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Day 218 - Dec 27 - Home

Mental note - Never forget we are always just a phone ring away from the world spinning out of control. In a single moment the unknown can rise up and slap down even the most pristine perceptions of happiness. And just as each moment holds the opportunity for the unexpected to bring elation, equally the passing of time brings the possibility of crushing realities to smash life. And even though I believe that if it were not for my traumas that I would be unable to appreciate beauty, logic does not prevail. Right now I feel connected with all that is not right. People can be devious and deceiving. I see parallels between people and the critters. Some people are like squirrels, playful and and feeding and nesting while others are like snakes that sit in wait in grass. I guess it all fits together somehow and there lays a balance between the hunter and hunted, parasite and host and life force versus gravity and from a distance it all seems to make sense. It is just when it is close at hand that my vision is blurry. And though it is unrelated I must admit that I feel a new caution in sharing my world.

On completely separate note, will you share with me a heartfelt goodbye to James Brown? He will be missed and enjoyably remembered . I heard a quote on the radio today where someone had asked James about what he thought about so many people sampling his music and he had replied something to the effect of "I guess it's cool that they like my music but why don't they write their own music?" I thought that was cool.

Another thing I thought was cool was something I read as I was thumbing through a book on old American logging trains

and came across this

And I realized that I really admire the Buster's of the world. I admire his likable humble confidence and skill without the negative and diluting spike of arrogance. So now, of the engineers I admire several do 'sound' and one drove a train. Oh, and speaking of cool people that I admire, if you feel so inspired, check out this guy Richard Feynman he was a physicist and truly an awesome human. Surely Your Joking Mister Feynman would be the book to read.

The holidays for me brought a a family gathering and we all headed up to my house in Big Bear for a snowy white Christmas of a wonderful get together of several generations from mixtures of families. Disjointed and perfect. Humans venturing together for the sole purpose of sharing time and stories and food and happiness. Meet mohawk snowman and punker dog

built by wonderful aunts and shorties. And speaking of Shorties, meet Jessica, my spirited little niece

And one day in splurge of inspiration I decided several years ago, inspired by train gifts given to me by my shorties and their mom, that a train that traveled around the ceiling would be be cool. So that is what I built, and on a timer that spins, the train activates and around the room it goes

And many gifts were given. It was a holiday to be remembered and once again, like every year, my mom has demonstrated her expertise in gifting by preciously selecting this dapper sweater for me

Well, I do feel a bit jealous. Even though the sweater vest is warm and stylish, I think she may like my brother a bit better. Otherwise, how else could you explain the fact that he got this candle holder a few years back

And also there was the time she showed up with "fortune grapefruits" that were actual grapefruits with little pieces of paper taped to them with scotch tape but I think we will have to save the "mom" stories for another day.

The somewhat somber but still smiling,

Dave Rat