Archive for January, 2012


Newfangled Nonesense- By Barb Lishko

I am attempting to stay up-to-date with the latest advances in bathroom technology, but every time I use the ladies room it is a whole new learning curve. What do I mean exactly? Some places have automatic faucets that turn on when your hands line up within the precise perimeters and a warm spray douses the germs away. Sometimes, you have to play games with those faucets and literally spell “P-L-E-A-S-E” in sign language before they turn on, only to shut off once your hands are sudsy.

Drying hands these days presents an array of possibilities. We have the traditional paper towels but that can mean folds or sheets that are twisted, turned, pulled, pushed or waved into usage. Sometimes I stand there like a total fool waving when I should be twisting, or searching for the handle when I should just state loudly, “dry me.”

Then we have the automatic flushing toilets…but only in some bathrooms. I find that they flush when I walk in and close the door, they flush again just before I sit down, and when I am really finished I practically have to do the potty dance before it flushes. Don’t get me wrong, I totally understand the thinking behind this ingenious idea, I have kids you know, but in our house we always had success with a little phrase I liked to say when they were young, “flush when you are finished.” What level of laziness are we fostering here? What happens, heaven forbid, in the future…or next week while visiting Tombstone, and we find ourselves using one of those traditional toilets, will we remember what to do?

I was in a tiny little bathroom the other day; you know the kind where you have to take off your purse, twist in sideways, hung your knees in real tight and then try and shut the door. This petite little loo had enough “power in the flush” that flushing was deafening. I had to hang on for dear life just to avoid getting sucked into in the sewer vortex.

We are a country brimming with originality and resourcefulness. We have gadgets for everything and the infomercials to prove it. You can add a bump to your hair instead of teasing it for free; slap chop your onions instead of using a knife; and watch TV right there on your refrigerator door. Call me ridiculous, it seems to me we are spending too much money attempting to make our life simpler when we already have all the tools and know-how at hand.

If there was ever a gigantic “EM pulse” like they occasionally portray in the movies that could shut down all the electronics in the world, what would we do? How could we check our status on “Facebook” and figure out our place in society? How would we spend all that free time our fingers would have from not typing, texting or gaming? Or worse, how would we learn to form our own opinions without the media telling us how to act and think?

I say we start going back to basics now and practice the “good ‘ol days” for nostalgia sake if nothing else. Use the pots and pans in our cupboards to cook or go grill on the BBQ. It may mean having to wash some dishes, but looking back I had some pretty fond memories of that time together with whoever got stuck doing them with me. Go over and talk to your neighbors instead of calling, emailing or texting them. The look on their faces will be worth the walk, and you will have exercised without using a single kilowatt. Finally, go ahead and dust off Candyland, ignore the whining, and laugh again together as a family in the simplicity of electronic-free fun.

Today is my day off and while we can rocket men into outer space, we haven’t yet managed to invent a house that cleans itself. Looks like today is the day I am getting back to basics myself…starting with toilets.

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Loved Into Exixtence

A glorious day awaits…. although every breath is a new beginning we make quite the deal of the new calendar year as human beings. I guess any day is as good as the next to begin anew in trying to improve ourselves. My mantra is all about accomplishing so much. I feel that I am always behind. And I know we spend our lives trying to get caught up….
Today I read the editorial in the Jan. Magnificat by Fr James Cameron and it was, as always inspiring, so here are a few things to ponder as the new year unfolds:

“God has loved us into existence, and that love governs every instant and action of our life” This is called Divine Providence and it is how God guides his creatures with wisdom, and love. God holds in his hands the depths of my life: all my worries, my troubles, my concerns: big or small, my challenges, my struggles, my phobias…nothing is beyond his tender, infallible protectorship. No one is too small or any problem beyond the reach of God. Divine providence literally “fore-sees every circumstance and concern in our existence, nothing happens in life unless God wills it to be. He always does what is best for us, that which will lead us on towards holiness.”
-If we truly believe this, if we truly trust this, the only logical response is to surrender ourselves to God. The Heavenly Father told St Catherine of Siena, “Whatever I do to provide for the body is done for the good of the soul, to make her grow in the light of faith, to make her trust in me more and give up trusting in herself…I can and will and know how to assist her and save her. For those who have surrendered themselves completely to God, all they are and do has power.”

“What God arranges for us to experience at each moment is the best and holiest thing that could happen to us…For those who have surrendered themselves completely to God, all they are and do has power.” (DeCaussade)

I invite us all to surrender to His Divine Providence each day for the rest of our lives. Let Him take us where He wants and use us in His grand plans.