| Everything’s Coming Up Rosen

Bye Bye 2019

Posted on 26 December 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



The close of a year, a decade, an era –

events unforeseen

We say bye bye to 2019

Unique in its way of negative feelings

of mass escalation,

division, frustration

mind-sets opposed,

never converging

despite all the urging,

small hope for its merging

sizzling embers stoked,

poked, provoked,

To strong beliefs — we were all —



What did we teach as we limped to impeach

with so many not reached?

in our sun, some were beached

or cooking a meal,

or making a deal,

critiquing a kneel,

bereft of the zeal

required to heal

to help us congeal


As never before as we enter the ‘20s

with some folks on food stamps

and others with plenty

as never before we all need to find

more ways to be kind,

to walk a few steps

in the shoes of the other

to hear — not just listen

to the heart of a brother


And then — as has happened

so much in the past

shake hands and agree

that disagreements will last

but ought never to plunder

or tear us asunder


Here’s to the magic of old

hocus pocus

goodbye to the hatreds

And in this Christmas season

And always and more

May love be our focus

And on a personal note, a sad goodbye. For at least 20 years, I have been ranting and opining and remembering in these pages. At times, I couldn’t wait to “let it all hang out.” At other times, I sat at the computer paralyzed. Nothing came to me, until … until … it DID. I never knew who read it, or who cared, but it was good for me to do it. I will miss the deadlines. But, I will make my own deadlines. You will find me, if indeed you look, at www.emilyrosen424.com.

Thanks to you, Rachel, for your encouragement, and for all of you who managed to put out a much needed community paper for so many years. Your leaving is a major loss to Deerfield.

I wish those of you who need it a good job and those of you who are retiring a happy and productive after-work life.

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The old days in Brooklyn & Merry Christmas

Posted on 05 December 2019 by LeslieM

This week, I snagged an article in the Styles Section of the New York Times about Pete Hamill, a huge hero of mine, and a now 84-year-old, somewhat disabled former hot stuff newspaper columnist, feature writer, editor and author of 21 masterful works  of both fiction and nonfiction  in which New York is a prominent backdrop. Currently, he is nostalgically existing back in time and presence in his home town of Brooklyn, while writing his next epoch, Back To The Old Country (of his youth).
This is an unapologetically long introduction to a segue into my own nostalgic memories of the same “old country” of my youth, and our several residences in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn.  
In the early depression days, desperate landlords were giving “concessions” — a first month’s free rent. I remember moving three times in three months and most probably breaking leases, but who had the money for a lawyer? We moved always in the same neighborhood, so that my younger sister and I would not have to change schools when my father was unemployed and could not afford the $50 — a month’s rent. He finally straightened out his finances and risked borrowing $500 to invest in a run-down local property which he fixed and flipped and reinvested the profits in a domino roll of good fortune. He was lucky that he had tenants who — mostly — paid rent, though not without a struggle.
One of our domiciles was located a block from Ebbets Field, the home of the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team, where Friday was Ladies Day with a discounted admission, which made me and “my gang” avid baseball fans, until, of course, the team was lured to Los Angeles, and baseball was never again the same for me.
I rode my bike in Prospect Park, and, when I was cursed one day with a flat tire, I had no cell phone to call my mother. I rang the doorbell of what turned out to be a kind stranger who allowed me to make the call. Mom came 45 minutes later — by trolley car. She did not know how to drive, American Yankee though she was. Women just didn’t drive in those days, when we were lucky to have one car, which of course, belonged to Dad.  She helped me lug the bike onto the trolley car, where she paid the dime that I didn’t have with me, and she helped me steer it home from the trolley stop.
Coney Island, the beach and the rides were often our weekend teenage destinations, and Frank Sinatra at the Paramount Theater on Broadway was worth the subway ride on days we played hooky, to stand in line and scream when the skinny kid made virtual love to his microphone.
Christmas was not much of a holiday in our almost exclusively Jewish-immigrant neighborhood. But the family across the street, although Jewish, had a magically trimmed Christmas tree defiantly placed prominently at their window, so the world could see it. And much as we pleaded to our parents to have one, we were told regretfully no, since Jews did not celebrate Christmas. We could not understand what was wrong with the family across the street, but they had evidently done something very bad.
Many a year has passed and many a Christmas tree have I admired in homes of people of all faiths. I never really believed that the people across the street had done something bad, but belief systems are hard to figure out and almost impossible to change and most of all, need to be respected, even in the face of extreme disagreement. May that be one of the most important messages of this holiday season — and a Merry Christmas to all.

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Obits! Be grateful your name is not listed

Posted on 07 November 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



Despite my advanced age, I am not an obsessive reader of the obituary pages. Alas, the people I have mostly cared about have already been there. However, I recently checked the Sunday New York Times obits out of curiosity. Actually, if you really want some good stories, this is a place to start. The biggest challenge to one’s imagination is to read between the lines. Could this person really have been God’s gift to humanity?

Some of you may remember the late comedian Alan King, who would read obituaries aloud as part of his act in an attempt to prove that women lived longer than men (statistically true), always followed by a laugh line that today would have been politically inappropriate professional suicide. He referenced in the obits, an overabundance of deceased men in their 90s, all of whom were survived by wives. The general subject, death, of course, is grim, but my mantra is that you can find humor in anything, and for a good laugh, check out youtube.com, Alan King on Obituaries.

Ah, but I digress. I will quote the one that caught my attention last week. I have changed her name and place of residence in the event that her fame slogged its way south to Florida. It was a very simple and inexpensive obit. (They charge by the word.)

It read: “Doe, Jane — Jane Doe of Mainville, Long Island is gone. She lived her life with intention.”

Well, you’ll pardon me, but think of how many ways that could be interpreted. First of all, no one claimed to have been the originator of that sentiment, but someone was nonetheless intent (pardon the pun) upon distributing the news. And the word “intention” is appealingly ambiguous. Somehow, the picture of Nurse Ratched [from One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest] popped into my head, a woman of distinct intention. And then, fleetingly, Eva Braun, creator of questionable lampshades, (who was Hitler’s wife for those of you born after the evil embers of World War II flickered out of consciousness). Of course, there was Madame Curie and Mother Teresa — both women of intention, and Lady Gaga and Marianne Williamson, and a zillion others, known and unknown whose “intentions” have been of all qualities. So much for Jane Doe, whose mysterious life ended in “gone.”

All of which gives me the most awkward segue into gratitude and — would you believe? — Thanksgiving! I am talking about gratitude that my name has not yet reached those pages, or to be more practical, is not yet eligible to appear there.  

And, so, I leave you with the November assignment of listing all the things in your life that are positive — and for which you remain grateful. The sorrows may well be there … Nobody escapes them … but, for now, we would be wise and good to ourselves by concentrating on our sunshine (when it’s not raining) and the birds, and flowers, and trees and mountains, (despite having to leave the state to find them), and oceans and whatever good personal stuff you can add to that. And may you have a really good Thanksgiving.

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For better or for worse

Posted on 03 October 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



I met my late husband on a blind date in 1952, the year Adlai Stevenson (Democrat) was running for President against General Dwight D. Eisenhower. (Republican) We were both political junkies — Democrats, and, since he was still in dental school, I had to be a “cheap date.” And so he “courted” me at free Stevenson rallies. We were very vociferous and proactive, and despondent over our loss when Eisenhower won.

Fast forward to a time when we were married and my husband was finally earning money — which was about the time he switched parties and voted for Nixon. Our “mixed marriage” survived all 57 years until his demise in 2013. We listened respectfully to each other, recognized the extent to which we were both “dug into” our (his “new”) belief system and learned from each other. We didn’t think the other was stupid, ignorant, scheming or unpatriotic. (He was a veteran of the Battle of the Bulge). Neither thought the other was a “bad” person, based on our political beliefs — or on anything else for that matter.

I will admit there were times when I entertained ideas about how to keep him away from the voting booth on election day, or tearing up his vote-by-mail ballot when I saw it in the out-mail box, but they never materialized. And so we both experienced political ups and downs as Nixon was followed by four more Republican presidents in my husband’s lifetime (not in this order): Ford, Reagan, Bush (1), Bush (2) and three Democrats: Carter, Clinton and Obama.

And I will never know if he would have become the “No Trump” Republican as did so many conservatives of our acquaintance. And I won’t even conjecture for this writing.

But I do know several “mixed marriage” couples now who are having a hard time with their relationship over this issue. I know, too, of dating couples who have either broken up over it or, if seeking a partner, have placed politics as an issue among their top criteria for a match.

What has happened to past civility and respect for our differences? For me, this is the single most frightening aspect of our current political climate. If we could only shed the idea that our disagreements make us natural enemies…

I must admit, I get stymied when I ask people from “the other side,” “Are you not outraged by the disrespect and direct defiance of law, or by inciting language or by lack of transparency ?” and I discover the answer, in most cases, to be “Well, I don’t like it, but it doesn’t  affect my support” followed by some version of a reference to “wonderful policies” and “what “everybody else” does. And that’s when I pull back and realize what “dug into” means. It means, “I ain’t budging” — and it comes from both sides.

So, it is true. I may not budge and they may not budge, which should not make us enemies. This is where history is such a balm. When I read about some of the most bellicose periods our country has experienced during its few hundred years of existence, I am comforted to know that we have always managed to survive in relative unity. This one may be the ultimate test.

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And so it goes…

Posted on 05 September 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



“Hello, Emily. This is Billie (as if I didn’t know). Are you sitting down?  I just did something monumental, and you’re the only person I can talk to about it.”

“Yes, I’m sitting down,”  my curiosity piqued and I was hesitant to tell her that I had just been studying all the artifacts in my living room, wondering how and when they would be “disposed of.”

In 1985, Billie, my good friend next door neighbor, and I took our first “adventure” trip together to Nepal. I was 58, with a spouse not at all interested in Nepal, and she, 52, a very recent widow with a daughter in the Peace Corps in Nepal.

Each year thereafter, for about 20 years, we did other (at the time) off the beaten track trips, collecting information, pictures and personal stories from our journals, all of which currently repose in a set of individual albums for each of us. The albums are in my garage in Boca and in her garage in Madison, CT.

She continued, “I just threw my albums away.”

Shock and silence … And then finally, “You what?”

“Yes, yes, yes,” she, always the minimalist, said defiantly. “Who is going to look at them? All of the stuff in there is in my head. These places and pictures are meaningless to anyone except us. It just isn’t fair to my family to make them responsible for getting rid of them.”

“You really did that? All of them?”

Horrified, I visualized the careful hours post- trips — the sharing of pictures and endless reminiscing that lasted until the next trip, the intermingling of memories each time she and I connected, by phone or visits. And, yes, the precious value to me of these possessions.

“Not yet, but almost all. I’m still working on it.”

Her voice hung in the air as if she were expecting my unequivocal approval.

“Hmmm,” I said thoughtfully.

And then … the back and forth acknowledgement of my obsession with hoarding and her insistence that this was an important way to show love for our progeny.  

“Please don’t go sentimental on me,” I thought, and then my eyes wandered back to my living room artifacts and recognition of the massive and unpleasant job entailed in the final disposal of life possessions. Thus, our conversation escalated to conclusion.

“I want you to go directly into your garage as soon as you hang up and take one album and get rid of it. Do one a day — randomly, whichever is on the top, slowly — no rush. You can look at them one last time, if you must,” she said, her voice intonation was firm as it always is.  

Eventually, we ended our conversation and, with my marching orders clear in my head, I strode into my totally disorganized garage and plucked the first album I saw titled: Amazon Adventure 1988.

She was right! How many pictures of jungles and indigenous people, and fish and slimy snakes, would anyone else want to view, and who, indeed, were Karen and Claire, and Tom and … and … but wait … Rebecca! Rebecca Schaeffer, 22 year old TV starlet with her parents … Rebecca, who just months after our return was shot to death in her Los Angeles apartment by a celebrity stalker whose trial and story made hot headlines for months thereafter.

Could I throw away all those pictures of her and newspaper stories and correspondence with her parents? Could I?

Tomorrow, I will tackle the Galapagos Islands, where only one has-been celebrity was among our group as we tripped our way lightly in full nudity following the blue boobies and newly hatched turtles into the clear waters off Ecuador.

Yes, Billie, I promised. I will, I will, I will.

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Everything’s Coming Up Rosen: Cell phones and me — a rant

Posted on 08 August 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



I worship Steve Jobs for his brilliance and creativity and the Smartphone (about his persona , another time). However, for all the ways in which he changed the world, not so much. He did indeed change it both for the better and the worse. And the totality of that Ying and Yang has often been explored, but I am somehow impelled to do it here. 

For the better:

* Cell phone parking lots at airports and the concomitant ease for people connections.

* The magic of texting when I’m at a meeting and the phone vibrates, and it’s a non-emergency (which, of course, it always is) and I can surreptitiously wiggle my fingers to assure the caller that indeed he or she will have my undivided attention — after the meeting — lest he or she feel ignored.

* The incalculable joy of knowing that only I will have access to my conversations — that no one (except maybe a couple of enterprising Russians) will be able to listen in on the “other phone.”

* The wonderful access to Google to find out the name of the female lead in that 1936 movie that most people I know who weren’t even born yet, had not seen … and my ability to bypass Siri for that information. Siri, who, God save her soul, is an ignorant idiot. (If that is an oxymoron, my apology to idiots.)

* Of course, the advantage (?– hmmmm) of being able to have human contact wherever I am and whatever I am doing.

* And I can count on you to fill in the missing advantages.

But for the inevitably permanent worse!

* Although I am “in touch” with many folks as a result of the iPhone — that most wonderful of the five senses — touch (skin to skin touch) is slip, slip, slipping away and some folks don’t even know how far gone it is.

* As a species, our very bodies are in transition — mutating, no doubt — heads down, fingers flying, eyes darting from other world-phone to the here and now place of reality. We have actually learned to be in two (or maybe more) places at the same time, and, the younger we are, the more natural it seems.

* And my personal abhorrence gets tested on an almost daily basis. When I am in a social setting with others, dinner, after-dinner … a walk … a beach-sit … a night on the town … wherever — I give the other person or people my undivided attention. But I am so old that I actually expect the same from others. (an unrealistic expectation, yes!) Is it possible that we never had “emergencies” when I was younger, living with land phones only, where people left messages to which responses were given within hours or days — not seconds.

Please, when we are together, turn it off, put it away, do not coddle it as if it were some small living creature needing the warmth of your hand. And fergodsake, please don’t show me your pictures unless I ask for them, and I promise I won’t force mine on you!

* Finally, however, I dare anyone to deny its highly addictive nature.

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Everything’s Coming Up Rosen: Reality? Truth?

Posted on 05 July 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



I was always a big fan of “reality.” My relationship with Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy didn’t last very long. Myths, magical realism, religious stories based on fantasy were fun but always overruled by my skepticism and, to some extent, distrust.

Having adults tell me lies made me feel like my intellect was being demeaned. How stupid did they think I was to believe that the prince actually climbed up Rapunzel’s hair to the tower to rescue her?  

Don’t get me wrong. I enjoyed Mother Goose and Cinderella like most kids, but I was never caught up in the magic of dismissing my belief system. I always took great comfort in what I knew was reality. I relied on truth as the one steady reliable “thing” in life, and, if the truth was bad for me, I could handle it because I knew it to be indisputable, and I knew I had to change circumstances and formulate a different truth for myself.

I believe that I can speak for many others who dare to think of the ramifications of the crumbling of the nature of “truth.” We are living during a period of major societal disruption, and the loss of reality seems to be pushing us over the edge.

Surely in political circles, there are very distinct “realities” — different “truths” held to be equally immutable by each side. Anyone who switches from [one cable newscast to others] is transported to a completely different reality. The question is can society live peaceably within a state of two palpably different realities. I am not talking about two opposing belief systems. This is different. I am talking about viewing the same set of circumstances and transmitting different interpretations to the brain. And this is where my faith in reality falters. Perhaps, it (reality) actually doesn’t exist.

And so with these musings in mind, and in recognition that we are again celebrating our most significant national holiday, I transition to the revered words of Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self evident: that all “men” are created equal [with women and African Americans relegated to lesser status],  that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights — that among them are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

I look at those words these 243 years later and suppress a groan of incredulity. Those truths were self evident? Those truths were acclaimed during all these years as being sacred to the values of our country, and yet how fictitious they were, and how for two centuries — centuries! —“all men” were certainly not deemed to have been created as the “equal” to white-skinned men, by any stretch of the political, social or economic imagination. And, in our blustering “patriotism,” we got away with worshiping those hollow deceitful words.

Perhaps non-white men and women, as well as people regarded as “other,” might soon produce a declaration of their own that can be interpreted by all as a mirror of truth and reality and can be revered as an updated document to which we will be proud to pledge our allegiance.

We honor Thomas Jefferson and our founders for their political genius and for guiding us in the direction of our not yet perfect union. We can still do better and, hopefully, will never stop trying. And maybe someday, the larger truth to which we all aspire, may be monolithic.

Happy Barbecue or whatever you do to celebrate our gratitude for an ever striving-to-be-great country.

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Everything’s Coming Up Rosen: D-Day – 75

Posted on 06 June 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



On June 6, 1944 —”D-Day” — 75 years ago, Allied troops invaded the Normandy beachhead in France. Who remembers? We had been officially “at war” since Dec. 11, 1941, and the victory we all prayed for seemed deadly far into the future.

I was 17 and, on that day, I was walking down the aisle for my high school graduation and the boys in my class — almost all of them — were preparing to go to war. The ones in the classes ahead of mine were already gone. Saturday night dances to the songs of the popular radio program, Your Hit Parade, most often in different people’s homes, became an all girls meeting. We shared mail and discussions about whose boyfriend was stationed in what weird-named place no one had ever heard of in Asia or which Air Force base or Navy ship those boys were likely to have been on, curled up and writing longing letters on what was called “onion skin” paper — “V-Mail.” (V for victory) I can still remember the serial numbers, (required on addresses) of some of the boys with whom I corresponded. I was a prodigious letter-writer.

That was only one of the things we did for the “war effort.” Bob Hope would bring his troupe of entertainers to the most remote corners of the globe, but I wasn’t a celebrity and the only “cheer” I was capable of was a newsy letter, as funny as I could make it. I can only now imagine how they might have been received — “mail call” in the midst of bombing and sniping, and surrounded by blood and guts.

We were all-in for “sacrifice.” The government issued “ration” books to every household, which limited the supply of sugar, canned goods, meat and cooking oil, and we couldn’t purchase those or a list of other items without relinquishing some ration stamps. I’m sure that fuel for cars was on that list, although who ever heard of a two car family back then?

We gave blood — even lying about our age. My parents were volunteer air raid wardens stationed at assigned times on the roof of our apartment building, dispatched to do — I can’t imagine what — at the suspicion of possible foreign planes hovering over our space. Neither of them, or anyone I knew at the time, had remotely considered the possibility of ever being a passenger on an airplane.

We didn’t have television and relied on newspapers and radio for information. The movie, Saving Private Ryan, was not even a budding creation in the mind of the not yet two-year-old Steven Spielberg.

Too many of us knew one or more than one “kid” who came back home in a body bag or with missing body parts or some who didn’t come home at all. Sadness was pervasive, but life at home went on.

I was bound for college, a commute of sorts, a daily subway ride from Brooklyn to NYU (downtown Greenwich Village) — where there was always another passenger to shake me from my sleep so that I would not miss my station, as I held tightly to my tell-tale bundle of books. And where, within a year after D-Day, “the boys” were flooding back to colleges on the (free) G.I. Bill.

Obviously, I’ve had several birthdays since D-Day. When I think of the seismic changes in society, technology, communication, musical trends, standards of behavior, political conduct, healthcare, attitudes about food and fitness, attempts at racial and gender equality, connectivity to the ends of our planet and, of course, so much more, I feel so lucky to have experienced “many lives” and much personal growth. Although today feels like a low point in that roller coaster ride, I know enough about history to be confident that we will drag ourselves out of this current morass, too. Indeed, it is the lessons of history that give us hope.

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Everything’s Coming Up Rosen: Whatever will be, will be

Posted on 02 May 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



I live frugally, though not inexpensively, in a 50 unit non-gated community in a perfect neighborhood for me where I feel safe and secure, almost like in the old days when people never bothered to lock their doors. I live where ducks and birds, and trees and grass, and flowers and water, and Walgreens are all within my sight. Daily, I walk maybe a couple of hundred feet or so to the mailbox from which about 95 percent of what I retrieve is requests for my money. And, truthfully, if I could, I would give to them all.

But here’s the thing. I have every chance of outliving my money — depending, of course, on a plethora of conditions that might or might not arise regarding the national economy and my own personal health which, for my age (it could be bad luck to mention) is remarkably and thankfully okay, so far.

So, I actually “saved” $24.83 on my Publix total bill of $78.34 this week. This is mostly an aberration but with careful attention to “BOGOs” it does happen occasionally. I mostly store-hop to save money — at the Dollar Store, Aldi’s, Walmart, etc. By most measurements, I am not poor. And, yet, I live in fear of becoming so.

I am also frantically frustrated by the “stop” button in my head which tells me that I cannot “give” (money) as I would like to — nor can I reasonably prioritize which “cause” is more worthy than another.

However, in consideration of the fact that May is Mental Health Month and, from my perspective, most every good cause rests on the assumption that emotional stability is the bottom line requisite for advocacy, this is and has always been my priority. (www.faulkcenterforcounseling.org)

No one in this world escapes from having bad things happen to them, and learning how to cope with the negative in a way that can enhance the positive elements to which all of us are privy in varying degrees is the greatest single gift we can hope for in life.

I can also list the mail I get that gives me pause as I weigh these other needs against my actuarial numbers, my assets, my chances of income and my willingness, or lack of — to live a lesser life.

I am in awe of Henry David Thoreau and Siddhartha, but not yet ready to live a Walden Pond life style.

On the other hand, I don’t have the slightest desire for a Park Avenue Penthouse, as a metaphor, and all the accouterments of that lifestyle.

And see? I just opened my mail and am told that my auxiliary health insurance premiums are being increased as of July. That’s enough for contributions to the several good causes represented by the letters in the “maybe” pile on my desk. Oh, I’m sure you noticed that gas prices have inched up again.

Of course, I am but one of the millions who go through life prioritizing expenditures and living with the realistic awareness that — poof — the world, our world, could end any minute.

And that’s why, having had my rant, I put that thought back into a locked pocket somewhere in my aura and begin to write checks with abandon, and look up at our Florida sun and get ready for a beach day tomorrow… and repeat the old saying “whatever will be, will be.”

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Everything’s Coming Up Rosen: What do you do all day?

Posted on 04 April 2019 by LeslieM

By Emily Rosen



There are some people I know who unintentionally sound rude in simply expressing their curiosity when they ask, “What do you do all day?” Actually, I interpret that as a coded unstated question which, in reality, goes like this, “So, old lady, what’s it like to live alone?”

My answer: “Oh Baby! For me, it’s the last phase-of-life dream – being responsible to no one, a reward for all those, yes, mostly wonderful years of being what my family needed me to be but, to be frank, was not always the real me. Now, I am able to navigate from day to day, my journey of choice, while wallowing in long delicious silences as well as whatever sounds I consciously seek.

First, as always, I need to acknowledge that I am lucky, lucky, lucky to be in relatively good health — able to drive, walk (not so well), see and hear (could be better, but…), read (with a magnifying glass), think, feel, muse, ponder, explore, converse and use, with some ease, computer and smart phone.

So, “what do I do all day?” I am out of bed any time between 6 and 8 a.m., and then washed, showered, exercised (daily), dressed and en route to the kitchen, during which lightning-quick time, I alight on my choice of breakfast . Not one to fall into habit, my need for variety sometimes causes the (minor) stress of decision making – as in, what to eat for breakfast, despite that my singular most important mantra is “avoid stress.”

If it’s Sunday, I bike and then read the New York Times, which could account for a major part of the day. Other days, I have the following options (some more chosen commitments than options): prepare for or facilitate a Memoir Writing Class (since the year 2000), co-facilitate a therapeutic support group, go to the Boca Downtown library where, after doing my business, I often just sit on the outdoor swing in the community garden and study the variety of growing veggies, putter around in my own teeny tiny garden caring for the “real” growth and admiring the fake ones that make me smile, invite company for a meal (I love to create my own recipes, which I can never duplicate), keep in touch with friends and family by phone, text, e-mail or snail mail or actual eyeball to eyeball and touch depending on their advanced or laggard ability to communicate and their geographical location. I walk for about 20 minutes in my apartment on a straight path while watching TV or outdoors around a local lake, write a poem, or check out a newly discovered website or TED talk, spend time with Google and Amazon, direct “Alexa” to play music of my current mood while I listen quietly and think great thoughts, the latter sometimes even without the music, plus the usual mandated chores which keep my house tidy the way I like it. I love to wander in Publix and Dollar stores, beach and pool, of course. [I watch] very limited TV, even as I am addicted to “news” (whatever that is, these days), but that’s a whole separate column. I take occasional local three to five day runaways with friends, exploring the glorious diversity of our state. And, as self appointed president of the “Nap Society,” I indulge frequently and highly regard it as a life extending activity.

It’s a good life and I love living it.

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