I believe

by Toni McGee Causey

Cornelia and I must be in hive-mind mode–I wrote this post and then went and saw her (much better) post from Saturday (today, as I write this). I, however, am not sitting in a cottage in a ski resort–I can't even pretend to have something as cool as Cornelia. Instead, I am sitting at my desk, wondering if I sever my head from my shoulders so I could quit coughing, if I'd miss it much. (I'm thinking no.) [You know you sound really incredibly crappy when you talk to a complete stranger on the phone and the first thing they say to you is, "Ohmygod, you sound so terrible!" Why thank you, AT&T, I wasn't quite suicidal yet, but I appreciate the nudge.] [It is just a common cold. How in the hell our forefathers survived colds without Kleenex (the soft kind with Aloe) and vaporizers and hot toddies, I just do not understand. It is probably a good thing I didn't have to discover the new world or we'd all be happily ensconced in France or Scotland.][Of course, with enough of the whiskey part of the toddy, I mighta jumped on the first ship over and not given a damn.]

I digress. Anyway.

Short probably rambly Declarative sentences are probably safest today.

I believe that the only real benefit to cold medicine is that it makes you just fuzzy-headed enough to not be aware of how disgusting you really are when you're full of phlegm.

I believe that the worst curse word in any language is the word "stupid" — particularly when aimed at a child.

I believe it's easy and lazy to be a cynic.

I believe hope is a fine, fine thing, but it doesn't do a damned bit of good if I'm not willing to work for that which I hope.

I believe our society will be judged two hundred years from now on how well we took care of our children and elderly.

I believe the only way we'll be around to be judged two hundred years from now is to learn to take better care of our children and our elderly.

I believe the likelihood of my tripping and falling and making a complete fool out of myself is directly proportionate to how many people are standing there to witness it. 

I believe the sole purpose of yearbooks is to warn you just how fashion-disastrous your kids are going to eventually be.

I believe the label "temporary storage unit" is a misnomer and a gateway drug for packrats the world over.

I believe if you've succeeded at everything that you've tried, then you haven't reached far enough yet and you're wasting time.

I believe that Americans often treat whining as an Olympic sport for the masses.

I believe no one's figured out everything, and anyone who tries to imply they have is either a really good actor or so full of crap, it's blocking their brain functions.

I believe Eleanor Roosevelt had it right: no one can make you feel inferior without your consent.

I believe that not a single person who died yesterday was worried in their final moments about whether or not their hair looked nice or whether or not they wore the most stylish clothes or had the latest gadget.

I believe we are what we do. Period. 

I believe that if we were as worked up over the institution of marriage as we'd like to claim, then there would be no murderers, pedophiles or rapists allowed to marry. 

I believe one requirement for graduation from college should be a bad-paying menial job with a funny hat, particularly if one is going into politics.

I believe we often miss what's right in front of us because it's not what we think we should be looking for.

I believe teachers are on the front lines of a war and we're doing everyone a serious injustice if we don't better equip their armories. 
I believe that people occasionally screw up even when they don't mean to, and if we love them, we see where their heart is and let it go.

I believe that there are about three people on the planet who look good in orange and that the fashion industry hates the average woman.

I believe anyone who says they don't have someone to love hasn't visited a nursing home, hospital or food bank lately.

I believe cops [all types] and firefighters put their lives on the line every day and are far far under-appreciated and under-paid.

I believe we're meant to laugh at ourselves, otherwise how do you explain mullets, poodle perms and shoulder pads? 

I believe that laughing is sometimes the only thing that keeps us from crying over the fact that some of these people can vote.

I believe that when all is said and done and I'm gone, the love I gave will be the one thing that mattered.

I believe the statement "look Ma, no hands" is, 99% of the time, going to end up being uttered by a Darwin Award nominee.

I believe this is going to be a good year, in spite of the financial nightmare of the economy.

I believe you can tell a lot about a person by how fully they laugh.

I believe in listening.

How about you? What do you believe?

30 thoughts on “I believe

  1. cj lyons

    Toni, hope you feel better, fast!!!

    BTW, there is new scientific evidence that the hot toddy (or any hot cordial drink) provides better symptom relief than cold medicines….from the British Medical Journal.

    Love the bicycle safety ad video–awesome!!!

    Take care,CJ

  2. Kaye Barley

    Toni – I always love what you write. No matter what it is, in whatever form it might be. And I think I could pick out your blog pieces from a grouping of 100 unsigned essays – they’re the ones that are going to make me think, laugh out loud and get a little teary all at the same time. HOW do you do that?!

    This is terrific and I’m going to print it out and hang it over my desk. I’ve been sitting here being kinda whiny about going back to work tomorrow after a two week vacation. Now tell me – how pitiful is that? Instead of being happy and grateful about the two weeks off, I’m feeling pitiful about going back to work INSTEAD of being damned grateful to have a job. Pitiful. And in need of a kick in my ever widening butt. Thank you for reminding me of the things that are important.

    Damn a cold, huh?! Ugh. Hope you feel better soonest. Zicam Zicam Zicam – I am a pusher of Zicam (although it seems to only work when you start it at the first sign of that cold bug).

  3. Lori

    Feel better Toni. I believe that you do not have to waste time or energy on getting back at those who have wronged you. Karma is a bitch and the universe has a way of taking care of everything eventually.

  4. I'm not bitter lol

    Colds are the worst…hope you feel better soon. I’ve always been a believer in Nyquil. Nothing like drugging yourself unconscious for 3 days and waking up much better!

    I believe that people have completely forgotten good manners and basic courtesey while out in public.

    I believe that we need more good things on the news instead of the stuff designed to freak us into believing that our country is a)at the brink of collapse, b) soon to be over run with murderers, rapists and pedophiles, c) we’re all rotten people.

    And not to start any type of discussion…I believe that child abusers should be sterilized and never be allowed around children again.

  5. pari

    Toni,Feel better.

    I believe that many common colds and ear infections are caused by undiagnosed acid reflux. (Actually, I KNOW this is true.)

    I believe that getting older is wonderful, but it’d be even better if my skeleton didn’t protest.

    I believe that I made many mistakes in my youth but that all of them somehow lead me to today — and I’m very, very grateful for that.

    I believe that practicing gratitude — every single day — makes life joyous, even through the pain.

  6. Becky Hutchison

    Toni, wonderful blog. I admire the way you can still think great thoughts while battling such a wicked cold. Get well soon!

    I believe that with each new career I’ve tried (and there have been many), I’ve learned important lessons that I can apply to my next endeavors.

    I believe that each person can make a big ripple in the world.

    I believe that the earth (Gaia) is a living organism.

    I believe that coincidences aren’t random.

    I believe that eventually I’ll purge all the junk in my house and create a relaxing place to live and work.

    I believe that I have some really great friends that will be there for me, even if we don’t keep in touch more than two or three times a year.

  7. woodstock

    Toni – feel better soon!

    I believe that all persons are stewards of creation – no matter how they define the creator. And that every pet we care for, every garden we tend, every piece of litter we dispose of properly, every “green” decision we make has an important impact in the life of our fragile planet.

    I believe that my glass is always half full, never half empty. And that if more people would make the effort to see the world that way that we would all be better off.

    I believe that fear is corrosive.

    I believe that anger is equally corrosive.

    I believe in dimensions of reality we can only perceive on the briefest of occasions, but which are, nevertheless, very very real.

  8. Fiona

    Thank you, Toni.

    I believe I am the luckiest person in the world. My DH and two kids make me feel like I’ve won the lottery three times.

    I believe being in nature is healing for the body and spirit.

    I believe authors have a tremendous power.

    I believe 2009 will be the best year of my life, so far.

    BTW, I reread A FAILURE TO COMMUNICATE, from THE KILLER YEAR, last night. OMG–I should know better than to read something that funny when my DH is trying to sleep! I was laughing so hard, the dogs started barking.

    Happy 2009.

  9. toni mcgee causey

    Louise, isn’t that bear great?

    Fiona, thank you! I’m so glad that one made you laugh. I was panicked over having to come up with a story and was about two days before the deadline when the whole thing just showed up (as is)(in that order).

    I love all of the beliefs being listed–y’all have some great ones. Woodstock, I believe that, too, about dimensions in reality that we only get glimpsed of. Kinda like what Becky’s saying above about coincidences. There’s too much we can’t explain.

    Becky-thank you. I’m stunned the blog is even coherent, to tell you the truth.

    Pari, that was a wonderful point about practicing gratitude. So very true. (And I was terribly sorry to see your comment yesterday about your beloved pet. I hope there is some peace found in knowing you have provided such a loving home.)

    I’m not bitter… LOL. I can’t watch the news many nights in a row for that exact reason. Too depressing.

  10. toni mcgee causey

    Lori, completely agreed on the not wasting time. It’d be like giving the person a second victory, because that time wasted was time that could’ve been spent doing something positive instead.

    Qwill, that’s one of the finest gifts anyone can give a child, I believe–that sense of endless possibilities.

    JT, glad to make you smile–and I’m definitely investing in Zicam for next time.

    Kaye–aw, thank you. I really appreciate the compliment… and I think we all do the same thing (getting wrapped up in what we don’t have instead of what we do). It’s human nature.

    Now why can’t I ever be in a study group like that one, CJ? Can you imagine, someone’s willing to give you a bunch of whiskey and check to see if you feel better later? Like you’d care? How do they know the people actually felt better or were just too drunk to know the difference, hmmmmmm? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  11. Lisa Hendrix


    With soft linen hankies, pots of hot water with herbs, and, ahem, hot toddies. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m sure Ben Franklin drank them. Maybe he even invented themโ€”he is, after all, the man who said “If I take a settler after my coffee, a cooler at nine, a bracer at ten, a whetter at eleven and two or three stiffners during the forenoon, who has any right to complain?”

    I believe that reading a little good writing every day makes you a better writer.

    That’s why I come to Murderati every morning. All of you are wonderful. [Sorry you have a cold, Toni.]

  12. Allison Brennan

    I believe in Airborne, Zicam, and vitamins in preventing or shortening the duration and severity of colds.

    I believe that children are our future and we must love them with all our heart and protect them from evil.

    I believe in not looking at past mistakes or regrets lest they make us miserable. Acknowledge your mistakes and strive to not make the same one twice (or twenty times–some of us are slow learners.)

    I believe if I had a dollar for every time I heard the sentence, “I could write a book too if I had the time” I would be able to retire wealthier than Bill Gates.

    I believe in the poem (I don’t remember the author): “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something I can do.”

    I believe that the writing community is generous with their time, talent and wisdom, especially the writers here.

    I believe that if I had never met Toni, I would have felt great loss and not known why.

  13. Marianne Plumridge

    I believe in you guys… you are all truly cosmic and a joy to read each day… Thank the universe that you exist, and that you care enough about the world and people to speak your mind. Words have power!

    Bears can moonwalk?? Did Bubbles teach them what he learned from Michael? ๐Ÿ˜ฎ


  14. gregory huffstutter

    I believe you should never utter the words: “Traffic sure is light today” or “We’ve got this game in the bag.”

    I believe I’d rather have a colonoscopy than deal with my cable company over the phone.

    I believe if every American teenager was forced to live abroad for six months, we’d have very different foreign policies.

    I believe in Neti pots.

    I believe reading to your child is the single greatest gift you can give them.

  15. toni mcgee causey

    Lisa, those danged Internet gremlins! And too funny about old Ben. I imagine with that much booze radiating off him, germs would’ve committed hari kari before even attempting to invade him.

    Allison, that is a wonderful poem. And damn, woman, you sure know how to cheer a body up. Thank you. And I feel exactly the same way.

    Marianne, thank you! We’re all just damned delighted that y’all come here and read us every day. I think we’re getting the best end of that bargain.

    Gregory, I am cracking up over the traffic one, and crying over the game one. (Man, is that painful or what? I cannot tell you how many 4 qtr losses that have made me want to weep.) (Then again, I am from LSU and Louisiana, where the Saints have made losing after a nice lead a trademark.)

    CJ was saying not long ago that it’s like saying the dreaded “quiet” word in an ER–guaranteed to wreak havoc.

    (Neti pots? okay, I had to go google that one; new one to me. huh.)

  16. J.D. Rhoades

    I can’t believe I waited til this late to read Murderati…

    Hope you feel better, Toni. And I too believe in NyQuil.

    I believe tomorrow’s writing will be better than today’s, but only if I actually do it.

  17. Carmel

    Hi Toni,

    I believe that ever person should know how to cook one meal (on a stove and not in a microwave).

    I believe that children can be trained from day 1. Whilst other parents may say “They’ll get to it when they’re ready.” I know a child can and should be encouraged to learn.

    I believe that all girls grow up to be women but only some grow up to be ladies.

    I believe in family time and dinners together at the dining table.

  18. Dana King

    I believe you have treated cynics unfairly. Anyone who pays close attention to politics, the legal system, or any financial-related activity will, over time, develop at least a patina of cynicism. It’s not the easy way; it’s hard to see the selfish interest behind a decision that’s going to screw a lot of people, and keep on trying. The easy way is to pretend those who are screwing us have our best interests at heart, and not their own.

    As someone famous once said, no matter how cynical you are, it’s never enough.

  19. Jake Nantz

    Toni,I believe you have the power to make me laugh, cry, and wonder, all in one post. I believe I envy the hell out of that ability.

    And since it’s 10:30 on a Wednesday and I’m in the middle of class, I believe I need a drink. Or twelve.


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