Fandango’s Flashback Friday — April 16

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of your earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 16th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.


This was originally posted on April 16, 2018.

Pep Talk

John knocked on his boss’s door. “Excuse me, Al. Do you have a minute?”

“Sure,” Al responded. “Come on in and have a seat.”

John sat down in a chair across the desk from Al. “I’ll get right to the point, he said. “In my written review you wrote that I need to crank it to eleven. What did you mean by that?”

“John,” Al said. “It means that it’s time for you to turn up the volume.”

John looked confused. “Turn up the volume, sir?”

“You know what I mean, John,” Al responded. “It’s time to put the pedal to the metal.”

“The pedal to the metal?”

“John, you know what I’m saying,” Al said. “You need to give it 110 percent.”

“Are you suggesting I’m not doing all I can for this job?” John asked.

“I’m just saying that it’s better to ask for forgiveness than it is to ask for permission, John,” Al said. “It’s time for you to shoot for the moon, to sing like no one is listening.”

“I see,” said John.

“Good,” said Al, “because you know that you miss 100 percent of the shots that you don’t take. Son, you need to make hay while the sun shines. When opportunity knocks you need to answer the door.”

“Yes, I see what you’re getting at,” John said, trying hard not to roll his eyes.

“Good,” said Al. “Now go out there and make it rain, my boy.”

John went back to his cubicle and started drafting his resignation letter.


Written for today’s one-word prompt, “crank.”

Fandango’s Flashback Friday — February 12

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of your earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 12th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.


This was originally posted on February 12, 2018

What’s That Word I’m Looking For?

There are occasions these days when I can’t quite conjure up that exact word — one I’ve used a million times before — that would be perfect for what I want to say. And yes, my memory for names or events isn’t quite what it once was.

But after all, I am a senior citizen; a card carrying Medicare beneficiary.

Okay, just saying that makes me feel kind of old. But then I have to remind myself that age is really just a number. It is what it is. I didn’t choose when I was born, just as I can’t choose when I will die.

I admit that my body ain’t what it used to be. My mind, though, except for occasionally being unable to conjure up the precise word I know is out there, is still sharp. And I believe that blogging is a way to keep it that way.

Blogging forces me to exercise my brain. It challenges me to keep up with what is going on in the world around me — news, politics, science, society, technology. It requires doing research, checking facts, and being able to see different perspectives. It necessitates logical and critical thinking.

It also gets my creative juices flowing when I see an image or am given a word or a phrase and must try to conjure up a short, fictional story about what that image, word, or phrase brings to mind.

It means needing to be able to express myself articulately and in a clever, entertaining, and witty way. Or at least attempting to do so.

Blogging also puts me in touch with people from around the globe. Fellow bloggers of all ages, from various backgrounds, with unique experiences, and with varying world views. It provides me with insights into what others are thinking about, writing about, and doing.

Who knows? Blogging might even delay the inevitable onset of old-age — oh, what’s that word I’m looking for? Oh, right — dementia.


Written for today’s one-word prompt, “conjure.”

Fandango’s Flashback Friday — December 11

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of your earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 11th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.


This was originally posted my on December 11, 2017. It was when WordPress was still publishing its own daily one-word prompts.

I Got Nothing Today

 

8B4EC126-35DC-447B-B507-4EEF75C8A2C7When I see the WordPress one-word prompt each morning, I think about if I’m going to respond and, if so, how?

Will I write a bit of flash fiction using the word as inspiration? Will the word remind me of something that happened in my life or in the life of someone I know and motivate me to write a post about such an incidence?

Will the word trigger something related to current events, political goings on, or some other timely topic for me to write about?

Today’s one-word prompt is the word “elegance.” It’s a noun used to describe something that is elegant, something tastefully fine or luxurious in dress, style, or design. Something refined or dignified.

There is nothing about me or anyone I know that can be described as “elegant.” My family, friends, and acquaintances are all firmly ensconced in America’s middle class. My home is not in any way elegant. Nor is my clothing, my car, or my lifestyle.

And today, neither is my imagination, as I haven’t been able to conjure up a fanciful tale built around the word “elegance” to share with my readers.

So I’m sorry to disappoint, but I got nothing. There will be no post from me today in response to the WordPress one-word prompt. Check back with me tomorrow.

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.