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whispers in the wind

seeking wisdom in the desert; learning to avoid the cacti

Wallpaper Meme
you are here
I have nilo to thank for this meme.

Anyone who looks at this entry has to post this meme and their current wallpaper at their LiveJournal. [Er, no, you don't have to. You know how I feel about free will.]

Explain in five sentences why you're using that wallpaper!

Don't change your wallpaper before doing this! The point is to see what you had on! And a few more !!!. Just because!!!!!!

And here is my entry:

Why did I have this on my desktop? Need you ask? It's an awesome image. Something which could really be occurring, elsewhere in our galaxy! Sometimes, there is grandeur in the sheer power of some things in our universe.

p.s. -- I have found a TON of fascinating images in the archive at the Astronomy Picture of the Day website.
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Random thoughts while cleaning at oh-dark-thirty
hobbes thinking
So, I'm cleaning house in the middle of the night.

Why? Because it's the best time is when kids and pregnant women aren't underfoot, or around to inhale the noxious vapors. (Or, to be there when I run into a spider... there really seem to be a lot of those, this year) Admittedly, I'll be less attentive as a Father and Husband, sleeping some of this off during the daytime. Which, I feel really bad about, but this is a temporary inconvenience for the Greater Good.

So I've got my iPod, my Crocs (Most Comfortable Shoes on the Planet), and a huge supply of paper towels, trash bags and medical-grade gloves. And, I've got my thoughts. They range from the profoundly spiritual to the selfishly mundane. Random thoughts while cleaning at oh-dark-thirtyCollapse )

- Some parting music recommendations, as I return to my cleaning duties:

Kalai : Guide Me to Thee (This guy is a musician in my ward!)
Eels : Fresh Blood
Sara Bareilles : Little Voice
Everlast : Saving Grace -&- Tuesday Mornin'
Gene Krupa : Drummin' Man
Queen : Flash's Theme
The Crystal Method : Drown in the Now (there is a very cool video available for this)
Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears : Sugarfoot (also vidded)
Sting : Someone to Watch Over Me
Booker T. & the MG's : Green Onions
Sophie Milman : Where Do You Start?
The Chemical Brothers : Block Rockin' Beats
David Allan Coe : The Ride
The Andrews Sisters : Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy
Crash Kings : Mountain Man -&- You Got Me
Dick Van Dyke, Julie Andrews (Mary Poppins) : Chim Chim Cher-ee
Shaw Blades : For What It's Worth (the only cover of Buffalo Springfield I've liked)
Don Henley : Workin' It

Cold Water
handicap inaccessible
So, the water heater went out. I have no idea why... it was barely put in, two years ago. We're supposedly getting gas, because I can turn the heater (air-heater) on, and get heat. Trying to start the Pilot is just not working - no spark.

I never realized how much I took hot water for granted, before this. I remember cold swimming pools (50 degrees or so) at scout camp, when I was a boy, but I don't remember it being this un-fun. Maybe that's because I'm a slightly more crusty adult, 23 years later?

As I type this, I'm building up the courage to go soap up, and then jump into a frigid cascade of death. Yesterday, when I did it, I couldn't help bursting into high-pitched bouts of insane laughter. You know it's not good when you start feeling "warm" again...

I'm going to have to call my Landlord. Problem is, the house is a mess. With BethAnne being so huge, and ready to pop, she's not been able to do much housework lately. And I -- I work four intense 12-hour nights a week, and so I lack both the energy and the desire for such things once I return home. In other words, much of our house just isn't as clean as I'd like it to be, and I'll be damned if I have the Landlord come when it looks like this!

So, we suffer, until I clean up a little bit more. I think I'll be cleaning very, very quickly.

Life is funny. ;-)
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Still Living
hobbes raspberry
New iMac. My first new rig in about seven years. (If you don't count my Xbox 360) And HOLY... FREAKING... HELL... it's got a TWENTY-FOUR INCH SCREEN!

Almost a new Baby... Pipes is eight months, one week pregnant. In fact, she went to her baby shower this morning whilst I hit my pillow between shifts. That situation has been going pretty good for the most part, although there have been a couple of scares along the way.

Life's been busy being... life. But it's been good. And, for some reason, it's harder to post when you're busy living better times. It seems like angst and blogging go together like peanut butter 'n jelly. I always start missing this stuff though, y'know. I just feel more sane and centered, after laying little chunks of my life down "on paper". Perhaps this is why so many great leaders tell us we ought to keep journals?

In fact, Pipes just now contacted me from the baby shower, after I began typing this, and told me one of her legs is larger than the other (with edema), which could be a sign of a blood clot. We're going to get it checked out, just in case. (This makes scare #3, after a respiratory episode, and some preterm labor, in previous months)

I told myself I wasn't going to be one of those "first time parents" who calls the doctor every week for something. Especially, because I'm a nurse. But in this case, I know what that kind of symptomology can mean. And, when it comes to your own Loved Ones, it's really hard to step back and take an "objective and professional" approach.

Argh. Drama. I guess it never stops coming into one's life. Not if you're still living. =)

uniqueness (leaves)
Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

I am thankful for:
  • My wonderful wife, PIpes. She has renewed my faith in Love, and she has become so much in the last couple of years. My true Companion and Best Friend.

  • Shade, my baby girl, whom I have a much better relationship with now, thanks to Pipes.

  • Sunshine, my oldest daughter, who is Daddy's Girl.

  • This nation -- the USA -- for what its originating ideals mean. Although, I worry that it is losing its way.

  • The brave men and women of the Armed Forces.

  • God, and all that He does for me and my loved ones. Much as I understand why some people would expect a higher-order being to not trouble Himself with us, I can see His hand in my life, repeatedly.

  • Jesus Christ, Whose sacrifice I perhaps am only beginning to grasp.

  • My Job, even though I feel like I want to go insane sometimes.

  • Our health.

  • My Brother and his family.

  • My Sister and hers.

  • My two sisters whom, although they are not in this life, I feel they have tried to be near my family during special occasions.

  • My parents who, although not perfect, taught me many things.

  • My extended family.

  • My friends... and that includes all of you here on LiveJournal. And, those of you who aren't, like my "Other Brother", Rudy and his family. (CAKE, BRUTHA!!!)

  • The pregnancy which Pipes and I just discovered... even though we were on birth control. This definitely isn't the easiest time for this to happen, but this child will be loved. And, almost as importantly, this child will be.

I must work tonight... holidays don't make a dent in a medical schedule, but I will still be keeping the holiday in my heart, and thinking upon all that I love and honor.

I love the Onion
static screen
Supporters of Obama:

Okay, you guys won. Have a little humor about it and WATCH THIS VIDEO. ;-)

Reality Check
hobbes raspberry
I think seeing the Republican Party getting the living hell comedically-slapped out of them in front of the world-public is one of the best things which could have happened to them.

I really do feel that way.

Frankly, would the Democratic Party be where it is today, if it hadn't had to take a long, hard look at itself (and maybe take some risks, like supporting Obama) after 2000 and 2004? With the 2008 election, they've had both the Executive and Legislative branches tied up in a bow and handed to them, just in time for Christmas.

This isn't based upon any vengeful desire against the GOP. I just think a little humility, now and then, is a good thing.

I may have my own political anxieties about our current political situation (or rather, the one which starts on January 20th), given that I'm a sort of Conservative-Libertarian, but I had different (but just as strong) political anxieties about the Shrub too. Given that, a little "change" now and then can be a refreshing thing.

Odd Feelings
Since last night I have felt possessed of the most odd -- no, creepy! -- feeling that, perhaps, President-Elect Obama will be assassinated at some point. Perhaps some of it has to do with the general perception of him as a "Black Kennedy", or the curious mix of Kennedy and MLK, Jr. (and their preceding assassinations), which he may represent to some people. Certainly, there is the fact that Obama is (historically defined, despite promises to reach across the aisle) an extremist, and may draw the ire of some of the more freakish factions of our nation. I also seem to remember a statistic that about every fourth President has been assassinated... although, the chain was broken by Reagan, who survived the attempt on his own life.

(Obama would be the fourth President after Reagan: Reagan, Bush Sr., Clinton, Bush Jr., Obama...)

That isn't to say that there haven't been attempts on previous Presidents' lives. Saddam Hussein tried to kill Bush, Sr. (The one who preceded Bill Clinton) after his Presidency. There were at least two or three individuals who opened up on the White House with an automatic rifle during Clinton's Presidency... and one individual who flew his private plane into the White House, itself. (Clinton wasn't home at the time, and the reinforced walls of the Presidential palace resisted the impact just fine) But actual death... I remember hearing it was every fourth President. (Until Reagan) Does anyone care to correct that information?

Thoughts? I know this isn't the most comfortable topic to bring up. And I am NOT advocating that this occur. I just... worry.

America has Spoken
patriot, flag, us flag
Congratulations to President-Elect Obama, and to all who supported him in this election. It would be very hard for me to not feel some sense of hope, as it oozes from the pores of so many of my friends and family. I do have to give it to Barack Obama: the man can speak. The man can inspire. And, if it were not for my concerns about his choices as a leader, I would be fully celebrating as much as you are. This is truly an historic election.

As it is, I am happy that we have the opportunity to at least try something new after eight years of Bush. I did not feel that McCain offered that. I did feel that, perhaps, Palin offered that, with her own history of having challenged and overcome the entrenched powers of both parties in her own state. I will be watching her political career more closely from now on. I expect she will likely run for President in 2012 or 2016. (And I think that, if Hillary tries again, she will find she no longer has the support to do so.)

I also hope that the election of a black man will finally help to oust another entrenched philosophy, carried by many Americans: that this country is somehow designed to keep anyone of color from succeeding. It is time to throw race and gender out of politics and get down to something more important. We have other problems to solve, and quickly, before they bring this great nation down any further.

I'll give the man his fair shake. We all owe him that. Even those who are bitter over McCain's loss in this election. Come January 20th, I will throw my support behind Obama, as MY new President. And I will expect him to discharge the duties of his office more responsibly than his predecessors from both parties.

Halloween Spirit
Joker & Harley Quinn
I am looking forward to Halloween with huge anticipation. I have to admit -- while feeling nervous that some will consider it odd -- that I am as excited about the Halloween season (as it is now becoming, instead of the single day it once was) as I am about Christmastime. Especially, this year.

Last year was a bit of a let-down. I'm not blaming it on Pipes... but we were going through a bit of a health crisis with her last year, with these strange abdominal pains. They'd taken both her gallbladder and appendix out in mid-October, and the postop care (and restrictions on activity) simply made Halloween a more limited affair. No haunted houses or anything. That's okay... we had some fun anyway. And it was my privilege to take care of my sweetheart. I think it really helped to convince Pipes' family how much I cared about her.

But this year? Halloween is going to be much, much more fun. We're planning on hitting several haunted houses. Maybe, planning a murder-mystery dinner event for ourselves and some friends. (If you live in the area, and are reading this, you would be invited) We get the girls on Halloween this year, and we're excited to take them trick-or-treating. We've already purchased costumes for the family. I put together a playlist for Halloween (two actually... one for sound-effects, and one for holiday-appropriate music) before completely losing my mind on iTunes. I bought a strobe light and some UV lights to decorate the place with. And I've been beefing up my collection of Halloweenish movies in the past few months... I'm hoping to really update my list of Halloween movie recommendations this year, if I can make the time. Oh, and to add to the Halloween mood lately? I've been working the past six months at a place which some people consider to be haunted. *shrug* I've never seen anything, but some of the staff are reporting strange happenings in the basement lately.

*evil grin*