life during the pandemic

Day 2862: I’m not smiling

I’m not smiling today because

  • the news sucks,
  • I’m overwhelmed at work,
  • difficult people are being difficult (surprise!),
  • the coronavirus epidemic is raging,
  • the U.S. President is raging,
  • disenfranchised people are raging, apparently to little avail,
  • I’m raging,
  • injustice seems out of control,
  • chaos seems to be winning,
  • bureaucracies, including the IRS, are even more impossible to negotiate, and
  • many people I love are not smiling, either.

What does the smiling Daily Bitch have to offer us today?

I’m also not smiling because I had NO TIME to walk yesterday, so here are the only other photos I have to offer:

Even watching the Match Game last night with Michael, Aaron, and Harley couldn’t make me smile.

I am now going to search YouTube for something that will make me smile.

I’m still not smiling. Here’s “Making Strangers Happy (Guaranteed to Make You Smile):

Are you smiling? How about this:

Sometimes, you have to move through the tears to get to the smiles.

It makes me smile to express my gratitude to Stephen Colbert, Mustafa Hussain, Herb Alpert, and everyone else who helps me create these daily posts, including YOU.

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Day 2861: Hell

What are your ideas about hell? To me, hell is a place with no

  • justice,
  • kindness,
  • awareness,
  • wisdom,
  • equality,
  • truth,
  • closure,
  • respite,
  • accountability,
  • shared responsibility,
  • honor,
  • freedom,
  • fun,
  • structure,
  • relief from pain,
  • control,
  • joy,
  • peace,
  • hope, and
  • love.

There are 40 days and 40 nights until the USA election day, and I’m bracing myself for hell, with no end in sight, because of Donald Trump’s hellish words and behaviors

Some of my readers may disagree with what I write, but hell is also a place where no disagreement is allowed. Hell, let’s just agree to disagree, okay? But do I want to hear defenses of Donald Trump these days? Hell, no.

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, said a man, and I’m hoping that many scorned women will vote on November 3.

Do you see hell in my latest photos?

Hell is where the adults act like children and the children have to act like adults, and Hell is living near the ocean when climate change deniers are in power.

Here‘s Billie Eilish and her brother FINNEAS performing “All the Good Girls Go to Hell.”

Do I want comments from you, below? Hell, yes.

Hell is a place with no gratitude, so thanks to all who help me create these posts every damn day, including YOU!

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 2860: Use my words against me

“Use my words against me” is something that wordy U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham said in 2016 when he opposed giving a hearing to President Obama’s pick for Supreme Court Justice, the honorable Merrick Garland.

Here are more of Lindsey Graham’s words, which I would like to use against him:

“I want you to use my words against me,” Graham said during a 2016 Senate meeting. “If there’s a Republican president in 2016 and a vacancy occurs in the last year of the first term, you can say Lindsey Graham said let’s let the next president, whoever it might be, make that nomination.”

Not only is the vacancy occurring — because of the death of the honorable Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — in the last year of a Republican President’s first term, it is occurring mere weeks before the Presidential election. Therefore, many people are using Lindsey Graham’s words against him. But that’s not stopping Lindsey Graham from using more words to declare that he will vote to confirm Donald Trump’s conservative pick to replace liberal icon RBG, even before he’s heard any words about who that person would be.

So I would love to use Lindsey Graham’s words against him, but I don’t know how, since his new words indicate that he is against many words I am for, including honor, honesty, and justice.

Yesterday, when the former words of many other wordy Republican Senators were being used against them to no avail, I decided to go for a walk looking for other words to use against them. Specifically, I was looking for these words:

“Don’t let them win.”

I couldn’t find those words, but I found other words instead.

I am doing my best to use words against many U.S Republican senators , including their own from 2016:

Feel free to use my words against me, including these words of gratitude:

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Day 2859: Great things

If you’re like me, you’ve been having trouble finding great things in the news lately.

Together, let’s look for great things in my photos from yesterday.

Did you find great things?  What great things did you find?

Did you notice great things here?

Sometimes we have to look close and hard for great things in order to find them. Sometimes those great things seem broken, but we need to keep looking, feeling, thinking, and acting.

The late great Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said many great things, including these:

“When a thoughtless or unkind word is spoken, best tune out. Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.”
— From Ginsburg’s 2016 book “My Own Words”

“I went to law school when women were less than 3% of lawyers in the country; today, they are 50%. I never had a woman teacher in college or in law school. The changes have been enormous. And they’ve gone much too far (to be) going back.”
— From a 2019 NPR interview

“I pray that I may be all that (my mother) would have been had she lived in an age when women could aspire and achieve and daughters are cherished as much as sons.”
— From her 1993 Supreme Court acceptance speech, about her mother

“I see my advocacy as part of an effort to make the equality principle everything the founders would have wanted it to be if they weren’t held back by the society in which they lived and particularly the shame of slavery. I don’t think my efforts would have succeeded had it not been for the women’s movement that was reviving in the United States and more or less all over the world at the time.”
— From a 2013 WNYC interview

“Women will have achieved true equality when men share with them the responsibility of bringing up the next generation.”
— From a 2001 interview with the New York City Bar Association

“One thing that I did feel in law school was that if I flubbed, that I would be bringing down my entire sex. That you weren’t just failing for yourself, but people would say, ‘Well, I did expect it of a woman.’ … I was determined not to leave that impression.”
— From a 2020 Slate interview

“Dissents speak to a future age. It’s not simply to say my colleagues are wrong and I would do it this way, but the greatest dissents do become court opinions.”
— From a 2002 NPR interview, on her Supreme Court dissents

“The number of women who have come forward as a result of the #MeToo movement has been astonishing. My hope is not just that it is here to stay, but that it is as effective for the woman who works as a maid in a hotel as it is for Hollywood stars.”
— From a 2018 interview at the National Constitution Center, on the impact of the #MeToo movement

“If there was one decision I would overrule, it would be Citizens United. I think the notion that we have all the democracy that money can buy strays so far from what our democracy is supposed to be.”
— From a 2014 New Republic interview, on Citizens United v. FEC, which ruled that corporations could fund political speech under the First Amendment

“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”
— From a 2015 luncheon at Harvard

Who wants to join me in the fight for the things I care about, like the great legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg?

Here‘s a great 2017 interview with Ruth Bader Ginsburg:

Here‘s a great appearance by RBG on the Stephen Colbert show:

Here‘s Stephen Colbert last night about the great loss of Ruth Bader Ginsburg:

I look forward to great things in the comments section, below.

As always, I have great gratitude for all the great things in my life, including YOU.

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, quotes | Tags: , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 2858: Fall

As we approach the fall of 2020, I’m wondering what is going to fall apart and what is going to fall together.

Do you see fall in these recent images?

Those who forget history are doomed, period, so VOTE this fall.

Here‘s a tribute to Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg which falls beautifully into place:

I look forward to reading whatever thoughts and feelings fall into the comments section, below.

Gratitude prevents me from falling every day, so thanks to all who help me create these fall, winter, spring, and summer posts, including YOU.

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 2856: A Nation Reveals Itself

A few hours before it was revealed that my nation’s Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had died, this revealed itself to me:

A nation reveals itself by its

  • leaders,
  • priorities,
  • values,
  • humanity,
  • awareness,
  • respect and protection for all,
  • focus on the future,
  • engagement in the world, and
  • justice.

Because of how our nation has been revealing itself, I and those I love were immeasurably grief-stricken and devastated by the loss of Justice Ginsburg.

Senate leader Republican Mitch McConnell, who blocked President Obama from choosing a Supreme Court Justice many months before the 2016 Presidential election because “the people should decide,” has already revealed his plans to rush the process of replacing RBG with somebody diametrically opposed to her judicial values, scant weeks before the election.

A nation reveals itself by the hypocrisy, partisanship, greed, and injustice of its leaders.

A blog reveals itself by its words and images.

A blogger reveals herself by taking a picture of a plastic pig, because I am so sick of the greedy pigs running and ruining my nation.

In this televised tribute to her last night, RBG reveals that she was taught by her mother never to respond in anger.

I have much to learn from her.

I now look for hope and justice to be revealed, somehow, in the days ahead.

Feel free to reveal yourself in a comment, below.

Gratitude reveals itself here every day, so undying thanks to the amazingly courageous Ruth Bader Ginsburg and to all who witness what I reveal here, including you.

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, in memoriam, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Day 2855: Information for voters

Dear USA voters,

Vote as if your life depended upon it, because it does.

Love,

Ann

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , | 27 Comments

Day 2854: All of the steps

Today’s post title is brought to you by the Daily Bitch Calendar.

I am taking all of the steps to admitting I have a problem with:

  • USA leadership,
  • cruelty,
  • greed,
  • ignorance,
  • rigidity, and
  • divisiveness.

Admitting you have a problem is the first step, but not all of the steps. One of the steps HAS to include exercising your right to vote.

I didn’t photograph all of the steps I took yesterday, but here are some of them:

I’ve been taking all of the steps to heal from the loss of our wonderful kitty Oscar (not pictured) and I noticed Oscar’s name when I was taking some of my steps yesterday.

All of the steps are easier when you are not alone, and I am obviously not alone in loving an Oscar.

Today I am taking all of the steps to facilitate a Zoom-like group for staff where I work. I’m looking forward to all of us taking steps towards coping and healing.

As we get steps closer to November, here’s “One Step Closer” by INTERSECTION …

by Linkin Park

… and by the Doobie Brothers:

Now I have to take all of the steps to publish this post, but not before I thank all of the people who help me blog every day, including YOU.

Categories: 2020 U.S. Presidential election, life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Day 2853: Other people’s stories

As a psychotherapist, I love listening to other people’s stories.

What I DON’T love is other people who act like only their story is:

  • real,
  • legitimate, and
  • worth listening to.

These days, more than ever, it’s important to make room for the stories that are not being heard. Why aren’t they being heard? Because people with power/the spotlight are

  • loud,
  • disrespectful of others,
  • disinterested in the facts,
  • obsessed with their own grievances,
  • trying to hold on to power, and
  • apparently not interested in other people’s stories.

If you do not leave room for other people’s stories, the dominant story becomes strident, repressive, demoralizing, inaccurate, and eventually obsolete. Personally, I am fighting for other people’s stories (including my own!) to be heard, so we can all survive together.

Here is one person’s photographic story for the day:

In my story, there is always room for the the Daily Bitch, love, AND your stories (in the comments section below).

Yesterday, when I was creating today’s photographic story, I heard the Prologue to Stephen Sondheim‘s Into the Woods, which includes lots of other people’s stories.

My stories always include gratitude for all who help me create these daily stories, including YOU.

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, politics, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 2852: The Sixties

Yesterday, the temperature here was in the sixties (Fahrenheit), although it did get into the seventies in the heat of the day.

During the day, I uploaded to YouTube the song I wrote and performed for my 50th high school reunion on Zoom: “We Grew Up in the Sixties and We’re in Our Sixties Now.”

Now that I’m in my sixties, I’m seeing lots of articles (like this one) about how the current times — with civil and political anger, unrest, and change — are reminding people of the sixties. If you remember the sixties, what do you think about that?

Here are some photos I took yesterday, when the temperature and I were both in our sixties:

I’m hoping that my fulfilling work as a therapist, accepting all feelings (including anger), nature walks, cats, the results of the November election, and eating delicious nutritious meals (like Michael’s halibut dish) will get me through my sixties.

Hey! Maybe the number of likes on this post will be in the sixties!

To thank you for reading this “Sixties” post, here are sixty images of gratitude:

Categories: life during the pandemic, original song, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

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