May your New Year be as free of misery as you are able to keep it. When the news is bad, when friends meet sudden disasters, sometimes deadly ones, we still can choose how our thinking goes. We may necessarily have sad moments but we can try to lift the spirits of those around us and therefore often lift our own. May you find a way to alleviate misery wherever you find it.
Peg Jones addresses undergoing some sad and painful thoughts when hearing about Newtown, Conneticut's tragic school slayings as many others did. The television dwelt on as much misery as they were able to wring from each interview they did. Thankfully, they finally found some heroic actions to report instead of exploiting the sadness of the families of the victims. Peg reminded herself to speak with the angels and many of us remembered to turn to prayer. Her column Angel Whispers reflects on the process of overcoming sadness.
Tom Fitzgerald O'Neill (Introspective) describes the freedoms we take for granted that are not allowed in China where he teaches. John I. Blair's column Always Looking-People Who Made A Difference focuses on 'Mr. Social Security' while Eric Shackle lightens the mood with the slant of news from Australia in his Column.
Mattie Lennon our Dublin columnist (Irish Eyes) tells us all about Mickey MacConnell a renown composer in Ireland. With our cooking editor Leo C. Helmer still a bit under the weather, he introduces Brandy Kizer as guest columnist who shares her recipe, Brandy's Chicken Taco Soup. We will all enjoy this tasty dish in "Cookin' With Leo."
Michael John Fierro, whose hometown is Pythagóreio, Samos, Greece, but who currently makes his home in Arizona, gives us his numerological analysis of what to expect in 2013. The article, "2013-A Universal 6 Year" may open your eyes. He published his book on Numerology in 2010, "You Know Your Name...Look Up Your Numbers." Michael is often a guest for various online radio shows and as a professional numerologist, life coach and spiritual mentor is available for private sessions, lectures, parties and corporate events.
Poetry submissions were comparatively few for this first issue in the new calendar year with only five. (A reminder that our ezine year starts new with the February issue and we are looking forward to many submissions.) For January we have a single poem from John I. Blair, "One Bite of Winter," also one from Bud Lemire, "A Happy New Year," and three from Bruce Clifford. He sent along "Times Like These," "The Wire," and "Life is Nothing Without You."
Mark Crocker has added more to his second book of Rabbo Tales, "Rabbo II, Chapter 10 - Trouble brewing." Previous chapters of this tale can be accessed by clicking the author's name.
Once more we remind our loyal readers that without our co-founder and webmaster Michael Craner, we would not have been able to bring you the past fifteen years of issues. Thanks again, Mike. See you in February when we kick off Volume Sixteen of Pencil Stubs Online.