kinder frame the natural beauty found around them
“if you truly love nature, you will find beauty everywhere.”
-laura ingalls wilder
yes, this is an original created by me.
years ago i posted a story
about how i had weirdly crossed paths with
meatloaf the rocker, not meatloaf the food, twice in my life.
as part of the post, for clarification
i added in a boring picture
of the food version of meatloaf
as well as
a picture of the rocker version of meatloaf.
imagine my surprise when all these years later
i got a call from an attorney in california
wanting me to pay him for a picture of his dinner
i thought it was a prank
he insisted it was real
citing the date of my published post
angrily standing his ground
i decided to take down my whole meatloaf post
and end the drama
i am always happy to support artists and their work
i can’t imagine that a slice of meatloaf on his dinner plate
was meant to be art, could be in high demand, or cause such controversy
so as you can see above
i have created my own meatloaf picture
and as a gift to you my loyal readers,
you are all free to use it as often as you would like
at no charge and with no drama.
“taking crazy things seriously is a serious waste of time.”
some may never think of this book as great literature
yet it is clearly one of my favorite books to read aloud
while this family is different from most
they accept absolutely everyone without judgement
always making the best of things
and seeing the good in other people
the kinder think back on this
learning to say ‘it’s just topsy-turvy’
when things change, are different than they expected, or don’t go as planned
they just smile and take it all in stride
for this reason i do find it to be pretty great indeed
and i think what a beautiful lesson and way to be.
“all really good picture books are written to be read 500 times.”
my favorite season – fall has arrived
Another year gone, leaving everywhere
its rich spiced residues: vines, leaves,
the uneaten fruits crumbling damply
in the shadows, unmattering back
from the particular island
of this summer, this NOW, that now is nowhere
except underfoot, moldering
in that black subterranean castle
of unobservable mysteries – roots and sealed seeds
and the wanderings of water. This
I try to remember when time’s measure
painfully chafes, for instance when Autumn
flares out at the last, boisterous and like us longing
to stay – how everything lives, shifting
from one bright vision to another, forever
in these momentary pastures.
~ Mary Oliver ~
image credit: Lumber Jane, Madame Cupcake@etsy
The FBI’s spy house on Wisconsin Avenue, in Washington, D.C.
This painfully obvious spy house sits right across the street from the Russian Embassy.
Cameras can be seen in the tinted skylights on the roof.
In the midcentury, the house at 2619 Wisconsin Avenue was attractive to all sorts of homebuyers: It had a big front porch, three stories, and was located in a family-friendly, residential neighborhood. Most attractive of all—to the FBI—it sat directly across the street from the Russian Embassy.
In 1977, the Soviet Union Embassy moved into a new building complex. It follows that, in the chaos of constructing the huge building, the FBI and the NSA would set up a secret spying station directly across the street.
According to most accounts, the house’s cover was negligible. The curtains were always drawn and no mail was ever delivered to the house, yet people were frequently seen coming and going. Cameras could be clearly spotted in the windows, filming all those who entered the Russian Embassy across the street. One local even reported seeing a long telescopic lens sticking out from a window late at night. In an attempt to up its anonymity, two FBI agents eventually moved into the house, though no one who knew of the house was fooled. The house’s owner was listed as “FBI” in public records, and its inhabitant’s occupation as “Clerk – really a spy.”
The FBI’s uses for the house may have gone beyond playing paparazzi. Operation MONOPOLY was a secret plan to dig a tunnel beneath the Embassy to record conversations taking place within the building, in the hopes of gleaning secret information. The problem was that the FBI had little knowledge of the Embassy’s layout. The agency hoped the tunnel would run underneath a conference or break room, but it was just as likely to lie beneath a storage closet.
The tunnel-digging was ill-fated from the start. Water regularly leaked into the tunnel, ruining the high-tech listening equipment, which rarely worked underground anyway. Though the FBI acknowledges the existence of the tunnel, they have never revealed which house in the neighborhood they began digging it from. Speculators believe it was either this observation house on Wisconsin Avenue or an abandoned house around the side of the Embassy on Fulton street. The truth may never be known for sure, as the tunnel has been sealed.
“it’s the oldest question of all – who can spy on the spies?”
-john le carre – british/irish espionage author
image credits: mad magazine, antonio prohias, mental floss,