Friday, 26 September 2008

They get 7 billion dollars and kids go to school hungry

I was trying to wrap my head around this Bail Out proposal thing. As far as I can tell, these are the same people who scream and yell about how the free market is the only way and regulation is tantamount to communism and will kill all our country stands for. BUT, when they screw up big time and everything falls apart, they want the taxpayers of this country to pony up a giant life preserver to the tune of seven BILLION dollars. Now. Today. Just hand over the check.

I was trying to imagine this from the viewpoint of one of our country's hungry families. One of the MILLIONS of hungry children.

"Mommy, I'm hungry."

"I'm so sorry honey, there's no food, and my minimum wage paycheck will just cover the rent. Maybe you'll be able to get one of the other kids at school to share their snack with you."

Mommy, how much breakfast would seven billion dollars buy? Would that be enough for milk and cereal? My tummy hurts."

There is no more to say.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Missing autumn

Right now in Central Pennsylvania, it's 68 degrees. The leaves will be starting to turn. Fireplaces will be lit tonight. Hot soup will be a meal of choice, as people come in from the suddenly crisp air. Autumn has arrived.

Today in Florida, it's 90 degrees. I will probably go swimming after work. A big chilled salad is the best idea for supper. Then maybe a late night walk on the beach.

I love Florida. It's home, it's where I grew up. But I also spent years living in other places. Places with autumn.

And today, I want autumn.

I want to experience that amazing feeling of coziness when you slip your arms into a soft sweatshirt jacket. I want to feel good when I pull warm socks from the dryer and put them on my feet. I want to go for a long walk on the Conewago Trail, in Bullfrog Valley Park or along a trail in Little Cottonwood Canyon and see the colors, my hand tucked snugly into my jacket pocket (or the hand of a special someone.)

I want to curl up in the big armchair in front of the fireplace, and lose myself in a good book. I want to sip hot apple cider, stirred with a cinnamon stick and munch on crisp Ginger Snaps.

It's time to visit autumn.

Monday, 15 September 2008

Are you a rock or a river?

The thoughts that were in my head when I awoke today, after yet another night of feeling "gone" and having a collection of vivid images in my head....

Which is stronger? Water or stone? Which is more powerful? Flexible and flowing, or rigid and stiff?

I sat there in bed and thought about it.

No matter how strong a stone stands, it cannot resist the flow of water. Water, which is constantly shifting and changing form, direction, speed, and shape will always dissolve the hard and fixed. Rules and absolutes are as stones. Heart, truth, spirit and openness are as water. In life the body is soft and flexible. In death, it is rigid. Even water itself...if it gets hard, it can be shattered. But as long as it stays soft, striking it cannot hurt it.

G-d is teaching us truth all around us. Water. Stone. Life. Death. Are we blind to not see the messages?

So I did a search, and after reading a few pages, I found this....

From the Tao

Chapter Seventy-Eight

Under heaven nothing is more soft and yielding than water.
Yet for attacking the solid and strong, nothing is better;
It has no equal.
The weak can overcome the strong;
The supple can overcome the stiff.
Under heaven everyone knows this,
Yet no one puts it into practice.

I wish I was free to meditate today.

Your thoughts?

Friday, 12 September 2008

10 reasons for raising a vegetarian child

Ever since the moment I announced that I would be raising my children as vegetarians, I've gotten grief from other people. It would make them sick. They would be short. They would feel left out.

My youngest is now 10, and after all these years, it seems appropriate to finally list the 10 best reasons for raising vegetarian kids!

10) They will never fall into the Supersizing trap at McDonald's or Burger King.

9) You will never have to feed them that nasty grey paste they claim is meat baby food.

8) They will get sick less than their meat eating classmates. They will need less doctor visits and less antibiotics. But no one will admit is has anything to do with diet!

7) They will not be contributing to the destruction of the environment -- grazing destroys 9 times more land than growing produce, for 1/10 of the food produced.

6) They will be leaner than their meat eating peers, a significant benefit given the growing rate of childhood obesity.

5) The grocery bill will be lower...veggies cost less than meat

4) They will have less than one half the risk of diabetes or hypertension compared to lifetime meat eaters

3) They will have a 70% lower rate of cancer in their lifetime

2) They will not be exposed to dangerous growth hormones and bovine antibiotics.

1) And best of all, they will grow up respecting the gift of life and understanding how very precious that is. "It tastes good" will never strike them as a good enough reason to kill living beings.

Fire away!

Tuesday, 9 September 2008