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Saturday, September 26, 2009


We all travel the Milky Way together, trees and men… trees are travelers in the ordinary sense. They make journeys, not very extensive ones, it is true; but our own little comings and goings are only little more than tree-wavings—many of them not so much.
~ John Muir
I don't know what trees think of us. I am not sure if there are smarter trees or less smart trees. I am not sure if seed or nuts from one tree maintain a connection of some kind with the tree from which they came.
In movies when trees grab at people, that can be pretty scary. Probably not as scary as when people grab at, carve in, and cut down trees.
When we bought our house we had a half-dead, strange-looking apple tree in the back yard. When we had the tree guy come and look at all of our trees and give us an estimate on trimming them, he looked at that tree and said, "Why on earth would anyone do that to a tree?!" He was really upset / aggravated.
It did make me think of trees as something different -- something more alive -- than I did before that.
I wonder if they like us. I wonder if they like hugs. I can't think that hugs would be bad for trees -- unless they were little saplings that got snapped off when you hugged them.


We know only that our entire existence is forced into new paths and disrupted, that new circumstances, new joys and new sorrows await us, and that the unknown has its uncanny attractions, alluring and at the same time anguishing.
~ Heinrich Heine
So, you might think that if you wanted to find a spot to make a pinky swear with someone that hiking up the trail in this photo would be a good place to go and do that. It's near the ocean and kind of secluded - except for the hikers who might walk by.
The problem, though, might - theoretically - come when you are ready to come back down the hill. If it gets dark and the tide comes in, you might end up coming down the deceptive hill (much steeper than it looks) kind of sliding on your butt.
Some pinky swears are worth it, though. And it can make for an interesting story about how you almost died.


The mere sense of living is joy enough.
~ Emily Dickinson
Seeing what you see in the way you've always seen it is missing out. We always talk about being able (or wishing we were able) to see things through the eyes of a child. I say, that if we could see things through the eyes of a child we'd see a lot of things from the knees down (which might be okay) or end up with a crick in the neck (which is probably not okay).
And by the way, we don't always talk about that. In fact, I haven't really talked about it ever with anyone. And who is the mysterious "we" of whom I speak? None of your beeswax.


The eye of a human being is a microscope, which makes the world seem bigger than it really is.
~ Kahlil Gibram

This is what I saw today when I looked up from taking photos of the leaves and the light and the sights in my backyard. Sometimes even looking in the backyard is going too far to find the good stuff. The better sights are inside most days.


A master was fanning himself. A monk approached and said: “Master, since the nature of wind is permanent and there is no place it does not reach, why must you still fan yourself?”
“Although you understand the nature of ‘wind is permanent,’” replied the master, “You do not understand the meaning of its ‘reaching everywhere.’”
“What is the meaning of its reaching everywhere?”
The master just fanned himself. The monk bowed.
~ Zen Mondo
Maddie just told me that Elizabeth is obsessed with the song "Eye of the Tiger." Apparently, it is as a result of playing Guitar Hero. Today when I was driving E to her softball game, that song came on and I said, "This will be a great song to get you pumped up your game." Then I went on to tell her how boring the trombone part for "Eye of the Tiger" is. I reenacted some of it for her. She said she wasn't sure if her arms were long enough to play a trombone.

At that point, we had kind of drifted away from the high energy motivation of listening to "Eye of the Tiger."

Friday, September 25, 2009


Mistakes are a fact of life.
It is the response to the error that counts.
~ Nikki Giovanni
I think a few good responses to mistakes are:
* No I didn't!
* Prove it!
* It's because of my parents.
* I did it that way on purpose to see what you'd say.
Maybe the better caption for the photo above would be, "Don't go taking any wooden nickels!"


Your mind will answer more questions if you learn
to relax and wait for the answer.
~ William S. Burroughs


I emailed a friend of mine today and was telling him about an honors seminar that I taught a few semesters ago called "The Power of Quiet." It was about relaxing, reflecting, enjoying calm and quiet and being intentional about making time for quiet in your life. It was an opportunity for students to find quiet places on campus and images taht produced a sense of calm in their lives. What I failed to consider, however, is the fact that students who sign up for a course called "The Power of Quiet" are ones who might be difficult to get to speak up in class.

I enjoyed the class.

Maybe next time I could teach one called "The Power of Yelling" or the "The Power of Talking in Class in Relation to Getting an A in the Class."


Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow."
~ Mary Anne Radmacher


The photo above includes a the jet ski from which I was thrown. I could have died. I did not. I did tread water while the other two people rode in to shore. When my friend Tina came back to rescue me I told her it was just like being on Bay Watch.

I did not have the courage to try and ride on the jet ski again. It was not fun for me. However, I did let people take turns pulling me around on a tube while they paddled a kayak.

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Arguably, no artist grows up: If he sheds the perceptions of childhood, he ceases being an artist.
~ Ed Norem
I like lots of kinds of art, but some of it freaks me out. I don't like Dali, for example. And - of course you all should realize that I would hate any sort of clown art.
I think it's a good idea to try different kinds of art, though. I always end up back at photography - which some still don't really consider art - but I've tried painting just a little, drawing, and pottery.
Types of art I have not tried include: tattooing someone, carving something really big out of a whole lot of butter, motorcycle maintenance, or painting egg shells for decorations on trees.
We did come home from work today and found that we had been the victimized by an art-attack. There is a painting of two lions under the tree in our front yard. It is not all that good.
In fact, when I asked Maddie why she left it there she said it was too embarrassing to even touch. I guess her friends driving by and seeing it under the tree in our yard is less embarrassing to her.
I will report back on how we get our art revenge on Jamie and / or Colleen or their parents. While I am confident their parents had nothing to do with this, they don't live far from us and would be pretty easy targets.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
~ Aristotle
Unfortunately, I think we have a lot of minds out that that are able to accept thoughts without fully entertaining them. They forget the "think first, then decide" process.
Oh, I have to go to class now to entertain my classmates without accepting them. Just kidding. I do accept them. Well, most of them.


The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the right place but to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.
~ Dorothy Nevill


I love a good conversation. You know, the kind where when you're done you think, "Whew! Now that was a good conversation!"

... Okay, so I don't know the last time (if ever) that I've actually thought that. I don't find that I think the word "Whew!" hardly at all.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Money is like manure; it's not worth a thing unless it's spread out and encouraging young things to grow.
~ Hartford Courant
I think it's a great idea to put a speed limit in livestock areas. It's hard to run and watch your step at the same time. And if you're driving, well, I imagine you can hydroplane on manure, too. Or manure-oplane... Either way - dangerous! and icky.
I did find another quote related to this that I really like:
"Acting out in these ways is a little like putting whipped cream on dog poop. It looks better for a while, but then the real stuff starts showing through." ~ Jim Tamm


You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you.

~ Eric Hoffer


I love that quote. Based on it, my enemies do not fear snakes or fire or small spaces. I think my enemies fear words.

If that's the case, then I can hold my own against them.

I will use clowns and dolls to scare them.

I hope they don't read this!


Artists can color the sky red because they know it's blue. Those of us who aren't artists must color things the way they really are or people might think we're stupid.
~ Jules Feiffer
I get artistic cravings. I used to crave playing my guitar when I had a guitar. I didn't play it often, but at certain times I would pick it up and play for several days / weeks. I do the same thing with drawing. I don't draw regularly, but I get an urge to draw and I pick up my sketchbook and markers and draw for a while.
I wouldn't mind illustrating children's books. Or writing children's books. I have some pretty good ideas for children's books. Like a story about a little invisible girl who found a circle and played with it in the snow. I could illustrate that pretty well, I think.

Monday, September 21, 2009


People only see what they are prepared to see.
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Elizabeth loves to prepare food. Actually, it's not so much the preparation as the plating of food - arranging it - which is an art.
One evening, she was making dessert for everyone. She was preparing strawberries. She wanted to make sure the food was clean, so she decided to use hand sanitizer on the berries. I told her (after she finished one bowl) not to clean them that way. I didn't tell her to re-do the strawberries she had already carefully arranged in one of the bowls. For one thing I didn't want to discourage her when she had put in so much effort. For another thing, I figured I only had a 25% chance of getting the hand sanitizer berries.
I ended up with the hand sanitizer berries.
The moral of the story is either:
1. Keep an eye on kids in the kitchen. OR
2. If you choose to spare a child's feelings instead of protecting yourself, you end up eating hand sanitizer.


Sit just to sit. And why not sit? You have to sit sometime, and so you may as well really sit, and be altogether here. Otherwise the mind wanders away from the matter at hand, and away from the present. Even to think thorugh the implicatons of the present is to avoid the present moment completely.
~ Alan Watts
And you know what else you shouldn't think about as you sit? Where you are sitting. Trust me, if you're sitting in Elizabeth's chair, no need to think about it at all because she will let you know. Her seat is, after all, quite clearly marked.


A great man is he who has not lost his childlike heart.
~ Mencius
I think that children are the most fun. They are easily surprised and they aren't cynical. At least not at first. If they become cynics, it's probably our fault.
I love to play games with kids. I don't "let" them win, though. No, they beat me on their own merits, usually. And then, after I'm done crying and I finish picking up the pieces from all over the room where I've thrown them, I think that they've learned an important lesson about competition. Winning isn't everything. And maybe, just maybe, losing isn't always for losers, either.
And then, after that, we all get trophies.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


And do not change. Do not divert your life from visible things. But go on loving what is good, simple and ordinary; animals and things and flowers, and keep the balance true.

~ Rainer Maria Rilke


Like on Little House on the Prairie the kids would get an orange in their stocking or an apple or something. In the movie The Godfather, a young Vito Corleone brings home a nice pear to his wife on the day he's fired from working at the deli.

There was a time when something as simple as a nice piece of fruit was a celebration.

Not now. Except you can buy those fruit bouquet things. I don't really get those. They look kind of cool, but I would bet the fruit doesn't taste so good.

If someone was going to give me a piece of fruit as a gift here are things I would not want:

pink lady apples -- i don't like them.
fruit from the tree of knowledge -- just a bad idea.
fruit of the loom characters from TV -- seriously, where would I keep those guys?
fruit flavored medicine -- you can tell me it's "cherry" all you want, but it still tastes like medicine.

Kinds of fruit I would like:

a golden apple -- not golden delicious, but a solid gold apple. The size of a watermelon. Or a solid gold watermelon would be fine, too.

Saturday, September 19, 2009


The field of consciousness is tiny. It accepts only one problem at a time. Get into a fistfight, put your mind on the strategy of the fight, and you will not feel the other fellow’s punches.
~ Antoine De Saint-Exupery
I love harvest season. I think there are really two types of people - planters and harvesters. The people who like beginnings and those who like endings. I am definitely not a beginner, I am a finisher.
Beginning is based on anticipation, enthusiasm, effort, dreaming.
Finishing is based on summary, completion, reflection, achievement.
The starters sit and think, "There is so much to do."
The finishers sit and think, "There was so much done."
I also REALLY love tractors working at night. One time I said that I thought I'd like to be a farmer because I love seeing tractors at night. Then I realized that maybe I should just buy a tractor and drive it at night instead of going to all the work of actually becoming a farmer.


Be slow to fall into friendship, but when thou art in,
continue firm and constant.
~ Socrates
My friends make me laugh. I think that's probably just about the most important part of friendship to me. Without laughter, what's the point? I can be serious or patient or whatever on my own. But making myself laugh is kind of like someone trying to tickle himself. When you know where it's coming from and the timing, it doesn't make you laugh as much.
Tonight I watched many of my friends laugh and dance and enjoy Sarah and Kevin's wedding. My favorite part was probably watching Joe and Chris dance. They came up with several new moves including the "butter churn" (which is completely inappropriate - especially around children and people with heart conditions).
Joe and Emily should move back to Ames. The above photo is of Joe and Emily. Well, Joe and a doll. Of course the doll may have been named Emily, since it belongs to Elizabeth.
Chris: (filling out forms for Girl Scout Camp) Allergies, none. Medications, none. Interests...
Elizabeth: Put horses and swimming. I really want to ride horses.
Chris: Okay. Horses and swimming... Nicknames...
Elizabeth: Emily
Chris: What? That's not your name.
Elizabeth: I know, it's my nickname.
Michelle: Who calls you that?
Elizabeth: This one girl at school does.
Chris: Why?
Elizabeth: Because I told her to.


He looks like a guy in a science fiction movie who
is first to see The Creature.
~ David Frye
I don't particularly care for horror movies. There are some that are okay, but most I don't really like. However, I DO like it when people I live with watch them. Because then it's really fun to hide around the house and scare them when they least expect it.
I think a good way to scare someone is to wait until they buy a bunch of jelly doughnuts, cut a small hole in the bottom and empty out the jelly (or use a straw if you like to eat jelly through a straw). After that, refill the doughnut with mustard. Then, wait for the fun.
If you think it will REALLY scare someone to the point that they might inflict violence on you when they bite into the doughnut, do it and then leave the area. That is the way I did it when I did this to my family. Did it and then went back to college.
It's not as scary as hiring someone to pretend they are a chainsaw killer and after your family / friends, but there is less risk involved. For you, for them and for the chainsaw killer actor.

Dogs & Cats

Living with a dog is easy – like living with an idealist.
~ HL Mencken
Dogs are to people what people are to cats. Grateful for the attention they receive, protective and loyal. Well, unless people don't like cats, then people don't care about not getting attention from cats.
I really like most dogs.
There are maybe one or two cats I like.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


There are no traffic jams along the extra mile.

~ Roger Staubach


I don't like people who don't try. Try your best, try something new, but just try. Even if you try my patience, maybe that's better than just sitting there.


I need to this about that a little more. It sounds good right now, but when my patience is being tried maybe I wouldn't think it was such a great thing after all.

And, by the way, thinking about trying and actually trying are not the same thing. Follow-through is important. I think about removing the popcorn ceiling in our living room almost every day. Until I actually put forth a little effort, though, it's still going to be popcorning there.


There is one who, though not having eaten rice for along time, feels no hunger. There is another who, though eating all the day long, never feels satisfied.
~ Pai-Chang’s Sermon to the Monks
It's funny how eat is at the core of so many of the things in our lives:
miscreant - wait. not that one
... seating. So, I had this thought the other day. I think that straight people - when furnishing their homes - should make sure they purchase heterosectionals. Or - if they're not sure, bisectionals would also be okay.


Confidence is the hinge on the door to success.
~ Mary O'Hare Dumas
That's great and all, but ignorance is the doorstop. If you've got them both, well, it doesn't matter. That door isn't going anywhere.


Laughter gives us distance. It allows us to step back from an event, deal with it, and then move on.
~ Bob Newhart
At my uncle funeral's last week one of the comments made was, "It cost something to be Dan's friend." I love that quote. Dan was someone who could definitely laugh at - not with, but AT - you. But he spent just as much time laughing at himself.
I like that. But I really prefer laughing at other people more than myself. They're WAY funnier.


To love what you do and feel that it matters – how could anything be more fun?
~ Katherine Graham
I love what I do. I get to meet with students and help them learn from their mistakes. Do I bring my work home with me? Of course. I get to meet with the children in my house and help them learn from their mistakes.
Actually, I may take more of home to work than I take work home. As an example, today I was explaining my judicial philosophy. I said that I think about my work with students the same way I think about helping Maddie and Elizabeth learn. The same result for their behaviors isn't equally effective.
When Maddie makes a mistake, if someone tells her, "I'm really disappointed in you," it's shattering. She is devastated. She does not like to let people down.
On the other hand, if - when Elizabeth makes mistakes - we told her, "We're really disappointed in you," she would not be devastated. Instead, she would look at you as if to say, "Toughen up. I'm sure you're disappointed now, but you're strong. You'll bounce back."


Much education today is monumentally ineffective. All too often we are giving young people cut flowers when we should be teaching them to grow their own plants.

~ John W. Gardner
I might have been a good botanist. I like plants.
I think that maybe "botanists" who make artificial plants get their jobs because they falsified their diplomas.
But back to me. I think I really would have been a great chemist except that when I got my microscope for Christmas one year, my parents took the chemistry stuff that came with it away from me. I have always harbored resentment about that.
Of course, at that time, the chemicals might have included things like mercury or asbestos or DDT.


Nothing will work unless you do.
~ Maya Angelou
A Haiku
Yardwork is hard work
The harder you work the more
Ther is to maintain
A Follow Up Haiku
Life is like yardwork
The harder you work the more
There is to maintain


Don't ever take down a fence until you know why it was put up.
~ Robert Frost
My brother Erik once was sitting on a fence post and I rode by on a bike and waved. He waved back, fell off the fence and broke his arm. To this day he swears I ran into the fence and that's why he fell.
My brother Erik fell down the stairs at my aunt and uncle's house and broke his collarbone. To this day he swears my cousin pushed him down the stairs. I could go on, but you get the idea.
I used to get so angry that he accused me of causing the accident. Never mind the fact that I did actually once break his arm. Another story for another blog entry.
Anyway, the other day Chris said, "Maybe the question isn't whether or not you rammed the fence so he fell or whether or not your cousin pushed him down the stairs. Maybe the real question is why would so many people want to hurt him?"
An excellent observation. And if you knew Erik, you'd know the answer.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Reputation is what people know about you.

Honor is what you know about yourself.

~ Lois McMaster Bujold


I really like it when people practice what I preach.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


The hardest part of raising a child is teaching them to ride bicycles. A shaky child on a bicycle for the first time needs both support and freedom. The realization that this is what the child will always need can hit hard.

~ Sloan Wilson


This morning Elizabeth realized she had forgotten to bring home her conferences slip for Chris to sign. She was worried about getting "yelled at" by her teacher (a woman whom I have met and whom I doubt makes a practice of yelling at children).

Elizabeth: (to Chris) Could you write your signature down or something so I could copy it on the paper?

The fact that forgery seemed a logical solution to her dilemma is disquieting at best.


You can recycle a used detergent bottle into a bird feeder...
But at the end of the day it is still just a detergent bottle
hanging from your tree.
And so, even though you've recycled it, it's not beautiful.
~ Danny Seo
Can you recycle the glass ceiling?


My advice: Don't worry about yourself. Take care of those who work for you and you'll float to greatness on their achievements.
~ H. S. M. "Max" Burns
I like not being a micromanager. I am not sure I'm a macromanager, either. I know I'm knot a macrame manager.

Monday, September 14, 2009


The Emporer’s chief carpenter, Ch’ing, once made a music stand so perfect that all who saw it marveled. When Lu asked him to reveal the mystery of his art, Ch’ing demurred, saying: “No mystery, your Highness, though there is something. When I am about to make such a stand, I first reduce my mind to absolute quiet. Three days in this condition and I am oblivious to any reward to be agined. Five days, and I am oblivious to any fame to be acquired. Seven days, and I become unconscious of my four limbs and body. Then, with no thought of the Court in mind, all my skill concentrated and all disturbing elements gone, I go into the forest and search for a suitable tree. It contains the stand in my mind’s eye, and then I set to work.
~ Chuang-Tzu
My dad can make anything out of wood. Also, my dad can beat up your dad. With his fire-shooting wooden robot, that is.

Scooby Doo

I think we are drawn to dogs because they are the uninhibited creatures we might be if we weren’t certain we knew better.
~ George Bird Evans
What if the gang decided they wanted a Labrador Retriever instead of a Great Dane? Or a Dachshund or a Boston Terrier? Is it the breed of the dog in Scooby Doo that made the show work?
And, seriously, if it just took some "pesky kids," do all those guys think they really would have gotten away with it? If some pesky kids could figure it out, I think most of those criminals were bound to be caught sooner or later.
Also, I'm not sure that Shaggy would have run in the same circles as Freddy and Velma and Daphne.
There are a bunch of holes in that show.
There is a van in Ames that looks just like the Mystery Machine, though.


In these things [of nature] there is a deep meaning, but if we try to express it, we forget the words.
~ Toenmei
What is funny about that quote is that when I originally put it down, I had two typos. I guess that means it's true.


He who opens a school door, closes a prison.
~ Victor Hugo
Is this true if you open a reform school door? Or maybe just half true.


Always write angry letters to your enemies. Never mail them.
~ James Fallows
I don't do this, but maybe I should. I would want to stress to anyone thinking of starting this practice, that writing angry emails and not sending them is much riskier. If you accidentally hit "REPLY" or worse yet, "REPLY ALL" -- well, we've all heard stories about those sorts of mishaps.
I also wouldn't encourage people to write angry postcards. I think it's more difficult to be angry on a postcard. And you don't have as much space for the anger.

Sunday, September 13, 2009


The summer night is like a perfection of thought.
~ Wallace Stevens
I get excited for every new season. Right now summer is coming to a close and I am very excited for autumn (my favorite). Having lived places without all the seasons, I think that if you don't go through winter, you can't really say that you know what it is like to anticipate anything. Seriously, you have no idea.
Even with that said, though, I will find a moment when I look forward to winter. It is not my favorite. I wish it could end in early January. But I do appreciate that it makes me appreciative of the rest of the year.
Plus, it is really inappropriate to throw a blob of mud at someone, but somehow it's okay to throw a snowball.

Civil Rights

It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can stop him from lynching me and I think that’s pretty important.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


The sound of water says what I think.
~ Chuang-Tzu
I love the sound of water. I love the quote above because it's true. It's not like water can read my mind, but when I hear water, I think about water and I - pardon the pun - immerse myself in the sound.
When Chris hears water, she thinks, "I have to go to the bathroom."


Humor tells you where the trouble is.
~ Louise Bernikow
Being able to laugh at yourself makes everything else bearable. And what makes you laugh the most probably reveals more about you than anything else. For example, this, said in all sincerity, still makes me laugh:
Elizabeth: It's okay to feel ashamed of yourself.
I am not sure if I laugh because I disagree or because I know that Elizabeth really believes this or a combination. I guess we all use shame in different ways...

Friday, September 11, 2009


"His socks compelled one's attention without losing one's respect." ~ H. H. Munro
So the girls don't mind if their socks don't look the same (color, stripes, etc.), as long as they FEEL the same. This is strange to me, but it seems very practical at the same time. And it's not about appearances, but sense of self, which I like.
Good for them.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Sad Songs

If a song can't be written in 20 minutes, it ain't worth writing.
~ Hank Williams
I think maybe Hank Williams was one of the saddest people ever. I don't know. I didn't ever meet him. Just seems like maybe he was sad.
Or maybe he was really happy and just tricking me.

Pants, Baseball, and Parades

Group conformity scares the pants off me because it's so often a prelude to cruelty toward anyone who doesn't want to -- or can't -- join the Big Parade.
~ Bette Midler
So my Uncle Dan offered to take me to an Iowa Oaks game one time (it was a long time ago before they were the Iowa Cubs). I was really excited to go. But then, when the day came, I had really bad diarrhea and couldn't go with him. He took my brother instead. Later that summer, the day of the Fourth of July parade (which was probably on July 4th), my brother couldn't go because he had a really bad diarrhea.
I got a lot of candy, but if I could have switched, I would rather have gone to the ballgame. And my brother probably would have liked the parade more.
I don't like parades, really. They're kind of boring. You stand there watching everyone else ride by waving - or flaunting, if you will - while you just stand there and pick up fruit-flavored Tootsie Rolls. And I don't really like those kind of Tootsie Rolls.
Plus, sometimes there are clowns. And I don't like clowns.
Plus, this blog probably contains TMI.


Do everything as in the eye of another.
~ Lucius Annaeus Seneca
I think that this used to mean something more than it means now. With "reality television" I don't think people really care much about the "eye of another."
The above is a piece of art I made a long time ago. My friend Julie asked me for a photo of it for her blog a few months back. Now it's here, too. I really like the art, but let me tell you that a pile of magazines with the eyes cut out of every person's face is really creepy.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


I loathe you. You revolt me stewing in your consumption… you are a loathsome reptile. I hope you die.
~ D.H. Lawrence to Katherin Mansfield
God was very good to the world. He took her from us.
~ Bette Davis re: Miriam Hopkins
She was never really charming till she died.
A few quotes for someone who would have really appreciated them. They seem strangely appropriate with Elizabeth's devil goat holiday decoration from a few years ago.

Monday, September 7, 2009


Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement.

~ C.S. Lewis


I love road trips. My dream vacation is to get in the car, have a general sense of what direction to head (usually South or West) and then -- just go. Whatever I see I was supposed to see and the things I miss I missed for a reason. I like to be aware of where I'm headed, but flexible enough to change direction or take a detour if the right opportunity presents itself.

I find it interesting that "detour" is "routed" spelled backwards. Well, not exactly, but close. That must mean something.

May be.

One day a farmer’s horse ran away. That evening his neighbors gathered around to commiserate with the farmer over such bad luck. The farmer said, “May be.” The next day the horse returned, followed by six wild horses. The neighbors couldn’t believe the farmer’s sudden good luck. The farmer said, “May be.” The next day, while trying to ride one of the wild horses, the farmer’s son was thrown and broke his leg. The neighbors again commiserated over the farmer’s bad luck, but all he said was, “May be.” The day after that, army officers came through the village conscripting the oldest sons, but the farmer’s son was rejected because of his broken leg. When the neighbors came to say how fotunate everything turned out, the farmer said, “May be.” ~ Zen Story
When they built this giant pitchfork in Ames, people told the makers it would bring billions of people to visit the community. The makers said "May be." But then only a few people showed up.