I don’t even have to quote a mainstream media source for this segment. By now, anyone who has access to media either print, tv, radio, or of course interactive media like this knows that YSU Football failed to bring home a championship last Saturday. And that is OK. It is OK that people sometimes fall short of their goals. It is OK to drop the ball. We still love our University. And our university teams. And our university faculty and staff. And yes, even our university president.
Failure and falling short does not negate love. In fact, sometimes when people fall or fail or suffer it causes us all to remember that we are all people. We are all human beings who have strengths and weaknesses. We all need each other to progress. Every person who you know is someone you need on some level to progress. If you are looking to do that. If you are looking for progress that is.
If you want to make things better for yourself and your neighbor. Then every single person you know on facebook or twitter can work with you. IF you are willing to work with them. And that is one of the things that I took away from YSU Footballs fumbles and turnovers and blocked kicks. IT was not those events directly that gave me the lesson. It was the Unity of the team after the game. It was how publicly there was no fingerpointing or blaming. There was none of that foolishness of if he did something different it would have been different.
There was only solidarity and kind words from the Coach and right down the line. There was only optimism that there can be another chance to improve. To progress. To move forward despite the fall. To find ways of making it better then it was. And quite frankly, that was the most incredibly positive and remarkable accomplishment of the entire season in my opinion. That as a team, they lost. But as an example for many people here in the Mahoning Valley, it was and still is a huge victory and a stellar example. Congratulations YSU Football Team and Coaches. You have set the bar for all of us here in the Mahoning Valley who are intent on working as a team to being good to our community.
Onto something that is easy for all of us to do as individuals. And that is embrace kindness. Let me first say that ever since I have relocated here from Miami Beach Florida in 2002, I have been impressed and pleased with all the kind acts I have witnessed and had the opportunity to participate in. Many people here do not know me and I did not grow up here full time. But it is time that you found out. I am actually from Pittsburgh by way of Miami Beach.
My family lived in Pittsburgh while I was growing up. First in Penn Hills and then Point Breeze during my high school years. And it was a wonderful place to grow up. Plenty of peers and people to interact with and plenty of opportunities to learn and grow. This was in the 1970’s. A time much different from today when if we wanted to call someone, we had to find a payphone or be at home. Or the office.
A time when as children we could have the run of the neighborhood without fear of being attacked or abducted. A time when our parents did not punish us by making us go outside, they punished us by forcing us to stay in.
I had a grandmother and aunts and cousins who lived in Northeast Ohio. For a time, my grandma lived in North Bloomfield. One aunt lived in Austintown with two of my cousins who were about my age and another aunt lived in Newton Falls. So I have always had family here in Northeast Ohio. And we did visit on a regular basis. So I spent part of my time growing up here as well.
But while the people who lived here may have felt that it was always the same old thing, when we got to visit NE Ohio, it was like a holiday. In fact, most of our visits were for the thanksgiving holiday. We would get time off from school. My parents would pack up the Station Wagon. We would crawl in the back of it and take the 2 hour drive northwest to Ohio. The land of holiday parties and feasts. The land of interesting and entertaining cousins. The land of a doting grandmother who loved to cook up all the thanksgiving fixins. And the land of freedom from our usual routines and friends. It was so much fun.
And so I fell in love with NE Ohio. Because for maybe as many as 15 or so years in a row, every thanksgiving my family and I would get to come here and celebrate family and love. And that is why when I was ready to leave Miami Beach, I wanted to come here and settle down. I wanted to come here and start a family. I wanted to see the snow and feel the cool breeze of a spring morning. And smell the cut grass in the Summer. And crunch through the leaves in the woods in the Autumn. Because here we have seasons. In Miami Beach, there are also seasons; 2 of them, wet and dry.
One thing that always impressed me when I visited here and after I moved back was the inherent friendliness and kindness of the people here. The good old fashioned Midwestern Values of God and Family and Hard Work. Of taking care of your neighbor and feeling bad if something bad happened to someone who lived in your community. Of wanting to pitch in and help. We still have a lot of these things here and these are the kinds of things that we need to continue to practice.
More so now then ever. Because our world has become increasingly hostile and divided by opinions. Sometimes we claim that we have the facts, and that may be true in part; but people have started to decide that their opinions are strong enough to be less than civil. And that if someone disagrees with you it is OK to block them. Or attack. So I have attached a graphic to this podcast to remind us of how to be kinder to each other. Not that we have forgotten entirely, but that kindness is one of the strengths that we can continue to build on here in our community. I have also linked to a facebook page and website that promotes kindness. I got this idea from one of the nicest people here in the mainstream media while listening to his show “Brainfood from the Heartland” Because staying informed can help us to practice kindness.
One of the most valuable resources we have here in the Mahoning Valley is the Public Library. When I first moved here to Boardman, I didn’t have any CD’s or DVD’s and one of my favorite things to do was walk over to the Library and borrow these types of media for my personal enjoyment. The fact is though that the Library is one of the most valuable resources that any community can have. Many of us may take it for granted, but there is a wealth of information and resources available to anyone free of charge. If you haven’t visited in a while, I encourage you to check it out. Here are few of things that you can expect to enjoy in a library and if you are in Trumbull County, your library is linked to here. Columbiana County yours is here.
In Mahoning County where I live for instance, The Columbus Children’s Theater will present the story of Lonely Jack, a foolish trade, and the giant who is ready for trouble. “Jack and the Beanstalk” was adapted by William Goldsmith.
Fun for kids of all ages. No reservations are needed.
Boardman Library, 11 a.m., Sat., Jan. 28
Meet and Greet Story Time with Youngstown Phantom’s Hockey
Meet the Youngstown Phantoms! Listen to stories and receive a special giveaway. No reservations needed for this special story time that will be fun for the whole family!
Canfield Library, 6-7 p.m., Tues., Jan. 24
Library Night with the Phantoms
Join the Library and the Phantoms at their January 27 game at the Covelli Centre in Youngstown. The theme is “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.” Watch for upcoming details in your local library and on the website.
This is a very small list of things that you can do with your friends at the library. Stay in touch with them on Facebook.
I know most people who listen to this podcast can spend money to entertain themselves. Or even spend money to help me keep this podcast coming out and spreading only good things about our Valley, but I still like to talk about Free events every now and then. I like free stuff. Most people do I think. Like for instance, I offer free initial consultations and assessments on your internet communication strategies. I don’t mind spending a few minutes chatting with you or even talking to you on the phone about what you have been doing and what you want to do. You can message me on facebook or twitter or even call me at 330-519-1205 to talk about it. Sometimes it is good to have an objective opinion. And I am here to help.
Anyway, back to free events. It may save you some time if I just mention a few free things that you can do with your family or friends and that way you can get back to work on that report for your boss or that term paper or research project or watching that movie or whatever you will do after you listen to this. If you want more information or need to get the details for these freebies, just find the transcript of this show somewhere. They are like everywhere. But mostly on my website. Or blog, Or other blog.
Let’s go do something free:
When:Thursday, Jan. 12, 2 p.m.
Where:Warren-Trumbull County Public Library
444 Mahoning Ave.
When:Thursday, Jan. 12, 5:30 p.m.
Where: Liberty Public Library
415 Churchill-Hubbard Road
Young cooks will follow Master Chef Miss Jill’s lead using their math, science, and language skills to make a delicious creation. For kids in kindergarten to grade five. Registration is required by calling (330) 759-2589.
When: Wednesday, Jan. 11, 11 a.m.
Age limit: All ages
Where: Warren Public Library
444 Mahoning Ave. NW
Children learn language and motor skills through an energetic combination of music, movement, and books. For toddlers 19 to 35 months old with a parent or caregiver. Registration is required by calling (330) 399-8807 ext. 206.
If you can’t make it tomorrow:
Check out these additional dates:
Wednesday, Jan. 18 or
Wednesday, Jan. 25
Just because something is free does not mean it is not good. I know there are two sides to that coin. Some people may say, “you get what you pay for” or even, “something is only worth what it costs.” But other people say that “the best things in life are free”. Like for instance this podcast. It is free. I really have no ambition to ever charge anyone to listen to or hear about the good things that happen here in the Mahoning Valley.
I gather this information and write it up for you for free. Sometimes, hopefully I am entertaining or at least informative. I admit this project is a work in progress. So I do something for you the listener for free, and I need to ask you to do something for me and for this valley. If you think that there are ways to improve our Valley, please share them with me somewhere. On facebook. On Twitter. On the blogs where I post the transcripts. Please participate in this project.
If you have any vested interest in improving this community and helping all of us live up to our potential then spend some money on keeping this project going. It is really easy to do that. Head on over to the website and send some money. Easy. If you do that, and want to be mentioned or linked to, just let me know. We can also work out ways for you to advertise your business or organization on other podcasts. Or even make your own podcast.
We can talk about ways you can improve your use of the internet to communicate through any channels if you want. I did offer to talk to your for free initially. If you want to run with some ideas I have and have me implement them for you, great. I like to work. And I have been using this here internet thingie for a long time. I know a few things about it. Let’s work together to make it better and spread the good.