Lessons from a Child

child handing flower to adult

She was dressed in pink sweatpants with the word, “sweet” emblazoned on her diaper-clad bottom.

On her feet were brown clogs. Atop her head was a wool, knitted, patchwork cap of pink, yellow, and red, giving her a pastel “Rastafarian” look. However, instead of dreadlocks wrapped within, a waterfall of blonde, bouncy, curls framed her wide-open blue eyes and light complexion.

In her chubby, small, right hand, she carried what used to be a cookie; now, however, all that remained was a half eaten, saliva-covered, dollop of doughy goo with a smattering of pink frosting encrusting the edges. “Cookie” in hand, she bounded as if on springs from one corner of the bakery to the other, her grandfather always in eye shot, as she pointed to each of the items on the bottom shelf of the bakery’s glass case, looking to him for the correct word.

“Cookie,” he said, as she pointed to a green, sprinkle covered cut-out of a dinosaur.

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Shaking Up My Thoughts

After the day’s folderol has wound down, it’s time to relax.

Lay on the couch please

Planted habitually on the left side of the couch, my wife places on herself an animal-print blanket she sewed, and the then places on said animal-print blanket three animals: two cats and a dog. I sit on the other side of the sofa and we watch TV, check out a movie, read, or – gasp! – possibly even talk to each other.

If you’re looking for wild parties, we’re not the go-to place. I’m not sure we ever were, but for a fact, I know we’re not now. We’re not exciting – and that’s the way we like it.

Recently, our pattern was most literally shaken up when the ground began trembling.

If you live in earthquake country, you know what comes next. If you don’t, there’s a mental and emotional checklist one goes through at the first inkling of a temblor.

1)    Look for others nearby and check their reactions to decide if you’re just dizzy or disoriented, or to get validation that the movement beneath your feet is actually happening.

2)    Determine if a large vehicle is rumbling down your street vibrating the entire neighborhood.

3)    Check to see if hanging objects are swinging.

4)    If indeed you are neither inebriated nor are tanks or eighteen-wheelers patrolling your street, and your favorite dangling knick-knack is making like a pendulum; then commence praying that this now verified earthquake will not be the “Big One.”

5)    Feel fear rise up in your throat. Decide if you’re heading for safety. Wait for quake to pass. Realize how powerless you are in the grasp of Mother Nature.

Steps one through four pass blindingly fast.

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You’re Going to Pay For it Either Way

man-paying-moneySince change only comes about as a result of fear, force, or pain; we’ll do what we can to deny we need to change as long as possible

— or at least until we’ve been psychically knocked upside the head long enough and can no longer disagree that things aren’t going as planned.

Should you wish to question that premise that change only comes about due to an excessive amount of yicky-ness, can we first agree that no one, not one person, wakes up, conducts a self-inventory, and exclaims, “Wow! Things are perfect! Let me see how I can muck them up”?

The unfortunate counter-reality is we decide to modify our lives only when two conditions are met:

  1. Life is not performing anywhere optimal level — and
  2. We can no longer fool ourselves into believing, should we follow the present course, it will change anytime soon

Only once we are defeated, will we begin the process.

It’s sad, but it’s true.

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There’s Nothing Worse…

I am not a snob; anyone who meets me would agree.

snob manWell, except those of an obviously lesser bloodline, of course. But, who cares about them anyway?

Having placed that firmly on the table, I know I can be, um, shall we say, “particular” about certain things and at times, might be prone to splash myself with a faint — very faint — scent of curmudgeonly, especially around speaking and writing.

As illustration, this is the second month of the year, pronounced “Feb-RU-ary,” not “Feb-U-ary.” Should you doubt, you can find out that I’m correct at the li-BRARY (not the “li-BARY”).

I manage to keep my mouth about “Febuary” because one only has to deal with it for 28 days a year.

Yet, lasting seemingly in perpetuity is misuse of  “your” and “you’re.”

The former is possessive while the latter is a contraction for, “you are.” Therefore, one would not write, “Your looking thin,” nor “I love what your doing with the house.” One might however write,

“When you’re on your way over, please let your hosts know if you’re bringing your children.”

See, isn’t that nicer?

Finally can we clarify that those of us on diets are attempting to “lose” weight, not “loose” it? (Ironically, “loose weight” is usually what started us on the path to “losing weight.”)

However, the expression that causes my head to explode is the self-important exaggeration, “There’s nothing worse than…”

This rose to my awareness on a TV commercial for an on-line postage service. In touting its (not “it’s”) benefits, a gentleman exasperatingly laments, “There’s nothing worse than standing in line at the post office.”

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