Everest…

Dear Reader,

The last few days have had a feeling of strange in them. The weather has been unusually colder than normal. I half expected to see snow in the mountains and even some heavy rain. Of course it does not help that there has been earthquake activity in this city. However, nothing has prepared me for what I learned. Everest has moved. On Sunday at noon, Nepal time an 8.1 magnitude earthquake shook Everest. The damage and devastation are reminiscent of the 1985 earthquake that struck Mexico City. My prayers are with them.

Living in a state that is in constant movement. I can tell you, I’ve been through some very destructive earthquakes in my lifetime. Northridge, among others. The highest being a 7.1. Even so, I can’t ever get used to the ground moving under me. The experience is still terrifying. The sounds one hears are not easily forgotten.

The thing with earthquakes is that regardless of all the technology around us we have yet to predict one with certainty. That is what makes them even more scary, I suppose. All we can do is be ready. Pray for a good outcome and hope it’s decades before the earth decides to move strongly enough to notice.

Not all that glitters is gold…

Dear Reader,

It is easy to say, “Be the change you want to see in the world”. After all, who is to say, you aren’t trying to start with the man in the mirror? No one. Some people, however, say things worthy of a Michael Jackson song simply for mass appeal, to sound philosophical, humble or intelligent. Whatever the reason, we hope they mean what they say, or that given the opportunity they will practice what they preach. Quite recently Britt McHenry, a ESPN reporter by the grace of God, Destiny, the Universe, or good old fashioned Karma got such an opportunity.

Ms. McHenry, posted on Facebook on March 29, something about the impact words can have, we should always say nice things. Less, than 14 days later, she went out parked her car, had dinner and for reasons known only to her, she left without it. When she came back the next morning, naturally she expected to find it exactly where she left it. To no one’s surprise but her own the car had been towed. Granted, the company that towed her car has a horrible rating online, but even bad companies do their job right once in a while. What followed was something worthy of the movie “Mean Girls”

Find video here. Be warned, the language is explicit http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=b0f_1429232562

There are two sides to every story, and I’m sure there is more to this video than the edited version that has made the rounds online. I just cannot fathom what could have been said to her to deserve the tongue slashing she delivered.

For all the education Ms. McHenry boasts about, you would think she would have learned the basics, like, never become the story, maintain grace under pressure, and my personal favorite, anything you do can and will eventually end up on online.

As expected ESPN has suspended her for one week effective yesterday. She has not apologized to the lady. I doubt she ever well, and by the looks of it, she is not at all sorry for her actions, she is sorry she got caught. While, the world will soon forget this debacle. I won’t.

Not a week goes by that I don’t read a story about a kid getting bullied in one way or another. It just makes my skin crawl when I see what by age qualifies as an adult being the bully. Ms. McHenry, is certainly being part of the problem rather than the solution. If there was any hope of the pretty Regina Gorge, to be simply a figment of Hollywood, that hope has been dashed. Pretty, blonde, and mean.

Like the tag line to the movie Chicago says, “If you can’t be famous, be infamous”.

Whatever, the future holds for Ms. McHenry, I hope sooner rather than later, she becomes the person she pretends to be.

Goodbye Pitt Bull…

Dear Reader,

I called my parents as I try to do at least twice a week. The news they had was not wonderful, not that all they say must be filled with wonder and rainbows. Their dog, who had been in the family since he was a baby, had passed away.  He was just a little over 15 years old. It is amazing how time flies.

He looked so full of life the last time I saw him, I can hardly believe he is no longer with us. He died of old age, as not too long ago he was given a clean bill of health. It was a sad day for the family as to us, pets are family and they are missed as such.

He was an American Pitt Bull Terrier. I know in general some dog breeds have a bad reputation. However, Chico was the biggest baby around, who would not hurt a fly. That is unless, you jumped the fence to the backyard, or tried to hurt anyone. He was quite a character, very playful and loving. I will miss the ways he almost acted like a playful cat, as though he forgot how big he was, or even how he would get on mom’s shoulders and she would sing to him and he would walk forward, it almost seemed like he was dancing.

He will be greatly missed. I know I certainly will miss seeing his playful face welcome me when I visit.

Hold your family pet, enjoy their company, because they are a blessing that brings smiles even when smiling is the hardest thing you can do.

Until the next post. Live, Learn and Enjoy.

Galaxies…

Dear Reader,

Did I just paint a picture in your mind of the first space themed movie or TV show you saw or perhaps the last? Or, maybe a simple picture of stars and general outer space?

The truth is galaxies are far more complex than that. Some if not most are extremely unique. In the universe there are two types of galaxies that are most prevalent spiral and elliptical (no I don’t mean the workout machine). Then there’s Hoag’s Object.

Now, according to StarDate.org there are two leading theories on how galaxies first came to be. Yes, we would like to think that after the Big Bang the dust settled and space was as we know it today, but in reality, nothing was that instant. About a billion years after The Big Bang, (quite a long time folks) the first galaxies were born. A galaxy’s birth is far more complicated than the birds and the bees talk we all have had with out parents.  One way that was an “explain it all” way for a while,  was that vast clouds of gas and dust collapsed under their own gravitational pull, allowing stars to form, and presto you got a shiny new galaxy. However, as times must and always will change, mostly due to advances in technology, yet another theory has come out of the wood work, and it has gained popularity. That theory states, that the universe contained many small “lumps” of matter, which clumped together to form galaxies. According to this theory, most of the large galaxies were spirals, that eventually merged and the elliptical galaxies were born.

So what makes Hoag’s Object so rare and unique? Well you see, when two galaxies come together to become an entirely new galaxy it basically becomes a survival of the fittest. It is difficult to imagine something as vast as space can be crowded, but it is, galaxies on their own are huge. Think about it for a minute, The Milky Way Galaxy, a very recognizable name as far as galaxies go, home of our solar system it itself is made up of many other galaxies it has gobbled up over millions of years. It’s nearest neighbor is Andromeda, and it is only 25 times the size of the both galaxies in distance away. That is not enough breathing room. So eventually a collision happens, and only one survives, becoming either spiral or elliptical, except you guessed it Hoag’s Object, this galaxy is unique in that is is both, and to be honest how it came to be so, cannot be explained by science, yet, yes theories abound, but none solid enough.

Now, collisions are not rare, in fact, they happen quite often, it makes one think of space as a gigantic game of Pac-Man. The universe is ever changing and evolving, even though when looking up at the night sky we see the same stars and the same phases of the moon, there is a world of action going on further than the eye can see.

Now with new galaxies being born most of witch are in the elliptical category thus supporting the new theory of creation by collision, one would ask about the stars, what happens to them, do they become further fuel for the crash or what? Well, it is vary rare that stars are scathed during these death matches, more often than not they are thrown out of orbit, they are tossed so far they become residents of a new galaxy or just float in space, this is due to the fact that the distance between stars is so great. Not all, however, is death, destruction and chaos, more often when new galaxies are created, millions of brand new stars are born, thus adding to the grand circle of life.

Yes, we all would like to see space as a very dark and void place to visit, and to the Astronauts that went to the moon, it might have appeared so, but if you look up photos of galaxies far from our own, Space is the most colorful and beautiful canvas of all.

 

 

The Oscar Goes To…

Dear Reader,

So, it has come to my attention that the Oscars took place last month. I have not been so busy that I would not notice the most important award show in the movie industry. It was not that for sure.

For a long while now, I been out of the loop. The last movie I saw in theaters was Tangled.  Since then, though, the Oscars have not been a priority to me. They seem as out of the loop as I am. Gone are the days, when all a took for you to consider a movie, for movie night was the words “Oscar Nominated” or “Oscar Winner”. Now granted, I stopped going to the movies, but there is always Netflix and such other services. When I eventually get around to watching the winners, I can’t say that I agree. Maybe, I’m not as old as the voters, so I cannot understand. Some things are better understood with age, take Golden Girls for example, when I was younger, I found the show boring. Now, that I’m older, and understand the subject matter I actually laugh, and enjoy the show very much. So that must be it. Then, I have to remind myself, not all movies in Hollywood are the Golden Girls, some movies require the review of the target audience. I doubt Sony Pictures, Paramount, 20th Century Fox and the like made movies targeted to people over 60, which is the average age of the people who decide who gets every award. Sometimes, I doubt they even watch or give the same level of attention to every actor, movie, and song among other categories that come to their attention.  I am not alone in thinking this either.

To further state my point on how little attention span they give to the once honorable Academy, here is yet another example: They usually have a section of the awards show dedicated to the recently departed, “In Memoriam” and more often than not, it’s executives and people that are members of the Academy, and not the celebrities themselves, which is suppose to be the main focus.  This year they forgot Joan Rivers, along with 23 other celebrities with outstanding contributions to Hollywood. This is not the first time, it happens practically every year.

What could be the cause of this? We are left to wonder, but the Oscars are certainly not what they used to be. So it is no surprise the the ratings dropped to a record low, yes, we all want to blame the host. Granted, in the past it was a good way to go, but this year, seeing who won on each category, I can understand why it has very fast become a royal waste of time. It does not reflect the young, old or in between generation. Their supposed rules for winning are more contradictory and misleading than a politician. I highly doubt even movie studios know what it takes to make an Oscar worthy movie. Thank heavens for that, otherwise movie studios would be putting out something far more worthy of a Razzie than an Oscar.

To be honest, I think Netflix does a better job at guessing what I would like to watch or own, than the Oscars do. No longer are the words, “Oscar Nominated…” or “Oscar Winner” synonymous with a good movie or a movie worth owning. There is no denying it, the Academy is in dire need of an overhaul and fast.

Until then the Oscar goes to…. not a movie I’ll be watching anytime soon.

Christmas Season…

Dear Reader,

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Yes, it might not be snowing, and there may not be Reindeer around but the holidays will soon be here. I started a playlist of songs, and even looked up some books to read during the season.

So in case I don’t write this year, Marry Christmas to all.

MSI…

Dear Reader,

I am seldom surprised. Yet, today, I got the biggest surprise this year, and while, initially it was a not so happy surprise, it turned out great.

For the longest time, I was considering getting a laptop. Today, that consideration finally turned into fact. As we speak, I am typing on an MSI Laptop. Or as I fondly call it, “A gaming war machine”. Yeah, it’s awesome.

My LaptopNow, let’s focus on the not so good part, which by the way, has nothing to do with the laptop, as it is a beast. It has more to do with my initial reaction, when I was told I be getting it. [insert expletives here]. Yeah, initially I was not so happy, as I’m not really a big spender. I’m more of a practical person, but after it arrived and lots of careful consideration, I thought to myself, “Why not?”. Not to mention it looks BEAUTIFUL…

So am I happy camper? Hell, yeah I am. Good things do happen sometimes but this is one of those times that will live on for more than just a couple of years.

For the practical side of things, I will be updating this blog a lot more often. Plus, reading emails a lot more than I have in the past few months.

Live long and prosper.

Realities so Far..

Dear Reader,

There has been so much going on. I guess, the first thing I can share with you, is that these past few months have been sad, sadder, and saddest. No one really wants to burden anyone with sad thoughts and feelings. Yet, these past few months have been really testing my happy smiles and good resolve for a better tomorrow.

Maybe it’s just the holiday blues in general. If I had to grade this year so far. It’s been testing my good mood, faith, and general hope with artillery fire. As the great Maya Angelou once wrote. “Like Dust I Rise”. We can only hope right?  I have made it a resolution for tomorrow to be happy no matter what.

Smile, even if your battles go up hill. Eventually you will be at the top. You will look down at your journey and know that it was worth it.

A matter of perspective…

Dear Reader,

Today, well it’s the most back to normal day I’ve had in the last two weeks. Yesterday, I caught up with family as well as friends. Surfed the web and caught up with the news. Both on the news, and social media. It was quite an informative night.  My friend Rudy, kept me company on Skype, while we played around with image manipulation software, and we had a few laughs. I think he was making sure I was feeling okay. Which I am, considering the pain I was in just a few weeks ago, I’m worlds better.

Sure there’s many surprising changes that occurred while I was out of it, but gladly they were good changes, and good bits of news. Lately, I been thinking about how much a good day, a good though, a smile, a feeling of joy, is a matter of perspective. Sure your day can be wonderful, it really just depends on how you look it.

Take me for example, I’m recovering from the first major surgery I’ve had ever, and while some days are good and some are not so good. I still try to smile. Believe me that is difficult to do sometimes, still, every so often I see the big picture and I know that this too shall pass. In the mean time I try to share in the joy of those that are dear to me, Maybe in four more weeks I will be back to my old self.

Who knows what the future will bring, but whatever it is, I hope it has a chocolate cake with my name on it.