Saturday, April 11, 2009

1939 Happenings and States of Affairs

~ Germany invades Poland
~ Russia invades Poland
~ Franklin D. Roosevelt president of US
~ WWII begins~ Average price for a new car about $700
~ President Roosevelt was presented with a letter from Albert Einstein urging the development of an atomic bomb program
~ "Gone With the Wind" premiered
~ DC Comics published its second superhero, Batman, in Detective Comics #27
~ The Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum was dedicated in Cooperstown, NY
~ Geraldine Carroll Sheehan, artist, communicator, teacher, genealogist, photographer, wife, mother, sister, and wondrous woman born in the final month of the year.
~ Lou Gehrig retired after playing in a record of 2130 major league baseball games
~ Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was introduced by Montgomery Ward stores
~ first jet aircraft flight
~ Laura E. Settle was CRTA president
~ Madrid surrender ends Spanish Civil War
~ Russo-Finish War
~ Italy invades Albania
~ As Germany and Italy supported Franco in Spanish Civil war, some call that war the beginning of WWII
~ John Dewey's Freedom and Culture was published
~ Joliot-Curie demonstrates possibility of splitting the atom
~ Paul Muller synthesizes DDT
~ Igor Sikorsky (Russ-Amer) constructs first helicopter
~ Frank Buchman re-forms Oxford Group as Moral Re-Armament
~ Earthquake in Turkey kills 45,000
~ Anglo-Saxon burial ship excavated at Sutto Hoo, Suffolk
~ Coal Strike by United Mine Workers demonstrates power of united people.
~ C. S. Forester's Captain Horatio Horn Blower is published
~ Popular songs in US included "God Bless America," "Three Little Fishes," and "Roll Out the Barrel"
~ AF of L organizer, Tom Mooney, freed from California prison
~ Communication Workers of America union founded

Friday, April 10, 2009

Blooming Cacti

My cacti are blooming nicely. Some wild flowers are in bloom. Migratory songbirds are tuning up. There are baby birds in the bathroom exhaust vent.

California Retired Teachers' Association

Happenings and times important to CRTA people:
1913 First retirement law was passed by the Legislature granting teachers $500 annually.
1925 A group of nine teachers met in Pasadena and created what would later become the first division of CRTA.
1929 The first car radio was made by Motorola.
1929 Retired teachers met at Sycamore Grove and organized the "Southern California Retired Teachers Association." At a second meeting that year they dropped the word "Southern."
1931 The Star spangled Banner became the national anthem.
1939 WWII began.
1941 CRTA Board signed the Articles of Incorporation.
1951 Laura E. Settle died and CRTA created the Laura E. Settle Loan and Scholarship Fund.
1954 Rosa Parks was arrested in Montgomery, Alabama which set the American Civil rights Movement in Motion.
1964 The Beatles appeared on the E Sullivan Show.
1968 The First CRTA Business Office was opened in Napa, California
1969 Man first walked on the moon.
1989 The www was 'invented.'
1989 The Supplemental Benefit Maintenance Account (SBMA) was established to maintain the purchasing power of retired teachers.
1996 The first sheep was cloned.
2000 The Fremont-Union City-Newark Division was formed bringing the total number of CRTA divisions to 88.
2008 CRTA successfully lobbied to increase the SBMA to 85% from 80%.
2009 You identify and help create your lobbies.

So Willing

Why, fellow citizen, do we seem to be so willing to .......
~ keep ourselves ignorant
~ be okay with a professional military more and more supplemented with mercenaries
~ be at war
~ make war
~ kill children, women, and other forms of life
~ kill in the name of Christ
~ support the hate and mistrust in Senate bill One and the Patriot Act
~ abdicate responsibility for our prisons, schools, military, health care, welfare, parenting
~ go on being fearful of talking to one another about the things important to us
~ teach our children to kill without clearly understanding why
~ think that it is fine for us to back out of or ignore our treaty obligations
~ why do we contemplate killing those who honor theirs
~ fear people who have attacked no one when we have attacked so many
~ to be proud of our many violent attacks on others
~ be so careless of 'collateral damage'
~ be so careless about killing civilians
~ support wasting mercury in the ocean when we know it threatens all life
~ avoid teaching our children
~ avoid caring for the health of our children?

What other question might we ask ourselves?

As Citizens

Most of us are concerned about our wars. Most agree that our involvement in war causes individuals and peoples to suffer, fear, and die. All of us can see that our wars cost us blood and tax dollars.

Can we come to some agreement about when, where, and under what conditions it is worthwhile for us to begin new killing or not? Could we talk it over? Can we come to a democratic agreement on a national war policy as part of a national foreign policy? We can maintain the necessary dialog? When shall we begin?

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Beautiful Little Bells

Some thoughts and memories inspired by the Mexico trip I just completed.

Northren Chihuaua:
I left the Paquime hotel in the early hours of the morning because it was too noisy for me to slep. I moved to the Casas Grandes Hotel where I slept peacefully and was able to use the connection 'inilambrica" to connect to the web with my lap top.
I found the owners of Cassas Grandes Hotel friendly and truly helpful. The hotel is pleasant and comfortable.
I have seen my sensitivity to noise as a problem. Problem or not it is important that I attend to it. When I accept the ongoing reality of that sensitivity and deal with it realisticaly my life and energy flow beautifully.

The fine people an respecters of quite at Hotel Casas Grandes in Casasa Grandes in Chihuahua, Mexico to the museum at Paquime. I found that museum well worth visiting and suspect you would to.

The Museum returned me to the beautiful little bells.
While at the museum I was reminded of a story that i have related on the pages or perhaps on another blog.
I am no longer sure where I heard this story which so well helps me to feel realities of pre-Columbian North America. I could have heard it in New Mexico but think that I was told it while on a driving trip in Nevada.
I stopped at a roadside stand stand run by Paiutes selling fireworks. A grandmother and her granddaughter were running it. There were few customers at the time and we got to talking. There was another woman there of about the grandmothers age or a bit older. She is, I believe, my source for this story.
It does not seem like a Paiute story to me and the woman telling it may not have been Paiute. My memory of it is imperfect, but it does seem that it took place in what is now know as the America Southwest. It is a story of happenings that took place before the people had heard of Spaniards, Mexicans, or of people like me. It had happened long ago, but not so very long ago.
It was not a story of beginnings or origins, but one that had been remembered.

A people came into the land. A people that the people of the land had not known. Men, women, and children came into the land. A people who knew things. A people who stayed in the land for a time and married among the people there. One thing that they knew was how to make beautiful little tinkling metal bells. They taught some of the people how to make those beautiful, powerful bells.
One had to find the rock and earth which was mother of the metal. It was not easy. One had to find the the soft green translucent stone that helped the fire bring out the metal. The metal stone and the green stone had to be broken and crushed and mixed together and heated until they were almost like water. It was not easy. The metal was beaten flat, shaped, and decorated. There was another way too. It was not easy.
These people form the south who knew things moved on. They had stayed and then they left. Maybe toward the north east. But they left bells and knowledge of the bells and some of themselves with the people.
The people no longer made the bells, but had not forgotten them.
There was more to the story. More about the the beautiful sound of the bells and more about a young girl and other things I have forgotten. I haven't forgotten the bells and I imagine their sound.
At the Paquime museum I saw those bells!
I saw them.
They were small and more beautifully made and decorated than i had imagined. One sensed their power. They seem to be made of a tempered copper and were truly more beautiful to look at then I had imagined.
I also learned that some time in about the 1300s the people there had felt int necessary to move north and had done so.
So, much for "old wives' tales."
My eyes are moist as I write.

Wu Wei

Brief reactions to reading "Wu Wei" on .

What useful meaning might "Friction keeps alive the fire of life." have?

Giving priority to age seems a useful heuristic.

"Cleaning out the attic" is often a more deeply felt part of an ongoing process of purification.

Communicating honestly and openly seems a loving and useful activity. Nurturing and supporting transparency in human activity also seems loving and useful.

Friction accompanies every action. The heat of friction can lead to fire which appears destructive, but keeping the home-fires burning has long been considered a good.

I wish us all Wu Wei balance.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Mexico Questions

Why did the "War of the Castes" last half a century?

Did Olmec culture really begin 10,000 years ago?!!

Site Map Help

I need help with the technical part of this and other blogs. Right now I would be grateful for help in setting up and maintaining well functioning site maps.


I'd like to see a local prodution of this play by Arthur L. Kopit.
It is "A Pseudoclassical Tragifarce in a Bastard French Tradition."
It is a broadly comic treatment of an almost terrifying subject.
That the action takes place in Cuba is not vital to the action.
"There is always something else."
"Words are Precious." maybe.
"As your mother to a son I ask you. What is the meaning of this?"


I need help in setting up good fuctioning site maps on four blogs.
I'm willing to pay.

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