Monday, January 15, 2018

A gift to any politican running for Congress

This is a free speech for any politician who chooses to run for Congress.

My friends, my neighbors, my fellow Americans. I am running to be your representative in what was once the most magnificent deliberative body in the history of the world. I am running as a (choose one) Let me be clear; I am not a Republican. I am not a Democrat; I am not an Independent, I am a concerned citizen of this great country, and I am running as an American who is willing to serve the greater good, not the party. I may have a party label because our current system only allows for two major parties and a few independent labels. We need other choices, but that’s for another time.

Here is my platform.

Fairness for all. Cooperation with all shades of opinion.

A promise to serve only one term in the Senate or two terms in the House. To generate support and pass term limits. To solicit a congressional vote to move congresses pension and health care back to what the average American must endure with social security and the current Medicare. To remove Congress as an exclusive club. To always be honest. To be courteous, cooperative, and combative for the common man and women, to be true to the founding values of our forefathers or any president who stood for principle over party.

Here is my phone number. I will call you back. Not In an hour, or a day, but soon as I can. Here is a litany of my affiliations and why I attach myself to them. Here are my weaknesses and perceived flaws and my perceived strengths. I will serve as an American, not for a political party. Vote for me if you have the courage.

Call me if you have any questions.


I had left-overs for dinner last night, and it was filling and fine. It was a simple meal, but ample and nourishing.

Up not a fan of left-overs, but with every bite, I thought of those throughout the world who didn't have left-overs to eat or where starvation is a constant worry. So many count the grains of rice for the pot to feed a family and deal with the ache of hunger as the body eats itself in a wrenching pain to stay alive.

My simple meal was to millions of souls around the world, a feast.

I had the pharmacy fill my prescriptions the other day. There are millions in the world who have no access to even simple medical treatments let alone to modern medicines to cure or prevent.

To get the same medical expertise, most of the world would have to walk for days or suffer in place.

I have a nice home. Good neighbors. I have heat, electricity, and freedom from fear. I know millions love their families, but who have no permanent home without the hostile and real intrusion of fear, and war.

With all these realizations, there comes a moment when I ask the question, “Why me?” “Why do I have so much and so many have so little?”

I don’t know the full answer and I suspect I never will until I get to the other side. I do know that even though there is no complete answer to my question, there is self-realization that appears when the question is asked, and they lead the way, not only to an appreciation of what I do have but to the responsibilities that go with the abundance.

Giving from substance.

Compassion and aid to those who suffer.

Tolerance of other’s beliefs.

Awareness of need.

Perhaps all of us who live in abundance should think of these things more often.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Saying "shit" on the air.

In the last 24 hours, I heard the word used as a quote, either spoken or written, or used once and then referred to the, “S” word so the nuance would be clear, on all the television networks, both broadcast and cable quoting the President of the United States referring to countries like Haiti and El Salvador.

I think our national puritanical under-garments are showing. We are not too far removed from those pilgrim beginnings. When I was a youngster and even into my teens, my Mother would not tolerate vulgarity in our house-hold. I never heard my Father use any vulgar words unless it was outside the home and then only rarely.

Me? (Sorry Mom), I use them often in expletives at other drivers, (my friends will attest to that). I use them when I see cruelty to humans and animals, at comments about congressional irresponsibility and when I slam my thumb when closing the dish-washer.

My Mother used to say when she did something that required an expletive, “phish-posh and piddle paddles.” I tried it once, but it never worked for me.

The way Mr. Trump used the term was not presidential and internationally offensive. The way some of the media reported the quote needs to be modernized. Get over it!

Thursday, January 11, 2018

America - Wake Up!

Never before have we had a President lie, obfuscate, delude and misinform as we have now.
Never before have we had a President create such confusion and consternation as we have now.
Never before have we had a President so not respected in the litany of world leaders.
Never before have we had a President create chaos in the daily White House as we have now.
Never before have we had a President say he will, and then he won't or say he won't then he will on numerous issues.
Never before have we had a President who refuses to reveal his personal and business finances.
Never before have we had a President who calls those with whom he disagrees derogatory names. Never before have we had a man in our top leadership position who promised to drain the political swamp, but instead fills it with muck and mire.

I know some of my friends supported this man in his quest to become president. I understood then their desire to see change, their hope for a better political world; I do not understand now how after a one year in office anyone can continue to support a man who is so devious, so ego-centric, and so anti-ethical American.

I want change too, but not at the expense of democracy, decency, and the deportation of innocents.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Young and Old

Hey Seniors, if you ever get a chance to spend some quality time with young people I would recommend that you do so. Most of us elders forget what it was like when we were in our teens and twenties. We think we remember, but when it comes right down to it, we don’t. We remember the essence of being young, but not the specifics and the particularity. Our imaginations remember better than what it is in reality.

I was a teenager in the mid-50’s. The time of James Dean, the actor not the singer. The time of Elvis, hotrods, fallout shelters, Yankees dominating the American League pennant race, Black Jack gum, Howdy Dowdy, Glass soda pop bottles, fifty-cent movies.  Captain Video, I love Lucy and cigarette ads all over the television, magazines, and newspapers, Ed Sullivan on Sunday night TV and Edward R. Murrow on CBS.

We had our wars too. Korea was prominent, but the death and dying of American troops were not. It was just as tragic as today and numerous, but we didn’t know about it for weeks or months. The media’s technology had not yet developed enough to share instantaneous information.

Today’s teens know who their entertainment and social heroes are, and they are environmentally aware, and most young diligently recycle. Their cognitive powers are far more advanced than mine was as a teenager.

They are conscious of their sugar intake, and they have heaps of information from computers and iPods available to them to augment their interests, amplify their studies and their hopes and wishes.

Margaret Mead, the noted anthropologist, recommended that the old and the young spend time together. She posited that time together encourages each to acknowledge the other in themselves. She concluded it forms a new agreement between generations.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

The touch of Sunshine

I had a profound awareness the other morning as I sat in a chair next to an Easterly window. The sun rose without morning cloudiness to obscure or dilute its light. I was reading a book while the early morning light bathed my shoulders with its warmth through double glazed windows.

I paused in my reading and thought of my old friend, singer, entertainer, actor, activist and environmentalist John Denver and his song, “Sunshine On My Shoulders.”

I replayed in my mind his many gifts to the world.

John was a poet, a singer of songs, a friend to many, an idol of millions the world over. He died in a plane crash in October 1997.  We continue to honor our friend with personal memories of his laughter and his profound intellect.

We remember his public gifts of song and self, his harmonies of love and nature, his vision for a sustainable future and all of the joys of life he shared through an extraordinary ability to entertain.  His songs would take us to places where troubles couldn't reach, at least for a while. His lyrics encouraged us to seek a higher ground, a metaphor for a better way. His hugs were special for they were given without condition and his smile personified his spirit and his love of life and humankind.

I think now we celebrate his life without the salt of sadness, and that's right, but we still miss him. We all come into this world, make choices, make sacrifices, laugh a little, love a little, cry a little and learn through experience that the real importance of life is to share our gifts, to be true to ourselves and to make the world a bit better place to live.

I hope I have more sunshine on my shoulders soon. I like the memories it engenders.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Turning 80! Oh! Not me, yet.

As I write this, I am listening to “A Te, O Cara,” from the opera “I Puritani” by Bellini. It is one of my favorite selections of all Operas, with the possible exception of Puccini’s “O Soave Fanciulla” in La Boheme.

Having said that and the fact that this post has nothing to do with the music I am listening to, but everything to do with the generation of comfort, I suppose they are minutely and mystically connected.

I recently returned from a gathering of elders and almost elders celebrating the 80th birthday of a mutual friend.

I looked around the long table of aging friends and felt privileged being in their company for they are all successful and accomplished gentlemen either active or retired in their chosen professions.

It mattered not that we were all friends from previous outings and experiences. At the moment of dining and libation, we were all equal colleagues and acquaintances joyfully celebrating a singular and unique moment in another’s life.

My mind moved to what some mystics call “the sacred moment of being,” and I rejoiced at the moment, the feeling of freedom, the wonder of expectation and the knowing that connection is instantaneous and fleeting in this density and time, but eternal elsewhere.

I will see these souls again here, if that is given to me to experience and if not here somewhere else in the eternity of being. Trying to fathom that moment in a restaurant bar with glasses clanking and dishes rattling, and ambient laughter is at best awkward, but possible if one genuinely lives in the moment.
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