Monthly Archives: December 2014

What I Learned From Fluffing Plastic Bags (and living a better life)

People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered; Forgive them anyway.

People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered;
Forgive them anyway.

When you volunteer to work at the food bank, you probably think to yourself, I’m going to help people and that’s a good thing. I’m going to help people who have hit hard financial times and need a lift in their spirit as well as food in their cupboard.

You imagine the recipients will look upon you as a Mother Teresa-type, grateful to your sweet spirit of volunteerism of handing out turkeys and canned pumpkin and toys for the kids.

A week before Christmas, I showed up on time for my assigned volunteer shift,  ready for my Mother Teresa benevolence to begin.

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Things I Learned in 2014

Ring in the new year and set new goals.

Ring in the new year and set new goals.

Things I learned this past year:

  • I learned hotels in California install booby traps in their parking lots. The hotel staff refers to these booby traps as curbs. Hah! Curbs! I call them dangerous booby traps lurking in wait for you, hoping with evil delight you break your foot when you stumble over it and your body lands splat on the sidewalk.  I know. I was booby trapped and hobbled in a cast for months.
  • I learned Californians are actually friendly. You realize this when the hotel’s booby trap (the so-called curb) exercises demonic power and shoves you into a graceless fall. Californians rush to help you; ask if you’re okay and help you get up while gathering your purse and water bottle and other things strewn about. You wonder. Are these nice people really Californians? The same Californians who honk their horn and shout from their car window, “Go back to Washington!” And of course, you live in Arizona so their request isn’t easy.

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My Awkward Moment & Fruitcake

I’m laughing. Ha, ha, heh, heh.

She’s not.

Silence.

Uh. Hullo?

Lull of silence continues at the other end of the line.

I often feel like these reindeer, trying to fly but falling flat on my face.

I often feel like these reindeer, trying to fly but falling flat on my face.

I’m interviewing nationally-known author Debbie Macomber (pronounced like cucumber her publicist informed me).  I’m writing a feature article for our local newspaper about an annual festival held in Port Orchard, Washington, which is the real-life setting for Macomber’s novels. At the time of the phone interview, six or seven years ago, Macomber had sold over sixty-million books.  A fact the city of Port Orchard celebrates. Thus, the festival. Although I personally hadn’t read Macomber’s books, I had read of her determination to make it as a writer. In the face of financial hardship, she persevered until she sold her first book. I recall her telling me during the interview that it took her twenty years to become an overnight success.

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