Skip to content
December 16, 2020 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Currents and Picks

Waterway and marina. (© image. Copyrighted, no permissions granted. All rights reserved)

Some have had their boats have come in, but this year the big charter party boats are strangely quiet and still. Doesn’t stop the holiday music blasting from the resort’s patio bar. You can still pick your poison there. (© image.)

You know what a pickaxe is, right?

So who was the darlin’ child that came up with “toothpick”?

Probably not a tooth’s pick. They, being rather small and fragile, would not axe for trouble. Of course an incisor might give up his eyetooth to take a bite at naming a dental grooming device. Word of mouth: what would the pearly whites choose? “Toothpick” just sound so, well, aggressive, uncouth, and unsophisticated – so not worthy of the bright whites.

Any alternatives? Or is this just dumb.

Crepe Myrtle tree turns scarlet at Christmas time before going dormant. (© image. Copyrighted, all rights reserved. No permissions granted)

Oh, the Crepe Myrtle finally got the memo about Christmas decorations. These turn scarlet around Christmas time before discarding all their leaves. Such a drama queen. Always one in every bunch. (© image)


That’s a desirable thing. Like retarded (“to delay or impede the development or progress of : to slow up especially by preventing or hindering advance or accomplishment”) the growth of mold.

No one was ever allowed to say that word about a person when we were kids. You would get Shushed and lectured about politeness and being kind.

Sometimes, you could hear adults say “feeble minded” or “weak minded” individuals. Said as a quiet fact, not an insult.

That was back when it was OK for everyone to be different, to have different levels of abilities of all sorts. Everyone had something they were good at (and were encouraged by adults to focus and develop that strong point), but everyone wasn’t a winner – and we all knew it and it was OK.

Telling a lie to a kid – that he/she could excel at a certain thing when there’s no chance in heck it’s ever going to happen – benign negligence. That sort of retards growth in a direction that is much more possible instead.

So where am I going with all this?

Christmas post card. 1929. Carollers in Poland (USPD., artist life/

A 1929 Polish Christmas postcard of Carolers. Somehow fits 2020. We’ve had similar mummers. (USPD/

Clobbered. That’s the way I feel about this year. 

People picking on others constantly. Emotion driving more than intelligence.

It has been the human race retarded.

You have to know when to fold ’em. Turn in the cards. Wait a bit, shuffle, before playing another hand.

And that’s what I’m doing: taking a break until next year. 

Maybe things will calm down in the world, and people will regain perspective and sense, but we’ll see.

Outlook is optimistic, but I need to free up time and energy, so I’ll try to slip in from time to time to read how you are all doing, but suspending regular posting  – Oh, Ok, short irregular sprints, maybe …the cat made me put that in…she has her own agenda.

Like she insists her “Recommendations for Party Manners and a Happy Life” be included immediately.

She says “It’s what the world needs now.”

You be the judge. I’m staying outta this.

1. Give credit where credit is due. 2. Praise in public; criticize in private. 3. Mind your own business and leave other people the #*%& alone.

And there you have it.

Colorful flowers and wreath at Christmas time (© image. Copyrighted, all rights reserved. No permissions granted)

It was closed to 75F this day. Our neighborhood Christmas landscape looks a bit different from many places who have those snowy scenes.(© image.)

From Our Realm to yours

Merry Christmas 

May all your holidays be merry and bright

Jingle on!

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Dog surrounding a Christmas tree with candles ( 1918 Karl Reichert/ USPD., artist life/

It’s got bark. We’ve got bark. It lights up their lives, and so do we. (1918 Christmas postcard/ USPD/



Leave a Comment
  1. Kate Crimmins / Dec 16 2020 6:23 am

    Enjoy your holiday!

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 16 2020 10:28 am

      A little piece (written sparingly here) and some quite (commented there) sounds good. Determined to wrap up a Merry Christmas and end of year with cheer. Thanks for sledding along ( and onward with your packing….I understand RC is sneaking your cats encouragement to be brave during the transition to new windows and sunny views)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kate Crimmins / Dec 16 2020 11:13 am

        They may be calling him on his direct line. You did know he has a direct line, right?

        Liked by 1 person

  2. easyweimaraner / Dec 16 2020 6:25 am

    we feel like you… ;O( : is the grim reaper really a part of the christmas carolers in poland? wow… I feared the black king, as I was a child, but to see this guy would probably kill me

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 16 2020 10:37 am

      Finding that was an OMG moment. Apparently during the 13th-16th century in Europe Mummers “were originally bands of masked persons who during winter festivals in Europe paraded the streets and entered houses to dance or play dice in silence.” Is that a bit creepy or what? They wore scary masks – you never knew who were – they performed for the public- often mutely – their productions involved a champion who is killed then brought back to life by a doctor. Plagues- spooky things – soooo 2020, right? (any chance politicians are modern-day mummers? HAHA)
      Certainly not the nice Father Christmas or Santa Claus child friendly group.
      Hope your holiday visitors have much more congenial appearances! Thanks for shivering along

      Liked by 1 person

  3. shoreacres / Dec 16 2020 6:28 am

    “Praise in public, criticize in private” would go some way to making this world a better place. I know a certain mechanic who’s probably nervous about a possible negative online review. I intend to tell him that ain’t gonna happen — no need to pile on!

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 16 2020 10:45 am

      Going back to the basics might be a good move for society right now. Basic consideration and commonsense isn’t much use for people determined to stir the pot though, so a return is not likely to happen. RC is forever optimistic.
      So happen your Princess is finding some magic and will soon be rolling again. Watch for those begging armadillos on the side of the roads
      Thanks for parking a comment here


  4. disperser / Dec 16 2020 7:10 am

    I did that one year . . . a whole month . . . not sure I’d do it again because there’s so much I enjoy about the window into the world we call The Internet. And, there’s a lot of joy to sharing photos (even if only one or two people see them).

    The trick is to ignore all the other stuff. Also, to remind people who want to engage you in current events that you’re not interested unless thay have a solution that helps everyone (that shuts them up really quick).

    Besides, even when taking a complete break from the web (hard to do in this connected world), stuff filters in. A sign here, a comment there . . . basically, we’re in the muck and no matter that we keep our eyes firmly on the beautiful meadow ahead, we still feel the muck pulling at our feet, asking us to look down to see what wonderful bits comprise said muck.

    Enjoy your break and, as Princess Cruises says, come back renewed.

    Happy Holidays and Happy New Year.

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 16 2020 11:02 am

      Funny, when I first started with WP long ago, it seemed that the majority of bloggers took December off. Many like Rough Seas had “summer hours”, too. Continuing to steadily blog felt like a kid stuck at home in the neighborhood when everyone else took off for vacation or ski trips. HAHA
      You know how the airlines always say in their safety speech “Put your own mask on first before trying to assist anyone around you”? It’s like that. A preemptive self preservation move for time management. A family member is beginning daily treatment for “some serious shit” (as another blogger has said). Optimistic outcome, but it means a very long daily drive for many weeks – and never sure what side effects will be along with exhaustion.
      Not really stepping away from the keyboard and web wandering (all that far too much fun – you can ignore the hyperbole and those who continue to beat a dead horse – like you, I feel if you’re not part of the solution, you are the problem.) Simply have to slip off the feeling of mandated posting – I’ve already slack off some – and proofreading has suffered – and I don’t like sloppy writing. Need to be crafted and careful. (One reason your short stories competition is such a delight ) So plan is to drift and float along as necessary.
      Thanks for the encouragement and holiday wishes. Jingle on!

      Liked by 3 people

    • disperser / Dec 16 2020 1:32 pm

      Well, I certainly hope the optimistic outcome becomes a reality. Take care of yourself as best you can when you can.


  5. Curt Mekemson / Dec 16 2020 12:17 pm

    Have a great holiday, Karen. See you in the New Year. May all of your mummers murmur mellowly with muted amusement. –Curt


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 16 2020 4:44 pm

      And may all the borogoves be mimsy and the mome raths outgrabe! Before you know it a new year will come galumphing back with all sorts of surprises. Thanks for dropping in this party and Jingle on!


      • Curt Mekemson / Dec 18 2020 5:37 pm

        He left it dead, and with its head, he went galumphing back! 🙂 I memorized that poem once, Karen. In high school, as I remember. Bits and pieces show up in the strangest places. –Curt

        Liked by 1 person

  6. sustainabilitea / Dec 16 2020 2:06 pm

    I understand exactly where you’re coming from, although I’ll keep blogging because I love the community. I may have already mentioned that I basically abandoned Facebook some months ago for many of the reasons you mention. Haven’t missed it at all. I also don’t read a lot of news stories and never the comments for all the same reasons. Just getting ready to have a very different Christmas this year and hope that next year life returns as close to normal as possible, although the issues we’re discussing have been around since the internet started offering (mostly) anonymity.

    Have a relaxing, healing break and stop by any time.


    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 16 2020 4:55 pm

      Blogging is the most wonderful neighborhood. As explained to Disperser, it’s more of a need to avoid unnecessary noise and conserve energy and time right now. I do hope to drop in and read posts to keep up with everyone, but may not have time to comment or create a cohesive post myself.
      Christmas will be kept as close to normal as possible – with family spread from coast to coast it won’t be the first time there’s not a big gathering…but I guess we’re all expected to Zoom now – that wasn’t always available – and speaker phone conversations were inventive and funny. Nice to have mild climates for patios, right? Thanks for slipping by. Merry on!

      Liked by 1 person

      • sustainabilitea / Dec 16 2020 5:12 pm

        If I don’t have a chance to say it later, Merry Christmas to all staff and owners. 🙂 Enjoy the season.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Spinster / Dec 16 2020 4:55 pm

    “Clobbered. That’s the way I feel about this year.”

    Me too, Philosopher Mouse. Me too. (Funnily enough, this was a theme today with my patients and how they feel.) Definitely time for a break. Mine is next week for a while.

    Enjoy your rest from here, and everywhere. Much deserved.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 16 2020 4:59 pm

      Years and years ago WP was a very quiet place during the holiday season with so many routinely taking a break. Maybe the odd year and exhaustion is triggering a revival of that. Thanks for stopping by to chat . Onward and may wonder find you this Christmas.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Littlesundog / Dec 17 2020 6:19 am

    Yep, clobbered (what I equate to a mother deer teaching her fawns the way of hierarchy in the herd) is a good word choice. It’s one thing to get hit by the lost sheep out there because I can cut them slack for not knowing any better. But, it’s an entirely different experience when folks you thought you knew well, give you a big bop on the head unexpectedly. I’m no longer connecting with those people. I quit social media a long time ago. These days I find myself doing finer, more detailed culling of situations that feel like I’ve ventured into a dangerous woodland. I think it best sometimes to hole up in our protective dens and enjoy the quiet and self care. May the holidays be a good time for you to do just that! Sending love your way…

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 23 2020 5:57 pm

      The deer image made me laugh – so appropriate. Yours is the perfect comment
      This winter is definitely a time to den up, rest, and renew…especially this year. Just time to turn down the noise a bit before heading into difficult waters to maneuver in Jan.
      Hope your winter lands wonder and joy.
      Thanks again.

      Liked by 1 person


  1. (Indirect) Re-blog: Currents and Picks. – Spinster's Compass
  2. A Merry Christmas Card Reveal! – Susie Lindau's Wild Ride

Always glad to hear from readers.

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: