Spring Break!

Springtime beauty in San Diego!

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Chena Ice Bar

An Appletinii at the Chena Ice Bar!  Does it get any better than this>

An Appletini at the Chena Ice Bar! Does it get any better than this?

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Just Curious

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Magnificence!

Splendor can always be found if one is open to seeing it!

Splendor can always be found if one is open to seeing it!

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Words Fail Me!

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The World is an Awesomely Beautiful Place!

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Sometimes I Feel Like Deck Furniture In An Alaskan Winter

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Wishful Thinking!

 

There is a certain amount of irony in my writing these words; my premise is simply that there are too many words being bandied about these days.  We are being buried beneath a blizzard.  Quite literally we are being snowed!  The internet has made it entirely too easy to give voice to words which may or may not be worthy of being spoken.  Every Tom, Dick, and David can have a blog.  Every Mickey, Minnie, and Donald can Tweet.  Sometimes those words reach tens of readers and sometimes they reach millions, and there is no measure of veracity for any of them.

In the “old days” when publishing and distributing words carried a certain amount of financial burden, there may have been a dollar filter that helped prevent garbage from being spread about.  No guarantees, of course, but reaching the masses with words required a financial commitment of someone other than the author.  If a second or even a third party didn’t feel the words were worthy of airtime, then they remained unheard or only spoken from the local soap box.

For my own writing, I’ve decided to use three filters, attributed to a variety of thinkers and philosophers throughout the years.  Is it true?  Is it kind?  Is it necessary?

The words that appear in this blog are opinion, and as such are true to me at the time they are written.  I don’t write words that I believe to be untrue.  I also don’t believe I ever present ideas as fact.  Some thoughts over time prove themselves to be truer than others, but I think in the world of ideas, there is no black and white, only grey.  In life, as in my fiction, there is always another story to shed more light on a situation, or other circumstances that make an event more understandable or obscure it forever.

Kind?  I work hard at being kind.  I don’t believe in name calling.  I don’t believe in putting people down.  I don’t believe in gossip.  I always try to give the benefit of the doubt if ever someone’s honor is in question.  Frequently, in the world of words, being kind means being silent.  If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.

Necessary?  This is the hardest filter for me.  Whenever I sit down to write this blog, I ask myself this question a dozen times in a dozen ways.  Do I really need to write these words? It’s different from sitting to write fiction.  It’s necessary for me to write my stories.  It’s fulfilling, and as a writer, there are things inside me that have to escape.  However, there is no immediate audience for those stories, and most will stay out of public view forever.

A blog is different.  As soon as I push the button, these words become visible to anyone who chances upon them.  So I ask again; is it really necessary that I push that button?  There is, of course, a certain amount of ego involved.  If I get a new reader, or get a new follower, then that is a sort of affirmation that someone else thinks my writing has quality.  Maybe as a writer, I need that boost to keep going.  I honestly don’t know.  I do know I will continue to put ideas into words.  There is a satisfaction in doing so.  However, whether the publish button gets pushed or not will remain the greatest filter for determining the amount of snow or garbage that I spread about.

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Un-Role Models

I like to think of myself as a positive person.  I actively avoid negativism whenever I possibly can.  I try to look for the twist of any situation that will allow me to accept it without judgement.  And yet I’ve observed myself consistently sliding into the world of UN when it comes to role models.

That’s not to say that I don’t have the usual cadre of positive icons, each selected for specific traits that I aspire to.  But on a day-to-day basis, I find the un-role models having a greater impact, and that might simply be because I see so many more of the negative ones than the positive.  I see them everywhere – the grocery, the mall, restaurants, on the street.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not criticizing these people; I don’t even know them.  I’m not judging them; there’s no point in placing them on a good to bad value scale.  I don’t want to change them; I don’t have that kind of influence.  Besides, I’m in no position to cast the first stone.  And yet . . .

When I’m at the grocery and I see an overweight shopper leaning on their cart, I stand up taller. When I’m walking a mall and I see a similar aged person shuffling, I pick up my feet and step up my pace.  When I see a similar aged person hunched over with obvious pain, I straighten my spine, lift my chin, push my shoulders back and keep my eyes looking forward.  When I see an extremely overweight person eat an enormous plate of food, I slow my eating pace and save half my meal for left-overs.  When I see driver after driver in oncoming cars with scowls on their faces, I smile.

A few years ago I remember sitting in an airport watching people.  I particularly watched similar aged or older people.  I observed as much as I could about them, and I would say to myself, “I’d like to be like that person when I get older” or “I don’t want to be like that person when I get older.”  I found in a very short time that the people I want not to be like is far greater than those I would emulate.

I understand that there are many physical afflictions that people suffer from that cause them to walk, act, or move in certain ways, often painful ways.  I understand for some there is little they can do about their physical being.  And yet, in some perverted way, I guess I am thankful for their existence in my life.  They have helped me be a better person.  For now, at least, I am able to avoid letting my physiology be a limiting factor for my activity.  I am blessed. And should the time come in the future, when I am no longer so blessed, I hope to also serve as the best possible UN-role model I can be.

 

 

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