All posts by M. Douglas Wray

Yilmaz Askan – Handmade Dog Collars & Harnesses

Visit him at his new site: Anatolian Leatherworks!

Simply outstanding work from Kurdish artist Yilmaz Askan living in Istanbul. You can contact him via his Facebook page. His business is called “Anatolian Leatherworks” and there will be a website eventually. These are only a few images of his incredible work.

Yilmaz Askan, maker of magnificent leatherwork!
Yilmaz Askan, maker of magnificent leatherwork!

ArgusStuddedCollar

yilmaz_askan_01yilmaz_askan_02  yilmaz_askan_03 yilmaz_askan_04 yilmaz_askan_05 yilmaz_askan_06 yilmaz_askan_07 yilmaz_askan_08 yilmaz_askan_09 yilmaz_askan_10 yilmaz_askan_11 yilmaz_askan_12 yilmaz_askan_13

Basimanyana

Basimanyana

Basimanyana, Basimanyana, Basimanyana ba llela boroko (x2)
Be re bolaisa go disa
Rena re thuswa le ke bo nimadikepu

(chorus)

sebaka sena se a thosa, se thotse, se a makatsa
ha ke seba sithaba
di kwahetswe ke mohudi kahohle

(chorus)

tlong, tlong badisa, tlong re be mmoho
bokellang makgomo
Basimanyana, Basimanyana, Basimanyana ba llela boroko (repeat)

(chorus)

tlong, tlong badisa, tlong re be mmoho
bokellang makgomo (x2)
ka re thabantana tsosa thabo
ha la ka la memella ntate moholo
ha a re le se ke la thusa makgomo, tulong ena
Basimanyana, Basimanyana, Basimanyana ba llela boroko (repeat)

(chorus)

Vusi Sidney Mahlasela Ka Zwane (born 1965 in Pretoria) is a Sotho South African singer-songwriter.
His music is generally described as ”African folk”. Vusi Mahlasela, is simply known as ‘The Voice’ in his home-country, South Africa, celebrated for his distinct, powerful voice and his poetic, optimistic lyrics.
http://vusimahlasela.com/bio/

Commuting Kills

From WordFence.

Every year we lose up to 10% of our electricity purely due to resistance during transmission. If you’ve ever wondered why a room-temperature superconductor is sought after, this is why. Thinking about superconductivity reminded me of the problem I have with companies who don’t allow telecommuting. The way I see it, remote-workers are like work-place superconductivity: Brain power and productivity arrive instantly where they’re needed with zero transmission cost.

I decided to do the math on what the health and environmental costs are related to commuting to work every year.

Moving people from home to work is surprisingly expensive in many ways. The average commute time by car in the United States is about 25 minutes each way. The average commute time by other means is also just over 25 minutes each way. [Source: US Census Bureau and wnyc.org data from census.gov] The average number of work days per year is 261. [Source: OPM.gov]

This gives us a total time spent commuting by car (or other means) per year of 217.5 hours, or 9 days. That’s 9 days (without sleeping) per year of your life you spend in a car, train, bus or other means of getting to work. That assumes you’re the average and not stuck on the I405 in California for 4 hours per day. I worked with a friend who had that commute.

If “sitting is the new smoking” [Source: Mayo Clinic and Dr James Levine], a phrase coined by Dr James Levine which has gained a groundswell of support of late, spending 9 waking days sitting in a car and pushing pedals, or on a bus or train per year has a profoundly detrimental impact on our health.

Read the rest at WordFence.com

Did you know?

The original Constitution of the United States that was ratified in 1789 had only one reference to religion: [Article 6] No religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

The de facto motto of the United States, adopted as part of the Great Seal of the U.S. by an Act of Congress in 1782, was E. Pluribus Unum (Out of Many,One).
Congress changed it 174 years later (1956) to “In God We Trust.”

The original ‘Pledge of Allegiance’ was written in 1892 by Baptist Minister Francis Bellamy who DID NOT INCLUDE the words “Under God.” Those were added by Congress 62 years later (1954).

The U.S. didn’t issue Paper Currency until 1861, and ‘In God We Trust’ didn’t appear on it for 96 years (1957).

Just after the Red Scare in the 1950’s, CONGRESS CHANGED the Pledge of Allegiance and our Nation’s Motto over the FEAR of COMMUNISM.

In a time when fear is traded like a commodity, and the word SOCIALISM is being used to create the same fear as the old word COMMUNISM, let’s REMEMBER that our country was NOT founded on fear. NO, OUR NATION was founded out of HOPE for a better world where all people were EQUAL – that we were ONE from MANY.

Let’s not let fear change our nation’s great tradition and direction again.

Transcribed from this graphic seen on Facebook:

Lets_not_let_fear_change_our_nation

Jolly Springtime

Jolly Springtime

Oh! The jolly Springtime
in the merry month of May
Oh! The heavenly hours
Oh! The come again day

Oh! The jolly Springtime
in the merry month of May
Oh! The heavenly hours
Oh! The come again day

Let the day run long
let the river run high
that tomorrow may live
so much yesterday died

Let the resin risin up in the tree
make the green leaf bud
bird and the bee and the fish in the sea
feelin it in my blood

Oh! The jolly Springtime
in the merry month of May
Oh! The heavenly hours
Oh! The come again day

Yes the winter was bitter and long
so the spring’ll be sweet
come along with a rhythm and song
watch Creation repeat

Thin, thin the moment is thin
ever so narrow the Now
Everybody say got to live in today
don’t nobody know how

Oh! The jolly Springtime
in the merry month of May
Oh! The heavenly hours
Oh! The come again day

Oh! The jolly Springtime
in the merry month of May
Oh! The heavenly hours
Oh! The come again day

James Taylor
Before This World – 2015

Friend of My Heart

My uncle Mickey was one of the first men I met who was truly *gentle* with me and playful as I was. His hugs were so encompassing, like no danger or harm could reach me in his arms. All my childhood cares were swept away when I was with him and he made my soul rise up and catch fire. I thank God for his love, it was a wonderful gift to me and transformed my heart.

He was SO silly. I had not known adults were allowed to BE silly ( I did not know my Uncle Bob very well at this point, rest his soul! ) but oh my God he WAS. I remember on at least one occasion laughing so hard I peed my pants. And it was even FUNNIER. Mickey always gave you a warm feeling – sometimes in ways you didn’t expect – or know that you needed.

At my mother’s funeral his words of comfort were like a stone wall holding me up. Even at that dark moment his blazing soul was hard at work and his humor helped me cheer my sister Paula who was dealing with losing her avatar. With one short conversation he helped us both. That’s a moment I remember so clearly.

He was more than my uncle, he was my childhood friend and as I grew, he remained a friend of my heart. He knew well how much I loved him. His Light lives on in me and I give Thanks to God for it.

This poem is my final homage to him.

I love you Uncle Mickey.

M. Douglas Wray and William D. "Mickey" Rowe - Oct. 30, 2010 - Family reunion
M. Douglas Wray and William D. “Mickey” Rowe – Oct. 30, 2010 – Family reunion

Friend of My Heart

Through wind and fire
you have come –
done the things
that must be done.

Worked the Steel
that built our dreams,
fought the fight
and heard the screams.

Built a family
shared his joys –
his lovely girl
his two fine boys.

Gentle heart
devoted soul –
perfect for
a father’s role.

Always humble,
God’s own tool
he shared his gifts –
obeyed the Rule.

Consoled the hearts
of those in pain
and raised them up
to Light again.

Made laughter ring out
clear and sweet –
wit so clever!
mind so fleet!

Time has taken
my favorite clown.
Friend of my heart!!!
My Friend is gone!

To my Uncle Mickey
With all my love

M. Douglas Wray
a nephew
2015

William D. “Mickey” Rowe – 7/14/31 – 5/29/15

William D. "Mickey" Rowe - 7/14/31 - 5/29/15
William D. “Mickey” Rowe – 7/14/31 – 5/29/15

William D. “Mickey” Rowe, 83, of Vandergrift passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Friday, May 29, 2015 in his home.

Born July 14, 1931 in Vandergrift he was a son of the late William John and Lillian Emily (Barber) Rowe. Mr. Rowe lived in Vandergrift all of his life and was a graduate of Vandergrift High School class of 1950. He was employed as Utilities Dispatcher for U.S. Steel in Vandergrift where he was Past President of Local Union U.S.W.A. 1346 retiring after 38 years.

After retirement Bill worked for Walter Optical in Vandergrift and the Vandergrift Beer Distributor.

An Air Force veteran, Bill served during the Korean Conflict in the 43rd Bomb Wing of the Strategic Air Command (S.A.C.). He was honorably discharged in 1956 after four years of service.

Mr. Rowe was a member of St. Gertrude Church, Vandergrift where he was a charter member of the Men’s Club, and former member of St. Vincent DePaul Society and the Bingo committee. He also served his church as an alter server for funerals and as a Minister of Consolation. He was an Honorary Member and Past Grand Knight of the Kiski Valley Knights of Columbus, Council #3174, the Alle-Kiski Assembly Knights of Columbus #0928 and a member of the Assembly Color Corp. Bill was also a member of the Vandergrift American Legion Post 0114 and life member of the Leechburg Elks B.P.O.E Lodge 377.

Mr. Rowe volunteered for the Vandergrift Meals on Wheels for more than 25 years and enjoyed working at his church’s spaghetti dinners and at all of the Men’s Club activities. He was also a member of the PA Adopt-A-Highway.

He was the proud recipient of Citations from the State House of Representatives, Westmoreland County Commissioners and the Vandergrift Borough along with a plaque from Vandergrift #2 Fire Department for rescuing a 74 year old woman from a fire in her home in 1983.

Bill enjoyed traveling, working in his yard, but most of all loved spending time with his family. Although he was a lifelong resident of Vandergrift he was an avid Dallas Cowboys football fan.

Besides his parents, Mr. Rowe was preceded in death by two sisters, Shirley Wray and Mary Barbara Walsh.

He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Lois Jean (Kane) Rowe of Vandergrift; daughter, Debra Jean Julian and her husband, Joseph of Pittsburgh; two sons, William D. Rowe and his wife, Jennifer of Broadview Heights, OH and Michael E. Rowe and his wife Beth of Leechburg; 3 grandchildren, Matthew R. and Angela J. Julian both of Pittsburgh and Edward J. Rowe of Leechburg; a sister, Guinivere Fleissner of Pittsburgh as well as many nieces and nephews. He also leaves behind his special friends, Wilmer and Raffelina Shaner.

Visitation will on Monday, June 1st from 2-4 & 6-8 pm in the Brady-Curran Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Inc., 429 Franklin Avenue, Vandergrift. Parting prayers of transfer will be recited at the funeral home on Tuesday, June 2nd at 11 am followed by Mass of Christian Burial at 11:30 am in St. Gertrude Roman Catholic Church, Vandergrift with Father James Loew OSB celebrant. Entombment will follow in Greenwood Memorial Park Mausoleum, Lower Burrell where full military honors will be accorded by the Vandergrift Veterans Honor Guard, Inc.

The family suggest memorial contributions in Bill’s memory be made to Heritage Hospice, 356 Freeport Street, Suite 200, New Kensington PA 15068.

Darkest Days

May 14 is my darkest day and the ones following are a slow climb back up to the Light.

Each year my soul remembers this ordeal, but from a farther vantage, the pain reduced by distance. No longer a searing white spear through my burning heart but a still-sharp red-hot lancet that leaves a small smoking brand on that worst of scars. A cold rushes over me as I remember Marilyn’s last breath. That awful moment of realization that it was her last and the sun in my world literally winking out and the stars shrinking back from my grief. I can hold this awful memory in my hands now, my heart absorbs the blow without flinching. The Darkness no longer frightens me now that I know my beloved Wife is there and surely kicking it’s ASS, waiting for me and reinforcements to arrive. Probably planting a garden and flowers too.

Thank you Didibear for being my wife and my lover. I miss you. There is still a void in the World that you once filled. SO many people miss you.

Thank you for the lessons you taught me – most of all I will drink deep until my cup is stricken down as well.

God bless you Wife.

I come in my own time.

There is still Work to do.

M. Douglas Wray and Marilyn Lawrence at Hoverhome in Longmont, CO - June 28, 1998
M. Douglas Wray and Marilyn Lawrence at Hoverhome in Longmont, CO – June 28, 1998

Guardian of the Light

dozer
Dozer 2013

When I look in your eyes
I sense the corridors of time
that your ancestors have trod.

For endless years
you’ve stood at man’s side
and faced danger with him.

The wheel of time has brought you here
to the warm soft bed
of your human companions.

I know the bitter winds of the steppes
still whistle through your soul
and the howls of the wolves as well.

But for now we are safe – together
in this quiet place in life’s River
no wolves at the door to fight.

When your days grow short
and the Earth calls for you
I will make easy your way.

Into the Great Darkness you will go
to clear the way for my arrival
and to make joyous our reunion.

MDWray 2015

for my beloved dog Dozer, an Anatolian Shepherd dog.

Strong Dogs

Seen at DogTube.us

Our dog Dozer Anatolian Shepherd/English Shepherd. Fantastic dog.
Our dog Dozer Anatolian Shepherd/English Shepherd Fantastic dog!

These dogs were originally bred for their physical strength and tenacity and remain some of the strongest dog breeds recognized by the American Kennel Club today.

  1. Bull Mastiff
    Originally bred in England to pin and hold poachers without attacking.
  2. Cane Corso Mastiff
    Originally bred in Italy, its name means Guardian and Protector and was bred to be a watch dog and hunt wild boar.
  3. Neapolitan Mastiff
    These dogs can be traced back to use by the Roman Army. They were originally bred to be defenders of property.
  4. Tibetan Mastiff
    Early records find these dogs in China, they remained isolated in the Himalayan mountains to develop into the dog we know today. Highly protective, they were bred to be a family and property guardian.
  5. Bull Terrier
    A small, friendly, muscular dog that packs a lot of strength and excels at sporting.
  6. Great Dane
    Originally bred to hunt wild boar in Germany is an excellent guard dog.
  7. Doberman Pinschers
    Originated in Germany around 1900 and was bred to be a guard dog.
  8. Rottweiler
    The Rottweiler’s ancestors protected the herds the Romans brought with them when invading Europe. Bred for the herding and guarding instincts.
  9. Irish Wolfhound
    Dates back to 391 A.D, these huge dogs were bred to hunt wolves and oversized Irish Elk.
  10. Boerboel
    Bred to be the first line of defense against predators and were used in tracking and holding down wounded game.
  11. Great Pyrenees
    Named after a mountain range in southwestern Europe, these territorial dogs were bred to guard livestock.
  12. Newfoundland
    The original ancestry is a bit controversial but these dogs were used to assist fishermen drag heavy nets, to haul wood from the forest, and perform heavy labor.
  13. Dogo Argentino
    Originally from Argentina, this highly active dog was bred to be a courageous hunter and protector of people.
  14. Anatolian Shepherd Dog
    Originating in Turkey, these independent thinking dogs were originally bred as a guard dog to be the frontline of defense against predators.
  15. St. Bernard
    Bred to help travelers cross the harsh terrain and passes in Italy and Switzerland, utilized as a cart dog, guard dog and in avalanche rescue.
  16. Swiss Mountain Dog
    Originally from remote areas of Switzerland, this dog was originally used for draft work, herding, guarding, and as a farm sentinel.

Classic Insults

  1. PEDICULOUS
    Lice-infested. From Latin pediculus (louse).
  2. XANTHODONTOUS
    Yellow-toothed. From Greek xanthos (yellow) and odont- (a combining form for tooth).
  3. RUCTABUNDE
    Gasbag. From Latin ructus (belch) and abundus (abundant).
  4. FLAGITIOUS
    Thoroughly wicked, villainous. From Latin flagitium (shameful act).
  5. QUISQUILIAN
    Worthless, consisting of trash. From Latin quisquiliae (waste matter, rubbish).
  6. FISSILINGUAL
    Fork-tongued. From Latin fissus (split) and lingua (tongue).
  7. QUIDNUNC
    Busybody, gossip-monger. From Latin quid nunc? (what now?).
  8. EXCEREBROSE
    Brainless. From Latin ex (out, without) and cerebrum (brain).
  9. FURFURACEOUS
    Flaky, dandruff-covered. From Latin furfur (bran, chaff).
  10. EXOPHTHALMIC
    Bug-eyed. From Greek ex (out) and ophthalmos (eye).
  11. MOROSOPH
    A learned fool. From Greek moros (stupid) and sophos (wise).

Comcast Customer Service

Saw this here: http://corporate.comcast.com/comcast-voices/comcast-statement-regarding-customer-service-call

We are very embarrassed by the way our employee spoke with Mr. Block and Ms. Belmont and are contacting them to personally apologize.  The way in which our representative communicated with them is unacceptable and not consistent with how we train our customer service representatives. We are investigating this situation and will take quick action.  While the overwhelming majority of our employees work very hard to do the right thing every day, we are using this very unfortunate experience to reinforce how important it is to always treat our customers with the utmost respect.


This was in response to:

http://laughingsquid.com/ryan-block-and-veronica-belmont-get-trapped-in-customer-retention-hell-while-trying-to-cancel-comcast-service/

So I left a comment that Comcast keeps refusing to publish:

“Very embarrassed”? Seriously? Funny but I don’t think you or your ‘superiors’ were even slightly embarrassed when you spent $300K to try and deny the people of Longmont, CO the right to use their own fiber optic network. Luckily you failed. However, I think now you’re desperately trying to make that money back by chiselling on rates and making it hard for people to leave your service. As soon as Greenspeed or any other provider can get me access via fiber, ‘Comcast’ will become persona non grata in my house permanently. This just underlines how right that decision is. If you had one scrap of decency or ethics you’d have started with “this employee has been dismissed” – the fact you DIDN’T tells me this knucklehead was likely the spawn of one of your shiny-suited pinhead bosses. Fire the moron and give this customer ALL of his fees for the last year back, then I’ll start believing you’re ’embarrassed’ – not just chagrined like a streetwalker caught soliciting a teenager.


 

I’ve tried reposting a couple of times and Scumcast keeps sweeping it under the rug.

Sorry old boys, you can’t bury things forever. Word’s out, you’re a predator and it’s time you were put down.

An Anatolian Shepherd Dog Guards This Home

dozer
Dozer, an Anatolian / English Shepherd mix

Entrance requires introduction, inspection and approval by ME. I am an Anatolian Shepherd dog. My bloodlines have guarded human homes for millenia. It is what we are.

There may be minor disputes about whom I allow. My Masters will generally default in my favor, we have an understanding of who has better instincts. If you take offense at this you are welcome not to visit again (I won’t forget in any event).

You will get from me what you bring; if you are fearful I will be suspicious, if you are angry I will be hostile, but if you are confident I will be an ally, if you are happy and boisterous I will be your eager playmate. Be warned, I can (and will) jump into your arms from a sitting pose if invited. I assume all the Masters in my home are aware of my strength and speed. Beware. I weigh over one hundred pounds and my standing embrace can be startling to a large man, let alone one of lesser stature. Call me up with care. No other dog will show you affection like me. Again, beware, it is addictive. It is why my breed has endured and flourished. If you are Approved I will lavish the same greeting on you that I do my Masters. And I will lay down my life to protect you.

No matter what, my Family is foremost. If you are violent to one of them, even in play, I may… intervene. Suddenly. Make sure my Family Member makes it clear to ME that it’s a game. Rough play is fine but if I barely know you, I won’t know HOW you play and I don’t second-guess. A play-bow never goes amiss with me. Even a few.

I have huge claws and razor-sharp teeth, so even playing I may hurt you a little. Not my fault you don’t have fur. I also have a double coat and shed – deal with it. Watch out, I will routinely tread on your feet trying to stay in reach. Being big and heavy I can be an oaf. You may stumble over me if you surprise me but I will always let you step over me without rising. For such a big dog I’m good at staying out of the way.

Once you’ve gotten to know me, you’ll see I am a Noble dog. Even when I’m sitting cross-legged at my Master’s side you can see the centuries of partnership in my breed. Shepherds of antiquity prized my uncanny senses, bear-like strength and terrifying speed. No predators survived entry to our camps. Humans feel safer around me for a reason. When I am defending my Family I have no fear and give no quarter.

The Anatolian shepherds made sure I could survive on just about anything – like them. I love to eat and I love it especially when you leave delicious treats out on the counter for me. I will always show my gratitude by eating every bite and begging for more later. I love the couch… and the bed. My favorite place is laying beside you or at your feet with my nose touching you. At the least I will take a position between you and the doorway. If there’s a high spot or stairway I will use that as a lookout. You’ll sleep in safety, as will your children. When you’re awake and the house is quiet I will sleep heavily unless you have work (or play!) for me.

I’m smarter than you think, faster than you would believe and often three steps ahead of you. When I bark at night it’s because I think there’s a threat. I will always obey a signal to be quiet, shepherds appreciated stealth but they wanted me to bark if there was real danger.

The modern world can be confusing to me sometimes…

For example, the sweeper? I’m gonna KILL that damn thing.

Helen Ruth Talbott – Oct. 27, 1937 — May 9, 2014

Helen Ruth Talbot
D. Eugene and Helen Ruth Talbott

Helen R. Talbott, longtime resident of Montrose and the Western Slope, passed away in Fruita on Friday, May 9, 2014. She was 76.

The child of Ralph and Naomi Cowan, she was born in Boise, Idaho, and lived in several locations throughout her childhood. But Western Colorado was her home. Some of her fondest childhood memories stem from her time living with her grandparents near Telluride in Ames, Colo., where her grandfather operated the Ames Power Plant, the world’s first commercial alternating-current power plant.

She married D. Eugene Talbott in Castle Rock, Colo., in 1959. They shared a lifelong love of the outdoors and togetherness. With her at his side, he passed away suddenly in 2001.

She was a devoted mother, loving wife, cherished friend and consummate grower of African violets. She worked as a bookkeeper and accountant, including at Connors Drilling in Montrose and Delta-Montrose Electric Association.

She is survived by son Clinton Talbott, daughter-in-law Melinda Marquis, and brothers Orion Cowan and Marvin Cowan.

She is preceded in death by her parents, her husband, “Gene,” her daughter, LaRena, and her baby boy.

A graveside remembrance is scheduled for 3 p.m. Friday, May 16, 2014, at Grandview Cemetery in Montrose (map).

Cynthia Lynn Owens – 1/27/59-5/1/14

Cindy Owens Beier
Cynthia Lynn Owens

Cynthia Lynn Owens, aged 55, died peacefully in her sleep on May 1, 2014 at her townhome in Erie of natural causes. Cindy was born January 27, 1959, in Gary, Indiana, the daughter of Richard and Dorothy Beier, now of Frederick, Colorado.

Cindy moved to Boulder, Colorado in 1972 with her parents, brother and sister. In 1983, Cynthia Beier married Thomas Owens, with whom she had two children, which they jointly raised following divorce.

Cindy thoroughly enjoyed socializing with friends and vacationing with her parents in Arizona. She read extensively, especially true crime and suspense novels. She was a huge Broncos fan and an even bigger fan of Pink Floyd. She loved her cats and spending time with her daughter Patty and Patty’s friends. She enjoyed hosting big meals, parties and family gatherings, and talking with her cousin Debbie on the phone every week. Cindy liked to play video poker, shoot pool, sing karaoke, smoke cigarettes and drink Budweiser. She was a devoted mother, daughter, sister, aunt and a loyal friend.

She attended Fairview High School in Boulder, Colorado in the 1970’s, obtained her G.E.D. and studied at Front Range Community College.

She was a key part of her father’s floor covering business before he retired. Following that, she started her own carpet and tile business that she ran for several years before moving to the Home Depot Pro-Desk. Throughout her career, contractors and customers sought her expert advice on home remodeling and decorating projects.

Cindy is survived by her daughter (Patty Ann (Owens) Stewart), her parents (Dick and Dee), her older brother (Marty), her younger sister (Jodi), several beloved nephews and nieces, and other relatives and close friends. Her son, J.D. Owens pre-deceased her but was always close to her heart.

There will be a private viewing for immediate family members and close friends at the Crist Mortuary in Boulder, Colorado. A public memorial to celebrate her life will be held at 4:00 p.m. on May 7, 2014 at the same location. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be sent in her name to the Humane Society of Boulder Valley and the Association for Suicide Prevention.

Hallelujah

Leonard Cohen Hallelujah ..
Lyrics:
“Now I’ve heard there was a secret chord
That David played, and it pleased the Lord
But you don’t really care for music, do you?
It goes like this
The fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Your faith was strong but you needed proof
You saw her bathing on the roof
Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you
She tied you
To a kitchen chair
She broke your throne, and she cut your hair
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

You say I took the name in vain
I don’t even know the name
But if I did, well really, what’s it to you?
There’s a blaze of light
In every word
It doesn’t matter which you heard
The holy or the broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

I did my best, it wasn’t much
I couldn’t feel, so I tried to touch
I’ve told the truth, I didn’t come to fool you
And even though
It all went wrong
I’ll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
…”

Service for Major Lee

Note: all images click to enlarge – click ‘x’ in top right corner to close.

IMG_1538B&W
Major Lee and his human Anthony Lee

May 1998 –– 17 August 2013

Memorial service: 2:00, Sunday 6 October 2013

Chapel of the Holy Family, St John’s Episcopal Church

1419 Pine Street, Boulder, Colorado

Major Lee
Major Lee

When I started working on this service, I was using as a guide the service I put together for Rumple in November 2003, which had been compiled mostly from resources furnished by the Franciscans because at that time the Episcopalians were somewhat slow in their development of such resources.  In the intervening ten years, I am pleased to say, the Episcopalians have caught up with and in some sense passed the Franciscans in this regard; some of the Franciscan material is now devoted rather specifically to St Francis himself and not to animals as such.  Thus, this service is a patchwork of quotes or ideas borrowed from the Franciscans, from a liturgy created by an Episcopal priest in Georgia, from an “authorized rite” from the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music, and from the BCP.  I will preface it with an observation from the Franciscans which is not quite a prayer and is therefore rather difficult to fit into the liturgy:

The animals of God’s creation inhabit the skies, the earth, and the sea.  They share in the fortunes of human existence and have a part in human life.  God, who confers his gifts on all living things, has often used the service of animals or made them symbolic reminders of the gifts of salvation.  Animals were saved from the Flood and afterwards made a part of the covenant with Noah.  The Paschal Lamb brings to mind the Passover sacrifice and the deliverance from the bondage of Egypt; a giant fish saved Noah, and ravens brought bread to Elijah.  Animals were included in the repentance enjoined on humans, and animals share in Christ’s redemption of all God’s creation.

We therefore thank God for blessing us with the companionship of animals in this life, and trust that in his mercy and wisdom  he will bring them as well as us to that place where we may together praise and glorify him throughout all ages.

Memorial service for Major Lee

Officiant

None of us has life in himself,
and none of us becomes his own master when he dies.
For if we have life, we are alive in the Lord,
and if we die, we die in the Lord.
So, then, whether we live or die,
We are the Lord’s possession.

Book of Common Prayer 491

Hymn #645 St Columba

  1. The King of love my shepherd is, whose goodness faileth never;
    I nothing lack if I am his, and he is mine for ever.
  2. Where streams of living water flow, my ransomed soul he leadeth.
    And where the verdant pastures grow, with food celestial feedeth.
  3. Perverse and foolish oft I strayed, but yet in love he sought me,
    And on his shoulder gently laid, and home, rejoicing, brought me.
  4. In death’s dark vale I fear no ill with thee, dear Lord, beside me;
    Thy rod and staff my comfort still, thy cross before to guide me.
  5. Thou spread’st a table in my sight; thy unction grace bestoweth;
    And oh, what transport of delight from thy pure chalice floweth.
  6. And so, through all the length of days, thy goodness faileth never;
    Good Shepherd, may I sing thy praise within the house for ever,

Paraphrase of Psalm 23 by Henry Williams Baker (1821-1877)

Collect for the Feast of St Francis

 Major Lee
Major Lee

Most high, omnipotent, good Lord: Grant unto your people grace to renounce gladly the vanities of the world; that, following the example of blessed Francis, we may for love of you delight in your whole creation with perfectness of joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit. one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.

Reader    A reading from the twelfth chapter of the Book of Job.

7 Ask of the animals, and they will teach you;

the birds of the air, and they will tell you.

  Ask the plants of the earth. and they will teach you;

and the fish of the sea will declare to you.

  Who amongst all these does not know

that the hand of the LORD has done this?

  In his hand is the life if every living thing

and the breath of every human being.

  The word of the Lord.

People    Thanks be to God.

Canticle 12 – A Song of Creation (Benedicite, omnia opera Domini) Book of Common Prayer 89, alt.

Let the earth glorify the Lord, *

  praise him and highly exalt him for ever.

Glorify the Lord, O mountains and hills, and all that grows upon the earth, *

  praise him and highly exalt him for ever.

Glorify the Lord, O springs of water, seas and streams, *

  O whales and all that move in the waters,

All birds of the air, glorify the Lord, *

  praise him and highly exalt him for ever.

Glorify the Lord, O beasts of the wild, *

  and all you flocks and herds [and all you dogs and cats],

O men and women everywhere, glorify the Lord, *

  praise him and highly exalt him for ever.

Reader    A reading from Paul’s letter to the Christians in Rome, in the eighth chapter.

19   The creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God; for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.  We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies.

  The word of the Lord.

People    Thanks be to God.

Prayer of St Francis (“Make me a channel of your peace”)

Celebrant  The Holy Gospel of our  Lord Jesus Christ according to John.

People    Glory to you, Lord Christ.

14:1   Jesus said: “Do not let your hearts be troubled.  In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places.  If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also.”

  The Gospel of the Lord.

People    Praise to you, Lord Christ.

Homily – Rev. Susan Springer

Offertory – “To Canaan’s land I’m on my way” – Cara McMillan & Tony Lee

  “What wondrous love is this” (v. 2 by McMillan; congregation join in on #439, v. 3)

Prayers of the People   Standing Commission on Liturgy & Music

O God, your blessed Son, Jesus, told us that not even one tiny sparrow is forgotten in your sight.  Strengthen our confidence in your love for all your creatures; in your goodness,

  Blessed Creator, hear our prayer.

Loving God, you brought this beloved animal into the life of Tony and all his friends, to share kindness, joy, and faithful companionship.  Receive our thanks and praise for the community between your animals and your people, and all the ways in which we bless each other’s lives; in your goodness,

  Blessed Creator, hear our prayer.

Gracious God, you have given us the blessing and responsibility of caring for animals.  If in any way   we have failed in that responsibility, we ask for your pardon and trust in your mercy; in your goodness,

  Blessed Creator, hear our prayer.

Various readers      

Most high, omnipotent, good Lord, we remember before you today our brother Major.  We thank you for giving him to us, his family and friends, to know and to love as a companion on our earthly pilgrimage.

May the love and faith and loyalty and trust he showed for us in his life be to us an example of the love and faith and loyalty and trust that we may show for you.  In your compassion, console us who mourn.  Give us faith to see in death the gate of eternal life, so that in quiet confidence we may continue our course on earth, until, by your call, we are united with those of all species who have gone before; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen. BCP 493, alt.

Almighty God, with whom live the spirits of your creatures who die innocent of sin as well as those who die in the Lord: We give you hearty thanks for the good example of your servant Major, who, having finished his life in peace, now finds rest and refreshment.  May we, with all who have died in harmony with your ways, have perfect fulfillment and bliss in your eternal glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.   BCP 503, alt.

God of grace and glory, we remember before you today our beloved companion Major.  We thank you for giving him to us to be a source of abundant love, affection, and joy.  In your compassion, comfort us who grieve.  Give us faith to commit this beloved creature of your own making to your care, for you live and reign for ever and ever.  Amen.    Standing Commission on Liturgy & Music

Almighty God, your Son taught us that though five sparrows could be bought for two pennies, they are not forgotten before you.  We thank you for Major, and for the companionship he offered to Tony and many others.  And we thank you for all the pets who share our homes and our lives.  We ask for comfort for this community in their loss, knowing that you grieve with them, for you care for all of your creation as you care for us.  May we live more peacefully because of today, and come at last, in the fellowship of all your people, to the heaven where we long to be; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

   Rev. Frank Logue, King of Peace Episcopal Church

Eucharistic Prayer C – BCP 369

The Lord’s Prayer – BCP 364

Communion – “Into paradise may the angels lead you” (Hymn #354) – Pick-up choir

Closing prayer Standing Commission on Liturgy & Music

God of creation, through your great mercy you renew us:

Send us now back to the love and labor of this day

with joy and compassion in our hearts;

Through Jesus Christ our Savior.  Amen.

Officiant

All life is interwoven.

People    All life is a gift from God.

Officiant Let us bless the Lord.

People    Thanks be to God.

Hymn #400 Lasst uns erfreuen

1 All creatures of our God and King, lift up your voices, let us sing:

  Alleluia, alleluia!

  Bright burning sun with golden beams, pale silver moon that gently gleams,

  Refrain   O praise him, O praise him, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!

2 Great rushing winds and breezes soft, you clouds that ride the heavens aloft,

  O praise him, Alleluia!

  Fair rising morn, with praise rejoice; stars, nightly shining, find a voice: Refrain

3 Swift flowing water, pure and clear, make music for your Lord to hear:

  Alleluia, alleluia!

  Fire, so intense and fiercely bright, you give to us both warmth and light. Refrain

4 Dear mother Earth, you day by day unfold your blessings on our way;

  O praise him, Alleluia!

  All flowers and fruits than in you grow, let them his glory also show: Refrain

5 All you with mercy in your heart, forgiving others, take your part;

  O sing now: Alleluia!

  All you that pain and sorrow bear, praise God, and cast on him your care: Refrain

6 And even you, most gentle death, waiting to hush our final breath,

  O praise him, Alleluia!

  You lead back home the child of God, for Christ our Lord that way has trod. Refrain

7 Let all things their creator bless, and worship him in humbleness;

  O praise him, Alleluia!

  Praise God the Father, God the Son, and praise the Spirit, Three in One: Refrain

St Francis of Assisi (1182-1226); tr. William H. Draper, alt.

 

A wake will follow immediately at the home of Charlie & Kathe Lujan, 1999 Clipper Drive, Lafayette; follow others to get there, or ask them for directions.  (Dog-owners, note that they don’t have a fenced yard.  Cat-allergists, note that they do have cats.)

Memorial donations may be sent to the Humane Society of Boulder Valley, or to VCA All Pets Animal Hospital, 805 S. Public Road, Lafayette 80026.

If I have any belief about immortality, it is that certain dogs I have known will go to heaven, and very, very few persons.

– James Thurber

 Major Lee
Major Lee
all photos: Taryn Taylor, 6 August 2013

Martha Maglocci 90th

My aunt Martha Maglocci turned 90 years old this past Sunday – Tammi and I were able to attend. My photos and an audio clip are included. Please leave comments!

Happy Birthday aunt Martha! I love you!

[sc_embed_player fileurl=”http://www.macwebguru.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/AuntMarthaRemembersPreviousBirthdays.mp3″] – Click this button to hear Martha speaking to her friends and family, telling about her previous birthdays. It’s LOUD so beware!

Click the thumbnails to enlarge. Note that these images are scaled down for web viewing. The full-resolution versions are in my Flickr account – you can also order prints online if you set up a free user account. If you have photos you’d like to add to my Flickr set, let me know and I’ll get you credentials so you can upload em! For those that leave comments below – note, they’ll be reviewed before appearing – depends on how busy I am.

LingrowFarmsDiningRoom DSC_0037 DSC_0036 DSC_0035 DSC_0034 DSC_0033 DSC_0032 DSC_0031 DSC_0030 DSC_0029 DSC_0028 DSC_0022 DSC_0015 DSC_0014 DSC_0010-WrayKidsAndSpouses DSC_0008-cake DSC_0004-cake DSC_0002-GeorgeAndMabelWray

 

Not enough soap on earth

I’ve been archiving a complete copy of some of the worst hate-blogging in Longmont – Stephanie Baum’s site ‘By the People and For the People’ for one.

Apparently the ‘has-been mayor‘s wife is trying to clean up her image: I got this today:


Date: April 1, 2013

Indra’s Net, Inc.
5435 Airport Blvd.
Suite 100
Boulder, CO 80301

To Whom It May Concern,

This letter is a Notice of Infringement as authorized in 512(c) of the U.S. Copyright Law under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). I wish to report an instance of Copyright Infringement. The infringing material appears on the Service for which you are the designated agent.

1. The copyrighted material, which I contend belongs to me and appears illegally on the Service, is the following:
My former blog titled, By The People and For the People written by Stephanie Baum, posted between December 2009 and December 2011 at http://www.takebacklongmont.com/

2. The unauthorized material appears at the website address:
http://www.macwebguru.com/blog/Archive_ByThePeopleAndFORThePeople.txt

3. My contact information is as follows:
Stephanie Baum
418 Flicker Avenue, Longmont, CO 80501
303-946-9507
skbaum1@comcast.net

4. I have a good faith belief that use of the copyrighted materials as described above is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law.

5. I swear, under penalty of perjury, that the information in the notification is accurate and that I am the copyright owner or am authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.

Stephanie K. Baum
*****

————————————–

This makes me laugh out loud.

I posted the archive of her nasty little political blog in 2009 – over four years ago – and she’s finally upset about it now? I wonder if it has anything to do with the multiple take-down orders I’ve had to do for things stolen from my personal site, my political blog, my FACEBOOK page…

So, rather than just let this wonderful example of how deep her hate for the Democratic party and anything Progressive goes be forgotten, I’ve made a list of some excerpts from her blog just for the record:


How Hard is it to Fill Out a Mail In Ballot?
By the People and FOR the People 12/12/07 10:33 AM Stephanie Baum
Sometimes I wonder, considering the election this past November where only 41% of registered voters took the time to fill out a ballot. FORTY ONE PERCENT! I truly don’t get it? It can’t even be the cost of a stamp that kept people from voting because the ballots could be dropped off. So why? Complacency. Or perhaps ignorance? Either way, it is because of people choosing to ignore their right (or as I feel, their duty) to vote that has landed our city where it is right now.

If you are like me, and love this city, and are horrified by the thought of a small, extreme group determining the economic future of our city, I implore you to VOTE in January for Gabe Santos, and send a message to the council that they caught us sleeping one time, but that it won’t ever happen again.
—–
Oh no, she’s not ‘partisan’ at all. *cough* -MDW


We Have an Ice Rink…and a Freeze on Hiring
By the People and FOR the People 12/13/07 7:47 PM Stephanie Baum
Last I looked, there were job postings on the City of Longmont website for Seasonal Ice Rink Workers. The city council voted to keep the rink, but in light of budget constraints, enacted a hiring freeze. Wouldn’t that mean that the city infact can’t hire the workers to run the ice rink? Am I missing something here?
—-
Take away the kids ice rink? I think that’s pretty damn heartless.


“One Nation…(pause…pause)…Indivisible, With Libery and Justice for All”
By the People and FOR the People 1/11/08 9:43 AM Stephanie Baum

When Richard Juday recites the Pledge of Allegiance, why does he omit the words “under God?” Well, Atheists don’t believe in God so I guess when they pledge allegiance to their flag, they omit those words to be true to their ideals – that’s my best guess anyway.
—-
Hm. Not very tolerant of others beliefs. Not exactly the attitude one would expect from a ‘First LADY’.


The Final Stretch…
By the People and FOR the People 1/22/08 10:03 AM Stephanie Baum
…A bloc who, while yes, is all Democrat, they are more than that – they are extreme left-wing, zero-growth, pro-big government group that their more centrist fellow party members have also come to fear. This vote isn’t about Democrat versus Republican, it IS about Radical Left-Wing versus the rest of us. Hopefully our message will be heard loud and clear this time.
—-
Anyone that opposes the GOP is ‘radical left-wing’ – this is about as hard-core partisan as you can get. Clearly, if you’re a Democrat in Longmont Ms. Baum considers you ‘radical left-wing’ and you don’t deserve representation on council. Again, not very ‘First Lady’-like.


The 4-Way Test
By the People and FOR the People 1/27/08 9:52 AM Stephanie Baum

As a former Rotarian, I try and live my life by the 4-Way Test. The 4-Way Test is a way to apply ethics and integrity to everything you think, say and do. It is a measure by which all Rotarians should strive to conduct their lives socially and in business.

Other ares of the 4-Way Test have been a struggle for me this campaign season. Being fair, building goodwill and being beneficial to all have tested me. I feel I’ve tried to be fair, but in an election, shedding light on the shortcomings of one candidate probably wouldn’t be considered being fair and certainly isn’t beneficial to them. But I guess I justify that by needing to help inform the citizens of our town so that they can make an educated decision of who to vote for. I think what I write is beneficial to the masses and I think it’s only fair to everyone to know the facts.
—-
Which is exactly why this material is being archived, so the people of Longmont can see how Ms. Baum conducts herself during a campaign. Odd that she’d want this removed from the web. Maybe if she really understood transparency and honesty it would be easier for her.


A New Chapter Starts…
By the People and FOR the People 1/30/08 1:36 PM Stephanie Baum
I’ve learned that anonymity can bring out the best and worst in people. Sometimes people are afraid to speak up and give praise for fear of retribution from employers, friends or family (which is fine, I can totally understand that) and the only way they feel free to express their thanks and support is by remaining anonymous. Yet others are compelled to spew hatred and say things they would never dare say in person but feel free to do so when they can’t be identified (similar to a jihadist executioner wearing a hood?)
—-
I find this laugh-out-loud funny. Especially since Ms. Baum is still guarding the identity of the person behind LongmontReport, one of the nastiest anonymous smear-blogs (which also supported Gabe Santos) Longmont has ever seen.


Here’s my last thought on this sad little tale: If it was so awful for Richard Juday to remove things from his blog before the election:

sb_longmont_city_council_mtg_1Changes to Juday’s Website…
By the People and FOR the People 1/10/08 10:46 AM Stephanie Baum
I see today that 2 days after I posted my blog regarding Richard Juday’s website, on which he posted his plans for IGAs to fight the “Big Box” retailers, he made changes to his site to remove his strategies for implementing the sales tax redistribution. My only guess is that he (or one of his followers) has been keeping tabs on my blog and after reading how ludicrous his ideas were, he changed his website and removed the specifics of his plans. I love it! Although I kind of wish he left it up there for everyone to see how “insightful” Juday is!


Then why, oh WHY Ms. Baum are you so eager to scrub your own remarks from the web?

Don’t you want people to see how ‘insightful‘ you were?

Or are you just trying to scrub off the image of a harpy in high heels?

You can try to clean up your badly-tarnished public image all you want – there’s not enough soap in the world to make people forget that face.

Spirit Abides

This is a poetic eulogy for my mother,  Shirley Jean Wray (1927-2001). It was printed on the back of the program for my youngest sister Paula’s wedding.

One of the decorative elements of the wedding was violets in many places, a tribute to our mother. I found it tremendously touching.

I miss you mom.

Spirit Abides

Though absent in body,
a spirit abides
we’ve only to summon –
it’s there at our side

Fire and steel
and a vessel of clay
brought forth a family
known proudly as Wray

But furnaces falter
and day turns to night
what once was so brilliant
is now gone from sight

So if there’s no answer
when her name is read,
let blossoms of violet
stand now in her stead

For Shirley Jean Wray
Beloved Mother

MDW 3/03

Mary Frances Gregory 2/16/1944 – 12/2/2012

Mary Frances Gregory
Mary Frances Gregory

Mary Frances Gregory, aged 68, of Hygiene, CO, beloved mother of Amy and her husband Bob, grandmother of Jacob and aunt of Meghan and Jeremy departed for heaven (we hope) on Sunday December 2, 2012 after a courageous battle with breast cancer, life, obesity and rude people.

She was born February 16, 1944 to Helen Elizabeth Lathrup Gregory and Virgil Littleton Gregory at Longmont United Hospital, then located at the corner of 4th and Coffman Streets. In attendance at her birth was Dr. John Andrew, who told her mother to give the baby oatmeal strained through a cheesecloth in lieu of mother’s milk. As a result, Mary developed a strong bond with oatmeal. At the time of her birth, her father, Virgil was milking the cows at the family farm north of Longmont. Her Mother, was hysterical with the pain of both childbirth, and being slapped about by a sadistic nurse.

Mary attended Lincoln Elementary through ½ year of Kindergarten. Upon dropping out of Kindergarten she later attended Chapman Elementary School, Longmont High School, the University of Colorado and Front Range Community College, all for a total of twenty plus years of education. In her younger years, she was employed as a bean bug exterminator on the family farm, and as a maid at the Zick Hotel in Grand Lake, CO. After college, she gained employment at the now defunct Washington Daily News in Washington, D.C. and numerous other jobs through the 70’s and 80’s, including a stint with this very publication delivering papers for the Times-Call. In 1987, she finally found a worthwhile career working with students as a graduate advisor at the University of Colorado. She was a member of the St. Vrain Ski and Surfing Society, The Longmont Christian Singles, Liberty Hall Grange, Hygiene United Methodist Church, and Longs Peak United Methodist Church. She was the recipient of C.U.’s outstanding graduate advisor award, as well as the University’s Student Choice Award. She won a state art contest during her junior year at Longmont High School and a blue ribbon in fourth grade track and field. After retiring from the University in 2009, she enjoyed spending quiet days at home. She was an artist and musician who enjoyed singing in the church choir, playing piano and listening to her daughter sing and play the violin. She adored her daughter, Amy, and grandson Jacob. She was crazy about flowers, but always frustrated that her garden consisted of one crummy patch of flowers about the size of a bread box.

Mary is preceded in death by her Parents Helen and Virgil, her Brother James Edward Gregory, her Granddaughter Adeline Elizabeth Miner, and many beloved pets. She is survived by her Daughter Amy Kathryn Mann, her Grandson Jacob Dalton Marsing, her son-in-law Robert Joseph Miner, her former son-in-law, Darin Kent Marsing, her sister-in-law Julia Caroline Gregory, niece Meghan Elizabeth Gregory, nephew Jeremy Scott Gregory, great niece Gabriel Lauren Campbell-Gregory, and many close friends and acquaintances that filled her life with joy and laughter. In particular, she wishes to acknowledge, upon her demise, the friendship and many kindnesses of the staff of Longs Peak United Methodist Church; and the staff and students of the Political Science Department, C.U., Boulder.

A celebration of Mary’s life will be held at 11:00am on Friday December, 7th at Longs Peak United Methodist Church, 1421 Elmhurst Dr. Longmont, CO. Cremation has been entrusted to the good folks at Howe Mortuary and crematorium. Contributions in Mary’s memory may be given to the Angel Fund of the Longs Peak United Methodist Church, or the Greenwood Wildlife Refuge. This obituary was written by Mary herself.

Puns 10-24-12

How does Moses make his tea? Hebrews it.

Venison for dinner again? Oh deer!

A cartoonist was found dead in his home. Details are sketchy.

I used to be a banker, but then I lost interest.

Haunted French pancakes give me the crêpes.

England has no kidney bank, but it does have a Liverpool.

I tried to catch some fog, but I mist.

They told me I had type-A blood, but it was a Type-O.

I changed my iPod’s name to Titanic. It’s syncing now.

Jokes about German sausage are the wurst.

I know a guy who’s addicted to brake fluid, but he says he can stop any time.

I stayed up all night to see where the sun went, and then it dawned on me.

This girl said she recognized me from the vegetarian club, but I’d never met herbivore.

When chemists die, they barium.

I’m reading a book about anti-gravity. I just can’t put it down.

I did a theatrical performance about puns. It was a play on words.

PMS jokes aren’t funny; period…

Why were the Indians here first? They had reservations.

We’re going on a class trip to the Coca-Cola factory. I hope there’s no pop quiz.

I didn’t like my beard at first. Then it grew on me.

Did you hear about the cross-eyed teacher who lost her job because she couldn’t control her pupils?

When you get a bladder infection urine trouble.

Broken pencils are pointless.

What do you call a dinosaur with an extensive vocabulary? A thesaurus.

I dropped out of communism class because of lousy Marx.

All the toilets in New York’s police stations have been stolen. The police have nothing to go on.

I got a job at a bakery because I kneaded dough.

Velcro – what a rip off!

Basics of HTML

HTML stands for ‘HyperText Markup Language’ and it’s the lingua franca of the web. Nearly every page you’ve ever seen on the web is crafted from HTML code, excepting those built using Flash but even those are delivered inside an HTML shell.

Many users on the web have been creating blogs using tools like WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc. and have been spared learning HTML by great graphic user interfaces like TinyMCE. However, to really master your content, you need to understand what’s happening ‘under the sheets’ so that you can make adjustments and add special formatting to set your work apart.

HTML is over twenty years old and is currently transitioning from version 4 to 5. For the purposes of this article I’ll only be discussing HTML 4 and will offer some hints about HTML 5 and its improvements.

Apple’s Hypercard program in 1980 set the stage for the invention of HTML but it was lacking in the ability to link to files on other computers. The web was just getting off the ground at that point and HTML’s creation is tied directly to the inventions that form the foundations of the web we know and rely on today.

Tim Berners-Lee, 2005

Tim Berners-Lee, starting with SGML (Standard Generalized Mark-up Language), devised a language that was independent of the tool that viewed it. The inherent simplicity of HTML is what made it such a hit and why it was adopted so swiftly and widely. One of the new elements Berners-Lee devised was the anchor tag – the ‘link’ functionality that allowed authors to ‘hyperlink’ to other pages. This was the springboard to the future.

He defined a set of ‘tags’ that when placed into standard ASCII text gave commands to rendering programs (browsers) to generate headers, paragraphs, bulleted and numbered lists, tables, etc. Here’s the basic tags that users really need to know (loosely organized by function):

h1 – 6 Headers. H1 largest. Secondary function – highlight information for Search Engine Optimization.
p Paragraph. Line height, leading and trailing margins can be assigned using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
ul (and li) Unordered List. Bulleted lists for arbitrarily-ordered items.
ol (and li) Ordered List. Numbered lists for sequentially-organized items. Numerous numbering schemes available including lettered and roman numerals.
blockquote Block quote. Indentation for quotes or highlighted material.
br Line break. Carriage return – no extra space as in end of paragraph. Used to force content onto new line. Also can have special uses with CSS.
a Anchor. Linked item – can be text or image. JavaScript commands can also be triggered using this block element. Anchors are often combined with unordered lists and CSS formatting to create navigation structures. Anchors can also point to specific locations within a page.
div Division. A segment of a document. Divs can be given specific ids and used to apply visual formatting from CSS. These replaced tables in design methodology.
hr Horizontal rule. A non-graphic line. Thickness and width can be set.
i Italic. Current standard calls for ’em’ for ’emphasis.’
b Bold. Current standard calls for ‘strong.’
img Image. Images can be sized and made clickable to display a larger image (thumbnails). Images can also be links to other pages.
pre Allows preformatted text to be displayed as-is (for example for code segments or free-form poetry)
table (and th and td) Table. Tabulated (rows and columns) data. Table headers can be called out with th tags and table data (cells) make up the bulk of a table. In early years of web design tables were used to structure pages. This has been supplanted by CSS-based design using divs.
span Span from arbitrary location to location. Used to apply custom formatting inline.
sub / sup Subscript and Superscript. For inserting references.

I’ve purposely omitted tags for creating forms since there’s many tools for creating them and even a brief discussion of them is prohibitive here. Suffice to say forms open a whole new door into interactivity and require skills not usually considered ‘basic.’

So, as you can see, the ‘rock bottom’ basics of HTML are indeed very basic. The artistry comes in how you combine the elements. Also, the serious bang comes from Cascading Style Sheets – but that’s another article!

Cheers!

The Frozen Man

Lyrics by James Taylor

The Frozen Man

(James Taylor)

Last thing I remember is the freezing cold
Water reaching up just to swallow me whole
Ice in the rigging and howling wind
Shock to my body as we tumbled in
Then my brothers and the others are lost at sea
I alone am returned to tell thee
Hidden in ice for a century
To walk the world again
Lord have mercy on the frozen man

Next words that were spoken to me
Nurse asked me what my name might be
She was all in white at the foot of my bed
I said angel of mercy I’m alive or am I dead
My name is William James McPhee
I was born in 1843
Raised in Liverpool by the sea
But that ain’t who I am
Lord have mercy on the frozen man

It took a lot of money to start my heart
To peg my leg and to buy my eye
The newspapers call me the state of the art
And the children, when they see me, cry
I thought it would be nice just to visit my grave
See what kind of tombstone I might have
I saw my wife and my daughter and it seemed so strange
Both of them dead and gone from extreme old age
See here, when I die make sure I’m gone
Don’t leave ’em nothing to work on
You can raise your arm, you can wiggle your hand
And you can wave goodbye to the frozen man

I know what it means to freeze to death
To lose a little life with every breath
To say goodbye to life on earth
To come around again
Lord have mercy on the frozen man
Lord have mercy on the frozen man

On the Other Side

On the Other Side

On the other side, the sun always shines
No minutes, no hour, there’s no such thing as time
Where the streets are paved with gold and
you never grow old on the other side

On the other side, everybody sings
there’s miles and miles of flowers and lots of pretty things
Where the sky’s pearly blue and everything looks brand new
on the other side

Chorus 1
Well I’ve never been to heaven,
I didn’t know what it was like
But God let me have a glimpse,
in my dream last night
And I could see you smiling,
you were looking right at me
For the first time in a long time,
on your face I saw some peace
I knew everything was going to be all right,
on the other side,
on the other side.

On the other side, do you ever see me cry
Do you know how much I miss you,
wish I could have said good-bye
Just one more I love you,
oh am I really getting through on the other side?

Chorus 2
Well I’ve never been to heaven,
I didn’t know what it was like
But God let me have a glimpse,
in my dream last night
And I could hear you laughing,
you were looking right at me
For the first time in a long time,
on your face I saw some peace
I knew everything was going to be all right,
no more tears and no more sad good-byes,
on the other side
On the other side

I’ll see you on the other side.

 written by: Tommy Dunbar, Kyle Vincent; Lyrics © Bob-A-Lew Songs, Cohen and Cohen

Memorial for Scott Alan Hofferber

Scott Alan Hofferber April 24, 1965 - April 10, 2003
Scott Alan Hofferber April 24, 1965 – April 10, 2003

Scott Alan Hofferber, 38, of Littleton, Colorado, suddenly and unexpectedly went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Thursday, April 10, 2003.

Scott was born April 24, 1965 in Grand Junction, Colorado and moved to Fort Collins with his family in 1968. Scott was a 1982 graduate from Rocky Mountain High School, Fort Collins, CO, and went on to continue his education at Aims Community College, Greeley, CO graduating in 1984 with an AA in Small Business Management. Scott was born with a very serious congenital heart defect; doctors said he would not survive past the age of four or five years of age. He had several close calls but proved the doctors wrong.

Scott truly was a miracle.

Scott married Tammi J. Lockman in March of 1986 and was blessed with four beautiful children, three sons and one daughter. He was a loving husband and father. He was very involved with every aspect of his children’s lives and enjoyed every minute he had with them. His wife and children were his life.

Scott was a member of Englewood First Assembly of God in Englewood, Colorado. He was very involved in the church and a leader of Royal Rangers Program.

Scott was Manager at Crown Trophy in Littleton, CO. Scott loved to camp and be outside as well as riding horses – his latest passion was watching NASCAR. Go #24!!

Scott is survived by his wife, Tammi, four children, Zachary 16, Jeffrey 15, Skyler 13 and Kylie-Jeanne 10; his parents George “Andy” and Maryann Hofferber and a brother, Steve of Fort Collins; a sister, Kimberly of Rio Ranch, NM; and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews.

Services will be held Wednesday, April 16, 2003, 11 a.m. at Timberline Church 2908 Timberline Rd., Fort Collins, Colorado with interment at Grandview Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Scott A. Hofferber Family Fund at the Colorado Business Bank of Littleton, Colorado. Donations may also be made at Allnutt Funeral Home in Fort Collins, Colorado.


I had the good fortune to meet Scott’s widow Tammi eight years after his death. Even at that huge distance of time I could feel what a good man he must have been. I wish I could have met him but I’m grateful that his legacy has come to me to preserve and protect. It’s an honor to be associated with the Hofferber family. Rest in peace Scott, you are fondly remembered and greatly missed. – MDW

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Claire Helwege Sidle – May 27, 1922 — January 8, 2012

Claire Helwege Sidle May 27, 1922 -- January 8, 2012
Claire Helwege Sidle May 27, 1922 — January 8, 2012

When you are sorrowful look again in
your heart, and you shall see that in truth
you are weeping for that which has been
your delight.
– Kahlil Gibran

~ Program ~
Music for gathering ~ Carolyn Kuban, George Banks
Opening Words ~ Lydia Ferrante-Roseberry
Meditation from Thaïs (Jules Massenet)
Annamarie Koracson, David Greene
Reflections on Claire ~ Lydia Ferrante-
Roseberry
Oblivion (Astor Piazolla)
Peter Ewing, Margaret Smith, David Greene
Jewel Lake (Bill Douglas)
Bruce Orr, Marcia Pasquer
Andante from Suite #2 (Max Reger)
Adwyn Lim on viola that Claire created
Reflections on Claire ~ Lydia Ferrante-
Roseberry
Sonata for clarinet and piano, op. 167 Mvmt #3
(Camille Saint-Saens)
Mary Jungerman, Marcia Pasquer
Roumanian Folk Dance #4 (Bela Bartok)
Annamarie Karacson, David Greene
Sharing
I’ll Fly Away (Albert E. Brumley)
John Sidle
Closing Words ~ Lydia Ferrante-Roseberry
Music to be announced
Reception

Donations may be made to the Colorado Music Festival,
900 Baseline Rd. Boulder, CO 80302. There is also a box in
the back for this purpose.

I love you Mom

xx ooo


Claire Helwege Sidle Memorial

February 4, 2012

 

Music for gathering  Carolyn Kuban, George

Banks

 

Opening Words

 

We are gathered here this afternoon to honor the life of Claire Helwege Sidle, a friend, mother, grandmother, musician, artist, and lover of life.

We gather because we need to be together in a time like this.

Setting aside this sacred time to be together – to be in the physical company of each other’s love provides a reminder to us all that the journey through grief and recovery from this loss need not happen alone.  It is good to be together.

Though we gather in sadness at this loss, a justified sadness that will linger, let this also be a time for affirming the kind of person Claire was – smart, curious, talented, loving and generous.  And it is those parts of her spirit that drew us to her, and will remain with us now.
Each of you had different relationships with Claire.  Each of you will experience this loss in your own way.  Each of you will grieve this loss, and grieve you must. But you will also, over time, appreciate how memories, stories, perhaps a gesture or word you hear yourself saying, will remind you of Claire’s influence on your life.  This is the gift of immortality.

Today we are called not only to honor death, but also to affirm life – to affirm that your lives will continue, even in the face of the mystery of death.

Let this, then, be a time for sharing sorrow, yes, but also a time of lifting up the beauty of a life well-lived, and celebrating the many gifts that Claire has left, gifts that transcend even death.

And so it is that we have come together.

Because we need each other in empathy and consolation,

And because we need one another in courage and wisdom

To face this loss

To celebrate this life

And to show our love and support for those who knew Claire best, and loved her the most.

I light this chalice in honor of Claire, who found this beautiful vessel in the Southwest and created the base for it on behalf of this Fellowship.

Meditation from Tha’|’s (jules Massenet)  Annamarie Koracson, David Greene

Reflections on Claire  (Claire’s personal life –- via stories from Janet) Lydia Ferrante-

Roseberry

Claire’s life was full of stories, friends and music.  We are breaking up the remembrances of her life into two parts, including a time for sharing, and allowing for the music that she so loved to be interspersed.

Claire’s daughter, Janet, provided me with some of her remembrances, which I’ll be including in my course of my reflections.  I begin with Janet’s sketch of Claire’s life:

Claire Eleanor Helwege was born in Niagra Falls, NY May 27, 1922. She was an only child. Her parents, Walter and Martha Helwege, whom some of you might remember, moved a lot while she was growing up between Lansing, Madison and Milwaukee, WI and St. Louis.

In a letter to Rev. Catharine Harris, Claire wrote that she was inordinately close to her father, from whom her love of music and the arts derives.  In his later years, she wrote, he used to tell her, “Nobody or nothing makes you mad.  If you decide to be mad about something, it’s your choice.” She adopted that attitude, confessing that she didn’t always succeed.

Claire went to 7 different schools in her junior and high school years. She was on the swim team and played violin and viola in the orchestras.
Claire went to college in Los Angeles at UCLA, and ended up in Washington, DC, receiving her Bachelor’s degree in Home Economics from Georgetown University.

Her degree got her a job at the Edison Company, where she was a lighting designer and taught people how to light their kitchens and homes. She later used her knowledge when she designed the house she and Bill and Janet lived in, by using direct and indirect lighting in ways that were functional and also soothing to the eye.
Later, during WWII, she was a draftsman and wrote and illustrated the directions on how to build bombs (!). You can see some examples of her work in the displays and in the photo assembly.

Claire met Bill Sidle in Washington, DC and they were married in September of 1955.  Janet was born two years later. They had been married almost 46 years when Bill passed away in 2001.   Claire remained in the home that they built until she died, on January 8th of this year.

I share with you now some of Janet’s personal reflections about her mom:

I always thought my mother was amazing. She astounded me. She could do anything.
When I was young in the 60’s, she joined the Boulder Potter’s Guild and produced a plethora of pots, from vases to casserole dishes, coffee cups, to platters.
I also have memories of going to the Artists Series Concerts at Macky Auditorium every Tuesday night – EVERY Tuesday night!

I would sit on the floor and color in my coloring book on the seat and ask questions in my little high-pitched voice. I remember my mother smiling down at me from her seat with her finger to her lips, “shhhh”.  I could only talk during clapping.
When I was in high school, my mom was the “cool Mom”. Our house became the place for all my friends to come over and we all “lived” in the basement where we played Rock and Roll music, did our homework, and just relaxed after school. Our house was the place to be and she was so accommodating to all my friends that everybody called her “Mom”.
And when I was 18 and crazy and I wanted to hitchhike and hop trains to CA, she came up with idea that I should go on a REAL adventure, to Israel, and volunteer on a kibbutz. So my boyfriend and I went. And it opened up the world to me – and I thank her so much for that.

It also opened up the world to Mom and Dad. They hadn’t done much traveling before. My dad wasn’t really interested before that. But they went to Israel to visit us and also to visit the Levron’s , their Israeli friends who had spent some time here at the University.
Next thing I know, I’m in Oregon at University and she’s found a radical college for me to go to, where I can travel the world and get college credit. So I went.

I ended up in Kenya and lived there for a year and Mom and Dad again came to visit. I think all her ideas for me were actually to get my dad out of the country and give them an excuse to travel!
Then they really did travel the world: besides Israel and Kenya, they explored Alaska, Canada, Iceland, China, India, New Zealand, South America, Russia, down the Danube, and the fiords of Norway.
Mom’s last trip was in 2005, when she went to Costa Rica with her companion, Rita Cray, to visit me and my son Ian, who were spending the summer there. They saw the volcanoes, and stayed on the beach in tent-huts. Mom really enjoyed the trip.

Claire was proud of Janet’s son Ian for his accomplishments in school and his amazing gymnastic ability, which she saw several times on video.  She was always interested in what he was up to — always asked about him.

Claire was funny and spirited. She lived with a twinkle in her eye.  As an example, Janet recalls how her mom and her dad invented a word:

PRUB: When someone flatulated, instead of using the usual words we all know, we used the word PRUB, which is BURP spelled backwards!

She didn’t do anything “ok” or “half-way” – she was a perfectionist, so if it had her name attached to it, it became “precision art”. She could fix anything in the house, and often did, everything from a leaky toilet to sealing the deck.

Claire spent nights in the basement at her sewing machine until 3am, forgetting to eat or sleep;
She could do anything with her hands.

She even made her own viola, which will be played as the last piece in the following musical selections.

Music

Oblivion (Astor Piazolla)  Peter Ewing, Margaret Smith, David Greene

jewel Lake (Bill Douglas)  Bruce Orr, Marcia Pasquer

Andante from Suite #2 (Max Reger)

Adwyn Lim on viola that Claire created

Reflections on Claire  (public life – music, organizations, Fellowship) Lydia Ferrante-

Roseberry

Claire was very well connected here in Boulder, as is attested to by this turn-out today after the biggest storm of the season.

Janet recalls:
I remember there was hardly ever a time when we were out in Boulder together that we didn’t run into someone Mom knew. Everywhere we went we ran into someone she knew: concerts, the grocery store, the Middle Eastern restaurant….

Mom was a member of the BCIV, Boulder Community for International Visitors. One of her favorite stories was when we hosted a young priest from Spain for several months, Miguel de Lorenta, whose English was not quite perfect. One evening at dinner, after he had cleaned his plate, Mom asked if he would like more, and he said, “No, thank you, I’m all fed up”. (!)

Her connections to Boulder were largely through music: Columbine, Colorado Music Festival, Tacaks.

She was also a member of this Fellowship from its early years, joining in 1981.  She cared passionately about this group and nurtured its growth and development. She was on the search committee that eventually found this building in 2004.  And, as I mentioned before, Claire made this chalice we light every week.

It was Claire who suggested to Rev. Catharine Harris, the Fellowship’s former minister that Marcia Pasquer be considered as music coordinator for the Fellowship.  Marcia did become the music director and, with Claire’s help built a fine music program here at the Fellowship.

Marcia wrote this about Claire’s support:

She was supportive and helpful as I learned the in’s and out’s of the job.  Her vast knowledge of music and the musical tastes of the Fellowship congregants often saved me from getting into hot water!

She was always very interested in the choice of musical selections for each service, making sure that they were appropriate to the service theme and the enhancement of the message. Especially in the beginning years, I often shared my ideas with her and was appreciative of her suggestions.  She introduced me to many fine musicians and loved hearing us play for her in her home.  She was a good listener and often had sound advice.  The musicians, themselves, enjoyed the opportunity to “rehearse” for an appreciative audience!  We still recall fond memories of playing for Claire!

She also helped me struggle to “build” a choir.  For the handful of folks who were willing to give it a try, she offered her home as a “rehearsal room”!  Many years went by before we were finally able to make something “stick”, but Claire was never one to give up and was always there when I needed a slice of her courage.  She made a solid and wonderful dent in my life and will always be sitting on my shoulder.

Marcia was also part of a group formed by Claire that included Peter Ewing, Margaret Smith, Lindsey Calhoun, Greg Merrill. They would get together every Monday night at Claire’s house to play trios, quartets, quintets, depending on how many players they had. It was a standing event, every Monday night, with coffee or wine, dessert and conversation afterwards. Even when Claire could no longer play viola, the friends came to play at her house so she could listen and still be a part of the group.

And so we continue with music in honor of Claire.

MUSIC

Sonata for clarinet and piano, op. 167 Mvmt #3

(Camille Saint-Saens)  Mary Jungerman, Marcia Pasquer

Roumanian Folk Dance #4 (Bela Bartok)  Annamarie Karacson, David Greene

Sharing

It is in the sharing of memories that lives become immortal. I’ve shared some of the stories I’ve heard about Claire over the years, stories from Janet and some Fellowship memories.

Now it is time for you to share your stories as well.  If you would like to speak, please come forward to the microphone here below the pulpit.

(Sharing)

These are the stories of a life well lived, a life woven with joy and sadness, a life committed to both family and the community at large.

It is through these stories that Claire’s legacy lives on.

I’ll Fly Away  (Brumley)

John Sidle

Closing Words   ~ Lydia Ferrante-

Roseberry

Undergirding the loss is a deep sense of gratitude, for the beauty of Claire’s life, and the circle of people who have been connected to her these many years.

Janet has been filled with gratitude amidst the sadness of losing her mother.  She asked me to share some of it with you:

Janet is grateful to her workplace that for the last 2 ⅕ years, graciously allowed her to work every Thursday on her computer from her Mom’s dining room table, so that she was able to spend both Thursdays and Sundays with her mom for many years, watching old movies together while Janet worked, or just enjoying the time together.

Janet offers these other gratitude’s:

THANK YOUS:
All of Claire’s musician friends who came to play for her: Malena Boratgis, Carolyn Kuban, Peter Ewing, David Greene, Gigi Boratgis, Margaret Smith, Virginia  ???, and everyone she may have missed!

Emily & Ross Jacobson, Isabel Echenique,  her neighbors who always kept a good watch on the comings and goings in the house and who stopped by to visit and were always there to help out;

Malena Boratgis, who came and stayed with her many nights, keeping each other company, and who stopped by several times a week, just to say “hi”;

Oshala’s group of caregivers, who were there at the beginning of the caregiving and dealt with Mom firing someone every few weeks; I think she fired about 20 people in all!

Alice Mosdell, who was willing to go out to the garage with Mom and help paint the scratches in the bumper of the car with a Q-Tip;

Vikky Krapu, who spent hours with her looking at slides my dad took from all over the world and reminiscing about their trips;

Brooke Biglow, who helped her stay young and interested with new books and movies and was there ‘til the end;

Pam Aamodt, who really understood what was going on with Mom, could handle her ups and downs, and has helped me maintain my sanity for the past couple of years;

Clay Finch, Pam’s husband (but we call him Mom’s boyfriend) whom she was very fond of and who often kept her company and could always make her laugh;

And Rita Cray. Who stuck it out for 11 years, paid Mom’s bills, got her taxes ready, kept track of everything from medication to doctor’s visits to whatever needed to be done, repaired her house, repotted plants, and treated it like it was her own home and her own mother. One of the most important things I’ll always remember was, when Mom and I were clashing about how things should be done, Rita said, “When that happens to us, I always try to remember that it’s not about me, it’s about her”.  When she said that, I was able to let go of my Ego and let be. That wisdom was one of the things that allowed my Mom and me to enjoy our last few years together.

Also, thanks to Boulder Hospice: Tyyne, Amy, and Peggy for helping keep her comfortable and keep her dignity in the days before she passed on.

Claire had a thing about turtles and collected them from all over the world. Her collection of turtles and her pottery are out in the foyer. Janet invites you to take a turtle or a piece of pottery to help keep her in your heart. This way her memory will be dispersed among those that admired and loved her. So please feel free to take the one that speaks to you.

Amidst the gratitude, is also the sorrow saying good-bye to the person of Claire Helwege Sidle, but not her spirit, nor her accomplishments. Those live on in our lives and are passed on through the generations.

And, now, as we prepare to end our formal time together, let us remember again those for whom this loss is greatest:  for Janet Thomas, Claire’s daughter, her son Ian, and all the close friends and family gathered here today.

May they be granted the strength they need to bear the loss, the wisdom to find deeper meaning and understanding of life through the lens of this death, and thanksgiving for Claire’s life, which touched them each dearly in its own way.

May both forgiveness and acceptance lead them to Peace.

May you all go in peace and be gentle with yourselves, taking from and giving to one another — as you need and are able – the gifts of courage, wisdom, and gratitude for all that is our life.

Blessed be and Amen.

Music to be announced

Good Life

Good Life

One Republic

Woke up in London yesterday
Found myself in the city near Piccadilly

Don’t really know how I got here
I got some pictures on my phone

New names and numbers that I don’t know
Address to places like Abbey Road
Day turns to night, night turns to whatever we want
We’re young enough to say

[Chorus]
Oh this has gotta be the good life

This has gotta be the good life
This could really be a good life, good life

Say oh, got this feeling that you can’t fight
Like this city is on fire tonight
This could really be a good life
A good, good life

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh

To my friends in New York, I say hello
My friends in L.A. they don’t know
Where I’ve been for the past few years or so
From Paris to China to Colorado

Sometimes there’s airplanes I can’t jump out
Sometimes there’s bullshit that don’t work now
We all got our stories but please tell me
What there is to complain about

When you’re happy like a fool
Let it take you over
When everything is out
You gotta take it in

[Chorus]

Say oh, got this feeling that you can’t fight
Like this city is on fire tonight

This could really be a good life
A good, good life

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
A good good life
Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh

Hopelessly
I feel like like there might be something that I’ll miss
Hopelessly

I feel like the window closes oh so quick
Hopelessly
I’m taking a mental picture of you now
‘Cause hopelessly
The hope is we have so much to feel good about

[Chorus]

Say oh, got this feeling that you can’t fight
Like this city is on fire tonight

This could really be a good life, oh yeah
A good, good life

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
Oh yeah, a good good life, good life
Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
Whoah, woah, listen,

To my friends in New York, I say hello
My friends in L.A. they don’t know

Where I’ve been for the past few years or so
From Paris to China to Colorado

Sometimes there’s airplanes I can’t jump out
Sometimes there’s bullshit that don’t work now
We all got our stories but please tell me
What there is to complain about

“Good Life” as written by Noel Patrick Zancanella, Brent Kutzle, Eddie Ray Fisher, Bobby Ray Jr Simmons, Ryan Benjamin Tedder

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.
Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
Universal Music Publishing Group

Fire when ready

I’ve heard and used the phrase ‘you may fire when ready Gridley’ and never knew it’s origin. A quick web search yielded this article from HistoryNet.com:

“YOU MAY FIRE WHEN YOU ARE READY, GRIDLEY.” : January/February ’98 American History Feature

U.S. Navy Captain Charles Gridley earned a place in history on May 1, 1898,during the Battle of Manila Bay.

By Richard Harris

Just after midnight on May 1, 1898, the USS Olympia led the United States’s Asiatic Squadron quietly through the calm, glassy waters of the Boca Grande Channel, between the island of Corregidor and the coast of Luzon in the Philippines. The United States was at war with Spain, and the American squadron was preparing to attack a Spanish fleet in Manila Bay.

As Sunday morning dawned hours later, the Olympia’s commander, Captain Charles Gridley, waited for the order to fire his ship’s guns. The order would come from the squadron’s commander, Commodore George Dewey, who watched from atop the Olympia’s flying bridge as shore batteries fired harmlessly at the advancing column of American ships. At 5:40 A.M. Dewey finally hailed Gridley with the now-famous words, “You may fire when you are ready, Gridley.”

There’s a ton more story – go read it and you’ll have a whole new appreciation for ‘Mr. Gridley’ as well some historical background on the Battle of Manila Bay.

Amazing Grace

Judy Collins a capella choir (mp3)

Bagpipes (mp3)

John Newton (1725-1807)
Stanza 6 anon.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

T’was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come;
‘Tis Grace that brought me safe thus far
and Grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promised good to me.
His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease,
I shall possess within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.

When we’ve been here ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun.
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we’ve first begun.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

Life with Dad

Transcribed from this image on imgur

4 years My Daddy can do anything
7 years My Daddy knows a lot, a whole lot
8 years Dad doesn’t quite know everything
12 years Oh well, naturally Dad doesn’t quite understand
14 years Father? Hopelessly old-fashioned
21 years Oh, that man is out of date! What would you expect?
25 years He comes up with a good idea, now and then.
30 years Let’s find out what Dad thinks about it.
35 years A little patience… must get Dad’s input first
50 years What would Dad have thought about it?
60 years I wish I could talk it over with Dad once more.

For my father, George Wray. You are sorely missed this season.

Human vs Pet Age

Human/Pet Age Analogy
Adult Size in Pounds
0 – 20 21 – 50 51 – 120 > 120
Years Feline Canine
Pet Age Human Equivalent Age
 3  28 28 29 31 39
 4  32 33 34 38 49
5  36 38 39 45 59
6 40 42 44 52 69
7 44 46 49 59 79
 8 48 50 54 66 89
 9 52 54 59 73 99
 10 56 58 64 80
11 60 62 69 87
 12 64 66 74 94
 13 68 70 79
14 72 74 84
15 76 78 89
16 80 82 94
17 84 86
18 88 90
19 92 94
20 96
Adult Senior Geriatric

Occupy Earth – HTML5 Canvas

HTML5 – the MDW logo

1st haircut

7:45am this morning I was bound for Niwot with my pal Dozer – going to his first grooming.

I think I have a faint grasp now of what that first haircut day must be like for a parent. One difference, your single-digit aged child can’t rip someone’s arm off if they panic and go bonkers.

It takes a really special groomer to be able to deal with a dog like this compassionately – I’m thrilled to say that Debbie Yarrusso is that degree of groomer – artist. (Full disclosure, Debbie and I traded services – I built her website ‘Puppy Paws Pet Spa’ for her Niwot-based dog grooming buisness. I used one of my photos of Dozer in it.)

We got to the shop and there were no distractions, just a gentle pleasant greeting from Debbie and her office-manager mom. Dozer was no more apprehensive than he usually is and in short order we had him in the tub washing. He dealt with that part pretty well – pulled hard on the tether but Debbie was all business and very soothing so he sat still for the rinse/soap/rinse and scrubbing. Afterwards some hand-drying with a hose dryer (Doze hates blow-driers at home) which went ok, then the big test, the cabinet dryer. I should have taken a photo – he looked so pathetic. An hour later he was dry but I’d spent the whole time with him so he’d at least realize it was me imprisoning him.

He complained.

A lot.

Then toenails and deshedding/brushing and ears cleaned. A final touch of scented spray (not just any fragrance, something specifically soothing to dogs).

As you can see from the lead photo he looks grand.

Here’s a close up:

Dozer - November 2011

God really blessed me, first with Tammi and her family, now with this lovely dog. Marilyn simply couldn’t handle dogs, I’d gotten her to give in about cats (and it was good for all concerned) but she would not bend when it came to dogs. It was a sad thing for me. So now that I’ve lost Marilyn I get to have this wonderful boy in my life. Blessings come wrapped in tragedy sometimes I guess. It was hell ‘unwrapping’ this one but it’s so sweet in the end.

Michael Francis Savage

Michael Francis Savage June 1981, Philadelphia, PA

My friend and neighbor Mike “The Beast” Savage when I lived on 48th St in Philly.

What a character. You see him here on a hot summer day hanging out on the roof of our building. He and his roomie Rob McNeile (not sure on that spelling) dubbed the roof ‘Silver Beach’ and many a good time was spent enjoying the view, the breeze and chatting.

If you know Mike’s whereabouts, ask him to get in touch. I hope he’s doing well.

Hymn

‘My way is not thy way, and thine is not mine.

But come, before we part
Let us separately go to the Morning Star,
And meet there.

I do not point you to my road, nor yet

Call: “Oh come!”
But the Star is the same for both of us,

Winsome.


The good ghost of me goes down the distance
To the Holy Ghost.
Oh you, in the tent of the cloven flame

Meet me, you I like most.

Each man his own way forever, but towards

The hoverer between;

Who opens his flame like a tent-flap,

As we slip in unseen.

A man cannot tread like a woman,

Nor a woman step out like a man.

The ghost of each through the leaves of shadow

Moves as it can.

But the Morning Star and the Evening Star
Pitch tents of flame

Where we foregather like gypsies, none knowing

How the other came.

I ask for nothing except to slip

In the tent of the Holy Ghost
And be there in the house of the cloven flame,

Guest of the Host.

Be with me there, my woman,
Be bodily there.
Then let the flame wrap round us

Like a snare.

Be there along with me, O men!

Reach across the hearth,

And laugh with me while the woman rests

For all we are worth.’

-D.H. Lawrence

Collective Nouns

From here.

Animal Collective Nouns

Animal Group Name
Albatross Rookery
Alligators Congregation
Apes Shrewdness, Troop
Antelope Herd
Ants Colony, Army, Swarm, Nest
Asses Pace, Herd, Drove
Auks Colony, Flock, Raft
Baboons Troop, Flange
Bacteria Culture
Badgers Cete, Colony, Set, Company
Barracudas Battery
Bats Colony, Cloud
Bass Shoal
Bears (General) Sloth, Sleuth
Bears (Cubs) Litter
Beavers Colony, Family
Bees Grist, Hive, Swarm, Nest
Birds (Chicks) Brood, Clutch
Birds (Flight) Flight
Birds (Game) Volary, Brace, Plump, Knob
Birds (Ground) Flock, Dissimulation
Birds (Sea) Wreck
Bison Herd
Bitterns Sedge, Seige
Bloodhounds Sute
Bobolinks Chain
Buffalo Herd, Troop, Gang, Obstinancy
Bullfinches Bellowing
Bullocks Drove
Butterflies Flight, Flutter, (Many more)
Buzzards Wake
Camels Caravan, Train, Flock
Capons Mews
Caribou Herd
Caterpillars Army
Cats (General) Clowder, Clutter, Pounce, Dout, Nuisance, Glorying, Glare
Cats (Kittens) Kindle, Litter, Intrigue
Cats (Wild) Destruction
Cattle Drove, Herd, Team
Cheetahs Coalition
Chickens (General) Brood, Peep
Chickens (Chicks) Clutch, Chattering
Chinchilla Colony
Choughs Clattering
Clams Bed
Cobras Quiver
Cockroaches Intrusion
Cod Lap
Coots Cover, Raft
Cormorants Gulp
Cows Kine
Coyotes Band
Crabs Cast
Cranes Sedge, Seige
Crocodiles Bask, Float
Crows Murder, Horde, Parcel, Storytelling
Curlews Herd
Deer (General) Herd, Leash, Gang
Deer (Buck) Brace, Clash
Deer (Roe) Bevy
Dogs (General) Kennel
Dogs (Curs) Cowardice
Dogs (Hounds) Cry, Mute, Pack
Dogs (Puppies) Litter
Dogs (Wild) Pack
Dolphins Pod
Donkeys Drove, Pace, Herd
Dotterel Trip
Doves (General) Dule, Bevy, Cote, Dole, Paddling
Doves (Turtle) Pitying, Piteousness
Ducks (Flight) Flock
Ducks (Ground) Brace, badling
Ducks (Water) Raft, Team, Paddling
Dunlins Fling
Eagles Convocation, Aerie
Eels Swarm, Bed, Fry
Elephants Herd, Memory
Elk Gang, Herd
Emus Mob
Falcons Cast
Ferrets Business, Cast, Fesnying
Finches Charm
Fish (General) Draft, Nest, Shoal, School (“school” is possibly a corruption of shoal)
Fish (Caught) Catch, Drought, Haul
Flamingoes Stand, Flamboyance
Flies Business, Swarm, Cloud
Frogs Army, Colony, Knot
Fox Leash, Skulk, Earth, Lead, Troop
Geese (General) Flock
Geese (Flight) Skein
Geese (Ground) Gaggle, Herd, Corps
Giraffes Tower
Gnats Cloud, Horde, Swarm
Gnus Implausibility
Goats Tribe, Trip, Drove, Herd, Flock
Goldfinches Charm
Goldfish Glint, Troubling
Gorillas Band, Troop
Goshawks Flight
Grasshoppers Cloud
Greyhounds Leash
Grouse Pack, Covey
Guillemots Bazaar
Gulls Colony, Screech
Guinea Fowl Confusion
Hawks (General) Cast
Hawks (Flight) Kettle
Hawks (Spiraling) Boil
Hedgehogs Array
Herons Sedge, Siege, Hedge
Herring Army, Shoal
Hippopotamuses Bloat
Hornets Nest, Bike
Horses (General) Team, Harras, Stable, Troop, Stud (a group belonging to one owner)
Horses (Colts) Rag, Rake
Horses (Ponies) String
Horses (Wild) Herd
Hummingbirds Charm
Hyenas Cackle, Clan
Impalas Herd
Insects Horde, Nest, Swarm, Rabble, Plague
Jays Party, Scold, Band
Jellyfish Smack, Brood
Kangaroos Troop, Mob, Herd
Lapwings Deceit
Larks Exaltation, Ascension
Leopards Leap
Lice Flock
Lions Pride, Sault, Troop
Lizards Lounge
Locusts Plague
Magpies Tiding, Gulp, Murder, Charm
Mallards (General) Brace
Mallards (Flight) Sord
Martens Richness
Mice Mischief
Midges Bite
Minnows Shoal, Steam, Swarm
Moles Labor, Company, Movement
Monkeys Troop, Barrel, Carload, Cartload, Tribe
Moose Herd
Mosquitoes Scourge
Mudhens Fleet
Mules Pack, Span, Barren, Rake
Nightingales Watch
Otters Romp, Bevy, Family, Raft
Owls Parliament, Stare
Oxen Team, Yoke, Drove
Oysters Bed
Parrots Company, Pandemonium
Partridge Covey, Bew
Peacocks Muster, Ostentation, Pride
Pekingese Pomp
Pelicans Pod
Penguins (General) Colony, Rookery, Huddle
Penguins (Nursery) Cr�che
Pheasants (General) Nest, Nye
Pheasants (Brood) Nide
Pheasants (Take-Off) Bouquet
Pigeons Flight, Flock, Kit
Pigs (General) Drift, Drove
Pigs (Boars) Singular, Sounder
Pigs (Hogs) Team, Passel, Drift, Parcel
Pigs (Piglets) Litter, Farrow
Pigs (Swine) Sounder
Pilchards Shoal
Plovers (General) Congregation
Plovers (Flight) Wing
Polecats Chine
Porcupines Prickle
Porpoises Herd, Pod, School, Crowd, Shoal
Prairie Dogs Coterie
Ptarmigans Covey
Quail Bevy, Covey
Rabbits (General) Colony, Warren, Bury, Trace, Trip
Rabbits (Domestic) Herd
Rabbits (Hares) Down, Husk
Rabbits (Jackrabbit) Husk
Rabbits (Young) Litter, Nest
Raccoons Gaze
Rats Colony, Pack, Plague, Swarm
Rattlesnakes Rhumba
Ravens Unkindness, Storytelling
Reindeer Herd
Rhinoceroses Crash, Stubbornness
Roebucks Bevy
Rooks Building, Clamor, Parliament
Ruffs Hill
Salamandars Congress
Salmon Run
Sandpipers Fling
Sardines Family
Scorpions Bed, Nest
Seabirds Wreck
Seals Pod, Bob, Harem, Herd, Rookery
Sharks Shiver, School, Shoal
Sheep Drove, Flock, Down, Hurtle, Fold, Pack, Trip
Sheldrakes Doading
Skylarks Exultation
Squirrels Dray, Scurry
Snails Escargatoire, Rout, Walk
Snakes Den, Nest, Pit, Bed, Knot
Snipe Walk, Wisp
Sparrows Host
Spiders Cluster, Clutter
Springbok Herd
Squirrels Dray, Scurry
Starlings Murmuration, Chattering
Stingrays Fever
Stoats Pack, Trip
Storks Mustering, Muster
Swallows Flight, Gulp
Swans (General) Bevy, Bank, Herd
Swans (Flight) Wedge, Flight
Swifts Flock
Teal Spring
Termites Colony, Nest, Swarm, Brood
Thrush Mutation
Tigers Streak, Ambush
Toads Knot, Knab, Nest
Trout Hover
Turkeys Rafter, Gang, Posse
Turtles Bale, Nest, Turn, Dole
Turtle Doves Pitying, Dule
Vipers Generation, Nest
Vultures Venue
Vultures (Circling) Kettle
Walruses Herd, Pod
Wasps Nest, Swarm
Waterfowl Knob, Plump
Weasles Gang, Colony, Pack
Whales Pod, Gam, Herd, School, Mod
Widgeons Company
Wildfowl Plump
Wolves (General) Pack
Wolves (Moving) Route, Rout
Wombats Wisdom
Woodcocks Fall
Woodpeckers Descent
Worms Bed, Clew, Bunch, Clat
Wrens Herd
Zebras Zeal, Crossing, Dazzle, Cohorts, Herd

Reception at the Sportsman’s Club

This post was written Dec 10, 2008 and has been held back till now, mostly due to procrastination but also a desire to add more to it but not finding time. So I present it now and may revisit it later – at least the photos get published.- mdw 6/2011

After the memorial service for my father, family and friends gathered at a nearby Sportsmans’ Club. By that point I was pretty much a trainwreck from stress, travel, grief, etc. so I didn’t take a lot of photos. Here’s what I did take. Anyone that has more is welcome to send theirs and I’ll add them in.

(all images click to enlarge)

Bonita Jo Wray, Jean Rowe and Lisa Diggs Left to right
Bonita Jo Wray, my aunt Jean Rowe, my neice Lisa Diggs
David and Christine Wray My brother David Wray and his wife Christine.
David reminisces with photo from his PA Military Academy days David remembers his Pennsylvania Military College days.
Doug Wray, David Wray, Michael Wray Me (Doug Wray), my brother David Wray and David’s son Michael.
Laurie Ammon, Bobby Jo Walsh, Georgia (Missy) Wray and Jenny Brosko Laurie Ammon, Guinie Walsh (thanks Laurie!!), Georgia (Missy) Wray and Jenny Brosko
Until I have time to write complete entries, here’s all the pix I took in a set at Flickr.

Faithful Friend

Faithful Friend

In my heart you shall always live
eyes aglow and eager
quivering with excitment
ready to play

My child soul rose up in joy
when we first met
for surely I knew you
from lives before

Now you’ve gone to heaven
and live only in a field
that I keep verdant
– for you alone,
my faithful friend.

One day I’ll greet you again
when life has had enough of me
and we will spend eternity
at play.

For my lost friend Cody,

rest in peace.

MDW June 8, 2011