Summertime, and the web page is cheesy

Summertime, and the web page is cheesy (or sleazy, or greezy, or teasy?)

Yep, gonna update this thing, and get it all pro – lookin’

Wish me luck, as I have a terrible eye for form and fashion.


My Crusade for Preventing and Curing Retinal Diseases

Members of my family suffer from retinal disorders. I drives me crazy to see their vision decline as I stand by, helplessly. If I had millions (or billions), I would dump it all into retinal research. I’m cautiously optimistic that there will either be cures or treatments in the upcoming decades, but I want to speed up the process. I had seen the first signs of eye disease in my loved ones in 2011, and I had thought I would start my crusade then. But life got in the way, and my focus (no pun intended) was lost. Now that another loved one will be undergoing surgery to preserve a weak retina, I am determined more than ever to pick up my standard and march into battle. If you read my blogs, then get ready for a new paradigm shift; I will be launching projects that raise awareness and raise money. My hope is that the research and therapies brought about by my efforts will not only help my loved ones, but perhaps people you know as well. Perhaps people who are not yet born, but will benefit from the work we do now.

Will you join me in this crusade?


The toughest part of parenting

I’ve recently come to realize that the toughest part of parenting is keeping everyone happy with equity.

This may seem simple and trite, but the formula works even if you have one one child (therefore, you keep equity between the parent and the child). In other words, you need to create and maintain win-win outcomes. And yes, with a bit of compromise.



Guess this person

Here’s a fun puzzle. Each new clue whittles down the list. See if you can guess the person:

1. Can hold the title of “World Leader”.

2. The title is “President of the United States”.

3. Beat out a female opponent in a political race.

4.Was embroiled in a controversy in which the US and a foreign country are accused of tampering with the outcome of their national election.

5.Had very little political experience when the person announced their candidacy for President

6.Has engaged in bullying and intimidating of journalists.

Final clue:

7.This leader has 6 letters in their first name, and 5 letters in their last name

Who is it?


On parenting (and difficulties)

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Fair and equitable

I’m not sure anymore what is fair and equitable. How can we, as a society, dictate what is fair and equitable meting of services, benefits, bonuses, and treatments when many times the issue comes down to the haves and have-nots


Poetry Month

April is “Poetry Month”. I don’t know what unilateral body set that aside, but we’re stuck with it. Sorry “April is Jazz Appreciation Month” Your advocates just don’t work hard enough for your cause.

This got me thinking about comparing modern-day poets to their classical ancestors (Poe, Kipling, Dickinson, Whitman, etc.) I heard an interesting poem recited on Public Radio in front of a live audience. I didn’t get it. I don’t think the audience did, either. When the poet was done her recitation, there was a beat of stark silence before she softly jumped in and said, “That was a poem about China”. If only I could see the audience, to witness their eyes light up as they applauded; their applause disingenuously clapped, “Oh. I knew that. I think.”

I get it that poems don’t rhyme anymore. And I have come to terms with the fact that modern poems are absent of rhythmic meter (well, it does have almost all the letters of “rhyme” in there, so if you are search/replacing the word “rhyme”, you might as well purge “rhythm” while you’re at it.) Sorry, Scrabble players, who don’t have any vowels and are looking for something to score some big points. “Rhythm” is out. May I suggest “Myrrh”?.

Alas, I rant

Apologize I can’t

Understand I shan’t

Accept, I guess so.

(That was a poem about china)


The steps to avoid the “P” word

So, what is it that keeps you from getting that looming task finished? What keeps you from dreading a job, a meeting, a to-do list item? What is it that keeps a blogger from updating their posts in a timely manner? Yes, the “p” word: Procrastination. What can be done about this traumatizing demon? What does it even exist? If there was an algorithm or a rubric that works, why isn’t it published and out there?.

You can do an Internet search and find many ways to conquer procrastination. Full disclosure: I am a procrastinator. And  I have read some of the posts on how to overcome procrastination. Many have similar ideas. Here are the two that work best:

Break the job into smaller tasks.

The old “divide-and-conquer rule works wonders on the tasks we hate.

Go for small chunks. I set twelve minutes aside for each divided component. Why twelve minutes? I give it a ten minute base, with one minute to start up and one minute to close down (and those start-up and shut down minutes really don’t count as part of the job anyway, right?). The twelve minutes are devoted to the single most dreaded task of the day. And if the time goes over, it’s a bonus!

And then I play a “minus one” game. I next set aside eleven minutes for the next dreaded task. Same deal as with the twelve minute monster.

And so on, and so on, until I get down to the five minute beast. If you do the math, you will end up with at least 68 minutes of time tackling your dreads. If the time goes over, then perhaps you are finally wrestling that beast to the ground, and slaying your procrastination monsters. (Your “P-monsters”).

You can also play this game using tasks instead of time. I’ve heard it called the “Tenth plus ten” method. Suppose you are a teacher, and you are dreading the grading of 120 essays. Go after a tenth of the papers (12) and do ten more. As your pile dwindles, you may find yourself doing more than a tenth, and more than “plus ten”. If your tenth comes out to a fraction, round up!

I dread vacuuming. I have divided my house into 14 areas. The “Tenth plus ten” wouldn’t work here since it would mean I have to vacuum 12 areas. Ugh. ‘Why not do it all?’ I would mutter. And to some, this would work. But If this is still overwhelming, modify the game to be “Tenth plus one”. The results are the same. You will eventually tackle the job completely.


Just do it.

Yep. Just roll up your sleeves, and “git ‘er done”. Sometimes you need to change your environment, close out your distractions, and get going on those taxes, your bills, or that book you’re writing and can never seem to finish.

We all have tasks we hate. Whether paying bills, running errands, vacuuming, or making some long over-due phone call, we dread it to our core.. But unless someone else is there to do it, they must get done. And it must be you. Search the internet, find ideas, modify them to fit your individualized style, and attack!

Happy p-monster slaying.


Phone, please

As we approach Valentines Day, I am always reminded of how the feelings of love (and particularly, new love) are rooted in biochemical reactions that evokes feelings similar to those of euphoria and addiction.

And, sadly, a broken heart also has roots in the biochemical. Worse yet, there are mental disturbance associated with a broken heart.

The following TED talk, from Guy Winch, sums it up quite well. If you are suffering from a broken heart, watch this video. And at 7:04, you will see the reason why this post is titled “Phone, please”

So, if you have a broken heart, watch this talk, and do the work that Guy Winch recommends. Happy healing of that heart.


The state of the state of the country

Lots of 2-cents to add the the recent State of the Union address delivered last evening to the joint chambers of Congress.