Zelda's exercise, September 24

Another exercise from Zelda's Inferno.

This one was inspired by a scene in the Johnny Cash biopic Walk the Line, where young John is talking with his brother, who is intently studying the Bible. His brother wants to be a preacher when he grows up, and says he has to study because if you want to help people, you have to know the right stories to tell them. This exercise: tell a story that helps.

a story from I don't know where, from I don't know when
that I come back to when I feel insignificant, inferior:

Once there was a stonecutter, who spent his days carving rocks from the side of a mountain with a hammer and chisel.

Nitrous oxide

New Scientist reports on human activity's impact on another greenhouse gas, nitrous oxide:

As a greenhouse gas, N2O is 296 times as powerful as carbon dioxide and accounts for 6 per cent of the greenhouse effect. To better understand the N2O output from forests, Klaus Butterbach-Bahl of the Karlsruhe Research Centre in Germany and team members Per Ambus and Sophie Zechmeister-Boltenstern studied N2O emissions from 11 European forests...

They found that nitrifying soil bacteria thrive on high nitrogen levels, producing mainly nitrates, which are turned into N2O by denitrifying bacteria. As human activity adds more nitrogen to the biosphere, the production of N2O by the bacteria looks set to grow.

Zelda's exercises, September 17

More exercises from Zelda's:

1) Connect these two lines:

It was the best of times, it was the - holy shit! What the hell is that?

and

And as she fell into his arms she lost all hope

It was the best of times, it was the - holy shit! What the hell is that?

She jumped in her chair
almost dropped the book
at the thunderous crash outside

and then the door opened
and he walked in
again
without warning
he walked back in
to the house
to her life
walked back in
after five years

walked back in
like the moon returning to the sky

Bruce Sterling: "I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by Google"

Interesting little short short story from Bruce Sterling in New Scientist, considering the future of people and "controlled spaces":

Right. We teenagers have to live in "controlled spaces". Radio-frequency ID tags, real-time locative systems, global positioning systems, smart doorways, security videocams. They "protect" us kids, from imaginary satanic drug dealer terrorist mafia predators. We're "secured". We're juvenile delinquents with always-on cellphone nannies in our pockets. There's no way to turn them off. The internet was designed without an off-switch.

9/11 + 5

Seems wrong to let the day, fifth anniversary of 9/11, pass unnoted; but there's nothing new to say. I'll just point to what I posted this time last year.

Here's lyrics to a song a wrote about that day (which will be on my forthcoming CD, whenever I get around to finishing that):

"No Words of Wisdom"
Tom Swiss

Everybody's looking at me
They ask me to sing and play
But I've got no words of wisdom
For a day like today

I came down here with my guitar
To help you pass the time
We could have a drink and have some fun
And sing these songs of mine

'Intersex' fish found in Potomac

LiveScience reports that “intersex" fish, with both male and female characteristics, have been discovered in the Potomac River and its tributaries. This of course raises questions about how whatever contaminants are causing this, will affect the people who drink tap water.

Last month's testing at three tributaries emptying into the Potomac revealed that more than 80 percent of all male smallmouth bass found were growing eggs, according to Vicki S. Blazer, a fish pathologist with the U.S. Geological Survey.

journaling and Zelda's exercise

Went to see Nicole do the triathalon relay today - so proud of her! She and two co-workers split the "Iron Girl" triathalon in Columbia, she did the biking part. I got her to volunteer as model for shiatsu photos afterward.

Been working a lot on the house the past week, moving furniture around, making preparations to renovate the rear addition, catching up on cleaning.

Dusting off photos of old friends who I haven't seen in months...there's some kind of symbolism there. "The mind is like a bright mirror in a stand, take care to keep it free of dust.", the old Buddhist poem.

Dust piles up on the photos in their frames
Faces of friends, some long unseen
Are hidden and dimmmed
Though memory is always bright
Memory is always bright

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