Wednesday, December 13, 2017

I have before and will do so again

I have posted on serious subjects before and most likely will again. I try to stick to my "theme" of lighten-up on this blog but since life often fails to go by lightly, happily, gently I occasionally post serious thoughts.

Cultures have celebrations in remembrance of good events. Sometimes these good events came out of bad events. Our Christmas season celebrates joy, peace, goodwill. Certainly if everyone was following along there would be no violence during this season of peace. But we know it doesn't work that way.

We are born innocent. Fortunately most children in first world countries remain innocent for the first few years of their lives. Even in some third world countries many young children don't see violence. I don't know at what age one should learn the world is not always a lovely peaceful place. I think by age 20 one should know. I don't believe a violent threatening world should be experienced by a child. The trauma could lead to a later cycle of violence by the afflicted child. We know violence can spread. Love and kindness also spreads. Love and kindness can be seen in the aid offered to victims after tragedies.

Old news - December 14, 2012- A horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary left 20 children, 6- and 7-year-olds, and six educators gunned down by a troubled 20-year-old.

There are no complete perfect fixes for our violent world. Instead of searching and waiting for some perfect solution we should strive today, now, to improve our situation by reducing the violence.

Today by way of a song I came across a group dedicated to improving the school situation. The group is called Sandy Hook Promise. They offer free training to schools and youth programs to educate students about recognizing early signs of violence.

The song that lead me to this group was "The Dreaming Kind" by Sheryl Crow. She wrote the song after the recent Las Vegas shooting. She decided to give the song to the Sandy Hook Promise as a vehicle to raise money. I made small donation for the song download. The Sandy Hook Promise has the links and information for making donations. The song starts with these lines:

I turned off the news again tonite
It’s getting hard to watch everyone fight
Every time I turn my face
I see the world from outer space
How small we are but look how much we have to waste

I don't see this so-called "war" on Christmas. I see a "war" on joy, peace and goodwill. Another Sheryl Crow song (about 10 years ago) suggests that we need to get out of our heads and into our hearts.

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Do you hear what I hear

Do you hear what I hear
Really? Unless you are standing next to me how could you hear the same thing?

no one wants to hear or smell this

Of course hearing and listening are different. Listening requires opening your mind and thinking.

I listen to lyrics but I know not all others do. Should I change my online moniker to lyricman? Have you ever watched any of Tim Hawkins’ clips on youtube? I know he listens to lyrics like me because in one clips he explains how “psycho” the lyrics of “Do You Hear What I Hear” are.

Said the little lamb to the shepherd boy
Do you hear what I hear

He suggests that a shepherd boy talking to sheep has been in the field too long. (a link to that clip)

don't physically open your mind - just mentally

The better song lyrics have a message or advice. Now I tend to discover advice within the classic rock set of songs. But it could be that I’m just more familiar with those songs compared to the newer ones.

A more recent (compared to classic rock) song with great advice is Sheryl Crow’s “Soak Up the Sun”. It has the lines:

I don't have digital
I don't have diddly squat
It's not having what you want
It's wanting what you've got

Finding singing advice takes a little digging and focus. Here’s some true words from a Led Zeppelin song “Over The Hills And Far Away”:

Mellow is the man who knows what he's been missing
Many, many men can't see the open road

Following me? 
Ok, let’s skip the light fandango and turn cartwheels cross the floor. Try not to get dizzy (I would like you to be able to type out your comment). My song listening, lyric digging, has uncovered two more verses to “Whiter Shade of Pale”. Within those extra verses is this truism:

If music be the food of love
Then laughter is its queen
And likewise if behind is in front
Then dirt in truth is clean

So lighten up, listen up, don't be worried about the dirt if it is true.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Breaking out of the cloister bar

My retirement has resulted in more time being spent at home than in the past. This is not all bad of course. The longer low stress time allows me to wonder about a plethora of topics. To sound more interesting I will start saying that I’ve been cloistered in my quiet study at home.

But the world is not your cloister. The saying is the world is your oyster. I really dislike oysters. I never could get my head around eating raw stuff. Regardless of the shellfish, one should get out into the world.

Occasionally I do get out and about. Most recently, I journeyed from the Illinois prairie to South Carolina hoops-n-hollers (commonly known as hills and valleys). I hope you enjoy my recent discoveries as much as I enjoy sharing them.

Lego has included seniors

During the visit I discovered these interesting Lego characters in my grandkids' collection. I can only hope their Lego characters help them think of me.

I thought running was healthy

I spotted this worn out 5K runner in a nearby town around Halloween. Strange way to advertise for an upcoming 5K. That guy definitely has blown out his knees.

clever? NOT funny

I noticed this clever modification of the sign on this baby changing table. Now while I’ll admit it’s clever, I didn’t find it funny. Probably done by a young guy who thinks he’s clever but probably has not experienced becoming a father yet.

peaceful restful place at a rest stop

Two things helped improve my cross country road trip. Nice clean rest stops help. This relaxing waterfall was at a North Carolina rest stop. A second more recent addition to my travels is satellite radio. I rather listen to music than talk or commercials. On this last trip there was a Margaritaville channel. It was a temporary channel that offered me plenty of Jimmy Buffett that was new to me. Here’s one I liked.

Hey before the volcano blows leave me a comment.

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