Autumnal calm #writephoto

It is late in the autumnal season

Many of the leaves have given their last regards

Soon it will be freezin’

Because Mother Nature doesn’t mess with the cards


There is an odd sense of calm in this glen

Quite unlike the stress in the U

Sunny skies abound for the forest when

Students are stuck with exam review


The leafless trees stand stately

As the cold sun beats down without clouds

It’s too quiet — foreboding eerily

The upcoming ice might make tires screech loud


As the people in the college have hit the wall

Two weeks remain before a respite

Something will have to fall

‘Cause some of us might be getting desperate


With that, there is always a duality

Calm and overwhelmed are peas in a pod

One’s worst is another’s best quality

The yin and the yang are one squad


This quatrain has taken on a stream of consciousness

As do quite a few of my writings on this blog

Thankfully this type of writing isn’t my main business

At the end of the day it’s not a dead horse to flog


The weirdness continues as a free-wheeling clerk

Thus I should probably get ready to go

After all, I should enjoy this evening free of work

And snack on ice cream while watching it snow!


Okay, okay, one more stanza I should produce

Got to give credit where the idea did come

Sue Vincent’s prompt was how this post was induced

But now I sign off before a possible call from the Mum


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Lincoln I: 13 days

Lincoln II: 43-ish days

Baltimore: 69 days

[O.C.T.O.B.E.R. V-18] Two diamonds (Freewrite)

Frequently, we say words without meaning,  just to fill space. I am certainly guilty of this, whether the words be excess qualifiers (such as ‘very,’ ‘really,’ etc.), meaningless fillers (um, uh, and similar things) and muttering to myself or others. And I see this as a method of waiting in conversation. Here comes a stream of consciousness about waiting.

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[M.A.P.L.E. IV-9] Flood!

This is a Freewrite with the prompt word “flood.” I know I can start with a few relevant examples.

On Wednesday, severe weather hit Nebraska hard. Although  I was not there, I certainly saw the aftermath of it on TV, Facebook, and other venues. I tried to call Mom and Dad on Wednesday night after getting back from the basketball banquet, and they luckily picked up in one piece.  They were hanging out in our basement, and had no flooding.  But the rain caused major reductions in visibility!

It reminds me, thinking of reduced visibility, once when I was riding my bike home from an SPG Improv workshop. There was a torrent of rain that I waited out in the lobby of Seabury, and finally it stopped raining, so I thought I had a chance to get home (about a 4-minute bike ride).

But a minute after I left, the torrential rain continued. It stung my eyes (despite my eyeglasses), and I had a REALLY hard time seeing. I should have stopped and waited out the weather (while getting soaked!), but I obstinately continued back to the apartment. The good news: I got home safely, and all of my possessions were in one piece.

Speaking of biking at Northwestern, the road to Lakeside Field (Lincoln Avenue) has been under destruction/construction these last few weeks. With this situation, there is a one-lane road with a stoplight taking the place of a STOP/SLOW flag-man. Thankfully, I never had to wait there, since I ould use the sidewalk and bypass this region. (Not to mention also: it would be illegal to ride in this area… the signs near it specifically say “no bikes or pedestrians.”)

This one-lane road also reminds me of road trips that we took in 1993-6, when we lived in Fort Dodge.  One trip that took us to Nebraska was dark and stormy, but we traveled during the day. I can’t remember the exact year, but the salient part of the trip was along U.S. Highway 30.  Just like the previous paragraph, there was a stretch of the highway that was a one-lane road due to construction.  There was either a flagman or a temporary stoplight.

Well, either on this trip or a previous one, the bad weather that I mentioned cuased some road flooding, and there was definitely flooding in the roadside ditches.  Because this was on Highway 30 near Denison, Iowa, we (i.e., my siblings and I) nicknamed the place Deniflood.

Deniflood? That was the second time that we nicknamed the town something other than its actual name. (In retrospect, there’s something that is cool about “Deniflood…” try calling it “Deniwood” and notice a feature of the town, in the picture below:

Courtesy Best Western Iowa.

But, no. Near the intersection of Highway 30 and 71 (I think), my family always noticed something that smelled really weird: a combination of cow doo-doo and factory smells. As a result of this, my siblings and I started calling the place “Denistink.” The last time that my parents and I drove through the area in 2009, I didn’t notice any horrible smells.

Oh, and about horrible smells, that reminds me of the song “Interstate 80 Iowa.” I’ll post it at the end of the post after the clock hits zero: I’ve only got 90 seconds left!

Floods: I think I’ve mentioned in a previous post about the flood on my sixth birthday. I’d still like to go canoeing, even though I did it in a proper sense in 2008. Come to think of it, that week seemed a week of “history repeating itself” in some strange way… much like how I interpreted my eleventh-grade year. That may be a new blog post later… and that’s TIME!!


Today is the ninth day of the fourth round of M.A.P.L.E. That makes one week and two days.

היום חמישה ושלושים יום–שהם חמישה שבועות לעומר

Countdown to “D-Day”: 23 days.

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Call the parents! (Freewrite)

This is a freeewrite based on a part of the B107.3 morning show tht I heard a few weeks ago.

While I was listening, an interesting survey from the March of Dimes came on. I was unable to find the actual survey, but essentially it asked people about their relationships with their parents, as well as communication thereof. One of the interesting things that it found was that the offspring are more likely to call their moms than their dads, and that the calls with the fathers tend to be much shorter.

I am definitely in that camp as well, as I usually call Mom for my “daily updates” and just to catch up with her. Most of my calls to Dad are for medical complaints or procedural questions, but not really much about chatting. I feel that I might be a different parent when I become one at some point (far?) down the road. … I might be a Dad who loves to talk in a Mom-style with his kids.  Time will tell!

Speaking of “Mom,” “Dad,” and phones, another thing that I have noticed about that, which is a little off-topic from the March of Dimes survey, interests me, follows. (Sorry about that horridly awkward sentence, but remember that I am just writing with essentially free association!) In my cell phone, all of my contacts are full name (i.e., first and last name). This includes Mom and Dad: their full names are the contact information rather than “Mom” and “Dad.” I wonder how many people register their parents’ names like this in their phone memory?

Well, I suppose that there can be reasons to use anything else. I don’t know, but then again, I suppose that when I had my first phone, I used the construct <NAME> cell instead of <FIRST> <LAST>. Of course, now that the phones can  register the type of number that is associated with the number itself, there’s no need to have “cell” appended. How many people acgtually have land lines anymore? My parents still have one at home, and their office obviously does too.

I also wonder: do Best Friends Forever or boyfriend/girlfriend duos register their other sides as something other than their first name and last name in the phone memory? That would be interesting. I have not used an “endearing name” to any of my friends, other than just their first names. I suppose that endearing names could come at a later time.

Wow, how close I still am to the original prompt, yet at the same time how far I have drifted.  The original prompt remains important to me, as I still want to keep in touch with Mom and Dad, to let them know how I am doing. I don’t mind them helicoptering in a small sense. This year, that has been especially true since I have needed support in trying to get myself started on the job search and the track to graduation. I have found that there are times in which I am not a self-starter, because finding the right questions to ask, or even mustering up the courage to ask, is not innate in my personality. I’m too passive!

Yet, at the same time, I can be aggressive once I either have a road map or when I am in Desperation Mode. But I really have to be in a pinch before I start becoming a self-starter most of the time. This is something that I need to figure out how to get around, because in the real world, I must make my own energy.

Shifting back to the orignal prompt, I’d like to discuss  phone calling in general. It’s funny how everyone seems to prefer text and Emoji conversations rather than talking on the phone or in person. I feel that is  quite sad and an indictment on modern culture. True human contact is more easily replicated with voice calls on the phone, but nothing can really replace face-to-face contact. But, when distance separates family members, the phone is the next best thing. As I have mentioned, I am very regular about calling Mom, and quasi-regular about calling Dad. But I am guilty: I rarely call my siblings, and really SHOULD call them more often. But it can be so hard to change a routine.  Yet, if I want to make it important, I will, and for that reason, I should try to  vow to call them more frequently.

We’ll see how well that goes, as the best-laid plans can often fall flat on their faces.

About a minute to go, and what else should I mention? Ah, yes. Calling the parents was salient to Mom today, as my grandfather celebrated his birthday today, with his favorite meal: mini-hamburgers at Mom and Dad’s house. I wish I ccould have been there, but being there on a weekday, when I live a megameter away, is not  exactly practicable. A phone call had to suffice, and …



היום חמישה ועשרים יום–שהם שלושה שבועות וארבעה ימים לעומר

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