Category Archives: Monday Musings

Monday Musings — 17Jun24

Let’s start with a poem, about crows.


by John Ciardi

“The old crow is getting slow; 

the young crow is not. 

Of what the young crow does not know, 

the old crow knows a lot. 

At knowing things, 

the old crow is still the young crow’s master.

What does the old crow not know? 

How to go faster. 

The young crow flies above, below, 

and rings around the slow old crow. 

What does the fast young crow not know? 


Beautiful paintings and sculpture from McCreery L. Jordan

And just for the heck of it Micheal Moorcock’s advice on how to write a novel in 3 days.

  • “If you’re going to do a piece of work in three days, you have to have everything properly prepared.”
  • “[The formula is] The Maltese Falcon. Or the Holy Grail. You use the quest theme, basically. In The Maltese Falcon it’s a lot of people after the same thing, which is the Black Bird. In Mort D’Arthur it’s also a lot of people after the same thing, which is the Holy Grail. That’s the formula for Westerns too: everybody’s after the gold of El Dorado or whatever.” (Cf the MacGuffin.)
  • Love you all. Have a great productive week–if that’s what you want. Don’t let me tell you what to do.

    Monday Musings — 10JUN24

    What happened last week.

    Well another week has gone by. I didn’t get to last weeks MM because i had cataract surgery on my right eye. WOW! Just doing that one eye, which had the worst cataract (I could barely see anything out of it.), made a big difference in my vision. Colors are brighter, and text is sharper. A book I had to put away because the size of the text made it impossible to read, was clear as day now. I’m having the other one done in a couple of months. I’m pretty excited.


    Well I found Tubi. Free movies and TV shows. Lots of art documentaries that can’t be found on YouTube, or other streamers.


    My health is better. I’m feeling a little stronger, and am eating better. I’m still not sleeping great. I sleep until about 1:33 -2:33 and then can’t get back to sleep. I can nap during the day so it’s not that bad. I just wish I didn’t feel cold all the time. It drives the wife crazy that I still have the heat on.

    Some art to start your week.

    Monday Musings — 27MAY24

    There’s more great stuff (not political) here:

    His statement:

    I am from Portland, Oregon and I am an artist here in the Pacific Northwest. Most of my work is figurative in nature but extends into abstract expressionism with a focus on portraiture, faces and geometric shapes.

    Here’s Geir Opdal:

    This is my online museum and store.  You can wander from room to room and listen to conversation between paintings.  You may also buy a signed print or an original work.

    Wolff Land is the geographical state of my imagination. In my mind it is an actual place where islands are limned in gold as the sea tongues up fantastic shores.
    Sphinxes wade through clear golden water among huge fields of grass (Sphinxland), hybrid dream creatures have multi canvas adventures (Catspider) and sometimes faces of friends show up (Portraits). The stories are driven by movement and color: stars unfol)d in vertical clouds over a mountainside
    of blue thistles (The Mermaid’s Feet), a man wanders through a falling down house as birds fly through his heart (Waltz). But always I try to paint the
    impossible: Light—light of the sun on objects, on water, the light of stars, the light around an amazing event; the light of love.


    And, finally, here’s something from me:

    Monday Musings — 6MAY24

    We all, probably, have heard the term “spang”. Here’s the definiton”

    spang [ spang ]

    adverb, Informal.

    1. directly; exactly:The bullet landed spang on target.

    This next word is not actually in any dictionary. I made it up while half way between sleep, and wakefulness Sunday morning.

    spangular [ spang-gyuh-ler ]


    1. Acting in a direct manner.
    2. Precisely

    In a sentence: He spoke in a spangular way.

    I don’t know, just some fun with words, I guess. LOL


    Found out that there is a Wiki project solely for art. Spent some time perusing it, and it’s pretty useful.

    Aim of the project

    Our primary goal is to make world’s art accessible to anyone and anywhere. WikiArt already features some 250.000 artworks by 3.000 artists, localized on 8 languages. These artworks are in museums, universities, town halls, and other civic buildings of more than 100 countries. Most of this art is not on public view. With your active involvement, we are planning to cover the entire art history of the Earth, from cave artworks to modern private collections. We also provide you with tools for translation on as many languages as needed.

    Has artist biographies, and a selection of their work, and a link to the Wikipedia article. It explains art movements/styles and has links (with portraits) of practitioners of the style.

    What a great resource.

    What about that box grater

    18 uses for a box grater. Number 2 was the best in my estimate.

    2. Brown Sugar

    Even though I know that putting a citrus peel in the brown sugar keeps it soft, I inevitably end up with brown-sugar boulders that I attack with a knife, a scenario sure to one day end in heartbreak. And then I thought: box grater. It works.

    Scott Nearing

    A nice biography and remembrance of Scott Nearing, who along with his wife Helen, basically, started the back to the land movement. Read their books assiduously back when I was younger, still have my original copies of the “Good Life” books.

    While I’m not able to garden like they did this spring, the wife and I have figured out how I can grow some herbs and veggies. Couldn’t do this life without her.

    Thanks for reading. Love you all.

    Monday Musings — 29APR24

    Well, it’s been a couple of weeks. Been sick. I was actually in the hospital last Monday. I fainted due to some med changes, and all my blood work numbers were BAD on Friday the 19th. Been home a couple of days, with more med changes and feeling okay so far. Let’s say that having Multiple Myeloma, and a heart condition sucks ass.

    The Body

    Here’s an artist I never heard of before. Love his work, go explore his site.

    Here’s another cool artist:

    So to change the subject for a second; electric vehicles. Talking about rickshaws or 3 wheel electric bikes, and how in some places they are leaving EVs in the dust.

    I think a city (this doesn’t work quite as well for rural areas)that has a mix of electric bikes, trikes, rickshaws, and EVs, plus public transportation that’s reliable, sounds like a great place to be. If I had an electric trike (not a bike for me, my balance isn’t that great) I could be a bit more independent. I could get a little exercise without over stressing my body, and go to stores and restaurants and be outside a bit more (except in winter, here). This would help a lot of seniors also.

    Well that’s it for today, back next Monday for more stuff. Keep your powder dry, and remember solutions are everywhere. Just got to turn over the right rocks.

    Monday Musings–8APR24

    Found this book at Goodwill. I read these back in the 70s/80s, and loved them. Zelazny is a great writer with a lot of style, and always a pleasure to read. Get it on Amazon

    A storyteller without peer. He created worlds as colorful and exotic and memorable as any our genre has ever seen.” —George R.R. Martin

    One of the most revered names in sf and fantasy, the incomparable Roger Zelazny was honored with numerous prizes—including six Hugo and three Nebula Awards—over the course of his legendary career. Among his more than fifty books, arguably Zelazny’s most popular literary creations were his extraordinary Amber novels. The Great Book of Amber is a collection of the complete Amber chronicles—featuring volumes one through ten—a treasure trove of the ingenious imagination and phenomenal storytelling that inspired a generation of fantasists, from Neil Gaiman to George R.R. Martin.

    Or Barnes and Noble:

    Or use my affiliate link to Bookshop, and help me, and a local bookstore out:

    Been a slow week for me, and that’s about all I’ve got for today. Read books, they’re good for you, and fun.

    Why you should read everyday

    Because it actively engages your brain, reading is one of the healthiest hobbies for your mind. Not only is reading educational and informative, which is beneficial in itself, but it also rewires the connections in your brain, leading to many benefits.

    1. Stress reduction. Studies show that reading can help relax your body by lowering your heart rate and easing the tension in your muscles, with a reduction in stress of up to 68% in people when silently reading a literary work for only six minutes.
    2. Mental stimulation. Research suggests that reading can slow the progress of Alzheirmer’s disease and dementia by keeping your brain active and engaged, especially when reading out loud.
    3. Memory improvement. Reading has been shown to slow the rate of memory deterioration and even improve your memory and thinking skills.
    4. Vocabulary expansion. Reading is one of the best ways to learn new words. That’s why many researchers advocate for more reading experience in schools.
    5. Better focus. Researchers have found that, compared to using social media, reading helps improve concentration by increasing the capacity for longer attention spans.
    6. Improved brain connectivity. Studies have revealed that reading a narrative improves the connections inside the left temporal cortex of the brain—the area which is associated with language reception. The increased connectivity lasts for a few days after a reading session.
    7. Stronger analytical skills. When reading fiction, your brain takes notes of all of the details and gets into critical thinking mode to try to figure out what happens next, a practice that is useful not just when reading but in day-to-day life and work.

    As playwright and novelist Somerset Maugham put it, “to acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life.” And yet… So many distractions, so many series to watch, so many podcasts to listen to. Finding the time or the motivation to read can be hard.

    Monday Musings–25MAR24

    I am basically a shut in. I can’t drive, I don’t have an ebike, which I’m not sure I could use anyways (maybe an etrike), and winter around here is not the best time for those anyways. So until recently I was having to wait on being able to get a ride somewhere. What i figured out this week is I don’t have to do that. This is actually a great time to be a shut in. No seriously. It is the best of times, if you can’t get out of your house, not like 15/20 years ago. I think a lot of it is fall out from the whole covid business, but it’s true. You can have groceries delivered, either via the store itself, or many of the services like uber__, or grubhub. Take out delivery from your favorite restaurant? No problem. Lowes, Homedepot, Tractor Supply, Walmart, Walgreens, they all deliver. Sometimes it’s free, and sometimes they charge a fee. Some places don’t deliver, but you can get your items shipped to you fairly quickly. Also check your city for bus schedules, to see if they have buses, or ride shares for disabled people.

    This all is not as relevant for people who live out in the countryside. Same day delivery is probably not an option for groceries, and delivery fees would probably not be cheap. But there are still some options,I’m sure.

    Oh, yeah, and it’s Spring. 😀

    Monday Musings — 11MAR24

    Hi there. Here’s another Monday musings. Sorry I missed last week, I was sick all weekend and couldn’t put one together, but I’m back.

    Some of you may have noticed I haven’t posted here, or on Instagram, or Facebook, about my graphic novel I’ve been working on for several years. Well I came to an impasse where I didn’t know how to continue it. I kinda script as I go, and ran out of steam at 25 pages. So I started work on something else that I didn’t script at all, and an actually almost finished , just need the last few pages figured out to stick the landing. (It’s a normal sized adventure comic, so not a “graphic novel.) Anyways, 25 pages was the end of the first act, but any ideas for the second act didn’t thrill me. I’ve finally figured out the way into the second act (basically a change in POV), and also the third and final(?) act. Now to flesh them out and get writing and drawing.

    On to other stuff.

    Who’s creating the unicorns popping up around Providence?

    Their less than two-inch stature makes them easy to miss. But locals are finding the figurines seemingly everywhere.

    Source: Who’s creating the unicorns popping up around Providence?

    A little bit ago I did a post on libraries. Here’s another article about Mychal Threets a librarian who uses TikTok to promote how great libraries are. He’s a lot of fun.

    His compassion radiates through the screen as he promotes positivity, belonging and “library joy.” In a country faced with a dire literacy crisis, coinciding with regressive and discriminatory book bans and attacks on third spaces from conservatives, Threets’ work to make reading more accessible is needed now more than ever.

    And another artist to end the day with. Hazem Harb is a Palestinian artist working in the UAE.

    Dystopia is not a Noun #14, 2023

    Tabari Artspace modern and contemporary Middle Eastern Art Gallery in Dubai

    Source: Emerging Artists Middle East | Tabari Artspace