Friday, August 30, 2013


imageRamana recently put the old and valuable wisdom of the mystic who dreamed he was a butterfly and then awakened to wonder if he was a man who had dreamed he was a butterfly or whether he was a butterfly now dreaming he was a man.

Einstein said that relativity was a statement of all that is relative to your frame of reference.  Although his theory becomes complex, the underlying theme was that he was really uncovering that which was truly irrelative regardless of the point of view.

And such is my view of distraction.  Am I distracted these days because I have so many people needs during my work time or am I distracted because I have so much work during necessary people time?  It is a beautiful example of relativity.  It depends upon the frame of reference and the frame of reference chosen depends upon what a person values and what necessities life presents.  I value the people, but supporting them and myself requires taking care of economic necessities.  I value taking care of my own needs as much as possible so that I don't become a burden to others, but diverting to people are personal necessities.  So, am I a man or a butterfly?

No wonder Vonnegut summed  the universal meaning as "Busy, busy, busy."

There was a time when I had extra time laying around, when I needed to fill it with meaning.  So, I started a blog and started expressing.  Then I became acquainted with others in the blogging community that I found myself attracted to for the understandings of the world they expressed.  So, I had this bright idea that maybe we could form a consortium of friends expressing on the same topic each week.  It was a great idea and has worked out marvelously.

Then life intervened and loaded me up with care giving and business.  From my perspective, it all makes sense.  That means I only post one blog posting a week in honor of those friends that I love and respect yet take time with those in need of my assist in one sense or another.

So life goes full circle.  Am I a distracted blogger or am I a distracted businessman or am I a distracted caregiver or am I a distracted mate?

Who cares?  Life is what it is and life is good!  Isn't that the true irrelative answer, the level at which none of it is distraction?

Friday, August 23, 2013

Modern Addictions

Instant communication in general is also a modern addiction.  I am listening to my daughter right now as she talks about her day with her internship while I'm typing this on my iPad.  I have a mobile hotspot so that I can tune in almost anywhere.

But, like all addictions, you know what the problem is.  Addictions unmoderated are unhealthy, even the positive addictions.  That is why the Lady and I kicked our modern addictions from last Thursday thru this Tuesday.  We headed into the back country around Mendocino, CA and did a lot of hiking, a lot of appreciation of forest and ocean and beautiful plants.  And food.  We got off the modern grid!


Friday, August 16, 2013

My Best Friend

I am on vacation tossing in from my iPad and I found I have no picture of him available.  It is probably just as well.  My friendship is not based upon his appearance.

One year older than I am, we initially thought we were within one week of each other in age.  But, that is because there was a confusion in paperwork when he came from Panama to America at the age of 12.

He did something for his adopted country that is an amazing statement, for he didn't use it to gain citizenship, he did it because he thought it was the right thing to do.  He joined the Marines at 17 and went  to Viet Nam!

He became the point man of his squad and was seriously wounded twice, once being the only survivor of the battle.  Past that point, I will not tell you how bad it really was or what the details were, for he would not.  Not unless he had a reason and because he knew you very well.  He sees himself as having just done his job and is grateful that the main difficulty he experiences is during cold weather when the pain affects him.  From my experience with him I can testify that it must be a lot of pain, because he is one of the toughest people I've ever known.  The pain never stops him.

Yet, that toughness is coupled with compassion for others.  Disciplined compassion to say the least, but the deep compassion of one who has been there.  We met in the church and worked our way to becoming church elders.  We taught children together for years.  We walked away from the church when we felt it time to leave.  Our spirituality is not at all bound by the church, yet we have no regret for the way we served.

We can discuss anything.  We spend too little time together these days, for he moved to the mountains with his wife who is also my wife's best friend.  It is extremely rare what we have shared, can share and look forward to sharing.  We have camped together in the Sierras, driving his jeep back into distant back country.  We have sat together and taken in the beauty.  We have experienced our vision of God's wonder with no need to speak.

This post is intentionally free flowing and disjointed.  That is how it often is when connecting with a best friend, for you ride the tossing waves of life together and share the peace and the tumult in equal measure.  And I know that you, the reader, knows exactly what I am talking about.  Each of us (hopefully) has someone like this in our lives.

Thank you, Delirious, for bringing this topic to the Loose Blogger Consortium!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Why Dad's Car Went to Lafawnda

This was Dad's car:

You are seeing it at it's new digs, in front of Lafawnda and Flash's apartment in Clovis, CA.  Why?  Multiple reasons.  This was the car that was going to Lafawnda:

This car came from Dad's Mother-in-law a couple of years ago.  It needed work, both cosmetic and mechanical, but was basically pretty sound and definitely was originally a luxury vehicle.  It was to go to Lafawnda as she started her Dietetic Internship today, since she would need independent transportation from Flash.

Then we took it to our mechanic to spiff it up mechanically before taking it to her.  However, he did such a fantastic job that Dad fell in love with it.  So, at the last minute we changed the lineup and took the burgundy Honda to Lafawnda and not just because the two names rhyme in the alternate universe of this blog.

Lafawnda was delighted because she learned to drive on the Honda and loved the car.  So now everyone is happy!  And happy is very important to a daughter undertaking a new adventure that can be a bit daunting at first.

The Lady F and I are really excited!  This is a big deal and we are excited for and with our daughter.  May her journey be on happy roads!

Friday, August 9, 2013


The above T-Shirt was originally posted by “Funny Shit” on Facebook and I passed along the sharing.  I figure if it is shareable there, it is shareable here.  I like the point it makes, for it is easy to forget that our moods are part of us that leak into the public square and all of us have been buoyed or afflicted by the moods of those around us.

Everyone gets mood poisoning from time to time.  It is a stupid indulgence to simply let it remain and take no account of the price others pay along with you.  Humor is one of the best cures for it.

My wife and I have known from the beginning that a shared sense of humor was more important to our marriage’s well-being than sex.  Both create a special social bond, but humor has longer lasting legs and is definitely more portable!

On a bigger scale, we have an intimate public square in my country.  We are a country of immigrants and hatred rears its ugly head in various spots.  We hate “others” all too often and it spoils the body politic.  So, how do we deal with that?  We use our free speech rights.  My old mentor from college, the late Dr. Leon Rappoport, Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Kansas State University was a fine Social Psychologist and he addressed this issue head on in what I believe was his last book:



It is through our humor that we uncover and deal with our prejudices in a constructive way, especially if we let go of our own pretensions about who we are as well as who the “others” are.  The Broadway musical “Avenue Q” dealt with it beautifully with this song:

We're All a Little Bit Racist

Humor, a nice antidote to mood poisoning.  Seriously.

See what the other members of the Loose Blogger Consortium think about this topic by clicking on the links on the right side of the page.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

A Great Weekend in the Napa Valley

The above picture of the Beringer Winery's Rhine House is typical of the Napa Valley and its beauty.  Beringer is the oldest continually operating active winery in the valley - I think - and they do have some very fine selections onsite, some special selection of Cabernet Sauvignon running about $750 per bottle.  But, the Lady F and I are in Napa so often caring for her mother's needs that we very seldom go out to the wineries, for it tends to be an expensive experience.

Then family comes into town from out of state and it becomes worth it.  The shared experience is better than the wine!  If you look at the left side of the house, that is where the following discussion of life was taking place:

You can tell by the animation that the conversation was lively and amenable - and it was for the entire weekend.  Many are the events in extended family and the relatives were from Salt Lake City, Utah, so a lot of catching up and learning about family was had.  The lady above with the Lady F is a cousin we had not even met before this trip and she was with another inlaw that we have known for many years.

Let us just say that everyone has not had the easiest life, but that a lot of knowledge and support has been shared between good hearts.  I can't think of a more worthwhile way to spend a weekend.

And we are heading home with two very nice bottles of Cabernet with a mild blend of Petite something that sounded kind of like Petite Fredo, but perhaps is Petite Verdot (you know an American and his understanding of foreign words, so I apologize).  Life is very busy, but it is very good.

Friday, August 2, 2013

If you could only hear 5 more songs what would they be and why?

This topic was brought to us this week by shackman, the true master of songs!  Would that I were the same …


shackman, I love you, I consider you part of my inner circle in so many ways.  So, it pains me to see your challenge and know that I am totally inadequate to the task!  I wrestled with this over the past couple of days, literally.  Every time I came up with a few candidates, it evolved almost immediately into a new set.  And the set wasn’t always five.

However, here goes:

  1. Ave Maria, the version that was used in Fantasia.  And, I’d like to have the video along with it.  It just moves my inner feelings in a good way and since it is one of my last five, I’m assuming I’m on the way out.  I’d like to go with the feeling it engenders in me.
  2. Thus Spake Zarathustra, 2001 Space Odyssey version.  I’m on the way out and this might inspire me to evolve in a good way, LOL.
  3. I Did it My Way by Frank Sinatra.  I do not like Sinatra the man, but I like this song as my last salute to the life and ego I leave behind.
  4. I Fall to Pieces by Patsy Cline.  I have always liked music by Patsy Cline and besides … one way or another I’m getting ready to fall to pieces!
  5. How Great Thou Art or Amazing Grace.  I don’t know which.  There is a part of me that welcomes my soul’s reconnection with the All and these songs evoke that in me.  I am sure there are some atheists out there thinking me a fool, but so be it.

Ask me again in ten minutes and it will be totally different.  I am worthless at this!

Hey, wait, don’t take me yet.  I forgot to include any Rock and Roll or Blues.  Can I see the menu again?  Maybe a little Billie Holiday or side of …