Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Why I Don't Celebrate Lent

Short answer: Because I don’t like giving things up.

My parents spoiled me rotten as a kid and not with material things, but with experiences. That is why, to this day, I can come up with the most creative ways of being able to “do it all”! (with the exception of bi-locating, but believe you me, I’m working on that one HARD!).

True story: Last year, for one month, Dave and I put a quarter in a dish every time we said something bad about someone or something. Every Time. It was kind of a version of Lent (e.g. giving up saying negative things) and it was a great mindfulness practice. When it was all said and done, we wondered what to do with the money. One of our ideas was to send it to the people about whom we said bad things. The letter would read, “Dear X, Here is $1.75 for the 7 bad things we said about you in March 2011. Sincerely, Karen & Dave” That really didn’t seem appropriate so we went out to dinner with the money instead. 

This story turned out to be quite an example of precisely why I suck at Lent; probably even moreso than the fact that I’m not (nor ever was) Catholic.

And I digress...

I believe Lent has already started, but for those of you who are still struggling to decide whether you really want to give up soda pop or if you should just go easy on yourself and limit your beer intake to 6 days a week, here are my suggestions: 

Participate in a Lent of Inclusion! Your daily mantra could be, “I will laugh from joy at least once each day during Lent,” or “I will compliment at least one person each day,” or “I will wash the dishes every day this Lent.” You could even say, "I will be the one to smile first for the entirety of Lent!"

The possibilities are endless and much more likely to affect you beyond the season of Lent. You might find yourself laughing, smiling, complimenting, or making beauty in the world each and every day in spite of yourself!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I'm not picking my nose

I multi-task while driving a lot of the time. Today I was applying nose oil whilst driving. Nose oil is awesome and a critical piece of winter health. Bacteria is oil-soluble and there are lots of germs trying to get in your nose. Stick a clean pinky in ghee (clarified butter, which is great to cook with too) or use any kind of high-quality organic oil (sunflower, coconut, grapeseed) and swirl it around each nostril three times. Voila! The dryness is gone (this also decreases the urge to pick your nose), itchiness is gone (again, less picking), and bacteria are absorbed before they get inside of you!

Another thing I really like to do while driving is sing. One day, I was driving in Bozeman, Montana and singing my heart out to Ben Harper’s “Burn One Down.” I don’t know all the words but when I get to the chorus, I can belt it out just like Ben!! Well, it was summer and my window was down and I was at the corner of Willson and Main. The light hit red and the chorus came up! As I hollered it out passionately, I realized that the very private bubble of my little car is not so much so when the window is down. Also, the people who seem so far away in the cars next to me - partly because I don’t know them and mostly because I am not in their car - really are only 3-5 feet away from me as I am basically yelling. Yes, they can hear me sing. No, they did not appear to love it. 

A funny thing happened to me in this situation. Normally, I am kind of a shy and quiet person. In this situation, my logic told me to act like I didn’t realize they could hear me and just keep on singing!! When the light turned green and the other cars sped away, I started laughing so hard I almost had a vehicular crack up. I have to imagine that was good for my soul.

Just to give some context as to how wholly I sing in my car, one day (in the wintertime so my windows were all up), my friend Pete left me a phone message. He said, “I want to know what you were listening to today. When you drove past me, I thought you were screaming at someone then I noticed you were alone. Must’ve been a good song. See ya.”

Here’s Ben doing it right...

Sunday, February 5, 2012


Today Davé and I skied The A. This is a line that I love and sometimes I botch it. Today I was so excited to ski it that I forgot to buckle my helmet. Fortunately, I wailed on it.

Here is the song that came into my mind afterward - one of my favorites:

Eminem - Lose Yourself

My favorite lines are at 4:00 and 4:10.

Also, 8 Mile is a great movie.