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Sunday, August 21, 2011

A song again, naturally

I heard the Gilbert O’Sullivan’s song Alone Again Naturally many times growing up. The structure of the song is deceivingly interesting. The song lures you with the singer’s unusual voice; its simple melody has a sing-song quality that makes it easy to hum after hearing it for the first time. Though I’m familiar with the song, it is definitely not one of my personal favorites. It’s a song that I consider to be very depressing, though every time I heard it was at the tail end of the song.  I wondered why its focus was on his parents dying.   
A few years later, I heard this song again and it was at the very beginning. At this time, I was pregnant with my son and my husband was driving us to a lunch meeting with another couple. I decided to listen to this song all the way through, and turned up the volume. This was a big mistake when I clearly heard the first refrain. It involves the singer being rejected by his intended bride at their wedding and his matter of fact quest to find a very tall building to hurl himself off of.
I literally gasped in horror as these words were sung with the piano and drum accompaniment sank into my brain.  My husband watched in horrific surprise as I proceeded to bawl, my flushed face wet with tears. Reaching out with one hand, he asked me what was wrong.  I whimpered I never knew this song was about a guy killing himself! My husband was amazed I never knew—hadn’t I heard this song before?  Between sobs, I admitted this was my first time hearing the song from the very beginning.
Since we were on the way to meeting people, my husband thoughtfully drove around the block a few times so I could gain my composure.  However, time was running out and we went to the restaurant, my face having the tell-tale signs of blotchiness.
 When we met up with our friends, we explained that I had heard a sad song on the radio and cried over it. They immediately were sympathetic, chalking my irrational burst of emotions on my raging pregnancy hormones.
Looking back, I believe that I was feeling a connection to all things since a life was growing inside of me. When I heard that song’s self-destructing lyrics, it created an adverse reaction in me that has never left.  Even to this day, the millisecond I hear the piano solo melody of this song, I quickly flip the channel; which is a shame--Mr. O’Sullivan has a very nice voice!
Perhaps I’ll have to see if Gilbert O’Sullivan sang anything a little bit more uplifting!! 

Monday, August 15, 2011

Based on a true story

When my son was 3 years old, he was learning his ABC’s.  To keep these lessons from getting boring, (honestly, how many times can you say A is for apple without stifling a yawn?)I used real life examples in my teachings. Any time I found printed words, I would point out the letters to him and he would identify them.  I wanted to let my son know that letters are everywhere, not just confined to his picture books.

One day, during his bath time, I found another opportunity for a letter lesson. On our bathtub, the faucets were installed in the wall and were marked H and C.  I pointed to the H and asked him what letter that was.  He replied, “H”, as he splashed the water about him.

With a broad smile, I said, “Good! H stands for hot.  Now, what is this letter?”  I pointed to the faucet on the right.  Today, however, the faucet was turned so the C looked different. 

He looked at it intently, beads of water trickling down his face. He answered quite emphatically, “U , U stands for unhot!”

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Just a note

If you visit my website, you can now read the first chapter of my book for free! Please feel free to click on its link below:
All I ask is please leave me a comment.
Even to just say "hello" so I know that some people are reading it!
Thanks everyone, and I'll talk with you later!!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Lesson from an Unlikely Source

Do you judge a book by its cover? In other words, do you make up your mind about a person by their appearance?
I must admit, I used to think this way. In one of my previous employments, when we interviewed someone for temporary office work, they were immediately categorized as front or back office, depending solely on how they were dressed and presented themselves. I didn’t give this harsh method of classification a second thought until something happened to me a few years ago.
I was at Meadows Mall in Las Vegas with my husband Chris and our son. Derek was a baby at the time and we took turns pushing his stroller through the many walkways. I enjoyed the window shopping, Chris not so much and Derek was amusing himself by kicking his legs about.
It was in the morning and the mall wasn’t too crowded.  Some spots of the mall were downright deserted.   
As we were walking down a long hallway, we caught sight of a guy following us. His jeans were torn, chains were dangling from his belt and his hair was a spiky mess.  We turned the corner, and still he was trailing us. Also, he was calling out. My heart skipped a beat.  What was he up to? Was he going to take advantage of the quiet mall to rob us?
Defensively, my husband stepped in front of our son and me and stood his ground. I peeked over Chris’ shoulder. As the guy came closer, I saw he was a teenager, younger than what I had originally thought. Also, he was carrying a small tennis shoe in his tattooed hands.
“Excuse me, sir,” he addressed my husband. His voice didn’t match his demeanor at all. In fact, he sounded very polite. “I think you dropped this.”
 He handed Chris the miniature shoe. At that moment, we looked down at Derek. Sure enough, he was only wearing one tiny shoe.  Derek was very proud of this fact, as he wiggled his freed foot to us. We both thanked the youth as he jangled away.
Putting Derek’s shoe back on, I had a realization. What if Derek dresses like that when he becomes a teenager? I would be hurt if people judged and wrote him off simply by his clothes. I resolved at that moment not to fall into the convenient trap of making up my mind about a person by appearance only.
I watched the youth walk away and smiled. He was somebody’s baby once.