What if …

Have you ever wondered what you’d be doing if you’d chosen a different path? I never have in the past, but I do think about it occasionally now.

For me it was easy. I was about 12 years old when I decided I wanted to work in advertising. Originally I wanted to be an art director and I did go to art school after high school. My mother wasn’t surprised because she used to say I was always doodling, that I didn’t have a notebook or school book that didn’t have sketches in it.

When I graduated from art school my first interview was Continue reading

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My true calling

I’ve mentioned several times that I subscribe to Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper and really enjoy it. She seems to always write about the issues and topics that are on my mind.

Well, a couple of weeks ago, she really nailed it when she wrote about the importance of figuring out the things that break our hearts, and how that can lead us to our life’s purpose. It sure did resonate with me, because I’ve been thinking about that an awful lot lately. My purpose, that is.

It didn’t take long for me to realize that for me, it’s injustice.

Whether it’s against humans, animals or the environment. Whether it’s physical, emotional, sexual, financial, political or religious. Whether it’s Continue reading

And the award goes to …

… me, for having the intestinal fortitude to not only watch the award shows, but to stick with ’em from start to finish. Yay me. My God they are boring. And long.

Every year I say “that’s it, no more, I am not going to watch next year.” And next year comes around and there I am, tuned in yet again.

This year I really wasn’t going to watch, but did out of curiosity — not to see who would win, but to see how they’d handle all the sexual harassment charges in the industry.

At first when I saw all the women (and a lot of men) Continue reading

I miss the good old days …

No question there’s a lot about the 21st century to be excited about, but there’s a lot I miss about days gone by.

Last Thursday I went to see the Christian Dior exhibit at the Royal Ontario Museum here, in Toronto. Every garment, whether for daytime or evening, was shown with gloves — short, mostly black ones with suits and dresses and white, cream and occasionally black, long, above-the-elbow ones for formal wear.

I remember that from when I was growing up. My mother, Continue reading

I can’t believe I’m saying this, but …

… there’s a part of me that feels sorry for Donald Trump. Wait … wait … hear me out before you have me committed or banish me.

First and foremost, I am NOT a fan of his, never was, never will be — and the sooner he’s out of the White House, the better — for his own good, the good of his country and the entire world. But …

Donald Trump is sick. Really and truly, seriously and dangerously mentally ill; and, I believe, he is also a desperately unhappy man. I’m no psychiatrist, but I don’t think you just suddenly wake up one day this crazy. I’ll bet he showed signs as a child and, for whatever reason, he
never got the professional help he so sorely needs.

He is so hideous, in every way, that it’s very easy to be Continue reading

On a positive note …

Whew! We survived 2017 and that’s all I’ll say about that. We’re being positive, right? So Happy New Year to you, to us, to all those we hold dear.

When I was thinking about what I’d write today, I remembered something my mother used to say (and do) every time I moved into a new house or apartment.

“Fransi,” she’d say, “remember to bring a piece of bread, some salt, some sugar and a new broom with you the first time you go in. And make sure you enter with your right foot first.” It wasn’t enough she’d Continue reading

What money can’t buy …

After yesterday’s post was published a friend emailed me to talk about it. One of her comments was in reference to my recollections of the Christmas lunches my father and grandfather had for their staff — her point being that it was probably those acts of kindness and generosity that were, in large part, what made their employees so loyal.

She was right, of course. My dad and grandfather treated their employees kindly, fairly and respectfully everyday, not just once a year at lunch. And in return, they had virtually
no staff turnover.

The comment got me thinking and, almost immediately, my Continue reading

What is it about the Holidays?

Well, Chanukah and Christmas are over for another year and I’m sure I’m not the only one for whom this season triggers many memories.

Christmas wasn’t a holiday we celebrated when I was growing up, we didn’t have a tree or exchange gifts, but we certainly got into its joyful spirit. Ours was a close family, and we spent just about every day and evening together for that week. Good times, good food and much laughter is what I remember.

Like all kids, I looked forward to being out of school for a Continue reading

Strangers in the night

I had a party to go to last Thursday night. It was mid-afternoon when I realized I should probably book a taxi (not an Uber fan) in advance, it being Christmas party season and all — when anyone with even half a brain leaves their car at home.

When I got downstairs there was no sign of the cab, which is very unusual — at least in my experience, especially when I’ve reserved one. Seems there was a fire somewhere — the concierge said it was in a subway, although I haven’t been able to verify that. But wherever it was, it was playing havoc with the traffic and cabs were in demand.

But I did notice a man standing outside, with a suitcase, also waiting. Not wanting him to take my cab, I sidled up to him and asked if he Continue reading

As the year draws to a close …

I was introduced to Pema Chödrön, the American Tibetan Buddhist nun and teacher, back in 2014 on an Oprah Winfrey show, Super Soul Sunday. I  was instantly enthralled, just loved what she had to say and have been following her ever since, although not religiously (no pun intended).

Last Saturday she showed up in my Facebook newsfeed. She was the subject of a story from a Brain Pickings newsletter.

Brain Pickings, which I’ve been subscribing to for several years, was founded by the writer and MIT Futures of Continue reading