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Unspoken Desire July 15, 2010

Posted by ninapaules in Living Life.
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Last time we munched through the magical power of fortune cookies.  Today, let’s talk fortunes – of the unspoken variety.

More than once, I’ve stood accused by someone of being a mind reader.  Thankfully, I’ve never been convicted.  But, my knack, ability, gift — whatever word you want to stick on it — is un-nerving, even for me, because I never know when to trust what floats unbidden through my mind when I’m talking to someone, or just chalk that strange idea/thought/image up to this vivid writer’s imagination of mine.

But then, some things in life are hard to deny when I see them.

One is regret.  It’s important to be careful with regret because it mimics guilt so well.  Guilt is giving your child a new toy because you feel bad about something you did/said or forgot to do.  Regret is laying on your deathbed wishing you’d spent less time at the office.

But never does regret start there.

Which leads me to my most favorite magical Fortune Cookie fortune of all time.

“Your unspoken desire is the road not taken.”

This favorite fortune of mine is actually from the 200th episode of JAG, a legal thriller that ran nine seasons, starting in 1995.  If you ever get a chance to watch the episode, titled “What If?”, do. (You can get it from Netfix.)  “What if?” is a vivid depiction of how one moment, one word, one yes that wanted to be a no, one fear that should have been trumped but wasn’t, rules the road not taken.  What remains is the life we lead.

In truth, I don’t know why I’m posting this, today.  I just know I need to.  So I will leave you with this.  The greatest gift you can give to another is a picture of the road not taken.  Then let them decide.




Chewing on a Fortune July 13, 2010

Posted by ninapaules in Living Life, Writing Life.
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My fortune, compliments of my most recent fortune cookie. How, in the entire universe, did the churning Chinese-Fortune-Cookie-Stuffing-Machine know I was a writer in need of such a vague encouraging fortune? 

Hard to say. 

But that’s what attracts us to those oddly bent and brittle cookies, isn’t it?  Even though we know that tawny exterior is tasteless and the words have no meaning, we eagerly break them open and mindlessly munch away anyway while absorbing our Chinese Fortune.  After all, everyone knows the wondrously mythical Chinese possess an unexplainable connection to the fortune whispering universe.  Three billion of their fortune-delivering-devices are consumed by the Western World every year.

But, did you know that the fortune cookie is not the least bit Chinese? 

We, the Americans, were the inventors.  Yup.  It’s true.  We invented the Fortune Cookie and all the little prophesies stuffed there in.  

Now, if we can do that, surely we can invent something that will keep our economy from repeating well-known history.  Because, if there is one thing that casts doubt upon the magical power of our tasteless fortune cookie, it’s when the same fortune is repeated at the same table.

Unless, of course, you wrote the 200th episode of JAG where fortune cookie fortunes do repeat.  Successfully.

See, we Americans can do anything if we’d just put our minds to it.

Do you know what the repeating fortune said? Its advice is worth considering.