You Can’t Have It Both Ways.

Everyone is yammering on about how an 18 year old shouldn’t be able to buy a gun.
They can go to war and protect your country, but not own a gun.
They can vote but they can’t buy a gun.
They can drive a car but they can’t own a gun.
They can marry and divorce, but can’t own a gun.
They can pay bills and make money, but they can’t own a gun.
They can buy pot, tobacco products and beer in some states, but can’t own a gun.
They can be fathers, but they can’t own a gun.
They can run a business, work in dangerous jobs, but they can’t own a gun.
They can save a life, but they can’t own a gun.
They can provide for an entire family, but they can’t own a gun.
They are considered adults, but they can;t own a gun.

Okay. You want them to remain children. So no more military, no more voting, no more marriage or divorce without parental consent, no more driving cars, no more smokes or booze, no more pot either, no more responsibility for being a daddy, no more working, no more being a man. Nope. They must remain children under the care of the uncaring government.

The leftists can’t have it both ways. Either they are adults, with all the rights of an adult, or they are children. What we need are police and federal officials who are willing to do their damned jobs. Most departments say that they “protect and serve” the people. Bull. Not in Florida. There they run away and serve themselves. That young man was sick, for a long time. No one did their job, had they done so, 17 people would be alive. Unless, of course, he blew them up or ran them down with a car. If someone is determined to kill, they will find a way.


A Short Holiday

We went on a brief holiday over the past four days. The more I am around people, the less I like them. Maybe it is because I am old, and I was raised with manners, expectations of certain social behaviors when in public, and on threat of perpetual grounding, expected the same from my children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Things I witnessed this past week makes me wonder about the safety, sanity, and abilities of future generations.

Story One:

We were in the resort restaurant for the dinner buffet. The place was packed, as they usually are. After getting our Addie settled with her meal, I wandered off to check out the grown up menu. A woman pushed past me, and as she did I noticed she was wearing a bikini top and a pair of pajama bottoms with a pair of mukluk boots. Now, granted, we were at a place where the main attractions were the pools and slides, but at first glance she looked like she had jumped out of bed in her bra and pajamas to grab a meal. First of all, she was everything I hate in people. Loud, pushy, obnoxious, and demanding. Secondly, she was downright tacky. It is one thing to grab a snack in your swimsuit at the snack bar, but it is far different to turn up to dinner dressed like that. And don’t get me started on just how tacky it is for a grown woman to be running around in public in pajamas. How hard is it to throw on a pair of trousers or jeans, descent shoes and a top? I don’t even care if you need a bra and don’t wear one, but really, put some damned clothes on.

Story Two:

Same restaurant second day there. We were at the Breakfast buffet. (It’s cheaper and there are more choices.) I get in line behind a family of a mom with her two boys of about seven and nine. She is on her phone. The older boy grabs a plate and starts filling it with eggs. Four large serving spoons of scrambled eggs. Mom says nothing. He hits the bacon next. He scooped up no less than twelve pieces of bacon. Mom says, “Honey let me have some of that bacon.” She takes one piece off his plate. He dives back in and puts four or five more pieces on his plate and heads for the hash browns. By now the first plate is full. He gets a second plate, mind you he can come back for more. He fills the second plate with hash brown potatoes and covers them with gravy. Then hands the plates to his Mom, who takes them, and he heads to the cereal dispenser. He fills a bowl with Fruit Loops and milk and heads back to the table, where the server is setting down his hot chocolate and orange juice. Their table is right across from ours. Because I had never seen a skinny kid that age eat so much, I wanted to see what he would do. His mom nibbled her bacon and sipped on her coffee while she stayed on the phone. The boy ate a few bites of cereal, had a few sips of hot chocolate, and didn’t touch anything else. His mother never noticed. They got up and left and she was still on the phone. Someone needs a lesson on wasting food and greed. Oh, and on parenting.

Story Three:

We decided to take a drive up into the mountains to see the National Park. We went to a very cool place that has a drive through living history thing. That takes everyone to see the old settlement in the valley. It is about eleven miles round trip and there are loads of places to stop and take photos and go into the old buildings. We ended up behind a car with a family of five. Two parents, three kids. Like everyone, they had their windows down. Two of the kids, one on each side, were sitting on the window sill of the doors, hanging outside the car, leaning back as far as they could go. Granted, the speed limit was about ten miles an hour, but there were a lot of sudden stops as people would decide to leave the road and park to take photos etc. We followed them for about two miles, and ever single minute, I expected one or both of those kids to fall out of the car. I kept falling back as far as I could, terrified I would run one of them over after they hit the ground. Finally, they stopped and we got past them. About half a hour later they turned up at the ranger station. Someone called out to the woman in the car and asked her why she was allowing her kids to do something so dangerous. Her response had a lot of F words in it, and basically said it was no one’s business what she let her kids do. The first woman said it would be everyone’s business if one of those kids got hurt. More than a few folks agreed. The woman was on her phone and smoking her cigarette, the kids were running wild, trying to climb on everything they weren’t supposed to climb on, and she basically told everyone to go do something anatomically impossible. The dad never got out of the car or engaged with anyone. The rangers made the kids leave the exhibit after the two girls started fighting over stuff. Unbelievable.

Story Three:

Back at the restaurant the next day at lunch. Vastly busy. We were seated next to a table full of pre-teen boys between ten and twelve. There wasn’t a single parent near them. The tables were next to windows that looked out over the wave pool and water slides. Two of the boys turned around and were kneeling in their chairs backward. Then they started rocking them back on the legs and banging the backs of the chairs on the windows. I asked the wait staff if that was a good idea, the guy shrugged and said, “The windows are supposed to be break proof.” At my surprised look he said, “They’re being kids.” Then walked off. I called him back and asked to see a manager. I explained that all glass has a breaking point, all it takes is for the right amount of pressure to be applied at the right point. Even if it is shatter proof, it will crack, and sometimes it will fall from its frame causing the window to come crashing down and the kids could fall out of the window. She said she understood, but that they were not allowed to correct other people’s kids. So my husband got up and went over to the boys and said, “You know, banging into the windows might not be a good idea. If they break and you fall two stories to the walkway below, you could hurt yourselves. That would make the rest of your vacation suck.” They stopped, turned around and finished their meal and left. How hard was that? If you don’t say anything, kids will just keep on doing what they do until someone gets hurt. Especially boys that age who still haven’t learned to fear getting hurt.

Story Four:

Parents and phones. If you are going to spend upwards of three hundred dollars a day for a family to go on a holiday, why are you on your phone? It is supposed to be a FAMILY adventure. We saw kids from the age of three up doing their best to get their parents attention. The parents never put their damned phones down for a second. Two little girls about Addie’s age, somewhere between four and six were playing in the water right in front of their mommy. They were thrilled to get up the courage to go into the water up to their knees. They were having a great time, squealing and jumping around. “Mommy look! Mommy watch me! Mommy, Mommy, Mommy!!!” She had a phone in her hand, face buried in it. Not once did she look up, take a photo, or interact with them. It was no wonder that in minutes they were whining and crying. All they wanted was five seconds of Mommy’s time. That enraged me. Those poor kids. And it was like that everywhere we went at the resort. Parents on their phones, at the pool bar, ignoring their kids. Why the hell bother to take them anywhere if you aren’t going to enjoy time with them? I never took my phone out of the room while we were there. Neither did my husband. And Addie got every bit of attention she deserved.

Story Five:

I was waiting for the elevator to go to our room. Waiting with me was a mother and three teenage girls. The girls were surly and snarly. All of them complaining of different things. One in particular that I pegged around the age of fourteen was really snarky. The elevator comes and the doors open. Instead of allow the people on it to get off first, the mother and all three girls shoved their way on. The other family with four little children almost ended up with one child left behind. I got on just as the doors closed. The hateful girl sighed and rolled her eyes at me. When I asked if she could press the floor button for me since she was standing in front of the controls, she moved and snarled, “What am I, your slave?” I looked at her mother, she had her face buried in her phone. I pushed the button for my floor, then the brat stood back in front of the control panel and pushed down on her floor button. Her sister asked what she was doing and she said, “I don’t want to have to wait for anyone else to get on. Its and old fireman trick.” I said, “I don’t think that works on these new elevators, most of them require a key to make them stop working.” At that time we stopped. The people waiting were going down so didn’t get on. I didn’t say anything. We got to my floor. The girls piled off, I waited for the mother. She was still on her phone so I got off. I heard her say something, but didn’t understand her. I asked her what she said. She told me I was rude for not letting her get off with her daughters. I pointed out that the doors were getting ready to close so I kept them open so I could get off. She gave me a nasty look. So I said, “While your learning some manners of your own, why not teach some to your daughters as well. You aren’t the only people who are paying to stay here and we have just as much of a right to use the elevators as you and your daughters. If you don’t like people sharing the elevator, take the stairs.” I got the expected F word response. It wasn’t worth my time to deal with her idiocy. I figured she would get her karma response in dealing with those hateful girls of hers.

Story Six:

We had a great time. Addie loved everything from the swimming and wave pools and slides, to painting ceramics with me, and doing sand art with her Papa. She loved the ranger station where they helped her learn the life cycle of moths and butterflies, and she got a Junior Ranger Award for answering all the questions correctly afterwards. She got to have Old Time photographs with fancy costumes along with her Papa, and she ate at a real diner for the first time. We all stayed up too late, ate too much, and wore ourselves to a frazzle. It was too bad so many other kids weren’t having fun with their parents or grandparents, and so many parents were acting annoyed to be there. Addie was in her element as the center of our attention, and the one melt down she had was quickly under control because a time out sitting in the middle of Nana’s bed with nothing to do is no fun. Next holiday, I think we need to go somewhere that has a lot fewer people and a lot more nature.

I Am Take A Side

I find it deeply disturbing that everyone wants to start screaming hatred at each other when discussing this horrific act of violence against innocent human beings. It becomes political from the moment it happens, and it just keeps getting more and more vicious as everyone takes a side.
Well, I am taking a side.
I am taking the side of the parents who will bury a child, be it one of the students, or their son or daughter who was a teacher.
I am taking the side of the community that will now bury 17 of their neighbors.
I am taking the side of the first responders, police officers, and adults who had to face the horror inside the school in the aftermath of the shootings, who will face the nightmares that will come from those hours.
I am taking the side of the students who lost friends, and who will have to go back to school and remember the fear.
I am taking the side of the mothers who will mourn for the rest of their lives.
I am taking the side of the fathers who will forever feel as if they didn’t protect their lost child.
I am taking the side of the victims, each one whose life was cut off without warning, though no fault of their own.
I am taking a side that condemns the media, pundits, and hate filled rhetoric of the people who think their opinion about guns is more important that taking time to pray for, with, and about the deep sorrow of the families of those who died.
I am taking a side. It isn’t about us, it is about them. I hope you will join me.

A Blank Page

There is something about a blank page that bugs me. It doesn’t matter if it is on my computer screen or a real piece of paper, it screams out for something, anything, to be written or drawn on it to make it unique.

When my kids were little, paper was a way to keep them entertained for all of two minutes while I made a bathroom stop. A notebook and pencil in my purse or diaper bag was a must to hold off boredom in places like restaurants and church. As they got older, we used paper and pencils to write words, and draw pictures to go with them. Sometimes, if we were in an appropriate, and sometimes not appropriate, place we would make paper airplanes, or fans, or anything we could by folding paper. It was a useful tool.

Then, when my kids were teenagers, before we all had text messaging, they left me notes on the fridge, the front door, in my car, and sometimes, on me, to remind me of things they needed or places they needed to be. I did the same for them and for my husband. Notes became an every day way of communicating in a busy teenage household.

But always, through the years, writing down my life was a part of my daily routine. I filled pages of paper in journals telling my story. Then I started writing down imaginary stories, always trying to write something that would teach, lead, or entertain others. I wrote letters, by hand, and notes saying Thank You, or You Are Invited To An Event, to others. I wrote love letters to my husband, and letters of appreciation and admonition to my children and grandchildren. I wrote the histories of my ancestors, and reams of papers for college courses.

Today, I still write every day. Sometimes it is just a blog, sometimes I work on a book or a short story, sometimes I just write an email, a response on social media, or to my elected officials. Like reading every day, writing is as much a part of my life as breathing. I can’t imagine being unable to do either.

So, today, when I was faced with a blank page, I thought about how important it is to write things down. Because once you are gone, and your children are gone, who will remember what you said, how you though, or the feelings that filled your life? This is your chance to put down the words that mean something to you. This is your time to tell your own story, opine on your ideas and dreams, and your time to say what you really think about any and every subject that comes to mind.

Every personal story is important. Without personal accounts of events, real history will be lost to the ages. All that will be left is what the professional politicians had to say, or the media of the day had to say, not what every day people had to say about a moment in time. Daily grind events are just as important as life changing events. And in the future, some many times great grandchild will sit in wonder reading what you really thought, did, or felt in your life. It will amaze, thrill, and surprise them with the turn of every page. Write it down. Inquiring minds will want to know.

A blank page is an opportunity. Don’t waste it.

Every Day Heroes

A friend told me about an accident she and her husband came upon the other day. A car was on fire, and someone was trying to get out. Her husband jumped out of their vehicle and ran to help him get out, stayed with him until medical people arrived to fly the injured driver out to a hospital. Her husband was banged up a bit, but fine. Everyone was commenting on how much of a hero he was for helping and putting himself at risk. She demurred. I wrote in her comment section the following.

“Heroes are every day people who do extraordinary things without worrying about the consequences.”

I thought on that later, and I have come to the decision that all of us are everyday heroes during our lives. Often we don’t think of our actions as heroic or special. We simply react to what is happening in the best way we can. Sometimes it is helping someone survive a horrific accident. Sometimes it is taking soup to a sick friend. Sometimes it is a listening ear, and sometimes a swift kick in the attitude of someone having a pity party.

Saving a life is a big deal. It is a lot of responsibility and takes someone with inner strength of steel and granite to do what has to be done. Pulling someone out of burning building, out of the twin towers; running into the line of fire to rescue someone, standing up to the local bully to protect someone; leaving the abusive spouse, male or female, and taking the children with you; moving back home to take care of aging parents and giving up your plans to raise a child you didn’t expect to raise. All of those are heroic things. It takes guts, selflessness, and a willingness to deal with unforeseen consequences due to your actions to fulfill the title of hero.

Some people have jobs that are more like callings which are intrinsically heroic. Fire fighters, Law enforcement, Military men and women, Emergency Medical Personnel, are all in highly dangerous occupations. People are willing to accept those dangers. They train and work hard to gain the skills to do their jobs to the highest degree of proficiency. They are heroic in going out into the harsh world and fulfilling their duty.

Some people are heroes for taking on responsibility that they didn’t sign up for in their lives. They don’t run into burning buildings or chase down criminals, nor do they go out and put an end to evil regimes that threaten their countries and ours. These are the average moms and dads who sacrifice career advancements, educational opportunities, and being upwardly mobile so that one of them can stay home and raise their children. These are the single moms and dads, who, for whatever reason, are raising their children without benefit of a spouse. These are the single parents who are working, going to school full time, and being a mom or dad too. They could easily drop the kids into the system, hand them off to grandparents or other family members, but choose to be the mom and dad, provider, and give up personal time to be the best parent they can be.

There are heroes who teach, guide, lead, discover, and reach out to students who are on the verge of becoming another statistic to the poverty, gangs, and violence of their cultural world. Older men and women who set out to be an example to younger men and women, becoming a mentor and someone who believes in a young man or woman who has never had an advocate for their potential. And some heroes who coach and shape young people into strong, independent, thinking adults become the silent hero in the lives of the lonely, lost, and ignored. Most of them never know they made a difference just by their example.

And there are the every day people who reach out to everyone around them with friendship. Sometimes all it takes is just one person to change the life of another in a positive way after the slings and arrows of life has beaten them down. To the one they helped, they are doing something extraordinary. They cared enough to encourage someone on the abyss to keep going, not to give up, and ask for nothing in return. Sometimes all it takes is one person, just one, to change the trajectory of the world for another lost or grieving soul. Who is your hero?

Every day people, doing extraordinary things . . . think about it.



If they can climb it,

jump on it,

stomp in it,

roll on it,

swing on it,

and even better, jump off it,

they love whatever it is.

If it gets them dirty,




or even better, muddy,

they want it.

If they can eat it,

drink it,

throw it,

smear it,

and it still tastes good,

they will take it.

If they can yell,





and be loud,

they say it.


Not your cream puff video game players,


Learning to be men by doing, playing, coping, challenging.


Hard to raise, harder to let go of.


Pride, honor, dignity,


Rant…Driving Makes People Idiots

So, I was driving to see my local vampire, AKA, my Endocrinologist for a blood test today. I was in the right hand lane, stopped at the light on Getwell and Church Road behind a pick up truck. On the left two vehicles pull up. One is an SUV, the other a dinky sedan. When the light turns green, the sedan doesn’t move fast enough for the SUV, and the driver honks at her. She moves, very slowly, across the intersection. The truck in front of me bales like his house is on fire, and I speed up a bit. The SUV, cuts in front of me, pulls back in front of the sedan, then brake checks her, I slowed down because I had a bad feeling. Sure enough, the sedan cuts me off. I ended up going off road to avoid her back quarter panel, well, lets just say it was close enough that there wouldn’t have been a back door if I had hit her, and my husband’s car would have been totaled. I went from scared to pissed off faster than Mario Andriette could get off the starting line.

I caught up with the bimbo at the light and told her to either pull over and talk to me, or I was calling the cops on her for dangerous driving and anything else they could throw at her. I had photos of her tag, the SUV tag, and the tag of the truck in front of me, and the other car that passed me while I was getting back on the road. She pulled over into the grocery store lot. I blocked her in. Then I got out of my car and went up to her window to speak to her. “What do you think you were doing? You ran me off the road, and nearly killed me. If had hit you, your friend in the back sea”t would be injured or dead, and your friend in the front seat would be seriously injured because she would have hit the window. And you would be injured or dead because you would have taken out the SUV. Her answer. She giggled. I wanted to grab her by her hair and pull her out of her car via the two inch gap in her window.

You think this is amusing? You are driving a six thousand pound or more weapon. It is a deadly weapon capable of killing you or anyone in it, and anyone you hit with it. Do you not understand that? It isn’t a toy, and if you are going to use it for fun, get the hell off the road and go play a video game instead of driving a real car. This isn’t for fun, it is a responsibility that is very serious.” She started saying sorry over and over. I wasn’t through. “ Sorry won’t get it when you cause an accident that kills or injures a family or a mom with a baby in the car, or someone’s daddy. Sorry won’t mean a damned thing to the person you put in the hospital with serious injuries. Sorry won’t mean a damned thing to your parents if they have to bury you before your next birthday, or heaven help them, have their daughter be an invalid for the rest your her life.” She started tearing up. I almost left. But….

Her guy friend in the back seat rolls down his window and says,)I Apologize for the language) “Why don’t you just shut the F..k up you stupid bitch?” [Note: he is gay, and pissy from the get go.] I looked him over. “Well, this stupid old bitch was smart enough to save your pathetic life today. You should be thanking whatever you worship – be it God or the Kardashians – that I have good reflexes for being bitchy and old instead of being a rude little rubbish heap.” His response, “F….ing old bitch, you just need to shut the F…l up and let us leave.” Now I am pissed off again. “Look sonny, calling me an old bitch doesn’t upset me, I am old and I can be a real bitch. Not that I have….yet.” He says, “F… You.” I have to admit, I snickered when I said, “I thought, by the way you talk and act, that you liked men. Either I got it wrong, or you really need glasses, child.” So he screams, yes, screams, “You f….ing homophobic bitch!” Well, he is verbally challenged when it comes to his vocabulary, but he did use another word. I laughed out loud.

“Sonny, I don’t give a flying damn who you sleep with, or in your case, since you are both ugly and dumb as a stump, who you wish you could sleep with, not my business. Or since you are sharing, that is too much information.” So he calls me the C word with the boring F word in front of it. Being the smart ass that I tend to be when really pissed off, I asked in all sincere sarcasm, “Do you know that you just called me the slang word for female genitalia? Honey, I know you are envious that you don’t have that, and that instead, you are just an arrogant prick. And not a big prick either, just a little prick that nobody give a flying damn about.”

The girls in the front seat are sitting like frozen ducks. I tell the driver, that she needs to know that if she injures or kills someone with her car, she will go to jail. One for reckless driving, the other for manslaughter. She is fortunate that I kept her from facing that today. And, that I expect she be aware of the danger driving a car poses. Just because she was behind the wheel, didn’t mean she was safe.

The screamer in the back seat said, “What the F..k do you know about it, are you some kind of cop or lawyer?” I just smiled. “It doesn’t matter what I do or don’t do for a living, prick. Today, right now, I am the judge and jury, and I am giving her a way out of jail. I suggest she take what I say to heart, and straighten up. Next time she won’t be so lucky.” He flings his hair out of his eyes for the millionth time, “She doesn’t have to do sh*t that you say. She is an adult since she is over eighteen.” I smiled again. He turned a bit pale. I do that to people sometimes. “So, she is an adult. Game over. No excuses or juvenile out for her. She would be charged as an adult. Sucks to be a grownup, doesn’t it, prick?”

The driver turned to him and told him to shut up, using the F word of first of course. The entire time, the other girl in the front seat just sat there, looking down. As I started to my car, her window came down, I braced for another tantrum. She was bright red with embarrassment. “Ma’am? I want to apologize for everything. I told her to slow down and not to be stupid, I saw your face when you drove off the road. I know it scared you. I’m so, so sorry.” I thanked her then told her that it wasn’t her fault her friend drove that way, and maybe she would think before getting in the car with anyone who drove like that again.

Screamer said not to listen to me. I looked her in the eyes and asked her, “Who do you think has more experience with life, me or the ignorant ass sitting behind you? Ask yourself this, how did I get to be so old if I were as stupid as he/she/it – whatever he calls himself – thinks I am? Been there done that, raised kids, grand kids, and their friends. Choose your friends wisely, they could kill you with their idiocy and arrogance.”

I got in my car, and still made it to my appointment on time, without speeding or driving like an idiot. Some days, I really think I should have just stayed in bed. I am still pissed off. The driver got a scare and she had to face how her idiocy effected me. The other poor girl needs better friends. And I still want to kick that little prick’s ass from here to Memphis and back.

Living in Her World

She lives in a world of princess dolls, tea sets, and toy horses, each enhanced with her imagination into a fantasy world of unending play and drama. She has deep conversations and interaction between her dolls and horses, and a tea party will include every toy she can find and her grandfather. She dances, prances, twirls, all in her tutu of the day – without an ounce of self conscious behavior.

In her world, everyone is expected to understand the rules that she sets forth and changes from moment to moment. It is her world after all. Her princesses posture, argue, share, and talk for hours, just like people in the grown up world. However, it is all driven by the imagination, intelligence, and curiosity of a four year old girl. When I over hear her say something that sound remarkably like something I have said to her, or her Mommy has said, it makes me smile. There are time she sounds amazingly mature, and other times it is clear she is fully engrossed in some magical moment of discovery.

In her world, her teddy bear, toy cat, and prized princess horse can have an intense conversation over pretend tea and cookies, while her imaginary sisters squabble in the background. I don’t know how she keeps the story lines straight. Maybe it doesn’t matter, because it is her world and subject to change without notice. And, like it or not, those of us on the peripheral are involved when we are needed to further the narrative.

Living in her world includes frequent costume changes, and requires a fashion show for each change. Sometimes it requires a new way of doing up her hair, different shoes, and a full change from the skin out. She dances her way through the day, fully aware of her beauty, and proud of her ability to be a princess one moment and a baby the next.

In her world, where she displays supreme self confidence and control, she has no fear, except a fear of the dark. She faces monsters, outrageous characters, stubborn dolls, and the occasional grumpy horse that needs a talking to. She laughs and dances through the story, the moment, the magic. And, at the end of her day, she crawls into her Papa’s lap, asking for a story to go to sleep by. Then, the next day, that story finds its way into her world, continuing on in her imagination.

Living in her world is a delight, a blessing, and an unending adventure. Her favorite living companion is her Papa, who willingly joins her world, and deeply misses her when she is away. We are old, she is young, but with her in our lives, in our hearts, we have learned to play again. Time to go see what is next, a tea party or a pretend trip to the barn. Either way, we will be in her world, and it will be an adventure worth remembering.

Do You Remember

I noticed, last time we were out to dinner, that there were a lot of couples and families around us who were sitting at the same table, but not in the same space. The adults were never looking at each other. They weren’t talking to each other. And they looked, well, alone and lonely. I have been married for 46 years to the same man. We always have things to say to each other. Sometimes they aren’t always nice things, because we do argue about stuff like all couples. But we rarely sit at the same table and ignore each other – unless we are arguing, and that never lasts past the first course. What has happened between these couples who are older? Drifting apart? Different interests or hobbies? Bored with each other? Have they forgotten why they fell in love in the first place?

I know, we all look different from our youth. Gained wight? Gained wrinkles? Slower to get around? Tired easier? Of course. But so what? Under the age, and changes, you are still the same people who, once upon a time, met, fell in love, and knew you were meant to be together.

Oh, I know, modern marriages are a mishmash of divorce, remarriage, loss and remarriage, and folks who never want to marry but are so lonely they want someone in their lives in some permanent way. I get that. But, for those of us who have stayed married, who are so much a part of each other’s lives that we understand each other without words, we are in danger of becoming strangers living in the same house.

So, let me ask you a few questions:

Do you remember the first kiss and how overwhelming it was?

Do you remember the first time you knew this person was the love of your life?

Do you remember the fear of the commitment, but how much you wanted your love to be your love forever?

Do you remember how bereft you felt when you had to leave his or her arms?

Do you remember that magic moment when the love of your love looked at you and smiled, and your knees went weak with happiness?

Do your remember where you were when you had your first fight and you knew you blew the whole relationship?

Do you remember saying the words, “I love you” and knowing you meant it with every thing in your heart and soul?

Do you remember the first love letter? Not a note, text, or email, but a real letter. On paper. Do you still have it in a treasure box somewhere?

Do you still feel that goofy feeling of joy when you see each other after being apart for a time?

Does your heart ache with emptiness when you have to be separated for long?

Do you remember the one habit drives you crazy with frustration, but you still put up with it because it is a part of who they are?

Do you remember the first time you felt like you were home when you were held in his or her arms?

Do you remember when you stopped being embarrassed to be seen less than perfect, like when you were sick or in a bad mood?

Do you remember when you knew this was forever, not just until you drifted apart?

Do you remember when you decided that you would fight for this relationship come hell or high water, because this was the only one you would ever want so much?

Do you remember saying yes to, or asking for marriage? (I know, marriage is so yesterday, but that commitment is still vital no matter what you call it.)

Can you still look at the love of your life and know that he or she is still the love of your life?

Do you let life, kids, family, work, hobbies, and technology get between you? Why?

If you are feeling distant, or as if there is no spark left, then do something about it.

Write a love letter.

Make sure to tell him or her, that you love them daily. And not just an off hand “love you” as you leave for work in the morning. Take the love of your life in your arms, share a kiss – not a peck, and say the words like you mean them.

Spend time doing something you both enjoy.

Take a long weekend – and don’t tell any of your kids where you are going.

Turn off your phone.

Make time together special – whatever that may entail. It doesn’t have to always be romantic either, just special.

Take a moment to let other people know how wonderful your love is and why.

It isn’t wrong to be madly in love with your spouse or whatever you call each other, even after years together. Let them know. Just say it. Often. When least expected.

Laugh together.

Love together.

Support each other and encourage each other.

Take time just to be together, doing nothing in particular.

And remember, one day, it will be just the two of you again. You will have to speak to each other about things other than the mundane. Talking about how much you love each other is a great topic.

One day one of you will be gone, you don’t want to have regrets because you didn’t take the time to say what you felt, thought, and how much you loved.

Taking my own advice, “I love you, Harold B. Combs. Always have, always will.”

Soap Box Rant


I saw a commercial today for Little Cesar’s Pizza Company. I found it absolutely disgusting.

A little prince of a brat was sitting in a chair while his Dad brought him a pizza. He told his dad about a sale at Little Cesar’s Pizza and when his dad shamefully admitted he didn’t get that deal, bratty prince told is father to bend down and the bratty prince removed the #1 logo from the Dad’s hat and threw it over his shoulder in compete contempt for his father.

Was that supposed to be funny? Was it meant to diminish the father in importance? Was it supposed to make parents want to buy pizza for the little brat prince from a store like Little Cesar’s Pizza? Was it supposed to make the bratty prince look smarter than the dad? Was it supposed to make a statement on family dynamics? What the hell was that about?

Why would anyone who is a parent, who acts and behaves like a parent, not a peer of the bratty kid, ever buy anything from a company who has so little respect for fathers? Would they have that same role filled by a woman who was supposed to be a mother? Nope. Would the dad role be filled by a gay guy, black guy, Hispanic guy? Nope. Only a white guy can be such a schmuck. A middle aged, somewhat paunchy, white guy to boot. Why? Because we all know a middle aged white male is nothing more than a schmuck who is worthless, and the only good he does is bring home the bacon, or pizza in this case.

Subliminal messages abound in advertising, movies, television and even in books. We are all rotten parents because we don’t give our little princes and princesses exactly what they want, when they want it, and how they want on a daily basis. We are no longer #1 Dad or #1 Mom or grandparent, we are failures in the eyes of the men and women who run big business. We are failures to be mocked and insulted on a daily basis, yet it is folks like the dad in that advert who actually pay the bills and buy most things for the household and the bratty kids.

Every time I see that ad, I get ticked off. If my child had ever behaved in such a way, they would be doing chores for a month straight, and that is after being told off in no uncertain terms about how much of an ungrateful, wretched little monster they were! Makes me want to reach through the screen and smack that kid right out of the chair he is lounging in along with his hateful attitude.

It isn’t right to portray parents who are trying to feed their kids as inept imbeciles. It creates the idea in kid’s heads that their parents aren’t Number One in any way. Sure teenagers feel that way, but that is part of the whole distancing themselves from their embarrassing parents that happens to every family. By making this kid in the ad ten years old or under, the subliminal message to all kids that age who see the ad, is that Dad is just one stupid mistake from being a total failure who doesn’t deserve the kid’s respect.

Next time a commercial comes on that your child is likely to see, pay attention to the subliminal messages, as well as the context and content of the message. Kids remember what they see and hear, and many copy it as well. And folks, never, ever, buy the products that are using ads that promote division, insults, or politically correct attitudes toward parents who are adults that actually parent, or their children. They don’t deserve your money, time, or loyalty.

I am getting off the soap box now. Going to go educate my cussing corner for a minute. Have a good evening.