Blinded by the White

Several weeks ago, I wrote some whiny drivel about how every visit to the grocery store felt life-threatening, because of COVID-19. What a thoughtless, cocooned, privileged, white thing to write.

For Black people, every damn minute of every damn day is life threatening. For Breonna Taylor, sleeping-in-her-own-bed-in-her-own-home-while-Black was fatal.

I knew that when I wrote that moronic, self-indulgent sentence about the grocery store. I just wasn’t thinking about it at the time. And that’s the problem. That’s a very big problem. That has changed. I think about that all the time. But what I think about doesn’t matter. What matters is what I do.

A blog like this written by a person like me in times like these is irrelevant and trivial. Ridiculous on a whole different plane. The only reason I’m writing this today is so that the most recent post won’t be all sunshine and lollipops, failing to acknowledge the gravity and the enormity of what is happening all over the world.

Think globally, act locally, right? Personal remorse and private outrage are useless. I’m going on hiatus, to shut up and listen, work on my behavior, and figure out something positive to do.

So far, I donated food through my church to an organization distributing food to people who lost their local grocery store to looting after otherwise peaceful and necessary protests. One tiny little thing. One small step. A journey of a thousand miles begins, etc.

With the hope and belief that the paradigm shift that will finally and permanently dismantle systematic racism has begun, I remain, your


“Senior” Middle Age?

Is there a zone between middle age and “senior?” I’m different than I was when I first came up with my “middle aged woman rules.” I look at those now and I think they’re kind of juvenile and stupid. I find myself at a point in my life where I just don’t give a crap anymore about styling myself to please others.

This is actually the second time in my life I discovered (and it was a discovery, not a decision) that I was just being who I am, without worrying about whether who I am pleases others.

That last time I settled into my own skin so comfortably, Mike showed up.


I’ve back to level of self-acceptance that allows me to just “be,” where in years past I would have doubted, criticized or or been disappointed in almost everything I did or said. I’ve calmed down. I’ve become a better listener. Weird shit that seems to be related to aging is happening to my body, but I shrug and think, “whatever.”

It doesn’t feel quite right to refer to myself as “middle-aged” anymore, but hell if I’m going to say I’m “old.” Is there such a thing as senior middle age? Advanced middle age? Not thinking about age?

Angelic daughter and I went through a low patch last year, but we’ve pulled out of it admirably I think, and now things are rolling along nicely (knock wood, cross fingers, whatever you do to ward off a reversal when you say something like that.) The great-creator-power-that-is has bestowed upon me the gift of work I love, at a place populated with genuine, and genuinely kind, people. I honestly didn’t believe such a workplace existed, as I have never experienced it before. Every job I’ve ever had was at an organization fraught with egos, anxiety, competition, backstabbing, stress, resentment, rumor-mongering, and a constant, threatening undercurrent that something bad would happen to someone, any minute. (HA!, reminds me of a certain House in the news lately, but I digress.)

But now, at this stage of my life, I have been welcomed into a workplace where there’s none of that negative stuff, and I get paid to spend the day doing something I love. I’m stunned, and stupid happy. I look forward to going to work. I don’t mind getting up at 4:45 a.m. to get there by 6:30 so I can pick Angelic Daughter up from her new, fabulous, welcoming, caring place by 3:20.

At that place, Angelic daughter has reconnected with a friend she hasn’t seen in years, gets to choose among many activities and decide how she wants to spend her day, and hops into the car smiling and chattering about singing to her friend when I pick her up.

I remember when my favorite film actor, Russell Crowe, won the Oscar for Gladiator. He said, “for anyone who’s on the downside of advantage, and relying purely on courage, it’s possible.” (If you want to skip the intro, start at about 34 seconds in):

There were times, from the moment Mike was diagnosed, through these past three and a half years without him, when I felt hopeless, or ready to give up. I don’t think I can say that I relied on courage – I guess I relied on my version of faith. But I did make a conscious decision to make conscious decisions about how I’d spend my time. I started writing, and I don’t intend to stop, for as long as I still “have my marbles,” as my Dad used to say. I feel wired – a little manic – in the good way I used to feel when I was directing my high school talent show, or improvising with some very talented people in clubs in Chicago, giving packed houses big laughs.

I’ve been blogging since October 2017, a little more than a year after Mike died, and since then, I have cried and despaired vicariously with other bloggers going through their own tough times and tragedies – and I’ve stuck with them long enough to read their stories of getting through it, getting better, finding what they needed and finding themselves exhilarated, reinvigorated, even triumphant.

If you’re in a dark place, going through a tough time, having trouble seeing a way out, hang in there. Things can get better. It’s possible.

Yours with prayers for Australia, Puerto Rico, the people of China and everyplace else on our hurting, pissed-off, melting, diseased, once-beautiful-and-still-could-be-beautiful- again-if-we-get-our-collective-shit-together-and-do-something-about-it planet, I remain,

Your loving, grateful, hopeful,


P.S. Have fun watching the Oscars this weekend, even if, like me, you haven’t seen any of the films (I’m working, OK?) And here’s another list, related to this post, up on my 27 Things page.

Update on the Update

I promised some actual content today, and it’s there, on my Books and Music page. I’ve fixed a few glitches with how images were displaying on the pages accessed by the main menu up there, so things should look a bit better, now.

I deleted the “donate” button, because I’ve got a job now (Woot woot!) and nobody ever donated a dime, anyway – Ha!

But I also remembered, I have a store!   Commerce, instead of a handout! I updated a product or two, and everything I’m highlighting today has the heart-on-my-sleeve- heart (the one on my shirt in the logo image up there) somewhere on it. Clever me! In time for Valentine’s Day!

Seriously, the baseball style shirt is pretty flattering and the heart-on-your-sleeve shirt now should be available in several colors in addition to black. Hope you find something you like, or just have fun looking.

Angelic Daughter asked for Dad’s magic chicken soup today (really an excuse to consume otherwise forbidden noodle-carbs) and it’s all made, so if I can stay awake long enough I might come up with an actual blog post for you by tomorrow morning.  Maybe. Don’t bet on it. But before Wednesday for sure!

Until then, I remain,

your trying to cram everything from shopping to cleaning to writing into a few hours on the weekend (um, oh yeah, like everyone else with a full-time job! Huzzah!) ,