Time Affects

Saturday, November 26, 2022

It appears that our current balmy weather will become fierce with snow predicted on Monday. The dogs and I have enjoyed the past several days of milder temperatures. Here’s hoping that “whatever weather” arrives next isn’t too awful.

We’re entering the dark days of December. Now, “midnight” seemingly occurs around 5 p.m. or earlier. Truly, I get confused during early darkness times. Now, early evening hours seem way later than my wristwatch shows. During these and upcoming briefer daylights, routine bedtime beckons early as 8 p.m.

The dogs come inside in the early evening and crash and sleep. I wind up doing the same but over a computer. At some point, faux unconsciousness quits, and as my brain returns to reality it’s thinking bedtime.

Yesterday, a professional dispatcher whose work makes him “in the know” told me there will be a final time turnover, which will happen next spring. After that, he said confidently, daylight savings time will remain unchanged without future time changes.

I’m just repeating the straw of hope that happened my way.

We’ve learned that semi-annual time changes make daylight changes highly confusing. Having to cope with suddenly shifting daylight hours is a hardship. Topping that, weather changes feel abrupt and unpleasant. So stressful.

Regardless, we’re entering this year’s darkest season knowing to anticipate having to cycle through. If my informer’s perception is true, next year we might learn what it’s like to experience “dark days” occurring in clock time not artificially adjusted.

Dear Friends: The current kind weather helps to ease the stress of adjusting our internal clocks. Diana

Cloud Speaking

Friday, November 25, 2022

Hello, Black Friday!

I looked through many available “deals” without finding anything I want or need, or don’t already have. This year’s Black Friday, like most other venues, lacks new attention-grabbing bright technological products. Following the Covid period and now the active war in Ukraine, the creative pipeline isn’t popping for household and personal products. Plus, factor in a sagging economy and cautious public mood.

Without paying much attention to changing, I’ve begun leaning more toward streaming. I’m tired of lugging books around to find places for them, and searching through stacks to find a particular book. I’ve begun reading books using the Kindle app or a Reader. Those make it a cinch to pull up almost any book, from anywhere and anytime. As to television, mine mostly remain turned off.

I gave up the internet long ago and found it too costly with unattractive choices. I streamed movies until sitting and watching became too time-consuming, and I canceled the subscriptions. I still like watching PBS for two evening airings that are excellent: The Newshour and Amanpour & Company. The Newshour airs often when I’m not home; and Amanpour airs at 10 p.m., usually just too late. Subscribing to PBS Passport lets me air both broadcasts on my own time on my computer screen.

After long resisting spending lots of time at a computer, I’ve adapted. There are Kindle and Passport, and (to be honest one Black Friday purchase, Hulu at $1.99/mo. for a year). Last night, I snuggled under an electric blanket with a tablet and watched a recent new movie from a talented director whom I admire.

To facilitate my transformation, it could make sense to try comprehending Elon Musk. Of course, many have/are and remain confused by the man; he’s wealthy. odd, and perhaps a technological genius. Musk reminds me of Howard Hughes, another super-wealthy genius and oddball. Hughes created the Spruce Goose, a prototype strategic flying boat that actually flew, but wasn’t finished soon enough to use in WWII. Ah genius, ah weirdos, ah money!

Dear Friends: This Black Friday represents a re-energizing of cloud-driven commerce. Diana

Reflections

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Happy Thanksgiving!

In my neighborhood, this day will be wonderfully warm. Our temps will climb into the mid-fifties.

This morning, I’m thinking about thankfulness and feeling grateful for tender mercies. There are “internals,” including reasonable health, strength to carry on, and brain energy. There are “externals,” like a sturdy homestead, healthy pets, and opportunities for periodic part-time employment, and ongoing friendships.

A key external I’m thankful for is this blog. I appreciate my readers and enjoy writing. I try to remain upbeat, but sometimes larger social and political events control my finger landings on the keyboard. I’m thankful to all who read both my good and less better blogs.

May we on this pleasant morning feel optimistic about today and tomorrow? And speaking of tomorrow, may we again meet here?

Dear Friends: Let’s hope this Thanksgiving Day offers up healthy doses of pleasure and reflection. Diana

Oh, World!

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Good gravy! I’ve worried about possibilities of an active shooter entering a busy store where I’m employed or where I’m shopping. In these days of holiday rushing, active shooters seem more common. I’m ordering more from online to avoid busy shops.

Early today, an active shooter in a Virginia Walmart murdered six. He was an employee! I’ve not imagined a shooter as being employed inside his target venue. Despite my experience as an employee in busy retail settings.

We employees often articulate a shared perspective of preferring to avoid a coworker because that person’s an “odd bird” or a “weird one.” Usually, an odd one departs for unexplained reasons.

We have learned that a weird employee, after leaving a workplace, may return as an active shooter. An early series of such murders, because of where they occurred, earned the label, “going postal.”

Maybe “going postal” encouraged us to not work for the Postal Service. We’d visit Post Offices anyway, for stamps and to mail packages.

Over time and increasingly, we grew more aware of actual and attempted public murders: The Kennedys, King, Lennon, and Regan, to mention some. After the Columbine shooting, there began a spreading of active shooters and mass murders, in schools, churches, and marketplaces.

Despite any concerns about entering public places, the odds more than not are in our favor. We might equate them to the safety or not of driving or riding in a car, crossing a street, riding a bicycle, or just walking the dog. We’re aware of the pros and cons and participate in those activities routinely.

We’re learning in a world now populated by 8 billion residents. Surprise after surprise begins generating fewer surprises.

Dear Friends: Wishing for us all, to find genuine moments of quiet, peace, and joy. Diana

Heroism

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Note: On this day in 1963 JFK was assassinated in Dallas. That and ensuing leadership changes began what today are continuous and ever-increasing social/political conflicts. The processes of governing have become complex and confusing beyond what anyone might ever have predicted or could have imagined.

Nowadays, we’re accustomed to assassinations. They occur all around us–in schools, nightclubs, neighborhood homes, and on the streets.

Today, and fortunately, we’re made aware of a mega-heroic act. An ex-military, professional warrior happened to be in a Colorado Springs LGBTQ nightclub. He responded immediately to gunfire; he tackled and brought down an active shooter. He got his hands on the shooter’s gun and steadily beat the man’s head with it. Someone else kicked an AK rifle beyond the shooter’s reach, and another person in high heels stomped on the downed shooter.

Serendipitous, right? People out, enjoying being together. A shooter enters, begins killing, and a trained warrior happens to be at the scene with his family and responds.

This story’s endings are rotten and great. Rotten is that people were killed, and great is that many more weren’t.

The cartoon header sums up much. Pelosi’s attempts to address gun violence have achieved only moderate successes. The Supreme Court agrees with a Republican majority that gun ownership and carrying is a constitutional free right.

Pelosi’s pants suits and high heels are recognizable images of her political strength and masterful management.

Dear Friends: We hope the next Congress reveals thoughtful heroes, participating for the greater good. Diana

Back To The Future

Monday, November 21, 2022

Today, I’ll go to St. Charles Medical Center for a job interview. For a change, it’s about desk-style work, part-time, and suits my experience. That’s also my preference after months of experience behind a busy retail cash register.

I became interested in St. Charles after bumping into previous co-workers who now are employed there. They like their work, are paid well, and not interested in leaving their jobs. They encouraged me to explore opportunities, which I did, and thus, today’s interview.

Years ago, I worked in a medical environment. Working in Human Resources for Kaiser Permanente in Los Angeles, I became assigned to its Bellflower Medical Center as an internal consultant to the management teams. That environment introduced me to a large hospital structure and to employee roles. I learned the processes for decision-making and communicating throughout the environment. Today’s interview may draw from that background.

For the past week of not working, I’ve enjoyed being home but slightly feel isolated. I enjoyed having the camaraderie of co-workers who like me are retirees. We viewed working in similar ways, giving it our best, and being mutually supportive. I felt that kinship again yesterday on returning to the market to clear my locker.

Interestingly, many retirees were very conservative; their political views differed significantly from mine. We sensed the differences and didn’t discuss politics. As a minority group, we elderlies focused on appreciating and supporting ourselves.

Today I’ll learn what St. Charles offers. For sure, many retirees are working there, as volunteers or in salaried positions.

Dear Friends: It’s weird, that I’ve not already sought employment in a medical environment. Diana

Worried World

Sunday, November 20, 2022

Yesterday, another mass shooting and this time in a Colorado LGBTQ nightclub. It’s another awful expression of social hatred by an American, seriously mentally ill and maladjusted. Here’s what else is awful: I didn’t pause to read about that shooting. My brain said to the headline, “Not again,” and skipping that story searched for others of interest.

Mass shootings in America and other developed nations seem occurring daily. They follow similar threads. Shooters typically are young men. Most after shooting are found dead. They share have common histories, of frequenting online hate sites and describing online their own deep hatreds while posting murderous threats.

Citizens are learning to expect such activities. The few shooters who’ve been found alive and are in custody are troubling to manage. Should they be executed or not? Is it helpful to those suffering losses of loved ones to describe their anger and sadness, to a stone-faced murderer?

As for me? While a supermarket cashier, always on my mind was that store’s cashiering setup. Just inside large entry doors are its fifteen cash registers. There wasn’t a question about an entering active shooter’s ability instantly to wipe out all register operators. That fear intensified among store workers after an active shooter targeted, shot up, and murdered, inside a local Safeway.

An imagined scenario didn’t make me quit working in the store. I did for other reasons, and yet, feel relieved for not working in a front row of multiple cash registers.

The world’s population, having reached 8 billion, forces more a general acceptance of our social and individual differences. Our enlightenment and understanding are revealing many incapacities of our usual legal positions. Calls are urgent for a united Congress, or at least bodies willing to and capable of negotiating across aisles.

Dear Friends: I am sad over the Colorado mass shooting, and today will immerse myself in a computer world. Diana

Changing Times

Saturday, November 19, 2022

The weather experts predict today’s local conditions to warm up. The area’s current uninviting 12 degrees F by this afternoon will register at 40 degrees F. Later this morning, I’ll lead my horses to a neighbor’s pasture and leave them to graze. Today, the streets won’t smack of black ice and threaten our safety, going or returning home later.

Yesterday, needing vinegar and canned pumpkin, and being price-conscious, I visited Costco. That store was mobbed with Thanksgiving-focused shoppers. Moving my cart against traffic flows through the aisles required time and effort; I was happy to escape the store with little beyond my two designated purchases.

Today, I’ll find a similar mob of shoppers in the supermarket where I’m no longer employed. I will go there to clear my locker without having to face unending customers lined up at a cash register. Cashiering is very physical work and increasingly so as a celebratory holiday approaches. I’m grateful for gaining the skills to operate a register, and equally so for having quit.

I watched Costco cashiers working even more physically. Carts roll on a cashier’s side of a register with heavier items inside needing scans. Cashiers must also scan small items moving on a register belt. At least, many have helpers that make checking out quicker.

These days while not working beyond my home, I relish having the time to care for my animals. I can fool around, too, for example, playing at creating a logo.

Dear Friends: Moving on now with hopes to understand later, better, as to where. Diana

Pretty & Slick

Friday, November 18, 2022

Still freezing here, the weather that is, and I keep myself bundled up. Today’s header photo shows the early morning path toward my barn from up at the house.

After quitting work outside my home, I am finding time for animal care and property needs. This extreme cold multiples animal needs. Maintaining warmth expends mega calories. I face frozen-over watering devices, sheltering areas needing improvements, and making corrections to feeding amounts and frequencies.

There also are my dogs. I let them be outside for a while and then inside for a while. This works well since mostly they sleep while inside. That gives me computer time for writing, reading, and attempting to create something cool.

Yesterday and today have the horror of black ice. Years ago, a couple of bad slips taught me that danger, which now discourages walking with my horses on asphalt toward a neighbor’s pasture. The horses will have to be in a dry lot until Central Oregon’s atmosphere heats a little.

It is lighter now and quite beautiful outside. But it’s cold!

Dear Friends: Icy weather is neat for carrying around and pointing a camera. Diana

Images

Thursday, November 17, 2022

Well, there’s Peaches on a big rock, and somehow, minus his perch and hot dog. While he’s wrongly sized in this, I did eliminate an original image’s background and successfully moved Peaches from a cage into the outdoors. I think these represent a decent start to learning the complex software, Photoshop.

In examining photos taken with my camera, my mind plays with them. Individual images often have me wishing to combine a couple or more, to tell a story or to increase their potential.

This began years ago. I was playing around and combined several throwaway shots, creating one I have loved. It shows my donkey, Pimmy, gazing at the wintery moon over the Cascade Mountains. Of course, this morning I cannot locate that old image in time for this blog. I will post it tomorrow.

Anyway, here’s to sharing my accomplishment so far, Hoping to continue and create something better.

Dear Friends: Cool as AI is, it’s really less than what human brains may produce. Diana