My Takes

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Archive for the tag “Life’s lessons”

Are You A Cynic Too?

So I have been diagnosed as a cynic. Well it’s not a legit diagnosis done by a qualified doctor or anything like that.  In fact, it’s not even a medical condition. It’s a self diagnosis borne out of the realization I am a person who takes everything with a grain of salt.  Everything!  Ever seen those people who reach for the salt as soon as their food is brought to them, without even doing a taste test? Well that’s me.  Except for the food part.

What am I cynical about? Every darn thing! See above.  Take for example the good old tried and true recommendation that one should hide underneath a door frame during a hurricane.  Do I believe that?  Nope.  I saw photos of Haiti after it was hit by an earthquake.  Not once did I see a doorway just standing there, in the middle of the carnage. Not one doorway!  Indonesia, no intact and untouched doorway there either. In fact, in all of the photos of earthquake devastation, I have yet to see proof that this works.  That’s not the only example of my cynicism though. There’s more. A lot more.

I am also a cynic of political promises.  Do  you really think I believe one word uttered by those smiling, well-dressed politicians? No way Jose! Why do I vote for them?  I do because I am tired of listening to the ‘If you don’t vote you blah blah blah’.  Newsflash! They are all the same.  And if you don’t believe that, show me solid proof that they aren’t.  I didn’t think so.  Just like that phantom doorway…

You are probably thinking that I have to be positive about something right? Maybe world peace.  Lmao! World Peace? Isn’t that an oxymoron? I do pray for world peace but I know that this would never be achieved.  Not while humans walk the earth.  End to racism? Sure, when pigs fly.  While humans of different color, class or creed share the planet, never happen.

So you get the picture, I am as cynic as they come.  Are you one too? Or do you share and like Facebook posts that promise blessings and winnings if you like or share?

I join the masses in praying for the stuff that I am cynical because cynic or not, you never know, and I have had misplaced cynicism before.   I do, however, cover the spread.  I pray harder for patience to deal with the undesired stuff that comes to me. Understanding to discern why it is happening and strength to deal with it.  I also pray for a small portion of the faith that Job exhibited in the Bible.  Without it, all is lost, cynical or not.


My Take


Don’t Let Your Badness Stop Your Goodness and Make You Lose Your Happiness

As I sat in the pew last Friday, attending my second funeral in as many months, I reflected on how final death was.  It was the funeral of a close family friend, she was only 46.  The celebration ran long as there were a total of 10 speakers, each sharing stories of the awesome person whose ashes lay before me.  Gone too soon.

I thought of how we sometimes live our lives as though we have a lot of years ahead of us.  Even though we greet each other at funerals with the same, “Oh life is so short, let’s not meet like this anymore.” that sentiment is usually forgotten before we are even done gorging on the funeral food.

Life is indeed too short and even though we have all these memes and sayings that remind us not to worry or sweat the small stuff, it’s all just hogwash.  We worry about past mistakes and screw-ups wasting valuable time regretting what we did to our best friends, our families and ourselves.  What we did in Vegas that stayed in Vegas…  The time we got drunk and experimented with drugs… Sometimes we even worry about the good things we did!  We spoke the truth and it resulted in us being alienated by family and friends, so we worry and stress about that too!

Last time I checked, worrying never fixed or changed anything.  Wishing you could turn back time is not going to change what happened.  So you did something bad stuff, who hasn’t?   Life is an ongoing lesson.  We never stop learning until we die, so learn from what you did.

Maybe you never intended to egg your neighbor’s house as you are a nice person.  You are anti-drugs but you did it anyways the night you got wasted.  What would your friends and family think if they only knew?  Maybe the same thing you would think if you only knew what they did. What you did is done so you might as well add it to your unplanned/accidental bucket list and scratch it off.  The thing is, a person’s worth is not judged by what they did but who they are.  I have seen pastors who were once incarcerated. Lives turned around for the better.  Don’t worry about your past, worry about your present. Did you learn from it?  Are you a better person because of it?  Then you are a success, not a failure.

As you lay dying, the only worry you should have is if your family would be ok.  Anything else is a waste of RAM.



Why Our Kids Lose Or Misplace Their Stuff

During the first week of school, our 5 year-old came home without his jacket.  How does one forget their jacket that they wore to keep warm? Wouldn’t the sudden drop in temperature be an instant reminder?  Apparently not to these kids who lose their gloves on the coldest of days.

I asked Treyton to check his school lost-and-found as I had no time to drop by his school to look myself.  He claimed that he did but it wasn’t there.  That was in September.  A week ago, I got a call from his school that he didn’t have a lunch.  Yes, he forgot it at home.  I went to his school bringing him MacDonald’s.  While there, I took the opportunity to inquire about his missing jacket.  I was sent to look in the lost-and-found.  It wasn’t hard spotting his jacket almost immediately.  I also saw one that looked suspiciously familiar. I debated taking it but didn’t.

That evening I was telling the family of my find and described the other jacket that looked familiar.  My 9 year-old sheepishly confessed that he had lost two jackets, including the one I described.  He brought them both home the next day.

As parents, one of our biggest issues is our children losing or misplacing their personal belongings.  Whether it’s books, clothes or lunches.  It’s irritating and even though we try to help them, it never works.  We get mad because we can’t understand why.  This morning while having another such talk with the boys, my wife added that as a kid she never lost anything, and that’s when I had the aha moment!

Our children today has so much that it’s difficult not to lose anything.  As a kid I never lost anything.  I always knew where the few things I had were. I never had more than one jacket at a  time, not more than two pairs of shoes or one hat.  It was very easy to keep track of my personal belonging.  As for lunch, sometimes I had none so it’s impossible to lose what you don’t have.  When I did have a lunch, I kept it close to me all the time.

My boys each has about four different jackets, they are found in the car, van, kitchen, everywhere.  That’s why we never realized that our 9 year-old was missing 2 jackets!  They have more hats than I could count, also found everywhere except on their heads.  With such a huge inventory, should we really blame them for not knowing where everything is?

It’s our fault, not theirs.


Ever wished you were living in your parents basement?

imagesCome on! Don’t tell me you never had that thought at least once.  I have.  It’s not as if you felt like being a loser living in your parents house like a parasite.  I am talking about those times when you are neck deep in adult responsibilities.  Kids, work, mortgage, etc.  For some, you could even toss in marriage into that mix.  Some days when the boss is driving you nuts at work, you probably think, oh if only I was still living at my parents I’d tell him where he could stick his project.  But of course you are not and you really don’t want to.  At least some of us don’t.

How about when it’s hard to get up on a cold, very cold, morning?  You think about calling in sick but then realize the bills have to be paid and the family fed.  Oh man, if only I lived with mom and dad, there’s no way I’d be going in today.  It’s fun to think it as long as you don’t make it a reality.

Enjoy the weekend and remember, living with your parents to escape reality is for losers.  Just my take.

Mikhail’s First F-Bomb.


While driving the boys home last Monday evening, Mikhail piped up that his gym teacher took them to a haunted place.  He said it was haunted because there were writings (graffiti) everywhere.  “Daddy, there was f**k and s**k my pee pee”, he said innocently while I audibly gasped.  Say what?!

Now you must understand that my wife and I are not trying to shelter our boys but we are doing our best to let them learn the world a little at a time for fear of sacrificing their innocence.  So when Mikhail said that, I was understandably shocked.   I felt robbed! I was supposed to be the one teaching him about the f word when the time was right.  Obviously the time was right and it came but I wasn’t there.  It was like your young teenaged daughter getting pregnant before you could have ‘the talk’.

As I drove home, I composed a letter in my head that I was going to send to the principal as soon I got home.   “How could your teachers expose my boy to that?  Didn’t they know where they were going?  Did they scope it out first? Why didn’t the teacher called me and let me know about this?  I could have prepared myself better.

I decided to call the next day instead.  Bright and early.  No, even better, I’ll go there on my break.  Nah, can’t wait, I’ll email right now. So I emailed.  As I was about to press the ‘send’ button, common sense kicked in.  Wait a minute.  Could it have happened if I had taken the boys somewhere I’d never been before?  Yes.  Would it be best to not make a big issue out of it and hope Mikhail forgets about it?  Yes.  Am I making too much out of it?  I think so.   I deleted the email.

Amie told me later that she also felt a bit sad about it.  To her it was as though a part of her little boy’s innocence was lost.  We haven’t brought it up with Mikhail since that day.  I am glad I didn’t make a big deal out of it now as I would have had some explaining to do both to him and his brothers.

This morning, after I had drafted this post, Mik whispered to me that there was another bad word that he saw.  I asked him to spell it because the other little sponges lurked nearby.  He spelled b@@ch.  Now how did he know that it was a bad word when we’ve never talked about it?  I am still not sure about this one, folks.

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