Turn Your Frown Upside Down
A Tattoo Statement
I live in the Southern Tier of New York State on the Pennsylvania border and we know all too well what winter can be like. This year, however, the long wintry season seemed to have missed us. Fortunately, my snow blower came out of mothballs only once and that is fine in my book. Tomorrow and the next day call for temperatures in the low 60s, but today winter lingers. In spite of a glowing sun and the sheer wonderment of the day, it is still only 14 degrees outside. There is hope for an early spring and we are overcome with happiness knowing we didn’t kill ourselves shoveling piles and piles of snow. However, what everyone across this country has been shoveling isn’t white fluff…oh no…this is a season where we’ve all been force-fed the manure of ideology and political methane gas fills the airwaves. So here I go. I’m saying the name only once because negative energy is being replaced today with positive energy. Rush Limbaugh. Okay, I’ve said his name, now let’s move on.
I love nature, gardening, wildlife, writing, reading, politics, cooking, arts, crafts, and woodworking. I eagerly anticipate waking my rotor tiller from its hibernation and resuscitating it back to life in order to turn the soil over and begin the growing season. My oldest daughter enthusiastically enjoys her patio garden each year and now this year her sister has asked dear old dad to put in her garden too. It pleases me to know that what I value is in some small way being passed on to my offspring. I would never want my children to emulate my past bad behaviors or decisions. I’m a firm believer, that in order to grow as individuals we must face the demons of the past. And bad choices, whether in act or deed, need to be addressed and corrected, so we are free to blossom in our own gardens of life. Surely the crops of a farmer will die in the field if his land is overridden with weeds, pests, and grubs.
Within my vicinity lies one of the most beautiful and breathtaking areas I have ever witnessed. We have the Finger Lakes, the gorges of Ithaca, Lake Ontario, the Thousand Islands on the Saint Lawrence River, hills, valleys, mountains and streams all around. Even though the local terrain is abundant in flamboyant brilliance, there is also the ever-present danger of horrific flooding. Twice within a 5 year period, we have been hit with devastating floods which have been described as “500-year floods.” There were hundreds of people, if not thousands who lost all of their worldly goods. Businesses shuttered their doors, never to reopen and complete neighborhoods are gone forever. Good versus evil is a constant theme. It’s as if you can’t have one without the other. What we can do when faced with adversity or negativity is move forward in a positive way with a smile on our faces, thereby setting an example for others to replicate. My loved ones are all too familiar with the roads of life I’ve traveled. They also have a keen awareness of the scenic highway I’m touring which has created an odyssey for the last legs of my journey. The windows are down; the air is fresh, as time passes by at laser speed. Breathe in the freshness. Drink with your eyes the spectacular lusciousness that tickles your senses. Be appreciative of what you have and stop dwelling on what has happened before or what you have lost.
My heart has always melted when around animals both domestic and wild. As a small boy, I would ride my bicycle to the SPCA and cry because I couldn’t take the abandoned pet’s home with me. Many people express disdain and squeal with fear surrounding the presence of wolves, I, on the other hand, respect their very existence. These magnificent creatures do not kill for sport, nor do they attack man, but rather they kill only for survival. The wolf pack has a hierarchy all part of a grand design to protect its members. I’m infatuated by their uniqueness. I steadfastly believe it is a major character flaw if humans do not like animals. As a matter of fact, several years ago I had a one of a kind wolf tattoo on my forearm. Many have been puzzled with my choice. To me, however, my tattoo is a reflection of my life. Not unlike the wolf, I too have been misunderstood, vilified, abhorred, fallen in disfavor, and even alienated by some. In reality Dennis L. Page the person is totally different than my perceived persona.
When I take a stand against a person on their positions of certain issues, I do so with a zeal for correcting what I have surmised as wrong thinking or wrong philosophies. It is intolerable to me when there are no negotiations on ideas. Debates solve problems, rather than creating them. With all of the passions of a crazed, crowd at a bonfire I will write, verbally argue and protest unfairness at every level. Like the wolf, I willingly fight off those who would destroy my pack. My pack is filled with inclusion, acceptance, protecting the environment, equality, understanding that love in a heart knows no sexual barriers, that wildlife needs to be honored, that women have the right to choose, that my religion is not your religion and that’s okay and finally, realizing that projecting positive messages while not as popular and polarizing as negative ones are certainly the much better path to follow in life.
In conclusion, although I didn’t leave the house today, it has been a glorious day and one I am so grateful to have had. Now if we can just get over this next election cycle, maybe there will be a small piece of civility amongst us. Yeah right…who am I kidding! Think positive, be positive, and live with an attitude of gratitude and everything else will fall into place.
WRITTEN BY: DENNIS L. PAGE
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