Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Once in a Blue Moon

Happy New Year,'s a rare one, sporting a Blue Moon, a term that simply refers to the second full moon in a calendar month, something that hasn't happened on a New Year's Eve for nearly 20 years, NASA says.

"December 1990 ended with a blue moon, and many New Year's Eve parties were themed by the event," said Professor Philip Hiscock of the department of folklore at Memorial University of Newfoundland, in Canada.

Most months have just one full moon, because the 29.5-day cycle of the moon matches up pretty well with the length of calendar months. Occasionally, there will be two full moons in a month, something that happens about every 2½ years, NASA says.

But a blue moon on December 31 is rare.

And so, in keeping with the theme I offer you four very different versions of Rogers and Hart's wonderful old jazz standard, "Blue Moon."

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Bailey The Unknown Reindeer

As a special holiday treat, here's Harry Connick, Jr. accompanying Bailey, The Unknown Reindeer as he shows you how to REALLY enjoy being snowed in! Happy Christmas!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sunday Uplift, Parts 2 & 3 - Crayons and Puppies

I can't help myself...I just have to post these two videos. One fun song, and one VERY sweet puppy.

Sunday Uplift - Hedgehog In The Fog

Feelings very much like a hedgehog in the fog this week, I thought this lovely animated film from 1975 Russia was the perfect uplift for this sunday morning. I hope you enjoy it, too.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Doing The Right Thing Makes Everyone's Life Better

I just caught a tiny bit on ABC News in the segment they've been doing all week as a farewell to Anchor Charles Gibson, who's retiring after 35 years. The little piece I saw STILL has me in tears of awe.

Some years ago, Gibson was given the privilege of releasing a Bald Eagle that had been nursed back to health after being injured. He was told by the rehabilitationists, "The eagle will fly off, then circle over your head in a show of thanks, and will then fly away." "Yeah, right," Charlie thought, and then, to his utter astonishment and delight, the eagle did precisely that.

There's SO much more complexity in the minds of the life around us than we humans have the snap to recognise.

How people can be so cruel - to one another, to themselves, to the natural world? I just don't understand how they can be alive and not see how stunningly beautiful and immense and impossibly incredibly and inexorably connected we all are. Time and again, I see clear evidence of sentient behaviour in animal species that most humans consider "lesser forms of life." Things like the eagle predictably circling its "friends." How can anyone only see a dumb animal in that behaviour? What arrogance! What absolute rubbish!

Has my rant made any sense? I dunno...I'm far too serious these days, but then, I always have been.

Back in the 70s, when I was a fairly angry feminist, a guy once asked me why I seemed so humourless about sexism, and at first I felt a little ashamed. And then I realised the fellow was right; I AM humourless about injustice and cruelty and mindless behaviour. And honestly? I don't really care to find the humour therein, though I confess that I eventually relaxed a bit and managed to find some humour in the interplay between men and women. But then, I had no choice; I worked as an enginerd in the high tech industry...when I started there were MAYBE two other women in my department. :-/ Late in that career, I was informed during a performance appraisal that other managers had complained I was "intolerant of mediocrity," and I just guffawed. "If tolerance of mediocrity is required, I want OUT!" Now THAT was a pretty funny situation.

I don't suppose I will ever stop fighting the good fight for all my fellow creatures, and following Dylan Thomas' insistence that we must "rage, rage against the dying of the light."

So DO go gently into that good night, folks. Be kind. Be mindful of your words and deeds and thoughts. Do your ever-connected best to be good neighbors to the world around you, and remember, we've been given the great honour of being Stewards of this perfect world. Let's not screw it up another day/hour/minute/moment's worth. Please?