The day after Mothers Day
raven_blue

Yesterday was Mother’s Day. The first one for my wife and mother of my son. I was sick most of the weekend and can only hope my wife understands how much I love her and appreciate everything she does. I think the day ended pretty well but it got me thinking of how much I really do rely on her for, well almost everything and how lost I would be without her. Without her life would go on... My son would survive and grow up but such a shadow of absence would be cast over our home that I shudder to think about it. My wife is more than my best friend; she is the rock I lean on in turbulent times. My great shame is that too often I take this for granted. All the things she does, she does so well that I forget that they may not be happy tasks or chores she takes on because she wants to take them on but instead things done out of necessity or urgency. I suppose a good wife and mother makes the hardest toil look easy. I wish that I were a better husband and father so I would notice the nuances of this and realize when it matters most that some jobs require me to step up and lend a hand, even when it seems that I would only get in the way, especially since getting in the way has always been one of my most annoying skills.

 So what does my wife do?

My wife makes our house a home...
My wife makes me smile...
My wife makes the best cupcakes...
My wife makes the best friend...
My wife makes our son giggle...
My wife has fantastic design skills...
My wife has the prettiest eyes in the whole world...

My wife makes better pot roast then even my mom!
My wife gave me a son that is the greatest joy there is...

My wife is my forever girl...




 



Mini Santa
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Today my son, It still feels odd to say it, but it is at least oddly comforting, had a photo session with Santa Claus. For the occasion he wore a red suit with white fur trim. Yes it was a Santa Suit, though on my diminutive little man it really made him look more like a munchkin decked out for an office Holiday party. He even had the office drunkards ruddy nose and flushed cheeks. For those of you who have offices, and for those offices that have Christmas parties, and for those Christmas parties with that guy you know what I mean. I assure you while he has been hitting the bottle heavily as of late the contents are only milk, that glorious libation which is like Soma too the Hindoo; sacred, nourishing, dream inducing yummy goodness. There are times I envy the boy and his ability to find such sublime pleasure in something so simple as sucking milk from a rubber teet. I wonder if I knew such pleasure in my own infancy and at what juncture in my life I thought it would be a good idea to go in search of more complex fare. Ah well, such is wisdom and folly. 
   Anyway, as I was saying my son met the jolly old elf today. Not the real elf mind you, who is no doubt far to busy with last minute preparations for the big show. But one of those erstwhile imposters. Not that impostering (is that a word?) is a bad thing. There is something ritualistic about it, something reminiscent of the Masked revelry of Europe or the whirling dances of the Plains tribes, the fearsome totems of the Pacific North West and the hip swaying, blue suede shoe wearing, Hunk-a-hunk-a Burning love Elvi that crop up in Las Vegas and various and sundry dinner theaters in places like Paramus, NJ. Each performing an act of worship by donning a false face and with it an altered perception of the self.  So to the mall Santa. And you never know, the real deal just might pop up from time to time, or maybe like the sacred dances  the real deal is present behind the mask, if you believe and trust me Oliver, that is my son for those who have not had the pleasure of his acquaintance yet is filled with three things; poop, total trust in his mommy and daddy, and belief in things we as adults find to difficult to believe. It is easy to believe when your vocabulary of the real is so limited. The difficulty in belief only comes later, but increasingly far to soon. Not so my Oliver. he wore his little Santa suit and met the fat man with wide eyed and sleepy eyed wonderment. I think that I shall enjoy the holiday season with my little man. Heck, I might even pass on a few of those amazing lies of the holiday I grew up on. What is a Christmas lie if not a truth placed before hope.



Writer's Block: Cat talk
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If your dog or cat had a mobile phone, who would be listed first on her or his speed dial?

Luci: 911, the local police and fire department and the Marine Corps for those not so subtle security situations.

Banjo: My wifes cell phone, just so he could check in every half hour to make sure she still loves him. He is a bit needy and emotional.

Lily: Acme Speedy Fish delivery service.

Writer's Block: Mind reader
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In three words, describe what's currently running through your mind.

Small furry penguins

Writer's Block: Nirvana
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What is your favorite place in the world? What makes it so meaningful to you? How often do you visit or imagine being there?

That is a tough question to answer. To me, a place that could be considered special is always connected with a strong emotion, and that emotion need not always be a positive one. What makes it difficult to pick a single place is the fluid nature of emotions. Places change along with emotions but I can safely assign a few places of great import to my life as I feel confident that the emotions these places represent wont ever really go away. They may change over time, but the seed of them remains.

First, and this is in no particular order would be the city of Savannah. It is a magical place to be. Standing beneath live oaks draped in Spanish moss, wandering from one square to next (the city, despite its being ordered along precise grids, each grid being centered upon a village square can be confounding and labyrinthine, the aroma of the salt marsh which is a sort of pleasant decay ever present. That place suits my soul in a way no other city ever has and indeed, a part of my soul belongs to her because once you are enthralled by her charms, the enchantment doesn’t fade easily.

Secondly, and again in no order would be the serpentine circle (Why do circles always come into it?) of mountains from Amicalola Fall's, to Rock Pile Gap and up to Walaseeyee and down again to Dahlonega. These are my mountains and I am rooted to them as much as a tree is rooted to the ground. These were the mountains where my people came from and where I return when I need to recharge.

Third is a little house on Hook Street. The house is nothing special, it has no architecture worth seeing, no history, nor even any real charm and yet that place is perhaps the most important of all to me. In a sense, it was at that house my life’s journey honestly began, at a little brick house on Hook Street.

Fourth and perhaps this is a bit over existential but I belong to rivers and mountains. I am never so at ease as when I am near to one of these. I have dug my toes in the sand at the cusp of great oceans and felt a momentary awe at the vastness of our world but it is to easy to get swallowed up. It is all too big, to grand to take in without losing yourself. I suppose there is too much of the Hobbit in me, or the Kenneth Grahame’s Water Rat. I prefer simple things, a warm fire, a good meal and a small home to call my own.  No one comes to the sea with wonder who does not leave with a little terror at what it holds but rivers, at least to me have a different sort of power. If oceans are the body of the world then rivers are its pulmonary system. That is where I feel life and being alive. Knee deep in the cold water of a mountain stream, lazy time on mossy banks, this is my temple and rivers begin in mountains. It is no wonder that the gods of old made their dwellings on mountain heights. Could you imagine the Gods of Olympus without the solidity of Mount Olympus? Mountains are the closest most of us will ever come to heaven on earth. I hear of astronauts who have slipped the surely bonds of earth and entered into the cosmos. It is a very elite club but what wonder have they witnessed that I have not, myself on the mountain heights.

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens may be among my favorite things, if the song is to be believed but my favorite places are well...



Writer's Block: Pet central
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Some animal rights activists are fighting to replace the term 'owner' with 'guardian' to convey a more balanced relationship between a person and her or his pet. Do you agree or disagree with the importance of this mission?

Perhaps some civil rights activists should stop trying to change the world and start reading a dictionary.   Here is the actual definition of the word guardian.

1 : one that guards : custodian
2 : one who has the care of the person or property of another

Notice that  the word guardian implies oversight of property or custodianship. What, you ask does custodianship mean?

one that guards and protects or maintains; especially : one entrusted with guarding and keeping property or records or with custody or guardianship of prisoners or inmates

Notice again that implicit within the meaning is the concept of ownership or of property.

It all means the same thing at a philisophical level; pet owner, pet guardian, pet custodian

Beyond the philisophical lets look at the practical. Most people who OWN a pet OWN that pet because some money changed hands. Either to a breeder or in the form of a spay fee or donation at the local clinic. Since money changed hands then the object (living or otherwise) becomes property. Further, There is no movement among owned pets to change their status as there once was among slaves to become free, or among women for equal pay or among coal miners for safe work rules. As soon as I see a picket line of felines protesting their status then perhaps I will change my mind. I would however suggest one status change. These animal rights activists should henceforth be called protestus overmuches of the sub family Publicus nusances.

Last thought to consider... The power of a name comes from the power one holds over another. A parent holds power of a child and so gives it a name. Man holds power of nature by giving it a name. A person who changes his name is only claiming power of his identity. We deride those we feel to be inferior by giving them slanderous names. In societies where chattel slavery existed it was common to change the name of a slave in order to deprive that slave of the power of having his own name. Ergo, in trying to change the word, the activists are in fact displaying their own sense of power over the so called victimized pet. And that is poor guardianship.


Writer's Block: Young and driven
raven_blue
What is the legal drinking age where you live? Do you think it should be higher, lower, or remain the same, and why?

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In Georgia many of the drinking laws are relics from when North Georgia and Tennessee was the buckle on the bible belt, Liquor is a sin day's. For example, you cant walk into a store on Sunday and buy a six pack of beer or a bottle of wine to drink in the privacy of your home but you can go to a bar and get drunk and then have to drive home. The drinking age is currently 21, which means that before you are even old enough to drink you have been voting, serving in the armed forces in combat in foreign lands, or are a junior in college for three years. This represents a discrepancy in common sense that should be addressed. The answer in my opinion is simple; A complete revision of the drinking laws that would lower the legal drinking age to 16 (if at home where your parents can supervise) and 18 in public. Then to compensate for the lack of maturity many teenagers have the penalties for crimes committed while intoxicated should be strengthened so that a first offense DUI under the age of 18 is the loss of your license for one full year with no exceptions and a fine to paid by the parents (to ensure the parents are doing their job and not letting their drunk kinds go around driving). At 18 a first offense should be the suspension of the license for 6 months, during which two month is a mandatory jail sentence, which can be lowered by community service. The reason for the harshness of the law would be simple to understand. A car, in the hands of a drunk is several thousand pounds of weapon and the person behind the wheel should be treated as someone who is using a weapon in public.

In short, lower the drinking age but raise the penalties for alcohol related crimes



(no subject)
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The dark side of children’s literature;

Propaganda and a child’s perception of the world  

By Tory Shane Quinton, Esq.

   Children learn by repetition. This is a point conceded by most pedagogues and while there are certainly other methods by which a child might learn repetition is the oldest, most reliable across a diverse spectrum and for the purposes of this study the most easily subverted to the purposes of altering a child’s perception.  Thus when a child embraces a book so eagerly that he or she reads it over and over again we as adults must be aware of the subject material and its potential effects on the child.

  

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Just an emotional diatribe for the day.
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   Shall we go quietly into that good night? What is it about night that we find both so appealing and frightening? The dark holds mystery and fascination but we are always safe in the awareness that darkness is only temporary, daylight will return, or we can exit the darkened room but what happens when darkness doesn’t go away? The blind know the answer, but like all else the truth is relevant to personal experience. The blind deal with darkness in the same ways seeing people do and with the same mix of emotions. What is it really to be blind? A friend of my wife’s recently lost her sight. Hers was a genetic malfunction that could have been corrected had she only had the money to catch it early. But was it really money that kept her away or was it perhaps her fear? Fear is after all a powerful force. Perhaps it is the most powerful force of all.
  

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Writer's Block: Defining moment
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Is there a particular moment or event in your life that you reflect on most? Why was it so important, and how did it shape you?

Can I only choose one? I am rather introspective by nature.

If I had to choose only one I suppose it would have to be...

My whole life I was a confirmed bachelor, suited to a life of solitude and quite happy to face the prospect of the passing years with my own company. So committed was I to this life it permeated every fiber of my being. I wasn't just a bachelor but I was the essence of bachelorhood. I dated just enough to be sure of this commitment and my dating life wasn’t selfish by any means. I sought to learn about who I was with and how the relationship (short though they always were) affected all parties. So when I say I was to be a bachelor it wasn’t out of any sense of distaste for romance, or a misunderstanding of what togetherness implied but rather it was a well thought out choice, one that came to define my life. Then I met someone and that definition became obsolete. I married that someone and now am on the verge of fatherhood and I couldn’t be happier. So why do I chose this moment to reflect upon? It is a curious thing but it isn’t the moment so much as what that moment made me to realize. Self defining ideas are all well and good but the real definition of a man is not what he thinks himself to be but what he does and how he reacts to what the universe does to him. I tried to define the whole of my life looking forward. I know now this is folly. I will define my life again, but this time I think I have it figured out. The who of me that will be defined comes only at the end when I might look back and regard my whole life from start to finish? And while I won’t define myself today I will work on crafting the thing that will be defined tomorrow. What I learned and what I continue to learn looking back and reflecting on the moment when I realized what I was wasn’t what I could be is simple. The book of life is the story of our whole life. The start of which is filled in by other hands and the ending is uncertain but the meat of that story is for us to write. Perhaps that is the point where we are truly connected to God, when we pick up the pen and begin to write in that great book.

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