Crappy freelance advice: Live networking is the best way to market

More than a decade ago, my work life was in a sad state. I was a single mother, newly unemployed and desperate for income. It didn’t matter if it was freelance writing or a full-time job. Plus I was distraught over jobs from which I had been terminated, no reason provided. A friend told me... Read more »

Phooey to new online networking sites

I’m looking at you, Alignable. Days ago I unsubscribed. My “relationship” with Alignable began several months ago when I started to receive its invitations to connect with people I know. Since these were Chicago-area people I consider friends, I agreed to connect rather than hurt their feelings. When I’d see these people, mostly at events... Read more »

Crappy freelance advice: Get paid what you are worth

My fundamental belief is that all of us human beings have the same value. This means I have the same value as Mother Teresa and Kim Kardashian. Since neither posts her freelance writing rates, I am at sea in trying to determine my fees. Making it even more complicated, affixing a dollar amount to human... Read more »
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A brand-new reason why it may be hard to get a job at age 65-plus

I recently wrote about my unsuccessful mission over the past year to get a part-time job. I never figured out conclusively what went wrong, but I—and many peers I talked with—suspected the same issue: age discrimination. Age discrimination? How can we know? The problem with the job market is that it is so darn noncommunicative.... Read more »

I’m at the one-year anniversary and I’m bailing

No, I am not divorcing my husband. Relax, Wayne. I’m quitting the job hunt. One year ago in March 2017 I had an unexpected inspiration: I would look for a part-time job. I have loved freelancing for more than 25 years, but I suddenly decided I would mix things up with some steady employment. I... Read more »

Wives and lovers

Wives and lovers. An intriguing title, eh? Specifically, it’s the title of a once-famous song that both surprised and appalled me a few days ago when it played on 87.7MeTVFM (Chicago) radio. The song, written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, is now about 55 years old. Jack Jones’s 1963 recording won the Grammy for... Read more »

All-of-a-Kind Family: Fond childhood memory

I am revisiting my favorite books of childhood to analyze what was so appealing and see how they hold up for me. First up: All-of-a-Kind Famly by Sydney Taylor. All-of-a-Kind Family (the book, that is) was born in 1951, just like me. It’s the first in a series of children’s chapter books about a Jewish... Read more »

Why is mental healthcare miraculous for everyone but me?

Right wingers say we don’t need gun control, just more mental health services. How come counseling and meds immediately head off violence but took years to kick in on my milder issues? I’m kinda bummed out at the moment. That’s not unusual. I’m kinda bummed out much of the time. I’ve had years of psychotherapy and coaching. I’ve tried Zoloft, which is my family antidepressant of choice. The therapy has helped immeasurably but I don’t have a smug confidence that I’m cured, whatever that means. Antidepressants don’t help me much. They make my mouth dry but facts are facts. Life can be just as difficult as ever.

My mental health status

I am blessed. I am not violent or suicidal. I have never been housebound/bedbound depressed. I have taken only two “mental health days” in my life and both related to boyfriend issues decades ago. I have the capacity to work and to love, which is Freud’s definition of mental health. I’m a Jewish neurotic. Like Woody Allen but without allegations of sexual perversion. Also without his level of artistic and commercial success. Actually, this post may come off as insensitive, since I may be making light of mental health issues that torment other people much more intensely. If so, I apologize.

Mental healthcare is society’s magic bullet

Apparently right wingers believe we don’t need gun control. Instead, we need more attention to mental healthcare in this country to prevent mass shootings. Get all those psychiatrists and psychologists and social workers on it and we’ll all be safe. This is an interesting approach, given that mental health is damn expensive and is only covered sufficiently in the very best health insurance policies. Could it be that the NRA cares about people and their mental wellbeing much more than I would have guessed? I am deeply touched. Just thinking this thought cheers me up. How do the Republicans propose we pay for all this diagnosis, counseling, meds, residential treatment, and such? Interesting question. I’m sure they’re working on it. They’ll report something out of committee soon. Now back to my original question:

How come mental healthcare is miraculous for everyone but me?

In my strictly personal experience, it took me years not to sob dramatically when a date who said he would call me about Saturday night never followed through or when my mother made a passive-aggressive comment. But now our political leadership say that mental health professionals can prevent mass killings if only they receive a heads-up before the first shot rings out. How does that work? Is there a better pill out there that I don’t know about? A magic observation in counseling that instantly calms the troubled mind? The only guaranteed solution that I can conceive of is to lock up every potentially violent youth in an institution until he is deemed cured. This may take years or even their lifetimes. Is this really what the far right has in mind? I have to admit, they really think big. Type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

Gun rights and rape prevention: The perfect marriage

Note: This is satire. It doesn’t mean what it appears to say. I had hoped it would be unnecessary to state this, but alas, my reading of social media tells me that some people won’t know this unless it is pointed out to them. For instance, many people still don’t know that Andy Borowitz in... Read more »

Smog alert

Apparently I’m running behind in my TV viewing. I just started watching the first season of The Crown, an absorbing Netflix series about the life and times of Queen Elizabeth II. (That’s the current Queen Elizabeth.) Though I’m not nearly old enough to have experienced many of her life events at the time, I was... Read more »