Sunday, February 28, 2010

We return from Springfield

On Wednesday, we left for Springfield. The traffic on I-44 was not bad. We bypassed the area where a hole opened up on a bridge on I-44 by taking the Creek Turnpike south around Tulsa. We arrived at my parents' apartment that afternoon. We arrived back in Sand Springs tonight.

On Saturday, we went geocaching. We found eight caches while there. Most were in the shopping center near Glenstone and Primrose. Had it not been so cold, we would have gone on a volkswalk.

Saturday night we watched a YouTube video of a man playing "Whispering Hope," using nothing but a blade of grass. Imagine what he could do if he had access to some real instruments.

Also on Saturday, we looked at the sheet music at Springfield Music, but I did not see anything new.

I am pretty tired from this trip. I will write more later after some rest.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I visit Dr. Uy's office

I had an appointment today to have blood drawn at Dr. Uy's. The blood will be analyzed to see if I will be able to have an MRI and a CT scan of my brain. This is a test you have to have if you are 60 year old or older. They should phone me with the results tomorrow. If the blood work says I am ok, then I will have the MRI and CT scans done the week of March 15.

On the way home, I stopped at a Family Dollar store and bought some large manila envelopes (10 X 13). We drove then to Lake Keystone and picked up the receipts for the walking club. As we were headed home, I realized that I was overdue for an oil change in the 2008 Saturn. I drove to Wal-Mart and got an oil change. I had to miss the evening news, but I guess the world will get along without me knowing what happened today.

I got news via Tulsa World web site that Sarah Palin will be coming to Tulsa to speak. She will be part of the Glenn Beck program to be held at the convention center.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Piano and errands

This day began with Gail coming over for our weekly practice at the piano. We had a good practice going over many of the songs that we have been playing.

Then we got out and ran some errands. We went by the bank and deposited a check. Next we went to the library and turned in several books. We went by the post office to turn in a hold mail request for our address. We took our tax papers to our CPA who does our taxes. We went by Nick's and dropped off a magazine that Ayla left at our house. We went walking at TCC, but walked only two miles today. We stopped at Chinese Express and got two take-out orders. We took them home and ate about half of each order. The reminder went into the refrigerator.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Daily wrap-up

I went to church this morning. I was going to sign the membership book, but I also needed to be at another location a half-hour after the service was over. The service today was on Black History Month. The hymns we sang were "Eyes on the Prize" and "Dancing Sarah's Circle." I might join next month, or, due to an unusual circumstance, I might quit going altogether. Once the service was over at 12:30, I hit the road. I needed to be at Garnett and 71st at 1:00 pm. Our meeting was at Panera Bread. I got there right at 1 pm. The meeting room was still being used by the previous group. After a wait of ten minutes, the group vacated the room.

The meeting was an organizational meeting of the Oklahoma Progressive Coalition, a liberal political group. There were 14 people present for this meeting. We talked about organization for the two hours. I got two phone calls while at the meeting: Randy called to let me know our interview with Channel 8 was postponed due to the rain. The Channel 8 cameras were to shoot some of us in front of our (Tulsa CoR) billboard on I-44. The second call I received was from Joe Price, our drumming leader. He said that he and his wife were not feeling the best, and they were calling drumming off for today.

At 3:00 pm we had to vacate the meeting room for another group. I got in my car and drove to Furr's Cafeteria. I had turkey and dressing, and two kinds of fish, carrots, corn, a roll, garlic bread, fruit salad, a piece of chocolate pie, and a glass of tea. After eating, I came home.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Volkswalking in Ft. Gibson

Today we drove to Ft. Gibson for a volkswalk. Ft. Gibson is just to the east of Muskogee. It took just over an hour to get there on the Muskogee Turnpike from Sand Springs. Ft. Gibson is the oldest town in Oklahoma.

It was foggy as we left home. In fact, it was foggy all day. There was not much fog in Ft. Gibson, but when we returned home, we noticed the fog was still around.

There were two options for today's volkswalk: a 5 K and a 10 K route. We choose the 5 K route. 5 K is equal to 3.1 miles. However, I figure we walked at least 4 miles due to some confusion along the route.

There is a nice visitor center there. The original fort has been reconstructed and is open for touring. The museum has many items from the heyday of the fort.

The UP railroad runs right by the fort, and we saw several trains today.

I had checked out the geocaches in the area before leaving home. I found two which were on the walk route. Later we found two more which were outside the walk route. The first one we found was titled "Here Lies Mr. Martin," Martin, the Chief Justice of first Supreme Court of the Cherokee Nation, is buried on the grounds in an above ground encasement. The second cache we found in a park. The micro was hanging in a cedar tree. The plastic tube is tied to a branch. After finishing the walk, we drove to "This Old House Once Knew My Granny." The coordinates led me directly to where the cache is hidden. Sometimes the coordinates are off by a little, but these were right on. The cache here was in a jar, making it a small cache rather than a micro.

The other cache we found is a virtaul cache. With virtual caches you are seeking information to e-mail back to the cache owner. This cache is inside the National Cemetary at Ft. Gibson. There are thousands of graves here, each with its own small white marker. I wish I had taken my camera to get a picture. We drove through the cemetary for a while, gazing at the thousands of markers. I thought that many have come before me and many have left before me. Just as I had no memory of the thousands of years that preceded my life, I will have no memory (or knowledge or awareness) of anything following my death. Anyone who is alive at this time is, for all intents and purpoes, immortal. Once you die, you will never be aware of having been alive. I would like to live long enough for signals from another civilization out in the Cosmos to be received on earth. While life in the Cosmos is exceedingly rare, there are literally millions of galaxies out there, each with untold thousands of solar systems in them. I think it is just a matter of time until contact is received from another far off civilization.

We had lunch today at Badlands Restaurant, across the street from the fort. Barbecue is their specialty. We both had pork sandwiches. I paid two dollars extra and got a piece of catfish. J paid two dollars extra and got a salad. It is not a bad place to eat.

We went to a fifth cache site, but did not pursue that cache as it required going through rough terrain and weeds.

My total finds for the day was four. This was my first volkswalk for this year, and was number 234 on my lifetime total. My number of geocache finds is at 262 now.

Some words on the health care crisis

Today I found the following e-mail in my inbox:

(Printed in Yukon Review, Feb. 20, 2010, by Carol Ruth)

If 45,000 people died this year as a result of terrorist attacks, Americans would respond with anger. If another 20 million were injured, citizens would march in the streets until politicians stopped the terror, retaliated, and provided care for the victims. Demands would be made for the slaughter to stop. Our fellow citizens would not die without a fight.

If 45,000 more died the following year, Congress would have long been forced by popular demand to focus on the protection of our citizens. Americans would insist Congress ignore lobbyists and concentrate on the good of the people. No expense would be spared in developing the finest fighting equipment possible; we would happily pay to train multitudes of the best fighters the world has ever seen.

If 45,000 additional people died the third year, prayer vigils would be held frequently in every city, town and village to pray to stop the madness. Every church leader would focus on the victims and demand a stop to the slaughter and pain. We would understand and share the agony of others; we would be furious if the attacks were not stopped.

If 45,000 more died in a succeeding year, anyone who said that the costs of were not worth it to put an end to the madness would be rightfully deemed a traitor. We would draw and quarter any politician who fought against the ending the pain of our fellow citizens. Those who made money off the misery of others would be called war profiteers. We would indict any politician who accepted money of anyone whose bottom line overrode the survival of the citizens.

Big events capture our attention, but the slow drawn out pain of our friends and neighbors escapes the nations undivided attention. It should be just as shocking as a terror attack that, according to Reuters, every year 45,000 Americans die due to lack of health care, most of it caused by a lack of health insurance. America may have the best health care system in the world, but it is not protecting every citizen. Millions suffer needless pain or bankruptcy because an illness wipes out everything they have and leaves them in debt for the rest of their lives. According to Business week, only about half of Americans receive medically recommended care for chronic or fatal conditions.

45,00 terrorist deaths would cause constant media attention. Yet, every twelve minutes an American dies from lack of health care, while millions more suffer in silence. Corporate owned media frequently discusses the costs of care and ignores the pain. Other industrialized countries have taken up the challenge and provided health care for all. As a result, the life expectancy in those countries is as high as 84 years, while the American life span at 78 years ranks below Bosnia.

The health care of almost everyone under age 65 is tied to their work. When someone loses his or her job through no fault of their own, that person is doubly penalized because they usually lose their health care as well. The system is also skewed when the sickest among us are the least able to hold down a job or to purchase health insurance. Health care should be separated from our work or age just as surely as defense is available to all.

Health care should be focused on healing the sick and keeping everyone well rather than the bottom line. Just as Nero fiddled while Rome burned, disaster will always strike when leaders ignore the pain and suffering and focus instead those who only worry about their personal gain.


How can people just ignore the pain and suffering, and yes, death, that results from embracing the status quo? Powerful monied interests are deceiving the public on the subject of health care.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Another slow day

It must sound like a broken record by now, but today we got up and had breakfast and went to the TCC Fitness Center and walked three miles. On the way home, we stopped at Homeland and got a bag of lettuce and one tomato. We come home and fixed a salad with chicken left over from a day or so ago.

Then we drove to the carwash and had the car washed. We swung by the library and then returned home. We got out the touch up paint and touched up a couple of spots on the rear bumper where we had chipped the paint while loading luggage into the trunk.

In the afternoon, I went to Roary's and got a haircut. After dinner, I swept and mopped the kitchen and dining room floors. A few years back, we had these two floors relaid in ceramic tile.

Tonight I loaded some coordinates in my GPS receiver in anticipation of doing some geocaching tomorrow.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Music at the Mansion

We attended a program today at the Tulsa Historical Society. We saw and heard two young ladies performing on the harp and flute. Some of the time it was harp and concertina. The program lasted for about an hour, perhaps a little longer. We also looked at a display on Tulsa of the 1940s.

On the way home we stopped at the Subway on 21st St. and had our usual sub. Next we went to the post office box for HAT. There were a few pieces of junk mail there. We stopped at TCC on the way home and walked four miles on the elevated track.

From there we trucked it on home and have been inside ever since. I missed my afternoon nap again today, and I am about ready to drop from fatigue.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Busy day

We had a busy day. So busy that we did not get around to going to TCC to walk.

We got up this morning and I fixed blueberry pancakes (with the assistance of the head cook). I had an appointment at my dentist to get a crown seated. After about a dozen times of putting it on and taking it off (and making two lucky saves when the thing almost went down my throat), the crown finally got seated. It was now 11:00 am. I had an 11:20 am meeting to make in Tulsa. We were going to drop off some library books in Sand Springs but skipped going to the Charles Page Library to save time.

We arrived at the White River Fish Market about 11:25. Gail and a couple of others were already seated at a table for the February ALGAE gathering. ALGAE is an acronym for "A Little Group of Atheists Eating." There were seven people at the luncheon, including one first-time attendee. There were seven of us there: Larry, Dave, Don, Gail, Marilyn, J and myself. I had the broiled seafood platter. WRFM has the best scallops. I love them dipped in butter. After we ate, we sat around for conversation.

It was about 1:45 pm when we left the restaurant. We went to the credit union and withdrew some money to make the final payment on my hearing aids. We went by Dr. Shirk's office, and gave them the check. Next we drove by the location where contra dances are held. Gail and her husband attended the last time the group met. I am hoping the J and I will be able to attend next time. The group meets once a month. If you are not familiar with contra dancing, go to YouTube and search for "contra dance lessons."

We had time remaining before the 3:00 pm showing at the Circle Cinema and went to Saied's Music Store on Yale. I noticed they had some new music for piano duo. I bought two pieces: "A Little Bit of Bach" and "Fiddle Faddle."

Next we went to the Circle Cinema. We got there early, so we went next door to the Kendall-Whittier Library. We read today's Tulsa World there.

We went across the street to the Circle Cinema. We saw Bill D. and his wife Jackie M. as we were going in. The movie we saw was Creation. The movie explored the conflict between Darwin and his religious wife. After reading the manuscript, Darwin's wife consents to the publication of his book, On the Origin of Species. At the same time as Darwin was mulling over his life's work, Alfred Russell Wallace had reached the same conclusion as Darwin. Wallace's paper on the subject was just twenty pages long; Darwin's was 250 pages long. The death of Darwin's young daughter (appears to be about 10 in the film) is a major event in his life.

We returned home in time to see the evening news. J went to the Methodist church for Ash Wednesday services while I stayed here. As she was leaving the church, she phoned me to see if I would like to meet her at the Crescent Cafe. I said yes. We met there and had dinner together.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Slow day

This entry will be brief. After a breakfast of scrambled eggs and sausage casserole, we went to the Fitness Center. We walked four miles today.

After we got in our walk, we drove home and had lunch. J went to Roary's and got her hair cut. I stayed here and read the Epstein book. There was going to be a discussion of the book, but I received an e-mail telling me that the discussion has been canceled.

I realize my lack of religious orthodoxy disappoints some of my friends and relatives, but I really have no choice in the matter. If you had been in my shoes for the last four decades, you would have a better understanding of my worldview.

From "Good Without God"

The following is a quote from the book Good Without God.
"...Humanism is also a warning that we cannot afford to wait until tomorrow or the next life to be good, because today -- the sort journey we get from birth to death, womb to tomb -- is all we have. Humanism rejects dependence up faith, the supernatural, divine texts, resurrection, reincarnation, or anything else for which we have no evidence. To put it another way, Humanists believe in life before death.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Activites of the day

We began the day with Gail coming over for piano practice. Ayla, my granddaughter, had spent the night with her Nana. Ayla especially likes Gail. She hero worships her. So it was a treat for Ayla to be here when Gail arrived. Periodically, Ayla would come in to the living room and chat with Gail.

Following our two-hour practice, we went to Ayla's house and picked up Luke. Then the four of us went to McDonald's for lunch. Luke and Ayla played on the indoor playground equipment. They played for quite a while. Then we took them back to their house. Next, we went walking at the Case Center. There is an indoor walking track above the gym floor, but I do not like it as well as the track at TCC. I walked only two miles today. Not knowing we were going walking when we left, I did not bring my MP3 with me.

I have not had a nap today and am starting to feel tired. I might go to bed early tonight.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Daily wrap-up for February 14

I went to Church of the Restoration this morning. There were 10 people there. I think Barbara will be returning to the church. She was very disappointed in a number of things about the church and seemed to indicate she would not be returning. However, today at the Congregational Meeting following the service, she volunteered to serve on the board in the "at large" position. I might actually join the church soon, too. I have been attending there for a few year. I found out today that many there thought I was a member, but I have never signed the membership book. They need all the help they can get. I might be able to convince some of my humanist friends to start coming. We definitely need more members. I looked on the roster today and saw 21 names listed. Two of the members I had never met before were there today.

There are a couple of members who do not live in the area who send large sums of money to keep the church going. Were it not for them, the church most likely would have folded by now.

I took Barbara home. She had caught a ride to church with Joy, but Joy had to leave early to be at the ballet. Joy asked me if I could take Barbara home, and I agree to.

On the way home, I went through the drive thru at Taco Mayo. I got two beef soft tacos, Mexicali rice, and refried beans. I ate that as my lunch and then left for Joe price's house for drumming. There were four of us there: Joe and Lou, Joel, and myself. Joe had some news for us. He had been contacted by the library to see if we would like to perform at one of their weekday noontime performances along with a troup of belly dancers. We would be providing the rhythm for the dancers. This would occur in May, if all goes well.

On the way home, I stopped at Dollar General and bought a birthday card for Gail, whose birthday is tomorrow. I watched the news and "Life (Part 2)" and took the trash cart out to the curb. I played the piano some in anticipation of our weekly practice session tomorrow.

Below is a link to a new movie about Charles Darwin. It looks interesting. I am going to try to go see it.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Hyechka event

This Saturday, we got up and threw on some clothes and went to the Fitness Center for our morning walk. While walking, I listened to music by Handel: Water Music and Royal Fireworks Music. Following those selections, I listened to some Dave Brubeck. We came home and had lunch.

After lunch, I took another long nap. Naps are so good, so refreshing.

This evening we went to an event held at All Souls Unitarian Church. There is a music lovers group in the city known as Hyechka. They sponsor performances throughout the year, usually at the Mansion on Peoria. Tonight's theme was "Love's Old Sweet Songs: Music of the Roaring Twenties." The dinner tonight was a benefit for Hyechka philanthropies. Several acts performed.

Friday, February 12, 2010

The day in review

We had a busy day today. We went walking at TCC. I walked three miles. Then we left and stopped at Subway and got a five-dollar footlong sub. We got a black forest ham sandwich, with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and bell peppers. J does not like bell peppers, so she let me have hers. We took the sandwich home and ate it.

We went to the library and turned in some movies and books and checked out a few books waiting there for me. That afternoon, we wrote out some checks to pay some bills. We went over our bank statement and got that caught up. We went to WalMart and bought some strawberries and chocolate dippng sauce. We came home and J fixed the strawberries and chocolate for our gathering at the Bradleys.

At 7:00 pm we went to Border's Bookstore for the meeting of the small poetry group. Gail is currently the leader of this group. Tonight we looked at the poetry of Edgar Allan Poe. I read "The Raven," and Gail read "The Bells." There were six of us there, including J who does not normally attend. J was with me since she wanted to go to Randy's for the celebration of Darwin's birthday. We, including Gail, had to leave early to arrive at Randy's. We were late, of course, since both events started at 7 pm.

After we arrived, Randy presented the Planned Parenthood representative with a check for $300 raised among local freethinkers. I took pictures of the presentation. We are hoping to get one in the newspaper. The PP rep spoke of the various kinds of services provided by PP. The husband of the rep was there. He will be a part of the Chautauqua in June. He will be portraying Robert E. Lee on one of the nights.

The Days of Our Lives

Below is a link to a web site which will, among other things, calculate your age in days. It tells me that I have lived 22,621.9 days. The site will calculate for you your age on other planets.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

TAM February social

I took this picture at the TAM mid-month social held at Campus Grill in Tulsa.

Wintry weather bypasses us

I guess we got lucky today for the Thursday snowstorm missed the Tulsa area. Gail came over this morning, and we played piano duets for two hours.

After lunch I stretched out on the bed and awoke two hours later. That was quite a nap. Hope I will be able to sleep tonight.

Tonight we went to the TAM mid-month social gathering. I will try to post a picture I took at the gathering. Some of the regulars were there: Bill D. and Bob H. were there. The others were people I had met just once or twice or not at all. There were about nine people there. We talked about many things, including veganism, and the brain. Kym has her doctorate (in some area of neurobiology) and she is not yet 30. Toby is a dedicated vegan and spoke about how he became a vegan and what all it entails.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Trip

Tuesday afternoon we took an out of town trip. We looked at the roads Monday, and decided a Wednesday morning business trip (for J) might be a problem. We decided to travel Tuesday while the roads were clear, then use it for an excuse to celebrate an early Valentine's Day.

Finding no motels actually close to the conference center, we got the closest motel we could find. That ended up being a motel three and a half miles away. We drove around a little getting familiar with the town, and ate at a local "Mom and Pop" that had generous portions for the price. We were both stuffed by the time we left, and we passed up dessert.

Wednesday morning, I drove J. to her meeting, then relaxed in the motel room watching TV. At noon I met Jan and we took advantage of the college cafe, but I do not recommend the place. I ordered a chicken salad sandwich, but had trouble finding much chicken salad between the slices of bread. Instead of saying "Where's the beef?", I was saying "Where's the chicken?"

That afternoon I visited the library, and read my Kindle until J was ready to head out of town.

We missed the rush hour traffic across Tulsa by using the Creek Turnpike. We use that turnpike often and find it saves time even when it may be a longer trip.

After supper, J and I went to a showing of a Darwin video at All Souls Unitarian Church. The room was packed once again as it was last week. Following the showing of the DVD, there was a brief discussion. Next week, the plan is to discuss the book Good Without God.

J and I are tired, but we had a nice trip.

Monday, February 08, 2010

More snow arrives

I went out to the mailbox to get the mail around 9:00 this morning. It was spitting rain but there was no sign of snow. By 9:30 the rain had changed over to snow, and it was snowing fast. We got a heavy snow for three hours, and then it stopped as suddenly as it had begun. Gail called from her cell phone when she was just four or five miles away and said she was turning back for home.

Fortunately, the snow did not stick. The ground was too warm. I got out and went to the library and the post office at the tag agency. I got an e-mail from Gail asking to reschedule the practice. She will be coming over Thursday morning now.

We went to TCC and walked three miles today.

I spent some time this afternoon trying (unsuccessfully) to find the sheet music to a song written by Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs. The title of the piece is "Cabin on the Hill." I checked my favorite music-by-mail site, Sheet Music Plus, but did not see it there. I called Saied's Music in Tulsa, and they could not find it in any of their collections of music. I checked with the Tulsa Library, and had no luck there. The lyrics can be found on the Internet, but not the musical notation. If any of my readers out there have any ideas on finding the music to this song, please let me know. The song is track 2 on the album "16 Biggest Hits, Flatt & Scruggs."

Sunday, February 07, 2010

How much will it snow?

It looks like we are in for another round of winter weather. The weatherman says we could get up to six inches. We will know by this time tomorrow.

Today I went to Church of the Restoration. I took highway 64 up to the Gilcrease Museum Road. I took the Museum Road to Pine. I go this way to avoid the road construction around downtown Tulsa. From Pine I go straight to Greenwood, turn right, and the church is just a block down the street. It was another slender group today: seven altogether.

Betty Morrow read a sermon written by Suzanne Meyer. Suzanne died recently. Her memorial service will be this Wednesday at Hope Unitarian Church. She was living in Wyoming (?) if I remember correctly. She was a minister there. Prior to that, she lived in Tulsa. She wrote some great sermons. Betty has read several of hers to the congregation before.

Following the service, I went to Braum's on Gilcrease Museum Road for lunch. J said she was going to take Luke and Ayla out for lunch. She also went to Braum's, but the one in Prattville (as south Sand Springs is known). I had a grilled chicken sandwich, fries, and a peanut butter and fudge shake. I usually get chocolate when I order a shake, but I saw a sign promoting the PB and fudge shake, so I got that instead. It was okay, but I think I will stick with chocolate.

I got a call from the Prices. They were not well and called off drumming for today.

Ayla spent the afternoon here. We took her home around 5 pm.

We also watched another lecture in the series we have been watching. The lecture was on the teleological argument for God.

Looking at my appointment calendar, I can see I have a busy week ahead. Of course, plans could change if we get a lot of snow.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Monty Python film shown at Movie Night

Right now the weather here is much better than the weather in Ohio, Virginia, and the D.C. However, another winter storm should be here by Monday. I am ready for this winter to be over.

This morning we went to the Case Community Center and walked three miles. That gives me 20.5 miles for the week. We managed to go walking every day since Monday. I probably will not go walking tomorrow. I have church in the morning and drumming in the afternoon.

We picked up Ayla this afternoon and went to McDonald's and ate. Ayla played on the indoor playground equipment.

My letter was published in the Tulsa World today. The last time I checked, it had received 40 online comments.

Tonight was Movie Night at the Bradleys. We watched Monty Python's "The Meaning of Life." Gail had a prior commitment and thus was not able to play a duet. Following the film, we moved back to the Bradleys' living room and had a free-wheeling (and lengthy) discussion, mostly pertaining to the sorry state of the country at this time. There were eleven people in attendance.

Following the gathering, I took Barbara back to her apartment. I returned home. Everyone had gone to bed; that is, Ayla and her grandmother.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Roundup of events

We began our day by watching another lecture in the series on Philosophy of Religion. Then we went grocery shopping. That took a couple of hours. After we got back home and put away the groceries, we changed clothes and drove to the Fitness Center at TCC West and walked three miles. I have walked 17.5 miles this week. We managed to get to the Fitness Center every day this week. We might go walking in the morning, but I don't know right now.

After walking we returned home and had a fish dinner with scallops. Scallops are my favorite food item. The best scallops are found at White River Fish Market in Tulsa. They almost melt in your mouth. Red Lobster has good scallops, but I prefer those at WRFM.

In the mail today I received the current issue of Sheet Music Magazine. I spent some time at the piano tonight playing several of the pieces. Some of the pieces in this issue which I like are "Heliotrope Bouquet," "Love's Been Good To Me," "Great Balls of Fire," and "The M.T.A." The issue also contains two interesting jazz pieces: "Upside" and "Patternesque." The magazine is published four time a year, and in addition to publishing 18 or so songs per issue also includes instructional material to improve your playing. The novelty song "Why Do They Play Here Comes The Bride (When They Should Play There Goes The Groom)" is also found in this issue.

This has been a strange winter. It looks like we might be in store for some more snow starting Monday. I will be glad when Spring gets here.

Thursday, February 04, 2010


I have had an interest in walking labyrinths for a few years now. On occasion, we have walked a few. There are two I can remember in Oklahoma. One in in Norman and the other is in Tahlequah. There also was a temporary labyrinth set up in a church in Tulsa that I walked once. The labyrinth in Norman in in Reaves Park, and the labyrinth in Tahlequah is at Sancta Sophia Seminary (a religious retreat) a little ways outside of Tahlequah.

What got me thinking about labyrinths is an article I read in a magazine called The Current. According to the review of the book, Oklahoma Labyrinths - a Path to Inner Peace by Gail Peck, the author cites 70 labyrinths in the state. I checked a web site I used to look at (Grace Cathedral in San Francisco), and noticed that the labyrinth locator at the site now list more labyrinths in Oklahoma than the last time I looked at the site, which was probably five years ago.

I ordered a copy of the book from Amazon. My son, Nick, gave me a gift card for $50 for Christmas. This was my first time to use the card.

I have a VHS tape which I used to show my friends about labyrinth walking. Proponents of labyrinth walking claim the activity has spiritual dimensions. I have walked six or seven labyrinths but have not noticed anything spiritual about them. I suspect a lot depends upon the walker's prior experiences. But I continue to walk one whenever I come across one. Other cities in Oklahoma have labyrinths including Oklahoma City, Ponca City, Tonkawa, and Shawnee.

We did our usual walk at TCC today - 4 miles. Stopped again at Subway on the way home and had a Black Forest ham sandwich. We ate it there and read the newspaper while we were in the store. We later went to the bank and deposited some money in Luke and Ayla's savings accounts and paid our annual fee on our safe deposit box. Then we went to the library and I picked up some books which had come in for me.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

What happened today?

First, we went to TCC and walked three miles. On the way home, we stopped at Subway and bought a five-dollar Black Forest Ham footlong sandwich, brought it home and ate it.

At 3:00 pm Gail arrived and we played piano until 5:00 pm. I watched the news at 5:30 and then we left at 6:30 for All Souls Unitarian Church to watch a DVD of Richard Dawkins on Charles Darwin. We actually saw two DVDs (45 minutes long) of Dawkins talking about Darwin. The second DVD deals with the subject of altruism. Tonight was the first part of a three part series on Darwin. The next sessions are on Feb. 10 and Feb. 17. The theater will filled to capacity. Extra seats were brought in to accompany the overflow crowd.

Afterwards, we stopped at La Hacienda, a Mexican restaurant on Peoria, for our evening meal. For less than seven dollars we got a gigantic chicken burrito which we shared.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Recapitulation of today's happenings

Well, you are probably thinking we did a lot today from the title of this post, but you would be mistaken. Today was pretty much like yesterday and several other previous days.

We went walking at TCC. I did four miles today. Then on the way home we stopped by the Springs Village shopping center where Papa Pat had his smoked meats truck parked and bought two pulled pork sandwiches. We took the sandwiches home and ate them.

I got a call from the newspaper, checking to verify that I was the writer of a letter I sent in for publication. I confirmed my authorship of the letter. I assume it will show up in the paper soon.

We were going to go grocery shopping, but thought we should give some attention to the snow on the roof. So we used the ladder to get up to the roof and removed some chunks of ice which had accumulated in the gutters.

Tonight while my better half watched "Lost" on TV, I watched some instructional videos (from YouTube) on the computer. The videos were on playing the ukulele. I would like to learn how to play the uke. I have a cheap soprano uke which I bought from WalMart. I find the most difficult thing about playing it is fingering the chords without muting strings that are supposed to be open. There are several instructional videos available on YouTube, and I watched a few of them tonight.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Some melting today

Today, following breakfast, we watched two lectures from the course "Philosophy of Religion" (on DVD) taught by James H. Hall of the University of Richmond. We listened to "What Constitutes Good Evidence" (lecture 8) and "Why Argue For the Existence of God?" (lecture 9). We listened to lecture 8 yesterday, but since I received three phone calls during the half-hour lecture, I wanted to hear it again.

In the afternoon, we went to TCC and walked the indoor track. I was hoping to walk four miles, but was interrupted after three and a half with a request to go home.

We had a good bit of melting of the snow today; however, much snow remains. I know what it is like to go three days without electricity. That happened to us in December of 2007. The house did not get cold. I guess the greatest hardship was being without all those things that use electricity to operate: lights, television, garage door opener, CD player.

I spoke with Gail on the phone, and we are going to get together for piano duet practice on Wednesday afternoon this week.

Food and Fellowship with Friends

Here are two pictures taken by Kathy Warren at our January Food & Fellowship meal at Billy Simms' Barbecue Restaurant in The Farm Shopping Center. There were 17 people at the event. We took several tables and lined them up so we could be together.