Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Whether you're celebrating Jewish Festival of Lights, Hanukkah; the return of the Sun, Winter Solstice; of the birth of the Son and the Star that heralded His arrival, Christmas -

May all that you consider holy, bless you with Light and warmth throughout the dark, winter nights

Sunday, December 12, 2010


As you know, I don't have an e-reader.  I've looked at three which are owned by different friends.  None of them thrilled me (the readers, not the friends).I think it might be the e-ink.  I've come to expect a certain level of brightness from handheld devices. I installed a pdf reader on my phone but the screen was too small to accommodate my need for larger font.  I spent several hours at the airport scanning the pages back and forth while I tried to read an e-book.

In the end, I've resorted to reading on my laptop.  Not ideal but it has a tad more flexibility than the desktop computer. My laptop is six years old and weighs as much as a small child.  It's not exactly conducive to a quiet read in bed before sleep.

If it's all that much hassle, why bother with e-books, then? Because both Bob Mayer and Christine Merrill have books available in that format only. As their books are well crafted, exciting page-turners I refuse to let technology keep me from my entertainment.

The links take you to two books that have kept me in front of my computer screen, jonesing at work and suffering eyestrain in the airport because they were compelling reads.  Isn't that what all readers want, regardless of format?

Happy reading!

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Actively listen

A couple of weeks ago, I posted a challenge on Facebook to all of my friends. Spend the day listening to someone with a differing opinion from your own. Sit quietly and actively listen to what they have to say.  Get a solid idea of their position and reasoning.

As long as we focus on our differences, from petty to significant, we'll never find a way to resolve our issues.  That includes personal and global.

I see so many people arguing or ignoring another opinion or suggestion simply because of the person who is speaking. They're missing out on some valid arguments that way.

I received more feedback about my experiment in real time than I did online. My DB and DN had an amazing conversation without its usual loud sighing or verbal blasts of incomprehension.  It was healthy and respectful.  Other people told me they had engaged in similar conversations, read newspapers with a different political slant than their own or observed a religious practice with which they were unfamiliar or a culture that made them uncomfortable. Someone even suggested we try to make it an International Day of Observing How the Other Side Lives but the title was too unwieldy.

I'm throwing that challenge out to the blogosphere. Spend the next few days listening to what people say. Throw aside your prejudices and preconceived notions.  Ignore your expectations.


You don't know what you will hear but it might change the world if we all do it.