On the last Friday of the month, I am participating in the We Are the World Blogfest (#WATWB), in which we share a hopeful or peaceful story about humanity.
This month, I’m sharing this story, Holocaust Education: The Missing Piece, about the work of my new friend and sometime music partner, Dr. Margareta (Maya) Ackerman. I met her in the context of music at church. She sings, I play the violin, and we have performed together in services a couple of times. We’re getting together later today, in fact, to prepare for this Sunday’s service, called Faith and Hope after the Holocaust. We will be performing two Emily Dickinson poems set to music. Continue reading Holocaust Education: The Missing Piece
This week’s Mundane Monday challenge shows the Taj Mahal framed by stacks of sandbags. It reminded me immediately of the stacks of sandbags I saw, and photographed, last week along a creek bed. No Taj Mahal here, but I was reminded of Leonard Cohen’s lyric, that the crack in everything is “how the light gets in.” In these stacks, the crack is where the flowers can grow:
This is my first post for the “We are the World” Blogfest. (It’s a day late, just like yesterday’s Thursday Doors post on Friday. Time doesn’t always move in a linear fashion in my world.) To participate in this blogfest, join us on the last Friday of each month. As the co-hosts say, “no story is too big or small, as long as it goes beyond religion and politics, into the core of humanity.”
Continue reading Communicating Science Through Art
Author’s Note: Anne McCaffrey was one of my favorite authors as a teen. A high school friend gave me a copy of Dragonflight and I was hooked. But as time went on and I read more of the series I started to see its flaws. I wrote this review in college, when I was closer to both my love of and irritation with the books. Years later, I read the Harper Hall trilogy to my daughter, who enjoyed it but who never showed any inclination to pick up McCaffrey’s work on her own. The Harper Hall trilogy probably remains my favorite of all of McCaffrey’s work.
Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern by Anne McCaffrey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
If you enjoyed Anne McCaffrey’s previous six Pern books, you’ll probably enjoy this one. If you were getting tired of meeting the same characters with different names or beginning to get frustrated by the discrepancy between the books’ potential and what they actually delivered, Moreta will be more of the same.
Continue reading Book Review: Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern, by Anne McCaffrey
One of our geocaches last weekend took us to the loading area of a small ferry in Rio Vista. We missed the ferry and didn’t get to take a picture of its door. But the parking lot had a couple of interesting ones. Continue reading Thursday Doors: A Parking Lot in Rio Vista
In 2016, the City of Milpitas set up the first Geotour in California. Geotours are a series of geocaches that are arranged around a theme with the goal of introducing the cache finders to a new place (and its doors).
Continue reading Thursday Doors: Milpitas
There is nothing like a deadline to focus your mind. It’s true of teenagers, it’s true of adults.
Continue reading Mundane Monday: Gnarled Tree in Fremont
The Water Knife by Paolo Bacigalupi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Paolo Bacigalupi is a master of near-future dystopian science fiction. I’ve been dabbling in the genre, and reading this book made me realize that I have a long way to go with respect to world building. In many ways, this book is a textbook for how it should be done. The book is richly drawn, with complex characters, plausible extrapolation of current events, catchy slang, and unexpected twists and turns. With The Water Knife, Bacigalupi is at the top of his imaginative game.
Continue reading Book Review: The Water Knife by Paolo Bacigalupi
The news is getting heavy this week, so I’m taking a little time out for some Thursday Doors in San Francisco. Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world, run by Norm 2.0. Join in any time!
Even though I live in the Bay Area I don’t get to San Francisco very often. It is still more legend in my mind than reality. People around here call it “the city,” which I think is kinda funny given that San Jose is also a city and is much closer. Even Mountain View, where I live, is a city. Continue reading Thursday Doors: More from San Francisco
Prisma is an app, available for iphone and android, that enables you to convert photos into artwork. It is almost scary how easy it is to use and transform ordinary phone photographs into pictures that look like paintings or prints. I first tried it on our trip to Santa Barbara over Thanksgiving, and was pleased with what it did with a gnarled tree.
Continue reading Mundane Monday: Fun with Prisma