February 24, 2017

Earth's Curvature

 Mauna Kea Sunset
As the sun continued to sink, the bones in my fingers started to feel like freeze-dried, orthopedic stumps impaled in withering flesh-sticks. Ok, embellishment aside, it was very cold. And I didn’t expect it to be. My fingers are always the first to punish me when I’m cold. 

That we were standing at 13,796 feet above the Island of Hawaii made it all the more surrealI’ve never been a huge sunset connoisseur, whether its because I lack the patience to sit for the few minutes it takes to appreciate what nature serves up everyday, or I’m just distracted by life’s less meaningful machinations, but this night was different. 

The sky, cloudless above the horizon, started to morph from powder blue hueinto a butterscotch colored sundae layered with boysenberry and marmalade topping. I wanted to reach out and take a scoop, but my fingers weren't willing. We watched the scene unfold standing on the summit of Mt. Mauna Kea, the largest mountain in the world at 33,500 feet when measured from it’s base at the bottom of the ocean. 

From here the horizon bends with the curvature of the earth, while the clouds coalesce along into a dessert sprinkled with white telescopes. A first for me and something to remember. 

February 20, 2017

The Making of a Peace Sign

We gathered white coral rocks. Then gently laid them down on the black lava. As the circle formed, we noticed the line down the center was a little crooked. Liv made the adjustment, then we stood back to see what we had done. Nothing magic, but magical nonetheless. A first for me.

They posed standing inside of it. Then they lay down in it, above the two lines which signify palms outstretched, downward, like Goya’s peasant before the firing squad, in the circle known for eternity and the unborn child. Two teenagers, two young girls, teammates, friends.

What’s so funny about peace, love and understanding?

February 11, 2017

A Cup of Coffee in Santa Barbara

I’m beginning to realize something pretty simple. Something so simple I think it is fair to say that children understand it more than adults. Which is not surprising given our hasty, consumption based culture.

To describe this from an adult’s perspective would be logical but misleading, because the essence of it is usually lost by the time we enter adolescence and begin the journey fulfilling our unquenchable need to define who we are “supposed” to be while stumbling toward discovering who we really are. Caught between these competing forces, we are oblivious to all that pushes and pulls us toward achieving more, having more, and ultimately being more. I’m somewhere in the middle of this struggle. You?

But what is “it?” Well, like I said, “it” is pretty simple. “It” is something most of us are missing every day. I’ll leave this to your imagination. Let me know what you think.

Today, for the first time, I had a cup of coffee with my daughter in her new town Santa Barbara. It was a simple thing, which I’m learning is the important thing.

Keep it real runners.

February 5, 2017

There is Truth. And there is Untruth.

Not sure why, possibly the tone of the airwaves, or maybe the slant of the day's storyline, but today I chose to watch a particular movie while running. The playback and treadmill were working swimmingly until the machine came to a screeching halt. A dreary scene, brutal torturing, a main character, me nearly catapulted over the machine. Ok, from this token running reference I now digress...

I don't remember seeing the movie 1984, but I vaguely remember reading the book back in high school. Thoughtcrime, newspeak, big brother, or my personal favorite quip from a newspeak committee member: "It's a beautiful thing, the destruction of words." 

For a more modern nugget, I kind of like the inter party zealot proclamation that there is "a huge network of conspirators prepared to commit any atrocity to weaken and demoralize the order of our society."

Familiarly, there is a transition taking place in dystopia. War, not waged to be won, but waged to be continuous, will keep the oppressed, oppressed. But now the enemy has crossed the line, has become so heinous and wicked, that "ideals" can no longer stand in the way of the opponent's destruction.      

Interparty zealot: 

"Until now, the war has been conducted with honor and bravery with the ideals of truth and justice in the best traditions of mankind... until this moment. Brothers and sisters, the endless catalog of beastie atrocities which will inevitably ensue from this appalling act must, can, and will be terminated.The forces of darkness and treasonable maggots who collaborate with them must, can, and will be wiped from the face of the Earth."

Maybe it all ends (or begins) with the possibility that "Power is tearing human minds apart and putting them back together in new shapes of your own choosing."