Thursday, January 27, 2011

Am I the only one who thinks she staged this?

This video of a woman falling into a mall fountain while texting went viral this month. Mall security cameras caught her walking along, blissfully ignorant of where she was headed while she was texting away.

Or so it would seem.

I'm not so sure it was as "innocent" as it appears on first glance. Notice how she raises her knee so high to clear the fountain's wall? Who walks like that? Nobody. Not even her, if you notice her stride leading up to the fountain.

That's why I think she staged this....and now she's suing the mall, I hear. Good luck with that, lass.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

How many of us would do what this man did?

A man was robbed in New York City. What he did next will blow your mind.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Looking forward...and looking back

January is naturally a time of beginnings, what with the arrival of the New Year....and resolutions...

But it's also a time of endings, and not just because the old year has gone. Did you know the suicide rate among Marines is highest in January? I don't know why that is, but it's a statistic that surprises me.

How January hits us depends on the circumstances in our lives. Have we got something powerful to look forward to in the New Year? Then we'll greet it with enthusiasm.

Have we suffered a profound loss? Then January will seem much darker to us.

It can be a tough month for many of us, simply because we're in the dead of winter (in the northern hemisphere) and we've got the natural come-down from the holidays (and usually the increase in our debt load from celebrating the holidays). I think I read somewhere that the most depressing day of the year is Jan. 17, calculated by the arrival of the post-holiday bills, plus Monday, plus cold weather. It's perceived as a lengthy equation whose sum is misery.

But this seems like a good time to take stock. Where are we, where would we like to be, and how can we get there? Where are we in relation to where we were five years ago? Sometimes, in the course of our day-to-day lives, we can lose sight of how far we've come.

And, yes, maybe things aren't as good now as they were five years ago. Maybe we see ourselves stuck on a treadmill, and we're pretty much just --- older.

But that's not really true. At the very least, we've had five years to grow as people, to strengthen or establish or heal relationships, to extract  (hopefully) wisdom from our experiences.

Any day with laughter and prayer included in it is not a waste. Any day we have helped another --- in even the smallest of ways --- has enriched the world. On any day, if we take a few moments to look, we can find ways in which we have been blessed...and think of people who care deeply about us.

When we can do that, even our gloomiest days can seem a little brighter.

Sunday, January 16, 2011


I just finished watching a Dutch film called "Twin Sisters," chronicaling the lives of twins separated at a young age after their father's death in Holland in the 1920s. One goes with relatives to Germany, the other to relatives in Holland.

As you can expect, they lived very different lives over the next several decades --- differences that wrenched them apart for most of their lives even after they had opportunities to reconnect. It was food for thought about the bonds of families - even of twins....something I'm conscious of, being a twin myself.

As a twin, you want to have your own identity...yet you are also aware that there's someone out there with whom you are closer - in ways that can be difficult to describe - than you are to almost anyone else.

Even if you're fraternal twins, such as I am with my brother.

I guess it comes down to striking a balance. Cherishing that connection while still living our own lives - thankfully in much less harrowing circumstances than these cinematic siblings.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Snow's in the forecast

Wichita hasn't had a single measurable snowfall so far this winter - though that will end later today, we're told.

The good news is, ice is not part of the forecast. This video, taken last month in Spokane, shows why I'm no fan of ice - unless it's in a drink!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The double-edged sword of resolutions

The arrival of a New Year seems to compel so many of us to make resolutions - i.e., changes - to improve our lives in some way.

Folks work out regularly joke about the crowd that swarms the gyms in January, intent on losing that weight, fitting into that swimsuit, putting on those 'skinny jeans' again. They know that in a few weeks the crowd will thin out as the "resolve" wanes.

And the remorse/self-ridicule mushrooms.

Why do we do this to ourselves? It's good to want to make improvements and to set goals. But so many resolutions merely set us up to fail. It's almost an exercise in masochism.

I guess the answer is moderation: set goals you know you can accomplish - and then build on them. Yet we seem to have as much trouble with self-control when it comes to resolutions as we do when it comes to holiday banquets.