Thursday, January 20, 2011

Thoughtful Encounters

It's not often that I get a contemplative blog itch. I mean, I guess I'm always contemplating things that happen and then writing about them, but most of the time it's pretty trivial. And that's a good thing. But today I have an itch that leans toward the serious and I intend to scratch it. Even if it's just for a moment.

Seekers of triviality, you have been warned.

Life has felt... heavy lately. Even the good things going on are BIG good things that come with a sense of gravity. There's so much to do. So much not to do. So much that seems like it can't be done. It can be overwhelming.

Forget that. It IS overwhelming. Or at least it was until I was reminded of six simple words spoken by Mother Teresa:

"Do small things with great love."

Life really is a series of millions of small actions and it's the emotion and drive behind those actions that makes them important. When tackled one tiny action and small step at a time, tasks don't seem as daunting. And when you throw love into everything you do and say, well that my friend is when greatness happens. Because that's when life isn't about you anymore. And when life isn't about you, the craziest thing happens: YOU reap the benefits.

It took a weekend in Wagoner, Oklahoma, with 140 teenagers to remind me that life might feel heavy but the light of Christ makes everything...well, light. Getting outside yourself changes everything. Owning your humanity makes everything different. It changes the way you see the world and the way you see other people. Our lives are short, and our to-do lists are long, but they aren't unconquerable. With faith, love and a heaping dose of perspective, maybe we can actually learn what it means to live. What it means to be alive.

The quote I mentioned above is something Mother Teresa said many times. It's part of this amazing quote that pretty much sums up my thoughts at the moment:

"What I do you cannot do; but what you do, I cannot do. The needs are great, and none of us, including me, ever do great things. But we can all do small things with great love, and together we can do something wonderful."

In other words, teamwork makes the dream work. We are here together for a reason. Let's do a bagillion small things with great love.

You in?


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Commercial Encounters

I miss jingles.

Almost every commercial used to have a snappy tune for you to sing along to as you were bombarded by subliminal messages to buy things you don't need. Those were the good old days.

Nowadays, commercials just scream at you or confuse you with the rapidly-read fine print at the end. I wonder how much that speed reading guy gets paid. He's super fast. (NOT as fast as the Micro-Machines guy. He was the fastest. So fast, in fact, that he landed a role on Saved by the Bell as a teacher who gave impossible tests and lectures. I can still see Jessie Spano's pen making smoke as she rapidly took notes in his class.)

I really do miss good jingles though. I have an auditory memory, so they help me remember things. I can still sing most jingles from back in the day. Not that it does me much good. But it's kind of a cool party trick when you are hanging out with people from your age group. It almost becomes a trivia game.

Someone should make a game like that! A theme song and jingle trivia game. I would definitely buy that game. And even if it turns out like Scene-It and my cousin refuses to play with me, I will still love it.

Hmmm. Let's try to play via this blog. Here's a list of products/jingles that jog my memory. Do you remember them too?

Double-Mint Gum
Creepy Crawlers
My Buddy
Pepsi (there are like 10 for this one, this one was my favorite)
Dr. Pepper
Toys 'R Us (that Steve Urkel on the swing at the end!)

That's only a few. I could play this game all day. This is dangerous...