Archive for September 30, 2022

Illness, Loneliness, and Friendship

Extended illness causes loneliness. The sick person wants to interact with others but may not have much energy. The parent/spouse/child caregiver is often just as lonely, seeing their loved one in their weakened, vulnerable, less communicative state while they, themselves, find their caregiving isolating them from their friends and normal life. For both, the loneliness can be as devastating as the illness itself. Which is where you come in. Brighten their lives with a card, note, or voicemail, just to let them know you’re thinking about them but not asking for a response. If they’ve been part of a group you belong to, call to fill them in on details of the last meeting or some silly thing that happened at a social event (this IS a good time for light, harmless gossip). Drop off a meal or special goodie. Bring over old pictures of times you spent together and share memories. Always call first, and stay only as long as you aren’t tiring them. Such little things go a long way to brighten lonely lives.

Parachutes and Minds

Today’s Thursday Thought quote is logical, yet so often we don’t operate according to it.

On the Lighter Side: Facebook & Eternity

I thought it was time for a chuckle, well, a chuckle with a warning to all who post on Facebook.

Cook for the Garbage Can

Tonight, cook and throw away 1/3 before serving it.  Sounds wasteful and stupid.  But that’s how much food we grow in our world that goes to waste.  Meanwhile, famine, hunger, and food insecurity among children exist while our landfills overflow.  Supermarkets put out only the perfect produce.  They know we won’t pay their prices for misshapen vegetables or fruit that has a slight bruise. So they toss it out, even though it tastes the same and is just as nutritious.  After all, it’s grown the same, in dirt or dangling from buggy trees.

I like the idea of a Canadian company who packages its appropriately named  “No Name Naturally Imperfect” produce.  These fruits and veggies can sell to markets cheaper, then markets can sell to us for less, and some major chains are planning to do just that.  I’ll be in line to buy it.  And I’ll lobby my lawmakers not to cut out farmers’ livelihood but put the extra produce to work feeding hungry people.

A Thought for This Jewish New Year

To all of my Jewish friends, readers — everyone, actually: Happy Rosh HaShanah!

For those who aren’t familiar with this day, it’s the beginning of a new civil year. This Christian (me) is partial to the two-day observance because of what it celebrates: the creation of Adam and Eve and, therefore, the human race. I like the idea that ALL humans, no matter color, religion, politics, country of origin, or position in society, are related to each other through those two people (either physically or symbolically, I don’t care which). So, it makes sense to me that we should treat everyone who crosses our path like long-lost, cherished family.

When Autumn Falls

Autumn began a few days ago. It’s a beautiful season, with tree-leaves turning bright colors then falling to the ground to carpet your yard. The problem is, bugs thrive and multiply in fallen leaves. You’ll want to control them. Instead of using chemicals to do that, try this: 1) keep leaves raked up from your yard, and 2) trim bushes so their lower branches don’t touch the ground.

[For more easy, money-saving, Eco-friendly tips, download a FREE copy of Green Riches: Help the Earth & Your Budget. Go to, choose a format, and download to your computer or e-book device. For a description of the book go to My Free Books).

Go Ahead and “Pass the Buck”

Here’s a bit of Americana for the card players out there: the origin of the term “pass the buck,” meaning, of course, to avoid responsibility by giving it to someone else.

In the second half of the 1800s, poker became a very popular game.  However, distrust was high, everyone assuming that everyone else was cheating, especially the dealer.  This led to many a gunfight and bloody messes to clean up.  The solution was to take turns dealing, passing the job on to the next person seated at the table.  Whoever was dealing was given a marker to indicate that he was the dealer.  Usually, this was a knife, which, in those days, often had handles carved out of a buck’s horn.  Therefore, when it was your turn to deal, someone would “pass the buck” to you.  Later, by the way, the knife was replaced by a silver dollar, which may be the derivation of the term “buck” for a dollar.

Another bit of trivia that you probably can’t work into any conversation……..

Why More Police?

More police?  I keep hearing that cities are scrambling to increase the size of their police forces.  I agree that it’s important to have people to keep us safe from muggers, break-ins, shootings, gangs, rapes, and all the other terrible crimes being perpetrated.  However, I can’t help wondering if a better approach might be to worry as much about solving the root cause of most crimes–poverty–as we do about increasing our police forces.  Definitely, spending the time, money, and resources up front, to alleviate poverty in our cities, would lessen the need for people to protect us.  That approach seems like a win-win situation to me.

I’m a Failure!

I tried a whole bunch of times and continued to fail.  I cut off heads or inserted a thumb.  I grimaced at the wrong time or squinted when I shouldn’t have.  I memorialized people behind me, catching them doing things they didn’t want people to see them doing.  I turned the whole landscape into a blinding flash.  Finally, I admitted my limitations and handed my cell phone over to a stranger to take a picture of my family and me on our outing to the beach.

I admit it.  I’m a selfie failure.  But, happily, my family loves me in spite of my shortcomings.

Payback as a Social Divider

“When you take out a loan you should pay it back like everybody else has to.” Set aside for a moment whether or not student loan forgiveness is fair or right, as in this comment. Go a step further and view the hypocrisy of many high-profile and/or affluent people who are shouting that comment from the top suite of a corporation, people whose businesses received loans to help them during the worst of Covid and then had those loans forgiven. It seems to me that they believe that struggling students are less deserving than businesses. Or maybe they just want to maintain the growing gap between the Haves and Have-Nots.