Gulf Shores

Gulf Shores
Photographer Patricia Gulick

Sunday, July 2, 2017

6/26/17 RMB Wonder Woman

6/26/17 RMB Wonder Woman


Dear Rita Mae Brown,

We walked into the theater early, before the previews, and watched as seats filled. The new Wonder Woman movie entertained us all. It excited and inspired us. Although quite different from the last film I enjoyed in the theater, Beauty and the Beast with Emma Watson, what they had in common was a good story told well.

We entertain one another with stories, fiction and fact, in books, in theaters, over the phone, everywhere there is a story to be told. And each of our lives is a story in itself, each step taken is a move into the next chapter. Each struggle, a version of good vs. evil, or a walk into the unknown, or a debate between what is best and what is less, all ending in lessons learned or not, only to be taught again.


May our actions write many happily after all endings,

Loraine

Monday, June 26, 2017

6/25/17 RMB Summer Whimsy

6/25/17 RMB Summer Whimsy


Dear Rita Mae Brown,

Saturday evening, I retired to my room early, around seven in the evening, thinking I would write. Instead I rested on my bed with Mythology by Edith Hamilton. As the book lay beside me, I closed my eyes and I enjoyed the night’s cool breeze, offering relief from a hot summer day.

From my open window, I could hear mariachi music from a neighbor’s backyard party, accompanied by their laughter. I drifted off to sleep, lulled by the melody of my mother’s people. It was a most pleasant way to end a Saturday evening.

I woke after ten, rested and not quite ready to go back to sleep. I considered writing again, but childlike whimsy held sway. I searched for, and found, a small coloring book that I had last held months, if not a year or more, ago.

I gathered my colorful pens and continued where I had left off, as though not a moment had passed. One by one, objects on the page brightened, a blue boot, a green leaf, a red umbrella. I enjoyed coloring as a child. And now I sat as an adult, doing the same, as though not a moment had passed. Life is magical that way.


Enjoying summer whimsy,

Loraine

Thursday, June 8, 2017

6/8/17 RMB One Challenge

6/8/17 RMB One Challenge


Dear Rita Mae Brown,

Most nights of the week I watch one show, a one hour show trimmed to 40 minutes sans commercials. Our San Diego County Library system has a wide variety of movies and shows on DVD. That’s where vast majority of the videos I watch reside.

Work takes up many of my hours, commuting another one, and sleep, that gets squeezed in too.

Reading is allotted to an occasional lunch break, weekend or late-night indulgence. Audio books via my recently smarter phone accompany my meager work out. From Mythology by Edith Hamilton, to Hotspur by the one and only Rita Mae Brown, to America’s Hidden History: Untold Tales of the First Pilgrims Fighting Women and Forgotten Founders that Shaped a Nation by Kenneth C. Davis, to Summer Knight by Jim Butcher… I absorb the written words, the television shows, an occasional movie, and the bits of media and news that creep through my buffer too.

It is apparent that we are a people who enjoy a challenge. When we are not busy taking one on in our lives, we create and share them in our stories. We have been doing this since before the first written words to today.  

I continue to wonder how we can steer our nature towards a kinder sort of human being. That is one challenge we have yet to master.


Onward we go,

Loraine

Sunday, April 30, 2017

4/30/17 RMB Tarzan

4/30/17 RMB Tarzan

Dear Rita Mae Brown,

Today is the last day of April. It seems important to mark the passing of time, endings and beginnings in particular.

I am reading Hotspur, your second book in the Jane Arnold fox hunting series. I’m also enjoying errands here and there listening to As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes on CD in my car. By my night stand is Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence by Daniel Goleman.

This morning I watched the latest version of Edgar Rice Burrough’s Tarzan come to life in the film The Legend of Tarzan staring Alexander Skarsgard.  

What is all this leading to? The puzzle of it all, words, books, why we write and the stories we tell.

We can live vicariously through characters, experiencing far more than each of us will in our own lives. Conversely, words can energize us to reach further than we might have risked on our own, or provide us the knowledge to do so.  

Our match can be found in words of others, the one that mirrors what we are on the outside and the one that mirrors our insides. In discovering each other, through the imagination of our authors, or their research, we discover a bit more about ourselves, our world, and all of the possibilities breathing there.

This is a how we learn and absorb our universe, by watching the rising sun, the faces we pass, and the words we devour. We are a curious lot. Our duffle bag full of inherited traits, adjusted by what has been learned, provides us everything we possess to charter our course.  

It is all an illusion, though, what we see and how we interpret it are vastly different from what another sees and the effects on that person’s life. One may face eminent danger and another reads about “those people over there” (the very ones facing danger), their worlds being worlds apart.

And, whether fiction or fact, there is this tug, internal and everlasting, connecting one being to the other. Our heart goes out to Tarzan as he rescues Jane. Our awareness expands as the scientists uncovering fossils from ancient times re-write history.

And I am convinced that words will ultimately act as the bridge from here to there, one book at a time, connecting us to our past, future, and each other, our saving grace. Words feed the depths of our hunger.

Sincerely,

Loraine

Sunday, April 16, 2017

4/16/17 RMB Siblings & Easter



4/16/17 RMB Siblings & Easter


Happy Easter Rita Mae Brown,
The sun is setting here in California. The day was good. Easter brings back memories of pink dresses and family pictures while we were in our Sunday finest. It’s a nice day to entertain images and sounds of yesteryear. 

News from Alabama came that big brother is breathing on his own and from New Mexico that big sister is hanging in there. Two siblings hospitalized, one for pneumonia and the other for heart trouble, at the same time.

Although miles divide us, our souls remain connected. Today we rejoice in another day together, far away from one another, yet together still.

I remember washing big brother’s car, with two other sisters and another brother, on a hot Alabama summer day. It was parked on our front lawn and we played more than we washed. He took care of us all without complaint.

I remember my big sister flying to Orange County from New Mexico late one night to share our Mom’s last days with us. And later her doing the honors of speaking the words that accompanied Mom’s ashes to their final resting place.

We siblings were apart more than together, often residing in different states, the gaps in our ages, and general circumstances, made memories of us together rare and precious.

Family, from those in mine, I learned that you don’t have to be together every day, nor share or even know about each other’s daily lives, to belong to each other. Blood matters not. Distance matters not. We make our family by an unspoken vow, a determination.  Young or old, whether they be friends that came into our lives late, or relatives that were here to greet us when we were born, all that matters is that they are family. Family matters.


Taking one day at a time,
Loraine

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

4/12/17 RMB Helen Reddy 2017



4/12/17 RMB Helen Reddy 2017


Dear Rita Mae Brown,

There is something about a song that can transport you back decades in an instant. For a few moments, melody streams into our core so deep that its ending opens a gap in thought from there to here and all that has transpired between then and now floods forward to fill the void.

Helen Reddy and her many songs, but most especially I am Woman, provided the soundtrack of my youth. I sit now, near my mid-fifties, and hear her again, now in her mid-seventies, still performing to the crowd, this time at the Los Angeles Women’s March on January 21st, 2017. For any fan of hers, I encourage googling Helen Reddy on YouTube, treasures await there.

What hope I held there in my childhood, and the inspiration that song gave me, awakens. I was young, unaware of inequality, although already touched by it. With her words, came my awareness. The vast difference in our society between yesteryear and today reminds me of our progress, while simultaneously emphasizing the extremely slow pace at which we evolve.

Regarding peace, equality, respect, and understanding, we remain embryos, with a long, long way to go.


Sing on,
Loraine

Sunday, March 19, 2017

3/11/17 RMB Let Humanity Win



3/11/17 RMB Let Humanity Win

Dear Rita Mae Brown,
Today I saw a Facebook post on the internet. I’m not sure who the original author was, but it includes a wish that the words be shared. And I feel they are important words, good words to share. Here they are.

"For all of you who aren't sure, it is possible to be gay and Christian. It's also possible to believe in God and science. It is possible to be pro-choice and anti-abortion.

It is equally possible to be a feminist and love and respect men. It's possible to have privilege and be discriminated against, to be poor and have a rich life, to not have a job and still have money. It is possible to be anti-guns and still believe in one's right to defend one's self, family, and property, it's possible to be anti-war and pro-military.

It is possible to love thy neighbor and despise his actions. It is possible to advocate Black Lives Matter and still be pro police. It is possible to not have an education and be brilliant. It is possible to be Muslim and also suffer at the hands of terrorists. It is possible to be a non-American fighting for the American dream.

It is possible to be different and the same.

We are all walking contradictions of what "normal" looks like. Let humanity and love win."
(The author is encouraging copy/paste if you like. If you share, only our mutual friends will see the post.)

To whoever wrote this I thank you for your words and for allowing us to share them in our corner of the world. 

May Humanity Win,
Loraine