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Thursday, June 20, 2013

The Human Perspective

If the world is represented by 100 people, then...

  • 50 would be male, 50 female
  • 26 would be children, 74 adults of which 8 are 65 or older
  • 23 would have no roof over their heads
  • 13 would have no safe drinking water
  • 15 would be undernourished, 1 would be starving and 23 would be overweight
  • 78 would not have access to a computer, 7 would have a college degree
  • 17 would be unable to read or write
  • 33 would be Christians, 22 Muslims, 14 Hindus, 7 Buddhists, 12 other, 12 no religion
  • 60 would live in Asia, 15 in Africa, 14 in The Americas and 11 in Europe
  • 70 would be non white of which 21 would be Chinese and 17 Indians
  • 32 would breathe polluted air
  • 22 would have no electricity
  • 16 would have no toilets, 19 would have only the crudest of facilities
  • 48 would live on $2 (US) or less per day, 1 of 2 children would live in poverty 
  • 48 wouldn't be able to freely speak or act according to their faith or conscience due to harassment, imprisonment, torture or death
So, in the real world of 7 billion people:

If you have food in your refrigerator, clothes to wear, a roof over your head and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75% of the world.

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet and some spare change, you are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy.

If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more blessed than the million people who will not survive this week.

If you have never experiened the danger of battle, the agony of inprisonment or torture or the horrible pangs of starvation, you are luckier than 500 million people alive and suffering.

If you can read this, you are more fortunate than 1 billion people in the world who cannot read at all.

100% of the people share one planet--no exceptions!

Kinda makes you think, doesn't it? That "Do unto others... " thing takes on little more meaning in real life.

Caveat: These are aggregated statistics from several sources and are accurate to estimate order of magnitude.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

A Letter to My Mom

Blessing no. 16... and counting
The wheels on the bus go round and round, round and round, round and round... and they still do.

Dear Mom... it doesn't seem so long ago that your first great-grandchild Kate, now 16, was born and you bought her this yellow, plastic toy bus with a lid for a top that lifted off. The bus held a dozen plastic figures of little men and women. Those red, green, yellow, white and blue people were made to snap together holding hands. Some of the figures have been lost over the years but that has never diminished the joy this toy brought... with your love for each of those great-grandchildren.

It's been over a year since you left us... you almost made it to age 99. Nice job mom! You did well in so many ways... not the least of which was picking the best toy ever.

This gem of a bus, with men and women figures representing happy, working people that actually held hands to make a better world, has delighted and entertained every one of your infant grandchildren... and is now ready for great-grandchild number 17 this fall!

So mom, on behalf of Kate and Joe and Claire and Jaci and Luke and Riley and Rio and Jacob and Taylor and Sol and Devin and Rafa and Audrey and Tyler and Harrison and Samantha... and Mr. November to come, thank you so much for this simple yellow bus filled with your love. You were special!

Just thought you'd like to know. Your loving son, Jerry

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Mawidg is a dweam wiffin a dweam.

Carrie & Michael
“Mawidge is a dweam wiffin a dweam. The dweam of wuv wapped wiffin the gweater dweam of everwasting west. Eternity is our fwiend, wemember that, and wuv wiw fowwow you fowever.”

Princess Bride is a classic love story--even if this minister has the wrong couple at the altar. This real one is even sweeter.

I had the joy to watch a beautiful niece and her handsome perfect match wed a week-end ago in 'Cabo' (the way us cool married people say it). It seems as if they were always meant to find each other. Even better, they are terrific people... the kind you want to know.

The beach wedding, with the Sea of Cortez in the background, couldn't have been more ideal. It was simple, touching and beautiful. The surfers didn't seem to mind and the reception on the lawn--with a full Harvest Moon in the sky--was just like in the movies. It leaves a wonderful memory in your heart.

The bride's mom is smiling down.

Lest we forget, this is what it is all about:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, a woman, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Carrie and Michael... blessed happiness forever.