Are We Allowed to Have Pride in our Ancestors (No Matter Who They May Have Been)?

I’ve been thinking about A Birthday Cake For George Washington “written, illustrated, and edited by a diverse group of people of color, including editor Andrea Davis Pinkney, who is black and a winner of the Coretta Scott King Award.” The book was pulled by Scholastic in 2016 because “(a)lmost as soon as the book was released, it received withering criticism for whitewashing the history of slavery.”

One of the people who work at the Jefferson Library at Monticello is descended from five of the enslaved families of Monticello. He is proud of his heritage and is active in tracking down the oral history of those families.

A recent 60 Minutes featured a story about Fred Miller, a 56-year-old Air Force vet. He bought the Sharswood Plantation in Pittsylvania County, Virginia to host gatherings for his extended family in the area, only to discover that his great, great grandparents Violet and David Miller had been enslaved people on that plantation. “Buying this home has opened a window into the Miller family’s past that was not discussed within their family, and that many African American families struggle to obtain.”

To me, these three examples show that despite how reprehensible slavery was, people still managed to accomplish extraordinary things that their descendants are proud of. Should we denigrate or ignore those accomplishments because they were achieved by enslaved people? Is sharing that heritage to be dismissed as “Woke” because it does not follow the traditional narrative?

Vlad the Imploder

He planned an invasion
that was supposed to be quick
It wasn't successful
Is Vlad really sick?

The carnage was high
Lots of buildings destroyed
Deceptions and lies
were immediately deployed

Casulties mounted 
progress was halted
Troops redeployed
and civilians assaulted

The Ukranian victory
not  yet achieved
Russian alibies
seldom believed

Can  a Jew be a Nazi
as Vlad has proclaimed?
This re-written history
where the victim is blamed.

They made me do it!
Vlad's head is exploding,
in the meantime
his victory just keeps imploding.


Cracked brick wall painted with a Ukrainian flag on the left and a Russian flag on the right.

May 10th is Mother Ocean Day





Mother, mother ocean, I have heard you call

Wanted to sail upon your waters since I was three feet tall

Youve seen it all, youve seen it all

From Jimmy Buffet’s Mother Ocean

The creator and the introducer of this day are South Florida Kayak Fishing Club, which is relatively a new celebration, and the day is introduced first in 2013. Then the City of Miami declared this day officially. Then the day is celebrated for wondering the beauty of the ocean, and it is quite surprising for the residents of Florida who come forward with this idea of celebrating the day.

Mother Ocean Day is celebrated on May 10th of every year. Mother Ocean Day spotlights the entire magnitude of the body of water, which makes our life possible on Earth. Marine biologists are unsure how many creatures are living in the ocean. Oceans cover more than 70% of the earth and contain 97% of our water.

  • Pacific Ocean is the biggest one.
  • You can find mountains and volcanoes on the bottom of oceans.
  • The deepest point in the ocean is the Mariana Trench
  • Oceanic evaporation is the source of most rainfall.
  • Ocean temperatures determine climate
  • Earth is the only known planet that has oceans (as far as we know for now).
  • The biggest animal in the ocean is the blue whale.
  • We have explored less than 5% of the ocean (to date).
From you womb we crept,
many of us yearning to 
embrace you again.

May 7 is National Cosmo Day

May 7 is National Cosmopolitan Day.  Better known as the “Cosmo,” the drink is a combination of vodka, triple sec, lime juice, and cranberry juice.

Probably the best-known Cosmo drinkers are Carrie, Samantha, Miranda, and Charlotte from Sex in the City, the show credited with popularizing (and overexposing) the drink.

There are slight variations on the recipe but a vodka drink devised in 1987 by bartender, Toby Cecchini is the one associated with the modern-day Cosmo.

  • The roots of the Cosmopolitan came from a drink called the Daisy from the 1930’s.  This version had gin, cointreau, lemon juice and raspberry syrup.  Similar but sweeter than our Cosmo.
  • The Cosmo was popularized by the movie Sex and the City, since it was a favorite drink of the actors in the series.
  • Before Carrie Bradshaw and friends enjoyed the drink, it was enjoyed by Madonna and other celebrities.
  • In the 1960’s a recipe for a cocktail on Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice Bottles was called the “harpoon.”
  • Even though Tony Cecchini is often credited as the creator of the Cosmo, the history is rather murky. Some think the origins go back to late 19th century.
  • National Cosmopolitan Day was coined by freelance author Jace Shoe-Maker Galloway.

WordPress Removes Useful Info with Its Cleaner Layout

On April 20, I noticed that WordPress had a new layout for comments.

We also lose that capability when somebody likes a post.

I like being able to check out the post of somebody who likes one of my posts or who comments. Sometimes they are first-time visitors or people who come by infrequently.

This is a blogger I do not recall visiting before. I tried to Google the only information that is provided and could not find a blog site to see if this is a blogger I might enjoy following. I did find it in Reader but I don’t habitually use Reader and hate having WordPress dictate what I must do to find something.

Yes, I do fall into the trap that if you like one of my posts, especially if you also comment, I will try to reciprocate and check out your post. Some of the blogs I visit are not necessarily ones that I want to follow, but I like them well enough to drop by and reciprocate.

WordPress, please us give back the additional info. Sometimes a cleaner look is not really an improvement if you have stripped away useful information. Do you prefer the old look or the cleaner new look?

Retreat

Retreat: an act of moving back or withdrawing.

Sometimes we all need to retreat–maybe a strategic withdrawal for the sake of ourselves, our families or jobs, the institutions we support, the beliefs we hold sacred.

We're not giving up
we're not giving in
We're exploring fresh ways
to advance 
our thoughts,
energies,
perspectives
honing in on what is essential
what is important
and what is extraneous.

When it all seems overwhelming
it is time to withdraw
and focus the light
where it seems the darkest.
What do the colors of
your prism reveal?

Painting the Trim with Sunshine and Glass

Stained glass pattern, just add sun
When the sun slants in through the window just so
the stained glass puts on a colorful show
decorating the walls with color and swirls
some lines are straight and others are curls
Some patterns crisp like geometric design
Others soft images, both look quite fine
A gift from the sun for those in the pews
If the sermon is boring, you can come for the views.

A-G-E

Androgynous
Gender blending
Evolving

At the gym today, I saw a trim, older man climbing out of the jacuzzi. His pecs had started to sag and had begun to look like moobs.

Have you noticed that as we age and start to lose muscle tone and firmer skin, we begin to look more like each other? Our hair thins and grays, our shapes shift and soften, as our ability to do most things easily declines. (Who would have thought that getting up off the floor would count as exercise and leave you huffing?)

She starts plucking hair on her chin and if particularly hair suit may have her chin waxed. The hair on her legs becomes sparser than the hair on his head. Each holds out hoping that the other will get up first. You become nostalgic for the capabilities you still had a few years earlier.

Declining eyesight is a mixed blessing–you can not clearly see that your looks are withering, but hopefully not your mind or sense of humor. Cheaters become stronger and get to the point where they may no longer help.

You become much noisier–popping joints, snoring, having your phone set to a louder volume so you do not miss a text, phone call, or email, entertaining the world with the randomness of your thoughts as you vocally analyze things that pass through your head.

Bedtime arrives earlier with the passage of time. Seven goes from being the normal dinner time to being the normal bedtime.

Your definition of fun may change to how much effort it requires. Distance is measured by how far away the nearest bathroom (preferably with a tall boy toilet) is.

Clothing requirements change from does it look good to is it easy to get on and off?

What you may lose in height you may gain in weight.

Cars That Go Bump

There once was a girl in a car
who did not get to drive very far
while trying to turn
she had to re-learn
that stopped vehicles, her progress will bar.

Dedicated to the teenager that did not look ahead at the stopped vehicles ahead of her, when she was too preoccupied trying to make a left into a busy gas station to get something to eat. The good news is that nobody was hurt; the bad news is that three vehicles now need varying levels of repair.

Just found out the insurance company totaled the car because it would cost more to repair than the 5 year old car was worth.