SoCS — Did You Notice?

Did you notice that I didn’t win Linda’s annual Stream of Consciousness Saturday badge contest? I know. Hard to believe, right. It turns out that my design came in fourth (out of ten).

But that’s okay because the winning badge, designed by Pamela, at A Chronicle of Hope, won. And her design was built around an actual water-based stream, whereas mine was based upon a stream of wispy clouds. So Pamela’s badge design was much more apropos for the prompt. Here it is. It’s really well done.8D53F4D3-B456-461F-BFAD-41536450817BSo congratulations, Pamela, on your big win.

On an entirely different topic, did you notice that ever since WordPress dropped its daily one-word prompt at the end of May, a bunch of bloggers, me included, started posting daily, one-word prompts? So now, instead of writing one post in response to each day’s WordPress one-word prompt, there are six or more one-word prompts to respond to.

But I just don’t have the bandwidth to compose and publish a separate post for each such one-word prompt. So I’ve taken to combining a bunch of them into a single post each day. I’ve been trying to weave somewhere between four and six daily word prompts into relatively short posts over the past couple of weeks.

I was even able to squeeze six prompts into a one-sentence post this past Wednesday. And just yesterday I fit eight prompts into a single post, although only six were one-word prompts and two were writing prompts.

I’m not sure how sustainable this multi-prompt approach is. So far I think my multi-prompt posts have hung together fairly well, but I’m concerned that they may start sounding forced or contrived and I sometimes wonder if the quality of my posts, by trying to cram multiple one-word prompts into single posts, will start to suffer.

Oh well, I’m just sort of thinking out loud, which means that you may notice that I have done my job in responding to Linda’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, where we are asked to use the word “notice.”

Forgive and Forget Redux

My blogger friend, Marilyn Armstrong at Serendipity, wrote a post yesterday about forgiveness. Actually, it was about so much more than forgiveness. It was also about religion, God, abuse, domestic violence, shame, and pride. And, as she usually does, she wrote a well-crafted, provocative post that is worth reading.

Marilyn’s post reminded me of something I wrote back in June 2017 about the notion of “forgive and forget.” And since my blog was relatively new at the time, most of you probably did not read it. So I thought I’d repost my thoughts on forgiveness. It’s not nearly as good as Marilyn’s post, though.

Anyway, here you go.

forgive and forgetSomeone you know — maybe someone you love — has “done you wrong.” You’re upset, angry, and hurt. What do you do? Some of your closest friends and confidants might tell you that you’re better off without that person.

Others, though, may advise you to “forgive and forget.” I cringe when I hear someone offer that advice. It’s seriously cringeworthy nonsense.

You’ve been betrayed. A trust has been broken. Is it even possible to forgive and forget?

I don’t think so. Not both.

The unfortunate truth is that you can’t change the past. Once words have been spoken, they can’t be unspoken. Once deeds have been done, they can’t be undone. All you can do is live in the present and strive for a better future. While it may be difficult, frustrating, and even painful, it’s for your own benefit to be forgiving.

Everyone make mistakes. I know I have. I’m sure you have, too. I can say that with certainty because none of us is perfect. To err is human, right? And according to Alexander Pope, to forgive is “divine.” Yet even if you understand that intellectually, to forgive is also hard as hell.

And then there’s forgetting. Forgetting is not only pretty close to impossible without undergoing a frontal lobotomy, it’s probably not even a very wise thing to do.

How can you be expected to forget one of the most painful experiences of your life? Wouldn’t that be counterproductive? If you forget something that has caused you great pain, how can you learn from that experience? How can you grow?

You may want to forget, but you can’t. It’s really hard to not be resentful, to not dwell on the betrayal, to not replay in your mind what happened and re-experience all of the negative feelings it evoked. But if that is what you do, then you haven’t really forgotten, even though you may have convinced yourself that you have.

I’m not a psychologist and I don’t play one on TV. That said, my advice, for what it’s worth, is to accept the fact that you won’t ever be able to forget the pain and the hurt. But if you wish to salvage your relationship, you need to find a way to deal with it, and that means genuinely forgiving the person who hurt you.

As painful as it was, you really do need to let it go. And if you can’t do that, you need to walk away and not look back.

And that’s what is so hard about “forgive and forget.” That’s why I cringe whenever I hear that phrase. The former is hard to do; the latter is impossible to do. As Thomas Szasz noted, a wise person won’t try to do both.

And now I ask you to forgive me for writing such a cringeworthy post. Actually, just forget I even wrote and posted it.

Negotiate is a Dirty Word

republicans and democratsIt’s sad that words like negotiate and compromise have become the equivalent of dirty words in today’s political environment.

Negotiation is essentially a method by which people settle differences and a process by which compromise or agreement is reached while avoiding argument and dispute.

Unfortunately, the art of negotiation has lost its value. What our country needs is a functioning federal government where our elected representatives at least attempt, through negotiation, to get for us, their constituents, what we need.

In order to be functional, our representatives — Republican, Democratic, and independent — are supposed to meet, present the views and desires of the people who elected them, and try to come to some kind of compromise through negotiation.

But compromise requires that all sides sacrifice a little in order to move the ball forward. It requires a bipartisan effort where legislators are willing to find a middle ground in order to achieve a greater good over self-interests.

Instead, “compromise” and “negotiate” have become dirty words in Congress. To be willing to negotiate with “the other side” is a sign of weakness and of party disloyalty. As a result, our government is in gridlock, with little getting done on behalf of the people.

This post is in response to the one-word word prompt, “negotiate” from Tales from the Mind of Kristian.


And in the End….

7E434961-86DF-4E33-ACC2-074D1CC8FBE8So this is the last “official” WordPress daily one-word prompt. It’s fitting that today’s word is “retrospective,” which means “an exhibition or compilation showing the development of the work of a particular artist over a period of time.”

I have been participating in this daily prompt pretty much since I started the blog last May. If you want to view a retrospective of my responses to these prompts — and you have nothing better to do with your valuable time — go to my Tag Cloud and click on “one-word prompt.” It’s pretty large. You can’t miss it.

But, as they say, all good things must come to an end. The past is the past and it’s time to look to the future. Whatever will be will be. And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.

Okay, Fandango. Enough with the trite and barely applicable platitudes.

I image that there are going to be quite a few bloggers who are going to attempt to make up for this abandonment and betrayal from WordPress by starting their own daily prompts.

Well, starting tomorrow I’m going to be one of those bloggers. I’m calling it “Fandango’s One-Word Challenge,” or FOWC for short. I will choose a word and write a post built around that word.

If you’d like to FOWC with me, please feel free to do so. Be sure to tag your post #FOWC and link it back to my daily FOWC.

Image credit: geralt at


B78016A9-B71B-4159-91B2-AA991C1D4044There are days lately when I feel like I’m broken.

Days when nothing seems right and everything seems wrong.

Days when the very idea of getting up and out of bed is abhorrent.

Days when my body aches and my mind has stopped functioning.

Days when my shell feels cracked and my insides feel rotten.

Days when I wish the nightmare would finally be over.

And then there are days like today.

Days when the sun is shining and there’s not a cloud in the sky.

Days when I can’t wait to rise and shine and meet the world head-on.

Days when I feel as if all of my dreams will come true.

Days when I’ll be seeing you, hugging you, touching you, loving you.

Days when you fix my broken body, my broken heart, my broken soul.

Days when you put me back together again.

Written for today’s one-word prompt, “broken.” Image credit: Marisa04 at