Tuesday, September 29, 2015

President Pope

I am not speaking about Olivia Pope from the ABC series, Scandal.  I am referring to the one and only Pope Francis for President of the United States.  Now, I am being tongue and cheek, but over the 5 days that he was in our country, he spoke of global climate change, immigration rights, and, yes, against abortion, among many other hot button issues. He spoke of the golden rule to Congress.  Can you imagine?  In his beautiful, dulcet voice he asked the members of Congress to do unto others....A bit embarrassing, don't you think?  There were even members of Congress that dissed the Pope because they didn't like his perspective on topics.  Seriously?  He's the Pope.  To the Catholic Church isn't he the closest vessel to God?  He is a learned man.  He's no one's uneducated dupe.  He preaches the "real" words of Jesus.  Feed the poor, help the needy, give health insurance for all.  Wow, radical thoughts and beliefs.  How in the world can anyone object to his preaching on these topics?  Shouldn't all people in the role of leader and clergy be preaching the same things?  

I have to admit, I was absolutely smitten with Pope Francis.  I kind of love him.  We don't agree on all things, but we are more aligned than any Republican candidate for President.  He thinks income inequality is a disgrace. He thinks all of us are God's children and he means it.  He, as did St. Francis of Assisi, cherishes the earth and all its living things.  There are things in the Catholic doctrine that I will always disagree with but for the most part, this Pope has taken his oath and Bible seriously.  Every time he saw a child or a disabled person he was drawn to all of them.  He would have stopped for everyone if the security detail and time permitted.  

New Yorkers enjoyed the Pope whether Catholic or not.  Hard to argue with all the love he shared.  I have no idea how he had the energy for all the places he went, people he blessed, and masses he led.  I was tired just watching him on television.  Interesting that so many people from his past reported that he never used to smile, when on this journey he couldn't stop smiling.  

The Pope's visit spread much needed love and acceptance that we have long been missing.  How long will that feeling last?  His message was so potent that House Speaker Boehner decided that he had enough of the insanity.  That's Boehner.  He was at the center of the crazy for awhile and now he was out-crazied in Congress.  He's tired and is out.  Basta!  Enough!  Done! Over and out!.  So now what will happen with Congress?  Who will take over as Speaker?  Remember the devil you know is always better than the devil you don't.  I think it will only get worse.  Even watching some of the Congressional hearings today, the disrespect was flying high.  Is the bloom already off the rose?  Can it happen that fast?  

All I know for sure is that if there was just one Republican candidate that was anything like the Pope, I could listen.  I can't take any of these candidates seriously, but we need to, don't we?  I don't want to keep hearing that T***p won't make it, Carson won't be the nominee, Huckabee, etc. etc. etc.  There will be a Republican nominee at some point. I don't want anyone to underestimate what money can do.  Let's see how it plays out.

Sidebars:  The new Fall TV season is here.  They roll shows out more slowly than when I was a kid, but they are coming.  I've watched two episodes of Blindspot and it's still interesting.  I'm worried about The Blacklist, just from the promos.  It may have jumped the shark.  The Voice is going strong.  Still highly recommend it to watch and hear how many talented singers there are and how fun the judges are.  Amazing Race and Survivor began for season whatever.  Dancing With the Stars is a whole bunch of non-stars and no more Len Goodman judging. -- Baseball season is winding down. NY Mets made it to the division championship for the NL East.  I'm still holding out a bit of hope for the SF Giants and the Yankees.  It all will be decided Sunday.  Great decision that all Sunday games will play at the same time.  Let's see how that works out. -- Trying to get back on the writing horse, but it's difficult.  I appreciate writers more and more. -- Don't forget to be kind to yourself and others.

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Friday, September 18, 2015

I Lost My Joie

I Lost My Joie.  One of my favorite, favorite songs from William Finn, creator of all things Falsetto and I believe cut from the production of Falsettos.  I use it all the time.  It's fitting. It says it all. These days, it's true.  Politics have gotten me dazed and confused.  Depressed a bit.  Watching the Republicans talk stupid over two debates is depleting my spirit.  There isn't a Republican candidate that I could vote for once they start spewing about Planned Parenthood, Women's Rights, Pro-Life, Religion, etc.  The social issues take them out for me.  In today's paper there are Republicans that won't go hear the Pope because of his "leftist" views.  Come on, really?  The Pope??? Leftist???????  Maybe they all have to go back and read the Bible.  So many stand on it, by it, around it, but maybe they should listen to the actual words of Jesus.  Seriously, if they don't like to read...go see Stephen Schwartz' Godspell.  It will give you a great, easy snapshot of Christianity without all those many pages to read.  You can even hum along.  

Did you watch the debate?  I could only watch the first two hours of the primetime debate this week.  Ridiculously too long and fairly empty of any significant content.  Tr**p is a big immature bully on the playground and all the other kids are trying to rise above the fray.  Not much is said.  They all want war.  They all love Israel (of course, not because they love Jewish people, but whatever).  They all hate Obamacare but have never presented any other idea how to cover people with health insurance.  They all hate Hillary Clinton.  The Donald refers to everyone by their first name.  Fiorina refers to him as "Mr. Tr**p."  They try to hold their ground but say nothing.  For over three hours of primetime television, nothing of substance gets presented.  It's the Miss America pageant without the swimsuits.  Actually, I hate to even demean the Miss America pageant, at least they get scholarship money.  

These candidates are all unelectable.  They are caught between a rock and a hard place because to get to the general election, they have to spew so much BS that the party can never win the Presidency again.  The religious right, the NRA, the tea party, all have their claws right between each pair of legs of these candidates.  Hard to know what anyone really believes.  The only one on the primetime stage that has basically been the same year in and year out...Rand Paul.  Like him or hate him, he seems to be true to his beliefs.  Dr. Ben Carson believing in creationism over evolution is mind-boggling.  How is a man of science so ignorant?  He was a pediatric neurologist for goodness sake.  Carly Fiorina's over the top, incorrect plea about abortions and Planned Parenthood funding was disgusting.  The Donald's bullshit connection of vaccines and autism should take him out of the race right now.  After all the doctors have disproven the research from the fully flawed British study that got the "ultra scholar" Jenny McCarthy, turning her Playboy playmate career into a PT Barnum barker, Tr**p has perpetuated the BS again during the debate. Ugh!! Mike Huckabee fortunately didn't speak too much because I have had enough of him from the Kim Davis disgrace.

Let me make it clear again. I firmly believe in the separation of Church and State.  Our Republican candidates get that all confused.  They really think the Bible, Ten Commandments, the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence should all be what guides our Country.  No, people.  Please take a civics course again from an atheist professor.  Let him/her set you straight.  You all continue to bastardize what it says that you can't possibly lead.  Mr. Huckabee, you brought civics into the debate, you can be the first to sign up for a crash course.  Of course, as each of you have to drop out of the race, you can spend more time on what our Forefathers so richly and thoughtfully created.  

And again, ladies and gentlemen, without upending the Citizens United decision, democracy is threatened.  The money in politics is destroying the Country that we all love.  Yes, Mr. Tr**p, if you want to make "America Great Again," it's not the immigrants tearing it down, it's the billionaires.

Sidebars: We get at least a month off before the next Republican debate.  The Democrats step up to the podiums mid-October. -- The Emmy's are on Sunday night.  Always makes me feel old and out of it. I haven't gotten into the flow of Netflix or any other off shoot.  I am still old school watching mostly network shows, lots of sports, and news.  Oh well, I'll still be there in front of the TV trying to figure out who all the people are. -- Baseball season is winding down.  The SF Giants aren't out yet, but looking pretty slim that they will be in the post season.  But hey, no one thought that they'd be this great this season, so it's been a great ride.  The NY Mets have been tearing it up.  The NY Yankees are still alive. Football season is fully underway.  Too much, too many games, too many days of the week.  Too much and it's just the beginning. --- If you haven't seen the hilarious video by Ann Pinto McCarney, google it.  For all the parents of college freshman, it will make you laugh.  
TGIF.   So that's it for the Friday before my birthday. Enjoy!!!

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Tuesday, September 8, 2015


So, the kids are in college and the empty nest hasn't been empty yet.  My sister came for two weeks.  Helped bridge the gap between their new chapter and mine.  Now, she's gone and I think the reality is really going to sink in.  Everyone has asked how am I doing with the kids away.  I have felt steadfast that I'm good, pretending that they are simply at sleep away camp.  We will see them at Parents' weekend in October, so I can almost really get away with that.  

It's just crazy. The school that our children went to for 13 years started today and we're not there anymore. It's odd. Not wishing that I was still there with them, but it's a huge transition from all these past years.  I see the Facebook photos from friends proudly posting the first day of school photos of their kids marching off to school.  Those days are gone for me.  Don't get me wrong, I'm exceedingly proud, but those photos are in the past.  I remember the first day they went to kindergarten and I was sad that I forgot my camera to take that picture of them starting school.  All these other parents were snapping away and I was running between two different classrooms seeing them off.  I decided that it was an "oh, well."  Living in the moment and capturing the images in my head.  

Now, they are pursuing independent lives.  I am still struggling with my future.  It will be a jagged road.  Nothing linear and clear.  Two steps forward, 5 steps back, and so on.  I do not feel sorry for myself, so no one has to worry about me.  I am one of many parents that have to adjust to an empty nest.  I just wish I had found a passion in addition to my children to help smoothly move me into this new volume, but I didn't.  So, now I sit here, starting over again.  Feels everyone else is on their path.  Trying to stay connected to friends, but without the structure of school, we are scattering every which way.  It's life. It's how it goes.  

The Jewish holidays are almost here and that will be another reminder of having to re-create traditions again.  It will be different, it will be smaller.  It will be, que sera, sera.  In the middle of all that annually, the birthday. More different celebrations.  

Made a few superficial changes:  got a Nespresso machine, drinking a lot more coffee, and got another piercing in my lobe. Still must do more household organization. Say it year in and year out, but this year...I mean it.  :-) 
So until I figure things out, I will struggle and may keep writing. It is a great outlet for me.  So much to say and so much time.

Sidebars:  Had tickets for months to see Hamilton on Broadway.  We got there and found out the star and creator wasn't doing the performance, even though I had reconfirmed with the box office earlier in the week.  We left the theatre and somehow got our money back.  That was my lottery win.  They never give money back if an actor isn't in the show, unless they're "above the title" actors.  So the best laid plans.  Now, struggling to get tickets -- Had the big fun turning Bachelor in Paradise into family viewing.  Not all members participated, but much fun and caused many debates and conversations.  Also, enjoying America's Got Talent and American Ninja Warriors as family gatherings. -- Still rooting loudly and passionately for the San Francisco Giants but looking more and more improbable.  Need Hunter Pence in the lineup. -- US Open tennis is halfway through.  Upsets and victories abound.  Tonight Serena and Venus have to play each other.  Hate that. If it were the finals, fine, but otherwise....-- The new season of The View began today.  I tried it. Not sure I can stick with it, but without doubt, it's great to have Joy Behar back. Stephen Colbert premieres tonight!  Well worth DVRing and giving it a chance. -- Sweltering here, there, and everywhere. Global climate change is a fact. It's not a belief. Enjoy your heat wherever you are.  Shout out to my friend, Holly.  It's her birthday today and no adult I know loves birthdays more than Holly.  

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