Saturday, February 6, 2016

Playing with a New Word for Aging

I got to this age the way everyone else does - by hanging around on this planet for X amount of time. What do we call being over 65? I read a couple of comments today without active participation until I decided to make up my own word for an older person. Making up words is more fun than aging. A word's power gets muddied in perception. Evidence crone which has slumped in popular usage over the centuries. Elder, some object to as too Druish. Senior? OK if there's a golf league to join or a discount to be had. Old. Nobody cares much for that because. Flowchart. That person with the wheelchair? Not me yet. If we think of this process of hanging around on earth for X time, (or for the math fans Earth+Time=Old. Maybe X=ET?) as spiritual growth or wisdom plus physical decline that gives me a place to word search. Wax and wane don't quite do the job because the etymology of those words is too close to make a word that's interesting or simple. Wax can mean grow in intensity, whether light in the case of the moon; or power in the case of potential energy (like a wound watch spring). That gives us aug. Augere in Latin, or Olde English, although that leads to augment and that leads to ED junk and I'm not going there. Wane gives us Latin vanus (empty) although I don't believe that etymological root. Ah, Yahoo, so not a root but a word itself. Combine spiritual growth and bodily decline. We're already in the realm of philosophical. Philosophy is not an antidote to science. Started reading a book by a philosopher which I then stopped reading because philosophy + science gets into the realm of gobbledygook. Holding two opposite thoughts in your head at the same time=bonkers. And getting a PhD in philosophy seems redundant to me. So trying to combine spiritual growth, which is potential energy (philosophy), but not applicable to every human's bodily decay over time, which is science and inescapable for everyone born of woman. That doesn't feel as much like bonkers. While the words are fun and highly entertaining for those of us old people who are terribly fond of words, old is old. No judgment on whether there is spiritual growth attained, or wisdom cultivated (and then, even more difficult: prove applied.) Judgment vs. discernment. Adding one more thought into this cauldron. So I'll stop here and go do something simple like laundry. Haven't even touched on the gobbledygookiery of adding anti-aging culture into the hopper. On to laundry...although...Latin de (to turn aside) as in decline, combined with a Latin word for growth silva is cool. Desilva. Turn aside from green? Maybe silva on its own. I am old. I am silva. [Photo: Detroit Bold is excellent coffee.]

Friday, February 5, 2016

My Next President

Imagine it's 2017. The president has been busy, vetting cabinet members, making new alliances and contacting old friends in Congress, firming up gubernatorial relationships state to state. Staff is putting out remaining fires from the campaign, paying bills, making new friends among staff in Congress, reaffirming commitments, bridging differences. Campaign workers are sending resumes for the next job. Newspapers are predicting whatever shiny new or stale old events their editorial board dictates. Life goes on. Politics goes on. Politicos move focus to the 2018 elections. Overseas news services ask what this new prez will do about all the hot spots on the globe. NGOs scribble grant proposals. What's your president doing? If my choice candidate is president, the issues that matter to me are being addressed already. Cabinet nominees are chosen and interviewed. Foreign government allies have been contacted, ambassadors in place or on their way to their new assignments. The first Cabinet positions have been sent to Congress for confirmation. Those posts will be the ones that are important in 2017. State, Education, Health and Human Services, Defense. Women's issues, children's issues will be on the mind and agenda of the President, and foreign policy initiatives are underway. Global governments that are not allies have been contacted as well, told emphatically what will remain the same, what will not. If a confirmation for State can be moved quickly, that Secretary will be on the road now, now, now. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright once said it was a huge diplomatic advantage to land on an airfield and step out of Air Force One. I believe and will vote to help ensure that when Air Force One lands, the huge diplomatic advantage will be that President H. R. Clinton steps off that plane.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Flint Michigan Water Crisis Volunteers

Water is life. Clean water is healthy life. For millions on our planet, clean water is a luxury. For those of us who are blessed to have water right out of our tap, we don't think about how safe that water is. People in Flint, Michigan know their water is harmful, poisoned by bureaucrats that counted money instead of people. There is a Chain of Fools that orchestrated this disaster. Always when officials act inhumanly, there are good humans who offer help to clean up the mess. The people who are volunteering in Flint are heroes. Whether it is sending water, delivering water, helping residents fit filters to their taps, demonstrating to change the way democracy has been ripped out of Michigan, giving rides to people who cannot get to the fire stations for test kits or water, supporting other volunteers. These are everyday heroes. I celebrate and admire their courage, fortitude and grace.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

2015 Good Bye

A scenic designer would have to use all the stuff from Stargate, Vertigo and Star Trek to illustrate traversing 2015. Hoping for us all that 2016 is more calm, more bright. Meanwhile, I laughed out loud when I envisioned this scene. Pretty sure this is not what the divine Maker intended when she created humankind. But at least Adam got a touch sensitive glove, so he can access his appshit. Please notice that, in keeping with the intelligent design silliness, the world (pictured on Adam's new smartphone his Provider is handing off) was in fact created...um, on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. By Michelangelo. And me. Happy new year everyone!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Phantosmia Pareidolia and A Happy Day

Today was a fantastic day, start to just ending. My brother had a confused beginning, which my father identified as probably having had no sleep. An extraordinary engagement from Dad. We talked about a history hiccup I found on the Veterans Day internet, got more clarity on Dad's experience. Walked Wild Wing trail in company with first experience nature encounters, called a friend to meet for lunch, and then my niece called stuck in traffic minutes from where we were. The two women in my life who are recently certified rescue people - one alpine rescue; my niece, certified deep water rescue met for the first time. I found a new interesting connecting person in my long-time search for people who understand that science is not disparate from divinity, is in fact completely related. Alistir McGrath, professor of both science and religion and labeled a Christian Apologist on wikipedia, but that's a subject for other people, another time. Found some forward motion on the writing I've been mulling long and scribing short. Not a single pareidolia event, but if I live long enough I'll find Carl Sagan's face in the spots on my hands. And this final note before I sleep: I had another phantosmia experience. I was reading a facebook post from a friend about how war communications were sometimes sent (Western Union, although how terrifying for a woman waiting for news - opening that not knowing if it was I love you or sorry to report) and I smelled the fragrance worn by the woman receiving the telegram. Distinct. I've had this experience a handful of times before - Another Country with Rupert Everett, he was wearing a boutonniere, and I smelled it, with the movie on over my shoulder, not watching, and smelling the flower, turned to the TV to see it in his lapel) I looked up olfactory hallucination when that happened. Stroke, Parkinson's, okay. A book I reviewed on goodreads, which I could find but not today - I saw the author at her desk writing the book, smelled the paper, ink. My first public disclosure of this stuff. Does it matter? No. If I lived in any other century but this one, I'd be in a walled bin somewhere for even mentioning this. I think it's just the continuation of a marvelous 24 hours in any person's life, only I looked at every hour. Appreciated each quarter hour. A singular day.  It cannot be surprising that all my senses are open to the wondrous.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Surrounded by Men

Anxiety levels inexplicably elevated, I checked a free biorhythm site this morning. Okay, so I checked two. Not helpful and not surprising. What's wrong with me? Not knowing when the next time I'll get to Vault of Midnight, thought I'd order Monstress Vol. 1, and also a couple of other female-drawn/written comics, so I searched what's out there. And light dawned! Two compilation lists of Top 50 Female Comics people: both by men. Looking up Nancy Meyers filmography to compare to Nora Ephron filmography earlier today, I find on imdb a "weighted average" for a couple of favorite movies. Doesn't seem possible that males under 18 and males over 45 all rated one movie exactly 5.1, but imdb writes we weight and we're not telling you how. Read some reviews of Spectre earlier. All men. Because reviewers are. Men. Comic book bloggers. Men. Rotten Tomatoes reviewers. Men. Men men men men. Does it surprise you that 5000 men thought Mixed Nuts was so so? Liev Schreiber alone is outstanding in that movie. Madeline Kahn, divine as always. I am fully aware there is woman-driven media out there. But not the first results in a search. You have to dig to find women reviewers, directors, subject matter experts, and even when the search has woman or female in the search parameters, the results are male written. Double whammy. Female content is curated by male gaters. Is that because male views are more popular? More searched for? I doubt it. But I've been wrong before. PS I just tried to find a link to Monstress, and got this. While I'm sure Asian-American pedagogy is a worthy subject - another G U Y! aaiieee! PPS The default players in my multiplayer games are men. Have to actively switch to female. PPPS Phoned Vault of Midnight, set up an account, signed for email notification of new Monstress and Captain Marvel releases. Monstress Vol. 1 is in my box, waiting to be collected. Life is calmer now.

Monday, October 26, 2015

You Can Create the Art You Were Born to Create

This may be my first not square art on my blog. That already is weird. I signed on for a watercolor class for September 2013. Had supplies in satchel as I was on my way out the door and my father was on the couch breathing funny. I called 911 instead of leaving for class. I called the only number I had to credit my absence. A couple days later, another artist called to tell me I had some options: 1) join the artist's class in another city, 2) wait until next year, or 3) she'd teach me what she'd learned in individual sessions at the art center I belong to. I am still overwhelmed at her generosity. As serendipity goes, I owned two watercolors painted by this artist proposing. I've been afraid of watercolor all my life. Talking with a friend today I realized and confessed that art was something I came up with to do instead of finishing writing. Third grade, 4th, I had a play produced in school, and then 5th grade I was done. There are studies about this phenomena, 9 year old girls get whacked in the world. Back to art: at 9 I started winning art awards. Art, write, art, write, different art, different write. So. Afraid of watercolor. And now I'm not. Not at all. It's expensive, but not as expensive as oil which never suited my hurry up and dry sensibilities. I like acrylics because of the control. You put down, it stays there. It is always the color in the tube. Dries fast. To do anything else with the color, you have to add mediums, which are varied and crazy. Float. Matte extend. And it has black and white, which should have indicated to me that it didn't suit me. I am so watered mystical indefinable, black and white are not in my vocabulary, and...what was I thinking? $20 for a float medium? $30 for something to make the whole expensive mess....me? Watercolor has no white. Nor black. When you look at the sky in life, it has clouds with varying shades of gray, palish blue, white. When you look at the sky as watercolor, there is no black, no white. The blue is the piece you need to focus on. The paper is white. Lordy, lord. And flow. I'm a paddler. Water rules. You lose focus with water in a white water river, you die. You lose focus in a watercolor painting, you live. My teacher is Barbara Weisenburg. One of her teachers is Nita Engle.