someone please make it stop! I just can’t take it anymore. Does anyone have a cave I can borrow for the weekend?

Like everyone else, I certainly have my own thoughts and concerns about what is going on in Washington and the world these days, but I feel like in order to retain some level of sanity, I must step away from the 24-hour cable news channels, talk radio and my social media feeds or else I am going to be one of those weirdos who “goes off the grid.”

I’m just so sick of all of it. From the smug jubilation on one side to the frantic hyperventilation on the other side, it’s just too much to process on a 24/7 basis. Don’t get me wrong, I know how important it is to stay well informed and I am all for people being passionate about what is happening in our country. But jumping into the toxic waste dump that is Facebook and Twitter and watching people you know (or even that you don’t) call each other names under posts and reposts of stories you have already read — well, it just doesn’t seem very productive to me. It’s just depressing.

I have faith in our democracy and am hopeful that the beautiful system of checks and balances our founding fathers put into place is going to work as it should.

For those of you who are like me and need a little break from the madness from time to time, I have put together a list of other things to think about and/or do. These things are totally unproductive but it will you give something to do when you need a little break from calling someone a butthurt snowflake, boycotting something or urging for a revolution, all of which can be utterly exhausting.

Laissez les bon temps rouler
Thank God for Mardi Gras. I don’t think I have ever looked forward to seeing the barricades go up more than I have this year. Mardi Gras is always a welcome respite from the darkness of winter and post-holiday blues, but this year there is even more reason to let go of all the nastiness and catch up with your friends while snagging MoonPies, dirty stuffed animals and “the good beads.”

Who can get into an argument about politics while listening to the sounds of the Excelsior Band, for heaven’s sake? Only crazy people, that’s who! (Now you may get into an argument about who actually caught that dirty stuffed animal with a fellow parade-goer, but that’s OK.)

Areas to avoid that could get you unintentionally back into an argument about politics: What will happen to “good bead” prices if we get in a trade war with China. No discussion allowed on at what point life begins for the king cake baby. Everyone knows it’s the moment of confection! (I kid. I kid. King cake babies aren’t real, silly!)

The Super Bowl
No need to talk about TPP when you can talk about Xs and Os. Replace talk of hatred of Republicans and Democrats with how you loathe the Patriots and/or Falcons.

Areas to avoid: Don’t talk about how Tom Brady may or not be friends with Donald Trump. Just talk about how hot Tom Brady is. Ladies, men at football parties LOVE to hear that! Say things like “The lord really does give with both hands sometimes” and “Wow, he is that old and still looks that good and I think he even still plays football pretty well.”

Also, avoid serving salsa and Coronas as their mere presence could lead to a “discussion” between your two brothers-in-law about what should be done about the Southern border. Not cute! Try a cream cheese-based dish instead. No one has ever been able to turn a discussion into a popular vote versus Electoral College debate while munching on a dip made with Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Oh wait! Philadelphia is in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania was an upset for Trump. Cream cheese is too risky. Go sour cream-based instead!

The politics in our own backyard
Why talk about Washington when our own sweet little baby state capital Montgomery is such a crazy hormonal cesspool? Instead of talking about how horrible or hilarious you felt that photo of Air Force One with testicles Photoshopped on it was, talk about the ginormous cajones our governor must have for taking his alleged mistress AND her husband with him on the state plane to some event in D.C. (Yes, it was the inauguration. Shhhh! Don’t bring that part up! Focus on the Lovernor’s actions!)

I don’t know who is the bigger fool for putting up with this mess, Rebekah Mason’s husband or us — the citizens of Alabama —who are allowing him to continue to embarrass us with this tremendously SAD, elderly playboy behavior. Wait, don’t use those adjectives. How about enormously pathetic behavior? Yes, go with those.

If he gets out of impeachment by appointing Attorney General Luther Strange to Sessions’ senate seat, a march on Montgomery will be in order. I think those pink hats the ladies wore to Washington would also be applicable here.

The Grammys and The Oscars
Pretty sure there is no way to avoid political discourse during these shows, but a fun drinking game could be conceived for your guests to ease the tension. Or wait, would that elevate it? Maybe just watch movies and listen to music instead while talking amongst yourselves about things in your own lives, like your jobs, children, dogs, cats or your friends who didn’t bother to show up. Surely one of them is having an affair, suffering a substance problem, getting too much Botox, or has spawned rotten children with behavioral issues.

Isn’t it time to talk about the things we used to love to talk about before our positions on foreign policy and NAFTA? If only for a moment?

I am not trying to make light of what is a very serious time in our history. Or, well, yes, maybe I am. I know there are very big issues to address and figure out and I truly believe we will get there as a nation. But as one native Mobilian once sang, “If we couldn’t laugh we would all go insane.” Truer words have never been spoken.