Christmas Is More Than The Sights

I had an experience early in my high school career that began to open my eyes about how other people see the world. As a freshman, I wanted to fit in. And somehow I seemed to gather all the weirdos around me. I didn’t want to be one of them. But one of them, one of the weirdos I met, made a profound impact upon me. She taught me that Christmas is more than the sights. The New Girl My homeroom teacher assigned me to show the new girl around. This new student stood out from everyone else. It embarrassed me for her. But she was blind. She couldn’t see that her messy hair or her mismatched clothes or that her eyes moved two different directions. She carried a cane and only needed a ‘guide’ for a few days. I escorted her through the push and shove of teens rushing through the halls until she’d memorized the way to her next class.  Selfish & Embarrassed I was a selfish sixteen-year-old. It never occurred to me to wonder how she felt being in a new school. Not being able to see. Relying on total strangers to help her. But in the few […]

You Must Look for the Good News

It’s the holiday season in the U.S. and many other nations (though different holidays and traditions, see my December Celebrations posts). If you are on Facebook or Twitter, you cannot help but feel overpowered with the negatives—racism, gender discrimination, hate crimes, and on and on. And all the while there are beautiful, creative, and giving people all around the world making a difference with their big hearts and ideas. But to find it, you must look for the good news. I am not saying we should ignore the problems in the world, nor am I saying we should only read the good news. Making either exclusive would be to our detriment. But the good news gets little notice. And that hurts us, too. It’s especially disturbing during the holidays. It takes a little work to find the good news, because it lacks the sensationalism that gets clicks or sells papers. But it is well worth the time.  Documenting History These indigenous women are documenting and disseminating an endangered language, culture, and oral history. And they’re doing so in an environmentally friendly way. Read this article on Atlas Obscura.  Homes for Homeless Veterans The Right Step You’re in the bottom of […]

A Veteran’s Day Tribute

Today I give a Veteran’s Day Tribute to all those who have served.  I salute all veterans—no matter where they served nor how long.  On the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918, hostilities ceased in the Great War.  In 1926, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution to observe the day in remembrance “with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.” November 11th became a legal holiday in 1938.  The holiday was “to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as “Armistice Day”” After WWII and the conflict in Korea, Congress amended the bill and the holiday to honor all veterans of all wars and changed the holiday’s name to Veteran’s Day. A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life wrote a blank check made payable to ‘The United States of America’ for an amount of ‘up to and including my life.’ That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it.      Unknown No matter your politics, nor your views of the worthiness of a particular war, battle or conflict our veterans served all who call the United […]