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Great Onelers: Sylvia Williams of Temple Hills August 12, 2009

Posted by Onely in As If!, Food for Thought, Great Onelies in Real Time.
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Yesterday the Washington Post had an article on Aging Well at All Ages. One of the four large faceshots on the front page of the Health section belonged to Sylvia Williams, 62, of Temple Hills. She is a counselor at Walker Mill Middle School. She says,

Being grateful and not trying to be a teenager again. Not trying to be younger than you are. It’s ok. And today’s my birthday. . . I’m single, no children and I guess that’s why I’m doing well.

Cheers to Sylvia.

Separately, I noticed how each of the photo captions mentioned three things about the person featured:  (more…)

Hard-Core Oneler: Dick Proenneke June 12, 2009

Posted by Onely in Great Onelies in Real Time, Great Onely Activities, Profiles, Secret Lives of the Happily Single, single and happy, solo travel, We like. . ..
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DickProennekeCabinWelcome to the Hard-Core Edition of our series, Great Onelers In Real Time. Today’s Hard-Core Oneler is former Navy carpenter Richard Proenneke. In 1968, at the age of 51, he went to the ultra-wild wilderness of Twin Lakes, Alaska and built himself a cabin by hand, with no chain saws or other automated machinery.  He even carved the handles for the tools he used to hew the spruce logs. Then he lived in the cabin for over thirty years.

The mesmerizing video  Alone in the Wilderness by Bob Swerer Productions tells the story of Dick’s first year at Twin Lakes. Dick used a tripod to film himself building his cabin. We see many shots of him from the backside, walking away from the lens with a determined, slightly bow-legged stride, once with a sheep ribcage strapped to his back. He films grizzly bears rolling joyfully  down snowy slopes. He feeds birds by hand. He makes door hinges, for goodness’ sake (I didn’t know you could make door hinges; I thought they grew on the door hinge tree).  (more…)

Great Onelies in Real Time: Dr. Trudy Steuernagel February 4, 2009

Posted by Onely in Great Onelies in Real Time.
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Onely salutes Dr. Gertrude Steuernagel, a beloved and progressive women’s studies and political science professor at Kent State in Ohio. Steuernagel is an accomplished and outspoken and feminist and autism advocate. As she raised her adored son Sky, who is autistic, she also found time to make an impact in both the women’s movement and in mental health advocacy–all while Onely.

Trudy Steuernagel (NewsChannel 5, via msnbc)

Tragically, last week Steuernagel was severely beaten by Sky.  Autism does not/not cause violence in and of itself, but the resulting sensory overload and frustration of not being able to communicate can cause sufferers to lash out, and Sky had other neurological challenges as well that may have contributed to the assault. He didn’t know what he was doing.  Steuernagel knew the challenges associated with caring for Sky, but she also knew the joys, as she describes in this amazing essay. She is truly a Great Onely, and we send our strongest well-wishes out to her numerous family and friends.


Great Onelies in Real Time: Wang GuiYing January 13, 2009

Posted by Onely in As If!, Great Onelies in Real Time, Heteronormativity.
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A Chinese woman has decided to become unsingle after 107 years of Oneliness

She didn’t marry because she was afraid of marriage. When we are tempted to glorify the long, historic tradition of man-woman matrimony and disparage those of us who, for whatever reasons, are not participating in it, let’s also take a moment to listen to Wang Gui Ying’s story (Reuters cites the ChongQing Commercial Times): 

Born in southern Guizhou province the child of a salt merchant, Wang grew up watching her uncles and other men scold and beat their wives and often found her aunt crying in the woodshed after an attack, the paper said.

“All the married people around there lived like that. Getting married was too frightening,” she said of an era when Chinese women had few rights and low social standing.

For me, Wang Guiying makes an interesting contrast to the many people nowadays (at least in the west) who marry because they are afraid of being single (I know, I know, not everyone–but lots!).  Wang kept the family farm going until she was 74. Now that she’s finally beginning to slow down, she’s worried about being a burden to her nieces and nephews. (more…)

Great Onelies in Real Time: Shanaz (YOUR RESPONSES REQUESTED) January 8, 2009

Posted by Onely in As If!, Everyday Happenings, Food for Thought, Great Onelies in Real Time, Heteronormativity, Profiles, Your Responses Requested!.
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This evening my hairdresser and I talked about being Onely. Shanaz likes men but is more interested in friends, her hair artistry, her daughter, her writing (Persian language commentary on Iranian politics), and just life. “I’m happiest without a boyfriend,” she says. At forty-something, she’s been married and coupled and single and even accidentally involved with a married man. And she chooses single. 

But you know what’s coming next, don’t you? (more…)

Great Onelies in Real Time: Veronica Dylan December 22, 2008

Posted by Onely in blog reviews, Dating, Great Onelies in Real Time, Profiles, Reviews.
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Lisa and I are doing our Onely thing in California and Costa Rica, respectively. A few days ago, at the resort where I was staying on the southwest Pacific coast, I had the good fortune to meet another Great Onely: Veronica Dylan, who owns a rockin’ sparkle blouse and also blogs with honesty and humor about life after divorce.

I like her blog “So Over You”  for a couple reasons (in addition to the blouse!): (more…)

Great Onelies in Realtime: Lisa December 17, 2008

Posted by Onely in Great Onelies in Real Time, Profiles.
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Welcome to Great Onelies in Realtime, a spinoff of our long-running (one post!) Great Onelies in History series. Our inaugural Great Realtime Onely is: Lisa, coblogger on Onely.org!  Ok, sure, this stinks of nepotism, but to tell the truth, Lisa and I don’t know that many Onelies–at least none who met the extensive profile criteria of 1) being willing to be written about by us (chickens!!). That’s why we always solicit suggestions from you, Copious Readers. Do you have single friends who exhibit moments of great Oneliness? Do you have heroes in politics, science, the media, medicine, social work who also happen to be Onely? Let us know! 

So, here’s why Lisa is a Great Onely: (more…)

Great Onelies in History: Sarah and Angelina Grimké December 12, 2008

Posted by Onely in Great Onelies in History, Profiles, We like. . ..
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Sarah Grimké

Last week we announced a new series: Great Onelies in History, featuring Frances Willard. Luckily for our copious readership, I’m finishing up a semester’s graduate course in the history of rhetoric, and so I’ve got two more important rhetorical figures for us to celebrate! This week, we’re happy to introduce:

Sarah and Angelina Grimké, Great Onelies in History!
Famous for: Advocating for women’s rights, suffrage, and the abolition of slavery. Angelina Grimké  happened to be married, but much of her activism work occurred while she was single — we think she deserves Honorary Oneler status!


Great Onelies in History: Frances Willard December 1, 2008

Posted by Onely in Great Onelies in History, Profiles.
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frances_willard_2We’re happy to announce a new series: Great Onelies in History, which we’re sure all you history buffs will enjoy. In this series, we’ll feature people who made a difference in the world and just happened to be single while doing it!

To inaugurate our series, we’re happy to introduce:

Frances Willard, Great Oneler in History!
Famous for: Advocating for women’s rights and suffrage, especially through her leadership of the WCTU (Women’s Christian Temperance Union)


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