T.G.I.F.: It’s been a long week

woodpecker


The woodpecker is capable of repeatedly pecking the wood of a tree, suffering deceleration in the order of 10,000 m/s.  Read more at @ The Hammock Papers. (Thank you Rob.)

Dancer

“Ukrainian-born “bad boy of ballet” Sergei Polunin became the Royal Ballet’s youngest ever principal dancer at age 19. But two years later — at the height of his success — he walked away from it all, resolving to give up dance entirely. Steven Cantor’s Dancer tracks the life of this iconoclastic virtuoso, from his prodigal beginnings in the Ukraine to his awe-inspiring performances in the U.K., Russia, and eventually the U.S., where he went viral after David LaChapelle filmed him dancing to Hozier’s “Take Me to Church.”

Highly recommended. (And hang straight through the closing credits)

Full stop.


Can be rented on Amazon Prime

Lightly child, lightly.

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How does an apple ripen?

It just sits in the sun.

~ Thomas Merton, From Merton’s Palace of Nowhere by James Finley


Notes:

  • Passage from James Finley:  “Merton once told me to quit trying so hard in prayer. He said, ‘How does an apple ripen? I just sits in the sun.’ A small green apple cannot ripen in one night by tightening all its muscles, squinting its eyes and tightening its jaw in order to find itself the next morning miraculously large, red, ripe and juicy beside its small green counterparts. Like the birth of a baby or the opening of a rose, the birth of true self takes place in God’s time.”
  • Photograph: Patty Maher with Claire in Exhibit A
  • Prior “Lightly child, lightly” Posts? Connect here.
  • Post Title & Inspiration: Aldous Huxley: “It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.”

 

 

It’s been a long day

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One day I’ll fly away
Leave all this to yesterday

~ Moulin Rouge! (2001), dir. Baz Luhrmann


Notes:

Guess.What.Day.It.Is?

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Live Shot!  Our very own Jennifer Kanigan is on vacation in Morocco and is getting lift from Caleb.  She is heading out to the desert for a night under the stars. (Jennifer is my Brother Rich’s better half.)


Notes: Background on Caleb/Wednesday/Hump Day Posts and Geico’s original commercial: Let’s Hit it Again

Charles Osgood

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LC: …You are now widely considered among one of the legends, certainly were to me growing up.

Charles: That has its advantages and disadvantages. There’s no joy in winding this up. But there has been a lot of joy in it. There has been a lot of happy memories associated with it.  And they all have to do with the people you work with. And also has to do with the people who are watching, because you really feel it’s all for them.

LC: Do you feel satisfied with this long career?

Charles: No. (laughing). Well, it’s just one of those things that if you enjoy something, you want to keep doing it, and you don’t want it to ever end, ever.  Most people find it hard to imagine that you regard this as work. It’s not really work, it is really a joy.

Charles Osgood, 83, retires from CBS Sunday Morning after 22 years.

And here’s Charles Osgood singing on his 80th birthday


Namaste

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Source: Huge Shoebill bird bows to tourists via Animated Gifs (via Your Eyes Blaze Out)

You Go Judge! Debate: Cut the Cr*p. Save our Children. All of them. 

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“Connecticut State Superior Court Judge Thomas G. Moukawsher threw out the state’s school financing system as unconstitutional, his unsparing 90-page ruling read and resonated like a cry from the heart on the failings of American public education.”

Some excerpts from NYTimes: An F-Minus for America’s Schools From a Fed-Up Judge:

  •  “Uselessly perfect teacher evaluations” that found “virtually every teacher in the state” proficient or exemplary, while a third of students in many of the poorest communities cannot read even at basic levels.
  • He attacked a task force charged with setting meaningful high school graduation requirements for how its “biggest thought on how to fix the problem turned out to be another task force,” and called it “a kind of a spoof.”
  • Too many American high school graduates are “let down by patronizing and illusory degrees”
  • Too many decisions and too much debate about schools seem, as he wrote, “completely disconnected to the teaching of children.”
  • Nearly all high school students in affluent communities like Darien and Westport scored on state tests as “advanced” in math and approached the same level in reading. But one out of three students in nearby Bridgeport and other poor cities did not reach the most basic level in math, and did only slightly better in reading.
  • It was a strikingly blunt way of saying what many people feel: The system is broken.
  • He added, “Just doing more of the same is unlikely to lead to a different result.”
  • The judge called for a radical reimagining that starts with the question of what schools should do: What are the goals for elementary students, or high school graduates? Then, he said, the state should decide how much money schools require so that all students, rich and poor, reach those goals.
  • 46 percent of white fourth graders across the country read at or above “proficient,” compared with just 18 percent of their black peers.
  • He criticized “uselessly perfect teacher evaluations” as part of a rating system “that is little more than cotton candy in a rainstorm.” He described the state’s efforts to define high school proficiency as “like a sugar cube boat,” adding, “It dissolves before it’s half-launched.”

Read entire article: NYTimes: An F-Minus for America’s Schools From a Fed-Up Judge


Photo: Hartford Courant

Monday Morning Wake-Up Call

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Source: Paddington the Dog and Butler the Cat. BFF. Photos by ©Annie & Paddington  (from Australia) (via Cats, Beavers & Ducks)

Running. A Blossom Rupturing.

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It’s dark, I grope, I grip the wooden arm of the bannister at the top of the stairs. I’m about to take the first step down and here it comes. Not just one morning, every morning.

Must be Mandelstam’s Blossom. It hovers. It hammers. It is now.  It is not. It ruptures and raptures. I try to turn, to turn away to Light. Yet and yet and yet, it pulls me back. A beckoning for what? To what?

55° F. Saturday morning. I’m on the front porch. Rain is spitting Autumn, the season has turned.

Mile 2:
I look down. Gray shirt. Gray shorts.  Gray water bottle.  Gray and Blue shoes. I look up, Gray skies. Synchronicity – cosmic alignment. [Read more…]

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