La Fédération Franco-Américaine du NY is sponsoring a trip to France, featuring the 75th Anniversary of D-Day & Normandy, April 23 – May 7, 2020. Rates include round trip air from New York, air taxes and fees/surcharges, hotel transfers, and 20 meals. Highlights of the trip: Paris, River Seine cruise, Normandy, Omaha Beach, Le Mont St. Michel, Loire Valley, 2-night Chateau stay, winery tour, Lyon, Les Halles de Lyon, Paul Boscuse Market, Avignon, Creme Brûlée Cooking demonstration, Nice, Monaco. Plenty of time to explore on your own. For more information, pricing or a brochure, call Lisa at Plaza Travel at 518-785-3338 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rensselaer County Recovery Helpline
Do you need help with substance use issues? Are you interested in volunteering for the helpline? The Rensselaer County Recovery Helpline offers information, local resources, and referrals for individuals and their families regarding substance use issues. The toll-free line is available 7 days a week from 9am-9pm. Each volunteer chooses shifts of 4 hours at a time to be on-call. When someone calls the number, a volunteer answers on their own smartphone, and can enter information to a database on their own computer, allowing for easy and quick access to resources. The information is sent to one of the 9 leaders, who will then assist the caller. If you or someone you know needs information, resources, or a referral for a substance use problem, call 1-833-467-3123. For more information, or if you are interested in volunteering, contact Renscohelpline@nullgmail.com
Castle In My Attic
I approached the familiar old castle
Cautiously, but excitedly.
I opened the door, and
Peered into the massive foyer.
Evidence of the castle’s former residents
Was still there,…As it had been a year ago.
There was the gossamer gown
Of a young and pretty princess.
The mask and costume of the jester
Brought a smile to my face.
The soldier’s uniform most certainly
Belonged to a descendent of the royal family.
Lurking in a corner, I saw the witch’s face
Peering from under the wrinkled brim of a black hat.
And, then my queen broke the magical spell
As she beckoned me with…”Dinner’s Ready!”
As I approached her sheepishly, she asked,
“Been rummaging in the Halloween Box?”
– Lloyd Barnhart
West Sand Lake
Letters to the Editor
Rules For Life
Have you heard of Dr. Jordan Peterson or his best selling book: “12 Rules for Life”? There are also a number of popular YouTube videos and audio podcasts with in-depth interviews of the doctor by noted hosts such as Joe Rogan and Dr. Oz.
Dr. Peterson is a renowned clinical psychologist and professor of psychology. He has much more advise besides what he narrowed down to fit in the book but the message that has transformed the lives of thousands of people is that many of us these days are pursuing happiness when we really ought to be pursuing meaningfulness.
I found it noteworthy that while his admonitions apply to everyone, the people who’ve sought his advice the most, about 80%, are men. The reason I found this statistic to be noteworthy is that when I was looking for answers regarding the suicide of a friend several years ago, I found that men were four times more likely to commit suicide than women.
Is this because women in general have more meaning to their lives?
Most living creatures have a simple reason for living. They exist to perpetuate their species. As the brains of the numerous species become more complex, they begin to develop competitive hierarchies where males have to vie for the attention of females in order to reproduce. They have to show her their bright colors, their ability to build a nest, hunt or provide.
In the case of humans, we have developed complex social hierarchies involving education, fame, fortune, beauty and many others that involve self-esteem and the pursuit of happiness. We’ve become captives of our uniquely human emotions. We manipulate our emotions with addictive substances. We pursue meaningless goals.
Dr. Peterson’s solution for many people, as explained in the first three minutes of his nearly 3 hour Dr. Oz interview, is to exchange the fleeting goal of happiness with one of personal responsibility in order to provide meaningfulness. And wait til you hear about his diet!
David Crawmer, North Greenbush
Policing For Profit Shouldn’t Be Encouraged
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration funds grants to states to conduct “high visibility traffic enforcement campaigns.” Everyone is in favor of highway safety, but New York has laws specifically against ticketing quotas.
Ticketing quotas earn states additional NHTSA grant money, resulting in “Policing for Profit,” a process which undermines legitimate traffic safety enforcement as well as drawing law enforcement personnel away from legitimate law enforcement.
New York has laws against ticketing quotas and there should be a stop to federal handout incentives for this activity. Contacting your Congressman to add your voice will be helpful in gathering support for an anti-ticket bill in Congress. What is already illegal in NY should not benefit from federal tax dollars.
– Steve Sevits
East Greenbush, New York 12061