While I loved a lot of LALA Land, I cringed inwardly and a little outwardly at the part where Emma Stone sang about how hard it is to be an artist and how we courageously suffer for YOU, so you can learn and grow from all of our feels. Ugh. Courage, in my mind, is the 70-year-old man who threw himself on top of a woman to save her during the shooting at the Florida airport, not me being semi-honest from the comfy safety of my Hollywood Hills Mid-Century.

The stories we tell can be very, very useful. They can comfort and sooth, they can make a person feel less alone — the island of misfit toys has more inhabitants than we thought and we take solace in that. Joss created that on Buffy, a family of oddballs, who found each other and were stronger because of it. That’s what we have on Girlfriend’s Guide, an unlikely tribe brought together by circumstance who help each other weather the ups and downs of love, money, raising kids and more.

Stories can also motivate. Art can make us aware of worlds we’ve never seen before, open our hearts and minds to new ideas and cultures.

But as they say around my “sober club” — faith without works is dead. Having the empathy/belief/inspiration is the first part — taking action is the follow-up. My brother is an amazing writer and artist. His feelings got too big to hold inside and he made this.

I am so humbled by my brother and anyone who makes art out of heartbreak, as Dame Streep said at the Golden Globes.

But the next step is action. What action can we take today to make the world a fairer, safer place? Phone your congressmen/senator today and tell them that this Russia thing WILL NOT STAND. Or plan your trip to a march. Or write/paint/sing your art and share it with the world. Decide what “courage” means for you and take the next step.

Love, Peace & Prosperity for All

xo M