I know everyone wants to be hopeful today, and many are full of joy, as the 46th President of the United States is sworn into office, alongside the first female Vice President (!). I have to be honest; I always thought Hillary Clinton would be the first female President, but I am quite hopeful for Kamala Harris (She’s smart, strong, and incredibly likeable.) and her role in how we move forward as a nation, but I realized earlier today that I had ignored my own mantra for a while in my attempt to tune as much of this out as humanly possible.

My mantra has been, “Question EVERYTHING” for as long as I can remember. It’s a good mantra. I am not the most trusting person. I often wait for people to fuck up because it’s inevitable. But today, I can only hope the new President doesn’t fuck up royally. This country can’t afford any more screw-ups. We have to take care of our citizens and remember who our long-time allies are. Now is not a time to pick fights or look for war, because it’s all too possible the war we face is on our own soil.

Many of us are far too young to remember slavery on U.S. soil, Civil War, World Wars I & II, Pearl Harbor, or Vietnam, but we aren’t too young to remember 9/11, Saddam Hussein, Al Qaeda, Osama bin Laden, ISIS, or the constant crap pulled by Hamas, the “Palestinian Authority”, and other extremist terrorist groups. Let the record state, I feel it’s important to discuss terrorism on all levels.

As I listened to people I know talk about their views, post the incident at the Capitol Building earlier this month, I realized how sheltered many truly were regarding White Supremacist “organizations” and other documented hate groups that are alive and well, functioning daily in this country.

Growing up in New York City, I didn’t encounter a lot of these things (Jehovah’s Witnesses? Yes, on the regular. I’ve actually never managed to escape them wherever I’ve lived. Unlike my Great-Uncle, I have never felt the need to invite them in for coffee and a religious debate.), but I was always highly aware. I was the girl who was always writing, but I was also the person who wanted to become a police officer who would make detective, and then move on to the FBI. Law enforcement was something I believed there was honor in. My detective instincts are a natural part of who I am; ask any of my friends who’ve been on a bad date or had a guy mistreat them. I recently offered to do a background check on someone, and I wasn’t joking.

My awareness of hatred started way before kindergarten, and because I’ve been lucky enough to have certain opportunities, groups like the KKK are something I’ve always known about. I knew they had a plethora of fringe groups with similar ideas and ideals, and there are so many of them who recruit online, but I could never wrap the blind hatred around my own mind because nature versus nurture is a real thing. It’s also impossible to brainwash me because I truly do question everything.

Nancy Pelosi was one hundred percent right to call out the fact that many wore Neo-Nazi t-shirts. She referred to one individual in particular and called him a, “punk”. The truth of this statement was way too polite, but I was proud of her in that moment. I hate politics, but I respect people who can honor the wrongs and do their best to correct the hate we are seeing rise every day. I’ve never stood for hatred of anyone, but I always stand for truth.

If you lost family during the Holocaust, you would understand this feeling (seeing those shirts) in a deeper way. Jews were not the only people murdered. Hitler was insane and evil (Remind you of anyone?) and believed he was annihilating anyone who didn’t fit into his, “Master Race” image. The Nazi regime also killed their own people who would not help them (Many died by refusing to turn in neighbors, friends, etc.), Roma Gypsies, anyone who was disabled or ill, and anyone from the LGBTQ+ community they could find.

My cousins were freedom fighters during the Holocaust, putting themselves at severe risk. Whenever someone denounces it as being “a Jewish propaganda lie”, wears an offensive t-shirt, or accuses Israel of apartheid actions, I think of them, and wonder how many people are alive today because of them. How many people got away, immigrated to another country, and rebuilt their lives because of their kindness and fighting spirit? I will never know, but I do know they’re out there. I occasionally wonder where my fighting spirit comes from, and despite not being like anyone else in my family, I know I’ve inherited traits along the way.

The Holocaust is not the only mass genocide the world has seen; and many ignored it while it took place. Until the camps were liberated, we cannot ever forget that the United States turned people away on their shores, people who arrived by boat, and they did so by Presidential order. It’s not spoken about enough. However, the Holocaust is not alone in its horrors. It is not without equally disturbing stories which took place in other countries.

The Armenian Genocide came first, beginning in 1915. Turkey still denies this ever took place. As though a million people, possibly more, simply vanished. Many other countries have committed atrocities against their own people over the centuries, and it needs to be discussed openly and honestly. If I can’t shrug my shoulders about any of it, then no one else should get away with that type of behavior, either. It is not okay to denounce the horrors man has allowed. When I think about these things, it fuels me into a tunnel vision mindset.

Slavery was once rampantly accepted all across this country. It’s heinous. It is now synonymous with human-trafficking, and the darker undercurrents that many are blind to. I can’t close my eyes and pretend I don’t know about these things. I don’t want to ignore the history because if I do, then I’m just another ignorant person who is useless to this world and its betterment.

Overall, it would be nice to have hope, but seeing as how I’m always going to be myself ,and this lends to certain things, I can only say I’m going to be realistic. Because after the past few years, it’s truly all I’ve got to offer. Realistic honesty.

If you have hope, more power to you. I’m tired of all the division and hope it can be bettered, but again, I’m realistic and honest about change.

Here’s to 4-8 years with minimal fuck-ups.

copyright © 2021 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC.

The Long Slow March Towards…More


Someday in the not-too-distant future, holiday weekends such as this one will have more meaning for me. They won’t just be about the “official end of summer” or hoisting the flag in a show of patriotism. No one should need a holiday to be proud of where they’re from. Unless, of course, Barack Obama is your President, is systematically destroying this country, and we’re heading into an election year, but I digress. Weekends like this will eventually be about family.

I wish I’d known ten years ago how fiercely I wanted the things I want today. I wish I’d known then that it was okay to pursue those dreams and goals, without fear. By fear I don’t mean fear in the traditional sense, more in the “How the hell am I going to do THIS?” sense. No matter how much faith and confidence you have, we all have moments of self-doubt. It’s normal. You can do every single thing in your life the “traditional way” and it can still go to shit before your eyes. I think people become consumed with honoring other people’s wishes, hopes, and dreams, and lose sight of their own.

When I said that I was going to make a career change, that in no way entailed the end of me putting ink to paper. It meant “I need more.”

I have a family member who is incredibly content to fill her home with rescued animals. And by fill, I truly mean FILL.

I was told, no joke, that I should feel “immense guilt” for not choosing to personally save more lives. I had to flat-out say that while admirable, I want my life to have more to it than that. Animals are wonderful, anyone who has spent five minutes reading my work knows that I love cat and kitten, but is that all I ever want to come home to until the day that I die? No. I respect her choice, but she cannot comprehend mine because she made her decision years ago. I find it simple: We want different things. That’s okay. It doesn’t make one person better and the other worse, it means we have different ideas for our lives, and she should be able to accept it and let it go. My life is not an animal sanctuary. Anyone who cannot understand that probably shouldn’t be a part of my life in any capacity.

Each of us wants different things in life. Some people might want the traditional life of a husband/wife, 2.5 kids (or no children), a dog/cat (or no pets), and the white picket fence. And others…we want more. It has nothing to do with material things and everything to do with depth. That’s precisely what I seek; Depth. Material things aren’t always yours “forever”, but the miracle of your own flesh & blood…that’s eternal.

In life, we all deserve the chance to find the things that make us feel whole, whatever that may be. Wherever you find your happiness, may it be the ‘more’, the depth, and the eternal truth that we all seek, whether we admit it or not.

copyright © 2015 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.




Stirring The Cauldron

There is a humorous saying in my family: “When Lisa gets bored, she gets dangerous.” It’s truly a joke, I’m basically a sweet kitten from hell, but right now, I’ve got a TON on my plate and it’s beyond overwhelming.

I hate it when people use the excuse of being “busy” so as not to do something or be present. I refuse to do that which I dislike SO much. Yes, I’m busy. So what. I can still make time for what’s important to me, and exactly who is important to me. If you know me well, you know I’ll drop anything and everything to help a friend or family member in need providing I can stand you.

So here I sit, hammering out details for a charity drive. I am exhilarated with ideas and I will be sharing all of the necessary information here that way no one can say they didn’t know about it, did not know they could help no matter where they live, etc. Again, NO EXCUSES. I cannot and will not force anyone to care strongly about things that are important to me, but I can encourage you to get involved if at all possible, or I just might visit you with a rather large hockey stick. People often say they want to help others, but it’s, more often than not, just talk. I rarely see action, which is precisely why I’ve decided to take action in my own way.


I am SO inspired by this. It took over a month for this shirt to arrive. 



The hoodie was VERY late to the party, but is SO warm, and I’m proud to be walking around in it.

And the video brings me to fucking TEARS (I’m blaming PMS.).

I am proud to have contributed, proud to be preparing to play a larger role that can affect a lot of people’s lives for the better, and thrilled to be stirring my cauldron when I really should be asleep.

You will know more about what I am doing when I’m greenlit.

copyright © 2015 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

The photos are mine and protected under my personal copyright, the video is not mine.

The Need For Silence

Tomorrow is Samhain, which is Halloween for the uninitiated who can’t even pronounce what I just said. I’ve taken some time this week to be quiet, to look deeply within, and to give myself some space. Every year brings a new set of challenges, and I am hoping to embark on happier ones this time around. Simply put: I am sick of the crap. Every last ounce of it. I’m ready for positive change, happy change, and I am looking forward to putting a lot of unhappiness and negativity to rest.

My only plan for tomorrow is to try hard to finish the read-through I am doing, and catch up on some little things that need to be put in the mail. Beyond that, nothing. I want a quiet day, I want to light candles at dusk, and I want a night of quality sleep. I don’t need scary movies to “get into the spirit”. I’ve already seen Sons of Anarchy and Stalker this week, I’ve had my dose of gore and I’ve been thoroughly ‘creeped out’.

It probably seems odd for someone so young to be in such desperate need of silence, but it’s honest. I already bought sweets this week and they were for myself. Okay, so I shared, but you get the point. The actual Halloween aspect doesn’t reside in my home. Samhain, on the other hand, does. It’s when I honor my loved ones who have passed away and light candles of remembrance. It’s when I keep my cats close to me and SAFE. I don’t believe in having outdoor cats, I never have and I never will. That is a personal choice because I believe that if you are going to have any kind of pet, you should do what is absolutely best for him/her and their overall well-being. When you rescue, you should give them a safe home. Last year there was a lot of concern over black cats being harmed. I own an all-black British Bombay who is the sweetest, most laid back little girl, so it’s even more important to me to keep her safe and sound. I don’t ever want my cats to know “the street life” again, which is precisely why I adopted them. You save a life, but you also save bits of yourself in the process.

Also, I have a very dear friend in the hospital, and I want to make sure I say a special prayer for her recovery. I’m breaking out the big guns on this one! 🙂

So, if there isn’t another post this month, enjoy the holiday however you choose to embrace it and keep yourself and those you hold dear safe & sound.

Bright Blessings.


copyright © 2014 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED