Tag Archives: class

heard by the universe.


(my glamour shot after returning from the salon and in full singing mode)

i love that my class

is unaware

that i am not a top notch singer

they are the best audience ever

very non-judgmental and accepting

as i belt out my tunes

and try to get them on board

i often improvise my own lyrics

when i only know part of them


think of something i’d like to add

many times accidentally

creating my own key

it’s all about the gusto

and not so much the skill.

“music in the soul can be heard by the universe. “

-lao tzu







i began a yoga class this summer

and share a quiet space 

with an friendly group:

rambo with the headband, 

the affectionate couple,

the woman about to give birth on the mat, 

the giggler,

stretch armstrong,

the woman with lots of extra stuff,

and a smattering of others

all kinds of interesting 

 of various skill levels

our instructor 

 a sweet hippie fairy

with a lyrical whisper voice

leaves me guessing

 watching the others

trying my best to follow 

open my eyes, close my eyes, bend, stretch, balance, breathe, hold, lift, tilt, reach

go further

stay in synch with the others 

all while relaxing and clearing my mind. 

i’m getting there, and as my generous teacher said,

“at least you’re going one inch further each time.”

well, there you go

according to this math

i will be doing a headstand by the time i’m 93

i’m on my way.

“blessed are the flexible, for they shall not be bent out of shape.”
– author unknown




photo credit: 1935, vintage bondi beach, australia, catherine annis

fashion is not about clothes, it is about a look. – carine roitfeld



they say

clothes don’t make the man


a fashion-forward rotweiller

on a gray, rainy day

strolling among the humans

to raise money


type 1 diabetes research

in her ballet-soft tutu

sure shows some

style and class.

age and size are only numbers.

it’s the attitude you bring to clothes

that makes the difference.

-donna karan



“Badges, Badges? We don’t need no stinkin’ badges.“ – Blazing Saddles



as is my way, when i am curious about something, i like to learn about and experience it firsthand. i’ve always been fascinated by the law, crime, the criminal mind, mysteries, and everything surrounding this world. (except when fighting an unjustified ticket).

imagine my delight when i saw that my county sheriff’s office was offering a ‘citizen’s academy.’ it was to be 13 weeks of classes, one night a week, with different divisions of their office teaching us, and showing us, what they do. they would only take 20 people so we could have good discussions, be hands-on,  and go on ‘field trips’ together. i applied and was accepted, in spite of those past traffic ‘misunderstandings.’

from the moment it began, i loved every minute of it. the first night, we met the sergeant in charge of the program, who explained that their motivation was to bring the community together with law enforcement in order to build a better connection, a partnership, rather than an adversarial relationship, through our understanding of what they do. 

in my class there were citizens of all ages, in their early 20s to 70s, all genders, races, and occupations. each of us was there for our own reason, but we all were eager to learn. there was the behavioral psychologist, the architect, the vietnam vet, the housewife, the business exec, student, the professor, the young married couple, the crime hobbyist, and on and on. the subjects and the presenters were fascinating and we went on field trips: to the jail downstairs, to the command center (we traveled in the the county prisoner transport vans), and to the shooting and drunk driving ranges. talk about bonding experiences. 

i was as fascinated by the characters in the class, as i was by the sheriffs, and they never failed to deliver. we built a close trust over the weeks and people became more and more open, disclosing all sorts of crazy things. when we had a chance to ask questions, it never failed that at least one person would ask a ‘hypothetical question’ about something that was illegal, and the sheriffs would usually respond by saying, ‘i don’t know, or need to know, why you asked that, but i can give you the legal answer…..’ even the prisoners got in on the action, as they cooked and provided themed meals for us each week: one week, bad chinese, another, sticky italian night, and always the cookies, but it was all part of the fun. 

some of the presenters/classes/moments were:

corrections officers – our visit to the county jail (where one member of my class yelled out, ‘thanks for the cookies!’ to the prisoners).

drug recognition and weapons experts – talked about all kinds of drugs and weapons what is out on the street (many revealing and personal class questions about these).

bomb sniffing and drug smuggling dogs – the sheriffs advised us to ‘ditch whatever you have if you’re carrying anything’.

underwater search and rescue – showed us actual rescues and recoveries, and polar bear diving just to keep in practice, amazing tech.

homicide detectives bureau – gruesome photos, fascinating ways of solving cases, macabre jokes, tears.

impaired driving expert – class member volunteered to take the test in front of class and failed – said she forgot she was on prescription medication. maybe not the best night to volunteer for something, but i loved her for getting into the spirit.  

undercover – out of cover, and class member said he recognized one of them tailing him in a bad neighborhood recently.

mounted unit – wonderful horses and one sheriff who said he had a dream that he would no longer be a motorcycle guy and become a horse guy instead, and then it happened. they chased down the sergeant in our parking lot using only their horses. 

special weapons and tactics – wow.

traffic accident reconstruction – sad and very hard job, have to figure out what happened and notify families, nightmares.

emergency preparedness – underground bunker, with seats for leaders from all factions of first responders in county and state.

hostage negotiation team – delicate work, very challenging, always on call, 24/7 as needed, high stress, very dangerous.

community team – targets a tough neighborhood, works with residents to help get criminals out and rebuild the community.


chasing sergeant b down in our parking lot

on our graduation night we met the sheriff himself, who uses a hierarchy of psychological needs approach to lawbreakers – take care of basic needs before we can help them learn and make progress upward. i told him i use the same approach in kindergarten. i loved their honest, and funny, and sad, and scary, behind the scenes, stories. sarge b said she will take any of us on a ride-along if we’d like. and i see another adventure ahead. 


If time were the wicked sheriff in a horse opera, I’d pay for riding lessons and take his gun away. – W. H. Auden