Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience - November 30, 2011

Today is Mark Twain's 176th birthday (wow).   I am a huge fan, and in honor of his birthday, I'd like to share a couple of favorite quotes.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

Let us endeavor so to live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry.

Never put off till tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.

It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.

Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Gravy - Erma Bombeck, November 15, 2011

Erma Bombeck was the kind of person you wanted to invite to over for a big family dinner.  As we close in on Thanksgiving, with its excess of food, food, FOOD, here is her take on one of the staples of a Turkey Day dinner:

I come from a family where gravy is considered a beverage.

Amen, Erma, and pass the gravy.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

In Flander's Fields - November 10, 2011

In honor of Veteran's Day, here is one of my favorite poems, written on May 3, 1915, by Canadian physician Lt. Colonel James McCrae.

In Flander's Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
      Between the crosses, row on row,
   That mark our place; and in the sky
   The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
   Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
         In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
   The torch; be yours to hold it high.
   If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
         In Flanders fields.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween and Homemade Popcorn Balls

Today was "trunk or treat" at Jack's pre-school. This is a relatively new phenomenon where churches or schools host trick or treating in their parking lots, with parents passing out candy from the trunk of their cars. Not sure how I feel about that, but I'm probably hung up on Halloweens past, where my brothers and I used to wander every neighborhood we could get to with our pillowcases.
Since I'm a grandmother now, I can appreciate a quote from Erma Bombeck on the topic of grandmothers and Halloween (a "two - fer" on this spooky holiday!):

A grandmother pretends she doesn't know who you are on Halloween.

I miss my grandmother's homemade popcorn balls. Can you imagine if she were still alive and handed them out to trick or treaters? They would be the first thing into the garbage during the "candy safety check." Sad that today's children live in fear of every stranger they meet, and can't enjoy a little old lady's homemade popcorn balls and a run through the neighborhood with pillowcase in hand. Happy Halloween, everyone!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Mark Twain - Part 1

Twain is one of my favorite writers and life observers. Get used to it, you'll be seeing a lot of his quotes on this blog. All time favorite, from "Following the Equator."

Be good and you will be lonesome.

Jimmy Buffett took this a step further:

Be good, and you'll be lonesome.
Be lonesome and you will be free.
Live a lie, and you will live to regret it.
That's what living is to me, that's what living is to me.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Chuck Lorre - Vanity Card #359

OK, I admit to a love of Chuck Lorre's vanity cards. This is one of the best:

Okay, I'm just gonna say it out loud. There are times when going crazy looks attractive. And I'm not talking about becoming charmingly eccentric. I've already got that covered nine ways to Sunday. No, I'm talking about purposely emigrating to the land of lunacy. That special psychological zip code where The Ancient Laws of Behave Yourself no longer apply. My "reasoning" is simple. It takes a great deal of effort to sustain a conservative, trustworthy persona. Surrendering that effort would involve, from a Freudian perspective, a conscious dismantling of the super ego - that part of the psyche entrusted with enforcing parental and socially approved actions. And therein lies the allure of going full frontal wack-a-doodle. The constant energy required to pass as normal would suddenly become available for doing and saying whatever pleases me in the moment. Imagine it. The id and libido completely unbound by any and all moral or cultural restrictions. Hmm... Probably won't need the shrink anymore... might need a lawyer.

Monday, October 10, 2011