One Potato, Two Potato, Three Potato… Hell Yes!

In case you missed this Twitter thread from John Darnielle, the lead singer of The Mountain Goats, when it came out on New Year’s Eve:

In 2022, may we all find moments when we can appreciate “the ten trillion small things that ease the path a little — colors, shades, sounds, flavors, sensations, moods, fleeting thoughts, moments of transcendence when you’re very lucky…”

Warren Zevon taught us to “enjoy every sandwich.” Now John Darnielle has taught us to enjoy every potato. Will it be enough to get us through another year? Hell yes!

Just wiser, that’s all

I don’t have any Ojibwa blood in me, but today I feel a bit Ojibwa…

The Ojibwa people called old people “wisdom keepers.” They are treasures. They’re also the funniest people in the community. Elders have the freedom to tease anybody.

author Louise Erdrich

“Wisdom keepers”…. yeah, that’s the ticket! Not over-the-hill, or outdated, or just an old fart. I’m a “treasure.” And I can tease you all I want.

Very grown-up of me to say that…

The quote above (uh, the Ojibwa one, not the nanny nanny boo boo one) came from the November AARP Bulletin… which showed up in MY mailbox for some inexplicable reason. Oh wait, I know the reason… it’s because I’m OLD full of wisdom!

But that beats the intro from a Golden Palominos song:

Now if only I could find a receptive audience for all the wisdom I’ve accumulated.

Today’s the Day… every day!

Just a few quotes to ponder as we get ready to turn the page on 2021.

A miracle happened: another day of life.

Paulo Coelho

Life, what an exquisite privilege.

Katie Rubenstein

Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.

Omar Khayyam

Funny how we tend to put too much stock in our resolutions for the “new year” based on a calendar that came out in the 1500s… and we don’t spend nearly enough effort making today count. Because it’s the only day that counts.

The true spirit of the season

If you’re looking for the true spirit of the holiday season, here it is:

Uh, I’m not saying that the true spirit of the holiday season is to gain 10 pounds from gorging on delicious baked goods. Although the bathroom scale at my house might beg to differ.

These homemade goodies came courtesy of my co-worker Kelsi and her husband Tommy. Last week, they baked, boxed, and delivered similar batches to nearly a dozen friends all over town, with no expectations of reciprocity. Just because.

That alone is pretty cool, but Kelsi and Tommy have really and truly embodied the spirit of the holiday season all year long… even longer, actually. When the pandemic hit, they started making similar “Baked Boxes” (as they dubbed them) once or twice a month, and distributed them to friends and co-workers in exchange for a donation to Crayons to Computers, a local non-profit that provides free educational supplies to teachers, many of whom would otherwise have to dip into their own pockets to purchase them for their students.

Yep, for months on end, Kelsi and Tommy spent their own money, and their own precious time, making goodies for others… while raising funds to help low-income students get the school supplies they need. Bringing joy to friends, bringing joy to teachers, bringing joy to students. If that doesn’t make your heart grow three sizes, you might want to see your cardiologist.

Imagine what a difference we could make if all of us opted to forgo — or at least downsize — our own holiday wish list, and instead redirect those funds to folks who truly need help. Giving over receiving. Other’s needs over our own wants. Sounds like the true spirit of the season to me… thanks, Kelsi and Tommy, for showing us the way.

Creativity is Child’s Play

The Broken Record podcast is a treasure trove for music geeks like me. But even if you’re not music-obsessed, you’ll probably enjoy it. The most recent episode features Amanda Shires, talking about her new Christmas album.

Something Amanda said about the writing process really rang true for me – check out this 45-second clip:

Write a little bit every day.

Read good books and poems to inspire you.

Be open to the muse.

Look for the magic in the mundane.

Stay your spontaneous “silly self.”

Our ability to write, to paint, to sculpt, to act, to dance, to create in all its forms, has been with us since we were kids. As we grow up, most of us bury it, or ignore it, or let it die of neglect. Because we’re scared of what others might think of it… of being judged.

But deep down, you know — and I know — that your “silly self” doesn’t give a damn about what others think. It’s just having fun.

Now get out there and rock on!

What happens in Vegas… is tragic

The Las Vegas Raiders lost a road game yesterday, falling to the NY Giants, 23-16.

A 23-year-old woman lost her life this past Tuesday in Las Vegas. All because Henry Ruggs III, a 22-year-old man who used to play for the Las Vegas Raiders, rear-ended her car on a suburban street.

Ruggs was driving at 156 mph with a blood-alcohol content twice Nevada’s legal limit before his sports car slammed into the rear of a vehicle that burned, killing Las Vegas resident Tina O. Tintor, 23, and her dog, prosecutors said Wednesday.

from NFL.com

Speed is what got Henry Ruggs III to the NFL. He was drafted in the first round in 2020 after running a 4.27-second 40-yard dash in that year’s combine. But now speed (and a woeful lack of judgement) will take him to jail.

“Life is about choices. Mr. Ruggs made a choice,” district attorney Steve Wolfson told reporters after the court appearance. “And the difficulty I have is there’s so many alternatives. There’s ride-sharing. There’s a designated driver. There’s a taxi. There’s so many alternatives. But Mr. Ruggs made a choice. And he’s going to have to live with the consequences.”

From this article in The Athletic

Henry Ruggs made a horrible decision when he got behind the wheel after drinking. It cost a young woman her life. Tina Tintor was only 23. After Henry Ruggs spends years in jail, living with consequence of his actions, here’s hoping and praying that he somehow finds a way to make the next chapter of his life less tragic…

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