Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The Color Of Gratitude - Cranberries And The Blue Bowl

Not really a blue bowl...

“I made cranberry sauce, and when it was done put it into a dark blue bowl for the beautiful contrast. I was thinking, doing this, about the old ways of gratitude: Indians thanking the deer they'd slain, grace before supper, kneeling before bed. I was thinking that gratitude is too much absent in our lives now, and we need it back, even if it only takes the form of acknowledging the blue of a bowl against the red of cranberries.” - Elisabeth Berg in Open House

Wishing everyone a beautiful and meaningful Thanksgiving - Dominique


Monday, November 21, 2016

I Hid the Body... Now What?

For James

It was a dark, gloomy November evening only a few days away form Thanksgiving. I was bored. The party was canceled, my husband was away for the weekend and there was nothing on TV that I wanted to watch. I called everyone I knew, but my friends were either lazy or busy or just as bored as I was.

I ordered pizza. The guy who delivered my order looked like someone who tortured small animals. Maybe he jumped in for someone because I could not imagine that Giovanni's Fine Italian restaurant would hire someone like that. You normally expected a shady mafia type guy to arrive at your door. This was to add some thrill to your pizza experience, not disgust. Capici?

I shut the door as quickly as I could. The pizza was too large for one, but I decided to eat it all by myself. Candles, Merlot, and Miles Davis. Nice!

And yet, somehow, Friday evening all by myself was not my idea of fun...

I remembered a joke that was making rounds in the office last week. "If you are bored, send a creepy message to a random number..."

I am not a prankster, but when you are drunk every stupid thing seems like fun! I took my iPhone and composed the suggested message: "I hid the body... now what?" The message went to a number I dialed without even looking at the keys.

I took another bite of my pizza and there it was. Faster than I would even think someone sent me a message: "What did you do with the knife?"

Interesting, I thought laughing laud. Whoever was there on the other side must have been just as bored as I was. "There was no knife!" I answered.

Seconds later a new message came. "You did not look under the bed!"

"Oh, yes! I did!" I typed, laughing. This was turning out to be quite a fun!

An angry message came back seconds later "I told you to check carefully, you idiot! You will pay for it! I swear!"

I could not believe my eyes. Was someone overdoing it or something? "I did my job. I want my money now!" I wrote, still laughing. 

"You will get nothing!" was the answer.

I took a large sip of wine and tried to think of something funny to make the person on the other side even more furious. And just as I was ready to type I heard a loud bang on my door. "Police! Open the door!"....

By Dominique Allmon


Image "Between past and present" by Nico De Pasquale.
Source of the image: unknown

Creative Commons License
I Hid the Body... Now What? by Dominique Allmon is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Saturday, November 5, 2016


Stairs in Jaffa, Israel
"Like drugs and alcohol, stairs take you up and stairs bring you down. Stairs are neither in one place nor another. They bridge the vertical. Stairs have no allegiance. Stairs live in a private world of the abstruse and mystical. Don't thrust them. More people die falling down stairs than on airplanes." - Chloe Thurlow


Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Famous Last Words Or The Reflection On Death And Dying

Our modern western culture has a very strange affair with death. We know that death is inevitable, and yet, we live in a total denial of it.

For as long as we live we do everything to prevent or delay natural death - our own or that of our loved ones. Too many of us are dying a very undignified death in semi-sterile hospital beds. The fear of dying and the uncertainty of the things to come in the hereafter make us cling to life and apply often dubious life extending strategies whether they make sense or not. But no matter what we do, we die unprepared and often leave a very big mess behind.

On this All Saint's Day I would like to quote a few prominent people whose last words were either puzzling or inspiring. Read on if you are curious and have a moment for reflection.

On his deathbed in 1519 Leonardo da Vinci said, “I have offended God and mankind because my work did not reach the quality it should have.”

It is said that when Sir Isaac Newton died in 1727, he was rather humble. He reportedly said, “I don’t know what I may seem to the world. But as to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore and diverting myself now and then in finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than the ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”

Oscar Wilde was truly intolerable till the end! Short before he died in 1900 he is believed to have said, “This wallpaper is dreadful, one of us will have to go.” We do not know what happened to the wallpaper, but Oscar left for good.

Rainer Maria Rilke died in Montreux, Switzerland in 1926. On his deathbed he said, “I don’t want the doctor’s death. I want to have my own freedom.” 

In 1930 Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of Sherlock Holmes stories, died in his garden at the age of 71. He turned to his wife and said, “You are wonderful,” then clutched his chest and passed away. 

Josephine Baker was a very special lady. She was an American singer, dancer, and actress who lived in Paris. Only a few days before her death she celebrated her fifty years in show business. On the last night of her life in 1975, she left a party that was held in her honor and said, “Oh, you young people act like old men. You are no fun.”

On his deathbed in 1980 Alfred Hitchcock reportedly said, “One never knows the ending. One has to die to know exactly what happens after death, although Catholics have their hopes.”

No one is really ready for his final departure and death always comes as surprise. Great life does not guarantee us a great death, but people who enjoy their lives more seem to have a healthier outlook on death and dying. Those who did not truly live their lives seem to cling to their lives more than those with more fulfilling life histories.

Unless we are suicidal, we do not normally chose the moment of our death. Keep in mind that for as long as you live, death does not concern you. Live your life to the full and do not regret anything, but make some provisions before it is too late.

Dominique Allmon