People never cease to amaze me! Just when I thought it was safe to be line at the grocery store, something changed. Little did I know that someone, most likely the Fox network, must be dispensing portable soap boxes to their loyal listeners. This is what I’m going with since I have no other answer.
Hey, I am a huge fan of Free Speech, but for the love of God I can not tolerate when it is abused. Why on earth would a complete stranger feel that a hateful political rant would be a good way to strike up a conversation with ME of all people on this planet? I guess the days of “hey baby what’s your sign?” are long gone.
There I was minding my own business in the check-out line, reading the headlines on all the rag magazines, catching up on all the Kardashian
bull shit news, when out of nowhere this person decided to egg me on while he ranted over everything under the sun. Maybe my peace sign bracelet set him off…who knows.
Well, that’s all I can say is THANK GOODNESS I’ve been graced with the gift of having my face come up with a quick response long before my mouth has a chance. Sometimes this can be a curse, but not this time.
I have no idea what my face said, but I can only imagine it was something like “WOW!” or “Shut up you bigoted ass!” or perhaps both since I was then referred to as “one of them” shortly after my face had spoken.
There really were no words to respond, well I did think of two, but I wasn’t going that low. One would think that having a 5′ 9″ cricket as his only audience member would make him stop.
Oh, this guy had all the answers. He was explaining everything that should be getting done “down there in Washington” and everything that would be getting done if “all the idiots” didn’t come out to vote. Can you feel my pain?
At this point I began chanting the ole “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all” lecture in my head for sanity purposes. I’ll be honest, after the 3rd time there were F-bombs tossed in to keep me out of jail.
I stood in silence wondering what would happen if this guy spent a quarter of his energy actually contributing to something good instead of spreading his relentless mouth farts all over the place. Hmm, maybe … just maybe, it would loosen that padlock on his mind.
Since that didn’t seem to be happening any time soon, I continued to silently ingest his gases while loading my groceries at the speed of light. As if food shopping wasn’t enough to suck the life out of me…seriously.
“All of us wish at times that we lived in a more tranquil world, but we don’t. And if our times are difficult and perplexing, so are they challenging and filled with opportunity.” Robert Kennedy
As you can imagine this left me with a huge social hangover by the time I got home. You know that wonderful feeling you get when you’re around exhausting people for a long period of time. It was going to take something much stronger than CALGON to take me away from this one!
I decided that the toxic remnants of this encounter had to leave before they did any more damage so I went out on my deck, flopped onto my swing and turned on some tunes. I was swinging in the silence when out of nowhere BAM! Teddy Pendergast saved the day. Thank you higher power, thank you very much!
I’m glad I didn’t waste my words on someone who didn’t deserve to hear my voice. Sometimes the most powerful thing you can say is nothing at all. Stay awake and Enjoy the Ride!
Oh Yes We Did!
This is an update on my recent post Democracy Is Alive. Looks like a small group of committed citizens certainly can make a difference…Oh yes we did!
After we gathered the troops to battle the politicians, we utilized our freedom of speech via the press and the good old social media. Fact: Facebook & YouTube scare the crap out of old politicians.
We went old school to pound pavements for signatures and also included an online petition for our cyber supporters as well. No one said it would be easy.
I was fortunate enough to be part of a team composed of like-minded individuals in order to make this a success. We all have talents that enabled us to move this forward quickly. This “project” was in the works for 7 years and we changed those plans in a little over 40 days.
For instance, my neighbor Joe created the video that tugged at heart-strings of his audience … hey now, nothing wrong with jumping on the sympathy wagon … which just happened to spread like wildfire, dubbing him the “Michael Moore” of our project.
Our neighbor Ray was our communicator/informant. He made calls to all parties involved daily to gather our
ammunition pertinent information, dubbing him “Deep Throat.”
As for me, well I was the digger. I searched until my eyes were burning and my fingers sore. Thank you Google and Public Records search engines thank you very much. This dubbed me “Erin Brockovich.”
The story made an appearance in our local paper The Northeast Times, The Philadelphia Daily News, The Philadelphia Inquirer and Radio Station 106.9 here in Philadelphia. Not bad for a few concerned neighbors.
Our initial goal was to stop the madness completely, however according to our City Councilman, it was already a “done deal” and although he admitted “I should have notified the community, I take full responsibility.” Let me finish this sentence: However, it was an election year and a lot of you already didn’t like me, so I decided winning for my 8th term was way more important than all of you.
Therefore, without a long drawn out legal battle we wouldn’t have a chance in reversing this deal. The other “done deal” will be this councilman loosing his next run for office. He has been in office for 32 years…so tootles!
After numerous negotiations we made the decision to compromise with the business owner and I am happy to report that we made some significant progress in saving a large portion of this land from the asphalt. It’s amazing what a collective effort can accomplish. Hmm, I wonder where this would come in handy *cough* DC.
The company we were up against has been at its current location for 11 years, with organic growth during that time, however he is getting cramped and does need additional space to expand. The fact that he is able to expand in this economy is a very good sign for our community.
We were extremely fortunate because just like us, this businessman was also duped by the politician involved. He was promised that “everything was taken care of” and he had nothing to worry about. Poor thing thought the politician was doing the right thing by him.
We have been given the opportunity to assist in the design of the area that will be surrounding the parking lot. It will now be bordered by natural berms, lined with mature trees to block our view and absorb sound. We blocked the idea of a chain-linked fence and agreed on something that would be safe, but esthetically easy on the eyes.
There is also going to be a “meadow” constructed using trees and grasses that are historic to the area. The business owner as agreed to maintain this portion of the property for (5) years to ensure this land resumes to its natural state. We were all especially elated about this piece of the plan.
All in all our efforts were not wasted. We not only gained a voice in the construction of his property, we gained a stronger sense of community, which was long overdue.
This small sliver of the pie opened our eyes to some significant changes that need to be made in order have a successful voice in the decisions that are being made on behalf of “our best interest,” at all levels of our local government.
Now get out there and make a difference one act at a time….Enjoy the Ride!
Caps Lock Crazy
I’ve noticed a trend recently that has really taken off like wildfire. No, you won’t find in on the pages of Vogue or on the runways in Paris, but you can certainly find it everywhere else.
Divide & Conquer are hitting the streets hard and the Social Media even harder as we get closer to November 6th. Can you say Caps Lock and Crazy?
On Monday I made a comment on a conservative friends Facebook wall. I just couldn’t leave well enough alone. She posted a photo, paid for by the Romney campaign, regarding high gas prices. I simply stated “Who holds the largest vested interest in Oil in this country? Hint: He doesn’t live on Pennsylvania Avenue.” Nothing mean-spirited, just a fact.
Well, hot diggity I never saw this response coming … “Good Grief! What does that have to do with anything Lisa? It is supply and demand, simple economics. Guess you weren’t home-schooled or you know how an economy works. Sorry, but I have had it with people who didn’t bother to learn anything about how things work.”
My parents were not Economists, but they certainly knew how to rob Peter to pay Paul and survive. Hey, looks like I might have been home-schooled after all…so there!
I must say I was a little taken back by this attack. Isn’t that exactly what I just said without the hate & judgement. Needless to say this certainly had me wondering…What the hell just happened? Are we really that far removed that we can’t even recognize that we might actually agree on a point? Maybe she was blinded by my peace sign icon…I don’t know.
The down right hatred I’ve witnessed over differences in opinions on political views, religious beliefs, race, sexual orientation and the reproductive system of a woman are downright mind-boggling.
News Flash: Conflict and Tension are tearing We The People to shreds at the speed of light. If you want to regain the will of the people, you must recognize the wisdom of Parker Palmer.
“Political civility is not about being polite to each other. It’s about reclaiming the power of “We the People” to come together, debate the common good and call American democracy back to its highest values amid our differences. The civility we need will come not from watching our tongues, but from valuing our differences and the creativity that can come when we hold them well.” Parker Palmer
The words you choose have a profound effect on the people they reach, please choose them wisely and Enjoy The Ride!
A TRUE STORY EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW
Yesterday a dear friend sent me an email entailing this very important information about the importance of women voting. I am proud to say that in April, I celebrated my 30th year as a registered voter. To date I have never missed an election. Not that anyone is handing out perfect attendance certificates or anything, but if they were..well..ahem..that’s right.
Remember, it was not until 1920 that women were granted the right to go to the polls and vote. That is only a mere 92 years ago. I know people who have furniture older than that for god sakes!
The women who fought for our RIGHT to vote were innocent and defenseless. They were jailed for picketing the White House, carrying signs asking for the vote.
They were hell raisers with a cause and willing to do whatever it took to ensure that their daughters and grand daughters would have a say at the polls. This included going to prison and being tortured for nothing more than … “obstructing sidewalk traffic.”
When one of the leaders, Alice Paul, embarked on a hunger strike, they tied her to a chair, forced a tube down her throat and poured liquid into her until she vomited. She was tortured like this for weeks until word was smuggled out to the press.
Woodrow Wilson and his cronies tried to persuade a psychiatrist to declare Alice Paul insane so that she could be permanently institutionalized. It is inspiring to know that a doctor refused to bend to the persuasion. The doctor stated that Alice Paul was strong and brave. That didn’t make her crazy.
He informed the men that ‘Courage in women is often mistaken for insanity.’ Hmm, it appears some things haven’t changed.
Now, doesn’t Alice’s story make your already lame excuses for NOT voting seem …just a tad….PATHETIC?
It’s hard to believe that in 92 short years we went from being put behind bars, beaten, tortured, starved and even dying just to have the right to walk into a voting booth, close the curtain and cast our votes …. to avoiding it like the plague with lamest of lame excuses.
Come on ladies … even your excuses lack creativity. No flavor..dull..boring and frankly, LAZY!
- Carpool? …. You can bring the kids with you, perhaps you could set an example.
- We have to get to work? … No problem, polls are open from 7am -8pm.
- Our vote doesn’t matter? … Bush/Gore … yea, it does.
- It’s raining? … Don’t worry, you won’t melt.
- I’m so busy … Solving world peace, on the brink of curing cancer? No, you’re not.
- I’ve got so much on my plate! … Really?… So did Alice Paul!
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