Small changes make big differences.

Tuesdays with MOJO / A Tribute to September

Marjorie Spitz Rento2 Comments

It’s September!  I love September.  You get a day off from the office because you work so hard (yesterday was great wasn’t it?).  The beautiful weather, breeziness of the air, and bright blue color of the sky are just perfection.  I welcome the bounty of fruits and vegetables from the local farms, and the shift in mood as the new school year begins.  And of course the outfits!  

During September we move back into our Montauk cottage, where the crowds are diminished, the ocean warm and the temperament light.  Heaven!

On Facebook, parents post pictures of their kids with bright faces, whether showing off their new threads for their entry into kindergarten, or embraced in tight hugs as they leave the nest on their way off to college.

For those in the Jewish community, September celebrates a New Year, and the 10 days of reflection as the Day of Atonement approaches (when you ask for forgiveness from anyone you've hurt, and pray to be inscribed into the book of life for one more year).

For sports fans you’ve got options a-plenty, between the start of football season, baseball playoffs, and the US Open.   TV enthusiasts have the return of your favorite shows, and cliffhangers resolved.

The leaves start to turn color and plans for foliage runs or apple picking put in place.

Plus it’s fabulous sleeping weather! 

It was a gorgeous Tuesday in September, 14 years ago when life changed for so many.  Living in NYC, today and that day, brings back so many conflicting memories.  I choose to remember the kindness and gracious pulling together of a city with a reputation for being cold and abrupt.  We are anything but, and we let the world in on that secret during that time.   

For many years since, I dreaded September, but this year I’ve decided to reclaim it as my favorite.  So I state here and now:  I love you September!   

I was so pleased when in 2009, 9/11 was officially recognized as a day of service and remembrance.  Apparently each year more than 40 million Americans and many others in 150 countries observe September 11th by performing good deeds that help others.  What a wonderful tribute to all who were impacted and a true testament of how to turn a day of tragedy into one of good.

Personally, I have been observing that anniversary by making annual gifts.  One to the firehouse around the block who lost all of their guys.  They shop at the local market so I always drop off a gift certificate around this time of year. 

The other to a learn to swim program where a guy I knew swam.  I found out that Doug was among the missing when I walked by a local bank and saw his picture on a flyer hanging in the window.  As those of you who lived in NYC then likely recall, flyers with faces of those missing were everywhere and I was devastated to see Doug was among them.  We weren’t close -  he was a guy I met at the Memory Motel bar one night with friends in Montauk.  He was handsome, friendly, smart and kind.  We had one date and decided we were better off as friends and would bump into each other occasionally in Montauk and the city.   I still have his business card.  To me, Doug symbolizes that regular person who did what we all do -- go to work on a normal September day.  He didn’t deserve what happened to him.  So every year, in his name, I donate to the place he swam to honor his memory through teaching kids who don’t know how to do what he loved, swim.

Accordingly, this week, in honor of Doug, Engine 25 and anyone else effected, I’d like to suggest that you take your usual random acts of kindness and make one less random.  Schedule a time to coach, mentor, volunteer, bring some food, help a local farm with their harvest, rake a neighbor’s leaves, visit someone lonely, or make a donation.  You can go to these links for some suggestions and choose whatever suits you.

And if you’re like me and love September, shout it out loud!  Take some time to enjoy its refreshing breezes, pull on those fabulous new boots, bake an apple or pumpkin pie and jump in a pile of leaves.  Or in the words of Earth Wind and Fire, Dance!  

Love bells was ringing
Our souls were singing
Do you remember, never a cloudy day, ba de ya...

Aaaah, isn’t it divine?! What’s your favorite month?

Warmly, 

Marjorie, Chief MOJO Maker™