Thank You for the Woman With Talking Eyes

•November 24, 2016 • 12 Comments

When I was nine years old, a woman came to our door with a large box of food the day before Thanksgiving.

She was a petite, kind looking woman in a navy blue coat. She had no idea what she was in for when she traipsed through the Michigan snow to knock on our door.

My mother, a paranoid schizophrenic, just happened to be having one of her episodes when this gentle woman came to our door on her mission to contribute to Humanity.

“What the Hell do you want?” My mother was not used to people knocking on our door.

Nor were her four children who stood in the background, peering through the doorway at the woman carrying a much needed box of food that appeared bigger than her.

“Mrs. Kelley, we were told by the school that your family might enjoy this Thanksgiving box and I’d like to leave it for you and your children.” The woman stepped back from the door a couple inches.

My mother yelled at the woman, “Who the Hell told you we needed charity? I don’t want anybody’s Goddamn charity! You can take that back where you got it and go piss up a rope!”

My three younger brothers and I remained quiet in the back ground as we had learned better than to contradict anything my mother said when she was like this. Our hearts sank as we had no food in the house for three days and this beautiful woman was being admonished for being our hero.

I stared at the woman’s face peeking through the space between the door jamb and my mother’s shoulder. She was trying to make eye contact with me.

She looked down at the box of food and then at me as my mother continued her threatening posture and paranoid rant a couple feet away from the woman’s bravery.

“You can all go to Hell! I don’t want anything from any of you! You just want me to kiss your ass! I’m not going to do it! Get the hell outta here!”

I sensed the woman was trying to tell me something as she responded to my mother’s paranoid accusations.

“Okay, Mrs. Kelley, I understand. There was probably a mistake. I’ll just take this to a family who might need it. I am so sorry to have bothered you. This is a lovely porch.”

She looked at me directly in the eyes and again at the food box and then to the porch next to the door.

I got it.

She said good bye. My mother slammed the door and went to her room mumbling about charity.

My younger brothers looked confused when I waited for a few minutes to make sure my mother was going to stay in her room and then went back to the door.

“She’s already gone, Lea. It’s too late.” one of them whispered.

I quietly opened the door and looked at the place on the porch next to it.

The box was there!

I made the best Thanksgiving dinner a nine year old can make out of canned goods and my mother came out to eat with us as though she had no idea how the food got there.

To that lovely woman in Midland, Michigan:

Who ever you are, where ever you are now, I will always remember your talking eyes.

Thank you.



Thank you for Eating Crow with Humble Pie for dessert (but I’m full)

•November 10, 2016 • 5 Comments

Dignity is defined as “the state of being worthy of honor or respect”.

Human Dignity is used to signify that all human beings possess inherent worth and deserve unconditional respect, regardless of differences among us.

We, as Americans seem to bounce from indignity to indignity.

We try, but we just can’t seem to get it right.

There is always some kind of victim in the wake of our historical and social development.

It is becoming embarrassing that we live with, and tolerate injustices toward each other and accept as authorities those who would humiliate us and strangle our sense of fairness and what we know is right as human beings.

Even as we are still eating (Jim) Crow over the travesties we have committed in our brief history by enslaving one people (African Americans) while usurping the land of another people (Native Americans), we now prepare our dessert.

“Humble pie” was considered inferior food, in medieval times.

The pie was often served to lower-class people and was originally called “Umbal” pie. It consisted of liver, heart and otherwise undesirable cast offs from any beast eaten by the wealthier class.

Evidently, Poverty is the new Black.

We continue to treat the poor (of all races) as though they were separate from us, as though they should somehow rise above their station and join those who do not sit in waiting rooms, submitting to scrutiny of their lives to feed their children.

We keep them standing in lines at low income housing, food banks, and the few overcrowded medical clinics that will accept them.

We segregate them from blatant view by insulating ourselves with the ridiculous notion that they have every opportunity to alleviate their own plight.

It is apparent that humiliating one another has woven it’s way into acceptability as a permanent attribute of our culture.

Not only have we oppressed and humiliated ourselves, our own, but now we have been so numbed by the prevalence of a lack of dignity, that we don’t even balk when we are required to strip to our underwear at an airport or submit to searches, surveillance, inspection, and  herding of humans into the slaughterhouse of our dignity.

We have expanded our menu.

Evidently, acquiescence is the new Patriotism.

Patriotism:  A pride in one’s culture or nation.

The implication of such devotion to a “fatherland” that one is willing to even sacrifice one’s life for the ideals that it stands for.

Sacrificing our humanity by humiliating others, naming them the lessor, the other, the enemy, the evil, or any other term that inches us toward idiocy so we can build a selective economic empire on their suffering and loss of dignity is just too much to swallow anymore.

I am full up to here with Crow and I would like to skip dessert, if you don’t mind.

Thank you for Gabriel

•September 18, 2016 • Leave a Comment

When I think of the name Gabriel I am reminded of stories about the angel, Gabriel, who served as a messenger from God to various people.

In my child bearing years, I said, “If I ever had a son, I would name him Gabriel.”

That was decades ago and I never did birth a son, but last year I met one.

We are the children of one another, and we are a parent to one another (we are all apparent to one another, if we look).

I met Gabriel (an exchange student) in a classroom and we have been friends in learning for over a year. He is a young person who is extraordinary at seeing life through the lens of a seeker and sharing what he sees.

We email back and forth, as he has moved back to Brazil since we met, to share our thoughts and viewpoints about Humanity, spirituality, and random revelations on evolving consciousness here on Earth.

While I am old enough to be Gabriel’s mother, or even grandmother, he frequently teaches me about living authentically and exploring the world with the enthusiasm and the sincerity of youth.

Gabriel reminds me that being alive is an endeavor of magic and inquiry about our own nature. He is a messenger with an exceptional ability to reflect his thoughts through a mirror of contemplation and compassion.

I am always delighted to see young people who demonstrate depth and true thoughtfulness in the world. It inspires me, and encourages me to be hopeful about the future of humans, and grateful for the ones who contribute to their evolution.

Thank you for Gabriel, a true messenger and child of the Universe.


who we are.jpg

Thank You for Things We’re Allowed to Take Without Asking

•August 5, 2016 • 9 Comments

(and not be stealing)

a breath


a hint

a shower

a minute

a break

a memo

a photo of a landscape

a vow


a compliment

a powder

a stand or action against injustices

the cake

pity on the soul of…

it easy

another little piece of my heart, now baby


a bite (if it’s your plate)

a look around

command of a situation

our time

a risk

a walk

it or leave it

the hand of a loved one

the trash out

a nap

a closer look at ourselves


a bow

pride in an accomplishment

home a doggy bag

charge of our own lives

There now, take that!

Thank you for Walking The Good Red Road

•May 30, 2016 • 5 Comments

The expression The Good Red Road originated in Native American tribes to represent one who is walking the road of balance, living right and following the rules of the Creator.

Some basic rules of the Road:

1. Search for yourself, by yourself. Do not allow others to make your path for you. It is your road, and yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but no one can walk it for you.

2. Treat the guests in your home with much consideration. Serve them the best food, give them the best bed and treat them with respect and honor.

3. Do not take what is not yours. Whether from a person, a community, the wilderness or from a culture. It was not earned nor given. It is not yours. You cannot enjoy what it not yours.

4. Respect all things that are placed upon this Earth.

5. Rise with the sun to pray. Pray alone. Pray often. The Great Spirit will listen, if only you speak.

6. Honor other people’s thoughts, wishes and words. Never interrupt another or mock or mimic them. Allow each person the right to a freedom of opinion. Respect that opinion.

7. Never speak of others in a bad way. The negative energy that you put out into the universe will multiply when it returns to you.

8. All persons make mistakes. No matter how small or how large the mistake is, it can still be forgiven.

9. Bad thoughts cause illness of the spirit, the mind and the body. Keep bad thoughts at bay. Practice optimism.

10. Nature is not for us, it is a part of us. Treat all natural beings as members of your family.

11. Children are the seeds of our future. Plant love in their hearts and water them with wisdom and life’s lessons. When they are grown, allow them find their own place.

12. Keep yourself balanced. Your Mental self, Spiritual Self, Emotional Self and Physical self all need to be strong, pure and healthy. Work out the body, to strengthen the mind. Grow rich in spirit to cure emotional ails.

13. Make conscious decisions as to who you will be and how you will react. Be responsible for your own actions.

14. Treat the elders as special gems – their wisdom will shine.

15. Be true to yourself first.

red road

photo by me

Thank you for Deliberating the Intent of the In Tense

•May 18, 2016 • 3 Comments

There are few things more emotionally bruising than not being understood or feeling misjudged through the eyes of someone else’s presumptions.

A person’s intent is not always apparent in their actions.

Sometimes a person’s intent is not even apparent to them, let alone to anyone else.

There are so many unspoken rules to social interactions.

There are so many pitfalls that can send us reeling into hurt feelings, defensive postures, and deemed rejection or indignities.

A lot of minutes are wasted asking ourselves questions about what someone else meant or speculating on the intentions of others instead of using our out loud voice for clarification when we need it.

Why is it so hard to say “Can you explain what you mean by that?”

Why do we assume the intent of another as if we are supposed to know everything there is to know about the mechanics of their mind?

Granted, there are times when it is best to say nothing at all or to let verbal mishaps slip away into error and delete justification.

But other than a slip of the toungue or a forgivible brain fart, we are accountable for our interactions with other human beings—on both the giving and the recieving end.

The cruelest and most arrogant of contentious behaviors is passive aggressive.

To carry around a resentment over a perceived insult without deliberating on the intent with the presenter is like transporting an open jar of rattlesnake venom on a bumpy road.  It can’t really be contained. It’s gonna spill all over everybody.

I know some people don’t feel comfortable clarifying in a converstion.

It may feel too much like confrontation or look like ignorance.

Maybe some folks think it takes too much time to ask a question before they formulate an opinion or come to a conclusion.

I can’t know.

But I am thankful for those who ask questions when they don’t understand me, who deliberate on wether my words are deliberate or not.

Sometimes I get a little intense and stuck in the IN Tense but it does not always reveal my intent.

I am still working on my language development skills.

Thanks for listening, but thanks even more for speaking up if you don’t understand.

I need the practice.


Thank you for Dandelions

•May 9, 2016 • 1 Comment

Not everyone gets to be a movie star, a great scientist, a tzar, or a specialist in some field that changes the world in the eyes of their peers.
Here in the “garden” there are many flowers; rare orchids, blue blood roses, shrinking violets, heirloom varieties, fragile stems with showy petals, and once in a while—usually in an alley somewhere in Detroit or a dark rest area on the road to nowhere—venus flytraps.

But today I am thankful for dandelions. We call them weeds.
Dandelions are common laborers, survivors, migrants, quick to take root in all the wrong places, getting ripped up and discarded into compost piles and mowed down by special landscapers who think beauty is a contrived walkway to a pristine palace.

No matter how we try to rid our culture of dandelions, they will always return. They will pop up in manicured lawns, create cracks in smooth side walks to poke their cheerful little heads through, and take over entire fields overnight. They are the ultimate in representing survival.

Dandelions don’t know they are not supposed to cross boundaries. They have no care for superficial esthetics or territory marked “elite”. Dandelions are the ones that we can count on to bring color to our world in environments where others would wilt and die. They are worthy of our respect and appreciation.

But even dandelions must abide by the cycles of life. They root, they bloom, they seed, and they let go of the present, to ride breezes into the future. It is the way of all things, this cycle.
But at least dandelions are cheerful while they are here.

Thank you for Human Voice

•May 4, 2016 • 2 Comments

Vox Humanus. The human voice.

As a person who has spent a great deal of time alone in silence, I can say there is barely such a thing as silence. Even in the middle of the Nevada desert surrounded by miles of nothing and stars I have heard my own heartbeat and the blood rushing into my ears in an effort to find a sound to assimilate.

Sometimes while I am in “silence” I hear my mothers voice, the voices of my friends (even the ones who are not on Earth anymore), my own voice in my head to fill the void. These voices are merely generated by my own thoughts and associations with others. The human voice is very powerful. It penetrates the voice of silence like nothing else can. The vibration of a human voice travels in a way that causes other sounds to become background noise.

When I miss people, I miss their voice. When I fall in love, it is the voice that opens my heart. When I hurt, it is the voice of my friends that soothe me. When I listen to a song, the voice pushes through the music to touch me.

I am primarily a visual person, but the human voice can connect me to feelings and pull me out of isolation and busy brainiac endeavors like no other sound. I am thankful for the human voice.

My Photo of “A voice in the desert”

Thank You for All the Roads to Here

•May 11, 2016 • 2 Comments

There is no There, only Here.

Every time I try to get there, I end up here.

Interestingly, everyone else ends up here too.

It does not seem so crowded as one would imagine.

Sometimes I think too much.

I think about Where I am going, with a capital W.

Will I get there?

What happens when I get There.

I’ll tell you what happens…

I end up here without a capital T.

I have done a lot of traveling, all over the physical world, far away to the imagination world, and deep into the tiny dark corners of my own internal world.

I have been to Here and back.

All roads do NOT lead to Rome.

They lead to Here.

I am thankful to be Here today.

And I am very thankful you are here with me.

Thank you for This One Special Moment

•May 10, 2016 • 6 Comments

This one transient, elusive, special moment filled with;

All the memories and thoughts and joys and sorrow and life experiences that have brought me here to be a part of this one special…

Oops, it’s gone now…

Oh, look! Here’s another one…

Thank you for this one special moment that I may cling to for…

Oops, another one, gone…

Hey! Here’s another!

Thanks for this one special moment that I get to reflect on all the special moments that make up my life.

Note to self:

Moments are brief. Life is short. Be in the moment so you don’t miss it.

Thank you for the Mother of my Invention

•May 8, 2016 • 3 Comments

Over the years, I have observed the relationships between my friends and their mothers (and one very lovely stepmother in the case of Karma, who was fortunate enough to have two good mothers).

I have listened to my friends discuss histories, memories, struggles, lessons, and situations with their mothers that fascinated me, concerned me, and sometimes made me glad I was born to mine.

At other times, I wished I could experience the kind of bond they had, which I can only view from the outside of those relationships.

Watching these women and their mothers has taught me a lot about the nature of Woman.

We start out as little girls with so many needs, and evolve into nurturers from nurturers.

In time, we seem to inevitably become the mother to our mothers.

My own limited experience in the traditional mother/child relationship affords me the opportunity to romanticize, conjecture, and watch with curiosity and amazement, the unfolding mystery of my women friends as they have grown into themselves and became mother to their own mothers.

My mother, through no fault of her own, inspired me to learn this lesson of the “mother role switch” early in life and has gifted me with the life that makes me who I am.

I am thankful for the mother of my invention and the mother in all of us.

Mother Goddess with Child, Uttar Pradesh, Gupta period, 575-625

Thank You for Isolation

•May 3, 2016 • 2 Comments

Painting of Lea Kelley by Jack

Watercolor: Lea Kelley by Jack L.

I’m wondering about our general view of the word Isolation.

Maybe because isolation is associated with loneliness, or quarantines, or separation from the familiar, we are averse to going there.

Maybe isolation looks like tuberculosis or severe depression or seniors who don’t have a car.

When I think of isolation, I see a shiny silver object standing out from a multitude of brass objects.

The word isolation sounds like silence on the prairie, a frozen glass house in a pristine field touched by one ray of sunlight.

Isolation looks like a row boat in the center of a calm lake.

But on the banks of that calm lake is a strong force that keeps pulling the row boat back to shore.

Though I love a solo boat ride on a lake under a full moon, I also like coming back to tell someone how beautiful it was.

We are not meant to be alone for too long, I think.

“Social isolation in both animals and humans can be responsible for a range of psychological effects, including anxiety, aggression and memory impairment,” said Dr. Erminio Costa, director of the UIC Psychiatric Institute.

Extreme isolation or forced isolation can hurt us by making us forget who we are.

But sometimes, if we get the opportunity, we can experience the kind of isolation that heals the overtaxed human and helps us remember who we are.

Everyone knows you have to isolate a problem to fix it.

Isolationism in world affairs means refusing to participate in someone else’s war.

Now, if everyone refused at the same time, that might be good, making war an isolated incident.


The advice of Switzerland’s popular saint, Nicholas of Flüe (1417-87), “Don’t get involved in other people’s affairs” has been the hallmark of Swiss policy for nearly 500 years. The country has in effect been neutral since 1515, a status formally recognised and guaranteed by the great powers of Europe after the Napoleonic Wars in 1815.

So isolationism must not be so bad, eh?

Thank You For Breakfast for Dinner

•May 2, 2016 • 3 Comments

My favorite dinner is breakfast food so I eat breakfast on Australia time.

Who decided what time is a good time to eat a specific food?

I don’t understand the rules about time sensitive food consumption and food combination taboos.

Why are we not allowed to eat meatball sandwiches at 8 am?

Why is it that no one else thinks salad goes well with pancakes?

Why do we refrain from putting fresh peas on top of our ice cream?

Who said cheese and apples with wheat crackers is not a meal?

Why must we adhere to rigid food rules and who made them?

Okay, yeah, the USDA and the American Medical Association spent a lot of time and money to get us away from eating bison for three months of the year or living on nuts and berries in the fall, but I think that whole “Balanced Meal” thing has gone too far.

Dairy corporations, the US Beef and Cattle Industry, and the National Corn Growers association like to keep balanced marketing practices and they got friends in high places who define a balanced meal.

I bet when they all get together for dinner, they just have martinis and olives— or maybe they have vegetarian and vegan food with tofuti for dessert. I can’t know.

I do know there are some things we should not combine for gastrointestinal reasons and some things we should not eat often for obesity avoidance reasons and some things we should not eat at all for fear of death but hey, other than that,  I think it’s okay to eat dessert first.

I also think it would be a whole different culture if the fifties television shows depicted Ward Cleaver’s wife scrambling eggs when he got home from work.

Thank You for the Language of Alone and the Meaningful Crowd

•May 2, 2016 • 4 Comments

There are very few people, no matter how much they love you, who are going to crawl into your coffin with you when you die.

And, unless you are a twin, nobody helped you find your way through the birth canal either.
There are just some things we’ve got to do alone.

There are also some things we can only discover alone.

I exchanged e-mails with a new pal recently in which he stated;
“The universe has emphatically insisted that I learn to enjoy life and find peace, meaning, and happiness, alone, as I am.”

This pal is having difficulty adjusting to aloneness after being in a twenty year relationship into which he naturally wove his sense of identity and meaning.

The transition through lonely, to lonesome, into alone is a very arduous journey for one’s psyche.

It is a path of revelation and discovery that can barely be put into words—it’s emotional and irrational and has a language of it’s own.

Anyone who has spent a lot of time alone, whether by a self induced circumstance, or merely by factors beyond their control, has whispered or screamed in this language of aloneness to themselves.

We discover most things about ourselves in the reflection of other human beings.

From birth through childhood, into adult relationships, we form much of our sense of belonging and meaning in the world through those in our environment.

We modify our behavior, adjust our perspectives, and grow into self awareness from the responses by those around us.
That is how we learn to walk, talk, and grow emotionally.

Through all of this we are alone.
Not isolated, but alone.

Some of us never experience our aloneness.
Some of us fear it.
Some of us are lost without being directed by the external road map of others’ response to our being.

While we are an interactive species with needs like touch, communication, and a sense of community, we don’t live in puppy piles.
And even puppies wander away from the pack at a certain point.
When they do return to the pack, they have better hunting skills to contribute to that collective.

The romanticism of “togetherness” that is instigated by survival needs, and promulgated into unrealistic ideals by poetry and cultural influences can contribute to our feeling abandoned or isolated when we are only alone.

We are still a part of the meaningful crowd even if we recognize our aloneness within it.

But there are so many factors involved in the language of aloneness.
This is the part where I post a link to a previous blog:



Thank You For Coming to My Senses, One at a Time

•May 1, 2016 • 2 Comments

I watch, I listen, I taste, smell, and sense the world around me.

Sometimes the world is a little much, and I can get a bit over-amped on stimuli.

If the computer is on, the phone is ringing, dinner is burning, and I’m chewing peppermint gum while standing in the shower, my whole world can short circuit.

Then I have to change a fuse or reset the circuit breaker.

Everything must be rebooted, one thing at a time.

I’m not a good multi-tasker when it comes to inundating my senses.

I like using one sense at a time so I can really experience it.

If I’m watching a sunset, I like quiet around me so my eyes can concentrate.

If I’m listening to classical music, I prefer not to be eating spicy Mexican food at the same time.

When I’m smelling a rose or an orange, I close my eyes.

During a massage, I don’t want to smell a BBQ or hear fire alarms and sirens.

My brain is a busy place, and sometimes I have to be selective about what comes through the revolving door into it, or it can get so crowded that I can’t concentrate on anything.

It can be like trying to carry on five conversations at once when all my senses are working simultaneously, nobody gets heard.

So I try to choose one focal point at a time.





or Otherwise

This is not always a practical approach—like when I’m driving a car or walking through a dangerous jungle—but I do what I can to make sense out of my experiences.

One at a time…

Thank You for Avoiding Omniscient and Powerless Succubi

•May 1, 2016 • Leave a Comment


There are those who know everything and use the rest of us like a verbal trash can without a clue about recycling or reciprocal interactions.

They are the ones among us who seem to think that other people are just props and extras in the movie about THEM.

On that line between givers and takers, they stand with an open satchel to be filled with accolades while they hold the gun of erudite sagaciousness to our heads.

I call these folks Succubi (pronounced suck-you-bye)

In mythology, a succubus is a demon that pretends to be a charming person so they can seduce the bejeezus out of an unwary virtuous person.

Modern day Succubi come in many forms, all of them designed to fill bottomless satchels under the guise of handing out gifts of wisdom and favors to those in need of profound salvation from self and unnamed ignorance.

Now there…

View original post 479 more words

Thank You for A Heart of Armor and Tinsel

•April 29, 2016 • 6 Comments

I was a gangly, awkward kid with screaming red hair. I was too tall, had skinny legs, big feet, and no command over my growing body.

I could find a way to trip over a piece of lint.

Yep, if there was a clumsy kid that was meritable of being ridiculed, shunned, or targeted by peers as the outlet for derision only known to children, ‘twas I.

Redheads have to be tough kids.

All redheaded boys should be named Sue so they can practice beating up their dads when they get older.

Redheaded girls learn to read fast and run fast— early.

They have to outwit jokes about woodpeckers, copperheads, and rusty brains or they have to fight or run fast (hiding is not an option with bright red hair).

So, I got smart and I got tough, yep. (insert Johnny Cash soundtrack)

Other children are the best teachers when it comes to developing social armor while growing into one’s feet.

My social armor was a great facade. I was aloof to peer jeers. I was self righteous in my defensively inflated intellectual capacity—did I mention kids also hate it if you act smarter than them.

I tripped and fell and gangled my way through childhood, pretending I was normal and other kids were just immature.

I learned to analyze, justify, and tolerate the ignorant behavior of others.

I thought I was doin’ pretty well with my armor development, immune to verbal cannibalism, until I had to confront a formidable act of kindness.

Some silly kid actually said “I’m sorry” .

I was completely befuddled and burst into tears.

Kindness can turn armor into tinsel. And all the bravado in the world crumbles into tiny shards of real feelings.

You know how, when you’re having a real hard time holding it all together, and your being brave and biting the bullet and pretending something doesn’t hurt?

You know how, when everything happens all at once, and you don’t know if you can cope but you do?

You know how you can keep going if you clench your little fist and wave it at God and say “You are not going to break me!” ?

Well, that’s all well and good until some unwitting kind person makes the erroneous gesture of asking “Hey, are you okay? Can I do something to help?”

The flood of not feeling on your own any more just drowns your toughness and suddenly you realize your armor was made of tinsel and you are allowed to cry.

Thank you for tears that can wash the rust off armor and reveal the tinsel underneath.

Tinsel is so much shinier than armor.

And tinsel weighs a lot less than armor on a person’s shoulders.

Also, if you’re clumsy and you fall down, tinsel won’t crush you.


Thank You for Do Overs

•December 31, 2015 • 5 Comments

The end draws near.

Tonight… all the mistakes you made, all those things you wish you would not have said, all the opportunities you screwed up, all the junk food you devoured, all the toys you broke, all the changes you forgot to make, and all the ugly clothes you wore in public because everything else was in the laundry, will disappear at midnight.

At precisely 12:01, in whatever time zone you live, a stranger will kiss you on the forehead and yell “Do Overs!” and run away.

You will awake in the morning, smelling of champagne, with confetti stuck to your neck, mumbling “Who slobbered on my eyebrow?”

As you shuffle your way toward the coffee pot, it will hit you like a party horn blast and angels will sing (a little too loud) and you will realize you are the recipient of a shiny new gift that no one can take away—another year of your life!

Congratulations, you get 365 more days to try it again!

Happy New Year!

Thank you for Roaring Vulnerability

•November 25, 2015 • 9 Comments

There are events that can send us spiraling, without warning, back into psychological places we thought we escaped— burning buildings of anger, fantasy filled corridors of magical thinking, and self guarding mythology that no longer serves us.

The genuine affection of others can slay terrible demons we meet in those places, during such events.

Kind words can dispel ghosts which haunt the silent aloneness in a heart, defended against perceived injury from the outside world.

We learn to survive emotionally with the tools we inherit.

Sometimes those tools are broken or inadequate for the task.

Often we do not realize the tools are broken until an event or random circumstance commands action.

I am keenly aware of the limitations of my inherited tools.

I am also conscious and extremely grateful for the people who offer alternatives to my scant tool bag and support me with affection, trustworthiness, and honest feedback when I need it.

They are the dispellers of my ghosts and co-slayers of my demons—they help me climb out of burning buildings when my own ladder catches fire.

I am not easy to love.

I can be moody, aloof, and sometimes I retreat from personal questions that involve emotional discomfort for me. I may seem selfish in these instances, and I am.

I prefer to be seen in a positive light and work diligently at protecting the world around me from my own fears and the dark places I can visit.

This is one of my myths— I am just that impervious to negative thinking.

It can be as transparent to those who love me as a chiffon curtain over a broken window.

Yet they love me anyway.

There are those who risk kindness and offer their own vulnerabilities as evidence that I can do the same without fear of emotional injury.

Sometimes I am not so funny. Sometimes I am not so strong or enlightened. Sometimes I have nothing to share and sometimes I resist allowing others to share with me.

But make no mistake, I am thankful, always, for those who continue to offer new tools and are patient with my clumsy attempts at trying them.

Thank you for all the kindness and comfort that allows me to say;

I am vulnerable, hear me roar.

Thank you for Tears and La-cry-mation

•November 13, 2015 • Leave a Comment


Crocodiles don’t really cry.

The one in Rudyard Kipling’s story was just pretending.

Maybe elephants cry, maybe chimpanzees, maybe harp seals, or other vertebrates do cry.

I have seen some animals exercise their tear ducts. At the time, I was almost certain it was associated with more than eye washing, but I can not know because they could not tell me.

Most scientists say that humans are the only animals that cry “emotional” tears.

They probably never had a dog.

And they definitely didn’t see that documentary about elephants returning to burial grounds, probably never heard a baby mammal that was separated from it’s mother either.

Again, I can not know.

Humans definitely cry. (well, most of us)

It amazes me how that works.

Sometimes I cry for no good reason. It just sneaks up on me.

Once, I was sitting in the second row of an auditorium listening to Tibetan…

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Thank you for Dialogue vs. Diatribe and The Futilitarian Society

•October 7, 2015 • 3 Comments

Imagine going to a play where all the actors on the stage—about a hundred of them— were delivering monologues simultaneously.

No interaction between them, all concentrating on their own voices, no dialogue back and forth, just a loud drone of human voices aimed at the audience.

Which one would the audience hear?

How about if the audience participated by starting up their own individual monologues, directed at the stage?

Now, place yourself between the stage and the audience of escalating voices, face the exit door, and scream “I am all alone!”

Let’s call this exercise The Futiliarian Society game.

A society is based on cooperation. Cooperation takes communication.

Communication does not happen on a one way street.

It sometimes seems we are moving into a social neighborhood of one way streets, where very few people ever face each other and wave acknowledgment to one another.

Dialogue is becoming a lost art, replaced by a myriad of diatribes pouring from the mouths of those who are entitled to their opinions, their perceptions, their right to express whatever they see as their own personal truth—no matter the limitation of their view of the world.

I am part of this evolving neighborhood.

I think therefore I blog.

When I blog, I blog alone.

My internal dialogue is limited to a severe lack of debate, exploration external to my own existence, and any resistance to ill formed opinions based on a view from one facet of a very complex diamond—the diamond of Humanity.

I have recently been inspired by a legitimate conversation, in person, with other sentient humans, to ponder the need for authentic dialogue in my own evolution.

I fear an inevitable loneliness that will render me stupid with the advent of technologies that purport to make me more informed.

I fear an isolation that separates me from my fellow humans by replacing them with smoke filled mirrors of sound bytes, ad campaigns, and twittering chirps of waning language skills.

The irony that I am relating these fears, expressing these thoughts on a blog as opposed to running into the street and hugging someone until they speak to me is not beyond me.

I am thankful for the internet and amazed at the connections that have rescued people from a particular kind of isolation.

I am thankful for the information available to those who might otherwise remain in the dark.

And I am wondering today, how to say hello on a one way street toward a futilitarian society that will ignite a dialogue toward exploring all sides of a beautiful diamond while actually holding it in our hands.

Thank You For the Non-Zero-Sum and Getting What You Need

•August 2, 2015 • Leave a Comment


Game theory, the mathematical theory which can be applied to behaviors, strategic situations, economics, social sciences, and a lot of other situations that one wouldn’t consider to have anything to do with math, explains the zero-sum game concept. 

Zero sum game can be described as a situation in which one person’s gain is another person’s loss. 

No matter how much of something you start with, it all comes down to zero after you pass it around and distribute it into “Haves” and “Have Nots”.

The premise being there’s only so much to go around and it gets competitively passed back and forth in a win/lose scenario for all participants involved until there’s a zero balance left on the table, in the relationship, in the grain silo, on the cake plate, or the planet, for that matter. 

I don’t like the part about the losers.

Game theory is actually far more…

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Thank You for the Marathon of Life and The Sprint Runner

•July 2, 2015 • Leave a Comment


I look athletic, but I’m not.

It’s just genetics, not endurance or discipline or anything I did on purpose.

But if Life was a metaphoric action sport, I would be all about Track and Field, not a long, steady marathon.

I like the multiple options of pole vaulting over obstacles, sprint running past drama fires, long jumping into creative endeavors, and…  throwing an occasional discus when I have an olympic tantrum about my lack of endurance for tedious marathons when I need a nap.

Life is short and the defined perimeters of one competitive marathon can consume a whole lifetime before we get to the finish line.

And seriously, who wants to get there sooner and steadier?

Marathons are about endurance;

Endurance: noun, the  power of enduring an unpleasant or difficult process or situation without giving way : the capacity of something to last or to withstand wear…

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Thank You for Important Messy People

•July 1, 2015 • Leave a Comment


Some folks believe that cluttered desks and messy spaces are indicative of a spontaneous, over achieving person who accomplishes more when surrounded by chaos.

Einstien had a notoriously messy desk.

But that’s like saying a Zen monestary invites dullards and sloths.

I’m no Einstein.

Too much clutter inhibits my creative faculties.

Nor am I a Monk.

But I can concentrate better when my environment is clutter free.

Some people say “ I don’t have time to clean my house, I have too many other things to do with my time.”

I have seen this in action and believe it to be true.

Often that time is used looking for keys, trying to find a clean cup for their coffee, apologizing to guests for lack of available seating, moving things around to find other things they need, and mumbling I know it’s here somewhere while a friend is being held hostage, waiting…

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Thank You for Non Light Beings, Einstein, and Bob Marley

•June 6, 2015 • Leave a Comment


I am frequently amazed at how things change when they are placed in a different light—including people.

Light travels at 186,000 miles per second.

It’s generated by electromagnetic waves, or vibrations of magnetic and electric fields.

Then, those little guys inside atoms, you know, the protons, the electrons, and the neutrons, pick up the vibrations like they are at a Bob Marley concert.

They get all excited and start dancin’ around until one of ‘em—usually an electron—gets knocked off the dance floor and starts makin’ a scene as they try to find the center again.

Light doesn’t need anything or anybody for it to exist, it just is.

It simply rides the vibes and travels around, bonkin’ us in the retina and makin’ a seen.

Some folks seem like they don’t need anybody else to exist.

They appear to be independent and not effected by the vibrations…

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