Do The Gifted Lack Honor?Or is it Suppressed by Celebrity?

As a consequence of Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte’s misremembering, misrepresentation, or outright lying about being robbed at gunpoint after an Olympic party, some companies, including Speedo and Polo Ralph Lauren, among others, have dropped their sponsorship/endorsement deals with the Olympic medalist.  Whether it was exaggeration or outright fabrication, the operative word here is “consequence.”

Apparently, the most gifted among us are not always the most honorable. One need only look around at professional sports and the entertainment industry for example after example of individuals with gifts, the magnitude of which vastly exceeds their apparent moral aptitude.

In my own simplistic logic, I find myself picturing God creating souls and bestowing on some, these amazing gifts – some born to be great athletes, musicians, actors, writers, etc. They are gifts, because the individuals did nothing to earn them. They were, quite simply, blessed by God with these remarkable talents.

I am then left to wonder. Did the parents, teachers, and/or coaches of these individuals, recognizing the talent, spoil and coddle them throughout their lives to the point where the gifted became and believed they were entitled? At some point in a lifetime of almost constant winning and subsequent indulgence, do they just come to think themselves  as above the rules, laws, and standards of behavior the rest of us must follow?

This is likely a “chicken/egg” discussion. However, we continue to see these things, ranging from such extremes as O.J. Simpson, to the non-criminal, but disappointing Tiger Woods’ “amorous indiscretions,” Lance Armstrong’s alleged “ped” use, Bill Cosby, and now this simply embarrassing situation for a celebrated Olympic swimmer. I cite those examples as more high profile and recent. Yet, stories of blatant indiscretions of the “celebrated,” over the centuries, ranging from criminal to merely disgusting, disappointing failure to demonstrate honor or any sense of morality, would fill volumes.

I am often reminded of a line from the 1984 movie Amadeus,where Antonio Salieri (played by F. Murray Abraham), was so disheartened that the crude, lustful, vulgar Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Tom Hulce) was born with such a magnificent musical gift, when Salieri longed for such blessing, and promised to praise God with it. Yet, despite his prayers, Salieri had only mediocre musical talent, and finally, in despair, asked, “What was God up to?”

I found that single line so funny, yet painfully poignant, and I don’t think Salieri’s resentment was that uncommon. I’m guessing many of us have thought, at some time, “If only I had that gift, talent, opportunity…I would use it for good, and give the glory to God.”

For those born with the God-given gifts, we can only offer the advice Jiminy Cricket gave Pinocchio: “Let your conscience be your guide.”

And if you don’t have a conscience, it might be a good idea to just learn something from the consequences of your poor judgment.

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 🌹

Posted in Blessings, celebrities, entertainment, Fame, famous people, movies, pop culture, Psychology, Sports, Success/Failure | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Loving Blindly, Like Katie Morosky in “The Way We Were”

Redford’s character (Hubbell) said to Streisand’s in THE WAY WE WERE: “When you love someone, from Roosevelt to me, you go deaf, dumb and blind.”
Like Streisand’s Katie Morosky, I also do that. From the Beatles to collies, I give it my all. When I was a teen, my best friend would offer this heads up to any new prospective boyfriend on my horizon: “If you really want to get in good with Nancy, don’t ever say anything bad about the Beatles or the Kennedys.”

I was reminiscing today about one of my all-time favorite jobs – when I worked in the Office of the late Dallas Mayor Jack W. Evans. Not only was he a good, honorable man, I made a couple of lifelong friendships there.  

According to civil service records, I was a “secretary.” However, I was blessed with an immediate supervisor who believed in matching abilities and talents to the job. So, when she and Mayor Jack learned I could write, my primary responsibilities were writing his speeches, the Mayoral proclamations, and responding to citizens’ correspondence. 
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Posted in Adulthood, Dallas history, Employment, Government, movies, politics, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

It’s Time to Escape SHAWSHANK – Quit Your Job & Find a New One

Each miserable day blends into the next.  The only changes are negative.  You think it might be time to change jobs.  But, it’s rough out there.  Times are hard, and your paycheck (such as it is), keeps coming.  And then there’s that pesky health insurance you must have (or suffer the penalizing fine at tax time).  So, how do you know when the time is right to make what Steve Harvey calls “the jump?”

 • You haven’t had a vacation in three years. Vacation??? You can’t even get time off to go to the doctor.

 • You spend more on headache and stomach medication than you do on groceries.

 • You can’t sleep, and the few hours you do get are filled with nightmares of work.

 • Your only day(s) off is spent in the fetal position, dreading tomorrow.

 • You wake each morning and do a lump check, hoping for cancer.

I say JUST DO IT.  Here’s Steve Harvey’s more eloquent inspiration:

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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Posted in Adulthood, Aging, celebrities, Depression, Employment, mid-centurians, pop culture, Success/Failure | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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 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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Posted in Adulthood, Authors, Christmas, Growing up, Literature, mid-centurians, movies, pop culture, Success/Failure | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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 21-27 is “NATIONAL ENGINEERS WEEK.”

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

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Give Up or Just Give – A Lenten List

Ash Wednesday, and so it begins, the season of spiritual renewal, and for some Christian denominations, the Lenten sacrifice. Typically, chocolate and other sweet snacks are offered up for this six week period. I can’t help but wonder if the objective there is truly spiritual sacrifice or using religion as an increased impetus to lose weight.

Then, there are the tricks, like giving up a fruit that is out of season, anyway, or a food you never eat. For example, if I gave up sushi, liver, or buttermilk… The lack thereof would never be noticed by my body or soul.

Seriously, maybe it’s time to reconsider the familiar “go to” (or “go from”) sacrifices. If, like me, you need all the calories you can get, let’s take food off the table, so to speak.

Instead of giving up physical nourishment, you might add something spiritually nourishing, such as reading the Bible every day, or a volunteer or other charitable activity.

I would also suggest, instead of forgoing food, give up a behavior or activity, such as cussing, reading gossip magazines, or daily selfie posting.

Some things I don’t recommend giving up: Deodorant, brushing your teeth, clipping your toenails, shaving your legs.

Just sayin’. . . It is, after all, a season of spiritual growth – no other growth.

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Confessions of a Freelance Worshipper

Okay. I admit it. I’m a fair weather church goer.” Note, I did not say a fair weather believer. No, I am always there in spirit, and I am a certified prayer warrior. I just don’t attend church with any regularity. Perhaps I should have dubbed myself a stormy weather church goer. Because, that is when I find myself on the kneeler. Disclaimer: I was raised to attend church, and usually went to Presbyterian Sunday School as a child.  I later converted to Catholicism, and always fulfilled my Sunday obligation. When I had an intact family, we were there – every Sunday, regardless of how squirmy the kids tried to be.

It has been the past decade (or so) I began my freelance worship.

Ouch – for a person who resists the face-to-face confession, preferring to hide behind the screen, that was quite a public admission. Continue reading

Posted in Blessings, Catholicism, Depression, emotions, Humor, Miracles, Prayer, religion, Success/Failure, values | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments