The Zombies Are Here

The zombies are here.

He wasn’t surprised. Not eating brains. Yet. No. Just a matter of time. Someone will probably tell them that eating brains will save them from the coronavirus or something. He wouldn’t put it past them.

He’d been expecting the zombies for a while. They’d quit thinking several years ago. Clearly were unthinking and undead, not caring about anything except themselves and the undermining of their so-called freedoms.

What else could they be but zombies? Living in such an alternative world, believing ridiculous conspiracy theories for which proof wasn’t offered. Well, okay, sometimes they tried to put up some ‘proof’ – or their idea of it – but then it was shot down. You know, like masks don’t work. Vaccines will magnetize you. The coronavirus is a hoax. No worse than the flu. There’s a secret child sex ring on Mars. Trump is still secretly POTUS. And take ivermectin for the virus that doesn’t exist, that’s no worse than the flu. Now they were trying to blame Biden for Afghanistan. Biden, who has been in office for seven months, who took office twenty years after the war in that poor country began.

Yep, the zombies are here.

It’s the Sun, Stupid

Okay, boys and girls. Gather ’round. Time for another rant.

An older friend related a story. He was assembled with his fishing club to hear a futurist speak. The first subject was global warming and climate change. The futurist announced, “It’s the sun, stupid.” That was the whole of the discussion about global warming and climate change.

Yes, it’s the sun, stupid. Has nothing to do with atmosphere. Nor methane gases being released. Conveyor belt effects on ocean currents. Nothing to do with anything humans are doing.

No, it’s the sun, stupid. Why is the planet warming? It’s the sun, stupid. The sun warms the planet. Well, should other aspects of that be addressed? Like, why exactly is the sun warming the planet so much? Why are ocean currents destabilizing? Is there any relationship with the jet stream changing, and all the extreme weather events, the growing, deepening droughts, the record, soaring, high temperatures? Or what of the wildfires and bushfires, like the ones that devastated Australia, the western U.S., and now parts of Europe? No? This is all just the sun?

These issues weren’t raised. While not a close friend, I’m aware of his political views. He pooh-poohs Black Lives Matter. Dismisses other social justice and equality issues. Laments the changes we’re seeing in our society. Wants to return to ‘the old values’. He’s older than me. Entrenched in his beliefs. Fortified by Fox News and other conservatives. I know these things from previous encounters. I know that he doesn’t think much of climate change or global warming. It’s the sun.

Stupid.

End of rant.

Wednesday’s Theme Music

Here we are, as helpless as a kitten on a Wednesday. Yes, it’s April 21, 2021. Our friendly sun came around 6:21 AM, and will wave so long at about 7:59 PM, all times Pacific. Cool again today, despite a sunny, clear day. 54 F right now. Rain showers struck yesterday. They hit lightly as a kitten swatting for about six minutes. We’re behind on our rain. Simultaneous countdowns are in progress. When will water constraints be imposed? And wildfire season is coming. As there’s spreading, major drought throughout the U.S. west, a bad one is expected. Fingers crossed, hold your breath, children. Here we go again.

It’s just like shooting deaths in the U.S., isn’t it? Every day brings more news of such events. Then, here we go again. A cop shot a black. Here we go again. Someone armed with an automatic weapon went on a rampage somewhere. Texas. California. Wisconsin. Here we go ago.

No surprise that I’m stuck on “Holding Out for A Hero”. I featured the 1984 Bonnie Tyler song before, back in 2017. Well, what was true then is true now. We need a hero. None is on the horizon. We’re going to muddle through without change and plenty of outrage and hand-wringing, supporting the world’s largest and most powerful military while ensuring citizens have the right to fight back in case said military and government turns on the people. Yeah, like that hasn’t happen before here in the U.S. Check your history, please.

A friend shared a FB post that made me laugh and summed up the general sit. The post was essentially about why the Japanese didn’t continue on to attempt the invade the U.S. after bombing Pearl Harbor. The post was all about how the Japanese commanders were aware of American hunters. How many people have hunting licenses and are armed in the U.S. So think about that when you think about gun control. Sure, the Japanese were willing to take on the Chinese and Korean military, but not the American hunter. Okay. Even if we agree that might have some merit back in 1941, does it have any merit now? Look at how the police are armored up. If anything, the argument and discussion is more about the growing absurdity of war. Yet, we roll on, bombing and shooting, firing rockets and missiles, building bigger and more sophisticated weapon systems aimed at more effectively killing the enemy while killing the human race and the planet in parallel. Always wonder how they ever managed to reach that period of peace in Star Trek that allowed us to begin working together, harness technology, and move forward.

Here’s the music. Wear a mask, get the vax, stay positive, and test negative. Cheers

Tuesday’s Bumper Sticker

I admit to being jaded when seeing this. Given the proliferation of manufactured and fact news being rolled out via the net and reading of how people develop angry confusion after reading reams of misinformation, I need an asterisk on this bumper sticker.

*Please employ critical thinking when reading.

Saturday’s Theme Music

The cats, my wife, and I agree, it’s pretty outside today. Take spring greenery and sunshine. Splash some gray and white clouds against the sky. Load up a brush with snowy white and slather across the land. Result: a snowy and sunny late winter day. That’s despite a temperature floating around 37 degrees F.

It happened abruptly. I let Boo the Bedroom Panther out at 10 PM. I let him back in at 10:15. There wasn’t any snow in evidence at that time, your honor. Thirty minutes later, my wife announces she’s going to bed to read, and why is it so bright outside? Ah, snow.

Today is March 6, 2021, a Saturday. Solrise was at 6:38 AM. Soldrop will be at 6:07 PM in southern Oregon. For those of you who collect days, you know that this is a unique one. There will never be a day like this again. For some reason, that prompted the Wayback Machine to spooled up some Talking Heads.

Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Same as it ever was…
Look where my hand was
Time isn’t holding up
Time is an asterisk
Same as it ever was…

h/t to DavidByrne.com

Well, Jill D. contributed to this thinking with her post, The Rich Get Richer While The Poor … | Filosofa’s Word (jilldennison.com). “Once In A Lifetime”, circa 1981, will stick to yer ribs.

Remember, stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get the vax. Cheers

Thursday Thoughts

  1. My cousin, Glenn Seidel, passed away, ending his cancer fight. A genuine nice, caring person, his death is one that makes you question life’s mechanics. I wish he’d never suffered cancer; he’d watched his mother and younger sister fall to cancer. It’s good that he’s no longer suffering, though. Watching the suffering, unable to do more than mouth platitudes, is the struggle for me when a friend, relative, or pet is suffering and dying. No, it’s not about me; the survivors always mourn. It’s about what he — what they all — went through before reaching the point of death. Here’s to Glenn.
  2. Weather is on my mind. We’re contemplating a move east. Why? Summer weather here in southern Oregon has become a litany of summer suffering: wildfires, or smoke from wildfires suspend or kill activities and travel. Drought requires water restrictions, which is enforced via capitalism: if you have the money, you can buy the water. Depressing, right? But our winter is comfortable, remarkably snow free and freezing free. Moving east to Ohio or PA would mean plunging into that stuff.
  3. Watching Texas suffer from lack of planning for cold weather brings deep sighs of frustration. Save some pennies, increase profits, but when the shit hits, you’re wickedly unprepared. It’s sadly now the GOP way. Yet that ‘save some pennies, increase profits’ mantra holds fast against critical thinking. It’s always the poorest classes who suffer most, of course.
  4. Since I’m on politics, will the righteous right-wing notice that President Biden, a Democrat, immediately reached out to help states, whether they’re ‘red’ or ‘blue’? Doubtful that they’ll notice; doubtful that they’ll remember. Yes, experiencing a strong cynical streak today.
  5. We worry about the animals along with people, you know? We hope the animals are warm and safe, too. The logical response is, this is life; suffering is inculcated as part of the formula. Death is a natural ending. Still, I hope for the best. Guess I’m an unrepentant optimist.
  6. Writing (knock on wood) continues going well, which continues to scare me. There’s a burst of jubilation as a major chapter is completed. After a pause of reflection, anxiety strikes as I face the ever-present, ever-daunting question, what next? That question always pulls me back into the puzzle that’s called writing a novel.
  7. I’m watching more foreign television shows that are in their native languages. I run in place and watch television to wind down at the day’s conclusion. Usually do two to three miles between 10:30 PM and midnight. Bad dubbing draws cringes and winces, which are disruptions to the entertainment. Don’t need it. Instead, I watch television in German, Icelandic, Norwegian, French, etc., eyes glued to the captions. We like how characters appear in television from other countries. Characters in the U.S. TV land are typically pretty people with pleasant lives and mild challenges to their principles and decisions. Typically, matters are quickly resolved, with little complications. There are exceptions. The characters in stories in other nations are less pretty, less glamorous, and more natural. Yes, they’re more like me. Fortunately, watching foreign television seems to be a growing streaming trend. A great selection is available.
  8. One exception in U.S. television that I continue to admire is “The Wire”. Watching it for the second time, finishing season four, the levels of excellence in production values, acting, character development, plots, and story arcs all still impress me. It’s been several years since I first watched it, yet so many of the people and story-lines remain memorable. It’s a gritty show, but you end up rooting and crying for so many.
  9. Finished reading/read six books last week. I’m mastering the jogging-in-place-while-reading process. Five of the books were fiction, the other was non-fiction. Reading does enhance/intensify my writing process. Hungry for more books now. One is on hold at the library, so I need to head that way, but also research more to add to my list. I’m reading mostly crime and speculative fiction while I’m writing my science fiction/speculative fiction novel.
  10. With running in place augmenting my walking and other exercise, my 28-day average remains over 12, coming in at 12.41 for this cycle, with a best day of 14 on February 7.
  11. It’s raining outside. My cats are in and asleep. One sleeps on my feet as I type, keeping me warm with his weight. Another is in the foyer, curled up on the bench, a paw over his eyes. The third is stretched out on the guest bed like a ginger throw. Their presence and the knowledge that they’re safe and comfortable reassures me against awareness of the world’s pain.
  12. Now, time to go eat lunch. Then it’s back to writing like crazy, at least one more time. Stay safe, please. Cheers

Thursday’s Theme Music

Hello, and welcome to this edition of Thursday. Today’s date is February 18, 2021. The temperature is 39 degrees F under sporadic rain, a vast difference from yesterday’s sunny disposition. The sunrise was at 7:03 AM while sunset is expected at 5:47 PM in Ashland. You know that means we’re moving closer to springing ahead, right?

We’re not enduring those horrible winter storms challenging most of the nation. We stayed too warm due to some weather system off of Oregon’s coast. It doesn’t save anything north of Eugene. Up there, they’ve been battered. Move east, the storm managed to sweep down over the plain states and invade Texas. Those proud Texans are asking for help. Some, like elected officials such as Mayor Tim Boyd of Colorado City, and Senator Ted Cruz, don’t particularly care. They could be wearing Melania’s infamous, “I Don’t Care Do You?” jacket.

Boyd told people without water to “think outside the box to survive” and called people waiting in the cold because they have no power “lazy” – even as authorities were telling people to stay home to avoid icy roads.

“Bottom line quit crying and looking for a handout!!” he said, before finishing off his message in capital letters,”DONT [be] PART OF PROBLEM, BE A PART OF THE SOLUTION!!”‘

That’s leadership. Meanwhile, Ted Cruz, demonstrating his concern, flew to Cancun.

Today’s song choice is “Glory Days”, a 1985 Bruce Springsteen offering. Glory days is an affliction that affect many as they peak at an early age and then continue to tell stories about who they once were, and what they did. I was thinking of it because I wondered if the United States was afflicted by glory days, telling about what we once did as the nation falls apart. Hope you enjoy the music. Remember, stay warm, positive, and safe, and test negative.

Tuesday’s Theme Music

Look at this: Sunrise: 7:30 AM. Sunset: 5:18 PM.

We’re squirting toward ten hours of sunlight here in Ashland, Oregon. The delta has become just twelve minutes. Twelve minutes. At this rate, we’ll have ten hours of sunlight by the end of January. That, my friends, is progress.

Yeah, I’m a sunlight fan.

We could use more sunlight today but stormy clouds have paraded in. The clouds brought a sharp wind as their plus one. Present temp is a chilly 31 F, which feels like colder. Today’s high will be 39, so no relief. Still, we’re faring better than places where single digits or piles of snow reign.

Today’s song, “Last Nite” by The Strokes, came out while the century was still young, 2001. Sweet and young, the new century was naive and combative, as the 2000 election showed. We’ve been fighting ever since.

How does “Last Nite” fit in? It’s all about understanding, innit? Don’t know if you recall/are familiar with “Last Nite”, so let’s paste in some lyrics, courtesy of Genius.com.

And say, people, they don’t understand
No, girlfriends, they can’t understand
Your grandsons, they won’t understand
On top of this, I ain’t ever gonna understand

Which sums up a lot going on in U.S. politics to me, which is how the song got into my head this AM. I was thinking about how people don’t understand one another. We took about it a lot. How can anyone trust Trump? He’s a proven liar and failed businessman. I don’t understand. Meanwhile, over on the spectrum’s other end, they’ve been yelling, Trump tells it like it is. The left doesn’t understand. But, but, but, how he’s telling it are lies and bullshit. I don’t understand why they don’t see that.

Stay positive — I know, it’s hard — test negative, wear a mask, get vaccinated, and persevere. The list keeps growing.

Here’s the music.

Saturday’s Theme Music

A new Saturday has arrived. (Momentarily, The Who sing, “Meet the new Saturday, same as the old Saturday… I haven’t had my coffee. Forgive me.)

Sunset came at 7:35 AM and we expect sunset at 5:14 PM here in Ashland. It’s rained through the night and morning, leaving us with gray clouds competing with blue skies and a 37 degree F temperature. The low temp is going to be 29 and the high is expected at 48 on this 23rd day of January, 2021.

Today’s music is “Torn” as covered by Natalie Imbruglia in 1997. First, a side note: some female co-workers in 1997 really disliked “Torn”. “She’s lying naked on the floor,” one would say with vehemence. “That’s disgusting.” She didn’t think about the song and that symbolism; lying naked on the floor was too much.

Reading about QAnon members reaction to President Biden being sworn in last night after Biden’s predecessor went into hiding in Florida, those conspiracists seemed torn about what was going on. Many were asking, “What’s going on? I don’t understand?” Others, with anger displayed in caps and multiple exclamation points and sharply chosen hateful words, were torn with emotions, claiming they’d been betrayed. Others tried calming them down by urging patience because there’s more to come.

Myself, I was torn about getting out of bed this morning. Caught in that wondrous place where I’m neither fully asleep nor awake, moving seemed like a gross violation of the moment, never mind leaving the warm bed. But the cats, torn about fighting one another, jumping on me, and pawing on the pet door to be let out, finally made me open my eyes and worm out of sleep.

Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask, and get a vaccine, if you haven’t already. Here’s the music.

Wednesday’s Theme Music

Today is January 20, 2021, a Wednesday. Sunrise was at 7:34 AM and sunrise is coming at 5:10 PM. Between them, the weather looks hazier than yesterday but still sunny. It’s currently 34 degrees F but we expect warmer.

Congratulations to President Joe Biden, forty-sixth POTUS, and Vice-President Kamela Harris. The inauguration ceremonies in D.C. were on the television at the same time as my wife’s Zoomercise class. There’s usually seventy to eighty people present; today there were twenty-eight. The rest were off watching the inauguration, we suspect. My wife exercised but kept the television on to hear President Biden’s speech and the Vice-President’s speech, and the rest of the pomp.

I walked two miles yesterday in the late afternoon, masking when I encountered people but trying to stay to routes that let me avoid them. Going up allowed me the privilege of gazing across the valley to where sunshine bathed green and brown hills, evidence that we’re creeping out of winter and toward spring. An Oasis song from 1996, “Don’t Look Back in Anger”, came to mind and stayed with me. I thought that it should be today’s theme music.

Slip inside the eye of your mind
Don’t you know you might find
A better place to play
You said that you’d never been
But all the things that you’ve seen
Will slowly fade away

So I start a revolution from my bed
‘Cause you said the brains I had went to my head
Step outside, summertime’s in bloom
Stand up beside the fireplace
Take that look from off your face
You ain’t ever gonna burn my heart out

h/t AZLyrics.com

Stay positive, test negative. Wear a mask. Get the vaccine, and lean forward.

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