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Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015

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Tilting At Windmills [Jan. 1st, 2020|12:00 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
[The river is |mischievous quixotic]

I'm going to start unlocking my journal now.

Argiope Aurantia
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Yup [Feb. 7th, 2016|08:26 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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From the Christian Science Monitor:


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Mom will protect you always! [Feb. 6th, 2016|09:53 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
Originally posted by terkat at Mom will protect you always!




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Paranoia or Conspiracy? [Feb. 6th, 2016|08:59 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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I don't know if this is me just being paranoid or if it was deliberate. I'm pretty sure I'm just being paranoid, but there was a 100,000 gallon wastewater spill right down the street from the place I talked about in my last post, the place where they are trying to evict 50 low-income families so developers can put in a mixed-use development with high-density housing.

Paranoia or Conspiracy?

http://kxan.com/2016/02/05/100k-gallons-of-wastewater-flows-into-carson-creek/
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A Rationalizing Animal [Feb. 5th, 2016|12:53 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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One day, Ken-the-Developer, one of the people who is responsible for the development around my land, got in my face and yelled at me saying, "you are costing me money!" His logic was that, by not selling my land to him or caving in on every idiotic thing he wanted to do, I was being a Bad Person, when in fact, he was the real Bad Person.

He scraped every single living thing off of 80 acres of woodland, then he dumped tons of imported lifeless soil on top of the scraped earth and put in as many houses as the law would allow. In the process, he did everything he could to provide as little environmental protection as possible. And he did all of this this right on the edge of the river, where the runoff will harm everything living thing downstream every time it rains. It would have been slightly worse if I hadn't stepped in to complain and it would have been much worse if he had been able to destroy my land as well.

But developers and pro-growth people don't see it that way. They don't see the harm they do, or if they see it, they just don't care. They don't see the logic of using available space that was previously developed and then abandoned before using wild space that is providing watershed recharge and protection, wildlife habitat and, sometimes, housing for humans.

I got to thinking about this again when I saw the quote below in an article about how some developers are trying to force existing residents out of their homes so the developers can buy the property and make a profit putting in higher density housing. One of the local housing commisioners sees the refusal-to-leave of the current residents as an impediment to improving things. Here's the quote:

"Vela said that while he sympathized with the plight of those who might be relocated, the city was in a housing crisis and desperately needed to add housing stock for all income levels."

“'I don’t want to lose sight of the fact that if this development were to move forward, it’s a net gain of 300 housing units,' he said. 'We may be preserving the affordable housing for these families, but we’re doing that on the backs of all the other families.'”

I wonder if Comissioner Vela is volunteering to have his house and maybe his neighbors' houses torn down to make way for more high-density housing. By his logic, we all should be forced out.

Here's the link to the whole article - http://www.austinmonitor.com/stories/2016/02/30038/.

Here's a picture I made of the first day of the destruction around my house. I had taken a bunch of amazing nature photos in the field of grasses and flowers that was there a couple of days before. Then I woke up and everything was being removed. I took this picture to document the beginning of the end.

No More Field By The Land
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Modern Technology [Feb. 4th, 2016|05:27 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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A couple of days ago, there was a hawk sitting on the power line over my driveway when I went out to go walking. It was the worst situation for my phone's camera, far away, backlit, nothing to steady my arms on, but I took a couple of pictures and then took a video of it flying away as I walked down the front steps.

Click here to find out what happened next...Collapse )
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The Organizer [Jan. 30th, 2016|10:51 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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I used the neighborhood bulletin board to organize a bike ride for this weekend. People have responded positively and it looks like at least a few people will show up. There's an amazing paved bike trail an easy ride away from here, so we're going there.

IMG_20140121_103216_294

I have no idea how this is going to go, the group's bike-riding skills will likely be quite varied. My plan is to turn them loose and see what happens. If it goes well, I'm going to see if people would be up for doing it every other week or so.

I hate organizing things, but I figure that, if I have to have neighbors, they might as well be entertaining. I'm encouraged by how nice all the neighbors I've met have been. Even so I'm nervous, but I think this will be fun.

Here's a picture of my bike:

My Bike (fixed up)
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Christmas Trip - Beginning [Jan. 24th, 2016|04:36 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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I'm slowly uploading my Christmas trip photos to Flickr. I made the mistake of trying to upload them all at once. I put a ton of time into tagging, naming and describing everything and then, of course, the uploader crashed. So now I'm uploading them in dribs and drabs. Click on the cut to see some stuff from the first few days of my trip.   CUT!Collapse )
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Free For Me [Jan. 15th, 2016|10:10 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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I just put the Google Hangouts phone app on my phone. It lets me make phone calls without using up the minutes I have on my cell plan. I never did it before because it seemed like it would be a hassle, but it turned out to be pretty easy.

I don't know how much data it uses -- I don't have to worry, because I have unlimited data. So using this instead of my "real" phone will save me much hassle when it comes to waiting for phone reps for hours on end. In the past, any interaction with help-desks, or other phone-in places that had long wait-times, could end up using literally all of my available minutes. Now I can call on my Google Phone and sit on hold for free. I only wish there was a way to put it on speaker. But the phone volume is loud enough that it won't be a problem.

Here's the link for the phone app - https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.apps.hangoutsdialer.

Thanks to my friend viverra (aka Claire) for encouraging me to try this. For years she's been telling me how useful this would be. I'm glad she patiently kept at it. I'm slow, but I get there eventually.
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Some People Get It [Jan. 4th, 2016|10:00 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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I was born to ignorance, yes, and lesser poverties,
I was born to privilege that I did not see,
Lack of pigment in my skin, one I'm free and easy in,
I didn’t know it, but my way was paved,

~ snip ~

If the wind is at your back and you never turn around,
You may never know the wind is there,
You may never hear the sound...

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Perfection [Jan. 2nd, 2016|11:44 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
You're not perfect,
But you're not your mistakes.

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Merry Christmas! [Dec. 31st, 2015|09:51 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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The "War On Christmas" complainers spend all of Advent complaining about how people are rejecting Christmas. But once Christmas actually starts, they forget all about it and turn their short little attention spans to New Years.

In the meantime it's still Christmas, and in honor of that fact, here's a video of one of the best Christmas carols being sung by one of the best gospel singers ever. This song is not about snow or Santa or anything tangible, this song is about faith and joy and Christmas. (The lyrics are in the comments.)

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"Chariots" (John Kirkpatrick) from "Nowell, Sing We Clear", 2012 [Dec. 29th, 2015|10:14 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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[The frogs are singing |Chariots by John Kirkpatrick]

This song, by John Kirkpatrick, has joined my (relatively long) list of favorite Christmas carols. I was surprised to find that it was written in 1995. It's timeless and magical.

With chariots of cherubim chanting
And seraphim singing hosanna
And a choir of archangels a-caroling come
Hallelujah Hallelu
All the angels a-trumpeting glory
In praise of the Prince of Peace

You can see the lyrics by clicking here, but it's best to listen as you read them.

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Wondering Where the Lions Are [Dec. 1st, 2015|10:49 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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My dreams were all about animals last night.

First I worked at a zoo, but I was new and uncertain. I was supposed to do something with a turtle, but I didn't know what. When I got to the turtle, it was a dead soft-shelled turtle, so I cut it open on one side from the back leg to the front leg and was going to peel its shell back when someone took it from me with a disapproving air. Next I was supposed to do something with an alligator. Again I had no idea what to do. It was a small alligator, maybe 2.5 to 3 feet long. So I went up behind it, caught it and held its mouth shut. Another disapproving person took the gator and then I was no longer at the zoo.

Next people were chasing me down a tree-lined street in a nice suburb somewhere up north. It was autumn and the trees were losing their colorful leaves. The street was damp and slick with wet leaves. When I got to the end of the street, I saw a path entrance between two red brick square pillars. Once I entered the path, I was no longer being chased. Via dream logic, I was now riding a horse. Not far down the path, I stopped my horse and dismounted because the path dropped down out of sight. It turned out that there was a sharp drop off and the path became very steep, and slippery. I wasn't sure if my horse could get down it without falling. I was trying to figure out how I could get the horse down to the bottom when three mountain lions and a wolf came along the lower path that I was trying to get to and stopped at the base of the hill. They stood there growling at me for a moment and then started up the hill toward me. I stood up waving my arms and yelling "Go away! I'm really large!"

After a bit they turned and walked back down the path. When they were almost out of sight, one of the mountain lions turned around and came toward me. I resumed waving my arms and yelling, but it didn't stop the lion. It came to about 3 feet away from me and stood there growling. So I took the horse's head under my arm and waved my other arm yelling "Now I'm really big, go away!"

Then a (human) mom with two kids showed up and came right over to me. I told her to go away because it wasn't safe. But then I asked her to take a picture of me with the mountain lion before she left. She said her phone's camera was crummy. I said that was OK, I just wanted proof that I had been this close to a mountain lion. She said ok and took her phone out. First I posed by kind of leaning toward the mountain lion, but then I reached over and pulled its head toward me and it leaned against me. I knew that was a really bad idea, but it was working so I just stood there grinning. The woman took a picture and I let go of the mountain lion and it sat back on its haunches. I gave her my email address, she entered it into her phone, sent me the e-mail, and that was the end of the dream.
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Goodbye [Nov. 29th, 2015|03:22 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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I just found out that my friend Windy died last month. He was one of a kind and I will miss him.


photo by David Blankenhorn
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The Future Is Here [Nov. 24th, 2015|08:31 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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It looks like they landed the capsule separately by parachute and then landed the rocket on the landing pad. The landing is just amazing.

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Fiskville Cemetery [Nov. 22nd, 2015|03:24 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
[The river is |pensivepensive]

I saw a sign for the cemetery and decided to check it out and I'm glad I did. Clicking on the image should take you to the album in Flickr.

Fiskville Cemetery Entrance
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Putting the Draw In Drawbridge [Nov. 19th, 2015|09:33 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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Drawbridges are cool. This bridge is on the Metro North rail line in my hometown in Connecticut. I have a vague memory of having a drawbridge opened for a boat I was on and going under it back when I was a kid. It was probably the little bridge that's in the background of this video.

I never considered the complexity of opening a drawbridge on a rail line, especially a rail line that runs on electricity.

A lot of people's lives depend on the guys in this video doing their job correctly. I like how the one guy crosses himself when the job is complete. I see that gesture both as giving thanks, and as calling for protection of the mechanical parts and the people who rely on them for safe passage.

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Natural Web Comic [Nov. 19th, 2015|09:01 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
urbpan just posted about a new nature-oriented webcomic called Your Wild City. There are only two entries so far, but it looks promising. You can check it out at http://www.yourwildcity.com/.
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I'm Back [Nov. 17th, 2015|10:33 am]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015

Facebook and I are having a dispute about my account, so I've been back reading LJ and I've decided to start back posting here. It's been a while and the format here feels unfamilair and thus a bit uncomfortable, but here goes nothing...

Click here for something...Collapse )

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