Archive for June, 2014

It’s been exhausting watching the mantra of “stockholder value” gnaw the life out of companies and communities over the years. Profitable plants closed just to show that cost-cutting was “serious”, groups of experts and specialized equipment dismantled because quick returns are ‘easier’ if you just gut and devour a start-up every few months.  If the only goal is to make money for shareholders, does it matter what you do to enrich them?  Why bother with products, or employee care, or safety, or keeping your forecasts pegged to something that improves the lives of people other than the CEO, the lobbyists, and the Accounting Department? Centuries worth of intellectual and cultural capital sacrificed for a botched civilization….bottom line.

I don’t know if this model will be better in the long run, but this crazy idea of making good products and having happy, loyal customers sounds like a valuable change….


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Belgium beats Russia; I am victorious over the lawn.

Now I just want to sit by a cool pond and watch fishies…

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If you wouldn’t mind terribly much, could you NOT be playing “Under the Boardwalk” while I am standing in the stairwell beneath my porch, bailing water for all I’m worth, as the thunderstorm roars and flashes through the structure around me?

Tusen tak.

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Bees that way sometimes

So…um….yeah…I woke up in the parking lot, and there was nothing. Just that big empty flat space, that flat hard space where nothing grows. And there I was, stumble-bumbling, tripping over my own wings, and there was no getting airborne. I was…well, I was no, that’s not working…..no, not that either…. Um… about to NOT be. Bad for a Bee, trust me. Nothing to climb on. No launching space, just flat. I can crawl. Maybe I can keep crawling a little longer.

Then, I don’t know. Something. Not a plant. Tasted funny to my feet, but I started climbing and more climbing, and not quite enough air was catching in my wings, not yet, but I’m up, I’m …wait. UP?

And then this Dandelion! I got smack into this Dandelion.

Delicious Dandelion.

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Well, it helped me. There are too many depressing stories on the news just now…

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Alternate routes

Roads around here parallel each other, but all are so congested that no way is really any “better” than the rest. Someone crashes on a “side road” and everything backs up on the other rungs and leaders of the web, leaving me wishing some sky spider could swing down and drag the detritus away in a more timely fashion.

Instead, we have almost the opposite: the fines keep getting raised on motorists who won’t get out of the way of emergency equipment. It puzzles me that any fines would be needed at all, but I remember being taught that even the US mail trucks had priority. Is that a generational or a regional thing?

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Oh, hello


The shimmer of distilled oils and alcohol, haunting an heirloom glass.

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I am intrigued by reports about the role of personalities among a species of community-dwelling spiders.

These critters need to be good at different things, and somehow it works out that those roles get filled. I sometimes wonder if some of the social problems we have now is that we’ve jumbled the roles necessary for societal success, but not yet managed to work out how to gracefully get people to the roles they will be best/happiest at filling. [Of course, there’s merit in finding ways out of official roles, too…]

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I’ve driven Saturns since shortly after they rolled off the assembly line in Tennessee. The cars did what I wanted them to do, the brand idea was great [for a while], and I didn’t have to argue with the dealership [Just imagine what it’s like when a traditional car salesman clashes with a feminist rhetorician. For 20 years of not having to deal with that sort of garbage, I am still grateful].

But THIS: this is awful.

Saturn LogoI was angry enough when GM killed the brand, but letting people die because it would be too much trouble to admit a problem? There should be some kind of warning stamp, perhaps with the image of the ill-fated Space Shuttle mission of 1986 on it, or even just the words “Challenger, go with throttle up“, that engineers can use as a last mark of dissent, or as a first sign of THIS COULD BE BIG TROUBLE. Or maybe the stamp here: http://geekystamps.weebly.com/

When my car lost power last summer, I was very lucky. Those were moments of panic, but I still had a sense of what I could do to control the car, and my momentum was such that I had time to take those actions.

But luck shouldn’t have been necessary.  Luck shouldn’t be why I’m alive and they are not. (I like being alive, but that is not the point of this particular musing…) (I guess it could be said that I’m alive because I am old enough to know how to drive a car without power steering and power brakes…?)

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