Friday, August 6, 2010


Darlings I am growing old; it's great that human beings don't mold.

I'm in the summer of a march into yet another decade of my life. I'm older but I'm happy to have come this far, alive and kicking.

I was born more than a few years ago, in a hospital building that is now vacant and waiting to be torn down to leave space for something else.

I was baptized in a church building that had been attended by generations of my family; it was razed in the 1950s and replaced with a new one.

I attended a grade school that is now closed for all seasons.

On my way home from that school every day, I window-shopped in a picturesque old downtown that now is mostly gone, a large part of it having been replaced by county buildings and parking lots.

I graduated from a classic high school building that was recently demolished. It is nothing now but a blank lot, and a new high school has been built on the other end of town.

My graduation ceremony was held in an attractive art deco theater in which my generation attended many Saturday movies; that theater was taken down to make way for an innocuous chain drug store.

I spent many a childhood Saturday morning in a reading room of a heritage building that was our public library; it has disappeared from the scene, too, in favor of a newer building.

All that makes me want to pinch myself to make sure I'M still here, and haven't been replaced to make room for something newer in the world!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


Years ago I thought I might be growing old, and I composed these words and later shared them with my friends. Now I'm even OLDER, and a landmark birthday convinced me I should share these words with you:

and revive myself when people dial 9-1-1.
I will dine on jelly beans and ginger snaps and coffee
and circulate hot rumors all around the town about myself.
I will be haughty with the clerks who carry only tiny sizes,
and I will skip obituary pages in the morning paper.
I will buy a healthy copper bracelet
and rub my skin with mink oil
and start my day with fiber laced with M&Ms.
I will paste a smile on my face for make-up
and refuse to tan and soak for hours at the spa,
for that could make me wrinkle into nothing
and be mistaken for a raisin.
I will ignore the TV ads for PolyGrip and grown-up diapers
and those ugly chairs that stand you up.
I will not let Ed McMahon seduce me into pre-paid funerals
or senior magazines or cheap insurance.
I will cultivate a mellow air of wisdom,
and when the young folks seek advice,
I will tell heroic tales about the past,
and I will also lie to them about the future.
I will gladly let my dwindling eyesight go,
for that would let my mirror lie to me
and also camouflage the cobwebs, dust and dirt.
If you ask how old I am, I will not hear you,
and if you ask about my health I'll simply say,
"It's fine, my dear, I only wish that YOURS was better."
I won't dance with other women on the dance floor
or do the hokey-pokey at your wedding
or spend my days at Big Lots trying to save a dime.
I won't hang out at Craft Fairs, Bingo Halls or Senior Centers
or go to quiet towns in Florida for shuffleboard and golf.
I won't bend over in my garden in a flowered muumuu,
and I won't be seen in funny polyester pants.
I will refuse to let the Beauty Ladies tint my hair
in any shade of blue, or kink it into
scouring pad or Orphan Annie hairdo.
I will wear strong necklaces in case I want to hang myself,
and I will never criticize the young except to God,
who's been around awhile and sympathizes.
If I'm forced to trade down to a cheap and dinky little car,
I will let the neighbor kids paint flowers on it
and glue a wind-up key upon the roof,
and they can ride around with me and make a lot of noise.
I will build a pedestal and designate myself an icon,
and refuse to speak of growing old until I'm 91,
and then I'll hold that very private conversation
only with myself.

(written in the 1990s when I wasn't as old as I thought I was)
(Comments accepted at

Monday, August 2, 2010


This posting may generate a lot of vitrol from some readers of this blog. But I have to say, it's time for us to stop throwing darts at LeBron James.

He's a 24-year-old who signed with the Cavs right out of high school. Most young men of his age are only just beginning the maturing process, and why should LeBron be an exception?

This young human being had not been involved in crime and scandal. He had done a lot of good things within the community, particularly its young people. He showed his love for his community in many ways.

When he didn't come through at the play-offs---whatever was going on behind the scenes---he was greeted with boos almost as boisterous as the cheers that erupted when he was winning.

At 24 years old, when a young man has a lot of personal maturing to do, what must he have been thinking? Could he have been telling himself: "I loved these people and I thought they loved me. But I'm just a piece of meat to them. I'm only important for what they can get out of me."

Yes, Z (who is also well loved in Cleveland) did write an open letter to Cleveland when he transferred from the Cavs to the Heat. But Z has had more years to mature; I think LeBron will also mature.

Leave him alone and let the process begin.

POSTSCRIPT... LATE SEPTEMBER 2010... LeBron may have changed my mind on this one. In a national interview within the past few days, he told the interviewer he felt his Cleveland fans' anger at the way he handled his free agency was RACIAL.
Oh, Lebron, did you have to pull out that tired old card. It had nothing to do with anything.