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Anthony Kennedy is a terrible human being.

As a public service, here is a running list of some of the articles related to Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement. Kennedy made it clear from his votes in the last session that he wants to make sure that his seat is filled with a reliable Republican (which means while Mitch McConnell’s Republican Party still has control of the United States Senate.) For that – and for the obvious fact that he is doing this simply so that he will still be invited to the best Washington cocktail parties – he deserves our scorn.

#WeCanFixThis. Get out the vote and get out *and* vote!

Summer Sunning!

Today marks the Summer Solstice. Astronomically, it looks like this:

The Summer Solstice occurs exactly when the Earth’s axial tilt is most inclined towards the sun at its maximum of 23° 26′. The seasonal significance of the Summer Solstice is in the reversal of the gradual shortening of nights and lengthening of days. That will occur later todayish – June 21st at 10:07 UTC (5:07am Central Time).

Today and tomorrow, the sunrise (where I live) will be 5:18am and sunset will be 8:40pm – 15 hours and 22 minutes of sunlight. On Winter Solstice, six loooong months ago, sunrise was at 7:25am and sunset was at 4:25pm, 9 hours of sunlight.

Next Sunday, the sunrise will be one minute later, signalling the waning of the year. But that’s Sunday and today we have 922 minutes of sunlight to enjoy!!

(Don’t forget to hover on the images!*)

VNV Thursday – A Theatrical Interlude 6/7/18

45th Street Theatres

I’ve loved theatre for most of my life. When I was in high school, I attended all the school plays, and with my humanities class was able to see William Devane in a production of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (he originated the role of McMurphy off-Broadway) that was done at a local theatre-in-the-round. After college, I treated myself one birthday to a production of The Elephant Man at the Blackstone in Chicago, which starred David Bowie; it was an amazing and memorable performance. Although opera has become my theatre-going choice of late, plays and musical theatre still hold a special place for me. The Tony’s are the only award show I ever watch, and since they’re airing this Sunday, June 10th (CBS, 8 EST), I thought I’d give a little preview of what to expect.  (As much as I appreciate and enjoy the technical side of theatre, I’m only going to highlight the Best Play and Best Musical categories.) And the nominees are…

Out of the Sea

Priestess

 

She thought her life was over—until the Goddess Thalassa called to her

 

That first week in Australia Stella decided that her new home was very much like her previous home in Texas. The weather was the same—boiling hot. The people were similar—tall, tanned, laid back, and friendly, although they didn’t wear cowboy boots; and everyone had two things on their minds: football, which they called “footy,” and the lack of rain.

A Creek Preservation Project on Earth Day 2018 & When is a plant a weed?

 

Mt.baker loomed above Canyon Creek

Canyon Creek, Whatcom Co., WA State

April 22, 2018 (Earth Day)

There were so many Earth Day activities to attend that I had some difficulty choosing which to spend my day with. I chose to go with the Whatcom Land Trust that has preserved over 20,000 acres from Farm land to salmon spawning habitat, to watersheds, to river corridors, to old growth forests and parks and has facilitated preservation of thousands more acres.

We Won’t Forget

Why are these rich old white guys laughing? They just passed a bill that would take health care away from 24 million people and push grannies off the cliff.

Let’s get the last laugh and vote them out. #WeWontForget #ProtectOurHealthCare

April Showers are Bringing May Flowers!

At Winter Solstice, the light begins to return – gradually, the memory of the long nights fades until the light and dark are equal on Spring Equinox. From that point on,  the light returns more rapidly and on May 1st we arrive at the midpoint between equinox and Summer Solstice.

Today, my sunrise was at 5:52am CDT and my sunset will be at 7:58pm … more than 14 hours of daylight, adding 2 hours since the equinox. By the end of May, we will have added 49 more minutes of daylight!

May your May days be filled with sunlight, flowers … and kissable snouts!

(Place your cursor over the photos to read the hovers!*)

Ocean and Beach Plastic Pollution Locally and Globally

 

A derelict sail boat washed up on a local beach from a winter storm a couple of years ago. It is polluting the beach and bay as it sheds particles from its fiberglass hull. Plastic decking has come off the bow and a number of other plastic items are wedged under the boat, not to mention the numerous cans of spray paint used to tag this mess. 

 

VNV Tuesday – Privilege and Allyship: A Call for Introspection 4/10/18

James Zwerg: Ally, Freedom Rider

I’ve been grappling with the issues of privilege and effective allyship lately. Some of this has been prompted by my reading about the Movement; some of it by the Parkland students; and some of it by a survey I recently had to complete for an organization that asked, “Are you willing to engage in civil disobedience?” After some reflection, I realized my truly honest answer to the question was, “no” and that saddened me about myself. This post isn’t going to focus on my personal efforts to reconcile my ideals and my actions; it instead is going to highlight the actions of one ally as a means to encourage personal reflection and introspection.