Only a Planet

One-Word Daily Prompt: Planet

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/planet/


I’m egocentric. The only planet that matters to me is earth despite the fact that an infinite number of planets may exist.

In my high school days, ecology became the darling of the media and school discussions. Save the planet before we kill it.  “The Population Bomb” was our bible. Earth Day celebrations began and recycling was the buzzword.

My recycling center accepts only clear glass. And I often wonder how many resources recycling actually preserves after factoring in the recycling process. Trucks must haul the used glass, it must be cleaned and remade into another item. Is there a net benefit after all?

The plant hardiness zone of my metropolitan area changed from a cooler 5 to a warmer zone 6. The climate warmed due to  a greater cluster  of people living together; more people, cars, concrete, and steaming piles of garbage.

“The Population Bomb” preached the dangers of the exponential growth of the human population on the planet. The human population still grows every year, but it has slowed down since the highest point in the 1960’s when the book was published.

Today a massive increase of machines/technology shows no sign of slowing down. Computers increase in numbers at astounding rates along with their voracious appetite for fuel.

It is hard to believe that electrically powered machinery did not exist 150 years ago. The instinctive reach for a light switch is as natural to us as breathing.

Machines/technology create better sanitation, crop yields, medical care, making life easier so we love it. Machines require fuel and pollute the planet, making the planet exposed to more toxic waste so we hate it. Machines replace the labor of humans, making life more economically difficult, less meaningful and, coming full circle, making life harder.

Logically the only way to save the planet is by moving backwards. We would have much less including less people, less machines, less stuff. But the planet will probably move on as it has been until machines and people eat up all our natural resources. Feed life or machines. Or will that be one and the same thing? Maybe the planet will just shoo us pesky life forms off the surface.

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Let’s Pull a New Cartoon Out of Our Hat

One-word prompt: Recreate

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/recreate/


Holy Smoke! Politics, espionage, Russians, uranium, a billionaire and his wife. Surely a Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon revival is due. Those old cartoons from the Cold War era were great.

So far no such revival in sight. The artsy Hollywood types, most likely to recreate a cartoon, apparently don’t see the potential humor new episodes could bring.

Just a few years ago, our former president said that Russia is not such a big threat anymore. Even though Russia has been known to mess around with American elections for decades. Who knows how many other countries try to influence the elections of other places. The good guys, US, are on that list as well.

Then a new president gets in and all of a sudden, we have Evil Empire redux. The Russians are hiding under every rock, Russians behind every potted plant. This time the attack on democracy is for real! Rocky and Bullwinkle we need your help!

Surely we can eke out some new cartoons with just a few minor tweaks:

  • Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatale drop stink bombs over Frostbite Falls. Rocky gets to work creating anti-stink missile defense system, saves the day.
  • An international incident barely averted when Boris and Natasha steal the Stanley Cup after Fearless Leader is offered a drink from it. Possibly getting back at Frostbite Falls for stealing all those hockey players.
  • Boris and Natasha sell counterfeit electronic coupons over Internet. Bullwinkle unwittingly foils plot by breaking Internet with tweets.
  • Wossamotta U holds contest to change school’s name. Rocky flies by just in time to pull Bullwinkle out of path of falling statue.
  • Upsidaisium mine sold to Boris and Natasha by mysterious shadowy figure.
  • Bare-back man and horse chase our heroes, Rocky and Bullwinkle, through the Frostbite Falls forest.

And now, can’t someone give us something we’ll really like?

Counting Language

One four zero tweet

Numbers unlock lexicon

Fives seven haiku

Hidden in the Cloud

One-word prompt: Hidden

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/hidden/


The cloud holds the photos and documents of my life. After I’m dead, I will still reside within the cloud. A sort of computer-designed eternity.

The cloud implies the ethereal, a soft, marshmallowy goodness. A benevolent spirit in the sky. Only the most fortunate travel upward to hang out in that rare air. Even the most atheistic among us may feel a slight regressive spiritual tug when contemplating clouds.

Our ancestors in the not so distant past, unconditionally believed in a spiritual afterlife. For the most part, modern man keeps throwing off the spiritual as mythology.

Yet an Apple store employee described the cloud as magic. Better magic than try to explain to an old, non-tech person what the hell this cloud is all about. He sold me a deception.

In reality the cloud it is just a huge warehouse in North Carolina filled with fossil-fuel guzzling, pollution-emitting machines. Multiply the cloud many times over and see that it occupies scores of factories around the world.

More computers, less paper, less waste. Not quite. Computer technology consumes more energy than most other products we use daily. Wireless comes with strings attached.

Every piece of network hardware has an identifying Internet Protocol (IP) address. Due to the dramatic increase in computerized machines, the number of IP addresses were in danger of being exhausted and the creation of new addresses were necessary to meet future needs. The newly created IP addresses were increased to permit an address to be assigned to every atom on the planet and to allow for some leftovers. That’s a lot of computer-driven devices.

Computers consume at least 10% of the world’s electricity. Since the future foretells dramatic increases in the ways computers will infiltrate every surface of our environment, the energy needed to feed these machines can become massive.

My mother-in-law loved her cats. My husband says, and not in a completely joking manner, that if she had to choose between feeding the cats or him, she might have chosen the cats. So just how important is your smartphone?

Infinity dwells within the cloud. Every 10 minutes people create as much informations as humans did in the first 10,000 generations of human existence. Infinite information and infinite capacity to store it.

Imagination no longer fuels our contemplation of clouds. Now fuel maintains endless bits of information with seemingly no unifying goal. Ceaseless chatter takes over our imagination.

Can the real harbinger of climate change doom be the cloud? Will the cloud consume more energy than our gas-loving cars or our penchant for K-cups?

To change our evil ways we must vastly decrease the number of machines we keep building and the people that love them. But Pandora unlatched the box, the cat’s out of the bag. To curtail technology will bring about Chaos. Ah, right back to the Beginning again.

I fret, yet I feed my machines.

Spring Promises

Google have you looked?

Keys— two mobiles hang in yard.

Buttons — hang in house.

Dark Arts and Crafts

One-word prompt: Craft

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/craft/


The Color of the Grave is Green —
The Outer Grave — I mean —
You would not know it from the Field —
Except it own a Stone —

To help the fond — to find it —
Too infinite asleep
To stop and tell them where it is—
But just a Daisy — deep —

The Color of the Grave is White —
The outer Grave  — I mean —
You would not know it from the Drifts —
In Winter — till the Sun —

Has furrowed out the Aisles —
Then — higher than the Land
The little Dwelling Houses rise
Where each — has left a friend —

The Color of the Grave within —
The Duplicate — I mean —
Not all the Snows could make it white —
Not all the Summers — Green —

You’ve seen the Color — maybe —
Upon a Bonnet bound —
When that you met it with before —
The Ferret — cannot find —

Emily Dickinson


Time travels faster today. Before I tire of the snow, a scorching summer appears. Magical, all because I’m old.

Death can show up within a minute or maybe within the next 40 years. I used to have an eternity to live when young. But if past practices hold true, I won’t live much longer.

Along with death, extra baggage haunts me. Not the kind used for travel, but the kind that lays around the house.

It might be making me insane. I’m searching through all closets, storage boxes, and drawers; all is fair game for recycling, repurposing, donating, or tossing. Sentimentality be damned.

Some of the insane part: I sorted through hundreds of buttons my mother had collected. They’re sorted by color and rest in individual trays or bags. I’m planning to make a garden mobile with these buttons. Let’s see if it happens this spring. Hundreds of buttons could create a few outside ornaments.

More insanity: I gathered every single extra, unused, old key in my house. I’m pretty confident about this since I don’t think I’ve left a dust bunny unturned. I love playing with those keys and try to imagine each one’s former purpose. What they unlocked, the when, and the where and the by whom. I plan to put a couple of the prettier ones, one gold and one silver, on necklaces. Some others are also destined for garden artwork. Google search — check to see if these projects show up in my backyard.

I’m editing my life away. Will I reach its essence? My son will only need to dispose of keys, buttons, a few books, and some other stuff I love or need. Every sweep through, more goes and goes.

Someday I may look in my closet and find only one grain of rice. Will that bring me peace?

I know I can’t take it with me. I’ll take care not to get too attached to this earth. ED, I won’t wander too far from my room; preparing for one beneath the grass and snow.

The cut may hurt less if renunciation mingles with fleeting joys. If only I could report back.

Squirrels for Breakfast

Because I like to watch the birds outside my windows, I can’t help but notice the squirrels. The nervously move through the tree branches, on the fences, under the bird feeders, and frequently peer into our windows at us.

Maybe they aren’t really looking at us, they may be looking for the nuts we bring into the house from the grocery store. I’m sure they smelled that large jar of fancy mixed nuts we bought for Christmas.

In October, some of my neighbors decorate their porches with corn stalks pulled from the field after harvest. Squirrels dash off with the dried ears of corn still attached to these stalks. One time I saw a squirrel running with the corn in his (or her) mouth with a four-foot long string of leaves trailing from behind.

A black walnut tree down the street is a favorite of the local squirrels. I’ve found the walnuts on window ledges on all sides of the house, in the nook between the drainpipe and house, on the garage workbench, in the backyard flower pots, on the patio table, and on top of the fence. My husband once accused me of messing with him by placing a black walnut on the tool chest in the garage. I told him that was a squirrelly practical joke and not one of mine.

One time I saw a squirrel run across the front sidewalk with what I thought was one of those walnuts. A few seconds later, that squirrel jumped up on the front window ledge and tucked a chewed up apple in the corner.

Now this is something new. Sometime late this morning, a bagel appeared outside on the kitchen windowsill. I’m guessing squirrel. Someone must have thrown out some old bagels this morning for the birds. Squirrelly grabbed it and hauled it up to one of his favorite “hiding” spots.

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