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Two Sons of Camelot

This is another of those pieces I wrote long ago. I wrote this after John died. I never thought of myself as a writer so I never kept anything.

John and I both came from Camelot, not the kingdom of so many centuries ago, or from the one thousand days of an American Presidency. But, from a surreal place, a place that was never meant to be surreal. A place that was always meant to be real and tangible, but never was, nor ever will be. This was a Camelot that was intended to expand — encompassing the whole world with its perfection.

John left Camelot suddenly, after a birthday party. My expulsion was slow. I never knew I had left, until one day I looked around me, realizing I was lost in an imperfect world.

I never knew John, but I would have liked to have shared a cup of coffee with him … just once. Maybe on a forgotten dock, where sandpipers played in the surf, their cries carried on an ocean breeze that caresses you ever so gently, both body and soul. We could have sat like long lost friends, and talked about nothing at all. Comforted by the fact that though we had little in common, we were both sons of Camelot.

The Last Defender of Camelot (2002 book)

The Last Defender of Camelot (2002 book) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Filed under Cup-O-Joe, history, New, thoughts

The 7 Secrets of Great Writing

I saw something the other day that a friend wrote on facebook, and I wanted to share it with you my friends, print this and put it by your “writing device.”

from Peter

I thought about that for a few moments. Then I told Peter I was going to share this. When we think back to our most successful works, regardless of our field or genre we have done this; columns, articles, books, stories, poems. Sometimes we are surprised with the success of something we have written. However, if you take Peter’s concise list in hand, and compare it to your work I think you will find you followed his advice, even if you did not know you were doing so at the time.

Write when moved. We have all had these moments. Sometimes we know exactly what we are going to write. Sometimes we only know the essence of what we are going to write. Sometimes the idea just hits us, all at once, and we begin to write. Other times it is something that nags at our conscious for days, something vague and yet specific. However it starts, when we begin to write it flows, at times it is all we can do to get the words out fast enough. When we are finished, before we begin editing, we look at what we wrote and marvel at how fast it all came together (wishing to ourselves that writing was always like this).

Be grown up. Mmmmm, be grown up. Well, first off, the kind of writing we are talking about is for your public, your regular readers. That is whom I write for. We are not talking about a letter to a lawyer who thinks you are negotiating when you are just trying to do what is right. (A word of advice, do not ever try to do what is right when dealing with a lawyer. If you do, they will not be content, and will continue pushing until they are taking the food from your mouth. Then they will tell you they are letting you off the hook, and you are lucky they are so generous.) Since you are writing for the public, and it would be nice to attract new readers, stay on the positive. There is always a positive and a negative to everything. If you do not see both, keep looking, they are both there. All of us have enough negative in our daily lives. Your readers do not need to turn to you for the negative. They can drive in rush hour traffic and get that. Give them the positive. If you can find the positive where most people miss it, that is even better. Be grown up — stay positive.

Know how to distribute. There is no easy answer for this, you learn over time. Start with a blog, a social network, and some site that will let you publish e-books at no cost to you. Then link them all together. It does not matter what kind of writing you do, you need at least those three. I will give you two examples:

1)      I am a blogger, I am not an author. That may be true. However, no matter how well you map your blog, at some time it will start to become difficult for people to navigate their way around 300 plus posts just to find their favorite posts. When your blog gets to that point, take you most popular posts (the ones with the most views) and put them together in an e-book. You regular readers will appreciate it. Make this e-book free or .99 cents, you are doing this as a gift for your regular readers to show your appreciation of them. Do not put a $14.99 price tag on this e-book, you are not doing this so you can buy a new Porsche, you are creating value for your regular readers. This will expand your regular readers, and show them how much you appreciate them.

2)      I write books, not blogs. That may be true. However, your regular readers have made an investment in you. They have given you their time. Time they could give to loved ones or other interests, but they have chosen to give it to you. So, once a week, or once a month, let them know what you are working on. Take your most popular book and tell your fans how you came up with the idea for their favorite book. Take some of your notes and drafts for a book and let your readers see how that book became the e-book on their e-reader. Let them inside the process. Also, always, always, give them a chance to talk with you. Listen to what they liked and did not like. Answer some of their questions. This will expand your regular readers, and show them how much you appreciate them.

Be heard. There is no magic formula for this, but if you give your readers value, and you appreciate them. You will be heard. How do you do this? Well, you provide value to your readers by teaching them something new, giving them ways to save money, encouraging them, or entertaining them. If you can do several of these at the same time you are doing even better. There is one more though that is a must, no matter what else you do, you must be passionate. I am not talking about romance, love, and sex. I mean you need to be writing about something that is important to you. Poetry, history, blogs, fiction, it does not matter what you write, write what you are passionate about. You cannot fake passion, you can try, and you may pull it off for a while. But, eventually all your readers will see through the ruse. When you write about subjects you are passionate about, you are taking a small part of you and giving it freely (this is not about price), willingly, openly. This is not about 1,000 downloads on Amazon. When someone reads what you wrote, it is an intimate one-on-one conversation — writer and reader. They want your passion; they already have too much in their lives that lacks passion. Why is Norm Abrams so successful? There are many others who can tell you how to build a deck for your house. Norm is successful because he is passionate about home improvement and working with wood.

Be recognized. This is something else that you cannot do very much about, directly. You can enter contests. However, the personal tastes of the judges have more to do with who wins. The type of recognition you should be concerned with is from your readers. When your readers enjoy your work so much they tell others about it, or provide links to your work so others may enjoy it as they do, THAT kind of recognition is exhilarating and humbling at the same time. It is the best kind of recognition you will ever receive.

Be a mover. When you write with passion, believe me, people will be moved to action because of your words. Historical, poetry, how-to, fiction, it does not matter what you write. If you write with passion, you will reach your readers, and they will take that passion and act on it in their own lives.

Be warm. You should never write for “the mob” or the “demographic group” you are shooting for. The United States has more than 350,000,000 people living in it. Just one percent of that is 3,500,000 people. Warmth has to do with passion and intimacy (once again this is not romance, love, and sex). Intimacy is being open and vulnerable it is a one-on-one connection. You do not get that by writing for 3.5 million people. You get that by writing for one person, you get that by holding nothing back, you get that by being positive. You do those three things and the warmth will come through. You do those three things and your readers will become important to you, individuals that you care about, and those feelings will create the warmth. Painting, sculpture, writing these are intimate expressions of you. Be intimate one-on-one with each reader and you will succeed one person at a time.

Now a word about my audience. Writing “how-to” books are always talking about “know your audience, write for your audience.” Those noble educators of the craft of writing are talking about a demographic group. You know, a certain; age, sex, race (sometimes), political view, religious view, and et cetera. This nameless, faceless group is the supposed consumers of your work. Therefore, of course, I do not follow this tact. The group I write for is very specific, and (fortunately for me) gains more faces than it loses.

There is a man who is about my age whom I share much in common, but we have just enough not in common to complement each other.

There is the talented historical author breaking down her own barriers by being both black and female, while possessing a real talent for history.

The poet who bares her soul for the entire world to see, inspiring the most dejected among us while doing so.

There is the couple restoring an historical home, a home that our government should have assumed care for a century ago.

There is the sea captains wife, though she has never said so specifically, I suspect she uses some of their precious, limited time they share to tell him about an occasional column I have written.

There is an extraordinary woman who just lost her soul mate of many years. She has shared the loss that she and her children feel, with her readers. She is dealing with this one day at a time. Some days are not too bad, and the not too bad days are slowly increasing in number. One day she will be back to normal. A new normal, her life will never be the same again. A part of her will always mourn her loss, but she will smile again, and laugh again. Knowing that her husband would want her to, will make it easier for her.

There is a young feminist, an old feminist, and a former feminist, a couple of artists, and some other writers as well. Some are as young as 7 and some as old as 70. I have left out many, but it would take a book length tome to do real justice to them all. They are really a neat bunch of people, whom I treasure. Some leave comments, some send e-mails, and some just read and smile. As I said I do not follow what the experts say we should do to build an audience, I do not have a narrow faceless group of 3.5 million people for whom I write. I write for an individual, someone I care about, someone I celebrate with when they win, someone I cry with when they hurt, someone I care for and pray for, even though they may be an atheist.

The audience I write for is too narrow, I know that. However, it works for me. I did not start writing for just one person. I started writing for this 3.5 million person demographic I wanted to reach. It just did not work for me. If it works for you, use it. But, there will be something else, just one thing all the experts say you should do, one thing you just cannot do.

That one thing robs you of the voice inside you screaming to get out. Follow what the experts say, but when that one thing you are not supposed to do presents its self, follow it. This is what makes you unique; it is your style, your voice.

It will come to you, do not force it, do not say, “I am going to do this and it will be my style.” If you do, it will come across as contrived. Contrived is fake you want genuine. Follow the experts until you reach that point where you say to yourself, “I do not care if I lose all my readers except my mother, I cannot do this anymore.” Then follow your spirit.

You may lose readers, and it may take a long time before you begin to gain readers again. Do it, do it anyway, and do not ever go back to what you did before (remember, if you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got). What you did before silenced your real voice that is why you left it. Your new audience will come, do not worry about them. They are searching for you right now, waiting on you to find that voice deep within you. They will find you. They will not quit searching for you until they find you. Be patient and as Shakespeare said, “to thine own shelf be true.”

If you have ever studied art seriously, you know that there are certain “rules” of painting. These rules have evolved over centuries; they are really observations of what make paintings attractive to the viewers. Ever see a painting you just do not like? It probably violates several of the observations. Good paintings make you feel at ease, calm, all is right in the world, they follow all the rules. What sets off the good from the great? One observation, one rule … just one. The artist had just one thing he could not bring himself to do (or her). The artist knew to break that one rule could mean disaster for them as an artist, it did not matter. “To thine own self be true.” The truly great did just that. Following all the other observations, they broke one rule and that is what sets them apart from the crowd, that is their style. They said to themselves, “If no one ever buys another of my paintings I do not care. This is what I must do.” You cannot force it, but in time, it will come to you too.

Thank You !!!

Thank You !!!


Filed under books, Cup-O-Joe, New, notes, writing

A Beautiful Lady

Hotel del Coronado, Coronado Beach, California...

Hotel del Coronado, Coronado Beach, California photochrom print rephotographed on slide film for preservation purposes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today, we change pace. I want to introduce you to a beautiful lady with class and style, a one of a kind. She has been imitated, but never copied. I remember her from my days when I lived in San Diego. Many of the guys in my school wanted to go to Tijuana, but I found the Del more alluring. She has known presidents, princes, the elite of Hollywood, and your’s truly.

The front of the Hotel del Coronado in Coronad...

The front of the Hotel del Coronado in Coronado, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

She opened in 1888 as the Hotel del Coronado, but she is known as the Del. The Hotel del Coronado turns 125 years old this year. The largest and oldest all-wooden building in California, at one time it was on the USA Today’s list of the ten best resorts in the world. In 1880, E.S. Babcock (a railroad executive), Hampton L. Story (a bank president), and Jacob Gruendike (a founder of a piano company) bought all of Coronado and North islands for $110,000. The architect was James W. Reid of New Brunswick, Canada.

Hotel del Coronado in Coronado, California.

Hotel del Coronado in Coronado, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Babcock already knew what he wanted the hotel to be:
“It would be built around a court … a garden of tropical trees, shrubs and flowers, … From the south end, the foyer should open to Glorietta Bay with verandas for rest and promenade. On the ocean corner, there should be a pavilion tower, and northward along the ocean, a colonnade, terraced in grass to the beach. The dining wing should project at an angle from the southeast corner of the court and be almost detached, to give full value to the view of the ocean, bay, and city.”

The old building of the Hotel del Coronado. Ca...

The old building of the Hotel del Coronado. Camera used is a Nikon Coolpix 5000. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Del certainly does that, and it provides a great view across the bay from the mainland. In 1890, the Spreckel family bought out the partners (which had grown to include two more). The Spreckel family owned the hotel until 1948. During World War Two pilots who were in training stayed at the Del with their families. The hotel passed through several hands over the years and is currently owned by the Blackstone Group LP, Strategic Hotels & Resorts Inc., and KSL Resorts. The hotel has over one thousand rooms and is valued at over $500 million.

Hotel del Coronado in San Diego, California as...

Hotel del Coronado in San Diego, California as seen from Cabrillo National Monument (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Construction started in March 1887. Lumber and labor was a problem at the time, Chinese immigrants were brought down from San Francisco and Oakland. All the lumber from the Dolbeer & Carson Lumber Company was sold on an exclusive contract to build the hotel. The builders also constructed their own brick works, and metal and iron shops on the grounds.

English: , Coronado Beach, .

English: , Coronado Beach, . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Many of the biggest stars in Hollywood from Charlie Chaplin to Brad Pitt have stayed at the Del. Presidents B. Harrison, McKinley, Taft, Wilson, F. Roosevelt, and every president from Eisenhower to Obama have all stayed at the Del. Frank Baum (the Wonderful Wizard of Oz) did much of his writing there, and supposedly Stephen King’s short story 1408 (which was made into a movie) was written about a haunted room at the hotel. The hotel has also inspired many other short stories, books, and movies.

Lobby area in the Hotel del Coronado. Camera u...

Lobby area in the Hotel del Coronado. Camera used is a Nikon Coolpix 5000. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rooms 3502 and 3312 are supposedly haunted by two young women, both of them were pregnant when they committed suicide at the hotel. The most haunted room is supposed to be room 3327. Other haunted rooms include 3519, 3343, 3284, 3305, 3315 and 3300. Also the lobby, the gift shop, and the hallway on the third floor are supposedly haunted as well. Other ghosts include a Victorian woman who glides across the dance floor, a small boy and girl, other men and women in period clothing, a man dressed in 1940’s style, and some former employees.
Ghosts aside, the Del is just a great hotel with great atmosphere. Feel like being pampered, or pampering a loved one? The Del is the place to go. Rates are about the same as a hotel in New York City, and less than Disney’s imitation of the Del, the Grand Floridian.

Disney - Grand Floridian From Monorail - HDR L...

Disney – Grand Floridian From Monorail – HDR LucisArt (Photo credit: Express Monorail)

I like the Del, just to get away for a day or two. Walk through her doors and the world just melts away. There is no place like that grand old dame of Southern California. I think everyone should stay there at least once. Oh, and don’t worry about ending up in one of the “haunted” rooms. Ghosts enthusiasts book those rooms solid, well in advance.

English: Evening shot of the Hotel Del Coronado

English: Evening shot of the Hotel Del Coronado (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Main building of the Hotel del Coronado. Camer...

Main building of the Hotel del Coronado. Camera used is a Nikon Coolpix 5000. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dracaena draco, the Dragon Tree, at the Hotel ...

Dracaena draco, the Dragon Tree, at the Hotel del Coronado. Camera used is a Nikon Coolpix 5000. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The entrance sign for the Hotel del Coronado i...

The entrance sign for the Hotel del Coronado in Coronado, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Filed under Cup-O-Joe, family, history, New

Titanic, In The News … and This I Like!

The violin of Wallace Hartley the bandleader of the Titanic. Found tied to his body when he was recovered. Photograph by AP

The violin of Wallace Hartley the bandleader of the Titanic. Found tied to his body when he was recovered. Photograph by AP

Wallace Hartley’s violin has been discovered and will be auctioned off, according to a story by the Huffington Post (click to read the article).

Yes, ladies and gentlemen … THE Wallace Hartley. The man who led his band in playing music as the Titanic sank to help keep the passengers calm. Even after these men were released from duty by Captain Smith they chose to stay and continue to play.

Mr. Hartley encouraged the other members of his band to save themselves, but they all stayed aboard Titanic, doing what they could to keep the calm and make it possible for as many people to be save as could be. If not for the courage of these musicians, it is possible that panic may have broken out aboard the ship with passengers rushing the lifeboats. That would have meant even fewer passengers saved than actually were saved.

Common men, doing a common job, in the face of certain death. Sacrificing their own lives so that others may be saved.

And that, to me ladies and gentlemen, is heroism.


English: Wallace Hartley, bandmaster and violi...

English: Wallace Hartley, bandmaster and violinist on board the Titanic. Français : Wallace Hartley, chef d’orchestre et violoniste à bord du Titanic, mort dans le naufrage. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Monument to Wallace Hartley, bandmast...

English: Monument to Wallace Hartley, bandmaster onboard RMS Titanic, Colne (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: RMS Titanic Musicians' Memorial, Sout...

English: RMS Titanic Musicians’ Memorial, Southampton (Photo credit: Wikipedia)




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Filed under history, Titanic

Hey, That Feminist Gave Me Back My Lance — Chivalry Part 4

English: A boy helping a girl over a creek.

English: A boy helping a girl over a creek. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This article is about chivalry and feminism. However, before I get to that point I want to talk briefly about people’s views, in general, and about feminism.

Take any view on any subject and you will find extremist views on both sides of that topic. It is also true that those with the most extreme views are usually the loudest, and therefore get the most coverage by the media.

I am of the opinion that every person, regardless of their similarities or differences to other people, should have the opportunity to go as far as they are capable of and should be compensated based on those skills and equally with others who possess similar skills. I also believe that all people, by nature of being human, are due a certain minimum amount of respect.

This does not always happen. I once worked for a company where employees could be fired for discussing their compensation with other employees. They would calculate what each person would most likely accept as the lowest offer, knock 10% to 20% off that to give you negotiating room, and give you that offer. They wanted to pay the rock bottom price for each employee. If you had a good job you were willing to leave, you might not do too bad. If you were currently unemployed, they took advantage of that. If you believe a woman should have the opportunity to excel based on her abilities and be compensated fairly for her skills, I do not consider that feminism, I consider it common sense, and I do not consider myself a feminist.

So, on to the extremes for a moment. There are those feminist that are on the extreme, and I was not surprised by their response to chivalry. These are the some of the same feminists that say “all men are potential rapists.” The same feminists who seem to take great joy in attacking anything masculine that men are doing, unless of course a feminists is doing it (then it’s a good thing, and they don’t see anything contradictory about this attitude, so much for equality). I’ll give you one quote from this group. But, this is not what today’s article is about. As you know I prefer to look at the positive, we already have enough negative in this world of ours. And so today I am applauding feminists. Not the extremists that appear to be men haters. Nope I am applauding the feminists who believe in equal opportunity and equal pay for equal work AND who also believe in chivalry.

I have read several articles that proclaim in their titles and their content that feminists have killed chivalry. I say feminists may be the key to brining back chivalry. But, before I go there, here is one from the opposition.

This is from a female college student who calls herself Pixie.

Feminism killed chivalry. Its our fault girls, that men don’t behave like men anymore. Good job.

wORLD WITHOUT chivlry? But …who will open doors?Who pull out chairs??!?! Who will joust 4 my honor????Women r truly lost wow it is a sad day in merica.” Punctuation, spelling and grammar is Pixie’s, italics are mine. Here’s her website.

Oh, just so you know, there are also MRA’s (that’s “men’s rights activists” in the activist’s jargon something I just learned … I’m not one of these either) who agree with the extremist feminists. Personally, I think those MRA’s are just cheap and lazy, but that is my opinion.

There was also a study (from the University of Florida) that proclaimed all chivalry benevolent sexism. Open a door for a woman, even if you just did that because you got there first, and it is benevolent sexism. Pretty much if a man does something that anyone could call chivalry, even if that is not why he did it, it is benevolent sexism. Of course, we must all work diligently to stamp out all forms of benevolent sexism. If it means stamping out chivalry, I’ll pass.

So why all this talk of chivalry lately? Wish I could take credit for it, but alas it’s not me. It wasn’t until I started to write the second article on this series that I decided, “Hey, I need to do a little web research.” I was shocked at how much I found and how recent it all was. Tracking backwards I discovered it all seems to have started with Ms. Emily Esfahani Smith and an article she wrote for “The Atlantic” , you can also find Ms. Smith’s work on the blog “Acculturated”. When Ms. Smith wrote that one article on chivalry it opened a flood of women blogging about chivalry. Jezebel did a good job of carrying the anti-chivalry flag, with other feminists joining in.

Ok, enough of that. I like positive. Now on to why I say feminists are saving chivalry. Many feminists are complaining about the loss of chivalry over the past few decades, and they want a return to chivalry. The 20 some-things of today do not date as “we did back in my day.” They just meet up someplace, usually with their friends around. Ms. Cheryl Yeoh, 29, does not do hook-ups or meet-ups. It’s only “traditional dating” (boy this makes me feel old) for her. She says “If he really wants you he has to put in some effort.” Here’s the article.

Next we go to Ms. Calla Kenney at “Breaking Away From Modern Feminism: Why This Woman is Leaving the Collective”, when you get there also read her “Terms and Definitions” tab, she does a great job of explaining herself, and has some suggested reading. Good job young lady (No insult intended, in my mind anyone young enough to be my kid is “young lady.”).

Then over at “Divine Caroline” I found this vlog from Lori Harfenist, a feminists who likes chivalry.

At “For Harriet” we find author Valerie Jean-Charles, a black feminist who is definitely a supporter of chivalry. Her article is “Feminism and Chivalry – A Case of Identity and Desire”. I specify “black feminist” because “For Harriet” is a community “celebrating the fullness of black womanhood.” Some of the other authors I quote from may be from a variety of races, they do not state their own race and I do not care what their race is (as some of my past girlfriends can attest too). I include Valerie’s race here because she stated it.

Valerie says, “…I love romance and the idea of building a life with someone. I love releasing the control I exhibit at work and in society within the confines of a relationship, and having a firm shoulder and strong arms to lean on and fall into. To many, I don’t necessarily fit the image of what the mainstream says a feminist should be because of my race, my socioeconomic status and most importantly my adoration of men — specifically, black men.

Feminism gives women the tools and space to speak, write, and argue about their need of equal representation in political, social, religious, and economic spheres of life. I love men opening doors, giving up their seats on public transportation, and pulling out chairs for me, as well as rising from the table when I do. Does this mean that I am complacent and weak without thoughts and ideas of my own? Of course not. …”

Ms. Chris Jordan at “Alpha Mom” gets the point across with humor ( a favorite of mine, humor is ALWAYS appreciated). Here’s her article “Has Feminism Killed Chivalry And Good Old Fashioned Manners?

At “Gridlock Magazine” Suze Nowak supports feminism and chivalry by pointing out that Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, only she did it in high heels and backwards.

Jennifer Harper made her pint in the “Washington Times” with the results of a Harris poll and her analysis.

Last on this list (there were too many for me to list them all, but when you do a web search on the topic you’ll see what I mean) is feminists Samantha (Sam) Brett (at the “Sydney Morning Herald”), who starts out, in her article “Should Chivalry Be Stopped?”, by telling you in her first two sentences, “I am a feminist. I also like men to be chivalrous …”

I bristle at people who declare “all” actions by a group of people are “this or that.” Nothing in life is that definitive. If you sit down and talk with an Army division just returning from combat you will be surprised to find (after getting past the “sound bite” answers) that there are as many reasons those soldiers chose to go into combat as there are soldiers in the division. Any time I hear something like “all chivalry is benevolent sexism” I just don’t buy it. To me the intent behind action is just as important as the actions themselves. And the intent comes from the doer not from the receiver or an observer. Also, dare I say it, “the ends NEVER justifies the means.” Ok, maybe bold, caps, underlined, italics is a bit overdoing it, but you get my point.

I thank God for the many lessons my grandfather taught me, and wish he had been around to meet his granddaughter. However, my intentions are not all altruistic on this point. There is a little selfishness here too. How much more could I have learned from him had he lived past my 16th birthday. He did live long enough though to teach me that women are amazing, and the most powerful women are those women who are comfortable with their own femininity. Don’t believe me? Look at some of the most powerful men in history. Do a before and after look at them. Single, each one was exceptional, married each one was nearly unstoppable. The writings of John Adams could be more accurately signed “by John and Abigail Adams.” Without Abigail Adams, John’s monarchist tendencies would have relegated his thoughts and influence to the trash heap of his day. But with Abigail John’s monarchist tendencies were properly bridled. Rarely were his greatest ideas his and his alone. Those ideas usually came about through deep and often complicated political conversations, held in private, between Abigail and John. You should read their personal letters to each other. Both were intellectual giants.

Here’s another one for you. Does anyone think Bill Clinton would have become the political leader he became, without Hillary Clinton? Say what you want about the two of them, I am not getting into politics or definitions of femininity here. But Bill would have been perfectly happy to lead a much simpler life. A man can be strong on his own. A woman can be strong on her own. But, a couple is so much more versatile and powerful than either of them are alone.

Back to my grandfather. He taught me to respect women because they are so amazing, versatile, intelligent, and yes powerful. He taught me to honor and respect women, without expecting anything in return, because respect and honor should be a gift and you should never expect anything in return for a gift. So, I am going to continue to be chivalrous. I am also going to retrieve those chivalrous parts of my personality I abandoned because they were frowned upon. More than that, I am going to teach my daughter what chivalry means. I am also going to teach her that chivalry IS NOT just manners, and women do not become chivalrous by being polite to men. Chivalrous behavior on the part of men and women is different, one from the other, yet both are about respect.

Finally, I would like to say I happily aligned myself with feminists like Samantha Brett. On chivalry at least, we are in agreement. So to Sam I would like to say, “Thank you for giving me back my lance.”


Filed under chivalry, Cup-O-Joe, family, history, New, notes