MAY DAY!!!!

HELLLOOOOOO, MAY! WELCOME! And you have arrived not a moment too soon! I LOVE MAY! It is full of good things. What, you ask? First of all, it is a holiday in France. May Day is France’s Labor Day AND the Fête du Muguet. Return of Spring. Flowers. Fun. We are ALL restored to a natural state of good health under the Law of Grace. And, so it is. Seriously,

Labor Day in France is always a designated day of action. France is never at a loss for a reason to hit the streets and take action!!!!! Haha. But, Labor Day obligates the French to do something!!!! Trade unions and other organizations take this day to organize marches and demonstrations to campaign for workers rights and other social issues.  Nobody told the French that they don’t know how good they have it. THEY DID NOT GET THE MEMO. So how did May 1st become such an important day for workers’ rights in France anyway when every day is an important day for workers’ rights in France?

Surely there’s nothing more French than protests and demonstrations, but this day of action actually gets its origins from a huge strike in Chicago in 1886.  On May 1st, 35,000 workers walked out of their jobs, joined by tens of thousands more in the next couple days, leading a national movement for an eight-hour work day.  Three years later, France decided to establish an “International Workers’ Day” with the same goal, but it didn’t officially become a paid day off until 1941 under the Vichy regime.

But May Day isn’t all protests and political events. It’s also about flowers and good luck. So, why is May Day also called the Fête du Muguet? On the first of May in 1561, France’s King Charles IX was given a muguet flower, or lily of the valley in English, as a lucky charm and liked it so much that he decided to offer them each year to the ladies of the court. 

These days, the flowers are sold in bouquets on the street around France and people offer them to friends or family members for good luck.  I bought one at the grocery store. 

And, ALSO, in 1890, May Day protesters started adorning their lapels with a red triangle, with the three sides representing the division of the ideal day in three equal parts: work, leisure, and sleep.  For those protestors who still wear pins on their lapels on May 1st, the triangle has since been replaced by a small bouquet of the lily of the valley flower tied with a red ribbon. Mine does not have a red ribbon but I believe work, leisure, and sleep.

The May 1st holiday can actually be traced back to pagan rituals. For the Celtic people, this day marked the change passage from the dark, winter months to the return of the beaux jours, or the beautiful, sunny days of spring.  The druids would light bonfires to symbolically protect their livestock from diseases.  In northeastern France, they called the last night of April the “night of sorcerers”. Children would patrol the villages and gardens, gathering objects that they would then place in the center of the village, giving the sense of a supernatural intervention. These days, the last traces of these Celtic rituals only exist in certain parts of France that still practice the tradition of the “tree of May”. I don’t think this ritual exist in the 16e of Paris. Just lots of flowers and peace and quiet.

AND – The tree of May.  France has LOTS of traditions. This rather quirky May Day tradition that has mostly fallen out of practice involves young men in some parts of France cutting down a tree during the night between the 30th of April and May 1st and then replanting it by the door of the woman they hoped to marry.  Everybody around here has concrete and that wouldn’t work. It was a sign of honor and also a celebration of the arrival of May: the month of trees, water, and nature.   We have that. Some trees, water, and nature. Other versions of this tradition saw this May tree placed in front of a church or at the home of a newlywed couple. Hmmmmmmm

Fête de la Terre.  During medieval France, this time was a celebration of the season rather than ‘work’, as it was to become. It was named “Fête de la Terre”. This was also a time to celebrate the shepherds, who worked in the land. A feast would be hosted for three days in celebration, during which time musical parades would take place with people dancing and riding mules adorned with ribbons through the villages, to an enormous banquet.  This tradition is best preserved in rural areas of France, such as the mountainous department of Isère, or the south west region of Cahors, where the weekend surrounding the 1st is still one of celebration, using it as an excuse to come together and enjoy the good weather, with parades and markets of regional products. Frankly, the French don’t need a reason to come together and enjoy the good weather. They love to enjoy EVERYTHING and to celebrate

The National Front’s “patriotic banquet” 

France’s extreme-right party the National Front is known for its yearly march from Place de l’Opéra to the statue of Joan of Arc at Place des Pyramides in the first arrondissement of Paris, which it’s been doing since 1988.  But on a recent year,  Marine Le Pen decided to scrap that plan in favor of a huge banquet at the Paris Event Center in the northern part of the city, with more than 2,000 people expected to attend. The party said the change was due to reasons of security.  Marine Le Pen’s father and the former head of the party, Jean-Marie Le Pen,  ignored the change of plans and called for people to join him at the old meeting spot anyway. I don’t know what happened. 

But, this year, May 1 demonstrations are expected through France this weekend. Historically, these demonstrations sometimes become disruptive and/or violent. U.S. citizens should be cautious throughout France. Areas of particular concern include:

  •  Strasbourg, Place du Marechal de Lattre de Tassigny towards Place d’Austerlitz, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Antifa groups protesting, with a risk of riots;
  •  Lyon, Place Jean MACE towards Place Bellecour, beginning at 10:30 a.m., antifacist protest with risk of riots;
  • ·Paris, Place de la Republique, where multiple protests are planned throughout the day.
  • Demonstration Alert – U.S. Embassy Paris, France
  • April 30, 2021,  Cities and towns throughout France on May 1

NOW, I am also going to celebrate by posting pretty pictures that make me feel good when I look at them. I have a new philosophy. I may not give credit to the photographer or to the artist. I apologize in advance, but it is laborious. And, on May Day, I am taking a holiday from obligations to give credit. Just enjoy.

So, Happy May Day, good luck, natural state of good health, and other good things. The cafes with be up and running on patios on May 17. I get my second shot next Saturday. LIVE, LAUGH, AND BE MERRY. The Best is Yet to Come!!!!

Best, Jay (just a headshot I like. )

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SPEND A MOMENT of TIME WITH ME…….

Just some of my thoughts and frustrations. I am taking a microscope to my life these days. Looking at everything with new eyes.  Who is doing what and how?  Covid has taken its toll on me.  Other people in their 80’s seem younger than I feel.  Why?  Friends are playing golf.  Others are wearing stilettos.  Others are going up and down stairs with no problem.  Oops.  Well, on the contrary, I was a late bloomer.  I got married at age 68 to my fourth husband (long story).  I thought I was invincible. Guess what? I am not!

I moved to France when I was 78.  And all of that time I had high blood pressure and lots of allergies to the medicines. BUT, I kept seeing doctors and pushing forward. SPOILER ALERT!!! I saw my doctor yesterday and some new medicine to try because my blood pressure needs to get a grip. It never got the memo. I NEED TO GET A GRIP!

Shoulda, coulda, woulda…….  I can give you lots of reasons why, but that does not solve the problem.  This is the problem.  I am exhausted and don’t feel like doing much of anything, much less exercising.  I have fought back and fought back and fought back.  Trying to ‘LIVE EVERY MOMENT TO ITS FULLEST. And, I have finally had to let go.  Not willingly, mind you.  Covid made me do it. Vertigo from brain strokes made me do it. High blood pressure made me do it. So now, I am making the best of it, trying to stay positive and motivate myself to take action.

Actually, lots of good things are happening.  I have a list.  And flowers make everything better. Besides, old is 100 or SO. 80-95 is “senior” or “elderly”. So, this Senior is still collecting photographs and paintings and memes.  But this elderly person still has lots of fears – falling, running out of money, getting sick, having to move to a cheaper place and such.  But she is holding her own.  No stairs. No stilettos.  No golf.   But she is alive and had time in Paris, surviving/thriving during a Pandemic.  Lots of “but-s” and  “on the contrary-s”

I am looking forward to the Oscars.  I have always been hostage to politically correct liberal propaganda.  I loved Nomadland. The Acting is incredible in all of the nominations.  I get most of the films in Paris with my subscription to Eurobox.  And, of course, I always wonder if I would still be working if I had not practiced law.  But coulda, woulda, shoulda.    Now I just want to walk and handle stairs and don’t feel like exercising.  Oops. 

I am having an apricot tarte for lunch with coffee with a chicken sandwich for dinner with a glass of my favorite wine. I did not buy any flowers. It was too much to carry. Flowers make everything better. So just some pictures I like for this moment in time.

Best, Jay (not a great picture of me but current. i am getting color with makeup soon. Not today. Not tomorrow. But, soon. I think I am brave to post on here. )

“ART” THOUGHTS – a brain exercise

I have avoided studying art history for years. It seemed to me that I had to pick one, or at best, two – theatre (drama), music, or art. So, I chose first music (voice and classical piano) and then drama (theatre history and performing arts). Art was not on the list. It was too complicated, and I did not aspire to be an artist. And I did not aspire to being a “pop” anything, So, I avoided museums and art classes in school. Musical Theatre was as close to “pop” as I got.

I spent time collecting works of friends and local artists that I liked and were “free”. I usually ended up with a painting that an artist friend did not want. And, it was free. I always liked it. I would frame the piece and hang it on the wall of wherever I happened to be living. I collected some beauties that I loved – over the years. I wanted to look at things I liked. Sometimes I would pay a small amount if a friend had a “showing”. And, then I would buy something I liked.

The problem is- ignoring art history did not “fit” my scholarly persona (MO) that I loved having all through the years. So, when I was moving to Paris, people would want to know which museums I planned to visit. None. Well, I had been to the Louvre in 1955 and seen the Mona Lisa, and Versailles and others and I did not need to go back and sit. I had belonged to the Getty in LA and was a patron of the LA Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the PR was what I wanted. I was a scholarly “snob”. Besides, I had received my BFA and master’s degree in Drama. I had taken courses toward my PhD in theatre history. And I was Phi Best Kappa with Summa Cum Laude grades without the sufficient course credit. So, I felt qualified to be a scholarly snob. I was “smart” and passing the California Bar Exam at age 63 proved it.

Now, it is with sheer humility that I admit these brain strokes (3 “vascular accidents”) have brought me to my knees. I make a lot of mistakes. Sorry. And I now am willing to admit that I don’t know anything about art, and I live in Paris, France. I am a “fake faker.” (song from “The Fantasticks.”). And my interest in acting even has taken a back seat to “health” issues. I have no problem not going to museums. Oh, I LOVE to act, having trained with Lee Strasberg himself. My “instrument” is rusty to not-working.

So, I am spending time with art. Online. Looking to see what I like. I sold most of my own artwork when I moved to Paris, so it is hanging on walls in Nice, Antibes, and Cannes. AND I LIVE IN PARIS!!!!!!! I kept favorites of Steve’s for personal reasons. But, I only have one or two of my favorites.

WHAT??????? I still don’t know anything about art, but I joined a Facebook group about Art and am saving photos of paintings I like. I “share” favorites. There is no rhyme or reason to it. Purely emotional. Or intuitive. Or uneducated. But I cannot tell you much about any of them. Too complicated. And, it does not interest me.

Truth be known, I was never interested in the personal information about performers. I did not care who was doing what or thought about anything. I just liked someone’s “work”. I watched programs based on someone’s work – writer’s or director’s or actor’s work. I still do, but now I don’t watch any violence. British mysteries. Solving puzzles. But it cannot be too dark. I went there and did that. No more. Oops. SO, just for fun, I am sharing with you some photos that I like – for some reason or other. And some memes. Working my brain. So far, so good. Honestly, I don’t know if forcing my brain to focus is good or not. But I am doing it and it is working (except for all the mistakes).

I have more that I have saved, but that’s enough for now. I regret I don’t know the artists but maybe you do. My point is to say that I am enjoying paintings anyway, and I think that is good. So be it. I have been to a couple of museums – in Nice and Antibes and Cannes and hope to go to more. There is no rhyme or reason to any of it. I just a sick of politics and a lot of people. I am busying myself with art and writing posts. And films seemed to be too dark.

Best, Jay

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“I DON’T KNOW” Get a coffee or tea……

This is on my mind – A bunch of rambling. Thinking out loud. Even though I know more than I have ever known, I don’t know. I know that I live in Paris. I know that I WANTED to live in Paris for many years. I know that I am in a pandemic. I know I got one dose of the Pfizer vaccine. I know that I am in my “golden years”. I know that I don’t want to die. I know that I believe my children turned out to be very good people. I know that I have lived a turbulent life that seemed “normal”. I “like” my family. I am basically OK. And, on it goes…… BUT, I DON’T KNOW. What? I am uncomfortable. I feel a sadness. I know that there is more that I have to do. I have a higher purpose. I have always known that. What? I DON’T KNOW.

Like a caterpillar, it feels so uncomfortable, like a sadness because there’s more to life and then it transforms into a beautiful butterfly, it’s like us we feel such uncomfort because we know we have a higher purpose.” -Eckhart Tolle.

Well, all of this time alone in my apartment seems unending. I got my first Vaccine this week and was ecstatic for a few hours, but that passed.  And my thoughts take over. Long story short – I am too negative.  I am striving to think in affirmations, but I default to the negative.  I vacillate between wanting something and affirming my happiness.  Is that a learned pattern?  Maybe.  Can it be unlearned?  Maybe.  And all there ever is- is NOW.  Present time.  All there ever is.  Period. End of story.  No past or future except as memory or anticipation.  Just NOW.  THE ETERNAL NOW.

I know, I know. DUH!!! SO, what do I do with that information? Welllllll, ..I am giving a lot of thought to what and how I think about things and events and possibly to whom I want to keep in touch – in my mind and on social media – but, mainly in my mind. Social media is easy. I am one of the few who actually like Facebook. I don’t use Twitter so much. I also like Instagram.

I am a terrible communicator and don’t keep in touch with much of anyone. But I think about people and events. And things that happened and choices I made. Lots of memory. Maybe too much life review. I am trying to get a perspective to consider whether an event was real or in my imagination. My fantasy of what happened and who people really were. What really happened. I am finding that my mind plays or has played tricks on me. Either then or now. People I thought were one thing were another. Events that I thought were one thing were another. The signals were all there. I misinterpreted them.

Is this a normal occurrence? Is something trying to happen? What? I DON’T KNOW. But something. Am I a caterpillar – ready to become a butterfly? Right now feels uncomfortable, like a sadness. I thought that was grief over the loss of good health and youth. Or the pandemic. Or just, plain loneliness.

But, I believe that each one of us is on a spiritual journey, whether we like it or not. We are here to learn something. We all have an eternal part of ourselves that is who we truly are and connected to something bigger than ourselves – God/Love/All, such as the Collective Unconscious – It is more than “nature at work”.) Or is life just groups of “clean slates” in which to start over? I DON’T KNOW. A bunch of “flukes” in which we must find “pockets of joy”?

I am trying to learn to love (sometimes I have to try hard with some people). Loving does not come easily to me. I DON’T KNOW WHY. I choose to find as many things as I can to know them as best I can, believing that they are in my life for a reason. From their point of view. I choose to believe that life is NOT just a “fluke”.

OK. REBOOT: Right now, I am where I choose to be.  Paris. I worked hard to get here.  But, will I choose to stay here?  I DON’T KNOW. I will admit that I am being very judgmental about a lot of things.   Does that mean that I am too judgmental?  Maybe.  Maybe I am just making too many plans that will NOT be my choice to make. I just try to be “present” with others. Does anyone care? Oh, who cares? I DO! Am I already forgotten, for the most part? Already gone. But, I am not gone, and I CARE. And I enjoy writing this post. And searching for truth matters TO ME. And, maybe my words will reach another person. One is enough to make me feel that something I said mattered.

I choose to believe most people are trying to become better. I may not agree. Do I try to “change or fix” them?  Maybe. For the most part, I try to look to see how I can imagine them for who they truly are, a soul, a brother/sister, a parent, a child? What do I notice about them that “triggers” me or “pushes my buttons”. Do I have a similar part of my personality that I can work on and change about myself?

I am in the middle period.  I give myself permission to NOT-KNOW, for now, without any shame, judgment, or pressure to resolve the mysteries of the heart. It is a pure expression of life, in and of itself, exactly as it is. I embrace it.  Who knows what is around the corner?  I choose to believe in miracles. “Feeling comfortable within the discomfort”. It is a process, and an interesting one at that.  A couple of memes and some flowers. Thank you for listening.

PHOTOGRAPER UNKNOWN.

Best, JAY

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RAINY DAY IN PARIS…..duh…..!

I wrote this post on Saturday, and it was raining. It rains a lot in Paris. But, today, there is sunshine and beginning to warm up. Good. So, I still feel good about a lot of things. So, I am reposting this. I want the message “out there”. Positive energy and positive thinking. And, lots of love. Best, Jay

JAYSPEAK

What is on my mind? Well, it is a rainy Saturday in Paris, so I will spend some time on JAYSPEAK. I really enjoy this blog and these weekly posts. They are changing – as I change – and we are not sure where they (or I) are(am) going. But I am feeling happy, for some reason. I am not sure why. I am – and have been – working on feeling happy for no reason. It takes work. Haha. I am used to feeling sad and depressed and lonely and……. I think I was hoping for youth to return, e. g. things lost forever. Never to return.

I am now loving that I am still alive. I am dreaming of a soul mate. I am dreaming of vacations in the South of France, and Britany and Normandy. I am dreaming of staying in wonderful hotels with facilities for the…

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RAINY DAY IN PARIS…..duh…..!

What is on my mind?  Well, it is a rainy Saturday in Paris, so I will spend some time on JAYSPEAK.  I really enjoy this blog and these weekly posts.  They are changing – as I change – and we are not sure where they (or I) are(am) going.  But I am feeling happy, for some reason.  I am not sure why.  I am – and have been – working on feeling happy for no reason.  It takes work. Haha.  I am used to feeling sad and depressed and lonely and…….  I think I was hoping for youth to return, e. g.  things lost forever.  Never to return.

I am now loving that I am still alive. I am dreaming of a soul mate.  I am dreaming of vacations in the South of France, and Britany and Normandy.  I am dreaming of staying in wonderful hotels with facilities for the handicapped.  Yes, I have accepted that I need certain things that I will need in my search for where I can stay.   Such as What?   

No stairs.  Handles in the shower.  Easy access into the shower.  Dining room with excellent food, good service, and no stairs (in case I enjoy the wine too much.).  Sea views from patios without stairs.  Hopefully a heated swimming pool with easy access.  I have started my searches and those places exist.  Apparently, I am not the only person still alive who wants to go to a pretty place with easy access who has problems with mobility.  Haha.

Guess what?????  BREAKING NEWS.  It is not all about ME!!!  I have been telling myself a lot – “Hey, it is not all about YOU!”   I was so used to taking things personally (part of my Southern training), I have learned the hard way …. It is not all about me.  Yes, I have certain loves and buttons that people seem to “push”, but I am better.  It is not all about ME!!! 

I am happy the landlord helped me find someone to fix my patio door (even though it was expensive.  It is FIXED.  HEY, IT WAS WORKING WHEN I MOVED IN!).  I am happy that I got an appointment for a vaccine next week. I had an appointment to get Astrazeneca today and canceled it for Pfizer next week.  I am happy I have pink roses on the piano.  I am happy I have fresh tangerines and blueberries for my muesli for breakfast. I am happy my coffee maker makes good coffee.  “Little Things Mean A Lot”.  Remember that song.  I am happy I can taste and smell.  And on it goes………

My photos have changed.  Not as good as before (I don’t think.) I don’t take as many.  It is awkward to set my cane down (when I am out) and use my hands with a camera. I did take some on Friday.  Here are several.  I was surprised to see so many different kinds of flowers.  Seasonal.  Lots of peonies (April and May), cacti, lilacs, rhododendrons.  And, of course, roses and tulips.  They now know me in there and do me a bouquet of 3 roses with greenery for 11 euros in a bag that is easy for me to carry with my cane.  They immediately offer me a chair so that I can wait while they prepare my packaged flowers. 

I used to hate that I needed to sit.  Now, I sit and try to focus.  Still dizzy (for those who don’t know, I have had problems with brain strokes ((“vascular accidents”) in the last 3 years and am working with my brain)), most of the time. It was caused by high blood pressure.  Don’t let that go untreated. I did. Ugh. Brain strokes usually don’t kill a person, so I don’t let that stop me.  I have good doctors. AND as long as I am alive, there is hope for healing, and I am definitely getting better.  I am learning a lot about the brain.  Wonderful!!!  And, people help me everywhere I go – the Pharmacie, the market, the florist, La Poste.  (Restaurants and Cafes and Shops are not open at present.)

Guess what!!! BREAKING NEWS!!!  They value “the elderly” in France.  They do what they can to keep you living “at home” and comfortable.  Well, I have been so independent in my life, that I am still learning the hard way.  So, some pretty photos TAKEN BY ME, and some memes I like.  Then, the Closer.  An edit from “The Velveteen Rabbit.”  I had that book for years, along with “Siddhartha” and “Jonathan Livingston Seagull.”

And now – the Closer! I love this.

“You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in your joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real, you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.” – Margery Williams – “The Velveteen Rabbit.” artwork photo by – William Nicholson #ravenousbutterflies #margerywilliamsbooks #williamnicholsonartist #velveteenrabbit–

BEST, JAY

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THREE DAYS OF EASTER – NEW FUTURE FOR ALL

What is on my mind?  Easter.   Rebirth.  New.  Spring.   New growth.  Sound familiar?  It does to me.  What is really happening?  A lifelong friend died.  My brother-in-law is surrounded by hospice workers.  I am having difficulty getting a vaccine appointment.  The virus is outside my window.  I need groceries and supplies.  I am not drinking wine for several days.  My hair needs color streaks.  I need updated orthotics. Money is tight.  Restaurants and cafes are closed.  So, how am I dealing with life right now? 

I wrote this letter yesterday to those of us who are still alive:

“It is with great sadness that I am writing to you today   First time – since graduation in June 1955.   I cannot let the death of Larry Whitfield go unnoticed by me.  As your Class President, I want to honor the life and work of Larry Whitfield.  Never on that graduation day in June 1955, on the stage in the GYM at GHS did I expect Larry Whitfield to be the light who would carry us through year after year after year together.

With Larry, we have not only lost a class member and a relationship, but we have lost the paste and the glue that has held us all together over decades.  All we have had to do is to flow, grow, and adapt.  And sometime, show up.  But, Larry kept us remembering our youth, birthdays, names, faces.  Some years, he called me long distance to wish me a happy birthday.  I can still remember his voice over the phone.  So familiar. So warm and friendly.  Through good times and bad.  And, over the years, he did not let one of our deaths pass him by.  Or sickness.  Reminding us of times gone by over the decades.  And of good friends.  Through wars and pandemics.  Good times and bad.

Does all of that have value?  I think so.  Our memories.  During our mid-80’s.  Our cycle of life was great!  For the most part…..   And, many of us are having new beginnings this spring.  But, we have a lot to be thankful for this Easter Season.  We are good people for no reason.  Just because……  Larry was a good person, for no reason.  Just because……. So, as each of you heal, start over again, and rediscover life once more, say a little prayer and a thank you, to Larry Whitfield, for his years of service to the Class of ’55!

Sending much love,

Janet Jewell aka Jay W. MacIntosh”

The ONLY way I know how.  Looking for a pony in all this shit.  So, as is my MO, I joined a group that emotionally supports each other. As a result, I am saving memes that help and going to share my favorites in a minute.  

No politics.  That doesn’t’ mean that I don’t get politically challenged.  But I don’t want to write about it. I will leave the governing to the experts.

I want to spend my time worrying about dumping the garbage downstairs without a cane.  Watering the plants.  Finding someone to fix the patio door.  I have now had three “vascular accidents” that I know of.  I am working with my brain, helping it stay positive.  I am learning about brains, doing a daily French lesson online, isolation exercises, writing, moving, sleeping…….

Honestly, I have never been so challenged in my life.  Trying to solve new problems in new ways.  “The Lord helps Those Who Help Themselves.”  I don’t know the verse or section. But that one sticks in my mind.  So……  During these 3 days of EASTER, 2021, I share with you, my Readers and Followers and other Interest Folks, this rambling post on JAYSPEAK.   Memes that help me.

My birthday was March 30. These two helped me have a good day. That was nice.

Thank you to all of you.  As you can see, health issues are front and center for me. So be it. In the background, I am living in PARIS. So, I am looking forward to a lot of things. I have some pretty photographs of roses that I took a few years ago. This is one of my favorites. Roses make me happy. Taking photographs makes me happy. Writing this blog makes me happy. DO WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY. It helps that brain. Quantum Physics. Go for it!!!

BEST, JAY

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WHAT HAPPENED TO COMMON SENSE?

THIS IS ON MY MIND – The light at the end of the tunnel keeps moving farther away.  But what gives me hope is that common sense is coming back into “vogue”.  I keep reading inspirational stuff and realized that I am getting numb to a lot of it. And where is common sense?  Where are my friends’ common sense? IT’S THERE!  Alive and well tho’ lying dormant.  Hey, Guys, Macron can only do so much.  Biden can only do so much. So STOP COMPLAINING and use your common sense. 

And my road is paved with good intentions.  WELL, my common sense tells me that I must dig deeper to find it within myself to go farther.  I can only imagine what my father faced in his day.  And his mother.  And his brothers and sisters.  I am such a wimp. 

This worked last week:

“Barely the day started and… it’s already six in the evening.

Barely arrived on Monday and it’s already Friday.

… and the month is already over.

… and the year is almost over.

… and already 40, 50 or 60 years of our lives have passed.

… and we realize that we lost our parents, friends.

and we realize it’s too late to go back…

So… Let’s try, despite everything, to enjoy the remaining time…

Let’s keep looking for activities that we like…

Let’s put some color in our grey…

Let’s smile at the little things in life that put balm in our hearts.

And despite everything, we must continue to enjoy with serenity this time we have left. Let’s try to eliminate the after’s…

I’m doing it after…

I’ll say after…

I’ll think about it after…

We leave everything for later like ′′ after ′′ is ours.

Because what we don’t understand is that:

Afterwards, the coffee gets cold…

afterwards, priorities change…

Afterwards, the charm is broken…

afterwards, health passes…

Afterwards, the kids grow up…

Afterwards parents get old…

Afterwards, promises are forgotten…

afterwards, the day becomes the night…

afterwards life ends…

And then it’s often too late….

So… Let’s leave nothing for later…

Because still waiting see you later, we can lose the best moments,

the best experiences,

best friends,

the best family…

The day is today… The moment is now…

We are no longer at the age where we can afford to postpone what needs to be done right away.

Or maybe you’ll leave it for… ′′ later “…

I like what it says.  Except, I am not a procrastinator.  I usually take action.  Usually.   (sigh).   What is really on my mind is that I am disgusted.  What has happened to common sense?  People that I thought had/have common sense don’t seem to be using it.   Well, they don’t have common sense according to what seems obvious to me.   I get very discouraged.  I want that light at the end of the tunnel to be around the corner and it is not!!  My fellow blogger uses a wonderful word “lassitude”. It means weariness and/or being tired of.  So, what do I do?  Take a shower?


Yesterday, I took a walk.  Today, it is Palm Sunday. Time in Europe changed this weekend.  I thought I was better.  Now, I feel worse.  Well, I am better.  And, if I take action, what action do I take?  Lots of questions without answers.  Meanwhile……

I have some new affirmations for my birthday on Tuesday (March 30th)  But the one I am going with today and especially on Tuesday and after that.

            EVERY DAY IS A NEW BEGINNING.  The 3 days of Easter.  Then, go for it!!  A new future.  Use your common sense! 

Peace.  JAY

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JANET’S STORY OF “JESSE”

His name was “Jesse”. I called him “Daddy”. It has been written “It is dangerous to say that one man in less than two decades changed the eating and food purchasing habits of the United States, saved many farmers from bankruptcy, helped found a national industry. Almost any citizen of North Georgia will readily admit that one man was at least the leading instrument, the planner and stimulating agent for this phenomenal development, and that his name was ‘Jesse Dickson Jewell’ ” . A friend said that he was born “before his time”. On the contrary, he was born at the perfect time and was able to help a lot of people.

During the last year of confinement, I have been doing a lot of thinking in Paris, about my life, my life choices, my family, what actually happened, the myths surrounding what actually happened, and the things I will NEVER KNOW – or rather, I only know pieces of a puzzle. (sigh) Memories mixed with facts mixed with speculation. THUS, “JANET’S STORY OF ‘JESSE’ ”

Get a cup of coffee. This may take a while. Some of it is factual. Some is Janet’s story or what happened.

A moment to recap – He was born in Gainesville, Georgia on March 13, 1902, to Mary Tallulah Dickson Jewell and Edgar Herman Jewell – their third child and second son. He grew up in Gainesville and attended local public schools through high school. His father committed suicide when he was seven (on July 19, 1909), when he was in the second grade.

Five years later, when he was in the 7th grade, his mother remarried Leonard Loudermilk, a handsome, young widower with five children of his own. They all lived together in Mary’s big house and Leonard helped with the family business (a Feed and Fertilizer Store).  Mary Tallulah and Leonard got all of the children (10) to help around the house and also hired a woman to help. I don’t know if she lived there or not.  I doubt it.    

All of the kids graduated from High School and started or graduated from college. 

Jesse went for a short time to the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, and also was a Kappa Alpha at Georgia Tech for a period of time.   He did not graduate.  He went home to help his mother and stepfather to run the Feed and Fertilizer Store.

The South was in a depression, and people were struggling. His mother was struggling. And, remember, this was a time when women did not work!! I don’t know when that store opened but it supplied farmers with feed and fertilizer “ALL YEAR ‘ROUND” for their animals and crops.  

But the store did not sell the feed or fertilizer when the farmers had no money to buy it.  The farmers in the area had hogs, cows, and chickens.  Crops were grown to feed the family, not to sell. Some were – cotton, peanuts, tobacco, peaches.  But everything was a tough sell.  The land was worn out.  And, on top of that, a devastating tornado wrecked the town in April 1936.

Jesse was hitting brick walls.  Did he give up?  NO.  With youthful enthusiasm, he started using common sense.

If the farmers could not buy the feed or fertilizer because they did not have any money, he had to help them get money so he could help his mother sell feed and fertilizer.  How? 

Pick an animal.  He picked chickens (hogs and cows were too big) Help the farmers get chickens to feed and raise. 

Step 1.  Get baby chickens to farmers. 

So, he figured out how to get baby chickens to farmers to raise.  (Somebody loaned him some money to get some baby chickens to begin this project with a few willing farmers.   Did his family do it?   I don’t know.) Somehow, he had resources.  It was a risk.  He gambled.  He GAVE them some chickens and GAVE them some feed.  Most farmers were unwilling, and landowners objected.  EVERYONE WAS SKEPTICAL. He was desperate.  A few agreed to go along. Then, he waited.

Step 2. When the chickens become “broiler” size (approximately 12 weeks), BUY them back from the farmer(s) at a market price.  With that money, the farmer could pay him back for the baby chickens and feed and still have a profit left.  

IT WORKED!!!

Farmers signed up.  People began to have money in their pockets.  Shops in town began to thrive. Jesse had helped his mother.  The feed store would be okay.

People then built hatcheries, more feed stores, and places for processing of the broiler-size chickens for market. 

The entire area changed. 

Jesse said, “Help others.  That’s the only way a man can help himself.”

And, from there, Jesse continued to use common sense.  It continued to work.  After that, I don’t know how he helped Mary Tallulah and Leonard.  He did. I just know that we visited them for over an hour EVERY SUNDAY FOR YEARS.  He was into sharing.  So, I can believe he shared the wealth with them.  I saw the love he had for his mother. 

So for all he did, we can thank Mary Tallulah Dickson.

Yes, he had problems. Yes, the story takes twists and turns.  But, all of it is huge and in the history books. Yes, I know the rest of the story, but this is major. And, important for me to think through. Thank you for sharing this time with me.

Best, Jay (the picture below was the picture in an ad that Daddy bought and put into the Gainesville High School Class of 1955 yearbook in my graduating class from High School.)

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STATUS QUO – MARCH THOUGHTS FOR TODAY!

March is my birthday month. And every March, like clockwork, I begin to change in some way or other. Things feel different. Why? I don’t know. And this March is not different. Things are changing. So, I am thinking out loud. Bear with me. First, the questions: Am I imagining it?  Why? Because, I don’t feel like talking right now; in fact, nobody seems to want to talk right now. Messages are brief and replies late or no reply. Group chats are no longer pinging all night long. Is it me?

It’s everyone. We are spent. We have nothing left to say. We are tired of saying, ‘I can’t wait for this to end’. “I want the cafes to open.” So I mostly say nothing.  “Bonjour’” and take a walk if I feel like it.  I get through each day. But, help is on the way.

I read, “This is a state of being like no other we have ever known because we are all going through it together but so very far apart. ” So, hang in there, my friend. Help is coming. So, when the mood strikes, send out all those messages and don’t feel you have to apologise for being quiet. No one is judging.

Some thoughts for today (a too-windy March day in Paris)

Pietro Annigoni (1910-1988), “The young Mary Magdalene” (1967), charcoal. Pietro Annigoni (1910-1988) was an Italian portraitist and a fresco painter influenced by the Italian Renaissance.  He was nicknamed by the press of his time as “the painter of queens”.  His portrait of Queen II from 1956 is very famous

Beautiful and young? Right? Wrong.

 “Always keep in mind that the skin wrinkles, hair turns white, days turn into years. But what is important does not change; your strength and conviction have no age. Your spirit is the glue of any spider web. Behind each finish line there is a starting line. Behind every success there is another disappointment. As long as you are alive, feel alive. If you miss what you did, go back to doing it. Don’t live on yellowed photos … Insist, even if everyone expects him to quit. Do not let the iron in you rust. Make sure that instead of compassion, they bring you respect.

 When, due to the years, you will not be able to run, walk fast. When you can not walk fast, walk. When you can’t walk, use the cane. But never hold back! ” -Mother Teresa of Calcutta, “Dedicated to women”

 

 

On my bucket list, today, Lake Como in Italy. SAVE MY PLACE!

Springtime at the Eiffel Tower in Paris! With flowers.

I don’t have any words of wisdom today because I don’t like a lot of wind. But, so be it. March has winds. And, I love March. So…..

I doubt I can change the world, but I will try- little by little. So, can you. “Rough Seas make good sailors.” “Go to it!” I don’ t “believe, I KNOW.

Forgive all of the memes but I like them. They remind me when I have lost my way. And, I am posting a picture of me from a few years ago. I am not comfortable posting a current one. Too vain. I am working on all of it – skin, body, mind, spirit, hair, eyes and it is working. Good for me!! I still don’t have the vaccine (high demand in Paris), so I am still social distancing. But help is on the way. Thanks for all of it. It is a good life.

Best, Jay

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