Left Off the Wall

The WallOn March 14th on this blog I shared a funny story I’d heard from a “Making History” class participant. Not all the stories I hear are funny, though. Some are sad. Here’s a sad story from a participant in a class discussion about the Vietnam War.

“Peggy” (not her real name) shared about her son who served in Vietnam. She and her husband, patriots of the World War II generation, were proud when their son volunteered for the Army and was sent to Vietnam in 1964. Over the next two years their pride turned to anguish as they read his increasingly disturbed letters home, letters that reeked of despair and anger. In the third year he stopped writing, which was to them the longest year of all. When he was finally discharged, their relief that he had made it home was short-lived, since he spent the next five years spiraling into alcoholism and drug addiction, from which he never recovered. He committed suicide in 1972. “His name isn’t on that Wall,” said Peggy. “But it should be.”

Share your stories – write them down. My book Making History (Peggy’s story is in there) can help you remember. If you don’t like to write, or don’t have time, get a ghostwriter to record them for you. Your descendants will thank you.

Kids and Dogs

AnimalsToday my haiku is from March 25th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Animals, Birds, Insects, and Other Teachers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Kids and Dogs”:

the best gift for dogs:
a kid of their very own
to play with and love

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here. You can purchase this book on Amazon here.  

It’s Spring!

Spring branch of Tree,Tree stick against blue sky background.

Alex Terrgi here. Spring makes me feel all giddy inside. The smell of the dirt, and the buds on the trees, and the smell of grass, and the worms, and the chattering birds, and the baby squirrels playing tag, and the feel of soft rain. It all makes me want to wiggle my nose, my butt, and my tail. My human calls it doing my doggy dance.

And when I go for walks I don’t have to wear that stupid coat my human bought for me. I hate it because it keeps me too warm and dry, which means that when I get home it’s not nearly as fun to rub myself all over the living room rug. That’s my real doggy dance, and it means I am happy.

Humans should try it. They might like it.

Spiders

AnimalsToday my haiku is from March 18th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Animals, Birds, Insects, and Other Teachers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Spiders”:

you think you are free
but spiders hatch in corners
hide webs to trap you

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here. You can purchase this book on Amazon here

Antiques and Tuna Pate

A few days ago Ivintage luxury red sofa isolated on a white background taught my class “Making History” (based on my book of the same name). I love to hear the stories people share. I believe strongly that sharing our stories helps the world. Yes, I know how grandiose that sounds. Sometimes the help takes the form of laughter. Here is a funny story from one of my class participants in a previous class in which we discussed politics of the 1960s.

“Sherry” (not her real name) shared her admiration for the new First Lady in the early sixties, by doing volunteer work for a Washington DC Arts project headed by Mrs. Kennedy. As a thank you, Jackie Kennedy invited the volunteers, all 500 of them, to a White House Tea. Although Sherry was seven months pregnant at the time, she was determined to attend – after all, how many times would Jackie Kennedy ask her to tea? The tea was held in the Red Room, where they were served dainty puff pastry stuffed with tuna pate, made by the French chef Jackie had imported into the White House. Carrying her teacup and plate of pastry, Sherry gingerly sat on a delicate antique red-plush sofa. The sofa was not comfortable for a pregnant woman, so she struggled to get up, balancing her teacup, plate, and outsized abdomen. To help herself, she grasped the wooden arm of the sofa and pushed off. Imagine her horror when the arm came off in her hand! She immediately sat down again, hoping no one had seen. But how could she fix the sofa, she wondered desperately. Showing the resourcefulness and creativity that made her such an outstanding volunteer, she stuck the arm back into its socket using tuna pate as glue! As far as she knew, it was never discovered.

Rabbits

AnimalsToday my haiku is from March 11th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Animals, Birds, Insects, and Other Teachers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Rabbits”:

rabbits are not smart
they have a lot of babies
but teach them nothing

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here. You can purchase this book on Amazon here.

Bad Words

Alex under blankyAlex Terrgi here. I don’t get sick much. When I do, I usually just barf up whatever feels bad. But a few weeks ago this didn’t work and I felt pretty icky. I didn’t want to play with my dog buddy Jackie. I didn’t want to eat very much. I just wanted to hunker down in my blanket. So my human thought she’d make me feel even ickier and took me to the dog torture chamber, otherwise known as the Vet. (I hate the sound of that word.)

The vet poked me and stuck needles in me and pushed his fingers down my throat. Then he told my human I had an “infection” (another nasty-sounding word) and had to take something called pills, which I now know is the worst word of all.

Every night for two weeks my human pried open my mouth and stuck one of those pill things down my throat, and then held my mouth shut until I swallowed it. I should have barfed it right back up again, because the taste was unbelievably bad, but before I could, my human fed me dinner and told me I was a good dog, so I forgave her. Until the next night, when we did it all again.

My advice to other dogs is to never get an infection. If you do get one, pretend you don’t.

Fleas

AnimalsToday my haiku is from March 4th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Animals, Birds, Insects, and Other Teachers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Fleas”:

from the flea’s viewpoint
he’s the miner, you’re the earth
waiting to be drilled

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here. You can purchase this book on Amazon here.