Everyone has something to offer

Volunteering for testingforcovid

A couple of years after I retired, I had the opportunity to become a server at a restaurant a block from where I live. I decided to take the job because it was a favorite restaurant and could use the extra money. I loved working there because the commute was perfect, and my biggest reward was the social interactions with customers. When COVID-19 forced the shutdown of all businesses, I lost my job along with everyone else. When restaurants opened for take-out and outside dining, the owner asked me if I could help him by accepting deliveries, buying supplies, and…

Should States Control the Gig Economy?

What’s happening to the gig economy in California? Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, who identifies herself as s friend of the workers, introduced Assembly Bill 5 (AB 5) classifying “gig” workers as employees instead of independent contractors, removing the freedom to work when they want and controlling how much the gig worker earns.

How meditation led to opportunities for giving

Photo from EastBayExpress.com/Masks

I have always considered myself to be a generous person. I enjoy helping other people find solutions to problems, being a caregiver, dog-sitter, and whatever I can do for other people in general. But COVID-19 has made it difficult to be generous while sheltering in place. I became fearful of the future. I have two special needs children who need extra support. My partner has underlying health issues and had foot surgery a month before the pandemic and was already home-bound with a cast on her foot, not able to walk even around the house. …

You stay safe when you are physically separated by at least six feet

Photo by Simon Matzinger on Unsplash

The government and media keep stressing that we must observe social Distancing. That’s not true. We must physically distance ourselves from others, at least by six feet, during the COVID-19 crisis. But it is imperative to connect socially. It is a proven fact that human beings are social creatures and must interact with other people for positive mental health and emotional happiness. Thankfully, we live in a time when we can virtually connect with others in our lives, including neighbors, friends, family, and co-workers. …

What is Peruvian Pisco

Photo by Johann Trasch on Unsplash

Peruvian Pisco. What is it?

Pisco is Peru’s national alcoholic beverage. It is a type of brandy distilled from wine in a copper pot. It is then left to rest in metal or glass for three months, but it isn’t aged. The Peruvian Pisco Sour is the traditional way to drink Pisco.

History of Peruvian Pisco

After the Spanish had conquered Peru in the mid-16th century, they found the southern coast of Peru ideal for growing grapes. They brought eight varieties of grapevines from Spain and produced wine from these grapes. They also created a drink from fermented grapes called aguardiente or “firewater” in English.

Wine production flourished until…

Can you see the humor or political commentary

Photo by Debra Lobel

Sitting at a red light across from the theater, I noticed a marquee which said:

Double Feature Coming Soon:

“The Death of the Coronavirus Plus, The End of Donald Trump.”

I laughed out loud and took a picture. It was no surprise to see commentary on the marquee. Besides listing what movies are playing, the owner of this theater always has a political or social statement. When I got home, I posted the picture on the Nextdoor app with the title “A little comic relief.” As of this writing, there are 150 happy-ish emojis and almost 100 comments.

To me…

People Want to Know What You Have to Say

Have you ever met anyone who has said they did NOT have an idea for the great American (British, German, etc.) novel? I thought not. Well, there might be a few, but not many. That’s because everyone has a story to tell. So maybe it won’t be on the New York Times Bestseller’s List. But possibly there will be people who love what you have to say, Or perhaps you’re an expert in some area and want to share your experience or knowledge. …

Be Creative and Share With Your Online World

Shelter in Place Photo Taken by Debra Lobel

I hate having to shelter in place. I know it is a necessary precaution that I must follow, but it can be depressing. I’m no social butterfly, but if someone tells me not to leave my house and I must stay at least 6 feet from everyone else when I do go outside, I am not happy. I love going out for walks. The fresh air is refreshing, and I quickly reach my goal of 10,000 steps a day. I enjoy smiling at people I see on the street, greeting my neighbors, and having their dogs jump all over me…

My story from the ’80s to now

Photo: Museums Victoria/Unsplash

On a rainy night in December 1983, I drove to the mall in Columbia, Maryland. On the way home, the cold rain turned to freezing rain, and the roads became ice rinks. I almost slid off the road multiple times and passed numerous car accidents. Eventually, I decided to park close to a ditch and walk home before I hit a tree or worse. Icicles hung from my hair, and I could barely feel my feet. That was the night I decided to move West.

It wasn’t just the freezing rain, sleet, and snow. Lately, I had begun to get…

How to know the difference

Photo by Debra Lobel

I recently wrote a memoir about how I learned to be a caregiver during years of taking care of my partner, parents, and sister. Some people refer to my book as an autobiography or biography. I correct them and explain the differences between the three similar but different genres.

Simply, biography and autobiography are the life story of a person, differentiated by who is writing it. A memoir is a specific theme or journey in the life of the author.


An autobiography is an account by a person of their own life. They are commonly written in the first person…

Debra Lobel

Author, writer, experienced in legacy and modern technology, and dedicated family caregiver

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