Sunday, April 28, 2019


Oh, yes, you bet I'm vaccinated! I'm sure I've written about this before. But it is worth repeating how important it is for all of us to be vaccinated. 

This story from today's Washington Post, "My parents didn't tell me....," is shocking, but it could have been even worse, even heartbreaking. The man telling the story mostly recovered, at least, and he writes that his parents are "predisposed to be suspicious of 'unnatural' medical intervention, and they stand behind their decision. I love them, and I try not to judge them too harshly..."

Thing is, he could have died. Would his parents have been sorry then? Would they have changed their minds? At least the author has been able to talk to his siblings about science and  medicine, and some of them have gotten themselves vaccinated. But what about the others? And the many others out in the world who may get the measles and NOT EVEN KNOW THAT'S WHAT THEY HAVE, and go around infecting others?  

(The "I" in the article is Josh Nerius, a software product manager from Chicago, and the story is "as told to" a Washington Post editor, Sophia Nguyen.)

In not judging them harshly, he's a much better person than most! He makes excuses for them like how in the 1980's not as much was known about measles as is known now. Really? I don't even believe that! And people who are making excuses for their anti-vax beliefs now are still hiding behind the idea that nobody gets measles any more.

Here's the problem with all those excuses, as the author writes to conclude his article: All these people "...don’t seem opposed to it, but the risk of infection doesn’t feel urgent. Everyone is healthy, so everything is fine — until it’s not."

Exactly. Until it's not. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2019


I bring a pile of items upstairs and start to put them away. In order to do that, I have to move a pile of things to another room where I should have put them some time ago. When I bring that pile of things to the other room, I find still another pile.

That pile includes a book that I've been meaning to return to the library. I take it downstairs and put it by the garage door so I'll remember to stop at the library next time I'm out. That reminds me of the other library book I've left by the couch in the family room, which I haven't finished reading, and I need to finish so I can return it, too. So I take a minute to open it and read a few pages.

Then: Oh my goodness! It's time to go somewhere! I put that book down, go upstairs to change clothes, and find one of those piles on the bed. I start putting some of them away, and then my ever-so-patient husband asks me when I'm going to be ready, so we won't be late...

Keep plugging away, Aunt Louise! You'll get it all done, so don't give up now!

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

A Chance to Start Over

A statue of Jesus Christ against a painted backdrop resembling the night sky.Once when I was writing a weekly column ("Sunshine From Sugarland") for a local newspaper, I noted in my New Year's column that I wasn't making New Year's resolutions any more. I'd stopped, I wrote, because I never kept any of those resolutions, so it was obviously a waste of time and emotional energy to come up with new ones every new year.

I added that the one New Year's resolution I'd ever kept had been the one, a few years earlier, never to write another one. 

And I'm still keeping that resolution. 

However, after celebrating Easter in a hospital bed this year, I'm deciding that it's time to fix myself up before it's too late for me. I've been thinking a lot lately about when I want to die (never, obviously!) and about how I want to die (peacefully, in my bed; or while embarked on some great adventure: nothing in between!). 

I'm not going to die for a long time, but I've got to make sure now that this long time is a pleasant time, not filled with weakness and illness and ... well, you know the drill.

Meanwhile, we are praying for a dear woman whose family is gathering from all over the world as she has been placed in hospice care, awaiting her death. 

One more thing, my testimony: Whenever and in whatever circumstances I die, there's the huge relief of knowing that I will live again, without the pain and sorrow that are part of this life's experiences. And I will see my family who are waiting for me there, and greet joyfully the ones who follow.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

The Saturday Book Review: Everything Trump Touches Dies

Everything Trump Touches Dies: A Republican Strategist Gets Real About the Worst President EverI've just finished reading the funniest book ever about The Unelected President, Donald Trump. The subtitle is "A Republican Strategist Gets Real About the Worst President Ever."

The author is Rick Wilson, a Republican strategist who was one of the first Never Trump people in the GOP. And he is among only a few who have maintained their standards over the past two years.

His biting wit is just what I've needed, but I don't recommend that anyone buy the book because it's already out of date, and has been since even before its publication date. (This is typical in these latter political days of a "24-hour news cycle" constantly being fed by that huge pig-like platinum-haired and orange-faced-with-raccoon-eyed buffoon whose name I even hate to write here.

But you should borrow it from your local library, which is what I did. But also you should not spend a lot of time with it. Just search for the witticisms.

Here is one of my favorite quotes from the book, about Alex Jones: "The dog's breakfast of conspiracy-driven, industrial-scale kook media in Trump's orbit has nothing on Alex Jones, the red-faced, hyperventilating host of the Infowars 'network.' Jones makes Breitbart look as measured and considered as the New Yorker in William Shawn's day."

Wilson has no compassion for anyone foolish enough to have entered the political arena. He is an equal-opportunity basher not only of He Who Shall Not Be Named and his allies, but also of mealy-mouthed, weak-spined, lying Republicans and self-proclaimed conservatives who have lost their way in this political climate, and of most Democrats. He does not spare Hillary Clinton or Nancy Pelosi, either. I would add more of his biting sarcasm here but, you know, life is short, and the day is long, and tomorrow is Easter, so now I'm going to turn my thoughts toward the good news.

Happy Easter!

p.s. I've never been an admirer of Ronald Reagan or of anyone who admires him, but here's a great quote from Reagan that Wilson (a Reagan admirer) favors us with:
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. The only way they can inherit the freedom we have known is if we fight for it, protect it, defend it and then hand it to them with the well thought lessons of how they in their lifetime must do the same. And if you and I don't do this, then you and I may well spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it once was like in America when men were free.
So, Reagan obviously didn't write that himself, but he was good at delivering a good line. And it is a good line, and one that we could be thinking of as Easter approaches, and as we contemplate the lessons of Passover.  And, on the subject of Passover, and resisting evil, here are some great Passover stories of resistance. 

Friday, April 19, 2019

Fiction Friday, April 19, 2019: The Little Paris Bookshop

M. Jean Perdu, AKA "John Lost," runs a bookshop on a barge in the Seine River in Paris. He calls his bookshop a "literary apothecary," and he dispenses advice in the form of books he recommends to his customers to cure their ills. Can literature save one from heartbreak or from the pain of working in a boring job for an unfeeling (or lecherous) boss? Yes, it can, he tells whoever comes into the shop, and after listening to their troubles for just a few minutes, he knows just what they need.

But he himself is heartbroken, having been left by his girlfriend of almost seven years, who goes back to her husband without telling him why.

Fortunately, as he works to solve a neighbor's problems, that lady finds a letter that his girlfriend had left for him, and, after he finally brings himself to read the letter, he knows what to do.

He unmoors the barge and takes off. One of his other neighbors, a suddenly famous novelist who needs to escape from his overly fanatic fans, jumps on board with him, and they follow the rivers and canals of France on a sometimes hilarious and sometimes tragic journey to find the solution to Jean's own problem.

Fair warning: You may not like this book if you don't like the moral background of the setup, or if you don't like the use of certain words (you know what I'm talking about).

But even I, who disapprove of extra-marital affairs and don't like vulgarities, got past all that to enjoy the characters, the plot, and the trip through the French countryside.

I got this book for free in exchange for volunteering in my local library (shout out to the Camas Library!), but you can buy it on Amazon ($11.87 new, and as little as 25 cents used).


Oh my goodness!

While looking through my past posts, I found this one:

"Unprecedented: Weird Word of the Week."

That was posted on September 6, 2018.

Weird Words of the Past 2 Years: Unprecedented, etc.

I'm so sick of hearing MSNBC people say that each and every new outrage performed by Donald Trump is "unprecedented," and all the other words they use to say that he's a lying, cheating, adulterous, idiotic, monstrous mistake who should never have been elected to the previously great office of president.

He lied, he continues to lie, he surrounds himself with liars, toadies, and suck-ups; and he and all his pals are coming close to ruining our country.

Here's my best word for this week and this coming year: Impeach.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Top Ten Reasons I'm Off Facebook

Buh-bye. Time to go. My cheeks are about to crack from smiling so much. So, my top 10 reasons:

10. I realized I was only checking in to see my son's hilarious posts.

9. I realized I was wasting more than 15 minutes per day on it. (I used to set my kitchen timer for 15 minutes every time I checked FB, but then I would turn it off and keep going if I was reading something interesting, or, I have to admit, if I was bored to death and simply didn't want to get back to the work I was supposed to be doing.)

8. I realized that I don't actually know about a quarter of the people who are my Facebook supposed "friends."

7. I was tired of reading ridiculous posts written by anti-vaxxers who are my Facebook supposed "friends."

6. I started getting angry when I read those ridiculous posts written by anti-vaxxers.

5. I realized that any response I made on FB to those ridiculous anti-vax posts would be met with umbrage and anger. (Umbrage and Anger, my new favorite law-firm name.)

4. When my birthday came around year after last and I got those typical "Happy Birthday!" posts from about 100 FB "friends," and I didn't even know who they all were, I made the change so that my real birthday doesn't show up on FB, so the FB people don't notify my FB "friends" that it's my birthday....and

3. The following year on my birthday I got "Happy Birthday" posts from fewer than 10 people, those who really knew it was my birthday w/o FB reminding them. Which was enough. Way enough. Know what I mean?

2. I realized that a ridiculous number of my FB "friends" are politically retarded.

And, DRUM ROLL, my NUMBER ONE reason for quitting Facebook:

1. One of my FB "friends" replied to one of my posts with such an earth-shatteringly and ridiculous excuse for her political retardation that I knew, finally, for sure and forever, at last, it was time to drop out.