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The following posts are collections of sights, sounds, and quotes — with occasional mental meanders. Think of this page as a catch all for things I find interesting and information that I wish to share.


One of us had once taken a long walking trip through the Southern United States. At first he had tried to explain that he did it because he liked to walk and because he saw and felt the country better that way. When he gave this explanation there was unbelief and dislike for him. It sounded like a lie. Finally a man said to him, “You can’t fool me. You’re doing it on a bet.” And after that, he used this explanation, and everyone liked and understood him from then on.

John Stienbeck, The Log from The Sea of Cortez


God and I have no quarrels.  The almighty conceived the cactus plant.  If God would choose a plant to represent him, I think he would choose of all plants the cactus.  The cactus has all the blessings he tried, but mostly failed, to give to man.  It has humility, but is not submissive.  It grows where no other plant will grow.  It does not complain when the sun bakes it back or the wind tears it from the cliff or drowns it in the dry sand of the desert or when it is thirsty.  When the rains come it stores water for the hard times to come.  In good times and bad, it will still flower.  It protects itself against danger, but it does no harm to other plants.  It adapts perfectly to almost any environment.  It has patience and enjoys solitude.  The cactus has properties that heal the wounds of men and from it come potions that can make man touch the face of God.  It is the plant of patience and solitude, love and madness, ugliness and beauty, toughness and gentleness.  Of all plants, surely God made the cactus in his own image.
From The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay


Peter Kirn, Editor-in-Chief and Publisher of Create Digital Music, just published a fantastic article about NASA publishing their recorded archive on SoundCloud. This TED talk is pretty great too.

Read the full article here: NASA Posts a Huge Library of Space Sounds


Right away I found that all the facts in life and nature are correlated; I saw that this specialty of mine, that you might think didn’t amount to much and that any first-rate gardener could contrive, was sort of a cross-country trip through the whole field of natural science. To arrive anywhere you needed something more than a definite idea of your destination – you needed a diagram of the lay of the land all around. But that is true generally; it is something all of us, no matter what our job in life may be, might be better off considering. Because you can not judge a man, for instance, by studying him alone, or even by studying man alone; you cannot know much about an elephant by studying elephants alone; you have to learn about habitats and tendencies and surroundings and about the things on which the individual is dependent and which go to make him and his actions possible or necessary, as the case may be. You cannot become an authority on grasses – the grasses fit to eat and those not fit to eat (all grasses fit to eat have seeds) – just from studying grasses. No the fact is that you cannot see all of the facts about anything by just looking at that thing itself. To learn part of the essential truth about grasses, for instance, you have to study the cow.
Luther Burbank – excerpt from Harvest of the Years















The Message Voyager 1 Carries for Alien Civilizations