Liebster Award and Nominees

Thanks first of all to Mitchel David Ring for the nomination. I have to admit that I have no idea who Liebster is nor what this award truly is about, but still I am honored nevertheless. I apologize if the formatting of this post turns into something less than perfect. Also I don’t know how to insert links within a post, so please indulge me. Following are the 11 questions asked by Mitch, with my answers to each.

  1. Are ghosts real? Have you ever had an experience with anything paranormal?
  2. Should aliens even care about what goes on down here on Earth?
  3. Do you think there are beings that exist beyond our perceptions? As in, are there things both smaller and larger than what our physical and technological capabilities can perceive?
  4. Chocolate or vanilla?
  5. What ancient city would you most like to visit at the height of its power?
  6. Is magic real?
  7. What happened to Amelia Earhart?
  8. The world has seen industries that started small among a select few individuals, and then spread like wildfire throughout the world: social media, online commerce, even cryptocurrency to an extent. What’s the next big industry?
  9. Would you rather be gifted a mansion or a private jet? All expenses paid for both.
  10. What is the one secret the government wants to be found out the least?
  11. Are you optimistic about humanity’s future?

1.  I would say that the existence of ghosts and the paranormal depends on the witness’s state of mind or point of view. People who think and perceive with one “bucket” of the mind will see things a certain way, and differently from others using another bucket. My experience has used a number of “buckets.”

2.  Any aliens out there will likely be as curious about life elsewhere as we are on Earth.

3.  I will refer people to the tale by H.P. Lovecraft called “From Beyond” for the answer to this question.

4.  I prefer the taste of chocolate, but I end up eating vanilla due to caffeine issues.

5.  Either Athens or Baghdad, the latter because of The Arabian Nights.

6.  Cf. answer to Question 1.

7.  Earhart ended up being the subject of a song by Joni Mitchell.

8.  The next big industry: roll-less toilet paper.

9.  A mansion. I’m a homebody. Just be sure that the paid expenses include a housekeeper, or a team of them.

10. The biggest government coverup is probably Trump’s clone(s).

11. Again a song comes to mind: “Carry On” by CSNY, especially the lines, “Rejoice, rejoice, we have no choice / But to carry on.”
The new nominations:

Liz Gauffreau


Diane de Exclana

The Used Life

D.W. Brewster, My Journey

Realistic Beginner

Helen Qin

Lara Trace Hentz

Elan Mudrow

Johnny (CALIATH)


New questions:

  1. What do you think is the most proper use of a blog?
  2. Is it ever right to tell a lie? When, or in what situations?
  3. Would you “barter” everything you have been, or could be, for one breath of ecstasy? (From a poem by Sara Teasdale)
  4. Have you ever been given over to a wanton passion? How did you feel afterwards?
  5. Consider Lt Henry in A Farewell to Arms. If you saw your turn coming to be executed in a lineup of soldiers, would you take the bullet or rather bolt for the river? Which move is nobler, in your opinion?
  6. Which is more important, society or the individual?
  7. Altruism or egoism? Can there be a balance?
  8. Which is logically prior, economy or ecology?
  9. Is premarital sex okay in your opinion?
  10. What is the best book you ever read?
  11. What advice would you give to someone you met with a serious addiction problem?

Thanks for reading and participating!


Thank You

I can do a little thinking about Unamuno now, although I haven’t finished the book. Basically there’s this concept of “the man of flesh and bone” that suggests to me that religion is more realistic than philosophy. Christianity and the real sociopolitical world are virtually inseparable in the West. The words on the sign outside the Eugene Mission: “Food, Bed, Gospel.” This differs from the Oracle at Delphi: “Know Thyself.” Or the motto of Phi Beta Kappa: “Love of Wisdom, the Guide of Life.” The real world has no use for knowledge and wisdom beyond what is necessary for survival, which Unamuno calls “preservation.” Hence I look around and see my sister’s family moiling and money grubbing, having for a creed the freely available New King James Version. I say this standing in the shoes of Miguel de Unamuno. But when I step out of them, I can think of at least two friends whose attitudes belie survival mode wretchedness, or is the word “misery?” Of course people have curiosity that goes beyond their next cheeseburger. You don’t meet them everywhere or every day, but they do exist. Without them, this blog I started would have expired long ago. It is to them I dedicate this post. Thank you all for three hundred follows!

For Keletso Chris

The following comment “could not be posted” on Forgotten Magic: Lifestyle Blog. I encourage readers to go see what Chris is up to.


I really like the last phrase, which came as a surprise to me. The word “fairytale” connotes a lot of things. For some people, fairytales are a good thing. Without tales of some kind, culture falls apart. Maybe the fairytale is a double edged sword? It just hits me as complex, though perhaps unintentional.

What is it going to take to get South Africa where it ought to be? Keep posting, Chris. You are an important spokesperson without realizing it. I hope you are doing ok through the pandemic. As it is said, all things must pass.

School Days

Ten fifty five.

After a nap, I at last looked through a pile of CDs and found a bunch of great ones, among them the Robert Plant I’d been obsessed with. I listened to it almost immediately, enjoying the whole thing. It made me remember old friends and one enemy I could think of. High school for me was thirty five years ago, and even the stores where I bought my CDs are mostly out of business. I can visualize the inside of one of them, on the corner of 11th and Seneca. The last time I was there was to sell music discs, not buy. Now, the business is gone forever.

Three fifty five. I don’t often acknowledge the fact that my mother taught me how to write prose, beginning with my book reports for seventh grade reading class. My first report, on Tarzan of the Apes, earned a perfect grade of fifty points. Mom helped me compose it from the comfort of her bedroom, shouting suggestions to me at my desk in the next room. She always stressed short sentences and short words. One ought never to use fragments or run ons. Ellipses were discouraged. I guess Cathy Cheleen, the reading teacher, contributed as well. Ages twelve and thirteen were critical for learning to write. Because I did learn, by now writing is second nature. The girl who sat behind me in that class, Kelly H—-, was hotly resentful when my paper came back with a perfect score. But Mrs Cheleen was pleased that a parent had taken an interest in her kid’s homework. Funny, I ran into her at the local Barnes and Noble many years ago. She stood in line for her turn at the register, frowning. I said nothing to her because I remembered the book loan I’d never returned. If I had spoken, however, she likely would’ve lost that frown.

Homage: Keletso and Mermaid

I was thinking about how mediocre my blogging is, and no better than anybody else’s. When using Reader and sorting through the blogs I follow, I find only a couple that are exceptional. I make a point of rewarding these with a like and a comment. Maybe I’m in a caffeine mood swing, on a low right now, but blogging seems such an amateurish thing. People with no credentials try to give advice on this or that or, like me, spam the domain with opinions and reports on their daily lives. Other bloggers want to sell something, or themselves; promote a product or a popular belief. Scrolling through it all is tiring. I don’t even like revisiting my own posts.

However, on occasion I encounter someone’s post with a keenly intelligent question or observation. These bloggers are young, bright, genuine, and fresh in their thinking. They strike me as being like 21st Century Candide figures, simply asking questions that no one else would think of, or dare to articulate if they did. I have in mind two young people, both from the so-called Third World. They seem to blurt problems and puzzles to stump the sagest among us. They do this effortlessly, spouting truth as if it rose from the reservoir of nature itself.

Therefore I call on Keletso Chris (Forgotten Lifestyle Blog) and Mermaid (A Mermaid’s Pen) to stand up and take a bow. Kudos and keep up the stellar work!