Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Glad Game

"Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared."
- Buddha

"Pollyanna" by Eleanor Porter
Things are tough right now. Tough for most of us, terribly tough for some of us, and downright tragic for more than a few.It's easy to get stuck in the quagmire of the sturm and drang of recent events.
Okay, let's face it. It's time to pull out the big guns today. This is a job for Pollyanna.

I always loved Pollyanna. Did you know that the character in the book (I'm not sure it was mentioned in the films) was from the Ozarks? Well, the Ozark Mountains are located well south of my hometown of Kansas City, but I always found it inspiring that a girl from the rural hills of my state could end up on a plantation in New England. So intriguing!
According to the story, Pollyanna's late father was a minister, but he shows signs of being a Buddhist to me. He taught his daughter The Glad Game, how to find something to be glad about in each moment, and how to share that perspective with others.
It's not a big lesson, and doesn't usually involve great mental gymnastics. It's just a little thing, one little thing that might just affect the way we experience our day.
With that little lesson in mind, allow me to share just a few things with you that make me glad right now;
- First of all, I'm planning to meet up soon with a friend I've not seen since sixth grade! We've had a bit of trouble sorting out our crazy schedules, but we will soon spend the day together, and just the thought of that fills me with gladness.
- Secondly, a wonderful blog friend, Cheryl, (or 'Jojo' to her two lovely granddaughters), from JOJO's JOYS has most generously offered to help The Graceful One as she makes her transition to the Atlanta area to begin her new job with The Georgia Ballet. How gracious is that?
We have some arrangements yet to make over the next few weeks, but I certainly hope to see Cheryl, introduce her to my daughter, and share a glass of sweet tea or lemonade.  I also look forward to telling her how glad she's made me feel with her warm, southern hospitality.
- The Graceful One began her career with two wonderful years in the beautiful city of Portland, Maine, and I'll be sad not to visit that charming city, which quickly became my favorite vacation spot...
but wait...this is the Glad Game. Nevermind. The silver lining to the imminent move means that we will be able to spend a few precious weeks with The Graceful One this summer, a treat we rarely get, so I'm very glad for that.
- Something else that makes very excited is coming up in just two weeks. I'm set to reunite with fellow graduates of Ruskin High School for our fortieth...yes, 40th! class reunion! Thanks to the magic of Facebook, I've become reaquainted (and in many cases, finally aquainted) with many friends, and have so much to look forward to that weekend, I can't help but feel glad. 
- Lastly, The Coach and The Fashionista in Las Vegas have gotten an adorable new puppy. I'm receiving regular updates, lots of photos, and I'm sort of hoping they'll love the experience enough to start a real family! (No pressure, Kids.)  Here is a photo of my new 'granddogger' Lily...

                              Awww. What's not to feel glad about?
Today, I hope you share some happiness.
The music choice today makes me feel happy all over. It's Chopin's "Étude Op. 10, No. 5 (Chopin)" or the "Black Key Étude." The entire right hand (and most of the left)is played only on the black keys of the piano. Who would think to compose a piece like that? Well, Chopin, of course!
This is performed by the outstanding Valentina Lisitsa. Watching her happy expression as her fingers fly across the black keys is delightful, and it does, indeed, make me feel glad. Enjoy.

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