Mocha’s School of Kick Ass Mousing

Riding on the cat tails of his recent success in catching a little mouse in our apartment our cat Mocha is now holding weekend seminars in our storage closet intended to teach his fellow cats and other interested parties how to succeed in the exciting world of mousing and competitive catting.
I told him this wouldn’t work and I am eating my words as he is now booked well into July. This is crazy. He has no formal training or licence. I am afraid this is all gone to his head and its already costing me money. He has had business cards made , a website designed and has hired a couple of neighborhood cats and my own daughter to assist him, all with my credit card!

He says not to worry “baby”, yes he called me baby!

He said that once his school gets going he will be making the “big bucks”and that he’ll be so successful that he will be able to pay me back with “a gazillion percent interest” so that I never will have to work again.¬† Seriously, he told me this.

ūüėÄ

Heard that story before….

Wish me luck..

~SBI

Free the Marijuana

There has been some backlash to a recent complaint made by the newest member of our apartment dwellers association. The complaint was regarding the sweet but pungent smell of marijuana that has at times lingered around our community and the wide availability of said and I may note legal marijuana products in our city of Potland, I mean Portland.
This has made “the mean looking guy upstairs” enemy number one in certain circles and a protest protesting the persecution and harassment of natural medicine enthusiasts, patients and supporters will be held today in the amphitheater.

I will be selling my homemade brownies to the participants to make some extra cash, stop by and pick some up while they last.

Update****

It began peacefully enough but when the protesters starting shouting “Free the Weed!”, “Free the Weed!” the amphitheater became swamped with crazed people looking for the free weed. FREE WEED!!

At first I was afraid. I was petrified as the crowd swelled to massive size! Quick thinking saved the day. I told them the marijuana was in the brownies and they cleaned me out of all 5 dozen in an instant, most of them tipped and handsomely too as stoned people are known to do. I walked away from the maddening but happy crowd with a few bucks to buy me some new kicks.

ūüėÄ

**Seriously, marijuana can be medicine and its consumption, medical and recreational is legal where I live and becoming legal in more and more places. Below are links to some interesting sites regarding the subject. **

Medical Marijuana By Harvard Medical School blog

Medical Cannabis by MedicineNet.com

Qualifying Conditions for Medical Cannabis (2020 Update)

and now a quote from...

DR. SANJAY GUPTA:

‚ÄúI mistakenly believed the Drug Enforcement Agency listed marijuana as a schedule 1 substance because of sound scientific proof. Surely, they must have quality reasoning as to why marijuana is in the category of the most dangerous drugs that have ‚Äėno accepted medicinal use and a high potential for abuse.‚Äô

They didn’t have the science to support that claim, and I now know that when it comes to marijuana neither of those things are true. It doesn’t have a high potential for abuse, and there are very legitimate medical applications. In fact, sometimes marijuana is the only thing that works…

We have been terribly and systematically misled for nearly 70 years in the United States, and I apologize for my own role in that.‚ÄĚ

Aug. 8, 2013, ‚ÄúWhy I Changed My Mind on Weed,‚ÄĚ CNN.com

The Perils of Time Travel

I am a time traveler. I travel in a linear fashion, straight ahead and very slowly but travel I do and so do you…

I know I look young for my age. It must be in my genes or something. That’s how I have been able to pass myself off as a ridiculously youthful and right-on looking middle-aged woman. ¬†I have seen a lot of history, hell, I’ve¬†been in a lot of history. ¬†Most of it has been untold until now for obvious reasons of International security. The truth has been hidden all these years. Only now has the various governmental agencies given me permission to tell the tale.

Reader discretion is advised:

 

vint dog odd7 vintage

My career as an insanely popular and charismatic daredevil and Queen of the Segovian Circus started out ordinarily enough. My dog Mr. Fluffy happened to be a speedboat driver for the International trade unionists union in the Segovia province of Spain.  He mentioned they needed a show girl for the aquatic circus there. I jumped at the chance to show my moves and show them I did.

I wowed the crowds every Saturday afternoon performing gymnastics and dancing atop a shiny speed boat driven by my faithful dog and now manager  Mr. Fluffy.  Eventually my fabulous baton twirling, amazing flexibility and obvious flair for fashion garnered me the notice of trade newspapers and famous people all over Europe.  I received countless fan letters, tokens of affection and numerous marriage proposals.

mealtime vintage fun animals eat table with people

I settled for Clive. The lead zookeeper for the circus. Clive seemed mild mannered at first. He lured me in with his fondness for animals and his keen intellect. ¬†We lived in a tent by the river. There I make “delicious” vegan meals and pots of strong coffee for him and the animals; a lion and a lamb.

It wasn’t until the lion, who happened to be a double agent for the CIA, asked me for my help that my life took a strange turn.

It turns out that Clive wasn’t really a worker in the circus he too was an agent a secret triple agent, so secret no one knew who he worked for. ¬†The lamb bought me a bus ticket for Las Vegas and handed me twenty bucks, get out while you can and don’t come baaaack it said.

“You are a killer, you are a thug, you got this!!” Huh???

I made it to Vegas, a wide eyed country girl with a dream to make it big in Sin City. The lion was waiting for me. He told me he had a job for me with great pay and travel.

If I have learned anything in my long life it is to suspect “the hard sell” especially from a someone from the government dressed up in an animal costume. I bought his jive and before you know it I had been enlisted in the CIA as a super secret inter dimensional and International Spy.

I met with a top scientist. Doctor Zulu. He had just “been released from his duties ” from the Miskationic University and had some “ideas” he was working on and asked if I could “help out”

I reluctantly agreed…

 

The Good Doctor

 

The first few times didn’t go too well.

 

Turns out one cannot reach the speed of light by racing down a steep hill standing a top a motorcycle, even while rocking some sweet boots!

 

but before you know it Doctor Zulu had me higher than a kite and tripping the light fantastic!

 

 

Somehow the brilliant doctor had figured out a way to send me forward and backward in time using everyday items that can be found in any home or office. And from then on my unbelievable exploits were only covered by comic books under the guise of fiction.

I became the foremost expert in time traveling espionage, spy gamery and tomfoolery. They called me the Mata Hari of time travel. I would have been a celebrity had I not had to keep my identity secret.

I met and interacted in the lives of countless people famous and infamous through many important times and places. Much of it unrecognizable to anyone here on this timeline. But I did make quite an impact.

Now I have retired. Left to fend for myself in an insane world that makes no sense. A world we time travelers have helped create. Imagine the Butterfly effect multiplied by infinity.

Sorry about that. We have formed an alliance, the ones that have remained here. So far its just the lion and I but we hope to recruit followers. We are devoted to setting things straight here.¬†We especially feel bad about this world, this particular timeline, I don’t have to tell you but this is the worst, by far.

Please email me with any strange goings-on or sudden changes to your reality and I will try to send someone out when we can.

~NLM

 

 

Related and not so related articles

Stephen Hawking – Black Hole Time Travel

The Time Machine( 1960) Clip from movie ”¬†The Eloi … Damn Them”¬†

Pink Floyd – Time

 

 

Aliens inside us

 

There are aliens inside us…hidden deep inside us…restless ones who move about changing shape and creating quite a stir…subtly effecting us in ways we cannot imagine…slowly taking over our minds…driving us insane…

 

This is the dramatic version I like to entertain myself with. The one that suggests a nerdy sci-fi thriller mixed with a slick medical docudrama. This may not be too far off. ..

So just what am I jabbering on about you ask?

 

Mitochondria!

(Play dramatic music here)

that’s right.¬†Mitochondria.

 

 

mitochondrion 1
Mitochondria

As we all know from Science class , mitochondria are adorable microscopic rod-shaped organelles. They live inside our cells, they give us our get up and go, our va va va voom and our very breath.

 

Really far out and groovy scientists hypothesize that millions of years ago a microscopic  free-living single-celled organism met up with another larger microscopic free-living single-celled organism and the two dug each other so much they reached some sort of agreement to develop a symbiotic relationship. And so they did;  shacking up together like bohemian live-in lovers, one not being able to live without the other, each complimenting each other perfectly. Eventually, the larger organism developed into a cell, the eukaryotic cell to be exact and the smaller organism developed into the mitochondrion we know today.   But how much do we know about mitochondria anyway?

 

Cultures cell stained for mitochondria (red), microtubules (blue), and the mitochondrial fission protein Drp1 (green)
Cultures cell stained for mitochondria (red), microtubules (blue), and the mitochondrial fission protein Drp1 (green)

Although they live inside us, mitochondrion do not share our DNA, they have their own.  They are quite the powerhouses of energy. They can change shape rapidly and are quite restless moving about ours cells almost constantly.

Mitochondria may not be literally the air that we breathe but it is they who convert the oxygen we breathe into energy in a¬†process called aerobic respiration.¬†Without mitochondria higher animals such as you and I and even my cat Mario are not likely to exist…

Ever since I heard of mitochondria and this arrangement made millions of years ago I have been fascinated.

 

 

I myself have entered into what most would consider a symbiotic relationships with another human and I don’t have to tell anyone that sometimes these relationships just don’t turn out. Sometimes they end badly and by the time you realize this, ¬†it’s already too late and you have been driven insane. ¬†It happens all the time. But imagine if you had literally absorbed this partner into your body and now it’s DNA is in your nucleus! ¬†How can you undo this? ¬†Argument, logic or idle threats cannot separate you. You are stuck with this mistake forever and there’s no amount of clever legalese or high priced lawyers that can save you. ¬†OMG! Yikes!!

 

Mammalian mitochondria
Mammalian mitochondria

Really?  Can your Mitochondria make you crazy and if I ever do go crazy can I use this as an excuse?

I have been catching up on my technical journals and ran into articles citing evidence that there is a correlation between mutated mitochondrion and mental illness. This is no surprise.

This aspect is what intrigues me about the whole subject.  I mean could these little buggers be influencing us on a more subtle level, and if I screw up or do something stupid can I blame them?

Would anyone buy this?

This is what I ponder as I look out the window into the great wide world outside. I watch two crows fly high in the sky which¬†leads to more pondering. ¬†Yes, there are times when symbiosis goes horribly wrong but what happens when it goes wonderfully right? ¬†Apart from some craziness, are we not the product of a successful symbiosis? ¬†I try to imagine a time before the merging of the two¬†single-celled organisms that created life as we know it here on earth. ¬†In our narrow human point of view not a lot had happened before this chance meeting. ¬†It was a spark that set off a whole heaping helping of a lot, dammit…

…has all of this been good ? That I will ponder another day…

I feel restless…

..the sun is out and I think I will go for walk

 

~NLM

art fractal gif 6

 

 

References and Related Articles

Entangled Particles and the Certainty of Love
The Air that I Breathe - The Hollies 


High Intensity Exercise Makes Muscle Mitochondria Happy

Psychiatric symptoms of patients with primary mitochondrial DNA disorders


Mitochondria (What is Mitochondria?)


Fame is a harsh mistress, just ask my cat.

 

 

mario my famous cat face

‚ÄúI’m already crazy. I’m a fearless person. I think it creeps up on you. I don’t think it can be stopped. If my destiny is to lose my mind because of fame, then that’s my destiny. But my passion still means more than anything.‚ÄĚ
~Lady Gaga

 

My famous cat Mario is beside himself. ¬†He fears his fame is fleeting and soon he’ll be forgotten. I was shocked. My cat never talks this way; he has been always a positive force, what happened to his great lion-like confidence?

Apparently he’d noticed his page-rankings were down. He had¬†Googled himself multiple times over the past few weeks and had been disappointed by the results. I laughed and cited his numerous accomplishments, awards and medals.

In a light hissy tone he ranted on and on about link analysis algorithms and numerical weighting. He then he spewed out formulas and equations. Honestly I was lost there.

He complained that his new book “Napping for the Sophisticated” ¬†hasn’t been selling and that he’s¬†sick of “playing some fool human’s pet in tawdry pet food commercials.” ¬†

Mario confided in me that his secret dream is to be the star of his own talk show. He wants to bring back the glamour and as he put it: “The Va va va voom of old downtown¬†Burbank back into late night T.V. just like his idol¬†Johnny Carson. ¬†He said he needed to “create a stir online to garner support and create a buzz”.

I offered to write a blog post about him and he laughed at me with disdain for suggesting such a thing. He brought up the fact that my readers are few, a devoted few( thanks guys) but a few nonetheless.

 

 

mario sleep nap sun

He said we need to hire a production team to make an overly dramatic and wildly expensive but tasteful You tube video about his napping habits. He showed me this pic of him I took last summer. He¬†called it “golden” and asked how could anyone human or cat “resist this cuteness?”¬†

He also wants a publicist “that knows what they’re doing” and a secretary to keep all his projects together for him. He demanded money to pay these “over-priced but well worth it professionals”.

He went so far as to suggest he could pull a wild stunt possibly involving himself and that other cat Spotsy who he calls White Fang in some sort of well-documented and digitally enhanced posturing incident where Mario wins a place atop all the furniture ( yeah right) while The Fang is delegated outside.

How did I get involved in this? ~Spotsy
How did I get involved in this?
~Spotsy

 

In a fit of ¬†hysteria he told the tale about the cat down the street who flushed the toilet all day long while his human servants were off “working”. Eventually he become so famous for this one simple act a news crew showed up and filmed him.

“He now has his own pilot coming out this fall on NBC.” ¬†Mario wailed in a mournful and pathetic mew.

Like I said, I had never seen Mario like this. My poor loving and faithful friend was reduced to a sad and desperate victim of that bitch goddess, fame.

 

Follow your bliss Mario, I said in no uncertain terms, he rolled his eyes knowing it was just me quoting Joseph Campbell again. ¬†There is a reason I do this. ¬†I ¬†brought up the fact that his true love is music, which it is and that if he diligently and deliberately pursued this love, all that he desired will come to him. As some of you may or may not know, ¬†Mario is a fabulous vocalist. He has the soul of Cat Stevens with all the pizzazz of a young Catty Purry. His lack of confidence holds him back, it’s something we share, that and pure laziness.

Your family loves you and that’s all that really matters Mario, I told him. Fame is supposed to be fleeting, love is not.

We spoke on throughout the afternoon. Mario entertained us with a medley of his favorite show tunes and we twittered away the rest of the day lost in a sweet and legal marijuana haze his musician friends contributed¬†to the packed¬†room of¬†neighborhood cats and trippy neighborhood people. ¬†We drank tea and enjoyed the music and that is what it’s all about.

ūüėÄ ¬†

~NLM

 

mario my famous cat sing song

 

 

 

mario my famous cat sings sing a song

 

‚ÄúThe world is a wonderfully weird place, consensual reality is significantly flawed, no institution can be trusted, certainty is a mirage, security a delusion, and the tyranny of the dull mind forever threatens — but our lives are not as limited as we think they are, all things are possible, laughter is holier than piety, freedom is sweeter than fame, and in the end it’s love and love alone that really matters.‚ÄĚ
~Tom Robbins

 

(UPDATE: Mario will soon be coming out with a new album. A bluesy reggae pop sound he’s been working on. I’ll keep you all posted)

 

Related Articles

The New Face of Friskies (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com) 

Cat Stevens – If you want to sing out

 

 

mario my famous cat in garden

 

Of Cats and Men

A wee tidbit from the other blog…pure silliness with some interesting “facts” mixed with the stuff I just blatantly made up. Enjoy!

Serendipity 13

old man with cat on leashTo me nothing is sexier than a man with a cat. Yes, you heard that right; I like guys who like cats. ¬†These men are not afraid to show their kinder and gentler side. These are masculine men, rugged men, intelligent men with big muscles and facial hair. These brave men ignore the taunts and teases from other men, men who say that ‚Äúreal men‚ÄĚ only have tough kick-ass pets like Pit Bulls, Snakes and Roosters with attitudes but not cute and cuddly cats, but these men, these ‚Äúcat men‚ÄĚ know the truth. That any real man worth his salt is compassionate and loving and likes a good petting every once in a while. So without any further ado I give you.

Of Cats and Men

vintage marlon brando and cat

Marlon Brando with His Cat at Home

The cat was an outstanding poet but lacked the fingers to type. Marlon provided those fingers and…

View original post 331 more words

I AM Catwoman

 

 

A while back in a previous post I touched briefly on my uncanny almost supernatural power over cats; ¬†it is a part of me that I am just now officially sharing with the world. Since bringing it up in “I Speak for the Cats” I have been inundated with endless queries as to the specifics of this power. I don’t know why I’ve been reluctant about sharing the story about this “gift’ I have. ¬†I am quite proud of it. I mean…

 

selfie2 funny cat face

 

…it IS about cats.

.

Ever since I remember cats have had a thing about me and I have had a thing about them… And I’ve always had a cat, or should I say the cat had me. They’ve always been there and can I let you in on a little secret?

I’m their favorite human of all the humans–I hate to break it to you but yes, it’s me!

I know what you are thinking…

 

vintage gif woman cat
Cat Power GRRRRR!

How did I get this fantastic power and and where can you get it?

I know how you feel and I wish I knew. It seems I was born this way. Of course I am pleased by this; to be adored by such an adoring animal is one of the best feelings in the world!

It could be that I speak their language. It was difficult to learn. Did you know there are 34 different mews for the word “nap”?

I do understand them and I really like them. I am an obedient human in many ways; I keep the Friskies coming with a few treats on the side. I can give a good chin rub but beyond all that I am not anything special. Honestly, I don’t know why cats like me so much. I wish I could take credit for it but really, it is just dumb luck.

Ebony the cat and Butterfly Bush by N.L McKinley
Ebony the cat and Butterfly Bush by N.L McKinley

 

My yard, of course is the hip hangout for all the popular and “with it” cats of the neighborhood. ¬†They like to nap in the back bushes or follow me around while I work in the garden. ¬†It was strange at first but I enjoy the company. And my cat Mario seems okay with it all..in fact he seems quite proud.

What are you trying to tell me Spotsy?
What are you trying to tell me Spotsy?

But there is something else… I have heard the talk of late; the whispered purrs and silent meows….their ringleader…the one they call Spotsy, ¬†often looks in my window. ¬†I get the feeling he wants something….it’s the same look I get from MM around dinnertime but even more so…

I do want to mention despite how strange and wonderful this whole thing sounds it is not all fun and laughs and signing autographs. Some of these cats can get quite insistent and a way only cats can.  I sometimes find them inside my house, having snuck in the backdoor.  They wander around and then leave. We have gotten used to this including my son who has woken up a few times with a strange cat in his room just staring at him.

 

vintage odd cat woman funny

I often take walks through my neighborhood. ¬†I like to walk. I like it so much that I take walks in other neighborhoods too. No matter where I am cats will come out of nowhere running to me and in most cases mewing up a storm. Some roll onto their backs, others purr…all want to be petted and I am careful not to encourage them too much lest they follow me home.

I used to think this sort of thing happened to everyone but over the years I have seen some surprised reactions. ¬†I was once accused of ¬†“hiding tuna in my pocket to excite cats just to freak everyone out”.¬†

Honestly, if I were to hide any sort of foodstuff in my pocket it would be chocolate. Anyone who knows me knows that.

And anyone with a cat who knows me ¬†knows that their cat likes me better. This happens time and time again whenever I go over to someone’s house and meet their cat. It’s ¬†just like that and it is embarrassing for all. ¬†Cats can be overwhelmingly affectionate especially the ones whose owners have deemed unfriendly. It’s these sorts of cats that are the most love-starved. Whatever the case, it is known immediately that the cat prefers me and that is made clear in no uncertain terms.

cat mouse funny cute pair

 

 

I once was presented with a live mouse at a dinner party of a co-worker whose cat thought it a loving tribute.

I did too….and it was delicious. ¬†The dinner I mean. The mouse? I don’t know what the mouse thought, the cat took off with it out the back door after it’s mistress screamed at the poor thing.

Well…I confess I made up the part about the mouse but the rest of it is true. ¬† Ask MM. He has witnessed my power over cats many times. Whenever it happens he shakes his head and doesn’t say a word. ¬†It’s a good thing he puts up with me and all my eccentricities.

Me and my endless ideas that don’t make a dime; ¬†I am thinking of starting a group. A performing ¬†acrobatic troupe comprised of…you guessed it, cats.

 

cat jump gif

We would train very hard, the cats and I. Then months from now…you will be watching a well-known cable variety program and you’ll see us and you will say “Wow! ¬†How did she get this wonderful troupe of performing cats and where can I get one?

 

I ¬†know what you are really thinking… This poor fool is primed to become one of those cat ladies who live with like 50 cats…the ones that you see on the news from time to time….

I want to assure you while I am Cat Woman I am not a cat lady. The cats of course will live in their own homes and I will pay them for their performances. ¬†Whatever the going rate is for cats. ¬†I may be nuts but I am not crazy…

And so I hope this answers some of the questions about my power of cats. Yes, it is a great responsibility but the rewards are well worth it….

I am Catwoman!
I am Catwoman!

 

Have a purrfectly wonderful day!

‚ô•

Nancy 

 

kitten gif cute 33

 

 

 

 

I Speak for the Cats (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

YouTube

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PURRKOUR     

 (Didga is an amazing cat!  

.

China Cat Sunflower by The Grateful Dead

Al Stewart РYear of the Cat 

Fresh Quotes: March MADNESS

Here I am. ¬†It is a quarter till midnight on the last day of February. I am floating beyond both the physical and the intellectual into a ¬†soft and fluffy sort of sugary mind-zapping void that not only resides in but thrives in wide stretches of the world wide web…..otherwise known as “the internets”.

I am currently googling “vintage strange people fun” and seeing the array of absurdities parading before my very eyes. ¬†(If you have never done this I highly recommend it.) ¬†…okay, I have a lot of time on my hands but not as much as you’d imagine…it is that important. ¬†Mad you say? ¬†Perhaps….

I start giggling then laughing which gives way to loud and succinct guffaws. I try to stop but keep giggling….oh my family must think me mad…..

She’s quite mad you know…

strawberry smile

Here’s proof…..

mad insanity certificate 001

There’s more than one kind of madness. There is the crazy “out there” wacky madness. For example my conversations with random squirrels around town, recording this nonsense and putting it on YouTube. ¬†That is a fun kind of madness the type that many young eccentrics like myself and probably you too enjoy.

There is also the sort of madness that comes about when the squirrels talk back. This is a not so fun kind of madness, depending really on what they say. An example of the worst kind of madness is when the talking squirrels start criticizing your life choices and making fun of your colorful outfits.

Today we’ll be concentrating on the fun variety of madness; the kind that has been scrubbed clean of any unpleasantness with a good strong anti-bacterial soap.

What follows is an example of quotable madness accompanied by some trippy pics with a side of SBI.

Happy March my friends,

Enjoy the madness

‚ô•

~SBI

.

M A D N E S S

strange-and-funny-vintage-animal-photographs-4 mad

‚ÄúWould it save you a lot of time if I just gave up and went mad now?‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Douglas Adams

Vintage Intelligent Animals (1) elephant mad

‚ÄúHumor is reason gone mad.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Groucho Marx

1920s-flapper-dances11 mad vintage

‚ÄúImperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Marilyn Monroe

att00025 vintage odd strange lard

“The mad are happy, the sane ignorant; those of us stuck on the sane side of madness or the mad fringe of sanity are in a purgatorial cage.” ¬†

~Anonymous

swing dance mad vintage 5

‚ÄúThe only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Jack Kerouac

Vintage-Womens-Fight-Club

‚ÄúIt is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Philip K. Dick

jimi hendrix madness mad hatter wonderland

‚ÄúBut I don‚Äôt want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.
“Oh, you can‚Äôt help that,” said the Cat: “we‚Äôre all mad here. I‚Äôm mad. You‚Äôre mad.”
“How do you know I‚Äôm mad?” said Alice.
“You must be,” said the Cat, or you¬†wouldn’t¬†have come here.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Lewis Carroll

quote moon ginsberg moon purple

girls-moon-space-stars-vintage-Favim.com-221897-1 madness

‚ÄúYou shall know the truth and the truth shall make you mad.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Aldous Huxley

Vintage Photos of Animals Acting Like People (16)

‚ÄúStay mad, but behave like normal people. Run the risk of being different, but learn to do so without attracting attention.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Paulo Coelho

quote mad carrol 1 black

MAD YouTube

One Step Beyond by Madness

Insane in the Brain by Cypress Hill

Crazy by Gnarls Barkley

MAD Articles

The Mad Artist (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Star Trek All-Star Extravaganza and Jamboree

space stars gif star trek

Boldly going where no blogger has gone before; into the depths and reaches of time, space and syndicated television greatness to celebrate nothing less than a cultural phenomenon.

Star Trek

I am not the only one who shares a fondness for the crew of the Starship Enterprise. ¬†We are everywhere, we connoisseurs¬†of the best Sci-Fi creation of all time. ¬†Seldom does a television show make such a far-reaching and significant impact on popular culture. Cancelled in it’s third season, this low budget small screen affair returned and won over a devoted fan base and cult-like following in reruns followed by movies and spin-offs.

The show touched on many important issues of the day. Much of the themes it explored are still valid today.  Star Trek explored more than just a fictional universe. It explored the issues of the day during a  time of great social change. It had much to say and subtly it spoke volumes. Star Trek pushed the envelope a bit when it could. It showed a future world where we humans had grown up; in which the people of the Earth had seen beyond their differences and embraced unity in a Federation of Planets.  Money was obsolete and it seemed everyone was free and able to pursue their dreams by utilizing their unique talents thus contributing back to society in a positive way.

It was Utopian, it was visionary. It spoke to a generation and then to another and another….

The crew of the fictional Enterprise comprised of a well-rounded mix of humans with a smattering of beings from other worlds all living in harmony. Sure, there were dangers out there…but that is what made it fun and there was always a lesson…and it was fair. The star of the show was the ship: The Enterprise. To its captain she was everything. In that crazy made-up universe she carried her adoring crew to far off exotic planets where they’d experience adventures and save other humanoids….spreading ¬†justice all over the galaxy.

¬†Another world saved at the last minute, a sigh of relief and a little joke and on to more adventures ahead…warp factor 1.

¬†There are likely a million people out there who probably know more about the show than I. ¬†It has quite a number of devoted admirers, I am but one.¬†One of the many amazing thing about Star Trek is the feeling of devotion and loyalty it evokes. Of the original series I have seen every episode, more than once. Each one is unique and comfortably the same. I still watch one from time to time and it’s like coming home; akin to steeping inside a toasty warm and wonderful memory that smells faintly of Mom’s roast beef, mashed potatoes and greatness.

and so without further ado I present SBI’s

star trek sulu with sword gif

 Star Trek All-Star Tribute Extravaganza and Jamboree

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Bringing you oddly shaped bits and pieces of pixel goodness, presented haphazardly and entirely for fun by me for whomever has the guts to continue on…..

**Note: ¬†What follows is not earth shattering. It will not make you cry, ponder or reflect in anyway. You will not learn anything whatsoever, in fact you may lose brain cells along the way. This may ¬†inspire you but not in any sort of meaningful way. What follows is a frivolous distraction filled with all kinds of cool GIF’s. ¬†ūüôā ¬†Okay. That being said let’s hop aboard!

THE NUMBERS

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79

Number of episodes in The Original Series before it was cancelled

(See list)

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FRESH QUOTES ala STAR TREK

Captain James T. Kirk--egotist in space

James T. Kirk: Genius doesn’t work on an assembly line basis. Did Einstein, Kazanga or Sitar of Vulcan produce new and revolutionary theories on a regular schedule? You can’t simply say, “Today I will be brilliant.”

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McCoy_experiencing_cordrazine_frenzy star trek

Dr. McCoy: Spock, I’ve found that evil usually triumphs…unless good is very, very careful

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star trek nn

Leonard McCoy: The release of emotions, Mr. Spock, is what keeps us healthy– emotionally healthy, that is.

Spock: That may be, Doctor. However, I have noted that the healthy release of emotion is frequently very unhealthy for those closest to you.

star trek scotty drink

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James T. Kirk: Another technical journal, Scotty?

Montgomery Scott: Aye.

James T. Kirk: Don’t you ever relax?

Montgomery Scott: I am relaxing.
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star trek kirk and keeler

Edith Keeler: One day soon, man is going to be able to harness incredible energies, maybe even the atom… energies that could ultimately hurl us to other worlds in… in some sort of spaceship. And the men that reach out into space will be able to find ways to feed the hungry millions of the world and to cure their diseases. They will be able to find a way to give each man hope and a common future. And those are the days worth living for.

star trek gif fascinating spock

Did You Know?

Star Trek Facts

  1. Lieutenant Uhura‚Äôs name means ‚Äúfreedom‚ÄĚ in Swahili.
  2. At the same time the Star Trek series was beginning to create a loyal following, the Monkees were exploding onto TV sets. Consequently, Roddenberry created the character of Pavel Andreievich Chekhov as a close approximation of the Monkees‚Äô lead singer, Davy Jones‚ÄĒwith a Russian accent.
  3. Divorce Klingon style means slapping your spouse, reciting the words ‚ÄúN‚ÄôGos tlhogh cha!‚ÄĚ (our marriage is done) and spitting in your spouse‚Äôs face.
  4. Klingons prefer to eat food that’s still alive. A favorite meal is gagh, a slimy serpent-worm dish, followed by warm blood wine. ¬†(Yum)
  5. Vulcans have inner eyelids that protect their eyes from the intensity of the Vulcan sun. They can also survive several days without water, perhaps because they evolved on a hot, dry planet.
  6. Even though they’d prefer not to mate, Vulcan’s are compelled to reproduce by a¬†ritual¬†called Pon Farr. Once every seven years,¬†they are consumed by Plak-tow, or blood fever, in which they become ¬†savage and may even fight to the death.
  7. Vulcans were once an extremely violent and emotional people until Surak developed a new philosophy of logic, which spawned the Vulcan time of Awakening. Those opposed to Vulcan logic left the planet and founded colonies elsewhere, most notably the Romulan Empire.
  8. The character Spock was at first rejected by network officials who feared his vaguely “Satanic” appearance (with pointed ears and eyebrows) might prove upsetting to some viewers. ¬†Spock, however, went on to become one of the most popular characters on the show. Spock, in fact, became a¬†sex symbol¬†of sorts–something no one connected with the show had expected. Leonard Nimoy notes that the question of Spock’s extraordinary sex appeal emerged:
    “almost any time I talked to someone in the press…I never give it a thought….to try to deal with the question of Mr. Spock as a sex symbol is silly.

star trek spock gif happy

Speaking of a certain Mr. Spock…

Yes, I have mentioned in a past post a girlhood crush I may have had on the Vulcan. I do tend to fall for the conflicted and emotional ¬†types…but I have since moved on. He is aware of this and we are “just friends”. That being said I would like to address some rumors that have been bandying about regarding¬†the candid photo shot by a member of the paparazzi at an exclusive Portland mall. Yes. It is I and Spock, but despite what the tabloids say we are Not, I repeat Not running off to Risa together.

Spock and Nancy

My heart belongs to someone else but THAT is another story…
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So what are your favorite Star Trek memories? ¬†Do you have a favorite episode or favorite character? Do you even like Star Trek at all and are wondering why I keep going on and on about it? These are the questions, if you choose to answer….regardless, this post will now self-destruct in five seconds…haha. Just kidding…seriously…

Have an amazing day full of fun space adventures….or chocolate, either one but have a great day!

‚ô•

Strawberryindigo.

gif star trek enterp

Odds and ends and little snippets

Top 10 ‘Star Trek’ Technologies That Actually Came True¬†(howstuffworks.com)

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Star Trek: The Original Series (wikipedia)

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Star Trek Quotes  (wikiquote)  An excellent resource.

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To Boldly Go Crazy: The Weird Fan Art Adventures of the Starship Enterprise

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YouTube

Where No Man Has Gone Before Star Trek: The Original Series (Every episode)

Lucy in the sky with diamonds by Bill Shatner   (Psychedelic)

Mr Tambourine Man by Bill Shatner (Very Very Shatner)

Spock Singing Bitter Dregs

Star-Trek-TOS-cast-star-trek-the-original-series-

Trick or Treat Me

I am at the grocery store and no one knows I’m here. I am about to confess my secret shame; I’m here to buy replacement Halloween candy.¬†Somehow the bags of candy I bought for the trick-or-treaters has disappeared.

The bored woman at the cash register gives me and my purchases a knowing glance. I know she knows and she knows I know she knows but doesn’t care that I do know. ¬†I grab my bags and get out of there. ¬†I’m not proud of myself but…

Who can stand up to all this candy temptation at this time of year? Every time I go shopping lately to get “healthy” food for my family I am bombarded, bombarded I say, by store aisles all overflowing with bag upon bag of delightful Halloween candy–fetchingly decorated in the festive brown, black and orange of the season. I can’t be the only one who has found this whole situation a tad bit tempting, well…a lot tempting!

I suppose I could go out and buy all the bags of candy I wanted and eat it all in the parking lot of the store before I get home–as fun as that sounds–it wouldn’t be the same.

Okay.  I admit it. I am jealous of the whole thing. I am a big kid and I miss being one especially on this, my most favorite day of the year.  I love the whole idea of Halloween. I love the scariness about it, the ghosts and the vampires and monsters. I love the drama, the dressing up, the festiveness and most of all I love the candy!

I wish I could and I have yearnings to dress up in some wildly colorful costume,  definitely something with wings and cruise the neighborhood going door to door just like the other kiddies on Halloween night scoring free goodies and treats; delightful little bite sized bits of sweetness.  Why should the fact that I am a 44-year-old woman stop me really?

You never know, ¬†I still look young…perhaps if I wore a mask and walked slumped¬†over…I might pull it off? Why just the other day a drunk guy mistook me for a high school student…from about 50 feet away (it’s my shoes)

I wonder what people’s reactions would be to seeing a chocolate-crazed middle-aged woman in a fairy costume trying to pass herself off as a child to get candy on Halloween? Would they say “go home old woman”? ¬†Would they laugh? Would they call the police? ¬†More importantly would they give me candy? ¬†And if so, how much and what kind?

I mean, so what? ¬†So I want to get dressed up in some ridiculous get-up and go to strange people’s doors and get candy. I want to do this on Halloween; on this Halloween and all the other holidays for that matter. ¬†Whew…I said it. Now you know.

I told you I wasn’t proud. ¬†But it is what it is. I never really grew up and I really like Halloween. Of course, I’ve had my fantasies about this very thing while being a mom taking my kids out for years, having to stand at the foot of my neighbor’s front steps with a flashlight looking pathetic in the dark waiting to be asked if I want some candy too. ¬†Or offered shots of Espresso and homemade donuts in some nice person’s warm and homey kitchen.

What about the adults on Halloween, what happens to them? ¬†I know that many spend this fantastic holiday at various parties in skimpy costumes getting wasted. ¬†I’ve done that, but these days throwing on a pair of butterfly wings and donning a purple wig while I gorge myself till I’m sick on candy really appeals to me–Right on!!!

Who wants to join me? The more the merrier….I know most of you do not live in my city but wouldn’t it be worth the trip? ¬†Seeing me and weird Portland all while getting free candy…I’d let you treat me to a Chai Latte afterward.

Well that’s the way I roll friends. Will I really take the plunge and risk making a total fool of myself for some cheap thrills and candy? Or will I chicken out and return to the store for more bags of Recess Cups? Only time will tell…

 

‚ô•

Strawberryindigo.

Me in years past
Me in years past

‚ÄúI think if human beings had genuine courage, they’d wear their costumes every day of the year, not just on Halloween. Wouldn’t life be more interesting that way? And now that I think about it, why the heck don’t they? Who made the rule that everybody has to dress like sheep 364 days of the year? Think of all the people you’d meet if they were in costume every day. People would be so much easier to talk to – like talking to dogs. ‚ÄĚ
‚Äē¬†Douglas Coupland

 

halloween candy pile

Life with a Celebrity Cat

‚ÄúBut I don‚Äôt want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.
“Oh, you can‚Äôt help that,” said the Cat: “we‚Äôre all mad here. I‚Äôm mad. You‚Äôre mad.”
“How do you know I‚Äôm mad?” said Alice.
“You must be,” said the Cat, or you wouldn‚Äôt have come here.‚Ä̬†
‚Äē¬†Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

cheshire cat 5

Warning

The following post holds no significance whatsoever. It wasn’t designed to make you think or question anything. It promises nothing. It exists solely to make no sense at all so…if you enjoy a little nonsense now and again¬†

keep reading...

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If this sort of thing isn’t your thing and you are looking for some deep philosophical discussion you will not find it here, not today anyway.Check out the archives; pick out a subject from the top of the front page and dig right in. You may be surprised.¬†

 and so for those of you that are staying: THANK YOU.

SBI Presents   **************************************************

LIFE WITH A CELEBRITY CAT

Mario my famous cat
Mario my famous cat

I have received countless letters and emails over these last half-dozen months asking me about my famous cat Mario–inquiring about his adventures. Are there are any new loves in his life? Are there any upcoming movies he’ll be in or new albums he will be recording? Questions on his stance on the political issues of the day, you know, common stuff… he is quite the popular cat. This is not surprising, but what it surprising is that many of the letters have been directed to myself personally; asking what it feels like to live with a celebrity such as he.

Sure¬†there are the fans, the crowds wherever he goes. Forget about going to a restaurant or to a club, he gets swamped with paparazzi and multitudes of hangers on. ¬†All this fame isn’t easy. ¬†It’s endless phone calls from dignitaries and captains of industry, the top people in science and medicine and of course, the well-known patrons of the arts. ¬†We have been so busy trying to keep up with all the correspondence we hired a staff of 6 people and one really smart squirrel to handle it all.

Despite Mario’s privileged upbringing and consequent fame Mario has stayed amazingly down to earth. He enjoys the simple things in life; like sunsets and long walks on the beach, poetry and napping.

mario in box

You can just feel his charisma can’t you!. His appeal reaches through the screen and grabs you, just like that. I know. ¬†What goes through a mind like that?! ¬†Look at him here.., You can tell from his picture….those deep penetrating intellectual eyes. ¬†He is poetry in slow motion–see how he stalked, hunted down and overran this common cardboard box.

Mario has claimed it for his own and has been napping in it ever since.  What prowess

I like to call him lovey boy in front of MM just to annoy him, Mario purrs extra loud and we get a great laugh out of this. That and card games. I don’t know if it’s well known but Mario was quite the card shark in his day. He played the Vegas circuit many times. He once even was kicked out of -the Bellagio for card counting. ¬†It was then he decided to never to gamble again and devote is free time to pursue a career in film and music.¬†Much to his credit he has not gambled since and all he ever plays for now are cat treats.

Although Mario has constant demands placed on him because of his popularity he still finds time for this napping; devoting at least 19 hours a day to this his most favorite of hobbies.  But the center of his universe remains his food dish and there I suspect it will remain.

One would think that living with a celebrity cat would be more exciting. I have been holding out hopes that some of Mario’s famous friends like George Clooney¬†or¬†Oprah ¬†would drop by for a visit…

…but so far he hasn’t been up for visitors. ¬†He amuses himself by following me around while I clean the house, do the laundry and make dinner.¬†This is not the glamorous life I was promised…

Don’t get me wrong. Its not like we don’t have good times because we do, I mean he is not famous for nothing. He is quite the entertainer and what a master of the art of conversation. He has perfected what we call around here: The Silent Mew. It is timeless and it is amazing, oh what form he has. He is suave and graceful and lots of fun to be around.

He can be fussy and whiny and also seemingly aloof and then instantly demanding. He is a handful alright, but he is my cat and he’s alright with me.

Strawberryindigo.

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‚ÄúIn ancient times cats were¬†worshiped¬†as gods; they have not forgotten this.‚Ä̬†
‚Äē¬†Terry Pratchett
This is a Mario-stand in. The actual star of stage and screen was not available for pictures the time this was taken.
This is a Mario-stand in. The actual star of stage and screen was not available for pictures the time this was taken.

***YouTube****

Stray Cat Strut by The Stray Cats

RELATED ARTICLES

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Why isn’t there mouse flavoured cat food? (itsarandomthing95.wordpress.com)

Shad gives black cats the love (shadthecat.wordpress.com)

Happy Distractions and Frivolous Nonsense

Canned Nonsense. Please have some...
Canned Nonsense. Please have some…

You can always find a distraction if you’re looking for one.~

Tom Kite

A-ha…yes, I am now back to more serious matters. I have had a good rest and now have woken up on the sunny side of the bed. ¬†I promised this next post would be something lighter and hopefully I will come through on that…so far all I have is the title but as you can see it is a damn good one. So I am talking to MM about this. “So what will I write?” I ask. I seldom do this, I usually am full of ideas but today, well…lets just say I am open to anything. ¬†MM doesn’t say a word, he is asleep so I must look elsewhere for inspiration and there he is. Who is he you ask? Why it’s Mario my famous cat. ¬†He has just sashayed through the door from another night of carousing and now has the nerve to demand breakfast. ¬†Just where has he been? ¬†I wonder if he has a secret life?

Ever wake up to find  a scene like this?
Ever wake up to find a scene like this?

7 SIGNS YOUR CAT HAS A SECRET LIFE

  1. He stays out all night.
  2. You find lipstick on his collar.
  3. You get strange phone calls in the middle of the night consisting of heavy breathing and insistent mews.
  4. He has taken to wearing cologne–Salmon flavored. (there is something fishy here alright)
  5. He spends a lot of time grooming himself.
  6. He seldom has time for you anymore.
  7. You find that he has erased his text message history.

I know what you are thinking…Yes, I know my cat is famous and he is very busy. I realize this. You should see the amount of fan mail he receives but something has changed. We just don’t talk anymore like we used to. ¬†I can’t remember the last time he took me out someplace nice. I asked him point-blank ‘What are you up to?” ¬†He just stared at me with his big green eyes and then just plopped over and went to sleep. I don’t know what to do about this. If anyone has any ideas let me know. I will keep you posted.

Mario
Mario
Now on to more pressing matters…let’s play a game shall we…

In an effort to get back to some serious journalism. I googled the word “cute” and the word “disturbing” can you tell me which photos were featured under cute and which were deemed disturbing?

CUTE or DISTURBING?

This one is easy. Obviously cute.
This one is easy. Obviously cute.

CUTE OR DISTURBING?

nonsense monkey and bird cute love
I took liberties with this. This was actually under “cute monkey love”
This was listed under "cute"
This was listed under “cute”
This was also listed under "cute"
This was also listed under “cute”
Believe it or not, this was deemed "disturbing"
Believe it or not, this was deemed “disturbing”

smile random fact

ūüėÄ

3 Little Birds by Bob Marley (YouTube)  A Happy Song!

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World Happiness Report 2013 (unsdsn.org) Do you live in one of the happiest places in the world?

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♥ Spread the LOVE!  Sign up to write love letters to people in need at MoreLoveLetters.com ♥

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Sometimes I just need to bury my head in the sand for a while and just let what is to be…be. ¬†Time passes and events will occur, much of it is beyond my control. ¬†It is a good thing to let out all the rage and dissatisfaction with events and writing has always been a therapeutic activity for me. I have appreciated the ongoing dialogue with you. ¬†It is nice to know that I am not alone in my feelings about events in the world. ¬†I will not be silent about my thoughts and feelings but there is a point where it becomes counterproductive .

While it is healthy not to keep feelings inside it is also healthy to know when to let go and turn my focus on what I can change.  Thanks for all the support my friends.

‚ô•

Strawberryindigo.

 

Seven Truths of Random

The all-knowing eye that knows all
The all-knowing eye that knows all

Today I was swimming in the creative juices of my fellow bloggers (please don’t picture this) in the deep end of my reader pool¬†when I¬†ran across the daily post’s daily prompt. I usually skip this as I am usually full of ideas, but this one called to me. ¬†It suggested I write down ten words off the top of my head, pick three, make that my title and write about it.

What an excellent and¬†intriguing exercise.” I said out loud to myself. ( I talk to myself a lot, think of THAT what you will)¬† but anyway, to go back to what I was saying: I thought what a great, um… I mean… ‘What an excellent and intriguing exercise.”¬†And do I ever need exercise. I admit that my writing muscles have grown somewhat flabby lately, perhaps it’s the heat. ¬†I don’t know but this idea by the fantastic people over there at the Daily Post got me going. I immediately made out my list of ten words off the top of my head.

  1. Random
  2. Mind
  3. Spirit
  4. Body
  5. Money
  6. Choice
  7. Seven
  8. Truths
  9. Time
  10. Destination
The thinking of deep thoughts
The thinking of deep thoughts

As you can see I have a lot on my mind.¬† Oh what a wealth of interesting subjects to write on I said to myself.¬† (See how deep I am.) ¬† I was¬†set to write all kinds of deep stuff.¬† Fantastic thoughts and wonderful ideas swirled in my mind. So many that I became dizzy just thinking about them. “This is exciting!” I said¬†to myself ( I told you I talk to myself a lot.) This is a chance to show everyone how really hip and happening I am. How I’m¬†so smart and oh so deep. ¬†I gazed fondly at my ten words….

Which three to pick?¬† I knew right away random would be one of them…I mean random is so well…random.

I have been reading this book on innovation; “Where Good Ideas Come From.” The author brings up the valid point that many good ideas come not from one individual mind dreaming up them up, sitting alone in a room and thinking-thinking-thinking…many if not most good ideas come from a collective of minds.¬†¬†A community. This brings to mind the community of bloggers here at WordPress and beyond.

This is¬†an enriching ¬†place, this blogoverse. I will read some posts and get instantly inspired. I have had the luck, foresight or both to have run into some pretty smart bloggers out there with much to say and I have learned much from you. Today was no exception….and so as I was saying ( sorry, if I am rambling) I was immersed in this fun “problem” of picking just three words to write a mind-blowing and oh so deep post about.

What’s next?¬† Random, mind and spirit popped up and instantly got me thinking…..hmmmm…sounds like Astral traveling; which could be an inexpensive way for a poor wannabe writer such as myself ¬†to see the world and bring along some of my favorite blogging buddies. Oh what a time we’d have! ¬†Skimming across The Atlantic..shooting to the Milky Way and beyond.¬† I couldn’t wait to pack my bags when it hit me—no¬†chocolate! I forgot to include chocolate on my list—how stupid and so not like me.

Yum
Yum

So this chocolate thing got me distracted I must admit. I was forced, I say forced to¬†focus my mind with a largish bowl of creamy and no doubt, fatty chocolate ice cream… this seemed to calm me and my mind was then free to stumble about¬†to places it should not go when I put together another triad of words: body, money and choice. Since this blog is PG rated I knew this would not do. I immediately put together three other words: truth, time and destination. This made of think of writing an action packed story about time travel!¬† Whoo-ho! This is it! This is how I can show off my creative talents! I sharpened the imaginary¬†pencil that writes in my mind and got to work only to realize that all the Science Fiction I’ve read in my life had come back to haunt me. I didn’t want¬†anyone to accuse me of subconscious plagiarism as I discovered I was writing out the plot of¬† H.G. Wells‘ “The Time Machine.”¬†So another three words would have to do.

I started to wonder about myself and my sanity at this point. The good people at The Daily Post need me to come up with something great and witty and deep..did I mention deep before? Did I mention how wonderful and smart the people are over there at the Daily Post? (this is me sucking up by the way) Did I mention that in the almost two years that I have been putting out this blog that I have yet to be Freshly Pressed? (hint-hint)

And so back to the wondering…I am wondering what to do and then it hits me; the three words; random, seven and truth—The Seven Truths of Random,.¬† How exciting and intriguing and…oh so deep. What a perfect title!

Instantly I remembered a quote:

¬† ‚ÄúLife is random and fucked-up and arbitrary, until you find someone who can make sense of it all for you‚ÄĒ if only temporarily.‚ÄĚ

~Matthew Quick

"Undress Parade"

and then I remembered that I’m PG rated, and I have chosen not to use words like “fucked-up”¬† oops. sorry….but the meaning is meaningful; many of us are looking for meaning. I know I am. For someone to tell us the truth and not just seven random ones but all of them. ¬†I thought I alone cannot but perhaps together we can. Sorry, this is where I admit that I don’t have seven truths for you, not even random ones but I do have something…a fantastic array of creative friends (that’s you guys by the way) that will never cease to inspire.¬† THAT is the truth and nothing but…and by the way, thanks for that!

‚ô•

Strawberryindigo.

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Daily Prompt-Haphazard (dailypost.wordpress.com)

Daily Prompt: Three-Tenths (angloswiss-chronicles.com)

Daily Prompt: Three-Tenths (theidol1.wordpress.com)

Daily Prompt: Three-Tenths (lifetheuniversenddepression.wordpress.com)

Haphazard (ambitiousdrifter.wordpress.com)

FUN STUFF to Ponder

  How to Perform Astral Projection (wikihow.com)

The Time Machine 1960 excerpt of film (YouTube)

How to Time Travel (science.howstuffworks.com)

 Astral Traveler by YES (YouTube)

English: Artist's conception of the spiral str...
English: Artist’s conception of the spiral structure of the Milky Way with two major stellar arms and a central bar. “Using infrared images from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope, scientists have discovered that the Milky Way’s elegant spiral structure is dominated by just two arms wrapping off the ends of a central bar of stars. Previously, our galaxy was thought to possess four major arms.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)