Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Do Overs

By Dani Ferguson Phillips of The Cataract Club

This past weekend I was thinking about reincarnation and some of the different philosophies on the subject. I am currently reading the book, Many Lives, Many Masters by Dr. Brian Weiss. It is a true story about his experience with a patient and past-life regression therapy.

The book is interesting but I am certainly not schooled on the concept of reincarnation although I’ve been interested over the years.

I think it was especially inviting during those periods in my life when I felt a sense of hopelessness. The times when I felt that life just wasn’t ever going to get any better. It was at those times that the idea of getting a chance to do it over again and perhaps “get it right” was a comforting thought.

In the next life I’d be sure to be successful in love and remain a size six (might as well get everything right) and not get married until AFTER I finished my education.

But I guess we all wish for a “do over” at some point in our lives. We know that sometimes in life we are doomed to repeat the same mistakes over and over again if we don’t learn from them. We’ve all seen people pick the wrong woman or man time and time again and each one a carbon copy of the last.

But there is always hope - and that hope is that when we know better we will do better. That to me is the appeal of reincarnation. An opportunity to hope that this ISN’T all there is.

In my vision of reincarnation, I would like to think that bigoted people come back as those they were prejudiced against. Or that a male chauvinist pig for example would come back as a woman in Iran. Talk about karma.

We are on this earth for just a brief time but we are growing and learning hopefully all the time. It seems ironic that by the time we have gained any wisdom we have reached the end of our life cycle.

It would almost seem reasonable that if we were to return again with just a little bit of that prior knowledge to build upon we might just get it right.

I suppose reincarnation is the ultimate in recycling.


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Tuesday, 18 August 2015

One Day Closer

By Arlene Corwin of Arlene Corwin Poetry

It’s always one day closer
To an end, yours most importantly:
It‘s that that counts
As days mount up inexorably.
Soon- or later, the debates are
What you do with time - your time: the in-between,
And what is worthy on this earthly sojourn?
I have answers.
There are answers: wo/man/swers!
Don’t waste a day,
The-closer-to-an-end,
But face it, for each second
Is one second closer…


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Monday, 17 August 2015

Consuming Love

By Marc Leavitt of Marc Leavitt's Blog

When Praying Mantis couples court,
Their love affairs are very short,
For, after hot sex with their dates,
The females gobble up their mates.


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Friday, 14 August 2015

No Way

From Clifford Rothband

We had a window treatment and interior decorator store in Boca Raton, Florida, for more than 20 years. I learned early on not to be impressed by another's fame or wealth. Sure, I was impressed to meet so many famous and outstanding people. But I learned treat them as just another client.

I've also been advised not to use their names lest I place myself in a libelous situation. I leave it to your imagination to identify these individuals.

A few that stand out included one famous Latin singer. We were contacted by an individual who identified himself by his real name. At the front door this guy hands me his card, he's an attorney. He then states that he wants a fair price since my company has been recommended.

Now this lawyer produces a contract: that I do not look at the owner, nor speak with him, tell anyone where he lives, acknowledge him nor ask for an autograph or photo.

I was astonished that this guy felt so important. Then we realized one reason, his girlfriend. What the fan magazines could have made of it.

Another guy was a still famous although over the hill baseball player. He lived in a large house with an ocean view. At the time of signing a contract for the order, I saw all the trophies and memorabilia. I knew who he was but asked his wife for her autograph on signing the contract. He looked at me funny, but so what.

Later on, an employee of ours said that she would do anything for his autograph. The wife had me call and apologize for being rude. He said not to worry, that when we do the installation to bring about a dozen baseballs and he would be glad to sign them.

So of course we purchased 12 new baseballs. After the installation he said to leave the balls and he would sign them at another time and call us or drop them off. He never did.

We did a restaurant for another baseball great. So now we are finished with the job and he comes over to speak with us, saying what a terrific job. His house is next.

At that moment, some woman approaches us and this homerun king says to her, "We have a glass counter with autographed photos and paraphernalia for sale.”

The lady answers, no, she just wanted my business card. He turned absolutely red - embarrassed, humiliated or angry. I never got his other job.

I wish that I could name names, but such is life.

A real treat was when a concierge from a high rise on south Ocean Boulevard called us. After the measure and sale, we returned for the install and this actor and his wife were there.

Afterwards, I asked downstairs at the front desk if he and his wife were who I thought they were. I could not wait to tell my wife. Of course my wife said, "No way."

That evening after work we stopped in at the nearby Publix supermarket. There they were. My wife again said, "No way.”

He saw us and they walked over - the hot blonde wife very pregnant, he as handsome and outgoing as in the movies and TV. They introduced themselves. What a high point.

Later on, my wife says that she has freckles, although she was more beautiful than on the big screen.


[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Please read instructions for submitting.]

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Thursday, 13 August 2015

Fireflies

By Vicki E. Jones

Little fires in the night
Going dark, then flashing bright
In the bushes
In the trees
By the flowers
By the leaves

Too dark out now to see you fly
But I see lights beneath the sky
Blinking off
Blinking on
Then in an instant
You are gone

Then your flashes of lightning bright
Pierce the dark of summer night
Never knowing where you’ll fly
Lights beneath the summer sky


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Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Ancient History

By Ross Middleton

I learnt something years ago
I have not retained it fully
Though still having a sense of its meaning
In the near future I intend exploring further
I can ask myself
Anyone can ask me
Why?

I set myself to know something of ancient history
Of the early days
In an attempt to understand
How we became what we are

Of course we know the question is too broad
In an exchange we can't explain
But we might convey
Hopefully
Something of what we discovered
And what we didn't


[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Please read instructions for submitting.]

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Tuesday, 11 August 2015

On the Beach

By Henry Lowenstern

I'm sitting on the beach
safely out of reach
of the shark
that tends to park,
waiting to inflict a breach

On the Beach II

Jumping into the surf is fun;
it's something I have often done.
But, now that I'm older
and have a sore shoulder,
it might have been something wiser to shun.


[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Please read instructions for submitting.]

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Monday, 10 August 2015

Backseat Drivers Anonymous

By Dani Ferguson Phillips of The Cataract Club

I'm going to start a support group for back seat drivers. I'm the first official member. Hi, my name is Dani and I'm a back seat driver.

Isn't recognizing the problem the first step to resolving it? I'm not sure what the 12 steps will be yet but for sure the first one is acknowledge your imperfection.

Now, the only defense I have concerning my affliction, imperfection is my husband (as wonderful as he is) always ends up somewhere other than where we are going. I sometimes wonder how the man finds his way home. If I don't occasional ask, "Uh, where are you going?" I'd never see my front door again.

His reply is always, "I meant to go this way,"

NOT!

But that's the only justifiable back seat driving I do. The rest is completely unjustified.

My husband is a good driver but I'm a horrible passenger. I flinch, grab the handle, use my imaginary brake and constantly gasp and then try to disguise it with a yawn. I don't know why I'm so nervous in the car but my theory is that I have PTSD.

It is the result of teaching 16-year-old twins to drive. All I could think about when one of them was behind the wheel was the fact that I had to teach these people how to use a spoon not to mention the fact I also had to tell them when to pee! None of this made it easy to entrust my life in their hands. It doesn't matter that it was 29 years ago that kind of terror never goes away.

So, now I try to always wear my sunglasses when riding in the car. This allows me to close my eyes and just hang on for the ride without my husband seeing the terror written on my face.

I don't think I'm fooling anyone but he hasn't made me run beside the car yet so I call that a victory.


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Friday, 07 August 2015

What I Believe

By Marc Leavitt of Marc Leavitt's Blog

When people ask what I believe,
I answer, I believe in change:
The sights and sounds that I receive
With joy, as nature will arrange;

The sunlight washing over me,
The lightning bursting in the sky,
The thunder crashing violently,
The honking calls of geese on high,

The buzzing sound of honey bees,
The brightness of a starry night,
The freshness of a summer breeze,
The changes, forming life’s delight.


[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Please read instructions for submitting.]

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Thursday, 06 August 2015

My First Dollar

By Carl Hansen

From time to time, I enter a place of business where the owner has a framed dollar bill on the wall with the notation that it was the “first dollar earned” when the business or service got its start.

While I don’t have such a dollar framed on my wall, there is a dollar packed away in my memory bank that is very special to me. It was not the “first dollar” I earned as pastor of small, struggling inner-city church in New Jersey but it is one I will never forget.

The year was 1965. I learned that the father of one of our sunday school children was in a local hospital so I added his name to may visitation list.

Over the next three weeks, I visited him several times and while it appeared that he was suffering from something quite serious, he never shared any details with me. And although I learned several things about him, he shared nothing about his family beyond the young children I already knew.

Eventually he was released from the hospital and a few days later I received a phone call from him. He had a request: “Me and the missus want to get married.” That afternoon, when he came by the church to iron out the details of the service, I learned the rest of the story.

Several years before, his wife had died leaving him with three small children. He hired a teen age girl from the neighborhood to be their nanny during the day while he was working and eventually, the paid relationship became much more serious.

The young woman moved into his home and in time they brought three more children into the world, loved, he said, as much as those who were born to his first wife. But now, he wanted — indeed he needed — to have this “missus” become his legal spouse.

Suddenly it became clear that his hospitalization was indeed serious; he had a terminal condition.

With that in mind, he learned that his missus could not inherit their home unless she was his legal spouse. And that, in turn, was the reason for requesting my pastoral services.

He had the necessary license so we agreed to meet the next evening for them to exchange their vows in what he requested to be a simple, private ceremony. At the appointed hour they met me at the church. No one else came with them. None of the children but also no one to be the witnesses whose names would join mine on the marriage be witnesses on license.

I made a quick trip to a home next to the church where I recruited a young man I had come to know to be one witness. He, in turn, went with me to a second home where we “drafted” one of his friends to be the second witness.

Once we were back in the sanctuary, the wedding went off without a hitch. Both of the witnesses thanked me for inviting them to be part of it for they admitted to being so nervous during their own wedding ceremonies, they were not really sure they listened all that carefully to what had been said.

When the witnesses went to their homes, the “newlyweds” said their good-byes. As the groom thanked me, he pressed into my hand what turned out to be a crumpled dollar bill.

That’s the “first dollar” I have never forgotten even though I “earned” it well over 50 years ago.


[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Please read instructions for submitting.]

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