07-14-17 Update

What I’m reading
I finished reading The Devil in the Shape of a Woman: Witchcraft in Colonial New England by Carol F. Karlsen. I found it interesting and quite informative. Although these witch trails occurred over 300 years ago, I see similarities in the way the conservative movement’s attempts to regulate women’s heath care and reproductive rights. In America we have nearly a 400 year history of fearing independent women and and in the current regime that fear is as prevalent as it was in the 17th century.

Our society still holds centuries old assumptions about women’s place in society and how they ought to behave. We also have a deeply embedded tendency in our society to hold women to hold women ultimately responsible for violence committed against them. That tendency and those assumptions still grip us as much today as they did in 17th century New England. However, that paradigm seems to be in its death throes and the longstanding patriarchy is desperately trying to hold on to them as women continue to voice their discontent and dissatisfaction. I say good riddance to it.

I’m now reading Lucid Dreaming by Charlie Morley. I’ve had an interest in the subject and I want to learn more about it. I’m finding that it’s not as easy as I’d thought it would be. Maybe I’ve perceiving it as more difficult than it is or I just need more practice and open my mind to it.

What I’ve been listening to
This week I listened an episode of Star Talk Radio, called Let’s Make America Smart Again. The discussion talked about what draws scientific talent to a university or a country for that matter. It’s not necessarily about the money but rather the quality and intelligence of the colleagues and post graduate students they work with. By cutting funding to public universities and dumbing them down, we do our nation a great disservice. We can make America great by shoring up its educational institutions, particularly in public education and by making Americans smart.

We become great by attracting greatness and being in the company of greatness. We cannot create greatness on our own. We are not great because we declared ourselves to be great but because the world perceives us a great.

What I’ve been watching
Though it’s in the ‘chick-flick’ genre, I recently watched the first season of Anne with an E on NetFlix. It started with my granddaughter wanting to watch it and I kind of got hooked.

Quotes I’ve been pondering
“The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear.” ~ Aung San Suu Kyi

“It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it.” ~ Aung San Suu Kyi

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Today is National Nude Day and this week is Nude Recreation Week. I don’t have any particular plans for these occasions. I really don’t need a special day or week, just a place and an opportunity. Here are  a few related quotes:

“Nudism is about comfort, freedom, friendship, and acceptance. Nudism is a way of life and a belief that the nude human body is not inherently sexual or obscene. We only have one body and one life to live. We should learn to accept ourselves and others as they are and for who they are.” ~ Anna Smith

“Don’t be so serious. Don’t make nudism a religion. It is a thing of joy. Try to get some joy into your own system! Let it overflow, so that it may spread among your friends!” ~ Julian Strange (1934)

“Why should we think nudity is such a revolting thing in a land where there is so much violence and corruption and racism and hatred? Nudity seems like a welcome relief from all the bullshit in life.” ~ Anthony Kiedis

06-30-17 Update

Event I attended
On Saturday Tina, Abigail, and I attended the grand opening of Kuya Ian’s Bistro in Columbus where the Sayaw FilipinOH gave a benefit performance. The staff made us feel very welcome and the Filipino cuisine was great. Everyone in attendance enjoyed the performance.

KuyaIanBistro-170624

What I’ve been reading
The Devil in the Shape of a Woman: Witchcraft in Colonial New England by Carol F. Karlsen. As expected, it is interesting with a lot of demographic data about the women (and a few men) who were accused of witchcraft (and many executed for it) in early colonial New England. It turns out that the social and economic factors in the New England witchcraft trials were much different than the eariler trials in England and Europe.

TDitSoaW

What I’m watching
I just started watching GLOW on NetFlix. It’s a series about a Hollywood director trying to create a television wrestling show featuring women wrestlers. I haven’t had much if any interest in “professional” wrestling since I was a kid but I guess I’m drawn to this program on a different level. Maybe it’s the characters I’m drawn to.

Project I’m working on
The kids have been reorganizing their garage, tearing out the shelving and cabinets that came with the house and installing new shelves and storage that fits their needs better. It was inevitable that I’d get involved but that’s okay because it will benefit me as well since I store a lot of my tools there because I don’t have a garage. To be honest, none of us is sure who owns some of the tools, not that it really matters. We’re family and we share what we have. I’m hoping that with the reorganization, I’ll be able to store a few more tools. And now I’m feeling motivated to clean out my shed.

Quotes I’ve been pondering
“There is an objective reality out there, but we view it through the spectacles of our beliefs, attitudes, and values.” ~ David G. Myers

“A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man’s mind can get both provocation and privacy.” ~ Edward P. Morgan

“Shit flows downhill. Rarely does anything positive ever trickle down. Positive change generally rises from the bottom in spite of the scum floating at the top trying to hold it down.” ~ R.B. Romig, 27 June 2017

“Let’s stop pretending that pants are even necessary. It’s time we progress as a society.” ~ Goddess of Mischief ‏@ShanaRose21

06-23-17 update

Sorry for not posting last Friday but I just didn’t have anything of interest to post and I’m not sure I have anything of interest this week either.

Events I’ve attended
My wife and I attended two lovely weddings. Both took place at the same venue and were officiated by the same pastor. I actually knew the second couple and I’m sure my wife knew, at least casually, everyone at both weddings. In the past year or so I’ve been becoming more and more integrated with the local Filipino community here through my granddaughter’s involvement with the Sayaw FilipinOH dance group , through social interactions with my wife’s Filipino friends, and the local Filipino-American Association. It’s definitely a good thing that I’m becoming more involved as I’ve pretty much been on the fringes for many years.

Things I’ve been listening to
I’ve always enjoyed writing I enjoyed it school (elementary, secondary, and university) but it’s a skill that has gotten a bit rusty over the years. I do occasionally have moments of inspiration in which I produce the occasional rant on a blog but I’ve been yearning to write something more substantial. Now and then I run across a webinar purporting to reveal some secrets to great writing. Usually, they’re inducements to enroll in some sort of online course costing hundreds of dollars, which, of course, is beyond my meager financial resources. Still, I usually get a few ideas and tips from them.

I don’t have any aspirations of becoming a professional writer. Much of what I do write is for my own pleasure or amusement. Sometimes I write as a way to work out ideas which are occasionally released into the wild via my blogs. Lately, I’ve been looking at writing as a means of looking into the shadows and getting to know myself on a deeper level. I’ve also been taken by the idea of writing down and sharing some of the stories of my life experiences which seems like it would be more fun and exciting than probing my inner demons.

What I’ve been reading
After putting it down for a while I finished The Children’s Blizzard by David Laskin. I found it interesting. I had ancestors and cousins who lived in the Dakotas when this blizzard occurred on one related family that was traveling when it struck. Several of them lost limbs or were blinded from the frostbite. They were unable to maintain their homestead and moved back to Ohio.

Now I’m reading The Devil in the Shape of a Woman: Witchcraft in Colonial New England by Carol F. Karlsen. That promises to be interesting reading.

Quotes I’ve been pondering
Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been pondering solitude and the benefits of spending time alone. Here is a small sampling of my favorite quotes on the subject.

“The power to bring me out of solitude – or to push me back into it – had never belonged to another person. It was mine and only mine.” ~ Martha Beck

“To dare to live alone is the rarest courage; since there are many who had rather meet their bitterest enemy in the field, than their own hearts in their closet.” ~ Charles Caleb Colton

“It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude. “ ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson, Self-Reliance

“Learn to be alone and to like it. There is nothing more freeing and empowering than learning to like your own company. ” ~ Mandy Hale

“But when I looked closer, I saw the footprints were mine. I had walked it alone. I knew then I no longer needed to believe in myths to be strong. ” ~ Fishbo Jangles

“I like being alone. I have control over my own shit. Therefore, in order to win me over, your presence has to feel better than my solitude. You’re not competing with another person, you are competing with my comfort zones. ” ~ Horatio Jones

“Only when totally alone and in a naked state, do we know the total truth of who we truly are!” ~ Aleta Nelson

“Solitude does not necessarily mean living apart from others; rather, it means never living apart from one’s self. It is not about the absence of other people—it is about being fully present to ourselves, whether or not we are with others.” ~ Parker Palmer

“All of man’s difficulties are caused by his inability to sit quietly in a room by himself.” ~ Blaise Pascal

“What is needed is, in the end, simply this: solitude, great inner solitude. Going into yourself and meeting no one for hours on end—that is what you must be able to attain.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

“I love to be alone. I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude. We are for the most part more lonely when we go abroad among men than when we stay in our chambers. A man thinking or working is always alone, let him be where he will.” ~ Henry David Thoreau, Walden

“As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness.” ~ Henry David Thoreau , Walden

“I think it is very healthy to spend time alone. You need to know how to be alone and not be defined by another person.” ~ Oscar Wilde