Friday, November 20, 2009

Only the Good Friday, November 20, 2009

Just a nice picture to get us started.

The weather sure has been comfortable these past couple of weeks. At least for the climate I live in, not to have snow and cold winds by now makes it comfortable. Comfortable for the pocketbook. I’ve kept the thermostat down as daytime highs are up near fifty degrees Fahrenheit, (I mention that it is Fahrenheit for my British friends, they can do their own calculations to Celsius), and that is saving my money on the monthly power bill. Comfortable clothing. I haven’t had to bundle up with heavy boots and layers of clothing. And comfortable driving. No ice and/or snow on the roads means fewer accidents, better fuel mileage and safer driving overall.

These are all “Good” things about the weather. But that doesn’t mean to say that if it were the opposite it would be bad. The weather is what we get. It can be predicted to an extent, so you might know or have an idea of what to expect, but it is what it is. To some life form, some part of the natural world, weather is helpful and the conditions are needed. Like the saying goes if it’s blustery and raining, “Nice day if you’re a duck.”

The ducks like that wet gloomy windy weather. I don’t know why. I don’t like it so much if I had planned on riding my motorcycle, but I like it plenty if I had planned on being at home cooking or baking. Maybe it’s what you have planned for any particular day that makes the weather “Good” or bad.

Life is like that as well. The best laid plans are to have a job and earn enough money to feed, clothe and shelter yourself and the members of the family. Like the weather, conditions sometimes become unpredictable and the climate at work might change abruptly sending the family budget into a tailspin. The non ducks have a much harder time keeping the mouths fed. Others do okay.

Speaking of “Good”, this is Friday, and it is then Only the Good Friday. The day to post only about something “Good”. This brainstorm from Shelly at This Eclectic Life is a “Good” idea. It keeps people seeking out and writing stories about “Good” things that are happening in our world. On Facebook, the sometimes hated, sometimes loved daily social internet site, many have adopted this idea of posting something you are thankful for every day. It started a while ago. People who do it are to keep it up until Thanksgiving.

I’m sure there are other places and other sites where people are trying to stay upbeat. Especially with the economy slow to recover hitting hard on many people. Not that they want to be rich, but they want basic human needs, and without work to earn money, these basic needs vanish. In the words of a song done by The Blues Brothers called Shotgun Blues, the lines read:

Hard to gamble, when you lose every bet

Hard to save money when you’re twenty years in debt

That last one says a lot. Most people who are low to middle on the food chain of life have a time payment for something, or many things. The car, appliances, credit cards. And the house payment mortgage or rent is monthly. The money is accounted for when it is made and everyone seems to be one paycheck away from the possibility of starvation.

So far, this post sure hasn’t said much that could be construed as “Good”. I’m getting to that. I’ve been hanging out at the local food shelf. I’ve seen a lot of really “Good” things happening. Volunteers hauling donated groceries into the building and helping elderly and infirmed people cart the grocery bags to their ride back home. “Good” people giving these rides to and from the food shelf.

I’ve been seeing local merchants giving food donations. Corporate giants like Walmart makes regular donations. There is a local orchard that has been giving over 150 pounds of apples in five pound bags regularly every week. Plain folks drop off donations all the time. I cannot even imagine how much courage it must take for a proud Mother or Father to go to the food shelf to shop for groceries. To bare their soul on a form just to eat. But the food shelf is available.

In some countries, and I’m sure in some places right here in our own country, there is no food shelf. And for some, the pride within keeps people from asking for food, especially within the ranks of the elderly who have a different frame of mind about a helping hand. They may not accept what they call handouts. You may have heard of elderly people who eat dog food. Myth? I don’t know. Pride can make us do crazy things.

It is a very “Good” thing that we have food shelves. It’s not so good that there might be a few people who take advantage of it and get more than they need or cheat the system altogether. But since I am not the police, I don’t judge those that are there getting groceries. Everyone has their reason for asking for food and none of their reasons are my business. I don’t expect people who are wearing Nike shoes to sell their shoes and buy a cheaper brand to buy groceries.

I am suggesting here today to do some “Good” for your local food shelf and for yourself. If you are able, donate food or money. If your community doesn’t have a specific food shelf, find out if any of the churches help people out and donate there. Donate some time. Donate at the homeless shelters, the battered women shelters, any place that shows a need. It does help those in need and it helps you to feel “Good”.

And that’s my “Good” story today. Do “Good”, be “Good”. Become a “Good” member of your own community by helping others. We can’t feed everyone who is starving all over the world, but we can do what we can and it starts at home.

Peace to all.


I, Like The View said...

what a lovely sentiment in your last paragraph. . .

a small seasonal example from this side of the pond

. . .in November the children fill shoeboxes, for other children who won't be getting gifts under a tree

when they were little the boxes had sensible things for a child in education - pencils, rubbers, rulers - and useful things for a child in winter - socks, a hat, gloves or a scarf - and generally - toothbrushes, combs - and, of course, many many treats - little packs of sweets, brand new or nearly new toys (no replica guns or model soldiers)

now they are older the boxes have things like soap powder, shampoo, washing-up liquid. . . not as much fun, but essentials if you don't have them

the other thing I wanted to say was that The Teen (my eldest son, turned 16 this summer) has finally decided that he likes The Blues Brothers soundtrack (I was getting fed up with Iron Maiden, so this is a relief!) and plays it so loudly in his room that I suspect the whole street sings along


Mel said...

(((((( Spadoman ))))))

What a GOOD post for me this morning. (alas the day got ahead of me yesterday--but this will make my Saturday GOODer!)

My kiddos at work volunteer with the local food pantry and it's an awesome thing....humbling and rewarding, it's a good thing all the way around. They always leave the experience much richer than when they walked into it. Isn't that how is should work....

susan said...

You're a Good Man and very wise. Every day brings its own blessing and even pain teaches us compassion.