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Posts Tagged ‘expectations’

When someone doesn’t have enough money to meet their daily needs it is easy to think that putting their hands on a boatload of money would just fix just about everything wrong in their life.  Yet, if you look around and observe the world you start to see just how wrong that is because money doesn’t fix everything.

There are rich people with just as many problems as poor people.  If you would like to continue reading click here: Writewhereyouare

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I know people who are struggling, people who have cut back in every conceivable way to save money just to stay afloat.  I also know people who are living very comfortably in nice homes, with fancy vehicles, going out to eat regularily and have no worries when it comes to bills or their health.  The world definately has classes of people who are in the haves and the have nots.  There is also a large population of people who are somewhere in the middle.  The thing is…we all have things that we could share.  Blessings come in many packages.

Everyone of us has gifts, talents, finances, possessions, strengths, knowledge or time that we could share with others.  What I love to celebrate and learn about are those who share those blessings with others without thought or expectation of getting something back from that experience of sharing.

Our society is going through some amazingly challenging times…people are struggling.  We need to be aware of others around us who are in need…those who could use a little pick me up.  It could be a kind word, a nice deed, financial gift, or it could be a sharing of knowledge that could bring a positive change to another.   There is a spiritual attitude that I love, it says this: “Those to whom much is given, much is expected in return”.  I call that an attitude of gratitude; being thankful for all that you have been blessed with and a willingness to share it with others!   I challenge you to find some way to bless others in your daily life.   Consider this a compassionate call to action…what can you give to others with no strings attached?

I have moved my site to a new Url: WriteWhereYouAre if you are interested in reading more blog posts!

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       It is a historical moment in time, this presidential inauguration of 2009; just like every other presidential inauguration since the beginning of the United States.  Yet, this one feels different.  It feels as though this particular inauguration is getting more attention than any other one, in my memory.

          I did not personally vote for Barack Obama…still, i can appreciate this moment…as it will be a moment of history as well as a moment for our future in America.  There is hope, excitement, fear and anxiety, as this nation faces huge difficulties.  That hope and excitement creates an air of expectancy; yet, we must temper that.

          To hear the media tell it…Obama is the answer to all the issues facing the nation.  That can not be,  he is just one man after all…even though he is a powerful man.  It isn’t fair to put that kind of pressue on him.  He cannot fix all of the issues facing this country in a way that is going to satisfy everyone.  There will be frustration, there will be disappointment…and, there will be a reality check for those who believe that things can only go up from here.

           The reason for that is…President Barack Obama is human; he is not God.  I believe that he realizes that…but, there is such a building up of who people think he is; that i think it builds a false sense of what he will be able to do.  He will represent the people…not just the black population, not just the white population or the male population.  I do think he will do his best.  I do think that he will accomplish much…but, it will be in partnership  with the Senate, the Congress,  and even the citizens of the United States.  This country will change…for better or worse who knows?  History many years from now will be the judge; when we look back to this period of our history we will have the advantage of knowing what came before and after.

          The Presidency is also a conditional thing; people forget that you must balance your expectations with reality, because reality is based on the conditions during that president’s time of the leadership.  The reality is that there are foreign governments, there are terrorists, there are internal struggles that create situations that each and every President must face during their term in office. 

     What we as a nation want to know is that our leader is a strong person, a person of good moral fiber, a person of commitment and a person who we can trust; we want a president who is wise, who knows good counsel when he hears it, a person of integrity who knows how to balance compassion and strong leadership.

          I say for now…let’s enjoy the excitement of the moment.  Let’s celebrate with the Obama family at this accomplishment. Things will get real soon enough with all of the demands of the office on the President, his family and friends.  This is a huge accomplishment and honor; but, let’s not forget it is also a sacrifice.

            The sacrifice comes by way of a sacrifice of schedule to have family time whenever they want it; it comes with pressure like no other job, it comes with a lack of privacy, it comes with media scrutiny that is justified; and, with scrutiny that is not. 

          So for now, can we not just honor the new President of the United States…acknowledge his tipping of the hat towards President Lincoln and his respect for the man and the office…while quietly considering the possibilities before us? Let’s celebrate our patriotism with our fellow citizens and not let ourselves be divided at this time…let’s look forward to the future and it’s impact on us and those around the world.

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      As we once again approach the end of a year and begin another one; it never fails to amaze me how often we repeat the same old patterns.  Oh to be sure…there will be the predictible year in review on the news programs…on the entertainment programs; and, even on the morning talk shows.  Does anyone else watch those things and think….that happened this year?  Why, i thought that person passed away longer ago than that…or did that much stuff really happen just this year?  We can learn from these things because time really does pass more quickly than we are aware of.

         As as we approach the new year…we will invariably have to hear about all of the new year’s resolutions that we may or, more likely, may not keep within days of making our comittments!  🙂  We will hear from all of those people who have the ability to “predict” the future; telling us their  version of the coming days and, how we are going to handle those situations around the world. 

          I say, let’s do something new this year.  Let’s live in the moment for a change…how does that sound?  People get so locked into the past that they can’t envision the future.  Those who have their sights set on the future…are so busy trying to forget about the past that they cant live for today.  When we live in a constant state of rewind or fast forward…we miss some of the greatest moments today with our friends, our family, our co-workers, neighbors and even with friends we have not yet met.

          Each day is a gift and must be truly lived in to be appreciated.  There is nothing worse than meeting someone who is bitter and corrupted from the past that continues to haunt them…or someone so bent on tomorrow that they can’t even take the time to realize that today is passing them by while they are so busy preparing for the next greatest thing that may be coming their way.  Regrets are a terrible thing to live with because wishing things were different doesn’t make it so. 

          People who get to the end of their lives either take stock and tally all the blessings in their life or they sit and review all of the missed opportunities and regrets of things that they could have, would have or should have been done better.  That is not a happy moment.  

          Our attitude or approach to life should be viewed as a whole life outlook or plan…not as in segments to be filed away for posterity to be reviewed at a later date; it is much too precious and passes way too quickly, we might forget to DO something important if we view life in small segments to be accomplished.  At the end of life, there are no do overs; I am afraid to tell you.  This is it, in this world that we live in.  If you get off of your chosen path…it is easy to re-route your footsteps and get back on track…as long as you are still breathing…you can change the course that you choose to follow.

         Many of us spend way too much time doing things that we don’t want to do…things that don’t make us happy; or, doing things that others expect us to be doing.  When it comes right down to it…no-one else lives inside of our skin…or our souls; we alone are responsible for our personal failures and achievements.  Yes, there are others who help us on our way but; no matter what…when it comes right down to it; we each have a responsibility to figure out how we want to live our lives…with both the beginnings, the endings and all that happens in our lives, in the very important middle.  Let’s make it a goal to make every day count for something special!

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      Wow… I just watched a clip from The View today in which Barbara Walters talks about an interview she did with Paula Abdul on her radio show.  http://abcnews.go.com/Video/playerIndex?id=6425460

       In the chat fest in the beginning of the show Barbara refers to that interview when she says that Paula has dropped a few explosive bombs about American Idol producers, Fox television, as well as,  Simon Cowell.

         As many of you know, there was an unfortunate young woman who was allegedly obsessed with Paula Adbul who died in front of Paula’s home…allegedly a suicide.  This young woman, Paula Goodspeed, has been supposedly sending letters and trying to make contact with Paula Abdul for something like 17 years, through her fan club. 

         Abdul claims in the radio interview with Barbara Walters that the producers of American Idol knew of this young woman’s obsession and still they allowed her to audition for the three Idol judges.  That audition  appears to have caused much harm; because of the rejection  Paula Goodspeed felt that she was publically humiliated.  Does a show like this carry a  legal and moral responsibility to pre-screen contestants; to make sure that they can handle the criticism that they face on the show?  I think they should.

          Paula Abdul says that she begged the producers and Simon not to allow Ms. Goodspeed to audition…but, against her wishes they allowed her to audition, possibly more than once.  It put her in a terrible position; Paula says that the producers and Simon wished to see her squirm. 

          At some point, Ms. Goodspeed followed Paula Abdul to her home address.  There were other incidents that took place there before the actual suicide took place.  Paula was not home when the suicide took place.  She now has her home for sale i hear; she says she has not slept there since it happened.

         Paula also says that she has lost endorsements and business opportunities because of the public’s perception that she is drunk or stoned on medications; because of the way that she is portrayed on the show.  She says, part of, that is caused by Simon who says crazy things in Paula’s ear piece while she is trying to communicate her “judgement”.   She says, something to the effect, that this is a distraction; and, Simon tries to make her laugh when she is trying to graciously speak to the contestants.

         If these things are true, and she can prove them…i see this turning into a major big, legal deal.  Obviously, Paula is upset about the whole nightmare of the suicide of Paula Goodspeed.  After all, a life was lost and if it is true that it was because of manipulations behind the scenes of the show…then shame on those involved.   There are more important things than ratings of a television show!

         When asked why Paula was still on the show…she apparently, simply said that she is under contract.  Paula also allegedly says that Simon could have at anytime corrected himself and retracted the statements that he has made.  She is under contract for another year; even though, this year there is a fourth judge being brought onto the show.  Just last week, Randy Jackson was on television shows saying not to believe everything people hear about this year’s American Idol.  

           What does this mean?  Is there a mystery here behind the scenes?  Does Paula want out of her contract?  Did this suicide impress on anyone the importance of the impact of the hurtful words that are said to contestants who don’t measure up to the judges expectations?  Is the show going to be legally liable in the young woman’s death?   I wonder, do you anyone feels guilty who was involved in that episode involving young Paula Goodspeed?

          Does this controversy mean that Paula will no longer associate herself with the show after her contract expires?  Time will tell.  I suspect that we have not heard the last of this drama.  What do you think is going on?  Is it alright to do “anything” to get ratings…or, should networks, producers, and the like be held responsible when things go wrong?

* See related story here: https://writeasrain.wordpress.com/2008/11/13/american-idol-judge-idolized/

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        I read that the host of a tabloid television show, The Insider, is leaving the show.  Pat O’brien has been on The Insider since 2004 he was the host until he had a couple of stints in rehab for addictions.  He made tabloid news himself when he left recorded messages sexually harrassing a female person on the phone.  Before he was the host of the Insider, he was on Access Hollywood for something like seven years.  Some people watch those shows regularily.

         So, he is leaving the show now.  It has been said that the decision to leave is a mutual one.  Yet, no real reason has been disclosed for the leave taking.  However, there has been speculation from; he slipped in his sobriety again, to, he is leaving because of an email that he sent to the staff at The Insider.  The email supposedly alledges that the staff of The Insider is out of touch with their real life viewers; who are struggling with day -to- day financial survival, and are not interested in the elite Hollywood fashions and over-indulgences of the stars. 

           If it is true that he was let go from the show for holding that opinion…i would tend to agree that the powers that be, are indeed out of touch.  However, I am sure that Mr. O’brien could have gotten that message across in a much more effective way than sending an email.  It is a valid point to say that mainstream America is struggling to maintain some semblance of financial stability…hearing about celebrities who toss away untold amounts of money on non-essentials is a bit of rubbing it (their wealth) in the viewer’s faces. 

           In general, i think the viewers would much rather hear about celebrities who are doing “good” in the world, with some of their “excess money”, than to hear about the latest mansion they bought or, how much money they spent on their last shopping spree!  In that, i agree in the theory behind the alleged email.

           I think that there will be a backlash in the sports world, the celebrity arena, the political figures, and other areas of our culture that continues to endorse reckless handling of money.    Reality for most people is not financial wealth; after the collapse of our banking systems, the mortgage crisis, the credit card crunch; and, the constant raising of prices of gasoline, home heating prices, and necessities such as groceries.  The American public is fighting to regain a financially secure life.  The impact of that is going to carry over into all areas of life including entertainment shows!

           If Mr. O’brien has had a change of heart over the types of stories that he felt his show should cover…he has to acknowledge that he also contributed to the environment of that show, for quite a period of time.  That however, doesn’t mean that a person can’t change their actions and raise awareness.  Good luck to everyone involved.  Let’s get real in our expectations and our actions…stop living in a fantasy world that very few people experience.  If the television executives cant do that…then, let those select few be their audience! 

           The Insider is supposed to be about the entertainment world…and it isn’t entertaining to their viewers to watch those who have been blessed financially live in ways that are wasteful when they are struggling to live above the poverty level.

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       There was a recent news story that did much to anger those who work with women who have been “date raped”.   Helen Mirren, a British actress, who won awards last year for her portrayal of the Queen, did an interview with GQ in which she claimed to have been raped several times, many years ago, when she was a student.  Helen is 63 years old now. 

         The reason some people have been upset with Helen, over that interview, is that she seemed to down play the experiences.  She said there was no extreme violence, she was not hit…but rather, was locked in a room and made to have sex.  She did not file charges in those incidents.  She also said that if a man and a woman were about to get intimate and the woman changed her mind, and the man continued; that was indeed rape.  However, in that circumstance; she didn’t feel that a woman could then turn around and take that man to court for it.  Those are highly controversial remarks when taken individually or out of context.  To some people…those comments smack of judgementalism…that those situations aren’t worthy of prosecution of a person who sexually assaults another.  Those comments appear inflammatory to many folks.

         Most people are clear that if a stranger attacks another person and forces sexual relations…then that is rape.  It is true enough…it is.  But there are other forms of rape as well that aren’t as clearly defined for some people. (more…)

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        Senator John Warner has asked Samuel Bodman the Energy Secretary to review information that would reveal what the ideal speed limit would be that would allow the most efficient use of gasoline in our vehicles today.  With gasoline prices topping $4.15 cents a gallon around the country the timing couldn’t be better to encourage changes in the way that we drive.

         Many Americans have already started to alter aimless driving habits.  I see nothing wrong with that…we all could do better in planning where we go and what we do while we are out and about.  Some people are in denial about the severity of the situation regarding supply and demand as well as all of the damage to our planet that our carelessness has brought.  

         Would the general population get behind a national drive 55 speed limit?  I think it is going to take some convincing as it will be viewed by many as an inconvience after being legally allowed to drive up to 70 mph on some highways.  After all, it will take longer to get where they are going.  I think more people would be willing to do it if they felt that the automakers were doing more to ensure that we were getting more miles to the gallon by the way that they factory set the computers on our vehicles to use the gasoline we spend our hard earned dollars on. (more…)

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         There are alot of things in life that are disappointing.  Parenting is one of those areas in life where we really desire and expect to excell.  I don’t know why we expect things to turn out well when there is no exact parenting plan to follow.  When a child is full grown and turns out well; meaning that they are productive, respectful, well- educated, and, showing caring and concern for others…it is no small feat.

           In today’s society, in America, it seems successful parenting is almost a rarity.  If you can get a child through elementary school without being expelled for violence, sexual harrassment, bullying, profanity, drug/alcohol use; well then, you are considered a paragon of virtue.

         You see we allow our kids to be exposed to violence on television 4 or 5 hours a day, we dont filter what they see in between shows regarding commercials with more skin than a newborn baby exposes, sexual innuendo’s on “family entertainment shows”, magazines with suggestive pictures and titles, we have lowered the bar on the level of respect that is reflected in their conversations, and their behaviors are over the top because consequences are not consistent. 

           Let me tell you, stepping into the schools today is a bit like stepping into another world…even children as young as elementary school aged children are not immune from these types of issues.  The lack of discipline, manners, respect and appropriate behaviors is staggering. Teachers have a thankless job.  Chaos reins in the classroom because the teachers have to spend so much time dealing with behaviors that educating the children often comes in second place to discipline. 

           Moving on to middle school is no less disallusioning.  The negative attitudes and behaviors have only amplified into open contempt.  By this age, many students have been led to believe that they are their own person and as such really do not have to listen to their parents.  Rebellion has taken on a life of it’s own.  Even students who wish to learn in school have trouble doing so because of the chaos going on around them in school. 

           Schools officials try to have more influence on the kids as many households have no control over their children whatsoever.   When they can’t control the kids…they call in law enforcement.   Some schools even  hand out condoms and medical advice, refusing to inform the parents because of privacy issues!!!  Say what?  Who’s child is this?  Who is legally responsible for providing for that child…not the school, surely.

           When the troubles come…and they do…then the system pulls in the parents and expects them to correct the situation or control the child.  The parental authority has been diminished by each and every person who trys to chip away at that God given authority….whether it be a school counselor, sports coach, the students very own peers, organizational leaders or whomever it may be.  It can’t be both ways…others can’t be in control of the students and still expect the parents to have the same influential authority that they should have had from the beginning.

         High School…now here is the real breakdown.  Parents are a killjoy.  They are always telling their children no.  They are trying to control their teens.  Rules are meant to be broken; right?  Yet when it comes right down to it…who is left with the responsibility when the teens have crossed the line…and entered into something illegal, immoral, or something self-destructive?  It is the parents.    Is it any wonder that many families are broken beyond repair?  We need to get back to having appropriate boundaries and expectations; so that our children know that they are loved and that they have someone close to them who cares what happens to them.

              It should be the most natural thing in the world, to turn to your parents when a kid finds themselves in trouble.  Often they are not the first person that a kid turns to.   Many times, it is a misquided, ill-informed, or rebellious peer; or, another enabling adult who wants to befriend the teen in some ignorant attempt to feel better about themselves.  This is the environment we are raising our children in today. 

         So, when a teen or preteen comes into your presence and complains about the evil parent they have at home…listen to the complaints carefully before you are pulled in.  It could just be a venting session like every other teen in the history of time.  If it is a genuine situation that needs intervention, such as real abuse or neglect, then by all means…recommend they talk to a professional. 

          Parenting isn’t easy; parenting when you are a teen is even more difficult.  When people decide to have children…they don’t think of all of the problems to come their way in the future.  When starting a family…you dream of the good things to come your way; and that is how it should be.  Parenting shouldn’t be mainly about disappointments…it should be about successes.

        

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      Tonight is another episode of Ophrah’s Big Give.  This show, if you have not seen it, is all about giving and making a positive change in someone’s life circumstances.  To those down on their luck, experiencing loss, lonely, sick or just plain in need; it is a miracle flowing their way.  To those doing the giving it is a gift of themselves to be able to tap into their ability to reach out to others and make a difference.

       Each week, each contestant is given a certain amount of money…they all have the same rules each week to make the most of giving the money away.  Then they are each judged by a panel of three who judge them on their creativity, effectiveness and follow through.  If a person is judged to have ill used the money or not followed through or in some way…didn’t exhibit the good intent of the helpfulness then they are let go.  Each week…at least one person leaves.

        As the responsibilities increase so do the expectations of the panel of judges.  In the beginning they worked in teams.  They use their talents and knowledge to find ways to raise additional funds in some cases.  If they didn’t work well together or tried to go their own way…they were let go.  Some were successful and some were not successful at teamwork.

           It was and is about using the money to achive the most positive help available and using their skills to tap into communities to support and inspire others to be looking for opportunities to be a blessing to others.. 

         I have to say that this show really challenges the viewer to “pay it forward”.  Last week, one of the gentleman failed to follow through.  He did some good work…but it was frustrating to see him promise to help pay for a person’s funeral..only to fail to show up because of his commitment to help others and he missed the time frame.  That is a heavy load of responsibility and disappointment.

        I like that Oprah is doing a show that is an extention of her Christian faith by the idea of “to those who much is given, much is expected in return”.   The contestants must find ways to help those in need; and so should we all.   

           It is a joyful show to watch.  It definately springs forward hope to those who have been helped and hopefully will allow them to be able to do the same when they are able for others.  The show is a beautiful  inspiration for finding the way to live our lives.  Keep up the good work!

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