Archive for the 'Whatever. Non-PS stories' Category

I Just Want to be Loved by You and You and You


I just want to be loved by you and you and you

Dear Readers: Some of you might think of me as the crazy Pet Society lady, but I actually write about a lot of other topics. If you’re interested, check out my new book, I Just Want to be Loved by You and You and You. What’s it about? Love, passion, infidelity, heartache—in short, the things that make life exciting. In David Massengill’s exquisitely written “The Little Man,” a woman who seeks the spirit of her long-dead lover. In my story “Love.com,” a woman has an explosive affair on the Web. The story explores the boundaries between reality and fantasy and questions the nature of online relationships—how well do you know your Facebook friends?

The book is 50 pages and available in print and digital (Kindle) formats. It’s not free, but the Kindle version is equivalent to about 16 Playfish Cash—or less than what it costs to dig in the new moon site. You’ll read some meaningful stories and help two fiction writers succeed—or at the very least, not embarrass themselves—in the world of digital publishing. Sample the first several pages of the book to see if you want to read more.

Sample and Buy Print Book $6.99

Sample and Buy Kindle Book $2.99

Cute Baby Socks for Adults

cute Korean socks

I love how so many things in Asia look like they were designed by an eight-year-old girl. These cute socks that were sold in Inchon, Korea look like children’s socks, but they were clearly made for adults.

Here are the women’s socks:

cute Korean socks

 
Here are the more masculine designs for men:

cute korean socks for men

  Visit my other blog for more fun stories about Asia

Farewell

Grandfather died on August 20. My mother and I watched him take his final breath.

Everyone keeps saying sorry. Don’t be. My grandfather led a long and healthy life, a life without regret. During the past week, he was struggling to breathe, but when he saw me, he managed to put both his arms over his head, forming a circle. “What does that mean?” I asked my mom. She said that it was the Korean sign for “I love you.”

It was an honor to be here and spend his final days with him.

Tibetan Advice to Live and Die without Regret

Please note, this has nothing to do with Pet Society. If you’re looking for PS news, check out the official blog or any of the other sites in my blogroll.
 

I am in South Korea right now. My grandfather, who turns 99 next week, is dying.

In preparing for this trip, I’ve been reading The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche. I’m not a spiritual person, yet I find many of the passages in this book very comforting. Rinpoche, who is a Tibetan monk, encourages us to think of death not as an end, but as the beginning of something greater than what we know as life.

Tibetan Buddhists believe that there are four continuously interlinked realities: 1) life 2) dying and death, 3) after death, and 4) rebirth. They believe that if we contemplate and accept death as part of our reality, we have a better chance of living our lives more fully and without regret. As Tibet’s poet saint, Milarepa, said, “My religion is to live—and die—without regret.”

My grandfather has definitely lived without regret. He’s a deeply religious man, who believes in the power of prayer. My mother, his child, is a doctor, and while he’s been proud of her accomplishments, he’s shunned Western medicine for most of his 99 years. He claims that he’s lived this long because of healthy eating, exercise, and devotion to God and family. He was with my grandmother for seventy years, from when she was 19 till she died at the age of 89. I don’t quite believe him when he claims that they never raised their voices at each other, but I do know that they had some very happy moments.

I remember my grandfather as a strong man. For the past several days, however, he’s been lying in a hospital bed, his body shrunken like a Holocaust survivor, his skin as flabby and yellow as that of a chicken. His breathing is forced, and he’s been sleeping most of the time. Still, he’s very much present. When I said hello to him yesterday, he opened his eyes and acknowledged me. I held his hand and he gripped harder, even swinging a few times. He didn’t speak, but when I talked to him, he nodded and blinked in response.

Right now, I’m sitting in his kitchen, expecting him to return home. One of his wishes is to die in his own bed. This is something that the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying also recommends, that people die in their homes, where they feel most comfortable. The book also encourages us to give relief to those who are near death, by touching them and letting them speak their minds freely, even to express anger. Above all, it encourages us to show unconditional love to the person dying.

I’m trying to do that now, for my grandfather, who is dying in a way that befits his long, dignified life.


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