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Showing posts from January, 2011

Arrested Development and the State of the Union

One the heels of President Obama's State of the Union address filled with promises and challenges to better educate our children.... we have this story in Akron Ohio where a mother is sentenced to 10 days in jail and given a felony record for using her father's address to get her kids into a better, safer school. Mr President, do you watch Good Morning America? Do one of your aides or interns? Is there someone on your staff that has told you about this story and what life is really like for people trying to get a decent education for their kids?
This story tugs at multiple areas of my heart. My law enforcement background, my student development background and my experiences as a single parent. I understand that this woman broke a law and I do not take that lightly. However, what in the world is this school district trying to accomplish by giving a woman who works as a teacher's assistant and is 12 credit hours away from a degree she will use to become a teacher a felony rec…

Monsters in the Lint Trap

Yesterday was my mother's birthday. She's been gone for over 25 years and I still have difficulty with her birthdays. Normally I try to do something nice for myself on her birthday. I bought my first new car on birthday. I have purchased myself some spectacular jewelry and even bought my first home on her birthday. In keeping with tradition I tried to think of something nice to do for myself yesterday. I don't have the money I used to have so buying myself something extravagant wasn't really a possibility. Even if I'd had some money that wasn't working, I would have had difficulty purchasing something that would have helped me feel better about missing her. I don't need anything, that's for certain. Even more than that, I have come to see that I can't fill the hole that not having a mom has left in my soul. I will never have anyone who loved me like my mom loved me and in my 50s I am wrestling with the pain that truth has brought me. I am …

Everything is Hokey Poky

One foot in front of the other.... one foot.... in front.... of .... the .... other. Ever wish there was someone directing you in the the day to day aspects of life? Ever said "just tell me what you want me to do!" and thought you meant it? I am absolutely miserable right now. I am angry, I am resentful, I am annoyed and I am fooling myself by thinking if God would just tell me what to do to get out of this funk, I would do it. How do I know I am delusional? Because He has and I haven't.

I have a niece who has the wonderful ability to accidentally use the wrong word in precisely the right way. Two of my favorites have been "obstacle illusion" (optical illusion) and "everything is Hokey Poky" (hunky dory). You'll have to trust me that the situations in which she almost used the well known idioms were enriched exponentially by her using the slightly altered version. We all knew what she meant when she said what she did and we …

Tangles

I have decided that blogging is a combination of letter writing, journaling and home movies - only without the movie part. That's better than what I used to think about it. I used to think that it was like open mic night on the net and everyone thought they were funny or had a message of national import.... but most of are wrong. That's why I have always felt a little sheepish about blogging. Do I think I am funny or that I have a public service announcement to make? Neither really. Sometimes both. Mostly I think I am looking for that elusive Vulcan mind-meld with one other person. The object of a writer's desire is the chance to touch with words; the right combination of syllables and symbols to lock into someone's psyche like one Lego fits onto another. I blog because I need to write. Writing is like hair conditioner for my soul. It helps me work my tangles.

Sometimes when I am pensive I fancy myself an old gold miner optimistically sifting through mud and sil…

Garbage, Resolutions and Amateur Theologians

I perform a ritual each Sunday I secretly call "playing Marty." Monday is garbage day so each Sunday after church I gather up the garbage, clean the science experiments out of the fridge and roll the garbage can to the end of the driveway in anticipation of an early Monday pickup. Why do I call it playing Marty? Because I lived in a small town where I knew the garbage man by name. His name was Marty. When you live in a small town you develop your own vocabulary. Families have their own languages too. Combine the two and in my family if you had garbage detail it was your turn to play Marty.

At my house New Year's Eve was called "Amateur Night" because that's the one night people who normally do not drink think they have built up their sobriety levels to such a point that they are immune to alcohol. Perfectly lovely people think a couple glasses of champagne or a cocktail or two cannot crumble their 364 day run of sobriety. They lose their minds. They …

Who put the "Old" in Auld Lang Syne?

I didn't see the New Year ushered in as I was overcome by sleep. Sleep, when you've been deprived of it, is a commodity worth way more than watching the crystal ball full of lights drop. I happily went to bed before fireworks or gunfire. Don't get me wrong- I am absolutely thrilled to be in a new year and a new decade. I am just old enough to know it will still be new in the morning and unlike the days of my youth, I can wait. Facing a new year hangover free is one of the many things I like about being older and wiser. One of the things that I like best about being a new creation in Christ is not having to wear the shame of all those New Year's Eve parties I went to when I was young a stupid, whether I can remember the details or not.

So, who can answer this for me? Why is it on a perfectly good holiday, one which conveniently falls on a rainy day, the television programming devoid of anything worth watching? I guess it hasn't been a total loss, I got to …