Posts By JoAnn Williams

Nostalgia

I am not sentimental or nostalgic. I rarely look back on what many of my generation refer to as “the good old years.”

I enjoy the benefits of living in an age where I can carry my phone with me. I believe online shopping is a godsend and who can complain about watching first-run movies at home in your jammies and fuzzy shoes?

When I do look back, I realize how thankful I am for my childhood. It saddens me that current political stances make those experiences impossible for other children.

If I could go back in time, I’d take my six-year-old self by the hand and tell her to soak up the treasure of her diverse community. The Lebanese, Syrian, Jewish and Greek merchant’s shops she visits with her grandmother reveal cultures that she would have never experienced otherwise. She doesn’t know this will shape her acceptance of other people.

The children of these immigrants are her school mates. Their surnames are their only distinguishing factors. Like her, they live for recess and hate arithmetic as much as she does. She doesn’t know that her future holds a government that fails to value the diversity of immigrants.

The beginning of every school day began with the pledge of allegiance, before “under God” was added. (My six-year-old self attended Sunday school and if I am truthful, she didn’t think much about God until the following Sunday.) There was no school prayer thus no one suffered the indignity of paying respects to an unfamiliar deity in a diverse classroom.

As a fifth-generation Texan, I knew about guns. My father did not own a gun and we never felt unsafe due to the absence of a weapon in our home. My six-year-old self looked forward to the fire and tornado drills in school as a respite from the classroom. I cannot imagine the fear she would have felt at the thought of hiding from a gunman.

A six year old today has never experienced the wonder of summer fireflies teasing us with the mystery of their source of light. Butterflies, bees and some species of birds no longer visit.

I can look back with joy at the advantages my six year old self enjoyed. Without significant change in our leadership, a six year old today will inherit a world sadly lacking those advantages.

Situations are Deplorable; People Are Not

Despite being an ardent trump supporter, he is a good man; a fervent evangelical who follows the tenets of that group. He had no qualms about altering his faith to support a leader who has a serious deficit in humanity.

His political beliefs meet all the qualifications for a so-called “Deplorable.” I first wrote about him this past November.

I ran into him last week and he told me he is recovering from a serious illness. His doctor recommended more tests and a consultation with a specialist.

He has no insurance.

He is not able to work full time because of his illness.

Due to his reduced income, he cannot afford the extra tests or a visit to a specialist.

I did not ask him if his virulent opposition to President Obama and the affordable care act had changed.

I did not mention that now he has a pre-existing condition which is insurance-speak for you got screwed.

I wished him well and told him I am sorry for his illness.

And I am sorry.

I am sorry, he relied on tribe mentality to define his political views.

I am sorry he turned a blind eye to Trump’s total indifference to the less fortunate.

I am sorry he supports a regime that works against his best interest.

He was searching for leadership that would lead to a better life.

He is not deplorable; he is betrayed.

Maxwell The Cat Discovers The Stable Genius

My human is slow to discover all my talents. I find her laptop’s warmth irresistible and it is my home base. When she is not looking, I read her emails, check out social media and surf the net.

Maxwell

My recent visit to the web proved so alarming that I may require a generous portion of catnip before I go online again.

It all started when I stumbled across a video of this great orange creature. Had it not been for its horrible orange hue I would have sworn it was my long-lost uncle Cheshire. I wondered what had turned his pink and purple fur into this ghastly shade of indescribable horror. You can imagine my relief when I discovered Cheshire is alive and well.

The creature’s mane was arranged in such a manner that I thought perhaps it’s ruff had become dislocated. My, oh my, that would be a horrible situation for a feline to recover from. I was relieved to discover that my hero, Garfield, had not contracted some horrible malady.

One cannot escape DNA and curiosity drove me to see what else I could discover about this unusual specimen. It appears that the creature is quite vocal, and I thought perhaps it might be the bastard undesirable runt offspring of a Siamese litter. I quickly ruled that out as the mutterings were not up to the intellect or standards of that breed.

The poor creature tried to cover its unfortunate mane with a red object that had letters on it. The creature evidently has discovered quite a following of humans with the same disability. They stood behind the creature, in a show of solidarity, wearing the same red object.

This creature demands further investigation, but I will have to be careful. I noticed the other day when it appeared on television, my human swore and changed the channel.

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