Doug

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

Merry Christmas 2012

ChristmasTree2011

As the year draws to a close
and families gather together,
we offer our warmest greetings
and best wishes for a
Merry Christmas
and
Happy New Year!

Doug, Tammi and Kylie

Sugar, Kona, Dozer and Kinkles too!

Our Christmas photo albums

Absolutely no trees were harmed to produce this card
although a lot of electrons were seriously inconvenienced.

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

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.

Bridge Sentinel Eagle, Philadelphia

Photo by M. Douglas Wray
Bridge Sentinel Eagle - Philadelphia by M. Douglas Wray
I was 20-something, Pentax K1000 in hand, walking down a street in Philly near Union Station when I found this fellow and his mates on the bridge end pylons. Magnificent art deco renditions. Such heroic scale.

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

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
Dragons Flight, Weyr, Wing
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, Prickle
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, Fluffle
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

Ode to Spot

(original transcription found here)

Felis Cattus, is your taxonomic nomenclature,
an endothermic quadruped carnivorous by nature?
Your visual, olfactory and auditory senses
contribute to your hunting skills, and natural defenses.

I find myself intrigued by your subvocal oscillations,
a singular development of cat communications
that obviates your basic hedonistic predilection
for a rhythmic stroking of your fur, to demonstrate affection.

A tail is quite essential for your acrobatic talents;
you would not be so agile if you lacked its counterbalance.
And when not being utilized to aid in locomotion,
it often serves to illustrate the state of your emotion.

O Spot, the complex levels of behaviour you display
connote a fairly well-developed cognitive array.
And though you are not sentient, Spot, and do not comprehend,
I nonetheless consider you a true and valued friend.

— Lt. Commander Data from Star Trek The Next Generation


I’ve always enjoyed this poem, on several levels, not the least the humor in the scene in which it’s read:

How Can I Keep From Singing?

Traditional Shaker Hymn

My life goes on in endless song
above earth’s lamentations,
I hear the real, though far-off hymn
that hails a new creation.

Through all the tumult and the strife
I hear its music ringing,
it sounds an echo in my soul.
How can I keep from singing?

While though the tempest loudly roars,
I hear the truth it liveth.
And though the darkness ’round me close,
songs in the night it giveth.

No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that rock I’m clinging.
Since love is lord of heaven and earth,
how can I keep from singing?

When tyrants tremble in their fear
and hear their death knell ringing,
when friends rejoice both far and near
how can I keep from singing?

In prison cell and dungeon vile
our thoughts to them are winging,
when friends by shame are undefiled
how can I keep from singing?

–Enya from Shepherd Moons

Dreams are more precious

Dreams Are More Precious

Come see, high above.
Come see, high in the heavens.
A new star shining bright.
Out of the darkness, comes a light.

Come here, midnight chimes
Come here, bells that are ringing
And from some distant shore
Sounds of a journey, echo on

This is the night
They say,
Everyone wants a dream.

This is the night
They say
Nothing is as it seems.

Come sleep, close your eyes.
Come sleep, give me your sorrow.
And I keep watch for you.
Until the dawn is, breaking through.
Until the morning wakens you.

Da, Da, Da…

Come dream, through the night.
Come dream, and then tomorrow
They’ll see who, what will know.

Dreams are more precious than gold
Dreams are more precious than gold
Dreams are more precious than gold

– Enya

David C. Hill Eulogy

David Claire Hill
March 26, 1948 – April 18, 2011

Photos from the funeral service and reception can be found here.

My eulogy for David C. Hill:

Somewhere David is walking.

He’s feeling good.

Better than ever.

The sun is shining down – it’s a beautiful day.

There is no pain, only rejoicing.

People gather around –
long-lost family,
comrades and friends,
welcoming him.

He’s filled with joy, not sadness for those left behind –
he knows we’ll be along shortly
and together again
one day.

David gathered all the titles a man accrues from a well-lived life: first he was son and brother, then uncle, then husband and father, then grandfather and great-grandfather. He was a steadfast friend and upright citizen. When his country called he answered and served willingly, bringing honor to himself and his family. As a firefighter he put himself in harms way to save his fellow citizens. He never stepped back. Thank you David. Thank you.

He was a literal pillar of the community, always leaning into the task, always giving more, always lending a hand, supporting the people around him in every way he could.

He was my brother-in-law by marriage to my sister Bonita, whom I know he felt aptly named. He was loving father to Deana Jo, father in law to Philip and proud grandfather to Alicia. I’m proud to say he was part of my family.

His thread is woven through the fabric of all our lives, a distinct and vivid line that shines out clearly, combining with and adding its color to ours. His thread was strong and resilient, strained by adventure, frayed by injury and finally, broken by illness.

I find great peace in the Latin saying:
non omnis moriar (not all of me will die)
for every time we remember him,
his laughter,
his playfulness,
his indomitable will,
his boundless energy
his loving heart,
– in those moments he still lives.

See you soon Dave.


My sister Georgia Leslie “Missy” Wray’s Eulogy for David Claire Hill

Have any of you ever wondered how Dave ended up in Wyoming?

Well, each and every one of you have me to thank for that because had he not drove me out to be with my parents who had moved to Boulder my senior year of high school you would not have had the pleasure and the honor of knowing the man who I will call my brother in law until the day I myself pass.

My parents, Dave’s in-laws, were moving to Boulder and I wanted to stay in Pennsylvania to finish my senior year in high school so I could graduate with my friends.

Dave went to my dad and told him let her stay with us then when she graduates we will drive her Boulder.  Myself, Dave, my sister and Deana Jo who was just a baby drove across country in Dave’s 1973 bright yellow jeep.

What a trip,  but we had a blast.

Deana Jo, you spent most of the time in the tiny back part of that jeep with Aunt Missy.

Dave loved it in Colorado hence the move to Boulder then later to Wyoming. Even though Dave and I had not had contact in a lot of years he always remained close to my heart.

My parents are buried in Apollo, Pennsylvania and to get there when I visit them at the cemetery I pass the road where all those years ago we started out on that long trip so Dave could fulfill his promise to my parents.

Growing up as a teenager and having Dave as my brother in law was like having another brother. He would always let me tag along for 4 wheeling, bow and arrow shooting, shooting the guns, sled riding, bowling all night on Fridays at Lee’s Lanes in Leechburg and he was always there after I got off work so I didnt have to walk home to where we lived.

All these years he has stayed in my heart and I will miss him but I also know that he is in heaven with my parents and when my time comes I’ll meet my brother in law and get to thank him for watching over me when my parents couldnt.

Rest in peace Dave.

Love, Missy – always your sister in law in my heart.

Web prayer

Our root,
Who art in UNIX
Hallowed be thy Shell.

Thy kernal come,
Thy commands be run.
@localhost as they are in iNet.

Give us this day our daily updates
And forgive us our four-oh-threes
As we forgive those who 403 against us.

And lead us not into segfaults
but deliver us from /dev/null

For thine is the Kernal, access and 1337ness

Forever and ever

EOF

Transcribed from here.

You may also enjoy this…

Jolly Copper

Preface

Listening to Randy Newman’s Jolly Coppers. Visualizing the lyrics. Thought of circus clown routines. Thought of clowns. Remembered my father was a Shriner clown in his later years. Remembered he was ‘Sherrif’ of the clowns (quite presitgious among the flappy-shoed).  Remembered this photo:

George Parker Wray 3/9/1928 - 5/21/2008

 

Jolly Copper, indeed.

Miss you dad.

Cheesehead hackers

1 failed login attempts (1 lockout(s)) from IP: 208.66.135.190

Last user attempted: admin

IP was blocked

IP Address Country (Short) Country (Full) Flag Region City ISP Map
208.66.135.190 US UNITED STATES WISCONSIN MADISON 5NINES DATA LLC

Hm.

If anyone in the Madison, WI area knows the owner of 5 Nines, would you mind reminding them that the Department of Homeland Security really frowns on hackers?

Makes me really question their ‘technical specialist’s claim that they “…strive to make technology your trusted partner” – someone trying to hack my personal site’s password really makes me not trust someone. A lot.

My pal Deb Johnson

The Gifting

I send you roses.  And warm fuzzies.  And Cinderella’s horseshoe I have on my mantle.

I send you sunshine, and blue skies, and white puffy clouds that come in funny animal shapes.

I send you rainbows, and dewdrops, and the soft scent of rain;

the smell of freshly mown grass in the farmer’s field;

meadows of wild flowers; sheep, content.

I send you healing thoughts; your mother’s hands to hold you in warm embrace;

fresh loaves of homemade bread; sunflowers; and a night sky filled with stars.

I send you wind through pine trees whispering; the song of your sisters singing.

I send you your child’s first word; a purring kitten on your lap; fireflies dancing the dark;

and a garden, filled to overflowing, waiting for canning.

I send you a basket, woven of marsh grasses, lined in velvet,

full of wonder and love.

I send you butterflies and the 4th of July; rubies, and Christmas;

a circle of friends to hold you; and a seat by a warm fire.

For you, I light a candle.

I send you peace.

© June 1995 by D.W. Johnson


On a Thought Of Leaving Home and Coming Here

The next time I come (here)

I will go (this way)

I am always coming or going–

Coming to stillness; going out of chaos.

Coming from work; going home.

Coming from home; going to a friend’s house.

Coming from the grocery; going to the book shop.

It is the pattern of my life–

I am coming in; I am going out.

Breathing in; breathing out.

What is left from the wake of the wave.

So if I say, “I don’t know if I am coming or going”, what does it matter?

I am in step with what I am…

A part of it.

©  August 26, 2005 by D.W. Johnson

Sisters of Mercy

A wonderful plaint. Posting inspired by my friend George Seaton.

Burn bright George. Burn bright.

Sisters of Mercy

Oh the sisters of mercy, they are not departed or gone.
They were waiting for me when I thought that I just can’t go on.
And they brought me their comfort and later they brought me their song.
Oh I hope you run into them, you who’ve been travelling so long.

Yes you who must leave everything that you cannot control.
It begins with your family, but soon it comes around to your soul.
Well I’ve been where you’re hanging, I think I can see how you’re pinned:
When you’re not feeling holy, your loneliness says that you’ve sinned.

They lay down beside me, I made my confession to them.
They touched both my eyes and I touched the dew on their hem.
If your life is a leaf that the seasons tear off and condemn
they will bind you with love that is graceful and green as a stem.

When I left they were sleeping, I hope you run into them soon.
Don’t turn on the lights, you can read their address by the moon.
And you won’t make me jealous if I hear that they sweetened your night:
We weren’t lovers like that and besides it would still be all right,
We weren’t lovers like that and besides it would still be all right.

-Leonard Cohen

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJQuwLZrusU

Bramble and the Rose

Thinking about all the loves I’ve had, how our lives twined around each other and how we changed each others path through life.

Here’s to all the wonderful and terrible moments, summed up in a traditional folk song by the Black Family (my favorite rendition) – go to the link and give it a listen.

Bramble and the Rose

Traditional. Arrangement The Black Family

We have been so close together
Each a candle and each a flame
All the dangers were outside us
And we knew them all by name

Chorus

See how the bramble and the rose intertwine
Love grows like the bramble and the rose
Often cruel and often kind

Now I’ve hurt you and it hurts me
Just to see what we can do
Give ourselves unto each other
Without ever meaning to

Chorus

Throw your loving arms around me
And sing for me a true love song
And the words sung together
I could sing them all night long

Chorus

See how the bramble and the rose intertwine
Love grows like the bramble and the rose
‘Round each other they will twine

Can be found on the album The Black Family.

Masterpiece

I’ve always believed that humor is where you find it – and you don’t have to look too hard.

Most of the advertising and packaging I’ve seen is so blissfully self-unaware that it self-lampoons with little or no help.

Case in point. Walking through the kitchen at work recently I saw this empty carton sitting on the counter waiting for its trip to the recycling bin:

Innocent enough

but on a whim I picked it up and saw this on the side:

Hm... what's this?

Here’s my thought process as my eyes homed in on the top:

"Morning Masterpiece" ? Oh, I think NOT.

“Morning Masterpiece”? What’s that brown stuff? Doesn’t look a thing like my ‘morning masterpiece’… and mine sure don’t come in pints… but it is kinda creamy… don’t think folks would want it in their coffee…

So to my coworker who was mystified as to my inexplicable laughter… now you know. Yes, it’s scatlogical, yes it’s puerile but it WAS a funny moment to me.

Christmas Cake

Tammi, Kate, Marty and I were at the Dec. 10, 2010 performance of this by Danú at Macky Auditorium.

Miss Fogerty’s Christmas Cake

Irish Christmas Song

As I sat in my window last evening
The letterman brought it to me
A little gilt-edged invitation sayin’
“Gilhooley come over to tea”
I knew that the Fogarties sent it.
So I went just for old friendships sake.
The first thing they gave me to tackle
Was a slice of Miss Fogarty’s cake.

Chorus

There were plums and prunes and cherries,
There were citrons and raisins and cinnamon, too
There was nutmeg, cloves and berries
And a crust that was nailed on with glue
There were caraway seeds in abundance
Such that work up a fine stomach ache
That could kill a man twice after eating a slice
Of Miss Fogarty’s Christmas cake.

Miss Mulligan wanted to try it,
But really it wasn’t no use
For we worked in it over an hour
And we couldn’t get none of it loose
Till Murphy came in with a hatchet
And Kelly came in with a saw
That cake was enough be the powers above
For to paralyze any man’s jaws

Miss Fogarty proud as a peacock,
Kept smiling and blinking away
Till she flipped over Flanagans brogans
And she spilt the homebrew in her tea
Aye Gilhooley she says you’re not eatin,
Try a little bit more for me sake
And no Miss Fogarty says I,
For I’ve had quite enough of your cake

Maloney was took with the colic,
O’Donald’s a pain in his head
Mc’Naughton lay down on the sofa,
And he swore that he wished he was dead
Miss Bailey went into hysterics
And there she did wriggle and shake
And everyone swore they were poisoned
Just from eating Miss Fogarty’s cake

Here’s a YouTube clip of Danú

10 Simple Words

10 Simple Words Students (And Everyone) Screw Up

from EDUdemic

OMG U Guyz, Grammar among kidz the$e days be terribllle! So does speeling! There is a big problem unfolding around the world right now. Lucky for you, The Oatmeal has spelled it out, literally. The guy behind the hit comic strip has laid out the top 10 words everyone probably misspells. Hilarious stuff. Enjoy!

1 MeV

JEOL-1000 High Voltage Electron Microscope

One of my favorite places at the University of Colorado was the High Voltage Electron Microscope lab in the Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology building.

I spent a lot of time there helping my father and the techinical team while in high school, then later when I worked at CU as a lab technician I ran a project that used the HVEM – full circle!

Sitting at its console, looking into the vacuum behind the viewport at the phosphor screen, my hands on the controls for the sample stage and the magnification I literally could see the unseen on the glowing surface. Being fully aware that there were million-volt x-rays bashing around just inches from my treasured brain, held back by inches-thick leaded glass and metal added to the thrill. The click of relays and the faint chugging of vacuum pumps mixed with the curls of vapor from the liquid-nitrogen oil trap completed the atmosphere of super-super-high-tech. And I was driving!! Hard to forget being at the controls of a building-size microscope.

Heady stuff for a young man very taken with science fiction – this was science fact! I’ll never forget the faint, high-pitched whistle the high-voltage system generated. I’m sure it still echoes in the walls even though the massive machine itself has been disassembled and gone for years now.

Neighbor Sarah

Sarah A. Medina
August 20, 1942 – October 15, 2010

Sarah A. Medina, 68, of Longmont, died October 15, 2010 at Life Care Center of Longmont.

She was born on August 20, 1942 in Center, Colorado to Paul and Miquilita (Chavez) Maez.

Sarah married Andy Medina in Leadville, Colorado on October 27, 1961. They lived in Leadville until moving to Boulder in 1987, and to Longmont in 1990.

She was a nurse at St. Vincent General Hospital for 20 years. She then worked at Good Samaritan Nursing Home in Boulder and later at Frasier Meadows in Boulder. She retired in 2003.

Sarah was a member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, where she was a Stephen Minister. She was also a member of Catholic Daughters and Women of the Moose. Sarah enjoyed crossword puzzles, reading, watching Westerns on TV, sewing, cooking for her family on holidays, dancing and oldies.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her daughter, Monica Rae and her siblings, Tony, Pauline, Leo, Jake, Bernie and Joe.

Sarah is survived by her husband, Andy Medina of Longmont; her son, Tony Medina (Roxann) of Leadville, Colorado; three daughters, Tina Lovato (Harvey) of Northglenn, Maria Medina and Andrea Medina, both of Longmont; four brothers, Robert Maez (Eloyda), Paul Maez (Nancy), Juan Maez (Sharon) and Richard Maez (Rosemary); a sister, Charlotte Padilla (Tony); sisters-in-law Burdell Maez and Sally Maez; five grandchildren, Paul (Jenny), Brandon, Jason, Christopher and Marissa; two great-grandchildren, Alana and Olivia and several nieces, nephews and cousins.

Visitation will be 5-8 PM with Vigil Service 7PM on Monday, October 18, 2010 at Ahlberg Funeral Chapel. Mass of Christian Burial will be 10 AM Tuesday, October 19, 2010 at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, 323 Collyer Street. Cremation to follow services at Ahlberg Funeral Chapel and Crematory.

A second Mass of Christian Burial will be held 10 AM on Wednesday October 20, 2010 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Leadville, Colorado. Inurnment will be at St. Joseph Cemetery in Leadville.

Memorial contributions may be made to the American Liver Foundation, 2100 S. Corona St. Denver, CO 80210.


Sarah Medina has been my neighbor on Bowen St. since I moved to Longmont. She and her husband Andy, as well as their daughters Maria and Andrea are like family to me. They were incredibly supportive when my wife Marilyn died and overjoyed when they met my new fiance Tammi.

Sarah’s struggle with liver issues was a long one – and her family stood with her staunchly. Andy showed me what a real husband was. He and his daughters did everything they could for Sarah to make her way easier.

God Bless them all. I know the pain you’re enduring and I know it’s only somewhat tempered by the realization that she’s walking without pain at our Savior’s side.

Mullah on Moolah

Iraqi currency brought home by my stepson after his second tour. (Hi res files at Flickr)

He’s Infantry and we’re endlessly proud of him – his biological father Scott Hofferber would have been even more so – he went to honor his memory.

God has blessed us by sending he and his fiance Richelle back to us.