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Showing posts from February, 2013

Truth and lies

If you have been reading this blog for awhile, you know that honestly and doing the right thing are common themes. They are things I ponder more than occasionally.

I have never served on a jury, and I hope I never have to. Why? Because other than with my own child, I am not very good at discerning the truth. For the most part it is because I am extremely honest (and open, for that matter), and I tend to think/hope that everyone else is too. For me that means that almost every time someone lies or is telling a half-truth, either I refuse to believe said person is lying or I am genuinely surprised that that person is lying. So how I am supposed to determine someone's guilt or innocence?

Let's say Man A said that Man B shot Man A in cold blood/in an attempt to kill. Man B said the shooting was in self-defense. Someone is lying, and I doubt I would be able to figure it out. And what bothers me even more is what if I am wrong? You can say that you make your decision based on the ev…

Do you want my prayers?

I mostly believe in the power of prayer. I have no solid proof that praying for something or about someone actually works, but as a person of faith, albeit not of the rock-solid kind, I like to think it helps. And I don't see how it could hurt. Right? I am looking at you, my faithless/atheist/agnostic blogging friends (and I will really be looking at you at the end of this post as well).

As I commented in another blog (probably in several blogs, actually, and perhaps even here), last year, a priest said that God answers our prayers, but not necessarily how we want them. I liked that thought. Well, not so much that it means I may not get what I want, but more so that it helps to explain why sometimes legions of people pray for something for days and weeks, and then it all seems for naught as they did not get what they so fervently prayed for. I can't say that if I prayed for something major, like the health of a loved one, and I did not get what I wanted, I would be okay with t…

To Pittsburgh, with love

I have written about my love for Pittsburgh before. In fact, a Pittsburgh blog picked up a post I wrote a few years ago, which was the first time anything like that had ever happened to me. I am purposefully not going to find that post; I want to write a new love letter to the city I have had long-term relationship with. The impetus: Momalom, a blog written by two sisters who have six children between them (the blog is in my Blog List at right).

My dearest Pittsburgh,

I have loved you since I was a child, living two counties away. Back then you were many things to me: trips to the Buhl Planetarium, a ride on the incline or one of the Gateway Clipper boats, a chance to be on KDKA radio and visit Santa at Horne's during the holidays, the Ice Capades and an occasional child-friendly concert, a show at Heinz Hall and later the Benedum, the arts festival and regatta, and, pretty important to my family, the home of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

In 1984, we had season tickets to see the Pitts…

No parking

I tend to drive downtown (Pittsburgh) during the week only a few times a year, typically to meet a friend or two for lunch and most years to attend a Steelers pep rally. I generally have no reasons to be downtown during the week, and the pricey parking options, traffic, and triangular grid (kind of an oxymoron) peppered with one-way streets give me even more excuses to avoid the area.

Two days ago, I headed downtown to pick up tickets I had won from a radio station. That winning phone call came only a couple days after I had won a free pizza from Papa John's for picking heads for the Super Bowl coin toss (something good did happen as a result of the Super Bowl). So I was in a pretty good mood as I headed into the city, a mood made even better as I arrived in about 20 minutes thanks to my waiting until after 10 a.m.

I called up a friend who works downtown to get his advice on parking. Typically I park in the First Avenue Garage, which is located near the jail and at the beginning o…

This is why I do it.

Since mid September I have been volunteering at a one-day-a-week after-school program. Most days, there have been times when I have wanted to scream. Some of the kids just don't listen. Some seem not to be able to stop talking when asked. Many have trouble sitting still. Just last week, I told a girl to sit up during a presentation (the kids were seated on the floor, and this girl was alternating between lying down and rolling around). She just looked at me with a half-confused/half-glare expression but stayed reclined. I repeated my direction, and I received the same look. By the third time, she actually listened, though it took only a couple of minutes before we did that same dance all over again. I am unsure what I could have done differently, short of dragging her out of the room. But not only would that have been disruptive to the presenter and everyone else (though probably not a whole lot more than the kid's rolling around), but manhandling kids is not something teacher…