Dear Reader,

I am a day late depending on where you are in the world. YouTube was first launched 16 years ago on Valentine’s Day. Cool huh?

I personally love YouTube even with Spotify I still visit the site to watch videos, and get a general feel for what’s on the minds of the world. I was doing so reaserach and found out an impressive number of countries have blocked YouTube fully or partially. The reasons range, but offensive video content to others. Ouch, I mean yeah, I’ve come across some weird videos, but I gotta say, I love YouTube and anything offensive is just the user preference.

If you were to look at my view history, you would find a lot of music videos, and how to videos. Though I’m sure YouTube has a dark side, I have not fully come across it.

The way I look at it, is, technology is like drinking, do both responsibly. Now that I think of it, when one drinks one’s sense of responsibility goes out the door, so I don’t know how I feel about most alcohol commercials saying to “drink responsibly”.

I still remember when I was sixteen. I gotta say I loved high school. I learned a lot about people there. Life goes better when you learn quick the people have a tenancy to be cruel to survive socially.

One of the greatest things about being an adult is no one ever questions me about social things anymore, which is wonderful because I’m not the most social butterfly, even in this day and age I still struggle to make friends, which is probably why I will can count my friends in one hand, No bad.

As of yesterday, YouTube is a teenager, a far more popular one that I ever was, but I’m hoping it is still around ten years from now, unlike most Yahoo! Services that have slowly disappeared thought the years.

To where ever, the tech giant takes us, I hope I’m still along for the ride. I hope you are too.

The Massacre…

Dear Reader,

Today is Valentine’s Day, most people see this day as a day of roses or dog houses. Yes, many boyfriends, girlfriends, husbands wifes, partners, friends and such, will be either in the middle of celebrating this day or they will be in the dog house for forgetting it. Yes, people it happens. People do forget, and in some case there was just no time to plan something wonderful. So be kind to your significant other cut them some slack.

In my case, I know there has been no time to prepare anything special, but it’s okay, there is always next year.

I am a strange one, I am far more interested in an event that took place during the prohibition era.

On this day, back in 1929, 7 men where executed by unknown assailants. The crime has never been solved. Given how long it’s been it’s highly likely it will never be solved.

All that is known is that four people gathered seven people up lined them up against a wall and killed them.

It has long been rumored that Al Capone an infamous Chicago gangster had something to do with it, but that is pure speculation, still, it’s one of those crimes, that makes my skin crawl. I mean, you gotta be a special kind of cold-hearted person to be able to sleep at night after something like that.

This event is what got me interested in Al Capone and other gangsters of the prohibition era, it’s quite a history below the layers of the prohibition and many more things that happened within the next two decades.

History is made everyday, so remember to never forget and try your best not to make the mistakes of the past. Live your life, like someone’s watching, and make it a good show.

Meet Joe Black…

Dear Reader,

Have you ever seen the movie, “Meet Joe Black”? If you have not you really should, it’s to some unnecessarily long, but I like it very much. It has it’s wise moments. Today, and maybe because it will soon be my birthday, but a quote said by Anthony Hopkins toward the end of the movie, got me thinking of things like life and such. He says, “… 65 years. Don’t they go by in a blink”

Okay, granted I won’ t be turning 65 on my next birthday, but it got me thinking of my lifetime, of how much I lived so far. I don’t particularly miss the years gone by, I try to live life looking forward, but it did make me appreciate so much of my past and and present and part of me is looking forward to the future.

I was born on a Tuesday in spring, and my mother was told to not even bother naming me because I would not make it past Friday. Grim right? Yet, here I sit so many, decades later far better than the best outcome they could have predicted back then.

I have never questioned why I made it past Friday, or why I’m a lot better than expected, though people in similar situations to mine have often asked my mother what she did different, I will tell you.

My mother was not the the type to be overly protective, from a young age, she never treated me like I couldn’t do this or I shouldn’t do that. Her approach was, “You want your dollie, come and get it”. “Oh, you fell down, come to me so I can pick you up.”

I gotta say the way she raised me made independent and unafraid, though, I’m still afraid of heights. I think I turned out well.

In my mother’s eyes there was nothing I couldn’t do, there was no goal I could not reach, and there was nothing that could not be accomplished if work was put into it. When I graduated high school I felt as though I reached the moon, Given the grim prospects I might as well have reached the moon.

I don’t say it nearly enough, but my mother is the reason I’m still here, why I will always defy the odds and reach new heights, I hope I continue this way.

As for the life I have lived, all the sad moments have made me appreciate the good times even more, and if there is anything I wish to see in my lifetime is the people I hold dear being the best version of themselves they can be. I wish everyone I care about will always succeed and be genuinely happy. To everyone that reads me, I wish you always have what you need to continue on, and remember we are all here for a reason, so live the best life you can and smile always, remember the sun shines brightest after the rain.

Abe Lincoln…

Dear Reader,

If you are in America, of course you know, today we celebrate “honest Abe”. If you’re somewhere else in the map now you know.

Oddly enough, while today we celebrate America’s 16th president and remember everything he did. I cannot help but think of a friend of mine. Abraham, I’ve know him since high school, but lost contact with him a while back, when he moved out of California to God knows where.

When I met him in high school, I used to have trouble remembering his name, for some reason. So I started associating his name with Lincoln, presto. Never again forgot, however, he was not a fan of my memory technique and I have to wonder if it’s because he didn’t like his name, because there’s no way he didn’t like the president.

It was in this memory technique that my mother imparted one of her most wise lessons to me. She said, a person’s name is important and should always be pronounced correctly. As a sign of respect. Before that, I didn’t mind anyone butchering my name to bits.

So now, I make an effort to pronounce names as correctly as I can. As for my name, if we are going to be using it more than once a year, I allow people to call me by my nickname: CC. It’s easier than hearing them struggle with the correct pronunciation, which yes, even in a state like California it still happens.

In case you are new to my letters, I will tell you, ‘CC’ stands for Chocolate Cake, yes, not very original choice of dessert, but I love chocolate cake, also a huge fan of chocolate cookies.

I will stop now before all this talk of food makes me hungry. Have fun today and always.

Crochet Bag…

Dear Reader,

A wise person once said: “Necessity is the mother of invention.” Wise words, how does this tie in? Well, while having walked my dog yet again, and having to hold my phone in my hand, because most of my clothes lacks deep enough pockets, I found myself in the necessity of a bag to carry my phone with me.

After much planning and and working out how it would look, I finally did it I crocheted a bag, and for a first attempt it was not bad, I made it pink and beige, and it serves the purpose. Finally my dog, my phone, and I will go out safely for his walks.

I don’t know if I have told you but I’ve already dropped think previous phones I own and unlike me they did not survive the fall. This one, luckily has not fallen yet, and with this bag, it likely never will.

I’m just glad, I’m not much of a perfectionist when it comes to art of crochet or I would undo my work and start over. My mother whose skills with the crochet needle are second to none has been wonderful and told me it was pretty. I know, it’s not perfect and I’m sure she knows it too, but I love the way she cheers me on.

I don’t think I was born to crochet, but I’m sure eventually with enough practice, I will finally make something that I won’t mind showing you. Until then I will take this small victory and ride with it.

There are plenty of things I will never do in my life and I’m okay with that. As my friend Martin used to say, “you don’t need to fly without wings to be noticed, you just have to be you.”

So I will be me. That’s a job only I can do. So be you and celebrate the victories life grants, dust off the failures and continue on.

In the Mood…

Dear Reader,

If you are sufficiently of age, you might remember this tune:

This is “In the Mood” by Glen Miller. The song has always been a favorite of mine. Ever since I was little. Yes, I was weird where music is concerned even then. This song makes me dance in my chair without a care in the world, like everything is just as it should be. I find myself listening to it today in honor of today being the first time Glen Miller got a Gold Record, a musician with such a short career and very big impact in music.

What are some songs you listen to that are not of your era?

Depending on your mood, you might if you are old enough to remember the forties look at it like, “the best of times” or the “worst of times”, as a book I once read began by saying. I personally, didn’t live in the forties and I’m well awere of the good and the bad, but I rather think of the good times. I wanna picture people dancing their hearts away and smiling the night way.

Every decade has its good points, and it’s bad points. The good point of the forties, Music most obviously, and the fashion because oh dear I wish dresses where that girlie again. Okay, okay I’m an old soul. I won’t sit here and tell you I dress like an old soul, in fact, I dress like a boy. Long sleeve shirts and long pants, baggy when possible, no make up and a face mask. Yup, I am as ungirlie as it is possible to be. Pay no mind to the photos on this blog, of the two times in my life I managed to look like a girl. Most of the time I look like a guy. That is not my self depreciating humor talking, I’ve been confused for a guy many times. The hockey jerseys I wear don’t help either.

My sister has tried to no avail to give me fashion advice, and my mother has not stopped reminding me I’m gorgeous. Moms, right? So, in honor of Glen Miller I’ll get as girlie as I can today. Wish me luck,

Cleaning House…

Dear Reader,

I, like some of you am a fan of before and after photos. Today, I was talking to my friend Rudy about the state of what else? My house. It does not look well, ever since quarantine started and my health was giving me trouble it has been let go. I showed the disaster to my friend, expecting all the possible replies, like shock, dismay, and something judgmental. Instead, he replied, “It looks like a normal home”.

The words I read, and read time and again before daring to reply. He was not joking, he has many qualities joking is not one of them. The fact that, that was his honest reaction gave the push I needed. Within an hour I showed him an after photo. He was impressed. I impressed myself too. I had drive, so I will continue to slowly clean house, and maybe clear my head and who knows where this will lead.

I have often read articles about a messy house and the effects of it on the mind. The only thing I can say is, when the mess gets out of hand we tend not to notice it, or we learn to ignore it, and usually when it all is clean is like we can finally breath.

In my case, I never actually notice when it starts getting bad, it’s when it’s already bad that it’s a constant reminder that I have to clean up. Being stuck at home, every single day, makes me think of chores for longer than it should be allowed.

Today, I finally got started, and eventually I will be done. When that happens, I will sleep for days. At least that is what I hope, but I doubt it will be possible. For one, my dog needs his daily walk and second.. Well, I don’t know what the second would be but I imagine Rudy and J, will wonder where I have gone.

At any rate, I suggest you start by taking the first step forward. Celebrate the small victories in the battle of the mess and remember to rest. While a clean house is important breaking yourself in the process is not what the end goal should be. Good luck, and I will let you know how it goes for me. Know, you are not alone, I’m in this battle with you.

My Holo Love…

Dear Reader,

I just finished watching, “My Holo Love” on Netflix. Don’t worry, I won’t spoil the story for you. Just know the premise of the story is a girl who can see a hologram of a man via some glasses. This hologram is like Google all the information you need at your fingertips.

I got to thinking, would I like a hologram to be around constantly? I think that it would be fun. For one I would not forget the things I forget all the time. I would remember to take my medication and maybe it would reply to my messages when I don’t feel like it. It could sit on endless hold waiting for a person to answer. Oh the possibilities are endless.

I would remember what my letters are about, so when I go back to writing I’ll remember all my thoughts. I’ve never had Alexa or Google Home, or whatever it’s called. I bet that minus the Hologram they probably already do all those things.

I wonder how my grandma would feel to see how far we have come in technology, or how anyone else would feel to think that letters no longer take months to get somewhere. I remember the first email I ever sent and how amazing it felt to get a reply within minutes. I also remember all the confusion when I got used to immediate replies and didn’t get one. Thinking, I did something wrong. Or the first poem someone searched for on AOL for me and how I sat there wondering about so much, how fun it was to hear “You’ve Got Mail”. How I sat there typing random words to see what would happen.

Things must and always do change, but sometimes I wish I could go back to those days where my biggest worry was remembering to finish my homework and go to the library. Now, I’m an adult, Life is more difficult I am older. Life has come at me in palpable waves. Yet, here I am.

Life is difficult and not so much at times, but I surprise myself thinking I have handled it well, when I was younger I often figured I was not made for adulting. Life, however, has shown me, I am a decent person, not perfect but I am an okay person. That’s already more than anyone can ask for.

The Color in your Eyes…

Dear Reader,

What’s your eye color? As you can see, if you see my photo on the right side of this page my eyes are brown, most common color on planet earth. I used to wonder what it would be like to have blue eyes or even green.

Once upon a time, when I learned how to use Photoshop, of course changing my eye color was the first thing I tried to do. The reason, I just loved how poets and writers would compare eyes to emeralds when green, to the sky when blue and so on.

It did cross my mind to get contacts once, but then I realized, they had to be stored a certain way, chemicals needed to be had, and to be honest I’m not a fan of poking my eyes, so that idea died quick. I can barely remember to breathe sometimes let alone remember the process of contacts.

It was not until today, while listening to a book for the millionth time I realized that a character’s eyes were being described as chocolate eyes. I jumped for joy. Then I could not help but look at myself in the mirror and say ‘I have chocolate eyes!’, and come on, if you know me you know I love chocolate. Life is beautiful!

I know plenty of songs about brown eyed girls exist, but I guess having a writer describe brown eyes like chocolate is just on another level.

I will close for now, because the more I think of chocolate the more I want to eat chocolate now. So I will see you next time. Wishing all the best, always.


Dear Reader,

If you have had a McDonald’s products in the last decade you might have come across the Monopoly game logos as part of their McDonald’s Monopoly game, so you are familiar with Monopoly. Now if you are as old as I am, or much older you may have even played the actual board game. I played various versions of the game over the years myself. I never won though.

I know board games come and go, but this one has a long history. First, this game is based on a “The Landlord’s Game” by Lizzie Magie, later stolen in my opinion by Charles Darrow. The game by Lizzie came out in 1906 she patented the game back then and also in 1923. In 1932 Darrow basically changed the name to Monopoly and released the game, after getting written instructions on how to play Lizzie’s game. Parker Brothers eventually bought both patents and Monopoly was officially released on this day in 1935.

It was not only that though, it was also used once as an escape kit of sorts, once Parker Brother’s licensed the game over seas. Versions were made of it for prisoners of war, and the game contained real money maps and other things.

Nowadays, the game has so many versions, even one that you play with credit cards, but as a person who has played that let me say it was not the same as counting money or seeing it dwindle to nothing. During Monopoly I was always the thimble, what was yours?

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