MONTHLY INSECURE WRITERS’ SHARE-A-THON CORNER
WHEN YOU RUN OUT OF AVENUES OF ESCAPE, Don’t Panic*–
—the greatest motto in the galaxy— featured in the adventures of Douglas Adams’s Arthur Dent, the last human to hitch a ride off Earth, moments before it was destroyed—to make way for an interstellar bypass.
*Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, 1979.
I think our revered leader, Alex Cavanaugh, would agree:
Fantasy—reading it or writing it—fills a certain hole in our psyche, a niche in our comfort zone. It gives us a reason to keep on going, even when the real world seems to have gone awry.
Groundhog Day and the 2016 Monkey Year
The Groundhog knows best. He—and the oriental Monkey who shares his calendar start date—figure if humans have generated global warming a.k.a. climate crisis and he sees his shadow on February 2nd—too much sun too soon—no wonder he goes back in his hole for another six weeks.
What the Monkey does is a whole ‘nuther story!
Metal Monkeys possesses character traits like curiosity, mischievousness, and cleverness. Forever playful, Monkeys are the masters of the practical joke.
For us as a culture, as this year unfolds, traits to prepare for—expect the unexpected.
Finding our Own Space
Forget the Primaries, Climate Crisis Summit, our involvement/warring with so many other countries, somewhere in there we are trying as individuals and collectively to halt our mad rush toward planet instability. Somewhere in the madness, we writers are supposed to find a place of calm—a refuge—usually littered with piles of loose papers and junk—but a haven nonetheless—where we can sit down, (metaphorically) put our feet up, drag the keyboard closer——
Many of us have previously admitted to being recluses—Myers-Briggs psychic make-up, above.
For me to allow the creative flow to come through, I have to have my filing system (kind-of) manageable and I crave a space where I won’t be barged in on by the (real) world.
Says a lot for our partners/spouses/spice that they put with us, doesn’t it?
I should have had more respect for the Groundhog. His timing was superb.
Happy New Writing Ideas, IWSGers.
Keep it coming.
©2016 Marian Youngblood
February 3, 2016 Posted by siderealview | ancient rites, authors, blogging, calendar customs, culture, fantasy, fiction, publishing, traditions, writing | 42, Alex J Cavanaugh, comfort zone, creative flow, Don't Panic, Douglas Adams, Groundhog Day, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Insecure Writers, IWSG, Metal Monkey, Myers-Briggs, refuge | Leave a comment
MONTHLY INSECURE WRITERS’ SAFETY ZONE or
What I Should’ve Done B4 All This Holiday Madness—IWSG CatchUp Corner
*parapet, ‘protecting the breast’—from Latin
pectus-i (m) breast, chest
paries-etis (m) wall, rampart, bulwark
All of us have in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch, we are going back from whence we came.
~John F. Kennedy, Newport speech before America’s Cup Races, September 1962
Trouble of the World
‘There is so much going on–so much that could make a person just want to run away.
‘Our lives on this Earth are relatively short, so we shouldn’t get too overwhelmed by all the troubles we face while here’
Thank you, wise ole Bird, Arlee, for putting some of our anxiety into perspective. We writers tend to be head-down anyway—well below parapet level—and it takes some “venting” by a fellow scribe—wot knowzzz—to keep a calm ‘sough’. That was good old Rabbie Burns‘s word for the windchill factor
“November chill blaws loud wi’ angry sough”
We might also try looking at the way our world appears to be fighting back, after all the trouble and toil we’ve levied at her.
Some of my generation believe we still have a chance to right the ‘wrongs’ we initiated. Our attitude to confronting our errors—from nuclear power to trashing earth’s resources—has made us cautious, nay, appreciative of finding the best in what’s left. This (antiquated?) belief may not go down well with the Millennials—a generation who inherited our mistakes, but who prefer to smile and slide on through—but, as even they know, this is the only home we’ve got. So why not pull together on a few issues?
Weather—the great Leveler
While December traditionally finds a way of leveling—wind, rain, hail and snow being not particularly creature-friendly—it can be a gift of time for us scribblers. Above or below the parapet, we can wield a computer (or ice-pick) to hack out a story. No pun intended. Sometimes that’s just what we have to do.
So to all my fellow moaning Minnies in our tight little IWSG corner, keeping head down can be a VERY GOOD THING.
We may have to leave the concept of climate control for another season—when life begins anew and buds start to bud again…and we catch a whiff of w-a-r-m…
But meantime, why not allow our ever-fertile Muse to raise her head above the bulwarks. We might be surprised by her dexterity.
p.s. Ninja Cap’n: my preference is for Dragons
“When a dragon offers you a helmet and a parachute, put them on. “
©2015 Marian Youngblood
December 2, 2015 Posted by siderealview | authors, blogging, consciousness, fiction, publishing, seasonal, weather, winter, writing | Alex J Cavanaugh, Arlee Bird, bulwark, calm sough, climate control, December, hail, holiday madness, ice-pick, IWSG, JFK, Mahalia Jackson, ocean analogy, parapet, Paris climate summit 2015, Robert F. Kennedy jr., seafaring, snow, Trouble of the World | 2 Comments
INSECURE WRITERS’ MOANING MINNIE CORNER
I am clearly in the minority here, at least six hours behind schedule—plus the extra three hours all good (true) Californians steel themselves to be in the office by six a.m., because that’s 0900 hours New York City time— well, I’m well over that.
So, my abject apologies to our ever-indulgent, forgiving and forgetting—but also hugely talented when it comes to such sci-fi antics in the fantasy world—Ninja Captain Alex, who is ALWAYS on time.
When it happens in the “real” world, however, I’m not sure anyone on the East Coast feels suitably badly-done-by to send condolences. But I need something.
I am told it is a total communications blackout—Pacific Northwest-wide—emanating from a small C.M.E. alongside a man-made under-the-R.A.D.A.R. [i.e. undisclosed] microwave blast centered on our ozone layer over Nevada-Arizona, to induce RAIN. But it caused other disruptions. RAIN did not fall, guys of NOAA persuasion. We are still arid here.
Don’t get me started on weather manipulation and climate control…
More alarming—solar unrest is just revving up. There are more solar disruptions to come. Don’t blame me. Blame SpaceWeather, see sidebar right.
Oldies But Goodies Going in Style
According to studio release from the set of director Zach Braff’s remake of 1979 George Burns movie, Going in Style, the comedy presents Morgan Freeman, 78, Alan Arkin, 81, and Michael Caine as desperadoes. Braff, huge on laughs, has ‘Scrubs’ to his television credit. He’s cleverly persuaded Ann-Margret, 76, to perform as well.
Yeah-h-h for us oldies-but-goodies. UR not old, Alex ;)
“Desperate to pay the bills and come through for their loved ones, the three risk it all by embarking on a daring bid to knock off the very bank that absconded with their money.”
Braff says Going In Style is about three seniors who lose their pension, because the company they worked for their entire lives sold overseas, and all of a sudden they have no money at all to live off, and they’re barely scraping by as it is.
‘And even though they’re older guys, they decide they’re going to try. They’re going to attempt to rob the very bank that’s withheld their pension money.’
Sometimes I wish life were as easy as robbing a bank—to get even.
But it isn’t easy to get even with a hurricane, floods in the basement, or a blanket communications blackout. SpaceWeather usually covers it: solar flares—CMEs—incoming.
May I send my fellow IWSGers a token solar flare—just so you know I’m late, but—like Baba Ram Dass—I’m still here.
Post-scriptum: Thanks to Alex for such a l-o-n-g list of links to us IWSG not-so-moaning-minnies on his new all singing dancing website, and for allowing me this time for ‘getting even’.*
*I so love your critique on Matt Damon’s The Martian. Evokes memories of Bruce Dern’s ‘Silent Running’, my fave sci-fi-realism fantasy.
When all around are losing theirs, give up.
©2015 Marian Youngblood
October 8, 2015 Posted by siderealview | authors, blogging, fantasy, fiction, rain, sun, volcanic, weather, writing | Alan Arkin, Alex J Cavanaugh, Ann-Margret, Arizona, Bermuda Triangle, Brooklyn, CME, communications blackout, coronal mass ejection, Going in Style, hand-written, hurricane Joaquin, IWSG, late posting, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Ram Dass, sci-fi movies, Silent Running, solar flare, spaceweather, Still Here, The Martian, Tromsø Norway, weather, Zach Braff | 4 Comments
MONTHLY INSECURE WRITERS‘ CRY~~LeavME.BE~~
or Leaving on the Next Train
“From all I’ve learned, there’s no religious revelation more satisfying than hard-won food of simple understanding—no liberation compares with seeing oneself as the illusions/delusions of the Age we live in.”
Terence McKenna b. November 16, 1946, Paonia, CO. d. April 03, 2000, San Rafael, CA
Fifteen years after the death of ‘Altered Statesman’—colleague and ethnobotanist partner in triumvirate of Berkeley LSD scientists—of whom only Baba Ram Dass survives, Terence McKenna progressed Timothy Leary’s ‘sixties psychedelic débût by experiencing 15 years as an Amazon Ayahuasca Shaman.
Finally he planted his own Hawaiian paradise, where his life cycle terminated.
Living in a Time-Wobble
McKenna was convinced that Western society lives in a kind of a time-wobble. With fantasy worlds available via Internet and Cell 24/7, we have essentially relinquished control over what our subconscious has already (collectively) devised for us.
“Time and our consciousness are speeding up. We are being drawn closer to the Attractor at the End of Time”
He called this our Eschaton.Add to such real human identity crisis the madness of July, revved up by today’s SuperMedia as three continents celebrate historical nationalism—French Bastille Day, U.S. Independence fireworks, Vedic Purva Ashadha.
If we are already in the thrall of a winking blinking (fantasy-internet-Muse) light at the end of a metaphorical Tunnel, the only antidote for these Cosmic surprises is laughter.
Thunder Moon Jupiter-Venus Conjunction
Before we get to the funnies, however, let’s take a quick look at how indigenous cultures in the Americas call on ancestral Spirits, to aid them through each Moon’s wax-wane cycle.
January: Wolf Moon (end December) Old Moon
February: Snow Moon, Hunger Moon
March: Worm Moon, Crow Moon, Sap Moon, Lenten Moon
April: Seed Moon, Pink Moon, Sprouting Grass Moon, Goose Egg Moon, Fish Moon
May: Milk Moon, Flower Moon, Corn-Planting Moon
June: Mead Moon, Strawberry Moon, Rose Moon, Thunder Moon
July: Hay Moon, Buck Moon, Thunder Moon
August: Corn Moon, Sturgeon Moon, Red Moon, Green Corn Moon, Grain Moon
September: Harvest Moon, Full Corn Moon
October: Hunter’s Moon, Blood Moon, Sanguine Moon
November: Beaver Moon, Frosty Moon
December: Oak Moon, Cold Moon, Long Nights’ Moon
Alternate Avenues through Muse Moodswings
When all else fails, #Humor never fails to do the trick. Even the saddest, most died-in-the-wool ‘LeaveMeAlone~I’m going away to eat Worms’ Muse-abandoned writer—the Mole—cannot fail to pause—if only for a blogging millisecond—and let out a chuckle.
If this apology for a monthly moan will suffice, dear Reader, and dear Cap’n-@our-Ninja-helm, Alex J. Cavanaugh ;)
then let me regale you with an Alternative Alphabet, conceived somewhere along those truly ephemeral airwaves our war-torn parents/grandparents constructed to amuse themselves, after a hard day’s work.
In their precious evenings, RADIO sprang to life. All kinds of fantasies might be fulfilled, all sounds and frequencies attempted.
Fantastical ‘Forties Fantasies over the R.A.D.I.O
For my sins, I grew up in a ‘Forties household, shielded from The Woah by a protective parent who—child polio victim, unable to serve—made all broadcasts [aka News] top priority. It became evening entertainment for the whole family—as there was only one radio!
Among a plethora of sounds emanating from the small walnut-cased glowing-dial box in the corner of the sitting room, after homework was done, we were allowed to hear a few tidbits.
One of these—probably altered beyond reasonable comprehension, to any but a native Scot—a rare glimpse into a smattering of hilarious popular culture of the time, a mingled brew—indiscriminate. But it has to make you laugh.
Give me this. You will at least allow yourself a giggle.
And, with all the crazies going on out there—Full Moon tonight, Jupiter and Venus in close conjunction, solar flares mixed in with Fourth of July weekend yet to come—you know it’s the best medicine~lol
‘FORTIES FORTITUDE: Adversity Kindling the Common Heart
Ralph Waldo Emerson got it right.
VERSOUL: that Unity within which every man’s Being is contained and made one with all other; that common heart
“Yet, from it all I have learned that there is no religious revelation more satisfying than the hard-won food of simple understanding.”
A is 4 ‘orses
C For Th Highlanders
Deef or Dumb
Eve or Adam
F for Vescence
H for Scratch
L for Leather
M for a Pie (Dundee accent, pie=peh)
N for a Pint (probably home brew: post-War booze was in short supply)
O fer the Sea to Skye
P fer Sninks ???
Q fer the ‘tippenies’ (cheap tuppenny seats Saturday matinée local cinema)
S for Williams
Tea for Two
U for me
V for Victory—this WAS the ‘Forties
W for Quits
X for Breakfast
Y for No?
Z for the Abbulance [nasal voice]
*[inserted by TimeMaster Alien, ‘cos.I can’t remember 1940s’ original]
I dare some Elder from the Olde Countree of Great Memory NOT to remember at least some of these [North-of-the-Border] Vaudeville gems.
©2015 Marian Youngblood
July 1, 2015 Posted by siderealview | art, astrology, astronomy, authors, blogging, culture, festivals, fiction, Muse, New Age, novel, writing | Alex J Cavanaugh, altered statesman, Antarctic, Aurora Borealis, authors, Bastille, blogging, calendar, Cherokee, Choctaw, consciousness, Eschaton, fireworks, Ganesh, Hoopa, IWSG, Lakota, Modoc, Okanagan, Terence McKenna, Thunder Moon, time wobble, timewarp, TimeWaveZero, Tsurai, Vedic, Yurok | 1 Comment
MONTHLY IWSG CORNER: Art as an Alternative to Pacify the Muse
Miraculously, we can sometimes soothe the savage breast—unfortunately standard accoutrement of our battle-ax Muse masquerading as our Ninja Captain Alex—to take a break. Or better still: think laterally—move sideways.
While ART covers a multitude of creative activities these days, it is truly refreshing sometimes to ignore the harridan shouting in your left ear; set down the pen. And take a look around.
Left Hemisphere—Literate, Analytical Right Hemisphere—Color, Number, Spatial
We are surrounded by Art—from simplest woven baskets to multi-faceted jewelry to cave painting c.2015. Yet writers prefer to keep nose to grindstone, in the fond belief that we may never need to explore that other hemisphere.
Artists, I am told, spend half their time trying to work out where their filing system is—any filing system—because they are continually having to feel their way through a “mess of space”, according to one art therapist.
Hanging out in our Right Hemisphere is good for us.As luck would have it, my local art venue—Westhaven Center for the Arts—aren’t I fortunate?—just opened its Membership Show. It runs through June 30th, 2015.
What is inspiring to a cranky writer with an even crankier Muse at her elbow, is that many artists admit their Muse is just as difficult to please.
Pen Mightier than the Sword
The pen, traditionally, allowed Man to elevate himself from prehistoric tattooing through medieval wars to a philosophical level of wisdom. Surprisingly, the paintbrush, the weaver’s loom, the gouache splash are far more effective therapy, according to art gurus.
None of the above may be much consolation, mid-writer’s block.
But there is something about an eclectic mix of art in Northern Humboldt that I wish Alex and all you Back Easters could hop over here and see. If nothing else, getting out of our rut—and ignoring Muse-girl for twenty-four hours—is sure-fire way of getting her back in harness.
©2015 Marian Youngblood
May 6, 2015 Posted by siderealview | art, authors, blogging, culture, fiction, Muse, popular, publishing, writing | Alex J Cavanaugh, art, art as therapy, Art Muse, body art, Dee Hemingway, gouache, Humboldt, Insecure Writers, IWSG, left hemisphere, literate, Muse-on-strke, music, right hemisphere, spacial, tatoo, therapy, Toni Magyar, Westhaven Center Arts | Leave a comment
MONTHLY IWSG GET-TOGETHER
Spring has sprung
Da grass has riz
I wonder where da boidies iz—
Da boid iz on da wing—
Dat’s a funny t’ing
I t’ought da wing wuz on da boid—
Ain’t it absoid?
attributed c.1940 to Two Black Crows
While weather is usually a poor writing subject, we may be forgiven this month for waxing eloquent on continuing and (apparently) continuous freak weather circling the globe. If my writing suffers, blame the Cosmos, IWSGers. Or alternatively pleeeeze lay blame where it is due: at door of our long-suffering Cap’nAlex.
—And I am not forgetting all my [non-sci-fi but hugely scary] fellow insecure buddies here on the First Wednesday—we might hide our heads in metaphorical sand and write on.
There are, however, unforeseen dangers in the cosmic waters ahead.
SOLAR WIND INCOMING—Man All (Earthship) Decks
Last week’s coronal mass ejection was deflected by a freak shift in our father, Sol. This week’s CME is coming straight at us.
Because this coronal hole crosses the sun’s equator, the solar wind it spews is likely to hit Earth squarely this time—no misses. ETA: April 2nd or 3rd.
Italics and Earth Warning message are entirely those of SpaceWeather, but we might be prudent to prepare for a little more than pretty aurora ovals… just sayin’…Within the inner solar system, left, all fireball orbits intersect at a single point–Earth. Orbits are color-coded by velocity, from slow (red) to fast (blue)
And, in case we were wondering if life can throw any more at us, enJOY the magnificent total lunar eclipse, Saturday morning, April 4th, sky watchers in the USA can see a brief but beautiful occultation of the Moon. Totality will be visible from Mexico, western Canada, across the entire Pacific Ocean, Australia, Indonesia.
Earthship or Jefferson Airplane? Home is Best
When all around are losing theirs———I don’t have to repeat favorite poésie to my erudite IWSGers to capture the mood.
When in doubt, do what Jefferson Airplane and Janis Joplin said a long space-time ago—with Big Brother and Holding Company and many of us singing along— in a famous long-ago song:
Keep Your Head.
Thanks, as ever, Alex, for letting me “rabbit’ on. :)
Happy skywatching. Easter-Passover has never had it so good.
©April 2015 Marian Youngblood
April 1, 2015 Posted by siderealview | astrology, astronomy, authors, birds, blogging, earth changes, fantasy, fiction, weather, writing | Alex J Cavanaugh, CME coronal mass ejection, coronal hole, cosmic waters, crazy, decks, duck, Earthship, eclipses, equinox, fireballs, freak weather, galactic, Indonesia eclipse, IWSG, Leo full moon, Ninja, Pacific Ocean, sci-fi, Solar Wind, space captain, spring, survival, total lunar eclipse, white rabbit | 1 Comment
MONTHLY INSECURE WRITERS’ SUPPORT GROUP CORNER
Because continental U.S.A. is suffering right now—and I’ve never been one to crow during others’ misfortune—PacNW experiencing tropical weather window—I choose to commiserate for this month’s IWSG get-together, rather than stress how fortunate I am to live where I do. Breathes deeply.
Let me try to put our current earth-shivers in a more space-time perspective—as does our revered leader, Space Ninja Captain Alex, who can conjure a blockbuster sci-fi series whenever real life gets tough. Bless him for continuing to inspire—me, at least.
The space/sci-fi scenario which follows is not quite Alex’s professional air-tight Science FICTION— sadly rather it borders on Science fact. But, you know what they say:
It’s All in the Stars.
MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE
Apocalypse HQ, NWPacCoast
Milky Way—Andromeda Arm, 5.6
Millennium2—Einstein—Kardashev Era-Timeline Civilization.Zero
All Vessels Please Respond|Relay-to-Galactic HQ
Earth and its Resources Depleting at irreplaceable rate. Counterbalance by Earth-Support Groups having little effect.
Apocalypse scenario in 50% floodplains, Emergency agencies battling counterproductive volcanic/seismic activity associated with fossil extraction, ongoing.
In spite of damage, Earth still reclaimable—with interGalactic assistance. Please help.
Despite Earth’s schism:lower echelon civilization K-type-0 in 48.2% population, there remains powerful 51.8% K-type-2-cerebral-zen-SETI-based group working to regenerate earth meadows and mountains.
All civilization please respond. Earth can be resurrected
Small explanation, in best sci-fi index/Matrix style:
In 1964, Russian astrophysicist Nikolai Kardashev categorized civilizations by total energy available to them. He isolated three levels of civilizations, based on their capacity to harness and use power. These have since been expanded to include a further four—in light of increasing speculation spawned in cross-discipline math/theoretical-physics.
Earth is a zero level civilization.
The Kardashev Scale now with seven levels of civilizations, bases its categories on (putative) galactic civilizations and their power consumption—but more implicitly on their technological advancement and enlightenment.Type I civilization would be able to marshal energy resources for communications on a planet-wide scale, equivalent to the entire present power consumption of the human race, or about 1016watts.
Type II civilization can surpass this by a factor of approximately ten billion, making available 1026 watts, and exploiting the total energy output of its central star.
Type III civilization is evolved enough to tap the energy resources of an entire galaxy, enabling access to power sources, approx. 1036 watts.
KARDASHEV CIVILIZATIONS and SETI
Carl Sagan pointed out that the energy gaps between Kardashev’s three types were so enormous that a finer gradation was needed to make his theory work, e.g. Type 1.1 civilization could expend maximum 1017 watts on communications, while Type 2.3 could utilize 1029 watts.
Kardashev estimated—on a discriminating scale—that the human race at present qualifies as approx. Type 0.7. But neither scientist figured in the extra oomph which comes, when Mother Earth decides to add a little pizzazz to the equation.
Volcanic eruptions 7.2 Kamchatka Feb. 23; earth tremors California ongoing; volcanic explosions Villarica, Chile March 2nd, ongoing.
MARCH COMING IN LIKE a LION
Weather, on the other hand, will always get a rise out of someone. We do not have to submit to wall-to-wall volcanic earth movement, or anomalous El Niño weather to get our pad out, intellectual pencils sharpened, and brandish our critique.
In 2010, I wrote how March came in like a lamb, but went Out Like a LION.
This time, the LION is biting at March’s open door. And we seem to have no reprise. Grand Cross lingers, on top of celestial fireworks: aligning in the heavens—perhaps to give us hope.
Celestial Alignment—Cosmic Crossroads
Great combination for stargazers, but poor Earth suffers under huge stresses in her—subterranean—tresses. Her petticoats are leaking out at the edge of her dresses. Pollution finally raises its oh-horrendously-ugly head.
Eclipses for equinox, with more karmic cleaning for us to do, as the celestial Grand Cross continues.
Buckle up. This year, it might be quite a ride.
©2015 Marian Youngblood
March 4, 2015 Posted by siderealview | astrology, authors, blogging, calendar customs, culture, earth changes, environment, nature, seismic, sun, volcanic, weather, writing | Alex J Cavanaugh, Arctic weather, blizzard, conjunction, deep freeze, eclipse, equinox, galactic, Global Volcanism Program, Grand Cross, heavenly appearances, hurricane, IWSG, Nikolai Kardashev, Pacific NW, Pisces, polar, Saturnine, Smithsonian, spaceweather, typhoon, Villaricca stratovolcano Chile, Virgo, volcanic ash, work ethic | 2 Comments
INSECURE WRITERS’ SUPPORT GROUP CORNER
PAYING IT FORWARD—Whatever the Weather
More chill—just one more plod thru the snow and I’ll make it, if…
Such a scenario, I hope, should not happen to a single one of you in Alex’s band of Insecure Writers.
Februarius mensis, after all—even for the Romans—was their “month of purification”. Adopted freely by the medieval Roman Catholic church, it morphed into Candlemas—Purification and doorway to Lent.
“The Feast of the Purification, otherwise known as Candlemas marks the end of the Season of Christmastide” according to Roman Catholic Latin Mass Society
Februarius mensis “month of purification, cannot conceivably have been named for anyone frivolous, one imagines.
Blame it on Celtic Fire Festivals
Yet, long before there was a church hierarchy, pagan/country people worshipped cycles of the Earth, relating sun and moon movements to life and daily work. In pre-Celtic Europe Candlemas was Feast Day of Bride—mermaid birthed by the Ocean with dramatic increase in daily light, Brigantia in Roman Britain, Brigid/Brighid in Irish lore, some identify her with great warrior queen of the Iceni, Dark Age winged monarch Boudicca.
Brazilian CARNAVAL, German Fasching, Mardi Gras in New Orleans and Bahamian JUNKANOO all have the same roots.
‘First come Candlemas
Syne the New Meen
The niest Tiseday efter that
Is aye Festern’s E’en.
That Meen oot
An’ anither at its hicht
The niest Sunday efter that
Is aye Pasche richt.’
Ancient Scots Easter calculation. Anon
Cosmically, last night’s full moon, parading across the heavens with Jupiter and Regulus in harness, like celestial sundogs borrowed from daytime frolics to dance a nighttime mazurka, gave a little more pizzazz to February darkness.
Magnificent. And in the U.S., they call this Groundhog Day.
It may be short, but sadly, those twenty-eight nights of February are often a crucial month to the human psyche.
Healthcare vs. Warfare
Americans may deplore lack of national health and welfare systems, as in Europe, but where poverty lurks, conditions remain identical. Homeless people worldwide—their numbers grow every year—suffer. For some, there is no welfare check, no food stamps, no heat. And when winter returns with a vengeance, bringing an icy blast, street people—no matter which culture dominates—are marginalized.
Pay It Forward: the NewAge Way*
One solution to life’s stresses is in the mindset of our Youth.
Reverse psychology had it only half right.
By projecting our loving thoughts, or acting forward-in-kind, we anticipate—and receive in advance—the reward of giving another pleasure, and feeling his/her gratitude
GRATITUDE—winging on a love vibration—certainly makes the world go round.
In Pay It Forward (2000), U.S. film drama based on Catherine Ryan Hyde’s novel, child star Haley Joel Osment launches a good-will movement—almost by accident in doing research for his social studies class. Helen Hunt, his single mother, and Kevin Spacey, sociologist-mentor are stunned when Angie Dickinson turns out to be his real-life street-wise ‘consultant’ for his school project.
Octogenarian and proud of it, Angie Dickinson—my heroine, 83 this year and counting–is one of Hollywood’s hardest working gals. No sign of slowing down, either.
Born Angeline Brown, September 30, 1931 (age 83) in Kulm, North Dakota, her family moved to Glendale-Hollywood, where she graduated in business studies, aged 15. Briefly married to football player Gene Dickinson (m. 1952–60) and longer to composer Burt Bacharach (m. 1965–81), her only child Nikki Bacharach (1966-2007) committed suicide.
Portraying a homeless cohort to young do-gooder Joel in Pay It Forward, Ms Dickinson helps him regenerate other lives which might have floundered. This simple act of anonymous giving, in frame of mind of seeking no comeback, does produce small miracles.
To give, and not to count the cost
To fight, and not to heed the wounds,
To toil, and not to seek for rest,
To labor, and not to ask for any reward,
Save that of knowing that we do Thy Will
― Ignatius of Loyola
And as we know: miracles—and love—make the world go round.
*inspired by a friend & co-believer in humankind
Post Scriptum: THE WAVE
In context of leaving anonymous gifts without seeking acknowledgement—as someone we all know around here does every month—ahem Ninja Cap’n Alex: this a trait which has carried our little group of IWSG-ers through some hard times. I have complete faith that Alex’s own brand of Paying it Forward will continue to support us. And I know I—and loads of my writerly co-travelers—will dig in with both feet as we reap greater and better life rewards!
Let’s enter that Consciousness, New Age IWSGers—go with that Flow, er Wave.
©2015 Marian Youngblood
February 4, 2015 Posted by siderealview | astrology, belief, blogging, calendar customs, consciousness, culture, environment, festivals, history, nature, New Age, pre-Christian, publishing, seasonal, sun, traditions, writing | Alex J Cavanaugh, Angie Dickinson, Arctic, Bride, Brigantia, Brigid, Burt Bacharach, Cabo Roag, Carnaval, death toll, Dickinson, die, everglades, Feast of Bride, February, fracking, gibbous moon, Glendale, Groundhog Day, Haley Joel Osment, healthcare, Helen Hunt, homeless, human psyche, IWSG, Junkanoo, Jupiter, Kevin Spacey, mazurka, migration, Nassau, Ninja captain, NYC, Obamacare, pay-it-forward, pizzazz, Purification, Regulus, Rio, Roman festival, seniors, severe weather, statistics, stress, sundogs, warfare | 1 Comment
INSECURE WRITERS’ SUPPORT GROUP—IWSG January—Catchup CornerIWSG FLYING the FLAG in 2015
January can often tax the kindest of our good intentions. Plus—forgive me for mentioning—an almost-75% landmass of the Northern hemisphere—E.United States hardest hit—is suffering blizzard conditions; a so-called mini-Ice Age.
NAKED IN SPACE—Comet Lovejoy in our Skies
Any emotional burdens which add to our New Year resolutions tend to throw our resolve out the window. But in the first week of the new year we are regaled by a delightful naked-eye object, to give our spirits a lift. Comet Lovejoy demands attention this week, drawing our sight heavenward. This is never a bad thing. By lifting our eyes from the computer, balance sheet, diaper drier, our thoughts get a chance to lie still for a moment. Instead, we can direct our attention to other—more dreaming musings—future successes—family changes—fame—whatever floats our boat. Our inner secrets revealed.
With our (astroLOGICAL) lives held in a 30-year Saturnine cycle, it’s nice to have a few little trifles to cheer us up when we get low: on motivation, NewYear rez—y’know—THAT time.
The Way Forward
Living in Present/Presence
Forget Auld Lang Syne: it’s all according to how we/you live now.
To plan y/our way forward, in life and in our day-to-day rhythm, we need to get comfortable first.Or, as the youth of 2015 constantly remind us:
NOW is where it’s at.
Within our little writerly IWSG community, fostered so well by our Ninja Cap’n Alex, I believe we writers have surfaced enough times here as a group, to understand our ‘other’ writerly silences. It goes with the territory.
I also believe, as fearless Alex constantly (gently) encourages us, that we are being asked—not just as a comfort-zone monthly moan-sharing group of Dreamweavers to open our own minds to what we can do. But to open our hearts as well.
Because soul-to-soul, we help each other connect to what really motivates us, just by holding each others’ hands through yet another (30-year wake-up call) Saturn Return.
Don’t do what I say. Do what Alex does!
Happy Epiphany & many 2015 Revelations.
©2015 Marian Youngblood
January 8, 2015 Posted by siderealview | Ascension, astrology, authors, belief, blogging, calendar customs, culture, fiction, Muse, New Age, novel, publishing, seasonal, sun, writing | 12-days of Christmas, 2015, Alex J Cavanaugh, Auld Lang Syne, awareness, Cancer full Moon, Capricorn, Comet Lovejoy, discernment, dreamweaver, Epiphany, Hasidic year 5775, Holy Days, inner work, IWSG, light, Muse, naked-eye comet, New Year's resolutions, Revelations, Saturn Return, skies, Twelfth Night, visible | 1 Comment
Insecure Writers’ Support Group [IWSG] Corner
So far, 2014 has been short on leisure.
Driving our Engines into the Ground
It’s not that we writers aren’t driven to distraction by our need to put graphite to tree pulp; extract or express some primeval desire hidden in the God-given Word; even one in our own God-driven engine-mind. I have known a fellow scribe who went into catatonia for a fortnight—today we call it ‘withdrawal’ or ‘having a bad hair day’—because she couldn’t find her high school propelling pencil.
Like losing a cell phone or iPod, our sudden disconnection fuels our dependency.
Change of season usually alters our work pattern, anyway. Deep inside, we must be akin to swallows, electromagnetically programmed to changing home base. Bureaucratic daylight manipulation makes it worse: disturbs our brain and sleep patterns, resulting in near-writer’s block.
Heaven forbid. I hope my mind hasn’t also flown the coop, along with my summer projects.
All Fall In
Needless to say, I’ve found the culprit: something I can blame. It’s easier to point a finger at retrograde Neptune, floundering in his own exalted sign of Pisces, or beg deathstar Pluto to release his vice-like grip on his fellow planet, Mars conjunct in restrictive structure-driven Capricorn! The ancient SeaGoat rises from the waters to vanquish all malingerers…
Under the Wire
We are, I do believe, supremely grateful for excess H20 which fell from the heavens just in time to save us from a fiery death by 2014 heatwave. Water saved us from our (continuing) careless treatment of our planetary home.
It’s mot for me to criticize. William McDonough’s Cradle to Cradle has shown us the way for a decade. We are still playing games with water. I merely add my comment—and gratitude. And pray that fewer hours of light may bring me time to relax, allow me to retreat into inner worlds.
And thanks Alex, as always, for doing what you do.
Dragon of the Stars, indeed. :)
©2014 Marian Youngblood
November 6, 2014 Posted by siderealview | astrology, authors, culture, earth changes, environment, fantasy, gardening, nature | Alex J Cavanaugh, Ascendant, autumn, blackberry, chase, Cradle, culprit, daylight savings time, exalted, fall, Insecure Writers, IWSG, Jupiter, McDonough, Neptune, Orion, Pisces, retreat, retrograde, Saturn, season, spacehunter, square, starhounds, timezone, Universal time, Uranus, weather map, weather pattern | Leave a comment
Lots of writers use a nom de plume to distinguish between their personae – it’s the way publishing works. Blogs, too. What choice, what abundance: we can be guided by all our Muses and still retain our integrity (who doubts it?)if we are prone to take one persona more seriously than another. For this blog I become this particular blogger because the material is time-sensitive; the research is all coming together now and our way forward is mapped. That said, it’s up to us whether we take the information and run with it.
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- Solstice and Yule—When Cosmic Forces Collide, Religions Meet
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- The Comet Labyrinth: Following the Umbilical Chord to the Soul
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- Rubber Duckies show the World the Way
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