Tuesday, December 30, 2008


From the first Definition from Merriam-Webster's Dictionary Online.


Main Entry: res·o·lu·tion
Pronunciation: \ˌre-zə-ˈlü-shən\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English resolucioun, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French resolucion, from Latin resolution-, resolutio, from resolvere
Date: 14th century
1: the act or process of resolving: as a: the act of analyzing a complex notion into simpler ones b: the act of answering : solving c: the act of determining

***So...who's in?
Making a New Year's Resolution?

Not me; I think they just about set you up for failure. Why wait until 01/01/09 to resolve to change/make better/to resolve issues? If you're aware of a problem or something that needs to be addressed why not just go for it instead of waiting?

I understand - new year, new life, new resolve; it all goes so well together.
How about...next year, when you discover something you want/need to change you just go for it? Start a "new year" for yourself on your own terms (with your own date! give yourself a reason to celebrate a year from some random date in March or June or August or whenever...): especially when you're talking about things like your health (smoking, drinking), the health of the planet (recycling, reducing waste, eating organic foods), the well-being of others (donate time and money now!) etc. - can those things really wait? Aren't you just cheating yourself and others by putting this off?

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Yes, Virginia...

Eight-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York's Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897. The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history's most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps.

"DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old. "Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. "Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.' "Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?

VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong.
They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy.

Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.
Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus.

The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond.

Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding. No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Quote for Today

I don't believe people are looking for the meaning of life as much as they are looking for the experience of being alive.

Joseph Campbell

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Ansel Adams Quote

“It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment.”

Monday, December 8, 2008


Those of you who know me know that I am not a religious person (by any stretch...I think growing up going to a catholic school ruined that forever...) but that I am a very spiritual person and that I am quite a giving person as well.
I have been told that I am "altruistic" (and think in a lot of ways I am [see - it's just not all the time and really so many people make me crazy I just can't actually wear that title completely!]). There have been times/circumstances where I've given more than I should have, have helped to the point of "hurting" myself (financially [i.e. taking loans out to give people money {which I have done several times...}]). Etc.

Below is a copy of an email (slightly edited) I sent to my friends and family: please read:

"Most of you know my family and I starting to STOP buying gifts for each other (less my sisters' kids) years ago: just wasn't worth it to exchange candles, sweaters, pocket knives etc.

I am a firm believer Christmas (as far as gift exchange) is for kids. I am (effective now-ish) opting out of exchanging gifts with adults!

I want to be clear that I love and appreciate all of you: truly. But as I look around the world and see things I wish didn't exist I am drawn to give where it is truly needed.

Some of you want; I know this. I do too; thing is, neither I, 'nor any of you that I am emailing need as much as those I am choosing to give to. It's quite simply: just that simple.

My own personal belief is that as far as adults go: Christmas is for dinners, coffees, pizza and movies, hanging out: just being together: your gift to me is your time and mine to you is my time (god: hope it's worth it!)!

I have already embarked on endeavors of putting funds that might have been allocated to all of you (gulp!) into funds that I am allocating to needy families (as designated by the reverend who supports the hot meal group I volunteer with [NO - i am NOT becoming religious .our group just happens to do our meal at a church and…at least there’s a good way to find/help deserving people...]).

I hope you don't mind. If you do - come volunteer with me once and you won't mind anymore.

I want to maintain certain traditions: dinners, pizza and movies, fall-down-stupid-drunk-night (duh!) etc... thing is: I appreciate you and your time much more than the gifts you might present to me.

If you're wondering what to do with the $5, $10, $15 etc. you might have spent on me for Christmas: please ask: we'll choose a charity together!

Thank you all for your attention here.
Thank you all for your understanding and do: email, call, question me should you have any qualms, concerns, or wants for information!

Happy Holidays!
I hope they find you fed, warm and surrounded by love!

I just wanted to share it with all of you.
Sometimes I think it is just so easy to forget about those in need when we're busy with our own hustle and bustle.

Times are tough: really tough: I know.
Most of us are lucky if we still have jobs (my company actually still gave out nice bonuses: the staff got 10% more than they did last year - hello?? that's luck!) but no matter how tough they are for you and yours - someone (I guarantee it) has it tougher.

It's not a contest - to see who is worse off, it's just a reminder that when you walk by the Salvation Army buckets, or see giving trees at local stores or coffee shops etc. - give: please.

The thing about giving: it's not selfless (anyone see that old episode of 'Friends'? ha!). You feel so good and every time you reflect on your giving you feel good.

I just donated about 20% of my net bonus check in grocery store gift certificates and in the form of gifts bought to 5 families in need. One on the verge of losing their house, two with extensive medical bills and lack of funds due to not being able to work - and frankly I forget why the rest were in need; it doesn't matter. I wanted to run into the lounge and yell at the top of my lungs when I delivered my donations (and I wanted to do more and more and more; and I still may!)! I still feel like a million bucks if I think about it right now!

Now...I am not a rich person: by any means. I still have a car payment, student loans, a personal loan: you know: debt. I don't have thousands in the bank (by any stretch). But I know at Christmas I normally spend $500 - $750 (remember: I get a bonus to help me do it!) and to be able to give so much of it away - in the name of my friends and family who are gracious enough to accept gifts of donations being made in their honor as Christmas gifts...well damn it's a good feeling!

Try It!
You needn't go to the extreme I did: instead of a single in the Salvation Army bucket - stick a five in there. Instead of sleeping in on Christmas Day - go to a local shelter, church etc. and serve a meal; open your gifts when you get home: they'll take on a whole new meaning. You don't have to have extra cash - you can donate your time (also a very valuable commodity these days!) - once, twice or regularly.

Here's the bottom line: if you're reading this chances are you have a roof over your head, your heat is on (even if there's plastic on the windows and you're still cold!) and there's food (even if it's not everything you want it to be) in your 'fridge. Aren't you lucky?

We're not in this world alone and no one got to where they are by themselves...
Pay it forward; do something.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Quote for Today

Enlightenment is for sissies.
Living ethically and morally is what really matters.
-Brad Warner