Tag Archives: politics

When Being Stubborn Kills

I’ve found a lot of joy during the pandemic in “perfecting” my crafting. Since joining the Phoenix Modern Quilt Guild, among the many things I’ve finally learned is how to sew a consistent 1/4 inch seam. Come to find out, there is no artistic give in a seam allowance for quilting if you want points to line up.

I’d gotten lazy, thinking that the rules of this craft didn’t apply to me. I was going to do it my way. I didn’t need to wash my fabrics, use a seam allowance, or starch. I didn’t need to use iron to press seams after sewn. I wanted to do it my way.

I was WRONG.

Reading the books, listening to the teachers, and following the rules produces a much prettier and sturdier quilt (leaving improv and art quilts out of this.) If you are making a quilt for someone, especially a baby quilt that will be washed often, sturdy seams are critical.

See those seams? Consistently 1/4 inch and pressed open. Pressed, not ironed. (A whole other lesson I needed to learn.)

I don’t know why our natural tendency is to think the rules don’t apply to us, but watching how cultures have responded to the pandemic, it’s hard to see this as anything other than stubborn Americanism. Why do what others are telling me when I know. I can figure it out. I am smarter.

Am I? Are we?

Most other countries immediately put community before self. They closed borders, limited infections and deaths, and recovered much faster. Not in the great US of A where we made sure to prioritize our freedoms. Our freedom to get sick. Our freedom to die. And now, our freedom not to be vaccinated.

We lost more than 18,000 people to COVID just in my state. That’s a small city in one of our rural counties, completely gone. 18,000 families now eating dinner with a seat empty at the table because we couldn’t get out of our own way and follow basic, well established public health instructions.

Working in public health, the tool of motivational interviewing has never been more useful. We can’t just create the tool and have enough of the tool on hand to save the nation, but we also have to be salespeople and get you to want it, too. We have to get you to believe in science, in truth, when falsity has never been more popular.

God bless America.

God, please bless everyone. If you’re giving out favors to our country, give us intelligence. Give us critical thinking. Give us the ability to better see when we are being hustled.

Teach us to follow the rules when it is in our best interest.



loving these

35th ave sew and vac

Fatty quarters

I’m thinking this pattern with a bamboo handle. Sweet, sweet moses these bags are going to rock.

So, I’ve got a bit of a bone to pick with Maureen Dowd. Ms. Dowd, op/ed writer for The New York Times, gave considerable print this week to how scorned women — harrigans — should behave in times of turmoil. Specifically, she focused her wrath on the Jenny Sanford, the wife in the middle of the Argentinan tan lined South Carolina governor scandal. Phew. That’s a spicy mouthful.

Here’s the deal — ladies, I’d be much happier if we stopped this. Stop giving each other advice on how you’d handle something so tender and raw. Stop beating each other up. Stop being judgmental and mean and remember that we are all in this together. I read that column and left with the sincere feeling that Ms. Dowd hasn’t ever been so vulnerable. Lucky her. Most of us have been through miserably heartbreaking pain that leaves you scratching your head wondering how in the world you’ll get dressed tomorrow. Without CNN on the front lawn to document each step.

I don’t know what I’d do if I was Jenny Sanford. But I do know that my opinion on the matter has changed since the Spitzer debacle. I am no longer so certain that life is black and white, simply wrong or right, up or down, etc. (Okay, I am still certain that Mr. Spitzer has a waspy wanker.)  There are somethings that fall in the gray that are ugly and horrible and private.

So, I’m not going to bash Maureen for her column because that would negate the point of all women being a part of this sisterhood. God knows, and oh, does He know, I am so far from perfect and have made so many mistakes in the past in talking trash about others. I am pretty sure I need to stop that right now. Instead, I’m really going to put effort into following the golden rule always, not just when I’m in front of the person.

What I would say to Maureen given the chance is:

“Look. Sometimes life sucks. Sometimes life hands you Pulitzers. Take a deep breath and refocus your efforts, words, energies on something that could perhaps make this world better. Teaching women how to handle themselves after adultery isn’t the best use of your talents.”

C’est tout. And it really is too bad I’ve decided to take the feminine high road this week because HELP ME RHONDA Sarah Pallin just quit. Wow.


Prayer for Change

Dear President Mugabe,

I know we haven’t seen eye to eye in the past. I can’t understand how you are still in power, how you’ve ruled Zimbabwe my entire life. I don’t know why your country, once called the breadbasket of Africa, has such a life-threatening issue with hunger today. I really can’t comprehend how a nation so rich — with some of the best universities, hospitals and businesses in sub-Saharan Africa — could crumple in such a short period of time.

Today, it’s cholera. You’ve pushed your people around for more than 20 years. You’ve run out the white Zimbabweans, stolen their land, killed those who refused to leave and ruined your economy in the process. You’ve created one of the most impressive brain drains in the history of man. I spoke with a friend from Zimbabwe last weekend. He teaches at the seminary in Harare. He makes $50 a month, which doesn’t cover the cost of going to and from the school daily.* The economy you’ve led has the highest inflation internationally — at something absurd like 1000%. How can that be? How can money be printed with an expiration date? A billion dollar bill? Really Bob, even you can do better.

You have single-handedly ruined this nation and the world has stood by, watching with a lazy, voyeuristic eye. I’m not sure which is the bigger disgrace. News is today that your reign of cruelty may soon be coming to an end — only because once again your people are suffering. Today it is cholera, as if the hunger, soaring HIV rates and severe poverty weren’t enough. While the world watches the tragedies and violence in India, Pakistan and the Middle East, I’ll continue screaming about Zimbabwe. This is nothing short of an African holocaust that the world is once again ignoring. We’ve learned nothing from Rwanda, Sudan or Somalia.

Mr. Mugabe, I am a person who doesn’t hate. I try to find something good in everyone. But for the life of me, I simply cannot see the silver lining of you breathing another breath.

May your people rise and may the world finally respond. May Zimbabwe once return to its state of grace and honor as a fruitful, healthy and beautiful country. May peace reign in Zim!


*{I begged him to let me come work in Harare next summer and he agreed. If I am allowed in the country, there is an opportunity for me to work in one of the many orphanages.}