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Why is it so hard to lose?

September 26th, 2011 by stephanie

Some people just do not like to lose. And if you watch them closely enough, in time, you will begin to see how they go to great lengths to make sure they win.

Now, in fairness, loss is not something I handle well either. But more than losing in a competition, loss can come in many different forms.

Recently, a friend of mine lost a person. Not through death. They just disappeared from their life. Without a trace. At times like these, it’s easy to question God. At least I have a tendency to do so. Interestingly, the message that kept coming to my friend during that frustrating time was, Don’t try to open a closed door. Just leave it alone. That was hard. She didn’t want to hear that. So, she argued with God, and questioned, and argued some more. Needless to say, the door did not re-open. And, she guesses it never will.

There was a verse that kept coming to my mind as she shared her story with me. It is found in Isaiah, chapter 43 verse 18. It goes like this:

Do not call to mind the former things,
Or ponder things of the past. (NAS)

a more modern translation says it like this:

Forget about what’s happened;
don’t keep going over old history. (
The Message)

If we’re honest, most of us would admit that we struggle to let go of the past. Whether it’s our past or someone else’s. Sometimes, it’s just simply hard to move on. Perhaps it’s a grudge or a personal grievance that we feel quite justified in holding. Whatever the case, there is one piece of advice I think you’ll agree is good to not only hear, but to adhere. It goes like this: KEEP MOVING.

Basically, lose the baggage of the past or whatever is holding you back. In the end, you’ll be glad you did.

Just my thoughts,

Do Not Exit While Train Is Moving.

September 12th, 2011 by stephanie

As I worked my way and my luggage up the steps and onto the Acela train headed for Union Station, I plopped down into the first two available seats. I then hurriedly began the dance, shuffle, swirl where I tried to organize my things so as not to slow up those making their way down the aisle behind me.

Once everything was in place, I breathed that universal, sigh of relief: finally. I had made it. Off the plane. Onto the transit bus. To the ticket window. Over the bridge. And now, onto the train headed for my destination.

It was the instruction card in the seat pocket in front of me that suddenly caught my eyes once I was settled in. And I must admit, it conjured up an unexpected laugh. Which I quickly attempted to stifle.

“Do not exit the train while it is moving.” Really? Do people do that? Oh my.

(I also happened to notice it was in Braille as well. Hmmmmmm.)

It got me to thinking. Aren’t there certain things that should just be understood? You know, we call them “Givens”. But alas, a multitude of today’s population somehow never quite got the memo.

You know, like the one that reads:

– Dear young couple in the plane seats next to me. You do not need to be physically on top of each other and kissing throughout the entire flight. Honest. You will live long enough to do that once we land at the end of our 90 minute flight. And oh, yes, there are single people in the world that just don’t need that today. I, would be one of them. (Sigh.)


– Dear lady: Please cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough.


– Dear sir: When I am trying to get on the escalator, there is no need for you to race me. We will both get to the bottom (preferably with both of us still standing) if you will just wait your turn. (Some of us were fortunate enough to receive that “wait-in-line-lesson-thing” back in kindergarten, but I digress…)

So, you can imagine my chuckle when the instructions in front of me kindly reminded me to stay in the train until we reached our destination and until it had stopped.

I am pleased to report, I followed the directions.

In today’s day and age, guidelines are sometimes considered so “old school”. It seems we agreed to throw them out of our lives and our culture in the 60s I guess? Not sure. But I do know that perhaps, etiquette, rules, instructions, directions and plain old warnings and guidelines just might not be such a bad idea after all.

Just my thoughts,


The Tiny Canadian Town that Came to Our Rescue on 9/11.

September 8th, 2011 by stephanie

There’s a little known story of a tiny town that came to America’s aid on one it’s darkest days. Join me as we look back and see how the miracle of goodness rose from the ashes of anger and despair that fateful September day.

When Americans think about New Foundland, many times, our thoughts drift first to the breed of canine that bears it’s name. But a small community on this island to the north of our American border played a major role on 9/11 that most folks may not be aware of.

As you may remember, every American plane was grounded that day. All International flights were diverted to Canada. Pilots recall seeing planes do complete 180s in airspace in order to return to their European destinations. Air Control Central sent tons of planes to the tiny colony of Gander, New Foundland. Pilots concerned that their flights might contain terrorists, told passengers they needed to land due to mechanical problems. Gander was only prepared for their usual 8 flights. Instead, 38 jumbo jets with 200 people on each plane landed that day. Gander landed 167 planes in all without incident. The 10,000 residents suddenly found themselves sheltering and feeding thousands of unexpected guests. Most passengers had no idea where they even were.

Ironically, Gander was an airport before it was a town. During WWII it was a take off place for our American military. (Not built to house Jumbo jets, it sat rather silent until 9/11/01.)

In a matter of hours, Gander doubled their population that day. The only vehicles that could be found to transport the new guests were school buses. As luck would have it, the bus drivers were on strike! Without a thought, that afternoon, each driver showed up and did what was needed.

No one was allowed off of the planes until each and every passenger was processed. Basically, checking for terrorists. Passengers weren’t allowed to retrieve their luggage due to safety reasons. Some sat on places for 19 hours not really knowing what was going on in the outside world.

It wasn’t until 30 hours later that the passengers got their first look at the footage and the photos of the devastation. New York fire fighter Kevin O’Rourke’s parents were on one of those places that landed in Gander. Praying their son wasn’t working that day. Unfortunately, he was. Beulah Cooper, also the mother of a firefighter, but from Gander, did what she could do befriend the grieving mother. Sadly, the O’Rourke’s would soon learn that their son, of Rescue 2, was one of the brave first responders.

What is hard to believe, but what is truth, is that good things happened that day too.

Residents threw together home cooked meals to feed their new friends. But there just wasn’t enough food on hand to feed the stranded masses. So, it was hauled in from other areas and stored on the town’s ice rink. Which was quickly dubbed the world’s largest refrigerator.

Pharmacies, worked day and night, filling all prescriptions at no cost. People were sent into stores and were told to take what they needed off the shelves.

An oil man from England noticed a woman from Houston sitting on one of the Army cots their group was living on. Something inside told him that day that she would be the woman in his future. And so, it was to be. When the entire ordeal was over, he returned to England, requested a transfer to his company’s Houston office, and they were married a year later.

U.S. Airspace reopened on 9/13. And the passengers were allowed to return home. One passenger, once the groups were finally airborne, asked to make an announcement. She suggested the plane take up donations and create a scholarship fund for the children of Gander where they had lived during their unexpected detour. It is now up to one million dollars!

Though many lost faith in humanity that fateful day, our Northern neighbors proved that good can still be found–in the most unexpected places. We should look for that in the dark times. It’s not easy, but this wonderful story may be a helpful reminder to you this weekend…as we look back and remember.

Just my thoughts,

More here.

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