Archive for June, 2010

IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church Part 5

IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church- Part One
IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church- Part Two
IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church Part 3.
IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church –Part Four

My Roman Catholic friends either laughed , shook their heads or knowingly smiled when I said

I am going to write to the Vatican.

I went on the Vatican’s website– No! I wasn’t going to write to the Pope he has his own problems ( because situations in the Roman Catholic Church that had been ignored, disregarded and swept aside – were now coming to light with a vengeance.

Investigators also opened the graves of archbishops in the St. Rombouts Cathedral in Mechlin, north of Brussels, looking for possibly incriminating documents, said Jean-Marc Meilleur, spokesman for the Brussels public prosecutor.

Austrian Catholics ramp up quest for church reform

Vatican opposes interrogation of pope in sex abuse case -USA

Pope Names Team to Investigate Abuse in Ireland

Walter Mixa, German bishop and ally of the Pope, faces new child abuse allegations

It seems the Vatican and the Pope are trying to sort through decades of problems world-wide because they were “ignored” in the first place (imho) . I figured I would get lost in the shuffle of “those that were ignored” and quite frankly they certainly deserved to be heard more than I!

Searching through the Vatican site I came across

Il Gran Magistero dell’Ordine
The Grand Magisterium of the Order
John Patrick Foley –

Ah well here is a someone who was born in Pennsylvania so certainly wouldn’t need an interpreter as to American “mid western” thinking.

I wrote the following:

Archbishop John Patrick Foley
President, Pontifical Council for Social Communication
00120 Vatican City State,
Rome, Italy February 26, 2010

Dear Archbishop Foley.

I am writing to you as you were born in Pennsylvania so presumably you know the “culture “of the Midwestern thinking. Also, quite frankly not knowing the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church, I am sending this to you as you seem to be in charge. I am curious to see what happens – will etiquette at least produce a letter of receipt or acknowledgement which hasn’t been the case so far in my journey of grief?

You can put this letter down to a grieving mother who wants some answers or who just wants to reach out and make someone of your faith aware of her terrible pain caused, in part, by decisions of people of your faith and enabling of such by your church and an acknowledgement of such.

I did write to the local Bishop ( Richard Lennon) and the priest here in Ohio involved in my secondary loss of my son. (Please see enclosed letter). However, I have received not even a “thank you for you letter, your concerns have been noted and filed” . As an aside the withholding of my son’s cremains was not done for any “religious reasoning” but because he wasn’t an organ donor so she wanted him “intact”.

Maybe I expected too much. I suppose in the grand scheme of things my grief and loss is tantamount to a mere blip on the screen of life , not worthy of acknowledgement , but to this family it is our world- one of unbearable heartache. Do you not think that I should have “expected” an acknowledgement? It does seem that the consensus among your flock here in Ohio they would not have expected any answer. I find that disconcerting actually that even your own people have told me “don’t expect any response”. Why shouldn’t I have expected a response to a letter sent to “men of the cloth” and the human experience?

So I thought I would reach out to the “almost” top and follow through. Thank you for your time in this matter- I await with anticipation your views or acknowledgement at least.

Yours sincerely

Loraine Ritchey

You see if Angela (Lombardi) ritchey IF she had said:

”due to my religious beliefs I cannot separate the ashes”

Believe it or not I would have understood that reasoning – I would have tried to intercede to change her mind to have people of her faith explain BUT remember that is NOT what she stated in the “note” over her signature – in fact she went out of her way to state that religion wasn’t the reason

Angela Lombardi ritchey

(emphasis mine)

I have decided not to separate his ashes. This decision was not made as a reaction to recent events . Religion did not play a role. Chris did not want to be an organ donor he wanted to leave this world with what he came with…I feel this is one last thing I can do to honor my husband…..

CAN YOU BELIEVE ALL THIS ???? – ALL THE HURT, ILL FEELINGS AND TURMOIL FOR A REASON SUCH AS ‘NOT AN ORGAN DONOR”- BEGGARS BELIEF…….( especially when he WAS! …..guess she didn’t know Chris as well as she thought she did.
This is supposedly an intelligent individual who hopefully takes in account what the outcome of her decisions make ( Dr. ) on fellow human beings. Also medically speaking she certainly should know what happens to the organs during a cremation

During the cremation process, a large part of the body (especially the organs) and other soft tissue are vaporized and oxidized because of the heat, and the resulting gases are discharged through the exhaust system.

Didn’t she give a thought to how her actions ( based on such asinine reasoning) would be nothing less than an act of cruelty of the most emotionally abusive kind perpetrated on this family –

Did she discuss this with her Roman Catholic family ? ( according to Sue Lombardi the morning of Dec 11th when confronted by my daughter- “Angela thought long and hard about this”- ( even more worrying in my opinion as to lacking in consequences of one’s actions- (but then again they wanted to send Chris on a 28 hour train journey when he couldn’t even walk to the bathroom)

Did she discuss her reasoning with her priest?

Did she discuss her thinking with fellow colleagues in the medical field?( after all some on them were part of the gypsy caravan in the waiting room .

ED note: looking at the scene that day where medical professionals ( my son’s “new” Dr. whom I met for the first time) piled into an already crowded 25 ft area .. sitting on that filthy waiting room floor carpet ( dressed to the nines)…… sharing soup and sandwiches – gathered around the feet of Angela whilst her mother (imho) figuratively crooned and swooned over the “professionals” reminded me of some alien picnic . It was very surreal and not conducive to my having “faith in the profession”- but I digress…….

Did they all think this was the “right ” thing to do?

Did not one soul have compassion for the people who would be traumatized by this act of “legal ” right?



June 29, 2010 at 8:39 pm 6 comments

IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church Part 4.

IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church- Part One
IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church- Part Two
IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church Part Three .

IGNORE by definition:
To refuse to pay attention to; disregard.

DISREGARD : there is another word you can get your teeth into:

To treat without proper respect or attentiveness.

When the Catholic Cemeteries people ( also supposedly men of compassion) decided to ignore and disregard my thoughts I decided to write on January 9th to

Bishop Lennon – Bishop of Cleveland and

Father Divis.

The epistle is lengthy and explains in the course of this letter ”

My son married Angela Lombardi, daughter of Tim and Sue Lombardi on June 7th 2008 at St. Mary’s. He married Angela without becoming a Roman Catholic, acquiesced to her wish of getting married in her church but did not take any counseling or “classes”, he refused to do so. He did not attend any services with her or her family. He had his own “independent views” as to religion, as does his family.

and lastly

I am coming to the close of this lengthy epistle – Chris’ family has had no closure due to, in my opinion, the enabling by your church of this travesty to our family . I would have thought that at least one of the “god fearing “ parishioners or priest would have had some compassion for my son’s immediate family . I was wrong and I am terribly disappointed that as I put aside religious beliefs to help the oldest Lorain parish continue the same was not done to help a family have closure. For the record I did not contact Angela Lombardi (Ritchey) after the “note” as my son had not yet been cremated. I was petrified (yes petrified) that she would then also change her mind about the cremation. This cruel injustice leaves us no dignity in death or focal point to our grief except the anger that replaces the tears briefly and gives some relief from our mourning

Letter Jan 9th Bishop Lennon Father Divis

My Roman Catholic friends( every single one of them ) told me:

You aren’t expecting an answer are you ?

Well of course I was expecting an acknowledgment of my “letters” – not emails – even if it was another one of the Bishop’s form letters or a thank you letter,

so sorry about your loss your thoughts have been noted.

Aren’t Bishops and Priests supposed to at least have good manners?

Not a way to run a “business” and trust me on this one – religion has become a business. After all I could have become a convert or potential supporter of the church of Mary Mother of God Lorain Ohio…..Oh wait I already did that.

By February 26th I was even more annoyed that our grief and loss was deemed so insignificant as to not even receiving one line of a condolence or a note of condolence at least-

Hell ! ( sorry Father ) they must have made some money from my son I think there is a cost of internment into the Catholic Cemetery in Lorain

( more than likely paid for out of the October fundraiser money – SIGH!!! More on that aspect of this journey in another posting)

but someone got paid – benefitted – didn’t they because of my son dying !

Where was there at least a “thank you for your contribution”….

Yes! I am being sarcastic and irreverent – but to me this is what they had now relegated my son to—– a business transaction !!!!!!?

My Roman Catholic friends said to a man and woman –

Told you so!!! .

Well OK- if the Roman Catholic Priest and a Bishop in the USA are without compassion or manners maybe Rome and the Vatican will acknowledge at least the situation……

So I wrote to :

Archbishop John Patrick Foley
President, Pontifical Council for Social Communication


June 28, 2010 at 2:26 am 4 comments


June 26, 2010 at 5:32 pm Leave a comment

IGNOR(e) (st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church Part Three

IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church- Part One
IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church- Part Two

So here we are June of 2010- Our lives turned inside out and denied even the luxury of closure for our son by staunch Roman Catholics.

Those that are regular readers of my writings throughout the years will know I am one of those people who have to know why, and who is accountable. I have fought for many people and issues through the years I have been an advocate , and tilted at some pretty tough windmills. But the toughest advocacy was and is personal, my own son removed from his family in life and in death. How could this be?

Oh I know the “legal rights” as given to his wife by the law- but what about the moral rights- what about compassion- what about Christian charity – is that not part of the Roman Catholic doctrine?

Angela Lombardi ( ritchey) – Chris RITCHEY

If the friend of the family who has sent out the emails asking for support for the Lombardis because of big bad me is to believed it was because of the memorial service that a “grieving???? widow ) sat angry and possibly thinking of ways to control a situation because of Chris’ mother (me) .

If you believe the widow it was because she was honoring her husband because he wasn’t an organ donor . (Read the links in green for more information)

Take your pick of reasonings – none that justify ( in my opinion ) the actions of the Lombardis as perpetrated on this family. But maybe I am wrong maybe this is the Mary, Mother of God Parish( St. Mary’s) way” you tell me?

However let’s get back to that church where the memorial service was held and where my son took his vows , it also happens to be the church I help to save from closure .

I wrote a great deal about that church and its congregation

and its worthiness to one Bishop Lennon. My writings and thoughts were front page in the local media.

Ironically about the time my son’s Hodgkin’s returned the church got good news:

As stated in Part Two of this series Chris was not a Roman Catholic and I am very angry that he was now interred in the “NOT OF HIS FAMILY OR RELIGION PLOT’ thanks to the legal rights of the “plot (ting) family “

I accessed the Cleveland Catholic Cemeteries website and asked them how they explained family unity in death when my sons “cremains were effectively legally kidnapped from his faith and family ? I was IGNORED

I knew this priest “Father Divis”and he knew of me ( after all I went to bat for him and his church) , he knew of Chris’ family and he officiated at the wedding ( more on that in the letter to the Bishop) and the memorial service . I never heard from this man of God after my son passed- he certainly knew where to reach me. Ironically I heard from Pastors, Reverends, Priests of other parishes( here and in the UK ) and even an Iman .

The Lombardi grouping.

So these loving God, staunch Mary Mother of God parishioners, after deciding Chris family would not be able to have their closure in their way then neglected(???) to inform anyone in Chris’ family as to the time they were putting Chris in their “papish ground” .

It wasn’t that they weren’t asked ( well at least to Tim Lombardi ) by two of Chris family members and of Angela and she promised in one of those little notes to Nikki that Nikki would be informed.

I wonder what justification they will come up with this time?

I wondered how this Father Divis could officiate at the internment of my son – Did he?

1. Did he know those of Chris’ blood hadn’t been informed by Mr. Tim Lombardi , Mrs. Sue Lombardi or Angela ( Lombardi )ritchey or any of the “family” as to the time of the interment –

ED NOTE:REMEMBER THE WIFE WAS NOW TAKING CONTROL AND EXERCISING HER RIGHTS AS CHRIS’ WIFE- we once again as per the hospital had to defer to her and or HER FAMILY for any information.

How private do you get with an internment?

2. Did he not think it strange that none of Chris immediate family was in attendance or did he too choose to IGNORE that happenstance or did he find this whole scenario acceptable because we weren’t Roman Catholic?

How does this work in the Roman Catholic Church- Did Angela perhaps have to do a penance for effectively lying to a family and breaking her word in front of witnesses I might add on Dec 4th .

Does honoring ones’ mother and father only count if it is YOUR own mother and father and to hell with anyone elses mother and father.

Sharing a laugh - but on whom?


What penance does a Roman Catholic receive for the pain she caused or perhaps that is OK with the parish and parishioners?

How does this work? Who decides a what is a sin or unacceptable in the Roman Catholic Church – does knowingly inflicting more pain and no closure on those that have lost their only son not count as unacceptable in the Church of Holy Mary Mother of God, Lorain Ohio?

You see I think what they did to this family was sinful and hateful but that is just me who has been on the receiving end of their decision and having to deal with the consequences of their actions .

Who am I just a grieving mother ( who admittedly has a reputation for not going quietly into the night) and a non parishioner.

Maybe delivering pain and non -closure is only unacceptable if you are of their religious persuasion.Oh ! gee where have I heard that before think it was somewhere in the dark ages………

So not having much else to do but cry and get through I wrote a letter to that same Bishop Lennon and to Father Divis.


June 25, 2010 at 10:01 am 19 comments

IGNOR(e) (st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church – PART TWO

IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church- Part One

ED note: You will notice that I refer to the ROMAN Catholic Church. The reason being is that the term “catholic” is all-encompassing meaning :
Date: 15th century
1 : a person who belongs to the universal Christian church.

Both my children attended the now defunct and closed Lorain Catholic High School from the 7th grade through 12. They did not attend due to religious conviction, we are and were not Roman Catholic. They attended Lorain Catholic because it was the only private school hereabouts we could afford. They attended because I was concerned as to the direction Lorain City Schools were heading at the time. I wanted a smaller school atmosphere where there was accountability and a cor majority of parents who were like-minded when it came to their child’s education.

We spoke to both Nikki and Chris as to the religious aspect of the school and what to expect and what was expected of them. They were told to treat the religion classes as they would any other course and if at any time they felt drawn to the Roman Catholic doctrine we would discuss it fully, also that if they felt pressured or made to feel uncomfortable about being non-Roman Catholics we would also discuss that situation.

For the most part things went smoothly with the educational and the religious aspect of Lorain Catholic. There were times when I made my presence known . Father Leo , Father Zingales could attest to that as well as Jim Francis and a couple of the nuns.

Nikki , usually opted out of the religious retreats preferring to take on a community project instead.

Chris also followed suit until his senior year he decided to attend (probably because he was now dating Angela and she was going and he envisioned a stay up all night sort of pajama party atmosphere for two days rather than a religious experience. )

He was in for 30 hours of fasting and non sleep, both of those things were not good for Chris or his mind-set. Chris not eating led to all sorts of fuss and not getting enough sleep well another story . Not eating and lack of sleep are tactics used by the less than worthy in this world.

To reduce a person’s sense of
individuality and confidence even further, physical measures will be employed. Sleep and food deprivation; can be used to render a person confused and weak, and thus malleable

The parents and siblings were supposed to write our positive feelings about Chris which would be read by him at his retreat. We duly followed the orders of Father Giampietro .

The retreat over – a tired Chris – spent the next day in bed recovering from “religion???”.

A few days later, it was a Saturday I remember, Chris was helping his father trim the willow tree- the mail arrived and along with it a letter from our son from the retreat. I have it pressed in a bible. It was the most unfortunate of letters. It was hurtful and questioning us as a family and our beliefs .

Naturally Chris was called down, none too gently, from the tree and asked to explain his most hurtful words.

Oh you had to write something to get the credit….. Your thoughts as to what your family could do better in their religious practices …. it was all I could think to write..I was tired —

and apparently he had some assistance in writing the note….

Oh! Oh were the signs already in place – hurtful notes 😉

I informed my son there was a consequence to each and every action and since he had opened up the can of worms we would now explore it fully. We would explore the Roman Catholic Church and their faith as well as other religions and cult tactics. And if he felt he would like to be a part of any of them we would take the steps needed. He agreed- reluctantly -to this excursion ecclesiastical because the alternative was removal from Lorain Catholic High School.
For the next few weeks the focus of religious history, the role of churches, Popes, Bishops , clergy. The Good the Bad and the Ugly of organized regious beliefs were explored, he had quite an education into all things religious and the whys and wherefores, the who what and when even to why Christmas is celebrated on December 25th.

But first I went to Father Leo De Chant and Father Fr. Giampietro Gasparin, showing them the offending letter and gave them a distinct dressing down (both in writing and verbally) as well as the possibility I would remove Chris from Lorain Catholic and to my reasoning of such a decision – profuse apologies all around but at least THEY DIDN’T IGNORE ME !

After many weeks of the “Discovery and History Channel ” as well as books .magazines and discussions on the subject. etc. Chris came to the conclusion he wasn’t cut out to be a Roman Catholic and wasn’t sure about being a Protestant either.

He graduated from “Religion/ Life /Consequences of One’s Actions Home School 101″ and Lorain Catholic High School.

He decided organized religion was very cloistering and quite frankly he was bored with the subject – he had done his “penance” and learned a life lesson – he never put anything in writing again without giving it a great deal of thought first 🙂 Also by this time was eager to start the LCCC soccer team and move on to college.

Nikki married a Roman Catholic and there has never been any issues.
Chris also married a Roman Catholic and there were issues………….

To be continued………..

June 24, 2010 at 1:02 am 4 comments

IGNOR(e)(st)ANCE and the Roman Catholic Church

I wonder how many people will be cringing and looking at the heavens- (guilt by association with THAT WOMAN 🙂 ) as they read my thoughts on this one. I have to smile at the thought actually as in my “mindset” lately I said something irreverent and the people standing by me (of great faith ) looked to the heavens at the very same time- expecting the lightning to strike possibly – it didn’t -but I could see they were very uncomfortable by what I said .

Let me preface this piece by saying

“I DON”T KNOW WHOSE FAITH IS BEST, I WISH I HAD GREAT FAITH (BLIND OR OTHERWISE) it would make my life at this particular time much easier.

As far as I am concerned you are ALL RIGHT , whether you are Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu , Buddhist, Wicca or any of the over 4,200 religions in the world . whatever you believe if it is right for you I applaud your faith I am not going to “preach” or try to convert ALL I ASK IS THAT MY BELIEFS ARE RESPECTED AS WELL.

There has been so much written about the Roman Catholic Church of late , too many links to link here in this article. I suggest you google “Vatican, Abuse, History of the Roman Catholic Church .

There is a simple flaw running through the Roman Catholic Church, a flaw that if addressed would have stopped the current problems and other situations. Unfortunately, in my opinion, this particular flaw is not just found in this particular religious community but in many many walks of life , from governments on down.

It is the flaw of “IGNORE

. I am exploring the Roman Catholic Church because it was that same church that has enabled (imho) a great disservice to be done to those I love and we were “Ignored”-

would they have ignored fellow Catholics- the question begs to be asked and I am going to and have done the asking?

In the next couple of posts I will explore the flaw but to begin a little background……….

If I ever had faith it was built on a foundation of sand and in hindsight obviously was lip service to organized religion ( better safe than sorry- you never know …conditioning ) .

First I do have some background and ancestry ( there is that unfinished portrait –who are we question again) .
Seems ( even from wrong side of the blanket my line can be traced back to John Bunyan.

For those that don’t know him you might have heard of a little book he wrote
Pilgrims Progress

He was the subject of great debate among “family in the know” as to his character 🙂 And it seems that my forbearers were even involved in the ” Reformation” back in the day , throw in an Archbishop ( Anglican- who also got thrown out – what a family ) and you have a bit of a resume of religion as pertains to my genes 🙂

My mother insisted on my singing in the choir every Sunday in Canada – I hated it didn’t like the “structural parameters” but I went because I had to and at 9 years old would debate Dr. Long on religious theory as opposed to what I was learing in my science text.

I think Dr. Long enjoyed those discussions – truth be known – I know I always was rewarded with some candy and his eyes would twinkle as I purposely made my way to his office, my blue eyes flashing usually with indignation, after sermon I felt needed to be questioned. He also used to reach back behind his chair to show us his watch so his little choir members knew just how much time we had left to sit when we fidgeted and strained at our confinement.

Frederick Stuart Richardson

Sunday school I skipped. I was dropped off every Sunday but never made it ( the staff were unaware I was even registered as I had never showed up ) . I would meet up  with  two  other young escapees behind the church  and spend a lovely time racing through the woods. picking blueberries along the train tracks, stuffing ourselves with bill berries, spearmint and picking fiddle heads ( when in season) , spying on the beaver dams and diverting streams with boulders and on the odd occasion catching water walkers ( a type of bug). Our Sunday lessons learned not from stories as written by men but in the joy of being at one with the world in a cathedral of green.
Photo John Thomson 1864

Since we always managed to dirty our Sunday Best and have faces covered in the tell-tale signs of our feast I wonder why we were never caught. Could it be that the signs were “ignored”?

Although I always had a sneaking suspicion that Dr. Long knew of our antics as the Church service was after Sunday School and the four of us must have seemed at odds with our rosy cheeks , curls all a tumble and muddy shoes with our spic and span counterparts who had quietly been sitting all morning, their hair combed neat and tidy . Yes thinking about it he knew , I wonder why he chose to ignore?

To be continued ……………..

June 22, 2010 at 1:09 pm 8 comments

Why BP’s Tony Hayward’s PR nightmare effects US

BP spills coffee

And yet another update: Ya think they read this blog 🙂


‘Distraught’ BP chief Tony Hayward hits back at oil spill error accusations

Oh! Tony Oh! Tony , can someone who runs such a huge corporation and has made his way through the ranks really be that arrogant and stupid? It doesn’t sit right with me somehow. Yes, I am a fellow Brit , have lived here in the USA for many years and understand the American psyche and I have to admit I believe YOU DO TOO ! They don’t pay you the bucks and send you out to deal with world leaders for being an absolute “tosser”.

BP pays Hayward an annual salary of £998,000 and in 2008 his bonus was £1,496,000.

Negotations with Russia’s Igor Sechin
In 2008, Tony Hayward had private meetings with Igor Sechin, a top figure of Russian military and security services. The two negotiated on BP’s deals with Russia

Lets look at the stats of Beneficial ownership from your company site

Beneficial owners as at 31 December 2009

Percentage of shares in issue
Range of holdings Institutions Individuals Total

By principal area
Range of Holdings/ Institutions/ Individuals
UK 33(RH) 7(Inst) 40 Ind()

US 25 (RH) 14(Inst) 39 (ind)

Rest of Europe 10 – 10

Rest of World 7 – 7

Miscellaneousc 4 – 4

a Reflects the beneficial (underlying) ownership of the shares.
b Represents BP’s best efforts to determine the domicile of the beneficial (underlying) owners of the group’s shares, based on analysis of the year-end share register. Note that institutions include custodians, market makers, delivery by value, brokerage, stocklending, clearing and non-American depositary receipt arbitrage.
c Miscellaneous represents shareholders below the 100,000-share threshold and unidentified shares. Unidentified shares represent holdings that are awaiting confirmation of the identity of the beneficial holder and the nature of their interest in the shares following enquiries made under Section 793 of the Companies Act 2006.
Source: Financial and Operating Information 2005- 2009

You see I don’t believe the majority of people you deal with every day in your corporation all talk like they have the proverbial marble in their mouth. I believe you know very well who and what you are dealing with and the American way of doing business- I am sure you talk to them. And I think you didn’t get where you are today by being stupid. So why your PR nightmare? A cynical me ,who believes there is more to this than we are being told, has wheels turning.

I can’t see how you literally keep putting your foot in it – although it seems the corporation etc. was and is still so inept (62 days and counting.) and ill prepared to deal with a disaster

(image: Eric Gay/AP via

that has the planet bleeding oil from a main artery spreading cancer- like through its eco system was also so inept with its PR response.
Could it be they who have billions at stake at first glance are letting a “muppet” put a face to their corporation ( especially the Americans who are very very heavily involved in this corporation)- They obviously have some say in how their corporation is perceived throughout the world and by fellow Amercicans so why aren’t they putting a sock in your mouth unless ?

It makes me wonder! Oh! I know you aren’t running for office and that win lose or draw your ass ( ets) will be covered. You have an enviable position of seemingly not losing. After all eventually we will be paying more at the pumps to pay for this mess, that is a given.

So could it be, Tony , that there is more to this than meets the eye are you perhaps the “go to lightning guy” deflecting from other issues. You aren’t stupid and you have the best PR people in the world so it makes me wonder?

Of course and then there is the other side OH ! OH! Obama what is this all about did I miss this on World News tonight? Not more media manipulation please !!!!!!!!!

73 per cent of all Gulf incidents involve Transocean
All bonuses banned after four died on firm’s oil rigs

Obama desperate for support of politicians linked to Transocean lobbyist

The American owners of the drilling rig at the centre of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill have been involved in nearly three-quarters of all significant safety incidents on rigs in the region since 2008, according to new figures.
Over the past five years, the US government has investigated four fires aboard deep-water rigs – all operated by Transocean. British regulators have also issued a warning over a Transocean rig in the North Sea because of worries over a key safety device, the blowout preventer.

Investigators believe April’s explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig – which caused the death of 11 workers and the growing oil slick in the Gulf – was caused by the failure either of a seal meant to keep oil and gas from escaping from a well or by the blowout preventer, which is designed to close off the well in an emergency.

The company recently relocated its HQ to Switzerland, which has a more favourable tax regime for multi-national companies…..

It has so far proved far more adept than BP at handling the intricacies of US politics, and last month hired an influential lobbyist and former politician to represent its interests in Washington.

He is ex-Democratic Congressman Bill Brewster of Oklahoma, who remains a powerful figure in Washington among politicians linked to the oil industry.

He is also a member of the Blue Dog Coalition, a group of conservative Democrat Congressmen from the southern states whose support Mr Obama desperately needs in the face of difficult mid-term elections later this year which could see many of his party’s Congressmen unseated.

Read more:

Tony, between your absolute cock -up on the Gulf and the England teams abysmal performance in South Africa, ALL of you millionaires ! I believe you all need a history lesson in what being English means but it in short it means having a heart , guts, creativity and following through- something none of you lot of over paid Englishmen” have shown in your employment . I can say this because you are of my ilk! I am ashamed of you .

Oh Tony! Oh Tony! I smell something phony about all this…this is more than a culture clash- because you have in your corporation been immersed in the American way and thinking – there is a reason you are out there as the “gaffe (r)” pun intended for the non Brits
gaf·fer (gfr)
n. Chiefly British A boss or foreman.

But for your efforts and that of those enabling this bleeding of our world you and all BP ownership Brits and Yanks get the Notorious Opponents of Exactitude Award

June 20, 2010 at 4:17 pm 2 comments

Father’s Day 2010 – Chris Ritchey

Chris and his Dad

This is a man who may stumble and fall but this is a man who tries”

(paraphrasing King and I)

This is very difficult piece for me to write, I want to pay homage to the man, the father of my children, without touching on the boiling . raging white-hot , beneath the surface anger I am feeling towards those that have hurt and robbed him of his peace.

I am not sure if I can do that considering I am a “writer who writes through my emotions and life experiences.”

What I see this week leading up to Father’s Day is a man aging beyond his years, his face creased with pain , scarred by loss and bewilderment , hair that was turning silvery now shot with white. Shoulders that were broad and held his children aloft at parades and festivals now bowed with the great weight of worry re the cancer and compounded by the grief he now carries. He is changed -this man- this father.

He was the quiet parent, never the disciplinarian and the few times he would try to raise his voice to naughtiness his efforts were met with giggles and mock contrition. He never spanked and always put both his children before anything and anyone else.

I look at the pictures as each in turn entered his world.

He seemed too young to be a father, but in actual fact was in his 30’s . We had been married 8 years before Nikki made her presence known- from that day forward this quiet and gentle man was there for his children , always in the picture and never taking center stage.

He was given a son , who was more like his mother in temperament , a temperament never quite understood by the husband but the father tried very hard to understand his son and his ways. He accepted the child, the boy, the man for who he was and was so proud of him.

He treated both children the same – always_ loved them both intensely” .

Never one to be overt with showing his emotions or feelings he expressed his love by always putting them first. Every Sunday the Dad and his two pride and joys would go to McDonalds for breakfast- it was their special alone time and every Father’s Day Nikki and Chris would take him to McDonalds.

He “gave away his daughter” on a cold December day to the young man she had fallen in love with – however he could not hide his emotions that day – although filled with happiness for her he knew that life would never be the same as she left our home but not his heart. Both the bride and her father walked down the aisle with tears of joy and sadness.

He danced with his daughter at her wedding to the music of the pipes- The Skye Boat Song– ironically it was the tune I hummed and sang to Chris in his last hours– I didn’t realize that until I started writing and remembering .

He lost his son on another cold December day, not to happiness and a new life but to the finality of death. He stood wordless in that room of unbearable sorrow looking quietly out of the window to the street below. He had come to that hospital overcoming the phobia he had to be with me and his son. He, since his father died when he was 11, has had a morbid fear of hospitals. We all knew that and Chris knew that for his father to go to a hospital was never good news .

“As long as Dad doesn’t show I know everything is OK- it would take a crisis to get him back to the clinic.

So when the crisis came we kept him away so Chris wouldn’t worry and continue to fight.

For a couple of days he stayed just in the waiting room- he was there as my “emotional punching bag” – I called him back to the hospital just an hour after he had left. I was so tired , very little sleep in days , exhaustion and worry had taken their toll -the waiting room gypsies with their inane chatter becoming more and more a problem for me.

I told the father of Chris’ bride why my husband was coming back- I thought, stupidly, that he would recognize the distress being caused.- maybe he would do something. I told him

“he was coming back because I needed him to be my “emotional punching bag” as I had to be able to let go of my feelings” before I “let go ” period!

“You have to do whatever you feel you need to do to get you through “

I just sighed and said :

you should all be thankful he is coming back because I am not sure how much more I can take and continue to be polite’

Whether it went over his head or whether he is the type that only sees what he wants to see, or a gutless wonder – I don’t know – but he is one father that I will not be wishing has a great day after what he enabled his child to do to Chris’ father.

( ED Note: sorry I said it was going to be hard to suppress the anger)

I knew I couldn’t keep my tenuous hold on politeness much longer- I had to release the feelings building up and I knew Chris didn’t need me to vent at them-

just get through this and when Chris is OK we will talk.

Chris’ Dad spent the next days being my “sounding board – emotional punching bag” and keeping me together for Chris’ sake.

He would do anything for Chris including bearing the brunt of my pain as well as his. He too tried making the deals with God – take me not Chris – don’t punish Chris – etc. – I know -I heard him when he thought he was alone.

He lost his only son too- and out of a self-righteous, sanctimonious self-serving spite he was punished two fold- he lost his son – those not of his blood took his closure – his chance to say goodbye and they dishonored Chris’ father – this kind quiet gentle man who never hurt or did anyone any harm in his whole life.
Punished by “control”

He chokes now on emotions that overwhelm him at times , feelings he can’t express , a wound that does not heal. His Drs. ,in sympathy, worry about his condition and the heart they repaired that is breaking but their medicine cannot help or cure.

Every morning , as I make the bed, I adjust the last picture taken of him and his son that sits on the bedside table , each morning it is turned toward the pillow where he tries to find a relief in sleep and fails, eyes fixed upon a photograph. remembering his son.

Last year Chris planned a Father’s Day weekend for this weekend- four wheeling in West Virgina- even that was tried to be taken from him (imho) out of calculated greed ( more on that aspect another time).

He too received a note in his dead son’s clothes- one he never saw – one he will never see – gone into the flames to protect what is left to him of his son. I couldn’t do much to ease his grief but I certainly was not going to have it added to by the “thoughts of conceit by one who claims to have known his son”She didn’t !

She wasn’t there at his birth, through his 3 am feedings, his first smile, his first steps, his first words, all the years of school and sports, and Sunday breakfasts, the tears and picking him up when he fell , the successes, the days of big wheels, riding a bike, the day the bike was stolen, karate, soccer, camping in the back yard, riding a camel in Morocco, playing “catch me if you can” in a hallway at Windsor castle, learning to swim , to fish , to pull a bow, shoot, sharing lobster rolls at the Piping college Prince Edward Island, racing down the ski slopes in Vermont, learning to drive, the talks under starry skies, a man and his son exploring life’s adventures together-

She only knew a tiny fraction of “Chris” – the husband for so short a time – but he was a son first and last.

So this father , who continues to stumble and bleed for his son will go on the trip , taking the four wheeler still caked with mud from Chris’ last ride and with him will be a silent rider that is carried in his heart and soul- HIS SON

Christopher David RITCHEY

June 18, 2010 at 10:46 am 5 comments

Lorain Dude- US Coast Guard Open House with Paula



OK! I am outta here!!!!! And now I am as crabby as the logo on my shirt I will have Auntie Paula take over whilst I change.

US Coast Guard- Open House- Lorain Ohio by Paula Tobias

I’m sorry if you missed the opportunity to attend the United States Coast Guard Lorain Station Open House May 28th. I think it’s safe to say that everyone who did attend was impressed, learned something and had a general good time.

United States Coast Guard

There was a slide show about the Edmund Fitzgerald
There was plenty of information about Boat Safety; we were able to see some of their gear (there was a rifle that looked pretty intense) and everyone was invited to go on their boat for a relaxing ride down the Black River to the Lighthouse. I found it especially touching to see the little ones and how their eyes lit up.

Sheriff Departments Northern Border Initiative

Lorain County Sheriff had their boat on display. I often wondered

“why does the Sheriff’s department need a boat”!?!

They are part of the Northern Border Initiative. I think people forget that we live on the edge of America. We have over 240 miles of Open Boarder and I haven’t seen a toll gate yet where boaters pass through to assure they have the proper papers, aren’t smuggling or whatever else goes on ……

Marine Patrol

The program is funded by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources – Division of Watercraft, in conjunction with the Lorain Port Authority and City of Lorain to provide safety and education for boaters on Lorain’s waterfront.

The Marine Officers work during the summer season enforcing boating laws and providing education on safe boating.

They may have the reputation of being “tough task masters” but ask the mother of a child that drowned because they didn’t have a life jacket, what they would have given if someone had reminded them it’s the law to wear one.
It’s all about keeping us safe.

You are sooooo right Auntie Paula and I wonder if they have one in blue to match my eyes? I like this boat just my size!
YUP!!! Blue it is …. although mum what is it with these hats ?

Hey ! I am all for a ride on the lake and there is Auntie Paula taking the photos-

Where is her life- jacket she is ON a Boat!!!!!!!!! HMMMMMMMM even if it is still tied up to the dock!!!- let you off with a warning this time Auntie!! If I see you without a jacket again though your are in biiiiiiiiigggggg trouble !

Sigh ! thats better, all safe and secure top and bottom side! Hang on Mum here we go!!!!

This boating safety is serious stuff and thanks to all those that make us safe everywhere- land -sea and air

June 16, 2010 at 10:32 am 6 comments

World Cup- 2010- More Than A Game

Jules Rimet Wold Cup Trophy.

So it begins the 2010 World Cup , the excitement in South Africa , the crowds, the pageantry all focused on a small round ball. This blog has been receiving a lot of hits due to people searching for South Africa . Rich Robbin wrote a series of posts on this blog chronicling his time in South Africa

The World Cup and Football (Soccer) was all important in this household. Previous World Cup events were looked upon with anticipation, they generated excitement, entertainment and “dreaming”.

I was but a mere slip of a girl myself when England won the 1966 World Cup but I can still remember the explosion of excitement as the announcer said “they think it is all over- it is now!”

Chris and I would ( as he grew) talk and dream about him playing for the 2006 World Cup, but for whom in our dream, England or the USA? 🙂
A couple of trips to England to play at the age of 16 and 17 tested the professional waters and the commitment , talent and lucky breaks needed to play at the European level.

It was decided an “education” was the way to go instead. Chris never lost the love of the game and he would never give up either on the field or in life.

Soccer , even though not at the dreamed of professional level , played an important part of Chris’ life.

High School Alumni Game
He loved the game the camaraderie and the skill. Coaches told me Chris’ although a playmaker his greatest assets was his “vision and heart.”

It was soccer that was center stage in his final for his BFA at CIA.

Graphics (BFA) Chris RITCHEY

The requirement was to show an example of each class taken, product design, glass blowing, photography, graphic design etc. Chris built a mock stadium , developed an advertising concept around his “old, beat-up,much worn, indoor soccer shoe”. Adidas– Durability Mixed with Style

The shoe was the focus of billboards, commercials ( which were videoed and run through a projector under the mock bleachers and projected on the wall of the “stadium” in a continuous loop

World Cup – Chris RITCHEY

He designed tables using glass halved soccer balls and Adidas logos that lit from underneath. There was an awful lot to see in that “mock stadium “ including his design for the “World Cup ala RITCHEY ”
He purposely took the spot to build the “stadium” near the food and wine tables

”That is where the people congregate and since there is no other seating they will head toward the bleaches to sit and my display”


Always thinking my son….. and he was right those with wine and goodies in hand headed for the bleachers 🙂

I miss him and will watch the games in the next days/ weeks not really caring who wins or loses -watching not with joy and anticipation knowing one player has been red carded from the game of life.…..

One “table” is still in his room and lights the night. The World Cup trophy ala RITCHEY takes pride of place there as well. Nikki has the other table and the third waits for its space.

Graphic – Chris RITCHEY

Soccer links

“In search of my son- in search of me.”
Part One In search of my son- In search of me
Part TwoTourjours Moi-Always Me
Part Three Always Me – Always Chris
Part Four In search of My Son-
Chris Ritchey – Thanks

Part Five Dark Humour- Shedding a Light
Part Six – The Unfinished Portrait

Part Seven– The Unfinished Portrait- The Artists
(2) Part Two – Who Are We Really?
Part Eight– When Premonition Becomes Hindsight

Part Nine– When Premonition Becomes Hindsight – Part Two
Part Ten (a)There is an “I” in Death
Part Ten (b)- I didn’t know my son- Chris Ritchey
Part Eleven- Unfinished Portrait the Artistic Gene
Part Twelve- Unfinished Portrait- the Artistic Gene- Part Two

June 13, 2010 at 8:26 pm 3 comments

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June 2010