Cold Shoulder

Last Tuesday I entered Mayo Clinic to have a brand new Titanium Reverse Ball and Socket installed in my shoulder. Wednesday afternoon my wife drove me home as I drifted from one opioid-induced dream to another. By Saturday I began weaning myself off the pain medication and grudgingly acknowledged to myself that some pain is good. Today one day after watching the greatest Minnesota Viking win in all of history, I am feeling OK. My shoulder hurts and I can’t really use my arm yet, but tomorrow begins the start of physical therapy and it will begin to get better.

For me, opioids provided a way to manage the pain involved with a transplant. It was administered by a team of specialists who were well aware of the addictive qualities of the prescribed pain relief.

Unfortunately, not everyone was as well counseled. Millions of patients were exploited by an industry that cared more about profits than an oath to “Do no harm”.

I would love to see those greedy SOBs dragged through the streets of the cities they’ve ruined!


I watch the daily news and am rocked by what has become a public exposition of bad behavior. People I’ve long recognized have had their business, civic, and personal lives subjected to dark charges, speculations, and criticisms – much of it admittedly deserved. Some have been widely admonished, while others have been elevated to the highest office in the land.

It is mystifying, to say the least!


A touch remembered, than exposed
Bits of behavior, dark vengeance supposed.
Images constructed on public words and deeds,
Toppled by memories of a person’s buried needs.

Understanding actions, what was at the core
Revised reminiscences of what went on before.
What they were, and what was built
Now under judgement, damning hidden guilt.

Should we join the crowd and help cast stones
Punish hero’s foibles that were previously unknown.
Separate actions from what went on before
Or simply tar & feather to even out the score.

Who controls the scarlet letters, awarded for a life
Sanctimonious judgements applied with a crooked knife.
Vengeance is an answer that some say is best serve cold
Consider forgiveness as an option most consider it gold.

-Clarence Holm


Photo by Robert Woodward
Robert E. Lee’s statue was removed from its pedestal May 19, 2017.

Monuments of history
Set on pillars high
Glorifying accomplishments
Others vilify

Scar covered history
Festering just below.
Traces of bigotry
Paraded now for show.

Lessons from history
Remembrances justified.
Sacred pomp and ceremony
Mixed with self-righteous pride.

                                                     -Clarence Holm

Holiday Greetings (Or Not)

“I’m Better Than You!”

If I receive one more message stating, “Rather than send out greeting cards (or presents) I’ve made a donation to a charity in your name.” I might just go out and buy a “Make America Great Again” hat!

This week I’ve received written letters, emails, and Facebook announcements from a number of businesses and/or private persons containing that announcement – and I wonder what could be their thought process?

Send or don’t send cards or presents if you like- it’s a personal decision, but don’t use it as a form of advertisement of some greater moral behavior. You apparently don’t like the practice, but please stop trying to have it both ways by sending public notices of not sending public notices.

If you find yourself sending out cards or presents for any other reason than that you enjoy making people feel good, you might want to check your motives. If you’re worried about a charity or a particular cause, send them a gift, but do it because you want to, not because you want people to notice your “selfless” act of charity.

I happen to enjoy sending out an annual Christmas greeting! What I don’t need is some “holier than thou” telling me that they don’t do cards or gifts anymore and I shouldn’t too.

To me the ultimate irony of that act is when some of the charities receive these cash donations; they end up using them to send out extra holiday cards — soliciting more money…

Happy Holidays
Clarence Holm


“Ormsby – We mind our business!”