Wednesday, July 31, 2013



 Just when I think the human race is doomed, because I have watched the idiocy on the news about voter registration or some such, I make the toy aisle at the local box store. This foray into the wonderland of toys is always redemption for the entire human race.

Today’s excursion was down the doll aisle. On one aisle resided the homogenous Barbies with their blond perfection and pink accessories. They are fun and have been around long enough for all of us to have worked out our anxieties with our therapists. Horror is being afraid as a little girl that you will never look like a Barbie. It doesn’t matter what color her hair is. Hair is not enough of a distinction to make a true identity difference. The figures on the dolls are all uniform. Their facial features have been stamped out to perfection, no noses with interesting bumps or other characteristics. Bodies are all uniform, small, thin, petite and impossible for a woman to achieve and live with.

Residing across the aisle from the Barbies are the Disney princesses. These are wonderful dolls with full color cartoons to go with them to enhance the many hours of play. These dolls are still pretty uniform. The Disney princess pretty much conforms to expectations. They are so uniform in fact that I had a drawing made of a warrior princess for my granddaughter. In this drawing the princess is wearing armor over her dress that has snow white sleeves and drawing her sword. It is not that I am militant about where girls should be, or their place in the military. It is just that these dolls represent such a traditional place in the world. I want my granddaughters to find their own place and not a place assigned to them by the princess industrial complex. We really want to raise girls who will seek all of the education they can achieve and make up their own minds about things.

Imagine my delight when I walked down the next aisle and saw the Monster High dolls. Now because they are combined mythic monsters, they represent true diversity. They come in many flavors. That is what struck me when I stood in the aisle and looked at them. How different they all are. Part vampire and squid, what an imaginative combination. All right, let’s cheer for the tormented mind at work that developed them. These combinations represent for little girls new possibilities no matter how gruesome the adults find them. These dolls can do things that Barbies or princesses can not and would not do.

There is hope for the human race after all. What starts in the toy aisle of the local box store will affect a generation’s attitudes. Monster dolls will do more for little girls, than auto mechanic Barbies, or physicist Barbie because the girls playing with these dolls will see new possibilities for beauty for themselves and others. We are all different. What fun they will have with these dolls imagining different and new things.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013



Why would a quiet introspective person want to spend time blogging? I am wondering as I type this… The introspective nature has given me a lot of time to think, and I have a rich inner world that I am willing to share. It has taken a lifetime to develop this inner view. Many people have had input into it, as they have moved through my life. I bring everything that I have seen and shared with me. This inner world requires discipline and energy. It also requires a willingness to take risks. Possibly the greatest risk to overcome is fear which would keep me from sharing this picture of my world with you.

There is so much noise in the world today. Everyone learns to screen out what they can. My inner life is one of peace. Peace must be worked for, it is not something you are given. You must surrender your vanity and strivings to begin to assimilate its presence into your daily activities. There are so many things over which one has no control. I have learned trying to control these things leads to discord and stress. So after many failed attempts, I have come to a place of peace and surrender about what I cannot control. Come with me. See what I can show you. Strive to live in peace.

Writing is the bravest thing a person can do. Submitting thoughts to a medium that could possibly exist forever is mind boggling. I have been comforted by the thought that I would pass from this place. My passing would leave the stage blank for those who come behind me. Perhaps they will live in better ways than I have lived, offer more than I have offered, show more than I have shown. The past should not be allowed to stand in the way of the future. Each of us must exit to make this important improvement. So now I face the possibility of lingering electronically to infinity. Not sure how I really feel about this.

My world is one of possibilities. Heroes and villains exist side by side struggling to understand their part. So, perhaps in some future, the myths I create might help someone to look forward and define themselves. Each of us has our own mythic reality. We must come to terms with ourselves and overcome the myths created for us. We must each write our own myth and begin to tell our own story. So I embark on that journey, not for the infinite future, but for you today who might find me. Let me show you my world.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013



I am not afraid of failure. Failing is tiresome and will make you revisit the things you thought you understood. But I am not sure loosing certainty is ever a mistake. When you think you have it all figured out, that is when you may be in danger of failing. Think about it…what does failure do for you? It gives you a second chance. Maybe some of us need more chances than others. I have always envied those with the conviction of their destiny.

I, however, have floundered down paths blundering along doing the best I could. Occasionally the paths have been wrong and I have had to turn and retreat. I find no shame in retreating, take your lessons and move along to a new place and begin again. In this journey, I have discovered important things about myself. Things I wouldn’t have known if I had not explored the option I have since discarded. People are of the opinion that as you age, you must surely move past this stage of making mistakes and trying things. I am not sure that is the case perhaps you only stop trying things if you become weak or ill.

My sticky notes are an elegant reminder of this type of adventure. The adventure that was a mistake, the one from which I had to backtrack. They have the shadow symbol of a red hawk on them. They will remind me not to be afraid to soar, even though I might make a mistake, I can always take another thermal current and try something else. I order the lot for the price break so I will have this reminder around for awhile.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013



My son and nephew were reminiscing about their younger days, I say this ironically because they are in their twenties and still children. During this review session, they reminded me about the technique for subduing them known by them as the “dreaded scary poking finger of death.” This finger appeared to jab them when they were being disorderly or a general public nuisance. They believe that I inherited this poking finger from my mother who used it on them also.

I need to clarify that they were “don’t let them build a devise” boys. Words of advice give to me by a professional when asked if they could get into trouble listening to conversations with a walkie talkie and a hand held phone.

They played hours of video games. Worlds were conquered, villains were vanquished, game levels mastered. At one point they even consulted with sailors who would mail their game discs to them to get them to help with their individual games. They played enough hours to warp their brains, so perhaps their behavior came under extra scrutiny when they were in public. I had to overcome my fear that they were not being properly raised, hence the “…poking finger…”

 They were expecting me to chastise my grandchildren. My grandchildren are lambs and 
will never require such a vigorous tool of chastisement as the “dreaded scary poking finger of death.” The scary poke of death was a direct tribute to their general unruliness and lack of deportment. My grandchildren will surely be better behaved and never require such a severe tool.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013



I remember talking to my paternal grandmother when she lived on such a tight budget that she counted the nickel phone call a luxury. She made a list of things she wanted to talk to us about. The children would line up to have their turn to talk to her. She was very business like in her phone conversations.

Having experienced this approach to phone conversation it is strange to see people go down the grocery store aisles chatting with a cell phone to their ears. I know someone is probably reading them the grocery list that they left at home. At some point we will surely be all talked out, as we continuously extend our conversations all hours of the day and night.

My brother developed a different approach to Sunday conversations. He calls us all when he has to return a call because he has to pay a certain rate for the first phone call and every additional one after that is free. We get to catch up with him on holidays and odd intervals as he uses his phone plan to his best advantage.

The old days of the Pershing exchange our phone number started with PE and then the rest of the phone number. We have become a nation of so many phone conversationalists  that our numbers are now ten digits long. We have so much more to say than we used to. I think we provide better support to each other than we did back then. Then if you had trouble you just had to deal with it, now you can call upon a bigger support system to help you. I think we live in a better world today. Those were not the good old days. As my grandmother would say, “time’s up.”