Perceptions of Honesty


honestyPeople place greater trust in advisors who admit to some kind of bias in their recommendations, or that there are things they don’t know.  Apparently, the admission of imperfection makes an advisor seem more honest and reliable.  Conversely, the person who claims to know everything is less credible.

The latest evidence of this comes from a report from a medical research team at Cornell University (1).  Doctors who preface a recommendation to a patient with an admission of bias toward procedures in their own specialty are perceived to be more believable, and their recommendations are more likely to be followed, than are doctors who don’t admit to any bias.  The study director thought the admission of bias would make recommendations about surgery less effective, but the result was the opposite.

That makes sense.  The world has become too complex for any one person to know everything, and consumers are smart…

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Adopt a Slang Expression

Won’t you consider adopting a word or two?If you’re from Delaware, Maryland, or Virginia and think having shat fall from your pinetrees is abnormal, then we have news for you: you are among the many Americans losing touch with your historical regional dialect. And let’s be frank: can our language, our literature really afford to lose…

via Endangered American Slang Needs Your Help — Electric Literature – Medium

The Demon Barn ©Lyn Crain and Raz Steel

A grove of black pines shrouds the moon
So the weathered barn blends into the darkness.
Painful shrieks on Halloween remind the elders
It should be ripped down
But fear holds them in abeyance.
A chain won’t protect the innocent from evil
On Hallow’s Eve.
An owl hides and townspeople lock themselves in,
Dueling with nightmares til dawn.
Moans lapse into screeches.
Nothing can save those caught in the demon’s barn
On Hallow’s Eve.


Check out Raz’s other work  Love Without Blood and Blood Between Lovers at:


Catalyst for Change © Kyle Poissonnier

Kyle was one of the engaging young men I had the joy to transport on my school bus all those years ago. He has created a successful business in Portland. Maine called Catalyst For Change Wear.  I am very proud of him.

I am sharing a cause that he believes in strongly with you today. I’ve shared his thinking with you below. Please help him raise awareness!

“Today we launch our third installment of our Suicide Awareness campaign with the sale of our semicolon hoodie. With each sale of these hoodies, we donate 25% profit directly to one of our beneficiaries One More Day Suicide Prevention. This money will help Katy Coffin continue to share her message and help those in need in Bangor. Katy first bought our suicide awareness hoodie in 2014 and told her story of survival wearing it. Suicide has affected so many over the years, and for me, it has been a personal experience over the past few years. Everyone from time to time doesn’t feel OK, or like they’re good enough. You are good enough. Make sure you tell someone if you ever feel that way, and if you’re a friend check in on your peers to make sure they are doing OK. Sometimes that’s all someone wants to hear. For those, we have lost, for those seeking help and for those in need. This is our semicolon hoodie. Let this be a flag for conversation.
Available now at

These hoodies are made in the USA, poly fleece and limited. They are pre-order so at the end of each week, the sales will be tallied, printed, and shipped out. At the end of the month, the sale will close until next year. Let’s try to make an even bigger impact than before.

With Love, Kyle”

Additional Facts About Suicide in the US
  • The annual age-adjusted suicide rate is 12.93 per 100,000 individuals.
  • Men die by suicide 3.5x more often than women.
  • On average, there are 117 suicides per day.
  • White males accounted for 7 of 10 suicides in 2014.
  • Firearms account for almost 50% of all suicides.

Suicide Statistics



Daring to Dream

Have you ever considered how many ways violence occurs in our society? Occasionally, the media discusses a new incidence that occurs, a brief glance and once again it is out of sight, out of mind unless it is happening directly to you. Victims of abuse live in the moment 24/7, for them it doesn’t flash across a screen and then disappear. I know this all too well.

Thankfully, the media has raised awareness of the physical and emotional scars that linger long after the abuse ends. But did you realize that for years after it can affect victims financially, too!

Their confidence levels are impacted as a result of the abuse and hence their career choices are affected. Low self-esteem ‘s hard to overcome.

My personal experiences shared in my writing reflect many of the issues women face daily trying to reclaim their lives.  It is not easy to begin again.  The key is knowing you are not alone and you are stronger than you think. I found my voice in poetry, you can find yours too! Just dare to dream…



Age and Mental Health

Aging is challenging enough without having misinformation complicating things.


Does mental health improve with age?

That’s the thesis of an article in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry (1) suggesting that might be the case.  The argument is based on a survey of 1546 people between the ages of 21 and 100.

The thesis is based on two errors in design and analysis of data:

  • A single survey conducted at a single point in time can never establish any form of causality.  You need to follow a group of people over time to establish trends and what might underlie them.
  • The alternative hypothesis is that people who are mentally healthy live longer than do others.  The data in the study is consistent with that theory.  In fact, by virtue of the fact that the mentally healthy are less likely commit suicide, by definition, they live longer.

There are several questions that the article does not address that could be of vital importance:


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