Today I visited the bike trail we used to ride. It goes along the harbor under the Verrazano bridge. Windy morning and rough seas and I could see the damage Sandy did. I wonder how long it will take for the City to get around to fixing this.
I’m the driver when we take Mom or Dad to see Doctors. Today it was Coney Island Hospital. Most of the campus is in disarray due to repairs of damage from hurricane Sandy. The Tower building, one of the newest one’s, wasn’t damaged.
These ladies were having a smoke and chat in front of the sign saying “no smoking within 15 feet of this sign.”
Street life on Ocean Parkway.
Chrissie Hynde and the Pretenders singing it must be Christmas time. Thanks to David Kanigan for the idea. The Pretenders were (are?) my daughter Aida’s favorite band. She introduced me to them a long time ago and I still love them. Merry Christmas.
This is an iPhone/Hipstamatic image that I love. Something from nothing? Maybe there is more here than meets the eye.
Its raining today in Sandwich where I live. Snowing some other places. I don’t know if its raining in Newtown Connecticut but it should be. It would befit the mood in a town that has had its gun culture turn on it in a horrific way. If that sounds harsh it is meant to. Newtown is emblematic of our country. A few people in most towns own guns that are designed to be effective killing machines. Designed to kill not rabid dogs or pheasants – designed to kill people. These guns must be taken out of the hands of anyone other than our military and police. No private citizen should have weapons of war. These weapons facilitate mass murder. Ownership of them must be controlled.
In Newtown attempts to control such weapons were blocked. A New York Times article, ran with this headline: “In Town at Ease With Its Firearms, Tightening Gun Rules Was Resisted.” The sound of rapid gunfire was heard in town causing concern. The mother of the mass murderer (shooter is far too delicate a term for this individual) collected high powered guns and took her kids to a shooting range. She was part of the town’s gun culture. The easy access to automatic, high powered guns facilitated this mass murder. Nothing that has that effect should be legal.
Those who advocate guns because they are protective miss the fact that guns in our towns and homes too often fall into the hands of the insane or malevolent. That is what happened in Newtown. Rather than give every school Principal a Bushmaster, we must work to get such weapons out of our homes and off the streets.
I have read arguments against control of automatic, high powered guns saying the second amendment is in place to ensure that the citizens of this country must be armed in case the government becomes tyrannical . As if an armed citizenry could over throw a government with the armaments at this one’s disposal. Not possible. Not the way to control tyranny anyway. A silly, frivolous argument.
In Newtown the police and town leadership has tried to institute regulations over guns. They have been blocked by gun advocates. The sound of gun fire – rapid gunfire is heard regularly in Newtown. People shoot propane tanks and cans of explosives to have the fun of blowing stuff up. This is not healthy behavior and must be outlawed and the weapons of war taken off the street. Any existing or new regulations must be enforced and enforced for real. Any weapon that has no use except to efficiently kill people by the dozens – these weapons must be taken out of the hands of citizens. Immediately.
After the horrible news of yesterday’s school shootings we have been mourning the losses and feel numb. Today The Chalice newsletter of the Unitarian Church of Barnstable arrived – the church we just joined last week — and Reverend Kristen Harper included the opening stanza from a poem by Ralph Waldo Emerson to introduce her paragraph about mourning losses during the year. Unfortunately it is very apt today.
Threnody by Ralph Waldo Emerson
THE SOUTH-WIND brings
Life, sunshine, and desire,
And on every mount and meadow
Breathes aromatic fire;
But over the dead he has no power,
The lost, the lost, he cannot restore;
And, looking over the hills, I mourn
The darling who shall not return.
I mourn all the little darlings who shall not return because their lives were cut short. I will look for them in the hills and valleys, when walking through a meadow I will remember and mourn. I will see them in the sunrise and sunset and along the beaches we walk on old Cape Cod. I will cherish my children and the children I meet in my travels all the more. I will be patient with them all and with my self. I will look for them as I look for Walt Whitman who wrote in Leaves of Grass:
Failing to fetch me at first keep encouraged,
Missing me one place search another,
I stop some where waiting for you.
I hope the sweet martyred babies will wait for us until we have the wisdom to see them again.
In the aftermath of horror we try to continue our normal, mostly happy lives. Today that’s a challenge. We can’t allow ourselves to go numb. Carefully considered action must be undertaken. We must protect the children.
Off to a late start today. Could not fire the engines. Or the head. Temperature: Brisk 35F. Not a trace of wind. And gloriously sunny. Sunny but dark.
I skip the hat. Skip the gloves. Skip the extra sweatshirt. I needed cold. Needed to feel alive. Needed a new path. A fresh 5-mile route. Away from the familiar.
9:45 am: I’m heading North. (It’s quiet out. Eerily quiet. I don’t hear birds. Traffic seems to be moving slower. Everyone mourning? Newtown is North. Sandy Hook Elementary School is 39 miles due North. TV images flicker by: Mother holding phone, screaming. Children being marched out of the building. “Close your eyes. Hold your hands.“)
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I am sharing two lily photos because I was inspired by Vladimir Brezina’s post — Lilies
Vlad’s blog is usually much more ambitious and all his posts are worth a visit.
The first of my lilies was taken with my iPhone 4 and edited in the phone. I am so impressed with what’s possible in today’s smart phones. The other one is a Panasonic LX3 shot — I’m on the LX7 now — a great series of cameras in a compact form. A fine machine to put in your pocket for not much out of pocket.
Here are links in case you want to buy a print or a card.
Here is my gem of the day — a photo I took while hiking in the woods on Cape Cod. Its Wolf moss, or Lutharia Vulpina its poisonous I believe. (Its actually a lichen not a moss) It was used to poison wolves years ago. Intimate glimpses into the forest floor yield endless beauty; it pays to look.
To order a print of this image please go here: