Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Earth Day Rattlesnake Idea


This is what I call the "Earth Day Rattlesnake". The idea came to me as I was picking up these bottles all around the neighborhood whare I live in Calistoga. You basically just cut the bottom off of an empty plastic water bottle and stuff it inside another with the cap and the bottom part that you just cut off ( thus creating a rattle effect ). Now see how long you can make it ! I was hoping that the kids would catch onto this idea for earth day, and begin recycling these things. Hey, when you are finished making one, you can deposit in the Blue Bin. What a concept. Anyway, today I am posting this idea and am sending it to the marketing department at Crystal Geyser™ water company where I live. Perhaps they will run with it.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Curmudgeon Mind

It seems culturally accurate that those in the Western World suffer from what many may call an "Inner Critic".Having been raised in an upper-middle-class neighborhood, with other Anglo Saxon peers, monitoring our behavior and the behavior of those around us was a full-time job."Keeping up with the Jones" meant (and in most cases) still means measuring our own self-worth in comparison to the perceived worth of those around us.

Living in San Francisco during the 60's put me into a special class of people that were out to change the opinions of those boring fundamentalists of our parent's generation.Most of my friends eschewed the wealth and outward appearances that seemed selfish, rigid and cold.We seemingly sought a more communal spirit that has carried the sixties philosophy through to the present day.Love, Peace, and Happiness had to come before Sex, Drugs and Rock n'Roll

One would suppose that there was a generosity of spirit that permeated our culture in radically new ways, thanks not in part to the frustration brought about because of the Vietnam war, the closed-minded arrogance of certain politicians and a fragmented, resistant government as it still exists today.

A close friend of mine at the time called all this progressiveness, "Responsible Hedonism".Today I would call that a cop-out.The idea of moving west and leaving your reputation behind to join the liberal left brought many an asshole to the west coast, particularly Northern California.

By most accounts, our first world problems prevent many from appreciating the suffering and misfortune of those in other areas of the world. Our personal suffering still flourishes though, every time we were stuck in traffic behind an ostentatious driver who moves at a pace just slow enough to piss you off.What I realize today, is that the haves and the have-nots are occupying the same roads, breathing the same polluted air and that we still have to exercise a generosity of spirit that is the hallmark of a functional albeit progressive society.

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

The Generative effect of the Ocean

Occasionally, I take off for the coast.Jenner and Russian Gulch offer me the serenity and peace of mind anyone would seek after the stressful or mundane days stack up.Nature has a way of replenishing the soul and enlivening the spirit within all of us.Taking off my shoes and wading across a small inlet toward the beach itself connects me to the earth in an energetic way.The flowing water also soothes my emotional state because water is a conduit which expels stored traumatic episodes.The waves lapping and crashing on the beach offer the sensual delight of repetitive sound, fresh air, ocean breezes and the salty smell of the sea.Nothing that compares to this blessed gift.Sunset especially, reminds me that thier is relief and rest in a day well spent


Wednesday, January 10, 2018

New Year, Blog Update

Okay, I know I haven't posted in awhile ( yea, quite awhile ) but it doesn't mean that I don't like to blog.It is just that my existence is not very interesting by most people's standards. Yes, you could say that I have become rather boring.Even my brother kind of grimaces and gives a forced laugh when I try to entertain him via FaceTime. My problem is I already know what people are doing in my life because I can read Facebook every day and find out.Nothing new under the sun as it is said. Today I lowered my yearly premium by forty dollars by signing up for renter's insurance... Yay! I will also be taking a mature drivers course for another discount... Yay! These are examples of how thrilling my life can be these days.

So, I was taking my daily shower when it occurred to me that I have not made out a will.How am I going to divide up my life's earnings amongst my loved ones, who will probably not love me as much if I leave this world with a mortuary bill. That being said,I have around ten grand in savings that may be enough to get me cremated, I dunno.

Anyway, I want my computer and car to go to my nephew Edward, and I am hereby assigning him to be the executor of my humble estate. I will graciously leave it up to him to disperse whatever is left in my name.My artwork should be donated to the Smithsonian collection, but if they don't accept it, then perhaps it should be donated to the National Archives.If that doesn't work, then give it all away at my vendors booth at the Calistoga Farmer's Market.


Sunday, October 08, 2017

Never forget that you are loved

One often hears that everyone deserves love. I don't think that this is true. We are loved by nature of our own existence, whether it is deserved or not.We were created when two people got together to achieve the desired result.Otherwise, nature or nurture cannot be served. Love's resistance only brings people together.The phrase, "God is love" also will conjure up a notion that two nebulous ideas formulate a similar outcome.There are a lot of things people may not like. It can even be said that one can not like "Love", but Love conquers all. Love is all.Just like energy, it cannot be created or destroyed.It just is.


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Monday, September 18, 2017

All Praise be to God, to whom all praise is due

These days, I've adopted a monkish life. My day starts as anyone's would. A shower, a shave, a made bed and eventually a morning cup of coffee. Then the thought of prayer comes. When will my knees hit the floor? When will the morning prayer app on my iPhone provide me with routine words of reflection? When will The routine provide an impetus for creativity to flow? Usually, by 7:45am the keys, wallet, and assorted necessary accouterments are pocketed as the door closes behind me. Will the bike ride be taken today, or will my Ford be driven? Hmm... decisions, decisions.The mass begins at 8:00am and Fr.Angelito is usually there Wednesday and Thursday.Fridays are his day off.The Celebration of the Mass grounds me. Christ is present in the Eucharist, and in my life.

I am thankful for what has been given me, what has been taken from me, and for what has been left me. As I am before my maker, this is all that I am. Nothing more... nothing less.May I do the will of my higher power, always. Thy will, not mine, be done. I am reminded of a prayer my younger sister Nancy used to pray. "Be thee to whom, one mind, compassion, OM. All praise be to God, to whom all praise is due." This prayer is beautiful, not only because it takes my mind off of myself, but it reminds me why I am here on earth. To give praise to a God that loves me.

My Sister Mary Ann is shown below. This was taken in the summer of 2016, which is the last time I saw her alive.She is with God now.She left us this past summer, shortly before her 80th birthday. She will be remembered fondly by her family, community, and friends.She is someone who put everything aside in her personal life to follow Jesus Christ.She is a beautiful soul whose Spirit will live on.Her presence is felt,even as I write.

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

No cause for the blues.

I'm listening to The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, which has been an acquired taste over the years. I first heard them back in College and was surprised to hear that many of these Chicago Blues men went on to play with many of my favorite musicians in and around the Bay Area. Today I understand Blues as being a style, a way of life for some and perhaps an attitude for others. It does not have to mean something depressive though. This rich creative tradition has been born out of tough times...and we have all had tough times.The trouble is that it is easy to get stuck there.As the saying goes, "If you don't dig the blues, you better check your shoes, you might have a hole in your sole."Why there is a pack of smiling dogs beneath this post, I haven't a clue. But hey, dogs live the blues.