Word of The Day




: to lose one’s mind because of stress


I sent my colleague an email with some errors she had made and she Skyped me that she was “hyperventablating”.


August 31, 2011 @ 3:23 p.m. EST


Synonyms: I’m not going to make it, rut-roh, I should really use spell-check

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A year ago this week, we planted a crape myrtle in our backyard. Neither one of us are tree or plant people, so adding a new addition to our landscape was a big deal for us. I worried about her during the Winter and it was a tough one, with lots of snow and ice. When Spring came it didn’t look like Myrtle had survived; we pulled her receipt as she was guaranteed for a year’s time.

However, slowly but surely, her leaves came out followed by tiny, little buds. We would see mature crape myrtles all over, in full bloom, and we kept wondering when our Myrtle would show her true colors. Perhaps what we suspected in the Spring was true, the Pennsylvania winter was just too much for her.

But last week, right before Hurricane Irene came a-callin’, my husband made his daily Myrtle Check only to report she had started to bloom. I hurriedly joined him outside to see for myself. It was true. Myrtle HAD made it and she is beautiful.

A mere 48 hours after she “came out”, Irene punished her once again. Why couldn’t Myrtle get a break? Strong winds, rain coming down so hard it came sideways. Nature again Nature. Myrtle against Irene.

Myrtle won.

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A Dry, Safe Place

On my way to pick up my Mom this morning, it started to pour rain. I stopped at the library to return some books before picking Mom up, and I noticed an older woman walking to the next door grocery store, with no umbrella and no protection from the downpour.

I hurried to get the books in the drop box as the library wasn’t open yet, jumped back in my car and headed towards the woman. I pulled up next to her so that my empty passenger seat was nearest to her, turned off my radio, lowered the front passenger window and said, “Ma’am, would you like a ride to the grocery store?”.

She stopped and I saw the hesitation in her eyes as she quickly checked me out. And for wheatever reason she made a decision and said “Yes” and got in. I immediately made small talk about picking up my Mom, hoping she’d see I was a woman up early on a Sunday morning to spend time with her Mom, completely wishing her no harm.

It took less than a moment to get to the front of the store, but in that time the rain came down even harder; my windshield wipers on their highest speed weren’t improving visibility. I dropped her off, she thanked me, and I was on my way.

I am so happy that I didn’t talk myself out of offering the ride to her as the same hesitation I saw in her eyes I had played out in my head as I drove to meet her and make the offer. I am so happy that she said yes. And I am so happy that for a moment in 2011, when the world is hardly a safe place, my dry car was.

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