Wednesday, April 30, 2014

A Glimpse of Another Character

John was going bald and it didn’t bother him for one flippin’ second. In fact, he embraced the fact that he had been losing his hair at an alarming rate since he was sixteen. When he was eighteen he shaved his head clean. “Easy to take care of,” he chuckled, his bright, blue eyes glistening and his smile wide. He was a handsome man, one who oozed confidence. It just came natural.

If there was one thing John had learned as a child, it was that his self-esteem did not hinge on the absence of a head full of hair. He had learned that lesson in a most unusual way, however – from his now dead father who had instructed John in ways he could never have fathomed.

John had watched his father years before face the same fate, baldness, but his was not without resistance. His dad had grown the few strands that existed to enormous lengths and swept them across his naked pate in hopes no one would notice. In front of the cracked, bathroom mirror, the old man combed and primped, pressing the hair into place and spraying it for good measure. The result was a thin helmet of fine fluff, the lacquered mat conspicuously sparkling in the sun. In time he gave up, resorting to caps and hats to conceal what he could not accept. John’s father went to his grave distressed by his appearance, and for that, John was a bit sad.

Yet John was satisfied too. He had avoided the trap that had ensnared his father and he had done so by watching. The old man had not needed to say a thing . . .

Monday, April 28, 2014

Press Release Below!


written by local author, Judith DeChesere-Boyle, is a new memoir that chronicles the nine-year battle of her son, Alex Stevenson,
a CAL FIRE Fire Apparatus Engineer, who served in Napa County, CA.

Alex Stevenson died at the age of 39 on May 24, 2013 of job-related brain cancer. He was awarded full honors by CAL FIRE, his firefighting “family” and was further honored at the IAFF Fallen Firefighter Memorial in Colorado Springs, CO in September 2013 as well as by the California Fire Foundation in Sacramento, CA in October 2013. The “blurb” on the back cover of the memoir introduces the story of a man who had been living his childhood dream of being a firefighter until he was diagnosed with the brain cancer that took his life. This 500-page memoir chronicles the journey and includes an appendix with “words for Alex” from his CAL FIRE colleagues as well as others. The author is donating a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this memoir to the American Brain Tumor Association. It is available on

Contact Information:
Judith DeChesere-Boyle
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 94952
(xxx) xxx-xxxx  Home
(xxx) xxx-xxxx Cell

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

More on Earth Day On The Day After!

It seems to me that every day should be Earth Day. I know so many people who have absolute respect for our planet. They recycle; they conserve; they admire and value nature; they actually seek and enjoy places of beauty that still exist around us.

Conversely, too many folks seem oblivious to the fact that the Earth’s resources are finite. Many simply will not accept responsibility for the incredible place we live and, indeed, share. It’s clear that for some, global warming is a joke or a hoax of some kind. The idea that greedy, careless corporations, ignorance, and blatant disrespect are compromising our world is disheartening to say the least. Sadly, politicians use the concept of global warming as political fodder; incredibly, some are unwilling simply to listen to scientific reason. Instead the issue is used to crank up the volume on the arguments, that contrary to our world’s resources, seem infinite. How sad is that!

A posting on Facebook by my friend, Dave, caught my eye this morning. The words speak for themselves. I cannot help but believe that we owe it to ourselves, and certainly to future generations, to do our part, however small. The problems that threaten our Earth unquestionably appear overwhelming for one individual, but each of us is capable of doing something . . . one step at a time. We need to get going, though, before it’s too late; I hate to think that maybe it already is.    

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Is It Positively So?

This morning my friend, Maria, posted the picture and quote below on Facebook just about the time I was thinking about writing today’s blog. I actually had been wondering a bit sadly about all the negativity in our world these days: negative news stories, drivers full of road rage, hate crimes, accounts of abuse and bullying. Sometimes I don’t even want to read the newspaper although I do! The television media is not much better, often biased to the right or left with not a great deal of credence paid to accuracy. Politicians can’t talk with one another; consensus has gone down the toilet, and many of us are left wondering, “How did these people get elected?” Perhaps I’m over-exaggerating. Maybe the world is spinning as it always has. Maybe nothing really has changed. After all, for generations, folks have been spouting, “What’s this world coming to?” and we’re still here!

Life is a balance, I suppose, and I like to believe that for all that appears negative, positive exists as well. I am reminded of Alicia whose life is dedicated to helping others through her sports; of Judy who greets her friends each day on Facebook with a happy, Good Morning; of Susan who volunteers to teach children about the beauty and intricacies of our world; of Kaaren who lets everyone know he or she is special; of Davina who always “checks in”; of Rick who gives free health care to those who cannot afford it; of Corinna who finds joy in nurturing friendships; of Karyl who teaches her children tolerance and appreciation for life; and of Tara who gives and gives and gives. These are only a few of the good people I know who do positive deeds to make the world a better place. How one faces each day, I guess, is what makes all the difference.

Positive < Negative

Thank you, Maria.