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Showing posts from November, 2013

On Death and Dying

More from the archives: July 23, 1994 The first funeral in seven years for me was two days ago. It seems like everyone has some kind of philosophy on funerals, and most of the time is seems like they are making it up as they go along; but they want everyone to think they've been contemplating these deep-seeded beliefs for years. Death is probably the only subject written about more than sex, though I'm sure it's a close race. The main difference being that very few people write about sex without first hand experience, yet almost no one writes about death from first hand. A few people have written about near death experiences, but only about the same number have written about near sex experiences. I don't give either group much credit. I wonder if all the souls in heaven, or wherever, laugh when they read our philosophies on death and dying. They are saying "Those crazy mortals, they actually think they know what they are talking about. They talk about dying as if t

The Funeral

From the archives: July 18, 1994 Death is something that happens to people who are still alive. My Grandmother Kio died in the early hours today. For her death is a passive verb, it is the act of not doing anything anymore, yet for the people who love her there is a flourish of activity and emotion. For us, death is an action verb, and more of us actually die, or maybe we all do just a little. I don't do funerals well. I've lost many friends, and never went to funerals. I never wanted to give that much respect to the disease that killed them and that I share. I just say a little prayer and cry a little cry, and die a little bit, and then grow a little and move on. Grandma Ruth is different. She wasn't one of my college buddies. She was directly responsible for my existence. I lived with her for about eight months as a child of nine. Dad was unemployed and he taught me to fish the waters of Potter County. I think I learned to love nature the summer I lived with Grandma Kio.

When Words Fail

From the archives: July 14, 1994 The red brown rose petals on my antique card table makes me want to paint again. Painting expresses in color what words sometimes can't express for me. I know how to convey anger, love, hatred, lust, happiness and loneliness on paper but there are perhaps a hundred or a million other emotions that are just shades of the emotions that have words attached to them. How do you combine anger, frustration and jealousy into words? Even using those words in the same sentence rarely conveys your true emotion. When I'm painting I can put colors and lines down to express myself. The beauty of painting is I can slop down my emotions and if no one can tell what I was feeling when I painted it, it really doesn't matter. If you can express your moods to others through color it's called art. If you just release yourself on canvas you are simply a painter, not an artist. My paintings as well as my journals are just for me to release myself. They are not

Japanese Tsunami Proves American Education Sucks

Today I read an article about the giant debris field floating toward California that is the result of the Japanese tsunami from 2011. The principle focus was that nearly three years later the largest density of debris will be landing on West Coast beaches. But this quote got me thinking: In April, a 20ft boat ran aground at Crescent City, California. It was formally identified as a boat that belonged to the marine sciences program at Takata High School in the city of Rikuzentakata.   Read more:   How many of our high schools have marine sciences programs? In fact, how many of our high schools have any kind of in-depth science program? Our newspapers are full of news stories about bullying and the lack of services for autistic and learning disabled children. We use phrases like, "No child left behind" to demonstrate how we lift up t

Pete the Llama

From the archives: July 12, 1994 To see a llama in New England may seem like one lost mammal. Llamas in Connecticut is the kind of thing one sees and is inspired to write a book about. But not the llama I'm referring to. "Pete", as my girlfriend now calls him, is a llama spotted in the back of a blue pickup truck on I-84 Westbound, just above Hartford. He was sitting, facing the rear in his roomy chickenwire cage. He sat chomping on his llama food and sipping on a coke. Pete looked at me with the exact look I was looking his way with. Neither of us were really shocked to see each other. We both felt as if it was our right to be where we were and the other person, llama, was the one out of place. Pete looked so normal where he was that I didn't think it odd at all except that I've never in my life seen a llama on the interstate. Curious, I asked my girlfriend how she knew Pete was a male. "Well, don't you think Pete is a pretty dumb name for a girl?"

Digging Through The Archives

Earlier this week I was cleaning out my office and found a bunch of old journals. In this sense I've been blogging for a long time, but nobody every read them. Over the next few posts I'm going to add some of them. Most of it is crap. Honestly, I don't know why I'm bothering. Maybe it will just make me feel better to throw out the old half-filled books if I know somewhere in the depths of cyberspace the words still live. July 9, 1994 There is something about an orgasm that seems to take the edge off a stressful day. That's true whether you are giving or receiving. See, I told you it was crap. Oh well...

I Know White When I Hear It

I get calls for a real estate office about once a week. Their number is similar to ours. I usually tell people "You misdialed, try again." and most of the time this works. Today, I got a call from a woman who was pretty convinced she hadn't misdialed. I told her I didn't know the number and was sorry. She called back again, being busy, I sent it to voicemail. The voicemail I received was 9:48 long. The first 30 seconds was her leaving a message. The next nine minutes was her arguing with what I'm assuming is her husband. I won't go into extreme detail, but here was the gist... "It was that same white guy. He said I had the wrong number before, but I called again and the voicemail was the same white guy."  --"How do you know he was white?" "I know white when I hear it."  --"Oh yeah, what does white sound like? Do I sound white?"  "You sound white now!"  -- Inaudible mumble  "I just wa