Stories written to share life experiences
Relighting Us – Relighting.Us
Seniors Ink – Seniorsink.com
Included is a Facebook Page to share stories worldwide
We’d like you to join us. We are Family – The Human Family
We share our stories on the Relighting Us and Seniors Ink websites.
My daughter Patty and I started these two websites about a year ago, and we want to invite as many as possible to join us in storytelling. Storytelling whose main purpose is connecting with each other. Not connecting like in social media, but real connecting through writing.
Relighting Us was designed to restore good memories of lost loved ones, and relive those treasures through the exercise of writing.
Writing is an exercise producing thoughtful joy.
Relighting Us was expanded with addition of the Seniors Ink website to become a venue for all varieties of recollection.
Edison didn’t perfect a light bulb on his first try. It took him over 25,000 tries before he got something that worked. Guess what? Others are still working on improving it. It goes on and on. The fun is in the improvement.
In that sense writing is a contributor to fun. It is also a contributor to better health. It has worked for me, and I want to show you how it can work for you.
You are invited to submit your writing and share your stories on this website! Just click HERE.
A Shaggy Dog’s View
The Shaggy Dog Stories are the primary set of my personal stories. They are adventures seen through two different lenses. They are not clothed in fancy garments. In fact they are rather simple, and sometimes, crude. I chose dogs to narrate them in basically those two lenses. It is my view that they have a sense of reality. Reality is not always pretty. Sometimes rough language is necessary to underline that everything is not always rosy. Crudity is a cousin to reality, and a vocal opponent of hypocrisy. I use it only for that purpose.
In one lens I write about an awkward guy named Skibootch. He is me in comedic metaphor. There are always two dogs nearby that discuss his antics. They are named Shaggy and Mollie and are composite representations of dogs in my life. I am adapting, in a slightly different way, a technique used by Dick Dougherty, a famous columnist for the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. Many of his humorous anecdotes consisted of two way conversations with his dogs Feeney and Midas. My conversations are not man and dog conversations like Dick’s. Mine are dog to dog observations. The dogs, Shaggy and Mollie, communicate with each other in a slightly “we know better” manner. You know – like in nudge-nudge.
The premise is that dogs are instinctively better suited to recognizing reality than humans, and have willingly accepted their submissive status in a spirit of support and understanding. They are unable to speak, but by their actions they show incredible understanding of what is really valuable. Especially unconditional love and vital area character assessment.
Humor is the medicine the dogs wrap their messages in. Medicine that soothes folly, mistakes, and downright stressful human behavior. As used in the Shaggy Dog Stories it is medicine that has been dipped in chocolate. The dogs demonstrate ways that sense reality far beyond human abilities.
Truth is difficult for humans to communicate with each other. They like to add their viewpoints into the mix, and completely miss what is happening. They are more interested in defining the scene, than observing it.
Dogs wag when they feel pleased, and bark when not. We humans tend to cover our tracks. Maybe we’re afraid of being discovered. Worse yet, of discovering ourselves.
My Battle Jacket Stories are my stories that focus on family. Skibootch has a collection of Brown Suits that Shaggy and Mollie admire. They are symbolized in the Brown Battle Jacket that I wore when I was with one of my extended families as we struggled for survival that long ago time.
I narrate the Battle Jacket stories myself. No dogs needed. I have included one of those stories, as an example of the many that can be found on the site.
Feel free to read as few or as many as you like on the sites. They all have a message.
The main thing about the stories, yours, mine, or anybody else’s is that they give each of us an opportunity to do something good for each other, and to receive the same in return.
It’s a win-win deal…
One of the aims of these sites is to share actual instances of something that happened in our past, and show how it made us better. By better, I mean better in the heart – feeling better about ourselves, and realizing that what we do, each of us, makes an impact on others and our world. We are all valuable cells in a giant eternally growing flower. Growing, in part, in the way we contribute. We are all contributors.
Our stories bring into light our very own contributions. Not, only that, but they help us see ourselves better. See ourselves in the cleansing waters of truth.
Please join us with your contribution stories…
- The included Shaggy Dog Story is entitled: The Pointless Point
- The included Battle Jacket Story is entitled: The Three Handshakes
It is our intent to place all of the stories in plain worldwide view to encourage each of us to become active, connected members of a family that has been gifted with a most amazing and beautiful home in which to enjoy peaceful and rewarding family life – each and every one of us.
Our Beautiful Home
A Shaggy Dog Story
The Pointless Point
“You know what Mollie? These guys talk a lot, but nothing gets said. It seems that Irish gentry are most comfortable with – drink and argument. The latter being mostly pointless, as well. So rather than do away with their tradition and habit, Mick, Skibootch, Father O’Doul and McGuinty head back to McGuinty’s saloon and resume their endless dialogue while Mick soothed his fractured ego with another hefty pint.
I see Mick savoring his pint whilst his overburdened mind was relishing another nonsensical journey to oblivion. He was sitting there filling his thoughts with another ridiculous riddle. He says to Skibootch: “Brigit has even more faults than the number of angels you could fit on the head of a pin. “ So, still being unable to contain himself, he opens a new conversation with that old chestnut: “OK you guys are so smart. Tell me how many Angels can you put on the head of a pin?”
Skibootch shouted out: “You ninny, you already know the answer to that – an infinite number. Why are you asking such a stupid question?”
“You want to get on the same list as Brigit do you?’ You surely know how to push the right buttons. My question contains some absurdities that need to be resolved or I will be forever in a state of turmoil, and if I am, you are going to be one of the first to suffer.”
“All right, all right Mick, don’t get so hot headed. The last thing I want to witness is any more of your turmoil. It is completely pointless. So, here is my suggestion. Let us contemplate for a moment the nature of your question. As I am able to understand that if an infinite number of angels can stand on the head of a pin, then surely the same number would be able to stand on its point as well. But the question is: ‘where is the point?’ “
“Where is what point?”
“I mean there is no point to your point. When you reduce the mathematical equivalent of the pinpoint it can never be brought to an absolute zero. Therefore the point is endless, and if it can never be determined, how the hell are you going to stand any angels on it anyway? There is no point for the angels to stand on and furthermore there is no point to your dumb question in the first place, right?”
“I’ll give you a point you can contemplate, you big bag of elephant gas.“ cried Mick as he grasped the handle of his pint.
With that gesture Father O’Doul entered into the fray and, sternly proclaimed: “So, the two of you. Point yourselves out the door and go home and make peace with whoever will have you, before I stick the point of this pin in both of you in the place where the sun doesn’t shine. You get my point?”
“So Mollie, what’s the point of all that pointlessness?”
A Battle Jacket Story
This is the second of three connected 13th Armored Division Reunion stories. The inspiration for it came from two experiences in my long life. Those experiences were separated by about 85 years. 85 years is indeed a long time. The interesting part of this story is that I am not only talking about 85 years of living, but at the same time, talking about intervals of 85 years. Not specifically but a range of 85, give or take about 5.
Where am I going with all this?
When I was very little, around five, my Granddaddy took me to see a parade of Civil War Veterans. They were around 85 years old. After the parade he took me over and introduced me to one he knew. At the time, I was not aware of the importance of that meeting. Especially, when my Granddaddy told me that this gentleman, when he was my age, had attended a similar parade. Only this time it was of Revolutionary War Veterans.
Not until I was quite a bit older did it dawn in me that this was a historic meeting. I had shaken hands with a man who shook hands with a Veteran of the Revolution. The start of the America we live in today. I was only two handshakes away from our beginnings.
OK, fast forward to 2015. Here we are, Veterans of WWII. The third, really major, war for our survival as America. We Veterans are not that far removed from that memorable time. Only now, we are actually the Granddaddy’s. We bring our Grandchildren to these reunions to participate in honoring those who fought for what we believed in. Thus, in the time frames I have just described, those Grandchildren are only three handshakes away from our beginning. We are not all that old. Only, 240 years, as of next year.
What an experience for our Grandchildren. To be with those who were so closely connected to those who kept our families free and together. We are indeed a family in the deepest sense of the word. Yes, one of those wars was a tragic inner-family occurrence, we saw things differently, but those wounds have been healed, we have reconciled, and we became a renewed, connected family again.
The history involved in these gatherings is momentous. To put the real importance in historical perspective is to consider what is behind all of this family unity.
I am going to propose that the major factor behind our family unity and support is attitude. An attitude that came from awareness. An awareness of how much we need each other. How precious is our unity and support as our means of survival. Survival from forces that are constantly trying to tear us apart.
Our name tells our story. We are united. We are: The United States of America. That unity is our attitude. It is the same attitude that welcomed me to my first 13th Armored Division Reunion in 2013. It is an attitude that comes from the heart. We may not always agree with each other but we respect each other. Respect is a significant part of the highest level of attitude.
Respect when partnered with supportive help puts that attitude into everyday practice. Again, I cite my welcoming to my first 13th Armored Division as testimony. The support that each 13th Armored Division Veteran provided for each other in those troubled days of WWII is solid testimony of the value of reunions that celebrate that same support.
Right up there with respect and help is another dimension of attitude – forgiveness. We cannot be united without being forgiving. The Civil War established that important part of attitude. We are reunited after that parting and are much the better for it. Families are at their best when reconciled. The return of the prodigal always brings celebration.
So the healthy attitudes of those Granddaddy’s who bring their grandchildren to these reunions testify to the importance of these celebrations. And more importantly, set a tone for their continuation long after their departure.
Those will be the third handshakes of this story.
It will be up to the grandchildren to keep them going.
There are many ways…