Plaudits

plaudit

noun. plau·dit \ ˈplȯ-dət \

1 : an act or round of applause

2 : enthusiastic approval —usually used in plural

  • received the plaudits of the critics

Plaudit is one of my favorite words. I wish it were used more often. I love the sound of it, but I especially love the sentiment behind the term. It’s all about giving credit where credit is due. That doesn’t seem to happen enough these days. Those who take the time to make the world a better place, even if they aren’t looking for kudos, deserve applause as far as I’m concerned.

There are so many opportunities to show appreciation to people. Do you take those opportunities? Have you thanked someone today?

Here are some plaudits that I’m sure everyone can agree with:

  • To all veterans and first responders for being heroes.

  • To teachers, for spreading knowledge and influencing all of us to be the best we can be.

  • To volunteers, for being so generous with their time.

  • To owners of rescue animals, for saving lives and providing them with safety and love.

  • To artists, for making life worth living for the rest of us in so many ways.

  • To friends, for being supportive.

  • To farmers, for providing us with sustenance.

  • To writers, for making us think.

  • To listeners, for listening.

And I’d like to send out a very personal and heartfelt plaudit to you, dear reader, for making this blog such a pleasure to write, and for giving me feedback and sharing it with others. I wouldn’t be here without you. So thanks!

Who do you think deserves plaudits?

Plaudits

An attitude of gratitude is what you need to get along. Read my book! http://amzn.to/2mlPVh5

How This Blog Has Touched Me

Today this blog made me cry. It wasn’t the first time. I’m sure it won’t be the last.

So far it’s always been happy tears, thank goodness. (I’m waiting for the day that my writer’s block is so overwhelming that I shed tears of sheer frustration, but so far I’ve been lucky.) Still, I never thought this humble project of mine would bring out such strong emotion in me. Had I known, I might have been too intimidated to start. But I’m so glad I did.

This time, the reason for my tears was a comment from a girl named April. She read one of my more popular blog entries, Why I Hate Alcohol. Then she commented in great detail about how it impacted her.

Discovering that something I wrote has helped someone, or made them look at things from a different angle, or taught someone something they didn’t know, never fails to move me. Sometimes I sit up here on my lonely little drawbridge and I write these things and it almost feels as if I’m putting messages in bottles and throwing them in the ocean. That these messages sometimes reach someone’s shore is gratifying beyond words.

Because of this blog, I’ve also made some amazing friends. Art, Carole, Anju, Sonia, Tony, Lyn, Valarie… so many more I couldn’t list them all, but each one an amazing person that wouldn’t have come into my life without this forum. And then there are the many friends I’ve met in other ways who have followed this blog and given me feedback and support. There’s nothing more wonderful than getting positive encouragement from someone you admire.

I’ve also learned a great deal. I’ve explored topics I wouldn’t have bothered to delve into if I didn’t think I’d have some reader to share them with. I’ve introduced myself, and you, to people I would not have discovered otherwise.

I’ve exorcised a number of personal demons, celebrated a number of victories, shared perhaps more than I should have, and wondered about any number of things. And I’ve improved my writing skills. Those are things I knew I would do. What I didn’t know was that having people actually read what I write has added a whole new dimension. You’ve validated, supported, and commiserated with me. You’ve given me wings.

So my message in the bottle for today is: Thank you. Thank you so much.

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[Image Credit: artisticallyinvited.com]

Working on Holidays

I love that more and more people are refusing to shop on the holidays in order to pressure companies to not force their staff to spend those days at work. And I love it when I hear of a company that chooses to do the right thing and close during those periods. I will always support organizations that support their employees.

But while you are enjoying your turkey today, please don’t forget that it’s not just the cashiers of this world who are forced to work on the holidays. As you read this, I’m most likely working all by myself on this, my favorite holiday, and feeling kind of lonely because of it. I’ll also be working on Christmas and New Year’s Day, just as I worked on Memorial Day and the 4th of July.

As a bridgetender, it kind of goes with the territory. Heaven forefend that the shipping lanes are not navigable for any reason. And I’m not alone. The ambulance drivers, nurses, policemen, cab drivers, 911 operators, security guards and airport personnel of this world are right here with me, keeping the gears of society turning.

So when you give thanks today, thank those of us who can’t sit at the table with you. And maybe bring us a plate. A little of everything, but hold the cranberries, please. I hate cranberries.

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Random Thankfulness

It wasn’t hard to come up with a blog topic for Thanksgiving Day. In spite of an annoying tendency to feel sorry for myself for the past few years, I really do realize that I’m quite lucky, relatively speaking. So here is a list of things that I’m thankful for. It’s not all inclusive, of course, and by no means is it in order of importance.

  • My dogs, who have always given me a reason to tie a knot and hang on when I was at the end of my rope.
  • Pizza delivery.
  • An employer who has been willing to re-hire me twice.
  • Hot water.
  • My intelligence. The thing I’m most confident about in life is that I’m capable of learning anything if I put my mind to it.
  • Seasons.
  • A car that usually starts.
  • Chocolate.
  • The roof over my head. I may not really be able to afford it, it may not be where I want it to be, but it keeps the rain off.
  • Sex.
  • Sunrises, sunsets and rainbows.
  • Immunizations.
  • My closest friends, who have always helped me keep things in perspective.
  • This blog.
  • Natural beauty.
  • The internet.
  • My government. It may be increasingly screwed up and insane, but I can be fairly confident that there won’t be a military coup, that the highways will stay paved, and that no civil war is imminent. Not everyone can be so sure of these things.
  • Train whistles and fog horns.
  • Public television and public radio.
  • My sister, who will always have my back, as I have hers.
  • Air conditioning.
  • The fact that I have never once in my life gone to bed hungry.
  • Art.

I’m grateful for these things not just today, but all year ’round. Happy Thanksgiving.

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