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This afternoon, while doing a favor for a pal, I stopped in a local downtown eatery to pick up a Skinny pumpkin latte and decided while I was there, I would grab a bite to eat. I requested a nice chicken salad with a side of hummus and bagel chips. I didn’t think it was a bad choice and as I sat and waited for my order, I picked up one of the downtown papers and saw a quote:
“To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.” La Rochefoucauld
I began to think and even question if I was in fact an intelligent eater. Am I giving my body the fuel it needs to function properly are am I eating something that will continually keep me “out of shape.
I decided to put myself to the test. I went to the brand new all you can Hibachi Grille in West Augusta. There was more food than the eye could process and a line out the door of people waiting with baited breath to gorge themselves at the all you could eat trough. I must admit that I too was tempted. There was ice cream, sherbets, seafood that was fried, dyed and laid to the side. There were shrimp prepared 7 different ways, a seafood salad, green salad, and rice salad. There was a ton of rice with noodles, noodles with vegetables, fried rice, white rice, sticky rice oh my.
I saw big kids, little kids, even kids with rock, short kids, fat kids, and even a kid with a lollipop. The adults had plates that were brimming with selections of starches, meats, and breads. I went to the food bars and noticed there was Sushi and looked for some options on chicken. Again, it was either fried or covered in a sauce but lo and behold, in the back of restaurant was a line to the Hibachi grille. For a mere penance of a tip, he would prepare my meal on the grill with my choice of vegetables. If I opted for no starch, and just chose a protein based meal I could have it, or if I chose to have vegetable plate, I could do that as well.
Where do we draw the line and create an art of eating what our body needs to function properly, while enjoying the culinary arts. I believe the answer is moderation. Moderate yourselves to enjoy the beauty of a good meal out with family and friends, but with the good conscious to know what we need to be healthy. I know, we have heard it all before and have seen the arguments from everything in health care reform, to reality television urging us to be a bigger loser. We even laughed at the over eater who had a tendency to “over eat”. However, in order to be better in our every day lives, and to be better people, we have to take the small steps that take you on the bigger journey.
Saying no to that piece of cheesecake is a good step, or you can have the cheesecake and just not have a second helping. Start the journey small and set a goal and in the end, you won’t eat your self to death.
You are riding down the highway and your cell phone starts to vibrate, you know it is a text message, however, you are going about 45 miles an hour in rush hour traffic. What do you? Do you reach down and grab the phone to see who is texting you or do you ignore it until you get to a stop sign? 95% of people will pick up the phone and “see who this is?” and risk every life on the road including their own, for what, a quick message of “Where u @?”
And as much as I love technology, I love living even more! It is not just a text messaging that has gotten out of control, but our inability to disengage from our cell phones that are turning normal everyday people into ignorant, raging morons. Don’t be offended, for if you are not the offender in this instance you have been at least once in the near past. Here are some prime examples of idiot phone offenses that are lowering our intelligence quotients and our ability to be kind to one another.
App Addlepate: Yes, this is person who has an app to perform every function they can possibly think of but fails to train them how to be a better person. Better people take a moment to appreciate the live person in front of you versus the virtual connection reaching out to you. Is there an APP to teach you life skills?
Bluetooth Blockhead: Yeah for you, you have a bluetooth, but honestly, do you have to walk up behind me, conversing with your imaginary friend with your outside voice? Having a bluetooth is great for hands free calling if you are on a long road trip, but really, your GPS comes bluetooth enabled, so once outside of the car, take the stupid thing off. You don’t look important, you look like someone who spends too much time on the phone and your extra money is being used to pay for unneeded cell services.
Conversation Cretin: I am trying to have a face to face, one on one conversation with you, please pay attention, I don’t need to have a conversation with the top of your head while you respond to frequent buzzing that appears to have your remotely programmed like Pavlov’s dog.
Dining Dimwit: I have a girlfriend that I refuse to go out to eat with and lately, I just hate to spend time with her. Why? Her phone never stops going off! Her husband, her kids, her father, all seem to have an incessant need to connect with her the minute she leaves their line of sight. One, it is rude and tells the person with whom you are with, that they are not important and unworthy of your time. Two, your family and kids have no respect for your time, and last but not least, it is just plain rude.
Dialing Dunderhead: How many times do you need to apologize for your butt, your purse, your dog or the 3-year-old speed calling on your phone because you refuse to lock the screen.
Facebook Fanatic: Yes I love my friends and enjoy their post, but no I am not going to respond to every posting on my wall, every request to add more fish on Farmville, join your Mafia, or accept your hearts of blessings. Do it at home on your own time.
Fast Food Fool: At the counter at the sandwich shop, on the phone, trying to place an order, talking to the young lady behind the counter, while yelling at your spouse, child or in law on the phone. Why not just finish the call, place your order, pay for the order, pick up the order and call the person on the phone as you head back outside.
Instant Message Imbecile: Yes, I know you need an answer soon, but does it have to be right now? You are reducing my productivity by forcing me to stop and answer you. If I did not answer your last 5 instant messages, maybe I am busy. Maybe I fell down the well and Lassie went to get Timmy, and maybe I just don’t want to answer you.
Loud Lamebrain: I know you are upset, I know they don’t understand, but really, neither do I. I don’t understand why everyone in the room, the hall, the bathroom, the restaurant and any other public place has to be tortured with your conversation and lack of mastery of your emotions? Tone it down and shut it up!
Meeting Moron: You are in a meeting, why is your phone on unless the conference call is coming in on your line and everyone in the room should be privy to the conversation. If not, please turn off your phone, my time is valuable too, don’t waste it by sending messages to your friends.
Picture Pinhead: You do realize that even if you don’t open it, you will still be charged for receiving the picture of the dancing penis that was not funny when you were 12 and is not funny now. If you are in an accident and I am your insurance agent, send me a picture mail. If not, send it via email that does not cost me anything, and 9 times out of 10, I don’t really want to see it.
Sync Simpleton: How many times of day do you need to sync it to your lap top? You don’t need to beam me your V-card, I have your business card and a card scanner, I have your info. I know how to reach you, besides your text messages has ALL of your contact info, just like your email.
Tunes Twit:. I have one friend that I like to call every day just to see which song will be playing today. How many ringtones do you really need, and why do I have to listen to “Single Ladies”, or “Blessed” or any other subjugation of your musical choices simply because I need to call you? You are an adult, your phone should ring, if you are available answer it, if not let it go to voice mail.
Twitter Twerp: Really, do we need a play by-play of your day? Enough said.
Voicemail Victim: I don’t really want to leave a message, but if I do, will you please take the time to listen to what I have to say, before you call me back to say “I saw you called.” Yes, I called. I left you a message telling you what I wanted, listen to it and call me back with an answer.
I know technology is a wonderful thing, but please, stop allowing your smart phone to make you an idiot. Remember the simple manners your mother taught you and put those into play. Now if you will excuse me, I need to send out some hearts, blessings, rob a pimp and steal a car as I build my mafia connection, and build my new life in YoVille.
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Today, I decided to review the definition of Mother. I went to dictionary.com, plugged in the term and waited for the results.
1. a female parent.
2. (often initial capital letter ) one’s female parent.
3. a mother-in-law, stepmother, or adoptive mother.
4. a term of address for a female parent or a woman having or regarded as having the status, function, or authority of a female parent.
5. a term of familiar address for an old or elderly woman.
7. a woman exercising control, influence, or authority like that of a mother: to be a mother to someone.
8. the qualities characteristic of a mother, as maternal affection: It is the mother in her showing itself.
9. something or someone that gives rise to or exercises protecting care over something else; origin or source.
10. (in disc recording) a mold from which stampers are made.
I tried to determine if I felt any of these definitions suited me, outside of being the female parent. And in all honesty, there are no real words to define what it is and means to be a mother. Of course, we can define ourselves as someone who gives rise to protecting and caring for something else. I can even see being the origin and the source for something in which I can mother or parent. I can see being a mold and stamping my imprint upon another, but nothing, in any of those terms begin to address the one common term all mother’s have, hold, and dread – and that is fear.
The one job that you have been given, without an instruction manual, no formal training, and all OJT, is being a mother. If you fail at your job, you know the consequences; you have a Jeffrey Dahmer or a Charles Manson. If you are too successful at your job, then you are a control freak. If you are too casual then you want to be a friend instead of a parent. Quite honestly, there is no way to win. With fear in your heart you rise every day and just hope that you are getting it right as they grow and become adults, with a sense of right and wrong that has been instilled in them and they will become productive members of society. You hope that the guidance they have been given does not inspire them to become parents themselves at a young age, and that they will find someone in which to share their life who is fair and loving and will be a good mother to your grandchildren.
To all the mothers out there I salute you, honor you and cherish you. I know your fear, and share in the turmoil, but I also understand a mother’s joy. I have been blessed with a wonderful son, that has turned into a wonderful man, and this Mother’s Day, I am blessed that God gave me an opportunity to provide protecting care over something else, and mold it, and become a female parent.
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I found myself utterly and completely fascinated with most of the answers which in part, where mostly defensive. Answers gravitated from recession concession to jealousy, to a real independent woman does not want to lose her independence. There were even comments from one gentleman who boasted about his independent woman’s gift giving and how she provided him pocket money. It was one extreme to the next, but the real question to all of you today, is your independence keeping you single?
Everyone wants to have or belong to someone, but some see companionship as compromise, while others argue why do I need a man to give me what I can provide for myself. Have we, as women, become so competitive in the workplace that we have forgotten the simple art of being a lady. Being a lady has nothing to do with your independence. I will admit, there are some men who are challenged by women who are smarter and more accomplished than themselves, but the majority of men, truly want to spend time in the company of a lady.
Webster’s defines lady as a refined, well spoken and polite woman of high social position and is the parallel of gentleman. This definition is pretty clear but just in case there is some confusion, parallel is complimentary. A woman’s relationship to and with a man, should be complimentary. This does not mean that you have to sacrifice who you are, what you have accomplished or your dreams or ambitions, in order to have a relationship with a man, but to compliment what he does and who he is. A prime example is Michelle Obama. She is complimentary to her husband and her accomplishments and achievements stand on their own, but she relishes her independent mind, but excels in her role as wife and mother. She is the epitome of the example of you can have it, without the sacrifice.
What does it take to have your independence and a great relationship? Take the focus off of being so damned independent and place the focus on being a lady. Place your focus on being complimentary. Place your focus on being parallel and lined up with something other than your own goals. When we remove ourselves from that constant cycle of “me…me…myself…I…wait back to me…” we have the golden opportunity to sit on the side and cheer for someone else. In the end, that is all your man truly wants, is for you to cheer for him once in a while. He is proud of you and what you have done, and he brags about you at the barber shop even though you don’t know it. He says with pride when he visits with his Mom or chats with his Dad about the things you are doing on the job. Can you say the same, without a sadden sigh because he hasn’t reached his full potential? Can you say the same without a snide comment of “now if he would just pick up his drawers, and put them in the hamper…”. Can you say the same without nitpicking him to death over dinner because he ordered a steak and you chose a salad? Here’s a hint sisters, you can graze on lettuce leaves at home. You man wants to see you enjoy some meat and he wants to pay for it! He wants to tell you about his day and what that “Dumb Dave” did at work. He wants to share with you the silly argument that ensued in the locker room or lunch room over some commentary on ESPN.
The question is do you want to listen? Or do you have so much on your mind about your day, and what that sneaky Millicent said, or that million dollar deal that is on the table that you know you are about close. More than anything, you are counting the money you are about to spend when the deal does closes and what is your next strategic move.
I am not taking sides, I am just asking the questions that I want you to answer, because if I am thinking it, so is someone else. So I weighed in from a woman’s point of view, give me some feedback with this next question.
Do you think they feel less of a man when dealing with a woman who is able to carry her own load, very successful, and can do things on her own without his help?
I often chuckle when I hear my friends and colleagues boasts about being a grown woman, then I am more amused when I watch them make immature decisions. I watch them make choices that are bad for their personal well-being an the moment, and choices that are bad for their future. The stresses of life and emotional loneliness can be contributing factors to bad decision making.
I am often asked, what should I do— and as a grown woman, I have learned to sit and listen, and realize that my friends thought process, do not neccessarily equate to me to interjecting mine. What works for me, may not work for you, so here is my advice to the many women who often ask me the same question, as well as my advice to all who read this post.
If you are at a crossroads in your life, sit down in the middle of the street and make a list of where you have been, and where you would like to go. As simple as it may seem, for some, just sitting still long enough to write a list –is an issue. However, you can not fully understand where you are trying to go, until you have identified, label, misnomer, or assigned the wrong psychological principle, to what you will soon learn to call– bull puckey.
That is what it is,bullpuckey— it is all the crap that you have convinced yourself is important, that in actuality has no real relevance in your life. It is the proverbial time on the treadmill where you are running inside of the the little cage which you have boxed yourself in, that you are NOW calling a fulfilling life. If you have not poured yourself a cup of tea, sat down with a good book or your favorite magazine without the tv on, to just read for 30 minutes, then how you are getting on in your life, well it is bull puckey!
If you have not or can not remember what you like to do for fun that is not associated with your husband or children, then how you are living needs to be reevaluated. If you can not remember the last time you and a girl friend sat down and had a two-hour lunch talking about nothing….and realized it was the best conversation you have had in a long time, then stop.
Put down the laptop, get off of Facebook, and sign out of your Twitter account. Get up off your butt and plug back into life. Decide in the next week what you would like to do to better yourself that can be done in incremental steps, and make a plan. I will start you off with some suggestions. You want to know why, because I am happy. Not in the moment, not for a reason, but because it is the way that I am living. I grew into my happiness and I want to help you grow into yours.
Here are my suggestions for the month of April 2010.
First we will start by getting you organized, to get the clutter out of your life. I know, you have a Blackberry or some other gadget you are paying too much money for and don’t really know how to use. Let’s first simplify with www.cozi.com and get everything in one place.
I also want you to start thinking about your summer vacation for the family and for you and your man (yes your man, and if that is not what you call him or how you think of him, we will address that in June) .
For the family, you can save some money, give back to America and help the planet all in one. http://www.thedailygreen.com/environmental-news/latest/eco-travel-volunteer-vacations-50022309.
Then plan a quiet get away for you and your man with www.cruises-4-free.com.
Tody is the day you take the first step to grow into your happiness. I check back with you in a month and see how you are doing.
All my best,
I am often asked how have you managed to say married for so long? My answer is very simple; I let my husband be who he is.
I have been married for 20 years with one child who is now in college. Over the years we have had our bumps and hiccups and our struggles for power. One day my husband told me, you can be in charge of whatever it is you do in your office, but in this house, you are wife and mother. Yep, go ahead, catch your breath, because I know I did. My first reaction was to get up cross the room, and knock the taste out of his mouth. But I stopped and considered his words.
I took his words to heart and in year 3, I concentrated on being his wife and the mother to my child. When he walks in the door from work, I greet him with a kiss, and now that we are empty nesters, sometimes skimpy lingerie. Dinner is on the table when he walks in the door whether I have cooked it, or ordered out. There are always leftovers in the fridge, a sweet dessert or something yummy to snack on. When he is watching tv, I leave him alone and let him enjoy his show. And you know what….he does the same for me.
The mortgage is paid on time, my car is road ready anytime I need to make a trip, and if I want to shop, he will give me what I need. During dinner we have conversations about life, world events, and about each other. He nurtures my need to change the world and allows me the freedom to do just that while I support him in being my man and taking care of our family.
We often hear the phrase let a man be a man, but often misconstrue it as giving a man free reign to sow his wild oats. Letting a man be a man to me, means making sure he feels wanted and needed. Because in the end, everyone want to be needed, but a man needs to be wanted.
I know some of you will disagree, but if you have not been married longer than I have then save your comments. And just in case you are wondering, I have a masters and PhD that he paid for.
In such a volitile economy, we are having to rethink the way we live, do business, eat, dress and even spend our money. The weekend trips to Blockbuster have been replaced with an On Demand selection. Weekend pizza ordering has been reduced to the best sellers in the Wal-mart deli (with extra pepperoni and shredded cheese, purchased seperately of course) while we spend time with our families. Dinner out is a $30 dollar swing for 4 at the local Mexican joint.
Amazingly enough, before I never had enough time, now, I have plenty of time to spend with my son working on my backyard and have even considered putting in a garden. The neighbors, I used to blow my horn at on my way to somewhere else, have become a staple in our home playing board games and cards.
Our weekend getaways to the “big city” have been exchanged for exploring our own city and becoming members of local non-profit groups and giving back to community. I even joined a writers network to brain storm and share ideas with other burgeoning writers. All in all, if being lead by a “comunity organizer” is having an affect on the American public, as well as the economy, then what have you changed in your way of life?