Call Pest Control

hibiscus

So thrilled the hibiscus planted 2 years ago has finally decided to bloom. Not so thrilled these little visitors have decided to take a break from their condo building on the side of the house to have lunch here. No way I’m getting up a ladder with an eviction notice…

 

Small Pleasures are awesome

awesome

There was a time when certain foods had their own undeniable flavour and were only eaten during season. Wild local strawberries at dusk bring back filtered memories of childhood, cicada song among the sweetgrass and that sleepy satisfaction at the end of a day that the world couldn’t get much better.

I would put forward that small unexpected pleasures, like the taste of a perfectly ripe summer berry bursting in your mouth, are the ones that make it all worthwhile. They are awesome because they are more than just the thing itself: they call out to the past, inform the present and remind us how things should be – one perfect moment at a time…

 

Urban Archeology

cat graffiti

I’ve passed over this piece of sidewalk graffiti more times than I can count and each time I have wondered about the circumstances of its making. And no, the image isn’t reversed as the “words” scrawled into the concrete would suggest. What do they say and to whom? The whole reminds me of ancient Roman graffiti – but one doubts it will last as long…

Networking 40 years later

beale

A post this morning about a film that would convince us that climate change is all about individual denial rather than the larger issues of corporate and governmental malfeasance makes one wonder just what it takes to make the public realize they are being duped at every available opportunity. It also brought to mind the 1976 film Network, directed by Sidney Lumet and written by the prescient Paddy Chayefsky, in which the machinations of the media, the dehumanization of the individual and one very angry man all collide in a very public meltdown.

“I don’t have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad.
We know things are bad — worse than bad. They’re crazy. It’s like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don’t go out anymore.
Well, I’m not gonna leave you alone. I want you to get MAD!
I’m a human being, god-dammit! My life has value!

I’M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!

And when the twelfth largest company in the world controls the most awesome, god-damn propaganda force in the whole godless world, who knows what shit will be peddled for truth on this network.
Television is not the truth. Television’s a god-damned amusement park. Television is a circus, a carnival, a traveling troupe of acrobats, storytellers, dancers, singers, jugglers, sideshow freaks, lion tamers, and football players. We’re in the boredom-killing business.
We’ll tell you any shit you want to hear.

You’re beginning to believe the illusions we’re spinning here. You’re beginning to think that the tube is reality and that your own lives are unreal.
It’s the individual that’s finished. It’s the single, solitary human being that’s finished. It’s every single one of you out there that’s finished. Because this is no longer a nation of independent individuals. It’s a nation of some two hundred odd million transistorized, deodorized, whiter-than-white, steel-belted bodies, totally unnecessary as human beings and as replaceable as piston rods.

The whole world’s people are becoming mass-produced, programmed, numbered, insensate things.”

Over a quarter of a century later, with the entrenchment of Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, the excerpts above taken from Howard Beale’s rant are no less searing. In fact, one might say we didn’t pay any attention at all, didn’t heed the warnings of those like Beale, and the many others from Snowden, Suzuki and Nader, Thoreau and Carson to Wordsworth and Ruskin, who got in our face about how we are constantly letting ourselves get screwed. Time to wake up from that insensate sleep of denial and make some changes: be Beale and rant because eventually someone will have to listen.

To be or not to be, Pluto

painterly pluto

who forgot to pack the sandwiches?

It has been an awfully long haul for New Horizons but it has paid off big-time in some of the most detailed and awe-inspiring pictures of that hotly-debated member of our solar system, Pluto. Get the details on the success of this mission in the latest wrap-up of news here.