Friday, October 12, 2018

Today is......

"Today is......." What a great and innocent prompt to get someone else to tell me what day it is. Yesterday, I decided to jump in and guess the date. It's the eighth, right? With appropriate chuckles, I was informed that it was actually the 15th of August, 2016. Even 2016, as I wrote the abbreviation '16 seemed as though I was writing 1916. What's the deal? This experience is fairly new for me. I'm good with the day of the week, most of the time, but the date itself is more challenging. It is so true that time speeds up or seems to speed up as one grows older.

Well, this news of the date reminded me, again, the school days are upon us. Today, my final grades were due for the summer term. Done. My class did very well. My syllabi for upcoming classes are due tomorrow. Fortunately, having taught some of these classes, a few date changes (hopefully, the right ones), and some adjustments to assignments. and I'll be good to go.

It has taken a long time to realize I can make some of the work easier on myself, especially with today's technology. Gone are the days of the mimeograph machine, either hand cranked or electric, requiring a ghastly smelling liquid and the hazard of having blue tinted hands and clothes. Mentioning mimeographed pages to my classes creates a most interesting and amusing haze to appear across the faces of these young college students. Carbon paper? Typewriters with a pencil for erasing, or a dusty tape to type out a mistake or the best thing to come along: this white paint out of a wee jar.

Let's see; I began writing this in August of 2016; it is now October of 2018. The word that stands guard within the clockworks of this Blog is Draft. So, whatever message was intended initially will hopefully come through and I can send one Draft guard on to the next incomplete thought.

Writing is a bit fickle. So am I. 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Hi - Ain't it hot as hell and remember when? Mercy!

Hello y'all,

I hope you are enjoying this warm (tediously hot) weather. I am certainly NOT built for this sultry, humid fare, but using the right words to describe it does at least afford one the joy of creating images of Faulkner or Twain or Foster or others whose works definitely enjoyed most effectively the imagery of the south land. Such romantic features indeed  - however, often associated with a lack of cognitive aptitude or accuracy with social conventions. Well, that just ain't so, thank you kindly.

Having spent some time this past weekend hacking holly bushes in the blazing summer sun, I all but withered...I'm here to tell you.  (left a mere shadow of a honeysuckle bloom what's done lost its honey) Mercy sake!

Please give me a cave, an arctic ice chunk, or at least a couple of box fans. Some of you surely remember a time when we didn't have air conditioning - sleeping was a test of modesty or rather to hell with modesty: flat on my back, spread eagle, with only enough on to cover the (well, you know) - windows open - hopefully there was a box fan - or better, a window fan, one of those we'd get real close to and make mouth sounds, like buzzing, that would be embellished by this rotary blade, into a tremulant not unlike one found on a Hammond B-3, those organs that used to abide with regularity, faithfully in most all upstanding funeral parlors. Now, that's another topic all in itself. I shall attend to that when I attend to it.

Now, this all started with the intention to wish you a most pleasant ...summuh. (Just say "summer" and take the "r" off of it.) So, I shall part with such a wish since I would never want to say a word that is disparaging, impolite, inappropriate, unkind, or even hint at sarcasm.
Not me.
Heavens, no.
Have mercy.
God bless it; (h)it don't know no bett-uh.
Bye for now...                  Damn, it's too hot already.



Meet Margo -
my dear doggy companion; she's a rescue Yorkie. Smart and full of energy and full of barks. Love her. She is named after the character Margo Channing (thus the name - another Diva)  in All About Eve starring Bette Davis, Ann Baxter, Celeste Holme - made in 1950 - B/W film - a classic. I hope some of you know this film. I made a reference to it recently to my students - no connection. I think I may be getting old.


Saturday, September 30, 2017

No Postage Needed - a letter to Ted

Good Morning to friends, family, colleagues and students,

Today, Saturday, September 30,  marks one month since my pup (although nearly fifteen) passed on from his land of play, treats; his soft, green bed; a multitude of toys, his special water bowl and even his "fine china" for meals. With gratitude to a student (1) (see below this letter for a few details), I began a letter to Ted which is providing a bittersweet catharsis during the grief that is an understood cross one bears when having the honor to host and care for such distinguished, even royal furry family members, one of the few family members permitted to run around the house, unabashedly, entirely naked. I share this portion of the beginning of my letter to Ted. Thank you for reading.


September 27, 2017

Dear Ted, 
     A month has nearly passed since you were gifted with wings lifting you to painless and joyful heights. Indeed, you went home in God's arms, where puppy angels begin and end their journeys. You must be near, as close as another panting breath, a squabble for treats or your sweet and furry body trusting my right arm to lift and lower you (2). Far more than a dog in the typical connotative sense - no, your spirit and presence watched over me through all your years here. You always gave me your love; always happy to see me; always ready for a romp for as long as there was romping and then your chariot (3) (once paralysis took hold). Your body continued to respond in joy through Teddy bops and then Teddy wobbles - movements that you could muster as long as possible - all this with your wonky leg (4) and all. You provided so much joy, the very glue that perpetuated my own sense of purpose. Playfully engaged, I was and will ever bee your Daddy: puppy school, walks (especially the Clare route (5), treats- certain treats; beating you up, a coded phrase for pup and Daddy's hug time on the floor. There's so much more to say; you're near. Stay near. Say "Hi" now and then. I'll write more later. 
Osh, Osh (6),
Daddy

1. A student of mine discovered we share an admiration and appreciation of fountain pens. This young gentleman provided me with some superb information in addition to gifts of a bottle of very fine ink and paper specifically suited for fountain pens. Wanting to try my hand at writing with these new materials, I initially had no idea what to write. I started with the date. Then, it was clear: "Dear Ted,". Thanks to that student. You have indeed granted me a cathartic place. 
2. This lift and lower phrase was our daily routine for his needs due to paralysis from the waist down. 
3. His chariot was the name given his wheels, his cart, that allowed him to zoom around as usual, supporting his back legs, something like a dog with his carriage. An endearing sight. 
4. One leg, front right when facing Ted, was crooked in that his foot seemed to want to rotate away from his body. There were times it seemed it would turn completely backward. He didn't seem to mind. 
5. On our walks, we had several routes. Ted typically chose the route. The Clare route took us near the home of our dear friend, Clare, who helped care for him, loved him, and also was his trainer in puppy school. 
6. I have no idea where this phrase came from - it was my Daddy language, among many other words and phrases. It was playful and had Ted's attention. 

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Herzlichen Gl├╝ckwunsch zum Geburtstag or Happy Birthday - How cool to receive such a greeting and......


Good Morning, all! 

(Be sure you read all the way down; you know I get wordy, but words and writers go together kinda', sorta' right? There are also some nice pics I think you will enjoy.)

Well, it's that day. Yes, it's that day. The day. Oh, yes. The birthday. Thanks to all who have sent such kind, gracious and loving greetings and well wishes, virtual and cards in hand. As you see in the title of this post, birthday wishes have come from near and far. I love this! The rich diversity that friends and family and acquaintances bring and offer is a virtual banquet of words with so many nuances of flavor, texture, form and function. Bring it on! "Herzlichen Gl├╝ckwunsch zum Geburtstag" alone is a linguistic feast. Thanks to my FB friend aus Deutschland!

A sentiment, poignant indeed:
"I was born when I was very young." I got that somewhere and just had to include it. That's about it although it is true. 

A narrative I offer with regard to my presence on this planet - Here 'tis: 
     My sister Sandy and I had numerous conversations during her final years, and she brought me up to speed on a number of events. One of my favorites is when Mom found out she was expecting another bundle of joy - well, that would be me. I suppose (counting back) that it was near the end of November, 1958 when she learned that she was about to have her fourth child; she was thirty-six years old. Mom and Dad had the first set of kids in the early 1940's, and the second set in the late 1950's. I wasn't planned, at least not by Mom and Dad; God had other ideas. I like to refer to myself as an "oops" baby. No wonder I like the unexpected. 

Mom and Dad 1944 - yes, long before me.
Back to Sandy...when Mom found out, she was very upset and angry and specifically with Dad. Hmmm........wonder why. Sandy said Mom just hauled off and hit Dad; Mom could pack a hefty punch, so I don't doubt this at all. Maybe that exertion had an impact on me as well. No idea - no matter. I'm so glad I had such great parents. Being older, I understand them much better. Both are deceased as is my sister. But, at 58 (in a few hours), I do understand more of the reasons for the variety of experiences, both positive and negative, and appreciate Mom and Dad (Bill and Dora Ruth) much more. 


A moment having to do with cake....

One birthday event I'll share with you goes back to the mid 1960's. Mom was going through a very dark period due to depression and anxiety. Dad was in Korea, working as an ammunition inspector with the Civil Service i.e., TDY. I was about six or seven. It was my birthday, but Mom was not able to do the birthday stuff. A neighbor, Caroline,  about four houses down, was going to bake a cake for my birthday. Mom must have called her so that I would have a cake and a party with neighborhood kids. Mom told me to take the cake mix over to Caroline's; it was a Jiffy mix (familiar?). I dutifully took it and I had my birthday moment that year. In years to come, I was resentful, even angry that I had to carry my own cake mix to a neighbor so I would have a cake. Well, life's lessons have changed that perspective. Mom made the effort, difficult as it was, to call Caroline. Mom had a cake mix on hand. She didn't expect Caroline to provide that. We had a great neighbor. I had a cake. Mom saw to it the best way she could. She took care of my birthday. It didn't have to follow some rule book for birthdays. Mom made it happen - she put me first. 

Often, love does exactly what we need it to do 
even when we might not be aware that it is love at work.
Thanks, Mom and Dad
Mom and Dad - 50th Anniversary, 1991


So, at this point today - which has felt like Christmas morning - I have arranged white roses in a wonderful, silver Victorian vase,  posted on FB and responded to many very kind messages. I made homemade muesli (to die for), have had more cups of coffee than I care to say because I don't recall. 



Then, I picked fresh figs. In the backyard, there are two fig trees. Every year, I am "gob-smacked" to go out and find these luscious, beautifully wrapped bursts of flavor hanging from the branches. Figs often hide behind their leaves, so it's a must to inspect carefully. For days now, there have been very few ripe figs, hardly any. 





Well, today, like a Christmas morning right before Mom and Dad open the door for us kids to run in for presents, I opened the back door to find a bounty of figs - God's birthday gift I do believe. How amazing. Special. Grace filled. Awe filled. I have found multiple luscious, beautifully wrapped bursts of flavorful words from friends and family. How amazing. Special. Grace filled. Awe filled. 
Thanks - filled. 

So, let's see where this anniversary leads. What adventures are ahead today and in the year to come? It's a good thing to be getting older. Often it takes a mirror or just a movement (like standing up) to remind me that I am getting older. Who is that guy with the silvery white hair looking back at me? Oh, it's me. Cool. 

Thanks everyone! Please join/follow my blog-we'll call it a birthday gift or an early Christmas present or just joining the blog. :) Whew! Thank God for medication and coffee. :)

Yep, the right mirror. 
Ah, there I am. Found the right mirror!!!   





















Monday, July 24, 2017

We've come a long, gay way, but the road still has some of the same old rocks in it. Yep.

Back in the 1980's, coming out of the proverbial closet and identifying as gay was a challenge indeed. Some of us decided to stay in the closet; some blasted through the closet door without even opening it first; some peeked through a slight crack in the door first and then ventured out - ever so cautiously. Some of us didn't know we were in a closet. I didn't.

You know, older homes (I mean truly old homes.) had few to no closets. My Grandmother's home had one closet in the whole house. It might have been added later though. At one time, closets were considered a room, and the more rooms you had, the more tax you had to pay. So, let's not have closets. Instead, the wardrobe was the harbinger of clothing at the time. So, is it possible that a gay person was in the wardrobe? That brings so many possible themes to mind, but I shall resist the temptation, for now, to engage those themes, yummy as they may be.

So, what is my point? Ah, yes! Having come out of the closet in the mid-1980's or should I say, having been pulled out of the closet, I knew little of what may be ahead of me. Quite innocent at the time, well - naive, or just ignorant (maybe stupid?), I determined that assuming this element of my identity was just fine. Fortunately, I had parents who refused to be judgmental of the differences among people, regardless. As a kid, when I asked for a doll as a Christmas present, Mom and Dad got me one. She had pretty blonde hair, kind of curly. So, I gave the doll a most striking butch hair cut. I suppose this being during the 1960's, it smacked of a flat top. Don't know.

As a result of my parents' neutrality about my "quirks," I saw no problem with integrating some stereotypical gay characteristics. I wasn't particularly successful with these traits, qualities, eccentricities. Trying to "flame on" came across more like a Bic lighter lacking enough fluid or a flint (some of you get that image :). This was the time  - back to the 80's - when wearing your collar up was a style statement. Being gay wasn't necessary to practice this fashionable trend, but it seemed to help. Well, my collar just wouldn't stay up.

I made it through those days with no tremendous trauma. Eventually, by virtue of sporting a gay emblem on my car, I would have the occasional word on my car's window - written in the morning dew (how poetic) such as "gay" or "fag." Okay, someone has their spelling down quite well. On one occasion, some guys in a car hurled insults and prejudicial names at me as I sat in my car behind them. It must have been the pink triangle emblem where a front license plate would go.

That was almost thirty years ago. Within the last year, after I finished teaching a class, several of my students stayed around as I packed my books and materials. Discussing age, I reminded them that I was indeed their age at one time; I had raven black hair, and was admittedly a guy who could turn a few heads. One of my students, a bright, fun loving bit of a rebel suggested that I must have had good luck with the ladies. I responded, "No, I don't play for that team." The students in the class responded to my statement, but the responses were positive and intriguing: "I wondered"; "I thought so"  - and that was about it. How cool! Neat! Dope! Dank! Lit! ...... nice?  I'm learning the lingo.

Up to this point is primarily back story to bring you to my point. Yes, we have come a long way on our path to be accepted and integrated into society at large, but some of the rocks (real and metaphorical) from forty years ago when I was yanked from the closet do litter the road. This came to mind within the last week. Some workers came to my home to remove some debris due to the storms back in late June. Upon meeting the first guy at the front door, we had a fun banter with each other as they were about to begin their work. I enjoy such engagement with others; some refer to it as just male BS, an unnecessary exchange of nonsense and useless information that is really more like a spitting contest or alpha male test. Maybe so. I must admit that in my experience such exchanges provide bonding that has unique qualities. So, all was going well. Then, my partner came to the door to see what the workers were about. He didn't say much; he was as pleased as I was to have this debris removed, and made that known.

My alpha male opponent, within one glance, seemed to have made an observation and a judgment. His entire demeanor changed. He became quiet, reserved and withdrawn. He remained so for the entire job. The two guys working were superb workers; they were efficient, thorough and professional. The yard looked great. Upon completion, I went out to thank them with the same approach as when we met at the door. The one gentleman's expression had not changed: guarded, stoic, reserved. I could be wrong. Maybe he was tired. Maybe he had received some bad news. I don't know. However, my senses know this dynamic. My heart and mind know this dynamic. It's hard to describe, but it did indeed cut me to the core; I hurt; I felt like the air of my soul had been punched out of me, leaving a scarred faggot at the center. No cheer here, queer.

Those rock remnants and even emerging rocks will likely litter my path until I eventually start my soul lift from this dusty plain. You all know the old saying about sticks and stones. Well, stones do hurt and words do hurt. With thanks to God, after one has walked such a rocky path for a number of years, feet do toughen up; rocks are more easily recognized; engaging the rocks is easier so they don't have quite the power they did; there are choices about just which rocks are worth stepping on or which ones should be stepped around. Maybe, just maybe, we might gather some rocks and create a different path altogether...it could happen. I'm sure of it.

Out of the closet, yes.
On the rocky road, yes.
Around the bend, yes.
Up the hill, yes.
Meet the rock, yes.
Suffer the rock, yes.
Bless the rock, yes.
Soul lifts from the rocks, yes.
Soul
lifts
from
the
rock.
Yes, yes, yes.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

TATipton: Les mots sont formidable, n'est-ce pas?

TATipton: Les mots sont formidable, n'est-ce pas?: Hello all, What a delight to see additional followers. I should think it easier to follow if there is something to follow! Such bodes the...

Les mots sont formidable, n'est-ce pas?

Hello all,

What a delight to see additional followers. I should think it easier to follow if there is something to follow! Such bodes the need for additional commentary and possibly (probably) more awareness for others to know that this blog exists. Yet, such arbitrary word crafting is an inherent trait in many of us who write; I suggest quite a bit of writing is not an actual physical, tactile, kinesthetic activity, but a mental, emotional, even spiritual awareness that insists, usually, to be recorded, and not remain a member of an unspoken oral tradition. Is such even possible?

I continue to remind students how powerful words are. The choice of a word may take some time; there are just so damn many words! The connotation and denotation must be considered; will the word chosen have the impact I intend? One of my favorite phrases, not of my own creation, is "Intention often determines interpretation." I must agree. I suggest it follows that I have a choice with regard to my intention. Our social norms, specifically those connected with spoken language, provide rather poignant communication based on our intentions. The brevity of sentences, or the tone of voice, eye contact, rhythm, pace, context, timing; all (and more) provide meanings that may be quite subtle or blatantly obvious.

So, one might ask (we'll say one is asking) just why I should choose today to write again. It's simple. I am striving to secure a position at a local university, and if I say that I write a blog, it would likely be in my best interest to demonstrate that such is true. So, a few words on words today is my offering to you.

By the way, with the continuing evolution of our language i.e., e-mail messages, messaging, text messages and the other constructs, I find in some ways I am "old school"; such doesn't bother me. In fact, I find it a rather amusing tool when connecting with those who are forty years (or more) younger. Never did I think I would experience a generation gap, yet as I continue to grow into my age, I find that such gaps can and do occur. So, I may choose to fall in the gap, lacking the vocabulary to request assistance, or I may yell across the gap and ask for a few definitions and directions for using today's communication styles. So, with some regularity, I am instructed in the meanings and usage of words and sometimes the intentional lack of words. I'm amused and perplexed. My students? I suspect they are quite amused when an older guy attempts to speak their vernacular. Eventually, I may know when something is dank, dope or lit. Until then, I shall continue to observe these amazing young students, with every intention of perplexing them with my own sense of words. 

Monday, August 8, 2016

My Cell Phone Doesn't Recognize Me

My cell phone doesn't recognize me. Me! The guy who pays for its feeding each month...the guy who bought him the little leather jacket so he wouldn't fall and be smashed, cracked, broken, fragmented, in a mess, in a heap, no good, worthless, of no use. (No issues here.)

I tried the security app that allows face and voice recognition in order to unlock your phone, so as to provide added protection. I thought that was pretty nifty ("nifty" - from what dark pool did that arise all of a sudden?). Sorry, side bar - nifty makes me feel the need to wear plaid, dungarees, sneakers, eat peanut butter and jelly on white bread with a glass of whole milk, and call shotgun for the station wagon. [End Scene].

Okay, the phone who doesn't know his own Daddy - owner. So, I confirmed the app, allowed the phone to take my pic, and spoke the magic word for voice activation six times so it would understand me clearly. Okay, I spoke in French to the gadget, but it was to understand. It agreed it had. While on line in the grocery store, waiting to bless the running belt with groceries from the store's myriad of shelves, coolers, freezers, I held up my phone and looked at it. Immediately, I realized how odd I felt at the action itself: looking at my phone as if I were seeing it for the first time. This is a p-h-o-n-e - pa-hon-ee. No, fone (with a long o sound, silent e at the end); what's it for? You get the idea. It was foreign all of a sudden. In order to make my phone more secure, I handed it the power to recognize me in order to let me in to my own phone. Does this not seem ludicrous?

Staring at the phone, feeling fully stupid, noting how absurd this was, yet how normal this has become, I proceeded to unlock my phone.

The phone (I paraphrase): I DON'T RECOGNIZE YOU.

This has lead to an afternoon and evening of musings, ideas, doubts, a plethora a'plenty. So, more to come on this one. I'm not through with it for sure. Here's hoping my Blog recognizes me. Here's hoping I recognize me.

Timothy?

Friday, August 5, 2016

Ramping up to School Days! Set the table!

As tradition has it, academics and the classroom beckon at this time of year. Sounds like a holiday in such a "word frame". Yet, as an instructor, it is indeed a holiday of sorts. I begin to anticipate the possibilities this semester will bring. Too many times have I been asked if I get bored, teaching the same thing over and over. My definite and determined response is a resounding "No!" The material is boring if I choose for it to be, yet what defines the classroom experience for me is the incredible interaction with so many different people, students from every walk of life.

Imagine serving a meal to a group of thirty people. Maybe you have several vegetarians, a vegan, someone who is lactose intolerant, someone who has no clue as to protocol at a dinner: which fork do I use or when do I begin eating? Sure, that would be a bit more formal, but then so can a classroom when needed. For me, this dinner and teaching have similar dynamics: I have to know who is showing up, what they already know, what they do not know, how they learn, their past experiences with learning, how they interact with their host.

I could put a loaf of white bread, a jar of peanut butter and a jar of jelly (grape of course), and let that be it. This is it. This is the course content. It's up to you to eat the stuff or not. I'm just going to put it out there. If you don't choose to eat (learn the material), that's your problem. This metaphor could take many roads I think you will agree.

So, I look forward to my dinner guests. Yes, I'll tell students which fork to use as well as when we began using forks in Western culture even though America did not get the fork until later than Europe. Hopefully, my students will inform me well on what works for them, which foods they prefer. So, a new semester begins. Time to plan a number of dinner parties. Can't wait to meet my guests.

Here's to a great academic year! (No, you don't drink before everyone else during a moment of "Cheers". Use a semicolon for that. No, a comma won't do; it isn't strong enough to hold back that brewski. 

Monday, August 1, 2016

FIGS - yep, figs.......

     Figs. Yes, just figs. Growing up, the only figgish thing I knew of was a cookie that encased a rather thick, dark, sweet, paste-like substance. I found the odd scattering of white specks throughout this filling quite interesting, having no idea that these were seeds. So, my childhood relationship was limited with regard to figs. For years, the fig was to me like a butternut squash; it was there, but I had little interest in it. I'm confident that you are familiar and skilled with the proper response to things in which you have no investment.

A friend (figophile?) says, "Look! Aren't these figs just beautiful! Look! Here's the butternut squash that I grew from one little seed. Amazing. My, my, my."

Response: "Well...my, my.....yes, that's nice." Grin ever so subtly as you back away. (A faint chuckle or giggle is quite appropriate here, yet do feign sincerity.)

    When I moved into my home on Birmingham's Southside, near Avondale Park, I found that I had a fig tree right at the back of the house, growing directly up and out, embracing the stairs to my deck. It is presently over two stories tall and I imagine ten feet or more in width at its widest point. By looking at the base and the larger branches, I imagine it's a rather old fig tree. Although not initially, I began to become aware of its offering each year, a bounty of fresh figs. (Surely, these are organic.) Some years, I have been unable to keep up with the harvest; some years have been lean. All that stated, now I hail the fig as a wonder and quite a gift.

     The fig season doesn't last that long. I would say that for two to three weeks during the summer, I can plan on gathering a pound or more of figs every morning. There is nothing quite like walking right onto the deck and picking figs from the top branches and also walking through the grass - barefoot - and picking them from every branch possible. Sometimes, they don't all make it back into the house - breakfast, don't you know. Fig trees have large, tough leaves and the branches tend to be quite flexible so I can pull a tall branch down to me for picking these succulent, juicy chunks of sweetness. So, here are two observations which in turn provide two lessons. See what you think.

1. Figs can hide in plain sight. It is only by moving around the tree and looking at multiple angles as well as under the leaves that I discover more of them. Those affords a wonderful moment for having playful discussions with the figs (when alone), almost like playing hide and seek. Did I really tell you that? 
    Lesson: Searching for answers to problems becomes easier if one considers multiple perspectives. The pay off can be sweet.

2. Figs are a favorite food for birds and squirrels and other creatures I'm sure. (I keep hearing about snakes; well, they can have some figs as well.) You can typically tell who or what has eaten or worked on a fig. If there is a neat, but pronounced hole in the bottom of the fig, it's likely a bird.

If the fig has been mauled to death, and there is but a shattered bit hanging from its branch, reminiscent of some horror flick, I should think that a squirrel had his way with said fig. Either way, I don't use those, but I do pick them and throw them out into the yard, thinking I am throwing my fellow creatures "off the scent".

     Lesson: Know that others have the same goals, needs and desires as we do (Knowing how others go about achieving such is worth noting - squirrels for example).

I remind myself that people and these creatures need food as well, and I have yet to see a squirrel at the check-out counter at the local Piggly Wiggly. (Yes, these stores exist - not just in a movie) So, if they eat a few, that's fine. I make a point to leave a number of ripe figs on the tree so the furry and winged ones can do their shopping as well. Side note: I've become aware that there are raccoons in my backyard now and then, yet I don't know if the fig tree could support their weight, and they also make an audacious racket when around.

So, the larger lesson for me is to know when I have plenty, enough; I don't have to have it all. 
For me, this is applicable to so many parts of life. 

I hope to share a few photos with you of the fig tree and figs - once I take them :) MANY thanks to "Bayou Woman" for her incredible recipe for fig preserves. I had more figs than I knew what to do with, so twelve  jars of fig preserves were the result of that concern. Fun to make and I was able to use my Mom's big canner/water bath/canning thingy pot.  

Thanks for reading. I hope you will respond and please become a follower of my blog. Themes range from the ordinary to the not ordinary and possibly the strange. A stream of consciousness may be a still, quiet stream of water or a babbling (I do mean babbling) brook or possibly raucous rapids. I just never know. Until then...

Peace to you.
Timothy