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December 5, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Tiny sticky points

Fire breathing dragon on couch with Oriental lady. (Russian story book by Wilson with ill.Pape (PD:, artist life/

First they came for the dragons…”Must we turn him in? How much pollution can one small, fire-breathing dragon cause?” (PD/

Finally the big reveal: What caused the dinosaurs to disappear.

If only their tiny pea-sized brains had realized….

If only ultra strength Beano had been invented earlier…

If only…

Not such a bloated idea.

If California dairy cows’ farts are damaging the climate, then imagine what a bunch of gassy dinosaurs could do.

No wonder there was loss of available food sources and an ice age.

Simple logic.

If A (dinosaurs were plant eaters that passed gas)= B (cows are plant eaters that pass gas)

And B (cows fart methane gas created by their digestion process) causes C (global warming/climate changed by methane gas);

Therefore A also causes C. Right?

Obvious conclusion: Dinosaurs gassed themselves. (The stupid creatures)

Now people have larger brains (yet can be stupid creatures).

We tell cows what’s good for them:

“California targets dairy cows to combat global warming”

Tiny things can have big impact.

As the Dalai Lama says, “If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito.”

Tall brush with fall colors. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted

Despite the seedy environment, answers blowing in the wind©

The mosquito challenge isn’t tiny.

Win-lose situation for one or the other.

Spraying poison not only can affect humans and others in the food chain, it spooks the tourists and celebrities, so it’s bad for local economies.

Using genetically modified, undercover mosquito double agents could upset the natural order. They might even buzz off and become turncoats.

So humans can all just get sick and die off. That should really save the environment and the climate.

Baby being towed into sky by bug.( Andersens Fairy Tales (1913) ill: William Heath (USPD

Bugged and getting carried away. Could become a common situation.(USPD/

Has Mother Nature finally sent in her assassins to get rid of those messing up her place?

Tiny things the downfall of mankind.

Well, something pea-size killed off the dinosaurs.

Logic out the window

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Additional buzz kills?

Pine Gully fall folliage. Tall weed. NO permissions granted. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted

Everything has its’ season. Nothing to sneeze at.©



December 2, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Brush with distress.

At twilight the trail path curved left hiding what was just beyond (ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted)

Twilight. The path curved hiding what waited just beyond. ©

Too stunned to scream? Or desperately hoping to wake up from the nightmare.

Four or five of them already had her. Treating her more roughly than the sidewalk under her back.

Several more were slinking out of shadowy cracks. Ready to join in.

She writhed. Knowing there was little time.

Struggled to break away.

Trying to crawl off like a fatally injured animal.

No time to acknowledge the pain.

Don’t know if she saw me. Knew I was there.

Never saw her eyes. She was completely focused on her tormentors.

Fighting to survive.

Growing weaker from the effort.

Quick resolution: one swoop with a large sturdy leaf to launch her safely into the wet grass.

Earthworms have a hard time if they decide to warm themselves in the sun on a sidewalk near some ants.

Saving Grace. No cliché.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” (Dalai Lama XIV)

“The creatures that inhabit this earth–be they human beings or animals–are here to contribute, each in its own particular way, to the beauty and prosperity of the world.” Dalai Lama XIV)

“The Chinese government wants me to say that for many centuries Tibet has been part of China. Even if I make that statement, many people would just laugh. And my statement will not change past history. History is history.” (Dalai Lama XIV)

Happy little tree along Pine Gully during fall. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted.

For some reason, this little tree just looked really happy. Maybe it thinks it’s being silly-naughty waving around and tossing off its’ leaves? In any case, tree’s free. Shouldn’t Tibet be? ©



November 30, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Chills. Thrills. No. No. No.

Red fish. Blue fish.

Say “Merry Christmas” with an inflatable fish.

Fish may be a Christian symbol, but don’t really think Disney’s Dory actually floats that.

Blue Disney cartoon fish, Dory, inflatable Christmas decoration from Home Depot. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted

Hey, don’t flounder around and judge. Energy-efficient and won’t stinking pollute. Can Santa’s reindeer say that?©

Although popular cool turned into fool at one ice skating rink recently.

Fishy marketing gone very bad. (By artsy types who see things differently?)

“5,000 Fish in Ice at Japan skating Rink Sparks Uproar.” (Bloomberg)

“Japan skating rink shuts over frozen fish controversy” (BBC)

The fish are going to have a memorial service once removed.

After the rink owners find something else to spell out “hello” with under the ice.

Another potential stinky situation is the Spa-musement Park concept.

Started out as a little attention grab for a Japanese hot springs area, but the video went viral.

Guests wandering around in soggy towels. (Meanwhile health clubs here warn people to wipe down exercise equipment before and after using…)

So, nope. No interest at all in sitting in a roller coaster car full of water for a scary ride. Assorted unidentified floating objects after big drops. Is that spa water or does it feel suspiciously very very warm suddenly in this spot….?

Not to mention that alarmist the old wives tale about keeping electricity away from water and wet areas…

“Confirms construction of a bizarre ‘spa-musement’ park” (Daily Mail)

Snowy trees along Colorado roadway driving to Denver. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted

Colorado, hi. Snow go mo’, please. No flaking out.©

You really can can make a real splash this Christmas with works by a Denver craftsman.

Started as a romantic whim – a present for a 10th wedding anniversary. (That’s tin, you know.) Made in the garage.

Now a business with a fabulously elegant line of bracelets, earrings, and more recycled from tin cans. Upcycling with style.

A cut above the normal Christmas commercialism.

Real Christmas spirit all year round: for every item purchased, one can good is donated to charity….along with the idea that we can all do good – locally.

No puffed up materialistic Christmas message. Actions do speak merrily.

CAN GOODS website

Speaking of Christmas, nothing says Christmas like Santa riding a giant elephant.

Christmas inflatable decoration from Home Depot. Santa on giant elephant. All rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted.

Dumbos trumpeting in Christmas: bigger, wilder, louder. (No, it is not outside the New Dehli…yet. It’s early in the seasoning.)©

You know that Rehab song “No, No, No” by Amy Winehouse?

Can someone update that to address the December inflatable puffalumps? Would be appreciated. Yes. Yes. Yes. A start…maybe you can do mo’, mo’ mo’….

They tried to make me go get Christmas inflatables
I said, no, no, no….

“Celebration inflation: We’re partying harder than ever and companies love it.” (Bloomberg)

Like with all fads, this too shall pass….especially if these winds keep up.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Like contests with prizes? One here. Storm over there.

Home Depot's inflatable Star Wars storm trooper. Christmas yard decoration (

May The Force to resist overblown holidays be with you.(



November 28, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

New that.

Building with sign for NY style deli. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Such promise. An early Christmas present?..oh, that should probably be Chanukah gelt. Details. Details.©

You need one. Better get it soon. December is just the beginning. So mark it like a cat.

A place for when you are too exhausted to hold your head up or when feeling like it’s not just your three-days-of-misery-and-then-it’s-over cold. One where the heavy door swings open as warmth rushes out to bathe your face – and the rest of you knows it will all be all right, too.

Shelter against any storm. Haven tried and true.

After wandering in the local wilderness full of restaurants, we thought one had been granted.

Who knew about that new? (Oy vey)

Unbelievable good fortune with a new deli opening. (B’ezrat HaShem)

Said to be the new second location of our favorite Victor’s Deli far away.

That one was like eating in a Jewish grandmother’s kitchen: old and young – even pajamas and fuzzy slippers welcomed.

The owners were like their booths: well-worn, but supportive.

Our first visit to the new deli left us underwhelmed. 

Same name, same sign fonts, same colors, same interiors, same menu – but quantity, quality, and service?


We won’t talk about the pickle.

Last week we noticed the new deli’s sign had changed.

Clarification for the neighborhood.

building front. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Still sporting the black and white checkerboard. Oh, the shattered dreams of  towering Reuben sandwiches, overflowing plate lunches, just made meatloaf, and healing chicken soup with matzo balls.©

We didn’t realize. It’s New Delhi.

Clears that up.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Sign for Victor's deli and Indian Kitchen and Bar. ALl rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

New sign for the new deli. Entirely different set of expectations. (But truth in advertising: this establishment hasn’t been there since 1988 and this version is not identical to the original Victor’s deli which actually came over from Beaumont in 1988…checkerboard and all.)©





November 25, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Switch thinking. Context matters.

Dog carrying stick. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. No permissions granted

Naughty or nice? ©

Molly Malamute is getting a head start on her holiday gift shopping.

Someone seems to be getting a bundle of switches – which probably means something different if it’s from a dog than if it’s from Santa.

Easy to Miss., the meaning.

Molly Malamute cheerfully showing off stick. NO permissions granted. ALL rights reserved. Copy righted

Ho Ho Ho. Gift collecting we will go!©

In any case, she’s put her paw down over anyone peeking into her stash in the hedge before Christmas.

Santa and Molly “…knows when you are sleeping. Knows when you’re awake….”

With traditions, magic has to be seen.

Molly always recommends if being a bit naughty, stick a little nice in there with it.

It’s the thought that doggedly counts.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Whether to the mall or home, safe travels all.

Molly malamute takes holdiay gift colelction very seriously. Note her festive red leash and green harness.ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copy righted.

Not Palm Beach, but Molly sports seasonal dress with green harness and red leash. Branching out as Santa’s little helper.©


November 23, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Wind in her hair. Departing wishes

Chilling north wind whips her hair. She stands for it. Faces it head on.  Can’t rip the genetic memories out of her.

Those dreams took root generations ago – in the warm Caribbean trade winds far far away. As an immigrant, she has done her best to “grow where you are planted”, but suburban life leaves her cold and longing. Her paradise lost.

“Do humans ever feel this?” she wonders. “Probably not.”

And again she tossed her fronds high – reaching for all the stories the wind was bringing from home.

Palms in the wind. ALL rights reserved. Copu righted. NO permissions granted

Palms up. Such tall lovely models happily drying their fronds in the sun and wind. Reminds them of home.©

Paradise seductively calls:

Forget the holiday gift hunting madness (Why bother? They won’t like it anyway) and winter’s chill.

You can easily book it: a flight or a warm spot by the fire.

Think of just the right words, and there you are:

Of course you can afford to move on and turn the page.

No need to pack.

Just grab a story by Susan M. Toy and say “Ahhhh.” (I swear your toes will feel the warm sands as you read.)

Like a laid back exotic setting with well-defined characters searching for answers?

Cruise into Bequia’s mysteries with Susan Toy’s Island in the Clouds.

That is if you don’t mind starting off the morning with a body in the pool.

Driving down cold snowy road. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions gratned. Copyrighted

Seriously. Now which is preferable? Time to escape.©

travel poster by American Airlines: Caribbean. From Don Thomas collection. San Diego Air and Space Museum (uspd/

Don’t think Bequia will allow anyone to live isolated from problems, though.

Things have changed a bit since 2008 and 2011.

In One Woman’s Island, Bequia Perspectives novel #2, there’s a clash of cultures and troubles stirred up by those simply trying to find themselves and maybe make the world a little better place in the process. Timeless and universal.

And there’s dogs. Rescue dogs.

You can see what’s cooking in One Woman’s Island. Really. Actual recipes included.

Some warm dishes and characters to entertain during the cold winter. (Perfect for that irritable SAD person with the winter blues)

Nothing like warm Caribbean winds to fill sails or dreams. 

Tropical Santa (Screenshot Christmas

“A few more minutes then back in the sleigh.” He’s in the book! (Christmas

Except maybe a red Mustang convertible.

That might do, too…with a big red bow, Santa?

Oh, OK the reindeer would complain. Can’t upset the deer ones.

They do approve of books, right?

Oh, prefer e-books? Weight watchers.

Should have guessed that. Susan’s books fit that perfectly, too.

Winter dreams keep everyone warm. No matter which way the wind blows.

So chill. With books, sunscreen’s optional.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

To those traveling today: safe passage and warm welcomes upon arrival.

Great time to reconsider an old rule for polite social gatherings: Never discuss money, religion, or politics. Dogs are great conversation starters. Like “Is that your dog rolling in that smelly spot?”

Palms in a strong wind. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted

Palms make such a lovely sound in the wind. And you don’t have to rake leaves later.©

November 21, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Not the Bitter End

Trips during a new relationship are tricky. It’s the see level of expectations.

Mallard drake trying to interest his love interest in floating perch. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted.

“Dude, you said ‘Fly south with me, Babe, and I’ll take you to paradise.’ This does not qualify  as desirable waterfront property – not even close to that promise of a private island.” ©

mallard duck on floating trash. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

“Wait, Babe. Visualize the potential. Ever watch HGTV’s House Hunters or Homes Afloat? Location. Location. Location. Flip it and then we can duck out towards Bitter .©

Better ending at Bitter:

Birds of a feather can flock together…we’ll use your credit card, OK?

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Not enthusiastic about a holiday sail of “Learn to work the lines and winches (Spelling is important) or walk the plank, Matey”? Chart some mystery later this week.

Two small floating flocks of ducks sheltering by bulkhead NO permissions granted. COPY RIGHTED. ALL rights reserved

Riding in on the strong front’s chilly blast, winter residents are arriving. Strangely humanlike, the established local flocks complain loudly about sharing watering holes and refuse to mingle with the newcomers…except there’s always at least one flighty teenager who totally ignores parents. ©





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