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Through the eyes of a child

July 20, 2017

“Young Explorers” is a series of short films about what happens when you allow kids who are very young—who have just learned to walk by themselves—to explore the world completely on their own.

Watch the endearing video on the site of the International Center of Photography.

(Found through swiss-miss)


July 20, 2017

Control. Of self, of others. It’s a topic at major play in daily interactions for most of us. Unless, perhaps we work with Buddhists, Stoics or others who are not concerned with it.

Be concerned ONLY with what you do and think. I want to plant this in my brain to grow and prosper.


Rediscovering Amorica

July 19, 2017

Is it optimistic or pessimistic? I can’t quite tell. Depends on mood. It could make me cry or lift me up. 

This week, I listened to it on repeat and blaring in the car with the windows down. 

I love it on it’s own and in the context of the rest of the album, Amorica. It’s from a time when an album mattered, and the flow of this one is near perfection from the raucous beginning to the more somber close. 

Want to enjoy it for a few minutes? Appreciate a beautiful acoustic version here or search for a rocking jam version. Lament with me that brothers Chris and Rich Robinson are unlikely to ever perform live together again

More shaker!


July 18, 2017

The chills run up and down my body. I want to shout so everyone can see what I’m experiencing. To share in the magic. But I’m not sure I want to say a word. I could keep it as my secret.

The air explodes up as they surface briefly only to dive down again, mouths open and then shutting; baleen sifting out whatever they don’t want to eat.

The exclamations of joy and excitement escape my lips. The people all around me are sharing their “look!” and “whales!” in a cacaphony of languages.

There are many of them. Spray from their spouts mist the air. Small dorsal fins and backs periodically sneak out of the water. A couple of tails flick out before gliding smoothly back in the water.


Photo by Abbe’s Road, July 16, 2017, in San Francisco

Oh, but they are glorious humpback whales feeding on krill under the Golden Gate Bridge. It’s picturesque, like out of a movie or a photo shoot. The sun is out, the fog has not appeared yet today. It’s a clear and beautiful day.

There’s no way for the average viewer to know how many whales there are or how large they are. They give us only a peak at their size. They are teasing us with bits of their monstrous bodies.


Photo by Abbe’s Road, July 16, 2017, in San Francisco

I could sit here all day. My cheap binoculars don’t help much, but I don’t care. I am grateful and lucky just to be near them.

The first time I heard humpback whales and knew they were nearby, I cried gently. I couldn’t tell you why. It just felt so beautiful and important to me that I was allowed to be close, to catch a glimpse, to listen to their songs.

I’ve spent hundreds of dollars on whale-watching boat trips. Never have I seen so many or for such a long amount of time as I did the other day, sitting by the shore so close to them but in different worlds. I wanted to sit there all day.

The alarm rang, interrupting my reverie. The pre-paid parking meter expired. It was time to go. You don’t want to test SF meter maids.

I was OK with leaving, silently thanking them for allowing me to watch them for a time.

Whales are magical, I whispered to my son one day when we were again talking about whales. We tend to do that.

Why? he pushed back.

Because they are. Magic has no explanation.

Time moves differently

July 17, 2017

He’s standing on the rock looking out over the Bay, with one eye on his kids playing in the sand. The water is rising, the tide is coming in but it’s moving slowly. He’s not concerned. 

Five minutes ago, he told his wife to go for a walk with her friend. It’s fine, he told her. The kids are happy, having fun. Come back in a little while. 

But he’s been standing since she left. He looks more impatient. He keeps looking around, away from the vista. Is he looking for her?

She’s walking and talking. Her friend’s dog likely sniffing everything in sight. 

He checks his watch again. He takes a photo of a lone young woman tourist. He is friendly. Asks her to check the photo to make sure she is happy with it. She is. 

He checks his phone. He hasn’t sat down. His arms are crossed. He’s tapping his foot. 

I sit nearby. I have recovered from the worry during the interminable wait for my loves’ journey. I can rest again. 

Time moves differently for the one left behind. 

Vodka and misery

July 16, 2017

“In Russia, we don’t have proverbs. In Russia, we have vodka and misery.

Wait, that’s a proverb!”

That was Red, in Orange is the New Black. I don’t know that it is, in actuality, a proverb. But it’s a great line, so I’ll forgive the writers. 

Pithy yet meaningful words are not easy to come up with. I feel the pressure daily in my writing here and for my work. 

Writing is an invaluable skill and something that should be stressed more in school, no matter what you study. It’s always useful to be able to communicate with the written word in any kind of job, for the most part. 

You don’t have to love it, but you should know how to do it. 

Trash or treasure?

July 15, 2017

One person’s trash is another person’s treasure. Companies like eBay, Poshmark and others make money from it. People dig through bins at Goodwill to find the ideal treasure someone else gave away. 

Neighbors leave on the curb random belongings that look a lot like trash to me. The items are often swooped up quickly by someone excited about their free score. 

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Just because you don’t value it, doesn’t mean it has no value. Perception is reality. 

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