Some cities, concerned about the amount of litter on their streets, have imposed a fee for using plastic bags at stores. Dallas is the latest. Granted, litter is a problem. I hate to even say how much trash I see along the county road where I walk each morning. I also hate to admit how many times I’ve seen someone toss a drink can out a truck window as they are driving along. When I was a kid, if I threw something out the car window, my father would stop and make me go pick it up. Believe me, I never tossed even a gum wrapper out after that.
That’s a point that a Dallas resident, Barbara Whitfield Streetman made in a letter to the editor. She challenged parents to do what my father did, “Teach kids never to throw anything out of the car window or throw anything on the sidewalks or anyplace. Just carry it home and dispose of it.”
What a concept.
Reactions to the latest violence – the mass shooting in Paris – incited the same kind of hateful rhetoric and behaviors as the last two in the United States. Sadly, and I may keep saying this until more than two people get it, that will not stop until people stop reacting with their emotions. Someone once said, “Hate the sin, not the sinner.” I think that was Jesus, and so many of the people reacting with hate and anger call themselves Christians?
That’s it for my rants today. Aren’t you glad? Just for fun I took a picture of my cats this morning. All four of them are on the edge of my desk watching the birds that are fluttering around in the flowerbed. The cats are twitching tails and ears and wishing there was no glass between them and the birds.Every now and then I hear a little chirp and it is one of the cats talking to the bird. I wonder if Harry is saying, “Come here little bird. I won’t hurt you.”
|Harry is the black cat closest to the window|
Now for some Friday Funnies. This first one is from Luann by Greg Evans. Luann’s parents, Nancy and Frank are sitting at the table in the kitchen working with some papers and Nancy says, “I can’t believe it’s another new year already.”
“No kidding,” Franks says. “Time is flying by. When I was a carefree kid, a year lasted forever. Now that I don’t have a spare second, the days flash by. Life is backwards.”
Nancy looks at him in surprise. “You’d rather rush through joyful childhood and crawl through grumpy old age?”
“Maybe I wouldn’t BE grumpy if I had more T… ” He looks up. “Wait a minute. How did I become a grumpy old man all of a sudden?”
She goes back to the paper she was writing on. “Time is flying by.”
Here’s one from Pickles by Brian Crane. Opal is sitting in the overstuffed chair, surrounded by hangars. Nelson stands in front of the chair watching what she is doing. Earl leans on the back of the chair and asks, “What are you doing with all those hangars, Opal?”
“I’m crocheting colorful covers for them.”
“Silly question… Why do they need covers?”
“Covers keep clothes from slipping off the hanger. And they’re pretty.”
“Ah that makes sense.” Then Earl walks off with Nelson and says, “I didn’t have the heart to tell her I could accomplish the same thing in a tenth of the time with a roll of friction tape.”
Finally, this one from Crankshaft by Batiuk & Ayers. Crankshaft and his son-in-law, Jeff, are watching a news program on television and the weather forecast starts. The meteorologist says, “This is the big one, people. The mother of all snow storms.
“We’re not going to get inches of snow…!!! But FEET of snow.
“We’re going to get snow, snow, snow… and even MORE SNOW!!”
Crankshaft looks at Jeff and says, “He must get paid by the flake.”
Another new feature I would like to start on the blog is “Writing Wisdom”. Each week I will add some bit of inspiration or advice that I find helpful. This week I found a piece that Anna Elliot wrote, In Praise of Quitting, for Writer Unboxed, and I found her article very helpful in thinking about projects that we start and then abandon. I’ll just post a short excerpt here, but do click over and read the whole article. It is well worth your time.
Now, maybe I’ll go back to the abandoned story someday. At some point, I’ll at least pull it out of the drawer and give it a read-through to see if there’s something there. Maybe there is, maybe there’s not. But that’s the good thing about stories. They’re very forgiving. They’re not going to be mad at you that you walked away and left them to sit idle for a couple of months or even years. Sometimes they actually even reward you for having walked away by suddenly revealing to you just what the fatal flaw was that made them impossible to finish before.