Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Spectator

I love the Olympics. I could sit lazily on my couch and watch those fine athletes perform for hours. Back in 1996 when the Games came to Atlanta, the hubby and I went down for one day. We took our chances and scored some tickets for handball, which was exciting in spite of it not being at all what I thought was handball. We walked and walked and took MARTA all over trying to catch the Olympics vibe as much as time would allow. I peered in the fence to glimpse some track and field events, bought some pins, and it was a fine day. It's great to see the American perform, but it is just as interesting to see athletes from around the globe.

Sunday, July 29, 2012


Today I have been leafing through books around the house as I prepare to donate some to the huge book sale in August, the one I usually help with. The one I hold in my lap now is a big, heavy book of quotations. I am not generally smitten with quotations, but some that are close to the truth seem to endure. Some are absurd and as absurdly funny, may notoriously endure. "Poets . . .though liars by profession, always endeavor to give an air of truth to their fictions," writes David Hume.

A sampling of others: That humorous Frenchman of the seventeenth century, Moliere, has these quotations, "It's an odd job, making decent people laugh," and "It's good food and not fine words that keeps me alive." Augustine Birrell a nineteenth century essayist, penned "...that great dust heap called history." This well-worn one is by screenwriter Billy Wilder, "Hindsight is always twenty twenty." Francois Rabelais: "Nature abhors a vacuum." Thomas Shadwell: "Every man loves what he is good at." Leo Tolstoy: "There are no conditions of life to which a man cannot get accustomed, especially if he sees them accepted by everyone about him."

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Catching Up

It has been three weeks since I last posted to my blog. I have no excuses except that I am not as interested in adding my experiences or opinions to the gazillions floating around cyberspace nor do I get as big a thrill out of seeing my words or pictures on a monitor. Yet keeping up the blog is still a fun hobby, so I don't plan to stop though it may look that way. Back when I began, I wanted to call this "Such is Life," an oft uttered phrase, but I saw that had been taken. So I found those six letters that put in a certain order became the powerful word "wisdom" and enhanced the title. Finding wisdom in the commanalities of life could perhaps be a focus, and here we are.

A lot has happened in the past few weeks. More news about joblessness and the economy, rain and draught, the nutty Jackson family. The presidential campaign is heating up, and my hope is that BO, or whoever he is, will be seen by more and more voters as the fraud he is. And there was another terrible shooting by a deranged young man. Since people are my business, I would like to offer a comment about that. I "assume" that over the past few years, he slipped into a deepening fantasy world that gave way to deep delusions. (A delusion is a fixed false belief that cannot be changed by reason or logic and is under the umbrella of psychosis.) But I do not know for sure. I have spoken with hundreds, maybe thousands of delusional people. They can appear fairly normal but the more they talk, the more they release their bizarre thoughts. For me there is always an aha moment when the conversation turns from what could be plausible to what is definitely implausible and farfetched. Some delusions are harmless; some are dangerous. I believe they provide a feeling of being special for the unfortunate people who have them.

Weather has made news as uusual, this month for its high temperatures. I hate to be a wimp, but thank goodness for wonderful air conditioning. I am certainly old enough to remember life without it. Of course American society was different then, and we simply adapted and enjoyed it.

Saturday, July 7, 2012


South Carolina is a prolific peach producing state, and I don't ever want to miss a season without some fresh ones. Today I went to a nearby orchard and did the next best thing to picking them from a tree, picking them from a bin. I found the ten nicest from among the imperfect bruised freestones. When I came home, I made a cobbler, a rich, sweet Southern summer tradition. It was delicious, but as I peeked through the oven window watching it bubble and brown, I asked myself why we take a perfectly wonderful fruit and add butter, sugar, and other ingredients and then reduce its nutrition by baking. I will bake more peach cobblers, but it is pretty hard to improve on Mother Nature.

Friday, July 6, 2012

In the Weekly News

Interesting stuff in the news the past week. First, the health care bill. I haven’t read it, have you? Even if I had, I am sure I would not understand most of it. There would be many questions like, “What does this mean?” Perhaps behind the length is the intent to obfuscate the issues. But I believe the overall aim/result is to increase government control over American citizens and to provide more lucre to the insurance and pharmaceutical companies who have way too much control anyway. I think that it is another policy/tax/program to cause the land of the free to cease to exist and to turn the home of the brave into a bunch of dependent whiners.
And second,the long awaited discovery, or validation, of the Higgs boson particle. A couple of years ago, Jacob introduced and explained the Hadron Collider to me, otherwise I would have no idea what any of the research was about. This is a huge and exciting find to us mortals, especially the physicists, as evidenced by the many tweets from Scientific American magazine. Outcomes in scientific research over the past century have certainly increased our knowledge of the universe, from the tiniest to the biggest, but I am reminded of a verse from the Bible, "The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God." (I Corinthians 3:19) It helps to keep all learning in perspective.

Thursday, July 5, 2012


Watercolor has been a struggle. I just couldn't get it. But over the past couple of months, I have developed a love for drawing, which really is the basis for all art. Van Gogh, I learned in the biography I read, also loved to draw, and when I looked at the dimensions of the actual drawings, some were quite small, especially for all the fuss over him. The book Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain says that anyone can draw. So armed with those two little bits of info, I now boldly draw, big or little, and using different kinds of beautiful warm pencils. I have always loved pencils. I am showing this little pic of my Tillman as he lies on the floor. I challenged myself to work quickly, not to erase though I did a tiny bit, and to trust myself to draw what I saw. I hope that by the time I take another watercolor class, that all this drawing practice will have helped me see.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Birthday, USA

I am sitting in my South Carolina home hearing what sounds like "bombs bursting in air" all around the neighborhood. It is alive with fireworks and celebrations. All I have to offer is this sparkly, heart shaped display from Disney to say, I heart America.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Sometimes I wonder just what percentage of a day is spent on maintaining the status quo. Our bodies must be continually cared for, relationships must be nourished, bills must be paid, grass must be cut, groceries must be bought, bathrooms must be cleaned, and we must sleep for a third of our day to be able to function well enough to maintain our status quo. My mother used to say it was important “to keep up,” and I consider that good advice. I am glad there are days such as today, for me, that can be used as such. When I don’t keep up, at least to some extent, I feel out of sync, burdened. When I have completed my duties, I feel lighter and freer for a while or until the next day when another round of maintenance is due.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

It has to do with birds.

A friend recommended a book she had read that held a lot of significance for her, and she thought I would like it, too. I do. Written by a woman, it deals with women's relationships, especially those with our women relatives, and our deeper struggles. As I read, what I am impressed with the most is how she - and I appreciate it in other writers as well - take the risk of putting their most true selves out there publicly for anyone to react to. My own reactions make me think...yeah that's how I feel, too. The well chosen words that bare their souls are validating. And their souls are ours as well. Their uncomfortable and unwanted feelings are mine as well. We are all connected. I admire a writer's willingness to share, and we readers are the beneficiaries.