What I Thought… My four grandparents died between the ages of 53 and 77. My longest-living grandmother died at age 77, and she seemed old from my 27-year-old perspective. Now in my early seventies, my thoughts are evolving concerning who is old. My mother just recently died at 94 and my father lives on, just…

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The best month of the year to idle is August. Idling is just astonishing! Don’t you just love the word “IDLE?” The definition of idle is “(1) (of a person) avoiding work; lazy or (2) without purpose or effect; pointless.” Idleness gets a really bad rap. My friend, Deb, and I just recently took a…

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Who is Entitled to the American Dream? The simple answer is anyone who is an American citizen. Early on in our history there is a stubborn refusal by our forefathers to consider women and non-white people as citizens. Only with the ratification of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution (1868) do Blacks, former slaves and…

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American Dream? An element of the American Dream, much overlooked, is the fact that our country is in an on-going attempt to build the definition of “who is an American and who is entitled to the American Dream?” Are the generations of former slaves entitled? Are illegal immigrants entitled? Is everyone who desires to be…

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WHAT IS THIS FEELING? Following last month’s DM post on the Italian Diaspora, the next logical step is to reflect on WWI. Rummaging through a few boxes, a photo turned up depicting WWI Gromignana soldiers. I had used the photo in a college term paper. Initially, the only person I cared about in the photo…

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Italian Diaspora Book-ended by the French Revolution and WWII are the stories of millions of Europeans whose lives were transformed during the age of industrialization and scientific advances. These years resulted in massive change upending the quiet rural existence of my family which had been living in Gromignana, Italy since arriving there in the 1400s,…

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Lenten Rituals In Myths To Live By, Joseph Campbell describes a ritual as “an organization of mythological symbols; and by participating in the drama of the rite one is brought directly in touch with (the) revelations here and now.” During my childhood, the Lenten rites were wonders. I found myself in awe (like “awe shucks”)…

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WAS FDR CORRECT?“Fear itself” is pretty scary!  It can shut down a nation.  Fortunately, many Americans will fight back.  The current Covid-19 crisis led me to think about fear and over-reacting out of “an abundance of caution.”  I realized a long time ago that we as a nation are willing to tolerate massive disruption in…

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THE CORONA WARMilitary rhetoric floods the media as politicians and pundits discuss the corona virus crisis. Our leaders hope to use the war-like references to unite our country in a common cause. The Corona is an enigmatic and ruthless enemy hell-bent on destroying our way of life. War involves high rates of mortality, economic upheaval,…

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TO GO OR NOT TO GOLast week a big decision loomed. Should we take a long-planned mother-daughter trip or should the pandemic make the decision for us? There were pros and cons but in the final analysis we decided to go. The promise of enjoyment appeared high and the risk in the area we planned…

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