Monday, November 30, 2009

Just so you'll know:

We are at Disney, Orlando, for an anesthesia conference. Grand daughters will join us tomorrow for the remainder of the week.


Friday, November 27, 2009

Our sumptuous repast among the international throng at the Heiss' home was magnificent. Each and every contributing some portion of the dinner as well as convivial conversations. Amongst the revelers there was; a Canasian girl, a Japanese girl and her Iranian/Japanese daughters, a Korean gal, folks from China and a girl from Belarus. And as with any gathering along an international border a good complement of Canadians and Americans of international descent: German, Dutch, and French.

All left well sated.

For some it's back to work and for others the chance to indulge "Black-Friday."
Yours truly will be back to work:

Helen Keller:
I long to accomplish a great and noble tasks, but it is my chief duty to accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble. The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker.


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart. ~Seneca


Sunday, November 22, 2009

#190 - Beauty

Tell us what you think about beauty. Is it really in the eye of the beholder? Is it all around us, or only there if you look for it? What does beauty look like? What does is sound like? Feel like? Tell us what beauty means to you
“For every beauty there is an eye somewhere to see it. For every truth there is an ear somewhere to hear it. For every love there is a heart somewhere to receive it.”
Ivan Panin quotes

Doing a Google image search for the word beauty left me flat: ten pages, 210 images of which 201 of them were cookie cutter images of women’s faces. You know the same faces you see in fashion magazines such as Allure, Vogue, Fashion and Cosmopolitan. They all look pretty much the same with only slight variations. It’s as if the gurus of fashion have decided on what beauty is and there you have it; take it or leave it.
Well for all that, I’ll leave it, thank you very much. Those women are attractive enough I suppose but they don’t stand out from one another and so their image of beauty has become mundane for me.
Two hundred and one out of two hundred and ten images leave nine images that weren’t of the female face. There was one male face, if not ugly, then extremely homely and used as a poster to illustrate the cliché: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: maybe not! The remaining images: three landscapes, four objects of nature, i.e. dog, bird, flower etc... And one was of a print of a written Chinese character.
In a nut shell; according to Google Image, beauty is relegated to the female face.
If you are one to define beauty by a fuller image of the female form you might want to do an image search of the word pulchritude. There in you will find a greater variety of form and will certainly see something to peak your appreciation of the female form and perhaps you’ll relegate it to the place in your mind reserved for things of beauty.
The female form and countenance have a place in my mind that’s reserved for beauty but it must share that space with a wide variety of things which I find beautiful.
To me, beauty is a stimulus; a sensory stimulus that gives rise, inside of me, of pleasurable feelings : calm, awe, peace and tranquility. Things that bring comfort and pleasure to my mind, beautiful things include a vast array if sensory stimuli. Music, nearly all forms of music are, to me beautiful. Some are discordant and unpleasing to me, but I don’t listen to them. There is beauty in the love call of the loon, the caws of the crow and the scolding of the Blue jay. The warbling of the Baltimore oriole nesting amid the apple trees in the spring causes me to cease all and listen. I find beauty in landscapes, seascapes, sun rises and sunsets, in rain storms and snow falling, there is beauty in food; preparation and presentation. I enjoy flowers and ferns and gardens and weeds, forest and lakes, spiders and their webs, paintings and sculptures and well made wooden furniture and patina worn floors. Spring breezes caressing my skin are a beautiful sensation as is the splash of river water coming over the hull of a kayak. The moon and the stars mesmerize and fill me with awe they are so beautiful. The profusion of fall, resplendent in all her fancy dresses is a show stopper every year. The smell of dry leaves burning brings the beauty of my childhood flooding back. Split rail fences, stone fences, and picket fences are things of beauty. Grandpa Walton telling us his perceptions of Christmas is a beautiful oration. Erma Bombeck’s favorite child column is an essay of beauty that has spanned four generations and will endure even longer.
Let’s not forget babies and puppies, kittens and trees, mittens and bees, horses and goats and bottles of wine. My oh my, things of beauty are multitude. Oh, have I even mentioned the female form or face?
Faces, yes faces; I like old craggy faces creased and lined with age and wisdom, tragedy and pain. Old faces are the best. Following close behind are old books and castles and churches and antique tables and heirlooms of every sort and old coats that still fit and, and, and well darn it, there is just so much that is beautiful. It seems a shame to believe that only the young female face defines beauty.
Oh yes let’s not ignore women. Without heart, a women’s beauty is only skin deep. If she has heart, then her beauty is soul deep and will last forever.


Sunday, today, marks the 46th anniversary of the assassination of American president and international icon John F. Kennedy.
The charismatic leader's assassination on Nov. 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas at the hands of Lee Harvey Oswald marked the end of the so-called Camelot era at the Whitehouse.

I remember!

I was in transient barracks at Great Lakes Naval Training Center; waiting for my hospital corpsman school to start.


Thursday, November 19, 2009

“Take time to deliberate; but when the time for action arrives, stop thinking and go in.”
Andrew Jackson quoting Napoleon Bonaparte.

Thinking; do you ever think about thinking? I do, in fact I get tired of thinking sometimes. Idle thinking can be OK for awhile but in general, for me, idle thinking is unproductive, stress producing waste of time. Thinking is what makes us human; sets us apart from other life forms, or so we like to think. (Just because trees don't talk doesn't mean they don't think.)
I remember when I first realized that other people thought thoughts. Say what?! Yes that's right, when I was nine years old a great revelation was revealed to me from the ether: everybody thinks! Jeepers, what a relief that was....the pressure of thinking that I was the only person who had thoughts was weighing heavily on my young mind and I was feeling overwhelmed, burdened in fact. I never mentioned this to anyone else before now; just in case the ether voice was wrong.
Now, all these many days hence, I'm fairly convinced that, in fact, other people think too. Just to be clear: I was 9 years 6 1/2 months old, standing in the living room of our matchbook house's living room staring at the clothes hanging in the doorway to my bedroom and above the huge grate that allowed the heat from the coal furnace below to heat the house. I'm not saying that the furnace was running, I'm just saying that I was looking in that direction.

The cure for thinking, yes cure; over thinking is an illness, I think, is to do something. Yup, get off my butt and undertake a physical activity. Preferably start with some mindless task: sweep the floor, wash the dishes, shovel the drive way; oops, nope belay the shoveling chore; it leads to too much thinking. Thinking while doing mindless tasks is better than just sitting around thinking but still not as releasing as short bursts of physicality. Like the difference between smoking 1/2 pack of cigarettes a day and smoking 2 PPD.

So, rel, what's the point of this essay? There is no point per se.....just putting random thoughts on the page. Typing is sort of a burst of physical activity isn't it? ;)
Thinking is a mood altering activity: nobody likes me. They don't understand me. I'm doing a terrible job. I'm a failure. Then that leads to; I can't sleep. I'll be too tired in the morning to do my job. Everybody will think I'm a slacker. I'm a worthless piece of debris. Gee, I was in a good mood 'til I started thinking. Stop; STOP! Quit thinking and get moving. Talk to someone: Hi good morning Jill. You're looking bright and chipper this morning. And that dress looks really good on you. Oh hi Tom. I forgot to tell you yesterday that you did a great job with that case with Dr. cut-m-up. It was a tough case from the get go and you made it look easy; nice job. Morning Ralph, here let me get that coffee for you; you're always picking up the tab for me, it's my turn today.

When you find yourself too much into idle thinking, step out of yourself and experience life. I'm not saying it's easy, but I'll try, will you.

Thanks for listening; I'll sleep better now.


Friday, November 13, 2009


The witch-goddess
The name "Friday" was derived from a Norse deity worshipped on the sixth day, known either as Frigg (goddess of marriage and fertility), or Freya (goddess of sex and fertility), or both, the two figures having become intertwined in the handing down of myths over time (the etymology of "Friday" has been given both ways). Frigg/Freya corresponded to Venus, the goddess of love of the Romans, who named the sixth day of the week in her honor "dies Veneris."
Friday was actually considered quite lucky by pre-Christian Teutonic peoples, we are told — especially as a day to get married — because of its traditional association with love and fertility. All that changed when Christianity came along. The goddess of the sixth day — most likely Freya in this context, given that the cat was her sacred animal — was recast in post-pagan folklore as a witch, and her day became associated with evil doings.
Various legends developed in that vein, but one is of particular interest: As the story goes, the witches of the north used to observe their sabbath by gathering in a cemetery in the dark of the moon. On one such occasion the Friday goddess, Freya herself, came down from her sanctuary in the mountaintops and appeared before the group, who numbered only 12 at the time, and gave them one of her cats, after which the witches' coven — and, by "tradition," every properly-formed coven since — comprised exactly 13.
Urban Legends


Wednesday, November 11, 2009


At Eleven o'clock this morning pause for a moment or two and remember a veteran who has touched your life and be thankful for the freedoms we enjoy.

John Noel Larocque: Civil War. Great grandfather

Daniel Story: Civil war. Great grandfather

Edmund "Shag" Montroy; WWI; great uncle

Tom LaRock; WWII. Uncle

Robert Ernest LaRock; WWII. Father

rel; Viet Nam

Jeff LaRock; Viet Nam. Brother

Michelle LaRock; Desert Storm. Daughter

Dennis McCarthy; USN 1977-1981 Brother-in-law

rel II; Desert Storm. Son


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Happy 234th Birthday, Marines!


Thursday, November 05, 2009

"I would rather be ashes than dust! I would rather my spark burn out in a brilliant blaze than be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy, permanent planet. The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time." ~Jack London


Tuesday, November 03, 2009

I'd forgotten how small newborns are!


Sunday, November 01, 2009

Happy Birthday Hailey

On this day 14 years ago our first grandchild was born. What a joy she has been to us ever since. The only down side is the distance of 2000+ miles that separate us and so we only get to spend a few shorts weeks together every year.

Happy birthday Hailey from Grandpa, grandma, Uncle Jacob, Aunt Kristy and Cousin Sophia.
We Love you!
See you in Disney soon.