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Saturday, December 31, 2011

The calender has switched.. another year over. A new one just begun.. with every last kiss there will be a final goodbye to the year that was.. disasters and horror, violence and fear.. Hope 2012 will be filled with none of the above. But we are all realistic, aren't we?



COAST TO COAST AND AROUND THE EARTH: 2012 HERE
Enjoy what you find in the new months ahead.. 



The calender has switched.. another year over. A new one just begun.. with every last kiss there will be a final goodbye to the year that was.. disasters and horror, violence and fear.. Hope 2012 will be filled with none of the above. But we are all realistic, aren't we?



COAST TO COAST AND AROUND THE EARTH: 2012 HERE
Enjoy what you find in the new months ahead.. 



2011.. better gone than here.... as life's whirlwind continues, a short pause to think back to the 12 months of horror that just occurred

Here we go again. The end of a year. The beginning of a new one.

As I get older, I begin to discover that we seem to live the same day over and over again. Bill Murray in GROUNDHOG DAY is..well...us! We are Bill Murray. 

We are all in the same story. We are all in the same loop. Spinning in infinity. Over and over again. Or at least until the brain, heart, and mind give out and we travel to that other side. Whatever that other side may be. IF that other say may even be there.  Christopher Hitchens left our world this year, and he sure as heck didn't believe in a God or a Satan. So if he is somewhere now after life, I wish he'd come back to say he was wrong. Hell, I wish he'd come back to say he was right! Anything. 

I entered the 30-somethings a year ago. Now at 31, I started a new chapter in life. 

My beautiful son was born on February 22, 2011. When he came out of my wife's womb, he was new to the world... fresh. And throughout this entire year he has grown with such speed that it has transformed life into a virtual whirlwind. I think some brain cells of mine became fried this year.. I think some intelligence was lost. I became worried about every little gasp, whimper, and wail. Little Ayden Morris never seemed to fail; he could make you worried, happy,  and sad all in one cry...

Indeed, everything changes with a birth of a child.

I can only explain it like this: When my wife told me at 3am February 22 that "this is it," my entire life changed in an instant..... so there we drove to the hospital after a snowstorm... hours later new life arrived on this planet.

But it wasn't without its losses, this year.. No indeed, not at all.

This year saw horror, tragedy, strife, and loss. Just like any given year, you may say. But this year seemed worse.

I lost my dog Bailey two weeks before my son was born. My sister lost her dog Cloud the same night that my wife went into labor. 

Later in the year, my wife lost her mother, Joyce-- a beautiful woman who walked this planet for over 80 years but left in an instant.

Beyond that, the human race itself lost many this year.

It could only be described as a year of disaster.

From birds dying in thousands on New Years day to a tsunami, to an earthquake in the Northeast in the summer..to rumors of war and to bombs of real war... Oh lord, yes indeed, we lived through it all. Not all of humanity lived through it though.

The massive tsunami that struck Japan was immense.. unbelievable..historic.. and deadly. A 9.0 quake coupled with a deadly tsunami and an after effect of nuclear contamination. The perfect storm of horror... the government denied problems first. High radiation levels later they couldn't deny anymore... so the US simply raised the level of 'safe' radiation!

That's how the West responds to horror.

But the West wasn't safe, either.

In 2011, drought killed animals in Texas and dried lakes. An earthquake rattled parts of the nation that never got rattled. Deadly tornadoes killed without prejudice in Joplin, Missouri.  Flooding ... winds... hurricanes striking New York City.. massive dust storms in Phoenix.. extreme heat.. snowstorms on Halloween. .

It's all too much.

The Arab spring.
The strange summer.
The frightening fall..
The nuclear winter.

A comet was supposed to destroy earth. So were solar flares. 
But that never happened..
Instead, the earth got busy trying to destroy itself. 

By year's end we had no choice but to fall on our knees and hear the angels' voices.. the night divine.

Osama was killed and now sleeps with the fishes.. the hot sauce mom went to jail.. A tent collapsed at a fair in Indiana before Sugarland sang. Cholera spread in Somalia. London blazed. 'Anonymous' was unfazed.

Congress voted to make the homeland a battlefield. 
Republicans never stopped talking about torture..
Obama lost the mojo..
Vladimir Putin came back.
Amy Winehouse left.
Sandusky "taught kids to use soap." 
Joe Pa got fired.
An apple fell from the tree when Steve Jobs left....

Fall on your knees indeed. And hear the angels...crying? Shrugging?

Not sure what they will do after 2011. The year of our lord. Or lordless. 

Or lard-asses. 

Oh night divine.. save us all.

Yes, indeed, it's been a year. It's been real. Or unreal. I can't tell, really.  I sure think the earth will be glad this whole mess of a calender year is now behind us.



Welcome, '12! Bring us the Mayan Calender! Bring us revolt!

Bring us an election!
Bring us something............. maybe no disasters? Maybe no birds dying? Maybe no earthquakes? Come on mother earth, even you have to get tired some time or another...!?

Good year, folks. '11 gone. 2012 hear. Y2-12. Never thought we'd make it through K. 

Twelve more months and we'll do this again..... unless those Mayans were right after all.

Happy new year, Earth. Same as it's ever been.

2011.. better gone than here.... as life's whirlwind continues, a short pause to think back to the 12 months of horror that just occurred

Here we go again. The end of a year. The beginning of a new one.

As I get older, I begin to discover that we seem to live the same day over and over again. Bill Murray in GROUNDHOG DAY is..well...us! We are Bill Murray. 

We are all in the same story. We are all in the same loop. Spinning in infinity. Over and over again. Or at least until the brain, heart, and mind give out and we travel to that other side. Whatever that other side may be. IF that other say may even be there.  Christopher Hitchens left our world this year, and he sure as heck didn't believe in a God or a Satan. So if he is somewhere now after life, I wish he'd come back to say he was wrong. Hell, I wish he'd come back to say he was right! Anything. 

I entered the 30-somethings a year ago. Now at 31, I started a new chapter in life. 

My beautiful son was born on February 22, 2011. When he came out of my wife's womb, he was new to the world... fresh. And throughout this entire year he has grown with such speed that it has transformed life into a virtual whirlwind. I think some brain cells of mine became fried this year.. I think some intelligence was lost. I became worried about every little gasp, whimper, and wail. Little Ayden Morris never seemed to fail; he could make you worried, happy,  and sad all in one cry...

Indeed, everything changes with a birth of a child.

I can only explain it like this: When my wife told me at 3am February 22 that "this is it," my entire life changed in an instant..... so there we drove to the hospital after a snowstorm... hours later new life arrived on this planet.

But it wasn't without its losses, this year.. No indeed, not at all.

This year saw horror, tragedy, strife, and loss. Just like any given year, you may say. But this year seemed worse.

I lost my dog Bailey two weeks before my son was born. My sister lost her dog Cloud the same night that my wife went into labor. 

Later in the year, my wife lost her mother, Joyce-- a beautiful woman who walked this planet for over 80 years but left in an instant.

Beyond that, the human race itself lost many this year.

It could only be described as a year of disaster.

From birds dying in thousands on New Years day to a tsunami, to an earthquake in the Northeast in the summer..to rumors of war and to bombs of real war... Oh lord, yes indeed, we lived through it all. Not all of humanity lived through it though.

The massive tsunami that struck Japan was immense.. unbelievable..historic.. and deadly. A 9.0 quake coupled with a deadly tsunami and an after effect of nuclear contamination. The perfect storm of horror... the government denied problems first. High radiation levels later they couldn't deny anymore... so the US simply raised the level of 'safe' radiation!

That's how the West responds to horror.

But the West wasn't safe, either.

In 2011, drought killed animals in Texas and dried lakes. An earthquake rattled parts of the nation that never got rattled. Deadly tornadoes killed without prejudice in Joplin, Missouri.  Flooding ... winds... hurricanes striking New York City.. massive dust storms in Phoenix.. extreme heat.. snowstorms on Halloween. .

It's all too much.

The Arab spring.
The strange summer.
The frightening fall..
The nuclear winter.

A comet was supposed to destroy earth. So were solar flares. 
But that never happened..
Instead, the earth got busy trying to destroy itself. 

By year's end we had no choice but to fall on our knees and hear the angels' voices.. the night divine.

Osama was killed and now sleeps with the fishes.. the hot sauce mom went to jail.. A tent collapsed at a fair in Indiana before Sugarland sang. Cholera spread in Somalia. London blazed. 'Anonymous' was unfazed.

Congress voted to make the homeland a battlefield. 
Republicans never stopped talking about torture..
Obama lost the mojo..
Vladimir Putin came back.
Amy Winehouse left.
Sandusky "taught kids to use soap." 
Joe Pa got fired.
An apple fell from the tree when Steve Jobs left....

Fall on your knees indeed. And hear the angels...crying? Shrugging?

Not sure what they will do after 2011. The year of our lord. Or lordless. 

Or lard-asses. 

Oh night divine.. save us all.

Yes, indeed, it's been a year. It's been real. Or unreal. I can't tell, really.  I sure think the earth will be glad this whole mess of a calender year is now behind us.



Welcome, '12! Bring us the Mayan Calender! Bring us revolt!

Bring us an election!
Bring us something............. maybe no disasters? Maybe no birds dying? Maybe no earthquakes? Come on mother earth, even you have to get tired some time or another...!?

Good year, folks. '11 gone. 2012 hear. Y2-12. Never thought we'd make it through K. 

Twelve more months and we'll do this again..... unless those Mayans were right after all.

Happy new year, Earth. Same as it's ever been.

A Grim decision: There is 'no question' the ground is unstable in Allentown cemetery

This is another image from Allentown, Pennsylvania, of a sinkhole developing near a cemetery in the town--an historic cemetery that may now have to have graves moved.

A court order was secured in case Lehigh County Coroner Scott Grim may need to make the grim decision on what to do with the graves. Land is being watched closely in case any shifting in soil occurs. Nearby homes have also been evacuated.

The cemetery holds 20,000 graves--including some from the Civil War.
"It's a very volatile situation. The ground is unstable. There is no question it is moving," said Everette Carr, president of the Union and West End Cemetery Association,

A Grim decision: There is 'no question' the ground is unstable in Allentown cemetery

This is another image from Allentown, Pennsylvania, of a sinkhole developing near a cemetery in the town--an historic cemetery that may now have to have graves moved.

A court order was secured in case Lehigh County Coroner Scott Grim may need to make the grim decision on what to do with the graves. Land is being watched closely in case any shifting in soil occurs. Nearby homes have also been evacuated.

The cemetery holds 20,000 graves--including some from the Civil War.
"It's a very volatile situation. The ground is unstable. There is no question it is moving," said Everette Carr, president of the Union and West End Cemetery Association,

Allentown the vanishing?

The land of the dead...sinking underneath the crust of the earth.. Living there in Allentown.. and all the land is giving out.

Billy Joel had a hit song about Allentown decades ago.. a whole new tune may need to be written if rumors, which are rampant online, turn out to be true: Allentown is sinking?


What we do know is that a sinkhole has developed in an historic cemetery in the city. Officials say a water main break is to blame--along with a year of saturation with constant rainstorms and flooding.


But the more interesting part comes around when you search out, as one YouTube user did, just where this sinking is occurring: Directly next to the site of a major gas line explosion in 2010.

So sayseth the rumor: The center of the town is sinking because of massive earth changes--changes which caused the gas line to rupture and now the ground to give way under the feet of Allentownians. 

While the premise sounds far fetched it also raises eyebrows when you consider proximity of where the ground is buckling.. The focal point being the center of town.. next to where a gas line did actually rupture a year back.

Sinkholes have been in the news for several years now. Dramatic photos of dark openings that look as though they go to the center of the earth itself have been published all across the world. 


Watching this one closely.. I am after all relatively close to it, anyway.

Allentown the vanishing?

The land of the dead...sinking underneath the crust of the earth.. Living there in Allentown.. and all the land is giving out.

Billy Joel had a hit song about Allentown decades ago.. a whole new tune may need to be written if rumors, which are rampant online, turn out to be true: Allentown is sinking?


What we do know is that a sinkhole has developed in an historic cemetery in the city. Officials say a water main break is to blame--along with a year of saturation with constant rainstorms and flooding.


But the more interesting part comes around when you search out, as one YouTube user did, just where this sinking is occurring: Directly next to the site of a major gas line explosion in 2010.

So sayseth the rumor: The center of the town is sinking because of massive earth changes--changes which caused the gas line to rupture and now the ground to give way under the feet of Allentownians. 

While the premise sounds far fetched it also raises eyebrows when you consider proximity of where the ground is buckling.. The focal point being the center of town.. next to where a gas line did actually rupture a year back.

Sinkholes have been in the news for several years now. Dramatic photos of dark openings that look as though they go to the center of the earth itself have been published all across the world. 


Watching this one closely.. I am after all relatively close to it, anyway.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

On the end of the year Thursday morning radar

Lots of news from around the world ready to astound and confound..True horror in some respects, and in others scary ... It's 2011, still, if you didn't realize it. Party like it's 1999. And hope for the best in 2012. 

And


By the way, some more 2012 year in review material is coming. I am quite proud of it to stick around and stay tuned to this page.. humble me and even read it. I hope you'll enjoy and share thoughts

On the end of the year Thursday morning radar

Lots of news from around the world ready to astound and confound..True horror in some respects, and in others scary ... It's 2011, still, if you didn't realize it. Party like it's 1999. And hope for the best in 2012. 

And


By the way, some more 2012 year in review material is coming. I am quite proud of it to stick around and stay tuned to this page.. humble me and even read it. I hope you'll enjoy and share thoughts

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A year end treat: You want propaganda?! You got propaganda!

And North Korea surely knows how to do it..

Large images of Kim Jong Il on a motorcade of government vehicles on a snowy stretch of North Korean highway. The dear leader perished from the earth after becoming so overworked that he died on a train.. So they said. 

A "clearly audible" out pouring grief took place as the motorcade swept through the streets.. According to reports, tens of thousands of people braved the freezing weather to say goodbye to the dear leader--and then most likely to home to freezing homes as well. 

And sure, those images were "live." Right? You mean, state run media would lie to the world? You mean they would call something live without it truly being live? It was getting dark in Seoul but on TV the light was abundant for the funeral procession. But I guess that just means God is smiling on Kim. Or wait, isn't Kim God? 

I think..?

I'd be curious to exactly created the giant portrait--and we mean GIANT--of Kim Jong Il? You can't just go to a Kinkos or Staples and get one produced, can you? ... There is just something about nations that go all out with propaganda that impress me: Giant signs, giant images, and giant photos. Amazing quality on the massive image of Kim ...I'm surprised the car was even able to movie with the weight on the humongous Kim.

But why poke fun at the death of a tyrant. 


Just get me the number to the giant portrait store!

A year end treat: You want propaganda?! You got propaganda!

And North Korea surely knows how to do it..

Large images of Kim Jong Il on a motorcade of government vehicles on a snowy stretch of North Korean highway. The dear leader perished from the earth after becoming so overworked that he died on a train.. So they said. 

A "clearly audible" out pouring grief took place as the motorcade swept through the streets.. According to reports, tens of thousands of people braved the freezing weather to say goodbye to the dear leader--and then most likely to home to freezing homes as well. 

And sure, those images were "live." Right? You mean, state run media would lie to the world? You mean they would call something live without it truly being live? It was getting dark in Seoul but on TV the light was abundant for the funeral procession. But I guess that just means God is smiling on Kim. Or wait, isn't Kim God? 

I think..?

I'd be curious to exactly created the giant portrait--and we mean GIANT--of Kim Jong Il? You can't just go to a Kinkos or Staples and get one produced, can you? ... There is just something about nations that go all out with propaganda that impress me: Giant signs, giant images, and giant photos. Amazing quality on the massive image of Kim ...I'm surprised the car was even able to movie with the weight on the humongous Kim.

But why poke fun at the death of a tyrant. 


Just get me the number to the giant portrait store!

Predictions for 2012

The Earth Informer.. not the prognosticator of prognosticators.. but neither is that little groundhog.. so if he could try it, so could I. 

The predictions for 2012. Hold me to them. We'll check in '13 how well this site did in its psychic ability to foretell future events before they occur.

  • Mitt Romney will be the Republican nominee. Newt Gingrich will crash. Ron Paul will run as a third party... but won't be a major factor. Barack Obama will be the president for the next four years after his victory in November 2012.
  • North Korea will launch missiles to threaten the United States. Kim Jong Il dead.. Un here. Ugh.
  • The tension in the Middle East will dramatically escalate in 2012. Iran, Israel.. Syria.. No nation will appear stable.
  • Lots of people will begin to think the end times are upon us. Not only due to the Mayan calender end in December 2012 but because of strange world events
  • Gas prices will soar.
  • The stock market will have major upticks and downward crashes. 
  • Unemployment claims will continue to fall.. Maybe to 8% or lower. But the real unemployment number will surge into the 30% range. The economy will look like it's recovery but it will not.
Am I a downer? Or a fine predictor or the future.
Check in January 2013 and find out.
If we are still here.............

Predictions for 2012

The Earth Informer.. not the prognosticator of prognosticators.. but neither is that little groundhog.. so if he could try it, so could I. 

The predictions for 2012. Hold me to them. We'll check in '13 how well this site did in its psychic ability to foretell future events before they occur.

  • Mitt Romney will be the Republican nominee. Newt Gingrich will crash. Ron Paul will run as a third party... but won't be a major factor. Barack Obama will be the president for the next four years after his victory in November 2012.
  • North Korea will launch missiles to threaten the United States. Kim Jong Il dead.. Un here. Ugh.
  • The tension in the Middle East will dramatically escalate in 2012. Iran, Israel.. Syria.. No nation will appear stable.
  • Lots of people will begin to think the end times are upon us. Not only due to the Mayan calender end in December 2012 but because of strange world events
  • Gas prices will soar.
  • The stock market will have major upticks and downward crashes. 
  • Unemployment claims will continue to fall.. Maybe to 8% or lower. But the real unemployment number will surge into the 30% range. The economy will look like it's recovery but it will not.
Am I a downer? Or a fine predictor or the future.
Check in January 2013 and find out.
If we are still here.............

Dumbest product of 2011

A late year decision occurred: The pajama jeans were dumb in 2011 until I saw this: The Forever Lazy.

For the nudist in you.. or the person who still wants to be a child.. Pajamas with feet. 

The ad paints a good picture.. you can drink coffee, type on the computer.. open Christmas gifts. Even go to a tailgating party before a football game. All in your forever lazy. 

Although I don't know how much respect you'd get in a football parking lot wearing a full body pajama set. 

But there may be something to this Forever Lazy frenzy.. could it be a sign that we, as Americans, are nothing but children in our mind? Childlike culture? Stay forever young... delusional that we are young but aging before ourselves in the mirror? I don't know.

Forever Lazy. A sign of the times or an exceptionally dumb blip on the radar. Time will decide.

Dumbest product of 2011

A late year decision occurred: The pajama jeans were dumb in 2011 until I saw this: The Forever Lazy.

For the nudist in you.. or the person who still wants to be a child.. Pajamas with feet. 

The ad paints a good picture.. you can drink coffee, type on the computer.. open Christmas gifts. Even go to a tailgating party before a football game. All in your forever lazy. 

Although I don't know how much respect you'd get in a football parking lot wearing a full body pajama set. 

But there may be something to this Forever Lazy frenzy.. could it be a sign that we, as Americans, are nothing but children in our mind? Childlike culture? Stay forever young... delusional that we are young but aging before ourselves in the mirror? I don't know.

Forever Lazy. A sign of the times or an exceptionally dumb blip on the radar. Time will decide.

Culture of 2011: Fear

We have been bombarded with scenes of torture and crime.. mayhem and murder.. terrorism.. fear.. and this is all just in our entertainment! This is all just at the 10pm hour.. this is all just at our local movie theater.

Since 2001, the American mind has been on a steady diet of fear porn. Our pop culture and entertainment forever changed with airplanes flying into buildings ten years ago. And now, this year, it is clear just how far down the path of uncertainty this has taken us.


  • Protesters have been pepper sprayed for simply sitting on a sidewalk.
  • An American citizen in another nation, one who we say was a terrorist, was killed on an order from the President of the United States.
  • The United States Congress and Senate passed a bill that may allow for the arrest of American citizens--on the homeland--and indefinite detention without charges... A few stood up to oppose. Most didn't. And most Americans didn't even know that Congress had that provision in the defense bill.
  • Stories of overreaching cops.. police arresting those who videotape arrests.. police pepper spraying or tasing senior citizens.. drone attacks in nations that didn't declare war on us..
Oh yes, indeed... what a rabbit hole we have placed ourselves in.

The term 'slippery slope' is heavily used, if not overused. But what other term truly could describe the place we find ourselves? The slippery slope..... where cops in black uniforms don't patrol neighborhoods on foot but instead bust doors down after the drone in the sky says criminal activity may be taking place. Warrants? Nah... we have the drone now. The mighty eye in the sky.. 

It's not a bird. 
It's not a plane.
It's the future... slyly flying..

Culture of 2011: Fear

We have been bombarded with scenes of torture and crime.. mayhem and murder.. terrorism.. fear.. and this is all just in our entertainment! This is all just at the 10pm hour.. this is all just at our local movie theater.

Since 2001, the American mind has been on a steady diet of fear porn. Our pop culture and entertainment forever changed with airplanes flying into buildings ten years ago. And now, this year, it is clear just how far down the path of uncertainty this has taken us.


  • Protesters have been pepper sprayed for simply sitting on a sidewalk.
  • An American citizen in another nation, one who we say was a terrorist, was killed on an order from the President of the United States.
  • The United States Congress and Senate passed a bill that may allow for the arrest of American citizens--on the homeland--and indefinite detention without charges... A few stood up to oppose. Most didn't. And most Americans didn't even know that Congress had that provision in the defense bill.
  • Stories of overreaching cops.. police arresting those who videotape arrests.. police pepper spraying or tasing senior citizens.. drone attacks in nations that didn't declare war on us..
Oh yes, indeed... what a rabbit hole we have placed ourselves in.

The term 'slippery slope' is heavily used, if not overused. But what other term truly could describe the place we find ourselves? The slippery slope..... where cops in black uniforms don't patrol neighborhoods on foot but instead bust doors down after the drone in the sky says criminal activity may be taking place. Warrants? Nah... we have the drone now. The mighty eye in the sky.. 

It's not a bird. 
It's not a plane.
It's the future... slyly flying..

The biggest ass of the year

Bill O'Reilly. How cannot it not be?
He earned his title with this:


The biggest ass of the year

Bill O'Reilly. How cannot it not be?
He earned his title with this:


The person of the year

TIME magazine made their choice: They picked 'the protester' as the person of the year. I agree with TIME in a degree, that may be the most important 'type' of person... it's broad, yes. And nameless, sure. But we are all protesters in some degree..

In my estimation, though, the person of the year is one sole human being... and no one besides a few in higher rankings of the government even knows the name of the person of the year. The man (or potentially woman) who shot Osama Bin Laden during the spring time raid in Pakistan. That, indeed, is the person of the year.. they changed history...

Controversy aside.. whether it was right or wrong aside.. it surely was the most dramatic event in geo political affairs of 2011. And one person is responsible for that final shot. Either in the back of the head ...or the front... 


The person of the year

TIME magazine made their choice: They picked 'the protester' as the person of the year. I agree with TIME in a degree, that may be the most important 'type' of person... it's broad, yes. And nameless, sure. But we are all protesters in some degree..

In my estimation, though, the person of the year is one sole human being... and no one besides a few in higher rankings of the government even knows the name of the person of the year. The man (or potentially woman) who shot Osama Bin Laden during the spring time raid in Pakistan. That, indeed, is the person of the year.. they changed history...

Controversy aside.. whether it was right or wrong aside.. it surely was the most dramatic event in geo political affairs of 2011. And one person is responsible for that final shot. Either in the back of the head ...or the front... 


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The most important story of the year: The earth strikes back

Life became fragile in 2011. The very ground the earth stood on shook... sometimes to a point where the land itself moved.

We will not forget the natural disasters in 2011. We will not erase from our memory those images of giant tidal waves simply removing villages and cities from the map in Japan. We cannot ever escape the visuals of a whirlpool in the ocean, gobbling up ships and whatever else was stuck within in.. No indeed.. in an instant, an earthquake hit, a tsunami thrashed, and a nuclear disaster began.

Drought in Texas. Joplin tornado.. flooding in the Northeast. Irene hit New York City. An earthquake caused damage to the Washington Monument. It was costly in dollars.. and costly in lives.

Just this past week, a typhoon hit the Philippines and once again... hundreds have perished from the planet.

New Zealand quake.
Flooding in Australia.
Thailand flooded.

It was exhausting even keeping up with the news. It was the year of disasters.. one major one a month somewhere on this planet.

And no, it's not the first time earth has had a bad year. But it sure as hell is one of the first times that the disasters all coupled together were as expensive as they are. 


To think, it all started with a few thousand dead birds on New Years' Day.

Hazards and tragic stories were all over the news in '11. Hope '12's a little quieter. 

The most important story of the year: The earth strikes back

Life became fragile in 2011. The very ground the earth stood on shook... sometimes to a point where the land itself moved.

We will not forget the natural disasters in 2011. We will not erase from our memory those images of giant tidal waves simply removing villages and cities from the map in Japan. We cannot ever escape the visuals of a whirlpool in the ocean, gobbling up ships and whatever else was stuck within in.. No indeed.. in an instant, an earthquake hit, a tsunami thrashed, and a nuclear disaster began.

Drought in Texas. Joplin tornado.. flooding in the Northeast. Irene hit New York City. An earthquake caused damage to the Washington Monument. It was costly in dollars.. and costly in lives.

Just this past week, a typhoon hit the Philippines and once again... hundreds have perished from the planet.

New Zealand quake.
Flooding in Australia.
Thailand flooded.

It was exhausting even keeping up with the news. It was the year of disasters.. one major one a month somewhere on this planet.

And no, it's not the first time earth has had a bad year. But it sure as hell is one of the first times that the disasters all coupled together were as expensive as they are. 


To think, it all started with a few thousand dead birds on New Years' Day.

Hazards and tragic stories were all over the news in '11. Hope '12's a little quieter. 

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Music of the mind: The life and times of Christmas past, present, and future.. A holiday rambling rant
Music is life.. life is music.. We are all dancing and singing to something. We are all ending a song.. or beginning it. To those who wished me a Merry Christmas and to those who didn’t.. Merry Christmas back to you. It has been a strange year.. getting older, my wife losing her mom this year.. having a new son.. Aging as new life enters. I hate life sometimes but love it. What a year.. whirlwind of activity.. and time flying by.


Wasn’t Charlie Brown just in in the beginning of December? Wasn’t it just Thanksgiving? Wasn’t it just Halloween!? Where is it going!!!!??



For some reason I have two fond memories clear in my mind tonight.. one is walking under a moonlight Christmas Eve night with my nephew Shawn —when he was about 5 and I was about …oh a teenager.. and another when I got JURASSIC PARK in VHS for Christmas and stayed up late with my father to watch it—knowing he would tell me how it was possible that science could bring back dinosaurs and waiting anxiously for him to tell me.. I think I watched it only for him to explain the fun science of it all.. then I listened to Art Bell with him into the wee hours of the night.



These two memories, along with many others of miracles and snow and rain and gifts and dinners and mom and dad and family and friends… all traveling ferociously in my mind right now. 



What is this whole thing about life? What is it that makes it go by so fast?



The fact we have so much to do? 



I vividly remember having the flu on Christmas, along with my sister, years ago. The same year I got a cop hat and Tonka truck. 



I remember glorious nights of cold weather…seeing breath in the air.. amazing nights of snow falling at midnight.. warm nights of rain ruining Santa’s sleigh ride.. 



This year my wife and I celebrated new life .. we also grieved death. It’s been a year to remember, and forget. All at once.



I remember a few years ago—many years now—-proposing marriage to my wife at Martin’s in Hazleton, PA… She accepted, to my joy.. 



We had a wedding and played Slade as we entered the reception hall…



And isn’t that what life is really all about? Highs and lows.. glory and tears.. sadness and laughter. Whirlwinds of time..



Pope Benedict tonight during his Christmas Eve mass lamented material possessions. Last I checked he was still wearing his Prada shoes and large hat. But nonetheless, he’s right. 



I don’t remember gifts, really. I remember the times.. the joy of my grandmother’s old house in Centralia, PA, on Christmas Eve.. with the whole family there. And all those Christmases gone and up until tonight, again with the whole family there. 



I am humbled by how fast life goes by. I’m not going to be here forever. No one is. I just want to be here as long as I can to see my son Ayden grow up… and have his own memories of Christmases past and present.. 



The whirlwind of time…….



Merry Christmas.

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