May(an) the New Year bless us all

 

By Kathleen Thomas Gaspar

Let’s just assume you’re reading this, which means the Mayans had it all wrong, and we weren’t pummeled by asteroids on Dec. 21.

With that, Happy New Year! And instead of burning bits of rocks, I pray for blessings on all our little heads.

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A Christmas story

By Kathleen Thomas Gaspar

To those who might find themselves saying, “I just can’t get in the Christmas spirit,” I’d like to offer a suggestion.

Get over yourself. Seriously. Believe (now there’s an operative word) it or not, it’s not about you.

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Life was just a tire swing

 

By Kathleen Thomas Gaspar

It was sometime around 1980 that I started fretting about the too-skinny branches on lodgepole pines. Such branches could never support a rope that in turn would support a well-worn Goodyear tire – which in turn would support a little boy. Or maybe two little boys.

My fretting continued through at least half that decade, a time when my two sons grew into and then out of the perfect size to make good use of a Goodyear on a rope. And somewhere in the recesses of my 1960s’ counterculture/knee-jerk liberal bellbottomed one-toke-over-the-line hippie mind, which in the ‘80s worsened to a ski resort snobbish-elite/liberal newspaper editor/publisher’s mind, there was guilt.

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Lions and tigers and …marauding raccoons?

By Kathleen Thomas Gaspar

Some people are afraid of spiders, and for some the creepiest critter on Earth is the slithering snake. For me, it’s always been flying monkeys.

You know the ones. They were introduced in the 1939 first-ever color movie, “The Wizard of Oz,” when the Wicked Witch of the West said the word, and a gajillion flying monkeys filled the sky. To this very day I either slam my grandmotherly peepers shut or make some excuse to leave the room. You should know I’m also freaked out by Dorothy chanting about lions and tigers and bears, oh my.

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Firstfruits

By Kathleen Thomas Gaspar

According to the calendar, the Farmer’s Almanac and Wikipedia, we’ve hit fall. That would be the season. According to the thermometer on my patio, we’ve hit Mercury. That would be the planet.

So wiping perspiration from my forehead today, I stood on the patio, in the shaded 91 degrees Fahrenheit, and surveyed my north 40 – that would be square feet devoted to growing good things to eat. Yellow and deep red and bright green and deep purple/brown dot (oh, and that would be literal, the use of the word “dot”) the flowerpotted landscape.

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In your Facebook

By Kathleen Thomas Gaspar

Sorry this is kinda late, Mr. Editor. But Facebook ate my computer.

Seriously.

Last week I wrote about “coincidences,” which for the most part are wondrous little God-humor events in my life. This week the simultaneous occurrences didn’t seem quite so divine – although right now I am able to laugh again.

Google “giggle” and you have me.

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Harry’s Choice

By Kathleen Thomas Gaspar

In his 1979 novel Sophie’s Choice, author William Styron left his readers breathless from the bleak portrayals he penned of the human condition.

Stingo’s poverty, Nathan’s spiraling mental illness and, of course, Sophie herself and the eventual confession she shared with Stingo about her choice during World War II. Sorry if you’ve not read this powerful book, but it’s Sophie’s choice I draw on this week.

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