Questions From The Middle

Okay folks, it’s been awhile since I have even made a smidgen of an attempt to write. So before going forward I want to quote a friend of mine from twitter who says “apologize for nothing” (Hat tip to you Ken!) so I won’t.

A better question might be what brought me back? Aha! Well, there are times in all of our lives where we just don’t have enough time or energy for anything. Buuuuuuuuttttt when we do…..I’ll just let you decide.

Back in the 60’s my dad was a prolific poet. The first poem I read was And The Lord Created the Middle Class. I was about six when I read it and I am pretty sure the understanding of my six-year-old self was limited to Barbie dolls, making gooey cakes in an Easy Bake Oven, my baseball mitt, football trading cards and a stuff bear named Mouse (didn’t everybody have a stuffed bear named Mouse?).

I have often thought of that poem from time to time. One because I have a memory that doesn’t let me forget things I have read and two, partly because I was curious to see if indeed anything has changed.  So I asked him about it tonight.  Dad was thrilled when I mentioned it and I could hear the years melt away from his voice. However, he wasn’t  exactly sure where he stashed it. Hopefully, he will be able to find it! It’s not like he had a hard drive back then like all of you digital natives do now. It is I will bet, stashed in a notebook somewhere in the Pepoy domain.

In his cherished poem he talks about in iambic pentameter the creation of the Middle Class and the responsibilities bestowed upon it. This has nothing to do with what side of the aisle politically this class is on, but just how much this group strives to move up and how much of America is paid for by them.

What reasons drove me to ask Dad about it? Like most things in my life that inspire me to write, I was having a conversation this week with a few friends and they asked me what I thought about the government shutdown. Snickering, I said “Ya know, my income keeps the government going and since they’re not working I’m thinking why should I pay for nothing?” My friends looked at me strangely.

Feeling like a comedian in room full of crickets I continued.

“See all of us pay taxes, more and more over the years. There are more of us in the middle than any other income group. We seldom use services or ask the government for much of anything. We work, we pay and we have gotten bored and fed up with all the arrogance that continues to plague Washington. If I pay taxes to keep all those agencies for my safety going, and throw in all those so-called departments that think they have better answers to agriculture, emergencies, justice and anything else you can think of,  it is clear I am not getting served. With that in mind, if services are not being rendered, as with any other business that doesn’t do a job you hire them for, then why shouldn’t our payments be withheld until it is?”

Suddenly the 100 watt light bulb made a miraculous returned for only a moment as my friends realized what I was saying.

Folks, they have a responsibility to us not the other way around. While the powers-to-be on the Hill want to act like 2 year olds in a room full of toys whom are fixated on just one toy and having a game of tug of war, then we have to take the role of the teacher and simply take the toy away. Our tax dollars are the toy and its time to take it away.

What is really funny to me to is this presents like taxation without representation. They’re taxing but name one member of congress who is representing right now?

I am not decreeing anarchy or to start a revolution. I just want the arrogance of their ignorance to stop and work for the American people. It’s just common sense.

If you know me then you are well aware there is a football reference in here somewhere. I will not disappoint.

My boyz in Cleveland have won three in a row– all while losing their starting quarterback; a hometown boy of Cleveland to suddenly using the previous quarterback, in which the fans booed as he entered the game and still manage to come up with the WIN?!  Well– I guess there may be a lesson to be learned by all.

The success screams true teamwork and the desire to win. The Browns had to go with the flow, win the crowd back and in the end everybody including the fans did their part. The offensive line held off the defense, the quarterback released the ball faster, the running backs blocked and ran for yardage, the receivers caught the ball, the defense stopped the run, broke up the passing game, made the seal the win interception, not to mention the speedy special team kick returner’s run back of punt for a much-needed touchdown. They made a choice to play as one team and with that win, succeeded in showing the nation what real teamwork should look like.

It was only three weeks ago the Browns were being accused of tanking on the season for the number one pick in the 2014 draft. Instead they dug in and became the surprise of the NFL.

So explain to me why those employees we elected can’t dig deep and do the job they were hired to do?

This is not rocket science.  Shoot it’s not even finger painting.  What it is, is a small group of people sent to a small district to collect and spend our dollars in a big way while telling us it is for our own good.

Would you want any of these guys balancing your checkbook and paying your bills? Ummm I’m thinking a big fat no.  If you do– I’ m sorry they are on furlough but they’ll get back to you.

When my dad wrote his poem almost 50 years ago he might have had hope that something would change. It’s politics! A man-made device that over looks the spirit and beliefs of all the American people.

There is an old saying I tell my team everyday:

“None of us are as smart as all of us.”

Whatever your beliefs are–We are smarter together and know that real leaders do more listening than talking. They plan, they guide, they teach and they defend their people. What are they doing in Washington? Does your Representative pass the test?

The challenge is a small group shutdown the government because they can’t work as a team. Yet they can assess blame, use fear, and threats to make us be at odds with each other like them. Which this may sound blasphemous but do they want us to be like them in their image? We are so much smarter than this! As a team we have a choice.

Do nothing, or terminate their employment. It is that simple.

God created all is my belief, I also believe you get what you pay for.  I am fed up and tired of throwing my money out the window when nobody is working and congress is still getting paid. Those guys should have forgone their pay and tee times first!

Here in the middle we cut the luxuries to get back on track and have been doing so, long before my dad wrote a poem. What stinks is when this is all over they will come to us in the middle and tell us to pay for the mess they made.

Again we have a choice.

UPDATE:   My Dad’s poems have been located and I have copies!!!  Look for another post soon!

James Carville was Right; it’s the Economy, Stupid!

Over 90 minutes of word volleying and it was clear from the beginning that Governor Mitt Romney quietly maneuvered the whole debate from foreign policy straight back to the economy.  The consensus is that Romney is weak on all subjects abroad.  Still, how is it possible before all who watched that this former governor was able to gather the attention of so many who tuned in for a debate of the Middle East, mostly Libya, Israel and for some hopefully, Mexico; to include Fast and Furious; then to flip the switch and steer it back to the economy?

Simple, he applied a very old adage; the best defense is a good offense, approach.  Romney understood with a presidential demeanor that if he attacked foreign policy of the current president at full throttle, he could subsequently trigger unwanted events should he be elected President of the United States.  He also applied a Theodore Roosevelt theory; but instead of speaking softly it is more of Tread lightly and carry a big stick.

His weapon of choice? Take the conversation back to the economy.  James Carville might not have had Romney in mind when he made his now famous quote. However, it soon became the catalyst of the whole debate.  Romney’s point was how we could possibly make a case abroad when we can’t even fix the problems we have here.  Americans in general will not think of issues on foreign policy when they can’t find work.

The use of treading lightly was on the foreign aspect of the debate and the big stick was his expertise with fiscal responsibilities.  Romney didn’t have to push and he simply channeled everything in a neat package demonstrating how the American economy affects the world and how they view us.

Talking heads will spin this debate anyway they want, but in the end Romney without saying it told everyone tonight what James Carville has been saying since 1992 “It’s the economy stupid!”

For most of us who look at gas and food prices daily understand the higher those prices rise and the burden that it places on the wallet that come November 6, 2012 that may just be the only issue to be voted on.

Fear Births the Storms of Socialism

Desperation: Noun

1: loss of hope and surrender to despair

2: a state of hopelessness leading to rashness

Merriam-Webster Dictionary

The clouds roll in and the thunder gently rattles in the distance, the heart knows the storm will soon arrive. Nothing will change the momentum of the impending squall. To stay is an act of desperation to protect the surroundings of comfort that is familiar.

To leave is the feinting of sorrows that go with such abrupt departures. Nothing will be the same when returned.

Rankled in the vain attempt of trying to mollify the situation, wrapped in the want, the need and the must desperation is born.

The screams and the hollers of those around brimming with panic and uncertainty begin the malignant transformation from rational thought to blood curdling acts of inaneness. Fear is a potion to drink.

The juvenile behaviors of fear force blindness of spirit, deafness of conscious and the demoralization of soul. Nothing is safe.

However, they can protect you.

They will give the comfort of food, clothing and shelter, nothing more, and nothing less. Try to better the standard they will apprehend what is better and place it elsewhere containing the status quo.

Now they own you.

Long hours, longer days and everything will stay the same. Nothing moves, or improves.

In the moments of discontent, their desperation has generated fear with hate, bias and greed all to stifle the mind and silence the need for freedom.

The sacrifice is made, but the storm never comes. It is the fear of the tempest that is used to control, dominate and separate the rational being from sanity, common sense and resolve.

Desperation of fear destroys what is constituted in mind, body and soul as the natural right of being.

The shroud lay over freedom as it breathes its last breath and American Socialism is born.

The Silent Pieces of the Puzzle.

What seems like a lifetime ago my paternal grandfather had a terrific hearing problem.  It was always kind of rough going to visit my Grandparents because when Grandma left the house for any reason I would be stuck sitting on the couch in a heavily paneled tiny family room, as Grandpa rocked back and forth in his rocking chair, smoking his pipe filling the room with the aroma of cherry vanilla tobacco, while watching a golf tournament on an old Magnavox.

If anyone wonders if he turned up the volume, let me make this clear.  It was golf!  Back then as it has been explained to me many times;  it is a quiet sport of concentration where even the announcers barely spoke above a whisper.  If Grandpa only knew my friends and their version of golf he might have gotten a hearing aid sooner.

Basically, it was perfect for him. He couldn’t hear and he didn’t need to.  Same held true with just about any sport he enjoyed viewing.  He could see the action, smile at the good stuff and frown at the bad.  His eyes were as blue as the sky and his far sight was not diminished by time, it was strong enough where he could see the score from across the room.  However, sitting there with him on the old avocado green sleeper sofa on a rainy Saturday made me wish I was old enough to attend the Ladies Rosary Auxiliary, purely because he didn’t have much to say.  This would make for a very long Saturday afternoon.

Once he sensed boredom on my part he would immediately come up with a plan.  Thus, I would become the newly crowned recipient of a 1000 piece wilderness puzzle to work on until Grandma returned.  If I wanted his attention while working on the multicolored billion pieces of cardboard landscape, all I had to do was start in the middle.  Grandpa was an expert at assembling these things and by not following the puzzle plan of attack, it would create a slight panic in him and quietly come to my aid.

In a kindly gentle fashion he would reach for his reading glasses and silently stand over me and guide my petite hands, with his enormous ones to build the outer border of the puzzle. In his aged voice which was soft and muffled he would say “Bethy, you start from the outside and work your way towards the center.

How ironic.

There isn’t any question in the grand political picture where the boundaries are.  There lie on the exterior are the conservatives and the liberals.  All will vote accordingly. 

Even with all the arguing that has run rampant inside the GOP over which candidate should be chosen.  By November 6, all of the GOP will vote for the chosen Republican.

There has been a lot of talking/shouting by both sides, but what if there is a silent majority not being heard from?  Just like putting together a puzzle on a rainy day establishing the framework of the scenery leaves the middle wide open and empty, while waiting to be engaged by joining in the fusing of similar pieces.

Moderates and Independents hold the majority of votes across the country. They are hard-working blue collars and entry-level to middle management white collars who have never registered for a political party. They are also inundated with campaign phone calls they hang up on, main stream media sound bites that cause them to change the channel and watch reruns on TVLand and are left with contempt for all things political.

Those who rest in the middle have a pain point. What that is may not be so clear. It is clear the left believes they have those votes.  But do they?  What actions are being taken to debunk the stereotypes of conservatives being spread over many social media outlets by the left?

How many conservatives are talking between themselves and or debating, arguing with the liberals?  It simply is not enough.

Once when I was living in the moderate state of mind I was only concerned with how much money it was going to cost to keep gas in my car, the lights on in my home and what school district offered my children the best hope of a strong education.  I wasn’t familiar with the debt clock, revenue and tax brackets.  The old adage of “All you ever have to do is die and pay taxes” was a mantra that was basically accepted.

This is no longer the case.

What I fear is the Moderates and Independents will choose to stay home on Election Day or throw their hands in the air, frustrated and vote the country towards another 4 years of the same struggles.

I am far from suggesting that conservatives move towards the middle; nothing, could be further from the point.  What I have started doing is asking my more moderate friends some simple questions:

Do you like paying the same price for a gallon of gasoline as you do for a gallon of milk?

So which would you choose milk for the kids or gas to get to work?

How are your finances i.e. retirement and savings doing?

Do you still have a savings?

What will it look like 4 years from now?

Do you agree with cutting military spending, will you feel that way if there is another attack on the U.S?

Basic questions but watching the expressions on their faces I could tell I made them feel the pain that has been staring them in the face.  Yet, the normal response is “Nothing can be done.”

My answer is always, “Much can be done and it starts with a single vote.”

The unifying of Moderates and encouraging Independents could very well swing the election by simply helping them realize this country belongs to all of us and no matter what happens we are in this together. 

This is to take nothing away from the T.E.A. Party and all they have done.  However, there are still people out there that don’t understand what the initials even stand for, let alone what the movement represents.

As with putting together a jigsaw puzzle, quietly with my grandfather, the strategy was straightforward; establish the framework and then address the middle to finish the landscape.  It is time to start the addressing of our Moderate and Independent friends and engage in the conversation that affects everyone.

This election is a multi-million piece jigsaw puzzle.  The border has been laid, but about 40% of the pieces are silently scattered on the table waiting for hands to help them find their proper place in the political picture.  So many pieces, so little time, and so important for us all to help lend a hand.

While there are questions to be asked. I must ask myself which GOP candidate speaks to the hurts and pain of everyday Americans?  Which candidate can overcome and avoid the stereotype of the scary right-winger that so many of them will not put up with?

I ask these questions not because I haven’t made up my mind, but like my Grandfather, you’ll need to finish figuring out the puzzle yourself.

Only then can you adequately explain the picture to those who don’t have the patience.

Special Thanks: To Generic Republican and PolitiJim  for always being a tweet away

Main Stream Media, CliffsNotes and Moby Dick


 Back in the early 80’s I was knee deep in High School activities.  It was during this same time of year that I would have had a term paper due before Christmas break (Yes, it was called Christmas break then) and I would have been up all night finishing it because procrastination was my middle name.

 Junior year was a litany of excitement for me.  I had a vast array of events happening all at once and none of them had to do with writing a term paper.  

11th grade English consisted of our teacher assigning term papers by tier level.  A certain selection of books would qualify as an A, other books B and so on.  If she felt you had chosen a book that was beneath your skill set she reassigned a novel for you.  My original choice went unnoticed partly because I had picked my book based on the number of pages the literary work contained.  Apparently my skill set was far higher then a 162 page novella and I was reassigned Moby Dick.  

Thus I was doomed to read of Captain Ahab’s obsession.  Once finished, turned in and received back with a grade, I dumped the work of doom on the kitchen table and readied myself for district finals in volleyball.  

Dashing through the kitchen to grab an apple, car keys and my volleyball shoes, I was to meet with a pair of stern looking hazel eyes that were not jumping with glee, and I was desperately trying to avoid looking in his direction.  I glanced over long enough to notice in my father’s hand was the work of doom.  In large red ink that glowed as easily as a traffic light in the dark, was the grade on the paper I had received,  The B- was basically a failing grade given that I was to have written a term paper from the highest level of books with the hardest requirements to complete. 

“Elizabeth?”  Dad said very calmly.  “We’ll talk when you get home.” 

One thought ran through my head. GREEEAATTT! And looking at him, I flashed a smile then took off. 

After my return to the homestead I slipped upstairs, grabbed a shower and headed down to the laundry room.  My plan was to dart across the kitchen unnoticed and towards the stairs.  This would not be the case.  

Once again I heard my name and it wasn’t the angelic sounds of a choir.  More like the low rumble of a car that needed a muffler. 

“Care to explain your points on your paper?”  Dad said raising an eyebrow and pushing a chair out from the table for me to sit in. 

“A B- isn’t a bad grade, Dad.”  As soon as the words left my mouth and the rankled look peaked on Dad’s face, I knew I had struck a nerve.  Not to mention, a minor little fact, I was about to enter a one-sided debate with a man who happens to have a masters in education.  

I began to explain the teacher had noted my opening and conclusion on the paper was ‘A’ worthy. However, it was the body of work that appeared to be questionable and lacked original thought.  

Hence my father began: 

“Explain to me how Ishmael described Ahab’s obsession and how it began?”  I couldn’t. 

“Tell me about Ishmael?  Was he the protagonist?”  I couldn’t and had no clue. 

“Tell me how much the CliffsNotes cost that you used?”  Busted! 

I had made the decision early on that Moby Dick was never going to be a book of dire interest to me nor would it fit my jammed packed schedule.  CliffsNotes provided an easy out.  

CliffsNotes have a purpose, but have never been a replacement for actually doing the work.  The booklet was designed as a guide to encourage reading and understanding of the literary works in which it represented. In my world as with many other students it was a quick way to write a term paper or study for a test without putting in all the time an effort.  AKA- a short cut. 

Short cuts have been a downfall in society for a long time. The major reason is short cuts in the end never work and appear to be a band-aid on a severed limb. 

My reasoning behind this is to ask– How many people come home after work and flip on the news to catch up on the day’s events?  What exactly are they hearing?  How much information is possibly given in 30 minutes? 

Main Stream Media (MSM) is not designed to give the whole story.  Those of us who follow news regularly and research topics are completely aware that MSM outlets are the CliffsNotes of current events.  

While there are thousands of resources available through out the internet, the average American will not be going through the trouble of researching the topic and will solely depend on MSM to provide updates and new information.  Decisions will be based on what they hear in sound bites and see in video from on-site correspondents.  

These 30 minutes of cleverly designed rating snatches will not only give an incomplete view, it will determine the outcome of major events that rely on public opinion.  By paying closer attention most MSM’s mention, “For more on this story please go to our website.” 

Is this fact checking?  Not really.  Will people go on to the website and read the whole story. Doubtful.  Will anyone make time to pursue it further? Hmmmmm I know some that do and some that won’t.  Kim Kardashian’s wedding and divorce trends better.  

With Moby Dick I basically robbed myself of Melville’s master piece and the rise of obsession through Ishmael’s witness of Ahab.  It was my responsibility to engage in the adventure of a literary classic. 

My English teacher knew I possessed the ability to do the work for my paper.  I chose not to. 

I see America with much higher capabilities than using CliffsNotes to problem-solve.  To only use MSM or any other short cuts to decide who should or shouldn’t be running for public office is absurd.  

By using MSM and not looking deeper into the issues that impact Americans on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis will lessen the value of the dollar, create misconceptions, and prove to be destructive in the long run.  As goes the old adage.  “A little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing.” 

In the past I have written about the steps we take in making decisions. This is merely another example of taking the steps that protect individual rights as they pertain to the basic ideologies of the pursuit of unalienable rights.  

It is within these natural rights (unalienable) that we have a responsibility to ask the basic questions that we learned in 7th grade English.  Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How?  If these questions can not meet the litmus test in viewing MSM then the logical choice would be to pursue the questions that have not been answered.   

CliffsNotes didn’t solve my problem of writing a term paper I still had to do it and I had made a poor choice for myself by not doing the actual work that was required.  I will not CliffsNote my way through another election based on what I hear in 30 minutes.  I value the right to explore and search for the answers that will provide in the long run for my family, friends and the future generations, now knowing who my choices will affect. 

Main Stream Media has a purpose to provide news and information.  It shouldn’t be their version of what side of the fence I stand on.     

Moby Dick was the obsession that led to the demise of Ahab. Ishmael was the reporter.  I was the reader who grasped information from a 30 minute read via CliffsNotes and retold the story in a paper.  I went up against far more intelligent people who found my findings beneath my abilities.  And thus questioned my integrity.  

The challenge is to question the integrity of those who present information and gaining the knowledge by asking deeper questions to provide the whole story and not just the CliffsNotes.  Who is up to such a task?  If not I have a very old and  used copy of Moby Dick CliffsNotes available.

The Steps We Take

Confucius once said (quoting Chinese Philosopher Lao-Tse) a journey of thousand miles begins with a single step. As innocuous as it seems, it really can hurt far more than given credit for. It’s not the physical steps that hurt but the emotional effects of making the decisions to carry out the ideas.

I tend to believe most people only see the big picture and are completely unaware of the many steps it may take to accomplish the tasks, journeys or events that are in mind. It is within these meager steps that can insure success. Miss a step and then start the count of how fast the house of cards crumble.

No one comes in to this world running, walking, standing or even sitting up. We learn it. It is those first steps that create the memories that endure and times we wish to forget.

What happened in the steps taken by some this week. Let’s see:

Rick Perry said he stepped in it.

Joe Paterno was forced to step down.

Herman Cain had to step through it again.

Newt Gingrich stepped it up.

Each one of the aforementioned had to make adjustments to circumstances and be held responsible for their decisions. I know there is more to it than what  appears above in those short blurted out sentences.

Rick Perry had a moment that most people would rather forget. I am not going to make excuses for his drawing a blank; however, this is a man who since having back surgery hasn’t missed an event. How many people can take any steps, let alone walk up to a podium after having back surgery?  Then have a mishap and be able to poke fun at himself? I must ask how much physical pain has he been in? What complaints can be heard from him about it? None, instead he turned that moment into a quiet powerful message.

Appearing on The Late Show with David Lettermen he handled the Top Ten List with confidence. He achieved something I think people may have missed. By understanding that his misstep would become a joke, he took the first jab. He was able to redirect and get back on point showing leaders make mistakes. Humbling as it seems, how many would have given excuses or try to come up with a good reason? Will he ever be a great debater? Probably not. Can he lead? Ask my good friends in Texas and they would give him a hell yea!

Herman Cain has been stepping through allegation of sexual harassment and the list is growing.

Bear with me here; along time ago my best friend from high school and I were discussing something that happened at school. My mother within ear shot of the discussion told us this:

“If one person says it, might have merit but would need proof. If two people say it then yes it has some truth to it. However, I caution you girls if there are more than three it has become everybody’s business and there isn’t any truth to it any more. It is just a popular topic to make people look more important. It has become nothing more than idle gossip which will bite those who spread it in the behind. Mark my words.”

This is what I see is happening to Herman Cain. It has become a supercilious rant by some tossing around allegations and waiting 15 years to step forward seems outrageous and a flat out embarrassment to those women who have truly suffered from sexual harassment. The painfulness of the subject is hard enough to come forward with and prove, but to have those take away from the severity with an attempt to discredit one person in an attempt to gain by it, is inexcusable.

In stark contrast to this is Joe Paterno’s firing from Penn State. Simply put he had all the opportunities in the world to remove Jerry Sandusky from his coaching staff.

This wasn’t questions of false allegations this is going to trial. Placing football before everything else may have put him in the record books. The truth is he will never coach again, and Penn State will for a very long time feel the effects of trying to cover up the horrific acts of one.

It can be said that JoePa reported it but how far did he follow through with it? Are there truly that many rules in HR manuals that caused this to be buried under a rock for so long, or was it a case of winning brings in too much money for those innocent boys to be protected? Hmmmmm.

No one likes when an icon falls but it is his own steps that he is responsible for. No one wins, game over Coach.

Then there is Newt. Every debate he picks up more and more support. He possesses the brilliance to handle moderators and peers easily in debates. Without sounding rehearsed he is confident almost in a cocky sense. He will not back down from his point and has yet to raise his voice. The victor of more debates than the other candidates, he is still deemed unworthy of being viable as the GOP presidential choice.

Newt’s steps are perfect right now. Why? He didn’t make a big splash in the polls when he first announced his bid for the top office, more of a steady climb. Using patience and perservrance, Newt is avoiding the rolling coaster climb that leads to the crashing and burning in the polls.

Once the joke of the GOP Presidential Candidates, he now has people taking a closer look and he is receiving better placement on the debate floor. Newt is making the small and right steps to accomplish the desired outcome. There is still room for missteps. Once the onset starts of garnering attention from the MSM (Main Stream Media), they will swarm like locust and thus begins the taring down of Newt. How will this be handled? Or is it more of his old-time beltway experience working in his favor that will allow him to maneuver past the MSM and directly hold the attentions of the voters? I am not so sure. I prefer to wait and see.

These four men have been facing steps, in, down, through and up, which are direct results of the decisions they have made whether on purpose or by happenstance. I envy none of them.

Why? I had to choose to take a step to write about it. Need I say more?

Taking steps can be deliberate decisions that should not be taken lightly. Confucius wasn’t kidding when he said the journey of a thousand miles…It is first steps that can allow the individual to pursue with either reckless abandon or be diverted from the path that needs to be taken.

From first steps of infancy to reaching the end of the journey the final destination is the same for all, plugged in the middle of it are choices. Choose wisely and reap the benefits, choose foolishly and the outcome could be dire.

Hey, I can’t sugarcoat it. Wouldn’t even try to.

Next time I think I will use the word rankle…sounds irritating, but that’s what may make it fun to use.

Be well and once again I remind you of something I posted a while back. Nothing that starts out peaceful stays that way. I was right. Think about it.


Is Anybody Listening?

The other evening I was at a friend’s house when I noticed she had the same Keurig Coffee Maker that I do.  I started to make a comment about it , when suddenly she revved up into a whole dissertation on the handy contraption.  I mentioned to her ( at least I tried to) that I already owned one just like it, but nevertheless she continued with her monologue, almost as if she was enjoying the sound of her own voice.

Looking at her in disbelief, I wanted to say; didn’t you hear what I just said?  Honestly, I was floored by how little she was paying attention, and astonished how effortlessly she moved from the contraption to what coffee I needed to buy.  She even went so far as to hand me a coupon for 20% off to buy a coffee maker I already own.  Frustrated, I managed a crooked smile and accepted the coupon. Next thing I knew she was handing me a cup of coffee.  Quickly (more like one hot fast gulp, I would pay for later) I  finished the steaming hot brew  that she insisted I try.  It was then I realized I needed to make my escape.  Don’t get me wrong I love her, she’s a great friend, but there are times that she gravitates towards something and I just can’t bring her back from it.

Hyped up on caffeine my drive home would be the kind of stuff  Speedracer would be proud of. 

And that’s when it hit me….

However,under extreme advisement (mostly my own, which I ignored).  I placed a call to my Dad at 11:30 CST to his 12:30 EST that was a non-emergency.  You will have to take my word for it, and I promise to spare you the ugly sounds (swearing– I think) I heard, before the phone was promptly disconnected.

The events of the evening  just reminded me of all the rhetoric going on within the GOP.  It seems everybody is banging on drums and not one person can hear the music. 

The next day I grabbed the phone ( hoping for a better response then from the night before) and hesitantly said “Dad?” immediately I began a rapid tear about what happened the previous evening and then tried to tie it all back to my political concerns.  How he understood everything I spewed at him is a wonder. I suspect it comes from living in a household of all females (I mean no disrespect but you had to know our household).  

 Everybody is in full motion– talking, ranting and raving, with arms swinging to make a point. We would stop only long enough to look at Dad, to have him conclude which one of us was right.  His answer was designed with truth and an easy escape clause;  “All of you—too bad you weren’t listening.”

Now I ask you does this sound familiar? 

Everybody is talking and nobody is listening, well to each other in some metaphoric way.  In all, isn’t it really about the same wants, needs and objectives.  The mitigating factor might just lie in what Dad told me:

“Emotions can and/or will win an election, but does that mean those emotions choose the right candidate?” 

How true does this hit home?  Of course we have emotional attachments this election season.  However, arguing amongst each other doesn’t serve any real interest, nor purpose.  My stockings run just sifting through the words being tossed around like weapons that are meant to impale. 

There are a lot of strong feelings going into this coming primary season and so much viable information that it tends to be overwhelming.  The trick, I think is to separate the emotion from the facts and not repeat electing on feelings like I believe what may have happened in 2008.

That said I fear that I am right back at my friend’s listening to what I already know, already understand and  my concerns are still not being heard.  What I need and want is one person to explain something I don’t already know with the ability to listen. Perhaps some type of plan.

Is there anybody listening?  Am I going to get a coupon for 20% off a platform I already know?

Many camps are working diligently and the candidates have become gadabouts trying to hit all the different events or so it appears. I question what coffee maker they represent?    

If my friend were to sell coffee makers I might be coerced into buying one.  If she decided to run for office I might have to recommend she sell coffee makers.  While I love her to death my vote would not be her’s.  Leaders listen, plan and talk.  They have the ability to choose the right people for the job and no fear in changing it when the desired outcome is not achieved.

I am waiting for the one candidate to stand up and grab my attention.  I already know what I don’t want.  Like my friend did by talking over and through me, I don’t want to have the same points given to me for what I already own the knowledge of.  It’s just an empty cup waiting to be filled.

To all the candidates—convince me, I am listening……for my vote is the coffee in your cup.  Where will my vote be poured?

Happy Hunting!  Next time I might just lean toward using bandersnatch. This might be a real challenge but I bet my anime friends out in twitter can help me (HINT, HINT)

Be Well


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