Scream of Consciousness. 

Venting on my blog is not something I like to do.  But I thought I’d switch it up for a change and tell you about my one day in the life of first world problems. Events I refer to as my Seinfeld Saturday. Remember that show was supposed to be much ado about nothing.  But it was really about something in the way it presented humorous renderings of daily insignificance that we North Americans experience and complain about.  No wonder it was so successful and it’s still relevant because every single episode was about mundane setbacks we can all relate to.

Before I begin I want to mention that a few weeks ago a tragic accident happened to someone I know who was involved in a head on car collision.  She did not survive. I haven’t been in much of a mood to write.  Life is precarious.  It’s a gift and when something like this happens out of the blue it really makes you evaluate what is important and what is not.  But we manage to move on however we can – taking in all the good, the bad and the uncertain. 

So as I’m reliving a very ordinary day, make no mistake that I’m also grateful for being alive to not only share it, but to poke fun at it too – like Seinfeld would.

Picking up my top from the same cleaners that I always go to resulted in a much higher bill for the same top which was there only two months prior. I found my old bill and noticed a $10 increase. I know; I know, the excuse of inflation, higher gas prices, yada, yada. However when I go to the cleaners I don’t expect to be taken to the cleaners!

Next was going to see my alterationist – a very skilled one at that.  I had a lining replaced in a fancy little jacket that belonged to my mom.  Her name was inscribed in the lining.  I asked that the name be cut out but sewn back for sentimental reasons.  Picked it up, got home and looked inside to see the name sewn upside down. Perhaps a metaphor for the topsy-turvy upended times we live in. When I called the alterationist to let her know, she explained that she was too busy so asked her husband to sew it on for her. Of course I had to take it back and get her to re-do it, which she did. But not happily. And extra wasted time for me.

Then I tried to register a business because I was granted the name I requested. However, in British Columbia you have to go through a “one-stop” business registry system (actually called “one-stop”) that makes you go through several non one-stop steps. Again; first world problem.  Still, I don’t understand why so much time is wasted on these unnecessary extra steps.  I’ll spare you the details.

My dog needing grooming but since we were on a two month wait list for the local groomer I decided to take her to a dog store with a DIY service.  I bathed, blow dried and thinned out Layla’s coat there. I may have used too much conditioner because Layla had so much static after blow drying that her fur was sticking straight up.  She looked like Rod Stewart. So we showed up at the regular groomer right after. Even though busy with other dogs, someone who works there decided to spend a few moments with Layla to straighten out the situation.

Later in the day, looking back on the day, I laughed over how many little things upset me.  Life’s little problems.

I always loved a good rollercoaster.

It’s a new week with a whole new set of adventures and little problems.  I wish you a wonderful week.  See you back here soon.


The power of Film

It’s that time of year again. The time where movie theaters start to fill up as Fall approaches.  And of course; the film festivals start up.  Toronto International Film Festival (better known as TIFF) is on now until the 18th followed by the Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF for short) which begins on September 29th

Film is a powerful tool for so many reasons.  There’s times I don’t want to think and only want to laugh, however; the three highlighted here help to get a message across with a not so gentle reminder of what good and bad we humans are capable of.  This is the true power of film. Comedy and Tragedy, like life itself. Previews of what’s to come…

If you liked My Octopus Teacher…


Blueback: photo + description taken from TIFF website

A story about an intimate mother–daughter relationship, forged by the women’s keen desire to protect the inhabitants of the pristine blue oceans on the Australian coast where they live.

With images of beautiful blue vistas demanding to be seen on the big screen, Robert Connolly (Balibo, TIFF ’09; Paper Planes, TIFF ’14) returns to the Festival with a story about a young woman’s connection to the ocean and an inherited mission of environmental advocacy.

A teenager named Abby and her mom maintains a bond with a groper fish (In Australia, “groper” is used instead of “grouper” ) affectionately named Blueback, who becomes a reminder of all the wonders the ocean has to offer and a path to healing a rift between Abby and her mother.

Sidenote from Girl who would be King: as a former scuba diver where at 19, my very first dive was in the Bahamas with a team from National Geographic no less,  I personally came into contact with Grouper fish among sea turtles and many other remarkable sea creatures.  I visited Cayman Islands too where turtle stew is considered the national dish. This trailer pulled on my heartstrings.  

Grouper and snapper are still the mainstays in the Bahamas, however, with the former being the “Rolls Royce of fish” according to Ben Simmons, owner and operator of Harbour Island’s Ocean View Club.

Bones of Crows

Bones of Crows: photo + description taken from VIFF website.

An epic account of the life of Cree matriarch Aline Spears that spans generations, Marie Clements’ Bones of Crows is a powerful indictment of the abuse of Indigenous peoples as well as a stirring story of resilience and resistance.

752 Is Not A Number

752 is Not a Number: photo + description taken from TIFF website.

On January 8, 2020, Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 went down as it was leaving Iranian air space. All 176 people on board were killed, many of them Iranian Canadians. For weeks Iranian authorities vociferously denied responsibility, but foreign governments and agencies were certain the plane was shot down by Iranian military, a fact Iran’s government eventually admitted. There were no answers as to why the plane was fired on or even why it was allowed to take off, since hostilities had broken out in the region in preceding days.

This tragedy is the subject of the documentary. The focus is one man’s dogged fight for the truth. Hamed Esmaeilion, a dentist in Newmarket, Ontario, lost his wife and his young daughter in the incident. Determined not to let the Iranian government exploit their memories, Hamed took a harrowing journey to Iran to claim the remains, then embarked on a quest for justice for all the victims in this atrocity.

Happy Film Going (and some not so happy film going) but we all learn something and become more mindful in the process.

Have a great weekend (a long weekend in most provinces in Canada due to the passing of Queen Elizabeth II).  RIP our longest reigning monarch.


2022 – Moving ahead

2022 here we go! I like the numbers.  They appear more balanced.

Summing up the year so far…

words to live by

The theme of this year is letting go. Letting go of what cannot be controlled. For starters; to stop putting pressure on myself and on others to do more, be more and maybe just BE is in itself, a bit of a challenge. Expectations have changed big time. Energy wasting explanations too – like letting go of a need to explain when there is really no need to explain.

We’ve all experienced many unforeseen events and changes in the past almost two years and this year will be no different because change is constant and we have to deal with the good along with the bad. It’s only the uncertainty that is puzzling and seems to be trying everyone’s patience. 

This year kicked off with a kick in the chest of a few less people in my life – two amazing women I know have passed.  Even some friendships have changed.  Some have lessened, some have strengthened and one has unexplainably disappeared from my life. Nothing is as it was, and yet everything is as it should be (except finding out about the untimely passing of my friend Ruth). Just trying to accept things as they are is a test to human nature along with a testament to strength.

Humans are disappointing.  We can watch all the blood, graphic violence & soft porn on every day TV shows, but we have to watch our personal opinions on social media.

As the symbolism behind the number 2022 suggests: set priorities in life and use your energy and time on them exclusively. Avoid thinking about unimportant things as this will only waste your time and take away energy that can be used in a much more useful way. Only draw in honest people to your life. Don’t dismiss the importance of lessons from the past. If you are aware of your eventual mistakes, you will know things to avoid in the future. Fear can only block you from achieving what you want, so ignore it. Be fierce, confident, and trust your instinct. For example, our own beliefs and idealizing people that are obviously not good for us can teach us not to ignore what our instinct is telling us. If you trust your gut, that means you believe in yourself.  So believe in yourself!

Alison Bechdel in “The Secret to Superhuman Strength” writes:

“Peel it back far enough and beneath every obsession, every compulsion, every peculiarity of being, every creative act and every destructive act, there is the kernel of some universal human struggle or longing — usually for love or for control, the twin faces of the elemental human heartache: we are born to die, and in the meantime life is one great uncertainty throughout which we are fundamentally alone, no matter the people and possessions we surround ourselves with.

How these universals manifest, however, is to a large extent a product of the time and place into which chance has deposited us.”

In “Superhuman Strength” you can feel that Bechdel knows that she doesn’t have that much control. But perfection is not the point, which is the point. Control is an illusion; the secret is to let go. – part of New York Times book review.

Wherever we go, we take ourselves with us – Walt Whitman.

You can follow the right path or you can take a rocky road – which is okay if it’s ice cream.

August Reflections – new beginnings

Can you believe it?  The first week of August is almost over.  Or; the second week of August is almost here.

Any way you look at it everyone seems to relish the month of August…soaking up the remains of summer.  Maybe it’s because school starts in September and people begin to get ready for Fall.  In any event, the month ahead is when many people begin to get more serious about…all kinds of things.

I’ve started early.  I’ve started my New Year as of August 1st even with a few new resolutions.  And I feel really good about it.  Out with the old, In with the new so to speak.  Some unexpected changes have occurred.  And just like that…a new beginning has emerged.  Sometimes something pushes you to get over the hump.  You never see it coming but in hindsight it all makes sense.  Listen to your intuition (it’s always right) and if you get red flags pay attention. As Maya Angelou wisely said “when someone shows you who they are the first time, believe them.”  Try not to let them show you time and time again before you realize who they were all along.  Personality is different than Character. Someone with a strong personality might not have strength of character.  Someone else can be quiet and unassuming but have a trusting character.  Yes; there’s a big difference.  Both are important but if I had to choose – character would win hands down!

So without looking back I choose to forge ahead and make new beginnings.  This website is still a passion and will carry on (with more content next month; after all, I want to enjoy what’s left of August) and I’ll introduce something new and find out where it leads.

Oh; and I learned about Lughnasadh (prounounced lunasa) exactly on August 1st.

On the first day of August a little hummingbird appeared out of nowhere while I was sitting outside enjoying coffee and laughing with a friend. He flapped around us for about 30 seconds before flitting off – perhaps he felt the positive energy. My feeder wasn’t even out and I hadn’t seen one for a few months.  Hummingbirds represent joy, healing, good luck, messages from spirits, and other special qualities. An uplifting sign.

So getting back to Lughnasadh…celebrated halfway between summer solstice and autumn equinox.  It’s the so-called festival of light which ushers in the harvest season to celebrate with friends and family.

Lughnasadh is mentioned in some of the earliest Irish literature and has pagan origins. The festival itself is named after the god Lugh. A Gaelic event that historically was widely observed throughout Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man.

And also very important: the festival is also a time for change, rebirth (not in the sense of physical death, but death of what we no longer need on our path) and thus for the new beginning.  Ahhh yes!

Therefore, a straw doll is often burned on August 1. It stands as a symbol of evil, the dark, the shadow. Burned also because the element of fire also stands for the light. And Lughnasadh is the festival of light. And August 1st is the beginning of the harvest of fruits.

And when we have reaped the harvest, then we are prepared for the dark and cold winter. We spend it in the close circle of our self-chosen family. We use it to gather new strength and discuss new ideas.

So here’s to strength of character, new ideas, growth and harmony.  Oh; and the harvest.

PS: Speaking of harvest – I have a harvest of home grown tomatoes that are starting to ripen.  That’s a story in itself.  I’m growing both beefsteak and little grape tomatoes.  I’ve been tending my garden for a few months now…only to find out that as soon as they began to turn red a few bites were taken out of 4 tomatoes.  Oh those crows!  No problem – I have lots more where that came from, so off to Canadian Tire I go to buy  bird netting.  Then my boyfriend made a trellis around the plants which when he was finished included not only the stretch netting, but also wire hangers and scotch tape.  As you can only imagine, I wasn’t fond of the aesthetics.  But if it kept the crows away I’d take it down once all the tomatoes were eaten.  Then that evening we were invited next door to a friend’s house for dinner.  My boyfriend decided to go back into my place to get something else to drink.  I went home to find out what was taking him so long.  He took longer than expected because he had to loosen a mouse from the netting as he was eating the tomatoes (the mouse; not the boyfriend – at least that’s what he told me!).  I didn’t bother to find out what is sold to keep mice, rats and/or racoons away because

the tomato project will not continue. 

To be continued…

Feel-good Flowers

Flowers have an immediate positive effect on our mood.  How can you not smile after receiving a fresh bouquet?  Participants in studies have reported feeling less depressed and anxious with a higher sense of enjoyment after receiving flowers.

I notice that my mood picks up when I admire fresh flowers or stop to smell the flowers on trees such as lilacs.  That is why I signed up to receive a farm fresh bouquet delivered to my door starting next week from a local company called Bear’s Blooms.

Which brings me to this question…

The Victoria from Bear’s Blooms Website. Roses, Alstroemeria, Tulips and Solidago.

If you could choose to be any flower, what would you be?

I think a Sunflower.  If not, then a Daffodil.

Sunflowers symbolize adoration, loyalty and longevity. Much of the meaning of sunflowers stems from its namesake, the sun itself.

The iris (Iris xiphium) symbolizes hope, cherished friendship and valor and is the inspiration for the fleur-de-lis. A gift of iris bulbs brings hope with each returning spring.

Daffodils: These bright blooms have been named the number one flower for enhancing people’s moods. Yellow is a color that is often associated with happiness, so it comes as little surprise that a vase brimming with beautiful daffodils will instantly

from the website:    Use code DEBBIE 5088 to get $15 off your first order.

perk up your day!

Happy Weekend Ahead.



Has Critical Thinking Gone Out of Style?

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to this lately…

piecing it all together 

Given the never-ending 24/7 barrage of breaking news arriving on our mental doorsteps these days, coupled with our jam-packed lifestyles, it’s easy to watch a newscast or read an article and simply assume that whatever the anchor or writer is saying is accurate. After all, if it’s on TV or in a newspaper, it must be true, right?

But why are we so quick to make that assumption? In part, it’s because we trust that journalists have bothered to check on the validity of what they’re being told, and are in turn reporting.

Yet despite this default trust assumption, our intuition occasionally suspects this might not always be the case, especially in this era of ideologically-filtered journalism.  

Enter the apparently lost art of critical thinking.

Ironically, I never gave critical thinking much thought until one day, many years ago, my late husband brought it to my attention.

The subject came up after I had just read something to him and was expecting an immediate response. But when none came, I was bothered by what I thought was his lack of interest, a bother which I openly expressed.  In response, he said he needed time to mull it over and to think what I had read through. Then he explained that one of the most insightful courses he ever took in university was one on critical thinking. At its most basic, critical thinking is the awareness of not assuming everything you hear or read to be accurate, and to take the time to question it before making up your own mind.

This doesn’t mean one should automatically assume everyone is a liar or that they’re out to cheat you, or sway you. Yet, nor does it mean one should blindly accept everything on face value either, even when it’s information reported by mainstream news media or claimed in government announcements. Why? Because even these sources aren’t without their own agenda (e.g. a goal to attract bigger audiences or promote certain political figures and their views).  In other words, critical thinking doesn’t just require we carefully scrutinize what we’re being told. It’s part of being a discerning consumer of information, which is key to being more socially intelligent.

Another form of critical thinking is the willingness to be self-critical — which is to say, a willingness to question one’s motives of buying into a particular perspective while at the same time ignoring other valid perspectives. 

Advice that I’m offering and taking myself: What WE ALL NEED is more evidence; fewer claims.

So, here’s the question: Are both kinds of critical thinking in short supply these days? 

Over and over again, I’m noticing how more and more people on social media are pushing their opinions in rather adamant unforgiving ways, while at the same time showing little tolerance for others’ viewpoints. So while everyone is entitled to their own views, these days, it seems that many are overly keen to push their views on you. Sure, people don’t have to see eye-to-eye on everything, and that should be okay. Yet for some curious reason, holding a divergence of perspectives no longer appears to be as “acceptable” as it used to be.

A court judge worth his/her salt will always weigh all sides of a legal argument. Why?  Because it’s an essential ingredient in the principle of justice.  In the same vein, a legal mediator always tries to be a neutral referee when trying to find a conciliatory middle ground in resolving disputes. Similarly, and by long-standing tradition, the Speakers in both Britain’s and Canada’s Parliamentary systems endeavor to remain impartial referees when mediating debates between opposing political parties, and when doing so, insist that parties remain within the limits of respectful parliamentary language. 

Yet in today’s social media, grey areas no longer seem to matter.  Instead, it’s only black or white, leaving us with 50 shades of polarity.

So, what does this imply? It implies we are losing the ability to think in more nuanced ways. It also implies we are rushing to conclusions without fully considering the merits of another person’s perspective on the situation, or fully appreciating their knowledge or experience.

And when we repeatedly act out of these kinds of default pre-judgments, or prejudices, we begin to reinforce a more narrow-minded style of “short-hand” thinking, one that takes pride and ego comfort in stereotyping and dehumanizing fellow human beings into easy-to-dispose-of categories. It’s the same thinking habit that the Nazis indulged when describing the Jews in their midst in the lead-up to the Second World War.  And history has shown us where that can ultimately lead.

I’m no expert and I have made my own share of stupid mistakes and misjudgments in dealing with all sorts of matters and people.  And like everyone else, I’ve learned my share of hard lessons through my mistakes.

Yet nowhere is critical thinking, including self-critical thinking more essential than today, especially when it comes to all we are being told about Covid-19. Our need to try to understand why someone might hold a view different from our own is part of both critical thinking and self-critical thinking (i.e. humility), because none of us should assume we know everything we need to know to navigate this, one of the greatest medical, social, economic and political challenges of our time.

Monday Mood: Color Therapy

Ever notice how certain colors make you feel?


From calming to invigorating and everything in between…while some just make you want to scream. Colors definitely have an effect on our mood. Maybe that’s why so many of us experience mood swings?

Remember the mood ring?  Me neither. The ring apparently changed color depending on your mood.  When it went black you knew you were in trouble. When it turned red you knew you were in love.  I mean without wearing the ring how would you know how you felt?

Well now I’m poking fun. But really, I’m looking into the psychology of color more seriously now because I want to re-paint two of the rooms in my house.  My bedroom walls because I have to, and my office space because I want to.

I’ve lived in the same house for 20 years now and in all that time I’ve only felt like changing the color in only one room – upstairs bathroom.  It was a boring neutral beige tone and now it’s not.  One wall in that bathroom is now turquoise but it works. I just found out that turquoise is associated with meanings of refreshment, feminine energy,  sophistication, wisdom, serenity, wholeness, creativity, emotional balance, good luck, spiritual grounding, friendship, love, joy, tranquility, patience, intuition, and loyalty.  Yes; I’m listening!

photo: d. king

That’s a lot of explanation for one color. And to think that I only painted it that color because I came across a small can of paint in my garage and thought “I’ll try to use this somewhere – how about my bathroom?”

All the rooms in my place are painted in the colors of the landscape and design found in the Southwest desert.  They’re all rich, warm tones.  I never tire of them.

My office space is actually a reconverted closet.  You would never know it unless I pointed that out.  Then you’d look at it again and say “ah, now I see why you have such a small workspace.”

But it’s a really good use of space because when you think about it, you only need little space to put a desk with laptop and a printer, an always hungry paper shredder and few other items. That’s the room I want to now have fun with.  Right now it’s a warm yellowish tone but I’ve recently been thinking of having it painted red, or somewhere in that spectrum.

When a spiritual sign appears in your life that is red, it usually represents that you are ready to take action on a new goal or project that you have been putting off.  How about that? I’m ready.

I’ve been checking out color therapy too for ideas. Color therapy uses these powers of color to heal, energize, and soothe us.  Let’s have fun with this.


If you want to look into it on a deeper level here’s a link:

What Is Color Therapy, What Is It For, And Is It Right For Me?

LUSCHER COLOR TEST – It might be fun to take this test:

The Luscher color test is based on the assumption the unconscious colors’ choice often reflects a person’s focus on a certain activity, mood, the most stable personality traits, and the functional human state.

Monday Mood: Resolutions

I didn’t make any resolutions this year because I remember what happened last time.

Actually I didn’t make any last time either.  But I can see what happens when you do.  It can get disappointing. 

One of the most popular resolutions is to get more in shape starting January 1st.  Like making a resolution to work out more at your gym, but wait a sec…your gym is no longer open.  Or; to finally take that trip or cruise you’ve been putting off forever.  Except…notice that they’re making it a little harder to travel by air or boat these days? Or; sign up for that new course or maybe take a dance class…but we’re not allowed to sit together or touch one another.  It’s a whole new era.  One hard to get used to, and one that will hopefully change sooner than later.  Add to that, the political climate (history has a way of repeating itself but this time it’s really different) and all appears out of control

On the plus side is having to come up with alternatives and solutions.  We’re more crafty and smarter than we give ourselves credit for.  

We must take control of our own lives.  We must do our own homework and critical thinking because depending on who you talk to, you’ll get two completely different versions.

Forbes Magazine said:

“We are living in a new era dominated by Millennial hoodie-and-Converse-wearing billionaires, a world in which a staggering rate of change and disruptive innovation is the order of the day. Old-fashioned charisma is no longer enough to get attention, get ahead, or get the job anymore. Now, it’s those with the fearlessness to go after what they want and the audacity to do it how they want, who are making their mark and changing the world.”

I can’t change the world but if I could change some things about myself…

Here is my personal Wish List of outstanding attributes in a person in no particular order:

The Wit of Fran Lebowitz

The Body of Raquel Welch (circa One Million Years B.C.)

The Knowledge of Einstein

The Power of Oprah

The Talent of Meryl Streep

The Voice of Whitney Houston

The Riches of a Rockefeller (I don’t need to have as much as Bezos – a Rockefeller will do).

The Athletic Ability of Serena Williams

The Strength of Wonder Woman

The Chutzpah of Cher

The Charisma of Princess Diana 

The Style of Coco Chanel

The Chicness of Jackie O

The Coolness of Kate Moss

The Patience of a Buddha

The Tenacity of Ruth Bader Ginsberg

The Respect of – Rodney Dangerfield

How about you? 

Answer really quickly. TRY IT.  If you could have:

The Wit of

The Body of

The Knowledge of

The Power of

The Talent of

The Voice of

The Riches of

The Athletic Ability of

The Strength of

The Chutzpah of

The Charisma of

The Style of

The Chicness of

The Coolness of  

The Patience of

The Tenacity of

The Respect of

This was fun right?

We can always try to imagine what it’s like to be in another’s shoes.   Speaking of shoes:

Talk about ‘dream’ shoes

In light of everything that’s happening now (or not) my plan in the absence of going to film and wine festivals, fashion shows, restaurant openings and other gatherings, will be to focus on publishing health and beauty articles, tried and true recipes, art, fashion, culture and canine news. May the gatherings be temporarily put “on hold.”

“Unreported Truths” author Alex Berenson stated “Don’t be afraid of Covid. “ Don’t be afraid of one another.” This is a respiratory virus. It spreads between people. And the only way to make it go away permanently is to lock us all away permanently. And that can’t happen. That is not compatible with life.

Life is short.  We want to Live it!

So what’s it going to be for you?

Monday Mood: Madness

Reflecting on the current situation…

Aldous Huxley –  BRAVE NEW WORLD

“Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.” — George Orwell 1984 (a political novel written with the purpose of warning readers in the West of the dangers of totalitarian government.)

Is it true that Illusion is sometimes all that keeps us sane? 

American poet and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson once said sanity is very rare; almost every man and woman has a dash of madness every so often.

Every so often is….how frequently exactly? I think things are shifting to more repeatedly because it’s every single day we’re bombarded with actions from those that make no sense and instead of moving forward we seem to be moving backwards. Right here…right now in our lives at present we’re witnessing a lot of history making madness.

People are just starting to wake up but in the process are we becoming more careful than need be? Or are we just afraid not to offend anyone.  Because everything is coming to a head.

The Dixie Chicks have changed their name to Chicks because of the connotation of “Dixie” with slavery.  Upon hearing this a  friend of mine jokingly suggested the new name could be considered sexist.  That maybe they should consider changing it to “the Chickens?” 

  I fully understand the “black lives matter” movement because to me it’s absurd that slavery ever happened in the first place. That stands for other history making events such as the holocaust.  The insanity of control and intention of cruelty over innocent lives.

The people at the very top, the people in power, are the very same people who could have put an end to these occurrences.  So who are we to trust?  Are we responsible for blindly following the orders given by lunatics in power if we consciously know they’re in the wrong for giving them, and we for following them?  Shouldn’t we take some responsibility?

Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States held the nation together during its greatest trial, the Civil War. Lincoln believed his most sacred duty was the preservation of the union. It was his firm conviction that slavery must be abolished. 

“I leave you hoping that the lamp of liberty will burn in your bosoms until there shall no longer be a doubt that all men are created free and equal.” Abraham Lincoln

Will we ever get it right?

Has rage replaced reason?  As in…

 “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore” – from the movie *Network.

This speech feels more relevant today than its release in 1976 and seems to predict the world we live in today.  A world filled with reality TV, tabloid journalism and the overwhelming direction that media in general is taking with its anything for ratings philosophy.

The Character Howard Beale played by the late great Peter Finch, gave the following speech in the film that still resonates today.

I don’t have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. It’s a depression. Everybody’s out of work or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel’s worth. Banks are going bust. Shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter. Punks are running wild in the street and there’s nobody anywhere who seems to know what to do, and there’s no end to it. We know the air is unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat, and we sit watching our TVs while some local newscaster tells us that today we had fifteen homicides and sixty-three violent crimes, as if that’s the way it’s supposed to be.

We know things are bad – worse than bad. They’re crazy. It’s like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don’t go out anymore. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we are living in is getting smaller, and all we say is: ‘Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV and my steel-belted radials and I won’t say anything. Just leave us alone.’

Well, I’m not gonna leave you alone. I want you to get MAD! I don’t want you to protest. I don’t want you to riot – I don’t want you to write to your congressman, because I wouldn’t know what to tell you to write. I don’t know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the street. All I know is that first you’ve got to get mad. (shouting) You’ve got to say: ‘I’m a human being, god-dammit! My life has value!’

To think that we can finally get it all together is unrealistic. To seek for some lasting security is futile. To undo our very ancient and very stuck habitual patterns of mind requires that we begin to turn around some of our most basic assumptions. Believing in a solid, separate self, continuing to seek pleasure and avoid pain, thinking that someone “out there” is to blame for our pain—one has to get totally fed up with these ways of thinking. One has to give up hope that this way of thinking will bring us satisfaction. Suffering begins to dissolve when we can question the belief or the hope that there’s anywhere to hide.” – Pema Chodraon “Nowhere to Hide”

I’ll leave you with this more uplifting quote:

Keep your Eyes on All that’s Good and Beautiful and Possible in the World. Because the Stories We Tell Create the People We Become.” – Jacqueline Lewis, Life Begins at the End of Your Comfort Zone: a Journal to Reignite, Renew, and Refuel Your Life. 

*Network: The man behind the words of this powerful speech was the American playwright, screenwriter and novelist Sidney Aaron “Paddy” Chayefsky. He is the only person to have won three solo Academy Awards for Best Screenplay (the other three-time winners, Woody Allen, Francis Ford Coppola, Charles Brackett and Billy Wilder, have all shared their awards with co-writers). The trio of Academy Awards were for Marty (1955), The Hospital (1971) and Network (1976).

Have a great week!