Category Archives: NOT PALEO RELATED

Nothing to Hide?

What do you think?  A relative of mine sent me the above little soft rap selection.  I watched it, and listened to the words (which I could understand) and also to the message (which I could also understand.)

My relative is somewhat of a Libertarian…I am not.  But whether we are of either extreme or the middle, we may very soon have something to hide, simply to save our necks!

How unreal was it historically when someone raided the house where Anne Frank and her family were hiding like trapped bunnies? It happened, and it happened in my lifetime.  People were truly heroic to try to hide so-called “enemies of the chosen race”, because not only would Nazi power find their hidden friends, but they would be thrown onto the same wagons and carted off to places they would not return from.

This really happened.  How did the land of happy hausfraus and joyful beergardens and Father Christmas and all that become a land fraught with fear and the smoke of incinerators disposing of millions of dead bodies?  It was political.  It was a mind game.  It was a gradual power play that poisoned people’s minds and then scared them into clustering into the safest group possible to save their lives. It required a blind eye.  It required a nation of blind eyes.

Most of the people saluting the Nazis were people with blind eyes simply to save their own souls from the concentration camps.  They had better salute religiously, especially if they were not endowed with blue eyes and fair skin.  Dark haired regular Germans were especially avid about those salutes, I reckon.

There are not a lot of people on a list in my house.  I don’t have a campaign going on anything really.  I have a house full of people with differing opinions,  but we don’t defend them with vitriol or guns.  In this house there are both pro and con about a lot of issues.

But we love the truth.  All of us do love the truth, and fear the power of blind-eyedness.

I have this creepy feeling that I am being set-up…like a “pigeon-drop scheme“, where a con-man (or woman) befriends me and tells me how things are going to improve.  In the process, this clever person gets to know me very well…my fears, my interests, my address book, and my vulnerabilities.  They find out what I value most. Then they tell me to trust them with some of it. Then you know how the pigeon-drop scheme works.  Like a perverse “Sting.”

What the Nazis found was that people valued the souls of people and the lives of family more than anything. More even than freedom. Enough so that a LOT of hiding was going on in Germany.  Blondes with blue eyes and pale skins hiding brunettes with dark eyes and olive skins.  Words kept inaudible.  Identification papers were forged, or destroyed.  Paper trails were a deadly thing. For a while people simply went away in carts and never came back.  Gradually the truth came out.  Unbelieveable truth.  And people hid their eyes and let it continue.  It was only for “others”, this decimation machine.  They hid within the cloud of safety saluting the power people, to save their souls.

Are we afraid of such a thing happening to us here, now?   We are not afraid.  We, after all, are AMERICANS!  Proud, lucky, cocky, spirited citizens of this Free Country where we stand on the Constitution of the United States of America.

Look at what we stand on.  We are standing on an ideal that is eroding out from under us.  We are in a house build on sandy soil.

And there are termites in the posts and beams.

And we don’t want to see them.  We have our outer-images down pat, and are buoyed up with the attitude and lingo of free people, with rights, and privileges, and good lives.  We have nothing to hide.

But we are happily blind to what is happening to our country right out loud, in plain sight, in broad daylight.

People curse the truth rather quickly when it tears a hole in the underground activity.  We are so blind we don’t know a traitor from a hero.  The blind people are all running around looking for something to believe– for which speaker to trust.  Chaos is what happens when principles are broken down.

WE have nothing to hide. But THEY have something to hide.  The truth is coming out.  Let it!

We had better believe it and get busy.  It’s getting too late quickly.

Old Swimmer


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Filed under Fairness or Justice, Family, Mysteries, NOT PALEO RELATED, secrets, Spirituality, Stubbornness, TEENS, The Why's

Shall I Feed My Compost Hydrocodone?

(not Paleo related)

Recently I was given a prescription for a pain killer after a nasty dental surgery,  and I found it powerful to help me sleep through pain,  but horrible to get rid of when I wanted to.  I suffered withdrawal in the form of sleeplessness until I weaned myself off more slowly by taking less and less each time.  Now I have the greater part of these pills in my medicine cache, wondering whether to flush them, crush them, or simply feed them to my Compost Pile.

Why not let them be digested that way?  I spent some time in the shower trying to figure out if hydroco biodegrades when sent down our gullets,  and if so, why not let it biodegrade in the innards of a hot compost pile.  Same difference, it seems to me.

Why is is okay for me to send digested hydrocodone into the septic tank, but not okay for me to set it free in the environment?

I’m not MANUFACTURING the stuff, after all, and am not sending huge amounts down the water supply to my neighbors.

Anyone know?  I’m not fixating about this,  but I am asking rhetorically whether things designed to work in human digestion systems are really all that terrible to release back into nature.  Didn’t the ingredients exist in nature once anyway?

What do distillers do with the fermented mash?  All of a sudden I am alive with wonderings and lay-theory.

Anyone know?

Old Swimmer

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Filed under Mysteries, Nature, NOT PALEO RELATED, The Why's, Uncategorized

“wwwp5k” invites me to the 5K—and I’m…

Old Swimmer not believing a 5K request

Old Swimmer prone regarding an invitation to run the 5K

(not paleo related)

NOTE: This post was written before my daughter assailed me with Paleo propoganda… you can see I was not such a peppy person!


Here I am looking at my feet from a prone position in my bed with the lovely April sunshine beckoning me to run/walk a 5K in solidarity with WordPress.

I wish!

Another appointment today to find out what in the world is keeping me prone most of the day and making my good muscle tone into wet spaghetti, and how I would like to do the recommended build-up exercises in prep for a 5K run/walk/crawl.

Well, this year I have to regret… but maybe next year.   I hope at least a mention of “wwwp5k” will get my blog freshly pressed (I wondered what you have to do to get into those things), and I hope people will look up and find my soliloquies and rants in several active blogs I am writing to regularly.  Hey, I could swim 5K in small increments in the bathtub, come to think of it!

Old Swimmer

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The Vintage Machine …still loved but getting worn in places.

This is a fortunately fuzzy picture of how I looked to my littlest grandchild last week during a visit to my family of grown children and grandchildren in Seattle. My granddaughter loves to take pictures with my camera, and often the pictures are of me.  This is fuzzy enough to be publishable, I think.

Considering my recent battle with some wintertime bug , I think it’s a pretty cheerful rendition.  Maybe I should always have my portrait taken by my granddaughter.  Well.. anyway this one was nice…there were some I deleted post haste– way too OLD looking!

There seems to be a MAJOR THEME already, this year.  The hinges are getting worn and the nuts and bolts are getting loose in this “vintage physical plant.”  Occuppying my body is getting to be like having a nice, well-used piece of equipment in my shop that is gradually losing precision and has some wear in the cutting edges.

The old Sturgis Press that I enjoyed for years in my studio (on loan from the late Hewitt Jackson, an admired artist and craftsman who borrowed my large rug loom in exchange), was a wonderful example of simplicity and elegance.  A large heavy wheel with a handle for turning , and some simple adjustments for pressure of the roller over the blanketed plates,  it allowed for a lot of manipulation and experimentation.  I printed all kinds of things in that press, including embossings using materials like plastic screens for shop lights, for instance.  I remember the exciting effect of offsetting multiple passes of that stuff and making the wildest kind of moire pattern on dampened heavy paper.  When it was dried and matted it made a truly three dimensional piece that was hard to keep one’s fingers off– the jagged peaks were so sharp and clean.

But that old press was wobbly,  and one had to adjust the way the handle was held to get it to occlude perfectly as the roller went across the plate.

I wonder how many times that very well-used press did its work? ..Surely more than the 25.300 plus days I’ve accumulated since I was born.

I went to the doctor today and found out some things about my innards that I didn’t know but which he had recently visited via camera/scope.  I have scar tissue in my plumbing, he told me,  that dates back to as far as 1954, and was added to over the years by various surgeries.  Scar tissue! Who knew? This is making it a jerky journey for my fuel to get from here to there to propel my machine through it daily mechanizations.

Being advised that there is something that is definitely a part of you for the rest of your life, and which is not going to heal up and be gone is always a surprise.  Since it’s on the inside and not out there looking ugly where people can see it, it’s not so bad.  And I am not yet hobbling or having to use a walker or a wheelchair.  But things creep up unseen that will make a difference, and gradually, (I hope it’s gradual) get worse.  Hm.  I don’t like it.

How fortunate that many of us have working bodies for so long.  And we do take them for granted once we learn how to use them (how to walk, and swim, and run, and twist, and dance and such.)  We teach them fine tricks like sewing and making clocks and performing eye surgery, for instance.  I used to make very fine pen and ink drawings.  I am finished being distressed that I don’t do well at that any more.  My hands might still have the skill, but my eyes do not.  They are not good at threading a needle either any more.  But I value my eyes greatly, and they reward me daily with miracles of beauty wherever I take the time to look.  My hands still work very much better than they did when I was three years old and still learning to know how to tie a bow.

This past week: “Mommom, will you come out and do some batting practice with me?” asks my six year old slugger?  Two years ago,  even four years ago, he and I spent many hours tossing balls toward the bat,  and later tossing balls around in the batting zone.  He’s really good at batting now,  and also pitching and catching, and a lot of that started with our little games that got more deliberate and skilled as time wore on.  I was complimented to be invited…what a dear to want me to pitch balls to him.   I had to decline, having been ill– I can hardly climb the hill this winter after some nasty months of being a “shut-in.” I am not used to feeling old.

I’m going to have to brush up on chess, I guess, unless my physical machine suddenly grows strong and energetic and limber again this spring.  Even if it does, it would be good to get my chess game ready for some months ahead that might not involve prancing around on the hilly back yard chasing well-hit balls. My grandson is very good at most things and that includes chess.  At least I don’t have to count on my body to play that…just my mind. Well— hopefully the gremlins in my mind are not creeping in as fast as the gremlins in my gut!

The operative words in the title of this rumination are “still loved“.  That part is the real treasure.  I spend a bit of time each visit imagining these people twenty years from now, gathering either in that back yard or another one, remembering the old batting practice,  or wild games of hide and seek with Mommom.  I love being asked.  I think I can move from real ball to something like virtual ball using paints and papers, or something like that.  I notice they are now allowed to use magic markers.  This opens up a new arena.

Very grateful for new arenas…  Old Swimmer

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The Marketing Glitch: i.e., they are not shopping for “me”, they are shopping for something that is “them.”

I look at the arty black and spare screens where you can’t figure out what opens the thing, and when you find something small in the field of blackness you pick at it with your cursor hoping something will happen so you can see something.

Some time ago I read a book on direct mail advertising.  Now the internet has taken over the direct mail concept– BIGTIME!  But I am wondering whether my lack of followers might be explained by recalling what surprising advice was in that book:

The Direct Mail experts adamantly insisted that trying fresh, new approaches to advertising wares was simply not going to work.  They taught their readers that one MUST look for the existing direct mail formats and copy them as closely as possible to even get a viewing.

This is not what a creative person likes to hear.  Stay in the lines… copy the template…. keep originality out of it!  Then you will sell stuff.

WHAT?  Of course they were right,  or at least, my versions of direct mail advertising were wrong.

Is it different with the internet?  I see featured snips of other people’s blogs and web promotions, but mine is never among them.  And I think my presentations are at least better than some of what I see.

The “market” reminds me a lot of other institutional entities.  The first that comes to mind is school (I mean k-12), where you find that one wears certain kinds of clothes and talks a certain slang and fixes one’s hair a certain way (it was ponytails and pompadours when I was in Jr. High School), in order to be other than alien.  But being “other than alien” is only the first step.  One had to be outstandingly cool, it seemed, to get to sit at the “popular table” in the cafeteria.

Is this still true?  Does my website or blog have to have a certain “this-year”s” look and language to get noticed?

Is this what I should do? Should I have such an enigmatically esoteric splash page that people have to spend five minutes figuring it out? Or a shocking statement at the top, or a controversial nude front and foremost?  (I admit, I have tried some of these things, and the resulting comments are usually from some unsavory source that causes me to put it in the spam/recycle bin immediately without opening it.  I save the short list of “real” responses like I save corsages from the old high school dance!!)

If mystery is what my website needs, I will certainly not make the grade.  Mine, like me, just presents itself as what it is, no special “Gaga” novelties or amazing things frolicking across the screen, or no haunting music that emanates slowly enough that you wonder if your computer is finally groaning to a stop.

No, my website has big words (so I can see what I’m doing)  and they pretty much say what I’m wanting you to know.  Then it has pictures of what I do. I may be kidding myself that you are interested in some background about what I am doing, so I tell a story.  Yes, I rattle on some.  I often go back, embarrassed, and take out whole chunks of what I have published the day before.  So I agree that I need to edit before publishing.

My nature is to be cheerfully friendly, sharing freely, telling truths, admitting human nature type foibles, and believing that others may like that I am like them in some of these ways.

It doesn’t sell.  After all, they are not shopping for ME.  They are shopping for something that is “them”.

This is where the glitch lies.

I need an agent.  I need someone who is out there shopping in the market all the time, knowing what people are crowding around and buying.  My nature is that I don’t shop!  And I don’t crowd around things that others are crowing around.  I like the exception.  I like to find the one-in-a-million.

My blindness is that I keep forgetting that other people are not like me… that’s why I make art the way I do.  No one else has made it.  That’s why it needs to be made.

Anyone know an agent?

Old Swimmer

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Filed under Advertising and Sales, Mysteries, NOT PALEO RELATED, Originality, The Why's, Website Design


(not paleo related)

Imagine my surprise when I received another weightless in water image in my email today! The transparency is my alternative rendition of the link I clicked..  which is

 Don’t you love the similarity between this and my horse header?   You will enjoy the video too if you are interested in animal behavior.

Old Swimmer

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The Fall of Facebook?

I got off Facebook about four months ago because I was just unhappy with a lot of things about this social network that I joined just to keep in the loop with my family. I miss the daily interactions on the fly very much, but my day has a lot more hours in it and the accumulated minutes “following” people I don’t really know were, indeed, an investment I could do without.

It’s entertainment, really, and general snoopiness! Someone opened the lid of the candy bin and everyone is addicted, I think.

Now I read that Facebook has apparently shot itself in the foot! See this link for the article.

Isn’t it odd the way explosive growth and success can make giants tumble?  When success starts to become its own taskmaster and the instigators become addicted to dramatic growth — that’s when it seems the trouble comes.  The fast horse is flayed into an injured state and stops being a healthy horse.  This is the beginning of a fall.



old swimmer


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Filed under NOT PALEO RELATED, The Why's