The Michael Moore book, "Here Comes Trouble" advertised on the site linked above is well worth the time. My wife got it from the library and I will prThe Michael Moore book, "Here Comes Trouble" advertised on the site linked above is well worth the time. My wife got it from the library and I will probably finish it after three nights. One anecdote from the book was about the time in 2004 when Michael was vilified by the right for his effective opposition to the Iraq War. Four days after it started Michael won an Oscar for "Bowling for Columbine". He used his acceptance speech to expose the war and had to suffer a technician yelling "Asshole" in his ear. Michael surrounded himself with ex-Navy seals for security because of the threats to his life. Kurt Vonnegut befriended him and told him the purpose of life was to help one another. He said that Michael's gift was making non-fiction seem interesting. This was a challenge Vonnegut had never quite mastered and he encouraged Michael to keep up the fight. He said nothing limited what Rove and Cheney were trying to do as much as "Fahrenheit 9/11". Rove discovered the movie caused 10% of Republican women to vote for Kerry or decide to not vote in 2004. It was the leading bootleg movie in the packs of soldiers deployed to Iraq. Vonnegut's friendship and humor went a long way towards breaking Michael out of the blues that was holding up his work at the time.
The book is filled with stories about the history of the Midwest and the role his family played, both good and bad. He is very honest about bigotry which is one way he unintentionally backed into notoriety when he made a speech about racial exclusion in the Elks Club while a freshman in high school.
What Michael Moore has, besides a commitment to the truth is a self-effacing sense of humor. It's all over his documentaries as well as in this latest work....more
The author participated in the Spanish Civil War and brought a lifetime of pro-revolutionary wisdom to this book which covers Cuba up to 1975. Some ofThe author participated in the Spanish Civil War and brought a lifetime of pro-revolutionary wisdom to this book which covers Cuba up to 1975. Some of it was hard slogging, but gaining a better understanding was well worth the effort....more
The first half explains the history of Buddhism and how it travelled from India to China and Japan and Korea. It sketches the various trends over theThe first half explains the history of Buddhism and how it travelled from India to China and Japan and Korea. It sketches the various trends over the last 2500 years. The second half is more concrete and lists various methods for gaining enlightenment. I am a bit of a skeptic but I think there is a place for emptying the mind and gazing at the universe with minimal bias. I could never be a monk, but there are some insights into human consciousness that may be of help. Now, to understand the sound of one hand clapping...
This collection of short stories written over the past 30 years offers alternative history, utopia, dystopia, travel logs, and the trials of tribulatiThis collection of short stories written over the past 30 years offers alternative history, utopia, dystopia, travel logs, and the trials of tribulations of a blind geometer and a totally clueless genetic researcher. I found it fascinating and entertaining. Robinson asks and answers more questions than this reader has ever imagined. The short story that made me laugh the most was the one about a double kidnapping of an abominable snowman. Alternative histories about the dropping of the atomic bomb (oops, I missed Hiroshima) shows how major changes in history can be traced back to the free will of individuals. Dystopias include futures with flooded artworks and impinging glaciers. The story that finished most differently than it started is about an author attempting to write about the twentieth century. Research leads him to all the wars and over 100 million deaths due to violence. Then a vacation to Scotland and the site of the oldest known stone village from over 3000 years old forces the author to view the century in a far more optimistic light.
One very nice touch are a collection of Robinson's impressions of each story at the end of the book. Once I discovered that, I referred to it after reading each of the short stories....more
Erikson was a freudian psychoanalist and wrote this book in 1965 when he could interview many of the principal participants of a 1918 lockout and striErikson was a freudian psychoanalist and wrote this book in 1965 when he could interview many of the principal participants of a 1918 lockout and strike of textile workers. Erikson had already written about the early life of Martin Luther and wanted this book to focus on the middle years of a great world leader. As a freudian, Erikson looked for the roots of motivation in earlier life experiences, so it is a very personal journey that makes me wonder if there is really any use in revealing such personal triumphs and tragedies. Gandhi had always been the apple of his father's eye. When an adolescent he stole a small piece of gold to use the proceeds to pay a debt for his brother. When he told his father of this "sin", instead of being punished, Gandhi's complete honesty brought tears to his father's eye. Erikson places great weight on the fact that Gandhi left his dying father's bedside to sleep with his young wife whom he married at age 13. Despite spending many days nursing his father, his dad ended up dying in the arms of Gandhi's uncle while Gandhi spent the night with his young wife. Gandhi supposedly experienced such waves of guilt from this event that he eventually adopted an almost maternal concern for all the oppressed. He came to feel that overcoming personal temptation was bound up with overcoming the control and might of external oppressors. Though not certain if I'm with Erikson on this insight, it is interesting to ponder what might be a necessary if not sufficient condition for successful conflict resolution.
It was fascinating to learn about Gandhi's early battles in South Africa amongst the Indian diaspora. After going to England to study to become a successful barrister, Gandhi eventually set aside his barrister's robe to organize nonviolent resistance to a tax on Indian immigrants who had worked long enough to serve the terms of their indentured servitude. He organized Indians in South Africa to work in ambulances during the Boer War between the British and the Afrikaners. He returned to India very much transformed from his early aspiration of being a lawyer and householder. He formed an ashram and eventually participated in a textile strike for a 35% rise in wages. Later on he led a fight to end the salt tax. Eventually the goal of the struggle became nothing less than independence from British rule. In every battle, the turn of events had unintended consequences, such as horrible violence perpetrated by the police or by fringe elements not directly won over to the Mahatma's pledge of nonviolence.
The book describes many of the social and personal conflicts in Gandhi's life, with climactic focus on a textile strike in 1918. Gandhi's method required close contact with both sides of the conflict. He practiced and taught something called Satyagraha which meant that the oppressed side should make sure of the justness of their cause and then be willing to commit to it "even unto death". Rather than villifying the oppressor, the goal was to act in such a way that the public and oppressor's consciences would be touched by the sacrifice of the oppressed. Gandhi would often resort to the tactic of fasting to force the mill owners or government to come to terms. The choice of a realizable goal and profound sensitivity towards the current zeitgeist was essential for the successful outcome of struggle through strictly nonviolent means. When a follower asked him whether fasting would be useful in another struggle, Gandhi replied by asking the friend to send him ten reasons why fasting would lead to a reasonable outcome. Gandhi promised to sign-off on the ten reasons without even reading them. The friend thought it through and found another way to forward the fight without fasting.
My "companion book" (I always like to choose one!) to "Gandhi's Truth" is "Revolution in Cuba" by H.L. Mathews. How similar and yet distinct are Gandhi's Satyagraha and Guevara's "patria o muerte - venceremos!" ("country or death - we shall overcome!")? A first order contrast is that Guevara took up struggles against dictators with so much blood on their hands that they were beyond the pale of human solicitude. Gandhi always held out hope that the oppressor would see that compromise was in their own best interest. Through direct experience with the Boer War in South Africa and distant observation of the Great War "to end all wars", Gandhi nurtured high hope that the British empire was on the wane and that it would be possible to help the oppressor loosen his grip through nonviolent means. Che and Fidel as well as Ho Chi Minh had a younger more virulent opponent in the rise of american imperialism in the years following WW II. Despite these differences, the dance of conflict and resolution is between members of what we think of as "humanity". If we are to survive as a civilization, there must be some means of learning to live together, without shedding blood and by sharing resources in a way which is fair to all, both the living and those yet to be born....more
I only got through the first three plays and found them depressing as hell. Given that they were written over 40 years ago when generations did not seI only got through the first three plays and found them depressing as hell. Given that they were written over 40 years ago when generations did not see eye to eye, I suppose Shepard's popularity is understandable. I just didn't find alcoholic characters and a fantasy about a dead child who had issued from incest returning to haunt the family very uplifting. Did I miss some inner meaning? ...more
I was attracted to this biography of Joshua Slocum because I loved the fictional Pat O'Brien series about sailing ships during the Napoleonic wars. JoI was attracted to this biography of Joshua Slocum because I loved the fictional Pat O'Brien series about sailing ships during the Napoleonic wars. Joshua Slocum was a merchant captain during the last half of the 19th century. He sailed with his wife and kids aboard, for the most part. The climax is the first solo trip around the world starting in 1893. His life was often controversial, rarely boring....more
I gained understanding about comedians of the past half century. A lot of it was self serving, but some of the stories were genuinely funny and a fewI gained understanding about comedians of the past half century. A lot of it was self serving, but some of the stories were genuinely funny and a few were touching. ...more
A truly comprehensive and unsettling book. Amoebas, protozoans, and insects capable of bringing whole nations to their knees. I'm always fascinated toA truly comprehensive and unsettling book. Amoebas, protozoans, and insects capable of bringing whole nations to their knees. I'm always fascinated to hear about the ways natural organisms find to survive and reproduce. It is difficult to keep the risks in proportion, but it is important to know about the risks of drinking unfiltered water or traveling far away places. I would rather know about the guinea worm that may be eradicated by changing human behavior. I was troubled to hear about the round worm carried by raccoons. Much to think about as you scratch that itch.
I just finished reading "Parasites: Tales of Humanity's Most Unwelcome Guests". It had lots of interesting stories like how the hook worm was imported with slaves from Africa. The hookworms crawl no more than five feet away from the bushes used as a latrine and burrow in through bare feet. It turns out that they don't have much effect on people from Africa, but caused white southerners to become anemic. You might say that the hook worm is the cause of the stereotype of "po' white trash". For hundreds of years, no one could guess the cause. You might also say that the hook worm, imported because of slavery, contributed to its downfall by weakening the troops whose job it was to defend it.
Another story was about an endosymbiont bacteria called Wolbachia that produces certain nutrients needed by nematodes to survive and reproduce. There is a terrible disease called Onchocerciasis or river blindness. A nematode roundworm called O. volvulus is transferred to humans via the bite of a blackfly in the genus Simulium, and has infected thirty-seven million people in Africa. Numerous methods have been used to eradicate this disease which is the second highest infectious cause of blindness. Merck came up with an anti-parasitic drug called ivermectin. It doesn't kill the worms, but causes temporary infertility. Unfortunately the adult worms can live for 10 to 15 years, so the treatments need to be treated annually. Not only that, the black flies can spread the disease to new hosts. Resistance to ivermectin has appeared, with some females able to reproduce a few months after treatment. It turns out that the bacteria Wolbachia spp. live inside the cells and embryos of O.volvulus and other nematodes. The human disease is actually caused by the immune response to Wobachia which are exposed when the nematode dies. One useful approach may be to go after the Wolbachia with antibiotics. So far research hasn't revealed an antibiotic that will clear Wolbachia bacteria in human cases of onchocerciasis with less than three weeks of treatment.
Another round worm, B. procyonis, is picked up from the feces of raccoons. Studies reveal that raccoon infection with B. procyonis is rare, but the following is a cautionary note implying that raccoon presence around small children should be avoided. Adult worms live in raccoon intestines and may generate a hundred thousand eggs a day. Eggs enter the environment in raccoon droppings and mature in moist soil. Raccoons defecate in communal latrines such as the tops of stumps, large horizontal branches, and fallen trees. Small animals such as mice, rabbits, and birds may forage a raccoon latrine and incidentally swallow eggs of B procyonis. In these animals, the infection is deadly. Mature eggs hatch in the intestines and the larvae migrate through tissues into the bloodstream. The majority encyst near the head. A small percentage of the larvae invade the brain causing mice to "jump, run, and spin". Infected animals may fall prey to a hungry raccoon and thus pass the larvae on. Once swallowed, larvae develop into adult worms inside the raccoon intestine.
The people who get caught in the life cycle of B. procyonis are almost invariably small children, those most likely to stumble across a raccoon latrine and transfer eggs from hands to mouths. Immediate preventive treatment with antiparasitic drugs can avert disaster, but by the time the diagnosis is made, it is usually too late. Many victims die and the remainder are left with permanent brain damage. Migrating larvae may cause a rash on the face and trunk, respiratory symptoms, and enlarged liver. The patient develops a fever, with loss of coordination, sleepiness, and irritability. The illness progresses to seizures and coma.
The tough eggs of B. proconis remain infective for years, making a contaminated lawn almost impossible to clean up.
The book is full of similar stories, including a chapter on imaginary infections, so don't get too spooked by these samples stories....more
Although they spent years living within the antarctic circle, not one crew member was lost. Some of the descriptions of discussions, injuries, and neuAlthough they spent years living within the antarctic circle, not one crew member was lost. Some of the descriptions of discussions, injuries, and neurotic behavior seemed like it must be made up. Apparently, on top of all the suffering, many crew members kept detailed logs. Then I discovered that the ship's doctor Alexander Macklin worked tirelessly with the author to create a sense of "I was there"....more
Nice book if you want to find out about the back story of Henry II when he said, "Who will rid me of this troublesome priest!" I feel as though I learNice book if you want to find out about the back story of Henry II when he said, "Who will rid me of this troublesome priest!" I feel as though I learned more from this book than I did taking a history course in British history. Ken Follett can really tie together a lot of loose threads in a satisfying way. ...more
The product placements were hilarious! Still, there were a few saving graces, most after the release from being stuck. I can't believe they made a movThe product placements were hilarious! Still, there were a few saving graces, most after the release from being stuck. I can't believe they made a movie of this....more
Very easy reading compared to the nonfiction I usually get into. Every page is so well crafted. Perhaps it is just nostalgia for this aging hippie, buVery easy reading compared to the nonfiction I usually get into. Every page is so well crafted. Perhaps it is just nostalgia for this aging hippie, but the first part of the book shows the benefits of sacrifice for those who commit to the life of the artist. I loved the insight that St. Bernadette was called to sainthood which is so much more significant than merely wanting it. For one summer, I hitchhiked around the country with the girl who was to become my wife. I can relate to how being homeless was part of a cosmic adventure during the 60's when the older generation could think of nothing better to do than thin our ranks through pointless war. It was liberating to be truly redundant. The only way up was to determine your worth in your own terms. This is the story of the roll of the dice of Patti Smith and Robert Maplethorp in the artist subculture of Brooklyn and Manhattan. Lots of interesting characters and idols walk through these pages, most of whom I never heard of. Nevertheless I found the book educational and inspiring. ...more
If you like books about origins or how things got this way, you will love this book. Our ancestors spent hundreds of thousands of years in the hunterIf you like books about origins or how things got this way, you will love this book. Our ancestors spent hundreds of thousands of years in the hunter gatherer mode. Human kind were totally transformed by the introduction of agriculture during the neolithic era about 10,000 years ago. Instead of isolated bands barely holding on to existence, population took off and human society became a possibility. That possibility is eroding as population has increased exponentially during our lifetimes. ...more
This is Bryson's most scholarly book to date. It goes far beyond the confines of the rooms of the home. He starts with Great Exhibition in 1851 in theThis is Bryson's most scholarly book to date. It goes far beyond the confines of the rooms of the home. He starts with Great Exhibition in 1851 in the Crystal Palace in England and talks about all the technology and class warfare behind the contents of the house. He reviews a lot of the history of science and technology during the Victorian era. A lot of this is covered in another book I recently read, called "The Species Seekers". Because I undertook a kitchen renovation project while in the midst of reading this book, it took me over three weeks to complete. Maybe it will inspire you to upgrade your own digs....more
I was attracted to this because of my son's love for the classics. Ursula Le Guin extends the characters and drama of Virgil's "The Aeneid", a foundinI was attracted to this because of my son's love for the classics. Ursula Le Guin extends the characters and drama of Virgil's "The Aeneid", a founding myth of Rome written during the reign of Augustus Caesar. Aeneas was an imagined survivor of the Trojan wars who led his band to settle in Latium on the Italian peninsula at the point where the Tiber empties into the Mediterranean Sea. Lavinia was the Latin princess that Aeneas would marry. In Le Guin's "love offering" to Virgil, Lavinia's life is the central focus. Le Guin wisely realized that there was a lot of grist for the mill in focusing on the character who was to become the mother of Rome, but is otherwise a minor character in Virgil's Aeneid. It is very well done, combining Illiad-like battles with the non-violent resistance of most of the females of our species. It is important for the reader to know that the poet Virgil died before "The Aeneid" was actually published. Virgil wanted to burn the incomplete text after his death, but Augustus insisted that it be published. I suggest you read "The Aeneid" first, but "Lavinia" will inspire you to read it over and over again. Great poets of our ancient past, like great composers of the Enlightenment, walked taller than anyone living today....more
**spoiler alert** It was hard work to get through this, but it is connected to the real world in a great number of ways, so I keep cackling about it.**spoiler alert** It was hard work to get through this, but it is connected to the real world in a great number of ways, so I keep cackling about it. The dialog in the bar was inspired. Interesting characters laboring under a load of dramatic irony made those pages turn quickly. The dialog between Ignacio's mom and her friends was labored and repetitive, but that is how some people choose to communicate. My problem was that I kept picturing Italians in the northeast US instead of people in New Orleans: fiction with a ring of truth inspires memories in the reader. The weaving together of Myrna, the kinky, avant garde activist, and Ignacio, the vanguard of all dunces living in an medieval fog, was masterful. The Levi pants clerk job had its highest expression in the "Moorish pride" job action for higher pay, an example of Ignacio's heated subjective factor exceeding the consciousness of the workers. The hot dog salesman job was a useful device to tour the neighborhoods of New Orleans, knitting together stray characters and leading to the ultimate resolution pictured on the cover of the book. I never saw so many threads drawn together in one cataclysmic spasm.
This book may go over the head of younger people, though I appreciated references to things that no longer exist, such as desert boots. If you can excuse such references and would like to dwell on the possible internal lives of zany people you have passed in the night, this book is a must. As zany as Ignacio was, I have to admit we do have more than a thing or two in common. For example, we share the tendency to scribble, and have too much pride in our point of view. So, for me, the book stands as an entertaining cautionary tale....more
The author employs anecdotes and personal interviews to reveal the personalities and meaning behind the economic collapse of 2008. He places ultimateThe author employs anecdotes and personal interviews to reveal the personalities and meaning behind the economic collapse of 2008. He places ultimate blame on the transformation of financial service companies publicly traded companies out of the private partnerships that existed before the 1980's. Fees are collected for each transaction, no matter how debased the investment. It was actually entertaining to find out about credit default swaps, collateralized debt obligations, tranches, and triple-A rated investments that were anything but. The characters at Deutches Bank and AIG provided two sides of transactions that should never have been allowed. I loved the characters from Cornwall Capital who knew very little, but enough to get rich off of betting against subprime mortgage products that were sure to fail. ...more
I found it in my local library and was not disappointed. When "fair and balanced" counter balances the discoveries of science against the views of those with a profit motive, we are all the poorer. It saddens me that so many americans, including some cherished family members, have no idea of what goes into establishing a justified, true belief. The corporate control of our news outlets make it easy for tobacco companies and oil and coal companies to have their propaganda accepted uncritically. Progress seems hopeless, but the truth has a way of winning out. The book gives me hope and explains how these doubts are funded. Should be required reading for every one who wishes not to be duped by conmen....more
I loved this book. There were many unsettling passages, but documenting the categorization phase of our understanding of life on earth is one of the rI loved this book. There were many unsettling passages, but documenting the categorization phase of our understanding of life on earth is one of the reasons I can't get enough of natural history museums.
Something I learned from this book was that pre-Darwinian collectors tended to find one or a few examples of each species because the prevailing theory was that creation was recent, and Noah's flood was even more so. Once Darwin and Wallace presented the theory of natural selection, it was realized that variations existed from island to island and around each bend in the river, something which primitive hunters had never lost touch with.
Something I rediscovered from this book had to do with Carroll and Lear's nonsense verse. In his twenties, Alfred Wallace had spent a few years collecting butterflies and other species in South America. When he finally set sail for home, the small ship he was on caught fire. The lifeboats were in such bad shape that the cook was ordered to bring cork from the galley to help patch them. Though eventually saved, the leaky lifeboats may have inspired "The Jumblies":
"Their heads were green, and their hands were blue, and they went to sea in a sieve."
I have reconnected with that wonderful Nonesuch album!...more
The resolution made me angry. Why did Roth write this? Does he wish to spread hopelessness or save us from wasting our potential with bad philosophy?The resolution made me angry. Why did Roth write this? Does he wish to spread hopelessness or save us from wasting our potential with bad philosophy? Could no one see that viruses have evolved to thrive and multiply like every other life form? There is no basis to feel such all consuming survivor's guilt. I saw no evidence that Cantor had learned any science in college. Surely someone could have explained about natural selection to counter the immature notions of a malevolent god. ...more
**spoiler alert** I recently read a great book: Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, A Man Who Would Cure the World
It is about a**spoiler alert** I recently read a great book: Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, A Man Who Would Cure the World
It is about an American doctor in Haiti. The stories of his youth and upbringing will make you chortle. His dad was simply amazing, making his family live in a Bluebird bus. His daughters called him "The Warden". I think Paul Farmer is younger than me but he has achieved much more, albeit it in what most would consider lost causes. He has set up effective clinics in Haiti where he spends a lot of time hiking into the mountains to visit his patients to get first hand knowledge of their living conditions. On these long trips, he makes many discoveries. One discovery was about a dam built with foreign assistance. It flooded fertile farmland and provided power only for the wealthy in Port Au Prince. The people ended up with no where to live but on the steep sides of the bank and can paradoxically get water only with great difficulty. He has learned to understand that the prejudices and superstitions held by his patients really do have a function in coping with hard living conditions. He loves his patients and tries hard to be in sympathy with their points of view. Farmer and his organization went on to work with the UN to launch programs to treat drug resistant strains of TB. It turned out the drug prices were artificially high even though the patents had run out. Nobody cared enough to check, even though there is great danger that resistant strains of TB could move out of prisons and barrios into "safe" havens of the middle class. Making a difference always requires sacrifice and rejection of the status quo. If you read this, prepare to feel uncomfortable with some of your creature comforts and priorities. Then decide what you will do to make some positive changes in the world. This book will change you, maybe by opening your eyes, perhaps even by opening your heart....more
I found this book to be extremely engrossing. I didn't know that John Muir was considered one of Ralph Waldo Emerson's men. The author, Donald WorsterI found this book to be extremely engrossing. I didn't know that John Muir was considered one of Ralph Waldo Emerson's men. The author, Donald Worster, has a good grasp on the delicate balance between appealing to the people to break out of the rat race to appreciate natural wonders and appealing to the powerful such as Theodore Roosevelt and the railroad magnate, Harriman. John Muir's life was an amazing force that helped establish national parks and monuments all over the western US. He was unafraid to wax poetic to inspire his countrymen to do the right thing. He was in the right place at the right time. It was lovely to read how the views of Darwin transformed his Calvanist views. It was heart breaking to see how the forces of "progress" stacked up against him in the failed attempt to keep Yosemites twin, the Hetch Hetchy valley, from falling under the developer's hammer. (Couldn't they have built that dam closer to SF?)
The book makes me want to do two things: read John Muir's first book "The Mountains of California" written in 1894. I also need to get to Yosemite to take in it's primordial beauty for myself....more
It was difficult to read cover-to-cover. It is more of an activist's handbook and will stay on reference shelf. Each chapter ends with suggestions forIt was difficult to read cover-to-cover. It is more of an activist's handbook and will stay on reference shelf. Each chapter ends with suggestions for finding out more and taking action. ...more
I read the book as sort of "Where's Waldo?" exercise. My bet is that Osama Bin Laden is hanging out in Peshwar province, although Somalia, Yemen, or SI read the book as sort of "Where's Waldo?" exercise. My bet is that Osama Bin Laden is hanging out in Peshwar province, although Somalia, Yemen, or Saudi Arabia are all good bets.
I gave a low rating to the book because the analysis was so shallow. Yes, the bin Ladens are rich and like fast planes and cars. I get it. The men have multiple wives, so they tend to have huge families. Many have contributed to jihad in the 1980's when the Soviet Union fought the Taleban in Afghanistan. Does anyone believe that oil money is not going to similar goals today? Follow the money!
The author seemed too gullible, too unlikely to challenge those in power, whether in Saudi Arabia or the Bush administration. If his analysis was more penetrating, it would cut off the interviews. The end result is that the book felt like an echo chamber of the bin Laden and al Saud PR departments. As hard as it was to get through, it is probably still worth the effort, as long as you are prepared to put up with its limitations. I would have liked the book more if he had addresses the key questions like: "Why is Osama still at large?" "What are his current sources of finance and other forms of support?" "What are the ties between western oil companies and OPEC?"
This book is an attempt to cope with deep, unrelenting sorrow that comes from loss of soul mates. Through no fault of her own, Joan had a very bad yeaThis book is an attempt to cope with deep, unrelenting sorrow that comes from loss of soul mates. Through no fault of her own, Joan had a very bad year there. She shares insights about grief and methods of avoiding the vortex of despair that sometimes confronts us. I hope I will not be as hard on myself if I am faced with such loss. She made me feel for all the parents who have had to bury a child. One life lesson is to do everything possible to give sick loved ones the time to recover. Don't let impatience on anyone's part cause you to increase their risk when a day or a month will give them the time to become stable again. If the worse comes to pass, there is no turning back the clock, and there is no controlling your emotions that replay your role in events. That replay function is a survival mechanism we inherit from our cave-dwelling and tree-clinging ancestors, but it can be as painful as hell nevertheless. You have to use every trick in this book and more to learn life's lessons without giving in to despair. We are survivors, so most of us will find a way to carry on with the memory of all that is good about our lost loved ones in the forefront of our consciousness.
The book will dig up your own feelings of loss over a beloved pet or person. View the book as part of the hard work of growing up and learning to take the good with the bad. As Joan's husband told their daughter, "It all evens out."
Read this when you're feeling strong, and then go and give all your loved ones a hug....more