Easy to Get, Hard to Keep

A woman I worked with years ago, a lovely bastion of traditionally built good hard common sense with an Israeli accent, used to say “It is easy to get a thing. The test is in keeping it.”

too hard to keepMiriam had permutations of this saying. “Easy to get, hard to keep” referred to high maintenance people in relationships. “You can get it, but can you keep it?” referenced programs we wanted to write grants for in the organization (the American Red Cross, back when they were kinda still respected). It was her way of asking “Are we chasing the dollar at the risk of mission drift?”

Sometimes she’d just rotate her hand up and down at the wrist and say, with that eyebrow-tilting smirking sparkle in her eye, “Easy, hard.” In other words, happened next was so up in the air it could flip six times before coming down. How it would land was anyone’s guess.

But my favorite was when she waited until pompous people had left our offices, having single-handedly mansplained to us how to save the universe, end poverty, bring justice to America. She’d wait until the door closed, lean in, and say “He can get things, but he can’t keep them.” Meaning there was no sustainability to the empire-building this person was doing, and it would all fall down if it ever even got to the heavy lifting they’d need atop their smoke-mirrors-and-faulty-paperwork foundation.

I think of Miriam, who has probably left this Earth by now, often these days. The divisions in our country, the tight election result last night, the strange rule-lifting and civility-ending moments when anything goes in our effort to keep (or acquire) that which is best for us at the expense of everyone else. (Republicans, Democrats, Christians, pagans – at this point it feels like a free-for-all for all; good behavior knows neither creed nor party.)

It is easy to get something, hard to keep it. Maybe that’s good advice for us to remember as we go into this season of acquisition. In the abstract world as well as the concrete one, some things aren’t worth holding on to, while others aren’t worth trying to get in the first place.

Heh. Does this make arguing politics on Facebook the equivalent of parents on Black Friday duking it out in the mall over a hatch-a-mole?

Anyway, Miriam’s advice is something I’m keeping in mind these days, not unsolicited advice for the universe – or the dozen people who read my blog. :] It can be easy to get a thing but hard to keep it. Have a sustainability plan. And a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Joyous Kwanza, and/or Cheerful Solstice.

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Filed under Big Stone Gap, Life reflections, Little Bookstore of Big Stone Gap, Uncategorized, Wendy Welch

Caption Contest Time

It’s time to vote on the best meme –

They are numbered, so just vote for your favorite by its number.

glass 1

Number 1

glass 2

Number 2

glass 3

Number 3

glass 4

Number 4

 

glass 5

Number 5

 

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The Canticle of Turning, by Rory Cooney

time-poy-cover-today-inline-171206_d52cad094fee0090903e9c449d3ea534.today-inline-large2xMy soul cries out with a joyful shout
that the God of my heart is great,
And my spirit sings of the wondrous things
that you bring to the one who waits.
You fixed your sight on the servant’s plight,
and my weakness you did not spurn,
So from east to west shall my name be blest.
Could the world be about to turn?

Refrain:
My heart shall sing of the day you bring.
Let the fires of your justice burn.
Wipe away all tears,
For the dawn draws near,
And the world is about to turn.

Though I am small, my God, my all,
you work great things in me.
And your mercy will last from the depths of the past
to the end of the age to be.
Your very name puts the proud to shame,
and those who would for you yearn,
You will show your might, put the strong to flight,
for the world is about to turn.

Refrain

From the halls of power to the fortress tower,
not a stone will be left on stone.
Let the king beware for your justice tears
every tyrant from his throne.
The hungry poor shall weep no more,
for the food they can never earn;
These are tables spread, ev’ry mouth be fed,
for the world is about to turn.

Canticle of Turning, Rory Cooney

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The Stupidest Angel by Christopher Moore

angelSo here’s my problem…..

I started reading this book, thinking it would be funny, I could review it for Christmas and be timely and relevant and it was short and I’d finish it quickly….

…and I didn’t like it enough to finish it. I didn’t even get to the brain-eating zombies the Angel raised when he got confused by the wishes of the wrong child to have Santa raised from the dead after he’d been whacked in the face with a shovel by a Christmas-tree-stealing do-gooder whose friend wields a broadsword.

That enough about plot summary? The plot could best be described as “smoke pot while watching HBO all night, then write.” Yeah, hilarious. Not.

What’s funny about a bunch of stereotypes slouching toward Bethlehem in an overwritten “ain’t my word use clever” streams of unmerciful-undead never ceasing?

I never read any of Moore’s other books. Tom Robbins kills me, so funny, so kooky, so Lewis Carroll on  a good day. Moore, apparently, is meant to be like him.

Still waiting to see that parallel line meet itself….

So I’m sorry to tell you that I have no Monday book because I backed the wrong horse, and didn’t have time to start over.

All I can tell you is, save yourself. If you like character driven plots, well, his characters are as thin as the paper they’re written on. His plot is driven by wild horses running away, and I’m not going to be looking for any more Moores.

Go watch Alias Grace. It’s way better and you can crochet at the same time.

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Please Read This

In solidarity with this blog that NAILED IT about animal shelters, I am reblogging the link here. It’s not got any graphic pictures or horror stories.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and pass it on – and act on it. Bless you and yours.rickon towel

Andy Roark Animal Shelters

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The Vagaries of Age – –

Jack slips in under the wire – –

I’m an idiot!

I have an inherited condition called ‘Nail Patella Syndrome’ (NPS), passed through the male line and mainly affecting bones, joints, finger and toe nails, and teeth. So, whenever I have any problem that might be attributed to that I’m quick to jump to that conclusion!

Back when we heard that ‘The Little Bookstore of Big Stone Gap’ would be published, we were on vacation in Chicago (we’d discovered that we could get a cheap flight from our local airport). But shortly before that I began to suffer severe pain in my left hip, Thigh, knee and foot. So much that I needed to use a cane, which eased me through check in very quickly!

Chiropractics aren’t a big thing in Scotland, so I wasn’t too sure Terri would be able to do much for me when we got back. But – miracle of miracles – after a couple of sessions I was back to normal, and she was very interested to learn about NPS.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago and I begin to experience the very same thing on my right side.

I’m four years older and people are talking about sciatica and arthritis, but I’m still focused on NTS as the culprit.

Until – –

The sainted Terri has again been X-raying and adjusting me without too much effect. The ‘Full Scottish Breakfast Club’ (of which I am a member) spent Thanksgiving weekend in Asheville, with me hirpling like an auld man. One of the other members (who shall be nameless) passed me heavy duty painkillers to let me sleep at night.

But, as I lay on Terri’s couch yesterday morning and she battered me around, she asked me how long I had kept my very thick wallet in my right hip pocket. “For years” I said.

Up until we spent that vacation in Chicago I had always kept it in my left hip pocket – until the pocket wore out. The I shifted it to my right hip pocket. I had been keeping a half inch wedge under – first my left hip, then my right hip – until yesterday morning.

I shifted it to a front pocket before I left the chiro office and almost immediately felt better!

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Selkie Calls a Press Conference

Good afternoon and thank you all for being here. I know you’ve got many questions for me since my starring role in the major motion picture, AFF GIVING TUESDAY PROMO. The film has just been released.

Let me begin with a few basics.23828923_947600555395967_1913690358_o Yes, this was my debut performance, but I prefer to call it my break-out. Anyone can see I’m a natural. And that I have a great instinct for choosing good scripts. At 12 weeks, I’m old enough to know what sells.

How did I get into Hollywood? I guess you could say acting was a way to compensate for the loss I felt after my family deserted me. So many of us in the biz have had troubled home lives; it’s the valley of shadows that truly makes or breaks an artist, in my opinion, getting in touch with the abandonment, the rejection, the heartbreak, the shots and worming medicine… From the dark path of uncertainty grows the true artist, giving that performance where the pain of the past is turned into pathos for the Big Screen.

My family? I had four brothers and sisters but they all got adopted and I was stuck here at the group home. I play acted to pass the time, pretended I was a fairy princess, rescued by a furrever family…23874247_947600735395949_1465708732_o {ahem} So when the casting call went out for GIVING TUESDAY, I knew this was the role I had been born to play. My character drew her strength from true life experiences. It was a bit traumatic, really, reaching down in there and remembering the hard times with no food, no warm bed, no security, but it was worth it to see the producer’s jaw drop at the audition. And the rest is history. Making history, one might say. Teehee.

No, I really wasn’t expecting the public reaction to be so huge. Okay, well, false modesty aside, I’m adorable and all, and I do have a certain je ne sais quoi on camera… you’ve seen the film, right? Then you know what I’m talking about. The accolades and offers coming in right now, they’re only what one might assume from such a magnificent delivery as mine.selkie

Yes, I do expect to hear from Meowimax shortly but right now I’m still under contract with Appalachian Feline Friends. They’re trying to raise money for spays and neuters coming up for some of the others in the group home. That reminds me, anyone who donates through Facebook on the Appalachian Feline Friends site between Tuesday and the end of the month gets their funds matched by the Gates Foundation. Double the money, no extra cost to the donor.

See it’s information like that I want to use my new platform of fame to highlight. My meteoric rise to stardom would be in vain were I to forget those humble beginnings with all the little cats back there who need a leg up. I’m planning to hire a couple as personal assistants before my next film. Stylists, carry my water dish, that kind of thing.

Shooting begins after Thanksgiving on my next project. It’s a biopic called “Furrever Family” and features me getting adopted. Kind of a “This is Your Life” documentary, focused on this one special moment.

Weeeelllll, the rumor is true. We did use a body double in a couple of scenes. I was unavailable for shooting the finale because of a vet appointment. A girl has to do self-care, you know.selkie

Which reminds me. I’ve brought copies of my rider to pass out, specifying my dressing room needs. Fresh tuna only, none of that canned stuff. Pedicures are weekly and I prefer white–whole and Vitamin D fortified is best, but I’ll drink raw as well. Now if there are no further questions, one of the little people has arranged a meeting with the funders for my next project. You can support it in Appalachian Feline Friends.

Thank you, oh, and I’d like thank the Academy and particularly Dirk and Martha Wiley, the production team. And now, we’ll watch my movie. Again. Here

 

 

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