May 31

The Fox Network???

 

Oh…. back to life in the country.

Yes.  When I live in the City…. I become the City Mouse.  And when I live in the Country…. guess what?

I become the City Mouse living in the Country.  Don’t get me wrong.  I like it out here in the middle of nowhere.  It smells just like manure.  Keeps the nostrils edgy.

Just down the road from us… three baby foxes have been hanging out by the big dairy farm.  They live just on the other side of the fence from all the cows.

One day last week, the three of them were walking along pasture.  The smallest of the three found a glove.  Heaven only knows how the glove got there.  Maybe someone pitched it out a car window…. who knows.  At any rate, the little fox picks it up and walks over to where the cows were grazing…..

She said “Hey you Holstein Girls…..  Did any of you lose your bra?”

Then, of course…. the three of them continued on and found an orchard filled with grapes.

They came to a bunch of Grapes just ripening on a vine which had been trained over a lofty branch. It was a pretty hot day outside…. and the oldest brother fox said… “Just the thing to quench my thirst,” as he scampered into the orchard.

Drawing back a few paces, he took a run and a jump, and just missed the bunch. Turning round again with…. One, Two, Three….. he jumped up a bit higher….. but with no greater success.

Again and again he tried after the tempting fruit.  Finally,  the little furball had to give it up.  Exhausted and hot…he walked away with his nose in the air.  He said to his sisters…. “I am sure those stupid grapes are sour.”

Yes… so much like Aesop’s Fable.   And the moral of the story: It is easy to despise what you cannot get.

Oh Aesop must have lived in the country I’ll tell you….. or perhaps just in the United States.

A lot of people seem to despise what they just can’t “get”…..  unfortunately…. that “thing” they can’t get…. is a new idea. 

And that… is the udder truth.

“Always keep an open mind and a compassionate heart.” – P. Jackson

“A new idea doesn’t have to fit you like a glove.  But you should be willing to at least try it on.” – Polly the Glove Wearing Fool (But NOT on my Udders)

May 30

For Goodness Sake…

This past week has been a little rocky.  It’s had a full share of trials and tribulations.  Yet, for every “bad” thing that has happened….  something “good” has risen in its place….. somehow.

For that I am grateful.

That is life though, isn’t it?  I could come up with a gazillion different analogies tonight.  But the one that springs to mind is The Amusement Park.  Yep.  Life is like an Amusement Park.

Take the rides….for one.  Different people enjoy different rides.  That is for sure.  But the Roller Coasters, the Zippers, the Tilt-A-Whirls….  the ones that scare you, make you feel sick, and anxious, and tense….

Well, a lot of life events are like riding one of those.  The whole time you are riding the darn thing… you think… “Oh my gosh.  This is scaring the living daylights out of me…. when will it ever end?”…. And once it is over…. you have a source of satisfaction that you made it through.  (Some people even say they had fun while they were on the stinking  thing.)  Either way….  a lot of us get back in line to do it all over again.  Ah.  Life.

Or maybe it is a bit like going in to the House of Mirrors.  Nothing seems quite right.  It is disorienting at times.  It twists your perception.  Even your own vision of your self is skewed.  But for as crazy and mixed up as it all seems… sometimes… it strikes you as being….. somehow… …. funny.  Ah.  Life.

And the Midway.  The odds of the games aren’t always in your favor.  But every once in a while, the ping pong ball drops into the bowl…. and you get a pet goldfish.  You name him Floyd.  Yep….. Life.

Tonight, I am glad.  I’ve won a lot of goldfish.  And I can still find humor in the image in the Hall of Mirrors….. where I have a really long body, and short little legs.  I still get all sweaty and nervous….  scared and uptight…. while riding the rides.  But I have learned to hang on tight.

I still think the clowns can be a little creepy at times.  On the other hand….  I like to tweak their noses.

 

“I hope that real love and truth are stronger in the end than any evil or misfortune in the world.”  – Charles Dickens

May 29

Living off the wall….

When it comes to things of human kindness, I think it might be better to build bridges, rather than to put up walls.

We may feel protected behind our walls.  Even safe.  But… when it comes down to it… we are human.  We are vulnerable no matter where we are.

So.  With that.  Better to connect, I think.  With bridges.

I imagine today, I shall build one bridge.  Somewhere.

 

…..Or at least, I will try.

 

“Love is the bridge between two hearts.” – Old Axiom

May 28

Jostling the brain cells.

 

Randomness…. From THIS Day in History:  May 28.

In 585 BC ……a solar eclipse occured.  It was predicted by Greek philosopher and scientist Thales.  This occured while Alyattes is battling Cyaxares in a big, mean, nasty battle..  Wouldn’t you know …. the very sight of the solar eclipse lead to a truce.

This whole deal…. marks one of the cardinal dates from which other dates can be calculated.  Yep.  Some Peace On Earth… and it came from the stars above.

A notable birthday…. In 1818,  P.G.T. Beauregard was born.  He was an American Confederate general.  A ladies man.  Dyed his hair black.  Dapper fellow.  Defended the Port of Charleston during the Civil War.  I know this… because he lived right up the street.  Headquarters.  They say his ghost still haunts the City Courthouse.  Why there….?  I guess he had unfinished business in this life.

And another good birthday.  From the year 1888…. Jim Thorpe.    He was born into the American Indian Tribe….Sac and Fox.   His given name was Wa-Tho-Huk. It translates into “Bright Path.”

He was probably the greatest American athlete of all time.  He won Olympic Golds in the Pentathlon, the Decathlon.  He was played professional Football, Baseball, and Basketball.  The first biography I ever read was a book about Jim Thorpe.  I was captivated by this story as I kid.  As fate would have it, the Bright Path dimmed for Thorpe.  The end of his life turned out to be pretty tragic.

And final birthday is that of Xīn Qìjí (28 May 1140–1207).  Say that three times fast.

I am sure everyone   Now this guy was a Chinese poet.  Also a  military leader, and statesman during the Southern Song dynasty.  But the guy could pen a poem.  His beat one was this…..

“众里寻他千百度,蓦然回首,那人却在灯火阑珊处。” -《青玉案·元夕》

(Whew.  YOU should try writing that line above…..  )

Anyway….. that all  means…..
“Having almost exhausted my energy searching for this person (vague), I suddenly turned my head, and there he was, standing at the far end of the street where the candlelight is the dimmest.”

Now that should shed some light on things for you.

I will translate further just in case you want more clarification.  If the ball rolls down the steps without bouncing, you can have cornflakes for breakfast the next morning, and not be ashamed.   The white duck may quack uncontrollably.  Be not afraid.

Got it?  Good.  I know I feel smarter already.  If you take nothing else from all of this….   remember…  feel good about your breakfast cereal.

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.” – Dr. Seuss

“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” –  Oscar Wilde

“Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death” – Albert Einstein

May 27

I am a drip.

I was looking through a bunch of old photo albums today.  From the time Mom & Dad were married….. our Mom, Lucy, took a LOT of photos.  Many.  A whole kaboodle…. AND a kit.  Tons.

We (kids) didn’t like it back then.  But now.  Wow.  There are about 100 albums, chronologically arranged and labeled, all of which document our miniscule lives growing up.  Yes.  Our little first steps through the universe.

Pulling an album off the shelf is always fun for me.  It brings back all sorts of memories, and stories.  It reminds me of things that I had long forgotten.

So today, I flipped through quite a few of them.  One of many realizations:  I think I might have been a bit of a handful as a youngster.  I know I surely had a LOT of energy….. and a fair amount of that energy was anxiety based.  A quirky ball of nerves, I’d say.  (Some things never change.)

I think I was a bit like a spigot with a perpetual drip.  Drip. Drip. Drip. … …. Drip.  And no matter how hard you turn the handle to get the thing to stop leaking…. it just keeps dribbling, and plopping. Drip.  Drip.  Drip.

Yep.  That’s me.

Anyway.  I was a handful.

So today, my 90-year-old Mom asked how many kids she had.

Dad responded….. “Seven.”
“Seven?  Really?  That’s a lot,” she countered.
So I added…. “Yep Mom.  Seven is a lot.”

She sat and thought for a minute…..
“Too many, I think.  At least, I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.”

I cracked up.  Of course, I had to remind her that I was the seventh born.  If she had not had seven, I wouldn’t be standing where I was standing.

She thought again for another minute.  “Well. Since you put it that way….   I guess it is okay then.”

Yep Mom.  It is all okay then.  It will all be okay.

 

“I’ll lean on you and you lean on me and we’ll be okay” – Dave Mathews Band

“’It’s okay’ is a cosmic truth.” – Richard Bach

May 26

Before tweeting was cool.

A little bird told me so.

This little phrase means that some sort of knowledge has been gathered OR “heard” from an “undisclosed source.”

Now this “undisclosed source” could be one of many different things.   Perhaps it is a bit of information which you have heard something through the grapevine.  Another idiom.

OR, it could be another way of saying… “our sixth sense”…. “our third eye”… “our intuition”

Whatever the case.   You didn’t know “it” before.  And now you do.

It could be anything.  That hunch.  That sneaky feeling.  That tap on the shoulder.  That piece of SkyLab crashing through your roof and onto your living room floor.

Most of the times… I try to squelch my intuition.  Stupid me.  I think we are better served if we listen to that “inner voice”… the one we can’t explain.  It is the one that often knows best.  Whether we like to admit it or not.

Logical thought is great and precious commodity in life.  This I will tell you.

But perhaps, intuition… TRULY being in touch with one’s intuition… is by far, a greater gift of knowledge.

A little bird told me so.

I guess in some ways… it is good to be a bird brain.

 

“The only real valuable thing is intuition.” – Albert Einstein

May 26

Hap Slappy

Slap-Somebody-Happy.

I don’t think that is quite how the phrase goes.

Let’s see.

Sixteen hours behind the wheel on Memorial Day Weekend.

Lost Wallet.

Five Hour Detour.

Stephen King Episodes along the way: 1. Met Cujo in North Carolina.  2. Was followed by Christine in Southern Ohio.  3.  Pretty sure I saw some Children of the Corn in West Virginia.

Slap-Happy.  The origin of the word comes from the 1920s.  A result of too many blows to the head.

Today.  I’ve had too many blows to the head.

“We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.” – Frederick Keonig

May 24

The Balance

I think we receive gifts in this life that we have to care of.  Whether it is our soundness of mind and spirit… our health… the people we love.  Ourselves.  Each other.

I think, perhaps…..  it is like a bank account.     We should always remember to take care of  The Balance.  Yes…. the more we deposit on a daily basis… the more that will be there for us when we need to make a withdrawal.

I’m still learning how to make better deposits.

Love doesn’t just sit there, like a stone; it has to be made, like bread, remade all the time, made new.
–Ursula K. Le Guin

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” – Leo Buscaglia

May 23

I am a parrot.

Today is a prolific day in history, I will tell you.  At the very least… abundant.

Lots of things that give me the shimmies.  (Okay.  Funny story before I start tonight.  The shimmies reminded me of it.)

When I was a very little girl, one of our favorite neighbors, Mary Eleanor Keyes, brought over a cake for our family.  I’m sure we all sat nice around the kitchen table.  Mom or Dad surely put on a pot of strong coffee as we took our chairs.

So, as we were sampling our first bite of the cake… I think it was a fruit cake…  I made the “yuck” face and did a body-shimmy.  Miss Keyes asked why I didn’t like the cake.  And I said… “This cake makes me shake.”

Even then.  Even then.

So.  Back to the future with a historical visit.

On THIS date in history… the year  was 1788 to be exact… South Carolina became the 8th state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.  What makes me quiver is this.  Our home (the back part of it) was built 9 years earlier than that…. in 1779.  That gives me the wobbles… in a good way.  Especially since a couple of those signers lived right near here.

Next… on this date.  Well…. earlier on this date… 1701.

Captain William Kidd was hanged in London after being convicted of piracy and murder.   ARRRR Matey.

Most modern historians agree, that he was merely a privateer, and railroaded by the Tory’s.    Kidd had two lawyers to assist in his defense.  He was found guilty on all charges (murder and five counts of piracy).

He was hanged  at ‘Execution Dock’, in London. During the execution, the hangman’s rope broke and Kidd was hanged on the second attempt. His body was gibbeted—left to hang in an iron cage over the River Thames at Tilbury Point—as a warning to future would-be pirates for three years.  You smell something?

His associates Richard Barleycorn, Robert Lamley, William Jenkins, Gabriel Loffe, Able Owens, and Hugh Parrot were convicted, but pardoned just prior to hanging at Execution Dock.  Basically, they all got off the hook… or the noose… for testifying against Kidd.

My favorite guy out of the bunch is Hugh Parrot.  I bet he got his bell rung quite often.  Imagine.

“Hello there Bloke.  Me name is Jack.  What is your name Matey?”
“Hugh Parrot”
“Well… no need to get smart with me your Blimey Wisecracker.  I am NOT a parrot.  Now.  I’ll ask ye’ again.  Your name Bloke?”
“Hugh Parrot.”
“Why you……….”

This would be the point in the conversation where Hugh Parrot gets his block knocked off.  I betcha’.

Finally… today is the birthday of Franz Anton Mesmer.  He was born in 1734.  A German Guy.  A Doctor.  His is best known for developing the use of Hypnosis.

I wouldn’t swear to it… but I bet we got the word “mesmerized” from this guy’s name.

Ahhh… I’m getting very sleepy.  Very sleeeeeeepy.  And that…. is all for tonight.

I’m history.

 

“History teaches us that men and nations behave wisely once they have exhausted all other alternatives.” – Abba Eban

 

May 22

Changing. It all is.

 

Hmmmm. Today marks the anniversary of the death of a very talented performer of old. She was the youngest of a well-known and popular vaudeville type act. They were called the Gumm Sisters and they performed mostly in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. The youngest daughter of Frank and Ethel.

Yes.  She was named after both her parents and baptized at a local Episcopal church. But her family called her…. “Baby”. And…. she shared her family’s flair for song and dance. Her first appearance came at the age of two-and-a-half.

She went on to live a brilliant and bedazzling….. yet very troubled, very sad life.

So. She could have never predicted at that young age that she would overdose on barbiturates.  Dead at the age of 47. Ethel Frances Gumm.

But.  Most of us know her as Judy Garland.

While her death was ruled accidental, many thought she committed suicide. Her friend, Ray Bolger (the Scarecrow), commented at her funeral, “She just plain wore out.”

I get really sad when I think about her. Especially when I see some of her later televised appearances, where she looks to be pretty bluto. I wish things could have turned out differently for her. Somehow.

I think of that beautiful, talented, young woman, who captured our hearts as Dorothy. I would have loved it if Glenda the Good Witch could have floated down and tapped Judy on the head, with her magic wand…. and made it all better.   Or if she had just hung on to those ruby slippers… she could have clicked her heels, and found her way home.

But that wasn’t to be.

Nope.

It is the things we can’t predict that knock us off our horses. And as it turns out…. THAT…. is pretty much EVERYTHING.

There is nothing…. not one single thing on this ball of dirt… that is unchangeable, or absolute.  Nothing is for certain.

So it’s not what you’re sure of. It’s what you don’t know.

And that is today. And tomorrow. And the next day. Would we want it differently? I don’t think I would.   Knowing might be too much.

So we do the best we can, and that is living, and breathing, and being.

Each day brings… a horse of a different color.

“The future is no more uncertain than the present”
-Walt Whitman