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Tempted To Touch


During the first iteration of the project, Gonzales and his creative collaborators passed out PDA pamphlets that included information on the benefits of physical touch. It turns out that just 10 to 15 minutes of human contact per day can help decrease stress levels, lower blood pressure and boost immunity.




Tempted To Touch



Faced with shapes and textures that are meant to be alluring - ivory inlays, exotic woods - even the most disciplined gallerygoer might find themselves tempted to touch a cabinet or two. (Though, for the record, the Metropolitan Museum of Art frowns on that sort of thing.)


A pension is no piggy bank. It's a lesson Jan Pena-Davis has learned the hard way.Three times, the Chicago teacher withdrew amounts between $10,000 and $20,000 from her pension fund. Each time she resigned and pulled out money, Pena-Davis hoped she was financing a dream that would pay off. She went to graduate school to become a diplomat, started writing a book and worked for an airline. But after every failed pursuit, she returned to teaching – with an increasingly diminished pension.Now the 60 year old is facing a scary fact: "I don't have enough money in my pension that will allow me even a reasonable lifestyle." She joked, "I will probably disintegrate on the job."While she watches fellow teachers her age retire, Pena-Davis is living paycheck to paycheck with no investments. And as an Illinois teacher, she will not collect Social Security.Add in substantial credit card debt from a predilection for expensive Swedish underwear and a weakness for spoiling her grandchildren, and Pena-Davis has a retirement crisis."I never in a million years would have said, 'well, I'm not able to retire with my peers.' Because I should be. It's my fault." Looking on the bright side, she added, "I have an incredible son-in-law, who would not allow me to go homeless."The two-time divorcée believes that her problems are common among many unmarried women."There are so many women who don't have husbands now or chose not to have husbands who are now confronted with the idea, 'okay, how am I going to live, where am I going to live?'" She continued, "It sort of snuck up on us."Pena-Davis remains hopeful that her dreams will pan out. She has a novel in the works, a screenwriting prize and some soon-to-be published writings, and she's balancing her optimism with some practical steps too, like teaching summer school and setting up a Roth IRA.Her advice to other women is to start thinking about money early and to give their passports and savings books to someone else, saying, "here, take it – put it in your safe, so that I'm not tempted to touch it and buy a new car or piece of artwork or whatever."For now, the English teacher plans to stay at her job as long as she can. But her sights are set high for her next dream quest."When I write my book, I want you all to come to my movie premiere!" Then with resignation, she quipped, "I'm too old to change."Back to American Families main page


Soon the trail turned uphill toward a sunlit opening. There a big red sign greeted the family; it said they were at Rock House Cave and a message urged them to be respectful of the prehistoric Indian rock art and not to touch it. No campfires allowed! Behind the sign an immense rock wall rose straight from the ground to the height of a three-story building. A huge cave cut into the wall; it was so big that in its center was a pile of boulders the size of cars. Some were as big as trucks! Mom grabbed Jason's arm just as he turned toward the rocks. "Oh, no you don't," she said. "You'll fall and break your neck!"


Tiffany, Jason, and their parents spent another hour looking at the paintings. Many were so faded that they were now only smudges. Some remained quite clear, but even so it was hard to identify their shapes. It was as if they were looking at a strange form of picture writing from another world. Jason wondered what it must have been like to live in that world. He wondered if kids his age made some of the paintings. Many were high up on the walls and ceilings, well out of his reach, but a few were down low. He was tempted to touch them, but he realized they were very special so he resisted the urge and obeyed the warning on the sign. Still, it would be cool to know who made them and why.


Scott notes that sexual temptation is one of the gravest risks powerful politicians face. Their power attracts people who want to connect with them, and some politicians, like Bill Clinton, cannot resist the opportunity. Those who are less powerful, like staff members, might be tempted to abuse their position in smaller, but no less unethical, ways. 041b061a72


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