Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Hey! It's Time For Another Quiz!

Hello Everyone,

I'm back with another quiz that's amazingly accurate (how DO they know so much about me?)

Feel free to take it if you want, you're killing time now anyway, right?

You Are a Cappuccino

You're fun, outgoing, and you love to try anything new.

However, you tend to have strong opinions on what you like.

You are a total girly girly at heart - and prefer your coffee with good conversation.

You're the type that seems complex to outsiders, but in reality, you are easy to please

Friday, April 11, 2008

Green Card Soldiers

We've been hearing statistics regarding the war in Iraq officially for 5 years now. That sad anniversary was noted recently with many news stories and marches of protest.

Occasionally, when an in depth story is done about the life and death of a soldier; that soldier will be an immigrant and not a citizen. Many people myself included, wondered how a person not a citizen of this country can be in the military, but the answer is they can. From Der Spiegel (The Mirror) Online International: "In July 2002, US President George W. Bush issued an executive order to expand existing legislation to offer a fast track to citizenship to foreigners who agree to fight for the US Armed Forces. About 8,000 non-Americans have joined the US military every year since then". There is even a name that has been coined to describe this portion of our armed forces: "Green Card Soldiers".

As I was in the post office today my eyes fell on a brightly colored brochure on the counter. The brochure appealed to "Men, 18 through 25, Do The Right Thing. Register. It's Quick - It's Easy - It's The Law". Hmmm....well clearly I wasn't the target audience for this advertising, but I wanted to know what it said. I picked it up and began to read, when I got to the "Who Must Register" section I was just perplexed. "Male U.S. citizens, documented and undocumented, residing in the U.S. and its territories must register if they are between 18 and 25".

I wondered how that happened. Aren't undocumented people otherwise known as Illegal immigrants? Assuming the degree of fear and tension associated with that status is someone really going to announce that status for the purpose of registering for the draft? I just don't know.

One thing I do know: that if someone chooses to risk their lives for this country no matter their country of origin, then I am deeply respectful of and grateful to them for that.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Training For Goodbye...Tobi Knight

A couple of days ago I discovered that a friend of mine had died. It was a strange occurrence to be sure, she had been on my mind strongly for a couple of days, it seemed I heard her voice in my head. I had a fleeting thought that she was dead, but "reality" convinced me to put that thought to the side; I had no concrete reason to believe such a thing.

I sent her an email which bounced back, I called both cell and home numbers for her, they were disconnected; basically all I needed was confirmation at this point. I "Googled" her... and brought up her obituary.

I wasn't really shocked, but it hit me rather hard nonetheless. I had last seen her in August when she had come to Las Vegas for a surprise party for a friend. She looked totally beautiful and healthy, completely belying the fact that she had cancer. We had a great time, I drove her around town doing the tourist bit. She excitedly snapped her camera phone out of the car window at all the sights and entertained the idea of moving here.

We had lunch at the Red Rock Casino and talked about everything under the sun. Being with her was fun and easy, and even though we didn't see each other or talk often, when we did it was if no time had passed at all.

Tobi and I met through our mutual practice of Nichiren Daishonin Buddhism. Tobi was a woman of strong faith and whenever she had a problem, her Buddhist practice was the first place she turned to find a solution. She was charming and amusing and a great person to have as a friend, and it goes without saying, but I will, that I will miss her.

The obituary I read said that Tobi had been "fighting cancer and lost her battle". I don't think she lost anything, Tobi died on December 26th, the day after Christmas, in her sleep. In our practice we speak of a "good death"and it seems that is what Tobi had.

Goodbye my dear friend, thank you for all of things you taught me and the great times we had. I'll be chanting for you, Nam myoho renge kyo.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

The Real Reason MP Has Been MIA

PD has been logging a lot of computer time as you can see.

Sorry I've been away!