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I’m trying to earn my keep here at work! I’ve repeated this board four times over the past 20 years or so. Originally, the scene was of a moose looking up at a winter’s moon with its tracks in the snow–that was at Millhopper Branch Library in the late 90’s. Sue Patterson worked there at the time and she helped me design the moose which is a difficult animal to get right when drawing—about that large nose of a head…Ha!

This is the 2013 version…

I carried the moose theme to the down town Headquarter’s Branch Library in the early 2000’s and ‘re-built’ much of the background set of trees. This board offers an elaborate background scene that’s time consuming to create so I saved all that work when the board came down a second time. To make this board cost efficient to tax payers, I’ve reused the background pieces of this board two more times, though the moose gave way to a deer and the largest tree has changed as well.

I’m thinking this may be the 2016 version….

You can see this years version in two pictures below or in the time lapse linked here. Stop the time lapse when you want to get a better look and feel for how the layering works in this design. This is a time lapse of my Holiday Board… stop it any time to see the progression…  Ho HO HO…..https://www.facebook.com/alachualibrary/videos/2470169859892438/?t=

 

   

So far, our media department (thank you Chris) has videoed a time lapse presentation of two boards I put up this year: a Halloween board and now this holiday board.

I like this board; it’s a peaceful image that sets a good tone for our work space in Youth Services. I hope this board fills your thoughts and the minds of our little and big patrons with wonder while enhancing enjoyment of our public libraries! Visit your public library—they are ours to enjoy!

Have a safe, wonderful Holiday!

Franque23

2013

The moose was really fun to draw and I’m not certain which version of this bulletin board I like more: the Deer with a larger tree and different signage, or the moose in a smaller setting. The background color changes from silver to gold and there is a moon in some and not others….which do you like better? I have to tell you what I so like about this board. The frozen lake presented by the silver paper is actually vertical on the wall but it appears horizontal to add depth to the scene… I love it.


 

Peace….IMG_20190626_203722699_BURST001

My daughter is involved with a world-wide communication between groups who intend to better the world in varying ways.* It’s sorta like an umbrella for every organization that ever had a good thought for mankind. Within this group, there is this link with the very short film found below.  It’s amazing to see and listen to.

It’s a sort message; one of peace, enlightenment and hope for all Mankind. What could be better than this? It’s a great time for all of us to step back and give thanks…and thank you for reading my glob and for being you! Cheers.

The full credits are included within the film…Oh, I so hope you watch this, investigated the other link below and share with friends. Peace is ours to create.

Enjoy

Franque23

 

*https://www.jet.org.za/resources/jala-peo-newsletter-term-4-2019.pdf/view?fbclid=IwAR0SbowquGLHcMCo1YI5oh0sVY0UOr3b0FNnL1-clXekLvRYwc97KbIXcKQ


(A Morgan-Franquemont reunion about 1951) Click the pic for a larger view.

Maybe I thought my sister might drop me—why else would I be crying?—pretty sure that’s my best diaper.

Remember being young for just a minute. There’s no hassle waiting to destroy the next minute, no bus, train, plane to catch or deadline to meet. No, you’re just young. Your skin is soft without a blemish and your hair shines like  grass after a brief rain.  You’ve learned to comb your hair but your not exactly sure why you do it. There’s no need to worry and everything feels right once your parents are home; the fire place sets itself and your dog is always fed. T.V. goes on past bedtime but you’ve seen everything you wanted to see and the day has come and gone like any other. Dreams come and go like the wind without cause or problem or forecast direction.

Everything just is. Do you remember now? Shoes or belts seemed useless unless you were playing dress-up.

(Our Son-in-Law running after his son.)

The world is an empty beach to run with dad close behind.

The sky is endless and full of mysterious clouds to watch as they drift by.

(My cousin’s son, Ross Franquemont, takes a selfie as he flies by the Northern lights in his U-2 plane.)

Remember the first time you stared at the clear night sky and realized there were more and more stars to see up above as your eyes adjusted to the blackness. Remember the morning dew on your bare feet. This is about the time you discovered ,’brain-freeze.’

There was so much to take in and share with your cousins and friends.

A la speed-o suit; that’s me.(Morgan dock at Lake Bonaparte-about 1956) ( AND… the person who edits this glob weekly* asked a good question: why am I the only one wearing a bathing suit? The dock is clearly wet?!?! Hmmmm)

Days come as easily as picking up a pencil. The scribbling on the paper wears a smile and it seems your masterpiece is, in fact, a heroic depiction of something meaningful to older folks—it’s some miraculous sketch of objects you’ve yet to see or a panorama of places everyone hopes to go. It’s good to be loved. Daylight loves you; nighttime is a blanket. The rain sounds loud upon the window pane and snow dances in street lights with winds that come from the moon you can’t see.  The pets always sleep on your bed.

Everyday is safe. Every night is cozy. You get along with other  kids, even with those who seem so different!

Being young harbors within it a certain kind of peaceful hope.

(View of Lake Bonaparte from our ‘half-way’ dock.)

Without notice, you assume the older folks will always be here.

Life seems a garden of acceptance.

You can wear any hat you want when you’re young!

(And on Youth Services hat day because we could.)

Routines begin to form. If it rains, you stay inside. If it is sunny you go out. Parents rush off in the morning and come back later after your nap but you’re never really alone, not that you’ve noticed or ever thought about. Tooth brushing is a daily important thing, not the best, but you watch as globs of toothpaste slide out of your mouth onto your cheeks around your out-stretched smile in the mirror and it tastes sweet. Tooth paste types change from being white, then striped, sometimes dotted or with a hidden line of stuff surrounded by white. You just do it.

You think broccoli may kill you but not if you eat just a bit. Vegetables are stupid but they’re the gateway to dessert.

I once thought food first filled my feet, legs, then my middle section, then my arms and finally my head: that’s when I was full. I made sure to save room in my head for dessert.  People talked over dinner but mostly we all came to eat. Someone would say something funny and we’d laugh but always, without fail, my dog’s head was near my lap, soft, warm, nudging my legs occasionally for that bit of something I didn’t care to eat or wanted to slip him anyway.

I hadn’t a care when I was young. Music filled the air and dancing had no steps, just movement.

Of course, I learned later in life that my life was not a universal experience. No, while I was in college there were children in Vietnam who awoke in the night to run out of their homes in fear Napalm bombs would hit their homes and burn them alive as it had some of their friends the night before. And other children weren’t lucky enough to live at all but died without ever knowing what a refrigerator was. Somehow, learning the truthful horror about some life on earth during my twenties put much of my childhood experience in a time-capsule that I cemented in a corner stone of myself.  My memories were too good sometimes to be shown in the face of another’s reality.

I’d been given so much and never knew. I’d been raised in the midst of modest but successful homes full of choices, flavors, designs, music,  friends and surrounded by mowed yards and shoveled driveways all owned by smiling people.

If you’re life was like mine, it’s okay. It’s okay that we may have been born some of the luckiest people on earth. Thing is, now it’s our time to give thanks. Now, if we haven’t already, it’s time for us to payback life anyway we can.  We have to fight for what we believe is best for this earth and give thanks to those who died for our right to do so. If we have something to teach, we have to do it. I think Thanksgiving has never seen a generation who has more to be thankful for than mine. Now, more than ever before, it’s time for my generation to stand up and speak about what we feel is right.

My generation owes the World a difference.

We can do this. It’s time to be young again, strong, wide-eyed, questioning and full of spirit. Spirits don’t age like our bodies, not really. Look in that mirror as you did as a child and see your face, see your smile and remember who you really are. You’re one who can make a difference.

We all can get along; we have to get along and help each other prosper—this is our task and purpose.

Franque23—Happy Thanksgiving.

*Barbara Mullenix gets all the credit for anything spelled correctly in these globs and none of the blame for all the rest….

 

 

 

 


Okay, I get it: we’re all different. Thing is, how different?

Of course I know it’s almost Thanksgiving, a time for food fetish feasting…so it’s the perfect time for this glob.

Let’s just get to it—I feel like I’m one guy yelling in the wind.  “– One-third of Americans have taken part in some sort of fetish or kink play.”* I may be a complete loser when it comes to the fetish game.  Apparently, I was born on another planet and merely shipped here to keep a sense of balance in the polls, not sure.

Thing is, why do people nibble toes?  Yes, people love to do this and it’s in plenty of movies, but why toes? Basically toes sweat in socks all day, right? Unless you take baths, how many people successfully bend over in showers to clean them? Yeah, no…you can’t start a date or third date depending upon on long it takes to need to ask your prospective partner if they take bathes or showers–that’s awkward.  Yet, it’s important to note that swallowing toe jam may not be the best thing. Who knows what’s in toe jam? When you get down to the microscopics of it all, there could spiders in that crap! Mushrooms may grow down there; bugs of any kind. Insects that have lived over the 6000 years people have only been on the planet (give to take a few million years) may have evolved into any type of toe jam eating organism. I’ve never seen a jar of jelly for sale labeled toe jam or even at a discounted price so , for me, toe nibbling is out.

Plenty of people nibble ears—huff, huff, ‘I have to nibble your ear’ said who?—again you see it in on zillion movies but why? Ears have ear wax in them right? What’s the break down on ear wax—I’d like to know. This is the sort of stuff we needed to learn in high school or middle school before we began diving in before lunch! Is ear wax high in protein and low in saturated fats? Maybe ear wax is the best diet food we’ve yet to discover? I’m not sure but it would have to come with some sort of warning……”Danger, there may be a bunch of hardware on that ear.” Before you nibble on a pierced ear you need to ask yourself a few simple questions: where did that hardware come from and where has it been?  I get it that tongue rings are ‘special,’ but what happens if a tongue rings meets an ear piercing? The two can tango or tangle? By the way–is ear wax fattening; has anyone asked? Are there fungus’s to be concerned about in the ear…it all needs studying.

For all we know, the plague might start from someone ingesting ear wax.

Then there’s under arms. I can’t wait to lick your under arms! Who knows what might be there? Maybe a bunch of deodorant full of carcinogenic material no one has tested? Plus, there’s sweat—you know, the stuff a body has outcast as trash. Yum.

Yes, it’s your deodorant I long for. (Like the perfect ad, right?)

Please don’t kiss me now.

Belly buttons are special, right. I get that ,too. But one thought: if you enjoy navel fuzz, have you tried licking your dryer filter?

We once were attached to mom there but now we’ve run a muck with piercing the area for what?

Are we decorating our life source or stabbing it?

Let’s hope that isn’t loaded.

Thing is, munching on a navel is enticing to some, but why talk with a mouth full of marbles while making love…” um bov, yu oeces,”  Again, about those tongue piecing and navel bells. I think the enticing part of nibbling on belly button is most likely that we’re on our way south. But, what if we get stuck there? Listen people do get stuck in all sorts of situations. You decide.**

So, there’s a zillion fetishes to talk about but I wanna skip the one about spanking. Listen, spankings are bad and we all know it from about day one. Mom can’t count to three slow enough and when dad gets home against all your prayers the entire world seems lost to the devil when he arrives. Still, some enjoy getting their butt walloped until their ass is red. Me? Nah. All I can think of is a guy or woman getting carpel tunnel after hearing , “May I have another” for the millionth time. I’d think one might lose a bunch of weight delivering a spanking but is that the point of sex?

In the end, (whoops) don’t beat yourself up over it.

There’s a million ways people find pleasure and I’m about to think 99.9% of them are weird to me since I’m from another planet.  But all of this, whether you indulged or not, doesn’t define who you might be in society. Don’t forget, President Lyndon B. Jonson had punishing shower heads in stalled in his White House shower.(Oh my god, this is so much worse than I’d read before).*** But that’s an entire different thing-self fetish, pain a punishment.

Me? I like the sex—you can keep the ‘au Jus.’

Franque23

*https://www.bustle.com/p/almost-half-of-americans-say-theyre-kinky-survey-finds-heres-what-sex-acts-theyre-into-8133938

*https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/all-about-sex/201810/unconventional-sex-is-actually-pretty-common

**https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-25827175

***https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2015/03/ldb-white-house-shower

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


There’s nothing like a quick four or five day get-a-way to lighten up  a month of working, right? It’s by luck we have a home in Barefoot Bay,  one of Florida’s largest manufactured home communities.  Sure, Barefoot has a golf course (I don’t play). a shopping center, library, food shops of all sorts, several pool areas and mini-lakes scattered about as well as it’s own super long pier that juts out into the Indian River—that’s all fine and good. But the thing to me about Barefoot Bay is the private Atlantic beach-side property the community owns, and what a treasure it is.

(You can see the Barefoot Bay community has no direct bridge to its beach front that is located just north of Sebastian Inlet. This is the only picture in this post that enlarges with a click.)

The property is located just north of Archie Carr’s National Wildlife Refuge* and for years it’s been as pristine and isolated as any beach-side could get in Florida. Only recently have adjacent and surrounding properties gone up for sale, and some houses are already in place. Of course, I hate this, but who can stop development? Thankfully, nothing can take away my memory of watching whales swim by this beach as well!

There’s no need for Valet parking when we go…

(Psst: this shot was taken at 4 PM on a Sunday afternoon!?!?!)

This isolated stretch of heavenly beach is also my dog’s favorite running zone!

Shadow’s ready to run and the beach is waiting as the waves roll in.

We have all we need to make this work!

“Come on!” Shadow waits patiently with his shadow.

“Get the ball; it’s time to run!”

I watch him scurry down the final leg of the boardwalk and onto the sand. I heave the ball with a ‘chuck-it’ as far as I can throw it.

Shadow runs himself ragged after tennis balls. It’s an amazing time and we still have the beach to ourselves as far as the eye can see! Seriously! On a ‘crowded’ day I see four or five fishermen and maybe four walkers. Can you imagine? These beach trips make me feel as though I’ve gone to the moon and back, only there’s an ocean here in all of its surf-side glory.

The waves pound as birds call above sea-foam that pops in the wind.

Finally, Shadow is played out for now. He goes to the boardwalk when he’s had enough and we scoot on up to wash off before enjoying a restful twenty-five minute ride home.

I always take one last look before we leave.

Bye for now.

Oh wait! There’s one more curious thing about this parking lot of no valets. I came to this beach for twenty years and until the parking lot was ‘improved'( widened and sea grapes taken out) I never noticed that underneath a vast array of vines was an old hotel or home of sorts.

That’s it—just ahead over there. Nothing but vines, right? Perhaps, if you look hard you’ll see this one hundred foot long structure of broken down doors and windows underneath the vines!

I wonder about this history? Who lived here? What was it like back then? Someone had a keen eye for solitude and staked a claim here.

(You can see some of the red roof line on the center-left.)

For now, the land has won back the space and for all the empty spaces still filled with vines, living plants and critters I wish it could stay this way.

Going to the ocean always remains dream-like for me. I know it’s real and part of me, but I can’t touch it when it’s gone from sight, when I’m away. Me and my Shadow just have to await another day to live the dream again.

What a day! What a run it was!

Cheers

Franque23

*https://www.fws.gov/refuge/Archie_Carr/


Man has always made weaving’s. Why? We are part of one.

It was just a small spool of thread lying upon the bed in the morning. Two inches of the thread lay extended beyond the spool as if it were searching for a binding that needed stitching. The colored thread was red but not as deep as fire, but rather subdued in a way that mellowed my attention to its purpose.

It all got me thinking about that Abercrombie and Fitch woman, Jamie, I’d met up at Lake Bonaparte who worked in the upper spheres of their purchasing department. She stood tall, but not too much so, and held a strong image of elegance. We bantered and shared the this and that of our lives.

“You must have fun picking out patterns and materials; it feels real artsy.” A few seconds of images passed in mind. “I like patterns; love material. I do leather craft.”

“You work in leather craft?” I watched Jamie’s eyes shift left to view a memory she might have stored about the media.

“Yes. It’s been over ten years now. My wife and I have made about everything you can imagine to do with leather craft.” I was proud of our three shops and success. “I love material; you’re lucky to be working with the designs, material purchases and decisions for such a large outfit.”

Her nod gave way to question.”So, what do you think is the most important part of what I buy for Abercrombie and Fitch?”

The query was unexpected. “Maybe the thread is the most important.” It was an off-hand answer, the first that came to mind when thinking about a blouse, or jeans, or about anything that had sewed pieces.

Her eyes glowed as a full moon in the deep night, “Yes! That’s it completely! Without the best thread, the finest material is lost, so easily torn and soon cast aside. The bindings are what matters.”

Bindings are what matters….

It’s thirty or more years since I heard the words but they somehow still hover near.

The deepest blue waters of Lake Bonaparte glistened around our conversation that day. I can still see the sparkling sunlight dance off the water and spring around the dock as though magic was in the air. Even back then, Lake Bonaparte had become more than a lake to me. The lake was a thread in my life, something that held me together before that day, then, and would well into the future.

My thoughts drifted off that morning just as those past days up at Lake Bonaparte have fled from view. I stared back at the spool of thread on the bed and wondered where it might belong, where it might go should I pick it up.

In truth, that red spool of thread had reached out to me. It had magically asked for me to realize how the threads of my life came together to make me whole, to bring me peace.  But, I have to tell you, that peace hasn’t come easily as a soft wind in the most subtle morning light, not like the evening stars up at the Lake.

My life has never been a smorgasbord of hurrahs, no not that. The red thread had stretched out to me and asked what passed through me, what tied me together. That answer ran a thin line through my eyes to my heart, wrapped around my brain and tightened into a knot.

I was born lucky, white, in America, with a loving dad and mom and all the Christmas tree trimmings any kid could ask for. Still, while others skated free in my childhood I seemed sidelined with some things I can’t even write about now, not yet. Of course, life is a mix for all of us, full of ups and downs we have to turn around and make straight.  We’ve all had our hearts torn out by first loves that were never meant to last but to teach. We’ve all had friends who turned out to be enemies; victories that ended in the loss column. But having a sixth grade friend at a scout meeting ask me for help in a way I could not understand and then hang himself in his parents basement that same night hasn’t been perfect—and so much worse for him. It’s as if the memory of his smile funnels me down along side his pain, one I can’t imagine. Later, not much, my best friend drown before me within hearing distance but beyond site in a lake at Marlborough Vermont. I’ve written about this event before, and there are too many premonitions that led up to this happenstance to recall here now, but I’m not sure I’ve ever left those three days of waiting that it took to find Bobby’s body. Let’s face it: part of me is still in that water and I know it.* Is it a stretch to think we all have pain in life?

We all have to move on; we all have to stitch our lives together the best we can.

So, without a mirror but a cast aside spool of thread I came that morning to reckon what pieces me together, what keeps me balanced, on my feet, smiling, working in the garden and saying hello to those I never think of as strangers. I’ve dug down, tore it all up and realized why I say hello to plants, birds, the sun and the rain. I’m happy; basically, I’m happy.

But, why am I happy?

Though my wife and I have had a small amount of success in our lives, I’m certain no amount of wealth or holdings brings happiness.  A simple, pure joy is a different animal than a bank account. Life is the thread we cling to as we live and in those moments lies the bind of happiness. My wife will tell you there are plenty of mornings, afternoons or evenings I’m doing the happy dance. Sure, I may be blocking my wife’s TV view or arousing our dog, Shadow, to uncontrollable fits of barking but you know what: I’m still happy. I’m happy to see the morning, the rain, the fog, the cold, the lonely stars at night, the snake that slithers away as I call it, the post man who waves back and my work mates who nod as they go by.  I’m happy to hear the wind as it vibrates my ear drums and becomes an inseparable part of me.

I understand the immense hardships humanity has suffered through in the past and is currently having to endure. None of that is good, and, like you, I wish it could end. Still, I cling to the notion that if we are here for a purpose in life it’s to blossom as we can through it. The smallest seed can sprout thought the most solid rock; this is what we must do.

It all comes down to the threads of our lives and how we spool them together to carry with us. If you hurt, unwind that thread and re-spool. Bind yourself to a joy you have known no matter how small and plant that to grow inside you.

Many ask how they might be happy?

In a world of advice, I say know your world.

Know the people, places, animals, land and thoughts in your life as much as possible. Don’t walk though your time as though surrounded by unnamed mysteries: learn the name of the trees, plants, your neighbors, tools, clouds, birds and sights that fill your ears, eyes, mind and heart. Learn the way of everything you can. We are all surround by thousands of threads of life that want to bind with us. Make it happen. Then, the fabric of you will never be alone, and you will bind with the life around you, forever.

Franque23 loves you.

 

*https://franque23.wordpress.com/2010/01/25/the-dream-i-lived/

 


(Click the pic for a larger view)

It made perfect sense back in the day to be awash at the beach by women wearing two piece suits.  Men wore the needed one piece while women wore all sorts of variations of single and two piece suits.

Really from 1960—

None of the suits turned see-through when wet and it seemed society remained relatively sane. Coppertone was widely used so actually I laid out in the sand in a vat full of people developing different forms of skin cancer. It was all good, like cigarettes, as far as we knew.

The two rules I recall at the beach was that there’d be no drinking and no female nipples showing. Not that my young self noticed any of those more risque two piece bonanzas..”Hey dad, can we go to the beach?” “Hey dad , can we go to the beach?” ” Hey, dad…..”

It seemed a no brainer, too, when our college bound hippie movement ushered in the bra-less, see my nipples under my shirt look. Not that any of us guys noticed. Ha! We were talkin’ straight studying of the Humanities or the science of it.

Anyway, today, just now, the news reported that six states currently will allow topless bathing (Is it just bathing?) -in Utah, Colorado, in please take me home, Kansas, New Mexico, even in Muskogee, Oklahoma and in beautiful, wide-open Wyoming. This is very embarrassing for my hippie counter parts: we defeated the bra but never thought outside the entire complex—the shirt, too. Sure, we had naked love-ins, parties, skinny dipping and whatnot, but I never heard anyone say, “Lets legalize topless ladies!”

But this new law didn’t happen over lust, but freedom. And the timing of today’s, “Free the Nipple” campaign is exactly 100 years after men fought to free their own nipples!  That’s right. Newspapers in the 1920 and 1930’s reported the nearly naked outlaws, and denounced the public display of  male nipples on beaches. Men were to cover up those evil nipples for the sake of, well, madness but no one seemed to know it back then.

“If only we could swim in our church suits!’ Said no one.

A semi-sorta prison outfit was a harbinger of things  to come for those guys who ‘freed’ their nipples at beaches!

Soon after the practice jail break beach-suit time, there were reports that indicated men were arrested left nipple and right nipple as they appeared nipple free at beaches…. As the New York Times reported :” No shirtless bather will be allowed “to mar the high standard and fine appearance” of Long Island’s newly created Ocean Beach Park, said resolute local Police Chief Philip B. Kohut, after the trial of three men arrested for swimming topless.”

But men would have none of this scandalously, ridiculous law that bogged them down from showing their nipples on beaches. Arrests were continuously made until 1937. What happened then?  Tarzan came out as a swinger.(Hee-hee)

That was it: men’s nipples were all the rage. The ‘top’ was blown off that stagnate, no male-nipple showing thought and it’s possible men started to think about how to get larger nipples at this time?!!? I’m not sure—just projecting by having the grace of knowledge about our history since this famous date.

Yep, Tazan went swinging and the world went crazy with this news: “‘Bareback’ bathing for men, heretofore taboo in Atlantic City, broke down the last line of official resistance today and will be allowed this Summer,” the New York Times reported on March 29, 1937.”

Women, however, were to remain in one piece bathing suits that only lacked a Chasity belt to be fully correct. So what freed the woman’s belly button? (Lord no, no one was thinking topless…)

Micheline Bernardini, a French nude dancer, was the only model swimsuit designer Louis Réard could find to wear his bikini when it debuted July 5, 1946, in Paris. (AFP/Getty Images)

To this point, here is the heroine of the modern day two-piece female swim-suit…It’s like she deserved the, Noble ‘Piece’ Prize…:-) Yep, leave it to a dancer to strip away antiquated opinions. Can’t you hear it now? All the men across America yelling, “Put your clothes back on! Put your clothes back on!” I gotta admit, I haven’t come across any article about marches of men who were outraged over women wearing a bikini taking place at this time. Weird, huh?

Does time change anything as much as it does fashion? I have to think.

 

Anyway, now-a-days plenty of women have been arrested for barring their souls and bosoms. It’s to America’s credit that six of our states have caught up to Germany who started their first nude beach in 1920. I’m mean that’s only, okay, about 100 years—that’s all it took for American society to almost catch up to Germany’s freedom of expression. So grading on a one one to ten basis, when it comes being able to be partially naked on beaches, America gets about, what, a one?

Yay! We get a one and maybe done for being a leader in not very much at all. I love this country: it’s the one I was born in. It’s just when it comes to so much, we seem so slow to catch on, to make a difference and to lead. Right now, this isn’t the country I grew up in. This is a country that still wants those one piece women swim suits, to dictate how those so different from one another should live by another’s standard. Listen, we fought to be free from the get-go. It ain’t gonna stop.  Women will be topless if they want; gays will marry and have equal rights. Big oil will lose it’s shirt if it doesn’t shift to solar and renewable energies and lying politicians who hate Homosexuality while keeping a closet full of young boys will pass. This is America, and we will right ourselves.

I learned in Boy Scouts how to tie and untie knots…we all did, and can. America is moving forward, not backward.

Cheers.

Franque23 has always been a skinny dippin’, fun loving guy 🙂

 

 

 

 

 


Even ends have them. Thing is, I may have found one.  It was a few days back when I first heard my wife talk to our Roomba: “Go on; get home.”  I listened to the curious sound of brushes swishing carpet until there was a metallic sounding clink and then silence but for my wife’s words, “Good boy.”

So, after one million years of marriage it’s come to me talking to plants while my wife talks to the Roomba! I guess this makes sense. But, will I soon be asking the sugar bowl to fill itself up? Wait! If that could work…

Did you ever notice how many things we talk to? The, “Stupid door,” that wouldn’t open; “Come on, baby,” is the best way to get that screw to budge; “You are out of here,” I told the roach.  And how about the wall you just walked into that didn’t move out of the way? What do you say then? (Can’t write that here.”)

You can always count on the French for a different point of view.(Paris street sculpture.)

Yep! Life is constant dialogue between the living, the dense and the concrete matter of every kind of substance.  Will we one day tell a chair our name, then raise, lower and recline it by voice command so that it remembers who we are and our position preferences? (actually, I haven’t looked, but this might be on sale somewhere)* So-called, ‘Smart-houses,’ one’s that have lights come on and doors open by voice command, are already here for those who can afford them. More, do you know scientists just detected brain wave functions in synthetic brain cells they created? It all makes me wonder—what if these synthetic thinking substances can be fused into inanimate objects?

Star Trek was cray-cray to show people talking to things on their wrist back in the 1960’s , right?

Here’s a phone from the 1960’s, though fancier ones could be hung on walls.

This is Star Trek’s whack-o idea of a phone.

Something about this seems so familiar…

Time flies, or does it loop, or spin down a funnel into another space and’time.’

Have you noticed how depictions of what worms holes or black holes might look like resemble the shape of the hourglass, an invention from the 8th century AD.

Worse, or more amazing, the hourglass measured time. Now, we think something along the same design may speed us through time–or connect time.

Scientists right now are speculating that hyper-drive technology (who wrote Star Trek anyway?) may enable people to travel from earth to mars in three hours. Really, that’s basically less time than it takes to watch a football game.

As much as we know, what do we really know? We’ve no idea what time might be but for our relative creation of the concept. We don’t know what is up or down in terms of just about anything.

Things can get weird fast when you think about it.

What was once attractive isn’t now and vice-versa. Things just change for better or worse depending, sometimes, upon your view.

This fifteenth century look was all the rage.

Hmmmm….maybe things don’t change! (Current shot from England.)

It was interesting to recount to my work mates that back in 1963 no guys (hardly) had hair that grew over there ears. And when the Beatles led that style people like myself got spit on by others for following that trend. Take just a minute to imagine such a time here in America.

Oh my, you can’t see the top of McCartney’s ear! Call the cops!!!

Now, just about any hair style, length and color is good.

So, there are always beginnings and endings and they actually always happen simultaneously—one defines the other without exception. Every beginning ends something, even if it is just that the particular beginning now exists when it didn’t a second before. The abstinence of any beginning is over once it has begun. I know—they can’t legalize pot soon enough.

Anyway…..

People shout!”This is the end of America.” Really? It’s a bit abstract to think of America simply ending. I suppose it could since anything is possible. Certainly, this current administration’s agendas and lack of regard for American principles is catastrophic in terms of its effect upon the environment, conservation and humanitarian principles. Simply, I think peace, justice and humanitarian principles will win over tyranny. But, make no mistake, this administration is one end that has to happen.

Still, no matter how globally we try to focus, it’s easy to find it very worrisome when someone yells, “The cake is all gone!”

Nah, don’t worry. You know someone will bake another. That last bite was just the start of many more to come.

Franque23

  •  saw an ad that shows a TV remote doing all sorts of freaky stuff in a house by voice command.

 


 

(Click the pic for a larger view.)

Sometimes, none of it seems possible. It can’t be that our family dog, Socks, has been gone for over 55 years. I still feel him sleeping in my bed. I still can feel his curly haired ears as I run my fingers through them… I still see him resting by our fireplace on cold winter nights.

Socks was always there to keep us company. Maybe, it doesn’t seem possible I once was young. I know it happened, but where did it all go? Where did my smiling grade school friends go? Where did the innocence of thinking that ice cream guy liked me go?

Of course, we kept busy. Time for growing up is a spring board made of hope, longing and foggy vision. It’s just impossible to focus on being 70 when you’re 10, 15 or 20 years old. Life doesn’t work that way. We arrive to life never intending to leave, or thinking it possible. The view from Christmas as an eight year old is a glorious thing.

6th Grade school  picture;  I’m 6th from the right in back row…So much of my life was unknown.

It seemed time might stand frozen still. How could anything really change?( My dad, Mr. Freeze, me and my dog’s tail. )

Later on, the prom corsages and carnations would be pressed to never be thrown away. All those promises were etched in stone and building blocks we thought we’d stand on and never leave behind. So much gets left behind.

Swimming in Lake Tenkiller in Oklahoma was a great moment…cousins on my mom’s side lived out west.

My cousins were all well and growing like me…

My father’s brother, his wife and son.

We had the best time without any sense of it.

My dad was from Iowa and he grew almost an apple orchard in our backyard on Long Island, NY. Some years we picked 40 bushels. We’d eat the apples, bake them and exchange so many bushels for a gallon of cider pressed by a cider mill that was still up and running back then in Suffolk county.

Life, it seemed, would always be this way. I even dreamed of being a rock star. Dreams are free unless they shackle your understanding.

Me with Aunt Edna and my gold plated stereo Gibson ES-355 guitar.

I drifted as many do and had my first child after falling in love with my wife. We were at the most happy schedule in life when my brother and his wife visited us in Micanopy, Florida.

Ed came once again many years later…

Ed is gone now but never from my heart—time can only steal so much.

At seventy, I’ve a view I could never have imagined in my younger, rubber boned, look at me now years. Now, I’m thankful to have the sight—so many of my peers have died without the chance. It seems a lifetime ago when President Kennedy was killed, when Martin Luther King was assassinated. I was only in high school at the time but I remember thinking these two were my brothers in a fight against evil—together we could change the world. Then, even my brother died and anything became possible. For those of you who have parents living, hug them right now if possible. The voices of the dead continue but you can’t hug them.

My mom having a great new year with my mother-in law. Just wow for me.

Mom’s last year at Lake Bonaparte. Her face says it all.

No matter your age, find at least a sliver of a second to tell the ones you love that you do.  A hug lasts forever in the mind and heart and it’s so easy to give.  Feelings are as real as the table or chair you might be sitting by or on. So much in our hurried lives gets unsaid. Go to the ones you love and say it.

Giving  what you can to others is the best thing you can do for your own life—trust me

I believe in you.

Where does it go? It all goes inside of you,  and that’s forever.

Franque23

 

 

 


Yard work is exercise which is a good thing. Really?

The garden was a bit overgrown by last week.

It’s true, I can look forward to losing some weight this fall while doing this garden/yard work which means I can drink more beer, right? Hmmmm, maybe all this exercise is a bad thing? I have to weigh (haha) my options: 1) I could sit like a lump in front of the tv or computer or get carpal tunnel from turning pages in books I read and grow larger like a fungus on tree bark or, 2) I can work my ass off outside keeping the same weight while supporting beer companies.  I’m pretty sure this is what my dad meant when he never said, “Son, there’s a lot to think about as you age.”

It turns out our neighbor’s chickens love our overgrown garden!

Here’s another good shot of the weeds and volunteer papaya….( I had 12  papaya growing in the garden this year, I guess from our compost-but it hasn’t ever happened before?!?!?)

That’s a sage bush in the foreground.

I clipped some sage before beginning the task of clearing the weeds from the garden. I’ve enough sage growing to keep me wise for three lifetimes. ( Would you believe for a day?)

Recently, I had some nice harvesting just before the weeds won, ….greens, rosemary, Kale and more…

 

 

It was like the weeds and my plants loved one another!

There’s no time like the right time, especially when it comes to working on gardens unless you’re asleep or napping. To be clear: nap time and midnight are absolutely the wrong times to plant a garden. You might dream you’ve planted and spend four weeks wondering why nothing has sprouted. Then, once it dawns on you that you never planted you’d be late planting and still need a nap! So planting gardens may not only support beer companies but it may be bad for one’s mental health.

Plus, growing a garden ties it’s owner to the seasons generally and the changes of weather specifically so it comes with strings—as in beans—attached. Plant too soon in Northern Florida and the seeds might get washed away, burned to a crisp or frozen solid depending upon what season you’re planting for. So gardens are like dinner in that it depends upon the season.

Right now, it’s Fall planting prep time: the weeds have taken over the spring garden and they gotta go  before the soil’s turned over. Weeds, BTW, don’t read signs. ‘GO Away,’ ‘I hate you!,’ ‘Never come back,’ signs posted in the garden don’t work at all—weeds are either impervious to being cursed at or they enjoy it, not sure.

So I got busy clearing…it’s a ritual I keep twice per year….and the hawks over head always come to call from above as worms squiggle in the dirt as I pull the weeds.. I only learned recently after twenty years of wondering that Hawks love worms.

Shadow knows the routine so he was ready to inspect the job.

There’s a torture embedded in garden work. It’s much like cleaning house in that once you start the task the more you see there is to do. So yeah, I pulled garden weeds for two hours and that led to another three hours of cutting down random jungle plants that now own the rest of our property.  Right now, because I’ve been busy,( i.e. lazy), I could cut bush off our property fences for about 10 hours before getting to mowing, cleaning flower beds and weeding the pineapple garden. This is why I’m moving out…nah, not really. Okay, maybe.

A pineapple flower-so beautiful to see. The plant can take two years to bring the flower forth, and then another 3 or 4 months to create a pineapple. But when they do, as  co-worker said today at work as I brought one in to share..” This is the best pineapple I’ve ever had.” Yes, bar none.

The garden owns me. I’m addicted to garden growth and a slave to the insects, moles, deer and weather that torments me. Speaking of moles, I once bailed our pool since it had rained enough to have it over-flow (something we’ve since learned is stupid, useless and plain annoying) only to finish and have a mole spurt out of the ground by the pool’s edge and land flat on its back deader than a, well, dead mole. Now? I wish I’d thought to perform CPR on that rascal.

Age has a way of making a person care for others no matter how small.  I don’t even mind that last spring a deer hopped my garden fence, a garden full of growing crops, and ate only three things: all three of my basil plants down to the ground! In my younger crazy years I might have wished for a shot gun but now at my age I laughed my ass off searching for any trace of my basil plants…(not really, not even the fatty part of my ass went missing.) I imagined that deer jumping in the garden and deciding what he wanted to eat that night.

My Grandchildren ate some dragon fruit(I didn’t grow it) and I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t care about the mole.

They got busy swimming.

I took a photo of the sorta finished garden—there’s about 4 more hours of weeding and planting left before the fall garden is in.

In the end, or is this the beginning—we never know, right?—the garden keeps me in touch with some neighbors who walk bye and smile or who I give produce to. It keeps me in touch with the world as it turns and the seasons change. It keeps me young at heart and a bit more fit than I’d be if I wasn’t working it. And, it supports  micro-brewery’s!

Here’s to the basil eatin’ deer, condolences to that one mole long ago. I hate you inch worms and I’ll get you! About those weeds? We have to talk; I’ve been pulling you out of my garden twice a year for twenty years now and it’s not because I don’t like you: I freakin’ hate you!

I’ll be workin’ it, turning the soil and planting the seeds soon.

Go ahead; plant something and watch it grow.

Franque23

BTW, it’s called flash eyes, but I call it spirit photography. Here’s to National Dog’s Day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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