Ahoy Mateys


On March 1st I am going to start another “100 days” blogging project. I have some really fun things planned for the next few months so I thought this would be a good time to do this project. In anticipation, I updated my blog template. It’s been a couple of years and I decided it needed a facelift. This theme depends on featured photos to help tell the story of the blog post, so it will be fun to dig through my archives to add photos to my daily blatherings. Or take new photos accompany the daily post.

I thought I’d warm up by posting a Friday photo. Here is another one I took at Marsh’s Free Museum last October. These guys were sitting next to the kitties.


Geeky Bits:

Camera: Olympus OM1n
Film: Arista.edu 400
Development: Stand developed for 1 hour in Adonal.




We visited Marsh’s Free Museum (Long Beach, WA)  around the end of October last year and I had my Olympus Om1n with me so I snapped some shots of the silly trinkets they sell there to tourists. Here is one of them. I was told by a couple of people that this photo is creepy. Which kind of leaves me wondering if there is something severely wrong with me because I don’t find it creepy at all. But then, I was the kid who was fascinated with Jake The Alligator Man and treasured a postcard of him, which I also showed-and-telled at school. So yeah. I am one of those people.

Olympus Pen on the Oregon Coast


Sometime last Autumn I decided to dust of the Olympus Pen and play around with it again, having given it a rest for a couple of years. It took me three months to get through the roll. I’d kind of forgotten that I was dealing with half-frames.

I took it with me to Newport, Oregon over Christmas, among other places. Here are the results. I tried being mindful of the diptych idea but at some point lost track of what I was doing. I think I will need to be more organized next time. I love the creative potential with this camera!



Fences and sunglasses

Tickets to the Paratrooper

Cultivate Love

Life, Thoughts and Opinions

This morning, my friend Marisa shared on Twitter this fascinating article (written in 2013 at the Atlantic) about love. It’s title is “There’s No Such Thing As Everlasting Love.” But I think the title is a bit misleading. Instead, the article is about the fact that romantic love is impossible to sustain, scientifically speaking. The focus of the article is a scientist named, Barbara Frederickson, who wrote the book Love 2.0. She suggests that our definition of love is wrong, that we actually experience moments of love all the time, and that maybe we should focus more on those moments. Focusing on those moments can bring happiness and joy to a person’s life.

She also suggests that love can be cultivated. I’ll let the Atlantic explain the study that she did and the results (it does so better than I can). But the thing that jumped out at me is that she tested her theory by using a Buddhist form of meditation that I am very familiar with, Mettā, translated in English as lovingkindness meditation. I’ve talked about my experience with this on my blog before. My experience with this seemed miraculous, frankly. But it’s really very practical.

It’s easy to do and you don’t have to be Buddhist to do this. Find a comfortable chair and about ten minutes to yourself (or even 5). Say these phrases in your head over and over:

May you be happy
May you be healthy
May you be safe
May you live with ease.


Start with yourself. Yep, just say the phrases to yourself. Then move on to someone you care about. Think about that person and say the phrases to them. Then think about someone you know who is in pain. Say the phrases to them. Think about someone you might be having difficulty with. Say the phrases to them. Think about someone you see often but don’t have a relationship with, like the cashier at the grocery story. Say the phrases to them. End the meditation by sending the phrases to all beings.

If your mind wanders don’t worry about it (it will wander) just come back to focusing on the phrases.

There are countless guided meditations of this out there. Google “Metta Guided Meditations.” Choose one and follow along to get a feel for how it’s done. Here is one by Gil Fronsdale, whom I like.

I am going to try something. Using my “I wonder what will happen if” principle : I am going to try doing Metta meditation three days a week. I wonder what will happen? Maybe I will write a blog post about it in a month and let you know.

I would encourage you to try it as well! If nothing else, you will have a few relaxing moments to yourself. If you do try it, I’d love to hear about your experience!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

on finding my inner warrior


I had kind of a surreal experience today. I attended a workshop that taught me what to do in the event of an “active shooter” situation. On the one hand, it is really horrible that this is the reality that I live in. This is something so common that it is a thing, getting trained for an active shooter situation. On the other hand, this is the reality. This happens all too often and being prepared could save my life. Pretending that this is something that doesn’t exist is not helpful.

We learned about the Run, Hide, Fight method. Watched the video (below) and talked about what we would do if this were to actually happen, what would be our plan.

Then we got to learn some of the “fight” tactics. We learned how to tackle an active shooter and to take him down (should it come down to that – this would be the last case scenario!) and we even got to practice by tackling the police officer giving the training.

I was super nervous about this, and didn’t believe I would have the strength or even fortitude to accomplish this. But I did it! And I even accidentally clocked the officer in the nose as we went toppling down to the mat. I apologized, and then was reprimanded for apologizing. 🙂

I have to admit, I feel empowered.