Monday, January 25, 2010

When Life Hands You Lemons

I did not come up with the catchy title of this post, I freely admit. I downright stole it from another blog. But that person is getting a free plug right here, to all twelve faithful followers of my blog. (Kudos to As they say, sometimes its better to beg forgiveness than to ask permission.

Yes, life does hand you lemons from time to time. Major lemons sometimes. No matter who we are, rich or poor, famous or not, we all get lemons, and some of us get much more than our share. The poor people of Haiti certainly have received a tremendous lemon of catastrophic proportions recently, with people losing their homes and more importantly, losing family members, in some cases, many family members. But the people of Haiti will be getting aid, and hopefully with the current world attention upon them, they can rebuild the city of Port-au-Prince and make it a better, safer place. We can't bring back their loved ones, but perhaps we can provide a better future for the young people who managed to survived.

I am not much of a TV watcher (although I will confess to getting hooked on NCIS while staying at my sister's house) but I was sick last Sunday and spent the whole day and evening in front of the boob-tube. I watched "Extreme Makeover"; well, I watched the very beginning of the show anyway. I watched the sob-story part of the show, where they show you how the lucky people who won a second chance at decent housing have survived despite horrific things that have happened to them. This show was no different. It featured a black woman from Jamaica who moved to Buffalo, NY, and bought a crummy house for $12,000. She and her family of four children tried to fix it up the best they could, but it was one of the saddest excuses for a house I have ever seen, so bad that the city had scheduled it for demolition unless she could bring it up to code.

Not only that, but Ty and crew also fixed up other houses along the family's street in the deteriorating neighborhood, giving the neighborhood new life and new hope for the future. What a great way to "pay it forward". I don't care if ABC is making tons of money from the advertisers for this show; I would be happy to see more shows of this type on TV.

I've had my own share of lemons. Watching this show is a good reminder to me to make lemonade out of what I've got and to be thankful that I didn't grow up poor in Haiti or Jamaica. If these people dare to have hope, then so can I.

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