Take Back Your Life!

Wake Up From Your Sleepwalking

April 8, 2016 by Giulietta Nardone

My father says that almost the whole world is asleep. Everybody you know. Everybody you see. Everybody you talk to. He says that only a few people are awake and they live in a state of constant total amazement.” ~ Patricia Graynamore, Joe Versus The Volcano

Too many people go through their entire lives sleepwalking, like they are on some kind of autopilot that they can’t wake up from.

I used to be on autopilot to the point that sometimes I’d get in my car and find myself going somewhere I wasn’t intending to go. Once I found myself on the Mass Pike without any change in my purse for the tolls. I had to scrounge around the console and glove box gathering up 4o cents to get off at the next toll exit.

Once I got off, I pulled over and subjected myself to a flurry of rather frank self-talk, “What is wrong with you? How did you end up on a major highway when you were going to the Natick mall?” (more…)

What Is It To Be Human?

March 2, 2012 by Giulietta Nardone

A friend sent me a short film clip that explains why it’s so hard to save things that matter to the heart, like nature. It highlights the book by Charles Eisenstein called, “Sacred Economics.” He traces the origins of money and talks about the need to return to the gift economy, where people actually need each other. In our present economy, nature becomes a commodity we destroy to make stuff, to fuel an economy that doesn’t celebrate our humanness.

It’s fascinating to me because I studied Anthropology in college. It married my love of people, culture, and geography. Some of the most interesting indigenous populations we studied lived along the Pacific Northwest Coast of North America. That’s when I first heard the term “potlatch,” a type of feast. During these feasts, the host family gave away as much of their wealth as they could. People derived status not from how much they had, but from how much they gave away. (more…)

The Devil’s Den, Community and Perspective

February 22, 2012 by Giulietta Nardone

Well, I’ve just spent the last 10 days trying to save one of my town’s two archaeological sites.

Our town decided to build a field complex in an area that contained a beautiful 18th century road and several archaeological sites. One of those sites is Devil’s Den, the only granite solutions cave in Eastern Massachusetts. (It’s a lot bigger than it looks in the picture.)

The fields committee and architect said it would be saved and folks believed them.

Ten days ago I opened the paper to this headline, “Devil’s Den To Be Demolished.” Shocked folks wrote to those in charge.

The next morning we first heard our cave had been demolished. Later that had been revised to “hoe-rammed.” They broke a chunk off the left side.  But the rest of it was still intact.

Then the finger pointing started. Then the throwing folks under the bus started. The the mea culpas started. Then the over compensating started. The BOS got TONS of emails from all sorts of folks.

I visited the cave yesterday. They had to blast through an unbelievable amount of New England Ledge on this hilly site. The cave had blasting paraphernalia all around it. The area around it had been dug up. Yet, it stood so proud up there on the top of its hill.

I wondered who would hurt something so defenseless. It was hard to enough to see 9 acres of trees, hills and dales go.

The cave is in the Images of America series on our town. It’s on cave sites. It’s on historic sites. It’s one of a handful of “Devil’s Den’s in Massachusetts, named by the Puritans.”

And still this happened. It took my husband to point out why.

He said, “Were any of you at the site on a regular basis making sure it was being protected?”

“No,” I said.

“To folks who don’t care about natural history,” he said. “It probably looked like a pile of big rocks.”

Ah, that ole’ perspective.

We had a public hearing last night, where I spoke first. I expressed my municipal motto, “Build community, not resentment. This isn’t the way to do that.” Tens of folks got up to speak about the cave. Eloquent, impassioned speeches about how this happened to our special little cave, our Devil’s Den. They spoke of its importance to our local history.

Some of our leaders appeared to have all ready decided the cave’s fate. Not sure they have the right to do that. The cave belongs to all of us. But the roomful of people who cared about the cave, their speeches, the cave’s historic evidence, it alerted them to the gem they were about to lose forever.

I learned more important life lessons in the past week than I have in the past six months:

a) Don’t assume someone will keep their word.

b) If you care about something, be actively involved in its protection.

c) Make sure the exact care and feeding instructions are outlined in writing.

d) Educate folks about the importance of natural wonders and local history.

e) Understand that it’s never too late to save something.

f) Jump into action and give it your all.


p.s. Please check out my self-discovery writing adventure at story circle on-line.

Grab Life by the Writing Gusto: Finding Your Life Theme



Free Will: Use It Or Lose It

December 14, 2011 by Giulietta Nardone

The other night, Jimmy and I decided to watch a movie. He flipped through the choices stopping on The Adjustment Bureau (TAB) starring Matt Damon. At first I said, “No way am I watching another film where Matt Damon plays a buff but emotionless character, (usually some kind of assassin or hero), or a character without emotion.

Then I realized the terrific Emily Blunt played his love interest. I adored her in The Devil Wears Prada and decided to give the movie a chance. ***Spoiler ahead***


What if everyone really cared?

November 21, 2011 by Giulietta Nardone

Hello readers,

As the holiday to give thanks approaches, it reminds me how fortunate my life has been and how difficult others’ lives have been. I wonder why does it have to be that way? Why can’t we all live fortunate lives?

I’ve been distressed about the young women and children forced into sex slavery. Big subjects speak to me. I don’t care about some jacket going on sale at The Mall, I care about humans made to do horrible things against their will. It’s a growing, very profitable “industry.”

It took me a good year of reading books, watching movies, reading articles, but I finally had my newspaper column published, The Sex Slave Next Door. Please consider checking it out. Some folks won’t read it because they say it’s too hard to read. (more…)

Teen dating violence in a small town

July 6, 2011 by Giulietta Nardone

Over the weekend, a murder happened in the small town I grew up. Allegedly, a young man referred to as a star athlete (football/track) slashed/strangled his ex-girlfriend’s throat most likely in his parents’ garage. They’d dated for three years before she broke up with him a few months back. Reports suggest he’d become withdrawn and angry post breakup. Yet, she remained friends with him and agreed to meet him after work. Perhaps, she wanted to keep the peace. Perhaps, she didn’t sense the impending danger. Perhaps she never believed he’d hurt her. (more…)

Do Appalachians deserve democracy, too? Or just coal companies?

February 6, 2011 by Giulietta Nardone

Hey friends,

I first became aware of mountain top removal in Appalachia a few years ago. But I didn’t give it much thought. Hey, that’s down in Appalachia. That’s their problem. They can fight for themselves. I’m working hard to save the beauty in my own backyard.

A documentary I watched in December called “Burning the Future: Coal in America,” helped me see that I was wrong.

It’s all my backyard and yours, too.

We’re in this “thing” called life together and the sooner we realize that, the sooner it may dawn on us that Earth is Heaven and we’ve been turning it into hell by not speaking up. (more…)

Does TV numb our brains and lives?

January 18, 2011 by Giulietta Nardone

Hey thinking ones,

I used to watch tons of TV in my twenties. Somehow I got involved in the usually miserable lives of the folks in the sitcoms and dramacoms and mini-series — to the point where I wasn’t involved in my own life. I’d refuse to go out on certain nights to ensure I didn’t miss an episode. I swear my brain started to get numb. If you recall the movie Repo Man, Otto’s parents sit like automatons in front of the TV set whenever the camera pans into the home. Not convinced it’s a stereotype anymore.  (more…)

Nothing is wrong with you.

December 20, 2010 by Giulietta Nardone

Hey feisty folks,

I’ll get right to the point.


Yes, that’s right. We come into this world genuine and adventurous and loving. Those qualities get hidden under cloaks of “must do isms.” At first others put these cloaks on us, then we willingly put them on ourselves long after the cloak-putter-onners no longer have the power to do so. Sometimes the cloaks get so heavy people collapse under the burden of trying to wear them, suffocated by the weight. You’ve seen these folks or, perhaps, even been one yourself, crawling through life, feeling unbelievably heavy. (more…)

Want to know my secret?

December 1, 2010 by Giulietta Nardone

Hey rebellious ones!

It’s perseverance.

When I set my sights on something, I take a personal vow not to give up. 99% of the time, whatever I want to happen does indeed happen. But only because I didn’t give up. I didn’t give in to that human tendency to “run back to mommy” at the slightest bump in the road.

It wasn’t always that way. I used to throw up my hands in fake disgust and give up really easily. I gave up jobs and boyfriends and hobbies. I gave up living my best life. Looking back I can see that either I didn’t really want those things or I didn’t really want to fight for those things because I could have had them with a bit more determination and grit. True grit, that is. (more…)

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