About Cats r Flyfishn

Never look down on someone unless you are helping them up.

Watering Hole: Tuesday, August 13, 2013 – The Big Ass Mountain

I don’t have much to say today except this, imagine a National Park under the control of a Libertarian/Tea Party/John Birch Society controlled government.

Here’s some photos from the “Big Ass Mountain” in Washington.

“Big Ass Mountain” as seen from Paradise.

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Fields of wild flowers located at the Big Ass Mountain.

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Big Ass Mountain glacial flow that is decreasing every year.

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Streams flowing from the Big Ass Mountain.

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And a  Big Ass Mountain Hoary Marmot (chewing on a piece of chipboard).  This fell off my SIL’s coffee cup and as he reached down to pick it up, this little critter quickly grabbed it and began to eat it.  There was no arguing with the marmot.

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My guess is that our national parks would be sold to the highest bidder(s) and the oil and gas industry would start their “drill, baby, drill” work.

This is our Open Thread.  Speak Up!

EXTRA:  Libertarians would love this idea.

Watering Hole: Tuesday, August 6, 2013 – Java Jitters

People on the west coast love their coffee.  There are coffee kiosks in every shopping center and practically one on every corner.  Folks on the east coast enjoy their coffee, too.  However, coffee shops are more of a sit-down experience and not so much a drive-through experience.

We went to look at an apartment in Springfield, Oregon.  The apartment manager told us a story about a woman from Philadelphia that wanted to rent a place for her son who would be attending the University of Oregon in nearby Eugene and she wanted to know if there was a place close by where her son could get a cup of coffee before class in the morning.  Needless to say, the apartment manager thought that this was a strange question and she asked us if there are coffee shops in Philadelphia.  We responded, “Yes, just not on every corner.”

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This is our Open Thread.  I said my piece and now it is time for you to Speak Up!

Watering Hole: Tuesday, July 30, 2013 – Mandela

This a man that I greatly admire.  He was brave while he was imprisoned and even braver after he was elected President.  Nelson knew that in order for South Africa to move forward, it could not dwell in its past sins and atrocities.

President Mandela celebrated his 95th birthday on July 18th and he was hospitalized for a lung infection back in June.  Even though he is showing improvement, his situation remains critical.

Just like everyone else, no leader is perfect.  What is important is the legacy that their leadership gives to us.  Here’s to you, Mandiba.

This is our Open Thread.  Speak Up!

Watering Hole: Tuesday, July 23, 2013 – Open Thread, Other Opinions

Today, I’m going to share a few links to other blogs that are worth mentioning.  Since these are blogs, I won’t be copying any of the content.

Can shareholders have an impact on fossil fuels?  Corporate Social Responsibility seems to think that shareholders can influence the future of drilling for gas and oil and investment in renewable energy.

As for those corporations that are fighting to prevent coverage for birth control and to make all abortions illegal because of ‘religious’ reasons, a study shows that the number of abortions decrease when contraception is free.  Addicting Info has more on this topic.

Tom Tomorrow has a posting at Democratic Underground.

State Impact is not a blog.  It is a reporting project of NPR stations.  This news story involves the dumping of fracking waste into the Allegheny River, upstream from Pittsburgh.

This is our Open Thread.  Speak Up!

Watering Hole: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 – What is this?

I spent a little time in Northwest Colorado with a friend that took me to a cemetery in Pagoda.  Now, I’m not sure if Pagoda is a town or a county or a township.  All I know is that there is a cemetery in the middle of nowhere with a sign with this name on it.

Is this an outhouse?  Or is this a shed?  I didn’t venture close enough to examine it.

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Some people like to dress up the grave site with artificial flowers and other trinkets.

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This is the Open Thread so Speak Up about anything.

And for the curious, Nonewhere and I are staying in Sammamish, Washington.  We had a safe trip across the continent and we are still homeless.

White Lines, Colorado and Fever

Since nonewhere has been spending the week packing up his office space (I call him ‘last minute louie), I decided to give him a break and get the music started.  We will be seeing a lot of this during the next several days.  By the way, we will be spending some vacation time in Northwest Colorado where nonewhere will be fishing with Onefly.

Watering Hole: Tuesday, June 11, 2013 – On the Road Again

IMG_0397Nonewhere and I will be starting our travels to the northwestern part of the United States on Friday, June 14.  We sold our house that we designed and lived in for 16 years and 1 day.  The east coast has been our home for all of our lives.  Over the years, we have made many good friends and it is sad to say “good-bye” so instead we say, “come visit us in Oregon”.  We have been very busy packing over the past several weeks and that is why you haven’t seen much of us lately.  It’s amazing how much stuff can accumulate over 16 years especially in a large house.  We like to entertain and a house this size provided ample room for political parties, family and friends parties, and house concerts.  Our next place will be quite a bit smaller.

The above picture shows the front of our house.  We had a small picnic table on this porch and we enjoyed many meals on this porch.  It was also a good place to hang out and listen to the evening birds, night cicadas and crickets.

The below picture presents a view of our patio.  We had an octagon shaped picnic table with benches that were made by the Amish along with folding Adirondack chairs.  The table got sold but the chairs are coming with us.

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This will be my last “Open Thread” until I get settled.  I’ll let the ‘boss lady’ (Zooey) know when I am ready to get back to work.

Open Thread… Speak Up!

Watering Hole – Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Sequestration only becomes a problem for Congress when it inconveniences them.

This is a last minute attempt to put up an Open Thread.  Speak Up!

Posted by Cats r Flyfishn.  Now, I have to get back to my packing.

All cartoons are posted with the artists’ express permission to TPZoo.
Paul Jamiol
Jamiol’s World

Watering Hole: May 14, 2013 – Women, Men and Violence

“It’s important that we acknowledge that the growing movement of men in the United States — in a multicultural sense — and all around the world — in an international sense — the growing movement of men who are standing up and speaking out about men’s violence against women and going into parts of male culture that have historically been either apathetic about or openly hostile to women’s efforts to engage them. That movement of men is indebted to the leadership of women on a personal level, on a professional level, on a political level, on an intellectual level, on every level. Women built these movements, and these are movements that are affecting — in a positive way — everybody, not just women and girls, but also men and boys.

And oftentimes, men like myself get a lot of credit and public acclaim for doing the work that women have been doing for a long time.

Happy Birthday to a wonderful women, my youngest daughter.

This is our Open Thread.  Speak Up!

Watering Hole: Tuesday, March 12, 2013 – Wealth Reality

The wealth distribution in this nation is appalling.  This is why it is becoming more difficult to make ends meet.  Are you feeling the pain?

Thom Hartman wrote a book in which one chapter explores “What is Enough”.  He presents different perspectives on being ‘rich’ and being ‘poor’.

While they number fewer than one percent of all humans on the planet, the result of a relentless 5-millenium genocide by our worldwide Younger Culture, there are still people alive on Earth who are members of Older Cultures that predate the Mesopotamian city-states. There are also people whose Older Culture ways have only been so recently taken from them-such as many Native American tribes-that while they may no longer live the Older Culture way, they remember it.

In these Older Cultures, the concept of “more is better” is unknown. They would consider “greed is good” to be the statement of an insane person. One person eating near another who is hungry is an obscene act.

The ‘Older Cultures’ regard wealth not as goods and services.  Instead, their view of wealth is security.

In Older Cultures, the goal of the entire community is to get every person in the community to the “enough point.” Once that is reached and ensured, people are free to pursue their own personal interests and bliss. The shaman explores trance states, the potter makes more elegant pots, the storyteller spins new yarns, and parents play with and teach their children how to live successfully.

Contrast that to the quest by people like Sheldon Adelson and the Koch brothers.  For them, there is never enough money in their bank accounts.  They don’t own enough ‘things’ so they keep striving for more and more.  If they lost everything today, they would have nothing because money doesn’t buy true friendship.  Who really likes a greedy person?  No one.

Ghandi said, “There is enough for everyone’s needs but not enough for everyone’s greed.”

(cross posted at Pennsylvaniaforchange.wordpress.com)

This is our Open Thread.  So what do you think?  Speak Up!

Watering Hole: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 – Isn’t She Beautiful

You may have seen this video before.  I wanted to share it because it is one of those stories where we gain more insight with each viewing.

I’ve been bullied as a child.  It took me 50 years to get to love myself and not blame myself for the words and actions of others.

That’s all I got.

This is our Open Thread.  You will not be bullied at The Zoo when you Speak Up.

To Know War Is To Know Madness In This World – President Lyndon B. Johnson

I posted this yesterday on Pennsylvania for Change.

Chuck Hagel served in this war.  So did John Kerry.  Yet the yellow elephants that got deferments find fault with these warriors.

Here’s a few cowards that were unwilling to serve or made sure that they didn’t have to fight:

  • George W. Bush – remained in the States
  • Ted Nugent
  • Rush Limbaugh
  • Donald Rumsfeld
  • Dick Cheney
  • Mitt Romney

They wear flag pins and called themselves patriots.  Yet when ‘Uncle Sam’ called them to serve, they found ways to get out of fighting in a war.   I’m sure there are more names to add to this list.

Let’s take a look at this war…

We fight differently these days.  Now the drones fly over our ‘enemies’ and someone thousands of miles away gives the command to fire off the smart bomb.   Without the close contact, our enemies are faceless and their deaths have less of an emotional impact on us.

I once had a soldier tell me that firing a gun at someone that is 100 yards away isn’t that difficult.  Killing someone with a knife is hard to do because it is up close and personal.  It’s hard to kill someone when you are looking in their eyes.

There’s no two ways about it.  War sucks.

Playing for Change:

Give me love my brother, give me love my sister, it’s just a kiss away.

Friday Night Music – Something Silly

I heard this song on WXPN yesterday and it made me laugh because the typewriter is certainly a thing of the past.

Once again, Nonewhere was a slacker so the privilege of posting a song was dumped on  handed to me.

This is all I got.  Do whatever you want with it.

BTW – WXPN may be one of the best radio stations in the nation.  Do visit their website to learn more about ‘XPN‘.

Watering Hole: Tuesday, February 19, 2013 – Lettuce

Quote:

“When you plant lettuce, if it does not grow well, you don’t blame the lettuce. You look for reasons it is not doing well. It may need fertilizer, or more water, or less sun. You never blame the lettuce. Yet if we have problems with our friends or family, we blame the other person. But if we know how to take care of them, they will grow well, like the lettuce. Blaming has no positive effect at all, nor does trying to persuade using reason and argument. That is my experience. No blame, no reasoning, no argument, just understanding. If you understand, and you show that you understand, you can love, and the situation will change.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh

End Quote.   :)

Some music from Lettuce, live in Brooklyn.

Let us not blame others for our mistakes and let us assume responsibility for our own actions.

This is our Open Thread.  Let us Speak Up!

Watering Hole: February 12, 2013 – Fashnacht Day

This day always occurs on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday.  The word “fashnacht” literally means “fast night” and it is in preparation for the fasting season of Lent.

You may ask, “What is a fashnacht?”  If made properly, it may be one of the best tasting donuts.  There is no fat free, gluten free fashnacht.  The yummiest of these treats is deep fried in lard, just like the best tasting potato chips.  Lard comes from pigs and so does bacon.  Any questions as to the superior flavor?   :)

Here are a few recipes for these scrumptious, artery blocking delights:

Fashnachts

2½ cups hot mashed potatoes
1 cup milk
3 beaten eggs
2 Tablespoons melted butter
2 cups sugar
2 Tablespoons baking powder
5 cups flour

Mix everything together except flour. Mix flour in slowly.
Divide the dough in half. Roll ½ inch thick. Cut with a donut cutter or use a knife to cut into triangular shaped pieces. Deep fry in hot fat or oil until done. Serve with sugar or molasses.

Another recipe from Kempton, PA resident Alice Faust:

Alice Faust’s Family Recipe #1:Faschnachts with baking powder
Beat two eggs and ¼ teaspoon salt in a little bowl. Add 1 cup sugar and 6 Tablespoons oil. Add alternately 1¼ cup milk and about 5 cups flour with 3 teaspoons baking powder on the first cup.

Roll out ¼ to ½ inch thick. Cut into triangles, squares, or rectangles. A slit can be cut in the center of the fashnacht. Fry 325-350 degrees.

Here’s Alice’s recipe using yeast:

Alice Faust’s Family Recipe #2: Fashnachts with Yeast
2 cups scaled milk ½ cup lard
1 cup mashed potatoes 2 teaspoons salt
¾ cup sugar 2 well beaten eggs
1 package yeast
7 cups flour, approximately

Scald milk and add mashed potatoes, sugar, salt, and lard. Cool until lukewarm. Add eggs. Add yeast and enough flour to make a soft dough. Knead well and place in a greased bowl. Cover with a cloth and let rise about 1½ hours. Roll ¼ inch thick on a floured board. Place on a cloth and let rise until doubled in size and fry in hot fat.

Did you get all that?  If you are interested in a bit of ‘local’ trivia, click on this link.

This is our Open Thread.  Speak Up!

Friday Night Music Night – Something New, I Think.

Once again, Nonewhere asked me to get tonight’s music started.  Since this was asked of me at 8:00 am today, I was lost for ideas so I contacted my oldest daughter.  Next week, she and her husband will be seeing this group in concert.  From what I understand, this group is becoming quite popular and that is why I am posting music from these up and coming artists.  For all I know, they may already be famous.

May I present to you, The Lumineers performing Ho Hey:

I think I like this group.  They are fresh and exciting.

Here’s a link to their bio.

Are you listening to any new performers and if so, who are they?  There are so many new artists to choose from.

Watering Hole: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 – And So It Begins

Monday, January 21, 2013 was a historic day.  It was the 50 year anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr’s famous “I got a dream” speech and it was the second Inauguration of America’s first African American President.  If someone would have suggested that history would merge on that date 12 years ago, I would have laughed at the idea.

Anyhow, I hope that you got to hear President Obama’s second Inauguration speech.

Congratulations to President Obama and Vice President Biden.  America is fortunate to have such strong and intelligent leaders.

This is our Open Thread.  Speak Up!  It’s your First Amendment right.

Watering Hole: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 – Inauguration 2009

I was there.  I saw it happen.  I was part of the crowd.  There were tears; tears of joy, tears of relief, and tears of love.  It was hard to believe that it had finally happened.

It all began when I was given two blue tickets to the inauguration of Barack Obama.  I shared these tickets with a friend whose mother owned a townhouse in Alexandria, VA.  She offered us a place to stay so that it would be easy to get into D.C. to witness this monumental event.

We started out on that historic morning by taking a taxi that was suppose to take us into D.C.  The taxi driver believed that he couldn’t cross any of the bridges to get into the city so he dropped us off at the train station in Alexandria.  Every train that stopped at the station was packed and it was impossible to get onto the train.  Since the trains traveling in the opposite direction were almost empty, we decided that we would take one of those trains and do the loop.  It would mean an extra 15 minutes but at least we were on a train.  At the end of the line, the train filled up with people that had arrived on buses from all across the nation.  The good people that stood near us on the train were from Minnesota.  It took them two and a half days of traveling to get to D.C.

When we finally arrived in D.C., we went to the area outside the entrance for the blue ticket holders.  There were hundreds of people gathered there and we became part of the crowd.  At 9:30, the gates were opened so that people could get in.  Needless to say, the crowd moved very slowly.  It was 11:35 when we finally reached the cattle chute and we were pushed in by the crowd and told to go to the scanners.  There was little time for scanning or searching our bags so security waved us through and told us to hurry.

When we got closer to the Capitol, we saw thousands and thousands of people gathered on the lawns, on the sidewalks and on the streets looking in the direction of the Capitol steps.  There had to be at least one million people crowded together looking towards Barack Obama.  From where I was standing, the President appeared to be about six inches tall. I perused the area and saw the “jumbotrons”.  These were the biggest screens that I have ever seen and they were everywhere.

Barack Obama was sworn into office and after he gave his address, the crowd went wild.  Everyone was hugging each other.  Standing next to me was a black woman who was about my age (I’m a white, young senior).  Tears were rolling down her face.  They were streaming down my cheeks, too.  We looked at each other, smiled, and then hugged each other.

This is where the real story takes place.  This stranger and myself lived through the challenge of opposing segregation during the ’60′s.  We witnessed blacks being beaten, and repelled with water from fire hoses.  We saw blacks being spit on as they walked into previously ‘whites only’ schools.  We heard the slurs and the name calling.  People died fighting for equal rights.

As a white person, I won’t pretend to know what it feels like to be a black person living in a society that dislikes you just because of the color of your skin.  I can only imagine how painful it must feel to see people cross to the other side of the street when they see you walking down the sidewalk or how hurtful it must feel when someone refuses to shake your hand or to sit next to you.  When Barack Obama became President Barack Obama, I thought that our nation had finally matured and would become integrated.  Was I in for a surprise.

Racism didn’t depart after the passage of the Civil Rights Act.  It only went into hiding.    A black man holding one of the most powerful positions in the world has brought the racists to the forefront.  This is a good thing as we now know who they are.  We are seeing faces and we have the power to stand up to them as we must speak the truth and confront them, always.

The inauguration of President Barack Obama was an exciting event.  As I was leaving the Capitol grounds and standing on the curb waiting to cross the street, two black SUV’s with the license plate number “2″ on it, passed by.  We all booed because we knew that Dick Cheney was in one of those SUV’s.

Next Tuesday, we will have reason to celebrate again.  This time I will be watching the events of the day from my home.

This is our Open Thread.  That is my story.  It was long.  Now it’s time for me to let you Speak Up! Continue reading