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Ten Things I Did Today Instead of Watching the Inauguration

Posted in ChicagoNow, January 20, 2017

Just got back from nine days in Cuba where there was no Internet or news. Guess what? Aside from missing talking to my kids and grandkids, it was OK. So today, rather than watching the inauguration of @realdonaldtrump, I found ten better things to do.

Perfect thought for a rainy inauguration day — putting my yard sign into action.

  1. Make plans to attend tomorrow’s Chicago Women’s March with friends. Taking a stand feels much more productive than going on Facebook and reading news, real or fake, or sharing memes, or putting sad emoticons on lamentations about the end of the world as we know it. I still believe in what President Obama called “the power of ordinary Americans to bring about change.”

  2. Do several loads of laundry. Remember, we just came back from a vacation with a ton of dirty clothes. And folding things is somehow soothing and feels constructive.

  3. Finish my book. I’m nearing the end of The Wonder by Emma Donoghue and am still hopeful of a happy ending. But maybe not. So, I’m trying to finish it.

  4. Get a manicure. Nothing lifts my spirit like a fresh coat of shiny polish. I know that’s rather shallow, but at least my hands will look good for tomorrow’s march.

  5. Pay the bills. Wow, there are a ton of them that arrived while we were away. At least that was a task out of the way, freeing up time for the rest of the weekend.

  6. Write a letter of condolence to a friend. I was sad to learn that her mother died while I was away, and writing her to express my sympathy is a better use of my time than watching talking heads blab on and on about Trump’s speech or Melania’s outfit.

  7. Skype with my out of town grandkids. If not today, then hopefully this weekend instead of watching Meet the Press. I’m sure the kids will lift my spirits, inspire me, and make a lot more sense than many of the so-called political experts.

  8. Hug my in-town grandkids. If I need to be reminded of #WhyIMarch, my eight grandchildren are the reason. There is not much they can do yet to improve the world, and I still have time to make the world they will inherit as safe and healthy as possible.

  9. Catch up with my friends’ news. Being away when babies are born, kiddos learn to crawl, or folks my age fall and break bones makes me realize that there are important everyday things happening that touch the lives of those I love.

  10. Write this blog post. I really should be attending to those endless loads of laundry, and soon I will have to deal with the ADT service call for our alarm that mysteriously broke when we were away. But my Cuba experience is still fresh enough to make me feel so grateful to have a home to protect, a dryer for my clothing, and a computer on which to write this.

Tonight, I will skip my addiction to MSNBC. I don’t need to see the inauguration or listen to endless commentary. If I turn on the television, it will be to watch the Cuba Libre series on Netflix and catch up on Sherlock and This is Us. Mostly, I will take some time to think about President Obama’s charge to all of us to

“Embrace the joyous task we’ve been given to continually try to improve this great nation of ours. Because for all our outward differences, we all share the same proud title: Citizen.”
I am tired of arguing with strangers on the Internet. As Obama suggested, I will lace up my walking shoes and…
“Show up. Dive in. Persevere. Sometimes you’ll win. Sometimes you’ll lose. Presuming a reservoir of goodness in others can be a risk, and there will be times when the process disappoints you. But for those of us fortunate enough to have been a part of this work, to see it up close, let me tell you, it can energize and inspire. And more often than not, your faith in America – and in Americans – will be confirmed.
Yes We Can.
Yes We Did.
Yes We Can.”


by Laurie Levy
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