Saturday, October 31, 2015

Halloween, 2015

Friday, October 30, 2015

I had decided to get my BLOG writing done just before supper...  I had gone through, as I occasionally do, a folder from long ago in which I have deposited verses I've written, and I had already found a poem I wrote in 1990... looking back at looking back... so what did I do!  I put the poem in the Blog, and during supper Margaret asked me if I had seen the spider today... She said he/she/it had something in its mouth.  I grabbed my camera and went outside to see if it still had something in its mouth.  It did.  I look a picture and added it to the pictures I posted today. If you know what is going on with that spider, let me know.  Keep in mind that the poem has nothing to do with the spider (or maybe it does and I just haven't discovered what it is).

Love in Summer

He had felt love,
or something that seemed like love,
long ago when the world was all greens and blues
and summer was one endless day.
It had happened as they rode a ferris wheel
late in July at the county fair.
The warm summer evening 
smelled of ripening peaches
and popcorn.
The music took them round and round
and up and up and up
until once in the middle of the ride
their rocking seat suspended them for a moment
at the very top of the ride high above the carnival.
She held his hand tightly,
and there with the bright lights shining up from below
and the music of the merry-go-round drifting up and around
it occurred to him that he was in love with her.
He hadn’t meant for it to happen,
but he knew he could never go back on it,
that what he was feeling he could never completely forget.
There was no great rush of air
and no angels sang.
It was just the music of the merry-go-round,
the lazy looping of the ferris wheel,
the warm summer night
and her solid presence
occupying space.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Ourside the bedroom window this morning a spider I’ve known since last year about this time was showing off.  Actually it may be the offspring of a spider I’ve known since last year.  I’ve seen a spider like this one near the front of the house… maybe that was two years ago.  This one is in the same spot where I got acquainted with it last year. I adjusted the camera so it could get the close-up without losing detail. This spider is at least two inches in diameter. When I got to the computer with the image I thought to make a negative it… then a black and white image.  I was wishing I could show it to the creature hanging outside the window.  

After lunch I went off to my volunteer job in Balboa Park at the Museum of Photographic Arts.  I stopped at the Zoro Garden wishing I could bring the spider to this place.  The Zoro Garden was a nudist colony when Balboa Park was first developed.  I don’t know if the big Ficus trees with impressive  roots have been in the same spot for the hundred years since the Park opened.  I’ve lifted my camera probably at least a hundred times in the same spot outside the entrance to the building where MOPA is located. I never get tired of the timelessness of Balboa Park.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

After lunch today I went out for my daily bike ride, and as usual when I left the house I didn’t have a specific destination.  I went down the hill to Friar’s Road, then turned and rode west and then made my way back home first on Linda Vista Road, which took me by three of my favorite places in San Diego.  First the University of San Diego, then Francis Parker School, then I stopped my ride in front of my favorite mural,  a big one near the Linda Vista Library.  It was painted by my friend Tom Fagan a long time ago. I can’t decide what is my favorite part of the mural, but all of these elements are important. I couldn’t get Mother Hubbard’s dog out of my mind as I rode back down Ulric Road to the street where I live, so maybe that’s my favorite part…  Naaah.  I like it all.  Life is Good!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


Give me a question
to make the day interesting.
I’ve had enough of politicians
and preachers who know everything
and other practitioners of practical smugness.

I like the quizzical grin
on the face of the scheming boy
that makes me wonder what’s up.
Spare me the smile that says, “I know,”
and leaves no possibility for question or doubt.

Monday, October 26, 2015

A Bicycle Ride up the hill by the University of San Diego today got me thinking about the costs of college education, and I realized I haven’t been paying much attention since I retired from the business of education, so I went home and checked costs on the Internet.  I learned that two-thirds of students who go to college don’t graduate in four years.  Forty percent of students in college drop out — many with substantial debt.   I was/am shocked.  Here’s what I found:

Costs for a student entering college in the 2015-16 full-year, annual tuition and fees for Californians at “public” school tend to be nearing $35,000 with tuition and fees at private universities like the Catholic University of San Diego costs close to $50,000.  The annual cost of college for the first two years at any of California’s Community Colleges is just over a thousand dollars plus fees.  If a student lives at home the total coast each year may be close to three thousand dollars compared with annual cost of around $30,000 for the student who chooses to live at the four-year public university; so it definitely makes sense to try to get the first two years of college at the lower rate.  Of course, those are the figures for students who are already citizens of the state of California. The Catholic University of California comes in over $50,000 each year.  Point Loma Nazarine University costs over $44,000 dollars a year. 

The annual cost for the University of California at any of its campuses is approximately $33,000 for the student who lives on campus.  Students who live off campus usually pay more. It doesn’t take much to push the annual cost of public university to $40,000, so some planning needs to be done while the student is still in high school.

Sunday, October 25, 2015


One of the most peaceful places on earth is a place where Margaret and I had lunch today.  I sat at a small lunch table with my camera and tried to convince myself that there must be somewhere else more peaceful, where safety is felt more strongly than here.  When I got home in the evening and checked the photographs I got in that place, I became more convinced than ever that the space is enchanted.  

Friday, October 23, 2015

Our last full day on Claggett the street where Nancy lives was colorful.  We came two weeks ago when Autumn was still the season; and while we were here, winter came with frost on the grass and temperatures at freezing.  I went for a walk this morning and found trees still have all their leaves, but the colors are spectacular.  We went later today to an Indian restaurant... Life is good...

Thursday, October 22, 2015

THE SUPREME COURT building complex sits opposite the Capitol building.  I spent most of the day there... inside and outside... front and back.  The message on the back of the building is often missed by people visiting the site.  The back of the building has "Justice, the Guardian of Liberty" blazoned across the top of the building... Across the front of the building "Equal Justice Under the Law." I am pleased to be a citizen of a country that has Justice at the very top of its goals for citizens. We have had as Chief Justices people like Oliver Wendell Holmes... and we continue to have them on the Court.