Mary Beth Writes

Len says one can hear LOTS of frogs when one rides their bike on the Drumlin Trail.  


 Frugal Wins during the Time of Coronavirus. 1. Haven’t bought anything except groceries. 2. Haven’t eaten anywhere except home. 3. Not cooking a splendid Easter dinner for kids or friends so no outlay for a wondrous multitude of groceries.  4. No Easter candy (well, some Peeps for me and maybe a chocolate bunny for Len). 4.5 The Savings on Easter Grass, right?  5. Not buying gas to drive anywhere. 6. Another eBay item sold today. A little clutter out/a little money in. Anyone willing to pay $7.50 plus shipping for an old china bunny is a person who WANTS the bunny which is great. 7. Len and I invested over $2000 for therapy when we were in our 30’s and that is still working. Therapist/counselor/psychologist, psychiatrist - whatever you call them– if you are anxious and your state of mind is crumbly – these professionals work via phone, skype, zoom.  They don’t fix you, but they can help you find YOUR light and YOUR strength. If you need help, get it and the more you can’t afford it, the more you probably need it. Find a person and then talk with them about ways to afford it. They can help you figure that part out.

Len bought on-sale patio lights more than a year ago. We had not yet put them for a variety of reasonable reasons. Today he strung them IN our garage and I’m excited to dine alfresco this evening. We we are meeting some friends via Zoom and I’m kind of grinning just writing this.

In normal circumstances it is possibly silly to deck out one’s garage. These are not normal times. I’m up for a change of venue…

Rationales. Be Careful with them.

Years ago, when I worked in the jail, I attended a seminar presented by an organization that worked with women who had been victims of assault.

The presenter talked about “magical thinking” and her example was this. They had worked with a woman who had come home from work one day to a stranger in her house. He violently assaulted her. The trauma affected her for years.

The presenter said, “She would say in therapy sessions, ‘If only I hadn’t come home right then…’” 

She could live with the fact that it had happened. She could not live with the reality that the violence was random.  If it was random, she couldn’t figure out how to protect herself so that it wouldn’t happen again. She would rather believe that it was her fault, because then at least, she was in control. 

I think of this story often and I am thinking of it these days. People are getting sick and people are dying, and we are looking for rationales. This victim did this or that person didn’t do that.

This is magical thinking. We need to stay quarantined.  We can try to eat well, stay hydrated, go outside for walks or bike rides IF we don’t live in a city where there is no space to do that.  There are boundaries to observe.

But even if we “do everything right” there is randomness to this.  When you hear that a person contracted it – watch your words, watch your thinking.  Don’t blame the victim.  Don’t blame yourself.

Judy Woodruff, a few weeks ago, stated what to me is the most profound statement I have heard yet. Her general words were, “Today the stock market rose a huge amount. Today hundreds of people died.  This really doesn’t make sense.”

Why do I have an app THAT CAME PRE-INSTALLED ON MY PHONE where I can check the Dow Jones, NASDAQ, NYSE, and more?

Where are the American indices that ask:

  • How many work-able adults in the US are currently working?
  • What it the average wage per house in the country right now?
  • If we select out individuals earning more than $100,000 per year – what is the average hourly wage?
  • What is the average cost of health insurance for a family of four?  Can we break that out by metro and rural area?

Wouldn’t these indices say more about the core strength of our nation? 

Today, Monday, the stock market rose 1600 points while the known death toll is now over 10,000.  

I can’t live in fear, anxiety, and anger.  As soon as Len gets back from his bike ride, I’m drinking wine with him in the garage. 

What ridiculous thing are you looking forward to?










TY, Look forward to your daily musings..

I don’t know if most of your readers are local or not, but I’m kinda proud that I know what “drumlin“ means! Other readers, do you know? If you do know, don’t spoil it- if you don’t know, don’t cheat! What do you guys think it is?
Mary Beth's picture

Drumlin... A secret Wisconsin word!

We ate dinner outside tonight, too, for the first time this year. It brings an added element of excitement--a change of scenery. We are so fortunate to live where we have a fenced in back yard; the boys & puppy can play and we don't have to worry. They are also still riding their bikes/scooters around the neighborhood. Feeling blessed and grateful for the sun. Not so in love with my garden at the moment... LOL
Mary Beth's picture

I discovered (well, reconfirmed) that whereas inside the house I generally have one small glass of wine - outside the house I have two regular sized glasses of wine. I see some kids outside but not many. The baby across the street just returned from her morning stroller ride.

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Susan's Birthday Questions 10/19/2020

(One decorates for October birthdays with orange trees.) 

Last week was my birthday. My niece Susan sometimes sends me birthday greetings where she asks excellent questions. She doesn’t know I still have the card she sent six years ago; I meant to answer her questions in the blog I had then, but I never got around to it.

Stereotypes Day

Today is October 12th - Indigenous Peoples’ Day. Not Columbus Day, okay?

I was in the process of giving birth to one of our kids and it was getting on towards midnight. The midwife wondered whether our baby would be born on the day we were in or whether it would be a few more minutes and then the child would have the next day as their birthday.

10/11/2020 This Crazy Advent We're In Now

This painting is by Andrea Kowch


Regarding Time: It’s been about a million months since the quarantine started. It will be an at least one epoch if not two, until a vaccine is available to quell it. Election Day is here now (I’ve already voted, have you?) yet it feels as if it will never be done and gone. Even when Nov 3 arrives we could be in for more epochs of anxious and angry waiting as ballots are tallied, argued over, recounted, all while lawyers and politicians fight and scrap.

Quarantine Diary #204 10/4/2020 3 Short Takes

Three things to say today and none are about our goatish, swag-bellied, canket-blossomed president. How to create a Shakespearean insult. 

1. I just read this WONDERFUL and REMARKABLE book! The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

Quarantine Diary #200 The Debate

Regarding that Debate. 

I’ve been at a zoo when a cranky monkey starts throwing poop. That remembrance came to me last night. Watching Uncle Joe try to answer questions while Trump trash talked everybody and everything except white supremacists – that was damn ugly.

Quarantine Diary #198 Who we still are ...

I’ve been trying and trying to write but it hasn’t happened so this morning I looked at some of my old stuff and found this from ten days after 9/11. Made me remember who we are.

I think the miserable karma of Trump is happening. I hope we will be okay. I’m not sure how talk about the harm he has done and is doing now. 

But we … we are still who we are.

The flowers in the photo were a surprise gift, just yesterday, from a friend.

I have edited it a bit. 

September 21, 2001 Lost in Racine - An Aftermath of Civility

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