- My Monday morning email was titled Very Sad News. Bruce Coggin, retired Episcopal rector and priest, died unexpectedly last Sunday. Bruce led 12 to 20 men of Trinity Episcopal in study and fellowship every Thursday morning. He was my dear friend, as he was to so many others in the congregation, senior facilities, and other life-long ministries. In Bruce’s honor I have begun drafting a new story titled, The Empty Chair. This Thursday morning, we told Bruce stories and remembered his brilliant shining light, now missed in so many ways by so many.
** President Biden has established a new federal office, Preventing Gun Violence. Two simple answers: 1) Stop making and selling non-sport rifles and handguns. 2) Establish education and problem-solving training for individuals and groups in schools and community centers.
- Barbara Jordan was a hero to me, the Texas Senate, and US House of Representatives. Her death at age 59, in 1996, silenced her strong voice of vision, her push to help all of us to find “our togetherness. “There is a danger we will cease to act as one nation and become a collection of interest groups: city against the rural, splintered by race, language, and background. Our strongest future is seeking common ground and experiences, not individual or private wants.” Hero time.
** “Bargain Block” is a home renovation program on Home & Garden TV. Evan and Keither buy falling down, inner city homes in Detroit for $4,000 to $20,000. The renovation or rebuild budget can be $80,00 to $100,000, with a net profit of $15 to $30,000. The Change is 4 or 5 restored, owner-occupied homes on one block, and then another block. These two bring Skills and Belief, they deliver Hope.
- I am preparing to publish my 2nd edition of short stories and other writings. Recently I asked a gathering of creative folk what style or format each preferred. Their answers: one-third print — one-third eBook (read on phone, iPad) — one-third audio (listen at desk, on the go). Send your Comments and Preferences as to your preferred reading style and format…each helpful to this writer.
** Let’s talk Sloths, that slower than slow, hard to find in tall trees, leaf eating Sloth. Lucy Cook, animal specialist, author, and presenter on 60 Minutes, showed us Sloths of different forests, their long survival, and 2023 challenges. In a TED Talk, Cook spoke to the once American and now world-wide obsession with speed and convenience. Amazon brings a book the next day. Markets provide “grab and go” meals. Local bookstores encourage introduction to new writers and encourage wandering of aisles and shelves. Cook spoke to the destruction of culture, climate, and our sense of where we fit in the blur of speed and convenience. No, we will never be our pre-Covid society again, but the Sloths can teach us to move with a more even pace, eat our leaves one at a time, and encourage the sharing of iced tea with a friend, telling and listening to the stories of our lives and family.
My calendar says it is somehow October 1st. Days of 2023 have definingly not been on Sloth time. I can be better at this daily living. Evening my pace, notice others by looking up and around, know I am eating and tasting my leaf, be curious and not just on Goggle, take an hour, OK, 30 minutes, OK, five minutes to set in a lobby, on a bench, or bus stop. Breathe in, breathe out.
Roy, slowing it down, paying attention