Showing posts from January, 2017

Some Days, I Can

Some days, I just can’t. I sit stunned while women I counted on to say “no” say “okay” to destructive people--even to someone who himself acknowledges he is not qualified--although all adults know that saying “no” early prevents all those uncomfortable contortions to justify your bad decision. I am less stunned when people pass legislation to prevent women everywhere from having information to make the best decisions for themselves, never mind ensuring that they have adequate medical care, never mind ensuring support and encouragement so they can contribute their gifts to this planet, which so desperately needs all gifts. I am even less stunned when women shout “jobs” while enabling antiquated visions of exploitation and pollution, instead of adhering to their best vision and principles to support innovation and conservation. Some days, I can foresee disappointments. Some days, I just can’t. Fortunately, I also can’t predict acts of courage. Yesterday, a


Sometimes, I need to turn away--turn my back on destructive people and events, in spite of the sick fascination they can offer. I think that fascination is what lures people into things like "hate-watching" something. You don't want to but you somehow can't stop? Yeah, that. But that feels horrible. It separates me from my work. It prevents me from doing what I can, however small my work and my efforts feel at times. So instead of turning away, I'm thinking about turning toward --looking for experiences and people that operate from respect. I'm focusing on people who can help me tinker and reconstruct, laugh and play, with respectful honesty. I welcome interaction with people who are curious enough to read and research. To listen (yes, I'm a broken record about that). To learn. That's where I'm putting my energy this week. Because I must.

A Word For...

My mother ran a household and raised five children, besides managing her career as a university teacher and researcher. She relied on rules, even or perhaps especially about the holidays. Christmas decorations and music could begin appearing on American Thanksgiving (aka Thanksgiving), but no earlier. The Christmas tree went up on December 21 (my father's birthday), probably because her classes were over and she'd turned in her grades. The Christmas tree came down on January 1, not only because it had likely dropped needles and we were all exhausted by the holidays, but also so that she could get the house back to normal and go back to focusing on her real love: teaching. As an adult, my life is less strict (and successful, by her standards). I recognize the value and meaning of her rules, but I also question how they apply to my life these days. So lately I've been searching for the word for "that feeling of knowing a special time is over but not wanting it

"Listen" Suggestions

It's a new year, and the recent US election seems like old news, except that it isn't--the ramifications grow bigger every day.  One recent "end of the year" highlight for Canada's news outlets was that the night of the election, searches in the US for "how to move to Canada" apparently spiked . (Note that the site linked isn't the official Government of Canada site, which has updated instructions and laws.)  So, Americans, here's something to know: Canadians love being the place where Americans move. Sorta. One thing don't love is that Americans assume it'll be easy.   I heard it expressed best this past summer by Jeff McArthur , a host on one of the morning news shows. I can't find the exact quote, but this is close: "Canada isn't like Disneyland. You can't just show up and pay an admission fee and expect to get in." Yeah. Maybe think a moment--what is it you have to offer Canada? Canadians are fluen