This summer I have embarked on a project to improve the view from the kitchen window. This window is the only view from the kitchen and is situated at one end of the kitchen table where we take all of our meals and engage in a variety of other family activities.
Previously, it had only a view of a nicely paved patio and the stark white wall of Dad's workshop. As the area received plentiful direct sunshine for about 6 hours a day and was located in a place where we might actually remember to water any plants that needed such attention, this unused space was clearly an opportunity knocking.
I've talked about bits and pieces of this project in other posts. Here, I will recap the entire project to date.
My first new plant is what we call here Jimson Weed. Called Loco Weed in the old cowboy movies. Called Datura scientifically. And the root is an important part of some Native American rituals such as vision quests. I have one plant that I hope will do well here. Some grow wild in this area, so I have reason to be hopeful.
My second new plant I'm starting form seed. I don't have a history of success with seeds but I am trying this as I could not find a live plant. Here, it's called Devil's Claw because of the seed pods. Turns out that some people believe the root is useful in treating some illnesses. (hmmm I won't go into the number of studies that have shown that holistic medicine is totally ineffective.) Anyway, this medicinal use made finding a live plant difficult as they are, for some reason, considered rare. When I was growing up, they were just there. Mom remembers the same. So, my hope is to grow a few and dry a few seed pods.
A few more plants are on the way. I'll let you know when I get them planted.
In the meanwhile, sitting at the kitchen table and looking out the window is much more pleasant than it once was. And I consider this project a success.
For old techies, the fun is in recognizing references to the 8080 chip and programming in ALC while seeing a phone on the wall with a curly cord to the hand set. For the guys, the fun might be in seeing Kirstie Alley play the femme fatale. Of course, for the gals, there's Tom Selleck.
Otherwise, it's a typical Michael Crichton (RIP) story line about the dangers of science and technology. I enjoyed but probably won't watch again.
Because this was an experiment, I used mostly things I already had on hand. Some acrylic paints. A small canvas. Chop sticks. Paper cups. My only investments were pouring medium, flow improver, and silicon. Some of the acrylic paint was a bit old. In particular, the yellow had lots of solid bits in it. At first, I tried to take them out. Then, I decided I rather liked the little speckled effect I got from leaving them in. Although you can't really tell from this image, one of the paints I used was a silver glitter paint. The original canvas has a definite glitter quality but no obvious silver color anywhere.
Overall, I consider this experiment a success.
I didn't get what I wanted, but I did get something I like.
I enjoyed it enough to do more, so, wait and see.
If you are interested in my RedBubble products featuring this design
Having said all that...
I've been binge watching HBO's True Blood on Hulu. The binge part means that I've missed some things because I watch at night and I fall asleep. BUT, I still get the gist of things. Tonight I realized that one of the big appeals of this series above other vampire, werewolf, supernatural being types of stories is the way it deals with
The Psychology and Sociology of Racism and Hate Groups
I am not either a psychologist or sociologist. But I have been exposed to scholars on these topics and I do read and I can think. So, here's what I think.
From an evolutionary perspective...
We are a social species and on an evolutionary scale, survival often depended on being with others like us. The more like us, the better. Different was avoided and, when it threatened, attacked.
Unfortunately, long after we had evolved and advanced technologically to the point where it became advantageous to welcome diversity, we continued to obey that early evolutionary imperative to fear/hate the different.
I guess my point is...
We once feared the different as a matter of survival. Now that deeply ingrained instinct is hindering us when we need to welcome the different and integrate rather than differentiate the species. That fear reaction is largely responsible for racism in its many forms. The sense of community people get from being with people of like minds is responsible for hate groups because the racist, even more than most of us, wants to be surrounded with others of its kind. It is a matter of what was once a survival trait becoming a handicap.
Back to the TV series...
True Blood is the name of the series. The obvious connection is the name of the synthetic blood product vampires drink rather than drinking human blood. The more subtle (?) connection is the racist attitude of some humans who want to exterminate vampires. Of course, vampires are actually humans who have been transformed and given near immortality. But who has "true blood?"
Having said all that...
I'm not sure what we do with this thought. But I do think hating the hater is not the answer.
A Dog's Purpose
The Arrival of Wang
The Dog Lover
Year of the Pig
French Onion Soup
Finally At Last
Happily Never After
Thru Kitchen Window
Skeleton in Closet
410 Pounds of QuikRete
Desire and Love
Bird Feeder of Dreams
Tribal Bugs n Leaves
Curly & TheGreenPoodle
My Funny Life
The Ranch (NetFlix)
TV ... Upcycling
Lost In Space
The Toys that Made Us
The Spy Next Door
A Wrinkle in Time