Despite his material and enviable career success, Don, like many of his mid-20th-century contemporaries and many men today, more than a half a century later, was hampered by a common theme that is prevalent in the lives of many men — a lack of genuine friendships. The old saying that “the more things change, the more they stay the same” rings true in regards to this particular issue.
Men have chosen to become totally consumed with one’s career to the detriment of having any healthy relationships. There have been a number of theories and reasons from experts as to why so many men have difficulty establishing and maintaining valuable, close relationships with other men. The social awkwardness and a rejection of intimacy with other men are present in fear of being viewed or labeled as gay. Societal mores have historically frowned upon it. Instead, men have chosen to become totally consumed with one’s career to the detriment of having any healthy relationships. Reasons aside, many individuals with the X/Y chromosome have a real deficit in their level of camaraderie with other men.
The undeniable conclusion from many psychologists, psychotherapists, mental health experts as well as testimony from a number of men themselves is that too many men have too few, if any, real male friends.
There has been a plethora of studies providing evidence that men who are largely friendless are living in an unhealthy situation, often resort to alcohol, engage in drug use, suffer from depression, and should reexamine their current predicament. Some things to consider:
Continue reading Addressing Social Isolation among Men – by Elwood Watson
How Should We Think About the Residents of Barbuda, Florida, Mexico, Puerto Rico, St. Croix, St. Maarten, St. Thomas, and Texas? How should we feel about them?
I live in Wheaton, Illinois, United States of America. The series of natural disasters that have impacted Texas, Mexico, Florida and the Leeward Caribbean islands over the past six weeks have raised some interesting questions about how we think and feel about other human beings.
Continue reading Unplugged, Under Water, or Buried – by Yvor Stoakley
Some of us have extra-sharp hearing, and others begin to lose their hearing at different times. For the first time in history, 20% of those in their late teens and early 20’s are reporting signs of a hearing loss – a problem that will cause major challenges for commerce and industry. (One cause for this is loud music played through earbuds for too long.) Presbycusis, hearing loss caused by age, is another challenge, and often starts in the late 50’s or early 60’s. By age 65, one third of Americans experience this problem. There are simple, practical strategies that can help. Here are three taken from the e-book, “What did you say?”
Continue reading Coping with a Loved One’s Hearing Loss — by Katie Schwartz
I know the September colors
of your eyes. If I were blind
and could not see them,
Continue reading Unlost in Love – Poem by Ann Thornfield-Long
An Interview with John Harrity, Managing Partner, Harrity & Harrity, LLP
At a recent Association of Legal Administrators, Washington, DC Chapter meeting – John Harrity, Managing Partner and Diversity Partner of Harrity & Harrity was on a panel and presenting his firm’s Diversity and Inclusion Journey. Harrity and Harrity, LLP is an Intellectual Property Firm boutique based in Fairfax, VA, experiencing high growth. He explained their commitment to Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) and said, “We believe that the ‘practice of law’ is advanced by a more diverse legal team – with diversity of background, upbringing, education, and perspective comes quality legal innovation. At Harrity & Harrity, we are committed to The Harrity Rule, a supercharged version of the Rooney Rule that shows our firm’s commitment to D&I is not window dressing or smoke and mirrors.”
Continue reading Harrity Pledge and D&I Challenge – by Mauricio Velásquez
Most of us think about how we can make the world a better place but we all struggle with just how to do it. The challenge is daunting. In 2009, I spent about two weeks in the tiny village of Dago, Kenya and came away determined to do what I could to improve the lives of these hard-working, incredibly kind but extremely poor people. I decided I wanted to make the world a better place, one child at a time.
Continue reading Making Dago and the World A Better Place, One Child at a Time – by Brett Weiss
Bill Maher, host of the quasi political/entertainment program HBO Real Time with Bill Maher, recently had renowned Black intellectual and ordained Baptist minister Dr. Michael Eric Dyson and rapper Ice Cube as guests. They discussed the n-word controversy that erupted on the May 31 edition of the program when Maher flippantly referred to himself as a “house nigger” in an interview with Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska). The senator had been invited to the program to discuss his book on what he sees as the increasing problem on prolonged adolescence occurring in American society. Sasse and Maher agreed on the issue and provided examples and suggestions on how to rectify the problem. Things seemed to be going well up until this exchange transpired between both men:
Maher: Adults dress up for Halloween. They don’t do that in Nebraska?
Sasse: It’s frowned upon. We don’t do that quite as much.
Maher: I gotta get to Nebraska more.
Sasse: You’re welcome. We’d love to have you work in the fields with us.
Maher: Work in the fields? Senator, I’m a house nigger.
Continue reading Bill Maher and the N-Word Debate – Elwood Watson
In 1986 colleagues Barney Olmsted and Suzanne Smith asked me to join them at New Ways to Work, the original flex think tank, in a national campaign to promote “equitable flexibility.” It was one part response to the promising emergence of Job Sharing, Part-time, Telecommuting – and possibly Phased Retirement – as scheduling flexibility in a range of corporations steeped in industrial habits.
And it was another part defense against the growing popularity of the “contingent workforce.” This strategy of creating a ring of benefit-less part-time, temporary and contract workers surrounding a core of “regular employees” offered companies staffing flexibility – but it was flexibility at the expense of employees. (The DNA of these practices seems emergent on steroids in today’s “Gig economy.”)
Continue reading Workplace Flexibility: It’s Time for Straight Talk – by Paul Rupert
Many years ago I authored an article entitled “Gender Quake” and it was all about the Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas hearings – the first time sexual harassment and gender equity issues entered our living rooms (through TV) and never left. Before these hearings – these issues did not garner attention or coverage, they did not make the newspaper or even local news – not even a blip or a mention. The current political climate and our President is a major contributing factor – a backdrop for this conversation. Now, national, international news and hours of coverage (educating public) on the nightly news and cable is the norm, our new normal.
Continue reading Gender Quake 2.0 – by Mauricio Velásquez, MBA
credit card snatched,
nor driver’s license,
nor picture ID.
Not her universal number
intercepted on the Internet.
Not the checkbook swiped
while her head was turned,
nor bank account number
pilfered from a pile of trash.
radiance snatched from her brow,
her voice knocked down an octave,
shoulders drooped from weight
of falling self-esteem.
Pride ripped from her psyche,
guilt smeared on her mirror,
ugliness glaring from the future
like a finger-wagging stepmother.
She sees Used scrawled across her forehead,
dreams the only wedding dresses
available are ones already worn.
She winces remembering his gaze,
shivers at the thought of solitude,
freezes at the prospect of another intimacy.
near to abort
the theft, he forced her
into an alley, stripped
away her innocence, tore off
her self respect, ripped off
her smile, her confidence,
stole her special gift. Filled her
future with depression and fear.