When I’m 64

Janine and I turned the proverbial corner in February and March. We both celebrated 64th birthdays.

I guess it wouldn’t quite the deal if the Beatles hadn’t come along with their famous tune. Naturally, I had to look up a rendition.

I’m trying out hearing aids, as well. My, my, my, how technology impacts my life these days. My hearing is being augmented by a pair of dandy, very light high-tech devices. My savings will take a hit, but once those marvelous devices were popped in my somewhat tired ears, the world’s soundscape changed dramatically.

I’ve been straining to hear what people say, and hearing what people say is a big part of my job, so the specialist says that delayed the inevitable.

I’m not complaining. I’m grinning more widely, since bird song is three times more present, as is every other low-volume sound I hadn’t been able to pay attention to.

With a smartphone, hearing aids become even more flexible.

I’m going to like this adventure.


I second it!

It’s a digital mix tape, thanks to a host of tunes posted by https://fimnorawestcaw.wordpress.com! This first bunch of choices are stellar for kicking back after a busy day. The visuals are a little hokey, so I suggest listening with video tucked away. Links expire after a time. If that happens to you, try going directly to youtube.com and enter the artist and title. I’m pretty much repeating Fimnora Westcaw’s choices, so if you’d rather, check out her site.

Van Halen: Happy Trails

Quicksilver Messenger Service: Fresh Air

John Denver: Sweet Surrender

Hayley Westenra: Dark Waltz

Loreena McKennitt: Night Ride Across the Caucasus

John Denver again: Rocky Mountain High

Loggins and Messina: Watching the River Run

Simon and Garfunkel: Bookends

The Beatles: Something

The Beatles: Because

Eric Whitacre: The Seal Lullaby

Robbie Robertson: Unbound

4 Non Blonds: What’s Up

And this way-old timeless classic
Dionne Warwick, Elton John, Gladys Knight ,Stevie Wonder: Thats What Friends Are For


This next bunch might make you move around a bit.
Sly and the Family Stone: Dance to the Music

John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band (reminiscent of Springsteen’s sound): Wild Summer Nights

Deep Purple: You Keep On Moving

The Grateful Dead: Truckin

Michael Franti: I’m Alive

Daniel Powter: Crazy All My Life

Dare we hope?

The last couple of days, snow melt has been running in the city storm sewers. There are reports of robins in the neighborhood. (I have yet to spot one.)

But, this morning, on a pleasant ice-free walk to the newspaper office, a pair of geese flew low, calling. Boy, did that lift my spirits.

A friend reported seeing a string of returning geese overhead.

Spring is approaching.

Good time for a lull

I don’t know quite how it works, but I’ve caught a cold in an unlikely time.

There’s not much that requires news gathering this weekend.

That’s weird, to have the two circumstances coincide.

So, here I sit, occasionally hacking, drinking lots of water (as well as coffee), leisurely working on a feature about a home-town boy starting a moving company.

I can give some attention to our dog, wonder at the lack of tracks in our back yard after the recent snowfall, go barefoot, since we’ve burned through the last of the seasoned stove wood (I have yet to estimate that correctly each season), listen to public radio and work my way through the Martin Luther King, Jr., sermon, “The Drum Major Instinct,” apparently from which the Super Bowl Ram truck drew its inspiration.

It’s nice, having a breather.

Anyone for the key of “E”?

I have a musically gifted friend who lives (at the moment) in an apartment nearing a loading dock. Trucks back continually into the area during portions of the day.

The high “E” tone the trucks emit is a major distraction. It won’t be after he and his wife finish remodeling the home they bought in their city, but, meanwhile, that “beep” gets on his nerves.

He says he can tune his guitar with that back-up tone going off. It’s that predictable.

He asked, via Facebook, for favorite songs in the key of “E” he could play to play over the tones.

He got plenty of suggestions. Mine was “Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder.

He posted a great piece that I have to reference here. “Sky Church Hymn” by David Sancious and Tone made for a great listen for a Saturday morning.

Next time I’m bothered by back-up tones, I’ll know what to cue and find the volume control.


The Little, Brown hard-covered collection of iconic images by Ansel Adams is worth every minute I gaze on it.

Every once in a while, there are nuggets of prose, too, that are worth re-reading. Here’s one, reprinted from his foreword the 1979 publication of “Ansel Adams: Yosemite and the Range of Light.” (There are a number of essays worth their salt at then end of the collection of stunning photos.)

Adams writes of his time with the Sierra Club, his involvement with the conservation movement (He valued still more getting away on his own in his beloved wilderness with his pack animal.) and his time as custodian of the Le Conte Memorial in Yosemite Valley.

“I passed through the messianic period, battling the implacable devourers and mutilators of wilderness, and gradually I entered a more philosophic, humanistic stage where I was able, in some small way, to separate personal euphoria from impersonal appraisals of the rights of man to participate in the bounties of his environment. The fact that he has fouled his nest and seems certain to continue with his destruction seems now more of an illness than an expression of evil intent. The problem is not whether we must save the natural scene, but how we may accomplish it.”

I wonder what Adams would photograph and write now, if he were alive. I wonder if he would be able to maintain a philosophic stance. I doubt it.