Hello, my Thanksgiving gobblers and giblets! How are you? Wasn't that heavy, wet snow the other day delightful? I can hardly wait for winter to come. And go! Dump your load and get out of here so we can get back to normal lives. Right now, "they" are saying rain for tomorrow and Friday. That's better than the snow they were originally predicting, but it could still snarl up some traffic and soak Black Friday shoppers. My main concern is holiday travelers. Leave yourselves plenty of time to get where you're going. And try, for once, driving a little slower.
I hope that nothing more slows down our beloved Green Bay Packers on their road to the Super Bowl.. They smashed the Minnesota Vikings this past Sunday. Now, they meet the Chicago Bears tomorrow (Thanksgiving) evening at home starting at 7:30 PM. Don't eat so much food that you sleep through this one. The Packers and the Bears have a longstanding feud with each other. Over what? They don't know. It doesn't matter; each team aspires to demolish the other. Often Packers-Bears matches get very physical, very soon. This promises to be either very good or very bad or both. I hope that Ms. Tender Heart Bear doesn't mind watching her team get beat down.
Here are this week's standings in the Irregular Football League:
They haven;t changed since last week. How irregular!
Thanksgiving is a time to take note of what you're grateful for. Besides my life, I"m grateful for Junior, Señor Zanza, my family, my friends, the JT Irregulars, and any soul that I've touched in any way.
I'm grateful for food to eat, a roof over my head, and clothes on my back. I'm also grateful for cartoons:
Thank you to all my readers. Irregular or not, you are why this blog is here. You spread joy. You share love.
"Gratitude is a funny thing. We often talk about it in the context of a
glass being half full rather than half empty, and based on the level of
that container’s fullness or lack there of, we sit… glass in hand…
happy or sad.
"See, I think that’s where we the idea of gratitude wrong. I mean who
among us hasn’t had our glass mysteriously emptied? Over my career I’ve
met many people whose glasses were far from half full or half empty, and
yet they persevered. I have often selfishly tucked their memories in
the back of my mind. Most of these people didn’t know how much of an
impact they had on me, but they did. "So I thought I would share these stories with you.
"When Death Seems Like A Blessing
"Writing for the West Allis Star when, my editor Roger Bartel
challenged us to find people who had overcome adversity. I met John from
West Allis when he was a senior at Nathan Hale High School in 2007. "John, who was 18-years-old, told me he wasn’t struggling to overcome
anything, he was dying. And while many of his peers were just starting
to build their lives, his life was ending because he had a rare and
terminal disease called Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. I wrote about how
he prepared for his death. He wanted an open casket during his funeral
to make his mom happy, but wanted to be cremated in an urn the shape of a
race car. "He wanted his funeral to be a party with balloons, cake and music.
His gratitude came in the form of the comfort he received in knowing
that one day he would die and not be in pain anymore. But his attitude
kept him grounded in the here and now. He spent the year doing what his
body allowed him to, but one of the highlights was that he got to meet a
race car driver. Almost a year later, John died at 18-years-old and his
funeral was just that… a party.
"When Pain and Frustration Help You Take On The World
"After being laid off from the Kenosha News, I decided that I wanted
to write about the mental health system. So many police reports
reflected the shortcomings of our current mental health system and
that’s how I met Brenda Wesley when I wrote about her sister Betty Cahn for the Milwaukee Magazine.
The story solidified what I had always known about the mental health
system in Milwaukee County, woefully inadequate but so many clung to the
notion that it was better than nothing. At the time, the Milwaukee
County Mental Health Complex received 12,000 people in crisis and 80
percent of them were turned away. "'Because she’s not laid out on the floor overdosing on meds, and she
hasn’t hit anyone or threatened to kill someone, they won’t take her to
the complex or an emergency detention,' Brenda told me. "Over the years, Brenda’s frustration with the system in trying to get
her sister help eventually yielded to finding the strength and courage
to write her own play called 'Pieces,' which aims to cut through the
stigma around mental illness, and working with a number of police
officers on crisis intervention training. These were her contributions
to making the system better by helping the community understand what her
family went through.
"If What Is Before You Doesn’t Serve You, Choose Another Path
"So you might wonder what these two stories have anything to do with
gratitude. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned that true gratitude is
about acceptance of what is happening in your life, and realizing some
of it may not be in your control. But with acceptance and gratitude you
stop fighting what you can’t change and start taking on what you can. "John couldn’t change that he was dying, but he could accept it and
plan for it. He could also free his mind up for other things… like
meeting a race car driver. For Brenda, she couldn’t save Betty from her
mental illness but she could help the system become more empowered in
how they treated people with mental illness. "And those are lessons I think we can all learn from. But the truth
about being a journalist is that stories change me all the time and that
has always been something I am grateful for."
"John F. Kennedy was the 35th President of the United States
(1961-1963), the youngest man elected to the office. On November 22,
1963, when he was hardly past his first thousand days in office, JFK was
assassinated in Dallas, Texas, becoming also the youngest President to
die." Read more: https://www.whitehouse.gov/1600/presidents/johnfkennedy
The JFK assassination was my first experience of a moment in time when you forever remember exactly where you were and what you were doing when you heard the news. Too many more moments like those occurred.
I believe that the JFK assassination changed the world.
I "discovered" this at WalMart. It tastes almost exactly like Coca-Cola, but is only 84 cents for a two liter bottle vs. $1.50 to $2 for Coke.
I believe that I was going through Coke withdrawal last week. I stopped buying it. I was feeling trembly and shaky all week. I don't know if it's the caffeine or sugar or both, but I was withdrawing cold turkey.
Every Wednesday, Madame Zoltar responds to your queries and comments in her blog, Dear Madame Zoltar. Are the stars in your favor? What to do with that 401K? Find out by sending your questions and thoughts to: email@example.com
"The famed Bald Eagles from Decorah, Iowa are back on their nest and ready to start a new family! World famous and live streamed via the internet by the Raptor Resource Center, anyone can view the parents raise their eaglets from egg to fledglings from the comfort of their homes. Using infrared cameras and microphones, the eagles can be seen around the clock during the nesting season, which starts in January or February and runs till June."
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