She Did and They Will


January 26, 2017, Prescott-

When I turned on the TV, of a Saturday night, when I was in my pre-teens and early teens, my adolescent eyes were glued to the screen, whenever Laura Petrie appeared.  As a few years went by, and Mary Tyler Moore assumed a more unfettered TV persona, I learned the value of seeing a woman or girl as far more than a pretty face, as any man with a pulse is bound to do-some, after a considerable fashion.  Mary Richards didn’t need a man to complete her, in any way.  Then, there was her real life struggle, mirrored in the character she played in “Ordinary People”, when my sympathies fell with the forlorn husband, played by Donald Sutherland, even while I wished she hadn’t been so vicious towards herself, as well as him and their tortured son, played by Timothy Hutton.

Mary Tyler Moore took up where Lucille Ball left off, becoming an entertainment production powerhouse.  She did so, in spite of family tragedies, failed marriages and debilitating disease.  When she did find a soulmate, and a measure of peace, she was to shine as both actress and television executive.  The example she set should not be lost, on any young woman starting out.

We are at something of a crossroads, with respect to the advancement of women.  Too many disempowered men feel as if giving strength to women means that they will be further at a loss.  In truth, when my wife prospered and felt validated, so did I.  We were never in competition.  I have never been emasculated.

I have, recently, been excoriated for  supporting the Womens’ March.  The alternate view is that all is well, that women are lucky to have it so good in this country and anyone voicing concerns, about the treatment of women and girls, is raising an issue out of whole cloth.

We have made progress, as a society.  Many jobs have been rated and graded, with regard to pay and benefits, particularly in the trades.  It could even be argued that this is a First World issue, that while upper management is still largely a male province, the punching of a time clock is done in an air of equity.  Biology still rears its head, though, in many offices and plants, and there is too high a rate of occurrence of sexual harassment.

We could, despite the argument that those who can’t afford day care should remain childless (a vicious sentiment that reflects some bitterness, of those who scrimped and saved), act more as a community, in ensuring the well-being of infants and toddlers, whose parents don’t have the luxury of market-driven child care.

Women will, most likely, over the coming decades, present more like Mary Richards, or Laura Petrie, than like June Cleaver (“Leave It to Beaver”).  Millennials and Post- Millennials, male and female alike, have very clear minds of their own and are not hesitant to voice informed opinions.  They will have the burden of cleaning up a fair number of messes and moving communities forward, much as the “GI Generation” had to, upon returning from the morass of World War II.

Mary Tyler Moore did move her needle, and the rising generations, of both women and men, will do the same.


Sixty Six, for 66, Part III: People, Places and Things


December 23, 2016, Prescott- School is out, for two weeks.  After helping to re-arrange the classroom, I took off from work, and decided to spend the afternoon and evening around town.  I will head for Phoenix, and the Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference, tomorrow morning, after a full night’s decompression.

Enough of that.  I wish to share 66 of my favourites- persons, places and things, in keeping with the Christmas spirit of positivity. So, in no particular order:

1. Mountain vistas

2. Posole

3.  Monty Python films

4.  The Olympic Peninsula

5.  Celtic Woman’s music

6. Fried clams

7.  The Harry Potter series (films and books)

8.  Baha’u’llah’s teachings

9.  The harbour at Vannes, Brittany

10. The presence of children

11.  Do Terra Essential Oils

12.  Honesty

13.  Pizza

14.  My biological family-wherever they are

15.  The United States Constitution

16.  Sweet potato pie

17.  Manitou Springs, Colorado

18.  Bears

19.  ‘Abdu’l-Baha

20.  Mint chip ice cream

21.  My Reno family

22. The Grand Canyon

23.  The Baha’i House of Worship, Wilmette, IL

24.  Trustworthiness

25.  Equity for women and girls

26.  San Diego

27.  The Fisher King

28.  Forthrightness

29.  Jennifer Lawrence, as an actress

30.  Denzel Washington, as an actor

31.   Gatherings at Prescott’s Courthouse Square

32. Justice

33. My mother’s love

34.  Memories of my wife

35.  Sharp cheddar cheese

36.  The Field Museum, Chicago

37.  My Tampa Bay family

38.  Jeju, South Korea

39.  Les Miserables

40.  The Sonoran Desert

41.  My son’s devotion

42.  Crispy bacon

43. Dogs

44. Thumb Butte, Prescott

45.  A job well done

46. Crystal Cove Beach, CA

47.  A Path With Heart

48.  Caramel

49.  Bluegrass music

50.  The Lord of the Rings 

51.  Consistency

52.  Sedona, AZ

53.  Hopi culture

54.  Whales

55.  Persistence in faith

56.  Boulder, CO

57.  Pumpernickel bread

58.  My southwest Missouri family

59.  Lemurs

60.  The Holy Bible

61.  Gyros

62.  Heidelberg

63.  Navajo culture

64.  Reuben sandwiches

65. Hot coffee

66. Southeast Alaska

There are so many more that I love, but I sense the reader’s flagging attention. 🙂