A few days ago I uploaded my first YouTube video. I’d been wondering how to do that for a few years now. Well, it turns out that it’s a simple thing, so you’ll probably be seeing a lot more videos, but I promise, they won’t be of me flossing, or eating breakfast, or any of the FB kind of nonsense!
We got some baby chicks this past May. The “Black Stars” that were not so common when we got our first batch back in 2002 now seem to be very popular because when we placed our order in March, they were back-ordered until the middle of May. It might be on account of the feed/egg-laying ratio being one of the best with this breed. With the price of feed going up, the amount of eggs that one gets should be a goodly amount.
A friend who said he would split the flock and take half of the 24 came over to tell us that he was going off to Costa Rica, so we’ve been feeding and trying to get used to double our normal (and very comfortable) number of hens.
They were supposed to start laying a few weeks ago. Seeing no eggs, I thought that our hens might be sterile. Oh no! That would mean taking them all to the market, where someone would bid on them for supper.
I decided to take my first YouTube video of them, to send to my family and friends, urging them with all the love I could muster in my heart, and more or less let them know that it was time to start laying.
The day after I shot this, the 2nd egg came, and then the 3rd, and now, today, I’ve already got 6. – I think my fears of sterile “Sally” hens can be put to rest.
My husband was relaxing in the living room, playing with our dog, Bello, and had some music on in the background. After a few minutes, I stopped what I was doing, and went to find out who it was. I heard some really good guitar, and it turned out that it was none other than Eric Clapton, who plays on half of the album, along with Steve Winwood!
As strange as it might sound in this “super fast time of so much to do and so many ways of connecting” (i.e. being on FaceBook, Pinterest, or your SmartPhone all the time), I listened to the whole album in a very relaxed space of pure enjoyment. Kind of like how I used to in my youth, when I bought a new record and just listened to it like this: side A, and then, flipping it over, side B. And then my favorite song a couple of times more. I hadn’t done that in a long time, and it felt good. It mellowed me out. Something that I had not experienced in a very long time.
The album is called How to Become Clairvoyant from Robbie Robertson. It’s his first record in over 10 years, and it’s good. I do know that it came out last year, but since I just discovered it now, it’s new to me, right? Kind of like when you meet a young person and they’ve just heard this CD called Abbey Road for the first time. It’s as if they have discovered this great band called the Beatles. It’s kind of amusing, I think. By the way, Track 3 was so good, that we got up and started dancing. I then realized how much I love dancing. We used to dance a lot. Now I spend a lot of time on the computer. Hmmmm. There might be a change comin’ me thinks. Check out some of the tracks on this excellent album here.
Next are a couple of flea market finds that are “DDD” quality (i.e. the best): CD’s from the ‘80’s: Horowitz in Moscow and Horowitz Plays Mozart: Oh the wonder and delight of great classical music! I bake to it, I paint to it, I play it in the background of a work day at home. I just love being surrounded by it. It keeps me mellow. Check out the Horowitz series that are a must in your record collection here.
And lastly, here’s one that might surprise you: Glen Campbell singing “Wichita Lineman”. I knew this song from somewhere in my past, the late 60’s maybe, floating around on the radio with some Carpenters and Partidge Family muzak. Since I grew up listening to AM/FM radio, I knew all the hits: good and bad. However, I had completely forgotten about Wichita Lineman, which made rediscovering it again a true delight. It’s such a cool song with some really good guitar from Glen.
I happened to “disover” it via Rita Wilson (the wife of Tom Hanks) blog post on “The Huffington Post” for people over 50. She wrote something that I briefly read, and then I noticed that she had an album called AM/FM. Rita Wilson: a singer? Hmmm.
Anyways, it was like a trip down memory lane, and then it hit me: I am getting old enough to feel nostalgic! Geez. I knew it was bound to happen if I lived long enough.
So Rita does her rendition of the Wichita Lineman, and well, sorry Rita, but it is done way too slow to be good. It did make me want to hear the original though, so I found it on YouTube, and then touched base again with that very special feeling that I think makes people from my generation special: yup, feeling mellow.
I’ve been singing and playing this clip for some days now. It’s a beautiful song and it fits to my mood of fall and the approaching winter.
Ok, I have to go out and plant some garlic, some lettuce, and some kale and swiss chard. It’s planting time!
I hope you are enjoying the changing seasons, wherever you are, and finding moments of…feeling mellow.
Oops50 received the following email recently from our friend Jean Cassidy, one of the great women over at SheVille.org, who has written a piece of music in honor of Rachel Carson. We love Rachel Carson, too, so we are including the lyrics below, from Jean’s email. We would have included the actual score if we could have figured out how to post it! Please contact us at Oops50 to obtain a copy!
I’m on a mission to spread the word right now about Rachel Carson and her book Silent Spring on its 50th anniversary of publication. Her lifetime work was the catalyst to our environmental movement. Included please find the lyrics page along with the original score of my piece. A small group here will be recording this and sending it out on YouTube soon. If you would like to be notified when it’s available, you can let Oops50 know, and we’ll make sure you get it! In the meantime, please send and share this post with your personal friends and colleagues who might be interested in using or performing the song in celebration of Carson and her important work…no charge, the benefit to me is in the enjoyment of creating the piece and of celebrating her monumental work.
Rachel Louise Carson (May 27, 1907 – April 14, 1964) was an American marine biologist and nature writer and one of the most influential environmentalists of all time. Her books The Sea Around Us, The Edge of the Sea and especially the publication of Silent Spring on September 27, 1962, essentially began the environmental movement as we know it today. Silent Spring not only influenced the practices of agricultural science and government, but encouraged all of us to be conscious of and drastically change the way we view our relationship to the natural world.
There’s a lot going on, and that’s why I haven’t written in a while.
Some of the things that have taken up my time are the following:
1. Planting and pruning time in the garden
3. A couple of birthday party’s
4. The fact that I’ve been drawing a blank on what to write about
5. And, our dog ate my ongoing journal of notes
We’ve also had some crazy weather, so not knowing if it’s summer or fall or spring has got me a little out of sorts. Then we had a killing frost, with my beloved fig tree surviving, but with a lot of damage, and just a few days ago a deluge of rain. Constant rain. Unusual amounts of rain. But no wind like the mid-west had with it’s incredible tornadoes that went through. Yes, there is always something to be thankful for.
The real news of the tragedy of Fukishima is coming out – finally. The media has been successful in keeping the truth of what did happen, and what is happening, from us for over a year. But the truth will always prevail, and so it is with the nuclear meltdown to end all nuclear meltdowns at Fukishima.
I go back and forth: should I even mention anything? Most friends don’t care, don’t know, or truly think it’s been taken care of.
Which I find interesting, because during the 1960’s and 70’s, these same older friends were the younger generation who were trying to change the world; to make love, not war; to give peace a chance; to stop all nuclear power, with bumper stickers like “The Sun in the only Nuclear Power we Need”.
I guess nothing could can be done, and it doesn’t ultimately matter anyways, right? Or maybe we are getting too old to think about it.
After watching the speech that Helen Caldicott, I went out into my garden and took a few pictures of the first Oriental Poppy and some flowers that are really weeds that I so enjoy to see come every year, and I was filled with peace and happiness. Because like Helen Caldicott, I am a worshiper of Nature. And, I love this planet. It’s time to go inside and create the world I want to see, to imagine it, to see with my mind’s eye, a better world that will come out of the chaos and change. I can’t wait.
At 5, which is the first age where I can remember the feeling, I worried that I would never see my favorite red-and-white cardboard bricks again, since my parents had “loaned” them to my cousins as we were leaving for a four-year Army tour in Germany.
At 10, in addition to worrying that our house might burn down, I lost sleep thinking that if Santa Claus wasn’t real, then what other lies might my parents have told me? And, since Tony Ludholz had stuck a ring with a blue stone in my hand and said “now we’re engaged,” did that mean I really had to marry him?
At 15, I spent a lot of time worrying about that horrible guy who killed the nurses or those two men who killed the family in Kansas ‘in cold blood’. I worried that the first men on the moon might not make it back home safely–and that every single person who had a chance of saving the world would get assassinated. I also worried a lot about nuclear bombs, when I wasn’t worrying that Michael Krick would not ask me to dance at the end-of-the-year dance.
At 20, I worried that I would never, ever finish all the work I had to get through to graduate from college, that we would never get out of VietNam, that even if I graduated, I would never get a job because all I knew how to do was go to school and pass my classes, and that I would never, ever fall in love because men were all sexist pigs–and that I would never be able to tolerate my father ever again because he sat and read the paper while my mother fixed dinner–and because he thought “Ms” was an unnecessary addition to the English language!
At 30, I worried that my new marriage would end in disaster, that childbirth would hurt worse than anyone had said it would–and I would die in the process–and that nuclear war would happen right at the point where I had discovered I could love someone.
At 35, I worried our baby girl would grow up in a world full of pollution, nuclear bombs and global warming–and would blame us. I also worried that she would die of SIDS, be kidnapped, get injured, have a life-threatening illness, or choke on bacon.
At 40, I worried we would never get out of Iraq, that my son would end up being drafted, that my children and my parents would die at any minute, that nuclear war would destroy us all, that Bush would always be president.
At 45, I worried that I had not read to my youngest child enough (or ever taught her to floss), that my parents would die, that I would die of heart failure caused by obesity, that my son would end up a crack addict, in jail, or a paraplegic from a skateboarding accident, that, despite all the changes of the ’70’s, my daughters would live in a world of sexist pigs and their souls would be trampled.
At 50, I started worrying about growing old before I could ever finish a single good poem, that our troops would never get out of anywhere, that my parents would die before my kids were old enough to remember them, that September 11th was just the beginning of a horrible end to whatever was left of the American dream, that there might not be a God, and that my children might hate me forever, since I was making daily mistakes with their teenage psyches.
At 55, I worried that my children were growing so fast that I couldn’t even take a breath before they’d be grown. I worried that my brain would stop working before I could finish anything, that my daughter/son/daughter would hate college, be unhappy away from home, get hurt without me there to fight off boogeymen, not want to come home because they took a Sociology class that made them realize all of their parents’ inadequacies. That I might be turning into my mother!
Looking back over this list, I realize that 1) some of these things came true, and, although they were bad, they were not as bad as I had feared–some of them were worse 2) there was nothing I could do about it, no matter what.
I wish I could say that now, at 58, I’ve stopped worrying. But I can’t. I think I might be addicted to worry because of the elusive sense of control it gives me. If I can make sure I worry about something, maybe I can stave that thing off for a few more seconds, keep that wolf away from the door. After all, bad things always happen when you least expect them.
I do know one thing: after all these years, I have at least learned to take some of my worries with a grain of salt–like , for instance, the one about the ice caps melting and carrying away our house. I have a few years before that could happen, right?