“Birthdays are good for you.

The more you have the longer you live.”



October 11, 1951

The United States was fighting in the Korean War.

Harry Truman was President.

The price of gasoline was 19 cents a gallon and a loaf of bread cost 16 cents.

In Columbus, Ohio – Harold and Evelyn Snider were having their third son, Jerry.

That’s me.

My father was a truck driver, my mother a housewife.


     *          *          *

October 11, 1884

The United States wasn’t fighting anyone

Chester Arthur was President.

Cars were not yet the major mode of transportation.

Most bread was baked at home.

And in New York City Eleanor Roosevelt was born.

Her parents, Elliott and Anna, were American Socialites (money, power, and influence.)

*          *         *

I share a birthday with Eleanor Roosevelt.

And what’s so special about that?

Although she died in 1962, Eleanor has never failed to make the list of most admired women.

She was the wife of President Franklin Roosevelt and later became one of our first delegates to the United Nations. A prolific writer and spokesperson, she was an advocate for the rights of minorities and the disadvantaged. During the second world war she traveled to England and later the South Pacific to boost the morale of the fighting troops.

Eleanor, in the words of President Truman, became “First Lady of the World.”

And I, in the words of a popular song, “Still haven’t found what I’m looking for.”

But the words of Mrs. Roosevelt inspire me to keep searching.


“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”


One of the first jobs I ever had as a teenager was a caddy at a golf course five miles from my home. I lived in a bedroom community, people lived there but worked mostly in the bigger town to the north. I used my thumb to get to the golf course everyday during the week the summer of 1964, 65, and 66. I hitch hiked. People on their way to their job were more than happy to give me a ride to mine because of my thumb.

When I made my next big move up the ladder of success and became a janitor, I quit thinking about my thumb. Twenty years went by, then came some terrible bouts of depression and I began to question my self worth. I took up running to help fight the battle and heard a motivational speaker, also a runner, talk about running with her thumb in the air – all the time affirming, “I am thumb-body.”


“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”


Now move ahead another 30 years. I’m still running. And I still have my thumb in the air. I’m still setting goals and dreaming big. Our right, yours and mine, to the good life come from God. He’s in the business of making us thumb- bodies. And that is good news.


Visit me at www.buddybloomwildflower.com


2 thoughts on “ELEANOR AND MY THUMB

  1. I’m giving you two thumbs up on this post. Sorry, I couldn’t help the pun. This is short but very, very important. Thank you so much for sharing your experience. May you have many blessed days ahead to share your wisdom with your brothers and sisters in Christ.


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