The Road to Nowhere

 

As I write this Blog I feel a need to explain who I am and why I write of the topics I do.  I am a 57-year-old, white, over-weight, married, self-proclaimed “Conservative” and “civil rights advocate”.  If you are a regular reader of my blog you would probably question the tag “conservative”.  I know I do.  Over the past few years, as the “conservative movement” has moved farther and farther to the right and become intolerant of any ideas that do not match theirs, I find myself at an ever-expanding divided between their ideals and my personal beliefs.  Instead of following my marching orders and getting in line with the views of a few ideologues in leadership I have actually began to listen, question and attempt to learn the truth.  What has become ever more clear to me is the amount of injustice in the world and the ability of society as a whole to ignore it and claim everything is good.  It’s NOT!  There are fundamental beliefs in the world that are born of ignorance, unquestioning loyalties and hate that have proliferated to drive many of  societies problems today. Until we as human beings, can understand that all men (and women) are created equal and have certain unalienable rights, then we will forever fall short of the potential of our race, the human race.

The United States of America is home to only 5% of the world’s population yet houses 25% of all  inmates in prison.  There are several things that may be responsible for this figure which I am not going to discuss today.  What I am going to discuss is the inequities within this population of inmates within the United States.

According to the National Bureau of Prison Statistics, in US prisons, African-Americans are incarcerated at a rate 5.1 times greater than whites.  In Federal prisons 37.6% of the population is African-American and 33.8% Latino while the two groups make up only 21.3% of the total US population. Native Americans make up 2% of the prison inmates while they represent only 1.1% of the population.  Inversely, whites make up 25% of the prison population while representing 63.7% of Americas population.  In 11 states 1 in every 20 African-American adult males are imprisoned.  In the worst state, Oklahoma the incarceration rate is 1 in 15 for adult African-American males.  A national story reported that African-American males received 20% to 50% longer sentences, for the same crimes as their white counterparts.

The easy answer for this, the conservative answer is African-Americans and Latinos commit more crimes.  I do not dispute this although that still doesn’t explain the longer sentences.  As I stated above, ignoring the truth is one of our fundamental faults.  It would be easy to accept the fact that African-Americans and Latinos commit more crimes, therefore are incarcerated more and be done with it. IF that is true, the real question is “Why do African-Americans and Latinos commit more crimes?”  African-Americans and Latinos are not genetically predisposed to commit crime.

Several things drive these statistics. A few are:

  • Racial Prejudice
  • Economics
  • Un or Under Employment
  • Education

Racial prejudice accounts for the different treatment after a crime is committed.  The Huffington Post reported that although drug use is reported as the same in white, African-American and Latino populations, African-Americans and Latinos are 12 times more likely to be imprisoned for the same crimes.  Some of this disparity might be due to economic reasons and a greater percent of whites able to afford legal council. SOME of it, not all.  Racial Prejudice plays a major role.  Preconceived notions of minorities sway juries and judges to make different determinations in these cases. The fact that African-Americans serve 20% to 50% longer for comparable crimes directly points toward prejudice.  Society has preconceived beliefs of minorities and acts on those notions.

Economics is also a root cause.  Desperation, by definition leads people to desperate acts, including crime. The latest US Census reported that while 8.7% of Caucasians lived in poverty, 21.2% of African-Americans and 18.3% of Latinos are impoverished.  The hopelessness of life when impoverished will often lead to crime.  What is their to lose when you have nothing.  Prison at least means a warm bed and three meals a day.  A father, unable to feed his children will go to any length to provide for them. Crime can offer a way out.  The ongoing, day-to-day desperation of poverty is only understood by those that experience it.  To know each day that tomorrow only offers more of the pain and suffering of today offers no hope for tomorrow. Stealing, dealing drugs and crime offer a way out.   Something that would never be contemplated in normal situations but in the desperation of poverty appears the only way to survive.

Employment opportunities is another factor.  For third quarter of 2018 unemployment rates for all males were; Caucasians 3.2%,  African Americans 6.5%,  Hispanic and Latino 3.8% .  While these are some of the lowest rates in several years it still illustrates the disparate distribution for minorities. This also does not take into account underemployment, or jobs with low pay and no benefits which compounds the issue. With no job there is no income.  People are forced to look to hand outs and programs for their very survival.  For some, a life of crime and independence of hand outs is preferred. During economic downturns the disparity increases.  During recessions African-American unemployment increases by 6.4% while Caucasians increase at a rate of 4.3%. This is called the “First Hired, Last Hired” phenomenon.

In 2015 the unemployment rate of African-Americans with no high school diploma was 26% while that of Caucasians was 12%.  The lack of a basic high school education directly impact the availability and quality of jobs.  It is hard for many minorities to see any value of an education.  They see graduates still struggling to find jobs and earn a reasonable living.  At the same time they see the financial windfalls offered by crime.  College is often seen as the impossible dream for many minority youths and not a path to follow.  For many, the role models representing the benefits of a good education are too few.  The situation perpetuates itself.

The underlying obstacles to the problem seem insurmountable.  The government has made feeble attempts over the years to address this problem.  The true solutions lie with the acceptance of the very causes to the problem.  Until society as a whole will take responsibility for these underlying causes there will be no solution.  It will continue to be a vicious circle, forever perpetuating itself.  Until we admit the root causes of disparate incarceration of minorities, no prison reform will ever influence the outcome.  When we all admit to the problems faced by minorities in the world and take responsibilities for our own actions, we will start making our world a better place for everyone.

JUST SAYING……

TODD

 

 

 

Trick of Treat

jack o lantern

Something has been happening in my neighborhood.  As I drive the narrow, tree-lined streets at twilight I am greeted by tombstones, with the hands of the un-dead breaking through the soil, giant spider webs draped across the trees, ghost and ghouls hovering around doors and trees, as witches streak across the amber sky and glowing jack-o-lanterns that seem to come alive.   Something so familiar to me is becoming strange and eerie. It must be Halloween.

Halloween descended from an ancient Celtic pagan ritual.  After the harvest, as summer gave way to fall, the Celts believed on this night, the spirits, disguised as humans set out-door to door looking for a new soul.  The Celts would wear masks to disguise that they were humans and scare away the evil spirits.  They left food on their door steps to attract the good spirits into their homes as protection.  Eventually this night was named HALLOWEEN.  Hallow is translated to Saints and EEN is translated to night.  Halloween was the eve of All Saints Day which is November 1.

Many, many, many years ago, when I was a kid, Halloween was a night of running door to door, “Trick or Treat”. You filled your bag with goodies of all kinds.  Our costumes were the cheap plastic type with a rubber band, stapled in place holding your mask on until the band broke in the middle of the night. Sometimes the costumes were hand-made by our Moms, using old sheets, clothes and sometimes a touch of make up.  We didn’t care, we just wanted the candy.

Halloween is celebrated in many countries across the globe including; Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Czechoslovakia, England, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Latin America, Spain and Sweden. But nowhere is it celebrated like the United States.

In the United States;

YEAR    Americans Celebrating        Spent

2015                157 million               $6.9 Billion

2016                171 million               $8.4 Billion

2017                179 million               $9.1 Billion

2018 (est)        175 million              $9.0 Billion

 

90% of Americans purchased candy for $2.6 billion

75% of Americans purchased décor for $2.7 billion

70% of Americans purchased costumes for $3.2 billion

and 20% of Americans even dressed their pets up.

In September, specialized Halloween only stores pop up across the town, taking over old abandoned locations.  Spirit Halloween, a large national chain starts real estate searches in January opening over 1,100 stores across the country.  We line up for hours at “haunts” waiting to be scared beyond our imaginations.  In 2017 Haunts generated $1.9 billion in sales with over 3,500 locations in America.

Halloween has come a long ways since the days of my youth.

What drives us to celebrate this night with such intensity.  334 days a year Americans avoid spiders and spider webs, yet for the month of October they drape them across their trees and living rooms.  Cemeteries are always to be avoided at night but for the month of October are recreated our front yards.  Ghosts fly through our trees as witches stir pots of potions in our entries.  We scour the web’s specialty costume shops for just the right costume.  It has to be authentic, a far cry from the cut up bed sheets of my past. We dress just as the beings that wake us in a cold sweat from our slumber.  We dress up as that fighter pilot we secretly (and sometimes not so secretly) fantasize of being.  We become that gun slinger we have romanticized of.  For one night we become someone else.

What is it about this one night that we celebrate our fears and act out our fantasies?  What drives us to find the scariest spook house to be scared out of our minds?  What draws us to decorate our homes with the very things we avoid the rest of the year?   I’m sure there are psychologist and psychiatrists that have studied Halloween and have found deep-seated psychological needs that drive us to that we avoid for this one night.  I don’t know the psychology that drives us and really don’t care.  Just sneak up behind me and say “BOO” .  It’s Halloween.

There is no one that embodies the Halloween feeling like the actor, Vincent Price.  His name alone can cause goose bumps.  I am going to let his words close the blog this week.

Darkness falls across the land

The midnight hour is lose at hand

Creatures crawl in search of blood

To terrorize y’all’s neighborhood

And whoever shall be found 

Without the soul of getting down

Must stand and face the hounds of hell

And rot inside a corpse’s shell

The foulest stench is in the air

The funk of forty thousand years

And grizzly ghouls from every tomb

Are closing in to share your doom

And though you fight to stay alive

Your body starts to shiver

For no mere mortal can resist

The evil of the Thriller.

HAHAHA HAHA

Vincent Price from Michael Jackson’s Thriller

Happy Halloween

Just Saying…..

TODD

todd

 

 

 

 

Happy Halloween

Lady Liberty Sheds a Tear.

You have driven this same road, everyday for 10 years.  The posted speed limit is 35 mph but everyone has always driven 45.  Today you were pulled over for driving 45.  They decided to start enforcing the limit.  How do you feel?  You were speeding but it had been accepted for 10 years.

That’s what is happening at our southern border today.  Yes, there have always been laws regarding entering our country illegally, but they were not aggressively enforced.  Now we have a zero tolerance policy and things have changed.  Good?  I’m not here to debate our immigration policies.  I see points on both sides.  The bottom line is we have laws and we are enforcing them.  If we want change, the answer is not ignoring laws, as in the pass.  The answer is to change the laws to reflect our intentions.

What I do want to talk about is the “collateral damage” to our current policies.  The “collateral damage” is the children.  As of September 13, 2018 there were 12,800 unaccompanied immigrant children held by the United States Government, which is five times higher than in May of 2017.  2,500 of those children crossed the border with their parents and were separated from them into special facilities.  In June of 2018 a Federal Judge issued an injunction requiring that all of these children be united with their families.  2,000 were either united or placed into special foster homes due to situations.

Of the 500 children remaining in custody, 22 are under the age 5!  Under the age of 5, separated from their parents and held in custody?  Seriously?  300 of the remaining children’s parents have already been returned to their home country without their children.  The system failed to match them up when they were deported.  One 8-year-old being held has been separated from his father for 4 months.  His father has already been deported back to Guatemala.

Of the 12,800 minors being held, over 10,000 were children attempting to enter America illegally without their parents.  They were NOT separated from their families.  That does not make their situation unimportant but is different than those separated from their parents.  These children did not make the choice to come here.  Their parents did. Their parents broke the law.  Does that mean they should be punished, incarcerated and separated from their parents?

If you are a parent, imagine the government showing up, pulling your child out of your hugging arms, crying and screaming for mommy or daddy.  What would you do?  I KNOW, you didn’t break the law but would that change your desperation and rage.  Would that make the event any less traumatic for your child.  They are taken away to a large gated facility with armed guards (“for their protection”).  They are placed in large dormitory facilities with many other children.  Many of them do not understand what is happening.  They do not understand immigration laws.  All they know is that they want their mommy.  Imagine it is your child!  Would you tolerate it?

Illegal immigration is a difficult subject with great passion on both sides. I want to protect our borers but I have several friends that have arrived here in many different manners and they are some of the best citizens our country could hope for.  They have sacrificed much to get here and believe in the American Dream. They love this country and do not take what they have for granted. The immigration issue will be debated for many years, possibly never-ending.

The issue of these children can not be debated.  These children are being traumatized and in some cases abused.  They are learning to hate America and everything our country stands for.  We say “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free” JUST NOT THE CHILDREN?  Is that what we want the inscription on the Statue of Liberty to read? This is not how we want to be seen by the world.  I think Lady Liberty is shedding a tear for these kids.  America is better than that.

JUST SAYING……

TODD

 

I DO

If you are not married you get a pass from this weeks Blog.  This one is for the married readers.

Believe it or not, I am a licensed reverend.  Hard to believe, I know.  I was ordained on-line to do a wedding ceremony for a friend.  I have performed a few ceremonies since being registered.  I do not do it for money.  I only perform ceremonies for friends.  I feel it a great honor to play a role in such an important day.

I am completing my preparations for a ceremony this afternoon.  A little nervous and a lot excited.  As officiator of the ceremony, you are expected to say a few words to the bride and groom.  I take this serious and try to give them some advice they can use.  I wanted to share my words for today’s ceremony with everyone.  I believe they can help other married couples as well.

Life can be difficult and our marriage can’t be isolated from life.  Everything impacts our relationship, the good and the bad.  Sometimes these difficult times even challenge our relationship.  We get angry at our partners.  If we would take a breath and think back to the time we were standing at the altar ready to take our vows.  Think of how your love for them consumed you.  Think of how excited you were for the future you were starting.  You were overwhelmed with emotions.  If you can think back and let those feeling back in, the anger you feel will wash away.  The issue you were upset over will seem much less important.  You will have your priorities back in-line.  What ever small issue that drove you to anger will fade away replaced by those feeling on that special day.

Life is serious and should be taken so.  Take life seriously, never take yourself seriously.  Do not get consumed by everything as it floods in on you.  Your time on this earth is limited and you don’t want it spent worrying about things, most of which you can’t influence.  HAVE FUN!  What is life worth without FUN.  Laugh and smile with your significant other, poke fun (carefully) at each other.  Let yourselves be kids again and blow off the distractions.  having fun is an important key to your marriage, your job, your kids and your life.  Peter Pan learned this lesson.  On returning to Never Never Land he found the child that he had buried inside himself.  Don’t bury that child.

My two cents for what they are worth.  I hope they have some meaning for others in addition to the bride and groom today.

Just Saying………

Wish me Luck today

TODD…

The New Greek Gods

In ancient Greece, man attributed their evolution and daily path of their lives to the Gods.  There were several Gods, each having complete control over different elements of their lives.  Zeus controlled the skies, Poseidon the oceans, Demeter agriculture, Ares war, Athena wisdom, war and the useful arts, Hera marriage, mothers and family and many, many more.

Modern man looks to science and technology as their “gods”.  We look for shelter from cold and heat and the science gods grant us air conditioning and heat for out structures.  We are driven to explore the heavens and they provide us rockets and satellites.  We wish to reach out and communicate with mankind and we are given cell phones and the internet.  People wish to travel and discover new lands and the gods provide us ships, planes and autos.  The gods provide for their subjects.  We, their loyal subjects worship the gods of science and innovation for their gifts.

Mankind is confident that their gods will protect and provide for them as they are all-powerful in the universe.

I spent much of last weekend utilizing one of these god’s gifts to us, television.  I, with millions of others was glued to the Weather Channel watching the pain and destruction unleashed by Florence.  Winds that ripped and destroyed structures, oceans that came on shore, consuming everything in its path.  Water from heaven dumped into our streets and claimed our homes.  Where are our gods?  Why have they forsaken us?  Why have the gods of science not established control of this beast?

As we worship our gods of science and assume they will always protect us from anything, Mother Nature imposes her mighty powers.  Just as ancient man learned that their gods did not exist. Mother Nature reminds us that our modern-day gods are not all-powerful.  Our modern gods can help us build structures to withstand wind and rain, build levees and dams to hold the waters but they will never control the awesome power of Mother Nature.  Hurricanes in the Carolinas, Volcanos in Hawaii, Flooding in Oklahoma City, Tornadoes in the mid west and earth quakes in California.  Mother Nature condescendingly dismisses our gods as she unleashes her power.

As mankind continues to dismiss Mother Nature and places their future in the hands of their gods of science, Mother Nature will continue her wrath.  If you are a true believer of your gods of science, placing your head in the sand like an ostrich, not accepting mankind’s effect on mother nature than skip the rest of this Blog and go listen to Rush Limbaugh.                                                                                                                                                                     Man continues to dismiss Mother Nature and her awesome power.  We continue polluting our environment and abusing the very resources she provides,  And as we do, she will continue to show us the error of our ways.  They say with the warming of our seas that Hurricanes will continue to grow stronger, larger and move slower, creating greater destruction.  If we continue to pump waste into the earth from our drilling, Mother Nature will continue to shake the very ground under our feet.  We build man-made islands in the ocean for an airport and watch a the structure sinks.  We fill in the bay in San Francisco and build structure on the debris and wonder why they are so vulnerable to earth quakes.  We build, live and work on the river in New Orleans where the ground is lower than sea level and wonder why it floods.  We pollute and abuse the environment and Mother Nature responds.

Mother nature is the true “god”  She has given vast resources and beauty for us to use.  She is there to care for her subjects as they felt the ancient Greek gods had.  She is forgiving and offers us everything we need.  When we continue to ignore her and abuse everything she has given us, she, as a loving parent will correct us.  And as we continue down this path, not heeding the warnings from our loving parent, she will continue to more forcefully remind us.

I am not an environmentalist, far from it, but I am smart enough to hear the warnings from mom.  I acknowledge the gifts she give us and listen to her warnings of using them properly.  Everything in moderation.   I also acknowledge the benefits of our false god, science and technology.  Science is not a god but tool of humanity.  The world has much to offer us, only if we do not lose sight of the true force of our universe, Mother Nature. I am not going out to hug a tree but maybe will not cut that tree down because I want the space.  I am not going to stop driving my car but maybe look more to electric for my lawn tools and be opened to electric cars in the future.  I am not going to start my own compost bin but will commit to doing better at recycling.

As our own moms, Mother Nature gives us everything and asks so little in return.  It’s time we start treating mom with the respect she deserves.

Just Saying…….

Todd

LOVE IT or LEAVE IT

If you follow my blogs you know I can be very critical of Americans.  They don’t keep up with what’s going on, they excuse themselves for ignoring injustice, they don’t appreciate what they have.  On first impression it appears I am anti-American and don’t like anything about it.  I would like to address that issue.

I LOVE AMERICA AND AMERICANS.

This is the greatest country in the world and that’s why so many want to come here.  Our government is for the people and by the people, even though it doesn’t work perfectly.  America values diversity and we will fight for it, even tough it still doesn’t exist.  American’s are some of the most caring and giving people in the world, even though they don’t follow what is happening in the world around them.  Americans embrace other cultural heritages and celebrate them, even when prejudice still exists.

I could go on and on with what makes America great.  Americans are compassionate and giving. They just need a reminder once in a while. Look at people reaching out during the hurricane.  Last week we remembered 9/11. I remember the months following that horrific tragedy.  Americans came together from all races, religions and every lifestyle.  We were one.

So why am I so critical of this great Nation?  Because I want MORE!  America is the best country on this planet. Because it is, because American citizens are the best I have confidence we can be better.  I want an even better Country for my children and grandchildren.

America is not the land or the buildings.  America is the people, and because of that will never reach perfection. People are flawed.  They make mistakes. People will never be perfect. But if we unite and agree on what perfection is and strive toward that goal, what kind of country would we be?

I just want to do God’s will and he has led me to the mountain top, and I have seen the promise land.”

This is an exert from Dr. Martin Luther King’s speech the day before he was assassinated. The journey over that mountain is long and difficult.  It will take time, work and cooperation with one another.  But the promise land is that perfection we should seek. The promise land is a place where everyone and everything has value.  It is a land where everyone appreciates what they have.  America has been slowly climbing that mountain for 242 years.  Our forefathers saw the promise land.  They gave us a map to get there.

The Declaration of Independence.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are empowered by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness….

So when you hear me rant and rave about injustice and shortcomings I feel are not right in this Country, understand it comes from a deep love for this America. The Blogs are me shouting “get back on track,”, “Follow the map”.  “We will all get to the promise Land.”  Dr. King said in his speech “I may not be alive to join you there”, how ironic that he was gunned down the following day.  I will probably not be there to join you either but I am having a beautiful journey up the mountain to get there.  My children and grandchildren may.  And for that it is  journey worth taking.

JUST SAYING…..

TODD

 

 

That’s the Way It Is

Said Hey little boy you can’t go where the others go

cause you don’t look like they do”

Standing in line, making time waiting on the welfare dime’

Cause they can’t buy a job

The man in the silk suit hurries by

as he catches the poor old ladies eyes

just for fun he says, get a job”

“That’s just the way it is

Some things never change”

 

That is from Bruce Hornsby’s “That’s the Way it is”.

This is an old favorite of mine I haven’t heard for a while.

“That’s just the way it is”  “Some things never change”

Last week I wrote about our disengagement from daily life, allowing others to determine our future.

Worse than that, is our laziness in accepting things as they are and not standing up for what we know is right.

“That is just the way it is.”  We know it’s not right but we don’t want to stand up and say no.  It’s just the way it is allows us to blame someone else.  Whether its equal treatment of others different from us, poverty, abuse or any of the other injustices our society accepts, we find it easier to say that’s the way it is.  We absolve ourselves from not making an effort to stand up for what we know is right.

This is worse than those who condone the injustice.  At least they are honest.  Excusing injustice by accepting it as the way things are does nothing to right the injustice and is dishonest.  It is a result of laziness, apathy and selfishness.  If it doesn’t impact you, it’s okay.

We argue that we are ONE person and we can’t change anything.  All change starts with one person.  Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, Rosa Parks, Dr. King, Abraham Lincoln.  They all gave a voice to injustice.  They didn’t accept things as the way they are.  They set themselves up for persecution, standing up for what they knew was right.

It is a matter of personal character.  What are you willing to accept?  What are you willing to make excuses and not accept responsibility for.  It is a reflection of your character.

Next time you experience an injustice, what are you going to do?

Just Saying……

TODD

Who Is In Charge?

I’ve checked out!  Like millions of others I have checked out of current events.

I can’t tell you the last time I have read a newspaper or watched a network news program.  I listen to satellite radio with no news.  Unless a meteor was headed directly for earth I probably haven’t heard about it.  (I do keep up with my Sooners and St Louis Cardinals and I keep up with weather on the internet).

Newspaper readership has been declining since 1990 and is at its lowest point ever tied with 1940.  Only 42% of Americans claim to watch a nightly network news program.  That is down from 60% in 1993 and is still declining.  I hear people claiming they follow the news on the web.  Really?  I don’t think snippets on Facebook really constitute the news.

Why have I “Opted Out”?  Several reasons.  Partisan politics has become a joke.  I think they have all decided that doing nothing is the best course of action and find little solutions.  The gridlock caused by partisan politics has become comical if it weren’t for the importance of their jobs. I’m tired of hearing about the senseless killing and robberies, the drug epidemic and everything else leading us to the abyss according to the anchor person.  I’m just tired of it all.  Then there is the fact that the media tends to spend too much time and effort tracking what the “stars” are doing.  Really?  Like I care about their lives.  I have my own.

The media itself has joined in the political partisan games.  The same story heard on CNBC is completely different when heard on FOX.  They constantly show their political biased and lead us to doubt the validity in anything they say.  Was Walter Cronkite biased or did he just gives us “That’s the way it is”?  I don’t need them to tell me how I should feel about the story, just tell me the facts of the story and I can decide for myself.

So I checked out.  No paper, no nightly news, and not much faith in Facebook for anything.  They say that knowledge is power.  When you know what is going on you can influence it.  So that leads to my question;

WHO IS LEFT TO RUN THINGS?

If everyone has checked out and do not what is going on, who does know it and is running things?  We are supposedly governed by “The People” but most of us don’t know what’s happening around us.  Are we qualified to make decisions?  Is Facebook in charge?  Is the morsels of news they decide to feed us, driving the herd of humanity down the path?   The world continues to grow smaller and ever more complicated and we expect to run it based on news highlight on Facebook.  Over the past 240 years, Americans have fought and died so we may have the privilege of self govern.  They laid down their lives so that we can make decisions for our future.  We become less and less qualified to self govern.

So what is the answer?  Do we go back to biased news sources and believe their content?  Do we find safety in blindly following a herd being led by people we do not know?

I don’t know the answers but I do know our current path leads no where we want to go.

Who is left in charge??

 

Just Saying….

TODD

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY

 

Happy Birthday to me

Happy Birthday to me

Happy Birthday dear me

Happy Birthday to me

It is my “47th” Birthday (okay 57th, but who’s counting).

It amazes me how each year seems to come faster and faster.

I have a theory on that.  I’ll call it Todd’s Theory of Relativity”!  (What?  That’s already been used?)

Okay.  Then let’s go with “Todd’s Theory of Why Time Seems to Go Faster and Faster as We Get Older and Older”

Kinda catchy, ha?

Here it goes. Everything, including time is relative to some reference point we have.  If you tell me something is 6 foot tall I imagine it is close to the same height I am.  If you tell me it is a foot long I imagine a Sonic 6 foot Coney(Not really.  I imagine a ruler, but the coney is a far better visual).  Anyway, you get the picture.  We compare things to references we have in our heads.  So what about time?  Why does it move faster?  Think of the visual we have to compare it to.  At age 4, a year is a quarter of our lives to that point.  One quarter.  That’s a significant amount of time.  At age 25, a years is 1/25th of our lives.  Not quite as a significant amount of time.  At 57, one year is 1/57th of our lives.  Can you imagine a pie cut into 57 slices and you only get one.  I think you would probably ask for seconds.  Relatively, one year becomes a smaller portion of our life each year, thus it feels like a shorter and shorter span of time. “Todd’s Theory of Why Time Seems to Go Faster and Faster as We Get Older and Older”

So.  57.  At the actual time of my birth (have to check with Mom on that one) on August 26th, 2018 I will have lived for 1,743,379,200 seconds.  1.7 billion seconds.  Now I REALLY want to know where time went.  How many did I waste? How many times have I said “That’s an hour I’ll never get back”.  How many of those seconds were spent waiting in line for Magic Mountain at Disneyland (Not sure that is wasted, but regardless it was worth it).  how many of the 1.7 billion seconds were spent sitting, thinking of what I needed to do without doing it?  How many were spent complaining about something I didn’t get to do instead of going out and doing something I could do.  How many of those seconds were spent brooding, mad at someone when you could have said, I’m sorry and spend time enjoying their company.  I think you get my point.

I am relatively sure my time ahead is less than my time behind me.  I have no plans of living until I am 114 years old. ( That might change as I get closer to that number).  I have lived over half of my life, 1,743,379,200 seconds and have no idea how many were wasted but more than I would like.  Most of you have heard the song, “Live like you were dying”, by Tie McGraw.  I feel certain I will not spend 2.7 seconds on a bull named Fumanchu and maybe nothing else in that song BUT I need to waste less of the billion plus seconds I hope I still have left.  What constitutes wasting time is a personal matter.  Things I feel are productive you may see as a waste of time and vice versa. The good thing is the only person I have to answer to is myself.  The bad thing is the only person I have to answer to is myself, I can be my worst critic.

So here are a few things I am committing to this year on my birthday:

  • I will spend less time getting mad and judging others behaviors and more time enjoying their company. ESPECIALLY MY WIFE and SON.
  • I will plan an overnight outing with my wife every month.
  • I will continue to improve my parenting skills with my autistic son.
  • I will spend more time with all of my grown children.
  • I will appreciate and cherish the time I spend with my mom.
  • I will continue to learn and grow in my job.
  • I will play my guitar and piano more.
  • I will practice until I can accurately shoot at 300 yards.

That’s a good start.  Every additional second I spend on any of these is one less wasted second in the future.

How many seconds did you waste today? (No, taking a nap when you are tired isn’t wasting time). How about in the past week?  Figure out what percent of your time you feel you waste.  Multiply your age X 365 X 24 X 60 X 60.  Multiply that by the percent you came up with and see how many seconds you have wasted.  Then, determine what is important to you, what you need to do and what you like doing and try focusing on those.  See how many seconds you can save in your future.  Regardless of what age we live to, we all only have so many seconds in our lives.  Don’t wait until the last one to realize how many you wasted.

 

JUST SAYING…..

Todd