Archives for May 2014


Why Support Poverty in Others?

Poverty – Madness

I have talked with several people, non-republican middle class folks who don’t believe the minimum wage should be increased to $15.00 per hour.  They made deprecating comments about how fast-food workers are not educated, why should they deserve $15.00 an hour?  Who will do the ‘crappy’ jobs? -they ask me.  Or they say, hamburgers will be $5.00…

I am so shocked and flabbergasted, I don’t even know where to begin.

So many millionaires have made their money through nefarious and illegal means.  The average American can now say that they have been swindled by a mortgage loan officer or a Pension/401K manager.  Let’s not even start on the profits made by those who own Walmart (I am sure that Sam Walton is in hell, who can perfect the perfect torture of backbreaking poverty, without going to hell?) Sam Walton systematically took advantage of poor undereducated people by withholding health insurance and proper benefits for full time workers (if not him, then his management staff).

We have twisted a perfectly good system that existed within the loose boundaries of capitalism and we have turned it into a system of royalty over feudalism.  You can only make money if you already have some and God bless you if you have no money.

I think that each and every one of us should give good will to everyone.  Why withhold support from fast food workers?  They don’t deserve it because they haven’t been to advanced schooling?  That’s ridiculous, we all know that ‘deserving’ has nothing to do with the acquisition of money.  We all know that.

The meanest, nastiest, lying, cheating thieves have billions of dollars – deserving has nothing to do with actually having money.

What will it cost you personally to support a poverty stricken full time worker to earn $15.00 per hour?  You already support the billionaires who cheat us, why not support people who actually work for a living?


Your Opinion Does Not Bother Me

What bothers me is that you think your opinion is “the” opinion.  You are unaware of your arrogance and your ethnocentricity.  You actually believe that you think for everyone – but of course – you believe that you think correctly.

How mistaken you are.  Your opinion is only idiosyncratic, in other words, it is your opinion and only yours.  What offends me is that you assert your opinion importantly, as if everyone must believe the same thing that you believe.  Of course, they do not.  Your spectrum of the universe is admittedly limited, in fact, you would know, after investigation, that your spectrum of the universe is extremely limited.  Your perspective is not only limited but very limited.  So, give up, you know nothing.  What you know is about your life, there are more than six billion lives on this planet.  Give up.


This Not That

Think This:

I am so glad that I am healthy enough to exercise.  I am able to walk without pain.  I enjoy fresh air and I can breath deeply.  By exercising, I know that I will be able to be a great grandmother.  I dearly want to live to be a great grandmother.

I can feel my body stretch, it’s like the atoms are alive in my muscles, they tingle.

Not That:

I am so tired, I don’t want to move.  I don’t want to get up and I especially don’t want to walk over there, it looks far away.  My muscles are sore and I don’t want to be sore.


This Not That…

Think This:

This morning is beautiful, the weather is dry and it’s not hot yet.  It’s only Tuesday, so I have lots of time to get the work done that I want to get done this week.  I’m excited at the thought of accomplishment!

Not That:

It’s only Tuesday and I am already exhausted, how will I make it through this week?

Bridge of Tears



In Ireland, there is a place called the Bridge of Tears, it is named because for more than a hundred years, when family members decided to go to America, the entire family would escort them as far as possible and here on the Bridge of Tears the families would separate.  Family members going on to America would leave their beloved families to travel onward, who then returned home.  The bridge was named to reflect the experience of the families, who often knew that they would never again see their loved ones.

Five years ago, when my family and I drove my daughter to Virginia with her queen size bed roped to the top of the Yukon, I believed we were going on a temporary mission.  As often happens with single parents, we make our world revolve around our children.  We have to, rarely do couple relationships become serious when your baggage include 3+ kids, particularly if they are teenagers.

Since that time, my family has changed significantly, we all tried moving to Virginia and that did not work out.  I even got married to the most fantastic man I have ever met.

It wasn’t until this week that I realized that with all of those familial changes, I still have not left the Bridge of Tears.  As my daughters and I tried to plan this year where we could see each other and I felt rejected by their responses, I realized that I still stand by the Bridge waiting for them to change their minds and return from their destinations.

I have not left the Bridge of Tears because I am afraid if I do, the mere act of leaving the Bridge will mean that I have truly lost them.  I am afraid I will not be there to welcome them home, I will not be there to guide their way back.  I lament what cruel twist of fate would take them from me for so long.  But it is not to be.

My daughters make their own homes now, they make homes for their own children, they do not return to me or the childhood of yesterday.  What I realize that I must do today is, I must leave the Bridge of Tears.  I must make a new life.  I must learn to make a new home, I am very lucky and – by the best twist of fate – I have someone showing the way – my husband.




Live Well, Laugh Often, and Love Much

He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much; who has enjoyed the trust of pure women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who has left the world better than he found it, whether an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had; whose life was an inspiration; whose memory a benediction.

Written by Bessie A. Stanley and published in 1911.

Reworded for Emerson’s quote:

To laugh often and much; To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.

It doesn’t surprise me that people keep attributing this work to a man, when it originally came from a woman.  When I was in school, I wrote a paper about the idolatry of male artists, while female artists are often ignored by history.  I just wanted to acknowledge Bessie A. Stanley for her enduringly positive philosophy.