A National Emergency

I’m really not sure how we got to a place where our leader is threatening a national emergency (it’s not) because he isn’t getting his way from Congress. Well, I do know, what I really don’t know is why no one has stopped him. The checks and balances found in three branches of government only work if there isn’t corruption in the system. Someone has figured out how to jigger the system, and exposed a weakness in our society, that we will turn on each other if we don’t all get what we want exactly when we want it. It’s not a pretty site.

If there is a national emergency, then he should declare it. Holding such a threat over the heads of people having budget negotiations is just a tactic. People’s livelihoods shouldn’t  be a tactic. Having a functioning government shouldn’t be a tactic. Our security shouldn’t be a tactic. We can’t be governed by a person that uses threats just to get his way. Look at some of the things a President can do when an emergency is declared, per The Atlantic:

 

“the president can, with the flick of his pen, activate laws allowing him to shut down many kinds of electronic communications inside the United States or freeze Americans’ bank accounts. Other powers are available even without a declaration of emergency, including laws that allow the president to deploy troops inside the country to subdue domestic unrest.”

 

All of that is scary in the hands of our current president (and by the way all of that happened in The Handmaid’s Tale), but that that last one… whoa. Let’s say people protested a ridiculous emergency declaration. He could basically declare marital law and impose his will. I know I sound like I’m wearing a tin foil hat. The rule allowing a president to declare an emergency assumes that the person will act accordingly, in the best interest of the country. Nothing about our president’s behavior tells me this is the case here and I find it very disturbing.

Things I Saw At Lunch Today

  • A male in a red suit with white polka dots
  • A whole group of ladies in construction gear and hard hats getting lunch.  
  • A security guard screaming, and I mean an expletative filled rant, at someone that “I”m going to fucking kill you. Don’t you dare fucking lie to me, you fucking junky”. 
  • A half eaten container of guacamole just sitting in the middle of the sideway

Christmas Happiness

We counted down the days.  We wrapped all the gifts.  We got excited for the love and sharing.   Then in a short burst of energy way too early in the morning, the gifts have been opened, the food begins to flow and we settle in to the holiday spirit. The sharing, the caring, the specialness of this one day where we are supposed to enjoy all the blessings we have.  Today is special, celebrate damn it!    And we do.  All except one family member:  

She is doing the same thing she does everyday:   sitting on the bed, sunbathing.  A girl needs her vitamin D, don’t you know. 

Hey lady, don’t you want to play with your new toys?    Nope.

What about coming out to say hi?   Nope. 

And I realized she is happy there.  Warm sunshine makes her happy and so that is what she wants to do on Christmas.   Then I realized if she is happy doing that, that is what she should do.  But it’s such an every day thing!  So boring!  It’s the day to share and care and all that.   Then I further realized if she has incorporated happiness into her day every day, she gets to have a little piece of Christmas every day.  No need to save it up for one day a year.

I resolve to bring a little Christmas into each day by doing something I love to do or that makes someone else happy.   I hope you will, too. 

Happy Holidays!

Books Books Everywhere Books…

That thing when you invite people over.  One stares at your bookcase and says:  I knew you liked to read, but this is a lot of books.  

And the bubble above your head says:  oh, that is just the bookcase in this room.  There is a whole other build in shelving situation in the other room.    🙂

David Ortiz

Today is the last regular season game for David Ortiz, the most important Boston sports persona of my life.  I’m a grown ass woman and I am going to cry like a baby during the ceremony.  Like a BABY.  

What does David Ortiz mean to us?   Just everything.  He was a cast away from a team that didn’t know what to do with him.  He came to us, a huge man with a huge personality and a huge heart.   He’s been a leader on the field, in life and in our hearts.   See, in our absolute darkest of times, after having been eliminated in the 2003 ALCS in the most excruciating way,  living through the long, long off season where we didn’t sign ARod (lesson:  what you think you want is not always what you really need), after a magical season to find ourselves in the playeoffs against our most fierce rival, only to go down 3-0, losing game 3 in the most humilating of fashsions.  We were going to get swept by the New York Yankees on our own field.  The abyss loomed and the dread was palpable.   And then Millar walked (there is life for the Red Sox), Dave Roberts came in to pitch run, Bill Mueller waited through a number of throw overs (Bill Mueller still waiting for his first pitch), until Dave Roberts stole second, the Mueller hit him in (Bill Mueller… has tied it).   For three excrutating innings we remained tied, late into the night.  No one went to bed.  No one went to bed for the entire ALCS, actually.   

And then…. Ortiz into deep right field.  Back is Sheifield.  We’ll see you later tonight.   

The Red Sox didn’t lose another game that season, winning three more against the Yankees, then four straight against the Cardinals to win the World Series.   That is what hope, heart and hard work can do.   That swing changed a fan base long used to losing, long used to heart break.  We have pre-2004 and post-2004 thinking now.  What he gave us was hope.  Hope that even when things appear their darkest, things can still change, things can get better.   Every time he approaches the plate, there is hope that this game can turn around.  Life can turn around.  And that is priceless.   Thank you so much for that gift, my friend.    

So many other hits, so many other memories… from worst to first, to worst to worst to first again, and then in our darkest time, he reminded us what really matters.   An immigrant who became a US citizen, but whose home is Boston, he is what this country is all about.  

So today will be the last regular season game, but we still have the playoffs, so I don’t have to say goodbye just yet.  But we will miss you and everything you represent, our Big Papi.  

#ThanksPapi

 

 

EXTRA… for those of you don’t know what it was like to be a Red Sox fan and just how much we changed after 2004 (and 2007 and 2013), I highly encourage you to watch the following back to back:

Still We Believe.  The Boston Red Sox Movie.   A documentary about the 2003 season..

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0403893/

Four Days in October.   The four days where the Red Sox went from 0-3 in the ALCS to the World Series.

Oh and by the way, the 2004 ALCS?   His hit won Game 5, too. 

And yeah, he hit a grand slam in the 2013 World Series.   The picture of the cop in the bullpen is STILL my phone home screen. 

And if you need more, and there is more…

On becoming the thing I never, ever, ever thought I would: Vegan

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One day at work, my co-worker announced “that’s it!  I’m not eating sugar anymore!”.   

What?   What brought this on? 

It seems another co-worker had watched a documentary on the evils of sugar:  That Sugar Movie

Sugar?  The stuff that makes cupcakes so good?  Bad for you?  

Sigh and sigh again because you know it’s true.  You KNOW it’s true.  

But to give it up.  Really?   No.   

My co-workers gathered around to hear more about this evil substance ruining our lives and health.  Suddenly people were mentioning other documentaries they’d heard of or seen.  In quick succession they were thrown out:    

 

Forks Over Knives

Eating a whole food, plant based diet solves health problems, makes you feel great and have tons of energy. 

Food Matters

Our food system is poisoning us and the pharmaceutical industry is there to clean up the mess.

Food, Inc.

How the food industry has grown and changed, includes quite a bit on the treatment of animals. 

 

So, I thought about it.   I had Vegan friends.  I had discussed the pros and cons of vegan cheese.  I, no way shape or form, thought I could ever, and do mean ever, give up dairy.   Cheese, yogurt, butter… these are necessary in  life.  

The following Monday I returned to work and was almost immediately accosted by the co-worker most skeptical of sugars evil:  

“Amy!   We’re all going to die!”

“Um… yes, I think that is correct.    Also I haven’t had enough coffee for this conversation.”  

“No!”  She exclaimed followed by rant on all things food:  animal mistreatment!   Sugar will kill us!  GMOs!  Pesticides!  Growth hormones! The envionment!

Her arms were flailing and she appeared wild eyed.   Then I noticed what was in her hand. 

“Wait, hold up.  What are you drinking?”  

“This is an organic kale smoothy.”   

This from the girl who routinely ate the meat lovers panini for lunch. 

“What happened?” 

“I watched them”, she said”The documentaries.   I watched ALL of them.”

She had a crazy look in her eye, as if she had seen things we weren’t supposed to see.   In two days she had subjected herself to part of the agribusiness that no food loving person should want to be aware of.  Do you really want to know where your food comes from? 

I decided I did.   I could not watch all of the documentaries in two days.  But over a week I watched all of them and more:    

 

Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead

Joe Cross travels around the US juicing, losing weight and educating people on the benefits of juicing.

Vegucated

Six New Yorkers try veganism and are educated about the food industry.   This one has some fairly graphic photos of animal treatment. 

GMO OMG

Trust no one

 

 I made this and I ate it!   Look at the pretty colors.

I made this and I ate it!   Look at the pretty colors.

Netflix will just keep recommending them to you (along with, inexplicably, Fuller House, but that is a story for another day).   And if you watch them back to back to back, I dare you to not change how you think about what you put in your mouth each day. 

The way animals are treated, the cost to our environment, our desire for the cheapest food possible.  Surely the healthcare issues we see in the western world are correlated.   Nothing I could write could make you understand the visuals in these films, so I encourage you to watch them, form your own opinions and make your own decisions.

All I knew is that I could no longer support that industry.  I couldn’t live with knowing what I now knew.  Every dollar you spend is a vote because corporations only respond to money.  

Oh, no.   I never, ever want to be one of those preachy foodie, vegetarian, vegan types, but….   I was horrified.  Disturbed.  Disgusted.    Though I am 100% sure there are wonderful farmers out there, farmers who don’t do the things described in these films, but I’m also 100% sure there are huge agricultural businesses that do these things every day and I have no reliable way to know the difference.  I am currently reading a book about Organic food labeling that doesn’t make feel I can trust it.

 

 

 

If you had asked me a year ago, six months ago even two months ago for a list of things I would never do, going Vegan would be pretty high on that list.   I love cheese.  I mean I LOVE cheese.   Yet here I am.  What’s next?   Run a marathon?  Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.  One life change at a time.

Word of the Day: Jehu

Since receiving a Word A Day Calendar, I’ve decided to write a short something including my new word each day.

jehu

noun je·hu ˈjē-(ˌ)hyü, -(ˌ)hü

  1. 1 capitalized :  a king of Israel in the ninth century b.c. who according to the account in II Kings had Jezebel killed in accordance with Elijah’s prophecy

  2. 2 :  a driver of a coach or cab

Tom from Downton Abbey used to drive the Crowley’s jehu, but he moved on up by marrying the bosses daughter.

Word of the Day: Loquacious

Since receiving a Word A Day Calendar, I’ve decided to write a short something including my new word each day.

loquacious

adjective lo·qua·cious lō-ˈkwā-shəs

liking to talk and talking smoothly and easily

 

The salesman’s loquacious approach could easily draw most people in, but not me.  This isn’t my first rodeo.

Word of the Day: Diapason

Since receiving a Word A Day Calendar, I’ve decided to write a short something including my new word each day.

diapason

noun di·a·pa·son ˌdī-ə-ˈpā-zən, -sən

  1. 1 a :  a burst of sound <diapasons of laughter> b :  the principal foundation stop in the organ extending through the complete range of the instrument c (1) :  the entire compass of musical tones (2)range, scope <registers the full diapason of her responses — Mindy Aloff>

  2. 2 atuning fork b :  a standard of pitch

 

The diapsons of cheers after the Red Sox homerun was deafening.

Word of the Day: Proffer

Since receiving a Word A Day Calendar, I’ve decided to write a short something including my new word each day.

proffer

verb prof·fer ˈprä-fər

to offer or give (something) to someone

I find no shortage of people willing to proffer advice on how I should live my life.