Thursday, April 17, 2014

April 17, 2014

Today's Tarot card is the 2 of Cups
A young man and woman stand facing each other in a field, each holding a cup.  The man reaches to touch the woman's hand. Their expressions are gentle. Between them is a caduceus and above them a winged lion head.

Twos are generally considered partnership cards, and that shows clearly in the illustration for today's card. It can also mean reconciliation.

I honestly don't know of any partnership in the offing, or of a person I need to reconcile with.

Today's art is a cameo from 1835 by George W. Jamison, done of Andrew Jackson.

Today I'm grateful for:
1. Hearing from my mom and two of my daughters.
2. Another evening to myself
3. Pleasant conversation with the bus driver on the ride home

Of note in the world:
1. MSN reports that militant Russian supporters are accused of distributing leaflets to Crimean Jews in Donesk. The fliers allegedly said that all the city's people of Jewish descent over the age of 18 have to register (at a cost of $50) with the Commissioner of Nationalities (the what??). Other sources add that the registrants must also list all their property. Secretary of State Kerry has confirmed the reports and condemned those responsible.
In a day or so we should have more reliable information on exactly who's responsible for this and whether it's legitimate. This could be a baseless attempt to intimidate, an outright lie, an attempt to further discredit the Russians, a hoax. Whatever its origin and intent, it's an outrage.

2. The FDA is warning that the process of grinding up a woman's uterus so it can be removed laparoscopically could cause cancer cells to be spread throughout the body.
How are they just figuring this out now?

3. Astronomers have found a "Goldilocks" planet 500 light-years away. It's 10% larger than earth, but is in the right zone of distance from its sun to allow the right temperatures so that any water on the planet could be liquid.
So this place is 500 light-years away. 500 light-years is 2,934,856,800,000,000 miles.
Voyager I (the furthest man-made object from space) travels at a speed of 38,030 miles per hour.
There are 8,766 hours in a year. So Voyager travels 333,370,980 miles per year.
It would take Voyager 8,803,576 years to reach this planet.
According to the fossil record, Homo sapiens first developed about 200,000 years ago. That's a lot of time to d/evolve. By the time we can reach them, will we even care?

April 16, 2014

Nice news this morning, that a rare baby camel was born in a zoo in Hungary, and made his public debut yesterday:

Ilias is a one week old Bactrian camel, a rare species.

Today's tarot card is the Six of Clubs.
Two children enjoy the flowers in six different planters in the safety of a village square or castle keep.

The card represents sentimentality, childhood, innocence, sharing.
I'm not feeling especially childlike or sentimental today, but it's a nice card.

Today I'm grateful for:
1. Going home at 3:30!

Today's chores:
1. Make dinner
2. Do a load of laundry
3. Hang the other curtain
4. dishes
5. Make a piece of jewelry
6. dust the living room

...yeah, none of that got done.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

April 15, 2014

Tax day!
This morning I finished two books on my way in to work. I'd started and nearly finished both... and they were more short stories than books anyway:
1. The Accidental Exorcist by Joshua Graham
2. The Shunned House by H.P. Lovecraft

Exorcist started out well enough. A psychiatrist tries to help a woman who's been accused - and confessed - to drowning her three children. But maybe it's a demon... The story cuts very quickly to the chase, and the psychiatrist finds herself calling on her long-lost faith. Or more accurately, the story becomes a heavy-handed parable on the necessity of faith in a world filled with evil.
The premise was good, but it skipped over some very important plot and character development in order to make the story short, so it was hard to empathize with either the "possessed" woman or the psychiatrist.

The Shunned House was interesting, especially since it was set in Providence and mentions places I'm quite familiar with. In fact, the "Shunned House" itself exists and is on Lovecraft tours. It was written in 1925, and still retains some of that painful Victorian/Edwardian oblique-speak.

Monday, April 14, 2014

April 14, 2014

A number of things happened over the weekend, and I'm just catching up with them all.

Start off with the beautiful:

Detail from a plaque at the cloisters. It's enamel and gilt, and was the weekend image from my MetMuseum calendar. It's French, from the 1170s.

The one above is by German artist Paul Klee, 1925. It's called Oriental Pleasure Garden. I don't know if I like it for what it is, but I like the color. I'd hoped for a better description of the style, but it's just classified as "Modern Art." Though it's almost 100 years old. Also, it's painted on cardboard.

Of note in the world:
1. Shootings at 2 Jewish centers in Kansas City kill 3. Former leader of the KKK is in custody. WTF. Seriously. Just... I don't understand.
2. Last Friday a bus crash killed 10, all on a trip to Humboldt State University, north of Sacramento. The trip was for low income and 1st generation students to get a taste of the college experience. The bus was struck by a FedEx tractor trailer.
3. Yesterday was Palm Sunday, which seems to have gone largely unnoticed.
4. Oh, and this. Best. Judge. Ever.

Today's Tarot card:
Five of Swords from the Ryder-Waite deck.
A young man stands with three swords in his hands. Two lay on the ground behind two other men, who are in the distance. One appears to be crying. The sky is partly cloudy
Represents victory, potency, and ample preparation or confidence. Wikipedia calls it the "defeat card. Could be a beacon of hope or dire warning.
I guess everything depends on perspective. The 5 is the defeat card if you're one of the guys in the background It's the victory card if you're the guy in the foreground. Our perception depends on our position.

Today I'm grateful for:
1. Dinner with my friend
2. More beautiful weather
3. Yummy breakfast casserole that my coworker brought in to share.

April 13, 2014

Yesterday was fairly busy. I went out around 10am, determined to enjoy this beautiful spring weather during the daytime. I surely did, too. I walked around Broadway, enjoying the big Victorian houses, some converted to business use, or condos. Some still private homes. It's not that hard to imagine brick or stone roads populated by horse-drawn carriages, and women in skirts with hoops or bustles, and men in top hats.

In my travels I stumbled upon a restaurant I hadn't heard of before. Excellent breakfast, with bacon going for $2.50 per slice. Which sounds outrageous until you see the bacon, each strip 10" long and 1/3" thick. Cooked. Each was easily the size of 4 regular strips. They must have come from Pigzilla.

Today will be dedicated to chores around the house, including changing the curtains from the heavy thermal-backed ones to the white sheers.

... and a long nap. Again. I'm really not sure what's wrong with me, except my bed and sheets are sooooo comfy. And now the day is done.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

April 11, 2014

Tarot card of the day: 10 of Swords
A cloaked woman weeks in a moonlit graveyard. She's dropped flowers on a grave with a Celtic cross for a headstone, on which a crow sits. 10 swords frame the image, 5 above, 5 below, all pointing inward.
10 swords
The card symbolizes desolation, violent demise, sadness, emptiness, ruin, delusion, tears, solitude.
Interestingly, this is the anniversary of a significant negative event in my life. All those words are ones I tend to associate with the experience.

Of note in the world:
1. Mandy Moore turned 30. What?

Something cool I saw today:

Today I'm thankful for:
1. Silly owl videos
2. Being alive

Today's challenge:
Pledge to buy a personal care product that bears the USDA Organic label the next time you shop.
This was super-easy, since I already had organic perfume in my etsy shopping cart.

Today's chore:

Sweep and mop the kitchen

Thursday, April 10, 2014

April 10, 2014

Today's tarot card is the King of Pentacles
A king sits on his throne. At his feet is a treasure chest filled with gold coins and ripe grapes. In his hand is a large coin with an acorn on it.

king of pents
The king is the "lord of wellness," whose power is founded on ambition and the capacity for enterprise and financial management.
I really need one of these.

Of note in the world:
1. The ebola outbreak in West Africa is being described as "challenging" by the WHO.
2. A marine guard fatally shot a fellow guard in Ft. LeJeune, NC, making it the second fatal shooting at a home military base in 2 weeks. This one may have been an accident.
3. Yesterday a 16-year-old boy stabbed several of his classmates in a high school in Pennsylvania. 20 students were injured.

Today is National Sibling Day.
I will celebrate by emailing both my siblings.

Today's Challenge is:
Take 5 minutes to learn about the quality of your tap water.
I went did a little research and learned that Providence is ranked 2nd best water in the country.

Today I'm grateful for:
1. A little time to myself while Bear is at work.

April 9, 2014

Today's tarot card is The Fool.
A young man stands in a hoop, bracing himself as he prepares to roll along. He doesn't realize he's on the edge of a steep drop.
That's him, in the bottom card.

The fool is the first card in the Major Arcana, and represents the neophyte as s/he starts out on the journey of life. The card is about new beginnings, adventure, naiveté, and being easily distracted. The young man is so excited about the ride in the hoop, he doesn't see the danger right at his feet.
It's a reminder to pay attention to what's going on right under your (my?) nose.

Today's art image is of a liturgical comb depicting scenes from King Henry II and Thomas a' Becket.
The first side shows Thomas being named Archbishop of Canterbury. The other side, Thomas' martyrdom.

Today I'm grateful for:
1. The nice man who let me use his restroom
2. Beautiful weather
3. The extra boost of energy I've had the last few days.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

April 8, 2014

The Tarot card for today is The Hierophant, pulled from the Rider-Waite deck.

A crowned person sits on an elevated throne, holding a triple-cross scepter. The throne is flanked by two pillars, and below are two bald men/monks facing the Hierophant. At the base of the throne are two crossed keys.

According to Wikipedia, the Hierophant is associated with "Education — Knowledge — Status quo — Institution; Conservatism — Discipline — Maturity — Formality; Deception — Power — Respect — Duality; Social convention — Belief system — Group identification; Experience — Tradition — Naïve"

It's time to examine your beliefs. ou may have the opportunity to teach someone about life. OrY perhaps you're the student. Either way, are the beliefs flexible or rigid? Have you taught or learned all you can with that person? Are you making decisions based on convention or intuition?

I'm going to have to give  this one some thought.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

April 7, 2014

Sorry to hear that Mickey Rooney passed yesterday. At 93, he lived a good long life. I believe he's the one who said "I lost $5 on a horse once, and I've spent a million dollars trying to win it back." He was in so many movies in the 30s and 40s, and I don't think it's possible to think of him without thinking of Judy Garland. Maybe they're "putting on a show" up in heaven.

Today is National Beer Day and National Coffee Cake Day. Guess which one I'll be celebrating?

Today i'm grateful for:
1. Game of Thrones is back!
2. Bear's elbow is not broken!
3. Good news from The Gal Herself.

Today's tarot card is the Knight of Pentacles.
A man with longish light brown hair and a mustache sits astride a brown horse in an autumn vineyard. He holds a coin in one hand.

He's about materialism, financial well-being, doggedness, resistance and laboriousness.
It seems like a lot of my cards have had something to do with money or success lately. I'm not sure if it's a good sign or not, but this one seems to indicate hard work. It could also mean financial stability to the point of ignoring all else. Selfishness (which I don't think is a problem for me), becoming boring (could definitely be a problem for me) or single-minded (yeah...).