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  • ivanildotrindade 1:24 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: absent grandparents, book of lamentation, , Grandparent, , Holiday, Home, lament, lamentation, losing grandparents, nostalgia, , , Starbucks   

    My Book of Lamentation 

    It’s amazing how much you learn about your surroundings just by sitting at Starbucks and listening to people talk. Now I know this is dangerous business because you can be accused of eavesdropping or worse yet you may hear threads of conversations and build a whole narrative around them. Or you may think you heard something when in reality the people were talking about something also.

    I noticed today an elderly couple who walked into the store. The woman looked frail, she carried a cane and had a distant look in her eyes which I have seen in people who are about to depart. I also noticed how one of the employees was so deferential to that couple and immediately told them to grab a table “before it was gone” — Starbucks was rather crowded this morning. He got their drinks ready and then, as the lady came to get her freshly brewed coffee, I heard him refer to her as “grandma.”

    A few minutes went by and before I knew it the employee took a break, sat at the table with the couple, and began to talk. He told them about a train trip — which was not as comfortable as going by plan but it was good; he even said they had Internet on the train! They talked about the advantages of having or not having a car — this guy rides the bus to and from work, which is how I started talking to him the first time I met him at the store, as he was waiting for a co-worker to get off so he could get a ride home. The last bus had already come and gone. They talked about budgeting and the demands of Holiday spending. They talked about an optimum time for him to go see his mom. Then the couple inquired about his day off — tomorrow, and they made plans to pick him up for lunch. 11:30.

    You know what I mean about being accused of eavesdropping now? Please, believe me when I say that I was sitting across the room from them and the words were floating in the common air space where decoding is free. I heard all of that while quietly removing dead cuticle from my nails in my corner of the store, and I was not taking notes!

    But that scene made me nostalgic. I realized I was witnessing something unique. And I realized I was indirectly living something I was never privileged to do in my life. You see, from the time I was seven, my siblings and I moved to a different state, and from that time on, we were never in the presence of our grandparents on both sides of the family for more than just a few precious minutes. Actually, I don’t even remember my grandparents on my dad’s side of the family, and I had oh so little interaction with the ones on my mom’s side.

    And today I lament that. Yes, lamentation is the right word for it. I don’t use that word lightly. My rules for lamentation are plain and simple: 1. You are only allowed to lament over stuff that has already happened — no “lamenting forward” in my book, for life is too precious to have it ruined by the possibility that something might not turn out the way I want it. 2. You are only allowed to lament over stuff you had no control over. If you see the “check engine” light go on and you still decide to make that 500-mile one way spring break trip and the engine blows up circa 299 miles, don’t come to me lamenting your bad luck. 3. You are only allowed to lament over stuff that cannot be fixed.

    My grandparents are all dead and gone now. I cannot fix that. My wife and I also moved, not to a different state, but to a different Continent, when our children were small. I cannot fix that. But perhaps I can do something about not moving away from my grandchildren — if and when I get my own. I can do something about my children being the last generation in the Trindade line that will have to lament the loss of the grandparents’ presence.

    Starbucks awaits.

    A footnote: I just spoke to “Joseph” (the name I am ascribing to the employee aforementioned) and he told me that indeed they were his grandparents, that they are well into their 80’s and that his grandmother had a devastating stroke last year but she is doing much better today. I told him, “You are honored to have them in your life.” He said, “Thank you for telling me that.”

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

    • Bob & Linda 4:05 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      My Dear Brother in Christ Our Lord,
      You are so “spot on” with this post. I was blessed to be able to be in close proximity to all of my Grandparents. That was good. They were unique in their own rights. They have all passed away but I have no regrets. In my time I believe this was more normal than not. That certainly isn’t the case today. We are all over the place. I heard a man this week with tears in his eyes talk about only seeing his two grand daughters but twice in their life since they live in different states. So sad but so true.
      Keep looking up, “perhaps today!”
      Bob & Linda

      • ivanildotrindade 1:03 pm on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        thanks for your comment, bob. yes, indeed, u were blessed to have your grandparents in your life. i feel sad for that man who connected so little to his grand daughters. that is even worse than my case, I think.

    • Ted Beaver 9:20 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you pastor, this gave me something to think about!

      • ivanildotrindade 1:05 pm on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        that’s my purpose, ted — help u think, but not too hard. i hope somehow this will help you in your journey. we can all learn from each other’s experiences. thanks for posting a reply!

    • Mary Barr 9:45 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I’ll give this a great big “LIKE”… I was SO blessed by grandparents that filled in for absent parents!

    • lionjudah 10:12 pm on January 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I doubt if we can live without lamenting about something. May I comment on this blog: The discussion reminds me of a conversation I had, maybe 40-years ago with a gentlemen. It was, “Are we stealing when we pickup a newspaper and read the news and do not purchase the paper?”

      He said, “The papers print for market profit, information that they received free!” As I think about it, wouldn’t this be the same as eaves dropping?

      Nevertheless, I am always amazed that important men and women meet in restaurants or public meeting places/hotel lobbies and discuss private stuff–they get so involved in conversation that they become oblivious to the persons around them who can easily eaves drop! I confess that I love to oblige whenever I can.

      A short time in my life I slept in a second bed in my parents room. I loved to pretend I was sleeping so I could then listen as they talked. Was that eaves dropping? How often we will be talking in a public place and suddently the person we are speaking with, suddenly cocks his ear to hear another conversation?

      When a high school senior we took the usual trip to the nation’s capitol. (1954) A guide led us in the hugh capitol rotundra and demonstrated how someone in the periforary could hear discussions from the center. In this way he explained a civil war plan from one side was easily understood by the other side.

      One can sometimes learn important news as well as lessons from eaves dropping. Your reflections, Pastor Ivanildo clearly point that out. Well done.

      Lamentation serves us well–it is like holding the “stuff” of life in tention. When I wrote my autobiography: RESOLVED TO FINISH STRONG,” I often wept while I wrote and relived scenes from my life. I lament that had I had a mentor to walk with me I believe could have avoided some pitfalls and have “Strengthened My Grip,” as Chuck Swindoll wrote.

      I was lamenting and musing this to a close friend, Dr. Arthur G. Mcphee, professor of missiology and he gave me this quote BY jAMES bARRIE:


      • ivanildotrindade 1:10 pm on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        thanks, harold. i think i have written here about the ethics of taking discarded newspapers at starbucks, but that is a different situation from what your friend was talking about 40 years ago. i am not even going to try to think of the logic behind his line of thinking. wouldn’t this apply to a whole lot of other things — like library books, for example? and your james barrie quote? sounds to me like the problem could be solved if he simple had a good publicist and a merciless editor — that will take care of writing a book that is longer than your original plan. 🙂

    • lionjudah 4:53 am on January 13, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Your excellent eaves dropping reflections has jogged my memory of eaves dropping, too! I remember discussing the subject of “Is it stealing if you pick up a newspaper and read it without purchasing the paper? His rationale was this: “NO. He argued that newspapers actually are printing information that costs them nothing plus they are selling it for profit. I love to oblige “eaves dropping” when folks discuss private info in public whenever I can. Great article!
      The lionjudah.

  • ivanildotrindade 12:10 am on May 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: discarded newspapers, ethics of newspapers, New York Times, Newspaper, newspapers ethics, Paper, Starbucks, stealing newspapers, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, what's stealing   

    The Ethics of Discarded Newspapers At Starbucks 

    I have an ethical dilemma that has bothered me so much I had to consult my “resident ethics adviser,” namely my son.

    I gave him the scenario: a man walks into Starbucks, buys his latte and a copy of the USA Today. He sips his coffee while reading the paper, and as he finishes each section, he throws the crumpled pages on the table until he reads the final section, the sports pages, at which time he tosses the entire newspaper on the table and leaves. The question is: is it wrong for me to take that newspaper with me when I leave?

    We had quite a back-and-forth in which several questions were posed: Did the man give the newspaper to the store? I said I didn’t think so. Does the fact that he throws it on the table make it automatically a property of the store? I doubt it. Would the act of taking the paper rob the man of any privilege he had earned from buying the paper? Obviously not — he was the one who threw the paper there and he got all his money’s worth, including laughing out loud when he got to the comics page.

    So we came to the conclusion that I was not “stealing” from the man or the store if I took the paper, but that I could be violating the man’s intentions when he left the paper there — that other customers would benefit from reading the paper.

    Well, I felt better because If I am there and that happens, I am inclined to take the paper. I know, awkward. But if our analysis is correct I am not guilty of larceny but of bad etiquette. But if only things were only that simple…

    There is another person, a lady, who also reads the paper at Starbucks. She likes The Wall Street Journal, which she buys it somewhere else because Starbucks in Wooster doesn’t carry it. She also tosses the paper on the table after she reads it. So last Sunday I came into the store and saw “her” newspaper sitting there. I knew she had been there but I couldn’t see her. I debated whether to take the paper but since I couldn’t establish for sure who the legitimate owner was, I left it there. It would probably wrong to take it.

    But there is more. Remember the guy who likes the USA Today? Well, he has a brother and he likes the New York Times. He also tosses the paper on the table. He came in today and did his usual routine. We were sitting next to each other until he decided it was getting too cold inside. He moved outside but he had not finished reading the paper. So he tossed the main section on the table and went in search of warmer seats.

    I lost track of him and when I remembered to look outside, he was gone. “Oh no,” I thought. “I only have half of the Saturday edition of the New York Times!” I went outside and looked for the rest of the paper. It was nowhere to be found. Then it hit me — “He had to have tossed it in the trash can.” He did. And how did I find out? I fished it out of there! Talk about bad etiquette…

    I came home and described what happened to my son. I told him that I had solved the puzzle of whether I was violating the wishes of the paper’s original owner, at least as far as my New York Times “supplier” was concerned. If he had intended for people to enjoy the paper that he had bought, he would have made an effort to come back into the store and put the secondary pages there together with the rest of the paper. He couldn’t possibly be wanting people to enjoy the first pages and skip the sports and cultural & arts pages, could he? That wouldn’t make sense!

    What he was doing was simply what was most convenient to him. The table inside and the trash can outside required the least amount of effort. After he got what he wanted from the paper, he just wanted to discard it the easiest way possible. So now I don’t feel I am violating his wishes anymore.

    I know, you are thinking there is something fundamentally wrong with people like my son and I who think about this stuff. But I had to find answers and there are no manuals on proprietary rights of discarded newspapers at Starbucks. I am actually more concerned about someone going for the trash can in search of discarded papers than I am about people who think about this stuff. But how could I go without my free copy of the cultural & arts section of the New York Times?

    So now I’m wondering: When will a new customer start coming who likes Times Magazine? Or better yet: Does the fact that I make sure no one is looking when I take the newspaper mean that what I am doing is not right? I guess I have to think a little more on that!

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

    • Julie 4:53 am on May 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Hmmm. I’m thinking that if you feel guilt about it or are careful that no one is looking, the jury may still be out on the personal ethics side. My thoughts (unsolicited, but I obviously couldn’t resist) are that regardless of a person’s intent, they did a good thing in leaving their paper. They are contributing to the economy of others and to recycling while potentially enhancing others’ lives. Perhaps the question would be, “If you were the person coming in after you and not being able to access one of these coveted gems (i.e. newspaper sections), how would you feel?” Another question: “After you use the paper, what do you do with it?” Do you throw it away? What I would be tempted to do is use the paper in the moment and take notes on anything that might be useful. If it’s something where note taking would be too rough, I would not have a big problem with tearing that piece out. I’d feel a bit guilty, but I would reassure myself that at least others who followed me would have the bulk of the paper. Interesting ponderings.

      • ivanildotrindade 5:17 pm on May 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        you conclusion is sound. feeling embarrassed or shamed about something u r doing is always a bad sign. as to your questions, a) the person coming after me does not have the notion of deprivation because s/he didn’t know that they could have been blessed by those “coveted gems.” b) yes, i throw it away. but i recycle it. does that help? what else do u do with do w/ old newspapers? your note-taking suggestion is good. i will do my best 2 read the paper there and leave it there, preferably without any tear… i have a friend who is head of security at a chain of malls in los angeles. he told me abt the time a teenage girl was going around one of the stores and while nobody was looking, she stuffing things in her jacket. when she was leaving, the security guys stopped her and brought her to an office on the back where my friend was ready waiting 4 her. he said he wanted 2 show her something. he showed her a video of her looking back and front, left and right, before she put stuff inside her jacket. then he told her, “u forgot 2 look up, didn’t u?” that’s where the cameras were! so i’m wondering: how the guy upstairs looks at my little newspaper indiscretions? ultimately his opinion is the one that matters, right? i will write him a letter… 🙂

    • ivanildotrindade 5:29 pm on May 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      but on the other hand, maybe i should just let go of my guilty conscience and not worry abt people seeing me take the papers… ha!

    • Julie 8:37 pm on May 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      OK, I admit I have also wondered about Starbuck’s on-the-table newspaper etiquette. You’ve got me laughing out loud. I particularly liked the part about you digging the paper out of the trashcan. The looking side to side that you described with the girl reminds me of people here who metodically drop their trash as they walk. They try to do it “discreetly”, so they know they’re doing wrong. And they’ll pass right by a trashcan and a few steps later throw the trash on the ground. Now here comes my moral dilemma? Should I NOT feel like strangling them? OK, that’s not a moral dilemma, just a strong urge. …Or you could take ALL the papers and return them to the tables later on when you’ve finished with them… or maybe the next week so that you can really mess with people. 🙂

      • ivanildotrindade 9:10 pm on May 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        your feeling is normal. i remember dealing with that in brazil. a friend who owned a car wash in a resort city told me that he used to think it was a problem with only the “C” and “D” economic class, but then he realized he was wrong. he had doctors, lawyers, etc. who would throw stuff on the floor (including dirty diapers) even though the trash can was right next to them. i had a hard time believing that. things have improved significantly in my beloved part of brazil in the last 10 years. but u r dealing with generations of people who didn’t know how to take care of the environment and the resources we have. i used to write notes on the beach and hand to people, after i saw them throwing stuff on the dunes. they were nice notes, but i tried to shame them too… 🙂

    • Duane 8:01 am on May 29, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      I’m thinking that if you went to McDonalds for coffee instead of Starbucks, you could afford to buy coffee, your own paper, AND a cup of coffee for a senior citizen or veteran. With this scenario you wouldn’t feel guilty for taking the paper OR paying too much for a cup of coffee, and feel good for helping another person.

      • ivanildotrindade 11:31 am on May 29, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        that’s good, duane. actually i go there often enough and the coffee is good. but for me the “solution” is not as simple as that. i’ve decided i don’t go to starbucks strictly for the coffee. i go for the way they treat me there. i feel like i am part of a family, and the environment is rich and exactly the type of surroundings i need to think and write. i have meetings with my staff there often, and i meet with another group there every thursday morning. the staff there is so nice and accommodating. on my days off, i can spend hours there reading, thinking, praying. and i know several of the other patrons. we talk, we keep tabs on the elderly lady and her two friends, we talk about the guy who comes in and orders a tall americano in a venti cup so he can fill the rest of it with milk. we are a sort of community. and on top of all that, if i stay long enough there, sitting on the comfortable chairs (which just recently got upgraded to leather!), i can listen to some wonderful brazilian music, not for five minutes only but for a whole long segment. so i have decided that my $3.15 cup of coffee, whenever i can afford it, is worth it. but u r right, your suggestion would go a long way 2 help me with my dilemma. thanks 4 commenting. and this is not a commercial 4 starbucks in general. only 4 the one in wooster. 🙂

  • ivanildotrindade 8:07 pm on December 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , addicted to winter, cup of coffee, flies, make up air, Starbucks, tall mocha   

    Dear Starbucks 

    Dear Starbucks,

    I am sitting at your store in Wooster, Ohio. Just so you know: I am a regular customer, so much so that when I come in the baristas normally ask me whether I am going to have my “usual.” Tall, non-fat, no whip, 180 degrees mocha. That’s my drink of choice. I am easy to please…

    I am sitting at my usual corner, sipping my coffee before I head to work, watching as a friend of mine, an engineer with many years of experience, keeps checking your front door and trying to close it. It is December in Ohio and though the temperatures have been unusually warm, it is still cold and it will not get better until sometime in April, or later…

    I have noticed for a while now that your front door keeps staying open, a crack, a gap, enough to get enough cold air into my hot cup and my cold bones. I have talked to several people here about this, including one of your managers. They tell me that they have tried to address this problem with the landlord. It looks like it is something related to the heater and ventilation system. If they crank the heater, they say, the door stays shut, but then everybody is sweating inside the store. If they keep the temperature right, the door refuses to be shut.

    I am writing to you because I simply refuse to believe that a corporation as big as Starbucks cannot take care of a problem that on the surface seems so easy to solve. I just can’t believe that this is going to go on for the rest of the winter. I am watching my friend and his wife sitting by the door and they seem to be ready to leave. How many other people will leave and not come back or drink inside their car where at least they can control the temperature?

    “Make up air.” That is the name of the problem you’re having, I found out. I mean, it is not even a real problem, it is a make up one. Make up a solution for it!

    But again, maybe not. I remember when you first came to Wooster. There was a typo on all your receipts. You spelled our town’s name “Wooser.” I was so appalled. If for no other reason, simply because it made it sound like “looser.” I kept mentioning it to the manager and anybody who would listen and it took you over a year to correct it.

    I think you have a great store. The employees are cordial, they are efficient and fast without compromising the quality of the product they serve. The sense of team building is obvious in this place. But I can’t stand the cold here, so I must leave.

    But don’t worry: I will be back. Your coffee is addictive. And maybe that’s what you are counting on with all your other customers — they will keep coming back just because you are Starbucks. Maybe they will, especially here since you are pretty much the only game in town. But is that all you want, that they should come back?

    Or maybe they will wait until summer, when the door will no longer be fighting make up air. That problem out of the way, they will only have to worry about all the flies that invade your store during the warmer months of the year. But I am not worried this time around: I got an electric swatter from Thailand and I can’t wait to start using it.

    Oh yes, if it is of any consolation to you, my friends haven’t left yet. They may be addicted too — at least to cold weather!

    See you at the drive through!

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

    • Renee Shilling 8:45 pm on December 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      That is so funny! I was in there on Wednesday and my toes became numb! They began to thaw as I walked to my car in 20• temperature.

      • ivanildotrindade 9:01 pm on December 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply

        funny, renee. i knew i should have asked a space heater 4 christmas, instead, only got gloves…

    • Harold & Sylvia Stoltzfus 11:21 pm on December 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      Professor Ivanildo:
      There is a plethargy of caring for the customer in America. The responsibility for the “Make up air” lies not only at the feet of both the powerful Starbucks company, but also at the feet of the Landlord. Both the Landlord needs happy customers, as well as Starbucks.The sum is this: both need “rectum rockets” to get them to be responsible individuals serving their customers well and with pride.

      Is a regular occurance to find good service in America and it is often some little factor that irritates customers, like a squeaky door at the Wachovia bank or burned out light bulbs in public buildings.. By the way, I have chosen to lease properties thoughout my lifetime. It has amounted to thousands of dollars each year and have yet to receive a Christmas gift! A renter is a customer and holds the care of their property in their hands!
      Nonetheless, I hope Mr. Trindade is able to get a prompt response to getting that door closed!

    • ivanildotrindade 11:54 pm on December 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      i like your response, harold. it has the marks of someone who feels my pain. there are good and bad renters, good and bad landlords; and there are customers like me, who vent on the internet about trivialities. no one can cry alone anymore. happy new year!

    • ivanildotrindade 12:25 pm on January 1, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Jim Hocking commented via e-mail: Nice….you would be surprised about the “quality” of all the parts of what it takes to run a business.

      “Ivanildo…I can tell you that it has become a passion of mine to do the work with integrity but you have no idea what that entails in my work in the heart of Africa.

      However, back to your story, I love what you note and I want to congratulate you on stories well done and you are just so consistent! Thanks for what you do. I would love to be able to do that but I really feel that God has called me to concentrate on some other things that I must keep my nose to the grind stone on.

      Thanks for your blog and I trust that this new year brings you great joy as you serve our God in WoosTer.


      • ivanildotrindade 12:29 pm on January 1, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        jim. loved the way you spelled “WoosterTer.” should start spelling it that way. i can only imagine how “creative” you have to be in certain parts of the world to run a business or a ministry. yes, God has called you to other endeavors, but i am sure one day you will be able to carve out some time to write too. it will be beneficial to your supporters. in order to write, you have to rebel against what your schedule imposes on you. it is never easy and it never seems to matter, until you get a compliment such as yours, which means a lot to me. happy new year!

  • ivanildotrindade 6:24 pm on December 13, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: 20-something, abuse, all i want for christmas, Christ, , christmas wish, , going home, Holidays, , Manhattan, New Year, Starbucks   

    What do I want for Christmas 

    What do I want for Christmas? Nothing, if you ask me. I already got everything I need.

    My wish list for others, however, devours my sleep. Particularly for the army of young people who live in pain too great to measure. There seems to be a shortage of happy 20-something-year-old people these days. I wish that between Christmas and New Year’s all the sadness from abuse and rejection, all the horrible outcomes of ill-advised choices, and all the ticks and tricks from the overuse of drugs be suspended. And yes, I would like the abolition of sexual slavery everywhere and peace on earth too!

    I will never forget meeting a 20-something year old girl at the funeral of a friend who had died of an overdose. I asked her how she knew the deceased and she said, “From AA meetings.” “How can I pray for you?” I asked. As she wiped the tears from her cold face on that April morning, she said, “I don’t know, it’s just hard being a 20-year-old.” I pointed her to Christ that morning, the only one I know whose words carry a supernatural strength that could lift her from the deepest valley of despair to the highest peaks of bliss.

    I met another 20-something on the streets of Manhattan just this past September. Her name is Rex and I wrote about her here. I will never forget that Rex said what she wished the most was being able to sleep one more night in the room that used to be hers in her mother’s house, a place she knows she cannot go back to; a location so close to where she was sitting on the sidewalk on 46th Street that might as well be on another planet. Rex was looking for a home, but would only come to it on her own terms.

    And this last Sunday I met another 20-something. She drove over an hour to come to our church, walked to the coffee kiosk, and softly asked to speak to a pastor, as she cried quietly. Her story could fill the pages of many books. There is mental illness, addiction, promiscuity, loneliness, strangeness from loved ones, and a keen sense of worthlessness that was as tangible as the hot mocha she was trying to drink between her paused sentences.

    And one more that comes to mind, the 20-something female who approached a total stranger at Starbucks — a guy who happened was interning in my department that summer — and asked him bluntly, “My boyfriend wants to bring another girl to live with us so we can be a threesome. I am so dizzy I just came here to think. What do you think I should do?” I don’t know that these were the exact words used, but that was the gist of it.

    Which makes me wonder: Where are the hurting MALE 20-something? They are there, I am sure, they are just not talking to no one… My wish extends to them as well this Christmas.

    I know I am naïve, but if my wish comes true, could I have it extended all through 2012?

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

    • marlin 1:17 pm on December 14, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      there IS but one solution… all others fall short.
      Read Isaiah 61:1-3 SLOW.
      This IS the hope of the lost. This is the hope of the saved. UNLESS I slow down..no stop each day to daily receive the renewable peace and joy that IS the LORD WHO IS SPIRT… I too am without hope.
      If we find joy in him… then he overwhelms us with joy and if we put our peace in his hands he overwhelms us with peace but if we do not look to him then WE ARE THE LOST. If we put our peace and joy in anything else…. peace and joy WILL alude us endlessly till we, turn back. WE ARE THE LOST… ALL OF US… but as with the flick of a light switch when this Lord who is spirit comes in… IN… we are RESTORED!
      Without Christmas… God to us… we would be lost without hope… but we are not!!!!
      The good news is not just a clean slate which is awesome and a wonder but…. a never ending JOY and PEACE despite our world… peace IN our hearts…he came to bring PEACE IN OUR HEART and a JOY THAT OVERCOMES… OVERCOMES WHAT EVER YOU FACE!!! look to him this season and have peace and joy.
      Have a merry, merry…. merry Christmas or not… that is YOUR daily choice.

    • ivanildotrindade 3:54 pm on December 14, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      thanks for posting, marlin. a lot of people who read my blog do not share my faith. that is totally fine with me. what i want is a chance for dialogue, for us to hear each other out and come to our own conclusions. i am not overtly “religious” here on purpose, but i do plant my “pearls” here and there, if one cares to read carefully. this is an awesome season indeed for those who believe in Christ, but i understand that it is just another day for those who think christmas is just another chance to sell merchandise… merry christmas to you as well!

  • ivanildotrindade 8:50 pm on November 28, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: California, living in ohio, , Starbucks, you know you live in ohio if...   

    My ‘you know you are from Ohio if…'” moment 

    Today I experienced one of those “you know you are from Ohio if…” moments. I cleaned my garage (50% done) and was hauling the trash on the back of my truck. I decided to stop at Starbucks to get a cup of coffee. I went in, got my mocha and came out. Next to my truck was parked a nice Toyota driven by a young lady who was there on the driver’ s seat. When she saw me approaching, she lowered her window and said, “You dropped a bag back there on Milltown Road. I didn’t know if it was important.”

    I laughed and said, “Oh no, it was all trash.” Then I immediately felt bad because I saw that she pulled out of the parking lot quickly. It dawned on me that she had followed me only to tell me that I had dropped a bag. She wasn’t there to order a coffee at all!

    I thought, “How rude of me, I didn’t even say thanks.” I was feeling bad when I noticed that the same young lady was on the same intersection with me — she was turning right, I was turning left. My chance to say thanks. I tried to lower the window but by then the light was turning green and she was moving. I managed to use my horn and give her the thumbs up sign.

    Where else would people take a detour in their destination to tell a perfect stranger that he dropped a bag? It was raining hard, the bed of my truck was not covered, there were bags of mostly paper matter, cardboard boxes. One would be justified to think it was just junk. But no, this nice woman from Ohio had to make sure.

    And stories like that abound. One day I got a call on my cell phone from the front desk person at the church where I work. She asked me if I had been to the outlet mall lately. I said, “No.” She said they had found a wallet with some money in it and a copy of a passport that belonged to someone with my last name. It took me one second for me to figure out: my nephew!

    He was visiting us from Brazil and went to this outlet mall about 30 minutes from Wooster. I called him and he was on his way back home from the outlet. He had not yet noticed he was missing his wallet. He went back, got his wallet with all the contents intact. He couldn’t believe it. Neither could I. But that’s what you get when you live in Ohio.

    Just today I went to the Post Office with my niece and people opened the doors for us; two ladies I had never seen before smiled at us as if we were best friends and one lady asked me if I was waiting to use the self-serve check out lane at the supermarket because I was standing close to the area trying to get my wife on her cell phone — and why certain people have cell phones anyway? The lady said, “I just didn’t want to cut in front of you.”

    I have a theory that it is the severe variations in weather patterns that make people somewhat docile. They all pretty much share the same misery from December to March. They figure if they are mean to each other, they will make life even more miserable… That’s certainly not the only reason but it has to be a factor.

    I lived in California. They have the mountains, the beaches, the beautiful landscape and the famous people. But when it comes to kind people, Ohio is light years ahead of California. I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t want to live here, except, of course, for the freezing weather in the winter.

    Ivanildo C. Trindade

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