Sunday, March 29, 2020

Katie,we hardly knew ye

Nine years ago... just about this time, I was at work at Barnes & Noble. Back then we were not allowed to carry our cell phones on the sales floor. My niece Katie was desperately ill in an Indianapolis hospital so I went to my boss Tara and asked if I could carry my phone. I didn't have the phone in my pocket two minutes when it rang and I did not want to answer it. I knew who it was going to be, and I knew why it was ringing.

Jumping nine years after that dark day, our family remembers Katie with fondness and love. She was a funny, smart, lively, life-loving young 20 year-old. We thought her life was ahead of her but it was not to be. 

This morning, I offered my well wishes to my brother Bryan, sister-in-law Dawn and to Katie's three siblings Britanny, Levi, and Tonya.

Earlier this week, was the 35th anniversary of my Dad's passing. These two events have shaped the way our family looks at the uncertainty of life. My brother Bryan still comments "A father should not outlive a child." Dawn has told me she thinks of her daughter every single day, as do we all. I feel her pain,  I think of my Dad all the time.

My friend Tom has often said to be sure to let your loved ones know how you feel about them, for with tomorrow there are no guarantees. So I say, give your friends and loved ones a kiss and a hug (when we can get together again), take pictures of your times together AND tell them those words we all too often find hard to say.

Katie, I love you.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

I'm not the only one

Would it not be an irony of all ironies that we, as world of people, no matter race, creed, gender, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, political persuasion, sinner, rich, poor, young, old, educated, non-educated, we are being affected almost identically by Coronavirus?

If we cannot find some comfort in unity, woe be to us... and worse, if we cannot find a way to draw together in the aftermath, we might deserve more sadness. I can hope...

Yeah, you might say I'm dreamer, but I'm not the only one.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

It's the End of the World as We Know it (and Yes) and I Feel Fine

It strikes me sad that this topic would be my first post for 2020.

David Gerrold, in one of his best essays a few years back, admonished people who look down on people who are fast-food workers, janitors, grocery store clerks, waitstaff, etc. David said something I have never forgotten. We all are a cog in society. He said something I believe in as well... all are deserving of respect and a decent pay wage.

These are good hard-working people who traditionally are not well paid. Since restaurants have shut down, their staff are scrambling for work. Unemployment insurance may not be kind to these folks. A lot of us are still working, a lot are not or soon will not be.

If anything has been made clear is that this crisis has exposed how completely vulnerable this nation, as are others, is to what Mother Nature can throw at us.

I am reminded of the irony of this in these troubled times. As we all have heard about (and I hope none of you reading this partook in this shameless practice) over the course of the past few weeks people have been swarming into grocery stores, panic buying nearly everything in sight. Hoarders buying cartloads of sanitizers, paper towels, and paper towels.

Please, someone, tell me what people can do with 20-30 + rolls of toilet paper? I do not know about you, but that would take me two years to use.

Grocer clerks have worked tirelessly keeping the shelves stocked best they can. They have seen humanity not at its best. One day last week I thanked a young girl working at Meijers. She told me she had never seen anything like this--and hoped not to again.

I would like to think the next time increasing the minimum wage is discussed in Congress that we will remember how hard these people worked to keep the shelves ready for their customers.

I mentioned earlier this week that I fear for food wait staff who are paid far less than the current minimum wage. Is it not time we start an honest discussion about wages in this country? AND in the meanwhile, I hope you remember how hard food care staff work when you tip your waiter or waitress when we all can dine out again.

I have often talked with a favorite Navy Chief of mine about there being angels on Earth and...

We also talk often about heroes. In these past days, it should be abundantly who are heroes should be. Doctors, nurses, EMTs, grocery store workers, truck drivers... anyone who is keeping this lumbering economy going. 

They sure have my gratitude and thanks!

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Farewell 2019

--WHEW-- What a year!

All I can say of 2019 is this: I am glad it's almost over!