Thursday, December 18, 2014


I come to all of those within Life’s struggle with the nth amount of love & due respect. I’ve had several individuals & readers tell me since Thanksgiving that they have Seasonal Blues which visit millions of people this time of year. I find it especially so with the elderly & those of us who were embedded with the true essence of the season. I would like to share some of my own thoughts & memories for the Holidays.

As a child growing up in a Village in the upper mid-west it was the grandest time of year. I couldn’t wait for the Village workers to put up the lighted Holiday symbols on our lamp posts. There was nothing like coming home from school at the end of a blistery day, opening the front door & being assaulted by the odors of my mother’s baking wrap around you in warmth & love. My mother would start baking right after Thanksgiving, first with the fruit cakes, cranberry bread, orange slice bread & Boston steamed bread. Then she’d start on cookies, a dozen different varieties & in the end there would be hundreds of them stored in containers throughout the house. Then came the candy; peanut brittle, fudge, sea foam, divinity, chow mein candy & more. 

Growing up, we weren't well off, but we weren't dirt poor either..but we struggled. We couldn't afford to buy gifts outside of our family, so my mother would make up boxes & tins of cookies, candy & bread to give to relatives & friends of the family. My mother was a master baker! Her gifts were greatly appreciated due to her skills in the kitchen & because so many women had entered the work force due to inflation. Outside of the luscious smells that assaulted us when we walked in the door, we were each given a sample from the batches she baked that day. I remember when we would eat supper around the table where we could find a spot since the baked goods consumed the table in all of their glory. My mother wasn’t selfish with her baking or creations, she often allowed us to help her & decorate the cookies…with pieces of candy, frosting & often one of our own decorated masterpieces disappearing into our mouth, over the gums & right into our tummies.

We always had a real Christmas tree decorated with ornaments, handmade decorations & sometimes even strung popcorn. Mom was also involved in craft projects making some of our ornaments, center pieces & wreaths made out of pine cones which was no easy task let me tell you! My father to supplement his income for the season on weekends would cut wood on my grandfather’s farm & sell it to purchase our gifts. I remember one year it was atrociously frigid & my father was cutting wood, when he came into the house & took off his bombardier style hat with the side flaps, his ear lobes had blisters on them from the cold! Then there was the year when he cut up out of lumber a whole gunny sack full of wood blocks that we could erect things to our hearts content…but we didn’t always have the common sense to pick them up. He warned us he would burn them if we didn’t…well eventually he came home to find them on the floor of the front room & true to his word, we were kept warm that night with those blocks!! 

Does anyone remember the fake snow kits that came with stencils that you could either put on your windows or spray your tree with? That’s the only thing I didn’t enjoy about the Holidays, it was my job after the Holidays to often scrape those stenciled beauties off the windows with a razor blade & clean the windows, try doing that in sub-zero temperatures!!

We always had my mother & father’s parents over on Christmas Eve…a light supper then the Dining Room table would be laden with oranges, a bowl of mixed nuts, mom’s breads all sliced on plates, candy & cookies placed on numerous plates. It was an incredible sight for a child to behold…all those sweets, treats & love in one place for us to devour. Then Santa would come to give us our presents…we could also open the gifts from my Grandparents. We would then be able to hit the heavily laden table & make pigs of ourselves. It was a grand thing to have all of that sugar in our system, because then we would go to mid-night mass with my mother’s parents.

Christmas Day, relatives would come to our house along with my grandparents…my mother was a master chef as well!! Later in life she must have thought so too for she had her own catering business! Oh yes, those were the times with so many precious memories. Christmas wasn’t about not being able to see the trunk of the Christmas Tree with more than our share of presents & gifts…it was about family, giving to others & celebrating the true essence of a baby’s birthday.

I don’t know when the evolution of our Holiday’s here in America began. There was a time when stores didn’t bring out the decorations & toys until after Halloween…there was a time when we thought of who we would see at Christmas time & not what we would receive. There was a time when people everywhere looked forward to the Holiday’s & not the economic burden & expectations starting after the Fourth of July. Unless you were well off you didn’t think of materialistic elements to make your child happy or become their babysitters. Today the perception that love is shown by purchasing an electronic device for a child’s happiness or babysitter on the home front does not meet the elements of love that so many seek or the quality time spent with family & friends.

 Now on the Holiday set aside to give thanks for a bountiful harvest & another year of survival is spent camping out in front of large stores & corporate chains thanking them for kidnapping the meaning of our two most cherished Holidays. Too many prefer the company & comfort of a shard of plastic then a chat with Uncle Guido or perfumed hugs from Aunt Harriet! The financial burden of high expectations at Christmas has robbed too many of the true essence & meaning of Christmas. 

Many choose to avoid family gatherings altogether & prefer to send a gift card with little thought of the recipient. We were always told it’s not the gift that counts, but the thought behind it!! How much thought do you suppose goes into a little card of plastic? I know one family that sends out 50 gift cards a yr…each for $25.00 while they’re at Nassau spending some quiet time on the beach for the holiday. I remember when you didn’t ask Santa for a large gift because they cost so much, today the little electronic gizmos & babysitters can cost a fortune. It seems as if everything in life is getting smaller…

There’s one thing the Holiday Evolution cannot take from my person…those endearing memories of so long ago of family, warmth, laughter, love & the celebration of a baby’s birthday. The gifts I received as a child so long ago are no longer, but the joyous memories, smells & sounds of the Holiday Season are with me still.

I leave you as I came with the nth amount of love & due respect.

Lady Gray/Rosemarie P.

Monday, September 29, 2014

White Washed Journey

History Erased

I come to all of those within Life’s Struggle with the nth amount of due respect & love for life. I would like to share my thoughts on a movement in this Nation by States & school boards to erase many chapters within the history of our Nation. Individuals who would like to portray our historic journey as a ‘cake walk’ & in a more positive light.

History is the Scientific Journey of’s trials, failures & discoveries.

Being a history fanatic since my elementary years in school, I find this new ‘white wash’ concept as somewhat traitorous to those of my Nation who came before me & made insurmountable sacrifices. Sacrifices that those who wish to erase chapters within our history books would not have the strength to endure nor would they presently be able to enjoy their present positions or stature in life. Let us erase public dissent, Indian Wars, the American Revolution, Civil War, Slavery, Civil Rights, the 60’s, WWI & II & the Industrialization of America & the Reformation of Worker Rights. Let us forget the sacrifices & blood that fertilizes our soil from shore to shore & border to border. Let us forget the ‘horrific’ chapters & events within our borders that united its citizenry & Nation into a powerful nucleus to cope & overcome.

Let us forget the evolving nature of our people & Nation. How numerous times the citizenry & leaders fought to correct & amend the wrongs which were put in place before our own birth & arrival. How we humbled ourselves to the citizenry & the World by admitting our errant choices, events & ideologies. . Human Rights…this portrait was not created without struggle, sacrifice or compromise. It wasn’t always a pretty journey, but for the most part it works. Let us forget how millions of inhabitants around the World want to live & achieve their dreams within this Nation.

We often hear about the ‘lost generation’ in America today. We complain because they have no reason or purpose, no respect or desire to be rooted. Keep deleting the journey of our Nation, the chapters & events which give us roots, pride, respect & a sense of belonging…reason & purpose & you will see the future degradation within the characters & morals of future generations also. I am always amazed & appreciative of the earnest interest & respect shown by youth when I share historic events & chapters of our journey with them. Very few children & youth today can tell you about the journey & struggle of their family’s history…their nationality, immigration journey, struggles or enslavement, nor the heroes or sacrifices made by family members who walked before them. When I
attended elementary school it was a 1st grade assignment to know your nationality/ies. We are known as the ‘melting pot’ of the World…before you partake & enjoy a bowl of soup, do you not want to know the ingredients?,

Over the years I have been chided for sharing certain events on our historic journey, especially when it comes to government, slavery, massacres and Wars within & out of our Nation. ‘Lady, we want to forget that time in our Nation, our lives, we just want to live for the here & now.’ If we forget those struggles & events they will surely be repeated in the future, maybe not in our lifetime, but in a generation to come. Many Wars & Rebellions are repeated or continue because errant concepts & ideologies out of the past have not evolved & been amended.

I have always believed that in order to proceed on a journey or with an agenda, to see progress as a Nation, we must first know how far we’ve come so that we may also know how far we must journey to reach our destination & expectations. If you want to erase legs of our journey & chapters within our history books to resemble ‘Xanadu’ or a ‘Fantasy Nation’, then you’re in the wrong profession, you need to become an employee of an Attraction Park or a Fiction Author!! Growth & Advancement in life is not achieved unless we can learn from our past; both positive & negative…leave our history books alone. Do not White Wash the events & sacrifices of those who have journeyed before us.

History is doomed to repeat itself when man is not taught nor does he heed the lessons which are rooted there…

I leave you as I came with the nth amount of respect & love for life.

Lady Gray/Rosemarie P.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

My Thoughts on the NFL & Abuse

I come to all of those in Life’s Struggle with the nth amount of love & respect for life.

I wish to discuss in this piece the recent events in the NFL & abuse at large. I would like it known that I’ve always been an avid fan of College & Professional Football. Perhaps that is due to the fact that I was raised in Wisconsin home of the Badgers & the Packers. I’ve also seen the roller coaster ride of the social & judicial mentality when it comes to domestic abuse, especially when it involves the partners in a relationship or union. I would like to share some of my present thoughts with you on this issue.

Many within society often see those within Professional Sports as Super Heroes or mentors for those who wish to follow in their shoes. However, they are mere mortals with exceptional talents & skills within a profession they love. Many of them have made self-sacrifices & great strides in order to reach their destination. Some of them have suffered just as many within the public domain regarding mental, physical & sexual abuse…many of them have also been victims of their environment & upbringing. We fail to take into account the total scope of their journey & only now focus on the games & their actions.

Although I now commend this Professional dimension in society for taking action & bringing domestic violence to the forefront of the public, we cannot solely rely on the NFL to curb the mentality or the violence that exists in our society. At the moment I believe that is what is happening…we’re looking to the NFL as a ‘cure-all’ & ‘trailblazer’ to abolish an issue that has been with us since the beginning of time on earth. Such violence & actions do not only occur within the NFL but are too common from the bottom of Life’s Food Chain to the apex of Life’s Ladder. No one entity will change the mentality that has embedded our perceptions of life or the role we play in those portraits. The mentality that curses too many, brings them misery & even disabilities & death can only become lessened through widespread education & the empowerment of individuals of both sexes.

There is no dimension within our existence that has not known or suffered from this issue. There is no class, race, creed or economic status that has not had such violence or events visit their realm. For centuries women have been treated as second class citizens & have been viewed as ‘property’ over the years by law enforcement & the judicial realms. There was a time in our Nation when men could murder their wives & it was known as a ‘crime of passion’ if it involved her cheating or stepping out on her husband. The same can be said for males who fall victim to emotional, physical & sexual abuse. Due to the fact that males were portrayed & profiled as being the stronger, dominant individual in our society, their own plight was often ignored & was often the brunt of (sic) jokes if they professed the crimes & indignities they were forced to endure.

I remember when the ‘Burning Bed’ made its debut & the uproar it caused across our Nation. Women who suffered many years of abuse who caused injury or killed their spouse did not receive the same justice as men who exercised the ‘crime of passion’ alibi. For centuries women have been forced to accept their ‘sub-servant’ roles to man & the mentality of society as a whole. When women spoke out about the issue, they were labeled as ‘bra burners’, ‘women in red’ & rebels who were tooting their own horn. Since the beginning of time women have had an uphill battle not to be seen as statistics but individuals. I don’t believe the majority of women want to be treated as equally as men on all levels in life, but they do want to be respected as equally & recognized for their self-worth. In my lifetime, I have held several jobs which were classified as ‘male’ employment. I did not receive the same wage & was often berated when I out performed them. I do believe there are things in life that either one sex or the other is better qualified to do or perform, not that it can’t be done by a female, just not as efficiently or as fast. However if a female does perform job tasks or meets all of the qualifications of their profession, I do believe they should be paid equally to their male counterpart.

I understand the elite & prominent role the NFL & sports in general play in our society, but why are we  now so ‘down in the mouth’ about the NFL. If we look to Hollywood & the entertainment industry where abuse has been rooted, we do not protest Movie Studios, Directors or Producers to ban any of their stars for their domestic or acts of violence. Does not the public receive greater exposure to this realm of life than NFL offerings? What about the music industry…many times we hear of violence against a mate or partner & yet we rush out to purchase their music with no barn storming or broad protests or legislative hearings & investigations. We seem to accept such behavior & uncivil actions in these realms as part of the ‘life’ or ‘norm’ in their dimensions. So why do we focus just on the NFL? Is it the salaries? The enormous amount of revenue raised or the beginning of reform for the issue of ‘violence’? 

This is an enormous issue which has many elements which contribute to its ongoing presence in our society & private lives. It is an issue where if all of the elements could be identified & dealt with on a nat’l scale it would be one of our most costly expenses outside of War. When you think of the physical & mental health issues, judiciary proceedings, the effects socially & economically on a family that must be assisted & healed you are dealing with astronomical amounts of funding. Perhaps that is why this issue has thrived for so long in our civilization. Perhaps its pride & individual weaknesses that we wish not to expose that so many have embraced or fallen victim to…but it is an issue that will not upright itself or go away just because we ‘wish’ it to be so.

It starts with each one of us…the transformation of our own mentality & perceptions of such violence & actions Perhaps if we started to see one another again as individuals & not just a number or statistic for number crunchers & politicians to point at. Maybe the 2 Golden Rules must be focused on once again…Do unto others as you would have them do unto you…Respect received is respect that can be given. Domestic violence & abuse have had centuries to strengthen & reinforce their chains within life, they won’t break on their own overnight, but if we can remove some of the links that enable it to exist with such impact & suppression on the masses, perhaps as a society & civilization we can truly earn our spot as the top of Life’s Circle & Food Chain.

So now I will sit back & observe this new movement, to see if it will stop at the gates of Stadiums & their boardrooms or travel to other dimensions where domestic violence is also prevalent. I do know that within the NFL itself & the players there is more good than what is currently being perceived. The players who give back to their communities, schools & neighborhoods both personally & monetarily is greatly appreciated & often overlooked.  I will pay attention to the direction the NFL & the Nation take on the issue of Domestic Violence & continue to enjoy the sport of Football.

I thank you for your time & patience while I share my thoughts on this issue with you. I leave you as I came with the nth amount of love & respect for life…

Lady Gray/Rosemarie P.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Lady on the Mid-East Upheavals...

Lady on the Mid-East upheavals…

You can lead a horse to water, but you cannot force him to drink even if he is dying of thirst. A large region in the World steeped deeply in the struggle, sacrifices & journey of mankind once again is experiencing the shifting of landscape & political power upheavals. A barren region for the most part given life by man through his strength & sheer will power. I once was told that no man, clan, tribe or people should control an ‘oasis’ or the will of a people. The dates, water & cool shade should be shared by all for it is essential to the survival of the regions heritage. Too many have known very little but pain, suffering & the destruction of War, yet they fervently believe in a time of peace to come. There is much wealth that lies beneath the shifting sands; some of it has come through the creation of irrigation systems by man. There has been too much wailing by women & children, too much war which only leaves images of destruction of legacies for the history books. 

Too many children ‘exist without dreams of living’ because they have never known peace. Prosperity for all people cannot exist if it does not have peace for a period of growth & if all people do not have a hand in the creation, fertilization & maintenance of growth to benefit from its fruition. It is time to break bread & enjoy cabsah with neighbors, to smile & talk of a future which will leave joyous chapters in the history books for children to behold. Lady Gray

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Attn all FB Friends, Readers & Observers: Since I moved to my new location I have not been online as much as I would prefer to be. I have been receiving questions & complaints from individuals in regards to ‘individual’s friend requests & non-profit associates’. Those who have followed me for any length of time know that I will not send any individual, non-profit, Orgz or Foundation to you without first notifying you personally & discussing it with you.

My pages on the internet are Public & not everyone who follows me is closely associated with my person. I have many individuals here who do have programs for their country, communities & neighborhoods…that does not mean that I endorse their personal character, but that I respect their efforts to move life. I encourage everyone to always look into any non-profit or Orgz thoroughly before gifting any funds…I prefer that individuals donate to well-known local charities in their own communities.

Since the fall of 2010 I only help individuals within the Judicial/Penal realms that are ‘Independents’ & not associated with any group or Organization. I am a Democrat & Liberal…I do not believe that President Barack Obama was a street member of the GD’s at any time!! So for those of you who have asked me about this claim…’I see it as a recruiting effort’ by the Orgz’s that make such claims. If this claim were to be true the SS, T-thugs & Repugs would have been all over this like flies on shit.  Please do not direct such questions to me anymore. I do not believe in violence as a cure-all to any issue that we may face. I believe that our pro-gun society & ideologies need a facelift. The alibi by the pro lobbyists of keeping weapons out of the hands of felons no longer has any weight with me. The majority of our mass shootings & weapons being brought into our educational realms are by non-felons who can legally attain & purchase such a weapon. What can you not do with one bullet that you can do with 10-15-30?

For those ‘cowardly eyes’ who follow me & observe but do not report the truth…no outside individual, group or entity needs to ‘divide & conquer’ your realm…you’ve become masters at doing it yourself!! I do not allow anyone to berate or disrespect anyone on my pages…nor is sexual literature or graphics welcome!! I have many here of all ages, races, creeds & nationalities…from time to time I will let ‘ignorance run its course’ so that everyone may behold the small mind from whence it comes. There is NO BULLYING on my site…you may post ideologies, news & political views different from my own…but do not harass individuals who are on my sites. Perhaps the citizens can do what the politicians cannot, we can compromise, seek tolerance & have more compassion for our fellow man…catastrophic events should not be the only time when humanity & the human touch visit our lives.

I will be online more now in the future…I will be writing more also & addressing issues that we face in our daily lives & existence. If you have concern over content on my pages please feel free to contact me. I will discuss the content or issue with you. I thank you for all of your messages & keeping an eye on my pgs while I am gone. Thank you for remaining with me & touching my life….

Lady Gray                                                                                                     

Friday, May 9, 2014

 A New Frightening Trend

I come to all of those within Life’s Struggle with the nth amount of due respect & love. Within the following piece I wish to discuss an issue & trend within the realms of education that have me extremely concerned. I am placing my thoughts & concerns within to invoke thought & dialogue for all who read this. I thank you for your time & patience.

As many of my Friends & readers know I live in the Low Country in South Carolina. A region well known for its history, scenery & climate. The last 6 mos as I tune in to the Low Country news, it seems that a week does not go by when there is not a report of a ‘gun’ being taken & found on school property. What I find even more alarming is the age of the student in possession of the firearm. Firearms are being taken more & more to school by students in Elementary & Middle School grades. We have been most fortunate not to have any casualties from these incidents however as the incidents occur more frequently that will surely change.  The firearms in some cases belong to parents or older youth who do not take responsible actions of owning their firearms & properly secure them. More & more the weapons appearing on school property & buses are semi-automatics & may have accompanying ammo, which have been the weapon of choice in tragic events in our Nation & Educational realms.

In a couple of the cases the younger students may give the weapon a ‘Show n’ Tell’ status, finding it a fascinating ‘toy’. Those students within the Middle School realms find them as a means of ‘protection’ from peer elements or ‘bullying’ at large. I find it a sad & deplorable situation when any student feels he has to resort to such a dangerous means in a realm that promotes safety & protection for all children & youth. There was a time in this Nation when parents & caretakers could send their children off to school with some comfort that is no longer the case!! Children who come from dysfunctional environments & abusive situations could find some escape, comfort & joy from their daily treks to their schools & classrooms. But with firearms being brought within Educational Institutes are more frequent & such tragedies as Sandy Hook occur we must as a society realize that such events & actions affect the lives & performance of students. The ‘Boogey Man’ is no longer just under the bed or in a closet, but their ‘safe haven/place’.

There are many programs that have been initiated across the Nation to deter ‘bullying & halt ‘firearms’ within our Educational realms. Some of them have seen success, while other students tell me it only intensifies ‘bullying’ & puts them at greater risk. Some students claim that when they relate their ‘bullying’ incidents to adults within their environments, the adults hear, but do not listen. Other youth have told me when they go to their parents or other adults they’re told that the adults suffered like ‘bullying’ when attending school & survived, the recipient of ‘bullying’ will survive also. As one teen from Detroit once told me, ‘I would like to help make things better, but as I look around me I don’t see adults moving very much.’ Often left the silent burden of their own emotions the victim of ‘bullying’ & peer pressure will find a way to rid themselves of their pain & suffering. If that means carrying a weapon to school so that they can feel they have a fighting chance, then that is what they’ll do. Others who do not have support or access to a weapon may seek out suicide to stop the pain & hurt.

An inmate once relayed a story to me from his youth of a tragic event that happened to him in his early teens. He was popular in school due to his participation in sports & was attending Middle School. One day after school he was walking home his best friend’s sister. Some older teens pulled up in a car & began shooting at them. The young girl age 11 was hit by bullets & killed. The next day when he returned to school he was greeted by fellow classmates as a conquering hero. He said “Lady, I was no hero…I was all tore up & crying inside.’ Twenty years later he still weeps when the memory comes to visit him.

I've discussed this issue the last 5 yrs with youth & adults. I cringe when I get embroiled in a discussion with a pro-gun extremist who has no problem telling me that they indeed would arm their child while attending school. Youth have a different outlook & silent fear they’re often burdened with. Students are constantly reminded to be on their toes & alert in regards to any possible situation, bullying & the possession of firearms. Many of them feel that they do not enjoy the same educational experience that the adults around them often refer to from their school days. More & more students are often carrying some type of protection with them including razors, knives, sprays & more deadly weapons…firearms. Too many students & young adults have been misinformed regarding the legalities of the laws protecting & concerning juveniles. There are 16 States in the US that may prosecute youth as young as 11yrs old for committing a crime as an adult.

You will find some members within the Law Enforcement & Professional realms that will tell you the incidents of weapons being brought into schools are relatively low when you factor in the ratios of weapons to students. I personally believe that perspective is extremely detrimental to the issue of weapons in our schools. I wonder at what point it would reach a concern & crisis for them.

What about the fears & silent pain our youth face today? The student who cries on the inside because the smiling face that once sat beside them is no longer in this life. Adults often have a difficult time coping with the death of a loved one, the finality of it all…how much more so for the young who believe they have a lifetime before them? When Life goes on tilt there’s no turning back no matter how many quarters you put in the slot or prayers you put up. How many parents & children must experience loss & pain before society as a whole changes their perspective & ideologies on firearms & weaponry? 

Many parents see their children as tomorrow’s caretakers & part of their legacy…how many chapters must go unwritten before they begin to ‘listen’ & seek change? As individuals & a society, when we do not seek or demand change, our youth see our stance as a ‘seal of approval’ for their conditions & actions. What role has Hollywood & the media played in regards to ‘gun toting’ individuals & gun control? What about the ‘glorified’ profiles that often are revealed within music & on the screen?

Americans rattled the halls of Washington DC over the deaths & disabilities our military endured in 2 wars. Every year in our Nation over 3,000 children lose their lives to firearms, is their value & loss any different? Whose child & how many children must we see maimed & murdered by firearms before we see new regulations within ‘gun control’? Have we made firearms the ‘crutch & cure-all’ for our fears & insecurities as a society? As our fears & insecurities increase, so do the size & capacity of our weaponry.

I wanted to share with you a few of my thoughts on the issues of children & juveniles who no longer feel safe within our schools & have fellow classmates bringing firearms into their realms. There is no clear-cut answer or resolution to this problem which grows with the silence of generations. Nor are we likely to see change when this topic is taboo socially & politically. How many more generations must pass for mankind before he returns to sticks & stones?

I leave you as I came with the nth amount of respect & love for life.
Lady Gray

Saturday, May 3, 2014


‘Social Snipers’

I come to everyone/everywhere with the nth amount of due respect & love for life. Within this piece I wish to implement ’flipping the script’ on portraits in the ‘social art galleries’. Therefore at this time I wish to discuss ‘bullies’ & ‘bullying’….

All of the ideologies & analogies that follow in regards to bullies are based upon my own observations, concepts & from being the recipient of their extraordinary talents. There has been an enormous amount of social & media attention lately focused on this issue due to the amount of violence & suicides by youth & young adults. Bullying however is not just confined to youth & social venues they visit; you can also find it in the work place, board rooms, political pits, professional ‘arenas’, military & religious venues. Bullying is almost as old as mankind itself, passed down over the generations, centuries & millenniums.

They can be anyone, a sibling, parent, relative, neighbor, friend, teacher, preacher, fellow employee, boss, officer of the law, politician or an individual sitting right next to you. They come in all shapes, sizes & ages. Bullying is fueled by many factors some of them are; character weaknesses, ignorance, fear, low self-esteem, envy, greed & just plain meanness.

To a certain degree I am grateful for the character often displayed by Bullies…not for the impact that they may have on an individual, but because they freely & willfully expose their own presence, agenda & weaknesses. Unlike a ‘terrorist’ who merges quietly within their environment & social scene, you do not have to look under rocks or rattle a bush to find them. I consider ‘Bullies’ to be nothing more than ‘social snipers’.  However, when youth carry their ‘bullying ammo’ with them into maturity, they can become mass ‘serial haters’. They become so enamored with the ‘false portrait’ of empowerment that ‘bullying’ gives them, they point their fingers more & more at other individuals & fail to strengthen their own image & character. Today these cowardly ‘social snipers’ have a new venue in which to launch their desperate acts…the internet, but still their character weaknesses are exposed. You can find these Super Bullies & Serial Haters by going to the Southern Poverty Law Center site & clicking on their Hate Group map link. You may also check at the same time into cases which they are pursuing on behalf of children & youth within the education realms & bullying…they have a top notch anti-bullying project.

Homo Sapiens are of the Animal Kingdom, therefore during their existence they also often become the victims of a ‘pecking order’. It often starts as soon as we can walk & is often referred to as ‘sibling rivalry’. But when competition enters a stage of empowerment gratification it can be classified as ‘bullying’. Many may see this as a period of growth in strength & character…they fail to see the hidden scars & wounds that can take a lifetime to heal & actually stunt the growth they hope to create.

You will be hard pressed to make your journey on this plane we call life & not observe or be the recipient of ‘bullying’. Spring risings, dissensions & rebellions are created by the recipients of ‘sustained bullying’. Cruel words, sic jokes & acts or an iron fist are not the only elements of bullying. It comes with many guises….violence to inflict fear & inferiority, economic gaps, limited human rights & restrictive knowledge, injustice, starvation & enforced poverty…the silent killers of ‘bullying’. It can come as a ‘lone wolf or run in a pack like wild dogs.”

‘The destruction of man lies within the grasp of his fingers, the power he holds within his imagination & only the knowledge he has capacitated through time will conquer’ (Lady Gray 1974). It is often said that individuals who do not retain the knowledge & mistakes of the past are doomed to repeat them in the future. Thus history in some form is always repeating itself.

Bullies are a rampant disease within mankind…no amount of research, miracle discovery or justice can abolish its existence. For every cure we discover ten more pop up!! Its extinction can only come from man itself.  I believe in strength in numbers & the recipients of bullying are more numerous than the stars in the Universe. We must flip the script on bullies! Come to the rescue of their recipients, support them & help strengthen them on their journey in life. ‘Pay it forward…Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.’ Strengthen our characters & not pick up the torches of the bullies which harbor their many internal weaknesses. “What comes around, goes around many times tenfold”, life’s justice can be more powerful than any written by man.

If any of you are experiencing or observing bullying please bring it the attention of someone you hold dear, your parents, teachers or law enforcement authorities…you do not have to bear the burden & pain alone. Every human life is precious…each plays a vital role & is a link in the circle of life. Every time we lose a link, the circle of life is weakened & man carries the burden of the loss.

I thank you for allowing me to share some of my thoughts on this issue & disease. We can no longer look the other way at bullying & the tragedies it claims within mankind. We can all start by ‘doing the right thing’.
I leave you as I came with the nth amount of respect & love for life itself….

Lady Gray

“It would be nice if we could all check our hearts at the door…but we find they give us life.” Lady Gray

“There’s a heart behind the fool you see or the individual with differences from your own.” Lady Gray
‘Southern Charm’
A ‘Treal Perspective’
I come to all of those within Life’s Struggle with the nth amount of love & due respect. Within the following article my words & observations are not meant to offend, but to merely share my perspective on ‘Southern Charm’ a new reality series on television. It is my goal to ‘flip the script’ on Hollywood’s version of ‘Southern Charm’ & some of the images & portraits which have been produced over the last 300 yrs.

The reality series Southern Charm has brought a great deal of controversy to the Low Country in South Carolina. From an economical perspective ‘it can only be beneficial to businesses, from the citizenry perspective concern is raised as to how it will represent & portray the ‘treal’ charm of southerners in the Low Country & SC. My definition of Southern Charm will most certainly clash with the glitz & glamor of Hollywood’s definition & image.

The series follows families & members of the Low Country elite or ‘upper crust’ within our society. Their daily lives & extravagant lifestyles. What you will not see is what is below the ‘crust’, the tapioca that is used to stop the filling from running. Some of the individuals have built ‘social economic chests’ upon the shoulders of the impoverished & common citizenry. They should not be compared to self-made moguls such as Gates or Buffet since they are generational economic beneficiaries. One thing is certain, the plantation mentality that many contend with here in South Carolina will come to the screen weekly.

‘Southern Charm’ is the epitome of the haves & have not’s. You will not see a resident of less economic resources or position ‘breaking into a museum after the bars close with their mate because they’re feeling their oats on ‘Cloud 9’ & not be the slave of the judiciary realms. You will see the portraits of large houses, high end clothing & in your face pompous lifestyles, not the visions of 64% of our children who attend public schools living in poverty. SC is ranked 2nd in the Nation for hunger. Since 2009, 300 children have died who had ties to the Dept of Social Services. You will not see that we rank #1 in the Nation for domestic violence & heinous crimes against women of all economical classes. You will not see those who struggle every day on sub-standard wages to maintain a menial existence with dreams of living.

I too fell in love with ‘Southern Charm’ as a young teen. I didn’t fall in love though with the Hollywood & media images of an elite few, but the victims of those portraits. The majority of those who live in the South have ‘charm’ deeply rooted in their characters & lifestyles, the ‘spirit stick’ which gives them strength & courage. They do not live in gilded cages of grandeur or flaunt their self-worth in character, it all boils down to their perception of the essence of life itself.

The true ‘charms’ of Southern living…those who are in the ‘middle class’ & ‘poverty who would not only give you the shirt off their back, but their last slice of bread & red cent. Those who are tired after working a full day & still greet you as you pass with a smile & a kind word. Individuals who have clean scrubbed bare wooden floors & tidy yards that did the work themselves & helped their misfortunate neighbor to do the same. They ask you about your health, if you need anything & bless you for your presence. They do not want to be acknowledged by fanfare or media items…after all, ‘that’s just what people do’…the right thing.

‘Southern Charm’ for the majority is not measured by a fat wallet & bank account; it is a deeply rooted ‘human right’ & spirit of those who have struggled for centuries, their prideful legacy. Their pride, respect & love are earned not purchased! Many are disheartened within their struggle, yet their ‘charm’ floats to the top & becomes an enchanting element for those who visit from a metropolis where isolation & seclusion exist in their daily lives. It would be wishful thinking I reckon if the ‘spirit sticks’ of ‘Charms’ could be collected on those visits & implemented elsewhere. Random acts of kindness are a ‘personal charm’ also. I only hope that the viewing public of the reality series ‘Southern Charm’ will not let the images of the ‘treal charms’ be suppressed & oppressed. That they do not limit their visits & experiences here to the images of the reality show…the real South is so much deeper & beautiful.

I thank you all for your patience, loyalty & presence within my existence. I leave you as I came with the nth amount of respect & love.

Lady Gray
Comment: “I have no desire to watch Fat Cats & their Kittens dining at 5 Star Restaurants stuffing their faces & lapping their cream when so many in our Nation are currently struggling with soaring food prices. Enough of ‘Reality & Crime’ Shows already…My bad, perhaps the well-to-do are struggling to put food on their tables as well & the ‘Southern Charm’ series is a way for them to maintain their present lifestyles. Rosie The Talking Mule

What happens to SC politicians with a blemished record & tainted character? The citizenry sends them to DC where square pegs can fit into round holes! The head chieftain of the Southern Charm clam who previously stepped down from his State Office position due to a cocaine conviction once again would like to join the political ranks as a Senator from SC. You’re absolutely correct in your observation Thomas that ‘reality isn’t reality TV’…Single at 51 with a newborn baby girl from a young woman more than half his age he has aspirations to represent the fine ‘forgiving’ citizens of SC in DC. If he can meet the requirements of a Senatorial campaign & is duly elected he will join the other tarnished soul in DC from SC..Sanford!! Mr. Revenel you could become a media pioneer by actually keeping it 100 with your audience & the citizens of SC. You should not be focusing on a select few when your desire is to represent the whole. Keep it 100 Thomas…
Lady Gray

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

'Blueprints' & Traditions...The Rise of a Nation

I come to all of those within Life’s Struggle with the nth amount of due respect & love for Life. For over a decade now I have been addressing blue prints, concepts, strength in numbers along with collective knowledge & growth. Change is not always easily embraced due to Fears which we harbor as humans, we often become too comfortable within our prisons & seeing the stumbling blocks which deter our daily progress & growth. We either have to physically hold or observe the product of change before we are willing to take a leap into unchartered waters to break the chains which hold us in bondage.

‘Take the knowledge of today & apply it to the ‘wisdom & growth’ of yesterday….I have always been fascinated with periods in American History where progress & unprecedented growth have taken place. The blueprints, concepts & foundation of society during these times which contributed to these spurts. It was during these periods that colorful & powerful portraits were painted of the United States.

In order to find solutions to some of the struggles we face in modern times, we must look into yesterday & the survival of those who have come before us. ‘The more things change, the more they stay the same’. In a society where we look for rapid satisfaction & momentary gratification the benefits of ‘time’ elude our thought process. Outside of a catastrophic event of nature or health, we must realize that we have not come to this point in life overnight. For the majority of humans our journey is as old as time itself.

The U.S. is often referred to as the ‘melting pot of the World’, yet many countries, nations & continents throughout the course of the World’s History have seen an integration of peoples, knowledge & growth. In the past we have been known for being more receptive during certain periods within chapters of our history to such integration & migration. Due to these chapters of ‘receptive integration & migration’ our Nation was able to rise to the level of a ‘power house’ with ‘strength in numbers & collective knowledge & wisdom’.

‘Teach one, pull one up’….How did those who came before us survive without a ‘safety net’…welfare, food stamps, housing & education opportunities? Life’s Struggles to exist have increased for many individuals & families today as the monetary & economic gap widen. Out of our dark time, if we look into the past we will see a ray of light. I have found an example of that light which can bring a spurt of growth once more for those who dream of living.

I recently purchased a movie which chronicles members of a family who migrated to the US with a ‘blueprint’ & perseverance in their hearts.  The epitome of just one blueprint which contributed to the foundation of a Nation. The name of the movie is ‘Avalon’ & I highly recommend it to all of those within the struggle. Their blueprint of ideologies, concepts & traditions is not only profound, but successful. Not everything is rosy however when individual family members begin to deter from the original agendas.

Over the last decade families & their members often find themselves once again living under the same roof. In a majority of these cases, it has strengthened their bond & foundation. In some instances you may find several generations under one roof beneficial to their existence & survival. College students, newlyweds & those recently divorced coming back to the nest to roost. In some cases it is beneficial for the more mature adults & elderly members of the family, enabling them to maintain & retain their own residence. ‘The family that plays together, stays together’ is very fitting for those within poverty & who struggle today.

The ideology of having more than one generation in the nest, is as old as mankind. The survival & legacy of the family was created by the co-operation & contribution of all its members. Individuals were able to contribute to the survival of all while stacking funds for their own pursuits. Those coming into adulthood & of marriage age were encouraged to save for their future education, house, possible family & business. Often businesses were not the sole ownership of one, but of several with a dream who pooled their resources. Family members were brought into the business for employment. What amazed me about the family in Avalon was while the ‘generations’ lived under one roof they were still concerned & able to make donations to neighborhood & community charities. They concerned themselves with the ‘strengthening’ of the family, by ‘bringing one over & pulling them up’.

With the deviation of a ‘blueprint’s’ original intention, whether it is the erection of a building, the legacy of a family or the strengthening of a community, you will see the weaknesses of endangerment & deterioration. You might consider adding another project on to the blueprint, but when you keep deleting portions of the original intent, purpose & goal, you will be hard pressed to leave anything standing at the end of your journey.

For my older followers & readers, ‘Avalon’ will bring back fond memories of those whom have walked before us. A time when the daily struggles meant pride, family, hope & a better future. The antics of the children & the fear of change in the elderly over technological advances will bring a smile to your lips. A time when children encouraged & clamored around their elders to hear of their journey & experiences. Everyone had a role, purpose & reason which kept the foundation strong. The respect, appreciation & wonder given to a Nation by individuals who were given the opportunity to pursue their dreams. Before we can change the future & pursue solutions to the issues we face today, I feel that we must look into yesterday to see just how far we’ve come so we know how far yet we have to travel.

I truly hope that you will search for & view the movie Avalon…stick with it & pay attention to the family’s foundation & their original blueprint & traditions. Wisdom & change cannot be attained if the knowledge we possess is not implemented with commitment & perseverance. I would like to thank you for your presence & patience as I share my words with you. All of the family members in this movie are real, they did exist & so did their blueprint. This blueprint was followed by many who fled oppression & suppression in their motherland, who chose the path for a better tomorrow & a chance to follow their dreams.

I leave you as I came with the nth amount of due respect & love for life….Lady Gray

Thursday, January 9, 2014

'Seasoned Men'

I come to those within Life’s Struggle with the nth amount of due respect & love for life. I would like to wish everyone health & progress for this New Year. As the New Year progresses, it is my desire to share more life with you, more so than I have in the past. Not just with my views on the political front, but on the home front as well. No matter where I go or whom I speak with, the consensus seems to be that society & our home front is in a state of regression & deterioration. It seems to weigh heavily on the minds & hearts of those who are now over the age of 45.

I was recently invited to join a discussion with a small group of males consisting of several veterans & several ex-felons. I was astonished to hear the topics they discussed which consisted of the increase in violence & crimes here in the Low Country along with certain endangered elements which lead to the growth in an individual’s character. More astonishing was the concern & fear expressed by these grown seasoned men & the sorrow often heard within their voices.

A 68 yr old Black Vietnam Veteran was difficult to listen to as he expressed his emotions on life today. He insisted that there was no difference between War & life on the streets today. Someone is always trying to justify death & the taking of life with excuses. He experiences more memories now of his actions in Nam than he did for so many years after his return from soldiering. He calls the daily departures from his home now, ‘social re-con’…it’s more dangerous today than when he was in the jungles & rice paddies. “I had someone above me justifying my actions & death…but at least I knew my enemies & who I was fighting. Today, people pop off on a moment’s notice for no reason or purpose…they’re in your family, a friend, a neighbor or stranger…they’re all tough & packing over little shit. You can brush by them on a bus or store, look at them side-ways & right away they want to make you a notch in their belt.” His favorite quote today is from Forest Gump..”Stupid is as stupid does.”

All of the men were known in their neighborhood’s & on their blocks for their reputations & character. They all felt it was difficult today to live their life out, hard pressed by younger males to take their pasts off the back burners. They had no desire to live in yesterday, but to live their life out in their ‘new skin’ today. They often faced chagrin & resentment on their street & block because they had no desire to be ‘Big Bad Leroy Brown’. A week does not go by when they are not challenged by another man usually younger. Often they walk away knowing the ‘excuse’ isn’t worth it only to leave under a hail storm of derogatory names, swallowing their pride.

A 47 yr old who spent 21 yrs in prison for weapon outside of his own 2 hands was involved & to this day claims it was self-defense…he’s challenged to fight several times a week & now prefers to stay more at home. He says he has been forced to fight & even when the individuals win, they keep coming back…walking away for me hasn’t always been an option. The day of the discussion he hadn’t left his home for 12 days. He fears for his children & family members whom have been threatened when he has walked away. “I did my time…I just want to be left alone & stay out of the mix & pettiness.’ What amazed me about all of these seasoned men was their knowledge & wisdom. We all came to the conclusion that there is ‘no growth or progress in life if the knowledge we all possess is not implemented’. Knowledge was meant to be shared. If those who walked before us were the sole owners of knowledge, the capacity for us to excel or survive would be more than a struggle.

A 45 yr old city worker, a veteran of Desert Storm is challenged monthly & often resented on his street for his job. He claims he doesn’t mind providing assistance to his family or neighbors when he can, but if he can’t its WWIII. When the younger males on his street ask him for monetary funds which he knows he’ll never see, he asks them to do things around his house or yard. He says because he doesn’t just give them money, things have a tendency to get damaged or broke. He’s offered to help his own family members get jobs & they refuse to work, why should he give them money to buy things he & his own children do not possess? They would rather ‘hustle’ than work for a master as he does…but they come to him time & time again to bail them out of jail. They treat him like dirt because he works for the city & will not succumb to their life style’s & habits.

I was astonished to find out that several of these ‘seasoned men’ were afraid of their own grandchildren. They knew that some of them carried weapons, had made their residences ‘blood theft proof’.  One of the men his voice cracked when he spoke of his own children. My children all graduated from school, 2 from college, none of them were ever in trouble with the law. That’s not the case now, they have issues themselves & do not care what their children do. They all started to change in the 90’s…my wife doesn’t like any of them coming to the house now if I’m not there. We’ve been threatened by them…have had to call the police. One of my daughters doesn’t even speak to us anymore after we called the police on her son who punched my wife in the face.

The topic switched to the absence today of pride, purpose & reason in life for individuals. How men today & the youth would not do anything or give assistance if they were not going to see monetary gain. One of the men, his mother was involved in the bus boycott in Montgomery. When he was sharing some of their great-grandmothers experiences the younger individuals hailed it as worthless & stupid because she didn’t receive any money for her involvement & suffered for her efforts. I saw what my mother went through, I was proud to be her son. I had more pride in myself & family than a peacock…but today, they don’t have pride. Look at how everyone dresses, how they talk, the music tells it all. Their pride is in their pocket, usually wrapped around someone else’s green backs. They all unanimously agreed that more than anything today, the education system lacks pride for that too is wrapped around ‘green backs’. All you have to do is look at college sports today…all of the tournaments & bowls.

They then switched to the ‘judicial realms & justice’…claimed it had been broken for too many decades to amend now. Too many individuals were getting ‘ripe’ off of the broken system. Change would begin when people took the bull by the horns & changed themselves. They felt too much emphasis today was being placed on religious morals. One of the seasoned Vets said ‘you can’t get right with God until you get right with yourself & at the moment it seemed as if people were content in going to hell in a hand basket. They didn’t approve of the racial disparities within the penal realms…but they said too many men were falling into the ‘wish book’ of the judicial system. One of the men described inmates as ‘volunteer indentured servants’ which surprised me.

These types of discussions by mature individuals is nothing new…it’s been done since the creation of mankind. It was done throughout the Roaring 20’s with the bootleg & flapper generation. It was done throughout the 50’s with the introduction of Rock n’ Roll & Hot Rods. It was done throughout the 60’s with drugs, flower children & protests. Yet, it seems that every generation seems more lost & degenerative than the one before. Even violence & crime seems to have reached new levels today…leaving no doubt in my mind that even Capone would have a hard time remaining a Boss or Top Dog. It also seems the more we develop as humans the more Neanderthal our actions & characters become.

I found the discussion with these men to be enlightening with a great deal of food for thought. At the conclusion we were all elated that we had grown up in our childhood & young adulthood when we did, where we did, none of us had the desire to turn back the hands of time. We all had fears for our generations to come & the issues they would face. Life would go on & chapters out of the history book would surely be repeated, but we felt certain with any luck the darkest chapters wouldn’t be repeated in our lifetime…we all had pride, a reason & purpose & we knew what they were.

I leave you as I came with the nth amount of respect & love for life…

Lady Gray