Tuesday, May 31, 2005

"going to the mountain is going home"

"Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountain is going home; that wildness is necessity; that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life." ~John Muir

'Tis/has been a day; the last regular day for me of this academic quarter (only the final exam to go), and the last of the month which meant case notes, billing and next month's activity plans had to be completed and turned in, along with creating my files for next month- part of the price of doing work I enjoy. Tomorrow is an early start and an early finish, so I leave you with the quote from Muir telling a part of why and describing where I always wish to be.

Monday, May 30, 2005

"Jove to Jove"

"We owe many valuable observations to people who are not very acute or profound, and who say the thing without effort which we want and have long been hunting in vain. The action of the soul is oftener in that which is felt and left unsaid than in that which is said in any conversation. It broods over every society, and they unconsciously seek for it in each other. We know better than we do. We do not yet possess ourselves, and we know at the same time that we are much more. I feel the same truth how often in my trivial conversation with my neighbors, that somewhat higher in each of us overlooks this by-play, and Jove nods to Jove from behind each of us."

I have been re-reading bits of Emerson ("The Essential Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson"; and to be truthful, reading with fresh eyes what I should have read more fully and carefully a long time ago). And I do admit that I can't get through very much at one time without pausing to figure out the meaning (and then what I think about it or where it leads me). I tend to get lost easily, thinking he is talking about one thing only to see that he has moved on to something else related, but different; I do wonder occasionally if he ever made a singular point.

My modern eyes and long under-used brain are accustomed to looking for the set-up logic, then finding a specific point quickly (something you may have some difficulty with in this post). Sometimes I grow tired of it and simply jump around until a passage catches my eye, so I have several bookmarks and page tabs for particular passages that either struck me as meaningful or else completely baffled me and several half finished places in the various sections of the book.

I was wandering the pages today, picked up where I had last left off in an essay ("The Over-Soul") and the passage above leapt out.

Setting aside the "not very acute or profound", I cannot help but think of this soul to soul or at least mind to mind connection we all seem to be seeking.

When I am reading each of you in your blogs, I sometimes "see" you. I am often moved and touched and very often all of you send me off into directions of my own. When you post something profound, frequently I cannot for the life of me think of a response that would fit the wondrous composition of your words; words that say a thing with such clarity and ring on in my mind long after they have disappeared from the screen. For a tiny moment besides the exhilaration of a new tangent for me, I grok you. If we were face to face, our souls would be nodding to each other "behind us", while I was still struggling out in front for words, but at least you would know that I saw you, heard and understood.


"I find that a great part of the information I have was acquired by looking up something and finding something else on the way." ~ Franklin P. Jones

John Suler, Ph.D
While looking for something else, I ran across what appears to be an interesting professor of psychology at Rider University; downloaded his book "The Psychology of Cyberspace" (not yet read; 'tis lengthy), blogrolled his blog (for the moment, anyway) and checked out his in class and longer exercises. There seems to be a wealth of information in his various pages.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Interesting psychological exercises

With my interest in psychology and counseling, as well as in my quest to poke and prod places within myself, I often take the various online tests that I find (it is also why I like the meme, Unconscious Mutterings). Many are just fun and not to be taken seriously, though if they help you think about some aspect of self that you hadn't thought about previously, then they are useful. I have yet to see some reliability and validity results posted with these sorts of tests and as such, they should only be used as possible tools in the quest for self knowledge, if the results make sense to you.

One of the most interesting exercises to date is the visualization exercise known as The Cube. If you haven't tried it, go check it out. Be sure and take it without reading the answers of others and without peeking at the key. It is not a competition and there are no wrong answers; its value lies in your interpretation of your visualization using the key. I highly recommend it, so take a few minutes and try it. Don't cheat.

Visualization exercises fascinate me because they often help one get to layers that don't always bubble up to consciousness, tapping into a variety of subconscious things. I did post my answers there, and I might post my interpretation here later on. It did make me curious to read the book to find out what kinds of common themes people found. By the way, the author of the blog, AmbivaBlog, where the exercise is found, is also the author of the books I want to read about the exercise.

Another little test, I found recently through Don at Conscious Living Journal (whose poetry I have enjoyed for a while), is a more straightforward sort of question and answer that attempts to tell one the archetypes that are playing a role in your life. My answers to that one seemed to make sense to me, too.

The archetypes they use are some common ones, but there is no single set of archetypes universally accepted, rather there are 70 or more that are used in various ways by various different disciplines. For further exploration about archetypes, there is an interesting list found here.

Unconscious Mutterings Week 121

I say ... and you think ... ?
  1. Crowd:: sometimes marching with, more often absently, not deliberately wandering away from (you know, my own faint drummer and that sort of thing ;-) ), then again I don't really like being in crowds
  2. Hamburger:: don't personally eat them
  3. Choker:: have a few; this one is pretty (and out of my league) and I like this one too, for different moods
  4. Lights:: I want to see something like this some day; and there is a category on my list of things to do that includes visiting a place where they happen more frequently
  5. Tinsel:: town with it's famous sign,  of course
  6. Testament:: document, strong evidence, profession of belief
  7. Best part of the day:: varies; sunset frequently, but best on those days I don't need to be somewhere and can stop to take it all in; and I like sunrise too, but seldom get to actually see them, sleep or getting ready to leave for somewhere taking precedence
  8. Election:: can we have a do-over with different choices?
  9. Clarinet:: reed
  10. Dead Sea:: scrolls
Want to play? Go to Unconscious Mutterings.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

When an existing word won't quite define the thing...

I really liked flusterpated, fahoodled and confuzzled, having experienced those; phonecrastinate is one I can relate to, as well as cognitive displaysia, which has happened often enough that I have become slightly (a smidglet) obsessive - compulsive, checking multiple times before leaving for work or class- most often occurring if anyone interrupts me on the first final check- which is probably related to being fahoodled.
Go check out  Mirriam-Webster Online: Favorite words that aren't in the dictionary

Friday, May 27, 2005

Here's to hoping I planted a few...

Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant. ~Robert Louis Stevenson

In that light, these posts from a couple of women in my blogroll were among those that held my thought today:

First from Fran at Sacred Ordinary: "World Within Worlds ad infinitum"; and at the time I read it, I wondered how many worlds I might have touched or come in contact with on this day or were yet to come.

And somehow as posts from various people often do, Fran's entry combined with this post from Lorianne at Hoarded Ordinaries: "Share the love" which includes a link to the Complimenting Commenter that I mentioned a few days ago, to remind me of the ripple effect

In one fashion or another, you might want to go plant some seeds of your own.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Sacred space

"Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again." ~Joseph Campbell

I have discovered several over the years and sometimes they aren't a place, but a state of mind, a state of being, or a state of being focused on things or moments that bring me joy and allow me to feel centered and complete, even if just for that moment. Fully immersed in creating something I will look up later and realize that I have been fully me and fully involved, with joy clearly part of the process bubbling along in the background. Stopping for a moment to feel the wind or watch a sunset or to watch the wonderful hidden world at ground level, I can later recognize the same sense of fully me.

I think clearly and feel most fully alive in mountains, but there I can also find a moment- not to think, not to let my mind race from next task to next task- which is what makes everything else important to me, crystal clear. So the words "find yourself" seem a misnomer; it is rather in losing my sense and awareness of isolated self, and being fully immersed in the moment that allow me to find me.

Where are your sacred places?

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

You'd think I would know by now

I am paying for staying up until past 2:30 a.m. Monday night, and then getting up at 6:45 a.m. on Tuesday. I made it through Tuesday (with the help of caffeine) until after midnight, one of those too tired to move to go to sleep things, but today seems to be in slow motion. Every bone and joint in my body is screaming at me, refusing to move smoothly. I have only one client to see today, but I don't need to be there until afternoon- which is a really good thing considering that every step and motion at this point is still literally, very painful.

I have this terrible tendency to keep tweaking and rewriting papers long after they are done (made worse when it is only one or two papers instead of several due), so the paper due on Tuesday evening which was completed (in draft 3) on Sunday night, was re-written Monday evening until it better reflected what I wanted to say. I still wasn't finished though, because I added, subtracted and reworked a few things on Tuesday between appointments and class.

Those days when I could stay out with friends until 2 or 3AM and then get up at 6 to go to work the next day are really gone. But I guess I still need one of those very late nights periodically, to remind me that I simply can't handle them and function two days later. Age makes the recovery time longer than the research and a grade (even if it could lead to a future research article) are worth to me. Yeah, great, I have that Honor Society key and 4.0 GPA, but who cares? And honestly, I know it doesn't make a difference outside the academic world.

Somebody, please remind me of that towards the end of summer, because the next (and only one this summer) class I am taking starting in mid-June is an entire mini-research project (idea, review of lit, design, collection of data, statistics, conclusions and paper detailing all) with the final product due the end of August.

I like research, so it could be fun as long as I finish it before crunch time and don't do this again.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Bits of Kahlil Gibran Wisdom

"Desire is half of life; indifference is half of death."

"Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls"

"I have learnt silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind; yet strange, I am ungrateful to these teachers."

All quotes by Kahlil Gibran

Sunday, May 22, 2005

"Where I'm From"

It doesn't flow poetic to me, but it isn't ever going to be finished so I might as well post it.... The idea is from Andy via Fragments From Floyd.
See here for all the links to Floyd's posts and others, plus the template.

I am from heavy stainless teaspoons, from Haviland china teacups and layers of worn Persian rugs.

I am from the tiny upstairs duplex full of love, warmth and later sadness, and from the big house on the lake, in hardwood forests and rolling hills, where down the road even now, my father (the only one that matters) lives.

I am from snapdragons and pansys in my grandmother's gardens, from forest ferns and bleeding hearts in the shade under the hardwood canopy and from the wind whipped waves of summer boaters; from autumn leaves of many colors reflected in the morning still waters and from hushed snow and ice covered winter water and ground; from live-forever stolen from Holiday Park and transplanted many times.

I am from loud dinner table discussions where shouting adults dissolved into laughter then more shouting, from Raymond and Emily whose table it was and from Emily Ann and an unremembered father replaced in full by Larry, who loves me still.

I am from mavericks marching to their own drummer and conformers afraid to appear different,

From "you are what you think", "you can, if you think you can", and also from "what would other people think?"

I am from nature conscious, Lutheran Episcopalian Methodist Presbyterian's turned Unitarian Universalist questioners, moving on with the business of living, choosing philosophy without structured doctrine.

I'm from the Army's Camp Atterbury in late morning on a Sunday in autumn, from Thursday night casseroles made from leftovers, from fresh tomatoes in summer's garden lovingly tended and lest I romanticize too much, I am from the expensive scotch and bourbon and other top shelf spirits lavishly purchased in quantity during tight times;

From German brothers who came to the untamed British colony and Revolutionary fighters for liberty from King, from the proud lineage of Lenape Captain/Chief Pipe and from people who kept secrets afraid of second class citizenship; from an Englishman who became the first judge in a once rough southwestern town, and from a long line of indigenous, immigrant, individualist, freedom seeking, wanderers...

I am from a few hastily snatched mementos before the estate dealer took the rest, from cards and letters haphazardly chosen saved in a moved many times cedar box, from faded handwritten documents and all the tiny clues for the treasure hunt of connections, to ancestors past and to my place in the whole that leads through me and flows onward to my son.

edit 1:31PM still tweaking bits...
edit 2:24PM, 12nov05 still polishing...

Unconscious Mutterings Week 120

I say ... and you think ... ?
  1. Heimlich:: Henry J., surgeon whose last name is most well known for the life saving maneuver to save someone from choking to death
  2. Gesture:: hand, finger or body motion used to communicate, signal, or initiate some action; gesture interfaces are an interesting research area with growing potential to assist people in all kinds of activities.
  3. Party:: birthday; celebration, social interaction; group aligned around some central purpose or theme
  4. Cuddle:: cozy and affectionate snuggling; miss that maybe most of all.... well, I miss that at least as much ;-)
  5. Room with a view:: 1985 movie
  6. Sebastian:: Johann Sebastian Bach
  7. Ooooh:: aahhhhhh
  8. Sigh:: yeah, those too... see above
  9. Two fish, three fish:: don't know two fish, three fish, but "One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish" comes to mind.
  10. Cake or death:: drawing a blank, but Google to the rescue with a band I've never heard of, which is not surprising and a fan site for a British comedian named Eddie Izzard with this in the opening bit of the bio on the site: ""So at the age of six I went off to St John's boarding school in Porthcawl, Wales. It was run by a very pleasant man called Mr. Crump who we nicknamed 'the man from hell who we all hate'. Seeing as my Mum had just died I decided to cry relentlessly for about a year. Mr. Crump would help me along with beatings when he could fit them in." (from 'Live at the Ambassadors')". Nothing about why Cake or Death? is the name of the site, but the humor sort of appealed to me.
Want to play? Go to Unconscious Mutterings.

I am from...

Back in February, Andy of Older and Growing posted his offering from a project he found from Fred of Fragments from Floyd. Andy's piece was wonderful and touching and I was quite intrigued.

I started working on it from the template, and then kept remembering more and more things that kept the piece growing larger and longer... not poetry at all. I abandoned any steady work on it, but kept the word document on my desktop to nag me and from time to time would open it and rework a bit or two. I have a version that is shorter now, but still not in final form. I will try to post it in the next day or so- finished or not- shortened or not- poetic or not (this will be my counter and break to the other writing I need to do to finish this quarter's counseling class).

Just the exercise itself is valuable- post or no post- and I was amazed at the memories of childhood that sprang up while trying to find the just right things.

So go check out the history and format, and the creations of others who were successful. I was touched by them all. Each one is a treasure.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Fear and Avoidance

If you pay attention, you may find that it is not fear that stops you from doing the brave and true thing in your daily life. Rather the problem is avoidance. You want to feel comfortable, so you avoid doing the thing that will evoke fear and other disquieting emotions. Avoidance will make you feel less vulnerable in the short run, but it will never make you feel less afraid.
~~Harriet Lerner, Ph.D, "Fear and Other Uninvited Guests"
For most of us, there's enough struggle just living a regular life. Who needs to go forth and battle dragons?

But we're also powerfully drawn to the idea of living a life emblazoned with passion. I think that's mostly because we're aware of the abyss of meaninglesness that can so easily lie at our feet. You know- like when out of the corner of your mind's eye you catch a glimpse of the idea that you're born, you work, you have a few laughs, and then you die, and what was it all for? Sometimes I think it's the best people among us who are more prone to a hunger for meaning. They sense that life can be most full of life when it's based on a struggle to make life better.

So part of us hungers for a sense of mission, part of us fears the cost. Usually it's the fear part of us that wins. Everyday life is in the driver's seat. We live, we laugh, we take things as they come. And that's okay.

~~Mira Kirshenbaum, "Everything Happens for a Reason"

Odds and Ends

This humorous item caught my eye while surfing blogs:
Blighty Blog: Solar Powered Chaos
Hundreds of angry motorists are lining the streets of Weston-super-Mare waiting for the sun to come out. This chaos has been caused by North Somerset Council's decision to install solar-powered ticket machines on the sea front. Since being installed they have only triggered into power once, last Friday, when the cloud thinned for a couple of minutes. Three drivers managed to buy a ticket and they are now stuck in the car park surrounded by an enormous traffic jam. Weston-super-Mare has ground to a halt. ...
Though the whole article was amusing to me, I especially liked the statement at the end:
On leaving the chaos this morning Blighty reflected upon the British spirit that resulted in hundreds of motorists queuing endlessly rather than attempting to park for nothing.


One of the ways my 'baby' (yes, I really do call him that to his face; one of my terms of endearment for him- and he actually seems to like it)  decided to celebrate his 21st birthday today was by leaving early this morning (with his girlfriend)  to see the new Star Wars movie. A few weeks ago he sent me this link.  Star Wars trailer.

I won't be anywhere near the movie for a long while. I really don't like lines and while I would love to see the movie, it will have to wait a while.

Note: If you haven't looked at my post about needing survey responses to ten questions on your feelings and experiences concerning multiculturalism, PLEASE, PLEASE do me a favor, read, and drop me line if you could- by Sunday. I really could use a little more input.

Twenty-One and Mom is rambling, free form... perhaps a little teary in places..

Today is my 'baby's' twenty-first birthday.

Gosh time flies.... so many memories....The afternoon and night of labor, followed by the morning trip to the hospital, followed by this beautiful infant that changed my life forever. The infant quickly a toddler I still held in my arms, rocked to sleep, bit my mouth to keep from stopping him when he climbed his first tree, bit my tongue to keep it silent so many times when my every instinct was to protect him from all possible harm... Memories of the young child that wanted to give away all his allowance to help the waifs he saw on television ads for the various children's foundations and any donation box he found next to a cash register... When Ninja Turtles and Power Rangers were the be all and end all of everything, as much as he wanted toys and trading cards, all change found its way into those donation boxes. And of course, as often as it was possible, indulgent mama gave him more when she saw or found out..

The young child that never met a piece of sports equipment, wheels or stick that he couldn't make do exactly what he wanted it to do.... sometimes on the first try.. plastic baseballs hit over the fence when he was two, hockey sticks that fit into his hands and street hockey pucks that made it to the net even when his father played to win.. skates that seemed an extension of his feet; the training wheels off the bike, he took off without a single spill or wobble as if he had been riding on two wheels forever..

How quickly he grew into the '"don't hug me in front of the guys, mom" stage, yet when he was sick or hurt, Mom was exactly who he wanted to hold him ... Memories of the young fellow, wanting to be different, wanting to fit in, not afraid to break the rules of other adults (not his parents) if he thought they were unfair, angered by injustice, but sometimes selfish and self centered wondering where his particular niche might be.. lead or follow peers was at first a balancing beam for him...

Memories of the hesitant freshman in high school moved by the coaches to starting varsity quarterback, practicing every single day of the four years.. quickly figuring out how comfortably to lead young teens larger and older than he... How I cringed at watching him play football.. and hated him learning to 'suck it up' and play for the win no matter the pain.. I remember the long (and sometimes short but over several days) discussions of philosophy, and living and values and religion and seeing my attempts to raise an individual who could make up his own mind, choose his own way, come to fruition.. and the teachers who equated jock with dumb and were always surprised and taken aback by his probing questions in class, his refusal to accept just everything they told him, and his grades that kept him in the upper third of his class. . A little testing now and then, but surprisingly little rebellion at home when the rules about 'demonstrate responsibility and the freedoms will be given one at a time as they are earned', were explained, allowing a lot of what my father would have called talking back, but what I called defend your request, be logical, tell me calmly why should I change my mind when the rules were questioned... sometimes he won..

Now the young adult is evident, responsibility easily draping his shoulders like a well fitting jacket, still a maverick in some places and often stubborn, determined to make his own mistakes... a thinker, yet still a jock; irreverent joker, and sometimes deep; wanting to be in the helping professions but not sure which one, casting about for the exact career that will suit him. Money matters more than I might have liked, but not as much as how things fit and how he feels about what he is doing. Tallish, lean and muscular, outwardly confident and mostly inwardly confident, still possessing that gentleness that allows him to do things like call a vet he knew would take care of and help find homes, rather than a shelter to take in abandoned barely a month old kittens that he found on his way to work and lambasting the sort of people who would leave kittens unable to eat solid food, abandoned in a box.. Strays, animals, people of all ages and stages- are all drawn to him.. Injustice still gets to him... But he is no pushover and he suffers no fools when he believes they should know better. I could go on and on...

Yes, I am proud, and I won't hesitate to tell you I believe I had some hand in his attitudes and demeanor- good and bad.... but I will also tell you that I am always a little amazed at this piece of my soul walking about in the world..

Twenty-one. Where did the time go?

Thursday, May 19, 2005

CBS- age discrimination; removing one of my favorite dramas

I am fed up with the broadcast networks in more ways than one, but the headlines about CBS cancelling shows to improve their standing among the under 50 year old crowd angers me.
OF course, I like the shows that they cancelled. I knew about "JAG", but cancelling Judging Amy was a surprise. Though Amy- 40ish or 30 something juvenile judge, divorced mother of a just turned teen daughter- was the focus, Tyne Daly's character - an over 50 (probably over 60) social worker with a certain attitude-was a favorite of mine. I have also watched "Joan of Arcadia", and thought it was an entertaining show, though it was no longer on my regular list of shows I try to see.

I don't really get it. Folks in the 40+ age group have the most money to spend. The over 45 crowd might be sometimes slower at adopting certain new things, but slower does not equate to 'never change'. It means the advertisers might have to work a touch harder to get our attention and give us a reason to change or at least present clever and thoughtful advertisement that makes us want to try a new item. I think the stereotype of folks over a certain age as 'set in their ways' is at work here, among other things.

Age discrimination is something I am acutely aware of, but it hasn't been on my agenda for participation in any active efforts to change. I think perhaps it should be.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Multicultural Survey: Help, please.

I have a paper due next week (Tuesday; for: Sociological and Cultural Factors in Counseling) and while I have interviewed a person directly, I would like to hear some other answers from other people. Please help me out- all genders, age groups, cultures, races, ethnic groups and countries (did I leave anyone or anything out? ;-) ) are welcome and encouraged. Email stormwind at gmail dot com (or you can use the comments if you prefer, as long as you understand they are on record for as long as the blog and/or Haloscan exists; There is a 10,000 character maximum per comment on my Haloscan account).

For anyone answering, please include a gender, country etc., and be assured even if I know your full name, it will not be used. Your identity will be protected. I am looking for more than yes or no answers, if possible, which will be sumarized and included in a few paragraphs towards the end of the paper. For those who take the time to answer the ten questions, thank you- very, very much.

1. What are your thoughts or feelings about "multiculturalism"?

2. Do you remember an experience, perhaps as a child, where you experienced feeling "different"?

3. What for you are some of the most important dimensions of diversity; e.g., what defines you better (e.g. culture, disability, age, gender, etc)?

4. Can you share an intercultural/interethnic experience that stands out for you as significant?

5. What is your cultural/ethnic identity? Has this changed over time?

6. Do you have available intragroup contacts or supports?

7. What are some memorable experiences living in _____ (Los Angeles, Sacramento, AnyCity, State, Country, etc.)?

8. Do you remember experiencing intergenerational conflict in your family?

9. Did you experience learning a second language? If so, how was it for you? How do you imagine it is for others today?

10. Do you recall experiencing bias or prejudice?


"Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase." ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Teaching nutrition to an adult with special needs

In the process of teaching one of my clients about nutrition, I have been on a search for materials that were easily understandable rather than creating all of my own. This has taken me to nutrition sites, childrens sites, teacher's sites, and on the list is to look for children's coloring pictures as well. I must consider cognitive abilities as well as making the material interesting enough to actually follow.

Of course, all of this required me to think about the process of how we teach people what is good to eat and what constitutes balanced, healthy meals and menu planning (ultimately grocery list planning too). I remember some discussions with my mother, and some with my son, but honestly, the process seemed to work more by example. My mother was knowledgeable about a balanced healthy diet. I did my own additional research, first as a young adult and then as a young wife and again as an over thirty mother of an infant. My son (who will be twenty-one this week!!) has done his own research of healthy food and diets, being concerned with fitness and nutrition from a personal trainer aspect. He credits the food he grew up eating as giving him a head start in figuring out what might be best.

Teaching an independent adult with developmental disabilities, who has a growing understanding of the connection between eating and health, but not what constitutes healthy foods (except for staying away from McDonald's french fries) is a large task. To give an example, on the night which started my realization that we had to fit this sort of instruction into our time together, my client had Doritos and salsa for dinner. As you might imagine, the inner Mom was shocked but only suggested that we work on figuring out better and healthier meals.

In subsequent weeks with a routine checkup following blood-work, her doctor has suggested she eat high protein snacks halfway between meals because they are worried about her low blood sugar and gave her some high protein special drinks to use when there was nothing else available. My client thought perhaps to follow that advice, she could have Jello as her snack between meals or maybe fruit. She is on a saturated fat restricted diet because of cholesterol issues. She buys many things that she never eats, either because she doesn't know how to prepare them or because they are on sale. Another issue is not knowing how much of any food or staple she might need (a few weeks ago, unbeknownst to me, she bought 6 bottles of salad dressing because it was on sale- none opened as yet. Another example of her lack of grasp of how much of anything she might need are the six huge bottles of laundry detergent that she bought also because it was on sale; she does laundry for one). Clearly we have some work to do.

So the first thing was to present the Food Pyramid and the types of foods which needed to be eaten daily. We have talked about that a bit and she has an easy to read chart. Tonight I gave her some sheets with simple pictures of the types of foods in the various food groups. These are intended to be used as cards, to later mix and match to come up with balanced meals and snacks. That will come later. For now, we will take a food group per week (or longer if it seems needed) and learn the types of foods that fall into those categories, always going back to the Food Pyramid to see how many servings per day.

The last time I created "individualized lesson plans" was when I was tutoring Political Science four years ago. This is definitely a bigger challenge.

Some sites worth noting:
USDA: Food and Nutrition Center
USDA Food Guide Pyramid
Nutrition Explorations: Educators - a great little site with materials, suggestions, activities, games and handouts for educators, separated by the age groups to be taught.

The definition of success...

"To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded." ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Monday, May 16, 2005


A first attempt to create my own set of smiley's including weather related. It is indeed cloudy and overcast here today. Posted by Hello

Retraction not really a retraction

The headlines make it seem as if it is a retraction of the original story, but the Newsweek article that they are talking about says something else entirely. The incident may well have happened, only the exact official report that it is mentioned in is in question.

Other blogs mentioning this with more clarity than I am capable of, given the emotional gut reaction I had to the original report:

Kevin Drum (my fav political blogger that I've been following since before he moved to larger audiences)

Moon of Alabama

I'm not going to read more reactions or explanations. I need something that triggers a more calm and possibly soothing mood.

dual posted to Corner of Babble


"We can easily manage if we will only take, each day, the burden appointed to it. But the load will be too heavy for us if we carry yesterday's burden over again today, and then add the burden of the morrow before we are required to bear it." ~John Newton

"Apparently there is nothing that cannot happen today." ~Mark Twain

Sunday, May 15, 2005


Newsweek says Koran desecration report is wrong

I find myself wondering what is true, not trusting any news source about anything as well as wondering what it says that I did not question that this was something the people holding and interrogating prisoners at Guantanamo would do. Did they, or didn't they? I don't know.

Solitude versus Loneliness

"There are days when solitude is a heady wine that intoxicates you with freedom, others when it is a bitter tonic, and still others when it is a poison that makes you beat your head against the wall." ~Sidonie Gabrielle

"Language... has created the word "loneliness" to express the pain of being alone. And it has created the word "solitude" to express the glory of being alone." ~Paul Tillich

"The whole value of solitude depends upon one's self; it may be a sanctuary or a prison, a haven of repose or a place of punishment, a heaven or a hell, as we ourselves make it" ~John Lubbock, Sr.

"Loneliness is never more cruel than when it is felt in close propinquity with someone who has ceased to communicate" ~Germaine Greer

"Loneliness is the ultimate poverty" ~Abigail Van Buren

Unconscious Mutterings Week 119

I say ... and you think ... ?

  1. Grandma:: existentialist, came of age as a flapper, wise woman; spoke 3 languages, read 5, college educated in an era when most women weren't. I can think of so many things I would like to have asked her now; She was my age when I was born and gone just as I was becoming an adult who might have been smart enough to know what questions to ask and which things to observe. The things the child observed and knew about her are wonderful, but not enough. The same goes for my mother who didn't even make it to my age and died knowing that a grandchild was on the way, but before she could hold him. I miss them both and have so many questions that are unanswered.
  2. Pet:: cat; former pets include fish, chameleon, gerbils, rat, dog, four previous cats
  3. Desolate:: landscape; image of desolate and inconsolable
  4. Backspace:: one of my favorite keys; text and a backspace key allows one to edit before allowing the words to surface in the world, unlike speech.
  5. Common ground:: (artistic representation of the concept) shared perception, agreed upon foundation for understanding
  6. Storm:: wind ;-) storm warnings; large storm brewing ahead
  7. Dark:: and windy night, it was a. She banished dark thoughts for the moment.
  8. Water bottle:: always have one or more with me; the twenty-first century must have accessory
  9. Training:: mastering something new, teacher, mentor; see one, do one, teach one
  10. Dot coms:: some eonomically viable
Want to play? Go to Unconscious Mutterings

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Quality of life

"I am responsible. Although I may not be able to prevent the worst from happening, I am responsible for my attitude toward the inevitable misfortunes that darken life. Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I have – life itself." ~Walter Anderson

"The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses. No one to lean on, rely on, or blame. The gift is yours - it is an amazing journey - and you alone are responsible for the quality of it. This is the day your life really begins." ~Bob Moawad

"You have the need and the right to spend part of your life caring for your soul. It is not easy. You have to resist the demands of the work-oriented, often defensive, element in your psyche that measures life only in terms of output -- how much you produce -- not in terms of the quality of your life experiences. To be a soulful person means to go against all the pervasive, prove-yourself values of our culture and instead treasure what is unique and internal and valuable in yourself and your own personal evolution." ~Jean Shinoda Bolen

"Life is an error-making and an error-correcting process, and nature in marking man's papers will grade him for wisdom as measured both by survival and by the quality of life of those who survive." ~Jonas Salk

Friday, May 13, 2005


One of the news and web topics I have Google Alerts watching is neuroscience, and an interesting article and website was listed in today's email.

PhysOrg is "online resource, totally dedicated to scientific discussions on physics, including such areas as nano- and quantum physics, applied physics, and semiconductor technology. We also have the news section about the latest scientific achievements in these areas." Wandering around the site, I see many things I would like to read.
A sampling of the stories that caught my eye for later:
High-Tech Robot Skin , Map of life on Earth could be used on Mars, Humans went out of Africa for shellfish but there are many more.

The specific article caught by Google Alerts that caused me to click on the link was "Adult and child brains perform tasks differently" about a recent journal by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis demonstrating the differences age makes to where and how similar information is processed in the brain.

I should have realized ...

"When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but with creatures of emotion, creatures bristling with prejudice, and motivated by pride and vanity" ~Dale Carnegie

I am always surprised when people feel the need to repeatedly do such things as informing someone of a meeting that should be attended but giving the wrong time, or passing along information with the important details altered or incorrectly embellished leading to an entirely different meaning, or withhold certain key pieces of information when directly and specifically asked. The real kicker is when they are (very politely) called on it, they smile sweetly and say, "Oh, I must have forgotten" or "Oh, I thought I told you" or something else that is meant to hide that they were deliberately being misleading.

It could be selective attention, but it has been my observation that men do this sort of thing much less often- to women at least (can count on one hand the times a male has done this and it takes two hands plus for women). I really detest those kinds of games and I honestly don't understand why some folks try to make everything some kind of competition. (Or maybe it isn't competition, but some other motive which is driving the behavior..)

I showed up twenty minutes early for this morning's meeting (with my hyper-reactive skin feeling burned)- and the meeting had already started about ten minutes before. When I said with a smile and a gestural apology, "I'm sorry, I thought I was early and the meeting was at 11:15 ", the reply from the person who told me 11:15, was "oh, we were all here, so we started early", to which another attendee said, "we were early, but I'm sure the meeting was supposed to start at 11". The person who told me 11:15 didn't even bat an eyelash.

That makes four or five times or more something like this has happened with this particular person (different things, differing degrees of importance; and yes, I am very slow to judge negatives). Sigh... I guess I need to view any future information with suspicion.

It's been a very long work day into night, but Friday is a day off.... sort of. I don't see clients and I can at least sleep a tiny bit later.

Oh, and I found the Benadryl gel after I got home tonight and liberally applied it to my face. It might slow down the reaction from my skin to whatever it is/was.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

New Firefox update

Firefox has another update- fixing more security issues before they are actually a problem. It is too late for me to do tonight and I should be asleep but the uncomfortable reaction on my face is keeping me awake.

I really do like Firefox and it really is worth little bit of extra time it takes for the update/upgrade steps. They have supposedly fixed the update issues and it is supposed to install over the old version. I just haven't tested that method yet.

Someone in the forum suggested that the frequent upgrades are messing with the 'sales pitch' using security as the main reason to switch. I haven't seen Microsoft hurry to fix any security problems with IE that fast.

Firefox 1.04 Installation Guidelines and Links

Updated post 5/13/05 12:40AM: I upgraded to 1.04 during a break today with no problems. And a very helpful article explaining why Firefox is still safer than IE appeared in the Windows Secrets newsletter which can be found online here.

Using statistics compiled by Scanit NV, the newsletter noted that IE users were vulnerable to known exploits that were already "in the wild" for 200 days or 54% of 2004 and compares that to Firefox which has produced an update for every exploit found before any hacker code circulated and instead of taking months to produce a patch, was about a week between hole found and the fix.

Red face: payback for posting political rants? ;-)

I woke Wednesday morning with my face feeling slightly sensitive and ever so slightly pink in a couple of patches. Throughout the day which included an impromptu round trip on the bus with one of my clients, I also had numerous occasions to use one of the pretty fold out fans (from my collection) that I carry with me for just such occasions. (Yes, I really do carry a fan and I do use it when the need arises.) The translated version of that is that I was flashing which added to the feeling that something was increasingly "wrong" with my face.

(today's fan and the hat I was wearing) Posted by Hello

By the time I arrived home this afternoon, my face was very noticeably reddened in various patches- nose, left side of chin, forehead, cheeks and my left ear. Washing with Basis soap and putting cream on was a mistake which was corrected by gently rewashing and digging out the colloidal oatmeal to apply. It feels better for a while, but soon feels very hot to the touch again. I know I have some contact allergies, but haven't had any trouble for a long time and never did nail down all the exact substances. I haven't used any new products so that leaves few clues for this episode. At least it isn't giant hives.

Argghh... This does mean Thursday is a no makeup day. Of course, I have an annual meeting in the morning for the caregivers and support people for one of my clients and then possibly a trip in the late afternoon to a company who is giving another of my clients a hard time about a payment the company lost. Maybe by then it will look sunburned. ;-)

Wandering far afield

I spent some time this morning and this evening, surfing random blogs through Blog Explosion and checking out those I had "blogmarked" today and previously. Here are a few that turned up:

Making Stuff -Artist who works in many materials. (later edit to correct the blog name)
Random Acts of Verbiage- Matt Jones Blog with a nice post on 50 Ways to Help the Homeless
Kevin, M.D. Medical Weblog
Connections pictures and commentary
Google Blogoscoped
Progressive Conservatism
Mama Write
A Watercolor Artist's Journal
Also worthy of mention is this blogger who turned up in my comments and makes a habit of giving compliments. The Complimenting Commenter

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

I shouldn't read the news...

US Koran Abuse

I am literally sick over this kind of thing. It makes my stomach tighten in a knot and I am angry; angry at the people in charge that they could be so blind and ethnocentric to allow this sort of thing to happen- to create a climate where this sort of thing is considered acceptable.

The longer all of this continues, the more of these kinds of abuses I expect to come to light. It saddens, sickens and makes me just angry with no where to put the anger to use.

I had more of a rant at COB...

There are many more horrible things in the news; more suicide attacks in Iraq, people killing other people at home, the Bushies working hard to turn the US into a money making machine for their cronies while damning the environment, and the needs and safety of future generations.

I keep trying to remember I can't fix all things, that I can only work on my little corner a little at a time. But while working on making my corner a better place, I have to figure out how to continue to work on a complete change in political climate in DC, even if all I can do is nibble on the fringes .


Tuesday, May 10, 2005


"I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do." ~ Leonardo da Vinci

and the Anthony Robbins version:
"You see, in life, lots of people know what to do, but few people actually do what they know. Knowing is not enough! You must take action." ~Anthony Robbins

"Don't wait. The time will never be just right." ~Napoleon Hill

"Remember, people will judge you by your actions, not your intentions. You may have a heart of gold -- but so does a hard-boiled egg." ~Anonymous

"Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires courage." ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

"You may never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing there will be no result" ~Mahatma Gandhi

"To keep a lamp burning we have to keep putting oil in it." ~Mother Teresa

Driving concerns?

Another freeway shooting this afternoon brings the total to "12 in recent weeks".

NBC 4: Motorist's Tire Shot On Freeway Transition Road
KCBS 2: Shooting on Costa Mesa Freeway
ABC 7: Another Freeway Shooting
KCAL 9: Shooting on Costa Mesa Freeway
KTLA : Another Shooting Reported on Freeway

There are no new Los Angeles Times stories that I can find, nor any new reports in the Daily News. Maybe I am not looking in the right place.

The May 6 editorial in the Daily News suggests the same thing I did in another post; the broadcast news is hyping this quite a bit and the incidence of these kinds of shootings are in fact fewer (or were) than in previous years.
(Daily News May 6, Editorial)

I don't feel any better; in fact, now that the number is up to "about a dozen", I feel more apprehensive, though Jay Leno's jokes about it tonight were pretty funny (Sorry, none of them are online yet) and that does a bit to defuse things.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Social brain

On most days, I score really well on logic puzzles and statements. I am not bragging; it is what it is and doesn't indicate anything about anything really except that one ability which sometimes kicks in and as evidenced today- sometimes doesn't.

In a simple little test to illustrate a point within a post at The Loom ("Cheating on the Brain"), I scored as the majority of folks do.

By writing that little bit, I will possibly change your results if you are heading over to check it out. Read the whole; it is fascinating about what parts of the brain engage with what sort of problem and the speculation about why. (The comments in the discussion after the post are interesting too, from all sorts of standpoints ;-) )

The full text of the research article he is writing about is also available in HTML: "Human Brain Mapping". It also makes interesting reading (You can read only the abstract if you prefer or jump to the various sections from the links on the left of the page).

Dream quotes

"If you're still hanging onto a dead dream of yesterday, laying flowers on its grave by the hour, you cannot be planting the seeds for a new dream to grow today" ~Joyce Chapman

"There are people who put their dreams in a little box and say, "Yes, I've got dreams, of course I've got dreams." Then they put the box away and bring it out once in awhile to look in it, and yep, they're still there." ~Erma Bombeck

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Mother's Day

"Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body." ~Elizabeth Stone

Happy Mother's Day to all the mother's out there.

Unconscious Mutterings Week 118

  1. Android:: Star Trek's Data; Space Science Data Operations Office: "The Science of Star Trek" by David A. Batchelor, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, 1993
  2. Revenge:: bad karma
  3. Knight:: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  4. Stranded::stuck, helpless, abandoned
  5. Weakness:: in one's mind
  6. Greed:: more bad karma
  7. Walter:: Sir Walter Raleigh
  8. Dense:: thick, viscous
  9. Sheep:: follow like
  10. Propane:: gas, heating fuel, boom

Want to play? Go to Unconscious Mutterings.

Friday, May 06, 2005

sigh... Bushies at work

I guess we should have known it was coming since it had already been suspended for five years. I wonder how much this has to do with the push for more oil drilling and exploration in Alaska and how much from the logging industry?
Bush Removes Logging Barrier

The Bush administration on Thursday overturned one of the most significant land conservation measures of the Clinton presidency: a ban on roads, logging and development on 58.5 million acres of national forests. The move could open large pristine areas to industry.
Though 38 states have some areas of national forests without roads, 97% of the land at issue is located in 12 Western states.

Tweak Guides

I discovered* a very useful set of easy to understand references to tweak Windows XP, Firefox, Nvidia Forceware graphics cards, various games, and many others at  TweakGuides.com.

The two that I have spent the most time with so far are:
Firefox Tweak Guide containing almost everything you wanted to know about what, why and how to use and customize Firefox and then some. I already see a few changes I am going to test...
Windows XP Tweaking Companion (the downloadable free version). I just started reading this one, but if it is anything like the Firefox tweak guide, I expect I will learn a whole lot of new things.

* Thanks for the find go to adot's notblog

NewScientist - May notes...

Perusing the free sections on New Scientist the Special Report on Nanotechnology is interesting and gives some food for thought.

There is an interactive graph that shows the relative size of a nanometre, and various pages on concerns and applications (now and hoped for) along with links to external sites with further information. A few pages are behind the paid subscriber shield.

When I got to the backpage where the short and sometimes weird notes are found (sort of like the Reuters odd news page) this bit seemed apropos with the British elections just over:
A bit hasty?

FINALLY, some slightly unfortunate phrasing from the BBC's online health news:

"Parliament must debate whether terminally ill patients should be given the right to die as early as possible after the election, peers said."

From issue 2498 of New Scientist magazine, 07 May 2005, page 76
hmmm.. hoping to add a few pounds to the National Health Service budget, are they? I suppose they expected those folks to vote for them first before removing themselves?

There are several items on the page that might cause a few smiles (though no giggles; and ok, I have a weird sense of humor sometimes), from an astrologer suing NASA, to downloading the entire internet, to speculation about a possible secret UK program that sends babies into space.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Looking at stats and shaking my head...

Looking at the most frequently used search terms that folks used to surf here in the past several days I find:

BMW Z4 image - the most frequently used search to get to tangents for the past several weeks. I don't understand this one. I linked to a picture (I didn't post the picture), in an unconscious mutterings post in August of last year, and since then several different foreign language image search engines including Google Images in various languages, turn up my site when folks search for pics of that car. The hits for this have increased over the past couple of months.This is really weird to me. Can anyone explain?

Occam's Razor - second most frequently searched item over the past month turns up this post which included '"Ocham's Razor essentially states that all things being equal, the simplest explanation is usually correct."' and links to various spellings. Occam's and Ockham's and Occham's are the most frequently used spellings. I hadn't seen it as "Ocham's" before the post that was referenced.

Firefox 1.03 not connecting, Firefox problems, Firefox - with or without various additional terms and this one has been popping up more frequently. To make it easy I thought I would link all my posts about Firefox in one spot:
1.02 to 1.03
pre-release version
1.00 official version upgrade
1.00 to 1.01
1.01 to 1.02

Go to the Firefox support forum, folks. Use the search feature there. And if you still can't fix whatever problem you are having after reading and trying the solutions, then post with a list of everything you have checked, your system and the problem. There are lots of people with exceptional knowledge hanging out there and some like me who have posted with and then solved a couple of little issues in configuring a particular system. I have even answered a few posts since joining. Connection problems aren't a Firefox bug or issue- the most common problems result from configuring firewall program access settings and ISP DNS problems (which are your ISP's problems, but there are solutions found in the support forum for those, too).

Others search terms used in the last few days include Santa Ana Winds and poetry, tangents, freeway shootings, and popping up more than once over time- "Stormwind" with variables looking for secrets and tips for the game; never played, don't know a thing about it, and I was around on the net before the city in the game was, I think...

That people would check out the blog from the various searches surprises me, except maybe the Firefox one (and "stormwind"). They say something- the searches and my surprise- but I haven't figured out just what...


"A writer writes not because he is educated but because he is driven by the need to communicate. Behind the need to communicate is the need to share. Behind the need to share is the need to be understood." ~Leo Rosten

"The way we communicate with others and with ourselves ultimately determines the quality of our lives" ~Anthony Robbins

"The newest computer can merely compound, at speed, the oldest problem in the relations between human beings, and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem, of what to say and how to say it."~attributed in my files as Edward R. Murrow

A lot of things going on jumbled around in my head, but mostly my brain is tired- hence once again combing the quote files, finding some inspiration and then losing the threads of thoughts that went with them.

so the final quote for tonight is:

"Saying nothing...sometimes says the most." ~Emily Dickinson

I didn't actually say nothing, did I?

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

I was impressed... Tim Wise on racism

If you have about an hour to spend or can download this and play it while driving somewhere, you might want to listen to Tim Wise and this mp3 (I saved/downloaded the page for later) of a speech given in 2003 about racism:

mp3 format, Speech by Tim Wise: a white Jewish fellow with a passionate style and persuasive argument to make that is still timely. In particular beyond the issues addressed are some interesting statements about our being in Iraq and before that Afghanistan and the hatred we are continuing to foster. He includes racism as a cause of the war.

Of course some of the same things that others say appear but also some fresh perspective from which to view this problem that doesn't appear to have vanished. There are points of view that I wish could be heard by the DC powers that be, and all those who feel racism in the United States is not really a problem any more.

He has an abandoned blog at A Word From the Wise where several articles and speeches (text and various formats) are listed and another website with more articles (text) at Tim Wise's ZNet HomePage

The mp3 speech was part of the class lecture tonight and animated discussions when we broke into smaller groups. Honestly, I want to hear it again and take sections to think about in a slower pace, as it raises issues that for me are sometimes problematic. Looking mostly white and feeling and being biracial poses problems that I have not entirely dealt with apparently.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

last thought of the night...

I have been finishing up a midterm exam and some writing (personal journaling about some specific topics) that must be turned in tomorrow afternoon; some of it to be sent via email. Of course I didn't find any scantrons at home. I will have to purchase a couple (plus extras of course) before class and quickly fill one in with the answers I have decided and marked on the multiple choice part of the test. I had five weeks to look for these, but didn't until now.

I am not sure it is related exactly, but I liked this quote I found tonight while looking for something else:

That they may have a little peace, even the best dogs are compelled to snarl occasionally. ~William Feather

I think I am tired of baring my soul in academic circumstances.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Freeway shootings

Even knowing a little about calculating probabilities and with the millions of drivers* on Los Angeles freeways daily, somehow having 7 freeway shootings in the last 2 months begins to register an alarm.

Do I perceive danger because it has been the subject of the disaster driven news so frequently and like everyone else I have trouble immediately sorting out the chicken little cries from real danger??

I don't know how long the ABC link above is good, but these shootings aren't confined to one local area or freeway and they appear to be random, though that isn't confirmed. There is also some concern that some of them may be copycat shootings.

Despite the mention by CHP of shootings being "rare", I don't feel any better knowing they are beginning to think copycats are involved. The Times gives the actual number of shootings so far this year (11), and in 2003 (46) and 2004 (36) including the number of fatalities.

LA Times on the 6th shooting  which happened on Sunday, 1 May. The Times article also lists the previous incidents by date, freeway, time, victim.
LA Times on the 7th and possibly 8th shootings

*LA County Freeway& Highway Traffic Volumes; In a quick search for actual facts rather than simply observation, I found statistics for 2003- and this little note at the bottom of the page:
Approximately 2,882,784 vehicle trips are taken on L.A.'s 650 miles of freeways and 22,000 miles of surface streets each day between 7-8 a.m. on weekdays. This is the equivalent of the entire population of Dallas, Texas.

No credit for standing on the sidelines...

It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement; and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

Universal cognition?

Different Ways Of Thinking And Thinking In Different Ways
We all have different ways of thinking but do we actually think in different ways? In other words, is cognition universal? The question of what is universal and what culturally specific is a classic issue in the nature vs. nurture debate.
The article goes on to talk about these issues and contains some fairly understandable analysis of what the author believes are the universal parts of cognition.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Unconscious Mutterings Week 117

I say ... and you think ... ?
  1. Texas:: NTexas; large state with various climates
  2. Scholarship:: exceptional study, knowledge; financial awards for study
  3. Runner-up:: second in a contest where someone is keeping score and usually where only the winner gets noticed
  4. Mustang Sally:: "All you wanna do is ride around Sally, ride, Sally ride... "
  5. Jones:: Wd9bfa; Indiana ;-)
  6. Hard to get:: a game; a scarcity often pretended to drive up the value
  7. Jewish:: ethnicity, culture, religion
  8. Crew:: organized group
  9. Cable:: internet, television; guy wire; bundle of wires
  10. Assistant:: helper
Want to play? Go to Unconscious Mutterings