Thursday, March 02, 2006

Every day the news, whether it be paper, internet, television or other electronic media, has become increasingly negative. There was a time when one could at least count on a lighthearted piece or two or three in their local daily paper, on their local evening news; a piece that had little to do with any editorial political agenda. Many people I have spoken to decry the fact that there is bias in what has become to be known as the mainstream media. Sadly, these are the same decent human beings who, at one time, believed that a destructuring of traditional values was essential for civil rights of all peoples to fully develop in both Europe and America. Of course, armed conflict of any kind, was simply unnecessary and those that appeared to be warriors, despicable. These people were smoking, literally. I was one of those individuals.

There are several things that I learned about the past as a student of history, notwithstanding the biggest point- it is doomed to repeat itself if society does not take lessons by looking at not only yesterday or last week, but the last 20, 50, 100 years.

There were several continents involved in a major conflict in the 1940's; progressive political judgments and a live and let live attitude led to what became World War II. The political parties involved in allowing the conflict to develop and those initially involved believed in one thing only. That religion, of any sort, was a bad idea.

The stakes are much higher in this century - two of them are most disturbing - there are few countries with the capabilities to bail out their neighbors, the United States being one of them, and there are simply more countries involved.

Here's a few thoughts on what could happen, or what should happen in a nightly newscast.

While watching the latest nightly newscast about the local zoo and a new exhibit, the newscaster could comment on how cute and fluffy the cub, monkey, etc., is and how much your family should visit the zoo for a day to relax. (Instead of the following: Finally, this black bear cub has found a home with the local zoo. If it were not for the current administrations total lack of regard for the environment, cubby here, would be allowed to stay at home in the wild!)

A diplomatic conversation:

"Excuse me, Mr. Ambassador to the Sudan, are you seriously telling me that millions of dollars in aid and materials are being held back from starving millions, who are suffering from aids, because you are concerned that some political warlord might take offence and the French and the Germans can't agree on what brand of truck needs to be flown in?"
"Here's what we are going to do; we're delivering everything, we're bringing in our troops, we'll shoot a few people who are trying to prevent the aid from taking place, and then we'll leave to applause when it is over."
"Oh and by they way, Sean Penn is going to make a movie about it - about how American's are hero's; he's had a change of heart since his citizenship was revoked and he's been living in France."

Just a thought.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Weathering A Storm of Childhood illnesses
Ode to Friendship

There is the desperation that sets in and gnaws at ones very soul when a child becomes ill and a parent is unable to find an immediate solution. Every mother blames themselves for not having taken nursing or first aid courses - knowing simple facts can make the difference between an increase in pain and alleviating symptoms. With all the technology at ones fingertips today there is nothing that can compete with the comfort, knowledge and kindness of a good friend.

God has gifted me with several amazing people in my life; and one of note appears, for all intents and purposes, as a rather ordinary today's woman. When one becomes better acquainted with Cindy, it is apparent that ordinary is not an applicable term.
Wonder woman is more like it.

I stand in awe of her for several reasons; she can whip up what-ever craft project needed by school or church within what seems like minutes and in multiples that boggle the mind, she organizes projects with ease (including costumes for school plays from desgin to completion up to a wedding dress - in her spare time). The scope of any given project does not matter - she shows great humor and patience with everyone around her who just "doesn't get it" - whatever that "it" might be. She juggles the responsibilities of a family, including extended members and household pets, in the same manner. Cindy works as a nurse on the night shift, pediatric care and obstetric, so that her children always have a parent present. She is the first person I call when I need general medical advice, because I know it will be sound, sensible and that is what is needed. (There are, of course, other occasions) What I find most remarkable is what she considers the "little things".

This weekend, my child was very ill, I called Cindy while waiting for a callback from the pediatrician office - She gave me some clues and told me to call her later. Of course, all of the very sensible items she suggested I was out of, with a few exceptions. My child did not want me to leave (nor did I) to go to the grocery store. We would make due, and wait out the illness with suggestions given by the pediatrician. Cindy arrived at my home around 5 pm., with a care package containing all of the items one should have in their home in a situation (tips will be listed below). One would think that someone so perfect, so wonder-woman-like would be stuffy and full of themselves (see Martha Stewart), not so. Intelligent, charming, witty - the kind of person you want to just chat with, have tea with, call your friend.

Care package for individuals with 24 hour stomach virus and/or food poisoning:
fruit juice, dry cereal (life), apple sauce, chicken soup, dry crackers, note for a friend that has no idea these should be pantry staples. Ginger ale can be added to the list - stir out the bubbles.

God has blessed me with many acquaintances in my life and few friends. My father once told me that in a lifetime one would be lucky if there were able to count their true friends on one finger of one hand. You know who you are; my friends, and i love and cherish you for the special talents you have to make the world a better place.

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