Moon Like A Rolled-Out Bread
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Friday, April 24, 2009
Stop the presses! The Internet has now become the main news source. A recent survey has found that 40% of its respondents prefer online sources to get their daily dose of news instead of the daily print.
The end of print journalism will mean many things. For those of us old enough to still care about going out on a Sunday morning for our doorstop edition of The Times, it will mean the end of a certain kind of civilized ritual that has defined most of our lives.
More importantly, the use of those read rags and the roles they have played, how will we replace their function? Recycling newspapers makes us feel good. We become environmentally and economically righteous by doing so. I can only assume we will have to make substitutions accordingly.
1. Lining the bottom of the bird cage – Instead of reciting the current headlines, Tweety will become well versed in computer applications. No one ever reads those manuals. Right?
2. Cleaning windows – No, Bill Gates is not the go-to here. A window cleaned with a newspaper gives a streak-free, lint-free shine. I suppose we’ll just have to become use to that certain fog-type effect as we gaze out onto the garden only to realize the bright and sunny day when we walk out.
3. Gift wrap – Nothing quite says “Happy Birthday” like a gift cleverly wrapped from the Sunday comics. It makes me shudder to even consider plastering Sponge Bob Square Pants or Dora the Explorer all over any gift. Besides, who really recycles gift wrap? It’s tacky.
4. Packing material – You know your breakables are safe when they are wrapped in layers of newspaper. And, there are many uses for those papers after unpacking. Sure it’s available in bright colors and, yes, it’s fun to pop, but have you actually ever lined kitty’s litter box with bubble wrap?
5. Fly swatter – A folded newspaper has much more surface area, therefore, you have a much better shot at ridding your home of those annoying flying pests. Later, roll that same newspaper into a fire log. No fuss, no muss compared to its plastic counterpart.
This is just a small sampling of how we will have to adjust our lives without newspapers. But, I believe the absence of this source for news it is more about tradition and routine. I, for one, have the memory of being taught to read and teaching my children to read from the daily comic strips. Where will Nancy and Family Circus go?
Leisurely perusing the newspaper over a cup of coffee for community news such as the high school scoreboards, the society page and upcoming events will become a thing of the past. Marriages, births and deaths may escape us. However, the collapsing tradition of the daily newspaper is just one sign – for the times they are a-changin’.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
by James Orvil Beady
With fire in her belly her head in the clouds
Cloaked with robes of blue green waters
Where is she from Who placed her here
And how was her path determined
She is mother to all
Host to the living mourner of the departed
She drinks the blood of the fallen
And stores the dead in her belly
Here from the beginning
Her age and history remain her closely guarded secret
Her sunrises cannot be counted
Her twilights are without number
Her hosts are countless yet she provides for them all
Who is her counselor
Who is her mentor and guardian
Who is her provider
She rejoices in happiness yet is witness to all evils
Can anyone understand her workings
Or predict her future
Is she immortal
Her virtues are patience and tolerance
Her fury unmatched and unequaled
In anger she knows no compassion
Her beauty is boundless
Her mountains crowned with frost
Her glamour the sparkling oceans
The stars her halo the clouds her veil
And the green meadows are the pastures for her children
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Friday, April 17, 2009
If you’ve had the pleasure of meeting IRU member Bob Finkbine, no matter how brief your encounter, chances are that you’ll never forget him. A history teacher by trade and a river rat and wilderness explorer by choice, Bob is one of those guys with more stories to tell than there are campfires to tell them at.
So last fall — just in case anyone has managed to miss spending time around a fire with him — Bob wrote about his life of river running and other adventures in a self-published autobiography: Inescapable Journey: The Life of a River Man.
Filled with plenty of humor and reflections from many nights spent in the wild, Bob’s book has touched those who know him, and has entertained many who don’t. “…I choose to share my stories because they tell of my haphazard journey into old age and toward a bonding with the land,” says Bob, who at age 75 joined IRU for our 2006 fund raising river trip to Costa Rica.
Inspired by IRU’s efforts to protect Idaho’s rivers, Bob chose to donate all proceeds from his book (collected voluntarily from friends, family members and acquaintances — the book has no set price) to IRU. He’s not even recouping printing costs.
Bob’s friends have responded. Since the book rolled off the presses last fall, donations in-lieu of payment for books have come to IRU from Arizona to Connecticut, and from France to Alaska. So far, Bob’s book has raised more than $3,000 for IRU and has brought more than 60 new members into the fold.
Copies of Inescapable Journey are still available. If you want one, just send Bob a note at email@example.com. When you receive your book, just send IRU a check for whatever amount you’re inspired to give.