Monthly Archives: June 2010

Homecoming

There’s something I’ve been wanting to put out here for quite some time, but just haven’t known how. Still don’t think I’ve found a total solution, but here it is nonetheless.

A couple months back, I traveled to D.C. for work. It was rather unpleasant, involving a 12 hour delay before leaving Detroit, culminating in a late evening flight and a very cranky Supergirl.

As I prepared to board, a co-worker noticed a hearse on the tarmac. Shortly after, we saw a uniformed Marine near our gate. We easily put it together and realized that this was a final homecoming for a soldier.

When I landed in D.C., I walked off the jetway and looked through the window back at the plane. There, waiting on the tarmac for the luggage to be unloaded, was a Marine honor guard. Gathering in the terminal was the family, waiting for their loved one.

I stood there for a moment, wanting to witness the scene and send up a prayer or two, but I quickly realized it needed to be a private moment. Instead, I went to find my ground transportation, quietly sobbing the entire way.

Fast forward to now. While enjoying a leisurely Memorial Day weekend, DD’s sister got word that her brother-in-law, a 20-year-old Marine, had been killed overseas. For now, let’s call him L. While not directly related to L, I’d seen him at family functions and know his sisters and brothers and nieces and nephews — 3 of which DD also plays uncle to.

The last two weekends have been spent in a whirlwind of emotion, combined with a healthy dose of babysitting. It was an interesting experience to watch the family go through a heartache no family should have to undergo.

At the funeral, the priest mentioned that L had written to his family about the deal he’d made with God so that he’d deliver him home safely. The priest made the point — comforting or not — that God did in fact bring L home safe.

I thought of that Marine I traveled to D.C. with and I thought of L. And I thought about this notion of homecoming. I suppose that while it’s not very comforting, it is true if you’re a person of faith. They are home. And they are safe.

I think of that Marine often, and now I’ll think of L as well.

I’ll think of them as I watch DD’s nephews play baseball on a hot Saturday afternoon. I’ll think of them as I leave the house in sandals and a tank top, with no one to judge my wardrobe. I’ll think of them as I sit on my favorite outdoor patio with a cocktail and good friends. And sure, I’ll think of them when I hear the Star Spangled Banner or cast my vote the next time. After all, it’s because of them and so many others that I’m able to do all of that and so much more without fear and with complete and utter abandon.

We all know people are dying halfway around the world, but do we really know? Do we really understand what that means? Even as an Army brat, with a father who served in the first Gulf War, I don’t think I completely understood.

But when I watched that honor guard wait on that tarmac, and I heard the 21 gun salute at L’s funeral, I got it. I was part of their final homecoming and I’m so thankful for what they gave up for me.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), family values, Hmm, rambling nature

Current events

Is this thing on?

Let’s forgo all the usual excuses about why this poor little blog has been barren these past weeks, shall we? I’m breaking the hiatus to talk about something much more important:

Current events. And my lack of knowledge about them.

Picture it…You’re me. One day not so long ago, you decide to enjoy a leisurely lunch in your office cafeteria with a few co-workers. The talk is mild enough — vacation destinations — and you mention that Greece is your next big travel to-do. The table agrees, though one co-worker laughs while saying “just stay out of Athens.” Instead of responding with a knowing commentary on the recent global financial disaster and the violence in the streets that had been occurring just days before, you look at her blankly.

Because you have no idea the any of the above has actually taken place.

Back in the day, I considered myself up on what was going on in the world. I was an award-winning forensics nerd in the extra-geeky Broadcasting category. I could read the news and write original and thought-provoking editorials on said news in 30 minutes flat. Hell, my degree is in Journalism and my first job out of college was in media relations — meaning I had to read the paper and know the news in order to pitch my company’s news to the media.

I’m starting to see why that job didn’t work out.

Since I moved out of my parents house and gave up cable, I rely on local TV news. I prefer checking my Facebook 10 times a day to surfing the local paper or CNN.com. I tell DD that if it’s not on Facebook or Twitter, it must not be important.

Until a couple weeks ago, this news gathering tactic had worked just fine. My social media outlets have stood by me through thick and thin, never leading me astray in any current events convo.

I suppose even social media has its shortcomings. After the Grecian Gaffe, I thought maybe I should leave my little bubble and start clicking over to the national and international Interwebs.

And then I promptly forgot about it.

Until I came home early today and turned on Oprah. To find Fergie (the Brit, not the Pea) doing an exclusive interview. I’d seen previews for the show, and had been wondering what all the fuss was about. After all, isn’t she so 1990?

For the second time, I had missed the news.

Obviously, I need to find a solution so I can get back to my previous role as Scintillating Conversationalist at Parties with Smart People.

The thing is, I’m kind of anti news feeds. I tried it once and it didn’t turn my crank. I hated having my reader overflowing with double digit postings in one day. If I missed a day (or three) my reader would collapse under the weight of them all. It made it annoying to skim and so I just gave up.

I’m thinking I need to reconsider. But I’m appealing to all of you, who are so much more tech savvy than I. Are there any good news feeds I should know about? Perhaps a feed or two that provides a daily round-up instead of instant updates multiple times a day?

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Filed under career, Excuse me while I trip on myself, rambling nature