Tag Archives: Racine

The Toilet Zone: Duck & Cover

Note: This the fourth installment of The Toilet Zone, a commentary series on the Trump presidency.

“Your silence will not protect you.” ― Audre Lorde

We are approaching the first six months of the Trump presidency. While I write, during the G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany, Trump met for the first time with Russian President, Vladimir Putin. After a brief public press event, they convened for over two hours behind closed doors. It’s been reported that Trump opened the meeting by confronting Putin on Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential Election. As was to be expected, Putin denied it. Representatives for each leader who were in the room, told different stories describing the tenor and tone of the meeting. No surprise. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

With a Little Help from My Friends

“Oh, I get by with a little help from my friends
with a little help from my friends”
— Songwriters: John Lennon/Paul McCartney

It’s the Memorial Day weekend. There are many traditions associated with this holiday. From Wikipedia, “Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. The holiday is currently observed every year on the last Monday of May. It marks the unofficial start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its unofficial end.” Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No More 9 to 5!

It’s still winter in Wisconsin. After a week of record-breaking temperatures of spring-like weather — a hopeful tease of things to come — then came the rain, sleet, ice pellets, followed by snow and howling winds. We’re reminded that winter remains for a few more weeks before spring arrives. Spring is a season of hope and new beginnings. So is my life today, as I cross the threshold of my third act. Cue up Dolly Parton, no more “9 to 5.”  Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Ode to Blue-Collar Working Class Heroes

“There’s room at the top they are telling you still
But first you must learn how to smile as you kill
If you want to be like the folks on the hill”
 —John Lennon, Working Class Hero

In July both the Republican and Democratic Presidential Conventions concluded. Each party, their supporters, speakers, and candidates have driven stakes, describing in detail— some more than others — their position on the issues, their plans for the future, and identified who their party represents, or not. The Republicans embraced fear, law and order, and promised to “Make America Great Again.” The Democrats expressed optimism for the future and reaffirmed that America is already great, in fact, in the words of Michelle Obama, “This right now is the greatest country on earth.” And as a people, we are “Stronger Together.”  Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Without Her: A Mother’s Day Lament

“The death of a mother is the first sorrow wept without her.” — Author unknown

On this Mother’s Day I want to express my gratitude. I’m lucky. My eyes first met my mother’s over 66 years ago on the day I was born. She was the first person I ever experienced in life, whose flesh touched mine, her smell familiar, whose breasts nourished me, and whose arms held me close to her heart. I’m sure I was comforted by the sound of her soft voice and steady heartbeat that I heard while still in her womb. Every year on my birthday I felt intimately close to her. We often shared tears, tears of gratitude and joy. This year was the last one we’ll ever share together. Mom died 10 days after my birthday. This is my first Mother’s Day without her. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Pajama Day: Or How I Failed at Hobnobbing

Pajama Day:  A day, usually on a weekend or during a day off, when you have nothing to do and sit around lazily in your pajamas, not leaving the house. Often involves eating cereal for every meal and excessive television/video games.

Hobnobbing:   Mix socially, especially with those of higher social status. To hobnob means to chat and share a laugh and a drink in the presence of other people at a function or party.”

First, a little background: Things that make you say “Hmmm!” It’s April in Wisconsin and on the eve of the Presidential Primary election statewide servers were down for several hours Friday — April Fool’s Day — disrupting the last day of in-person absentee voting. Next, it’s officially spring, yet yesterday’s weather was bipolar, alternating between blizzardy snow with blustery winds and blue skies with powder puff clouds. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , ,

On the Move Again!

“The first step in getting somewhere is to decide you’re not going to stay where you are.”  — Unknown

It’s that time of year in Madison, Wisconsin when U-Hauls and Two Men and a Truck will soon clog the streets. Popup curbside flea markets appear overnight as university students dump their second-hand furniture and poorly-assembled IKEA desks and bookcases rather than move them. It’s so commonplace that when student leases expire on August 15th, we’ve dubbed it “Hippie Christmas.” Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Loud Family Loses a Loved One

We Say Goodbye to Our Matriarch

First, a little background:  In 1973 American TV audiences were introduced to a groundbreaking 12-part documentary series on PBS entitled An American Family featuring the Louds, an upper middle class family in Santa Barbara, California. This was considered the first reality TV series. Keeping with its irreverent tradition of satirizing American culture, Saturday Night Live in season four, episode six, created its own Loud family, starring Jane Curtin as Mrs. Loud, Bill Murray as Mr. Loud and their daughters, Gilda Radner and guest host, Carrie Fisher with supporting characters played by John Belushi, Dan Ayckroyd and Garrett Morris. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Full Moon on Christmas Day: Part I

Pre-Holiday Musings & Memories of Christmas Past

“Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time.”  Laura Ingalls Wilder

“The bright moon glows amongst pines.” — Wang Wei

Christmas approaches and for those who celebrate this Christian holiday or families like mine of Northern European heritage who practice a more Americanized consumer tradition we are being treated to a Full Cold Moon on Christmas Day. The Full Cold Moon is also called the Long Night Moon by some Native American tribes because it’s near the Winter Solstice. Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Waxing Sentimental

Nostalgia: (n.) a sentimental yearning for the happiness of a former place or time.

Tomorrow, Monday, November 30th is Cyber Monday. It’s the online equivalent of Black Friday, the Monday following Thanksgiving when people return to work and shop online and take advantage of deep discounts and promotions. In late November 2005, The New York Times reported: “The name Cyber Monday grew out of the observation that millions of otherwise productive working Americans, fresh off a Thanksgiving weekend of window shopping, were returning to high-speed Internet connections at work Monday and buying what they liked.” Continue reading

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,