New Normal and Other Possibilities of a Post-Coronavirus World

When this Coronavirus insanity ends…

When retail stores throw open their doors…

When kids go back to school, and parents return to work…

When the world at large reopens…

When devastation and isolation turn to celebration…

And we trust these things will happen.

Because, well, we have to trust. We have to assume. We must have faith that, at some point, movement and life outside these four walls will be restored. Otherwise, this really is just the end of the world, in which case, COVID-19 is the Ice Age (or asteroids) and we are the dinosaurs – just sittin’ here like, “What-the-heck just happened?”

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Posted in 2020, Addiction, alcoholism, american history, Baby Boomers, coronavirus, cultural history, Halloween, health, history, Humor, news, Psychology | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Fear the Fear

In his first inaugural address in 1933, President Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “… the only thing we have to fear is…fear itself...” So true. The danger is in the fear.

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Maybe You Had to be There…

I was recently privileged to be invited to a Golden Wedding Anniversary of some dear friends. The guy who served as best man in 1969 was at the party, and stood to toast, and say a few words. He began by telling how the couple met all those years ago. His tribute was great – both heartwarming and humorous. Because of the amusing angles, I wanted to share it with my daughter, then realized she is not old enough to grasp or fully comprehend the comedy.

Though my daughter is officially Generation Y, I have dubbed her an honorary Baby Boomer. She grew up with my music, old movies, and solid values, and has never been an easily offended snowflake type. I had both of my kids watch the film On the Beach so they could get some kind of understanding of the nuclear war/Duck and Cover environment that was my childhood. Nevertheless, I realized she would have no way of knowing about the military draft, and 1960s drama involved therein. Continue reading

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Country Music – More Than A High, Lonesome Sound

Country music was not really a part of my life until my mother met my stepfather when I was six years old. Mom was of the Big Band generation, and always kept up with popular music. She bought records – not just by Sinatra and the crooners of her generation, but also hits by artists such as Johnny Mathis, Paul Anka, and Frankie Avalon.

Enter the Kentucky-born country boy who would become my stepfather, and consequently, lots of Jim Reeves, Patsy Cline, Roy Drusky, and other 1960s country singers. Popular and easy-listening remained the primary music in our home. The car, however, was my stepfather’s domain, and country music radio stations were his choice. Continue reading

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Why Do They Say “Party of One” When One is Never a Party?

Perhaps one of the few (maybe only) advantages of living alone is you may double-dip without worry. Go ahead. Scoop that chip in the five-layer dip. Take a bite, and dip the same chip in again. I don’t, however, recommend getting into the habit, lest you embarrass yourself, should you ever again dine among fellow humans.

That is just one of the many things I have learned about eating, sleeping – living alone. Actually, I’m not completely alone. I have the most devoted collie. I admit the possibility she isn’t all that faithful. Maybe she just knows she is chipped, and I would find her if she ran away. Well, either way, she’s good company and comfort. Continue reading

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I’m Rubber and You’re Glue… What Name Offends You?

When I was a kid, the standard response to name-calling was, “Sticks and stones may break my bones. But, words can never hurt me.” Apparently, a lot has changed since my idyllic Baby Boomer childhood. These days, it takes very little to offend someone. In fact, it takes no effort. Whereas, in the past, a sarcastic “No offense” was meant as a feigned apology for an intentional jab, these days people are offended when, truly, no offense was intended.

As a society, we are now required to (borrowing a couple of my mom’s phrases) “walk on egg shells” and handle people “with kid gloves.” Ideology, gender, and ethnicity seem the hot buttons now. In my child and growinguphood, it was often more about appearance. Continue reading

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Barbed Wire Fences and Other Baby Boomer Country Memories

Yesterday, I saw something I had not seen in years – a barbed wire fence.

It evoked memories of a brief, yet, impactful time of my childhood. We lived, for a time, with my grandmother who lived in a rock house in the country, and had farming neighbors.

I remember waking up to roosters, catching lightning bugs, and slinging “supper” leftovers across the fence to the chickens and cows. It was a time when a simple plastic paddle with a wire handle, called a “flyswatter” was used, not just as an insect weapon, but, also like a switch, to threaten us kids. Continue reading

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“First Man” – Not a Movie Review, Just a Baby Boomer’s Perspective

I finally got to the theater again to see a first-run movie – First Man, and unabashedly admit to having thoroughly enjoyed it. In fact, I loved it, and intend to see it again. Unfortunately, if social media is any indication, at least one of the stars (Claire Foy) does not share my affection for this land of the free; home of the brave that spawned the courageous men and women profiled in the story. However, that attitude was not evident in her performance. Additionally, there was some controversy over omission of the flag planting. I don’t know if there was conscious intention to deflect credit for this amazing accomplishment from the United States, in an effort to promote globalism. I hope not, and I am especially glad I resisted my first impulse (based on that controversy) to boycott the film. I would have only cheated myself out of a great movie.

But, as the old writer cliche goes, “I digress.” This is neither a film review, nor an essay on Hollywood Meets Politics (and why we wish it wouldn’t).

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Paul McCartney – Yesterday and Today – Stories Now Told

I just read the GQ article “The Untold Stories of Paul McCartney.” https://www.gq.com/story/the-untold-stories-of-paul-mccartney Writer Chris Heath’s interviews with Paul revealed many things even this lifelong fan never knew about the former Beatles/Wings/singer/songwriter/icon for a generation.

I was pleased and relieved to realize the energy, intellect, excitement, and mental clarity we perceive in Sir Paul is, apparently, an accurate impression. The 76-year-old is definitely still all there.

Heath unearthed far more than the sweet story behind “Let it Be” of how Paul’s mother Mary came to him in a dream – oh, so much more… I found, especially interesting, the insight to the Wings’ song “Jet.” While the title was for a pony they had named Jet, Paul seemed to suggest that early in his marriage to Linda, his father-in-law was a “kind of a nuisance,” and might have been the “Major” in that 1973 song.

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Dickens and Do-Overs

I can’t help wondering if perhaps Charles Dickens’ inspiration for “A Christmas Carol” was not just looking back over his life. Was there just that moment when he wished that all he had lived through was but a dress rehearsal for the real thing? Was there not the slightest hope that it was all just a dream from which he learned what he needed to know.  He then awoke, and instead of it being Christmas Day, it was actually the first day of the rest of his life.

My first real understanding of this Dickens’ tale was the animated Mr. Magoo version. I could never forget his relief and utter jubilation upon realizing the horrors he had seen were but a dream.  The spirits had done it all in one night, and he had not missed Christmas Day.  He was given a second chance to make everything right.

As someone having a bout of wisdom once told me, “The worst thing about life is the learning curve.”

If only life could be like Ebenezer’s bad dream, from which we could simply wake and begin anew.

Now, for the proverbial “call to action:”

If you liked this piece, please click “Like,” leave a comment, “Follow” my blog, – better yet, share the link with friends, family, or colleagues you think would enjoy it. It’s the only way a writer can gather an audience. Thanks very much! Nancy 🌹
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National Engineers Week

If you live, work, or have ever sought shelter in a building that is structurally sound; If you regularly cross a body of water, cloverleaf interchange or similar high overpass, confident the bridge will not fail;

If you can turn on lights, keep warm or cool, and dry your hair because of energy generated by a massive dam/hydroelectric source;

If you have enjoyed hike and bike trails and other municipal or National Park amenities;

If you drive cross country, or just take your child to school via a network of strategically designed streets and highways;

If you can flush your toilet, never doubting that waste will be carried far from your home and appropriately treated, so we can live free of waste-borne diseases…

Thank an engineer.

February 17-23 is “NATIONAL ENGINEERS WEEK.”

Celebrate the security of the safe, healthy society they create and maintain.

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Scary Movies – Nothing to Fear But Watching Alone

Which horror movies scared you the most? I was weaned on the horror flicks of the early 1960s (many of which were actually released in the late ’50s). By the time I was allowed to see them, it was after the Bela Lugosi/Lon Chaney era. In fact, the classic, yet somewhat more contemporary Christopher Lee played the Count in the first horror movie I ever saw -“Horror of Dracula.” Like a first kiss, it has to be in the top five fave – just because it was a “first.” Besides, after seeing it, I stayed awake all night, thinking I felt my teeth growing. My big brother and I loved spending an afternoon at the movies – especially the scary ones. Afternoon seemed the ideal time to see a scary movie. You think if you see it early enough in the day, you will recover by bedtime. Wrong! Those images linger in the subconscious, just waiting for your mom to turn out the lights. Then, it’s let the nightmares begin.

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Pearl Harbor Day

For the post-baby boomer generations who were taught the U.S. barbarically, mercilessly bombed Japan in 1945, it’s not your fault.  No one ever told you the Japanese were not always the cool, car-building, techno-genius, anime-creating society you know them to be.  So, please look up December 7, 1941.

The “date which will live in infamy” was essentially “9-1-1” before September 9, 2001.

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No More Virtual – Bring Back Actual

Seriously, the only thing making me sick is the word virtual. I am truly just so sick of hearing about virtual concerts, virtual conventions, virtual fairs. For cryin’ out loud, even the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade will be virtual this year.

The great State Fair of Texas was canceled, offering instead, drive-through photo ops with Big Tex and similar alternatives for obtaining deep-fried Fair food. In all fairness, I understand the relative impossibility of achieving and maintaining any kind of social distancing at such an event.

However, social distancing aside, with all due respect, the State Fair has long been an experience of basically taking your life into your own hands. It’s true that many years ago, either it was much safer, or we were much more naive. For example, the first time I attended the fair, I had only lived in Dallas two years. I went with the little boy who lived next door. Hs mother just dropped us off at the front gate, and we two nine-year-olds spent the entire day at the fair (albeit, among thousands of other elementary school kids). Three years later, at just 12 years old, I boarded a city bus with my friend (Dallas school kids were given bus tickets along with our free fair pass), and we spent the day at the fair, then caught a bus back home. Twelve years old – alone on a city bus from quiet, little, basically suburban, Mayfieldesque Northeast Dallas to the outer edge of downtown. True story. That was simply situation normal in the 1960s. Fast forward a few decades, even with prominent police presence on the fairgrounds, it is highly unlikely anyone would allow their elementary school age children to attend the fair alone.

But, I digress with a not infrequent lapse into a Baby Boomer childhood moment.

My point is the Texas State Fair is an annual event that thousands of people attend, knowing full well the inherent dangers, given the crowds and ingesting all manner of fried foods and delicacies on a stick from outdoor vendors.

And I can’t even say I would have attended the fair this year. I would just like to have had the option.

Returning to my initial premise, I am sick of the cancellations and closures. I can’t even go inside the veterinarian’s office with my dog. It is now a drive up, call in, tell them what space you’re in, they send someone out to get the dog, then the doctor calls you with the diagnosis, your credit card is processed inside, then card and dog returned to your car.

It’s like everything is the Chick-fil-A drive-thru, but without that exacting efficiency.

I was definitely never, by any stretch of the cocoon, a social butterfly. Yet, all of these non-interaction interactions and virtual events have made me appreciate when actual human contact was at least an option.

I understand if people with underlying health problems that make them more vulnerable to viruses want or need to self quarantine. But, at the risk of sounding selfish, I would love to return to an America fully open for business, events, and celebrations.

The current state of isolation and impersonal existence is virtually sickening.

Now, for the proverbial “call to action:”
If you liked this piece, please click “Like,” leave a comment, “Follow” my blog, – better yet, share the link with friends, family, or colleagues you think would enjoy it. It’s the only way a writer can gather an audience. Thanks very much!
Nancy 🌹

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“Victory Over Japan” Perspective of Someone Who Wasn’t There, but learned to fear “fear itself…”

Nancsue's Blog

Today marks the anniversary of what they called “Victory over Japan Day” or “V-J Day,” when Japan surrendered in World War II, basically bringing that world conflict to an end on August 14, 1945. The surrender document officially ending the war, however, was signed on September 2.

The initial surrender by Japan occurred just nine days after the bombing of Hiroshima. That atomic bomb seemed to galvanize the concept of war and peace into a single, treacherous, and disturbingly quiet “cold war.” Seventy years later we have grown relatively complacent with the positives and negatives of nuclear power. We accept it in our homes for the convenience of a microwave oven (it’s true – popcorn used to take at least five minutes). We submit ourselves to x-rays and other medical uses of radiation. Only after a disaster like Chernobyl in 1986, do we pause to ponder anew…

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More of the “New Normal” and Why I Prefer the Old Normal

Society has a whole new set of rules.

A retired friend recently returned to work – a feat in itself that I find nearly miraculous, since I can’t even get an interview at a used book store – but, that’s a whole ‘nother blog…

My friend is excited about being out and about, and returning to the productive population. However, he said it is difficult re-adjusting to things like not shaking hands.

Yes! Someone else is feeling it – the frustration of re-learning how to interact with other humans. A few months ago, after a particularly pleasant experience in the service department of an auto dealership, I instinctively reached out to shake the masked service advisor’s hand, then immediately drew back my hand. My brain reacted like the navigation app in your car when you make a wrong turn: “Re-calculating! Re-calculating!” The service advisor nodded understanding, and we sort of waved in mutual appreciation. Continue reading

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If It’s Five O’clock Somewhere, and The Mood is Right

One of the first college psychology courses I took had a lesson about how alcohol does not lift your spirits – it only amplifies the mood you’re in. That was actually something I already knew from experience. No, not from any underage drinking. I was an adult student, because I didn’t go to college until I was working full time, and could pay for it myself. Anyway, with that bit of experiential and textbook knowledge, I made it a point to never drink when I’m in a bad mood. Continue reading

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Don’t Be Shocked – It’s Not Just About the Lights

Nancsue's Blog

In the old days (read “when I was a child”), most people called the electric bill their “light bill.” Because, lights were pretty much the primary leeches of that magic current flowing into the house.

Even the logo for the power company was “Reddy Kilowatt,”a sort of spokes-filament lightbulb character.

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Caring Rightly or Accepting Solitude

Nancsue's Blog

Don’t assume, Do not think for a single minute that there is another human on this planet who cares as much about you as you care for them.

Be it friend or family, It is not likely they think about you the way your mind is consumed with thoughts of them day after day, and all through the night.

They do not worry about you the way you spend endless hours agonizing over their wellbeing.

They don’t see you in every sunset

Or long for you when the moon is full.

They have no urge to call or text you to share a good joke – or memory.

And in the outside chance that you ever do find another human who places that much value in knowing you – who truly loves you more than they love themselves – THAT is THE ONE – your soulmate for life.

Otherwise, just…

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Caring Rightly or Accepting Solitude

Don’t assume, Do not think for a single minute that there is another human on this planet who cares as much about you as you care for them.

Be it friend or family, It is not likely they think about you the way your mind is consumed with thoughts of them day after day, and all through the night.

They do not worry about you the way you spend endless hours agonizing over their wellbeing.

They don’t see you in every sunset

Or long for you when the moon is full.

They have no urge to call or text you to share a good joke – or memory.

And in the outside chance that you ever do find another human who places that much value in knowing you – who truly loves you more than they love themselves – THAT is THE ONE – your soulmate for life.

Otherwise, just focus on God. He is the only one who loves you even more than you can possibly love Him.

I realize how cynical this sounds. But, I have had years to learn this lesson, and more than enough time to ponder and accept it as an unfortunate truth.

When I was very young, my mom taught me the Twenty-third Psalm, and encouraged turning to it whenever I was fearful.  Mom was right.  Reciting those words of comfort has always consoled me.  Even now, when I find myself agonizing over the welfare of loved ones who have no such interest in my well-being, I try to turn my thoughts to The One who does care.  David, the psalmist, needed a shepherd.  These days, I think of God, not so much as a shepherd, as that much needed relationship of loving care.  And so, I added this beginning to my recitation of the Twenty-third Psalm:   

          The Lord is my shepherd – my loved one, my friend

           I shall not want – not ever again

And so, at times, I am reminded of where my focus needs to be.

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Father’s Day – Even For the Fatherless

So, here comes Father’s Day – a Hallmark holiday I always dreaded as a child, because I didn’t have a father. No, I wasn’t a test tube baby or anything. My parents divorced just shy of my fourth birthday. Mom, my big brother, and I moved to another state, and never again saw my father. I have no, as the saying goes, “independent recollection” of ever calling anyone “Daddy,” though I must have done so, since I lived with him for almost four years. There were a few phone calls. But, in the 1950s, long distance telephone calls were a luxury, and luxuries were rare in my childhood. The last time we spoke, I was four years old. Mom handed me the phone, and I said, “Hello, Jack.” (Well, that’s what my mother called him.) he said, “Jack? That’s what you call me? Well, how hardheaded can you get… Put your brother on the phone.” And those were the last words I ever heard from my father – prophetic, though they were. Throughout my life, most who know me would agree with that “hardheaded” conclusion. So, although I didn’t really know my father, he obviously understood a bit about me.

There were no grandfathers. Both died within a few months of each other when I was two, and we lived in a different state from our uncles. Mom remarried after a few years. However, he already had four children of his own. So, he was a nice man – mostly just my mother’s husband. I especially dreaded Father’s Day, because in the 1960s and ‘70s, greeting cards were far less specific. Whereas, nowadays, you can likely find a Father’s Day card for Caitlyn Jennerto the woman who used to be my dad. Back in the day, there were no Happy Father’s Day to the man who married my mom, drives the car, and keeps us on his health insurance. I suppose divorce was not yet socially acceptable enough to make stepfather cards. Anyway, I never felt comfortable with the mushy “I love you, Daddy” cards, because they just were not applicable for my situation. Fortunately, my stepfather’s birthday was within a few days – some years, it fell on Father’s Day. So, I would usually just give him a birthday card, and add a Father’s Day greeting to it.

My father died when I was 14. So, there was never any reunion. After missing out on the whole daddy experience, one might think that, as an adult, I would have a warm relationship with a father-in-law. However, I married a guy who was, likewise, fatherless, having lost his dad when he was just nine years old.

While I personally knew no paternal relationship, my two children had a wonderful dad.

I don’t know if, in the almost 10 years he had with his father, my husband learned how to be a good father, or if he simply became the kind of dad he always wanted. Whatever the reason, he could have been the poster child/dad for neat, fun father.

Even before we had our own children, the little boy next door would come over, and ask me if my husband could come outside and play.

He was the kind of hands-on daddy who changed his share of dirty diapers, and regularly spelled me for the 2 AM feedings. Of course, it helped that we had that newfangled creature comfort called cable TV, which definitely enhanced that middle-of-the-night quality time for a sleepy parent with a wide-awake infant.

When the kids were very young, it was not unusual for me to return home from shopping only to find every pillow and cushion removed from our sectional sofa, and carefully arranged to accommodate all kinds of wrestling matches or gymnastic feats. My little family was staging stunts long before TV shows like Wipeout and The Titan Games.

Their dad made sure my son and daughter could pitch, catch, dribble, or pass any kind of ball. He taught them to fish in fresh and salt water, to shoot guns and use a bow and arrow. When we lived in the country, we had a pool, regulation size trampoline, huge paved area for skating and skateboarding, volleyball area, a tether ball, and at age 12, my son had a motorcycle to drive in the field.

My kids’ dad made sure they saw Disneyland and Disney World – beaches, mountains, and deserts. They skied, sailed, surfed, hiked, and camped. And all of those experiences were firsts for their mom, as well – this little girl with no dad of her own. So, despite never enjoying Father’s Day as a child, I had every reason to celebrate it as a mother. I did not grow up with a dad. But, my kids were blessed with one of the best.

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My Loss Was Always A Baby – Not a Clump of Cells – A Baby

On this date in 1977, after waiting and praying over the long holiday weekend, I was officially told by my obstetrician that the baby I had carried for five months had died in utero.

I had not felt her kick for about a week. A visit to my doctor on the Friday before Memorial Day detected no heartbeat. In those days, they did not have sophisticated sonogram equipment in the doctor’s office. The most reliable instrument was the stethoscope. My doctor listened intently. Then, diplomatically called his associate in, telling me Dr. Sparr had “much better hearing.” Yet, even the doctor with the best hearing could find no heartbeat. Nevertheless, Dr. Stephens sent me home with some small hope that my baby might just be turned in an awkward position, and perhaps by Tuesday morning, that would change.

We did spend the long weekend praying and trying to find those familiar kicks – to no avail. Continue reading

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Why I Love Collies

After quite a dry spell – not so much writer’s block as, at worst , starter’s block; at best, finisher’s block, I realized I had to write something – anything. So, with nary a nod to nasty politics, I thought I would start slowly with an elementary school style essay on why I love collies.

Without further ado… ahem…”Why I Love Collies” by Nancy Krenrich:

It should come as no surprise that this Baby Boomer grew up watching “Lassie.” I was too young for the Jeff episodes with Tommy Rettig (1954 – 1957). It was the Timmy shows (starring Jon Provost) that I watched every Sunday night.

It might be that my love of collies is hereditary. I have seen a picture of my big brother (before I was born) holding what appeared to be a tricolor collie puppy, whose name I am told, was Tippy. My mom never had pets, because her mother was not a fan, and was appalled at the very idea of actually keeping and feeding them. Heaven forbid they should be allowed in the house! So, any affection for animals would likely come from my father. After I was born, we had a sable collie named Sandy until my parents divorced. Mom got my brother and me. My dad got custody of the collie.

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In-law Christmas

This next weekend is usually designated as what I used to affectionately call “in-law Christmas,” when you gather with the non-alpha in-laws to celebrate the holiday (as opposed to the real festivities with your actual family).

For further clarification, the “alpha in-laws” are typically the woman’s family. I’m not sure why that is. It likely harks back to that old adage my grandmother often cited, “A son’s a son ‘til he takes a wife. A daughter’s a daughter all her life.” While that is not always the situation, fortunately, it worked out that way for me. My family was the alpha. I’m not sure I could have survived had it been otherwise. There were three sisters-in-law, and having only a big brother, I never really understood how to relate or get along with sisters. Besides, two of those women viewed my husband as the “baby brother.” And my mother-in-law? She was my brunette Marie Barone of “Everybody Loves Raymond” (impeccably portrayed by the late Doris Roberts). I never questioned the precept governing alpha in-laws as long as it was working in my favor. Continue reading

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In-law Thanksgiving

This weekend is usually designated as what I used to affectionately call “in-law Thanksgiving,” when you gather with the non-alpha in-laws to celebrate the holiday (as opposed to the real feast with your actual family).

For further clarification, the “alpha in-laws” are typically the woman’s family. I’m not sure why that is. It likely harks back to that old adage my grandmother often cited, “A son’s a son ‘til he takes a wife. A daughter’s a daughter all her life.” While that is not always the situation, fortunately, it worked out that way for me. My family was the alpha. I’m not sure I could have survived had it been otherwise. There were three sisters-in-law, and having only a big brother, I never really understood how to relate or get along with sisters. Besides, two of those women viewed my husband as the “baby brother.” And my mother-in-law? She was my brunette Marie Barone of “Everybody Loves Raymond” (impeccably portrayed by the late Doris Roberts). I never questioned the precept governing alpha in-laws as long as it was working in my favor. Continue reading

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Youth Does Have a Shelf Life – Nobody Warned Me

There’s a Rolling Stones‘ song “Time is on My Side.” When I was very young, I believed that. As a matter of fact, I embraced this fallacy until about four years ago.

Truth is, time is never on your side. It is always the enemy.

On some level, I think I was caught up in the great Baby Boomer deception. We were to be the perennial teenagers. Continue reading

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New Tennis Shoes – A Whiff of Nostalgia

Ahh… the smell of new tennis shoes.

My granddaughter got new tennis shoes today, and while lacing them for her, I got a good whiff of that brand-new sneaker smell. I don’t know whether it’s the fresh canvas or pristine rubber. There is just something special about that aroma that really took me back to another time and place. My first memory of new tennis shoes is when I was six years old. My brother, then 12, helped our cousin with a landscaping project. With some of the money he made, he bought me a pair of red, Keds-type sneakers that I had been wanting. How I loved those shoes! I believed I could actually jump higher and run faster in those wonderful red shoes. Continue reading

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I Used to be a Music Maker

Once upon a time, I was a music maker.

I was first a poet.

At age 11, my main Christmas gift was a guitar. Not unlike millions of other kids mesmerized and inspired by the Beatles, I believed I could better express myself musically.

Cradling my guitar, I carefully crafted chords to fit my words.

Composing was a solo act. Yet, I enjoyed harmonizing with a few friends who shared my passion. Continue reading

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The Hierarchy of Problems Principle – Just How Miserable Are You?

More than a few decades ago, as a newlywed, I was complaining to my mother about a situation that felt important to me.

After only a brief period of the ear-bending, Mom abruptly shut me down by reminding me of a family member with a much greater problem. She ended with a comment along the lines of how (in contrast to our relative), I didn’t know what a problem was.

Ouch.

It’s true, my worries were merely emotional and mental, unlike the physical health crisis to which my mother referred. Nevertheless, it was my introduction to the hierarchy of problems principle. Very similar to the adage, “I cried because I had no shoes, until I met a man who had no feet,” there was an order of importance and degree of difficulty, so to speak, before one could qualify for sympathy in my family. Continue reading

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