Tag Archives: Fun

Beauty – Adaptive or Arbitrary

A number of days past, I made a post titled Wildflowers where I pondered the evolutionary adaptations of plants.  How their beauty, shape, and the perfume of their flowers attract certain pollinators to ensure the propagation of their species.

Naturally, I simply enjoy their beauty, regardless of how it came to be. 😊

Then yesterday, I stumbled upon an article discussing the theories of “adaptive adornment” versus “arbitrary beauty.”*  And I must admit, those terms are much more scientific and deliberately descriptive than my own ponderings.

It seems that Darwin had a second theory apart from natural selection – sexual selection.

Continue reading Beauty – Adaptive or Arbitrary

Call of the Wild*

I’ve been doing a lot of stumbling lately.

I really like that word.  Its main definition is about walking in an unsteady manner, being clumsy, to almost fall, or to make an error.  Blunder.  But I like the other definition, that of unexpectantly coming upon something – like truth.

Now that’s no error.  That’s magic.

Continue reading Call of the Wild*

Forget Civility, How About Just Having an Adult Conversation?

I, like a lot of friends I know, have become a little quieter in cyberspace these days.  Why?  Because of the lack of civility in human discourse out there.   Of course, there is nothing surprising by that statement.  Anybody out there in cyberland has witnessed, or may have been a party to, a discussion that has turned drastically evil.

The evilest one I can remember was where one very confused gentleman, I use that word “gentleman” very loosely, responded to a very factual statement of mine by saying he had my ISP address and was on his way to my house to: “. . . rape your mother and kill your whole family.”  Nice guy.  Apparently, intelligence, in any measurable form, was lacking in this individual.

And such responses tend to scare people off from wanting to engage any further.  Which may have been this person’s objective.  No intelligent response, so they had to threaten me with violence.

Continue reading Forget Civility, How About Just Having an Adult Conversation?

Silence is Golden, but Mantras . . .

You can fill in the blank in the title.  I might say . . . “are miraculous.”

***

I can remember back in college, I had friends who used to wear their headphones constantly.  They told me they couldn’t study without listening to music.  And I always found that hard to believe because if I’m listening to music, the only other thing I can do at the same time is dance.  And I’m not so great at that either, although I have fun flailing about 🙂

I mean I can’t even go to sleep listening to music.  Music just seems to engage some part of my brain that carries me somewhere else completely.

And totally.

Continue reading Silence is Golden, but Mantras . . .

Dragon !

I’ve been seeing a lot of articles and postings on the Net lately about Millennials.  And a lot of it is very derogatory and carries an overall tone of blame.  Blame for what?  Apparently, there is a blame game now where if it looks like you’ll be delayed in reaching some of society’s dictated milestones, such as marriage, children, and owning a home, then you are defective.

In fact, people falling in this category are more than just defective.  They are downright utter failures.  And those in this generation acquiring a higher education are also called fools for racking up student loan debt.

Of course, if you visit the pages like LinkedIn, the general tone is that if you’re having difficulty achieving the American Dream, regardless of who you are but especially if you’re a Millennial, it’s because you are incompetent and lazy and simply haven’t learned to pull yourself up by your bootstraps.  It’s also assumed that you do not know how to prioritize your purchasing power and always spend beyond your means.

If you were only like the commentator who walked 20 miles to school each day, uphill, both ways, and forwent buying so much as a candy bar until they could afford to buy a falling apart car with the money they earned mowing lawns and doing other odd jobs until they became a self-made . . . blah, blah, blah . . . judgmental bigot?

I find such types of gross over-generalizations to be pretty ignorant.

Continue reading Dragon !

What’s in a Name?

Those of you who follow my blog know I’m constantly remarking about how powerful and fun words are.  I love words.  And if you can tell a story and manage to raise the image you’re trying to paint in another person’s mind, well, that’s when storytelling becomes art.

I love it when words can be used in alternative tenses.  Past, present, and future.  But they can also be used in multiple fashions.  As a noun, adjective, and verb.  All three.

But have you ever seen a proper noun be used with such multiplicity?

Continue reading What’s in a Name?

Elsewhere

I dislike beginning another blog with a chant about being absent for a while, but there it is.  I’ve not been here.  I’ve been elsewhere.

But where is “elsewhere?”

I kind of like that word.  In fact, if I ever incorporated a township, that’s what I’d name it – Elsewhere.  And everyone would be invited to go there and take a mental vacation.  And better yet, while you were there you could conjure up any type of reality you desired.  The only limits would be the boundaries of your imagination.

Actually, I think we are all in Elsewhere every day.

Continue reading Elsewhere

Liebster Award # 3

I must extend my many thanks to Carly for nominating me for another Liebster Award.  You should really check out her blog, Message in Stanza, for some great musings, poetry, and photography.

I must also apologize for being slow because she nominated me a month ago, but here goes:

The Rules:

  1. Acknowledge the blogger that gave you the nomination and display the award.
  2. Answer 11 questions that blogger gives you.
  3. Give 11 random thoughts about yourself.
  4. Nominate 11 blogs and notify them of their nomination.
  5. Give these blogs 11 questions to answer.

Humm, first off, I have to say I’ve never been one who likes to stay faithful to all the rules, so I guess I’ll play with these a little bit.  Next, I assume (I know, assuming is not the best thing to do) that items 2 and 3 are separate items.  Thus, the answers to the questions are different from the 11 random thoughts, and I just gave you one random thought, I don’t like to follow the rules all the time. 🙂

The Rest of My Random Thoughts:

I am thinking quite randomly today because I’m having a neurotoxic reaction to environmental pollutants and scattered thoughts is about all I can muster up about now.

Some days, no matter how organized you think you are going to be, everything will just deteriorate, or may actually improve, as seemingly chance occurrences unfold and take you in completely different directions than you had planned.  Fun stuff.

I plan to do some standing meditation today.

I will be meeting with a friend later, something I had not planned.

I began the day working on a book, but now I’m bouncing about randomly digitizing words.

We have had a real Midwest winter this year.  Last Tuesday it was a negative 7 degrees, Sunday it was 70 degrees and today we have freezing rain.

I’m still having trouble with this new keyboard not wanting to type the letters on the left-hand side.  So, I’m having to do a lot more editing and adding back in all those missing Ws, Rs, Es and Ts.

I’ve finally got the house warmed back up having rebuilt the fire in the woodstove. I love the woodstove 🙂

I’m thinking about the new gear I need to pick up for a planned trip this summer.

I’m looking forward to Spring when all the flowers will be back in bloom.

The Questions:

  • What are you most passionate about?

See number 3

  • What is one thing you would like people to know about you that is not so obvious?

Nothing, if it’s not obvious, then I probably don’t want people to know.

  • What are three of your favorite pastimes?

Traveling, Hiking, Writing, Photography – there, I gave you 4, although I usually combine them all into one activity Travwhikgraphy 🙂  I like making up words.

  • Who is your favorite author?

Always a toss-up.  I just love good writing.  But two of my favorite satirical writers are Kurt Vonnegut and Christopher Moore.

  • What is your favorite reading genre?

As I said before, I just love good writing.  Fiction, non-fiction, poetry, you name it.

  • Why is it your favorite?

Hummm – good – writing.  Well composed, sucks you in, can’t get enough type of writing.

  • What advice would you give to new bloggers?

Write.  Just start putting something on paper.  It doesn’t matter what.  Once you have something down, you have something to edit. That’s where the real fun is, I think.  Great writers don’t always write great stuff.  They write a lot, and a tiny bit of their stuff is great.  So write.

  • What two items on your bucket list might you do next year?

Going to Yosemite and taking a train trip through the Canadian Rockies.

  • What is something you have always wanted to say to a loved one who has passed?

To my Dad – “You’re the wisest guy I know, thanks for being my Dad.”

  • Who do you admire that is historically famous and why?

This could be any number of people, but today, randomly, I pick Thoreau.  Not only was he a writer, but he lived out in Nature, at least for a while.  And these are two of my favorite pastimes.

  • When was the first time you really got scolded by your parents?

Probably when I was around 5.  Once my Dad scolded us, we didn’t need any further discipline.  We knew to be good, and if we needed reminding, he gave us the “look.”  Yes, that look that bore right through you and said straighten up or else.

My Nominations:

Again, not being one who likes to follow the rules, I’ll not list out blogs here.  Instead, I nominate every blogger that I’ve had a discussion with here on WordPress.  You all know who you are, so if you want to participate and pick up this challenge (and you don’t have to) here are my questions.

My Questions:

These are the same ones I picked for my first Liebster Award, but they are good ones 😊

  • What is the title of the book you are going to write?
  • What is your favorite pet?
  • What is your favorite dessert?
  • If you’re doing the cooking, what’s for dinner?
  • What is your favorite poem?
  • Who is your favorite author?
  • If you could have a “do-over” in your life, what would you change?
  • What is your favorite travel destination and why?
  • Who is your favorite movie character?
  • If you were granted one wish, what would you wish for?
  • If you could commit a crime, and knew you would get away with it, what would it be?

I hope you all have a wonderful day.

***

Clearing the Cobwebs

Well, I’m coming up to my one-year anniversary here on WordPress, and the blog has certainly helped me do what I set out to do with it.  It’s given me a creative outlet and provided incentive for me to write on a more regular basis.

That, in turn, has had many beneficial effects.  I do love to write, but I have to say, it is so easy to let time slip away with a million other things that it’s good to have something to help with my focus.  More importantly, I find writing to be very therapeutic for me.

The more I write, the better I feel.  And I have a lot of stories I want to get down on paper.  Some are a little hard to believe, but they’re true, and that makes them more fun.

I passed the 200-post mark a little while back and I realize as time goes on that my earliest posts probably aren’t being viewed by people anymore and I’ve decided to start taking them down.  They may get recycled at a later date in some form, but it’s time to clear the cobwebs off the blog, and out of my mind too.

New Year, fresh start.

I will keep up some of my personal favs, and some of those posts that everyone really liked.  And it may be time to start compiling some materials for a book.

Guess we’ll see what happens 🙂

***

Photo: An Orb-Weaver Spider, sometimes called a Yellow Garden Spider or a Golden Orb.  Orb spiders weave distinctive spiral webs.  I like to think that we, as writers, weave the stories we tell.  They go in all sort of directions, take many shapes, and have interconnections that will hopefully “capture our prey” – the attention and imagination of our readers.

spidy + spfx2

Coming Up: A little later today I’ll put up part one of my story that lost the writing contest I had entered it in.  (See my prior post “Loser.”)  I think it’s a good story from back in my road-living days of my early twenties.  It’s true too.  Hope you like it.

Loser

I found out yesterday that I did not win in a writing contest I had entered.  So, I guess that makes me a loser – LOL!

There were 2700 entries though, and the entry fee was $25.  The journal raked in $67,500 and only paid out a $5000 prize.  Clearly, they were the winners.

But I’ll look at this as being their loss.  I thought I had submitted a great story and since I no long have to worry about publication rights, I’ll be posting that story here on my blog 🙂

And it’s a true story too.

When I relayed the history of what happened to one of the parties involved he appropriately said, “Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction.”

This story kind of flows sequentially with the multi-chapter story I’ve been writing called, very unoriginally, “A Story.”  And I might break this one up into two chapters since it’s about 2600 words.

First, I must complete Chapter 5.  My apologies for not getting it together sooner, but soon, I promise.

Yes, what will happen to Mike and me in our drug-crazed frenzy? 🙂

Until then, I hope you all have a wonderful day filled with many happy surprises.  I have to get out for a bit today.  Helios is back and nature is calling . . .

***

Photo: The beautiful sunrise is marred by the damn telephone poles and wires – making it a loser of a pic 🙂  Just kidding.  It is a beautiful sunrise to a beautiful day, fitting with my post’s theme.  While my story and this photo didn’t win any contests, they are still winners as far as I’m concerned.  Here is a pic of that same time just prior to the sun breaking though.

sunrise 11-30-17 +

Turn About is Fair Play

As we begin a new circle around the sun, I think it’s a common thing for us to reflect back.  We not only give ourselves a list of goals for the new year, but we give ourselves a scorecard for the past year.  Where did we succeed and where did we fail?  What dreams were realized and which ones were dashed upon the rocks of despair.

Sorry, that’s a bit overly dramatic 🙂

Continue reading Turn About is Fair Play

May You Soar High In the New Year

Sandhill Cranes Plus Text

So yesterday I stumbled on this quote and I thought Wow!  What a great thought.  Not that I wish to take anything away from the celebration of New Year’s Eve, but I like the lofty idea of changing the world.

And then I thought, not the world in the “global” sense, although that too is a great aspiration.  I thought, our own “worlds.”  Yes, let’s celebrate all of those amazing and positive changes we bring into our own lives.

I wish you all many blessing for the New Year !

***

Photo:  Some Sandhill Cranes take flight! I had the fortune to follow these guys on their migratory path in 2017.  I first saw them in Michigan and then later in southern Arizona.  It wasn’t my intention to follow them, but there they were, and I was totally blessed with being able to experience them.

To Soar: The definition of soaring implies more than just flying.  It is to reach new heights!  To feel the wind below your wings!  Joy ! Exhilaration ! Beauty !

Give Yourself Permission

As I rose from my slumbers a couple of days ago, I began my usual prodding of myself. “What are you going to do today?”  “What will you accomplish?”

I think we’ve all been conditioned to get in this frame of mindlessness.  We have to do something “constructive” in order to feel like we have any self-worth.

But who is this “judge” sitting in the back of our minds and where do all of these self-created pressures come from?  Why do we have to “accomplish” something and what makes that something “constructive” or “meaningful?”

I decided to give myself permission to take the day off.

Not in the sense of doing nothing, although arguably, there is value in that too sometimes.  But I gave myself permission to get off my own back.  To kill that self-judging voice in the back of my head.

What happened?

Well, I spent a good part of the day reading, relaxing, enjoying the freedom I gave myself not to attach my entire worth as a person on completing some task.  And it felt like a giant weight had been lifted from my shoulders.

So, I carried this state of mind over into a second day.  I read, meditated, had coffee with my daughter, took a long hot bath, built a nice fire in the woodstove.  And I cranked up the music and danced around the living room 🙂

It was absolutely liberating.

You see, by giving myself permission to quit judging myself, I actually accomplished much more in terms of gaining some peace of mind.  Of freeing my spirit.  Of capturing some happiness.  Of living in the moment.

Happy Holidays to everyone and give yourself permission to be joyous and free!

Crank up the music and dance!

***

Photo:  Somewhere in Oregon.  Open and free.  Rolling grasses.  Azure blue lakes.  Snow-capped mountain peaks.  Weightless beauty.  Liberation.