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.

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

I enjoy social media.

How Not Knowing Where to See the 2021 Ball Drop Makes You a Rookie

Sometimes, when I want to write a blog post, I turn to a random generator to help develop an idea.  While it’s not wise to let go of a secret, it shouldn’t be too big a surprise that such a tool is helpful.  By far almost everything I think to write springs from my beleaguered self.

    I know no writer wants to be called a plagiarist.  I am steadfast of the belief that “everything is a remix” and go from there.

    I do take a few liberties assembling content.  Be that as it may, I am not making a solitary dollar from composing this.

    Years ago, when my godmother was visiting us here in town, she observed that “it’s all been done.”  She also admonished me not to tweet.  I took to heart neither of this advice, although I am sure that the dear lady is far more capable than I am, like it or not.

    I also think she would neither remember any of that conversation over dinner nor would she cop to saying anything like that.  Life works like that sometimes.

    Her mom, my grandma, an even longer time back, each year, on New Year’s Eve, would keep an eye on us, while my folks were out celebrating the New Year.  As I am the oldest, I enjoyed the privilege of staying up with my grandmother and watching the ball drop at Times Square.

    We would have a cup of tea together.  It’s been about twenty years since she passed on.  She was a stunning old dear.

    Valentine’s Day is here in eight days, and it appears we are in a period of development, it should be obvious.  I was reading a blog Monday night, by an NYC blogger, Beauty Beyond Bones, who reflects on everything Jesus does for her.

Photographer:
Jeremy Bishop

    The Beauty Beyond Bones blog goes live three times a week, I believe, both Monday and Thursday evenings, which are her regular event, and Wednesdays, her recipe-sharing.  Good eating is one serving of Beauty Beyond Bones’ expertise.  I doubt she would have it any other way.

    Monday, the Beauty Beyond Bones blog pointed out that while, characteristically, astrology and the Law of Attraction tend to pull in people who are searching for answers, that may not be The Way, to put a Taoist label on that kind of struggle.  I wouldn’t be above joining such a movement, as I am in my forties and without question, there is a brigade of more youthful and fit men loaded with moxie against who I don’t know I can pull in more than I have.

    Beauty Beyond Bones put up a link Monday to an awesome webcast where she typifies her biography.  You may see her blog for yourself:

https://tinyurl.com/w6prnvu

    I enjoy the Internet and just this year I chose to get a Tik Tok account, after discovering that my sister and her husband had done a little video on the website. On the first of February, I put up a photo that I soon thought better of.

    I care for a cemetery, but does that necessitate I represent myself not unlike the host of cult TV item Tales from the Crypt?  Presumably not, while in a snapshot of what I thought would be motivation, I chose to risk the picture.

    I imagine it would frighten people with certain sensibilities.  Rookie move.

    There are no fixed rules to social media, except to go ahead and do it.  I am sure everybody is prone to the odd bad decision when tackling that kind of thing.  It’s Tik Tok, anyway, not eHarmony, the dating service.

Photographer:
Burst

    It did occur to me that, if anybody noticed how I was handling myself, there was a good chance that I would not know that person much longer.  There were aspects of the image that I liked, and there were aspects I didn’t.  I presume, regardless of how much development I appreciate, I will consistently have that sense to want to be a crypt keeper.

    When I was a boy and had a different sense of the theatrical, I liked to be the Dungeon Master.  There is no shortage of folk interested in games like D + D.  Better believe it, the game’s monsters, the undead, and Medusa.

    It’s difficult to clarify to anyone who became an adult playing Super Mario Brothers, Nintendo’s mammoth game.

    At present, I bear a few commitments  https://tinyurl.com/vdwqo88  

I realize that as long as my folks are alive and healthy, I must remain here to show them out, you may put it.  I’m a Catholic and I don’t have much trouble acknowledging my faith.

    Whether I can accommodate various aspects of my mental self-portrait with what is most critical, presently, is something I think about. I am trying to put this in more simple terms than is easy, in pursuit of something intangible.  It’s neither an idea that comes easy nor is language to encapsulate that want easy to write.

    If you blog and you’re on WordPress, that’s wonderful!  It’s a terrific interest.  If you do business for yourself, or you’re of a mind that writing for the public appeals to you, you would do well to get a blog, if you don’t have one already.  You can sign up for WordPress to join for free.

    Get your spot for the ball drop.

Photographer:
Tommy Jepsen

You’re free to like, follow, or potentially remark.  See you soon!

Why Looking Backward at 2019 is Worse than a Bad Valentine

I wrote this three months ago, the beginning of the winter that changed lives around the world. I realize that despite my intention to offer kind wishes, nobody got what they wanted when the last month became unprecedented in history.

I didn’t factor into the equation how long we would be at the same task. Speaking in terms of temperature forecasts, some days were more tolerable than others.

Today the Canadian provinces of Quebec and Ontario ordered all non-essential businesses closed. They had already begun reacting to the new restrictions. When I raised the point with my dad the last couple of times we spoke together, he said that a cemetery is considered an essential service.

Photographer:
Elliott Chau

My dad has a business and we have an agreement that I will do some work for the cemetery which the business operates. The agreement is becoming strained, of course, because of the recession.

My mom asked me quietly why I seem disinterested. I wasn’t sure how to emphasize sympathy was the issue, given that the present events around the world are tragic and discouraging.

I decided to update this because that was kind of one winter I might be happy to put behind me. Seeing a copy of TROS was nice, though.

A week or so after a lovely Christmas rest and a pleasant New Year’s Day, we finished last year rather indignantly when a brushfire spread to one of our trees, a fire which we had to extinguish.

    My mother turned seventy years old in December.  She has been enormous for me, obviously, beyond what I can succinctly talk. She said she was pleased when she saw for herself this post.

    I remember when Mom was asking me as Christmas approached what Christmas TV programming I might get to see, and she reminded me that a lot of the network TV shows are having their mid-season hiatus.  It’s sort of in their absence, especially, that the network shows feel relevant and add heaps of joy to the calendar year.

   I don’t have the foggiest idea whether you have a sentiment for January, or if nothing else be alongside associates with who you can explore the winter month of January.  I know from the weight of popular interest in romance, and relationships, that there is something intrinsically human and good about the romance of winter.

Seeing the tree that had been alight

    While I’m a Canadian, I live in the southern ranges, where lake impact temperatures are generally sensible, while keeping you inside a greater amount of the time than you may somehow prefer to spend. Some people have that flair to form a unit that stops a problem, and sometimes, even if it is as routine as waiting for the cast of, for example, The Bachelor, to reconvene.

    I risk appearing to be dismal if I reflect what getting in some Bachelor may accomplish for me.

    It could prove, by the fact that I help at a cemetery, that being morose lives for me in a heart of darkness, but tempering that with an appetite for uplifting and curious experiences, you have in me, not a pack animal nor a reptile, but, I feel, an effusive human being, making a sound perceptible in its absence.

No Perceptible Difference By Its Presence or Absence – Aristotle

You don’t have a clue what you have until it’s gone, maybe, but I don’t know now that our certainties for the future have been upset what to expect entirely, nor, I take it, does anybody. Remember that prayer often provides relief.

Why Skywalker`s Students Should Have Been Afraid

The Stupendous Wave on YouTube said yesterday that John Boyega’s people have said that an official trailer for Rise of Skywalker will air at halftime during Monday Night Football, and go to YouTube at the same time.

I wanted to say something more about the character of Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, played in 2017 again by Mark Hamill.

Luke Skywalker wanted there to be more Jedi Masters, heroes of the Light Side of the Force, who help police their galaxy.

The word disciple often refers to people dedicated to learning about The Bible from Jesus Christ, of course. The Last Jedi retells how Jesus could do only so much, as when Luke is unseated by Ben Solo, son of Han Solo, and Leia Organa. Ben Solo has betrayed Luke and murdered the other disciples, becoming Kylo Ren.

This is not that different than the Apostle Judas betraying Jesus to Pontius Pilate for thirty pieces of silver. Unlike Jesus Christ, crucified by the Romans, Luke has enjoyed the freedom to retreat to Ahch-To. He is done with enlisting potential Jedi, at least until Rey seeks him, and tells him what she knows is happening in the First Order, across the galaxy.

The difference between Ben Solo and the other Jedi disciples Luke was trying to train is that Ben is the son of Leia and Han. Luke had known when training Ben, that the young man could be trouble for the galaxy if the Dark Side of the Force continued to grow in him.

Some of the tragedy of The Last Jedi, tragic in the sense that the events of the story are irreversible, and of an ill-nature, is that what Luke could teach caused the apprentices’ demise. The Jedi dedication to the Light Side of the Force could not combat the darkness in Ben. Supreme Leader Snoke has corrupted young Ben Solo, as a transformation into Kylo Ren begins, not too different than the transformation of Anakin Skywalker into Darth Vader, in the prequel trilogy.

Snoke, a new character in The Force Awakens, has origins unclear, and likewise murky in The Last Jedi, but is an evil mentor to Kylo Ren, the opposite to how Luke was a mentor to young Ben Solo.

Dimensions: 3200 x 1967
Photographer: Luca Baggio

Not a big surprise, Luke Skywalker is my favorite character in The Last Jedi because of the reminders Mark Hamill creates of the original Star Wars trilogy. Luke`s powerful abilities with the Force, begun in Star Wars: A New Hope in 1977, and explored in the next two films, are what fans like about him. For Luke to be teaching the ways of a Jedi Master is great because Luke learned from Yoda, in The Empire Strikes Back, the ways of the Force.

“Pass on what you have learned,” Yoda finally tells Luke in Return of the Jedi.

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Photographer: Michal Jarmoluk

The Star Wars audience knows of events in the time between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens because they have been told to Rey by Han Solo when the two are aboard the Millenium Falcon after Rey leaves home. If Luke`s other disciples had known of Snoke`s influence, on Luke, and his protégés, they would have become afraid. No one facing death would surrender life voluntarily when a pressing objective very much requires the opposite: the objective to become Jedi Masters and to protect the galaxy.

Luke`s remorse is evident. Mark Hamill displays the emotion perfectly.

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Photographer: Mateusz Dach

Recollections of the murders are present in The Last Jedi, but that movie would have been better if it were more clear what Luke searched for in his years of travel before the events of The Force Awakens. Luke is a Jedi Master who can deter the First Order if only he can teach Ben Solo the importance of the Light Side of the Force. That can`t be done, not even by Luke Skywalker.

How is it that Luke, with everything he understands about the Force, can make such a dangerous error? Luke has decided, I think, in The Last Jedi that to wield the Force, with as much ferocity as he has, is an act of hubris. If Luke had reached Ben Solo on any other level than of training the young man to become a Jedi, the sway of Snoke on Ben Solo might have been dispelled, with Ben never joining the First Order.

Although the conflict in Ben has made unrest in the galaxy that Luke, Leia, Poe, Fin, C-3P0, R2-D2, and Rose together combat in The Force Awakens, Ben`s path could have taken him elsewhere instead of to the very center of the battle against tyranny in the galaxy.

Appropriate fear is usually an emotion evoked by the Dark Side of the Force on one vulnerable. That same emotion could have prevented tragedy and kept both Han Solo and Luke Skywalker alive. Luke`s powers mostly fail him in The Empire Strikes Back when Darth Vader confronts him on Cloud City in Bespin, after Jedi Master Yoda has told Luke that he isn`t ready for such an encounter.

In The Last Jedi, Leia has told Luke that she desires for him to teach the Light Side of the Force. If Luke could have drawn insight from what Yoda at the last had to say about teaching with wisdom the Force, long before Ben precipitated the murders of Luke’s apprentices, the drawback of overconfidence in Luke Skywalker could have meant a better outcome for all.

You`re welcome to like this post, to follow the blog and/or to comment.

The Skywalker Saga draws to a close this winter beginning December 20.

How Halloween Resolutions are Making the World a Better Place

In What Ways Might We Find a Little Magic in Affirming Halloween?

Guy Fawkes Day, Bonfire Night and Firework Night, is a yearly remembrance on 5 November, in the United Kingdom. I was there twenty years ago, in 1999, and the festivities I saw that fifth of November delighted me. I drifted among village people carrying an effigy of the infamous Guy Fawkes in procession and then setting him ablaze, burned.

He had been a traitor. Here, back in Canada, on Halloween, 31 October, of course, I get a little remorseful that I have let some fine moments pass by since, without being in the same kind of high spirit that night in the English village I was visiting.

Years later, I continue to enjoy seeing the leaves change colour, and I like seeing candy on store shelves, and spooky house decorations. I always think I could get myself a few costume elements–maybe this year will be the year I make good on my promise. I experience occasional brief pangs of regret for having spent years with less beauty and sensation as I would have liked, in my youth.

Even with as much opportunity as we have in the West, fiscal and personal and soul-satisfying, too, the calendar pages keep turning. There could be so much in the world that invigorates. I can think of one example in particular.

On the off chance that you’re visiting Iceland in winter, you are most likely wanting to see the Northern Lights, or the aurora borealis. The Northern Lights can be seen from pre-winter to spring, with the most obvious opportunity being during the nighttimes of the winter months.

Dimensions: 1944 x 1320
Photographer: Hunter Bryant

I think of a kind of magic there could be, viewing a sky like that. If I think of seeing that, but never, I can start to feel sad. If you have the calling, you may need to go somewhere like that, to feel as though you have lived properly.

Where I live, we enjoy Halloween candy and costumes. Halloween is not officially celebrated in Iceland, so it can be thought of a blessing that in this culture, in Canada, we celebrate Halloween, Americanized Halloween. In the United Kingdom, individuals hold Halloween parties where they take on the appearance of phantoms, skeletons or other frightening figure. In that respect, Canada’s the same as there.

I tweet occasional content that I think could be valuable for the right reader, lots of it trending and about my life and yours. If you want to share in these riches, click me up at https://twitter.com/findingenvirons

Happy autumn!

Weighing What’s Next in 2019

Dimensions: 4818 x 5346
Photographer: sasint

It is the beginning of the Christmas season in my neck of the woods, and I can see from old posts how 2019 began.

When I reached two hundred followers with my WordPress blog.  I was satisfied with the achievement, and I was grateful to the people following this for spending the time they do.

Writing for prompts feels like a shared experience.  I miss the Daily Prompts organized by WordPress.  Back when they were daily posts, the prompts from WordPress were lots of fun. I had thought Publishous could be a great new opportunity for quality blogging.

An example of the style of blog post I write can be found at the following:

https://findingenvirons1.blog/2017/08

Since the last time I wrote, I received two more editions of Publishous.  I enjoy them, but I have not seen another writing prompt.  The newsletter exploded by 1500 subscribers in only several days.  Did they abandon their prompts?

Or the prompts are not weekly, contrary to an assumption I made. I feel like I’m getting behind.

Expert YouTuber Neil Patel suggests quality over quantity.  He pitches one post a week or once a month.  Neil Patel is a gentleman with an ad agency, but I don’t want to wait the entire span of a month to write posts.

#NeilPatel #ContentMarketing #Blogging

I try to think how I could deliver a better post. I don’t need as many writing prompts, but I do put into place tools, when writing for the blogosphere, that help me write me well.

I remember also learning some tips at finessing a personal blog when I looked at video lessons from bestselling author Jeff Goins. Although I believe that time for those lessons has gone by now, with those lessons he did a great job at getting new writers putting together great blogs. A few of my peers from that time I remain friends with on Facebook.

You’re welcome to “like” this post and/or subscribe.

Resolutions for 2019

Seeking ideas for this small blog of mine, I began last month to refer to the weekly newsletter Publishous.  Publishous is a little more than a year old, with about 5800 supporters.  The newsletter is a collection of semi-connected ideas about content and the like and includes a writing prompt.

Formerly I would refer to WordPress’ own daily prompts before that came to an end, owing, I presume, to WordPress no longer wishing to organize their once-a-day prompts.

The prompt for the current newsletter is Resolutions.  I am late because I did less work between Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

As you know, the custom among many New Year’s revelers is to identify resolutions for the coming year that mark a life change.  Resolutions can be in the spirit of fun, or they can be difficult to declare if a resolution requires the kind of change that is hard to make.

I kind of hate resolutions because I cannot think of useful ones.  I do have a few tactics ready, for better productivity in 2019.

I was inspired in 2018 to read Robert Greene’s book The 48 Laws of Power.  This book was a difficult read, but rich enough with great ideas to benefit from having read the book.  Even though 2019 was far off, I thought to resolve to make some attempt to apply the book to my strategy in the year ahead.

I was not confident that I could apply much of The 48 Laws of Power until I came across a Twitter account that helps by mentioning ideas from Greene’s book–
https://twitter.com/48tweetsofpower

I want to apply more commitment to the areas of work for which I am already present.

My digital social interactions are largely confined to Facebook and Twitter.

At the cemetery, we have been working together since 2011, and we soon thought that a page for the work we do would be useful.

Maple Lawn Cemetery, St. Catharines

On Twitter, I don’t specifically refer to details of the work I do with my dad.  Instead, I tweet a few articles, generally about tech, and some about charity and a few other concepts.  I have the idea that, if I do this, it could prove useful.

On Facebook, real “real estate” is hard to market, because of the competition among business users, to make ads which are interesting.  I wish my dad and I had a marketing budget, but we don’t.

Most of the work I do for my dad’s little business is done on a volunteer basis, and I rarely include a call-to-action that deliberately invites business (you could say I leave money on the table).  It’s just not my responsibility.

That’s all part of why I struggle with effective New Year’s resolutions.  It is frustrating to think that life improvement could be worked out without a yin and yang down-side, that depletes the benefit of strategy in business, and in life.  I want to check the work in case there is a down-side, that I am blind to, that could defeat me.

I want to blog at approximately the same pace at which the newsletter prompts are e-mailed, in Publishous.  You may wish to check it out for yourself.

The spirit of the blog is to put out an “ask” identifying that I’m interested in taking “real world” work online and also that I’m capable as a creator, to use the buzzword, to keep active in a role which for now is valuable to my dad’s business in terms of the results I effect.  I’m an optimist.


Photographer:
Jiyeon Park

Thank you for reading my post here, and good luck with your own blogging in 2019. Take care, and all the best.