Crossroads of Humanity

Dec 25, 2011

My Daughter Love Schnuffel Bunny!

Another in honor of the season!

Chanukah Rock of Ages

This video is too funny.  Especially at this time of year, I wonder why we can't all get along?  I love the variety this season brings!

Nov 30, 2011

Michael Franti and Spearhead Rocks!

I Know I'm Not Alone is a DVD worth watching.  In 2004, Michael Franti and his band, along with a small camera crew visited the red zone, war torn areas of Baghadad, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.  Michael Franti - I Know I'm Not Alone [DVD]

One of my favorite Franti songs is Nobody Right, Nobody Wrong.

Nov 20, 2011

Very Old LIFE Magazines

Once again, I was flipping through those old Life magazines I wrote about in September.  This headline, from the May 18, 1959 edition of LIFE sounds timely if you just change the names.  "A National Threat: Hoffa's Teamsters - Part I: Sources of a Union's Uncurbed Power."

Sadly, for those who consider unions to be a threat, I'm one of the scary people.  Yes, I am a teacher.  I work my butt off 9 months of the year, working well over 40 hours per week, with few breaks during the day (some days, I get no break due to our limited staff numbers).  And, yes, people have told me that I deserve less than I earn and less health coverage.  Shouldn't it be the other way around?  Shouldn't we be fighting  to pay workers what they're worth and for better benefits for everyone?  Or are teachers really worth so little?  With the union busting that occurred earlier this year, most school districts in our state no longer have teachers' contracts.  Instead teachers are given a "handbook."  In a matter of months, school districts throughout our state became vastly unequal.  One district lowered all teacher salaries to beginner year teacher salary.  Another decided to implement a staff dress code: suits for the men and dresses or skirts for the women.  The list goes on and on and nothing is as it was.

Nov 13, 2011

Orwellian Sci Fi

S. L. Wallace's latest interview has been posted.  Language alert for those of you who are sensitive to that sort of thing.  For the rest of you, read on!  If you post a comment, you'll be entered in a drawing for a signed paperback.

Viva La Resistance!

Nov 6, 2011

Death Penalty - Really?

This article about the Death Penalty in Question was posted today at

I feel sick every time I read about another person sentenced to death.  With sophisticated DNA testing practices, why aren't the courts requiring this when a person's life is at stake, especially someone who's been denying any involvement in the crime from the very beginning?  Really, is our quest for vengence so strong that we don't care whether or not the right person has been convicted?  That's utter maddness!

Price of a Bounty Available in a Variety of Formats

Avaiable at:
Create Space paperback
Amazon ebook
Amazon paperback
Barnes and Noble ebook
Smashwords ebook in all formats

Nov 3, 2011

This isn't new news, but even politicians enjoy a little fun.

Oct 31, 2011

Happy Halloween and by the way...

A great big Happy Halloween to everyone out there!

While we're on the subject of holidays, if you haven't seen this link, you might want to check it out!

Oct 23, 2011

Price of a Bounty - Now in Paperback!

My latest novel, Price of a Bounty, is now available in paperback.  If you haven't read it, please check it out!Price of a Bounty at Create Space (Amazon)

Oct 19, 2011

Are people really so self-centered?

What's wrong with people?  As a little girl lay bleeding in the street, after being hit not once, but twice!  Many claimed they didn't even see her.  Others said they saw a little girl bleeding and crying in the street but didn't want to get involved.  Only one woman - ONE - picked her up and moved her to safety.  She is being hailed as a hero.  In that same situation, I would hope that we would all do as she did.  And, had I been the one in either vehicle, I would have stopped immediately to try and help fix a wrong.  What kind of person drives away after hitting a child, after hitting anyone for that matter?  We need to find our humanity!
Chinese girl - hit and run

Oct 7, 2011

Three women's rights activists share Nobel Peace Prize

is a top news story today, as it should be.  It recognizes important strides towards achieving peace in our world.  Understanding the importance of that, I was struck by some of the words in the article...  "Rights group Amnesty International said the award would encourage women everywhere to continue fighting for their rights."  Do you see it?  The word is "fighting."  In an article about three amazing women who are all working hard to live in peaceful societies, someone else describes what they're doing as fighting - the opposite of peace.  How odd...  I am glad to see that none of the people who were directly quoted used the word fighting.  "Why not?" you may ask.  "Isn't that what they're doing?"  Nope.  It's exactly what they're trying to avoid.

Sep 30, 2011

When the focus is on hating each other, how will we ever learn to get along?

I'm not saying I agree with the Tea Party - quite the opposite, but I'm constantly reminded how focused the US is on competition.  When a newspaper as reputable as the New York Times reports on which groups are the most disliked in the nation, something is seriously wrong!

Sep 24, 2011

Outsourcing to China!

I bumped into a friend at the library today.  His life is changing in many ways.  In addition to expecting their second child, he's been laid off because his job has been outsourced to China.  Are we really still doing that?  US companies continue to take jobs away from hard working US citizens in order to avoid paying taxes that support our society, and on top of that, they pay hard working people in other countries next to nothing for a job well done.  How are any of us to survive?  Fortunately for my friend, his company has decided to pay their US employees tuition for new job training.

Sep 23, 2011

The Weekend

So it's finally here - two days off!  Note to self: I will not go into work this weekend.  Plus, I brought very little work home with me, and if I don't touch it that's awesome because we all need some free time, right?  Absolutely!

Free time is hard to come by for many Americans.  Has anyone else noticed that many people are being asked, bribed or coerced to spend more time working for less pay?  We're told that we all have to give, all have to make sacrifices, but I wonder about that...  In fact, I'll come right out and say it - I DISAGREE!  I think people are more productive in their work when they have the chance to relax on a daily and weekly basis.

I pledge to take some time to relax this weekend.  I will spend time with my family and friends.  I will spend time alone.  I will spend time working on my novel, reading a friend's novel, singing and dancing with my daughter...  I will do what I choose to do to relax so that when I reenter the work force on Monday morning, I am refreshed and ready to be productive.

Will you join me?

Sep 19, 2011

Never moving forward part 2

So I was sitting at a board meeting at work this evening, and I started thinking (or rather continued thinking) about ruts really...  The same discussion topics seem to come up over and over again.  On a smaller scale, I see it at places like board meetings and on a much larger scale in news headlines about topics that affect us on a city, state, national and even international level.  So, why is this?  Why do we keep rehashing the same issues and problems?  Why is it that we never seem to be moving forward?

Is there a simple explanation?  Could it be as simple as turnover?  That's why the same issues are brought up at our board meetings.  Even though the history is there, when there is constant turnover and a break in communication with those who have come before, the people making the decisions simply don't know what has and hasn't worked in the past, don't know what is already available to them.  They don't know so they start from scratch.

That's really scary to me because the US government is based on turnover.  I understand the importance of having term limits - so that no one person or group has too much power for too long, so that every side has a chance to be heard.  But, by setting short term limits, are we preventing ourselves from making progress?

Even more scary, turnover has become a constant in our society.  It's a cost saving measure for business owners to be sure - when you have constant turnover, you can pay workers the minimum starting salary or wages.  But again, in cutting corners, are we cutting too much?

Sep 18, 2011

Yet other articles are timely. I wonder though, are the problems behind them destined to be repeated elsewhere?

An article titled "Living Through a Crisis" by Mrs. Willy Brandt, listed on the cover of McCall's 1962 issue, priced at $0.35, caught my attention. Mrs. Willy Brandt was the wife of the mayor of West Berlin. He'd been giving a political speech in Nurnberg when the border was closed. You know what I mean... the WALL.

A wonderful movie about the fallout from the Berlin Wall is called GOODBYE, LENIN!

Sep 17, 2011

Never moving forward...

My mother recently found some old magazines in the attic at our family's cabin in the north woods.  They're from 1959, and the headlines are unbelievable.  Why can't we figure these things out?

Here's one from Life magazine - Our Taxes: A Mess and a Gyp
And another from the same issue - Birth Control: A Controversial World Question

Sep 14, 2011

What a mess!

Sometimes it seems like the world is such a mess!  It's crazy really.  People try to make the world a better place, but with all of our different viewpoints, it seems like all we end up doing is arguing.  Then we plow ahead, repeating past mistakes.  Do we really believe that this time it will be different?