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A Christmas Thought…

Merry Christmas!

 

With very few exceptions, Christmas has been a season when people put aside differences both petty … and not so petty.

We’ve welcomed each other in thought and in presence … we’ve done so without reservations. No identity relationship has mattered, no visible difference, no qualification as to where we live, no reservation based on ideology.

It’s been a time when we all can look at our fellow humans with understanding, kindness, charity, and dare I say it … love?

Isn’t it sad?

There is pressure to put an end to this season of goodwill.

It comes from all around us and inundates us like a tsunami destroying that feeling of happiness and peace that accompanies the magic I associate with a simple phrase … “Merry Christmas.”

What I see on TV, what I read, what I hear … and worse, how I see us treat each other during this season of what I see as a period of truce, convinces me that some wish to steal from us the most valuable thing we have.

Our collective humanity.

Listening to pontificating TV commentators and politicians this morning occasioned a thought.

I refuse to allow others to rob my sense of humanity. I will NOT reject people who differ from me, in any way, based on narrowness of vision and selfish views of life.

Humanity’s laws do not require that we think the same.

Because someone does not agree with my political outlook, social values, or other personal beliefs, does not give me the right to value them any less as a human.

Certainly, the reverse is true.

My personal set of values does not devalue me.

With this thought in mind, I’ve decided not to allow the rhetoric of division and derision to destroy my enjoyment of fellow human beings this Christmas. I hope I have the wisdom to maintain this state of mind far past this season of goodwill.

I will not assign a negative value to a person with whom I disagree most vehemently. I will proudly retain my thoughts, understanding that people will differ. Disagreement with another simply means I have to be tolerant of them. I’ll strive to remember those who see only one point of view … those who resort to labels and vitriol in response to opposing ideas, lack the intelligence to reason and refute. I’ll react to them with the pity and understanding those with such narrow intellectuality require.

I will put the atmosphere of recrimination aside, hope they will, and if not, ignore the “slings and arrows.”

Can I persuade some of you who read this to adopt this thought? Let’s make this a “Merry Christmas!”

 

“On the avenue, Christmas Avenue…

 

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When a disaster hits…Please think of us!

 

This is just a reminder note to all you pet owners. Please, please, please see to all dogs, cats, birds, rabbits, and all your other non-human friends safety, when disaster knocks on the door. Aren’t we your buddies? Just because many of us have four legs, not two, doesn’t make us any less loyal. Most of us provide you with unconditional love. Should you do less for your friends? Locking us in a room with a few bowls of food doesn’t get it. Would you do that to Aunt Pamela? Or your neighbor Fred? Take us with you and provide for us. Do you really thing we can survive something like you see below?

Rarely can a pet survive this!

Do you want your friend to end up like the ones below?

A welcome helping hand.

 

Stranded! Be better than __________!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please take care of us when disaster strikes!

Get out and vote!

VOTE !

VOTE! If you’ve never done it before, do it now! This election will determine the future of the country…that’s NOT hyperbole, hype, or exaggeration. Many people see politics and are repulsed by them. In the past, a significant percentage of the US population has told themselves, “Why bother? Things just stay the same.” This time that won’t happen. The citizens of this country are faced with a formative decision. Shall we continue on the path we have followed for over 200 years, that of focus on individual freedom or shall we proceed down a path trod by others, that of the collective state. History tells us, when it’s allowed, the outcome of both forms. It’s a simple choice. Do what you WANT, or do what you’re TOLD. What makes this election different is that one course may make it nearly impossible to return to the other.

😒 Twitter had originally censored this post!!

Hi! I’m Brandi…

HI! I’m Brandi. I’m Sandy’s understudy. I hope to carry on with her tradition – – – a dog’s eye view of humans.

There comes a time in a dog’s life where she wants to kick back a little, smell the roast beef, and enjoy the next part of life. That time has come for me. Sooooooooooo, let me introduce you to someone who will be writing some of my information pieces on you humans. I give you Brandi! She’s a Golden Retriever just like me! In living color!

I believe a lot of life is the angle you view it from!

Hello! I’m young…I’m energetic…I love life…and I love all you crazy, mixed-up, humans. I’ll be sharing the keyboard with Sandy and the Geezer. Some at first, then more, and more, and more. About me! I’m still getting to learn about myself. I have a different view of things, I do some things well…Run around like crazy, wag my tail so hard my whole rear shakes, eat non-stop, and play hide and seek with Missy…She’s something called a cat. I’m still learning lots. My grammar is spotty, my bark is shrill and high pitched, and I don’t do potty well. I do LOVE to chew!

Above all else I love to chew!

One thing the Geezer and Sandy agree on is that I love people and people love me. Oh…another is I’m a cutie. Standby. I’m ready to start my writing career.

I know I’ll love all of you! I hope all of you will love me!

 

Sandy here! Isn’t she lovable…

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News…of this…and that

Mixons Art and Craft show is very popular in the Bradenton Florida area

Hello all…Some tidbits about the Geezer.  He’ll be at Mixon’s for their Arts & Craft show, in Bradenton, Florida this Saturday, from 10 AM until 3 PM. The location is 2525 27th Street East.

The Geezer spoke at the Authors for Authors Writers Conference at the Hilton in Melbourne, Florida last Saturday. This fine event was lightly attended due to the Corona virus. It seems people are rightfully concerned about the disease. Those in the very light attendance used all the tools required to limit covid-19’s spread. 

What is most amazing is the number of people who make no attempt to protect themselves and others by ignoring safety precautions. At needed stops (gas, restaurants) coming and going we were surprised by the number of people, particularly young ones, who didn’t care. When the Geezer was inside a gas station, he asked a young lady(?) who was in a tight cluster of unmasked individuals, if she was concerned about getting the virus. Her answer was illuminating. “No…don’t bother us…it just gets rid of you old f—–s.” Laughter.

It takes all kinds of people to make the world…or so the saying goes…but sometimes don’t you wonder why?

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June 6th, 2020…Another D-Day? Getting a toe in the water —

The Gezeer, “I shall return.”

June 6th, 2020 is another D-Day of sorts. At least, it is for a lot of us. That includes the Geezer. He’s venturing out to try to reclaim some vestige of “normal” life. For the first time since February, he’ll be out and about. He’ll be at Mixon’s Arts & Crafts Show in Bradenton, Florida. Will he observe all the do’s and don’ts – masks, spacing, disinfecting.

There is the same question in his mind that must be occurring in thinking human’s in ALL the US of A. Which is right? We must stay isolated. We must hit the streets and thrust people together to mix and match virus strains. One has to be correct…but which? Of course, if you’re waiting for direction from our political leaders, what is jokingly called our news media, or the even more ludicrous disappearing medical experts, good luck!

As the Gezeer said, “At this point, I’m going to use my common sense, try to protect myself and those around me, and enjoy what little portions of life the politicians, media, and junk science people allow us.”

As I remove my four paws from the soap box, I’ll tell you that the Geezer will be at the Mixon Arts & Crafts Show, Saturday, June 6, 9 AM to 4 PM. The location is:  2525, 27th Street East, Bradenton, Florida. He hopes to see you there and encourages all to wear masks, practice distancing, and be good citizens…something that is lost on a segment of our population.

The sign at Mixon’s…one of Florida’s last privately owned tourists attraction.

 

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How Reading Makes Me A Better Bear!

Reading makes me a better bear.

 

Guest post: The Geezer is doing this post for me – Woof, woof!

About four years ago, I’d had enough! Enough of what, you say? Enough of seeing young ‘uns with no interest in reading. I speak to libraries, civic groups, museums, continuing learning groups, and at book stores. After one of my presentations, there are always a few questions posed by audience members and they are often accompanied by young children. My standard question to ‘our future’ is “What is the latest book you’ve read?” The young ones most frequent reaction to the query is to look at me like I’m a Martian.

I’m not a children’s writer. But, if you’re going to criticize, you to be willing to help solve the problem, not add to it. (If any of you know a media person, please quote the last sentence to them.) I wrote “Why Reading Makes Me A Better Bear” for that reason. Its intent is to stimulate young children’s interest in reading. I print them, sell a few at appearances to offset my costs, and give them to schools, libraries, and organizations promoting children’s literacy. So far we’ve given over a 1,000 away. A two page guide at the rear of the book is a guide for adults to work with a young reader to get the most out of the book. (Prepared with the HELP of PhD. in education process.)

Since a lot of us are confined to wherever we call home, I thought this would be a good time to share…….and to hope you’ll share with your friends and family.

  1. Click on the link below  2) Power Point will ask if it can come up on your screen – answer yes  3) At top click on slide show  4) Select from the beginning.

Narated.Why.Reading Makes Me A Better Bear

One page from the book.

Feedback from libraries, etc. has been extremely favorable. If you are a teacher, librarian, or other adult who works with children and want a free copy of the book, go to my web page  http://www.dlhavlin.coom  then click the contact tab and request we ship you one. We’ll ask you for shipping cost ONLY.

 

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“What’s in my head is what I’ve read!”

Reading makes me a better bear.

As you probably know, my human is an author. I call him the Geezer. I usually don’t talk much about his writing, because he does enough of that. However, one of the things the old boy does is really pretty cool. Why? Because he wants kids to develop an interest and love for reading. Even though he’s not a children’s author, he wrote and produces a short book for kids from preschool through 4th grade. The book’s title is, “Why reading makes me a better bear.”

I have to take part of the credit for “Better Bear.” The Geezer would often mutter and complain to me after making one of his many, many historical presentations. His standard complaint was as follows: It drives me crazy! Parents and grandparents bring their young ones up after I speak. I ask the kids what the last book they read is, and they look at me like I’m a Martian! Don’t the parents and kids understand reading is the foundation for all learning? I got tired of listening to it, so I told him, “Stop talking and start doing.”

One of the unique things about this children’s book are the last two pages. They don’t finish this book, they are what the Geezer hopes will be the beginning of adults working with, and encouraging their loved ones to read! Giving a child the gift of love for, and appreciation of, reading, is one of the greatest acts a parent or grandparent can perform to insure the youths success in life. It doesn’t cost the adult a thing! A friend who has a doctorate in education helped him with those two pages. That friend’s specialty is reading retention.

What he does with the the book, is what I consider the best part. He gives them away to libraries and elementary schools. When he makes public appearances, he sells a few…all the funds collected from these sales are used to print more “Better Bears.” He has distributed close to 1500 to schools, libraries, and teachers to date.

One page from the book.

When I told the Geezer I was going to write about “Why reading makes me a better bear,” he said I could offer a free book to individuals who’d like a copy for their personal use. So I can send up to 200 out on a first-come-first-serve basis, after September 30th, 2019. Here’s how to get one:

Go to his web page at     www.dlhavlin.com

Under Inside the World (right side) – click on Contact

Complete the form required information –

Write in the comments section – “Send me a copy of Better Bear.”  Write the address to where you want it shipped.

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Memories, our most valuable possession………..

Sometimes I like to immerse myself in memories – so do my humans.

In the end, our memories maybe our most valuable possession. When other things are taken away from us we can retain these. They make our lives bearable, when material items are lost, when our physical capabilities are diminished, and most sadly, when those we love are lost to us. 

I have watched my human, one that I love, suffer the loss of his best friend. It was a friendship that is fifty-two years young and one that the Geezer says will transcend his “brother’s” death. Death is not a word we like. We avoid it like we avoid the event, but the knowledge it is inevitable forces us to consider it. Memories are what makes someone or something eternal. At least, that’s what the Geezer believes. 

His friend Chet was one of those people who created memories for so, so many. He achieved many things in life. Chet was a scholar-educator of the highest order, a great athlete, a fine father and husband, and a leader of men and women. He left his imprint on those who knew him. 

 The Geezer and Coach, as everyone called him, shared the highs and lows in life. The hunting and fishing trips, the triumphs and satisfactions of coaching young men, the sharing and support when either succeeded or failed, the unflinching friendship under all conditions, and they always knew if they needed someone they could depend on, it was that special friend. The memories of those times will not die. We love you Coach.

Chet the “Coach” on the left, the Geezer in the center, Miss Betty, Coach’s fair lady is on the right.

“I’ve never felt more alone,” the Geezer told me. “It is like losing mom or dad, again. We had so many good times together, we went through tough ones leaning against each other, it’s difficult to admit to myself I can’t get in the car and visit him.”

I told him, “It is so hard to say goodbye.”

The Geezer shook his head. “It’s not goodbye, it’s until later. Until then he is in my heart and in my mind. We will never be far apart.”

 

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Meet Missy!

Hooray! I have a new housemate! Meet Missy.

“My word! What’s this?”    Missy’s reaction to the camera.

 

 

I have a new friend and housemate. Mrs. “G” received a phone call from the lady that sits with me when the Geezer & Mrs. “G” go to places that are not dog enlightened. That lady, I’ll call her Peg, told a sad but recurrent story. A couple on the island went back north for the summer. They called a neighbor and asked them to take care of their kitty “for a little while” then left. The neighbor was in the process of leaving himself. That would leave the cat in a situation where chances of survival were minimal. My friend, Peg, made the call and “Shazzam,” I have a new half-sister.

A better look at my new friend, Missy.

Mrs. “G” says Missy has to go to the vet for a check-up before I can really get to know her. She seems very nice…and very quiet. I’ll introduce you to her when the two of us exchange nose sniffs and we’ve had a chance to chat.

I sometimes wonder about humans. How can they be so contemptuous of life that they really don’t value it? Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe it’s because humans have or are losing all sense of responsibility. That even extends to themselves. Many simply expect “others” to take care of their responsibilities. Who are these “others?” …….. Their neighbors. Their society. Their government. You won’t find a Golden Retriever, a poodle, or any dog that isn’t faithful to their human and would never abandon them. As I often said, canines are superior to humans…at least, to a large group of them.

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If you like my blog you might want to read the Geezer’z blog — It’s found at http://www.dlhavlin.wordpress.com

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