Like the plurality of voters in this country, I do not align with a party. As a registered Independent I educate myself on issues and candidates and vote accordingly. Sadly, the GOP has devolved into a confused mess of fear and violence. I hope they find their way back to the party of Lincoln. The progressive fringe of the Democratic party also engages in fairly endless arrogance and patronizing. Independent, unaffiliated voters can see this clearly while party loyalists cannot.

So out of this polarized, agitated mess comes Rep. Lauren Boebert (R, CO 3rd). Boebert was arrested several times. She’s…

We all love lists, especially “busy” people who like to check boxes around the New Year. So here’s a list to knock your socks off: if today was the last day of your life — always a possibility — what regrets would you have? That’s a life-changing list that doesn’t involve a trip to Target, a sales goal or a dentist appointment.

How powerful would it be if we could change the course of our lives by thinking about death? Visionaries tell us that we should always start at the end. Folks with remarkable ideas that come into reality confirm…

I can’t stand the term “reinvention” when applied to humans. Robots and apps are invented and reinvented, not people. Human beings evolve, we grow, we screw up then get better, rinse and repeat. We can’t just snap our fingers and change our lives no matter how the multi-billion dollar personal transformation business tries to convince us we’re just one weekend seminar away from success and “happiness.” Like it or not, we’re on a complex, confusing and often exhausting journey to be free. You say you want a re-evolution? …

None of my flesh-and-blood husbands ever accused me of being married to my writing but I am. In fact, it’s the longest and deepest relationship I’ve had in my life — starting as a tween writing bad odes to the passage of time (“Oh Time, Zipper Your Fly”) and cataloguing the drama of high school in frayed and tear-stained journals. Writing erupted early in me and has dogged me ever since and yes indeed we are now like an old married couple, fighting the same decades-long fight and alternating between hatred and deep love. I wish I could just leave

I’m alarmed at how gleeful I was when I read that Trump and his wife have a potentially fatal virus. Jumping for joy. Fist pumping his impending suffering and death, hoping for it actually. Not just death but a bad death — suffering, suffocating, gasping, paralyzed by fear. That’s what I hoped for him. Not Melanie. Just being quarantined with her husband is a fate worse than death — I figured in my hate-addled mind. These were my waking thoughts.

I should tell you I’m a practicing Buddhist, an ordained secular Zen chaplain, a long term meditator and yet this…

In school, children in this country are losing ground every day. Parents struggle to understand links, upload protocols, Zoom rooms, mute buttons and why YouTube is now an educational channel. They’re called on to help with assignments they can’t even comprehend. It reminds me of my own powerlessness in high school when I was forced to solve for “x” — being humiliated by Mrs. Liebman, our Algebra teacher:

“Phyllis, how can you get a 60 on the test and a 54 on the RETEST?”

Damned if I knew. I just wanted to get the heck out of high school as…

I remember watching my black lab, Chopper, in the act of vigorously licking himself or eating horse poop or engaging in other pretty disgusting doggy-acts and this occurred to me: he’s just doing what dogs do. Let’s apply that to a teenager who, by nature, will also engage in behavior that is maddening, ridiculous and — much like Chopper — occasionally disgusting. Just like a dog, a teenager has a certain nature and s(he) will just do what teenagers do. Here are the Top Five Teenage Behaviors that are universal and sometimes awful, much like Chopper’s self-bathing:

  1. They lie.

Every…

Before schools closed in March of 2020 there were six school shootings, which is pretty average for three months in the United States. Prior to that, since 2020, over 200 kids have been killed in school, and hundreds wounded, terrified and traumatized every single year . In 2020, so far only four students have been killed in schools, probably because school buildings have been empty since March.

It’s both compelling and tragic that the pandemic may be keeping our kids safer by padlocking the buildings we allow them to inhabit nine months a year. In a country unable to regulate…

Remember that scene in Good Will Hunting when Robin Williams’ therapist-character tells Will Hunting, (Matt Damon) “You see this? All this shit? It’s not your fault”? To all those idealistic teachers who went into the profession with visions of igniting creativity and inspiring a love of learning, I’m here to say — You see all this shit? It’s not your fault. As Covid has shown us — bless you, evil virus — our educational system is a steaming pile of dung.

K-12 education in the US is broken on so many levels it’s unfathomable. It has morphed into a bloated…

For kids K-12 in the US, the second semester of 2020 was a waste - an unmitigated disaster of confused youngsters, disengaged teenagers, and frantic parents. Our schools, still operating on the factory model of in-person teaching, scrambled to upload boring worksheets to the Web. Since “innovation in education” is itself an oxymoron, the whole thing was an epic fail. Students lost academic ground immediately while parents and families suffered toxic stress. Like healthcare, government, and every major institution, the pandemic exposed the fatal flaws in education: it’s a terrible, ineffective system on a good day.

There are a myriad…

Phyllis Coletta

I’m a warrior and joyful crone on a mission to help every human uncover their greatness.

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