Thursday, March 31, 2005

Thoughts on Terri Schiavo

R.I.P., Terri. Her family has, I hope, some relief today, though I know that there will be plenty of bitterness. To be honest, I am a little surprised at the court decisions. They all seemed to go against the parents and for the husbamd, but I don't know what the legal arguments for the decisions were.

I am also surprised at the high emotions and general meanness that the case generated in the Schiavo/Schindler families. I shouldn't be so surprised. Every time, it seems, a family member dies, rifts are created between families and family members. I have seen it with my family and my wife's family.

I found it utterly distasteful and inappropriate for activists and clergy and politicians to be doing all of their huffing and puffing on the case. They all, and we all, should have just minded our own business.

In the end this wasn't a human drama about rights, dignity, death or love. It was a circus of seething resentment, disenfranchisement, frustration, and exploitation.

Now, I suppose, we'll be able to concentrate more fully on the Michael Jackson trial.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Good Things to Think About

I like the sentiment behind a quote that I found on "You must always have good things to think about." There's actually a second statement that follows this, but it's this first part that interests me.

The interesting thing is that, while we're always thinking, we're not always aware that we're thinking. Personally, sometimes I am so busy at work solving sudden problems and accomplishing small task after small task, that I don't even recognize that something is on my mind.

That's why the quote struck me. It made me realize that I did not consciously have in my mind a good thing that I was thinking about. I suppose that for the good people at, good things primarily involve Torah, Talmud or the like. I don't have any good recall of these texts -- especially here at my workspace -- so I thnk of my family.

My daughter and my wife. My parents and my parents-in-law. My brothers and their families. They all make my life good, fun, interesting, stressful, and exciting. In other words, they give me "spirit and passion and values".

Make no mistake: I think Torah and studying Torah give these things too, but no one would ever mistake me for a Torah scholar or even a pious man. Maybe my true good thing to think about is reading some Torah tonight and ardently thinking about what it says -- as well as what others say about it.

Good thinking leads to good resolutions, and we hope to good actions. If we are really sharp, we repeat the process over and over. And, importantly, we remember to repeat the process over and over.

The good, finally, has got to be more in the doing again than in the doing.

Monday, March 14, 2005

March Plods Along

After an extended absence -- over a month -- here I am back with a post.

It's been more than just a little busy at my primary job -- that is, my primary source of income. When it gets really busy like it has been, I realize clearly that I could take or leave my job. It holds verry little interest for me, at least in any sustained way. The deadlines are grueling, the pressure from my boss is unrelenting, fearful thoughts come and go of the company higher-ups suddenly realizing that my job function costs too much to maintain, the projects seem the same and their differences are not enough to arouse much passion in me, and on and on and on.

This must be what is called "ennui." Or, suddenly at 35 I am entering my mid-life crisis. One thing's for sure: I Can't Get No Satisfaction! I want to earn more money, I want more excitement, and I want more flexibility -- is this too much to ask?

Well, I am looking around for an opportunity -- a different job, a freelance gig, a business venture. Something will come along because I am going to make it come along.