Touch Me, Kiss Me, Thrill Me

Dearest Reader!

One of the loveliest aspects of romantic love is the enduring imprint it inevitably leaves on our heart and body.

So much so that even if “love” only lasts for an hour, a day, or weeks, years later when other “urgent” memories have faded, the memory of a single moment can still reach down into our being with its long arms and touch us deeply–decades later.

This is a true story of such a moment of “love:”

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Happy Valentine’s Day

winged arts flying through the air and a cloud shooting heart arrows

Dearest Reader!

If wishes could come true and my wishes had any power at all in the Universe, then this is my heartfelt wish for today: That every living soul who has ever dreamed a dream of true love could win the lottery of love…

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Call to action: Go forth and commit a random act of loving!

I Want My Dada…

NOTE: This is Part II of a two-part series. Please check out Part I.

Dearest Reader!

As I stated in Part I, a dear friend asked, “If you could spend 24 hours with anyone doing exactly what you want, who would it be and what would you do?”

Answering this question has uncovered longings in me that I did not even know I had. It seems that I am famished for connection, family history, and continuity.

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I Want My Grandma…

Dearest Reader!

Last week, a dear friend asked me a most ordinary but meaningful question. He asked:

If you could spend 24 hours with anyone doing exactly what you want, who would it be and what would you do?

Her name was Mary Mathilda Lavinia.

And when she fell into her final sleep on April 25, 1990, I was at work. I was wearing a two-piece, purple floral peplum dress from Lord & Taylor and my favorite slingbacks.

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Where Are Your Pearls?!

Dear Reader!

Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you. ~ Matthew 7:6, King James Version

The years have taught me much about myself.

I have learned that my heart cares too much; that my soul is fragile; and that when I get hurt, the pain cuts deep and scars permanently.

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Take a Moment…

sandy beach, blue skies, white clouds, blue ocean

Dear Reader!

This picture has reminded me yet again that there’s so much astounding loveliness in our world!

Call to action: Take a moment to imagine yourself walking along this peaceful stretch of sandy beach; inhaling the crisp, salty air; and feeling the ocean breeze caress your bare skin.

All I Want for Christmas…

a white gift box with red hearts on it tied up with a red ribbon admist a scattering of sparkly red bark

Dear Reader!

The day designated to celebrate the birth of Christ, the greatest gift of all time, is mere days away.

And although it is NOT my birthday, who doesn’t love getting gifts. So here is a list of all I want for Christmas this year:

  • a warm, cozy hug that lasts and lasts and lasts without agenda…
  • a l-o-o-o-n-g stretch of time with no dull, trifling busyness that must be done…
  • a hearty, savory, steaming bowl of Chicken Tortilla Soup on an icy winter evening..
  • the sound of absolute quietness (does anyone else remember that sound?!)…
  • a kinder, gentler, slower world so that I can E-X-H-A-L-E…
  • peace of mind and spirit…
  • all the true love I can stand…
  • the sweetest kiss to seal the deal…

Really, that is all I want for Christmas.

Call to action: What’s on your Christmas wish list?

Enjoy the very FIRST post I wrote one year ago: Today, I made my mommy cry…

Let’s Live Romantically

a quote on living romantically

Dear Reader!

Little acts of romance can happen every day if we expand the definition by making it more inclusive of all the people we love–mom, dad, brother, sister, friend, lovers–and then finding ways to weave it through the everyday fabric of our lives and the lives of our beloveds.

And here’s a thought: Wouldn’t it be wonderful if every day we also chose to embrace a complete stranger with a romantic spirit–to truly consider and appreciate, to really care for, to deeply treasure?!

Seriously, if enough of us did this, we could probably affect the world.

Call to action: Think about it. And ask yourself how can you infuse your life and the life of someone else with romance today and every day.

Hopelessly: Written on the Wind

image of a wooden person crushing head of another wooden person with a rock

Dear Reader!

This is a true story.

and so she let herself wonder
when he said, “I am so very sorry to have hurt you”
and she let herself half-way trust
when he said, “I promise, I promise you I will never ever hurt you again”
and she let herself plunge all the way
when his full lips earnestly graze the sweet spot at the back of her neck
in that moment, she thawed, she melted, she gave in
she deeply needed to feel something, to feel anything, to choose life

but very soon afterwards
their fable of “love” would play out the only way it could
really, as it always had
he would swiftly forget how very sorry he was
his voice cloaked in heavy, utter contempt when he spoke to her
his promises as meaningful as the wind they were written on

this wasn’t the something, the anything she had hoped for…

Call to action: Share with us your own thoughts on love and heartbreak in the comments.

Check out two of my favorite posts: Remembrance: Deep, Meaningful, True and Love Fights.

Beautiful, Successful, Rich, Undressed

silhouette of erotic woman

Dear Reader!

Am I cuckoo? Because I am feeling cuckoo and more than a tad bit nauseated too!

Why is that Food Network chef—you know, the woman everyone thinks is so beautiful—wearing a very body conscious, white dress and making like “sexy” as she lies in a pool of marinara sauce?!

Eww.

Why is a famous, really famous, Academy Award-winning actress known for her very pouty lips wearing nothing but that pout and a naughty sliver of silk?!

Can it get any worse?!

Why is Food Network’s Ms. EVOO wearing nothing but a bra, a tiny red and white gingham apron with pink bows, and red heels as she removes the Thanksgiving turkey from the oven? And why is she up on the white tiled kitchen counter in hot pants—yes, hot pants—all sudsy and giggly?

Alright, it officially just got excruciatingly worse!

Why is there a life-size poster of a rap diva with all three assets on display: back arched and arse out, boobs in your face, and her painted, pouty lips suggestively parted?!

This at my local mall: Kids, impressionable kids, go to the mall.

Okay, I am about to upchuck my breakfast, second breakfast, and lunch, so I will stop here.

The descriptions above are just a few of the unfortunate, au courant images from the covers and/or pages of popular men’s magazines.

A truly powerful woman has nothing to prove and no desire or need to undress herself in public simply for random male viewing pleasure.

Seriously, these days, my local magazine stand resembles a soft porn site. It seems like magazine covers are in need of a rating system like movies, R(estricted) or NC-17 (Adults Only).

Unsurprisingly enough, I have NEVER seen any handsome, successful, rich man featured on these same magazines naked, with an open crotch, with suggestively parted lips, or with the infamous arched back and arse shot. And they certainly do not slosh in food–that would be ridiculous, right?!

For example, Channing — the bod — Tatum graced one of the guilty men’s magazines wearing (1) a pair of long pants, (2) a shirt, (3) a jacket, and, get this: (4) a damn vest too.

So, why are women who are considered beautiful and successful and rich willingly getting undressed for these types of photo ops?

Why?

Is it vanity? Is it insecurity? Some deluded sense of power?

Where is the power in the centuries old male game of female objectification?

How is a woman powerful who needs to be always seen as indiscriminately fuckable?

Where is the power in looking like a submissive, fuckable, blow up doll?

What does it say about a woman whose dignity and sensual mystery is for sale, especially when she doesn’t even need the money or the exposure?

Yes, these women may be getting paid, but they are not in control.

Too many women have drank the spiked Kool-aid that they can express themselves in any way they damn well please, but the truth is: A truly powerful woman has nothing to prove and no desire or need to undress herself in public simply for random male viewing pleasure.

On the other hand, an insecure woman searching for daddy’s or any man’s approval, well, that another story…

Call to action: Am I cuckoo? Are you feeling cuckoo too?

Below are links to related articles written by other people that make very good sense:

Mom’s Epic Open Letter to Daughter
A Daddy’s Letter to His Little Girl
Words from a Father to His Daughter from the Makeup Aisle

Wedded Bliss & I Don’t

Couple in love sitting on a bench

Dear Reader!

First, a very important and necessary disclaimer:

I believe in love that fights.

I believe in love that sacrifices and gives every thing, every thing—and not think twice.

I believe in love that shatters our everyday reality and flings us into the heavens not only exists but, more importantly, can go the distance… all the way to the grave.

I believe we live and we die and that love is the only thing—the only thing—that makes any of the in between worthwhile or meaningful.

My point is: I believe in love that is deep, meaningful, true.

I do.

Now, that I have delivered my disclaimer…

bridal couple wearing sneakers

Nevertheless, I have never witnessed firsthand a happy marriage. I am not saying they don’t exist—I simply have not witnessed one firsthand. I have, however, had great occasion to witness too many unhappy and/or stupid ones.

Not to mention how much I despise, abhor, and loathe women’s fixation on ONE day and an overpriced, white dress — when it is loving day in and day out; putting up with each other’s bullsh*t; honoring your love and your beloved; and living a lifetime together well that really matters.

So from a very tender age, I swore off the institution of marriage.

Love, definitely yes. Marriage, definitely no.

To me marriage is primarily a social construct that protects any children a union might give birth to and provides the partners’ with legal recourse (typically, the woman) for “fair” compensation should the union fail.

In love relationships, mutual adoration and fidelity come first, and then the parties involved can choose to marry to make a public statement of their intentions. But you certainly do not need marriage to convey this.

Unfortunately, too many of us confuse love/romance and marriage as being one and the same. They are not! Frankly, love does NOT necessarily equal marriage and marriage does not necessarily equal love.

FACT: People marry for all sorts of reasons, known and unknown. And you can be married and totally uncommitted and unmarried and 110% in with all of your heart, body, and soul.

With that being said and because when it comes to matters of the heart or marriage, nothing is simple: While I am decidedly not interested in saying, “I do,” I would never consider for one second staying with any man who does not want to marry me.

Call to action: Which do you believe in: “I do” or “I don’t?”

Happy Veteran’s Day!

toddler running through a field of American flags

Dear Reader!

Here are some wise words from actor Tom Hanks: “I’m glad I didn’t have to fight in any war. I’m glad I didn’t have to pick up a gun. I’m glad I didn’t get killed or kill somebody. I hope my kids enjoy the same lack of manhood.”

Today is Veteran’s Day. It is the day we celebrate both our living and our fallen heroes of our armed forces.

I beg you to let us never forget those that have fallen, their courage and their sacrifice, and to let us keep in our hearts and hopes — always — those who are still serving us!

If this dream is to be a reality, we must all dream — and ACT — together towards its achievement!

Finally, I have a dream that one day the only courage our young will need to be heroes is: To every day choose to express loving-kindness to themselves and to others.

Call to action: Remember and hope… And if there is a hero in your life that you would love to pay tribute to, I urge you to leave a comment in their honor.

I’m pretty proud of this post, so check it out: Memorial Day: It’s a Sad Day.

When a Woman Wants to Leave…

open bird cage with birds leaving

Dear Reader!

Good art starts a lively conversation in your heart and/or in your head.

The French film Leaving (2009) directed by Catherine Corsini and starring Kristin Scott Thomas is good art if the comments on Netflix are any indication.

On Netflix, this film got viewers more hot and bothered than Suzanne, our heroine, was over Ivan, her Latin lover. And that, my dear reader, is quite a feat as Suzanne was both deliriously mad and deliciously hot and bothered over Ivan.

So let us have a chat about Leaving culled from the rich commentary on Netflix. Because there is so many subtle layers to this film, it will be difficult, but I will try to be brief.

Why would a well-do woman leave her husband to be with the hired help?

Apparently, many of the viewers are snobs. Who knew?! But hear ye: A palatial cage is still a cage. And the human desire to feel fully alive can be a powerful one, especially if your husband is…

How could she do this to a husband who loved her?

Disparaging your aspirations openly in front of the “hired help;” dismissing your aspirations in front of your kids and your mutual friends; forbidding you to have your own feelings; locking you in your room; blacklisting you so you could not support yourself; raping you—someone, anyone, how is this love?

He couldn’t stand to lose, so he…

Whatever is she going to talk to the hired help about?

Snobbery, again! It is ridiculous to assume that “higher education” naturally implies general intelligence. Conversely, being the “hired help” does not mean one is unable to have meaningful conversations or is uneducated.

And I have a question: What is Suzanne talking to her boorish, disrespectful, abusive husband about?! What?!

There is no way a well-to-do woman would throw away a 20-year marriage and her “easy” life for poverty with the “hired help.”

Mm, she might if she was married to an abusive, controlling husband and finally had enough!

Clearly, for Suzanne the grand adornments of her upper class cage were no longer enticing.

And why do so many of us believe that feeling deader than King Tut inside but being financial secure is a worthier choice than choosing love or the desire to feel fully alive?!

Furthermore, who said anything about poverty?! She was willing return to the work force…

Bottom line

This is a wonderful film about the internal incitements that can drive us to behave in ways that are as surprising to ourselves as they are to others.

The director did a great job of drawing the viewer into Suzanne’s “madness” by never explicitly revealing Suzanne’s why. Like Suzanne said, “I didn’t expect to fall in love. It just hit me.”

It just hit us too. It didn’t make sense to her. Maybe, it doesn’t make sense to us…

As for the ending, which is also the beginning, of the film, it will have a visceral effect on anyone with a pulse or a heart.

Call to action: Do you understand the desperate drive to feel alive? Have you ever gone “mad” for love?

Other film posts: Remembrance: Deep, Meaningful, True; Fall in Love, the 11th Commandment; and Do You Want to Live Forever?

Bacon Is Revelatory! I Miss You Minnie!

bacon

Dear Reader!

OK, before I go on, please humor me: Take a moment, look at the image above, and imagine that the skillet of bacon goodness above is sizzling on your stove, in your kitchen. Now, can you smell the heady scent of smoky deliciousness? Is your mouth beginning to water expectantly? Are you anxiously waiting to take your first bite, and another, and another of a hot, crispy strip?

I can. It is. I am!

Anyhoo, this scrumptious image of sizzling, crisp bacony wonderfulness reminds me fondly of a privileged friendship I had once with Minnie Shafton.

Minnie chose me (Yea!). And although she was 36 years older than me and of a different race and religion, a deep and memorable friendship bloomed between Minnie and I. Her day—and mine—was incomplete if we did not speak to each other at least once. It was a friendship that we would enjoy for 15 years!

I miss you Minnie.

Sadly for me, Minnie died in 2010 at the age of 84—and I lost something extraordinary: a friend who made me to be part of their everyday.

[Rain, rain go away. Come again another day.]

Still, even today whenever the aroma of bacon beckons to me, I can’t help but think of Minnie, because she always said:

“When I come back in my next life, I am coming back as a Gentile, and the very first thing I am going to do is: eat bacon!”

So when the dog bites, and the bee stings, and I’m feeling sad… I say, BACON—and I think of Minnie and smile!

Call to action: Do you love bacon? What food reconnects you to somewhere in time or reminds you of someone special?

Other things that make me very happy: Peonies and Don Williams.