Wednesday, August 31, 2005
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
I started a routine of exercising with dumbbells and Dorothy and I are trying to walk a mile or more three days a week. After walking every day on the job for 21 years it would be disastrous for my health to sit down now.
There are projects I'm anxious to get started on, but it seems there just isn't enough time. I've heard other retirees say this before, and now I'm experiencing it: How did I have time to work all those years?
Sunday, August 28, 2005
James Hillman -- The Force of Character
Saturday, August 27, 2005
After taking cold shower
--What a mistake--
I look in the mirror.
There, a funny guy,
Grey hair, white beard, wrinkled skin,
--What a pity--
Poor, dirty, old man!
He is not me, absolutely not.
Land and life
Fishing in the ocean
Sleeping in the desert with stars
Building a shelter in mountains
Farming the ancient way
Singing with Coyotes
Singing against nuclear war--
I'll never be tired of life.
Now I'm seventeen years old,
Very charming young man.
I sit down quietly in lotus position,
Meditating, meditating for nothing.
Suddenly a voice comes to me:
"To stay young,
To save the world,
Break the mirror."
Nanao Sakaki, Breaking the Mirror, 1987
Thursday, August 25, 2005
The Lewis and Clark expedition set out in 1803 to explore the vast, uninhabited (except for the indians) west, yet California had been claimed for England by Sir Francis Drake in 1579, and the city of Los Angeles was dedicated by Father Junipero Serra in 1781 with 44 original settlers.
The day general Custer and his men were massacred at Little Big Horn, the St. Louis Cardinals (known then as the Brown Stockings) were playing baseball in St. Louis.
I did some research on my own family to find out what historical events were happening at the birth and death of my ancestors. Here is what I found:
Peter. O. Blue was born in Scotland in 1745, the same year "Bonnie Prince Charlie" Stuart defeated the British in battle and advanced toward Derby. He was defeated at Culloden the following year. Peter came to America in 1771, 5 years before the Revolutionary War. He died in 1828, the year Andrew Jackson was elected president, Alexandre Dumas wrote "The Three Musketeers", Jules Verne was born, Webster's dictionary was published, and Gilbert Stuart, the painter of George Washington's portrait died.
Peter's son Malcom Blue was born in 1785, the year Mozart performed the Six "Hadyn" String Quartet, and the seismograph was invented. When Malcom died in 1866, Dostoevsky wrote "Crime and Punishment", H.G. Wells was born, Degas painted the ballet series, and Alfred Nobel invented dynamite.
Malcom' son, James Daniel Blue was born in 1838, the year Queen Victoria was crowned; Dickens published "Oliver Twist", William Clark, from the Lewis & Clark expedition died; Great Britain had 90 naval ships, Russia 50, France 49, and the U.S. 15. When James Daniel died in 1908, LBJ was born, Ian Fleming (author of James Bond stories) was born; General Motors Corp. was formed, and Ford produced the 1st Model T.
James Daniel's son Homer Blue was born in 1881, the year that James Garfield was assassinated; Picasso was born; the population of London was 3.3 million, Paris 2.2 million, New York, 1.2 million, and Tokyo, 800,000. When Homer died in 1952, Eisenhower was elected as president of the U.S.; the Korean War was in progress; Ernest Hemingway wrote "The Old Man and the Sea"; Norman Vincent Peale published "The Power of Positive Thinking"; Movie: High Noon; popular songs: "I Saw Mama Kissing Santa Clause", "It Takes Two to Tango", "Your Cheatin' Heart"; first hydrogen bomb exploded.
Homer's son Homer G. Blue was born in 1915 at the start of WWI, that year Booker T. Washington died; Einstein postulated the General Theory of Relativity; the first transcontinental phone call was made. When my dad died in 1985, Ronald Reagan began his second term, John Irving wrote "The Cider House Rules", Garrison Keillor wrote "Lake Wobegon Days"; the Academy Award for best picture went to "Amadeus"; and the U.S. deficit reached 130 billion dollars.
One week before I was born in 1945 a nuclear bomb was dropped on Hiroshima; also that year George Orwell published "Animal Farm"; the boxer of the year was Rocky Graziano, and the Empire State building was struck by a B-25 bomber.
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
- What song or movies reminds her of you
- She'll pick a color/flavor of jello to wrestle you with
- She'll say something that only she and you will understand
- She'll tell you her first memory of you
- She'll tell you what animal you remind her of
- She'll ask something she's always wanted to know about you
Here are her responses for me:
2) Forever Young...by Rod Stewart. (I see you singing it to your grandkids)
3) Orange Jello. We can throw it against the walls and see if it's a good color.
4) "Here I am!"
5) A deep thinking postal worker....that adores his family.
6) A ground hog. You come up when something interesting is going on...but otherwise...don't bother me....I'm thinking and pondering "life".
7) Did you really hit that snake in your living room with just ONE SHOT?
Tuesday, August 23, 2005
The female species enter a store with only a vague idea of what she wants to buy and meanders through the merchandise, picking up things, laying them down, making comparisons, going through a mental process that even with modern technology scientists have failed to decipher. If she manages to buy something on sale, she returns home aglow with the pride of having "saved" money.
Names have been omitted in this post to protect the innocent (me). The fact that I went shopping with Dorothy and Kelly yesterday is purely coincidental.
Monday, August 22, 2005
Sunday, August 21, 2005
We drove to Little Rock, Ar. to attend the 40th wedding anniversay celebration of Carl and Carol Keys. Wow, what an accomlishment to live together that long, raise a family, and still be going strong.
We met many of the Keys' friends and family members, and enjoyed the time spent in conversation and laughter.
Dorothy made the cake and Kelly helped her decorate it.
After we left Little Rock we headed to Hot Springs. The picture at right is the view of Lake Hamilton from our motel. After checking in we called our dear friends Ricci and Sandy Davis who live south of the city. Ricci and I have known each other since we were 15 years old and attending Los Altos High School in Hacienda Heights, California. We visitied until midnight, reminiscing about the good old days and trading stories about the grandkids. It had been 14 years since our last visit and we decided to visit more often. We're getting older and we can't afford to let time go by without the important people in our lives. We hope to see them again soon.
Saturday, August 20, 2005
I worked on the dishwasher, but wasn't able to solve the problem. I installed a new motion sensitive flood light on the front of the house. Took the grandkids to the creek. Installed a new printer/scanner/fax on my computer. Mowed the lawn. And even had time to catch up on my reading and watching old movies on TV.
This morning, Dorothy and I are leaving for Little Rock to attend the 40th anniversary party of Carl and Carol Keys, our son-in-law's parents. We'll spend the night in Hot Springs and visit some old friends from high school the next day. So this is my last post until Sunday night or Monday morning.
I love this retired life.
Friday, August 19, 2005
but it is the center hole
that makes the wagon move.
We shape clay into a pot,
but it is the emptiness inside
that holds whatever we want.
We hammer wood for a house,
but it is the inner space
that makes it livable.
We work with being,
but non-being is what we use.
Tao te Ching
Thursday, August 18, 2005
Wednesday, August 17, 2005
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
Before lunch I repaired the dishwasher and that was enough manual labor for the day. After lunch we watched a movie and took a nap. In the evening we went to Tahlequah and ate at Chalinga's restaurant. It was their first anniversary of being in business and the meals were half price, plus they had a Mariachi band. Then we visited a friend, a fellow letter carrier, who is under hospice care at a nursing home. He doesn't have much time left and we want to be with him as often as possible.
So that was a pretty good start to retirement. This morning I actually slept in until 6:00am. Dorothy and I went to Siloam Springs and picked up the two younger grand kids and brought them home. They will be spending the night.
Monday, August 15, 2005
Sunday, August 14, 2005
It's taking me awhile to read this one. I have to go back and reread paragraphs and chew on them for awhile before I can go on.
Here's a quote from the jacket cover: "In this empowering and original work, James Hillman resurrects the ancient, widespread, and socially effective idea of the old person as "ancestor", a model for the young, the bearer of a society's cultural memory and traditions. America disregards old people who aren't young-acting and young-looking. We don't realize that "oldness" is an archetypal state of being that can add value and luster to things we treasure, places we revere, and people's character."
I want to think of it not as driving away, but driving toward a new life, a new beginning. My family was waiting for me at home to celebrate not only my retirement but my 60th birthday. I spent the evening just watching each child and grandchild, savoring them. They're all beautiful, each one a jewell.
Dorothy and I also celebrated our 39th wedding anniversary this week. She's responsible for all this. If I had not met her when I was a kid the idea of working for a living would have never occurred to me.
Friday, August 12, 2005
Thursday, August 11, 2005
– Alan Watts
Wednesday, August 10, 2005
Tuesday, August 09, 2005
Sunday, August 07, 2005
Dorothy was going through some old photos and clippings and found this. I went to the first grade class at Cherokee Elementary, Tahlequah. Ok. and "delivered" letters to each child. Occasionally, a teenager will approach me on the route and ask me if I remember them from that day. It's funny how something like that sticks in the mind of a child. It reminds me that whenever we have an opportunity to have a positive encounter with a child, we should never fail to do so.
Alan Watts -- The Wisdom of Insecurity
Tuesday, August 02, 2005
There's a song on the radio whose lyrics declare: "And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance, I hope you dance." Well, the writer of that song hasn't seen me dance. There seems to be a neural interrupt between my brain and feet; they just won't do what I tell them to. But, have you seen that Six Flags commercial with the old guy dancing up a storm? Now, there's one cool dude. If he would just put out a how-to video, I could learn to maneuver out on the dance floor just like him. Dorothy's always wanted to go dancing and when I told her that once I'm able to dance like him we'd go dancing all the time. She said I'd be dancing alone. I will never understand the female mind.