MIDlifestyle blog. I'm the mom of Professor Angel Boy and grandma to Angel Boy 2.0 and Angel Girl 2.0. I love to camp and hike. I've been in a few films, co-produced a surf-related radio show, co-owned a couple small businesses, and co-directed a non-profit organization. I love seashells and rocks, gardening and baking, Hello Kitty, Chanel, and anything sparkly. I've been a veg since 1970 and an ardent animal activist forever. Fashionista...veganista...animal activista...If you don't find me crying myself to sleep, I'm off on a mission to find the perfect shoe! And...I met His Holiness The Dalai Lama, so def read that post!
Because somebody set fire to several ballot drop off boxes in California and because there are rumors of fake and tampered ballot boxes, I decided that it was worth the one-hour roundtrip drive to the Registrar of Voters office to have the peace of mind that my vote would be counted in this most important election year.
They had created a drive-through drop off at the Registrar’s location. It was so easy and there was no line, just a steady stream of cars. The nice lady confirmed that my signature was correct and that I had dated it, said thank you to me, and sent me on my way with the “I Voted” sticker.
Now I can check online to make sure that the barcode was read, and I’ve done our most important civic duty.
I believe this is the most important election of our lifetime. I’m beyond shocked at the racism and misogyny and targeted hatred that’s been uncovered these last four years.
In my opinion, it will take a lifetime to scour their systemic toxicity and re-educate certain sectors of our country about things I thought we all learned decades ago.
Here’s just a couple of the major things that piss me off.
Black lives matter. We can’t continue to allow this systematic murder of people simply based upon the color of their skin. It’s INSANE.
NEVER EVER strip babies and children from their parents and put them in cages because they were looking to escape violence. This is beyond disgusting. Those poor children.
Women have the RIGHT to choose what happens to our bodies. No one else. NO ONE.
Trust Dr. Fauci.
Stop killing animals to profit from their habitats.
Climate change is real.
There are many more issues, but for me, these are intrinsically the basis of what I fight for. Also, NEVER EVER again allow a failed reality TV show narcissist to run for office and cheat the system. EVER.
We all know Hillary won the popular vote. That’s why an overwhelming turnout this year is the antidote we need.
Join me on yet another Odysseus-like journey through my town. I’m not sure what I’m searching for, but maybe like Odysseus, I’m trying to find my way home, facing challenges along the way.
This was an interesting morning.
When I began my pilgrimage, there was so much fog! It was coming down from the heavens like rain. Super cool for walking, not so good for curly hair, but I like to look on the bright side so I braided my curls and wore a hat.
Check out the Halloweeny spider webs on this pine tree, brought to life by the heavy fog.
For a while, I was a few houses behind a woman who was walking her Rottweiler. I was actually across the street, but couldn’t help but notice that she was roughly pulling on the poor creature’s leash/collar. The collar was one of those mean ones that have little barbs in them. I was already upset that the dog had a cropped tail. I believe that sort of mutilation is outlawed in other–more humane–countries, as is that nasty hurtful collar.
OK, I said to myself. Don’t say it, I said to myself. You know what to do, girl, I said to myself, keep walking and don’t speak. Don’t say a word this time, I said to myself. Just DON’T, I said to myself. Look away, I said to myself. Take a deep breath, I said to myself. You can’t protect every animal in the world, I said to myself. This might not go well, I said to myself. Take another deep breath, I said to myself. Mind your own business, I said to myself. Slow down your pace so you’re out of hearing distance, I said to myself. I mean it, have some impulse control; this time just don’t say it, I said to myself.
And then the woman and her dog slowed down, so they were within the range of my voice.
What do you think I did?
Yup. I really did. I couldn’t help myself. I TRIED really hard to get my Zen on, but my one little inner voice was joined by yet another little inner voice and the words spilled out…
“Umm, excuse me, but I couldn’t help but notice how you’re jerking your poor animal’s neck that way with that awful chain around its neck. It looks really painful from my point of view.”
“She needs to learn to listen. It’s just a little pinch.”
I said…”Well, you might want to learn another more positive method of training that poor girl because as I’ve observed during the last two blocks, your way isn’t working out very well.”
I concluded by saying, “I’ve trained a lot of animals, and actually think those types of chains with the hooks on them are banned in other countries. It’s abusive. You might want to research using a harness which doesn’t choke your beautiful dog.”
Well, she didn’t say anything else to me because at that point she walked up a side street, in all likelihood to get as far away from me as she could.
To her credit, we didn’t get into a screaming match. Walking away was her best choice, as she would have lost.
I took a deep breath and felt good that I had spoken truth and possibly opened her brain to a nicer way of training. Or not. Maybe I just ruined her day. Either way, job well done, in my opinion.
I looked down and was rewarded by a treasure! This is the most beautiful hawk feather. I carefully picked it up and placed it in my backpack. I think this might be a tail feather, don’t you?
At the beach, there was the usual non-compliant non-mask wearers, but I wore mine, took my ocean photos, and turned back to walk home.
The lights were out at the intersection of Carlsbad Blvd. and Tamarack. There was utter chaos with cars and pedestrians, near misses, and impatient drivers. I crossed the street, defying a white SUV who was inching slowly toward running us all down, and saw a few police cars show up to direct the shitshow, so I thanked them for saving our lives and continued on my way.
This was a new sign at the railroad tracks. I swear there’s a deeper, more profound meaning here, but I can’t figure it out. I don’t have a clue. What do you think?
I stopped at RiteAid and bought a couple of cute Halloween decorations to add to my display ‘cos they were on sale.
Six miles or so again. Except for a still sore left arm where I had the injections, I think I’ve fully recovered from the horrible side effects of these vaccinations. I’m no closer to answering life’s existential questions, but the song that came on as I was almost home was Sting’s If I Ever Lose My Faith in You, and I’m even more confused.
As I’m sure a lot of us have been doing lately, I’ve been contemplating Blogger or some other blogging platform because in all seriousness, the Block Editor SUCKS. I’ve tried to surmount my initial criticism of it and learn how it operates (an old dog learning new tricks) but it’s still REALLY not user friendly. Anyway, here’s a very interesting and intelligent post regarding the pros and cons of Blogger.
Some of you probably know of bloggers who left their blog on WordPress to set up a new blog on Blogger.
And, some of you are also aware of the fact, that some of the bloggers on WordPress are thinking about going over to Blogger.
A lot of the older folks (and some of the younger people too) disliked WordPress’s decision to replace the Classic Editor with the Block Editor (That caused them to consider the option of blogging over on Blogger).
For the record, I am not going to discourage anyone from creating a blog over on Blogger because they are within their rights to do so.
However, they should do some research on Blogger (Especially if they have never been on that blogging platform before).
One of the greatest mistakes that any blogger can make is jumping blindly into something that they know nothing of; which in this…
The Yiddish word mandelbrot literally means almond bread, a reference to its common ingredient of almonds. It is typically formed by baking a loaf which is then cut into small slabs and twice-baked in order to form a crunchy exterior. sort of like biscotti.
This has absolutely nothing to do with fractals; I just thought I’d toss it in for randomness, like croutons on a Caesar salad.
Fractals freak me out but they’re also super cool and I decided to learn a little bit about them since I’m immobile for a couple of days, recovering from a bad reaction to a pneumonia vaccination. I felt as I imagined it would feel to be run over by a big rig that broke every single bone in my body.
According to Wiki, Benoit B. Mandelbrot (20 November 1924 – 14 October 2010) was a Polish-born French and American mathematician and polymath with broad interests in the practical sciences, especially regarding what he labeled as “the art of roughness” of physical phenomena and “the uncontrolled element in life”.
He referred to himself as a “fractalist” and is recognized for his contribution to the field of fractal geometry, also coining the word “fractal”, as well as developing a theory of “roughness and self-similarity” in nature.
Toward the end of his career, he was Sterling Professor of Mathematical Sciences at Yale University, where he was the oldest professor in Yale’s history to receive tenure.
Fractals are also found in human pursuits, such as music, painting, architecture, and stock market prices. Mandelbrot believed that fractals, far from being unnatural, were in many ways more intuitive and natural than the artificially smooth objects of traditional Euclidean geometry:
Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, coastlines are not circles, and bark is not smooth, nor does lightning travel in a straight line. (Mandelbrot, in his introduction to The Fractal Geometry of Nature)
A fractal is a never-ending pattern. Fractals are infinitely complex patterns that are self-similar across different scales. They are created by repeating a simple process over and over in an ongoing feedback loop. Driven by recursion, fractals are images of dynamic systems – the pictures of Chaos. Or in my opinion, of heart-centered LOVE, an infinite woven pattern of infinity. Not finite. Not at all.
A curve or geometric figure, each part of which has the same statistical character as the whole. Fractals are useful in modeling structures (such as eroded coastlines or snowflakes) in which similar patterns recur at progressively smaller scales, and in describing partly random or chaotic phenomena such as crystal growth, fluid turbulence, and galaxy formation.
The most famous fractal equation is the 2D Mandelbrot set, named after Mandelbrot in 1975.
What is Mandelbrot set zoom?
It’s an image made purely of mathematics. It is formed by converting the coordinates of each pixel into a complex number and then iterating it with a simple equation. We can actually zoom into the picture by narrowing the range of the axes and get a better look at the detail along the edge of the set.
The spirals of florets on a Romanesco broccoli form natural fractals.
As it turns out, a lot of plant life grows in patterns that mimic the Fibonacci sequence with petals, leaves, or (in the case of Romanesco broccoli) tiny buds called “meristems” that have 1,2,3,5,8,21 and more spirals coming from the center.
I sent all of my Halloween decor to my Angel Boys and Angel Girls so I was left with nothing.
I went to the nursery, made a beeline for their discounted plants, and saw this festive orange ornamental pepper for one dollar. ONE DOLLAR!!! (I love to rescue these tossed out plants. With a little TLC, I bring them back to life.)
After that, I went to my other favorite store, DollarTree, and got a Halloween themed bucket and a sparkly door hanger. Much better! That bucket is the perfect size to display a medium-sized plant.
I don’t know if anyone will be trick or treating this year, but it feels a little more seasonal around here now.
I’m not sure if it’s red because of the fires or because of a planetary shadow or if it’s some sort of blood moon, but it was super cool, no matter what the reason.
Here’s what NASA says: “The air molecules from Earth’s atmosphere scatter out most of the blue light. The remaining light reflects onto the Moon’s surface with a red glow, making the Moon appear red in the night sky. The name “blood moon” is also sometimes used for a Moon that appears reddish because of dust, smoke or haze in the sky.”
Taken at 9:30 p.m. with my Canon Rebel T3i. No filters. This is the true color.
Every single time I pour out a half drunk cup of cold coffee, I am reminded of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.
Each and every time, I become Francie in her belief that this is what rich people do; to waste coffee is a luxurious act of defiance against personal poverty. I didn’t grow up like Francie but I hate waste, so it’s become a conscious act of extravagance.
I first read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn when I was about ten; I had a VERY active imagination combined with an overabundance of empathy and I would take on the persona–I BECAME the character I most identified with–and so I became poor Francie.
Just like I became Laura Ingalls Wilder in Little House on the Prairie or Anne Frank or Mary Lennox in The Secret Garden.
In my case, these multiple personalities weren’t anything more than trying on a new dress or pair of shoes; I always returned to my own authentic self–wolf lover, nature lover, underdog defender, wearer of rose-colored glasses—but it was part of the process of individuation to slip on these other personas and feel as if I was walking in another’s shoes to learn about how other people live and think.
Mom Katie Nolan believes that Francie is entitled to throw her coffee down the drain if she wishes, saying that it’s good for poor people like them to be able to waste something.
“There was a special Nolan idea about the coffee. It was their one great luxury. Mama made a big potful each morning and reheated it for dinner and supper and it got stronger as the day wore on. It was an awful lot of water and very little coffee but mama put a lump of chicory in it which made it taste strong and bitter. Each one was allowed three cups a day with milk. Other times you could help yourself to a cup of black coffee anytime you felt like it. Sometimes when you had nothing at all and it was raining and you were alone in the flat, it was wonderful to know that you could have something even though it was only a cup of black and bitter coffee.
Neeley and Francie loved coffee but seldom drank it. Today, as usual, Neeley let his coffee stand black and ate his condensed milk spread on bread. He sipped a little of the black coffee for the sake of formality. Mama poured out Francie’s coffee and put the milk in it even though she knew that the child wouldn’t drink it.”
“Francie loved the smell of coffee and the way it was hot. As she ate her bread and meat, she kept one hand curved about the cup enjoying its warmth. From time to time, she’d smell the bitter sweetness of it. That was better than drinking it. At the end of the meal, it went down the sink.”
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn–Betty Smith
Did you ever read this classic? What did you like about it?