A Month of Love #28

Today is the last day of Paula Light’s month of lurve (aka love). where she asked us post one thing we loved every day throughout February.

Now the truth is that I’m not really a romantic guy, so I might be hard pressed to come up with 28 objects of love, but I think I should be able to come up with 28 things I like a lot.

I just want to say “thank you” to Paula.Thank you for your February Month of Love prompt. It was fun and it made me think of 28 (well 27 — I skipped last Sunday) things that I love and appreciate.

Rory’s Got Questions — 22 to be Precise

Rory, the King of Questions, asks many, many questions. Here are seven from Rory’s Season 4 – Game 5 Fun Questions.

1. What really makes you angry?

These days, Republicans.

2. What is your preferred mode of transport from the following: walking, driving car, train ride, riding a bike, or something else entirely?

If I can walk or ride a bike, that would be my preference. When I lived in the city, I would take the bus if wherever I was going was too far to walk, but now that I live in the ‘burbs, it’s driving a car.

3. Which would you rather do: wash dishes, mow the lawn, clean the bathroom, or vacuum the house?

I’d rather do none of the above, but of those listed, I suppose washing the dishes.

4. If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?


5. How many pairs of shoes do you own?

Three: my everyday sneakers, a pair of “dress shoes” that I rarely wear, and a pair of slippers for inside the house. I also have a pair of hiking boots.

6. How long does it take you to get ready in the morning for the rest of your day?

Maybe ten minutes to go to the bathroom, take a quick shower, and brush my teeth. Then another 45 minutes or so for coffee, reading the morning paper, and my daily bowl of cold cereal. Only then am I ready to face the rest of my day.

7. What three items only would you take with you on a deserted island to survive for a week?

My iPhone and a charger. What else would I need?

And here are 15 more questions from Rory’s “Ima Hear Becuz Ima All Ear!

1. What or who got you into listening to music first?

My transistor radio.

2. Who were some of your favorited bands/artists as a youngster?

The Four Seasons, The Beach Boys, Smokey Robinson and the Miracle, The Four Tops, The Temptations, Simon & Garfunkel, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Supremes, The Drifters, Sonny & Cher.

3. Which decades of music influenced you the most as a youngster growing up?

The ’60s and ’70s.

4. Did your parents listen to a lot of music when you were living with them in your younger years and did any of their listening influence your own musical tastes?

No and no.

5. Can you list your Top 5 musical genres that you listen to frequently today?

  1. Classic rock
  2. Classic rock
  3. Classic rock
  4. Classic rock
  5. Classic rock

6. Aside from listening to music, have you ever learned to play a musical instrument or sing or take part in the musical entertainment industry?


7. What is it you most like about music and how does it make you feel when listening?

The music itself and the lyrics. Because I listen mostly to classic rock, the music elicits memories and feelings from my youth and from when I was a young adult.

8. Which decade of music throughout your years to date has influenced you the most with regards to your listening today?

The mid ’60s through the late ’70s.

9. Do you listen to music daily? If so, is that all day or only at certain times? If not, when do you listen to music?

Yes. I play the Music Choice classic rock channel available from my cable provider virtually all day long as background music.

10. Do you ever sing, whistle, hum, or dance to any of the music that is playing?

Sometimes. But more often, I’ll just stop what I’m doing and listen when I hear a song I love or which triggers a vivid memory.

11. Do you have music playing when you are writing or creating? If so, does it further inspire you and help to juice up your imagination, or do you find music can knock your concentration levels off?

As I said, I have music playing in the background most of the time. I can’t say that it inspires me when I’m writing, but it also doesn’t adversely affect my ability to concentrate.

12. What was the very first concert you ever attended and also the last one and how many concerts have you seen from the first to the last in total?

I honestly can’t remember my first ever concert. It might have been when my older sister took me to see the Kingston Trio playing at the Carter Barron Amphitheatre outdoor music venue in Rock Creek Park in Washington, D.C. The last concert I saw was Don Henley (of The Eagles) at the Greek Theater in Berkeley. As to how many total concerts, it has to be a hundred or more.

13. Do you prefer to listen to music and appreciate it that way or are you more likely to be more physically involved as in dancing?

These days it’s mostly just listening.

14. What sort of system do you have to listen to music at home and do you “collect music” or purely listen?

At home I listen to music mostly on the Music Choice channel through my cable TV and my surround sound system. I will also listen to my iTunes music on my iPhone while wearing my AirPods. In the car it’s the classic rock channel is SiriusXM.

15. How important is music to you?

I enjoy listening to music, so because being able to enjoy things is important to me, I suppose, therefore, music is important to me.

Who Won the Week? 02/28/2021

FWWTWThe idea behind Who Won the Week is for you to select who (or what) you think “won” this past week. Your selection can be anyone or anything — politicians, celebrities, athletes, authors, bloggers, your friends or family members, books, movies, TV shows, businesses, organizations, whatever.

I will be posting this prompt on Sunday mornings (my time). If you want to participate, write your own post designating who you think won the week and why you think they deserve your nod. Then link back to this post and tag you post with FWWTW.

This week’s “winner” of Who Won the Week is idolatry, as in the worship of idols. It’s also defined as “excessive or blind adoration, reverence, devotion, or love for something or someone.” So why am I going this week’s honor to idolatry?

Well, you may recall this post in which I mentioned that Donald Trump will be making his big return to the national stage this weekend at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), where he will be giving the keynote speech at the conservative conference tonight.

You may also be familiar with the the biblical story of the Golden Calf. It is one of the most famous stories in the Old Testament. The Israelites, newly freed from Egyptian slavery, have a crisis of faith while God is speaking with Moses on Mount Sinai. They melt down their gold jewelry to construct a physical god — a statue in the shape of a calf — to worship in place of their abstract, invisible deity. It’s a story about the allure of idolatry, how easy it is to abandon one’s commitments to principle in favor of shiny, easy falsehoods.

So what does this Bible story have to do with anything?It seems that someone involved in the CPAC conference constructed a golden statue — not of a calf, but of Trump — and wheeled it out to cheers from conference attendees.

It doesn’t take a religious scholar to see the parallel to this ludicrous idol worship of Donald Trump and the Golden Calf episode in the Bible. And yet these religious Christian conservatives attending CPAC just don’t get it.

I don’t believe in God, but should there is a God, I think it’s time for him/her/it to smite Donald Trump and the GOP.

What about you? Who (or what) do you think won the week?

Song Lyric Sunday — Both Sides, Now

For today’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt, Jim Adams gave us “breeze,” “cloud,” “sky,” and “wind” for the theme words. For me, it was a toss up between Bob Dylan’s “Blowin’ in the Wind” and Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides, Now.” I’m a fan of both artists, but I really love Joni Mitchell, so I decided to go with “Both Sides, Now.”

“Both Sides, Now” was the first hit song written by Canadian singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell. It was first recorded by Judy Collins and her version appeared on the U.S. singles chart during the fall of 1968. The next year it was included on Mitchell’s own album, Clouds, which was named after a lyric from the song, “I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now.” In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked “Both Sides, Now” at number 170 on its list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

Joni Mitchell said the song came to her while she was reading Saul Bellow’s Henderson the Rain King on a plane. “Early in the book,” Mitchell said, “Henderson the Rain King is also up in a plane. He’s on his way to Africa and he looks down and sees these clouds. I put down the book, looked out the window and saw clouds too, and I immediately started writing the song. I had no idea that the song would become as popular as it did.”

Joni Mitchell had been through a very difficult time when she wrote this song’s lyric. In 1965, she gave birth to a baby girl, but after the baby’s father, an old boyfriend, left her soon after she got pregnant, Mitchell struggled as a single mom. She married a musician named Chuck Mitchell that year, but shortly after the marriage, she gave up the child for adoption. Soon, her marriage was on the rocks, and in 1967 they split up.

Mitchell described the song as a meditation on reality and fantasy, “an idea that was so big it seemed like I’d just scratched the surface of it.” Like Neil Young’s song, “Sugar Mountain,” which Mitchell answered with “The Circle Game,” “Both Sides, Now” ruminates on the subject of lost youth. At first it’s a meditation on clouds, the whimsical way a child sees them, as “ice-cream castles in the air,” but there are two sides to everything, and as we mature, we stop seeing clouds for their simple beauty, but as a sign of rain or bad weather.

Here are the lyrics for “Both Sides, Now.”

Rows and flows of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere
I’ve looked at clouds that way

But now they only block the sun
They rain and snow on everyone
So many things I would have done
But clouds got in my way

I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now
From up and down, and still somehow
It’s cloud illusions I recall
I really don’t know clouds at all

Moons and Junes and Ferris wheels
The dizzy dancing way you feel
As every fairy tale comes real
I’ve looked at love that way

But now it’s just another show
You leave ’em laughing when you go
And if you care, don’t let them know
Don’t give yourself away

I’ve looked at love from both sides now
From give and take, and still somehow
It’s love’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know love at all

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say “I love you” right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I’ve looked at life that way

But now old friends are acting strange
They shake their heads, they say I’ve changed
Well something’s lost, but something’s gained
In living every day

I’ve looked at life from both sides now
From win and lose and still somehow
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all

I’ve looked at life from both sides now
From up and down and still somehow
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all

If you’re interested, here’s the song sung by Judy Collins.

FOWC with Fandango — Sanguine

FOWCWelcome to February 28, 2021 and to Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (aka, FOWC). It’s designed to fill the void after WordPress bailed on its daily one-word prompt.

I will be posting each day’s word just after midnight Pacific Time (US).

Today’s word is “sanguine.”

Write a post using that word. It can be prose, poetry, fiction, non-fiction. It can be any length. It can be just a picture or a drawing if you want. No holds barred, so to speak.

Once you are done, tag your post with #FOWC and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Please check to confirm that your pingback is there. If not, please manually add your link in the comments.

And be sure to read the posts of other bloggers who respond to this prompt. You will marvel at their creativity.