Tuesday, June 9, 2009

495. Tuesday Addenda

I know earlier today I said the blog would be on break for a week and that was my plan, but then I wanted to write some more, and, as it is my blog, I am thus writing some more.

First, in an entry on Saturday I mentioned stopping by Bethlehem, Indiana, where my grandfather's stepmother once lived and where his youngest siblings, the children of his father and stepmother were raised. While standing in the Bethlehem Cemetery I called my grandfather's youngest sister, Aunt Mildred, to report to her my presence there in her hometown. She wasn't in when I called so I left a message. Later that night she called her niece, my mother, to report my call and let her know that the other of my grandfather's youngest siblings, his brother Lee Roy, would be visiting her today from Paducah, where he is living in retirement. How odd that within three days of my visiting their ancestral home, they were getting together to do so themselves. I spent this afternoon visiting with that side of my family and, as has always been the case when visiting there, had a big plate of food - lasagna, salad, and pie with whipped cream, along with very sweet tea to drink. While many of the people who have always been a part of such reunions have long since passed on, it is always good to see those remaining of my grandfather's family.

Second, on reading my emails just a few minutes ago, one was from my friend Olivia Fuchs, who is an attorney here in town. She forwarded to me some words of wisdom sent to her in one of those emails where the sender asks you to pass it along. I don't ever do that. But I did like the philosophy of the original writer of this email, said to be 90 years old in the article. She writes the 45 Lessons of Life. I find them true at least in my life so far at 48 years of age. They remind me of the much longer poem called My Philosophy, written by James Whitcomb Riley, the one-time Poet Laureate of the State of Indiana (in honor of my grandfather's Indiana siblings mentioned above).

Below is the email. I've tried to find Riley's poem on the internet, but can't. Maybe someone else can locate it. There is another of these philosophical soliloquys by Ralph Waldo Emerson, but I couldn't find it either.


Written by Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Ohio.
"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It is the most-requested column I've ever written."

1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.

3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.

5. Pay off your credit cards every month.

6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.

8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.

9. Save for retirement starting with your first pay cheque.

10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.

11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.

12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.

13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.

15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.

16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.

17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.

18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.

19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.

20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.

21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets and wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion, today is special.

22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.

23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.

24. The most important sex organ is the brain.

25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words 'In five years, will this matter?'

27. Always choose life.

28. Forgive everyone everything.

29. What other people think of you is none of your business.

30. Time heals almost everything. Give time.

31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

32. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

33. Believe in miracles.

34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.

35. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.

36. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.

37. Your children get only one childhood.

38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.

39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back.

41. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

42. The best is yet to come.

43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

44. Yield.

45. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift."


My favorites are #2, #16, #23, #28, #34, #39, and especially #44.

Now, we'll go on break. Hopefully I will see some of you at the Metro Club tomorrow night.

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The Archives at Milepost 606


Louisville, Kentucky, United States
Never married, liberal Democrat, born in 1960, opinionated but generally pleasant, member of the Episcopal Church. Graduate of Prestonia Elementary, Durrett High, and Spalding University; the first two now-closed Jefferson County Public Schools, the latter a very small liberal arts college in downtown Louisville affiliated with the Roman Catholic Sisters of Charity of Nazareth. My vocation and avocation is politics. My favorite pastime is driving the backroads of Kentucky and southern Indiana, visiting small towns, political hangouts, courthouses, churches, and cemeteries. You are welcome to ride with me sometime.