Friday, July 24, 2009

Fulghum

If you don't know who Robert Fulghum is, you must find out - quickly. I'll help you catch up a bit: he wrote the essay "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten" which was published in a collection of essays under the same title. He has since published 8 other books, most of them collections of his essays.

I received his most recent book in the mail and began reading it last night. As always, I have laughed and cried. Again, I am amazed by the way Fulghum's observation of the little things in life makes me think about the big things. He writes about the things that I think about but could never put into words. The essays are funny and touching and REAL. They have affected me deeply.

I met Fulghum once, at a book signing in Dallas. I was star-struck, but I managed to ask him a question about one of his essays in which he describes tasting Cheer detergent. I asked him if he really tasted the Cheer, and he told me he did. That book he signed for me is one of my most prized possessions. I felt, at that moment, that I was in the presence of greatness. This is a man with whom you could talk all day and not begin to say everything. This is a man with whom you could have an easy, lifelong friendship.

When I grow up, I want to be Robert Fulghum. But I would settle for an afternoon to talk with him one-on-one. Since that's highly unlikely, I'll sing his praises to you.

My wish for you this weekend is to find one of his collections of essays, get a cup of coffee and find a quiet spot, and prepare to be irreparably changed.

Robert Fulghum

Monday, July 20, 2009

I'm not an f'n sheep!

I swear, if I'm not careful, I'm going to tell someone off. And it's probably going to happen very soon, because I'm about at my breaking point.

Here's the thing, folks: you're entitled to your opinion, but SO AM I!!! And just because my opinion doesn't mesh with the opinions of 99% of the western world, doesn't make it WRONG! I'm tired of justifying myself, of being politically correct, of keeping my mouth shut because it's just easier that way.

I. Don't. Want. Kids.

It doesn't matter (and it's really none of your business) how I reached this decision. What counts is that my beloved and I do not want kids. It does not cheapen our love, and we are a family, just the two of us (and our furkid). I'm not telling you all the reasons you shouldn't have had kids, and I'm not going to listen anymore to you telling me all the reasons I should. It's reason enough that I don't want to.

And you know what? If you are somehow offended or threatened by the fact that my life path isn't exactly the same as yours, get the hell over it! I don't want to be a sheep and think like everyone else. But, more than that, I DON'T think like everyone else. And there is nothing inherently wrong with that.

So if you don't like it, walk away. Trust me, it's better than the scene you're about to cause.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Slogans I love...

If you want a t-shirt/mug/bumper sticker/magnet/button that is GUARANTEED to draw attention, check out cafepress.com. Here's a sampling of ones I need to buy for myself:


From the religion section:
"It takes more than a chrome fish, pal."
"Tea and cake or death." (If you don't get it, you probably shouldn't be reading my blog.)

From the child-free by choice section:
"If I want a baby inside me, I'll eat it."
"Your kids are the reason I don't have any."
"I took the batteries out of my biological clock and put them in my vibrator."
"I park in stork spots because pregnancy is not a disability!"
"Me + your kids = crime scene"

From the politics section:
"I mourn the death of Common Sense in our Society."
"Annoy a Republican, think for yourself"
"Don't confuse dying for oil with fighting for freedom"
"Well behaved women rarely make history"
"If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention"

From the mental health section:
"I'm bipolar, what's your excuse?"
"My mania writes checks my depression can't cash!"
"Some days it's just not worth chewing through the restraints"
"And this is me with my medication"
"Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional."


Check it out. There are plenty more funnies for every attitude. :)

What the Second Amendment really says...

"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

Our founding fathers wanted Americans to be able to protect their homes and families, and protect the Union in case of war. They were not advocating AK-47s and other automatic weapons being stockpiled in the home. Let's be real: they probably didn't think of automatic weapons or modern cities. They didn't know how closely we'd be living together. And I'm sure they didn't dream of the organized crime, drug dealing, or mass murder so common in modern society.

Most of the yo-yos out there who belong to the local gun club only know how to quote the last half of the Amendment, and they quote it the way so many people with a cause quote things: the way it suits their purpose. But just like anything else, we have to look at The Big Picture. I'm not advocating that guns be outlawed. I agree with that bumper sticker that says, "If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns." Prohibition - in any form - doesn't work. My point is simply that gun control is not a bad thing.

If you want to buy a handgun or rifle, fine. Go through the background check and waiting period, and get a gun. Get 20 guns, for all I care. Use them to protect your home and family, and to hunt, if that's your thing. But don't preach this drivel about how it's your RIGHT as an American to keep 50 automatic weapons in your home. There's simply no legitimate reason for those kinds of weapons to be available to the average citizen.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Where does your secret door go...?

"Ever had a day so crazy you just wanted to stop the world and get off for awhile? When I have those days, I start imagining a door. It’s kind of like my front door, but there’s something much more interesting on the other side of it than my porch... So what we’d love to know is this: if you had a secret door you could escape through once in a while, where would it lead?"

~ Stolen from Ransom Riggs' blog on mentalfloss.com, 7-8-09


Now, gentle reader, you ask: where would I go? The answer depends on my mood at a given moment, but here are a few ideas:

~ Pompeii (yeah, I'll see the rest of Italy while I'm there)
~ Ireland
~ Black Hills of South Dakota (to see Crazy Horse)
~ DisneyWorld at Christmas
~ London, Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Cairo...all the great cities
~ Vegas
~ NYC / Cooperstown, NY
~ Boston, just so I can wear a Yankees jersey into Fenway :)
~ San Francisco / Alcatraz Island
~ Portland (mostly for Powell's Books)
~ Sandusky, OH - home of Cedar Point
~ Valencia, CA - there are some coasters at Magic Mountain that I missed the first time around!
~ a beautiful, quiet beach with a hammock in the shade (somewhere in Mexico, maybe?)
~ Mayan ruins - Chichen Itza, Mexico
~ Giza Necropolis / Alexandria (Egypt)
~ New Orleans - pre-Katrina
~ one of those ridiculously expensive couples resorts in the Caribbean (with my beloved, of course)
~ New Zealand / Australia
~ Greece
~ Jerusalem


And for when I don't want to hop on a plane? Here's what I'd like:

~ home, wherever that happens to be at the moment, to spend a whole, uninterrupted day with my beloved
~ that vineyard where I can have all my questions answered - but not for a long, long time

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Why is it...

that pets in this country are treated better than people? I'm referring specifically to end-of-life care. Most of the time, when a pet is diagnosed with some type of painful and/or terminal disease, the animal is put to sleep. The fur-parents let go of their beloved friend so that she/he does not have to suffer. But what do we do when grandma is diagnosed with terminal cancer? Well, unless you live in one of three American states (Montana, Oregon, and Washington) that allow assisted suicide, she suffers until her death.

We would never, NEVER do that to Spot or Fluffy! So WHY do we do it to grandma?

The reigning argument is: because people have souls and animals don't. Well, to that I say: really? Have you ever looked into the eyes of a dog that loves you? I can guarantee that there is a soul behind those eyes. Dogs are loyal and loving and are incapable of deceit. They are better than people, and if we get a soul and they don't, then I've got some things to say to God.