Beauty in a troubled times …

As anyone who’s been following me knows, I haven’t blogged in a long while. Honestly, I haven’t been inspired. But a friend just sent me a poem Anderson Cooper (a CNN anchor for those unfamiliar with him) read on air last week. It was written by Brother Richard Hendrick. It made me tear up, it gave me goosebumps and it reminded me that despite what we are all going through — all the suffering and uncertainty and fear — there is still beauty in this world and there is still a lot to be grateful for:

Lockdown by Brother Richard Hendrick

Yes there is fear.
Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying.
Yes there is sickness.
Yes there is even death.
But,
They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise
You can hear the birds again.
They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.
They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them.
They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland
Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.
Today a young woman I know
is busy spreading fliers with her number
through the neighbourhood
So that the elders may have someone to call on.
Today Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples
are preparing to welcome
and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary
All over the world people are slowing down and reflecting
All over the world people are looking at their neighbours in a new way
All over the world people are waking up to a new reality
To how big we really are.
To how little control we really have.
To what really matters.
To Love.
So we pray and we remember that
Yes there is fear.
But there does not have to be hate.
Yes there is isolation.
But there does not have to be loneliness.
Yes there is panic buying.
But there does not have to be meanness.
Yes there is sickness.
But there does not have to be disease of the soul
Yes there is even death.
But there can always be a rebirth of love.
Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.
Today, breathe.
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic
The birds are singing again
The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming,
And we are always encompassed by Love.
Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,
Sing.

March 13th 2020

 

Ugh …

… November is my least favourite month of the year. If it happens to be when you celebrate your birthday or anniversary or any other occasion that’s important to you, please don’t take it personally. My distaste for November has nothing to do with you.

I don’t like it because it’s dreary. Dull. Sure, there’s the odd sunny day, but mostly it’s grey and damp and dismal. The days get shorter. It gets dark earlier. Piles of leaves cover the roads and sidewalks and Continue reading

Do something …

I was reading a piece about Alyssa Milano in Sunday’s New York Times and came across this quote, which I love: “Each day is a blank canvas…go and make some marks.” I so agree.

In this particular instance, it’s related to Milano’s political activism. But I think the sentiment — or call to action — can be applied to anything. We no longer live in a world where it’s okay to just “be.” We do have to get involved, to participate, to do something for the greater good, to make our mark. How we choose to do it is up to us.

Given the state of politics globally, being an activist may be the first thought that pops into your mind, it’s Continue reading

Whew!

It was election night in Canada last night and we narrowly avoided seeing Andrew Scheer, our answer to Donald Trump, elected as our new prime minister. Justin Trudeau hung on, albeit with a minority government.

Trudeau’s far from perfect, he made some very serious mistakes and he’s lucky he still has a job. But not as lucky as we are.

There’s a lot to talk about, but it was a late night and right now I’m going back to bed.

xoxo

Today’s my dad’s birthday and I’m flooded with memories. My father never wanted us to make a big deal of his birthday. He never wanted to be the centre of attention and, as for surprise parties, he was not a fan.

My mother and I respected his wishes up to a point. We never even thought about throwing him a surprise party or any other kind of party. We did, however, insist on a small celebration — either just the three of us or a very small group of our immediate family — either at our house or at a restaurant. But there was never a Continue reading

Just when you’re ready to give up …

It feels like the whole world is in shambles. It doesn’t matter in which country you live, there’s another crisis every day and scandals more often than that. Lying and cheating have become the new normal.  I’ve never seen so much lawlessness, so much anger, hatred and cruelty.

Everywhere I turn, including online in comments I read on various posts, articles and blogs, people are mean-spirited, aggressive, antagonistic and rude. Like they’re just spoiling for a fight. Disagree with something or someone and you can expect to be attacked, abused actually — verbally and Continue reading

Bittersweet …

Today is the last day of Rosh Hashanah. It’s the Jewish New Year and the first of the Jewish High Holy Days. For this holiday, the meal includes apples dipped in honey, to symbolize a sweet new year. But for me, this holiday has both sweet and bittersweet memories.

My family was not particularly observant. We followed some traditions and didn’t follow others. But when it came to the holidays, we were all in. Not as much for the religious significance as for the Continue reading

It’s truly gobsmacking …

I know, I know, we have enough of our own problems with our own politicians in Canada to question what’s going on in the U.S. — but honestly, I can’t believe Donald Trump is still in the White House and not behind bars.

David Leonhardt, a NY Times opinion columnist wrote yesterday that Trump’s recent conversation with Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukranian president, during which he admits to pressuring him to dig Continue reading

Let’s call ghosting what it really is …

I belong to an online group for freelancers in the ad industry. It’s on Facebook. Yesterday morning someone posted about a recent experience she had.

She’d been talking with someone about possibly doing some work together and suddenly the conversation just stopped. No reason, no explanation, no nothing. She wanted to know if “ghosting” is common in the industry — she’s spent a lot of time working in Europe, where apparently business is conducted differently.

This isn’t the first time I’ve seen posts like this. It’s an all-too-common occurrence. And I’ve got to Continue reading

Nothing is easy

I’ve had the same digital box and remote forever. I’m in the “if-it’s-not-broke-don’t-fix-it” camp.

About a year ago, the on/off power button on the remote stopped working, but that didn’t bother me. It’s good to get off the couch once in a while. Then on Thursday night, the channel selector thingie stopped working. And that was a bridge too far for me.

Bright and early Friday morning I called my cable provider. I looked at my watch and it was 9:15 a.m. I got through to a customer service person (and I use the term loosely, more like customer torture) Continue reading