I always thought that when asked to pick 5 people, alive or dead, to join me for dinner that I would pick amazing or noble people – Cleopatra, Gandhi, The Dalai Lama, you know people of that nature. Now that my life is a little bit different from where I thought I would be at almost-24, I think my answers have really changed.
- Lucille Ball
Lucille Ball has always been one of my favorite people. As a child (and still today), laughter always helped me get through my pain. I Love Lucy reruns were a really big part of my childhood. It wasn’t until the last few years that I learned that she developed RA as a teenager. Her original dream was to become an amazing dancer. When RA hit, she had to learn how to walk all over again. Through her different shows, she incorporated dancing and was able to be very physical despite the progression of the disease. I admire her tenacity and her bravery. I would love to learn more about her resilience and how she was able to fight through the pain. Here are my three favorite quotes from the famous redhead:
“One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn’ t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself.”
“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”
“I’m not funny. What I am is brave”
I’m not much of an art person. The great artists I care about are Italian, and that’s why I love them… which is not entirely true because I love Middle Eastern art but not enough to tell you names. Renior, though, fought RA for a very long time. Towards the end of his life, he was bedridden and his hands were so deformed he couldn’t do what he loved most – paint. Eventually, he decided to bind his brushes to his hands and he learned to paint differently. I admire his fighting spirit most.
- The Dalai Lama
My undergraduate degree is in religious studies, but I started out in chemistry. People who don’t know that much about me assume that I did it because of faith, seeing as how I’m also an ordained minister. They really don’t know me well though. My sophomore year, I took a survey class on Asian Religions. I mostly did it because I do yoga to help with my illness, and I have since I was about 12 or so. I wanted to learn more about Buddhism and about the roots of yoga. By the end of that class, not only had I changed my major but also my outlook on life. I would not say that I am a definite Buddhist or anything, but if I had to choose a religion that follows mostly what I believe, then Buddhism would be it.
And the Dalai Lama has an amazing sense of humor. Seriously, the man watches Monty Python and laughs constantly.
Here is one of my favorite DL quotes. I like it because there is so much truth to it, and you don’t need to be a believer or accept someone into your life for it to be true:
“If we were aware that we all contain love within us, and that we could foster and develop it, we would certainly give it far more attention than we do.”
- Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert
These men are two of the funniest and smartest in the world in my eyes. The boyfriend points out that they have writers, which is true. But even during the writer’s strike a few years ago, I love their shows. Hell, I think I might have loved the shows even more during that period because you got to see some jokes that flopped and some segments that didn’t work well. Even in failures, these guys are hilarious. Interviews on their shows aren’t like those on those other nightly interview shows on other networks. These two actually ask questions that are pertinent to the world, about things that actually matter. I think that Jon more so is known for this, but Stephen does it well during his parodies.
And, I suppose, to be truthful I should share that I think they’re both super hot and I would probably lick, I dunno, caramel sauce off their faces or something… because that’s not creepy at all. But see, I think they’re hot not only because they’re both dashingly handsome but because of the things that they stand up for, because of the awareness they raise on issues, and because of their use of humor in doing it.
And I might be kind of in love with Stephen, partially because this quote by him gives me strength:
“Don’t be bitter. Everybody suffers. If you can accept your suffering then you will understand other people better. Be grateful for pain. Love life.”