Posted in motivational, Uncategorized


“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”
Dr. Seuss was correct (always, even if he might not have said this one, who knows, but he makes me smile).
Nothing can protect you from the storms of life, not enough the biggest umbrella (thanks Rhianna/Jay-Z, I’ll never get that song out of my head). on those rain boots, galoshes, rubbers, overshoes, Wellies, whatever and go out and dance in the rain. Stand in it. Sit. Sleep.

Those storms are going to come, whether you fear them or not.
Change is going to come whether you fear it or not.
The lightning strikes of technology.
The rumbling thunder of racism.
The pelting hail of misinformation.
The sleet of corruption.

The hurricanes of hate.
The tornadoes of greed.
The slapping winds of regression.
Face them. Fight them. Survive them. But you can’t avoid them.

Ignoring something never made it go away. Get stormy, let your inner Mary Poppins out, and get on with it.

Too often in my life I’ve missed out on good, hell, amazing things because I was afraid. My fear stopped me. Siting on my shoulder, claws curled into my trembling flesh, cackling in my ear about how I was going to fail, how it wasn’t going to turn out anyway (it rarely did), I was going to get hurt, I was going flounder, or goof…

I was going to ruin things, even ruin my life I listened, avidly, to the voice of fear, so I missed out on smiling because it happened.

Much of what we fear stems from what we’ve learned, consciously or subconsciously.
Fear is actively used in: child-rearing, schooling, work, play, sports, politics, science, religion, movies, TV, books, business, and well, everything – then we’re shocked/surprised that fear rules us? Sometimes those fears are irrational and sometimes: “be afraid, be very afraid”.

So many fears…Fear of the dark comes from fear of the unknown (what’s out there I can’t see?).
Fear of strangers, immigrants, different races?  Just people you don’t know yet.

Fear of snakes?  Boo, hiss!
Fear of antiques? That gets old fast.
Fear of spiders?  Sorry Charlotte, you know I love you (and your web), but you’re super creepy looking.
Fear of bananas?  That’s bananas!
Fear of time?  But it’s so wibbly wobbly timey wimey.
Fear of falling asleep?  Probably good away after a good night’s sleep.
Fear of Trump?  Well, duh, that’s rational.
Fear of failure? It has all happened before and it will all happen again.
Fear of success?  I could live with that.
Fear of heights You never want to get to the bottom of things with that one, but I could fall for that fear.
Fear of planes, trains, and automobiles Really, it’s a hilarious movie.
Fear of books?  What?!? The?!? No, just no.
Fear of fear?  Nothing to fear but…

Yoda got it so right, “Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering”.

“No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.” ~C.S. Lewis
Some days I feel I’ve lost something, or am missing something. In those times, I go about my life with a weird, niggling feeling gnawing at the base of my skull.
Slowly I come to the same conclusion, it feels like fear, but it’s grief. Loss of loved ones, loss of health, loss of what could have been, loss of civility, loss of decency, loss of honour, loss of dreams as they fade into changed expectations.
Yet, at these moments, “There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.”  Jane Austen, my courage hasn’t always risen – I’ve been intimidated, dispirited, badgered, ruffled, browbeaten, disheartened, constrained…But sorry not sorry that’s a thing of the past (and it can stay there)
Fear is likely even part of my procrastination issues I’ve made a promise, to myself, to let my courage flag fly, I can’t always let them grind me down…

I used to believe if I tried to control everything I could control, even conquer my fear. That I could stop bad things from happening. Nope. The only thing I can control is how I react to fear. How I react to the bad things.
I’m out of control and loving it (when I’m not terrified beyond words).
Trust yourself. Respect yourself. Not the Fear.
And I hope you know, you can always stand under my umbrella (not with the Umbrella Corporation, they suck), or dance with me in the rain.

Posted in Books, Christmas, Food, Holidays, Televison, Uncategorized, Weight

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?


Society is degenerating to a constant state of anxiety and fear, especially the fear of missing out. What if we missed an email, text, post, tweet, party, sale, invitation, night out, gossip, especially about celebrities, trips, trends…what if we just missed something? The only thing we don’t fear missing out on…voting.


While reading Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by the stunningly beautiful, talented, and hilarious Mindy Kaling (Three Rivers Press) I had an a-ha moment. The book itself was funny, charming, authentic, very much what you’d expect from the writer and star of The Mindy Project and The Office, she’s a hot mess and makes it work, but I started thinking about why more and more people are more depressed, stressed, anxious, suicidal, homicidal, etc. than ever, even children. I’m sure there are multiple reasons, but being in constant contact, rampant consumerism, extreme inequality, and fear of missing out must be high on the list.

So a bunch of money-grubbing, self-regulating corporations appeal to natural human curiosity, use culturally complex language, jargon, fear of missing out, pop culture references, celebrities, and even bullying to ensure we feel compelled to consume, which leads to wanting and buying and consuming even more which leads to, well, you get the picture. This isn’t just adults, we’re letting our children be groomed, to be exploited, for profit. Isn’t there a name for that?
The good news, there’s no need to stop consuming, or watching TV, or going on the internet…we just slow down and consider the source, who will profit.

Symptoms of  a fear of missing out may include, but are not limited to:


1. Forgetting those you love or those in need while rushing around trying not to miss out.
2. Rationalizing buying products manufactured under deplorable conditions.
3. Describing wants as needs or worse believing wants are needs.
4. Obsessing about products, services, and activities.
5. Putting items above people.

There is hope. Some people might be doing things you’re not or having things you’re not, that doesn’t mean they’re happier or more content. It’s not a contest. Hopefully this will all level out and people will finally see what’s important instead of what’s advertised.
Since the holiday season is already being forced on us to stretch out the shopping and socializing so we’ll spend more, don’t fear missing out, celebrate what you have.


Posted in Books, Christmas, Uncategorized

Expect the Unexpected

 1love5 Human beings have an interesting quirk, we tend to see what we expect to see. Good or bad.

1. We left our car empty, so we expect no one will be in it when we return.

2.  We assume people are telling the truth, even if they’re adding a lot of details.

3. When we buy or consume things, we expect them all to be safe and working properly.

4. We expect people to be nice or at least respectful.

5. If we see a child at our door or hear a baby crying, we expect they need help, not someone trying to trick us into opening our door.

6. We expect our government to do what’s in the best interests of all of their citizens.

7. We expect our child not to go off with someone, or that they’ll know who and how to ask for help.

And the so much more.

1black28Reading Becca Fitzpatrick’s disturbing new thriller, Black Ice (Simon & Schuster) I expected thrills and chills, but actually alternated between goosebumps and groans of exasperation. I wanted to scream at the prey, I mean, protagonist, aaargh really?!? Fitzpatrick knows exactly how to write books that capture and keep her readers, and this latest novel could also serve as a how-to handbook for things teen girls shouldn’t do. Black Ice points out how easily we see what we expect to see, even ignoring our gut feelings screaming hysterically.

You’d think we’d have become more cautious, but in a world of instant gratification, the lure of easy, fun, and exciting is hard to resist.

Seeing what we expect to see may cause side effects such as but not limited to: rationalizing, justifying, minimizing, denial, pain, or even death.

A useful gift this Christmas, especially for women, would be Black Ice (not the kind on the road in winter) and maybe throw in The Gift of Fear and Protecting the Gift by Gavin de Becker, for good measure.1black27

I know it’s unpleasant to think people aren’t what they appear to be, but wouldn’t you rather know the truth?

Posted in Books, Uncategorized

Is A Worry Worrying You?

Wo1worry2rry has been an unwanted passenger for too much of my life journey. I’ve tried to make worry useful so it doesn’t drag me down.

Not that the world doesn’t give us a lot to worry about – wars, disease, poverty, hunger, terror, storms and more. Worry is a passive by-product of fear. When we have a fear about something and either don’t know what to do or can’t do anything, we worry.

Unlike vampires worry doesn’t need to be invited in, it just shoves its way into your thoughts, your good times.
There’s a lovely book, Is a Worry Worrying You? by Ferida Wolff and Harriet May Savitz with engaging illustrations by Marie Letourneau (Tanglewood Press) that beautifully explains worry and gives easy suggestions how to overcome it. A children’s book with lessons for adults as well. They give a physical representation of worry as a monster, and give ideas to contain the beast.1worry1

Here are my worry tamers:


1. Put it to work.  Find ways to make things better or at least better for right now.
2. Have fun. Worry hates fun and shrinks from it.
3. Compartmentalize it. Place the worry in a box in your brain.
4. Share it. Sometimes when you can talk to someone about your worry, the worry shrinks or goes away altogether.
5. Ignore it. Show worry that you’re not going to give it any attention.

When in doubt go for the 5 rule.
Will this worry matter in 5 minutes?
Or 5 hours?
5 days?
5 months?
5 years?
More often than not the answer is no.

If you live through your worst fears and they happen you’ve gone through it more than once, if it never happens, you went through it for nothing.

Next time a worry tries to hitch a ride, dump it, who needs the worry or worries?1xfiles4

Posted in Books, Uncategorized



I’d like to crawl inside Neil Gaiman’s head, just briefly, although I imagine it’s intense. I’d also like to do a Vulcan mind meld on some people, yet where would that lead, aside from the hollow paths of: interesting, boring, extreme, creepy? You’d still just be a visitor.

Gaiman has a remarkable ability to plop you inside his stories and against your better judgement you decide to stay to see how it end1gaiman4s.

The Ocean At The End Of The Lane is no exception. Like a worm that gets inside you, a feeling that scuttles through you, a scratching in the dark, this story and it’s inhabitants don’t give you answers, just a sensation of contentment and fear and something else you know you probably shouldn’t identify just yet, if ever.

As with all Gaiman’s work this ingeniously focuses on the imbalance of power, between adults and children, men and women, good and evil, right and wrong, man and nature, even between worlds.

I’ve already learned the most significant things I’ll ever learn in my entire life, I think, and Gaiman’s works always reinforce these, for me.

 What we know is not nearly as important as what we don’t know.

We don’t need to know everything.

But what if we do?