gratitude-a-thon day 2007: don’t let him wear you down


There is a serious reason to believe that the president has lost his marbles. Of course, that’s  providing he had all of them to start with, which I sincerely doubt. (Read what Art of the Deal writer has to say about Trump).

I know that I whine about POTUS a lot. It’s because I cannot believe the things that come out of his mouth, which are devoid of moral character and any trace of grace. I can’t tolerate that his twitter feed is the work of a runaway train kind of impulsivity and that this misogynistic, predator, racist, islamophobic, lying, pedophile-supporting, immigrant-despising, Nazi-loving, hater has the same job as men like Lincoln, Washington and Roosevelt held. It’s worse than the Twilight Zone episode with the monster on the wing of the plane. BECAUSE THE MONSTER IS IN THE WHITE HOUSE WITH THE NUCLEAR CODES.

I continue to talk about this person and rant about him because I believe we cannot allow him to wear us down with his rhetoric. We can’t allow his repugnant actions and speech to become normalized, like say, opioids, which, by the way, he is as dangerous as.

Here’s the thing: does anyone think Donald Trump is a good role model for a child? Does anyone believe that bullying an unbalanced Kim Jong-un, who is cavalierly launching nuclear warheads our way, is an intelligent play?

Yeah, thought so.

Keep talking about his hate, his disrespect for all. Do not allow this to pass for leadership. He’s trying to exhaust reason. And us. Don’t let him. We are better than this. I know I am and I know you are too. I am not going to stop speaking the truth about our president until he is no longer president. This isn’t Democrat vs. Republican. It’s crazy vs. the sanity of our country. Gratitude goes to every person who continues to remind the world that we all deserve better. RESIST. Do it loudly, so like, anyone living on Mars could hear you. And treat it like brushing your teeth– twice a day, every day.


gratitude-a-thon day 2006: computer help


When I was a kid pounding on a typewriter, doing homework and drafting papers, correcting mistakes with White Out, no such thing as “Cutting or Pasting,” I didn’t even have the imagination to conjure up the likes of what a computer could do. (Yes, I am “White Out” old). I mean, it was impossible back then, to even entertain that future technology would one day allow us to connect to the whole damn world on a tiny, thin oblong box, smaller than your hand. Not to mention, that you would be able to actually see the person that you were talking to on that tiny, thin oblong box that was smaller than your hand, if you so desired–WHAT. I mean, that’s some George Jetson shit right there, isn’t it?


Computer technology is like a dream you might have after doing mushrooms one night with your college roommates when you were supposed to be studying trig. I use my computer and phone to work remotely, to communicate with friends and family, to access my “other” brain, google. I rely on it for entertainment, getting news, planning a trip, going to a restaurant, finding the very best fill-in-the-blank and shopping for the mundane, like water, to the exotic, like the finest olives.


But oh, the deep down dread when something goes wrong with your computer or phone. I wish there was a Lifeline necklace for this issue, like they have for older people who fall. You know, you’d press it and a bunch of techie nerds would break down your door and come to your rescue (new service?)


Anyway, I am in computer hell right now. Again. I have a knight in White Shining armor coming tomorrow and hoping that he can sweep my laptop off its feet and get me back on the grid. There will not be enough gratitude. NOT. ENOUGH. I. TELL. YOU.



gratitude-a-thon day 2005: best holiday



My Uncle Louie. This was the mastermind of most of the Thanksgivings I’ve had. This man, one of the best men around (and sadly, no longer around) was the chef of all chefs. And man could this guy cook (not to mention, eat).


Tomorrow is my most favorite holiday. There are a bunch of reasons why.

1) It is a food holiday. I am all about some food, and it happens to be the traditional turkey, (for a the absolute best turkey recipe, check out my Uncle Louie, the turkey master’s recipe, written by my sister for her column in Globe South).stuffing and mashed potatoes is some food that I could possibly live on if you asked me what I’d need on a desert island. Also, I love to pick. And is there anything more fun than standing around the turkey picking at its good bits? (There probably is, but this just highlights how boring my life is).

2) There is no gift shopping, and while I love to shop, when I am forced to, I find it less alluring than, say, having an internal exam at the gynecologist while having a few teeth pulled and vacuuming at the same time.

3) This is a holiday that’s all about what you’re thankful for. Boom, you know how I feel about that, here at the gratitude-a-thon.

4) I have had some of my most fun and best times on this holiday at my Aunt and Uncle’s house, with big crowds some years and intimate crowds, others. Thanksgiving is about family, and family is anybody you are related to, or wish you were related to, who you love madly, or can’t stand.

5) Did I already mention the mashed potatoes?

Wherever you’ll be, whoever you are going to be with, be grateful for what you have and fuck whatever you don’t have. I’m telling you, this is the miracle you need in your life–gratitude.


This is the beautiful table at my Uncle Lou’s and Aunt Chris’s that i have spent most of the turkey holiday at.
The gang.
Always too much eating.
A change of scenery–the first Thanksgiving at my house.


That time we had it in Barcelona when Jake was going to University of Barcelona and he got sick and had to go home.



The year we spent it with the Lapidus clan and had Greek Thanksgiving and watched Nick carve a turkey like nobody’s business.


gratitude-a-thon day 2004: a good binge


With the world so completely out of its ever loving mind, I find solace where I can. A good binge-worthy series is often my drug of choice. And, no calories!

I couldn’t get myself to watch Stranger Things, despite the fact that even my dog had apparently watched it and loved it. I am not a sci-fi kind of girl, and I don’t like being scared either.

But, with a pedophile about to be elected in Alabama, one must do what one must do. And so, without movies offered in our hotel this past weekend, we hooked up my computer to the tv (oh, don’t be impressed, actually Ally did) and decided to give Stranger Things a try.


Peter and I were immediately hooked. A little bit Poltergeist, a little bit E.T., with some Stand By Me and Close Encounters of the Third Kind thrown in, this 80’s story is an absolute blast.

A powerful girl, an honest cop, a corrupt government agency, a devoted mom, a teenge love story, a geeky gang of outsider boys, a mystery, all living together in that time when you could ride your bike around and not fear being abducted.

If you need a diversion, this is it. Good, innocent, alternative universe fun.

gratitude-a-thon day 2003: the best ice cream EVER


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Ok, so I had the best ice cream in the world this weekend. No, seriously, there is no debate here, people. I have found the holy grail, the Academy Award, the Tom Brady of ice creams.

We were visiting Ally for the weekend for her birthday, and stayed in West Hartford. We’d just eaten lunch and I was stuffed, but Ally said we had to try this new ice cream place called Milkcraft. It was like, 26 degrees, mind you, so ice cream was the last thing on my mind, and also, did I mention I was full to my eyeballs. But she persisted, and we went into this adorably funky shop, where we shared one salted caramel ice cream and watched it get whipped up with liquid nitrogen, in a Kitchenmaid mixer, smokey and foggy and da, da, da, daaaaa–the creamiest stuff that’s ever met my tongue with the perfect flavor of salted caramel, topped with caramel kettle corn. Also, I didn’t even tell you about their waffle cones, which are not the waffle cones you’re thinking of–no, they’re freaking real waffles that are made in front of you on a proper waffle machine. Uh huh. And all the ice cream is all natural and sourced from local farms. It’s ridiculously perfect.


This is just after we had the ice cream. I was in a delusional state, considering going in and ordering another.


All I’m saying is that this stuff is like an addiction waiting to happen. I am thinking of driving the four hours today so that I can have one. If we ever solve the Opioid crisis, this could take its place. Anyway, Milkcraft. There are none in Boston, but if you’re near one, be careful. Because this is major yum. I’m walking to the car right now…..

gratitude-a-thon day 2002: it’s been a year


Here is my before (last year’s election) and after (last year’s election).

We are now a year away from hell day. I still remember it like it was exactly six minutes ago, that feeling of being duped, of wanting to do a Cher and “Turn Back Time.” I was shaky that first few weeks. I couldn’t turn off the news. I grabbed my phone in the middle of the night to see if we were still alive. I cried. A lot. The blog became one big political rant. I could think of nothing else. I was grateful for the bubble I lived in, but also wondered how I could not have been aware of the population that had voted for, well, that “thing” who was now being called president.

I kept thinking that my reaction was overblown. I vowed to try and understand the Trump voter, get to the reasons they had such passion for him. I tried to turn off the news, but I couldn’t. I started to listen to CNN and MSNBC in the car. If I could have had Anderson Cooper broadcasting from my bed, I would have.

I kept waiting to get back to my real life, where an adult had been elected president.  I went to a training at the ACLU, I went ot the Boston Women’s March.

I began to realize, I along with so many, were having a little PTSD.

The news got worse everyday. Until the rumors of Russian hacks. Suddenly a glimmer of light peeked through the window. I hung on every word.

Aside from a few weeks, when I banned myself from media, because it was just too much, there hasn’t been a day that I don’t think about the mess our political system is, about the monster and total disaster who heads up our country. I have never been so obsessed with anything in my life.

Last year’s election changed me. I ask for Trump’s impeachment as a gift for all major holidays. I set up an alter to Robert Mueller. I unfriended any idiot who thinks that orange plague is a good president. Those people are not my friends.

But I also know what I stand for and that nobody can sway me from those beliefs. I wish I could say that I think goodness always wins, but I don’t. Not anymore. Still, I hope we can somehow right ourselves. This isn’t about Republcian vs. Democrat. It’s about right vs. wrong.

Here is a hilarious compilation of tweets, showing how people have changed since last year’s election. I knew it before, but it’s been confirmed, in circumstances like this you gotta pray, you gotta take action and you just gotta laugh.





MAD-A-TUDE-A-THON: No place is safe


We should have signs at every border like McDonald’s: does “One billion killed in mass shootings.”


Again. Again. AGAIN.

A man walks into a church in a small town and shoots 26 people dead.

Questions swirl–“Is he is mentally ill?” OF COURSE HE IS MENTALLY ILL. Nobody shoots  innocent people unless they are mentally ill. You know, in case you were wondering about this, wonder no more.

We have become a nation where mass shootings happen, everybody offers prayers and thoughts, a week goes by and all is forgotten. Amnesia sets in. Nothing is done. The people affected are changed forever, and the rest of us all go on as if the event never occurred. And by the way, I include myself in this do-nothing crowd. You know why? Because I don’t know what the fuck to do. I don’t know how to make change here. I feel helpless to make a difference, because I know the almighty power of the NRA. I know that lawmakers can be bought and sold. I know the most this president will do about this situation is tweet about it. And the tweet won’t make sense, either. I know the pro-gun set is holding the second amendment in front of themselves like a bullet proof vest.

Kiss your loved ones goodbye everyday, and wear clean underwear, because there is no place that is exempt from the being the next mass casualty shooting.





gratitude-a-thon day 2001: feeling better


I had some sort of ridiculous sinus infection, followed by what now apprears to have been a virus for the past six weeks (confirmed by two visists to primary care physician, one to ENT, one sinus CAT scan and two ineffective rounds of antibiotics with a side of steroids) which had me battling a headache nearly every day. NEARLY. EVERY. DAY. Sometimes the headaches became migraines with a double helping of nausea. I even had two ocular migraines in one week, that made my hands shake (for those of you who don’t know about this fresh hell, here you go: your eyes are blinded with flashing lights that zigzag and form starbursts and other bizarre shapes  for about half an hour before you get the pain. Think major lightning storm meets LSD trip.


It is time for a fucking parade! The No Headache Parade, in which all the wonderful things in life march down the middle of my street. Because by the time this headache virus thingy had reached the six week mark, I had forgotten there was anything wonderful in the world.  Life had become one big oversized vat of grotesque smelly garbage, much like the current presidency. Yes, that bad. Maybe even worse. Although I don’t know if there is worse, so scratch that.

Anyway, cue up the drum corp. and get the baton twirlers, line up the coffee, the yoga class, kindness from a stranger, the multi-colored leaves, especially the red ones, a heaping plate of pasta smothered in Bolognese, blue skies, a walk by the water and a great book, the I DO NOT HAVE A HEADACHE parade is about to start. And not a moment too fucking soon, might I add.


gratitude-a-thon day 2000: look for it: gratitude



Gratitude does not always announce itself. It isn’t always like a big parade through Time Square, or the mayhem of Mardi-Gras, or the fourth of July celebration on the Esplanade in Boston with those big cannons capping off the event that always make me shiver. It’s not always as loud as Roger Stone, doesn’t come on as strong as Joan Rivers used to, and it doesnt normally hit you with like, that Bob Mackie feathered head dress Cher wore to the 1986 Oscar’s.


Yeah, gratitude can be obvious, as in that lump you find that turns out to be “nothing,” or an unexpected windfall of cash from a relative you barely knew, or finding out that rattling in your car you thought would cost you a bundle, happens to be on warranty.

Most of the time, you gotta look for that sucker. In the wind, in the daily stuff that occurs, but that’s easy to ignore. You need to look in the back of your pantry, in your child’s hopeful eyes, in your own backyard. Gratitude is often hiding in the small cracks of your life, where light peaks through, but that you might have to get out your detective magnifying glass to see.


But to stay sane these days, to be happy if you’re a sensitive type, or even if you’re not, this, I have found,  is our job. What we have vs. what we don’t have is money in the bank. To focus on that is to focus on hope in a world that can sometimes appear to have gone off its meds. To be in the present with unexpected horror and unspeakable sadness, is to take a look around at what is yours, the verdant green of the grass growing beneath our feet, the thermometer on your wall that you touch and creates heat, those bed sheets that feel like a silk chemise dress a 40’s movie siren used to wear.

Has it ever been more necessary to be grateful, to do a Linda Blair-in-The-Exorcist-360 head-turn and see all you have? I think not. Find it, nurture it, make a practice of it. It’s yours all the time. I needed a reminder today. I thought you might, too.