Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Having read the book.....................

The Beatles...................................A Day In The Life

We've been comrades..................

       The Passing of the Year

My glass is filled, my pipe is lit,
     My den is all a cosy glow;
And snug before the fire I sit,
     And wait to feel the old year go.
I dedicate to solemn thought
     Amid my too-unthinking days,
This sober moment, sadly fraught
     With much of blame, with little praise.

Old Year! upon the Stage of Time
     You stand to bow your last adieu;
A moment, and the prompter's chime
     Will ring the curtain down on you.
Your mien is sad, your step is slow;
     You falter as a Sage in pain;
Yet turn, Old Year, before you go,
     And face your audience again.

That sphinx-like face, remote, austere,
     Let us all read, whate'er the cost:
O Maiden! why that bitter tear?
     Is it for dear one you have lost?
Is it for fond illusion gone?
     For trusted lover proved untrue?
O sweet girl-face, so sad, so wan
     What hath the Old Year meant to you?

And you, O neighbour on my right
     So sleek, so prosperously clad!
What see you in that aged wight
     That makes your smile so gay and glad?
What opportunity unmissed?
     What golden gain, what pride of place?
What splendid hope? O Optimist!
     What read you in that withered face?

And You, deep shrinking in the gloom,
     What find you in that filmy gaze?
What menace of a tragic doom?
     What dark, condemning yesterdays?
What urge to crime, what evil done?
     What cold, confronting shape of fear?
O haggard, haunted, hidden One
     What see you in the dying year?

And so from face to face I flit,
     The countless eyes that stare and stare;
Some are with approbation lit,
     And some are shadowed with despair.
Some show a smile and some a frown;
     Some joy and hope, some pain and woe:
Enough! Oh, ring the curtain down!
     Old weary year! it's time to go.

My pipe is out, my glass is dry;
     My fire is almost ashes too;
But once again, before you go,
     And I prepare to meet the New:
Old Year! a parting word that's true,
     For we've been comrades, you and I --
I thank God for each day of you;
     There! bless you now! Old Year, good-bye! 


-Robert W. Service

...............You don't need a weather man ...............To know which way the wind blows.

With apologies to Bob Dylan, you do need these handy maps:













For the real, watch the wind blow across the USA, map...visit here























To watch the wind circulate around the globe (and you can spin the globe on its axis), visit here

thanks warren

Doodles + stuff found sitting around = Art

Thirteen examples found here.  Samples here:
























Fifty years ago.............................

The Jaynells..........................................I'll Stay Home

A note from your friendly editor.............

As we say goodbye to 2013, this wee blog is also saying goodbye to the music and images of 1963.  According to the scorecard on the right, there were at least 360 "Fifty Years Ago" posts dedicated to 1963. Some were classics that deserve savoring.  Some of them were an absolute stretch, for which apologies are offered.  Since this blog exists solely for the amusement of this blogger and his faithful readers, starting tomorrow, the "Fifty Years Ago" feature will move into the fertile hunting grounds of 1964.  If memory serves, it was a very good year.  Stay tuned.

And he is doing a damn fine job of it....

Making like a well-designed lighthouse in the Heartland

If you don't follow John E. Smith's blog, well, do.

Seeds.....................................

"Every adversity, every failure, and every heartache carries with it the Seed of an equivalent or greater Benefit."
-Napoleon Hill

Merry New Year's Eve..............
















via and via

Monday, December 30, 2013

No pressure at all..........................

Blake Shelton..............................Sure Be Cool If You Did

Opening paragraphs...................Part the First

Debt takes its toll.
      To no one had this ever seemed clearer than to the sixty-one-year-old farmer named Oliver Coolidge who languished in Woodstock Common Jail in Windsor County, Vermont, in the spring of 1949.  Coolidge was behind bars because he owed a neighbor, Frederick Wheeler, $24.23.  He had not honored a contract because he lacked the money to honor it.  Now his debts had climbed to $29.48 because the justice of the peace had ruled that he had to carry the  costs of the creditor, $5, and a fine of 25 cents for the serving of papers.
-Amity Shlaes, from the Introduction to Coolidge

Opening paragraphs..............Part the Second

They were the ones who stayed.
      They told themselves this as they trudged past the houses up the road to the old lot in the spring snow.  The lot itself was a challenge.  Farming there was especially difficult because the soil was too rocky; the hill curved up too steeply.  For a period the family had burned lime there, but the railroad had not chosen to come to Plymouth and no one could get the lime out.  Now, in the 1870's, they found themselves returning to the limekiln for humbler, simpler harvest:  wood or sugar.  The logs could be sold by the cord.  The lot lay above their farm, to the west, and sugar maples were plentiful there.  In April, they tapped the trees.  Their family fashioned the wooden buckets themselves, sometimes branding the bottom with their name in capital letters.  They carried the buckets of sap to a sugarhouse, where it was heated and made into syrup.  Each year eight hundred to two thousand pounds of maple syrup and hard sugar were produced this way.  They liked the trees, which grew up with them, like siblings or children.  Others, even relatives, had deemed such harvests paltry.  Those others had headed west to the Great Plains, where your prosperity unfurled before you, flat and vast, like a yellow carpet.
-Amity Shlaes,  Coolidge

Silent Cal......................................

















Turns out that our thirtieth president (1923-1929), far from being silent, said some very interesting things.  Coolidge seemed to spend most of his time as president saying "No" to requests for the government to do something.  Based on many of his quotes, those "Noes" were principle driven.  Here is a smattering of words attributed to him:

Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas.

The Constitution is the sole source and guaranty of national freedom.

I believe in the American Constitution. I favor the American system of individual enterprise, and I am opposed to any general extension of government ownership, and control. I believe not only in advocating economy in public expenditure, but in its practical application and actual accomplishment. I believe in a reduction and reform of taxation, and shall continue my efforts in that direction.

It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones.

To live under the American Constitution is the greatest political privilege that was ever accorded to the human race.

I favor the policy of economy, not because I wish to save money, but because I wish to save people. The men and women of this country who toil are the ones who bear the cost of the Government. Every dollar that we carelessly waste means that their life will be so much the more meager. Every dollar that we prudently save means that their life will be so much the more abundant. Economy is idealism in its most practical form.

Don’t expect to build up the weak by pulling down the strong

I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis on the observance of the law than they do on its enforcement. It is a maxim of our institutions, that the government does not make the people, but the people make the government

We live in an age of science and abounding accumulation of material things. These did not create the Declaration. Our Declaration created them. The things of the spirit come first. Unless we cling to that, all of our material prosperity, overwhelming though it may appear, will turn to a barren scepter in our grasp. If we are to maintain the great heritage bequeathed to us, we must be like minded as the Founders who created. We must not sink into a pagan materialism. We must cultivate the reverence which they had and for the things that are holy. We must follow the spiritual and moral leadership which they showed. We must keep replenished, that they may glow with a more compelling flame, the altar fires before which they worshipped.

It is not industry, but idleness, that is degrading

Workmen’s compensation, hours and conditions of labor are cold consolations, if there be no employment

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

I have noticed that nothing I have never said ever did me any harm.

Fifty years ago............................

At the movies............Vincent Price, et. al., in The Raven

Hate it when that happens...................



































via

On knowledge and money.......................

There are two kinds of knowledge.  One is general, the other is specialized.  General knowledge, no matter how great in quantity or variety it may be, is of but little use in the accumulation of money.  The faculties of the great universities possess, in the aggregate, practically every form of general knowledge known to civilization.  Most of the professors have but little money.   They specialize on teaching knowledge but the do not specialize on the organization, or the use of knowledge.
     Knowledge will not attract money, unless it is organized, and intelligently directed, through practical plans of action, to the definite end of accumulation of money.  Lack of understanding of this fact has been the source of confusion to millions of people who falsely believe that "knowledge is power."  It is nothing of the sort!  Knowledge is only potential power.  It becomes power only when, and if, it is organized into definite plans of action and directed to a definite end.
-Napoleon Hill,  Think And Grow Rich

On wealth and nature...........................

15.   “The wealth required by nature is limited and is easy to procure; but the wealth required by vain ideals extends to infinity.” 
-Epicurus, as excerpted from his "Principal Doctrines"

Trifle..................................

God requires a faithful fulfilment of the merest trifle given us to do, rather than the most ardent aspiration to things to which we are not called.
-St. Francis de Sales

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Shadows...................................

Bodeans...........................................Fadeaway

Prescient..........................................

     "There's a guy I know only on the Internet.  He's apparently involved in some kind of hassle with Krause.  Anyway, he says that Krause has got a rat's-nest-inter-agency intelligence operation going, and one of the things that they're testing is called Deep Data Correlation.  The basic concept was supposed to be that they could look at an ocean of data and figure out from that who might be bad guys.  Terrorists."
     "Is that bad?"  The waiter came back with a martini, waited, with me, until Bob nodded.  The waiter went away and I continued.
     "Not if that was what was happening.  but there are some fundamental problems with that kind of data-mining," I said.  I explained the numbers problem.  "So essentially, what they were trying to do is impossible.  But - if you come at it from the other end, starting with a name, then going after associated data, you can develop some pretty powerful tools."
     "What a minute,"  Bob said.  "You're saying that instead of looking at the data, and finding suspects, they find a suspect, and then mine some data to support the suspicion."
     "Yeah.  Except, of course, that you've got to identify a target first.  With terrorists, identifying the target is the whole problem.  That's the hard part.  If they'd been a private company, say, hired to find techniques that would identify terrorists, they'd have concluded that data-mining was a waste of time.  But they're not in a private company.  They're with the government.  So they apparently said to themselves, "Well, data-mining doesn't work, but we've got this great research tool, let's just check it out on a few targets."
-John Sandford,  as excerpted from The Hanged Man's Song, published in 2003

Verse.......................

          Whatever man gives me
           In true devotion:
           Fruit or water,
           A leaf, a flower:
           I will accept it.
           That gift is love,
           His heart's dedication.

           Whatever your action,
           Food or worship;
           Whatever the gift
           That you give to another;
           Whatever the vow
           To the work of the spirit:
           O Son of Kunti,
           Lay these also
           As offerings before me.

     Thus you will free yourself from both the good and the evil effects of your actions.  Offer up everything to me.  If your heart is united with me, you will be set free from karma even in this life, and come to me at the last.

-an excerpt from Chapter IX
The Song of God: Bhagavad-Gita
as translated by Swami Prabhavananda and Christopher Isherwood

TBDBITL..............................

The Strategic Learner highlights this performance by the wondrous The Ohio State University Marching Band, and asks if there are some lessons to be learned here:

"This is one excellent example of the payoff from organization and mindfulness.   Everyone knows what to do, when to do it, and does so flawlessly.   These folks are paying attention to both planning and execution."

My favorite performance by The Best Damn Band In The Land can be found here.

Fifty years ago......................

A two-minute Crest commercial that aired on Judy Garland's TV show on December 29, 1963.  What a difference fifty years makes!

Worthy...........................

From Sipp........................................

"I can't say I like the winter. I've always been cold. Poor people are often cold, and I have been poor in my life. I'm not a fool and I don't like misery. But I respect the winter here. It's a worthy adversary, and so, goddamn it, am I. Bring it on."

On friendship...........................

27. Of all the means which wisdom acquires to ensure happiness throughout the whole of life, by far the most important is friendship.
-Epicurus, as excerpted from his "Principal Doctrines"

Ten minutes of football fun............



thanks craig

Fun with the language..........................

"Jejune and barren speculations may unfold the plicatures of Truth's garments, but they cannot discover her lovely face."
-John Smith, the Platonist

















Saturday, December 28, 2013

Hey, who are those strangers on the stage...?

U2 (and friends)......................................Gimme Shelter

On home study.............................

       "There is one weakness in people for which there is no remedy.  It is the universal weakness of lack of ambition!  Persons, particularly salaried people who schedule their spare time, to provide for home study, seldom remain at the bottom very long.  Their action opens the way for the upward climb, removes many obstacles from their path, and gains the friendly interest of those who have the power to put them in the way of opportunity."
-Napoleon Hill, as excerpted from Think and Grow Rich

On doing good deeds..................























"When you feel hurt because someone has been ungrateful for your kindness, it shows that you have been looking for gratitude, and this is a great mistake.  The true reason for helping another is that it is our duty to help others insofar as we can do so wisely; or because it is an expression of love.  Of course, love will not look for a quid pro quo, and to have done one's duty should be its own reward, remembering, if we wish, that in some other way the deed will surely be recognized.  The very fact that one is looking for gratitude means that he is putting the other person under a sense of obligation, and that person will probably get this subconsciously and resent it strongly, as such a thing is highly repugnant to human nature.  Do your good deed, and then pass on, neither expecting nor wishing for personal recognition."
-Emmet Fox, as excerpted from The Sermon On The Mount

Painting, The Runaway, by Norman Rockwell from 1958

On networking.........................

"One of my all-time favorite quotes on networking comes from Peter Linneman. He says that in order to build a great network you must 'always do the very best you can to fulfill what you said you would do, help others simply because you can rather than because you believe it would indirectly benefit you, and do this for the next thirty years.' He’s dead on."
-Joe Stampone, as excerpted from this blog post

Come on, tell us what you really think...............

Spengler is not a fan of the Middle East in general and Erdogan's Turkey in particular.  Full post here.  Interesting, fun-with-words, quote here:

Now the hashish smoke has cleared, Erdogan’s Cave of Wonders has turned back into a sandpit, and the foreign policy establishment has nothing to show for years of propitiation of this Anatolian wannabe except a headache.

Fifty years ago.............................

At the movies................................Federico Fellini's 8 1/2

So, who listens to critics anyway...............























      He had the misfortune to come of age at a time when realist painting was written off as less "authentic" than abstract painting.  Critics denounced him as insufficiently angst ridden and overtly cheery.  What somehow got lost in the critical discussion in this:  looking is an act of passion if you look hard enough.
-Deborah Solomon,  as excerpted from American Mirror:  The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell

Are you talking to me............?

Afraid he might be.  Trying to change..........honest.

Ah, technology.....................................

Happy Anniversary, Michael...............













Long may you blog...........................!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Tell me something.........................

David Gray..........................................Hospital Food

Beyond......................................






















via Ka-Ching!

A Call..............................

'Hold on,' she said, 'I'll just run out and get him.
The weather here's so good, he took the chance
To do a bit of weeding.'
                                         So I saw him
Down on his hands and knees beside the leek rig,
Touching, inspecting, separating one
Stalk from the other, gently pulling up
Everything not tapered, frail, and leafless,
Pleased to feel each little weed-root break,
But rueful also...
                             Then found myself listening to
The amplified grave ticking of the hall clocks
Where the phone lay unattended in a calm
Of mirror glass and sunstruck pendulums...

And found myself thinking:  if it were nowadays,
This is how Death would summon Everyman.

Next thing he spoke and I nearly said I loved him.

-Seamus Heaney

Fifty years ago..........................

At the movies........................Jason and The Argonauts

Finding some beauty.........................

My Sweetie's amaryllis opened in time to celebrate Christmas.



Meaning...............................









"To invent your own life's meaning is not easy, but it's still allowed, and I think you'll be happier for the trouble.  Reading those turgid philosophers here in these remote stone buildings may not get you a job, but if those books have forced you to ask yourself questions about what makes life truthful, purposeful, meaningful, and redeeming, you have the Swiss Army Knife of mental tools, and it's going to come in handy all the time."
-Bill Watterson

thanks maria

"........redemptive power................."






























      Underlying Rockwell's every painting and gesture was his faith in the redemptive power of story-telling -- stories, he believed, were a buffer against despair and emptiness.  Each of his Post covers amounts to a one-frame story complete with a protagonist and plot.  Among his earliest inspirations was Charles Dickens, who taught him how to espy stories on every street corner.  In some ways, Rockwell's paintings, which are grounded in the rendering of particulars, demands to be "read" like a story.  The experience they offer is literary as much as visual, in the sense that he cared less about the sensual dazzle of oil pint than the construction of a seamless narrative.  The public that saw and appreciated his paintings walked away from them thinking not about the dominance of cerulean blue or cadmium yellow but about the kid on the twenty-foot-high diving board up in the sky, terrified as he peers over the edge and realizes there is only one way down.
-Deborah Solomon,  as excerpted from American Mirror:  The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell

Peace............................

From Pope Francis's Christmas message:

"True peace is not a balance of opposing forces. It is not a lovely "façade" which conceals conflicts and divisions. Peace calls for daily commitment, starting from God's gift, from the grace which he has given us in Jesus Christ."

Full text of the message is here.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Did I tell you we will be seeing TSO today?

Trans-Siberian Orchestra............A Bumble Bee flys to Joy

Santa's stack...............................


Opening paragraphs........................

For every Rembrandt, for every artist whose work shines across the divide of centuries, there are thousands of artists whose names have been forgotten.  Their work remains invisible to us, shuttered away in moldering basements and junk shops where no one has bothered to dust it off and look at it for decades.  It's not a tragedy.  It's simply the law of the art jungle:  lesser artists fall into obscurity over time.  And then there's even a lower category, those who never had the good fortune to climb into a respectable professional height from which to plummet.
-Deborah Solomon,  American Mirror:  The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell

Rockwell....................................























Cliff Notes on the life of  Norman Rockwell (1894-1978) are here.   A few quotes attributed to him are here:

“The secret to so many artists living so long is that every painting is a new adventure. So, you see, they're always looking ahead to something new and exciting. The secret is not to look back.”

“Commonplaces never become tiresome. It is we who become tired when we cease to be curious and appreciative. We find that it is not a new scene which is needed, but a new viewpoint.” 

"I'll never have enough time to paint all the pictures I'd like to."

"Without thinking too much about it in specific terms, I was showing the America I knew and observed to others who might not have noticed. My fundamental purpose is to interpret the typical American. I am a story teller."

"When I go to farms or little towns, I am always surprised at the discontent I find. And New York, too often, has looked across the sea toward Europe. And all of us who turn our eyes away from what we have are missing life."

"I unconsciously decided that, even if it wasn't an ideal world, it should be. So I painted only the ideal aspects of it - pictures in which there are no drunken slatterns or self-centered mothers... only foxy grandpas who played baseball with the kids and boys who fished from logs and got up circuses in the backyard."

"If a picture wasn't going very well, I'd put a puppy in it."

"If there was sadness in this creative world of mine, it was a pleasant sadness. If there were problems, they were humorous problems."

"The view of life I communicate in my pictures excludes the sordid and ugly. I paint life as I would like it to be."

Be careful with those expectations..................

.....................they are often just premeditated resentments.















thanks jessica

Fifty years ago..........................

Live TV.......Tex Ritter recites the Gettysburg Address  12/26/63

Lostness..........................................

















                       Lost In Heaven

The clouds, the source of rain, one stormy night
Offered an opening to the source of dew;
Which I accepted with impatient sight,
Looking for my old sky-marks in the blue.

But stars were scarce in that part of the sky,
And no two were of the same constellation -
No one was bright enough to identify;
So 'twas with not ungrateful consternation.

Seeing myself well lost once more, I sighed
"Where, where is Heaven am I?  But don't tell me
O opening clouds, by opening on me wide.
Let's let my heavenly lostness overwhelm me."

-Robert Frost

photo via

Three things..................................





















via             thanks john

The evolution of morality................

Matt (The Rational Optimist) Ridley is on the case- here.  Conclusion here:

"So the question immediately suggests itself. What am I doing today that my great-grandchildren will find disgusting and might even get me prosecuted in old age? When I asked Pinker for his answer, he replied: 'That’s easy — meat eating.' I would add field sports. I consider hooking a trout on a dry fly, or shooting a fast woodcock for the pot, to be acts of almost noble communion with nature, but others already see them as barbaric. It seems unlikely that my view will prevail in the very long run."

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas................................

Lindsey Stirling...............................What Child Is This

Verse.......................

8  And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

9  And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

10  And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

11  For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

12  And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

13  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

14  Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

Luke 2:8-14
The Holy Bible
King James Version

Merry Christmas.............................




images recycled from previous years

Merry Christmas........................

















thanks doug

Fifty years ago............................

The Life Treasury of Christmas Music..............Patapan



Oops...............................


















via

Rockwell's Santa.......................








Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Holy night........................................

Silent Night.....................................................

Presto......................!

............Christmas Magic from the Heartland.

It's never too late to be late..................

The Execupundit offers a public service - for the last minute shoppers amongst us.

The kids will do just fine......................

More fun with test answers:



















via

Today's lesson.........................















via

Fifty years ago..........................

The Beatles interviewed, two takes, Christmas 1963

On human nature and the return of history....

The Economist looks back 100 years with angst and sees "uncomfortable parallels".  Full essay here.  Conclusion here:
"Madness, whether motivated by race, religion or tribe, usually gives ground to rational self-interest. But when it triumphs, it leads to carnage, so to assume that reason will prevail is to be culpably complacent. That is the lesson of a century ago."

It's what therapists do.........................

Interesting rationale for a massive fraud:

“With the help of his therapist,” wrote attorney John Kern, “Mr. Beale has come to recognize that, beyond the motive of greed, his theft and deception were animated by a highly self-destructive and dysfunctional need to engage in excessively reckless, risky behavior.” Kern also said Beale was driven “to manipulate those around him through the fabrication of grandiose narratives … that are fueled by his insecurities.”

via

Quote worth pondering.........................

"Corporatism is not capitalism."
-Arnold Kling, as excerpted from this blog post on Health Insurance, government, and the marketplace; circa 2014.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Proclaim.................................

King's College Choir................Hark!  The Herald Angels Sing

Opening paragraphs...........................

      Bradbury's birth remains the point of departure for one of his most controversial autobiographical anecdotes - his claim to remember the trauma of birth, the sensation of breastfeeding, the pain of circumcision, and infant nightmares about being born.  When he discovered (in his late seventies) that he had been delivered as a ten-month baby, Bradbury felt sure that his memories were the result of heightened development of his senses.  He stands ready to argue the point with psychologists of any school and to proclaim his memories with conviction with any audience.  These memories - whether imagined or real - surface with great impact in such stories as "The Small Assassin," one of his best-known weird tales of the 1940's:  What if birth trauma can translate into hate during the first hours of life?  What if a ten-month baby developed more quickly than the norm, and found the ability to turn on its parents with murderous intent?  Is it merely fear projected by a mother who nearly died in childbirth?  Or is there really a small movement in the dark at the top of the stairs, carefully planting a toy that sends the mother tumbling to her death?
-Jonathan R. Eller,  Becoming Ray Bradbury

Bradbury.........................

















Ray Bradbury was a virtual quote machine.  He wrote over 600 short stories on top of 27 novels. Here are the Cliff Notes on his life.   Here is a smattering of some of the fun things he said: 

“If we listened to our intellect we'd never have a love affair. We'd never have a friendship. We'd never go in business because we'd be cynical: "It's gonna go wrong." Or "She's going to hurt me." Or,"I've had a couple of bad love affairs, so therefore . . ." Well, that's nonsense. You're going to miss life. You've got to jump off the cliff all the time and build your wings on the way down.” 

“Self-consciousness is the enemy of all art, be it acting, writing, painting, or living itself, which is the greatest art of all.”


“I hate a Roman named Status Quo!" he said to me. "Stuff your eyes with wonder," he said, "live as if you'd drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It's more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day every day, sleeping its life away. To hell with that," he said, "shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass.” 


“We need not to be let alone. We need to be really bothered once in a while. How long is it since you were really bothered? About something important, about something real?” 


“Learning to let go should be learned before learning to get. Life should be touched, not strangled. You've got to relax, let it happen at times, and at others move forward with it. It's like boats. You keep your motor on so you can steer with the current. And when you hear the sound of the waterfall coming nearer and nearer, tidy up the boat, put on your best tie and hat, and smoke a cigar right up till the moment you go over. That's a triumph.” 


“We are an impossibility in an impossible universe.” 

“I don't believe in colleges and universities. I believe in libraries because most students don't have any money. When I graduated from high school, it was during the Depression and we had no money. I couldn't go to college, so I went to the library three days a week for 10 years.” 


“A good night sleep, or a ten minute bawl, or a pint of chocolate ice cream, or all three together, is good medicine.”


“Insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage.” 


Other Bradbury quotes can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

Traditions................................







How blessed we are....................

"Today, of Americans officially designated as 'poor,' 99 percent have electricity, running water, flush toilets, and a refrigerator; 95 percent have a television, 88 percent a telephone, 71 percent a car and 70 percent air conditioning. Cornelius Vanderbilt had none of these."
-Matt Ridley, as excerpted from The Rational Optimist

Fifty years ago........................

Phil Spector..........................A Christmas Gift for You

What is the strongest force on earth?

Hmmm..........If you answered "love," you get a red X.  Interesting scientific answer and analysis is here.

Habit-forming..............................

















"A great strategy for success in life is to become good at something, anything, and let that feeling propel you to new and better victories.  Success can be habit-forming."
-Scott Adams, as excerpted from How To Fail At Almost Everything And Still Win Big:  Kind of the Story of My Life

via

Hey, wait a minute..............

Do you mean that "experts" say meaningless things?

Les Mis..................................

My Sweetie and I attended a performance of Les Miserables at Newark's fabulous Weathervane Playhouse this weekend.  A stunning show!  The cast was superb, voices in fine form, and the set amazing.   The story is not light-hearted, but any tale of redemption is worth paying attention to. It is a rare theatrical performance that will bring tears to my eyes.  This one did.  It plays through next weekend.  If you have the chance, go experience it.   The company may differ from the one below, but they were still special.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Exultation...............................

Martina McBride..................O Come Let Us Adore Him

Opening paragraphs.............................

To understand Carl Gustav Jung one must first understand Switzerland, and this is no easy matter.  People become puzzled when confronted with a republic that has no president but a communal leadership consisting of an executive council.  The technicalities of confederation rather than federation - the technical distinction is that in confederation the central government has powers over the member states but not directly over their citizens - leads to further confusions.  Compound this with a geography that produces cis-Alpine, trans-Alpine and inter-Alpine cantons and a political culture not based on a single language and one is already faced with a social complexity that matches the notorious difficulty of Jung's psychological thought.  Some observers have even suggested a stricter determinism:  that Jung could not have had the theories he had if he had been born elsewhere, since the Swiss constitution is itself "Jungian."
-Frank McLynn,  Carl Gustav Jung

Choosing from thousands of Jung quotes....















Cliff Notes on Carl Jung can be found here or here.  Quotes here:

“The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.” 

“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” 


“You are what you do, not what you say you’ll do.” 

“I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.” 


“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.” 


“Every form of addiction is bad, no matter whether the narcotic be alcohol, morphine or idealism.” 


“Thinking is difficult, that’s why most people judge.” 

“The shoe that fits one person pinches another; there is no recipe for living that suits all cases.” 


“The man who promises everything is sure to fulfil nothing, and everyone who promises too much is in danger of using evil means in order to carry out his promises, and is already on the road to perdition.” 

“Midlife is the time to let go of an overdominant ego and to contemplate the deeper significance of human existence.”