Sunday, December 30, 2007

Finding someone special, a guide to the ladies

I saw an article recently that listed 31 ways to find a decent guy. I'm sure that lady that wrote it meant well, but I think 31 suggestions is a bit much. I wrote this as a response to the article and it was very well received. I thought it worth repeating here.

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Finding a guy is fairly easy. They're out there looking for you, just make yourself available.

1. Don't try too hard, that's a little scary. Go to the store in your sweats. That makes you approachable.

2. Forget the makeup. A clean fresh face makes you real. Heavy makeup means you're hiding something.

3. Don't talk about commitments. If he likes you, he'll commit. If he's using you, he won't.

4. Be his friend, but not his best friend. He'll tell his best friend things he'll never tell his wife or lover. That's the way it's supposed to be. Get over it.

5. Don't expect him to change. Many relationships fail for two simple reasons. (1) She expects him to change, but he doesn't. (2) He expects her to not change, but she does.

6. If you love him, you won't try to hurt him no matter how much something he did hurts you. If he loves you he won't try to hurt you no matter how much something you did hurts him. If either one of you TRIES to hurt the other, it isn't love and it's time to move on. The same thing applies if either of you does something and doesn't care if it hurts the other or not.

7. Don't expect to understand him. He's male and you're not. You can't understand him. Don't expect him to understand you. You're female and he's not. He can't understand you. Accept that you are different. Learn where those differences are and where the similarities are. This will cut your arguments in half.

8. You are going to argue. Don't take it personally and don't make it personal. Before long you'll find that you're discussing and not arguing. You won't remember the change.

9. Most arguments aren't worth the trouble, but you won't know until you discuss it.

10. If it isn't working out, let it go. Try to save the friendship, but don't feel bad if that's gone too. It's hard to take a relationship backwards. If he handles it well, tell your friends about him. If he handles it badly, be SURE to tell your friends about him.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Christmas vs Hannukah vs Solstice vs Saturnalia vs, well you get the idea

I've known a few atheists and pagans over the years. Many of them have been better Christians than some of my acquaintances that profess to be Christian. Some of the Christian's I've known would be better described as atheists. Neither group seems qualified to lay sole claim, or take complete blame for good or evil deeds. Is Christmas a stolen holiday? Yes, it is. But no group alive today can lay claim to its creation or its theft. The solstice has been celebrated (in both joy and fear) since before recorded history, probably back to the first time that one of the brighter cavemen realized that the days were getting shorter as it got colder. He might have said "Gee, that never happened before. I'd better do something." He might have worked out a simple ritual to bring back the sun, and after a few days (let's say three just for the sake of argument since that's the timespan between the solstice and the modern Christmas day) he noticed the sun was, indeed, returning. The ritual became an annual event and was embellished every year and copied by others. Over the years, each group took bits and pieces from those around them and wove a new celebration that fits in with their hopes for the future, their needs for the present, and their regrets from the past. Soon, religion was born. Unfortunately, somewhere along the line, religious intolerance reared its ugly head when someone decided that they had to enforce their beliefs on everyone else. We'll never know if this was done because of a desire for power, or out of concern for the fate in the afterlife of those who were deemed "wrong". Either way, we'll never know how the holiday and the intolerance started. It's also quite possible that we'll never know how to truly celebrate the former until we can eliminate the latter. I don't know about you, but I'll continue to say Merry Christmas, or Happy Hannukah, or Happy Solstice, or even IO Saturnalia to my friends during the holidays.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Life is a Cabaret

What good is sitting alone in your room?
Come hear the music play.
Life is a Cabaret, old chum,
Come to the Cabaret.
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People watching is a relaxing pastime. You get to see humanity in all its forms. I like to sit at a local hangout, grab a cup of coffee (and maybe a cigar) and watch the world go by. The variety always amazes me. I watch the successful go in for their morning coffee. You can alway tell them by the car they drive and the way they walk. No furtive steps, and no cell phone. If a call comes in, it's quiet and quick. Then there's the self-important poser. Always looking around to see who they can impress. They talk loud and make sure everyone knows what about the big things they're doing. Occasionally, they arrive in groups. Loud obnoxious groups. Next come the workers on a time schedule. They have enough time to stop for coffee (the good stuff, not the office sludge) and get back on the road. The day is ahead of them and sometimes it's not a pretty sight. Sometimes the Moms come it, the kids are at school, Dad's at work, and they have a chance to sit and read (or people watch) with no interruptions. Sometimes Dad comes in, often with the kids, Mom's at home sleeping late. Young women drift through. You can never tell where they're going, but you have to wonder why they dress that way to go there. They wear everything from pajamas to formal dress. And, of course, there are the people like me. We sit, sip, and watch the world go by. Life truly is a cabaret. It's loud, crowded, and full of strange people.
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Start by admitting
From cradle to tomb
Isn't that long a stay.
Life is a Cabaret, old chum,
Only a Cabaret, old chum,
And I love a Cabaret!

What was the most important thing we learned in church?

I don't know why this came to mind, but I started wondering about it the other day. We didn't learn right from wrong in church, our parents took care of that on a daily basis. Waiting until Sunday would have been too little too late. We didn't learn how to get along with others, church is too structured. Proper manners? Church socials are hardly a place where manners are strictly enforced. Please and Thank You? Required, but not taught there. Our parents wouldn't have let us near church friends unless we knew how to behave. What was the most important thing we learned in church? We learned how to sit down and shut up for an hour or so. We learned that, no matter how much we didn't want to, we had to be quiet and fairly still. We didn't get to play with video games. At the most, we were given a pencil and paper. We learned a little respect. We also learned that dessert after Sunday dinner was a little easier to get if we were good, and that the reminder to be good was more forceful the next Sunday if we were bad. If we were really bad, sitting at the table for dinner was a little uncomfortable, and dessert didn't happen. This isn't the lesson that our parents planned for us to learn, but it was a very good lesson.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Squalling brats and servers that don't care

I go out to eat occasionally with the family. I might go out more often, but I get tired of listening to some brat squall while its parents ignore it. These are the same little wastes of space that grow up to be noisy and rude mall rats. The parents don't care, and the schools aren't allowed to teach them basic manners. We went out this weekend and were treated to a chorus of screams and screeches as we tried to eat. The other problem is the attitude of the servers. When I place an order I specify how I want the meal cooked. Take breakfast for instance. I don't like runny eggs and I don't like undercooked bacon. I specify "eggs scrambled dry" and "crisp bacon." Most of the time the eggs can be consumed through a straw and the bacon is Triconosis on a plate. Forget the hashbrowns, they either scare them with the word "fire" or manage to burn them to a crisp on one side while leaving one side raw. The primary responsibility for a properly prepared meal rests with the cook, but the server should always check the order before delivering it to the customer. Theirs is the ultimate responsibility. Add the improperly prepared food to a server that disappears after it's been delivered and you have the makings of a poor dining experience. I've even had to get up from the table after my meal was delivered and find my own silverware and condiments. I'm not rude when I order. I make sure the server understands me in case the noise from the squalling brats drowns out my request, and I tip in excess of 20 percent. I am regular customer at a couple of places where I receive good service, properly prepared food, and hopefully a reasonably quiet meal. I don't blame the restaurant for the brats, that blame rest squarely on the parents. I do blame the restaurant (cook, server, and manager) for poor service and food. Some day, maybe restaurants will learn that their business will improve when the food and the service improves. Probably not, but I can hope.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Life in Three Words

Have you ever noticed that some of the most important thing you can say can be said in three words. There are those three special words that you should say to your wife (I'll get back to that later), the three most important words to remember when you're trying to discuss things with your children (I Love You), the three most important words to remember when you're trying to talk to a friend (We Both Matter), the three most important words to remember when you're trying to talk to your boss (I Am Important), the three most important words to remember when you're trying to talk to an employee (You Are Important), and the three most important words to remember when you're trying to talk to a large group (Listen To Me). Three little words can convey a world of emotion. What words can you use to give your kids advice on talking to the opposite sex? “Make Eye Contact!” and “Tell The Truth!” come to mind along with “Stop and Listen”. “Be a Friend!” is also a good one. There are also some three letter statements to avoid. “I Don't Care” (when you really do), “Not My Job” (when it really is), and “Don't Bother Me” (when you know you should really listen). Which words to you say to your wife? Which three little words can you say that will carry a powerful message about your love? The words aren't “I Love You”, while it's true that those words should be spoken often, the three truly important words are: “I Was Wrong”. Using those three little words will convey a very special message. Use them wisely and use them well.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Getting started

"I'm just a country boy, money have I none. But I've got silver in the evening star, and gold in the morning sun." I don't know who wrote this, but I remember Tennessee Ernie Ford's voice as he sang it. I, too, am just a country boy. Unfortunately, the country where I grew up is now moving towards citification and I feel like I'm stuck in the Belly of the Beast as it consumes everything around it. This blog will contain the ramblings and rememberances of a country boy that's been in the city too long.