Lance and I are visiting friend (and mentor to Lance) Chuck Kimmerle and his wife Brenda in Casper, WY. Lance and Chuck are talking shop. Earlier today, we went to the Nicolayson Museum of Art in downtown Casper. Brilliant! Great building, great collection.
And we three all found a new favorite, Sarah Williams. [...]]]>
Here is a great article on the latest research on the effect of the disease on a person's perceived identity. The fact is, there is much that remains intact in Alzheimer's patients, at least in the early stages.
On Monday I got one with a link to the site of U.S. Passports and International Travel, Bureau of Consular Affairs, Department of State.
"The Department of State warns U.S. citizens to defer all non-essential travel to Ukraine, and particularly the Crimean Peninsula, due to the potential for instability following [...]]]>
The light at 7,000 feet elevation here in Santa Fe is almost unbearably bright, and casts deep shadows. This is the view in our room at the St. Francis Hotel, a downtown Santa Fe landmark. We got the room using the app Hotel [...]]]>
The news from the Ukraine is unsettling. It is going to take skilled diplomacy to tamp down this crisis, if it is even possible. Eastern Europe replete with ancient grievances, as well as some very large more recent grievances. The region bore the brunt of World War II. Civilians suffered bloody repression by Stalin, then Hitler, then Stalin again. The area has mass death in its recent memory. Not just in the concentration camps, but in massacres of civilian [...]]]>
Packed and left Carlsbad yesterday morning just as the coast storm set in, drenching the area in horizontal rain. I took one last walk down to the beach to see the ocean during a storm. The water level was higher than I had seen, I suspect due to a combination of storm surge and tide.
The month in Southern California went by fast. It gave me a feel for the place. Some random observations:
•Drivers were polite and sensible, [...]]]>
The nursing home in tiny Hoffman, MN is forced to close.
These closures are due entirely to deliberate--and faulty--state policy. Almost every nursing home in rural Minnesota, particularly in Northwest Minnesota, is in trouble. Reimbursements from the state have been cut drastically over the past few years. It is impossible for nursing homes [...]]]>
Just for kicks, I went on the MNSure website, registered, and evaluated a bunch of insurance options. I didn't qualify for subsidized health insurance, but I sure enjoyed looking at the options I had to replace my present plan.
Within an hour, I had replaced my present plan with one 65% cheaper, and had added Lance to the plan--at a small cost, since he is young and healthy. All in all, our household is completely insured for less than half [...]]]>
They could really put it away, George, Thomas, Benjamin and the crew.
An excellent Ken Burns documentary on Prohibition gets underway with a section entitled "A Drunken Nation." He details the heavy drinking of the early Republic, and the social problems it created.
The article cited in the post above shows how artists renderings [...]]]>
Here is one of Bach's simpler major works for organ, a Prelude and Fugue in E minor. This one is sometimes nicknamed the "Cathedral" because it seems to have been composed for a space with ample reverberation.
The organ in this video has been refurbished to 1750 standards. Imagine what this organ would have sounded like to the ear of a person in 1750, an ear unpolluted by loudspeakers, [...]]]>
The pitchers and catchers are reporting for spring training. In one week, the Twins play their first spring training game.
I am lukewarm about the team's chances this year. I think they should have brought in a more aggressive, less accomodating manager, somebody who incites a little respect, even fear from the players––a Billy Martin, without his propensity to ruin a pitching staff.
Or, Tom Kelly. But Kelly is weary of [...]]]>
Funny how when we get better after a health issue, we forget what it was like not to feel so good.
Such is the case with my tonsillectomy last summer. The surgery and its aftermath were miserable. However, the surgery has changed my life.
Every previous winter, even when have gone south, I have been plagued by sore throats and a sore neck from swollen glands.
This winter? Nothing. Not even a cold. No rounds of [...]]]>
It's been an pretty cold winter over much of the country, with snow down as far as Georgia and South Carolina, which is unusual but not unheard of.
However down south it has a different effect. Atlanta has been basically paralyzed for two [...]]]>
Balboa Park in San Diego is like a permanent state fair. Lance and I went there today. My main goal was to hear the weekly pipe organ concert at the largest outdoor pipe organ in the world. But we also took in two of the fifteen museums on the premises.
The museums were just our size and speed. We spent half an hour in each. The Timken Museum of Art is only about [...]]]>
The beach is growing on me. Yesterday, I went wading. The water is cold, but I got used to it. Today, I took a several-mile walk and watched the surfers try to catch waves. They are amazingly persistent. I can see why surfing must be one of the most strenuous sports: just paddling to where you might get started is a chore.
On the beach, families play. All nationalities. A couple of women of Mideastern descent walked covered in their flowing [...]]]>
Seven years ago, Lance and I took a trip to China and were hosted by my cousin Roy and his partner Michael. We haven't seen them since--until today. Lance and Michael picked up right where they left off. Both are quiet, sensitive, introspective souls. While Roy and I jibber jabber about politics, they [...]]]>
The life-long goal of rocks deep under the ocean waves is to escape from their watery grave and once again bask in the sun as they did 14.3 million years ago. Kelp can help. Here we see a seaweed which grabbed onto several rocks and then pulled them to shore via wave action.
...from a haunted time.
Went out to sing karaoke the other night one block from the house here in Carlsbad. There were a lot of people about 10 years older than I who were fond of some of the great ballads of the early 1970s.
•Moody Blues Nights in White Satin was one, but it sent me off in search of other favorites.
Now, here is a kid with a head on his shoulders at an early age.
College athletics is all-consuming. Just because you can do well at it doesn't mean you should.
There is big money involved in college sports––and none of it goes to the players.
I like this young man's [...]]]>
Lance arrived last night. The drive to the San Diego airport to pick him up was complicated by driving rain. The airport is in downtown, so it is quite a rigamaroll to get there and back. To get back on the freeway, you end up going through residential neighborhoods. I can't imagine those people living so close to such ridiculous amounts of traffic.
Today, we went to the Birch Aquarium. Not a gigantic [...]]]>