Thursday, February 02, 2006

Ducks Unlimited

Ha, those words just popped in my mind, walking by the creek. It seems to me that there are more ducks than ever. They congegrate by and in open water. Late at night I still hear them talking to each other in the dark. Sleep seems far from their minds. This morning on my way to Food Basics, I watched a large community of ducks, swimming, chattering, playing, splashing, in the creek behind Highland road, near the overpass of Westmount. They look absolutely healthy and gorgeous. Their featherpacks smooth, colourful and shiny. They must think it is spring. Here at the house, doors and windows open, I listen to birds being very busy. They fly off and on, and I hear clear bird calls. And no, Maryholme friends, it is not my cassette playing, it is the real thing. Canada Geese fly over a lot. Are they still here, or coming back allready? And musk rats. They are very active in the creeks, swimming, swimming, crossing from bank to bank. Musk rats are supposed to build homes like beavers, theirs floating in the water. I never see those. I can only conclude that the ones around here make burrows in the soft creek sides, under water. Simon is very interested in them. (For those who don't know about Simon, he's my golden retriever. ) I used to have a dog named Timber. He killed musk rats, even though
they bite back. Bleeding cheeks and paws did not deter her. Simon doesn't attack or kill. I am thinking of nominating him for the Nobel Peace Price. Well, there are
many signs of spring. But I haven't heard or seen the real messengers yet, the red
winged black birds. I don't put any trust in a caged groundhog. Unless the male
redwinged blackbirds come and prepare the nesting ground for their females, winter ain't over yet.



Anonymous said...

Miff Neddy,
yore indernashunal rebudashun as a lover of all wild dings sudjests to be dat you shood have a more charidable additude to a boor bambered groudhog lige be. i'b nod agtually caged bost of da tibe. i have a bery wudderful custom desined burro and by keebers feed be bery well too. bud you bust udderstand dat id's nod eezy beig at da bercy of bolidishuns and da debands of toorism. id's nod eezy beig a nashunal symbl. and i always hav to bake shoor i don'd get too fat. den dey wake be up so urly in da mordig and i'b suppose to loog perky for da caberas. id's a dog's life i say...

Anonymous said...

Ah, Wiarton Willy,

I am so sorry, I phrased that wrong. I am not down on you when I say I don't trust a caged groundhog. I am down on the people who caged you and make your natural instinct into a travesty. I would like you to see a free groundhog, out in nature doing your own thing. Even if they give you a 'burro' , it is not like freedom and you will have to put up with all those silly dressed up people.

Did you hear about the woman who caught a shark, which turned out to be a very rare species. And the shark was killed and will go to a museum, and for research. People are so insensitive that do things like that. That shark, in my humble opinion, should have gone back to his/her habitat and live.

Well, that's it for now Willie. I have to run to editing circle. You are OK, Willie. The way they force you to predict whether spring is near of far, is not OK in my book.

love, netty

Anonymous said...

Well, here's the truth. Today I walked into my backyard and lo and behold, a weed was growing. Really! A healthy very green weed growing out of the mulch. How's that for a sign of spring in February?

As for Farley and me, I took the old dog for a walk along the Grand (which old dog am I referring to? Surely not BB.... lol. Surely not me... but the real dog in our house, the 14 year old cockapoo). Farley needed an adventure to move him out of his winter senility. The Geese along the river were amazing. They were riding the current, not head-on, but some had positioned their bodies sideways to the flow of the river and others looked backwards as they were carried by the water.... really odd, but sheesh, were they moving!

And as for our friend Wiarton Will, I'd say it's a hog's life, not a dog's life!

Anonymous said...

X's green healthy weeds inspired me to look at my weed circle near the corner, in my front yard. Imagine my amazement when a clump of virgin white snow drops looked up at me! Theyre usually not up untill somewhere the end of March, when they come peeking out from under the snow.

I once watched ducks play. Swimming with great efford upstream in wild water. Then suddenly they let go and sailed down stream, I swear, laughing. Weeeee!!!

Wish I could've seen the geese.

Any handy inventors out there? I need a dog wash. Something like a car wash. Your 'mud bale' goes in dirty and wet and enters the house dry and clean.

Anonymous said...

Hey Larry, I tried to access your Mental Blog to get caught up all that reading tonight - poured myself a glass of white wine to get in the mood - and I GOT BLOCKED as being unauthorized. Hey, was it something I said????!!! LOL!

Okay, not once, but about five times I tried - I feel like the forbidden, the shunned...

Okay, okay, I should stop being so dramatic, but... I miss you 2!

Anonymous said...

Even blogs have bad days, I guess. Seems we're back online....

Larry Keiler said...

dt, after your Friday comment Larry answered and published but now he sees that the comment is not there. So, yes, it must have been something going on through the whole system.

The only relevant thing he said in that comment was something to the effect of an "effin problem..."

Maybe later, he will check the admin section (or news, or whatever the h it's called) to see if there is some explanation.

Yes, maybe China...we could ask the execs at Google about that!

Anonymous said...

Either Google or China because ya know how powerful words are... or even cartoons of a religious figure...

Course that would suggest a conspiracy... And we know that conspiracies are just the imagination of the paranoid...

There are no conspiracies… Fidel can’t smoke his cigars without concern…

There is no land of shadows… The truth is just as it is presented… and there is no one behind the curtain…

Anonymous said...

beyond the shadow of a doubt
according to Jung
we all have a shadow
our personal unconcious
according to Jung
we also have a collective
unconcious our shared

maybe our shared shadow
our collective
unconcious is
the land of the
maybe it's not a
conspiracy but
a collective dream

how that ties in
with the great wall of china
or fidel's cigar
is a riddle for the
the wizard of oz
is behind the curtain
there's no place like

home page when we talk
computer the
collective internet
where chaos may be
dark and deep where
we meet the shadows
where life within
does not compute

Anonymous said...

I love the collective unconsciousness of the internet - what it has become (or rather computers and how people use them) is much different than the doomsday folks predicted way back in the late seventies when the first desktops began to appear. We are social creatures, and it is our nature to "collect". Something new has been created that has a life of its own, and presents potential. Of course, others would say Big Brother smiles, appears benign, and the danger is to be lulled by him. And that is probably true too. Should the rules of a nation rule the use of internet within that nation? Surely yes, when it comes to areas like pornography or terrorist acts.

But what about basic expression of freedom, and whose definition are we talking about? Is the internet, by nature, a democracy? And how about the global village?

Anyway, Larry and BB, this leads me to my question - please explain to me the Google Exec. & China thing...

And shadow of wt - loved the poem... all of it, but esp. the last few lines. Life does not compute! Perhaps, in the end, only the Shadow knows...

Anonymous said...

Me too. I didn't get that Google, China thing, really. But I am rather philosophical. If I don't understand it now, maybe later. Also with the kind of husband I had, I was afraid of asking for an explanation, 'cause the way he explained, going from Amsterdam via Rome to reach say, one of Amsterdam's neighbouring towns, was exasperating and if I dared to say 'no' to the question, "Do you understand?", I had to listen to it all over again. But hey, that is my hang up and not a fair one towards Larry and BB, cause they explain clearly and to the point.
So, with Marianne I will listen to what you can tell us.

Computers are amazingly wonderful, and really connect us. The more complex systems are, the more open to misuse. Every peaceful intent can be counteracted with violence. In case of war, all our "secrets" are out there to be violated. It's not too long ago that I was in true awe of what computers can do for us and at the same time it scared the hell out of me. War times are not easily forgotten. And shouldn't be. I am still in awe with computers. Amazing how with the click of a mouse, new pages turn up. Amazing how while writing in Word, a left hand click will present you with the correction of your misspelling. Amazing how sometimes your program itself chances your spelling automatically. Even if that can be frustrating, 'cause you WANT it rhe wrong way, it is still amazing. And I am constantly aware of them, even while I swear at my computer. Same as when I sit in the dentist chair and am really having no fun, but marvel at the dexterity of the dentist and the techniques available to him.

Life is life. It's not what we create, but our attitude toward what has been created that makes the difference. And when things go out of hand, it's our participation that helped it get there. When we slip, and release our awareness, when we let others think for us, whether we like it or not, we help open the ways to evil.

When monsters invade your dreams, the only way to get rid of them is by turning around in your dream and face them. They then crumble or fade away. No fighting involved.

And that more or less comes back to what BB said, "Conspiracies are just the imagination of the paranoid."

Larry Keiler said...

Larry's take on the China-Google thing is this:

After several months of dithering Google finally caved in to the Chinese government and agreed to block certain web sites and web sites in general that contain politically sensitive words and ideas. Falun Gong will not be allowed. Free Tibet will not be allowed.

Profit rules.

The counter-argument to this, Larry supposes, is the "engagement" theory. Quiet diplomacy. One must first gain a foothold in order to exercise influence. So Google is there now, and therefore has the opportunity to try to change things...China may also find internet in general difficult to police and control. Who knows?

From this you can extrapolate how this relates to the blogs being down on the weekend. China didn't like what we were attempting to say. Google said, OK, we'll interfere with their signal, that'll teach em.

In actuality, that's not what happened. Some of Blogspot's servers melted down. Larry guesses they didn't respond well to being moved last month.

Larry also respectfully disagrees with bb about conspiracies. Sometimes they are real. That's why conspiracy is in the criminal code. Sometimes a cigar really is a cigar.

Now, please excuse Larry while he goes and puts on his tin hat.

Larry Keiler said...


Larry forgot to say that the reason Google caved in was so that they would be allowed to introduce the Google search engine and allied services to the Chinese market.

See. Putting on the tin hat works. Signal is much clearer now.

Anonymous said...

I think every one knows that I was tongue in cheek about conspiracies. Right? But I have a funny way of
expressing myself.

I know too much of the shadow world to not believe in conspiracies. Matter of fact it is not a faith structure it is history. Argentina was overthrown with by the CIA in the 1970’s. Not a theory.

Fidel cigars were laced with arsenic and LSD.

Now those that generally conspire in the shadow lands are not generally brilliant people. A lot of conspiracies have no great intelligent plan.

There is another side of blogger/Google/China that Gary forgot to tell you. That is Google was major sponsor of our blogger. Our blogger was concerned about Googles approach to China.

The day the Blogger announced it was dropping Google, as a major sponsor was the day I couldn’t get into poor Blogging site.

Coincidence... sometimes a coincidence is like a cigar. Is a cigar is a cigar. But sometimes a cigar is laced with LSD. There are shadow lands.

There is a man behind the curtain...scarey thing is he is the type of guy that thinks the idea of putting something in Fidels cigar is a brilliant idea...

scarey huh?


Larry Keiler said...


Larry watched an episode of Seinfeld from season 3 last night. George goes to pick up Jerry at the airport, but on the way his car breaks down. George sees a man holding up a sign which says "O'Brien" and convinces Jerry to back him up impersonating O'Brien. Jerry will be "Dylan Murphy". So they take a limousine meant for someone else.

All goes well for a while. They find out they're heading towards Madison Square Gardens, where the Knicks are playing the Bulls. So Jerry phones Elaine and tells her to meet them, and to get Kraemer too, because they have passes.

But they soon discover that the O'Brien whom George is impersonating is actually the head of "Aryan Nation" (or something like that), that O'Brien is a major American neo-Nazi and is heading in fact to a place next to the Gardens to give a virulent anti-Jewish speech.

Meanwhile, Elaine mentions to Kraemer that they are supposed to refer to Jerry and George as Murphy and O'Brien. Through various coincidences, Kraemer starts to put 2 and 2 together, adding up to something like 13.

First, he concludes that Jerry has been living a double life all along and that he's O'Brien, a flaming white supremacist. (Cuz he's too normal to really be a comedian...) But that can't be right. Further deductive reasoning leads him to the idea that Jerry and George are actually CIA plants within Aryan Nation, that the two are privy to all sorts of secret, undercover information, and that they probably know who assassinated Kennedy.

And Kraemer was not wearing a tin hat.

PS. One of the funniest lines comes when Jerry explains how his family had to move away from Ireland when he was 18 because of a breakfast cereal famine.

Anonymous said...

What led me to BB's statement that conspiricies are a fragment of the imagination, and agreed with it on one level, is rather Star Trekkious. I haven't watched much Star Trek myself, but have a son who was a real trekkie, and never shut up about it. I was thinking along the lines of the unconcious. I was thinking along the lines of how we have powerful minds and create situations. I was thinking along the lines of maybe our planet being there because we believe it to be there. Believing coming from the whole human species as we know it. I was thinking about how maybe the moon or even Mars are not lifeless but contain life we cannot fathom, we don't have the brain power or componants in place to perceive. Almost like the computer, eh? If you don't install certain disks, you cannot receive the program, the fotos, or a certain page. I've seen Star Treks where they landed on a place of, say war, and got heavily involved. I think they discovered that they had to redirect their thinking. When they did, war disappeared and just a bare planet. It's thinking like that, the possibility that we create situations, that are not really in existance, that are a figment of our brainpower/believe/imagination, that made me come around to BB's suggestion-in-fun, that maybe yes, conspiricies are just the imagination of the paranoid. And that comes down to the unconcious part of our being, the untapped part of ourselves.

Reading Larry and BB's explanations I could really get paranoid about conspiricies, and Google, and China powers. I think it's because I really don't understand it fully. Can't grasp the magnitude of it. Same as I never understand the power of money and the dictatorship of banks. How does it get determined that a stupid, dead block of gold is worth so much in material stuff, and how it should be divided. How come people have to be sick and hungry for the sake of nature being replaced by metals that come from the earth in the first place? OK, I stop sounding stupid. You get the point, I don't get it.

Anonymous said...

oh man I liked the Sienfeld episode your described...

and WT those are great questions but I don't think anybody could anwser them.

if there us anwser I figure it may be greed and power, unfortunately.

as far as conspiracy goes smiles..sites do have difficulty from time to time. Its not usual but I think our Blogger provider made a hard decison based on principles and I admire them for that.

Larry Keiler said...

W.T. that's very Buddhist of you. There is a school of Buddhism which posits that all of this is produced by our minds. We are not one single mind, however. Everybody's mindstream, every sentient being (including the tiniest microbe) is individual, but we all come together through the force of similar karma to create this universe as we know it. In other words, we share common delusional tendencies that cause us to create this particular conception of a universe.

Which is partly why change is possible. Inevitable. The minute you change your mind, the universe changes. Which is why Buddhists consider mind (but especially compassionate mind) to be the most powerful force there is.

As for life forms about which we know nothing, a Buddhist would say, "Well, duh..."

This applies to the Buddhas themselves. Ordinary beings (like us) can't perceive Buddhas. Because we're no longer programmed to do so. But we can re-program ourselves and wipe away the conceptual obscurations that prevent us from clear knowing. (So far that's still better than any Artificial Intelligence/Robbie the Robot/Data construct.)

Re: Gold
Only a week or two ago, Larry was asking himself exactly the same questions.

On a certain level, there are some answers. Its relative rarity. Its beauty. (Everybody likes shiny things.) Its usefulness in a technological age.

But then, the story of Midas shows us the limitations of relying on gold, or any other substance, as the solution to all our problems.

Ultimately, it's completely arbitrary. A fiction. Just the way money itself is a fiction (or a convention) we all agree on for the sake of facilitating trade. When we all stop agreeing, that's when we get things like the hyper-inflation in the Weimar Republic of the 20's.

Anonymous said...

Oh man, one never stops learning. Don't know about the Weimar Republic of the twenties and inflation. Have heard of Weimar Republic, but it is just words to me. No excuse that I didn't live in the twenties, huh? Neither did Larry.

I've never been impressed with gold. It's cold and hard. Not even that shiny. I was in a cathedral in Cologne, Germany. It's full of gold. Golden coffins with bones of dead saints in it. Sort of grabs you around the throat and starts choking you. Sort of sucks the air out of you and starts you suffocating. What a relieve to be outside again and breathe fresh air. What a relieve to see a mommy feline in the hallway near the imposing heavy doors, feeding her kittens, what a relieve to further on, outside, see ducks and ducklings swim...

A simple golden piece of jewelry can be handsome. Myself I don't care a hoot about it. But I can appreciate it on others. But still, the wearer should own the gold. More often the gold owns the owner. Same with diamonds.

Wild Thing, long before she had that name, once wrote passionately,

I want no gold, no jewels,
I don't want to gather dust,
I want wild things, living things,
Things that reach into my soul.

Ever read "Nicobobinus," by Terry Jones, the guy from Monty Python? It's the story of the most extraordinairy child who ever stuck his tongue out at the prime minister, he lived in Venice and could do anything. Well, Nicobobinus went through many wild adventures with ghost ships and pirates and what all. There was a golden man who turned everything he touched to gold. Nicobobinus tried running away from him. but his foot was touched and turned into a heavy clump of gold, which he had to drag trhough all his seekings for dragon blood, which he could not draw from dragons but eventually found on his own doorstep back at home, a little plant called dragon blood and the red juice of it turned his golden foot back into flesh and blood.
Fun book. Haven't found a kid yet that didn't love it when I read it to them, including the kid in me.

I never intently studied Buddhism. I did read Siddhartha and other such literature that may have helped shape my mind that way.

Anonymous said...

In further to our converation about Google and kow-towing to the Chinese government, here's an article about Yahoo's actions in and China leading to arrests. Hope it comes up as a link. If not, it is certainly a conspiracy against free expression.

If no link, then cut and paste, unless someone has stolen your scissors....

Anonymous said...

Try this, although you might need to type it in - since I've added hard returns in order to get the whole URL in...

Anonymous said...

Although the positive thing in all of this in terms of Yahoo is that I read about their actions with China (leading to the imprisonment of a Chinese web-writer/blogger) in Yahoo News... so no censorship there... or is there....

Anonymous said...

You know, in terms of gold... I always feel the insanity of material goods when I go into a dollar store... the rows and rows of things make me think that god is truly insane... and that we are made in his/her image... we create ceaselessly... and so share in the insanity. Mad creations - plastics, little baubles, all that end up in the garbage heap, and aren't biodegradable. Hey, maybe that brings us back in some small way to the original posting - ducks unlimited - and nature...

I guess I have more of a problem with plastics than gold, since a good goldsmith who is an artisan can fashion gold into things of beauty, as much as any other artist does. I admire craftmanship, but don't (or try not to - being human and all) covet its results. But hey, if anyone out there wants to give me some fine gold jewellery... lolololol....

Anonymous said...

It always ends up that I have to install something to get what I search for. What I do get is a combination of little squares and what is Chinese to me. So, I figure I have a fair idea now what is going on. The way I get waylayed on the screen may suggest conspiricy yet. I didn't loose my scissors, but don't know what to cut and paste. Hey, life is supposed to be simple! You have a point with the art and craftmanship that goes into working with gold, X, hadn't thought of that. Like with anything huh, it's how you use it, and your attitude toward it. Golden filigre (sp.?) is pretty awesome.

Dollar stores are bad. Not only all the stuff that will be disposed of and where does it go? Also the people that produce it for ridiculous low wages. Mass production of poor quality the promotion of poor taste, and to an extend disabeling the market for true art.

Example: True pottery crafts people have a hard time selling because of the ceramics, which is painting mass produced forms, and way cheaper.

And yet I am guilty of helping to keep dollar stores in existance. No matter how much I appreciate real art, and high quality products, my thin wallet often decides for me. But then, I do not buy much of what I don't need. If you let yourself go, as I see many people do, it costs you a fortune to shop in a dollar store. Those dollars count up fast.

It ain't easy to live a pure life.
Staying in touch with nature to remind us of simplicity is a good thing. Life is good.

Anonymous said...

Me, too, re: dollar stores.

Lol - very funny, wild thing - about dollar stores costing one a fortune... I've done that before.... gone in to buy ONE GIFT BAG...

And then sometimes I buy things there to save money, and then end up pissed because the quality is so bad - i.e., paint brushes that leave bristles in the paint and on the wall... I should have just spent the money in the first place...

Anonymous said...

While I was making myself a bagle cheese melt for lunch I thought about simple. Is nature simple, I questioned myself. Then I knew: Life cannot be simple and complicated at the same time. But life can be simple and complex.

And now, wildlife, ducks unlimited, dollarstores and conspiracies are better set aside. My house needs a good cleaning and shaping up, and when I keep on blogging and running out to walk the dog, I will soon get lost in chaos, no more than a thin shadow among the mess, in danger of evaporating. If I emerge unharmed, I'll be back on the blogline later.