Friday, May 22, 2009


The Oxford definition of power is: (n)(3) dominance, mastery, rule, command, ascendancy, sovereignty, domination.

Why would I write a post about power? Because power, and the use thereof, surrounds us and is part of our lives everyday whether we know it or not. From large uses to very subtle ones. From tangible to intangible. From real to imagined. This post could turn into a doctoral thesis or a research book; how does power affect our everyday life? Do we even know it affects us? How does each of us use power and respond to other peoples' use of it?

This is just one of the topics that has been attached to the membrane for sometime and has not figured out a way to detach until this moment. Humor me!

There are obvious sources of power: money, political esteem, weaponry, brilliance of mind, use of manipulation, and unusual physical attributes-to name a few. We are all witness to these sources of power; whether we recognize them or are just conditioned for them to be a part of our life that there is no such recognition, is inconsequential.

The face to face conversation where both participants make eye contact and the first one to break that contact unofficially gives in to the other superiority. The swagger and confidence of a person who knows they just have it. The failure to acknowledge a challenge that results in the unacknowledgers silent win. Cliques; whether in reality or cyberspace.

Why discuss power? It is part of the human condition; part of our hard-wiring. This is why we don't recognize or acknowledge it all of the time; because its such an essential part of our makeup, i.e. second nature.

Your history lessons are all about power; who overcomes which conflict? Entertainment, from drama to comedy, is all about power and conflict. Our sports, our jobs, our relationships, all about power--who has it and how do they use it.

Power can be draining, but I think it is what keeps our species evolving. Without power, without these daily conflicts we would idle, we wouldn't know how to move forward and conquer the small battles.

I think the trick is how we each handle our daily experiences with power; the old flight or fight situation. Do we need to win every little battle? Probably not, its probably an impossibility anyway. Food for thought. I'm interested in your thoughts.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Memories, condolences, and obituaries

Well its been almost a year since I lost two people who were very important to me. I had watched both my Nanny and my Great-Uncle age quickly over the last few years; shadows of who they once were. During June of 2008 both past-away within twenty days of each other, one barely mourning the other. I know they needed to comfort each other in death as they had in life, so it was sort of fitting.

I haven't dealt with it, haven't really reflected on it, or remembered a whole lot about their deaths or their lives; I don't feel guilty about this, just a need to do this. I loved both of these people dearly, their were an important, character changing part of my childhood and early adulthood, until both started to deteriorate. They were the part of my childhood that made me feel safe, comforted, like a warm blanket just out of the dryer.

My Nanny would give you anything you wanted, and all she asked in return was to have a little attention thrown her way, maybe a conversation or a card game. She had her strong opinions, but in the end she loved all. I will miss her for as long as I shall live and will eagerly wait to see her in the after life. She loved her family and her family loved her. I hope she is with my Grandpa and Uncle in peace.

My Uncle Jerry made everybody laugh; that's what I remember him most for. He was the consummate perfectionist; a mathematician for the Pentagon, who fought under Patton and always pressed as to what happened to the two missing points on a math test when I received a 98. He was that rare person who could tell an absorbing, meaningful story, while at the same time have you in stitches relating to his many life observations. He would always start out a conversation with me be reminiscing about a story that I was too young to remember. He would always say "My David" like he was my guardian angel in life, not a Great-Uncle separated my miles and years. He always had a scratchy beard, but I never shied from his kisses or hugs. I miss him so every day.

About two months ago I had a dream where there was a white light right behind me and in front of me was a mix of brown, black, and greys. I came to a woman sitting in a chair with two men standing on either side of her and various people in the near background. I knelt down and it was my Nanny, a younger version sitting in the chair flanked by my Uncle and Grandpa who were both smiling. With happiness in her voice she told me that she was doing fine and that she was with her husband, brother, and family; at this point I realized that the people in the background were relatives and ancestors from years ago. This dream was not contrived or planned, in fact I question if it was a dream at all, or a glimpse into another 'place.'

I know I could never do justice to two wonderful people who lived long, full lives, in a few simple paragraphs, but I needed to do something. May their memories live on through us--Peace.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Windows to the Soul

I believe we all have a soul; some kind of eternal energy or being that transcends life, death, and everything in between. As humans we are constantly changing, evolving, adjusting to life and the challenges that we all face.

I often try to peek into peoples' souls by glancing at their eyes. Most of the time I see something; at least a glimmer. With my 'munchkins' I sometimes do the Larry David stare that implies me wanting to extract the truth from a certain wayward situation.

I did that today to a 'munchkin' who seemed a bit beside herself. The result of my peek was nothing. I felt as though I was peering into a cloudy marble; their was no entrance, no humor or curiosity would help me gain my portal.

I had never experienced this denial of the soul, not even a brief glimmer. This 'munchkins' soul must be wrapped so tightly in fear, anger, and helplessness that the light is almost non-existent. Its makes me sad to experience this, even for the briefest of moments, for this 'munchkin'.

To be lost and forever scarred and scared at such a young age; and to know that this is probably the tip of the iceberg, for I'm sure there are others just like her. She may torture me for the time that we spend together, but I'm sure that it is nothing compared to what her own mind and experience have done and still do to her.

So for all those children, and people who are lost, or wrapped so tightly in their own fear and loathing that they can't see the worth in life, I will say a prayer for you and try to send some positive karmic thoughts to try and break that emotional traffic jam. My tears will be sent to try and clear yours.

In the words of the great Chris and Rich Robinson:

Soul Singing by Black Crowes. Artist: Black CrowesAlbum: LionsTitle: Soul Singing
Written by: r. robinson & c. robinson

"I've been downCascading and blue w/out a sound
Now i've traded my black feathers for a crown
So feed me milk & honeyLay me downLay me down
Look around
Show me holy places not yet found
Let's disappear and we'll hide underground
We'll get high and we'll feel safe & sound
It comes around arayayayound
Chorus:You got my soul singing my soul singingYou got my soul singing my soul singingYou got my soul singing my soul singingYou got my soul singing my soul singing

Home bound
Tired of tired of running town to town
Tired of my heart turned upside down
Now my life's a smile not a frown
The soundThe sound."

Lyrics contained within subject to US Copyright Lawsand are the property of their respective authors & Black Crowes, artists and labels.Commercial use prohibited. is a not-for-profit resource. All advertising proceeds are used to maintain its servers.

Saturday, May 9, 2009


To start off on a topic that I did not wish to cover this post might not be meant to be, considering I typed it on Microsoft Vista and tried to cut and paste it onto this format and it disappeared. And it might have been the most brilliant piece of writing thought of and conveyed to an audience in about the last 3 seconds.

I haven't posted in a while and that's OK. It is shame though. I often wake up on the Long Island Railroad, jarred awake by the shaking of the cab, making me wonder if this box of metal, plastic, and rubber could jump off the tracks plunging us into certain death. I've come to realize and analyze that at this moment I put all of my anxieties and fears into that waking nightmare.

As life rushes by I contemplate all the usual philosophical questions that have been thought countless times over by countless people. I do believe in the collective unconscious and I believe that I don't contemplate certain issues because those issues have already been resolved by the collective. If your following my train of thought, thank you, and no pun intended.

I think of how I spend 5 hours a day, 25 hours a week, 100 hours a month, and 1000 hours a year riding public transportation. That's roughly 24 full days a year being shaken, not stirred by a metal box, my ass molding into pleather seats. Alot of contemplation, book reading, and sleeping. Observing the human condition. I wonder what it would be like to spend the next 20 years commuting; that would be about a full year and a quarter of my life spent on public transportation. I hope there is no transportation in the after life, or that they invent a transporter machine soon(my small ode to Star Trek). I guess its better than spending time in other even less glorious situations.

Rewind to my subway ride. As I enter the less superior utilitarian iron box I slump into a hard plastic seat, exhausted from having seventh graders pull off my finger nails one by one all day. I slather the anti-bacterial liquid onto my hands and pretend that it is a shield from the diseases of the world. I whip out my book and begin to read. My brain tired my concentration wanes and I seek the solace of observation.

I peek up just above the rim of the book to see who my fellow travelers are. Everyone from young to old, coal black to stare into the sun white, faces as scared as the moon, and as smooth as the porcelain under your feet are on display. Not many are smiling, most caught in their own membrane contemplating different or similar subjects, no one knows or do we?

We spend most of our thinking time trying to figure out how we are different or special or unique, but in the grand scheme of things I think that we are all very similar, our misery, joy, sex, fight, flaws..........The only thing that separates us from the other inhabitants of this tiny planet is our ability to reason, and even that if flawed on a daily, or momentary basis. Our ability to choose right from wrong, depending on what acts and words fit into each category.

This life is a constant struggle, but most of us want to see it to its end, and rightfully so, the good times are definitely worth it; we just all wish that there were more to breath in.

Its time for bed; see you all in the collective, and this time, try to bring an original thought, I'm getting a little bored.