Back from another three-day vacation from all things plugged-in...Yougov.com just asked which news media I'd used in the last 24 hours. The answer is none. I'm reading the news in my e-mail as I begin this post. This means I'll be finding out, today, whether certain Hurricane Matthew evacuees are still in town because their home was destroyed or because they're enjoying a long visit with relatives...and other things. (End of the day: looks like they're enjoying their visit!) Categories: Animals, Charity, Christian, Crafts, Education, Food, Fun, Health, Pictures, Poetry, Politics, Psychology, Writing, Yougov, Zazzle.
Just about all dictators hate cats...not because keeping cats indoors is ritually unclean according to Islamic halal law (although it is) but because all control freaks hate cats. The ability to bond with cats may well be considered proof of a healthy, control-obsession-free personality. (That's why it's good news that, as Bing wants everybody to know, a certain candidate lives with cats called Pickle and Oreo. Which candidate? I remembered, but, er um...if you look it up on Bing today y'might get a few extra points toward free stuff.)
Dog food recalls:
Cute dog who, among other things, tried to adopt a bunny (who didn't need adopting):
Here's a blind senior citizen who obviously loves recycling and does it well. Miraculously well; his sticking his hands into garbage bins is obviously not a good idea. Depriving him of purposeful activity...might be just as bad! Does anyone out there feel called to help him upgrade and expand his recycling operations?
Christian reacts to the presidential debate (no, I didn't watch; yes, it sounds as if I've been right all along in predicting that Trump is Clinton's strongest supporter).
If you follow "this link" (embedded in Becky Kiser's post) you may want to read this classic corrective essay, which also contains a link to a potentially lucrative video contest. It's not Christian, but it does respond quite directly to what BK's e-friend says. (Thanks to +Kat Murti for sharing.)
Now this is Christian--two sermons, one of which flows naturally into the next:
Calling all girls, and parents of little girls, who want to dress up for Halloween...as something other than a Disney Princess (which is like saying "I am a fashion victim"), witch ("I have no imagination"), or ghost ("I have no imagination, no craft skills, and no money"). In Washington, D.C., there's an ancient and honorable tradition of buying a mask that looks vaguely like some politician or other and explaining that you wanted to dress up as something "really scary"; that might be read as like saying "Somebody at my house has money and political beliefs, but no skills or imagination." Here, however, is a gallery of cute, fun, unusual costumes to inspire those who do have skills and imagination. Thanks to Elizabeth Barrette for sharing the link:
For more practical sewing, here's a pattern for sewn slippers:
Here's a student's perspective on discrimination in Virginia's public schools, specifically George Washington High School in Danville, Virginia. (Like most Danville-related content, this was shared by Patricia Evans.)
Paul Sperry adds an adult perspective...My adult comment is that I'd like to see teachers (and students) resist the temptation to define things in Black/White terms. Fix Facts First: Feelings Follow means, among other things, detach from your emotions about race (or gender or whatever) and consider the situation objectively. One thing to be objectively considered is White privilege. It exists. However, White privilege is not what's being invoked when teachers (should) punish or expel students for hitting people; safety is.
Here's a naturally gluten-free recipe that I wouldn't have to tweak at all. Not that I wouldn't tweak it, but I could eat it and like it just the way it is. Enjoy. (For those who don't already know...when you comment on Itsjustlife, funds are donated to a different charity each month. You can click back to the first post of the month to find out which charity you'll be supporting, and comment accordingly.)
Here are three versions of a turkey sandwich: junky, "healthy," and gluten-free.
I could eat this tomato-beef goulash if it were made with rice instead of macaroni...assuming glyphosate-free, GMO-free rice, which is no longer a safe assumption.
Likewise this tomato-turkey sauce if it were on rice (or rice-based pasta):
And here's a vegan soup that's naturally gluten-free. If you choose the right cornmeal mix and don't add flour the cornbread, too, will be gluten-free.
Things to do with kale:
Do you remember when Microsoft used a "trash can" icon? Do you wonder what happened to it? There's a story about that icon, and Dan Lewis found it:
DL's mini-biography of "Box Brown" is also a fun read:
To all the teenagers out there: Endure those "entry-level" jobs after the novelty fun factor wears off, and some day you, too, may write a really funny mini-memoir about them and have it picked up by The New Yorker.
Y'never know how many more chances there may be to spend ten days with Dr. John McDougall and friends in California. Though well preserved, Mary and John McDougall aren't young. If you'd like to meet the best known vegan doctor in America while experimenting with a vegan diet under medical supervision, taking classes, enjoying hotel and spa facilities, and staying warm in early December...
Even though this specific story of Loma Linda Nice comes from the borderline of Hospice Care Practices...it's nice. (So is Tim McGraw's song. Especially the mash-up obtained by singing the lyrics of that song found in Steve Martin's Born Standing Up, reviewed below, to TMcG's tune...sorry, can't help having that sort of brain...)
Lots of pictures today! This gorgeous autumn landscape is obviously north of me...still no frost, hence very few bright red leaves, in southwestern Virginia. (Such a late autumn is unusual, though not unprecedented; if it were to become "the new normal" for us over several years, that would be "climate change.")
Shameless advertising for products that don't profit this site in any way, but I have to admit these Halloween cat-motif items are cute. (If the Cat Sanctuary were decorated to encourage trick-or-treating, which it's not, what we'd use would be real pumpkins...the seeds to be scooped out, shelled, and ground for mixing into cat food. Pumpkin seeds are nutritious to cats and humans. Many humans enjoy the flavor, and some cats, including Heather and Irene, have acquired a taste for pepitas as well. Pumpkin seeds are especially valuable to cats because they're naturally toxic to some intestinal parasites--a worm treatment that does not upset the cats' digestion. I try to save mine for the cats, but nibble on them before they're ground, myself.)
Here's an original painting with its story:
Here's another chance to vote for the cutest baby picture. (All babies are cute. One thing that makes this one extra-cute is that her parents support other writers...Admit it, though. Until the next baby enters your real life, will you ever get over those brown eyes?)
Here's a gallery of California sunsets:
Old mill in Germany:
Seagull in flight:
Really really bad free-verse "poem"...Fair disclosure: although I am not and have never been a fan of Rosie O'Donnell, this lez-crush effusion would impress me as equally bad if it had been written by a man.
Discussion about what makes poetry poetry, with a few examples and lots of links:
Politics (Election 2016)
This one makes me sad, because I see its truth. Small business owners outside Washington like Trump. Small business owners who remember him from Washington say, "Yes...but he doesn't like us." For so many fellow vendors in Gate City's Friday Market, for Bud and for Mr. Gilbert at the Gun & Pawn stores, for the real-world friends whose real-world furniture store is down in Johnson City although they mostly live nearer where I live...I've shed a few actual tears. They are the salt of the earth. Donald Trump is sooo not.
And this one...reflects the way I've felt many times in the past decade. Like, if saving a consciously though passively suicidal man's life, giving him ten good years, had been a good thing, I'd be the one living it up on the money I was the one who helped him recover after bankruptcy. (That's real bankruptcy, not the #BankruptcyBillionnaire kind.) And if being an honest, ethical massage therapist who was never ever sued had been a good thing, I'd be the one still in practice while certain other people would be doing the occasional wistful blog post about how certain types of massage really can have effects that have often been described as miraculous. And so on. Snarky lefty comedy, but not without merit.
Ben Carson has a brief but important comment on the latest debate. (Facebook...I'm sorry. If you scroll down you can probably see the post.)
Penny Nance calls--seriously--for prayer and fasting.
The news here is that "neuroticism" has acquired an academic definition, after being dropped by the A.P.A. for years:
(If that sounded even a tiny bit like you, here's what you should be doing with your computer...)
All regular readers should know by now that I'll write guest posts. So will +Lyn Lomasi , and I can testify that, although I've never met her in real life, she's maintained a single, consistent, high-quality online presence for ten years too. If anybody out there wants to hire a writer, this is a Real Bargain. Prepare to tip liberally.
If not already a member, you might want to be. I've been taking Yougov surveys for years, have collected free stuff (I chose gift certificates for yarn, but by now the site's won respect and offers a wide selection) and enjoyed it (sold some things knitted with the said yarn), and have not been spammed or harassed. Both you and I get free stuff sooner if you use this link to join:
(While I'm here...This morning's Yougov survey also asked whether, if I were a member of Congress, I'd vote to support legislation that would require a lot of things I do in fact support...reducing the rate of immigration into the U.S., e.g., and raising the fuel efficiency of "the average new car" from 25 to 35 miles per gallon. I support doing those things, all right. I do not support depending on or authorizing the federal government to require those things. Individuals like you and me have the right, the power, and the need to raise the fuel efficiency of "the average new car" by choosing the more efficient cars if we buy cars at all. Likewise, those of us who blog have the right, the power, and the need to discourage immigration into the U.S. by simply telling the world the truth we see around us--that there aren't enough of the good jobs here to go around, that there aren't jobs for illegal immigrants in much of the U.S. and there's enough hostility that those people can expect to be treated appallingly in the places where they do find jobs. And so on. If I were a member of Congress, my blog would be read by more Virginians than it is, and I'd have a better chance of influencing more of them to do this kind of good things; that would be the difference. And by the way, it's Google and the Catholics out there, not I, who want this web site not to say more than it does about my real-world agenda for keeping abortion from becoming a medical specialty; all I'll say is that, for my relatives and me, it's worked perfectly.)
Today's big sale at Zazzle features custom hair ties. They make great gifts, for all occasions, for anyone who has long hair; I happen to find these gymnasts cute:
Now the official Fix Facts First hair tie: