Creating a Memoir? Sometimes the Things We Take For Granted Are Most Important

Clip art courtesy of Microsoft Office

Have you ever been reading a history book and said to yourself, "It is unfortunate that we don't have any information on this or that thing."  Perhaps you wanted to know more about peasant life during the Roman era, or you wanted to know how certain individuals in prior centuries coped with the deaths of loved ones (especially given the high rates of mortality for children and young adults in previous generations--how would a person cope with the loss of several of his or her siblings, as well as his/her parents, before that individual even reached adulthood).  You searched far and wide for this information but were not able to find it because the data no longer existed.

Often, we lack information on the past because those people did not keep records, or because the records they did create have been destroyed.  However, just as often, and especially when dealing with more modern periods, we lack vital information on a subject because writers from that era took it for granted.  They assumed that everyone knew about these events/things, so they didn't mention them.  

Keep that fact in mind as you are writing/creating your memoir (assuming you want to leave some type of written/image based memoir behind once you pass).  The little things that you take for granted are the bits and pieces of your life that your descendants (and any other interested people) might be most interested in.  

#memoir #history #genealogy #personal #information #data


Your Suggestions for How to Keep from Becoming Jaded

It snowed in my area a few days ago.  I watched the snowflakes fall to the earth and thought to myself, "Isn't this site beautiful."  Upon further reflection, I realized that I enjoyed the moment only because it was both rare and ephemeral.  I only see a few snow showers per year--maybe five or six at the most.  I think I would have a much different opinion of these phenomena if they occurred more often.

Along the same lines, I have lived in the shadow of the Blue Ridge mountains, since I was born.  I have grown used to the sight of these peaks and do not feel a thing--even a brief flicker of emotion--when I turn my eyes towards them.  Whereas a visitor to the area might say, "Wow, look at those beautiful mountains," I simply shrug and say, "Eh, mountains..."

Photo courtesy of Microsoft Office
It is the same with everything.  If I view an object, vista, whatever, often enough, then I lose my sense of wonder.  I become jaded.  I'm sure that this is human nature; that we all struggle with this problem.  So, my question to you (to my
readers) is, "Can I use any techniques, etc. to keep these views fresh?"  In other words, is there a method I can utilize that will allow me to maintain my sense of wonder/excitement at seeing a scene/object, regardless of how many times I look upon it?

Perhaps you have some ideas...I would be happy to hear them.

#mountains #snow #personal #beauty


Posting Our Gray (Unfinished) Musings

#musings #thoughts #ideas 

Clip art courtesy of Microsoft Office

I think it would be interesting if more people on the Web posited their daily ruminations.  I don’t mean to say that people should update their statuses more often, list their lunch ideas, or place more emoticons on their posts. I think most of us have seen enough of those two types of updates.  Rather, I think people should spend more time positing their somewhat deeper philosophical, ethical, social, and financial thoughts/ideas.  The ones that are foremost in their minds at any particular moment but have not yet attained mature status (eg., are not ready for the press).

I feel that this tactic would achieve several purposes.  First, as a society, we would be able to learn more about our fellow men and women, as we could get beyond the facile.  Second, the individual posters would be creating a virtual storehouse for their ideas—a storehouse that might last long after they have perished.  Finally, the very act of writing down these thoughts might help us to learn more about ourselves. 
Those are my thoughts for the day.

Anthony Hopper