The Essentials in Life


The longer one lives, the more one learns. At least that’s what I hear. But this has not exactly been my experience. Some of us didn’t get that memo so we’re still learning. And by us I mean me. I’m rapidly gaining ground on 63 yet I’m still realizing some essentials in life. You probably think I should know them all by now, wouldn’t you? Sadly, no. Now don’t get me wrong; I’m not a total loss. There are things I’ve learned. For instance…

One should always floss.

Brushing and not flossing is like taking a shower without using soap. What’s the point? You don’t think some of that ham sandwich you had for lunch is wedged between your molars? Think again. Flossing keeps your gums healthy, which keeps your pearly whites in your mouth. So basically, flossing keeps you from becoming toothless. Keep your teeth people!

flossing 2

Don’t buy the $7 a month Direct TV receiver insurance.

But if you do, like I did, just know that the month you cancel is the exact month your receiver will stop working. Never mind that you forgot you ever signed up in the first place, 9 YEARS AGO, because you never check your bill and could have bought multiple receivers by now with that $930. Generally speaking, extended warranties are not considered cost effective. You’re welcome.

Direct TV receiver

My $930 receiver

Just know that once you buy a new car, someone is going to ding your door in the Safeway parking lot.

My advice? Just ding it yourself and get it over with. After that, you won’t give a damn. Flying rocks on the freeway? Hit me. Bird smashing into the hood? Hit me again. Mechanic dropping his wrench on your trunk? What else ya got?

car door dent

Don’t fall for fads.

Did all those Beanie Babies you bought actually earn you thousands of dollars in resale? And if you wanted a Pet Rock, there were plenty in your backyard, saving you the embarrassment of having to admit you actually bought one. Or what about Amanda Ruby, the Cabbage Patch Kid you were convinced would one day be a collectors item? You weren’t entirely wrong on that one. Amanda Ruby is very likely collecting dust.

Amanda Ruby doll

Amanda Ruby

beanie babies

Me in a tub of hundreds of my friend Sharon’s Beanie Babies


Few subjects bring out more arguments than this one. I say let’s agree to disagree. Why ruin a perfectly fine dinner when nobody’s going to change anyone’s opinion and tempers are sure to flair? I say save your breath (along with your friendships) and pass the butter please.

political quote

Give new and different foods a chance.

Whenever my dad wanted us to taste something new (like frog legs he passed off as chicken) he’d say, “Try everything twice in case you weren’t feeling well the first time.” That’s actually sound advice and I try to do that but I draw the line with Lima beans. No matter how great I feel, I just can’t keep those disgusting things down. Sorry Dad.

Lima beans

I already feel myself gagging

Turns out ‘You can’t always judge a book by its cover’ is remarkably true.

This is a biggie: Try not to judge people who look, talk, act, live or think differently than you. Different is good. A wise person once said Jumping to conclusions is the only exercise some people get. We all make many assumptions and judgements about people, often outside our own awareness. But really, what fun is there in all of us being, thinking and looking the same? Who wants a world full of Stepford Wives? How boring.

Stepford wives

different is good

But seriously, don’t forget to floss.







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