WordPress Discover: Curve

A lovely word, curve. The curve is the subject of today’s WordPress Discover prompt, moderated by Michelle Weber.

I have a photo, from February 5, of the curving drive into the cemetery I help care for. It’s on the outskirts of town, just a little cemetery. If I was being honest, I would say I am not sure I’d like to be there after dark.

Louth United Church

I take the cemetery onto Facebook. We have a Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LouthUnited

Owing to the health crisis, I’ve had to slow right down on the number of times I post to Facebook, as I don’t want to seem too out of touch. I’m keeping it active, of course, until such a time I can resume, one might put it, my “editorial calendar.” 🙂

I was glad for the Discover prompts this month, from WordPress, as they provide fuel for the creative fires.

I find putting myself into something like that helps with managing stress, as anxious energy spills out onto words. I occasionally look to a guru like Tim Ferriss, who wrote The Four-Hour Work Week, years ago, or whatever source of advice that seems savvy that comes up, on Twitter, for example. I really have a couple of guidelines I borrowed from Four-Hour Work Week, although I’m nothing like that.

I haven’t been working that hard lately. There just hasn’t been a call for it. Funeral services are an essential service in Ontario, and it is usually just two or three of us at the cemetery, so I think we are okay to do some work.

There don’t seem to be too many people around most of the time. I would stay home without concern if I had to. My dad, who handles the monetary details of the work, among other details, is free to drop the duty in the short term, and he knows that.

It sounds pretentious, but at the moment, I guess it really is about playing the long game. I hope you like the photo. The congregation disbanded in the year 2006.

A Difficult St. Patrick’s Day

It’s the end of March and two weeks ago was St. Patrick’s Day for 2020. The weather in Southern Ontario was reasonable in light of expectations. I found myself spending less time on Facebook. My sister telephoned me a couple of times.

A cousin of my mother, Cathie, along other lovely people, with a hobby of genealogy, ending with a nice account of the Irish my mother’s side of the family has. It looks like this St. Patrick’s Day, 2020, I’ll be a little less Irish.  It looks grim.

Photographer:
Tiago Almeida

change

the act or instance of making or becoming different.

I wish a lot of things were different, but I never would have chalked up the possibility of experiencing our pandemic catastrophe in my own life.  I read of environmental warnings, like that there could be, say, eight years until the damage to the planet caused by humans becomes irreversible, or that global warming will cause sea levels to rise, however active God is on the picture at large. I don’t know how human beings will fare.

To consider attacks between warring groups the world over, hellbent on decreasing each other to iotas, to very small pieces, I think also police and military unfairly treat peaceable citizens, because the police loathe the skin colour or addiction, behaviour that doesn’t toe the line for the safety of the public.  I think about these now and again, yet I hadn’t thought of what really descended three months ago. It is hard to contextualize that.

I always do my best to enjoy St. Patrick’s Day, as so many do with aplomb and style.  I welcome the end of winter. We are all called on to be, not so much Godfearing, as instead socially distant from one another.

Good on us all the same, that we can find solidarity in separating from one another, in a fashion that, like the lot of the unlucky addict, is no fault of our own.

Photographer:
Peter Hershey

We will have to come up with new measures to survive, and we have to do it at a time when I am sure many of us would be happier celebrating St. Patty’s in the usual fashion, wearing the colour green, and staying out late.  We’re told to stay out of bars and restaurants and nightclubs and still young people want to go to those kinds of haunts. I want to be young myself, but not to the extent I want to risk sacrificing growing old.

I wanted to think about a superb St. Patrick’s Day, and although I recall it every year, I don’t know I could say that any specific March festivity was better than some other.  A number of them were beautiful and left me feeling blessed. I am grateful to The Lord.

1998 occurs to me, becoming 21 years of age.  However, against how this spring is going, I don’t think the excitement of taking a visit back in time is going to especially cause me to feel better. I like to enjoy speaking a kind word at certain times, because a little kindness sprinkled in the mix, while not reversing the uncertainty that we’re facing, does help temper the darkness.

I would like to wish you a happy St. Patrick’s Day, dreadful or not.

St. Patrick’s Day isn’t to be overlooked, obviously.  Go with the luck of the Irish! Let’s have a safe spring!

You’re of course welcome to comment and to follow.  All the best to you, and to your loved ones.

Find us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/LouthUnited

We’re also on Twitter https://twitter.com/findingenvirons

I enjoy social media.

Taking Steps to Infuse Life With The Ingredient of Maturity

Toward the end of the year 2004, when I was twenty-seven, and sort of in the routine of a day-to-day lifestyle that worked for me, I happened to find myself listening to a public speaker who was talking about someone I took to be the famous philosopher of relationships, writer John Gray. The man proposing Gray’s books appeared certain about his suggestion.

That year, a lady with who I was likely getting a charge out of a sorry excuse for a tease, had quite recently given me Gray’s blockbuster, Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. If you’re sensitive, you’ll have experienced coincidences of that same sum and substance. I chose to peruse Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, and I enjoyed it enough to get intrigued to discover what else Gray had.

Photographer: Stephen Rahn

At our library, I found Gray’s first book, What You Feel, You Can Heal. I saw John Gray wrote about surviving homelessness when he was in the springtime of life. He talked with individuals he met en route, asking himself what was genuinely upsetting these individuals. I know everyone has a hard road to walk, but I understand Gray thought he might be able to light the way for those struggling.

Gray thought of life experiences that he felt are universally true. He wrote in What You Feel, You Can Heal that when people reach their mid-thirties, it is time for them to get down to raising a dependent, whether an animal or a person. And come the age of 42, individuals are ready to experience what it’s like to be part of a community, people together more than the sum of their parts.

I was reading my favourite blog last night, the title Beauty Beyond Bones, and I saw she wrote she was just so tired of men who wouldn’t grow up. It didn’t sound like she was having the most splendid time at the moment. I am grateful to the Beauty Beyond Bones blog for its inspiration.

As she is confident in saying, God is good. Beauty Beyond Bones can be found here: https://beautybeyondbones.com/

She is also a Patreon creator. Look here: https://beautybeyondbones.com/support-bbb-on-patreon/

She only asks for a couple of dollars a month, and she draws on the resources she finds, for the purpose of ministry. She deserves the shout-out.

Far fewer than her, I have two hundred and fifty subscribers, and I don’t know if anyone among those will be available to offer her additional support, but I like reading her blog on Monday and Thursday evenings. She also does a Wednesday evening post, where she shares recipes, but I’m not such a talented kitchen hand.

Photographer: Tim Sullivan

Incongruously, I’ve got an interest in Star Wars. I like cinema, I think Star Wars is absorbing, but it crossed my mind that it might not be the kind of priority that’s too impressive for someone of my level.

I’ve written in my blog a bit about Disney, and about Star Wars, taking inspiration from others who find threads of that kind usable. and I’ve devoted time to experiencing Lucasfilm and their “Star Wars.” Maybe I should have slowed down how many times I turned the focus of my blog back to Star Wars, but, on the whole, I don’t think it changed the overall definition of the blog I’ve done. I enjoyed most aspects of the task–my dear mother reading my thoughts on the Star Wars movies, told me I must be an expert!

On the subject of Beauty Beyond Bones, last night that blog cast back what it’s like going into the 2020s. The author’s a beautiful young lady and I understand why a lot of men might not interest her. Her blog has forty-five thousand subscribers, and of course, she doesn’t need to be concerned unduly with undeserving men.

I like reading her because she’s Catholic, and she lives in the Big Apple, and she has a fantastic amount of charm with which to counter other bloggers who are interested in the conversation. But removing blogs from the equation, I thought of providence, you might say, and I wondered if there was a method I could use to satisfy that need for a community.

Maybe I should go back to reading something that addresses the matter, probably not John Gray any longer, but something that is geared to helping grown-ups get better. I don’t have a straight-up answer to the question, but even starting to reflect on this reminds me that I could ask something about it on Quora, for example, and see if I have the good fortune to attract a sensible response. I would like to change, in light of the number of years I’m racking up, but I do need a strategy to get there (somewhere better, ostensibly).

I usually make a go of Monday’s motivation, the trend. I like YouTube videos about motivation or strategies to make life improvements. Even better, when Monday evening arrives, the Beauty Beyond Bones blog goes live. It is a superb discussion.

Photo: Jonas Svidras @ STEP.CAMERA

Of course, it’s not 2004 anymore, or 1994, for that matter, but sound advice is always agreeable, of course. I am sure it is a positive investment for the time it takes to enjoy it.

I hope that 2020 will be filled with the right opportunity for you. You’re welcome to like, to follow and or/to comment. Do take care and may there be many happy tidings.

20 Problems I Have Seen and Resolved

Today is Kaite’s thirty-fifth chasing the hobbit. She is happily married, to a great guy, and they have hopping careers. She has been known to help clarify life, with thoughtful Christmas contributions.


One gift was a special design, on a coffee thermos, a Maple Lawn Cemetery logo, for the cemetery for who I’m a computer monkey. She is one of our “friendlies.”

Bearing my customized canteen ten months back

http://www.maplelawncemetery.org/24701.html

BUMP… you’re on WordPress? If you’ve hit bumps in the road, the reality that there will be problems has taught me a trick or two. I came up with a few contingencies!


For those lucky few, I have a list for you, of twenty posts, of special use, in the event of specific unforeseen circumstances. Here you are.

  1. Verbal Confirmation: Assigning a Speech Label https://findingenvirons1.blog/2014/10/01/verbal-confirmation-assigning-a-speech-label/
  2. Passion is Fragile https://findingenvirons1.blog/2016/09/16/passion-is-fragile/
  3. Action is Essential if you Want Your Aims https://findingenvirons1.blog/2016/10/06/action-is-essential-if-you-want-your-aims/
  4. Lofty Ambitions are Nothing But Daunting, At the Start https://findingenvirons1.blog/2016/11/13/lofty-ambitions-are-nothing-but-daunting-at-the-start/
  5. Thinking I Have Been Misguided https://findingenvirons1.blog/2017/09/04/thinking-i-have-been-misguided/
  6. Being Artificial on Social Media https://findingenvirons1.blog/2017/10/23/being-artificial-on-social-media/
  7. Devising Content that Stands Out from the Crowd https://findingenvirons1.blog/2017/11/07/devising-content-that-stands-out-from-the-crowd/
  8. Requirement To Proceed Gingerly is Essential https://findingenvirons1.blog/2017/11/09/requirement-to-proceed-gingerly-is-essential/
  9. Whether Sincere or Can We Challenge Ourselves https://findingenvirons1.blog/2017/11/18/whether-sincere-or-can-we-challenge-ourselves/
  10. Narrowing Down How People Interrelate https://findingenvirons1.blog/2017/12/30/narrowing-down-how-people-interrelate/
  11. Attack of the Video Content https://findingenvirons1.blog/2018/01/28/attack-of-the-video-content/
  12. Twitter Refreshing How the Platform Looks and Making It Easier https://findingenvirons1.blog/2018/04/09/twitter-refreshing-how-the-platform-looks-and-making-it-easier/
  13. Be That You Would Rather Risk Temporary Shelf Life https://findingenvirons1.blog/2018/05/07/be-that-you-would-rather-risk-temporary-shelf-life/
  14. How Literature Can Keep You Out of Trouble #LiteracyDay https://findingenvirons1.blog/2018/09/08/how-literature-can-keep-you-out-of-trouble-literacyday/
  15. 10 Freaky Reasons Cupcakes Could Get You Fired https://findingenvirons1.blog/2018/09/22/10-freaky-reasons-cupcakes-could-get-you-fired/
  16. Drifting Down the Inclination to Abnormal https://findingenvirons1.blog/2019/08/29/drifting-down-the-inclination-to-abnormal/
  17. Why Blogger’s Envy Will Make You Question Everything https://findingenvirons1.blog/2019/09/12/why-bloggers-envy-will-make-you-question-everything/
  18. Why A Winter’s Night Will Change Your Life https://findingenvirons1.blog/2019/10/04/why-a-winters-night-will-change-your-life/
  19. Why When We Are Young We Heed What We’re About https://findingenvirons1.blog/2019/11/05/why-when-we-are-young-we-heed-what-were-about/
  20. There is no number twenty. I am sure you can write it. This is an exercise that you have brief to appropriately respond, except if you have prepared what to do.

Trust in your arrangement. I’m glad you visited, as the reason I have written these posts is to hang out, these last few years, in the blogosphere. The pleasure is mine.

The Whispering Doll

In response to Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge #26, I wrote a piece of flash fiction this morning inspired by an illustration Fandango blogged. #FFFC https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Fandango

Robot servicables, three in number, stood by the entry port to the cultural receiving destination, completing their ask of assisting humans reaching the district. The latest car sailing above the rail beams pulled to a halt and the door was thrown back, revealing the people inside, a woman thirty or thirty-two years in age, and a little girl with her, both dressed for the chill night air. The woman wore quality fleece and held hands with the child, perhaps eight years old, likewise dressed for the temperature in fleece hanging from the shoulders to the knees.

The little girl with her arms cradled a doll, looking like it was crafted from porcelain and dear to the child.

The doll resembled a classical design for a child’s toy, but its mouth, red rose lips, curled into a smile, fitted by its manufacturer with an oval speaker that permitted the doll to speak, a pricey but not uncommon companion, to speak to a child from a family with privilege. The doll had a low-level mind that collected sentiments occurring to the little girl, her perceptions of her surroundings and the denizens nearby. As the girl gazed upon the servicables standing upright on the platform, where the car was letting the two girls go, quiet for at once being in the open air, the sound of a whispered murmur escaped into the night.

The little girl reached forth and gripped the adult’s arm. The doll’s sentience was clear. The porcelain figurine’s lyrical but artificial voice reached the little girl.

“Tell me what you saw, for her sake!”

Author: Fandango

Boldness of The Skywalker Saga: Where’d You Go?

Dedicated to a love of Star Wars, Celebration this month in Chicago flabbergasted fans.  The assembly included panel discussions and all manner of Star Wars exhibits, and also celebrity appearances, a teaser for Episode IX, along with trailers for EA’s game Jedi:  Fallen Order, The Clone Wars S7, and The Mandalorian.  The celebration also took a look back at The Phantom Menace, embracing the sci-fi franchise once again.


StarWars.com

I took in some of it owing to its availability on YouTube.  Celebration, I recall, is nine years in the running, and in 2019 it highlights Episode IX.  Celebration revealed the title of Episode IX, and a teaser trailer.  There is excitement in the business sector of the entertainment industry, being the introduction of Disney+.  Disney+ is making available animated features from Disney’s history of films, along with Marvel Cinema Universe titles from the last ten or eleven years, and the Star Wars films, of which by now there are several.

The reason I enjoy Star Wars is that when J. J. Abrams directed The Force Awakens, I felt the excitement that Star Wars was again back speaking to me.  It seemed to again be a film series to be passionate about.

The response following Celebration did not completely line up with the positive outlook of the fortunate people who went to Celebration in person.  While most everybody there loved what’s going on, some of the YouTube channels who discuss Star Wars have mixed feelings, to say the least.  Geeks + Gamers criticized the teaser for Episode IX, The Quartering was dismissive, and a union of voices on the Internet ridiculed reactions that were exuberantly emotional.  All that is best measured against the outpouring of support for the franchise.

It is almost as if there is a guilty conscience about being part of the Fandom Menace and hating The Last Jedi, but still wanting to see what Episode IX is about.  I am sure the average fan does not feel this way.  I waited for The Last Jedi to go to Netflix, but I enjoyed it.


Photographer:
Tim Mossholder

The influence of Star Wars is hard to comprehend, but there is a war indeed between the feelings a fan has for Star Wars in the nineteen seventies and eighties, and equivalent satisfaction with the new trilogy, however much it taps into your experience of Star Wars and however deep it runs within you that the original films were perfect.

Rian Johnson directed The Last Jedi, and while that film was a commercial success, the popular response to the movie, as, for example, those voices on the Internet made known on Rotten Tomatoes, divided the fans.

None of this will be settled until December, but there will be a lot of excitement that grows this summer and fall.  As is typical of hot takes, animosities, apprehension, and outrage for Star Wars will be evident in the backlash that is going, “to battle,” for whatever reasons.

Publishous this month presented the Where’d You Go writing prompt.  Publishous is an 11,000-strong Medium newsletter which presents and highlights Christian writers who seek to make it, in the sense that they are writing because of the compulsion they feel to do so.  Although I’m not a member of Publishous, I look over articles they present, which provide some inspiration to blog in light of their writing prompts.

I am also a volunteer at a cemetery, Maple Lawn Cemetery, and I am their SMM.  You can find out more about us here: http://www.maplelawncemetery.org

Thank you, and please feel welcome to “like,” “follow,” and/or comment.  All the best.

SciFi Fandom Pride: Where’d You Go? “He tends to say whatever comes into his circuits.” – Cassian Andor, Rogue One

The Force Awakens

To think about pride, like for me familiarity with popular science fiction, it is true that in 2015, enthusiasm for the Star Wars films, Star Wars fandom, soared nearly beyond measure when Lucasfilm presented the Star Wars film The Force Awakens.

The realization was great that appreciation for the popular trilogy of films of the nineteen seventies and eighties was “striking back,” an achievement again like the success of Star Wars in the spring of 1977.  George Lucas nearly didn’t get his 1977 film made, according to accounts of what happened, and even though it is true that most film projects whether original in scope or not fail to get made, it is an endearing success story that Lucas made the movie.  The phrase “success story” lacks the weight behind what Star Wars actually did to Hollywood cinema, which was as expansive as what became of the Star Wars galaxy a long time ago and far away.


Photographer:
One Idea LLC

The fervor for Star Wars returning in 2015, helmed by J. J. Abrams, was awe-inspiring.  In fact, Star Wars’ ability to create awe is what gives it such a punch.  For The Force Awakens, original cast members from 1977 joined a new cast for a continuation of Return of the Jedi.

The Force Awakens was a giant success and seemed to bring with it the promise that Star Wars would be once more returning with aplomb and dedication.  Despite unravelling the plot of the original Star Wars films by undoing the Rebel Alliance’s success destroying Supreme Chancellor Palpatine, and failing to bring Harrison Ford, the late Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill together in The Force Awakens, it was implied that untied ends and more importantly the reunion between the actors from the original movies would appear in Star Wars Episode VIII in 2017, directed by Rian Johnson.

Discouragingly, Johnson’s film about Star Wars horrified and divided the Star Wars fandom, by dismantling thoughtlessly a trove of Star Wars lore, failing to shoot what would have been an extremely important reunion of Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa and Han Solo, and, also front and centre, bringing identity politics into the movie.

There has always been a deep-felt pride in Star Wars and while I’m a Canadian, I felt pride when Star Wars returned loud and strong in 2015 with The Force Awakens.  Then I felt that pride evaporate when I realized that The Last Jedi is potentially ruining Star Wars, which sounds catastrophic and yet is indeed a possibility.  There is every chance that the best science fiction, at least science fiction on film, the best of the entire twentieth century, will be undone if Episode IX fails at the box office.

The rest of Star Wars will be history.

There are voices on the Internet, the fandom, divided by The Last Jedi, that organized and presented a call to Disney to save the glory of Star Wars by insisting CEO Bob Iger and Kathleen Kennedy do the work to successfully market Episode IX, for which we have not yet heard a title or seen a trailer.  Star Wars Celebration is in a few days, helping Star Wars on its way.  Youtuber and filmmaker Star Wars Theory has promised to upload video he’ll shoot at Celebration.  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8CbFnDTYkiVweaz8y9wd_Q

In the event that Episode IX is good, the Star Wars fandom will unite, and pride will spread throughout.

If the film flops, Star Wars will go to that great “clearance bin” in the sky.  I hope very much for pride but chances are it is through.

You are welcome to click “like,” to follow the blog, and/or to comment.