Now and Then

I’ve been offline for a few days.  WordPress noticed even if you didn’t.  One thing I hate about WordPress is that if I am away for more than one day, it seems to forget I exist. I spent a half hour this morning re-establishing myself on WP. 

Whenever this happens, I ask myself, why oh why do I do this? The next thing I ask myself is why WP. When I first signed up to blog, I had several choices. I choose WP because my prof had it listed first in the syllabus. 

Yes, a Business History prof started my blogging experience.  Her parting words to us when we finished her class were..if you liked this experience you can go on blogging. 

I liked that professor a lot.  She had no final exam. Final exams are stupid in my book so I thought she was very progressive in her thinking. I believe that if you get to the point in your education you can conduct bona fide research, you should not be subjected to a final exam. I wrote my course paper on the history of the Kohler Company in Wisconsin which required much research.  I was amazed at how much information existed in the Wisconsin archives. Someday, I will return to those archives and do some genealogy work.


I dropped a graduate course once because the prof told us we would have an in-class, hand written, final exam, He said he had been an editor before he became a prof and he hated plagiarism, i.e., cheating.  I felt insulted by the mere thought that I would cheat. Besides the arthritis in my hand makes it almost impossible to write. 

I told him I was in the graduate program so that I could take the courses that appealed to me. In other words, I was here to have some fun.  I told him about my issues regarding health and trust. He said he would accommodate me. But I dropped the course anyway.  I don’t like to have advantages others don’t have because they are younger. I’m funny like that.     

I erased my first posts from the early blog, so you can’t find them here. I was so ignorant about the Internet, I had no idea the whole world could see what I was writing until some fellow (not in our class) wrote a comment. As I spent much time arguing with my class mates about this and that (mostly playing the Devil’s Advocate), you can imagine how tortured those first post were.

When I began writing a blog for my amusement, I worried about sounding too academic. Finally, I decided, this is me, the way I am… academic and I hope scholarly, though not off putting.


My daughter visited yesterday. She had driven to NOVA (what we locals call northern Virginia) to visit me, MIL #1 (age 99)who is in a nursing home, and MIL#2 (age unknown) who has Parkinson’s and is facing a hip replacement. Both women are widows. 

“Do you realize some of those people in the nursing home are only 55?” she said.

As she will be 51 this year, she found that idea quite shocking. I think the notion that life zips by has hit her hard. Her husband is 57 and given the difficulties associated with his small business which include him climbing on roofs,  he is not likely to continue indefinitely.

Two of my granddaughters were along for the visit. One is waiting to hear if she will be admitted to the graduate program of her choice, the other is facing the problems associated with not continuing her higher education, i.e. low paying jobs.

I shared the story of my work career, which involved many low-paying jobs, for many years, until I finished my early degrees in sociology at age 35. I then told them the story of how I was working in the china, crystal and silverware department at a local store, when I received a call from the US Congress to come for an interview.  Of course there is more to the story, but this post is long enough.  The point is this, education pays.


11 thoughts on “Now and Then

  1. I wish I could agree, but I don’t; not about education paying off in jobs. I graduated in 2008, at the height of the recession. I gave up paid employment to have my first child and I had been 18 years at home in 2008. I had lots of volunteer work under my belt and at any other time I know they would have helped, but in 2008 and after I was up against people with long career records, recently unemployed and with up-to-date and provable skills. I’ve had two interviews in five years.

    I did learn that timing is EVERYTHING 🙂

    For those already in employment it probably helps, but it won’t help everyone, no matter how much they want to work.

    Education is never wasted, of course. I don’t regret taking my degree; the day I graduated was the proudest in my life. I am dying to take a Masters. My degree gave me confidence and skills and a real sense of achievement and satisfaction. I love that I did it and have it.

    Re the way you write on your blog – I often read (in veiled terms, of course) that it’s best to dumb down; hi-falutin’ language puts people off. I disagree. I use words I know; not everybody knows them – they don’t seem to mind. I am being myself and that’s how it should be in a blog. So, good for you!


  2. I love it that you blog too. I have learned so much from you. I was certainly never a fan of finals. I’m still not. I’m sorry you’re having trouble with WordPress. I haven’t had that problem… yet.


  3. I agree that education pays … though not always immediately, and not always in the way you think. Anyway, I steered clear of WordPress, b/c I heard it was “difficult.” Blogger seems pretty easy (after all, I can do it!), but presents its own problems and limitations.


    • I suggested to Rita it didn’t matter what she majored in, she would be working on a computer. WP has been pretty good, but I do have issues from time to time. Its the Devil I know, so I’ll stick with it.


  4. Even with a degree, the high paying jobs don’t always come about too soon. I worked for 13 years with a BS in marketing, making ok money. Returned to school to get the teaching credential and was hired two years later. Made more money than ever with super good benefits, one being that after 21 years, I had a nice little retirement, which I am now enjoying. It takes time, young people, be patient.


  5. What an incredible journey your life has been so far. Keep going! I try not to look back too much and try to focus on tomorrow. Always, what will I DO tomorrow, not what is in store for me tomorrow. Planning is everything, isn’t it? Otherwise, you will end up frittering the rest of your life away. I probably have another 20 years of living to go, and those years will disappear in a flash.
    P.S. Is the fact that you have your own domain giving you so much trouble? I have never had trouble with WP, ever, and that’s because I use — not my own domain.


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