Monthly Archives: June 2009

What makes a good life?

With death always comes reflection, whether it is the death of a loved one or a favorite celebrity. Today I’m wondering: What makes a good life?

It isn’t money, that’s for certain, and it isn’t cool stuff. It isn’t good reviews or a successful career, either, or any of that stuff. I’m coming to believe that life is made up of days well lived, and days are made up of moments.

Every moment, I have a decision–at least one.  Do I want to be happy or unhappy? Do I want to lead with my heart or with my cynicism? Do I want to be critical or see the best in people and their efforts?

And along with those decisions, I have a lot of little actions, too. Will my tongue be sharp or gentle? Will I act in a way that sustains the earth or in a way that is expedient? Will I take care of myself or succumb to instant gratification?

The Urantia Book says: “The keys of the kingdom of heaven are sincerity, more sincerity, and more sincerity.” Sincerity is a decision, made moment by moment.

Today I will speak gently to people, work to beautify my garden and provide nutritious food for my table, and make it a point, with sincerity, to let my husband know how much I appreciate him. Today I will proceed with love in my heart, extend the mercy to others that I would have them extend to me, and give raspberries to my neighbor.

If I can do all that, then this will be a day well lived. Strung together, these days make for a good life.


Filed under Beauty, Gardening, Goodness, regrets, relationships, Social Consciousness, Spirituality, The Urantia Book, Truth

Biking Safety and Cell Phones

Let me begin by saying that I am guilty of talking on the cell phone while driving.

No more.

In all the thousands of miles I’ve put on my bicycles over the years, the only real close calls I’ve had have been due to my own stupidity. I’ve ridden against traffic, surprising drivers with my unexpected presence; I’ve ridden at night without lights; I’ve dodged in and out of traffic at  my own great peril. But I’ve learned not to do those things. I’ve aged and mellowed, and now am quite a safe bicyclist. I’m glad I am still here to report this.

But I’ve had three close calls in the last two days, and I mean close calls. Each time I have been vigilant (which is why I’m here to write this) and each time I have been obeying proper biking protocol. What do these three near-misses have in common? You guessed. In each case, the driver was talking on her cell phone.

The ability to multi-task is a great one. But it’s not for driving. Driving is for paying attention to all the unexpected things that come your way, like drivers and bikers who are doing the unexpected thing. When you’re on your cell phone, your concentration is fragmented. I was almost taken out by three SUVs with phone-talking women at the wheel in the last two days, and let me tell you, that is an event to make you pee your pants.

What if I, or some other cyclist, was now in the hospital on life support because you were making your nail appointment on the run? I’m begging you not to take that chance.

When I’m in the car, my phone is off.

Please do the same.


Filed under Bicycle, Summer