Saturday, December 31, 2011

G-d bless the joyful wretched.The wretchful joyed.

G-d bless the lonely and the crowded. The ones who have ripped their hearts out and given them away. Bless the children who don't know and the adults who do. Bless those who never tell and those who tell Everyone.

Bless the old who know and won't tell anymore, without coaxing.

G-d bless the walker and the walkee. G-d bless those who build castles of money and think this makes them safe. G-d bless the rich who know they are not safe. G-d bless the rich in spirit. G-d bless the destitute. G-d bless the thieves, white collar, blue collar, no collar, no shirt.

God bless the clueless and the ones mired in shit and bless the shit. Bless all the shit that thou hast wrought.

Bless those who masturbate in secret. And those who masturbate in public. And those who don't masturbate. Bless the ones who fear masturbation and those who laugh at the procreators.

God bless the creative and the destroyers.

G-d bless the children and their abusers. Bless the evil and the ignorant. G-d bless the arrogant. Bless the atheist, and agnostic, I think. And G-d bless the faithful.

G-d bless the blind who can see and the sighted who are blind. Bless those too tired to look. Bless those who didn't know they were supposed to look.

G-d bless the asshole who throws trash out of the window, and the infirm who drop trash. G-d bless those looking for redemption and those redeemed and those beyond redemption.

Bless those who don't know and those who don't care.

Bless the stone throwers and their glass houses. Bless the ones with houses that won't sell, and those without houses. Bless those who would rather sleep under the stars, but find themselves in houses.

Bless the ones who take running water for granted and those who run from water and those who dive in.

Bless the full pantries and the empty souls and the full souls who have no room for more.

Bless the lazy and those who sell their children's souls for convenience or status, and refuse to consider freedom thru compassion. Bless those who are hard lined, and those too young for lines. Bless the lines that are supposed to protect us.

Bless the fearful and the terrified, and the justifiers and the justifications themselves. Bless the blade that cuts our meat and our fingers and throats, and chest open. Bless the bullet that defends a life and that ends a life. Bless the hand that pulled the trigger. Bless the brave and the coward.

Bless the dark and the light and the blanket. Bless the bed, sheets smoothed down. Bless the monster under the  bed.

Bless the denial that we all carry around, snuggle under, until it is time for facing our monsters.

Bless our thumbs, and sense of superiority. Bless the tired and the illicit and the crazy. Bless those who know but won't talk.

G-d bless those who read Proust and those who want to and can't and those who wonder who is Proust.

Bless those who work hard and those who don't care anymore and those who would like to care but can't.

Bless the prostrate and the energetic and the wandering lost.

Bless the incomprehensible and the random. Bless the ones who thought they were brilliant to invent ____ and then sad to find it dangerous. Bless the dangerous.

Bless the Jews and the fucking radicals and bless them even when we hate their actions and want to beat them up for accosting women and children.

Bless the camps all the crowded miserable horrible camps.

Bless racism and idiots. Bless all the bombs. Or none of them.

Bless those who believe in only black and white.

G-d bless those who believe in favorites.

Bless the miserly and mean and stupid and all the old and young. Bless the middle aged and fat bodies we drag around and the clothes made in China.

Bless the Chinese and the Palestinians, and Al Queda and the next terrorists. Bless the deranged and the sweaty and the smelly. Bless the good stuff and the reprehensible.

Bless hell and those who go thru it and those who never make it out.

Bless those who make things that disturb us and those that can't watch.

Bless the rock and the hard place

Bless the fire and the ice.

Bless the cold that keeps us moving and the warmth that we enjoy. Bless the laughter and the desperation that makes us laugh too hard.

Bless the insecure and the infirm and the strong and capable. Bless those who mistake strength for good and vulnerability for weakness.

Bless the ones who remember and those who forget.

Bless the nature of things and the essence and the spaces in between.

Bless the void and the connections.

Bless you too G-d, even if you are an atheist.

Bless all those who are determined to put prayers back in school, and those who realize it never left.

Bless those who say wtf and those who wonder if you made that up first.

Bless the wretched and the joyful. Bless the wretched joyful.

Friday, December 23, 2011


Last night to my 13 year old: "One day you will fall in love and *bam* it will hit you hard, and you will want to be with that person all the time. Just like it's hit Patrick now, like it hit Madeleine last year, and it happened to me, a couple of times. And you'll think you know what love is.

Then one day you'll have a baby, and you'll get hit an indescribable number of times harder, with love. It's why new parents can just sit around and watch their baby. For long periods of time. Even if it's sleeping.

The career, and all your plans don't matter much any more. It's all about the baby and nursing and watching it grow.

You'll start learning from your kids, 'cause you're smart, and they will teach you so much. And they will break your heart, many times.

Then, with your second one, you'll wonder how you could possibly love another child as much as you love your first. (I was very protective of Patrick, and couldn't imagine loving another as much as I loved him.)

And then, you meet the second child, and somehow, there IS enough love. It's not like a small fishbowl and now there are two fish, it's like there's a bigger bowl. There's plenty!

By the time you have your third child, you trust that there is going to be enough love to go around, and you find that also there is the brother and sister now to love this third child. Patrick only had me and his dad."

After a moment, she adds, "And cousins - you get all those cousins who love you."

"Yes, that's true."

"Our Sidney is going to get SO much love, 'cause she's the youngest cousin."

Smile. "I hadn't thought of that."

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Draft - finish this
New idea : the Republican party has no choice but to attack every institution with an ounce of credibility. This is, sadly, the result of letting radicals take over the party, and rewarding drama queens like Newt Gingrich (no offense to drama queens).

If I started several wars that helped bankrupt the federal budget, raided social security for the entire baby boom generation, and I fought regulation to the point of assisting wall street in bringing down our economy, and I didn't have any real candidates who could lead, I might attack constantly too.

Alcoholics and addicts have an interesting tactic when dealing with their lives. It's all too easy to fight about _______. Meaning everything. Anything except the real problem. The drinking or drugs. So they can be extremely belligerent.  It's easy, to the unaware, to get sucked into an argument that is ultimately a diversionary tactic.

So emboldened (confused?) has the radical right become that they even attack the idea of democracy - insisting now that we are supposed to be a republic. Sure it's a crafty move, one imbued with academic finesse, but it's just another way to tear down what we have struggled for 200 years to build.

It is the very fact we are a democracy that allows radical right to tear down our institutions - the ones that have helped lead us to some sort of balance. The govt, the news, and the schools.

Yes, it's an experiment. It is after all ONLY 200 years old. And when the sands of time wash over us in another 200 years it will look very different than it does today.

The question is simply this: can we give the problem we face a name? Is it radicalism that threatens the foundations of our government?

NPR - having decimated the government's credibility, the new target is our best journalism or source of information.

What other institutions are to be attacked in the war of ideology? Universities.

Starve the beast - stated strategy. Why isn't this more publically discussed?

John McCain - brow beaten into positions I don't think he believed in.

Ronald Reagin - idea: poor people are bad. But was he the last compassionate conservative?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Decided not to stress about the 5 events coming this weekend: a dinner for youth group, a luncheon to attend, a play to attend (our own young starling on stage), a fundraiser to run and finish up, and a 2nd social at our house. Yes, the holiday cards are on my desk. No, I don't have all the addresses or photos printed. Yes, I wrote the letter to family and friends :) No, I won't stress. Yes, there are knitting projects waiting to be transformed into gifts. No, I haven't quite finished shopping, tho I thought I had. Yes, I get to have kids do wrapping for me :D No, I haven't finished cleaning the house. Yes, I have a plan for cleaning the entire house. No, we didn't make the choir concert last night because G didn't feel good. Yes, I did make a mess of the kitchen last night. Making crackers. And then I rested. And then went to work in my warm, comfy bed. Dreaming.

Good to sleep, wonderful to dream. And to wake and bless the house and all our plans, children, loved ones and "enemies".

Now, to stick to the plan. Work. Not stress.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Why are Birthday Candles so Small?

There is something sweet about the tip of a hat, such that the phrase is common, while hats (that can be tipped) are not so much.

I had to smile when "That 70s Show" (tv sitcom) had Red (the dad) on an episode the other night, with his hat on, going to dinner with his wife. It's one of the only sitcoms I watch, and my favorite character is this Dad - he's less contrived than Archie Bunker, but cut from the same cloth. It could just be that Archie was more like my grandparents, and Red is more like my Dad.

Speaking of Dads, my biological father had a birthday yesterday. I mean, he's dead, but it's still a birth day, isn't it? I got sad this morning when I realized I may be the only one on the planet who remembered it today. (Yeah, ok, a day late.)  It had been nagging in the back of my mind... early Dec... I wasn't close to him for most of my life, so it's a tough one to recall. Heck, birthdays of best friends and dear family are elusive (the 17th or the 19th? or was it the 21st? It was an odd day...)

It's weird how some thoughts have come to me only as a result of age. For instance about 10 or 15 years ago, I realized that there were fewer people on the planet who had held me as a baby. My dad died, my grandparents had mostly gone. Slowly they were leaving. I have one grandparent left. My Mom :D and two sweet aunts who were probably all about holding me. It's cool to know someone who has known me that long.

But today it was a sad surprise to think that maybe no one else remembered my Dad's birthday. His mom died about 7 months before he did, in 1998. And his step dad, my sweet surviving grandparent, maybe isn't good at those kind of dates. Would he remember?

My uncle might remember, but I don't know how good he is for birthdays either, even for his brother. My aunt, his wife, may have remembered. It gives me an excuse to call her. I think my Dad was born in 1940, so he would have been 71 today if he had lived.  Wow - that would have been something. Hard to imagine him old since he died pretty young. 57.

Seemed old-ish then. Pretty young, now.

He was crazy smart. Like really. Crazy. and Smart. We think he was bipolar, which explains both, sort of. I love that he was a damn good writer and an award winning journalist. I think of him when I see college football marching bands - he was the drum major for the university of florida, one of his proudest achievements.

And he bought me my first horse when I was about 7 or 8. A beautiful quarter horse, Mr. Skip. One day I'll have a horse again. I'll remember who first taught me to ride.

He loved to tell stories and jokes. He gave a lot of compassion to people - so I was told after his death.

Jews have a tradition of lighting a candle each year on the anniversary of someone's death. We remember our dead on certain holidays too (Yom Kippur, etc - see this link for more info). It's said that as long as someone remembers you, you live on in the world. For the first time, I think I'll be making a donation in my Dad's honor. And I'll be lighting a candle :) For his birthday. Sucks that they are so small. Burn out quick.

May his memory be for a blessing.  Maybe, at last, he rests in peace.