Muting The Sun

These past six months have been like groundhog's day around here, and I'm sure I'm not alone in saying that. The work from home order has been lifted to an extent - I am working from home 3 days a week, and in the office 2 days. I am a person of numerous fixed habits and with the ability to go anywhere freely, the habits are all one has, really. So I am evidently stuck at perfecting them because, well, there's nothing else to do around here. Fortunately the pandemic came on the lead-end of summer when people could get outdoors and do socially distant outdoor activities. It has saved me. My bike, my walks and my kayak have kept me out of the mentally unstable ward at the local hospital. You throw a highly charged political race, unprecedented runaway wildfires, a hundred protests and riots and, well the outdoors is all a person has some days. The problem with all of it is...winter is coming. Sure you can go outside, but it's not the same. I'm going into it with …

The Revolution Will Not Be Blogged

In case you haven't noticed, this blog has been on a pandemic holiday. I quit posting for the past 6 months, partly out of blog-fatigue and partly to work on other things, primarily getting my latest manuscript in shape for submitting to publishers. I'd been blogging twice a week for the past 10 years and had reached a point where I just needed to step away. It has been refreshing and I am coming back with renewed energy and looking forward to starting "So it goes..." back up again. For those who follow it, I will be posting once a week on Wednesday evenings. My topics will follow the whim of my week, much like my last blog. Topics will vary and reflect the world as I see it. I hope you like where it goes and will let me know if you do.So, what has happened in the world since I last posted in March? Only kidding. I never signed up for a revolution/pandemic/apocalypse, but here we are. So much unrest. The last time I saw anything like this was the late 60's and ea…

Isolation Innovation

I've noticed a number of positive attempts at keeping people engaged or connected or just looking up during the Coronavirus isolation that we're all working through. Here's a rundown of 10 of them, some I've heard of, some I've participated in.

Visual and Word prompts for writing. A friend posts a picture and an inspirational message and people are encouraged to write a paragraph, story or poem about it. Great for writer types and writer wannabesArt: A friend posts a digital blank picture and friends are encouraged to color it using MS Paint, Photoshop or real art materials. Hatpy Hour where a bunch of friends all get a hat and a drink and hang out on Zoom.Virtual Church gatherings using Google Hangouts5:00 Happy Hour outdoors & "meet your neighbor". A friend parked his lawn chair on his lawn with a couple on either side 6' away or more, in hopes a neighbor would sit down and chat.Virtual writing critique groups using Zoom. Writers share work by em…

This Is Not A Drill

I can't seem to fathom what is ahead for all of us over the next several weeks. Working from home, everything under the sun is closed, no gathering, no social events, and on and on.

If I think about it too hard, I want to go fetal and rock in a corner. Of course, as an introvert, the ability to say no to everyone without guilt is sort of freeing, so that part is welcome. But beyond that, the seclusion, isolation and distancing are not even the hardest parts. It is the loss of routine and balance. It is the ripple effects of a stagnant economy. And, maybe most of all, it's the unknown - the not knowing what's coming next. No one seems to know, so here we sit. Alone.

On Tuesday, most of the Parks and Land Use employees who could work from home were told to do so. I quickly set up a home office and after changing out some old equipment, have made myself comfortable upstairs. And these first two days have been strangely productive. It's amazing what a person can get accomp…

The View From The Bunker

Typically today I would post a "Picture My Life" post on this blog. Those posts started as a creative exercise a few weeks back and I've had fun with them.
But I'll be honest, like many of you I've been sorta obsessed with the impending doom of the coronavirus pandemic we're all facing.
It has occupied my mind space worse than anything ever has, I think. I google about it. I check Twitter and Facebook for updates about it. And worst of all, I can't not think about it. It's right there - all the grim reports and updates - staring us down as a country and a world.
The closest thing I think I can compare it to was Operation Desert Storm, when I would come home from work and watch the war on Kuwait on the news. EVERY NIGHT. We had not had involvement in a war like that in a while, so I was fairly obsessed.
So it goes today, except with Coronavirus. 
I am of an obsessive enough nature that I know I am going to have to find something constructive to do with…

Picture My Life - 2004

As part of a creative exercise, I'm taking a picture from every year of my extensive photo collection and writing about it. I use the month and date to determine the folder # and picture #. This random but measured system will provide a glimpse into the people and places of my past.

This shot comes from 2004. It was taken by a stranger because I wanted to capture the moment together with Ben at a Brewers game. We had a seat in left field - not sure how I got tickets, but it's not like me to go to a lot of games, so I probably got them free. 

I do remember that Ben Sheets pitched out of his mind and threw at least 11 strikeouts, if not more. 

The picture reminds me of my days in the Big Brothers program in the late 80s when I had a "little brother" that absolutely loved the Brewers, and the game of baseball. We went to a ton of games together because BB/BS always seemed to have free tickets. This kid, Michael, was a baseball nut. He quoted stats and knew the history of m…

International Women's Day

With today being International Women's Day I'd like to call out a few that have impacted my life in significant ways. There's really too many to count, including Elizabeth Warren who just dropped out of the Presidential race. She was my first pick in part because I think it's high time we give a woman a chance at running the country. Lord knows there's been enough middle of the road or downright inept men running it at times in our history. Well, evidently we're not ready for that yet, so maybe as a VP.

I'll start with the obvious, my mom. She'll be 87 in a few weeks and is still kicking. In fact when I typically call her on a Sunday evening, she's usually entertaining or on her way out the door to some social event. She almost single handedly raised 7 of us right and lived to tell about. A feat of human strength if you ask me.

Of course there's my wife. The past three years we've been adapting to an empty nest around here with both our kids…