Sunday, November 27, 2005

"Thanks For Nothing"

...I see while I was absent, AOL has begun placing banners on our journal pages, and has created a controversy! 

    While being a paying customer, I have always felt that AOL was like a friend. Full of information....connecting my ideas , my questions where they needed to be. Filling many of my nights with music, poetry from a soul in Pennsylvania, laughter, joy and warmth from you J-landers, Photo images from around the world, and ideas on how to improve whatever it was I wanted to improve. I was "Thankful" to pay my monthly fee to was like a friend that needed a few bucks from me.

...Then this "betrayel".....I pondered...."what do you say to friend that has betrayed you?".......and then, I recalled........


    Alex, Ray and I were typical ten year olds that lived on the same block and hung out together. Alex's house was real nice inside, nicely furnished. His mom collected figurines. She had hundreds of them in that living room. They were crowded on every table, on every shelf, every square inch of that living room had a small figurine on it, it was like a China Shop! Naturally, we were not allowed to go in that living room, not even one foot in!

    One day we were home from school and after having a boring catch outside, Alex invited Ray and me back to his house. No one was at his home. He opened the door and walked straight into the livingroom! "Cmon, don't be scared, you guys can sit in here" he cajoled. Reluctantly, we sat down, and looked around us, stunned by the massive collection of figurines that seemed to be staring at us. Alex removed the tennis ball from his pocket, and began tossing it in the air. "Hey Alex , not a good idea" we cautioned him. He laughed, and then tossed the ball over to Ray.."catch!" he said (implying a dare to drop the ball). Ray caught the ball, then tossed it to me. Call it pre adolescent Bravado, but we began tossing that ball around...faster...and faster...til, my toss to Alex sailed over his outstretched hands and sailed towards the end table! The ball landed and figurines were scattered about, and one slid off the table and onto the floor! We jumped up and ran over to asses the damage. Alex leaning over the figurine exclaimed, "My Mom is gonna kill me!....This is her favorite horse and its all busted up!"I tried to mitigate the circumstance with "favorite horse? There must be 100 little horses here, and THIS ONE is her favorite?"   "You better believe it" said Alex..."She paid 200 bucks for this's her favorite!"

     My stomach collapsed, I broke a 200 dollar horse! My Mom was gonna kill me too!...... "Hold on" I said as I tried to gain control of a situation that was going out of control. I began rearranging the animals that were on the table, trying to compensate for the empty space left on the table. "There!, Now she will never know her horse is missing..the display looks the same as when we first walked in here."   Ray nodded his head in agreement and we decided to bury the broken horse figurine in the backyard.

    The next day at school, Ray and I met up with Alex. "Boy is my Mom mad!" He exclaimed. As soon as she walked into the living room she cried out, "who messed up my end table?....and then  that is when she noticed her favorite horse was missing!" "What did you tell her?" I asked with panic in my heart. "I told her that I didn't know a thing...that maybe my sister and her friends did something to it".  "You won't ever tell her that it was us, will you?" I asked. "Nope" said Alex..."I don't squeal on my friends" "Man, you are the best friend that someone could have" I said as I placed my arm around Alex..."I really owe you"......

     Time passed, my gratefullness for Alex not bailing out on me played into our friendship. I would loan him nickels for candy and let him use my bike whenever he needed. 

    Several months passed, it was now Spring and just when that incident was as deeply buried as that horse, my Mother confronted me. "I just got off the phone with Alex's mom, and while she was working in her garden she found a broken horse figurine buried there. She says that you, Alex and Ray were playing one day and broke that true?"..........  I was caught!  .... In shame and for Mercy I put my head down and   put my best puppy dog eyes on...."yes Mom....we broke it".  "Well, you will be grounded for the next month and I told her that I would share in the cost of replaing that you will be losing 5 weeks of your allowance money."   My head was spinning....I can't believe that Alex caved in and confessed...especially 5 months after we broke that horse!.....Grounded and no allwance for....  Five weeks? That's it? I got 75 cents a does that add up to 200 dollars?

      The next day came and at first, I did not want to even look at Alex.. Over the past 5 months,I had thanked him a million times, bought him candy, loaned him my bike...all that "Thanks" and gratitude..and what does he do?  Rat me out!  But I was curious about why I was only losing 5 weeks of "Hey Alex!   Thanks for Nothing! couldn't deny it?"...... "No I couldn't" he said with his head in shame...."Besides, I'm the one that has to face her everyday...I am the one who hears her..I am one who is paying for this"... Then I asked about the cost of the horse...."oh, I made a mistake, the horse was only a few bucks..."  He put out his hand to me..."still friends?" he asked.....I slowly put my hand out there.."yeah...we're still friends"

   and so I matter how thankful you are and how grateful you might be to a friend, it is not a guarantee that they will always perform in a manner that is to your liking...there will bea time when they let you down . A friendship that is based on being grateful and thankful can only last as long as the "thanks" are being repayed.....

        The years passed, and Alex and I remained friends. As we entered adolesence we shared the gossip and secrets of who had a crush on who. He was the first to know about a girl that had caught my heart.   He, of course, set out and let her know....which was no problem this "betrayel" had led me to my first kiss!

    I hope and trust...that this breakdown that AOL had with us, will teach us with something meaningful .......and one day we'll look back and all say "friends?"

Peace and Blessings     Marc :)

The Art of Missing You

You return home from a day of work, your cat comes out from its hiding place and meanders between your legs and meows.    Your dog lurches on top of you, as you open  your door and greets you with yelps of joy!    

How wonderful that our Creator imbued even the smallest creatures with that feeling of "missing"! Imagine if that feeling did not exist in our "emotional vocabulary"?   ..To be gone for a day or two, and no one would notice. When we are told in any language, a bark, a meow, a "hello", that we were missed, its a wonderful form of acknowledgement that we have a place in the mind and spirit of another!

My deepest and warmest thanks to those  who expressed a concern about my absense here. You have made me feel like this IS aspecial place to come back to!

  My DSL at home has been restored......I may now enter and roam ......

and whether you missed me or not...I missed you all......Meow,   Marc :) 

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Suddenly It's Christmas!

  Whether it's approaching your partner for intamcy, or  being sold an automobile, or attending a family celebration...anticipation is the fuel that jump starts the engine of the heart.
  Anticipation is a wonderful energy, but if that event gets over anticipated, the event itself will be anti-climatic.
I have just returned from the Mall. The stores have already begun decorating and setting up  Christmas displays that reach the  ceiling. One store was playing "Jingle Bells" over the sound system....pardon me, but last time I looked, it was the 11th of November! The Thanksgiving decorations were already moved to the clearence tables...I guessI was supposed to have purchased those items on Labor day!
   Retailers are afraid about this Christmas season, between significantly higher gas prices, higher prices for merchandise, and the elevated interest rates , there won't be much in the pockets of consumers.
   With all this Christmas "foreplay" they will certainly kill consumer spontanaity, which will leaving the store shelves with the unecessary merchandise that will need huge discounting to move. Well, you will be ale to find those bargains in the "day after Christmas sales" which will begin on Dec. 22 this year!
  Peace & Joy....Marc :)

Wednesday, November 9, 2005


    A socialite is having a party at her spacious home. As the waiters weave through the large rooms with trays of hors d'ouevres, a lovely young woman sits at the piano playing "Strangers In The Night". A guest who has been admiring this lady, uses this as his cue to make his introduction. He leans over the piano and asks, "do you know the Orgasm song?" Without breaking stride, the woman calmly replies, "no, but if you hum a few bars, I could fake it".

   We have Fake gems, fake designer handbags, fake Rolex watches, false eyelashes and fake nails. Some of us fake happiness, some fake their age or their weight. Some of us say fake "how are you?", "Thank You" or even, "I love you". We all fake something in life. My! There is a whole lot of "faking" going on!  Actually, it's understandable, afterall  faking is an easy way to get a taste of the ultimate without having to go through the expense or trouble of obtaining the original.
  What great insight the author (God, if you wish) of the Ten Commandments had when he inscribed "Thou shall not obey no other God but me".  He knew how easily we could accept a subsitute, adapt to a fake.  While God is out of our sight, he knew our vulnerability and that  we could align ourselves with something that felt "close to his presence".

   Two weeks ago Hurricane Wilma barged through South Florida,taking lives, demolishing homes, uprooting the livilhood of millions here. I was spared , once again making me thankful for the Mercy bestowed, but leaving me even more mindful for the many who have sufered great losses. 
  This past year we have seen not only the worst of  many Hurricanes, but a Tsunami, major Earthquakes,Tornadoes and landslides. This is Nature, trying to regain its ba ance, from a world that is overheating its atmosphere, and plowing its depths for the energy it needs to thrive on. It is us,that has created this unbalance, and it us who is caught in this balancing act. Thus demonstarting once again, we are not in control. Yes, we are amazing, with our Ipods and PCs, cars and planes. Our bodies and minds can touch the four corners of this universe, but we still are not in control. One act of Mother nature can change all of that!
  In this aftermath, I hear in the desparate quivering voices of the affected for something strong to lift them, something real to sustain them, and something eternal that will carry them past their wounds....they will not accept anything but the most fake is allowed in this place....only the genuine warmth of Gods Mercy can be embraced.  

     Praying this balancing act is complete! Peace and Mercy.......Marc