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Sunday, October 25, 2015

The temporary nature of art.

We had some good news this past week, so with that in mind we decided to travel down to Clearwater and take in the chalk art festival that run over the weekend.  I've always admired those that can draw or do something, anything with their hands.  Perhaps because I never got past the stick figure phase, I am always impressed with what people can do.  From creating 3-D fish with chalk to creating ice sculptures or crafting a wonderful piece of furniture.

You have to wonder exactly how many hours someone put into what, will ultimately be lost.  Much like those that build elaborate sand sculptures or sand mandela's, I suppose the joy is in the creation.

All life is transitory.

I can understand why people create art, or write blogs.  It's a way of saying, "I'm here, I matter."  Still though, when you're working in a art form that can be washed away in the next tide or rainstorm, I can not help but wonder what drives them to create.

Then you hear the "Oh's" and the "Wow's" and I start to understand a little more.   Life is dark, hard, brutal...even in a paradise like Florida, and now and again you're shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right (with apologies to Robert Hunter who first uttered that line).  Life is funny that way.  Art helps us find our way.  It provides a few moments of wonder and joy.

Not the best pic, but you can see the 3D nature of it.

I'm an explorer at heart, give me that experience...that sense of wonder at any time.  I'll take it.  Give that that "OH!" moment.  Give me food that I may never have again.  Give me the experience of a new drink, new music, new is to short not to enjoy it.

And as I dug into my first ever Stone Crab at a local eatery I found the meat to be sweet and meaty but lacking much taste.  Perhaps it was how it was prepared.  In fact, it tasted much like other crab I've had in my life.  I also find that eating crab requires a lot of work for little return, and I found it funny that I was reminded of peeling a hard boiled egg as I removed the carapace from the meat.  Just look at that concentration!

For what it's worth, life is good.  You have that special someone to keep you warm, you have warm days and cool nights to snuggle.  You have that now...but life is transitory.  We age, and yes...we will die.

Did we bring joy?  Did we bring someone an "OH!" moment in their life?  Did we write a song that brings a smile, gets someone to tap their feet?  A love note?  A novel?  Did we paint a picture that brings a smile.

Life is simple.  Make someone happy.  In doing so, you'll be happy too.  Create a Positive feedback loop.  

For additional photo's go here.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Bernie Sanders - The President we need.

I am a member of the Democratic Party.  Always have been, always will be.  I'm a dyed in the wool Democrat.

Depending on your political views that is either a good thing or a bad thing.  It stirs up a certain image in your mind.

Bernie Sanders is a Democratic Socialist.   It's that last word that people have been concentrating on lately and honestly if you listen to his speeches he is talking about one of the basic tenets of Socialism, class warfare.  It's that last word I want to concentrate on.

I like Bernie Sanders.  I support Bernie Sanders and I truly believe that he has a chance (although slim) of taking the Democratic nomination for President.  What attracts me, and many of his supporters, is that the man has been "walking the walk" for his whole political career.  He's never run a political attack ad - preferring to stay on topic and talk the issues - as he recent "Enough with the damned emails" comment during the first Democratic debate shows.

Thanks to the NY Observer
He also could have turned a chance meeting into political gold.   He did not.   In fact, it was a friend of the Bland family that broke the story.  Any other politician would have called for TV camera's and issued press releases.

Integrity and class are words not often associated with politicians.

Of course, it is not the way of modern politicians to use integrity and class.  Instead we get a twitter war between, in my humble opinion, idiots like Trump and Bush.  Do we really want two grown men acting like grade schoolers to be the future leader of this country?

The American people deserve better.

Yet, for a variety of reasons (all of our own doing), this is what we get.

Of course, as the race heats up and we move deeper into the political season (hard to believe the election is still over a year away)  we are going to see more and more attacks on Bernie and the "Socialist" label he gives himself.

 Never mind the fact that many of our allies are Democratic Socialist nations or have some Democratic Socialist system in place.  All the right will hear will be the "Socialism" part of things.

America is socialist in a lot of ways already.  There are the very public examples of the police and fire departments.  The roads and bridges we drive on.   Our often wrongly misunderstood Social Security and Medicare systems.  I am not sure if there is enough time to educate the average Joe on the street about that.

I can see it now.  Hour after hour of negative political ads featuring pictures of the old Soviet Union and of Cuba being flashed across our TV screens while jackbooted soldiers march to the Internationale.

I'm curious if the fear is going to work though.  We have had eight years under that Communist Muslim Obama and yet our lives are pretty much the same as they were before.  Some might even argue better than before.  Negative ads work, but will they work against the Republicans in this case?  I'm sure they are asking themselves that very question.

The pundits and news media are missing one thing in all their coverage.  The American people are angry, fed up with the bullshit and tired.  We have had eight or more years of Fox News telling us lies. Nineteen years of Jon Stewart, Steven Colbert and John Oliver deflating the pompous attitude of politicians on both sides of the spectrum.  Both sides have failed to live up to their promises to us, the American people.

It's hard to deny.  This election has everyone in power on edge.  No, I'm not a conspiracy nut.  There is no vast network of people trying to keep Sanders down.   But he does threaten vested interests in keeping the status quo, just like Trump does on the right.   Both set dangerous precedents for the future (and that is for another day as well).

The internet, although it does allow us to form little enclaves with like minded individuals, has also allowed people to do their own research and collect their own data.  To actually make up their own mind on an issue.  It also has allowed old myths to perpetuate.  What were the most searched for words after the Democratic debate?   Socialism, Democratic Socialism, and

Yes, Communism and Socialism are in the same family.  Democratic Socialism is to the left of the Democratic party.  If you actually sit and read what many of the Tea Party darlings like Walker and Huckabee are calling for...that is more towards the Totalitarianism side of the political spectrum.  Of course they don't want to hear that.   I'll be the first to call a spade a spade.

I understand Democratic Socialism.  I am not afraid of it, and I've been calling for a one payer medical system for years.  It's coming, America has no choice as it is the only way we will reign in the over bloated health care costs that privatization and for profit hospitals bring.

Some of the other things make sense.  For example using our post office systems as banks, investing in our infrastructure, raising taxes on the wealthy.   It's not going to be easy and honestly I feel the Republican party understands this too.  They are not dying but may be passing into the night as a National party if they don't change...we are seeing the birthing pains of a new, and hopefully better, Republican party now.  That however is for another time, another place.

So yea, a little Socialism just might be what this country needs.

It's not going to work however if we the House and Senate to the Republicans.  We need more progressives in office than ever before.  Just because they are a Democrat does not make them progressive - always research there record.  I would proudly have this guy in office any day of the week!

So please, join us on the barricades.  Join the revolution and #feelthebern

Monday, October 19, 2015

Welcome to my diseased mind. Enjoy the view.

I've been considering starting another blog for sometime.   While I enjoy writing about my adventures on my bike, that is not all I'm interested in.

I'm interested in politics, music, football, that other football (soccer), the law and life in general.  Sometimes an idea strikes me that I want to write about but it doesn't seem like it really belongs in a motorcycle blog.

Sure I could put this crap on my Facebook page, and to a large extent I already do.  However the problem with Facebook is that your limited.  A 20,000 word rambling about the evils of polyester is just not possible on Zuckberg's creation.

So I thought I should lay down some ground rules.

a)  I really do want your feedback - but you have to defend your argument with facts.  I'll be the first one to admit when I'm wrong.   You should be able to do that as well.  If you're insulting, mean or just plain stupid your reply may not see the light of day, but then just might.  I have the final say.

b)  I don't plan to limit myself.  We get to be better people by questioning things.  We learn that way.  I truly believe you never stop learning.   So you might get an article about Bernie Sanders one day followed by a piece on my favorite piece of classical music the next.   If you know something I don't, then share it with me.  Just be nice.  I'm still debating about you really need to know everything?

c)  Whenever possible I will use facts.  Sometimes I will not and these are opinion pieces.  Take it for what it is.

d)  If you want to link this to your blog go ahead.  I will be happy to share your link as well.

e)  I plan on having fun with this.   When it stops being fun that's it.  I'm done.   This will be updated whenever I feel like it.

Simple enough I think.