Tuesday Open Thread

Neither fire nor wind, birth nor death can erase our good deeds. ~ Buddha

Apologies for not being able to host this morning's OT but my Sister's Mother-in-law passed away yesterday and I've been travelling back and forth from my place to her place helping out as best I can. So, for today, I will leave you with a set of stories courtesy of The Moth. For those not familiar, The Moth started out as a small group of artists whose goal was to promote the art and craft of storytelling. The idea caught on and soon they had events in cities on both the east and west coast, eventually landing on NPR. Today, the structure still remains the same; the stories have to be true, told without a script, and in front of a live audience. Back in the early 2000's when I lived in New York, you could actually get a seat at The Moth. Now, I'm afraid, it's standing-room-only. Yet, if you're interested in live story-telling where amateur raconteurs gather under a spotlight with only a microphone in a roomful of strangers, I'd definitely recommend it. Always organic, sometimes terrifying for first-time story-tellers, but absolutely a great vehicle for some brilliant storytelling.

Well, that about wraps things up for this week's edition.
Any stories of your own to tell today?
17 users have voted.


Helping out your sister is more important than hosting here today. Hope you can smooth things over. Good info on The Moth too.

11 users have voted.

Let's try to help each other
find a better way.

mimi's picture

your Buddha quote made me thinking if he had also said about the opposite:
Like, for example, "Neither fire nor wind, birth nor death can erase our bad deeds. ~ Buddha"
I have no knowledge of Buddha's teaching, the only reason I ask, is, because I wanted to share this article with you and all other C99pers, as I found it so disturbing to say the least.

The Concentration Camp Victim Who Never Was

A supposed former prisoner at Stutthof concentration camp attracted attention around the world when he hugged an a man accused of being a former guard during his criminal trial and offered his forgiveness. The story seemed too good to be true -- and it was.

On Nov. 12, a scene inside the packed Courtroom 300 at the Hamburg District Court in Germany made headlines around the world. It was the seventh day of the criminal trial against former concentration camp guard Bruno D., who is now 93 years old. He stands accused of having aided and abetted in the murder of 5,230 people in 1944 and 1945, while stationed at the Stutthof concentration camp near Danzig, as Gdansk was then called.

That November day, Moshe Peter Loth took the stand as a witness in the case. The 76-year-old of Port Charlotte, Florida, had joined the case as a co-plaintiff to testify as a Stutthof survivor. At the end of his testimony, according to several people who were present at the proceedings, Loth turned and told the courtroom spectators: "Watch out everyone, I will forgive him now." He asked the presiding judge if he could come forward and then bent down to the defendant, who was sitting in a wheelchair.

That story rubbed me the wrong way this morning and I needed to get it out of my head by posting it here and then hopefully forget about it.

5 users have voted.

“Trauma is not what happens to you.
Trauma is what happens inside you,
as a result of what happens to you.”
— Dr. Gabor Maté

Raggedy Ann's picture

Thank you for being in service to your sister and her family. It is the highest honor.

I, too, lost a friend on Sunday. Very sad for her family. They are in CA, where she was receiving her medical treatments, so I cannot be in service yet. I told the husband I am here for him when he returns.

Thanks for the Moth Radio Hour. I listen whenever I can but it is at inconvenient times here so I try and catch a podcast, too. Great stories! Must have been fun to go to them live!

Have a lovely Tuesday, folks! Pleasantry

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"When will our conscience's grow so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it?" Eleanor Roosevelt

"The secret of change is to focus all your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new." Socrates (469-399 BC)

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

You lifted my mood with your quotation and the painting, and that's difficult these days.

I'm sorry for your family's loss.

10 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

Lookout's picture

washed away the Flea (meaning no trade day today).

Telling stories is a very Southern way of communicating. I love our local ones.

Long story short...

My buddy Ronald had one of those big half Brahman bulls .. kind like the wall street version. Well his neighbor had a paddock full of heifers and as you can imagine, the bull kept escaping to hang out with them. The neighbor had other breeding plans and arrived on Ronald's doorstep steaming mad. Ronald said "The only thing I can think of is just to sell you that bull." The bull would bring well over $1000 at market and Ronald only asked $300 for the bull. The neighbor bought him in a flash seeing profit in his mind's eye.

Well it is no easy task loading up a bull in a paddock full of heifers, and after chasing him around and around, they called a local fellow with a gun that fired hypodermic bullets full of knock out juice. He popped the bull in the back end, and the bull must have thought he was stung because he headed right to the pond, swam half way across, and sunk.

Somehow they managed to dredge him out and on to a trailer...now only fit to go to the dog food factory, which didn't even cover the initial $300 cost. Sure made a local tale though.

One more quick one

Billy Ray was quite a local character. Once he waited till the big county football rival game to rob the local dry merchants safe. Town was empty and he managed to get the safe loaded, but in his haste to get out of town, the safe toppled out of his truck at the main light and intersection of town. There he was in the middle of the street trying to load it back up when the deputy on duty came by. This was back in the day when police helped the public, and the deputy got out and helped Billy Ray get the safe back in his truck.

Next morning when they heard of the robbery the deputy said Billy Ray had it. He was arrest and served a few years for his crime.

So many more, too. Every community has these sorts of stories. Thanks Anja for bringing them to mind. Sorry for loss of the M-i-L. Hope sister and family are at peace with it.

11 users have voted.

“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

your family has suffered a loss. I know you are glad to be able to lend them support.
A perfect time and place for stories is at the family gatherings before and after funerals. It is a great way to honor and remember loved ones, to tell the stories about their lives.

8 users have voted.
enhydra lutris's picture

the OT and pretty flowers.

4 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

phillybluesfan's picture

Where the Semicolon Meets the Soul.

When I am with no one but myself
I might muster the will to stop letting others define me
with the power of their hurled definitions
predicated on who I should be
in relation to some concrete or abstract other, some ideal,
beyond the boundaries of who I already am.
I might write like Jack Kerouac …
exploring complex, difficult subjects inhabiting my constant tussle
between inner and outer, individual and social, private and performative.

Maybe I’d REALLY try to fool you
if my first name ended in a, and I owned three bras, and I’d been pregnant five times.
But those details don’t matter since I predate the invention of women by decades.
I am the generic he, as in, “If anybody needs an abortion he will have to go to another state,”
“A writer knows which side his bread is buttered on.”
That’s me, the writer, him. I am a man. Not maybe a first-rate man.
I’m perfectly willing to admit that I may be in fact a kind of second-rate or imitation man,
a Pretend-a-Him.
I am to a genuine male him as a microwaved fish stick is to a whole grilled Chinook salmon.

With “the beard and the guns and the wives and the little short sentences” Hemingway did man right.
He would have died rather than have syntax or semicolons. And he did. He shot himself.
A short sentence. Anything rather than a long sentence, a life sentence.
Death sentences are short and very, very manly.
Life sentence goes on and on,
full of syntax and qualifying clauses and confusing references and getting old.

Shamelessly. I have allowed myself to get old and haven’t done one single thing about it.
My tenses get all mixed up. There must have been something that a real man could have done.
Something short of guns, but more effective than Oil of Olay. What was the use?
If I’m no good at pretending to be a man and no good at being young,
I might just as well start pretending that I am an old woman.

*From Ursula K. Le Guin on Being a Man by Brain Pickings

7 users have voted.

Few are guilty, but all are responsible.”
― Abraham Joshua Heschel, The Prophets

mhagle's picture


3 users have voted.


"Make dirt, not war." eyo

smiley7's picture

Sorry to learn of you family's loss; sending virtual hugs.

3 users have voted.
TheOtherMaven's picture

I've made several attempts to retrieve my Reddit password, and all have gone into the Bit Bucket of Eternity. No response, no nothing.

Looks like I'll have to make up a new account and start all over again, because their customer "service"is nonexistent.

Edit: Never mind - finally got through to them by using my *exact* username (same as here). Apparently you mustn't forget your username or you go in the Bit Bucket.

1 user has voted.

There is no justice. There can be no peace.

janis b's picture

I'm sorry for your family's loss.

In thinking of you, and your closeness to the child in you, I thought of this ...


Once, in a little pond, in the muddy water under the lily pads,
there lived a little water beetle in a community of water
beetles. They lived a simple and comfortable life in the pond
with few disturbances and interruptions.

Once in a while, sadness would come to the community when one of
their fellow beetles would climb the stem of a lily pad and
would never be seen again. They knew when this happened; their
friend was dead, gone forever.

Then, one day, one little water beetle felt an irresistible urge
to climb up that stem. However, he was determined that he would
not leave forever. He would come back and tell his friends what
he had found at the top.

When he reached the top and climbed out of the water onto the
surface of the lily pad, he was so tired, and the sun felt so
warm, that he decided he must take a nap. As he slept, his body
changed and when he woke up, he had turned into a beautiful
blue-tailed dragonfly with broad wings and a slender body
designed for flying.

So, fly he did! And, as he soared he saw the beauty of a whole
new world and a far superior way of life to what he had never
known existed.

Then he remembered his beetle friends and how they were thinking
by now he was dead. He wanted to go back to tell them, and
explain to them that he was now more alive than he had ever been
before. His life had been fulfilled rather than ended.

But, his new body would not go down into the water. He could
not get back to tell his friends the good news. Then he
understood that their time would come, when they, too, would
know what he now knew. So, he raised his wings and flew off
into his joyous new life!

~Author Unknown~

4 users have voted.
Anja Geitz's picture

It's been a very sad day all around for both my Sister and my Brother-in-law. Lots of conversations about life, memories, and the connections we have people. Really crystallizes where our efforts should be focused on: relationships.

1 user has voted.

There is always Music amongst the trees in the Garden, but our hearts must be very quiet to hear it. ~ Minnie Aumonier