Blogging, a Thing of the Past?

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THE BLOOM is OFF BLOGGING, have you noticed?

My Feedly feed, which for years has brought me the posts of my favorite blogs has been close to empty every time I’ve gone there. For months! I first noticed it in February. Where there used to be 1-2 dozen posts waiting, I now find a single post, maybe two. I’m not trying to shame anyone. I’m not the blog police. I’m just making an observation. Blogging is down.

A digression: I tend not to subscribe to blogs directly because posts pile up in my inbox and get overlooked. With Feedly, I wait until my mind makes it’s daily turn toward reading, take my cup of something, then go sit and see what everyone is up to. I think I give people better attention that way rather than hastily reading (even worse, hastily responding) while between tasks. But everyone has their own system.

I HAVE A THEORY. The world got so noisy, people went silent. It’s rudimentary, I admit. What I mean is, people are reluctant to add to the noise. People hesistate expressing even a genteel opinion these days because of the discussions it may trigger. Why, I’ve seen people post some of the most innocuous things, only to have readers get into a brawl in the comments section. This is true on blogs, FB, Instagram, etc.

Anyway, blogging is falling by the wayside. Have you noticed? And, if so, what’s the cause?

Posted in things that catch my eye | 4 Comments

Maybe the Key to Mercy

Hallelujah Anyway

I am reading Anne Lamott’s “Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy.” In it, she makes an interesting observation. In the story of Jonah and the parable of The Prodigal Son, we are left with questions, not answers:

  • Does Jonah ever get over himself?
  • Does the older brother attend the feast for his prodigal brother?

Left unanswered all this time, all these centuries. What to make of this? Are we waiting for a sequel?

Maybe the answer is ours to give. We pray, Grant us mercy, Lord. But maybe the very mercy we want pouring down on us, the very intervention we long for, is realized as we give our own answers to the two questions. To what degree am I willing to get over myself? How able am I to celebrate the return of an undeserving one?

Deep Sunday thoughts.

Posted in compassion, mercy, philosophical maelstroms | Leave a comment

“I Can’t Be in Class with Men,” she says.

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IT HAPPENS EVERY AUGUST, when the refugee mothers who no longer need child care in order to attend English class (because their youngest enters Pre-K) “graduate” to classes in the main building. There, classes are tailored to specific levels – beginner, intermediate and advanced – and their English will improve more quickly.

But it happens every August, that they are sad to leave us.
They know us.
They know the drill.
They’ve made friends.

For one or two of them, though, it’s about more than that. It’s about …… MEN. Being in class with men. Every year, there’s at least one for whom this is unthinkable.

“I can’t be in class with men,” Vina says.

I know what some of you are thinking. They are in the USA now. They need to adjust. Sure. But we are talking about a woman who, her whole life – 40 years  – has not associated with men outside her family. How to best help her with that adjustment?

I suggest she sign up for a mentor to meet with her weekly, and to request a woman. No, no, she says, shaking her head. She’s sure her husband will not allow that. Next day, though, she waits until the end of class, after everyone’s left the room, to ask a question.

“Marilyn? Do you do that, come to house for English?”
“No, I don’t. I work here in the classroom 3 mornings a week.”
“Oh,” she says. “Because I feel good to talk with you.”

Ahhhhh. So an absolute ‘no’ has some wiggle room, after all.

Perhaps, if I give her another day or two, or a week maybe, she will find her way to the office of the person who arranges for mentors and dare to take a chance on another person, another friendship.

Perhaps even…….Would it be too much to hope for, that she finds her way to giving her new class a chance? And that it would be okay with her husband, too?

Maybe it is too much.
Then again, maybe not.

Her English is very good. I would hate to see it deteriorate due to lack of use.

Posted in comfort zone, compassion, courage, languages, refugees | 2 Comments