I’ve known some seriously obsessed, never missed a hometown parade people. I’ve also known a few regular rotation, TV viewing  aficionados. I’m accidentally in the latter category.

I didn’t grow up gung-ho on parades. Exceptions were the 1776-1976 Bicentennial parade, and the yearly Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Although I always enjoyed that turkey day morning tradition, I’m pretty sure it was used in a calculated way to keep us kids out of the stuffing chef’s way until it was time to set the semi-formal dinner table. Until my mid-20’s, my in-person parade experience was limited. One year, I glimpsed the annual NYC event from in between the shoulders of tallers on the sidelines. The next year, I tagged along to the 4:00 AM inflation, which was fascinating and cold.  I also once (emphasis on sole) attempted to watch the New Year’s Eve Ball drop in Times Square, through elbows and push, frozen ears and watery eyes. The next immediate year following both, I front-seat parked myself back in front of the TV.

I learned through third-decade attrition: Senior Day, Home-Coming, Memorial Day, Independence Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Veteran’s Day, Halloween, Christmas, Summer Solstice, Parade of Lights, FestiFools, Championship Bowls, Ticker Tape. Hot weather, cold weather – there’s a parade for every season, and a few for no seasons, too. I absorbed the rituals, like deeply breathing second-hand smoke, but in a good way. Watching others enjoy, and being happy to help promote happiness.

Attached to holiday and tradition, approached as renewals and reminders; equally able to reclaim joyful childhood wonder and grow into patriotically serious adult respect. I became accustomed to the heart swell and admit to misty eyes each time our Flag would pass by.

At first, I clung to the original ideal: transference through love. Truly tried to make it a few times, envisioning arriving alone with the intention of meeting up with others, but eventually decided to drop out. Picturing being there hurt more than picturing not, especially when I became hung-up that my being might change the experience. I’m not claiming major influence. I’ve just been awkwardly considering from the side-lines long enough to believe showing up isn’t always for the best. Taking away from any enjoyable moment, not wanting to seem sad, not wanting to pretend happiness, having to explain, declaims any worth the experience may have had to offered.

I shake my head each time I am handed a health questionnaire that attempts to pigeon-hole present frame of mind. “Are you no longer finding enjoyment in the things you used to?” Consideration is supposed to light-bulb your brain into acknowledging you’re exhibiting an obvious sign of depression. Inapplicable for me, it’s a rather useless question. Answering, “Yes,” raises false flags. Answering, “No,’” just simply isn’t true.

That’s really not the point I’m trying to get to, though. The point is to recognize when it is time to declassify the past, re-future and re-program repetitive experiences as individually new. Projection, often the cause of unrealistic expectational holiday unhappiness, applies to nearly everything.

Here’s what I’m thinking: any awkwardness in life shouldn’t immediately be about “Let it Go” avoidance.

There’s a better pattern. Let it happen, deal with it, and only afterwards, decide if it’s worth trying again.

So, maybe next year, if I get up the nerve, and drum up appropriate support, I’ll parade again.

Quote for the Week:

2015 05 26 2015 Parade Decide jakorte

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Everybody Loves a Parade:

I Love a Parade:

About that Parade:


A Moment of Choice

There’s a word we are supposed to use, but I won’t.

With lack of intentional and circumstantial disbelief, its purpose is too succinct. It cannot and never will encompass an eternal reality for a moment of choice.

There’s just too much confusion. Parlaying between what I’ve come to understand and what I pray to be justifiable exception.

I’m not seeking lip-service. I am not seeking to be assured rules bend.

I’m just wondering if we don’t have all the details: explicit caveats, assured exceptions.

Maybe there are other branch outcomes. Much like speeding limits posted, everyone knows a tick or two higher or lower usually isn’t jail worthy. There’s a little give and take that inherently comes with variation in calibration, design and plan.

So, in what case is an offense not an offense? When it’s a defense? When it is a coping mechanism? When the voice of GOD says, “Now.”?

Who’s to say?  At a funeral once, an officiate declared this as afterlife; “We hope they have ascended to heaven and are sitting at the right hand of God.” Adjacent, and unfamiliar with this religious vein, an astonished voice whispered, “He hopes? He doesn’t know?”

I’m not sure the declaration was a singularly aimed question of absolute in- or dis-clusion, rather just a reflection of an honest expression of unsureness. Perhaps it is assumptive to believe what I believe. Perhaps there is a divine humility in any cautionary advisement of the unknown.

I’d like to think this was something special; that it was not seen as a cut and dry affront to doctrine of any kind. I’d like to think this event found welcome – with open, healing arms of grace and love and reward for having been so perfectly incapable of anger or rage or malicious intent. Because, after all, God knew before he was born.

I just hope the angels realize what they have.

Quote for the Week:

Perhaps it is the job of angels May 19 2015

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Out of the Darkness:

Angel of Grief:




Or, Can’t Miss

The saddest part of life might be this:

It doesn’t really matter how much you miss someone if they don’t miss you back.  Or can’t miss you, which I’m hoping is the case.

If ever there was a case for a higher place of happy consciousness, I’d vote for the reality to be somewhere between real and now.

It would be ok to be the one left behind if I could be truly comforted by the many similar ways grief experts and hospice nurses describe standard (if a bit purported) euphoric crossover.

I’m not sure I purchase such euphemistic explanations for pre-death, last-breath smile phenomenon suggesting memory flare for the fondest memories, the happiest space in a lifetime.

I am finding it necessary to welcome the numbness, embrace the cloak, wield the shield as tightly as possible, deflect.

There is no other way to move forward without pain, if there is importance in moving forward. Lacking in the past, there is it now. An inkling.

I used to not want to be the last one standing. Suddenly, I know I can afford to bear the most, and cause others less, pain.

There is no saving from pain, but there is consideration, which this loss lacked. To me it seems, the way out is just that.

Just because there is an arrowed sign, doesn’t mean you have to disembark.

Immediate or indiscernible, there are always alternative paths, alternate timing, other unforced exits.

Always. Unless, I’m wrong or we’re all wrong, and the highway just ends where it should, when it should.

Quote for the Week:

Exit Sign doesnt mean you must disembark  05 12 2015

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Two Big Myths About Grief:

To Which I Say

It’s like this:

A friend stops by to ask what has happened the last two weeks of a television drama because while they were on a cruise, the power went out at their home, the DVR failed and they need to catch up. You don’t see how you can easily catch them up. The details are important, but will take forever, and the last episode’s ending isn’t going to change. So, you summarize as best you can, picking and choosing the points that matter.

Another episode or two in, your friend will come back to ask why or how, shaking their head that you failed to convey the exact right detail that could have helped them figure it out on their own.

So, that’s the way it is for these last two weeks. I can’t catch you up. I don’t want to, and you don’t know it but you don’t want me to, either. There are unnecessary burdens in the details; even in missing ones left off the story line.

Resources stand on my shelves. I’ve glanced their way infinite times, but I’m still absorbing reality so while abstract may redirect my mind, the heart of the matter comes first.

I have learned frantic speculation doesn’t help. I have learned tempered reaction doesn’t help. I have learned immediate blameful introspection doesn’t help.

I have learned with enough evidence or time, or time and evidence, any unbelievable wrong thing can become believable and right.

I say within the sanctity of love, in two languages for honor, the prayer that deserves to be said:

Blessed, praised, honored, exalted, extolled, glorified, adored, and lauded be the name of the Holy Blessed One, above and beyond all the blessings, hymns, praises and consolations that are uttered in the world. May there be abundant peace from heaven, and life, for us. May the One who creates harmony on high, bring peace to us and to all.

… to which I say, Amen.

Quote for the Week:

with enough evidence or time 05 05 2015

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Zen Lessons:


The Origin: