Saturday, November 11, 2017

Sunday Stealing

The Simple Life

What are five things you would like to do more.
1) Exercise
2) Volunteer
3) Read
4) Write for pleasure
5) Attend church
What is your quote to live by


What was the best thing that happened this week?
Friday evening, I got a new pair of contact lenses. YEA! Those glasses were really cramping my style.

What is something you are stressed about?
Ha! There's a possibility that I'll be let go on November 15. I believe that's worth a sleepless night or two.

What book has influenced your life?
Saving Graces by Elizabeth Edwards. I read it a decade ago, and I still think about it.

Share a childhood memory
The Christmas I was in second grade, Santa brought me this very poster. Which I hung on my bedroom door and kissed every morning and night. 

What fictional character would you most like to be?
Mary Poppins, because she was practically perfect in every way.

What is something you are proud of?
I have given good homes to the cats I've rescued. 

What was the last thing you celebrated?
Last weekend, I had lunch with my friend Nancy for the first time in months, and I gave her a mug ("Potent potables for $20, Alex") to celebrate her appearance as a contestant on Jeopardy.

What are weird things you like?
I watch very weird TV. Like Autopsy: The Last Hours of .... And What's My Line? from the 1950s.

What is your favorite song to sing?
I found myself singing along to "Memories" with Elvis. "Holding hands and red bouquets and twilights trimmed in purple haze ..." The King sounded so sincere on those ballads.

Name three things you do well.
1)  Bonding with critters
2)  Present to clients
3)  Laundry (I hate it, but I'm good at it)

What are your priorities in life?
I try to live by the Golden Rule. 

What is something that scares you?
Losing my job on November 15.
Best book you read this year?
Perhaps it's the sin of recency, but I'll go with the one I just finished, Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter. Haunting and heartbreaking.

It gives me hope

Anika is an Indian-born market researcher who has worked at my agency for four years now. Early in her career here, she sat outside the office I share with my coworkers and did the most wonderful thing: she surprised me with a Christmas present for being "the most thoughtful person I've ever had the good fortune of knowing. You spread holiday cheer year around." Because she sees me that way, I work hard to be a good person, to live up to her expectation.

This past week, she showed what an extraordinary woman she is.

She's been researching marketing to the LGBTQ community, which is important to our clients because demographically-speaking, gay HHs have an impressive amount of disposable income. Yet while she was collecting data, she worried she was missing nuance. After all, she grew up in India, where homosexuality is still illegal. Since she's been in Chicago, she's watched us all become more accepting and welcoming, but she doesn't know a single "out" LGBTQ American.

Without any prompting, she approached our HR department and asked how to find a gay coworker to help her craft a more sensitive and inclusive presentation. Her request gave Human Resources a pause. Sexuality is not a box to be ticked on any form. But they put Anika in touch with Andy, a numbers-cruncher at one of our sister agencies, who is out and proud and just thrilled to be involved with something more creative than monthly billing.

Anika and Andy's presentation was well attended (yes, lunch was provided) and sensitive. At times, I welled up. Partly because of the content -- I was thinking of my friends John and Henry and Reg and the obstacles they have faced, and how far our society has come in accepting them. Partly because of the fact of it.

I mean, here was Anika. Reaching out. Going beyond her upbringing, working hard to assimilate into her chosen country and to open her heart. I find this so moving, and it gives me hope.

Saturday 9

Saturday 9: Get Down Tonight (1975)

1) Tonight, KC has three things on his "to-do" list: do a little dance, make a little love and get down. Tell us three things you'd like to accomplish this weekend. 1) Make a dent in that freelance project I took on. It's not due until Thursday, but I'd like to knock it out now and then spend the rest of the week refining it. 2) Laundry. There's always laundry. 3) Attend a special screening of Casablanca with Will and my movie group.

2) This week's song is considered emblematic of disco, a genre that had as many detractors as fans. Is there a kind of music you simply cannot stand? That would be disco. (Though I admit a certain fondness of the Brothers Gibb.)

3) Before becoming a musician, KC, aka Harry Casey, worked in a record store. In those days, record stores were very popular. Peaches, Coconuts, Sam Goody and Tower Records are four store chains that once dotted the landscape but now are gone. Today, if you wanted to purchase a CD, where would you turn? Amazon. I always check out the ones I see by the register at Starbucks, Walgreen's and Whole Foods, but I seldom buy.

4) One of his duties at the record store was unloading the big corrugated shippers filled with LPs. What's the heaviest thing you've lifted lately? My fat ass.

5) KC is proud that he's lived his entire life in Miami-Dade County. Do you expect to change your address in the next year or so? No.

6) In 1975, the year this song was popular, former Teamsters boss Jimmy Hoffa disappeared, never to be seen again. Many theories flourish about what may have happened to him. Is there a famous criminal case that has a hold on your attention? I recently befriended a pair of millennials who had absolutely no idea who Patty Hearst is. I suppose that's a good thing for Patty, but it got me thinking about her case again. I picked up Jeffrey Toobin's 2016 book on the case and it's waiting on my TBR pile.
7) Jaws was the most popular movie of 1975. Are you afraid of sharks? Not especially.
8) Actress Angelina Jolie was born in 1975. People magazine once named her
"most beautiful." Who is the most beautiful woman you can think of? Every time I see CNN's Erin Burnett, I think, "God, I wish I looked like her."

9) Random question: A wizard offers you a choice -- would you like your life to stay as it is right now (in terms of your health, your career, your relationships and your finances) for the next 5 years, or would you like to take a chance that the future will be brighter? I'm frankly terrified of the future. I'd like to stay frozen here. At least I know this life.