A New Year

 

A new year is upon us. I find myself wondering where 2012 went. Not to mention 2011, 2010…

2013 will mark my 20th anniversary of high school graduation and 10th anniversary of grad school graduation. I can’t fathom how this is possible.

Moving right along, 2013 will also bring the 9th annual birthday list. For those of you who are new to the blog, the birthday list started before my 30th birthday. In the months leading up to my birthday in June, I accomplished 30 things I hadn’t done before. And it has become a tradition. So between January 1 and May 31, 2013, I will be drumming up 38 new things to do. Suggestions are welcome.

May 2013 bring us all happiness, good health, and good cheer!

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Another Senseless Tragedy

 

I woke up on Christmas eve morning to the news of more senseless deaths at the hands of a crazy person with an assault weapon. About 10 miles from my hometown, an ex-convict set his house and car on fire to lure firefighters to the scene, in order to kill them. He killed a 43 yo and a 19 yo. He also killed his sister, who he lived with, and then killed himself.

This man beat his grandmother to death with a hammer 30 years ago. And he was released from jail, so he could kill again. Just weeks ago, kindergarteners were killed. Now, volunteer firefighters??

If you’re interested in signing a petition for gun control, there is one here.

On a much lighter note, I’d like to share my brother’s Christmas tree topper.

 

dino

 

 

 

 

 

dinocu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s a little dinosaur and I love it.

And on an editing note, I am highly disturbed that the new datebook I bought today was not proofed! I was entering some events in January and February and found that a chunk of pages is duplicated! I hope this is not a strange omen about the coming year.

Hope you all enjoy the last few days of 2012.

Still Here

 

Yay, the world didn’t end. Hope everyone is having a somewhat relaxing holiday season and escaping the commercialism of it all.

Here are some holiday quotes I dug up. They all specify Christmas, but please replace it with your holiday of choice. 🙂

 

“A lovely thing about Christmas is that it’s compulsory, like a thunderstorm, and we all go through it together.” —Garrison Keillor

“Christmas gift suggestions: To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect.” —Oren Arnold

“Christmas … is not an eternal event at all, but a piece of one’s home that one carries in one’s heart.” —Freya Stark

“I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.” —Charles Dickens, Ebenezer Scrooge, A Christmas Carol

Seeking Truth

 

I attended a lecture by architect Moshe Safdie the other night. I have no formal knowledge of architecture, but I love admiring it. I admire the design and creative vision that goes into a structure that has a functional purpose. Safdie showed some of his building projects, including a mixed-use resort in Singapore and an art museum in Kansas, and walked us through the design process. He likes to incorporate nature into his design, which I greatly appreciate. He’s built into hills and within forested land. The environment around each building plays a role in his design, as does the building’s purpose (a school, museum, residence, etc.). Some projects of his that I know and enjoy are the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem and the Old Port in Montreal.

He ended the lecture with a poem he wrote and included at the end of one of his books. I liked it.

“Beauty”

He who seeks Truth
Shall find Beauty

He who seeks Beauty
Shall find Vanity

He who seeks Order
Shall find Gratification

He who seeks Gratification
Shall be Disappointed

He who considers himself as the servant of his fellow being
Shall find the joy of Self-Expression

He who seeks Self-Expression
Shall fall into the pit of Arrogance

Arrogance is incompatible with nature
Through the nature of the universe
and the nature of man
we shall seek Truth

If we seek Truth, we shall find Beauty

 

The Root of the Problem

 

I think we’re all still reeling from the shooting rampage in Newtown. Why does this keep happening?? When I worked abroad in London in 1998, I remember being asked if I carried a gun with me at home, since I was an American. I remember being confused every time that question came up. I certainly didn’t know anyone who packed heat at home! This was in 1998, before Virginia Tech, before Aurora, before Portland, before Newtown.

I wholeheartedly agree that the government needs to seriously look at gun control laws. I know it will be a TOUGH battle, thanks to the second amendment.

As people who own guns like to say, it’s not guns that kill people, it’s people. This is key.

Yes, we need more laws. But I believe part of, or maybe the root of, the problem is that there are a lot of mentally ill people not being treated…and too much violence in the media, of course.

We need to stop the stigmatization of mental illness. These shooters are obviously mentally ill. How many signs did their family and friends overlook because they were embarrassed, confused, in denial. Or just plain miss, because they were uninformed.

I don’t want to point the finger at their family and friends…I really don’t. It’s not their fault that mental illness is a taboo topic.

Many of the recent shooters have been in their 20s. Is this where violence in the media comes in? In the ’80s, I was playing Frogger and Pac Man, not god-knows-what-game with guns and blood all over the place.

Five-year-old kids are dead. It’s time to fix this problem.

 

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