Thursday, August 28, 2014

A Special Tree

I was thinking...rare...yes but I was.

This tree...this big fat oak.  It is maybe 300 years old.  The Declaration of Independence was read for the first time near this spot...well read for the first time near here anyway.

How amazing is that.  A tree.  Longer than our memory.




Turtles That Swim

Grand daughters at the Natural History Museum
Who is looking out and who is looking in?
The Tortoise - Ogden Nash

Come crown my brow with leaves of myrtle,
I know the tortoise is a turtle,
Come carve my name in stone immortal,
I know the turtoise is a tortle.
I know to my profound despair,
I bet on one to beat a hare.
I also know I'm now a pauper,
Because of its tortley, turtley, torper.

But it was kinda an aquarium...

Some fish are minnows, Some are whales.
People like dimples,Fish like scales,
Some fish are slim, And some are round,
They don't get cold, They don't get drowned.
But every fishwife Fears for her fish.
What we call mermaids They call merfish.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Pliny the Younger

About 21 centuries ago today Vesuvius buried Pompeii in a manner as horrific as the wall of water did in northern Japan.  Obviously those closest to the disaster were not able to report it.  We know of accounts via letters from Pliny - here being one:

"Ashes were already falling, not as yet very thickly. I looked round: a dense black cloud was coming up behind us, spreading over the earth like a flood.'Let us leave the road while we can still see,'I said,'or we shall be knocked down and trampled underfoot in the dark by the crowd behind.'We had scarcely sat down to rest when darkness fell, not the dark of a moonless or cloudy night, but as if the lamp had been put out in a closed room. 
You could hear the shrieks of women, the wailing of infants, and the shouting of men; some were calling their parents, others their children or their wives, trying to recognize them by their voices. People bewailed their own fate or that of their relatives, and there were some who prayed for death in their terror of dying. Many besought the aid of the gods, but still more imagined there were no gods left, and that the universe was plunged into eternal darkness for evermore".
That's about it if you want to have an account.  One can imagine but only in the context that our eyes have seen volcanoes erupt and have enough movie references so we kinda "get it" as to the horror. Tidal waves in movies tend to be of the Poseidon Adventure scale with a 100 feet of water barrelling towards a ship or shore and, like a broom, everyone and thing is swept clean. Japan's tragedy seemed different - like some ooze, some spilled bucket of mud, that just came coming out of an endlessly deep bucket.  But in the end, there you were...by fire or by water, by ash or by mud.



The dreaded Presidential vacation.

If you got nothing you argue with facts that are hard to track.  Its like saying your pile of pennies is bigger than anyone's in the neighborhood....I mean how do you check that out.

So now it is the mess that is now Mr. Bush's folly.  The President is on vacation...which means a few hours a day away from work.  But the media screams (if you call Faux Noise media):

OBAMA TAKES TOO MANY VACATIONS!

According to Factcheck.org and others who keep those records, Pres. Obama has taken 138 days of vacation in his six years in office. Pres. George W. Bush took 879 vacation days, the most in modern presidential history! Ronald Reagan took 335 vacation days. George H.W. Bush took more vacation days in his four years in office than Pres. Obama took in his first four years. 

So now we have selective outrage.  It is so becoming. Penny for your thoughts.


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Anticipation

Mr. Gershwin...thanks a lot...thank you.
Just listening to some of his (Gershwin's) music last night...music like sometimes no other....glass of wine, pretty, foggy sunset...grand kids tomorrow....hog heaven. Have a few new forum friends who are the bravest people on earth. I'm so lucky....at least for the next few minutes.

Knock on wood.




Midnight Special

Faint memories of half a century ago.

WFMT FM in Chicago was a powerhouse FM station and of course Saturday morning in college meant about an English lit class and a chem lab and the afternoon at the fraternity house cleaning up for the Saturday night party and then when all was said and done, the Midnight Special out of Chicago.  

Tom Lehrer, Buffy St. Marie and countless others graced those airwaves. Here are a couple of Tom's better ones. This played well at a Lutheran university in northern indiana let me tell ya'.

Frat House. 1am. Popcorn and sitting on the floor.







Friday, August 22, 2014

Water Boy

Actually I like the movie Water Boy. It is beyond stupid of course and frankly I am loath to admit it even to my Facebook friends; many of you I have not a clue as to who you are.

I bring Water Boy up because, of course, there is an "ice water" dump....Gator Aide of course.... and it is all in fun and silly, good humor.  No harm no foul.

Seems a good many "serious" folks have been bent out of shape over the IceWater ALS challenge. Cheap stunt. All about me. yada yada.

Of course Facebook is all about me.  YouTube, if not filming or replaying something of note is, again, all about me. Got it. Over and Out.

What some of the "ohhhhh you horrible people just in it for the glory" folks don't get is two fold:
 1.  No one gives a rats ass about ALS in everyday life.  That is out of ignorance as it is and remains perhaps the most horrible way to die on God's green earth.
2.  There are about 30,000 Americans with ALS...a paltry number, insignificant.....an outlier.  But the fact is cold.  The number of new folks with ALS = the Number of Folks that DIE from ALS each year.  You get it you die and there is one to take your place.

So do what you can and what you feel is right.  No one can ask more of you and NO ONE expects less.