Life Lessons from Uncle Charlie

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Uncle Charlie of Two and a Half Men.  If a fan of this show, you may agree that it’s difficult not to love that swashbuckling, whisky gulping man with a heart of gold. And though the new cast is doing a good job, the show is just not the same without him. And as I watch reruns of old episodes every other evening (it’s one of the best ways to unwind after a workday), I have to come to realize that irrespective of what the character is all about, there are quite a few life lessons to be learnt from Uncle Charlie. For instance, is this gold or what:We all want the shining red apple, but sometimes we got to settle for what’s on the lower branch, or in some cases we take what’s lying on the ground.”

So here are a few life lessons from Uncle Charlie that I think we can all use.

Lesson #1: It is important to enjoy time alone.

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Lesson #2: When in trouble, always call Mom.  

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Lesson #3: Napping equals recharging and we all could use some.

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Lesson #4: You should live life on your own terms.

Charlie: “I don’t have to face anything I don’t want to face, and I don’t have to feel anything I don’t want to feel, and that includes Mom’s vodka knockers.”

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Charlie: “When the phone rings at Uncle Charlie’s house, we don’t just willy-nilly pick up the receiver and answer it. No. What we do is check the caller ID, and only pick up if we want to talk to that person.”

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Lesson #5:  Everyone can be your friend. That includes your pizza delivery guy, your housekeeper and your stalker.

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Lesson #6:  As the older sibling, it is your responsibility to teach stuff to your younger brother.

Charlie: “Listen, you’ve got to do me a favor.”

Alan: “That’s what I live for.”

Charlie: “Sarcasm is for winners, Alan.”

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Lesson #7: It’s good to know exactly what you want from people.

Berta: “Alright, I ordered your pizza. I’m going home.”

Charlie: “Thanks, Berta. “I ordered your pizza, I’m going home.” Two of the three things you want in a woman.”

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And finally, another gem from the man:

Charlie: “No woman ever came home from a date complaining that all she did was talk about herself.”

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Pretty Little Notebooks

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Recently I came across an anthology titled Writers on Writing: Collected Essays from the New York Times. A delightful collection of writing by literary icons, one that I particularly loved is by Mary Gordon, titled Putting Pen to Paper, but Not Just Any Pen to Just Any Paper. The author has lovingly described her notebooks – from Swedish ones in primary colors to confectionery colored ones from New Orleans, and as a writer and lover of all things colorful, I enjoyed reading about her love for notebooks and writing.

Indeed there is something oh-so-charming about notebooks, right? My Sundays are usually devoted to such indulgences as notebook shopping; and though the writing may not be happening as frequently as I would have liked it to, watching that pile of new notebooks grow taller is quite fun! 🙂

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My current favorite and latest buy. That colorful fabric cover makes…

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What Matters Most

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At the end of the day, how you have faced it all depends on these three:

A sense of GRATITUDE, the right ATTITUDE, and plenty of FORTITUDE. 

How wonderful will it be if you express thankfulness for all those little things that make your day brighter? I read somewhere that gratitude changes everything, and couldn’t agree more.

Do you handle roadblocks and difficult people in a gracious manner? Sure, you can’t control how others are going to talk to you or treat you. But, the thing you CAN control, is your own attitude.

And finally, do you exhibit courage, resilience, and perseverance while facing the ups and downs of the day? Whenever you fall, remember that every time, you did so, you got back up again, didn’t ya? Now that’s something to keep in mind 🙂

Thanks for reading. I hope you have a great day ahead!

(And that’s cute plant from my balcony)

Beginning Your Day Right

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If we begin each morning by reading few pages from an uplifting book, it will help put a positive spin on the entire day. If practiced regularly, the key takeaway from the day’s reading will help cultivate positive emotions, and reduce the impact of negativity during the day.

Your mind gets affected by what you read first thing in the morning. Before reading the newspaper or watching the morning news, which, more often than not, can be quite depressing, it is a good practice to read a few pages, from a book that uplifts you and nourishes your soul. Often, I have heard/read about going on a “news fast”, but I think it is important to know what’s going on in the world. Hence, a better way to begin the day is by reading something which makes you feel good, perhaps Flourish by Dr. Martin Seligman, or Power of the Subconscious Mind by Dr. Joseph Murphy.

I have personally tried this out, and have encouraged friends to do so. Some of them have taken this up seriously, and say that it has been helpful.

Give it a shot. It’ll go a long way in training your mind to focus on what’s working in your life, think about good things and maintain a positive outlook . And who among us doesn’t want to have a nice day?

Writer’s Block

 

Our writer wants new ideas, so she turns to three wise men for help.

Writer: “Tony, I need help with my new book.”

Tony Soprano: “Sure, kid. You want me to clip someone?”

 

Writer: “Jerry, you’ve got to give me something.”

Jerry Seinfeld: “Let me tell you what I can give you – Nothing.”

 

Writer: “Red, I need some ideas.”

Red Forman: “Kid, once I put my foot in your ass, I bet the words will come tumbling out!”

 

Exasperated, our writer decides to approach a wise woman instead.

 

Writer: “Deb, what should I write about this time?”

Debra Morgan: “Jesus ……….. Christ, stop talking and start writing already!”

 

Fort Tiracol in a charming Goan village

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Moonlight, sea breeze, sounds of gentle waves, some white wine and delicious food – that’s what our first night at Fort Tiracol was all about. There is this smart young lad (I think his name is Carousel), who took ordinary patio furniture and set up this gorgeous looking table for our wine and food on the balcony of our suite, and it looked straight out of a glossy magazine! And sitting there, we just couldn’t help but be drawn into that eerily ecstatic feel, that where you are sitting is exactly the same place used to keep a watch on the sea hundreds of years ago!

We had chosen this place on a whim, as heritage properties intrigue us a lot, and Fort Tiracol lived up to expectations and then some! We had stayed at the ‘Sunday’ suite, a marvelous room with antique furniture, beautifully lit up spaces, and an uber luxe bathroom. The fort seems to be a favorite sightseeing spot too, and the restaurant a popular pitstop for these non-residents. Speaking of the restaurant, the decor is colorful, eclectic, and offers you fantastic sea views while you enjoy Goan, Portuguese and Indian delicacies. The property has old photos hung all over, so you get to know a lot of Fort Tiracol’s history from those displays.

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With just two days to make the most of our time, we had quite a choc-o-bloc itinerary, but it was very interestingly planned. The highlights were a rickshaw ride through the village to see some lesser known (but very pretty) beaches, typical Goan lunch at a local restaurant (the owner is the retired ‘sarpanch’ of the village, and over a glass of beer with my husband, he shared many interesting stories about local life), and finally a walk through all kinds of terrain that ended with some tea and pakodas served by our guide’s wife.

Fort Tiracol is the kind of place where you can feel the presence of 400-year-old history, that’s for sure. How they have kept that old-world charm intact and yet infused a feel of modern day luxuries is what makes the place so beautiful. The place also has an ‘inclusive’ feel, and by that I mean how the village people are involved with the business of running this place. One moment they are serving you in your room, and then when you are taking in the sights and sounds of Tiracol village, they’ll pass you by with warm ‘hellos’. Truly a delightful and different Goan experience.