Let the Light In and the Darkness Out….

Dear Reader:

At the start of the final sentencing Friday, in the nationally televised Alex Murdaugh trial, Judge Clifton Newman began referencing part of a quote that Alex Murdaugh, himself, had somewhat mentioned earlier… hoping , most likely, that Murdaugh would complete the familiar saying. He did not … but visually ascertained the verbal connection with a nod and glance at the judge.

” Oh what a tangled web…”

I felt my hand raising, like in a school classroom, and yelling at the television… ” Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.” ( Sir Walter Scott)

Later… when I researched the origin of this familiar childhood warning ( in my family at least) I discovered it belonged to Sir Walter Scott. Grandmother Wilson made sure all of her grandchildren took this warning to heart and could repeat the saying. Once a lie was told… cover-up lies would certainly unfold… and complications grow out of control. ( We all learned, as adolescents, how right she was !) Don’t ” fib ” and / or if you do… confess and apologize.

Throughout the day, following the final sentence, the drama was repeatedly shown, regardless of the network or source. And each time I saw segments of it again, it became more obvious that Judge Newman was trying to give the accused time to speak to all those hurt by a vast accumulation of deceitful practices played out repeatedly over a long period of time… that didn’t happen.

I did discover that the Sir Walter Scott quote can be found in the epic poem-Marmion: A Tale of Flodden Field. It tells the story of a courtier of Henry VIII named Lord Marmion. He is smitten with a wealthy woman named Clara de Clare who, unfortunately for the suitor, is already engaged to another.

A devious scheme is designed to implicate Clara’s fiancé in a duel and initially it appears it has been successful. Marmion’s deceit defeats the honor of the honorable fiancé, but it is all in vain since Clara retires to a nun’s convent rather than marry Marmion.

At the end of the day … as several law enforcers and legal teams admitted… this senseless tragedy, with all of its complicated entanglements didn’t happen over night but over extended periods of time when personal decisions were repeatedly made that set the wheel in motion to a horrific tragedy.

So until tomorrow…In the big picture… there were no winners or losers… just sadness and disbelief in a life of deceit and darkness that hurt so many. What a sad legacy to leave behind… to take away the sunshine, the light … in exchange for darkness!

Today is my favorite day -Winnie the Pooh

Thursday two pigeons decided to lodge on the ledge above Mandy’s front door loudly “cukcooing” … apparently it is a good sign since pigeons are drawn to peace and calmness… Mandy and I laughed that the two pigeons left right before the children got home from school… so much for calmness!

From pigeons to ducks… beautiful walk in Mandy’s neighborhood each morning-Winnie keeps putting on brakes and half the walk is spent in Mandy’s arms!

Let’s always remember to follow the sun along our life’s path… no detours into darkness.

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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2 Responses to Let the Light In and the Darkness Out….

  1. Sis Kinney says:

    Hi Becky,
    I have wondered how those in SC have felt about the Murdaugh case and I appreciate your commenting on it; I found it so incredibly sad that those who appeared to “have it all” just didn’t appreciate what they had. I don’t know if he was truly an addict; he apparently “kicked the habit” before the trial as nothing was seemingly mentioned that he had any withdrawal symptoms or was “still suffering.” Seems like if he indeed was taking all those opioids, he would have had a hard time suddenly being denied access to them. And the comments of one juror who said Murdaugh “never shed tears, just blew snot” was telling as well. It was just a horribly, horribly sad, sordid tale and it certainly ended well for the prosecution – not so much for Murdaugh. Or his wife and one son.
    It’s at times like these days – when y’all are having nice, sunny, warmish weather – that I miss Summerville the most. We’re not having bitter cold and the ski season was dreadful this year, but we cannot count on “spring” until at least mid-May. I guess that gives us plenty of prep time for garden clean-outs and clean-ups!!


    • Becky Dingle says:

      You are right… a tale of deceit and greed… too much of everything and thinking you are above the law-megalomania at its worst!

      Sent from my iPhone


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