Musings

Logo Design

Great article on logo design.

Logo design in today’s world is totally underrated. People don’t understand how important a good logo is and how valuable it is to their business. Let me guide you through the basics of what makes a good logo, while also walking you through the process of creating the identity and logo design for one of my recent clients, Vero, a limited liability company based in Miami, Florida. Hopefully, this will give you an understanding of what actually goes on behind the scenes while creating a professionally designed logo.

Read the rest at Layers magazine.

Tough Job

Thermal Craft Insulation Installer at work in attic

Just finished a series of upgrades to my home via the Climate Smart program and wanted to give kudos to two of the contractors:

Thermal Craft Insulation Co.

303-817-3006

Larry Meeks

and

Cooper Heating and Cooling

11780 Olde Wadsworth Blvd

Broomfield, CO 80020

303-466-4209

The picture at the top of this entry is the installer Dustin busting his nuts blowing in insulation in the teensy-tiny section of my split-level’s attic. When he came back out he was COVERED in the cellulose insulation – the guy really went after it. The blow-in from the outside of the house (holes drilled through the walls) took a couple of days and he did a SUPERB job. Can’t say enough good about the work.

The HVAC system and hot water heater were done by Cooper Heating and Cooling. Every single person I dealt with was polite, professional and knowledgeable. The salesman, Jim Reynolds was completely versed in the Climate Smart program, had all the paperwork straight and the install went 1-2-3 by the numbers. The new unit works flawlessly and I’m thrilled to death.

I’d tell you about the experience I had with the windows (Accent) but suffice to say I was less than pleased and let it go at that.

You may live in Canada…

Stolen wholeheartedly directly from Malcha’s Sound Visions:

If your local Dairy Queen is closed from
September through May,
You may live in Canada .

If someone in a Home Depot store
Offers you assistance and they don’t work there,
You may live in Canada .

If you’ve worn shorts and a parka at the same time,
You may live in Canada .

If you’ve had a lengthy telephone conversation
With someone who dialed a wrong number,
You may live in Canada .

If ‘Vacation’ means going anywhere
South of Detroit for the weekend,
You may live in Canada .

If you measure distance in hours,
You may live in Canada .

If you know several people
Who have hit a deer more than once,
You may live in Canada .

If you have switched from ‘heat’ to ‘A/C’
In the same day and back again,
You may live in Canada .

If you can drive 90 km/hr through 2 feet of snow
During a raging blizzard without flinching,
You may live in Canada .

If you install security lights on your house and garage,
But leave both unlocked,
You may live in Canada .

If you carry jumper cables in your car
And your wife knows how to use them,
You may live in Canada .

If you design your kid’s Halloween costume
To fit over a snowsuit,
You may live in Canada .

If the speed limit on the highway is 80 km –
You’re going 95 and everybody is passing you,
You may live in Canada .

If driving is better in the winter
Because the potholes are filled with snow,
You may live in Canada .

If you know all 4 seasons:
Almost winter, winter, still winter,
and road construction,
You may live in Canada .

(this is my favourite, because how true)

If you have more miles
On your snow blower than your car,
You may live in Canada .

If you find -2 degrees ‘a little chilly’,
You may live in Canada .

If you actually understand these jokes,
you definitely are Canadian and proud to be.

Bullet Porno

Lovely photography of bullets impacting/penetrating metal.

Such an incredible race we are that we can create such astounding devices.

Sad that we first turn them to killing.

Imagine these images but substitute a soldier’s body for the impact surface. Then substitute a friend or loved one.

The images take on a whole new dimension of horror.

Think about it.

I can only vaguely express my joy

IBM orders MS Office out of the building.

IBM Throws Out Microsoft Office

Sep 12, 2009

360,000 IBM workers have been told to stop using Microsoft Office and switch to the Open Office-based software Symphony.

Quoting an inside source, the German economic newspaper, “Handelsblatt” reports that staff at IBM have been given ten days to change to Symphony, IBM’s in-house Lotus software. The use of Microsoft Office will in future require managerial approval. With immediate affect, the Open Document Format (ODF) will rule at IBM with the file ending .doc soon belonging to the past.

Marilyn’s first email to me

I have every single email Marilyn ever sent me. I went back to the very beginning and found this.

Sigh. She was 100% honest and right out front – start to finish.

I still miss her and I always will.

Miss you Didibear…


Hi. I am not sure what to write… so here goes. I am 46/f/Swedish/English/Scottish. I have red curly hair and blue eyes with fair skin. I am about 5’5″ and voluptuous. I am currently a graduate student in clinical social work and work with kids.

I love opera, light rock, the mountains, water, autumn, cooking, sewing, knitting, crocheting, quilting, needlework, baking, hiking, swimming, ballet, and am doing quite well figuring out how to use the internet.

I have never been married (too buzy) and I adopt my friends children. I drive a truck (1978 Ford stepside) and will not part with it under any curcumstances.

I write, sing, play the guitar, and prefer cooler weather. My mothers family are all Canadian and I have lived in Alberta as a child. I have a degree in Criminal Justice, Courts and Law and Social Work with special emphasis in Native Americans.

I, too, have life issues that I am working through. I am also a June baby and have many facets to my personality.

I am looking for a friend, companion, and perhaps a special someone who can eccept me for me. I can be crazy and wild, or quiet and shy. I have lots of energy and love life.

Would like to correspond with you and see where it goes.

Marilyn

Love of my life

DSC_0054_Doug&Tammi

I am amazed
when I look at you
I see you smiling back at me
it’s like all my dreams come true
I am afraid
if I lost you girl
I’d fall through the cracks
and lose my track in this crazy lonely world

Sometimes it’s so hard to believe
when the nights can be so long
and faith gave me the strength
and kept me holding on

Chorus
You are the love of my life
and I’m so glad you found me
You are the love of my life
baby put your arms around me
I guess this is how it feels
when you finally find something real
my angel in the night
you are my love
the love of my life

Now here you are
with midnight closing in
you take my hand as our shadows dance
with moonlight on your skin

I look in your eyes
I’m lost inside your kiss
I think if I’d never met you
about all the things i’d missed

Sometimes it’s so hard to believe
when a love can be so strong
and faith gave me the strength
and kept me holding on

You are the love of my life
and I’m so glad you found me
you are the love of my life
baby put your arms around me
I guess this is how it feels
when you finally find something real
my angel in the night
you are my love
the love of my life.

– Jim Brickman

video

for Tammi

Wild at Heart

(see video here)

Down a back road
Long, hot summer
A couple kids runnin’ loose and wild
He kissed her
She said mister,
Take an inch and I’ll give you a mile

I ain’t here to do anything half-way
Don’t give a damn what anyone might say
I just wanna free fall for a while

That rebel moon is shinin’
Those stars burn like diamonds
Hell bent on chasin’ down that crazy slide
I’ll follow you where you’re leading
To the first sweet taste of freedom
You got me runnin’ baby,
Wild at heart

About midnight, he tells her
I ain’t got no come-on lines
Well I’ll love you, or I’ll try to
We got nothing to lose but time

Stick your hand into my back pocket
Light me up like a bottle rocket
I just wanna free fall for a while

That rebel moon is shinin’
Those stars burn like diamonds
Hell bent on chasin’ down that crazy slide
I’ll follow you where you’re leadin’
To the first sweet taste of freedom
You got me runnin’ baby,
Wild at heart

O-oh, alright
Tonight is tellin’ us we’re way too young

O-oh, that’s alright
I’ve forever on the tip of my tongue

That rebel moon is shinin’
Those stars burn like diamonds
Hell bent on chasin’ down that crazy slide
I’ll follow you where you’re leading
To the first sweet taste of freedom
You got me runnin’ baby,
Wild at heart

That rebel moon is shinin’
Those stars burn like diamonds
Hell bent on chasin’ down that crazy slide
I’ll follow you where you’re leading
To the first sweet taste of freedom
You got me runnin’ baby,
You got me runnin’ baby,
Wild at heart

O-oh, alright…

++++++++++++++

Thanks to Tammi

Forge

Clasped in tongs
a heart of gold
incandescent
from the mold

Upon the anvil
water hiss
hammer falls
in iron kiss

Sparks explode
and corruscate
from pealing blows
of angry fate

Blow and blow
ring clarion
purifying
making strong

From the anvil
to the Fire
heart remelts
from new desire

Then to the fount
in churning steam
solidifying
this new dream

No other path
would I this trade
for now this heart
is whole,
remade

MDW 7/09
For Tammi

God, Thou Art Love

If I forget,
Yet God remembers! If these hands of mine
Cease from their clinging, yet the hands divine
Hold me so firmly that I cannot fall;
And if sometimes I am too tired to call
For Him to help me, then He reads the prayer
Unspoken in my heart, and lifts my care.

I dare not fear, since certainly I know
That I am in God’s keeping, shielded so
From all that else would harm, and in the hour
Of stern temptation strengthened by His power;
I tread no path in life to Him unknown;
I lift no burden, bear no pain, alone:
My soul a calm, sure hiding-place has found:
The everlasting arms my life surround.

God, Thou art love! I build my faith on that.
I know Thee who has kept my path, and made
Light for me in the darkness, tempering sorrow
So that it reached me like a solemn joy;
It were too strange that I should doubt Thy love.
—Robert Browning

Rising Trail

Up from the Canyon of Death I climb,
legs weary and burning
I pause at a vantage point
and look back

Only darkness lies below
clouds and fog shroud the trail
my lungs burn from the effort
of such a terrible climb

I sit for a moment
in a quiet place
remembering
shuddering in horror

I feel the clouds part
and the sun pour down
it’s heat welcome on my closed eyes
as the wind tousles my hair like a mother

The wind gusts now, pushing at my back
I open my eyes, shoulder my burden
and resume the climb
rising with the trail.

MDW 6/26/09
To all those who helped me reach this vantage

God Bless You All

Lighthouses

One of the sights DJ and Martha took me to see was Pigeon Point Lighthouse.

WOW.

pigeonpointlighthouse-sm

Reviewing my photos so far I was struck by this shot most of all. (More of this location here)

This has been an incredibly stormy period in my life and were it not for the ‘lighthouses’ manned by my friends (Marty and Kate Beier, DJ and Martha, Todd and Rita Lockwood, etc, etc, etc!!) I would surely have crashed on the rocks.

God bless everyone who’s ‘manned the light’ and given me guidance.

The weather is clearing and I feel that soon it will be safe to raise sail once again.

Tupelo Honey

Sitting the Green Tortoise ballroom having breakfast and this came on the radio.

I hear you Didibear.

Tupelo Honey by Van Morrisson

You can take all the tea in china
Put it in a big brown bag for me
Sail right around the seven oceans
Drop it straight into the deep blue sea
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Shes an angel of the first degree
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Just like honey from the bee

You cant stop us on the road to freedom
You cant keep us cause our eyes can see
Men with insight, men in granite
Knights in armor bent on chivalry
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Shes an angel of the first degree
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Just like honey from the bee

You cant stop us on the road to freedom
You cant stop us cause our eyes can see
Men with insight, men in granite
Knights in armor intent on chivalry
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Shes an angel of the first degree
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Just like honey from the bee

You know shes alright
You know shes alright with me
Shes alright, shes alright (shes an angel)

You can take all the tea in china
Put it in a big brown bag for me
Sail it right around the seven oceans
Drop it smack dab in the middle of the deep blue sea
Because shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Shes an angel of the first degree
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Just like honey from the bee

Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Shes an angel of the first degree
Shes as sweet as tupelo honey
Just like the honey, baby, from the bee
Shes my baby, you know shes alright…..

Pretty Ballerina

Marilyn was my pretty little ballerina

Hat tip to DJCline.

YouTube video (audio with image of record player)

Pretty Ballerina by Left Banke

I had a date with a pretty ballerina
Her hair so brilliant that it hurt my eyes
I asked her for this dance
and then she obliged me
Was I surprised, yeah
Was I surprised,
no not at all

I called her yesterday,
it should have been tomorrow
I could not keep
the joy that was inside
I begged for her to tell me
if she really loved me
Somewhere a mountain is moving
Afraid it’s moving without me

I had a date with a pretty ballerina
Her hair so brilliant that it hurt my eyes
I asked her for this dance
and then she obliged me
Was I surprised, yeah
Was I surprised, no not at all

And when I wake on a dreary Sunday morning
I open up my eyes to find there’s rain
And something strange within said,
go ahead and find her
Just close your eyes, yeah
Just close your eyes and she’ll be there
She’ll be there…

Yet a While

My dear friend Mary Pitt sent me this poem she wrote for her beloved husband. He too, has departed and this poem now has special meaning for me as well.

Thank you Mumzee.

 

 

Ed Pitt

 

 


Yet a While

Walk with me yet a while, dear heart,
The road is dark ahead
I need your light to show the way
Down the path of fear and dread

Our journey started long ago
Skipping gaily hand in hand
Young and eager to face the challenge
Of great adventure and foreign lands

We often stopped to smell the flowers
And pick up burdens along the way
Confident of our strengh to carry
And our ablilties to pay

Later we walked to slower measure
Due to weight we often bore
Tiring from our mainful labor
But willing still to carry more

Uphill and down, through heat or cold
Heedless of the weather
We presevered and carried on
And always clung together

You lent your strength, I added mine
No mountain was too high
You stumbled, I caught you, I fell, you raised me
We let no challenge pass by

And now we near the fearful end
The greatest challenge of all
I fear without you by my side
That I will fail and doubt and fall

So give me once again that wink
And optimistic smile
That tells me you will find the strength
To walk with me yet a while

Mary Pitt 2004

O Wife

marilynwray_2008

O Wife
for my beloved Marilyn Bonita

God did smile
when we met
happiest either
had been yet

Love had blossomed
we both grew
each made the other
whole and new

The wheel has turned
and you’ve departed
now I finish
what we started

I walk alone
pain like a sun
heart like a stone
almost! undone

Now you’ve burned
and ash remains
to Earth return
in sooty grains

Within my heart
there is a flame
that burns forever
just the same

Now I proceed
and you abide
no longer hand-clasped
at my side

To gateway distant
sure and true
and on that day
return to you

Goodbye O Wife!

I Come O Wife!

MDW

“…I walk alone…”

Boulevard Of Broken Dreams

Green Day

I walk a lonely road
The only one that I have ever known
Don’t know where it goes
But it’s home to me and I walk alone

I walk this empty street
On the Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Where the city sleeps
and I’m the only one and I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone

Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Aaah-ah,
Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah

I’m walking down the line
That divides me somewhere in my mind
On the border line
Of the edge and where I walk alone

Read between the lines
What’s fucked up and everything’s alright
Check my vital signs
To know I’m still alive and I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk alone

I walk alone
I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone

Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Aaah-ah
Ah-ah, Ah-ah

I walk alone
I walk a…

I walk this empty street
On the Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Where the city sleeps
And I’m the only one and I walk a…

My shadow’s the only one that walks beside me
My shallow heart’s the only thing that’s beating
Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me
‘Til then I walk alone…

The Cremation of Sam McGee

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
That would make your blood run cold;
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
But the queerest they ever did see
Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
I cremated Sam McGee.

Now Sam McGee was from Tennessee, where the cotton blooms and blows.
Why he left his home in the South to roam ’round the Pole, God only knows.
He was always cold, but the land of gold seemed to hold him like a spell;
Though he’d often say in his homely way that “he’d sooner live in hell.”

On a Christmas Day we were mushing our way over the Dawson trail.
Talk of your cold! through the parka’s fold it stabbed like a driven nail.
If our eyes we’d close, then the lashes froze till sometimes we couldn’t see;
It wasn’t much fun, but the only one to whimper was Sam McGee.

And that very night, as we lay packed tight in our robes beneath the snow,
And the dogs were fed, and the stars o’erhead were dancing heel and toe,
He turned to me, and “Cap,” says he, “I’ll cash in this trip, I guess;
And if I do, I’m asking that you won’t refuse my last request.”

Well, he seemed so low that I couldn’t say no; then he says with a sort of moan:
“It’s the cursèd cold, and it’s got right hold, till I’m chilled clean through to the bone.
Yet ’tain’t being dead — it’s my awful dread of the icy grave that pains;
So I want you to swear that, foul or fair, you’ll cremate my last remains.”

A pal’s last need is a thing to heed, so I swore I would not fail;
And we started on at the streak of dawn; but God! he looked ghastly pale.
He crouched on the sleigh, and he raved all day of his home in Tennessee;
And before nightfall a corpse was all that was left of Sam McGee.

There wasn’t a breath in that land of death, and I hurried, horror-driven,
With a corpse half hid that I couldn’t get rid, because of a promise given;
It was lashed to the sleigh, and it seemed to say: “You may tax your brawn and brains,
But you promised true, and it’s up to you, to cremate those last remains.”

Now a promise made is a debt unpaid, and the trail has its own stern code.
In the days to come, though my lips were dumb, in my heart how I cursed that load.
In the long, long night, by the lone firelight, while the huskies, round in a ring,
Howled out their woes to the homeless snows — Oh God! how I loathed the thing.

And every day that quiet clay seemed to heavy and heavier grow;
And on I went, though the dogs were spent and the grub was getting low;
The trail was bad, and I felt half mad, but I swore I would not give in;
And I’d often sing to the hateful thing, and it hearkened with a grin.

Till I came to the marge of Lake Lebarge, and a derelict there lay;
It was jammed in the ice, but I saw in a trice it was called the “Alice May.”
And I looked at it, and I thought a bit, and I looked at my frozen chum;
Then “Here,” said I, with a sudden cry, “is my cre-ma-tor-eum.”

Some planks I tore from the cabin floor, and I lit the boiler fire;
Some coal I found that was lying around, and I heaped the fuel higher;
The flames just soared, and the furnace roared — such a blaze you seldom see;
And I burrowed a hole in the glowing coal, and I stuffed in Sam McGee.

Then I made a hike, for I didn’t like to hear him sizzle so;
And the heavens scowled, and the huskies howled, and the wind began to blow.
It was icy cold, but the hot sweat rolled down my cheeks, and I don’t know why;
And the greasy smoke in an inky cloak went streaking down the sky.

I do not know how long in the snow I wrestled with grisly fear;
But the stars came out and they danced about ere again I ventured near;
I was sick with dread, but I bravely said: “I’ll just take a peep inside.
I guess he’s cooked, and it’s time I looked”; … then the door I opened wide.

And there sat Sam, looking cool and calm, in the heart of the furnace roar;
And he wore a smile you could see a mile, and said: “Please close that door.
It’s fine in here, but I greatly fear, you’ll let in the cold and storm —
Since I left Plumtree, down in Tennessee, it’s the first time I’ve been warm.”

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
That would make your blood run cold;
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
But the queerest they ever did see
Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
I cremated Sam McGee.

Robert Service (1874-1958)

Renascence

by Edna St. Vincent Millay in 1917

All I could see from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood;
I turned and looked another way,
And saw three islands in a bay.
So with my eyes I traced the line
Of the horizon, thin and fine,
Straight around till I was come
Back to where I’d started from;
And all I saw from where I stood
Was three long mountains and a wood.
Over these things I could not see;
These were the things that bounded me;
And I could touch them with my hand,
Almost, I thought, from where I stand.
And all at once things seemed so small
My breath came short, and scarce at all.
But, sure, the sky is big, I said;
Miles and miles above my head;
So here upon my back I’ll lie
And look my fill into the sky.
And so I looked, and, after all,
The sky was not so very tall.
The sky, I said, must somewhere stop,
And–sure enough!–I see the top!
The sky, I thought, is not so grand;
I ‘most could touch it with my hand
And reaching up my hand to try,
I screamed to feel it touch the sky.
I screamed, and–lo!–Infinity
Came down and settled over me;
Forced back my scream into my chest,
Bent back my arm upon my breast,
And, pressing of the Undefined
The definition on my mind,
Held up before my eyes a glass
Through which my shrinking sight did pass
Until it seemed I must behold
Immensity made manifold;
Whispered to me a word whose sound
Deafened the air for worlds around,
And brought unmuffled to my ears
The gossiping of friendly spheres,
The creaking of the tented sky,
The ticking of Eternity.
I saw and heard, and knew at last
The How and Why of all things, past,
And present, and forevermore.
The Universe, cleft to the core,
Lay open to my probing sense
That, sick’ning, I would fain pluck thence
But could not,–nay! But needs must suck
At the great wound, and could not pluck
My lips away till I had drawn
All venom out.–Ah, fearful pawn!
For my omniscience paid I toll
In infinite remorse of soul.
All sin was of my sinning, all
Atoning mine, and mine the gall
Of all regret. Mine was the weight
Of every brooded wrong, the hate
That stood behind each envious thrust,
Mine every greed, mine every lust.
And all the while for every grief,
Each suffering, I craved relief
With individual desire,–
Craved all in vain! And felt fierce fire
About a thousand people crawl;
Perished with each,–then mourned for all
A man was starving in Capri;
He moved his eyes and looked at me;
I felt his gaze, I heard his moan,
And knew his hunger as my own.
I saw at sea a great fog bank
Between two ships that struck and sank;
A thousand screams the heavens smote;
And every scream tore through my throat.
No hurt I did not feel, no death
That was not mine; mine each last breath
That, crying, met an answering cry
From the compassion that was I.
All suffering mine, and mine its rod;
Mine, pity like the pity of God.
Ah, awful weight! Infinity
Pressed down upon the finite Me
My anguished spirit, like a bird,
Beating against my lips I heard;
Yet lay the weight so close about
There was no room for it without.
And so beneath the weight lay I
And suffered death, but could not die.

Long had I lain thus, craving death,
When quietly the earth beneath
Gave way, and inch by inch, so great
At last had grown the crushing weight,
Into the earth I sank till I
Full six feet under ground did lie,
And sank no more,–there is no weight
Can follow here, however great.
From off my breast I felt it roll,
And as it went my tortured soul
Burst forth and fled in such a gust
That all about me swirled the dust.

Deep in the earth I rested now;
Cool is its hand upon the brow
And soft its breast beneath the head
Of one who is so gladly dead.
And all at once, and over all
The pitying rain began to fall;
I lay and heard each pattering hoof
Upon my lowly, thatched roof,
And seemed to love the sound far more
Than ever I had done before.
For rain it hath a friendly sound
To one who’s six feet underground;
And scarce the friendly voice or face:
A grave is such a quiet place.

The rain, I said, is kind to come
And speak to me in my new home.
I would I were alive again
To kiss the fingers of the rain,
To drink into my eyes the shine
Of every slanting silver line,
To catch the freshened, fragrant breeze
From drenched and dripping apple-trees.
For soon the shower will be done,
And then the broad face of the sun
Will laugh above the rain-soaked earth
Until the world with answering mirth
Shakes joyously, and each round drop
Rolls, twinkling, from its grass-blade top.
How can I bear it; buried here,
While overhead the sky grows clear
And blue again after the storm?
O, multi-colored, multiform,
Beloved beauty over me,
That I shall never, never see
Again! Spring-silver, autumn-gold,
That I shall never more behold!
Sleeping your myriad magics through,
Close-sepulchred away from you!
O God, I cried, give me new birth,
And put me back upon the earth!
Upset each clouds gigantic gourd
And let the heavy rain, down-poured
In one big torrent, set me free,
Washing my grave away from me!

I ceased; and through the breathless hush
That answered me, the far-off rush
Of herald wings came whispering
Like music down the vibrant string
Of my ascending prayer, and–crash!
Before the wild wind’s whistling lash
The startled storm-clouds reared on high
And plunged in terror down the sky,
And the big rain in one black wave
Fell from the sky and struck my grave.
I know not how such things can be;
I only know there came to me
A fragrance such as never clings
To aught save happy living things;
A sound as of some joyous elf
Singing sweet songs to please himself,
And, through and over everything,
A sense of glad awakening.
The grass, a-tiptoe at my ear,
Whispering to me I could hear;
I felt the rain’s cool finger-tips
Brushed tenderly across my lips,
Laid gently on my sealed sight,
And all at once the heavy night
Fell from my eyes and I could see,–
A drenched and dripping apple-tree,
A last long line of silver rain,
A sky grown clear and blue again.
And as I looked a quickening gust
Of wind blew up to me and thrust
Into my face a miracle
Of orchard-breath, and with the smell,–
I know not how such things can be!–
I breathed my soul back into me.
Ah! Up then from the ground sprang I
And hailed the earth with such a cry
As is not heard save from a man
Who has been dead, and lives again.
About the trees my arms I wound;
Like one gone mad I hugged the ground;
I raised my quivering arms on high;
I laughed and laughed into the sky,
Till at my throat a strangling sob
Caught fiercely, and a great heart-throb
Sent instant tears into my eyes;
O God, I cried, no dark disguise
Can e’er hereafter hide from me
Thy radiant identity!
Thou canst not move across the grass
But my quick eyes will see Thee pass,
Nor speak, however silently,
But my hushed voice will answer Thee.
I know the path that tells Thy way
Through the cool eve of every day;
God, I can push the grass apart
And lay my finger on Thy heart!

The world stands out on either side
No wider than the heart is wide;
Above the world is stretched the sky,–
No higher than the soul is high.
The heart can push the sea and land
Farther away on either hand;
The soul can split the sky in two,
And let the face of God shine through.
But East and West will pinch the heart
That can not keep them pushed apart;
And he whose soul is flat–the sky
Will cave in on him by and by.

Funeral Blues

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He is Dead.
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now; put out every one,
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun,
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the woods;
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

W.H. Auden

Mirror and candle

releasingthespirit

There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it. Edith Wharton, Vesalius in Zante
US novelist (1862 – 1937)


Note – everything in this photo is significant: The chalice holding the candle is one that’s been in Marilyn’s family for generations. The candle itself from the supply she used to heat essential oils to fragrance the house. The red-framed mirror a heart-shaped ‘Safelite Sweetheart’ promo she’d had since teens and carried in her purse. The mirror is resting on a ceramic butter dish – Marilyn adored butter. The silver frame has a grapes motif – echoing the poem on the kitchen wall that I wrote for her the day of our marriage. Everything is resting on the top of a glass-top stove she’d gotten a bargain on – she loved that stove.

The Political Future

by Mary Pitt

One may hear much speculation as to the future of the Republican Party as that once-august group find their following at a historic low and they have to turn for leadership to radio commentators and historic losers from their past. The most-asked questions in the television fora is, “Where is the future of the Republican party?”

The future of the Republican Party may be seen if one looks closely at the other side of the aisle in today’s Congress as well as in secondary positions in the administration. After years of hearing references to RINO’s, (Republicans In Name Only), we now are beginning to count the DINO’s. A new President who was swept into office on a wave of Progressive support is finding his path to the restoration of our nation blocked by Senators and Representatives who profess to be of his own party.

The most prominent of these may well be Secretary-of-State Hillary Clinton. Her history since her failed attempt to establish universal medical care at the beginning of her husband’s first term has been one of compromising and conceding to opponents the very heart of the principles which she professes to espouse. After eight years of watching her husband as his major successes were in the area of maintaing and improving the status quo to the benefit of the financial masters, she was so well schooled in the politics of survival as a politician that her record for supporting the policies of George W. Bush is all but unblemished. In the Senate, she diligently worked to become the leader of a “half-a-loaf coalition” that we may call the DINO’s.

These DINO’s are a combination of the Blue Dog Democrats and some almost-Republican opportunists who insist that we must cling to “the way we’ve always done it.”. (If we have always done it right, why is it not working?) In coalition with a few “moderate Republicans”, they have done an admirable job of foot-dragging and hampering the passage of President Obama’s most progressive proposals. On the other hand, under the influence of Secretary Clinton and the many other re-treads from the Bush and Clinton administrations, the President too often has no choice but to follow their lead into the old tactics of compromise and coalition in order to make any progress at all.

The Progressive movement watches, aghast, as they are marginalized by the title of “fringe groups” and the “middle way” is presumed to be the proper path. The younger members of Congress are held in check by the seniority system which allows them little influence until they have become sufficiently “trained” to be allowed committee chairmanships and other positions which would allow them to assist in the needed reforms. There may be hope if the Progressives can continue to cling together in common cause through another election cycle or two and dislodge many of the bought-and-paid-for old veterans who like things just the way they are.

Both parties are represented in the House and the Senate but that may be misleading. There may well be the same sort of crisis in the Democratic Party as the Republicans now suffer. The result will be a lot of aisle-crossing as more Progressive members are added, pushing the “moderates” to the right and to the left as the parties re-align in an effort to keep their power. The future of both parties is currently represented in Congress but, with the continued efforts of “we, the people”, the lines will be re-drawn. The war-mongers and mind-benders will be pushed out to the Libertarians and other militant parties, the present middle will be the right, and the Democrats will become more Progressive in their attempts to restore a nation that is free and democratic.

This occurence will be dependent upon maintaining the fervor of the common people to re-establish their power. With each election, as more young people are inspired to public service and more war veterans return home with the determination that nothing like the George Bush administration, ever happens again, we will become “a more perfect union”. Then and only then will we be able to proudly boast of the government which was visualized by the Founders in forming our precious Constitution.

Exploded 128

exploded 128 by Garry Booth

(click image to enlarge — only if you are wearing absorbent clothing, don’t say I didn’t warn you)

Ohmigawd. Oh.Mah.GAWD. Accurate right down to those pesky deeply-buried top screws. siiigh… (wipes away tear)

Go nowget.

If you drove one of the earliest Macs, this is an official ‘Holy Relic’ – and should be treated as such.

Garry Booth has created a lovely piece of artwork that any Mac Geek would be proud to have.

Good job folks!

I hope the folks at Denver Apple Pi see this soon.

Memorial to Boatswain

Transcription from Ready to go e-Books free online books.

Image of original monument inscription.

Inscription on the monument of a newfoundland dog by Lord Byron at Newstead Abbey, November 30, 1808.

Near this spot
Are deposited the Remains of one
Who possessed Beauty without Vanity,
Strength without Insolence,
Courage without Ferocity,
And all the Virtues of Man without his Vices.
This Praise, which would be unmeaning Flattery
If inscribed over human ashes,
Is but a just tribute to the Memory of
BOATSWAIN, a DOG
Who was born at Newfoundland, May, 1803,
And died at Newstead, Nov 18th, 1808.

When some proud son of man returns to earth,
Unknown to glory, but upheld by birth,
The sculptor’s art exhausts the pomp of woe,
And storied urns record who rest below:
When all is done, upon the tomb is seen,
Not what he was, but what he should have been:
But the poor dog, in life the firmest friend,
The first to welcome, foremost to defend,
Whose honest heart is still his master’s own,
Who labours, fights, lives, breathes for him alone,
Unhonour’d falls, unnoticed all his worth,
Denied in heaven the soul he held on earth:
While man, vain insect!  hopes to be forgiven,
And claims himself a sole exclusive heaven.
Oh man! thou feeble tenant of an hour,
Debased by slavery, or corrupt by power,
Who knows thee well must quit thee with disgust,
Degraded mass of animated dust!
Thy love is lust, thy friendship all a cheat,
Thy smiles hypocrisy, thy words deceit!
By nature vile, ennobled but by name,
Each kindred brute might bid thee blush for shame.
Ye! who perchance behold this simple urn,
Pass on – it honours none you wish to mourn:
To mark a friend’s remains these stones arise;
I never knew but one, – and here he lies.

Surplus

Hat tip to Bifurcated Rivets:

from:

Gin, Television and Social Surplus

by Clay Shirky

Here’s something four-year-olds know: A screen that ships without a mouse ships broken. Here’s something four-year-olds know: Media that’s targeted at you but doesn’t include you may not be worth sitting still for. Those are things that make me believe that this is a one-way change. Because four year olds, the people who are soaking most deeply in the current environment, who won’t have to go through the trauma that I have to go through of trying to unlearn a childhood spent watching Gilligan’s Island, they just assume that media includes consuming, producing and sharing.

Go read the rest, it’s well worth it.

Dialogues Within the Specialized Brain

Joy Hirsch is a professor of Functional Neuroradiology, Neuroscience, and Psychology at Columbia University in New York City. She is also the Director of the Program for Imaging & Cognitive Sciences, PICS, a university-wide core imaging facility to study brain and mind. Her Imaging Center aims to apply advanced and developing imaging technologies including functional magnetic resonance imaging, fMRI, to observe both the structures of the brain and their internal connections as well as to investigate fundamental processes that underlie brain-driven functions.

Hirsch’s research focuses on the investigation of the brain circuitry that underlies cognition, perception, and action. She studies conscious and subconscious neural processes that mediate emotion and cognition in healthy individuals and in patients with psychiatric, neurological, and developmental disorders.

Her research on language was the first to show that the mechanisms involved in acquiring a second language occur in a part of the brain separate from parts used in learning a primary language. She and her group have also pioneered studies of obesity and eating disorders, autism, vision, and inter-brain communications.

I’ll be attending and possibly liveblogging.

Mariah Power

The Windspire is a low cost, attractive, plug-n-produce wind power appliance that provides a safe and attractive method for harnessing power from the wind. At only 30 feet tall and 2 feet in radius, Windspire is distinguished by its sleek propeller-free design, ultra quiet operation, rugged construction, and affordable pricing. Designed for operation where we live and work, it comes complete with a high efficiency generator, integrated inverter, hinged monopole, and wireless performance monitor.
Hat tip to Doug’s Dynamic Drivel! Go check out the video!

Games: “a year from irrelevance”

From A Tree Falling in the Forest:

Long and thoughtful article about the electronic games industry. The closing paragraph:

I don’t believe either of these examples provide a roadmap for sustaining our industry. However, they do provide effective warnings about complacency and fetishistic attachment to existing consumers. We have to start taking risks again. We are not at the point of drastic Cadillac-like measures, but there should be a risk component in publisher portfolios. The gap between the sub USD one million XBL/PSN downloadable and USD 20 million console game is to great to have nothing in between. Traditional publishers’ relevance and the premier creators of interactive entertainment is under attack by movie studios, Miniclips type sites, DVD games, Facebook apps and other social network games and a ton of others. They are using the same game mechanics and the same hooks we abandoned years ago in favor of the pursuit of “advanced technology.” The audience is being conditioned to pricing models that don’t demand up front investments of USD 60 or monthly subscription fees. It is not just a question of a simple interface change. The Wii mote led the horse to water, but so far they are not drinking. We need end to end revisions. Changes in production, release timing, marketing and pricing. We can continue to believe EA, Actard, Microsoft and Sony will always dominate the market operating business as usual – kind of like MGM and Cadillac – or we can look to new audience segments and determine how we can make the changes needed to remain relevant. If we don’t I am afraid my son’s generation will view today’s games as the new polyester shirt.


The rest is well worth reading.

Nanobatteries

From MIT Technology Review

Monday, March 16, 2009

Nanocapacitors with Big-Energy Storage
Nanopore arrays combine high power and storage capacity.

By Katherine Bourzac

The ultimate electronic energy-storage device would store plenty of energy but also charge up rapidly and provide powerful bursts when needed. Sadly, today’s devices can only do one or the other: capacitors provide high power, while batteries offer high storage.


In a paper published online this week in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, the Maryland group describes making 125-micrometer-wide arrays, each containing one million nanocapacitors. The surface area of each array is 250 times greater than that of a conventional capacitor of comparable size. The arrays’ storage capacity is about 100 microfarads per square centimeter.


Holy crap…!! That’s impressive as hell for something so relatively-easy to manufacture.

Imagine an electric car that can go a thousand miles on a charge and recharge in under 30 minutes.

This is the research that will make this possible.

Tangled Web

Fascinating article about spontaneous tangling of agitated strings.

If you consider the web a series of strings (tubes?) that are constantly being ‘agitated’ (edited?) then ‘knotting’ is to be expected.

I wonder if the Gordian knot that might result will be ‘solved’ by the Alexandrian solution employed so often by governments…

When Great Planes Go Bad

From:

SR-71 Disintegrates around pilot during flight test

The cumulative effects of system malfunctions, reduced longitudinal stability, increased angle-of-attack in the turn, supersonic speed, high altitude and other factors imposed forces on the airframe that exceeded flight control authority and the Stability Augmentation System’s ability to restore control.

Everything seemed to unfold in slow motion. I learned later the time from event onset to catastrophic departure from controlled flight was only 2-3 sec. Still trying to communicate with Jim, I blacked out, succumbing to extremely high g-forces. The SR-71 then literally disintegrated around us.

From that point, I was just along for the ride.

Read the rest