Monthly Archives: December 2013

Madiba Rests in Peace

…and we must pray that his country will have grown strong enough to live in peace without his presence.

With the passing of Nelson Mandela last Thursday, the world lost the most iconic man of the entire 20th century. He was one of those rarest of human beings who combined intelligence with the wisdom to use it. And with it he saved his nation. The struggle in South Africa is not yet over, but that the people have come this far without a bloody civil war must be credited to this one man with the moral authority to risk love and forgiveness when others would have preferred hate and revenge.

Just think how much better a place the world we live in could be if we all emulated Madiba.

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” — Nelson Mandela


Filed under civil rights, Endings, human rights, Obituary, Remembering, Tribute


…on yesterday’s post!

Someone emailed me and said there was a notice on the post saying “Comments are Closed”. No idea where that came from. It was not intentional, at any rate. Maybe I’ll succeed in making this mini-post were comments are, indeed, possible. Because I love your feedback, whichever way the wind blows.

My second clarification is to do with the content itself. Yes, I was bemoaning the letters from the charities. But hopefully, upon careful reading, it was clear to the reader that it is RIGHT for my conscience to be awoken at this time of year, as it needs to be all year long. And not only that, I have so many blessings in my life – even if I don’t accredit them to a god somewhere – that when asked what I’d like for Christmas, it seems a travesty to ask for anything while so many others do not have the simplest necessities for survival.

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Filed under Christmas, Seasonal Reflections

Deck the Halls



It’s that time of year again when our heads are full of sugar plums – or at least the modern equivalent. To put it another way: We’ve got Christmas on the brain and can think of nothing except all the stuff needed for making it a great holiday for one and all.
It’s a bit of a spoiler, though, getting all of these damn letters looking for donations. The Red Cross, UNICEF, Doctors without Borders, ad infinitum. I made the mistake of reading one of them about the homeless young man in Hamburg who was probably going to freeze to death for lack of a warm jacket and any hot nourishment. Or the elderly lady whose pension is so small that once the rent and utilities are paid, there’s no money left for food. Then there are the Syrian refugees, desperate to be somewhere safe and also in need of food and clothing.
How dare they ruin my fantasy of the wonderful world out there, full of colored lights, Christmas trees and good times for all!
In fact, the damage is done. All those letters have made the rot spread in my brain. So whatever you do, don’t ask me what I want for Christmas. I’ve got more than I need of everything. Please make a donation to the organization of your choice instead, even if it is small and you feel like it couldn’t possibly make a difference. All those small contributions add up and will help. We must believe that! Of course, if that’s all too impersonal for you, maybe there’s someone in the neighborhood who could use a helping hand.


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Filed under Christmas, Fiction and Other Truths, Seasonal Reflections