Wednesday’s Women: @wordsdonewrite @bonnie67 @girlygrizzly @atugend @careyfuller

blog soup 02.01.2012

Wednesday’s Women: A Celebration of Woman

by Stan Faryna

Stan Faryna

No Doubt, I’m just a girl

1. The Dangers of Saying Thank You by Amber Avines

Amber gives good tips for remembering the right people when it’s time to say thank you.

My comment:

Thank you for this whole-hearted observation, Amber.

It has been said and it bears true for me that saying thank you is more than a matter of good manners; it’s good, deep, and real spirituality.

And when I reflect on gratitude, I often remember the prophet Daniel in thanksgiving:

To You, O God of my fathers, I give thanks and praise, For You have given me wisdom and power; Even now You have made known to me what we requested of You, For You have made known to us the king’s matter.

Whether you read Daniel as revelation or as a classic of literature, Daniel’s expression is a thank you that speaks to the human heart – as much as it speaks to the divine and sacred.

Daniel was in a tough spot. The king had ordered all advisors and counselors to be put to death because they do not know the dream that troubled him. Nor did the king trust an interpretation of the dream by anyone who could not know his dream without him telling it.  

Daniel prayed for God’s help and the dream and it’s meaning were revealed to Daniel. Daniel went to the king, described the dream, and explained it – a dream about the course of human civilization and it’s ultimate demise. Thus, Daniel’s life and the lives of his friends were spared by the King. 

Said Meister Eckhart (Eckhart von Hochheim) of a thank you:

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was “thank you, that would suffice.

One of my favorite authors, G.K. Chesterton, wrote:

Thanks are the highest form of thought; and gratitude is happiness double by wonder.

And, C.S. Lewis (if I correctly remember what he wrote):

We must give thanks for all fortune: as it is, it is good. And if bad, only because it gives us patience, humility, and hope for the eternal.

That said, I don’t see enough thanksgiving going on – especially in social media where the opportunity is prolific and people say they are all about being social, gracious, and friendly.

Let us understand, now and together, that we are gifts to each other – whether or not we know or admit to such wonder.

We are surrounded by gifts, in fact. Therefore, giving thanks from the heart can never be done too often.

Writes Elizabeth Barret Browning in Sonnet 41 from Sonnets from the Portuguese:

I thank all who have loved me in their hearts,
With thanks and love from mine.
Deep thanks to all Who paused a little near the prison-wall
To hear my music in its louder parts
Ere they went onward, each one to the mart’s
Or temple’s occupation, beyond call.
But thou, who, in my voice’s sink and fall
When the sob took it, thy divinest Art’s
Own instrument didst drop down at thy foot
To harken what I said between my tears, . . .
Instruct me how to thank thee! Oh, to shoot
My soul’s full meaning into future years,
That they should lend it utterance, and salute
Love that endures, from life that disappears!

Thank you…

Or with more enthusiasm, as Sebastian says to Antonio in Act Three of Scene Three of William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night:

I can no other answer make but thanks, And thanks!

Subscribe to Amber Avines’s blog, Words Done Write.

Need more Amber Avine? Check out the following:

ABC to 123: Giving adults social media grades

Social media conferences are like Vegas

Can social media ruin memories?

Alanis Morissette, Thank You

2. I need your Love by Bonnie Squires

Writes Bonnie:

We welcome each new year with much anticipation and enthusiasm. But the new year doesn’t bring the change we want. Because we never (or rarely) do what it takes to make change happen. We just wait for wonderful things to happen. Fall out of the sky. Like winning the lottery. But it doesn’t work that way. Not for me anyway. Know what I mean?

My comment:

I unabashedly bawled my eyes out while reading Bonnie’s blog post.

Subscribe to Bonnie Squire’s Blog

Need More Bonnie Squires? Check out the following:

Laugh, Love, and Blogging #Triberr

Because Love is bigger than anything else

Love is six parts giving and one part talk

Matt Kearney, Sooner or Later

3. Hunting Dall Sheep and Learning Social Media by Amber-Lee Dibble

Inspired by Joseph Pine’s TED Talk about the economics of authenticity, Amber-Lee relates big game hunting to social media.
My comment:
Joseph Pine talks about commodities. He also talks about goods, services, experiences, and people. In other words, commodities. [grin] You and I are commodities in that social media business model – all that we are: our hearts, our minds, our souls, our bodies, our hopes and dreams, and, yes, also our fears, our vulnerability, and failure.
Supply. Cost. Relevance. Authenticity. It’s all there in the business plan. Twitter. Facebook. Google. Etc. So, yeah, social media is a matrix.  That’s why the 1 percenters are putting hundreds of billions of dollars into it. Because it is an elegant business model that promises considerable Return on Investment (ROI).
Has anyone ever spelled that out to you, my dear friend? Like this?
Because I know there’s a lot of so-called social media experts (out there) who think they know what’s going on, but they just have some silly talks and walks. [grin]
The silly thing was a reference to Monty Python.
Just imagine if you could create reliable and affordable kill zones (artificial mineral licks and the other things that Dall sheep desperately crave). Places where the Dall Sheep would come on a predictable time-table. Imagine that!
Social media is also about you and I commoditizing ourselves. And each other. The more effective we are at doing it with the limited (cost effective!) tools that we are given, the more effectively we commoditize ourselves for the social media machine.
Social media is sinister that way. And yet, it is also something wonderful. Because we all want more. That’s who we are! We want to be (more), to love (more), and to know (more). This, perhaps, is the essence of loving strongly.
Social media is also messy. 
Because commoditization is messy. Generally speaking, commoditization is the process of making a thing (resource, good, service, experience, or you) known, interesting, and available to a market (consumers). This is a considerable challenge for a business (even the biggest of businesses) and how much more for you or me who lack the resources to commoditize any thing – let alone ourselves!
And yet, despite such epic challenge to commoditize ourselves, social media suggests to us a boon of inconceivable merit: that it provides us with a unique, exciting, and new opportunity through which we can become commodities. 
For us, it is the opportunity to commoditize ourselves and others. And people get that. You and I, to be sure, get it.
Do not mistake opportunity for easy street, my dearest friend. That common and mistaken assumption is cause for much disappointment as we see with our own eyes. Bloggers and social media experts do tend to rise, buzz, and drop as fast as flies. 
What I didn’t say:
Beyond the economics of authenticity. Beyond the business model of social media at the macro and micro level, there is the you and me, our dignity as human persons, our purpose (as you mention), who we are, and what you and I want beyond our material fantasies and needs.
We want and need love, to be thankful, and want and need to serve, give, and shine bright. We want and need to be true and, by these aforementioned virtues, we shall be more truly ourselves.
Authenticity. This is the heart of human authenticity. 
In his Ted Talk, Joe Pine quotes the last lines of Polonius’s advice to his son, Laertes, in William Shakespeare’s play, Hamlet.
This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
Perhaps, Shakespeare quotes Plato’s Charmides. The entire advice of Polonius, however, provides a more complete view of what it means to be true. And truth, I have often reflected, is not just something to say, share, or write, but rather something that is in the doing.
Or Truth is not there. Perhaps, a shadow of truth. A hint. But not Truth, itself.
We all recognize there is more or less truth to my opinion. We all have felt it. We all feel it – if we still have a heart and conscience.
Maya Angelou captures a glimpse of the beauty of a woman’s authenticity in her poem, Phenomenal Woman.
Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.
Yes, I know! I’m preaching to the choir. [warm smile]
But we all need reminders. Even me. And especially me! Maybe, you too?
Let this, then, be written upon your heart. That you, you truly, must be the subtext of what you do. On Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, on your blog, when you are proving the safer route to cross a glacial river, etcetera.
And, regarding commoditization, take care not to confuse the subtext with the text. [grin]
P.S. Happy Blogiversary!
Subscribe to Amber-Lee’s blog, Alaska Chick
Need more Amber-Lee? Check out the following:
Partners that you can trust: Alaska Chick and Thunder
Finding Your Own Way
DIY-er & Big Game Outfitter, Alaska Chick, “Do they mix?”

Alicia Keyes, A Woman’s Worth

4. Forget Networking. How to Be a Connector by Alina Tugend

Writes Alina:

“Networking I see as a means to an end,” says Jill Leiderman, executive producer of the late-night show Jimmy Kimmel Live. But connecting, she explains, is about using a genuine love of meeting people and making friends to engage and assist one another.

My comment:

Connectors will be known by the amazing outcomes they orchestrate- for their own advantage among mutual advantages OR, more importantly, for the advantage of the people that they are connecting. Because they like to see people working together, collaborating, and making it happen.

As my friend, Florin Cosac, puts it:

Help others dream bigger.

Self-proclaimed networkers often lack the subtext of authenticity that I mention in my comment to Amber-Lee. They are almost always and obviously all about themselves; their desperation is often obvious at first glance; there’s gotta be something in it for them: free drinks, hors d’oeuvresshameless self-promotion, or worse, they just have to control the situation. And there’s nothing less natural than the latter.

Don’t know the type? Just show up at your next local chamber of commerce event, network marketing meet up, or Mary Kay party. [grin]

Writes Emily Dickinson:

If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain;
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.

Dickinson emphasizes empathy. But our empathy, nor do I intend to suggest this was Dickinson’s only concern, our empathy must also lift others who rise to joy as much as we must support those who fall into despair. This is authenticity. Too.

Curating people, connecting people, illuminating what is beautiful, good, and true AND, last but not least, helping others dream bigger.

That’s what I’m trying to do with blog soup , Castleville, and my blog in general.

I may not get it right. Not now. Maybe, never. But even if I dont get it right, I’m not talking about doing something as unnatural and wild-eyed as putting a man (or woman) on the moon.

And if I’m not getting it right that doesn’t mean you can’t get it right. Because if I’m not getting it right, what’s going on is a personal problem. A fail. In other words, my problem – not yours.

BTW – How am I doing?

Need more Alina Tugen? Check out the following:

Pursuing Self-Improvement at the Risk of Self Acceptance

If Not Passion for the Job, at Least Warm Feelings

Putting Yourself Out There on a Shelf to Buy

5. A New Year, A New Beginning by Carey Fuller

Writes Carey:

For many, the New Year brings new resolutions and new beginnings. For the homeless, it’s a time of anxiety. For one thing, many wonder if their health will hold out another year while others wonder how long it will take to find permanent housing, a living wage job or enough food to eat for their kids.

But the most important thing that Carey has to say in this blog post is this:

The only things we truly own are the memories we create both good and bad.

My comment:

Carey is a homeless, single mother. She lives in a van with her children. But what I want to say to you is that Carey is more than her misfortune, hardships, and pain. She helps others.


Do you get it?

Carey reminds me of the sea rose in The Sea Garden – a poem by Hilda Doolittle (H.D.).

Rose, harsh rose,
marred and with stint of petals,
meagre flower, thin,
sparse of leaf,
more precious
than a wet rose
single on a stem–
you are caught in the drift.

In fact, Carey owns more than her memories! Carey owns a substantial portion of authenticity. And, authenticity, I promise you, is forever – unlike material things.

Do you want to be forever?

Subscribe to Carey Fuller’s Blog, Tales From the Driver’s Side

Need more Carey Fuller? Check out the following:

Keeps crying down

What today was like in Kent

Meet Jay, homeless disabled man


Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston, When You Believe


If you think that this blog post sucks, let me know in your comment and don’t forget to include a link to YOUR favorite blog post.

If you think this blog post rocks, tell me why it rocks in the comment. “Awesome,””Great post,” etc. works for me. Don’t forget to include a link to YOUR most recent blog post.

Subscribe to this blog if you would enjoy keeping up with my thoughts and commentary.

Stan Faryna
01 February 2012
Bucharest, Romania


No fairies were harmed during the writing and publishing of this blog post.


18 Responses to Wednesday’s Women: @wordsdonewrite @bonnie67 @girlygrizzly @atugend @careyfuller

  1. WOW what a great group of blogs and videos and some of my favorite topics! I’m all about thank-yous and authenticity and I love all your blog posts, but this has been one of my favorites so far. Great blog!

  2. Stan Faryna says:


    You lift me up with your kind compliments and encouragement. You lift me higher and higher.

    Thank you.

  3. Betsy Cross says:

    Carey Fuller’s post / blog touched me. I’m sad that there’s so much suffering, but hopeful that there is a lot of good going on. It would help to read stories like hers every morning, first thing, before I start my day, just to put things in perspective. The problem is so overwhelming…homelessness that is. It just doesn’t make much sense to me. But then I ask what am I doing about it other than hoping my family doesn’t become a part of the “problem”. Maybe for now, other than the money we donate at church, that’s enough?
    Thanks, Stan

    • Stan Faryna says:


      You can start right now by retweeting Carey and other homeless advocates. Perhaps, curate them in a blog post every now and then.

      Sometimes, we don’t do anything because we can’t solve the problem, once and for all. But I have a feeling that no one’s asking you or me to fix it, single-handedly.

      We are only asked, I would like to believe, to give what we can honestly give of ourselves which is often much more and much less than we want to give.

      Again, I am reminded of that seeming cliche. Yes, authenticity.

      It’s a bugger of a word! Because, of course, it is more than just a word…

      Big hug to you!

  4. bonnie67 says:

    Hello Stan

    I must check these blogs out. I do know some of the bloggers and they are awesome, wonderful ladies.

    Betsy, in the last couple years I’ve learned a lot of two people, Stan and Marie from Spreading Joy. She is awesome what she does is make bags up and gives them to the homeless. She puts in tooth brushes, tooth paste, sandwiches, a drink, and some other things and a card in it with encouragement.

    It may not seem like much to you or me, but to them it may be their only meal for the day. That means so much to them.

    So may be you could do some thing like that – if you want to do more than share a message. Also, maybe your friends and church want to do something together.

    Stan, thank you for putting me in your blog soup. I’m honored as I am sure everyone is honored to be featured in your blog soups. You are a connector, a leader, a mentor, a visionary, a general, a healer and much more.

    You use the gifts given to you with grace and humility.

    Bonnie Squires

    • Stan Faryna says:


      I think it’s important to listen to each other. We may not always understand each other, but we will never understand each other until, first, we listen to each other. Blog soup is an exercise in listening to you ( a human being) as much as it is about curating people, connecting people, and celebrating their unique voice.

      For me, my comments are not about me trying to show you how intelligent I’d like you to believe I am. My comments are my own poor attempt to illuminate what was important to you… as best as I have understood it. Does that make any sense to you?

      I’m glad that I don’t so terribly misunderstand your intentions, hopes and thoughts that you’d want to burn down my blog.

      But maybe I do misunderstand you and maybe you do want to burn it down, but you are so kind and gentle not to punish me for my ignorance and misperception. I can only hope it is not so.

  5. […] close to me know January was a tough […]

  6. Jayna Locke says:

    Stan, this is beautiful. What a fabulous meld of music and minds! I cried when I read Bonnie’s blog post too. There is way too much heaped on people’s plates these days, and she has been amazing, holding it together. In fact, she is the one that gave me the heads up on your “blog soup.” What a clever creation! And soup is not only a metaphor for a big pot of all kinds of ingredients, but also nourishment. Your post is nourishment for the soul.

    • Stan Faryna says:

      Would you like another bowl of blog soup? [smile]

      I’m grateful to be meeting you here, Jayna!

      Wow, do I agree with you! Soup is good food. I like soup. Almost as much as pie. [grin]

      Of course, I’m still working on my soup kitchen skills, but hopefully I’m getting better at it.

  7. Wonderful tribute to wonderful women. Thank you for this series, Stan!

    • Stan Faryna says:

      It wasn’t a little too long? [grin]

      Carolyn, you are always supportive and encouraging of my endeavors. Thank you! Thank you for being the wonderful that you are.

  8. alaskachick says:

    I’m always so self-conscious when I see that you’ve mentioned me… I guess instead of Alaska Chick.

    Stan… I wonder why that is?

    Your thoughts, and how you share what these posts that you gather and how they make you think, (although, I can admit, sometimes I say “huh?”) is incredibly illuminating.

    Oh, yeah I can imagine how simple life would be as Sheep Guides with mineral licks set out for them! We wouldn’t have to worry at all! We would be out of business! LOL! (that would be, umm, unethical, not to mention, illegal!)

    But seriously, I see and understand (I think) what you are saying to me… but Stan, I have to think hard, of course, but I have to follow my heart and hope that it is my heart, listening for His voice, and being as real as I can be… I think I’m pretty real. Not hiding anymore. Not from Him, not from me, and not from the world.

    I am ready.

    Thank you, for sharing with me Phenomenal Woman written by Maya Angelou…I had never read that before. What a mantra.

    Carey Fuller, I am off to go introduce myself to. Please keep your fingers crossed that my internet will hold! I agree with Betsy, that certain things should be part of every day break, not only to put our individual lives into perspective, but to remind ourselves what we are working and praying for.

    Please! Do you know Nancy Davis? Have you been keeping up with her? This morning’s post An Amazing Revelation was incredible. Please try to see her/it soon.


    • Stan Faryna says:

      Amber-Lee, you are strong. You are faster, more agile, and stronger than most men that I know. Myself included. And I admire you for it.

      The stride of your step, how you stand upon a horse’s back and study your approach and kill, and your laughter – how it rings in the cabin. Like the light of a roaring campfire throwing back the quiet night in licks and curls.

      I think of you thundering along the river bank on Thunder’s back, the Timber wolves watching you go with heads lowered in humility. The grizzly bear and the Dall sheep listening from far away- listening to that distant rumble of Thunder’s gallop.

      In other words…

      You’re a woman

  9. Thanks for the shoutout, Stan! You’re so right. Giving thanks and being grateful is such an important part of life. Not on “special” days, but every day!

    – Amber

    • Stan Faryna says:

      You’re welcome, Amber. And thank you!

      Thank you for reminding me about the one thing that matters most. To be thankful.

  10. Ah, some lovely ladies indeed; Stan the ladies man………:)

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