Why Don’t We Wise Up?

Have you noticed the plethora of products being marketed to make you happy in the new year? Things that organize your life, journaling your mindfulness, grabbing for those goals that have eluded you all your life.

First of all, my life is a mess. No organizational planner, yours or mine, will clean me up. Only supernatural power can do that and the only person who is good at it is God. He proved it at the Red Sea. That’s what it would take to part with my clutter and disasters.minimal

Second, since when is journaling a verb? It’s never been a verb, it’s always been a noun, as in keeping a journal or diary. Diary is the old fashion word, but it’s too close to dairy. Since people don’t read anymore, marketers made the switch and sent consumers into bookstores for theirs instead of dairy farms where the cows live chewing the cud.

Mindfulness. Now there’s a mouthful. To be mindful means to be observant, alert, cognizant. But now it’s been turned on its head and it’s a meditation technique with breathing exercises. Think mindless therapy.

And what makes us think we’ll nail those goals this year when we haven’t succeeded thus far? That’s crazy. Those ads and inspirational books and podcasts are meant to do one thing only – buy the course of course! Knowing full well you’ll fail. Like going to the gym. Two sweaty sessions and you’re out.

So what do we do? Try harder? Flog ourselves? Ignore the mounting evidence of sloth that has overtaken our homes and lives?

Being cognizant of the steep hill we must climb, we make a date to walk the dog, eat more fruits and green things, and enjoy the many times we fall off the wagon. That’s part of the fun.

What? You want perfect?

Calvin says, “I like walking the dog part. Stick with me. I’ll take you places that’ll expand you…I mean shrink you.”  beagle

 

 

 

Doctora Doolittle

Yesterday was my day for lost animals.

It’s funny how things like this happen in bunches.

I came into the office to discover a yellow cockatiel in the kitchen peering out of its cage. As the story goes, he flew onto the front steps over the weekend and one of our co-workers, who lives up the street, discovered him, rushed to the store for a cage and food, and is now caring for it until she can find its owner. He’s well socialized and beautiful. Somebody loved him. Did he fly in from the surrounding neighborhood or from Mexico? He’s not talking and so we’ll never know.

When I got home that evening Alf announced he’d found a lost kitten. He was sitting on top of our backyard fence making loud cries for its mother. If you want to see me spring into action this is it. We scooped him up and walked over to our neighbors who have several cats. The kitten was not theirs, and no, they didn’t want it. We brought it home, fed it some tuna, and tried to calm the little thing down. He was shaking from fright from nose to tail. The rest of the evening I was on the phone talking with friends and marketing the heck out of the little thing. Nothing worked. Every one stood their ground while I tugged at their heart strings. IMG_3147

We kept him overnight and this morning Alf returned him to the fence. We’re hoping the mamma cat will come around looking for him and they’ll be reunited and I can go back to a good night’s sleep again.

That’s in a perfect world.

Calvin says, “Hey, you didn’t consult me about this. It stinks. He’ll consume your attention and affections. And don’t count on me to cat-sit. I’ll be sulking.”  beagle

Stop Eating If You Want to Be Healthy

Are you reading about healthy eating lately?

I want to scream.

Corn is out, beef is in.   artichoke

Wheat is a no-no, it gives you a fat belly, but chicken is good.

Dairy is terrible, full of hormones and antibiotics, but tofu is worse, so go for quinoa.

Rice has arsenic in it. Arsenic? Yep, in the water.

Potatoes are suspicious. Why? What have they done to anybody?

Sugar, alcohol, and caffeine are poison. There go the bakeries, the beer and wine makers, and never mind the coffee growers in Central America.

Chocolate gets a bad wrap, too. (Spelling intended)

It’s utter confusion out there.

How do you shop and what do you eat?

Today I just read Valerie Comer’s blog who wrote, “I love eating chemicals and pesticides. After all, if this stuff preserves food, it will preserve me, too. Won’t it?” http://eatlocalgrown.com/article/11392-27-reasons-to-avoid-farmers-markets-satire.html

That’s a funny way to deal with it! She makes a good point.

Calvin says, “Kibble? Where did that come from? Probably some marketer’s brain fart to turn scraps into money.” beagle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas is a Spirit

I was out on the streets of San Francisco on Black Friday.

I know. I know. I must have been crazy.

But I wanted an experience.

I’ve never seen so many hordes in one place, except maybe at a ballgame, but then that’s expected.

This wasn’t normal.

I was in the center of town where all the department stores were.

Wave upon wave of humanity came up the streets, speaking different languages, all with one intent – to pounce on the deals.

I noticed many policemen, too. Most were on foot, a few were in patrol cars, and then two showed up on horseback.

The horses were enormous, well groomed and kept.

They walked up the hill where I stood and stopped at a red light.  photo (9)photo (11)

The tourists leaned over the curb and snapped a million pictures.

Not to be outdone, I stepped into the street and took some close-ups.

The horses posed for me.

One even smiled.

How did those cops manage that?

Calvin says, “They’d get special treats for showing their teeth. Works every time.” beagle

Is Your Dog A Relative?

We live in a pet-centric world. For $50,000 dollars you can clone Buster so he’ll keep coming back to you. That’s probably the only way he’ll come back to you, because he’s figured out how to ignore you and turn a deaf ear to your commands.

Have you noticed the progression we’ve taken as a society with our pets?

They started out in the backyard. Some of them were actually working dogs. They earned their bowl of scraps herding sheep or cows. Or went hunting for birds with you.

Then they migrated to the back porch. Still looking in, but getting closer.

Eventually your wife gave in to Roxie’s begging eyes and let her inside your kitchen, then your bedroom was next, and now she’s sleeping on your bed.

The veterinary industry is keenly aware of this trend and has marketed it to the hilt.

Dogs and cats are not animals anymore. They’re hairy people. And because they’re relatives with fur, you’ll spend your last dollar on them. The vets are counting on it.

If Buster needs an MRI or a hip replacement, you’re made to feel guilty if you say no.

What about teeth cleaning, pedicures and doggie furdos? Any conscientious owner would of course make regular appointments for these. If you don’t, you’re the beast, not Tabitha, the cat.

I’m convinced this ridiculousness began with the pet food industry. They convinced us our animals should not eat human food because it’s bad for them, so as a substitute they produced good, wholesome, nutritionally well-balanced sawdust with flavorings. If last night’s leftovers are not safe for our pooches, then why are we eating them?

The more advanced we are in the medical industry, the more these tests trickle down to our vets to use on our animals. What’s good for Fred is good for Fido, too.

And of course since Fred now can live to be 100, he wants Fido by his side, too – at a spry 700 years old.

Calvin says, “Ouch! A little too close to home. Of course I want to carry on sniffing and peeing and chasing rabbits. Don’t you?”

 

Grab A Rule And Live

Today I received my car insurance company’s newsletter by email. The headline article read, “Top Five Food Trends”. I laughed.

First of all, why is a car insurance company talking to me about food?

And second, why would I want to try recipes written by car mechanics?

The truth is, it has nothing to do with food at all.

It’s all about marketing.

And everybody’s doing it.

All the popular bloggers are doing it.

How-to gurus are doing it.

Inspirational writers are doing it.

Medical websites are doing it.

Everybody is distilling their articles into formulas for achieving success.

Ten Tips To A Frizz-Free Hair Day

Seven Ideas That Will Revolutionize Your Dog’s Obedience

Twenty-Four Ways To Get Into A Girdle

You get the idea. Everything gets reduced to a list of rules which you then have to do.

And we all know how that ends up.

In the same place your resolution to keep that diet ended up.

So why do we eat this stuff up? (No pun intended.)

It’s because we’re suckers.

We really believe we can do it.

Until we try.

Then we know.

Calvin says, “Beagles don’t need their obedience revolutionized. We’re remarkable already. We’ll do anything for a treat.”