Gimme Shelter

Hope the roof on this baby wasn’t built by the same contractor who installed the one on the Olympic Stadium :laughing:
I really wish local government would get with the program and accept that not all tourists to our fair city are francophone: Such a great PS installation should at least be bilingual and then everyone could go home and say they saw the world’s largest :poop: and not wonder what that was all about.

This was Thursday: A Lifetime Ago

vote

Print advertising in Playboy Magazine, 1972.

Read your history : Find out what happened : Note the change : Recognize why we are here : Vote responsibly.

Not thrilled with a lot of things these days but have decided that this 1000th post will help keep things moving forward.

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.

Great Ideas from Garbage

water bottle equals

A recent rather heated conversation on the water bottle dilemma only hinted at the the size of the iceberg that is rapidly melting and affecting much of our global health. In Nigeria, Kaduna-based NGO Development Association for Renewable Energies (DARE), with the assistance of London-based NGO Africa Community Trust, are actively addressing homelessness and environmental impact with their program to build plastic bottle homes. More proof of necessity being the mother of invention: perhaps we should fly some of our Environment, Employment and Social Development bureaucrats there to pick up a few pointers and start cleaning up our own act…

Monday, Monday

chron102999La vie d’artiste

After a long and unexpectedly protracted hiatus from the blogosphere where one day just rolled into the next without a blip, we find ourselves back at the keyboard. Admittedly, it would have been easy to let things lapse just a little bit longer but like that thank-you letter to Aunt Joan for the bespectacled crazy cat-lady slippers, it just had to be done.

We missed you. There were moments in the craziness of this past month’s real-life project that we yearned just to be blogging – to toss everything aside because it was becoming a chore, a bore, an insurmountable task for which our skill set seemed ill-equipped but we survived. We proved that given enough sheer will-power (and divine inspiration) we could overcome the limitations of time zones, scheduling and other parties interference and interest (or lack thereof). We learned that sometimes you have to push to get what you want and know is right and sometimes you have to put your faith in the person handling your stuff at the other end and just hope, pray and cross your fingers that they too have your best interests at heart.

We’re far from done on this one.  Many times we moaned to ourselves that we were too old to be doing this, that in an ideal world we were supposed to be retired by now, but we did manage to hurtle across the first deadline panting to lie winded for all of five minutes before leaping back into action. Our suppliers delivered, as promised, leading us to believe that the true meaning of service is indeed being perpetuated by a small group willing to make sure things get done right. Karma points all around – on to Part Two.

We did meet a few truly nice people, people who went out of their way to pay attention, say something good for a change, be encouraging about what we’re doing and yes, even get excited of the prospect of things going forward. Much like all our blog readers who waited patiently for our return.

We’re glad to be back. We will, shortly, indulge in a bit of shameless self-promotion to show you what we have been working so hard on for longer than we care to admit.

Forgive us, in the meantime,  if we are a bit rusty in our routineness…

So Much for Sunday: Awards

chocolate-icingbecause you know you really want a slice

Sunday seems like an appropriate day to be particularly thankful for all that is good in the world and so, with that in mind, Across the Bored would first like to send out a very large chocolate-covered Thank You to all who have stuck by us for the longest time through thick and thin, bounty and drought, to all who have followed along, passed by, commented, liked and laughed or just browsed. It is also an opportunity to thank those bloggers who have forwarded awards and to whom (insert profuse apologies here) we have been procrastinating in responding more quickly to…

boty-2star1  Boundaries and Edges is sci-fi and experimental fiction author Theresa Barker’s blog: her statement “pushing the boundaries of writing and running along the edges of imagination” extends far beyond to all those who choose to express their creativity in forms that reach out and touch others. Read a great twist on Lost and Found in her Freshly Pressed post. Many thanks go out to Theresa as she was kind enough to forward the Blog of the Year 2013 award which has a few straight-forward  rules which may be found by following the link. We hope there will be one for 2014 and would like to pass this one along to Life portoFolio who treats life, love and getting by in Greece with her own particular brand of humour. Have a peek at her Mad Cowz while there!

doncharisma-org-most-influential-blogger-award-womanA big thank you goes to A Day in the Life who has sent along a Most Influential Blogger award – she blogs about “People, Places, Nature, Life!” and participates in many challenges and prompts. Wings and a superhero crest? Yahoo! Across the Bored’s own suit is presently at the dry cleaner’s getting a badly needed refreshing but we do love to virtually win friends and influence people so this one goes straight to the sidebar.

Conditions For Accepting The Award

To accept this award, the awardee must do the following:

  1. Display the Award on your Blog.
  2. Announce your win with a blog post and thank the Blogger who awarded you. Do not lump this award with any other award in a “basket”, “bouquet” or “collection” etc, I would rather you didn’t accept the award.
  3. Present 10 deserving Bloggers with the Award.
  4. Link your awardees in the post and let them know of their being awarded with a comment (or a pingback).
  5. Include an embedded video of your current favourite song (YouTube has virtually everything, just copy and paste the link into your WordPress editor). If a video is not possible you can embed a SoundCloud track.

And the Award goes to:

2812 photography

A is for

Abandoned Kansai

Aperture64 Photography

Backseat Mafia

Cee’s Photography

Gracie Binoya Photography

Hello, Fig

Leya

My Cyber House Rules

Check them all out – each one is influential in their own right, has a distinctive point of view and offers us a unique perspective on how their world looks!

The last dregs of winter are slowly fading away (but it’s almost June, you say!) and the cosmos is conspiring to make us all smile with the prospect of summer. As is usually the case, we stumble upon things that resurrect and sustain us: amazing photographs, a kind word or comment that makes us laugh out loud, a memory long-forgotten, love in its many guises and the possibility of just being. The Wild Smiles know all about it and have captured it in an infectious tune that gets it just right. Go get ’em boys…

Fantabulous Four!

becauseurfantabulous

What a few weeks it has been! So many best-laid plans made with good intentions have been only somewhat accomplished but as the tendency to over-extend ourselves and to THINK BIG at this time of year seems to be the norm, one would think we would know better by now… Seems like a good time to put aside the holiday scurrying around and thank all the wonderful bloggers who have sent us some early Christmas treats!

Our favourite big dog with a blog, Clowie, over at Clowie’s Corner has sent along the Fantabulous Award. This one is truly fantabulous in every way because, according to the originator, there are “no-strings-attached” and can be “bestowed upon others as (we) see fit” – and it does seem to sum up the mood of the season in that here it really is the thought that counts! Do go and have a look at Clowie’s blog if you love all things humorous and canine, there are some doggy words of wisdom us bipeds would be wise to heed and a few felines thrown in for good measure… This little gem of an award is being passed along to Spumoni Caddo who is always there with a good word or piece of wise advice for those who need it and who certainly has her hands more than full enough without having to deal with the rigours of an award with a lot of rules!

Tom, who writes the tech-oriented blog TechnoTom filled with tips and reviews, has come up with a new award which he was nice enough to send our way:
read-on blogging award

The rules of this award are simple:
– When you receive the award, publish a post mentioning the award and thank the blogger that sent it along (linking back to their blog);
– Read their post on the award (don’t forget to give them a like!);
– Mention the rules above and below:
– Answer why you think you’ve been given the award
– Nominate 10 other bloggers you find interesting (linking to their blog) and leave a comment on their blog (leaving a link to the post you’ve just published)
– Post the “Read-On Blogging Award” image on your blog sidebar!

We are all for an award that has its roots in literacy, not only going forward but also going back – the beauty of our blogs (and reading in general) is that we can pick it up at any point in time and see what has gone before, re-read our favourites, pick and choose what strikes our fancy and thrill to the next post or page. We’d like to think that Across the Bored inspires everyone to “read-on”! Those who have followed us for awhile will know how hard it is for us to do 1 of anything let alone 10 so we are going to fudge (hey, it’s the holiday season and the elves are on strike in our neighbourhood) and nominate 5 blogs. These five have two things in common, they have followed us from the beginning and their authors make a special effort to craft posts that are word-oriented whether the emphasis is on a technical aspect, family, work, love or just the humorous side of life.

Island Traveler
Aperture 64
Naomikko
NMNPHX
The Bright Old Oak

Another thank-you goes out to Ann, at afriendofJESUS2013Blog, who has nominated us for a Blog of The Year Award 2013! She writes on all manner of topics religious and has visitors from over 111 countries reading her inspirational quotations. This award lets you collect stars and even if you or your nominee has already been given the award by someone else – you can still bestow it on them again and help them to reach the maximum 6 stars!

Blog of the Year Award 1 star jpeg

This is a particularly nice touch and seeing that we were never very good with stars even at the most elementary level, we are going to help Ann with her collection. If anyone out there knows blogs that are collecting stars for this award, please leave a link in the comment box below and we will go and have a look. The instructions for this award are simple and the full set of rules are available at The Thought Palette where the award originated.

Imagine our surprise when we got a notification through our fledgling Twitter account that Destino had nominated us for the Versatile Blogger Award. Her blog combines observations on daily life with photography – how can you not want to visit someone who “laugh(s) really loud” and likes “change. And coffee”!

versatile-blogger

The rules for this award are:
– Display the Award Certificate on your blog
– Write a post and link back to the blogger who nominated you
– Nominate 15 other bloggers and inform them of their nomination via comment on their blog
– Post 7 interesting things about yourself

Here we go:
– I have taught the dog how to eat politely off a fork (but never at the table)
– I am equally wary of both the dentist and the hairdresser for both have my head in their hands
– I have enough needlepoint wool to open a store (it’s a long story – if you are interested, leave me a comment)
– I would gladly wear a white t-shirt and jeans daily BUT
– don’t ask me to give up stylish shoes
– I still dance around the living room when no one is home
– I have Christmas tree OCD, meaning that there is only my way to trim it so just sit back and watch, thank you…

Remember those elves from earlier on, well they are still working to rule so the 5 nominees are:

The Bookshelf Gargoyle
Hope* the happy hugger
West Seventh Freelance
Animalcouriers
Vastly Curious

Well, it looks as though we have a nice start to the season where the unexpected brings a smile and reminds us that the best gifts don’t always come in boxes.

May your days be merry and bright…