Short dark days. Santa’s list. Hungry church carols poking guilt.
Peers tapping toes and looking.
Facebook glaring – waiting to trumpet praise or scorn.
‘Tis the season to give.
No one likes coal lumps or to be lumped by cold stares.
And some finally feel good about themselves by giving and shouting about it.
Reasons don’t matter if those in need get some help.
But something odd.
Why more worthy to give to those in far far away lands when so many are suffering close at hand?
Oh, all the sad eyed pictures.
And there’s a certificate – or letter – or better a photo – to post on-line!
Your part’s done! Complete. Now move on. Party!
(And after the holidays, it’s all back under cover and out of sight. Won’t disturb.)
Meanwhile those desperate eyes down the block wonder: “Am I less worthy? Why not help me?”
Oh, Silly. This country has so much. Someone else will help them.
Only they’re not.
Everyone thinks Someone Else is those people’s elf.
Oh, dunderhead, how would I find them?
The schools know who they are.
And the firemen, the police men, the domestic abuse rescue groups.
And there’s always the churches. The homeless shelters….
Oh, spoil sport, how much difference can one person make?
As much here as there.
Someone Else can’t be everywhere or do everything.
Give locally. Need ideas?
People and companies (mine included) did that after Hurricane Katrina and helped some New Orleans small businesses stay afloat during their temporary relocation.
They are our friends and neighbors after all – and would do the same for us.
It makes a difference.
You’ll feel just as good.
Be S. Won Else’s Elf this year.
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.
Marketing dream: Shopping saves lives.
One woman lucky it was Black Friday.
All heading out to shop ’til they drop.
One smelled smoke.
Noticed woman’s hair on fire.
Story cheerfully reported with a perfectly straight face by news anchor.
Continued on perkily with the next story.
Not one comment about the obvious:
“What if they hadn’t been going to the mall?”
(Investigative reporting is truly dead.)
Hope someone keeps a closer eye on Auntie, Sister, or Grandma.
(Mom, of course, had the car keys and was out the door before the sparks flew.)
Only one explanation: part of the Heat Miser clan.
The Heat Miser. Mr. Green Christmas, Mr. 101.
Confused? Heat Miser song from “Year Without a Santa Claus”. 1974 classic. (YouTube.)
Bursting into flames not a local Black Friday Shopping tradition.
It’s supposed to be “charged” – not “charred”.
(Note: Lady was treated and released before the malls closed.)
News anchor didn’t seem least bit disturbed.
An animated Holiday Special conspiracy?
Shopping for an answer.
More Bob here.
No impossible. We shan’t say that
Encouraging them to eat like mannerless dolts?
Granny, get that paw trailing with paper out of Our face.
What have you been scratching in?
No, We do not need your notes.
The one time We wish a cat would get her tongue…
We don’t need any advice for a formal address to the Realm.
either crouch at our feet compose yourself and stand at Our side.
What? This mic is live?
Citizens of the Realm, We gather today to celebrate Our bounty with those dear to Us.
The early years of the Realms were often filled with hardships.
Our ancestors struggled to make alliances to ensure all would survive.
The hardy hunted down creatures who would snitch food from the common storerooms.
Being considerate, they wrapped themselves around the shoulders and even the feet of the poor furless creatures shivering in the cold. Comforted them with their warmth.
Our ancestors repeatedly assured the weak two-legged companions that all had a purpose in life – and their was to build warm dry structures
and bring tasty treats on silver trays to where we moodily wait on soft cushions.
Slowly The Great Wisdom was recognized.
And the smarter
louts ones became contented to serve Us with a thankful heart.
Today, We ask all to gather with friends and families.
Take time to reflect on the past and future.
United in voice, shall We read?
Granny, Now! Hold up the poster. Higher. No, you can’t leave now. We’re almost done. You wanted to participate. Be regal!
The Olde Wisdoms’ Words
- Kindness and compassion
- Respect for self and others.
- Always believe good can and will happen. It has been destined.
- Take time to enjoy the sunny spots.
- Purr with purpose.
Excellently done. We are so honored to stand in such company.
Granny, stand! Someone get her up. She’s sleeping on my tail. Trying to maintain some dignity here.
Speaking of dignity, We wish to assure all that concerns about those strange neglected children have not been ignored.
Once the Molly brought the situation to Our attention, We immediately sent invitations for them to shelter within the Realm.
Yet they refused to move.
Even as bitterly cold rain drenched them.
Even as the Molly patiently sat before them – multiple times – encouraging them with her toothy grin and wagging tail.
Even as the winds made it difficult for them to stand.
Despite Our gracious efforts, the children chose to stand in those flower beds and peer into the window of a home that ignored their needs.
Sometimes it is difficult for children to parted from parents – even uncaring ones.
But know We did not turn a blind eye to their misfortune.
Just as We were about to instruct the Molly to simply drag them over for their own good, Staff said they would contact authorities.
Finally. Poor little tots.
Simply the last straw.
that ancient Granny has rolled over off Our tail and We are free to escape We release all to their homes and hearths.
Revel in friendship and families.
Rejoice in a day where, for once, everything stops.
Staff, we remind you any attempt to wander off towards retail shall me met with harsh scowls. Why are they so slow to learn what is important?
Rejoice in thanks for such a glorious Realm
which We work Our little paws to the nubs for to maintain Our listing in the Top Ten Realms. We do have Our pride
We offer a hardy paw wave to all.
Please do not step upon ancient Granny in your haste to leave.
Staff. Someone please gather up Granny. She can’t be left out here like a rug.
Granny. Stop hissing. There’s a sunny spot inside, too.
Move her. Now you dolts!
Ah, yes, lovely to assist the elderly.
You have Our permission to withdraw.
Our paw has waved.
And don’t forget to leave the tribute of an open can of food in the doorway.
I am RC Cat and I approve this message.
New to RC Cat and the Realm? Click the RC Cat in the sidebar or start here:
On the chance that deportations are lax during the feel good holiday season, time to cruise on over.
Widows can hang around just so long without making a move.
Wishing for a little warmth for the cold winter.
Who this time of year doesn’t search for family, friends, that next spouse?
Fine to accessorize for New Years a bit early.
Seasonal celebrations are rushed so much now.
Sophisticated black, a perennial favorite.
With an Auld Lang Syne motif of an hour-glass? Appropriate in so many ways.
Red is always good for accessorizing: sexy.
Always smart to travel with food.
You know how flights get canceled and airport food isn’t always vegetarian.
With a little luck and it’ll be new home for the holidays.
Shouts of joy! Oh, shouts of some sort, anyway.
- “Deadly spiders used to protect Tesco’s grapes” UK Daily Mail. Nature’s Choice reduces pesticide use. It’s green growing. So now what? How about washing fruits and veggies…and handling with care…and maybe gloves?
- “Black widow spiders found in grapes in multiple states” UK Daily Mail
- “First bananas. Now grapes. No fruit is safe?” Huffington Post. A real horror story? (Hey, you’re a writer, get started.)
FYI. Small children and the elderly can be affected by the Black Widow’s poisonous bite. So if you find one, trap it in a jar and take it outside…to live with the other Black Widow spiders.
It’s only looking for a home….and perhaps a mate. Widows do get lonely.
That way, if it unfortunately succumbs to the cold, you won’t have a murder on your Karma list…
Although you did toss it out when you could have…..
Does intent count with spider deaths?
Black Widow Spiders are pretty common here.
Yet another reason not to stick your hand under a log or rock/brick without kicking it over first.
And staying out of certain trees – that one tree we were told not to climb – ever – and it had such great branches. Stupid spiders.
Thankful for small things,
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge
Once, when the Greybeards talked, people listened.
Wisdom carved in stone.
Whether the pillar of the community, a supporting role, or merely a peg in the portal rosette,
All hushed for messages.
Thankful for shared insights and guidance.
Don’t need that now.
There’s Google and WebMD.
Get info on demand anytime.
In a group. All alone
Dressed to impress at Starbucks or dressed for quest at home.
Something to be thankful for.
Another thing to be thankful for?
Being surrounded by those who matter during your choice of holiday celebrations.
They’d really be delighted to repeat it all next year, too.
And you – only you – can do something to make sure that happens.
Get those cancer screening exams and tests done now.
Perfect time to make that call.
So easy to get the Scheduling Office to pick up the phone this time of year.
Big selection of available appointment times.
Because everyone else will be crushed shopping at the mall!
(How unhealthy is that anyway? Let me count the ways….)
Now is the perfect time to find presence.
Life isn’t written in stone.
But your totally avoidable demise could be.
Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be.
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge
- “Movember Resonates withe Young Cancer Survivor’s Family” CBS story and video
- Big Ben Sprouts Ginger Moustache to Honour Movember” Not to be outdone, so do the Pyramids, and the Taj Mahal. Gingerfightsback creates an amazing series of images. Click through them all.
- “Show Me Your ‘Stache!” Giggle along with Susie Lindau’s Wild Ride
- “Blogger for Movember 2013 Begins!” The Hook rallies the troops and herds them in the right direction.
- “Bloggers for Movember Grande Finale” It’s not too late! The auction goes until Nov. 28. Check with Becca of 25tofly.
Engineered. Thought perfection.
Driven hard like German cars.
Purposefully composed, as if Wagner chose each note.
Solid like Berlin’s architecture.
Stark. Precise. Analytical.
German scientists thought.
Sorted it out.
And clearly labeled it.
A cohort of students were the lab rats.
(No better choice. Always observe the Pros.)
Study published in the Journal for Motivation and Emotion. (Which is similar to the journey of blogging – but with footnotes and graphs?)
Conclusion: Five types of boredom exist.
- Indifferent boredom. “General indifference to the external world.” A pleasant soothing form of boredom. Relaxing. Vegging with mindless TV shows.
- Calibrating boredom. Thoughts wander. Like daydreaming, but not motivated to get up and do something.
- Searching boredom. A restlessness.Gets one motivated to find something more interesting to do: like texting, doodling, or, of course, Googling. May result in creative positive actions…or at least some action.
- Reactant boredom. So bad it makes one crave leave the boredom-inducing situation and avoid anyone responsible for it. Often accompanied by aggressive feelings because of the trapped feeling . (Like when one crawls out a window to escape mind numbing training session…but I digress.)
- Apathetic boredom. Oddly a “newly discovered” category. (Researchers lived under a rock?). Common among high school students. Usually teamed with a lack of motivation and considered similar to depression. A negative mental state.
Researcher Thomas Goetz commented,”Boredom is the most often and most intense emotion experienced by students….Much more intense than enjoyment, anxiety or anger.”
Troubling or not? Depends.
Perhaps a mind-numbing boredom needed to distract the restless crowd.
Some boredom can be good.
Maybe read more about it. (Stop yawning.)
“Scientists identify a FIFTH form of tedium.” (UK Daily Mail)
How about “Five types of boredom, explained by baby animals” ? (Humans can clearly identify animals’ emotions, so these cute fuzzy little videos are justified, right? Smiles are good, right?)
Any further discussion closed due to boredom.
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge
Typical of any teenager.
Funny. Moody. Demanding. Beautiful.
Something to die for.
At fifteen, her world opening before her.
Confident, having already tried her wings, she naturally wants her space.
Born of hopes and dreams, she is their darling.
Frets at their indecision, their over protection.
She is fifteen!
Giddy, the world at her feet and her head in the stars.
She boldly gazes past them.
Their worry over her finances.
(Over stupid nuts and bolts!)
She holds the dream – even if theirs is faltering.
Fifteen. And all is possible.
Who can deny her?
The International Space Station, a fragile baby, struggled into life and took wings on November 20, 1998 with the launch of a 42,600 pound module by the Russians into an orbit 240 miles above the Earth.
Within weeks the US Space Shuttle Endeavour flew in with her luggage: the 25,000 pound Utility module. The Space Station grew until 2011.
And now she’s 15 years old and in her prime.
How time flies.
But will time and the future be kind to ISS?
- Despite the scientific payoffs for research is increasing. (The Center for Advancement of Science in Space says it now takes as little as 6 months to design a research experiment and have up and operating in the ISS zero gravity environment.)
- Despite offering “basic conditions for good science: attracting outside researchers, engaging disciplinary debates, and generating publishable results” (Washington Post/William Bianco, Indiana U. political science professor)
- Despite studying health related problems of astronauts with outcomes benefiting Earth-bound patients. (Such as decline in T-cells, weakened immune systems, eye-sight loss, bone density, robotic limbs, remote medical treatment.)
- Despite the potential as a destination for private spacecraft and tourism.
- Despite the ISS is able to work out all sorts of problems that will face humans on long spaceflights as they boldly go for real.
- Despite there is so much left to explore. That human tradition of going into the unknown in search for – well, whatever is there.
ISS is sort of like those who ventured to the New World (That didn’t turn out so badly.).
In any case, time for celebration: Happy 15th Birthday, ISS!
(We know you are more than Tang and Velcro.)
Still star struck after all these years over you,
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge
- “NASA wants ‘Space Taxis’ to bring astronauts to the International Space Station” (Now here’s a new approach…Do you have to wait outside in the meteor showers to catch one? Business Insider)
- “UK built cameras headed for space station” (BBC news. Cool stuff…and why are these cameras important to you? Read and find out the job they have to do)
- “Spot the ISS” Hey, go out and give the gal a wave. Here’s how to locate her.
- “Third Rock Radio” . You won’t believe this! Other worldly cool. Really spacey.
- “Sound of Life” VIDEO. Remote medical care. Ultrasound. Isolated international communities welcome ISS. She’s ready for her closeup. Benefits for Humanity.(NASA)
- “Sound of Inspiration VIDEO” Kids who normally tromp around rural areas opening new doors for their futures.(NASA)
- “Celebration 15 Years Since the Sunrise” (NASA news release. History and info. about the ISS)
- “Happy Birthday, Space Station” (European Space Agency. Pictures, info, links to more)