Winter Goes, Spring Begins

The “season” of Spring officially starts tomorrow in the northern hemisphere, which is often called “the northlands” in these pages.  In a sense “northlands” is a good word for certain things, for example, snow.  One can certainly be in the northern hemisphere and be somewhere there’s no snow.  The word “northlands” tends to convey a notion of areas closer to the north pole.

So, it’s officially Spring in the northlands tomorrow.  In the area underfoot there have already been warm days followed later by freezing temperatures and some snow.  There are little bitsy sprouty types of things all over the tree limbs and so forth.  The insect world is surely disturbed already.  And, presently many people have adjusted somewhat to the “spring time change.”

One fact of life in this time of “greeting spring” is that some people actually like winter.  They do not necessarily want it forever or deadly for that matter.  And, of course, there needs to be a warm place to be much of the time, especially after enjoying some play in the snow or on ice.  There’s no way to deny a layer of snow on dirty anything at least for a time makes it look better.

Spring is comfortable, hopeful, enlivening and so forth, but after it there comes summer.  Indeed, three-fourths of the year isn’t hopeful, enlivening and so forth or even necessarily comfortable.  If people are to be realistic, it’s not good to be too carried away with the arrival of Spring, even if it means no further need of lugging firewood into the house for at least the next six months or so.

Perspective can change things.  🙂

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Just Some Musing

It’s Daylight Saving Time again!  It’s still Lent, but getting closer to that very serious time called Holy Week.  It’s the week for the Ides of March and St. Patrick.  It may rain or snow a bit farther north.  There may also be a few early flowers around.  People may be disorganized, maybe for the entire week.  Baseball is on the minds of fans.  And, it’s birthday week at the spot underfoot.

It may be nearly three more weeks of Lent, but the Happy Easter bunny, artistic eggs, etc., are already displayed around the old folks’ home underfoot.  So much for the mood of Holy Week.  It may be birthday upcoming at the desk at hand, but the community party for all in March was more than a week ago instead of mid-March — all of three or four people and no cake was delivered.

Daylight Saving Time is now in play, which is a different inconvenience for anyone who didn’t do the switch to Standard Time personally.  With Standard Time in the outside world, if one doesn’t switch, people who are ordinarily late for everything are at least on time if not early.  Being late is not good for one’s reputation.  It’s also a way to miss a lot of goodies grabbed by the early folks.

The Ides of March is Thursday, and there’s no way to know at this time what the bad thing that might happen might be.  St. Patrick’s day, however, is Saturday, and since it’s all right to have a big party on Sundays, the only thing people need to do is piddle around until midnight.  As for a few early flowers, well, they’re pretty new life and very enlivening but they also encourage bugs.

Soon enough days and years pass.  🙂

Upcoming: St. Patrick’s Day

The commercial event of the month is St. Patrick’s day. There has to be at least one commercial event every month (two is better).  How the commercial event of March was established as St. Patrick’s day has got to be a minor mystery of the times.  There are a lot of Irish in the United States, but it’s hardly near a majority.  Not even the total Roman Catholic population is enough to make a saint’s day important.

While it’s true the Irish carry considerable reputation in general, can be at least partly identified by things like surnames and make much of being Irish, it’s a little inappropriate to put said day nearly in the same class as Thanksgiving (which is a shade ethnic).  It’s also true the Spanish, Italians and Germans have a handicap in the fact that at some time in American history their “mother” nations were enemies.

Some may debate the truths about St. Patrick.  To perhaps the same extent some might argue the validity of the March warning of the “Ides of March,” which is sometimes noted by people on an individual basis.  However, there’s hardly the same amount of to-do about the Ides of March as there is about St. Patrick.  One might think a time to be wary of things should be of greater concern than a “party time.”

With all due respect to a noble patron saint (every nation probably has one, including the United States, where it isn’t St. Patrick), that piece of Irish business should really be left to Ireland and family and/or appropriate organizations.  It’s reasonable to wonder why those of Irish descent (as in the U.S.) do not actively protest the crass commercialism.  It may be Lent with need for relief, but use something else.

Thoughts can be thought-provoking.  🙂

‘Tis Lent In The Christian World

The Christian world still exists, but not quite with the impact of not that long ago.  Today the food industry inland can be expected to have more fish and maybe less candy.  Some people may not be around as much if they plan to go to religious services designed for the religious period.  That may or may not be said as a way to explain an absence from something.  And, at least some time the weather will suitably provide for the gloomy spirit of the time.

Apparently there is “outside of religion” evidence (for lack of better wording) that there was “a man in time” (as has been said) called, at least in English in modern times, Jesus of Nazareth.  Calendar years are somewhat confused, a few years off, but it seems there was some kind of unrest noted in historic records at the time and place of the origin of the belief system.  If there was “unrest,” it had to be a group of people, not just one man carrying on.

Setting aside the debates about whether or not there was a Jesus, is a God and was Jesus God or the Son of God, the moral system of Christianity isn’t too bad despite the variations.  While the societies created as a result of it are far from perfect, they did generate and allow space and opportunity for ideas and inventions that have greatly enhanced human and other life, which is not saying non-Christians haven’t also come up with things.

Much of the basis of modern Christianity is the analysis done by a (St.) Thomas Aquinas, who explored other systems for understanding.  It’s not out of the question to look at other belief systems for ideas.  Much of the world this past week was into activities for the “Chinese New Year.”  So, it is now “The Year of the Dog.”  Dogs are wolves, so perhaps by extension it’s also the year of the wolf.  How it pans out, of course, is yet to be seen by all people.

Belated Happy Chinese New Year!  🙂

M. L. King, Jr. Day — Another Holiday

Another holiday means another day when offices are closed.  They aren’t all closed, but the important stuff like mail delivery is out and banks aren’t open.  Mail can be tossed in boxes, of course.  Cash money can still come in hand if someone has an ATM usable account and the means to get to one.  On the whole, however, as with any holiday, it was best to be prepared to not be carrying on ordinary living.

Given that it’s mid-January, at least in the Northlands, there’s a second reason to be more or less prepared to not be carrying on ordinary living, namely, the weather, and this year is no exception.  Indeed, a government-type of office called Friday afternoon was already closed on the basis of expected bad weather.  By sunset not only was there considerable drop in temperature, but it had started to snow.

One might say today’s holiday was a day of convenience (maybe a convenient matter).  Although some people have just started getting “after holiday” organized again (we must keep in mind here that technically Christmas decorations are not due to be taken down until the traditional arrival of the Three Kings/Wise Men, January 6), there is sure to be much less squawking about anything if it’s also convenient.

It’s good there was a Martin Luther King, Jr., for many reasons.  This year the holiday is on his actual birthday, which doesn’t always happen.  Although he would be quite old, if he had not been killed, he could have been still alive in the natural order of existence.  And, maybe most important, it’s to be considered that a great legacy of the whole matter is good results from there being a holiday at this time at all.

What’s done with things can be valuable.  🙂

What Year Is It?

The year called by many “2017” was most likely very good for some and very bad for others.  Those for whom it was good may hope “2018” will be better; those for whom it was bad surely at least deep down inside seriously (if not desperately) hope “2018” will be better.  Regardless, it’s the year “2018” only for those who calculate time from the Birth of Jesus Christ era.  There was time before that, lots of time so lots of years on the records of whatever people such as the biblical Three Kings or Wise Men with gifts.

Were they kings or wise men?  They saw a star, so most likely they may have been at least astronomers if not sages or seers, but they could also have been kings, and they did think to bring meaningful gifts.  Since they “saw a star” they were aware of the changes “heaven-ward” and surely operated on calendars of some sort using other numbers for the year (unknown at this desk).  Apart from that being a bit interesting if it could be learned, it seems important to recall there are other numbers for years.

Today humans can get off the earth and soon may be going to other planets ordinarily where a year is not 365 (or whatever) days.  Scientists have calculated, for example, that one year (trip around the sun) on the more distant planets such as Neptune is more than a known human lifespan.  In the case of Neptune it’s 165 earth years.  One could live a standard human life and not be a year old.  Planets closer to the sun, such as Venus, have years that have fewer days than the Earth, just 225 Earth days for Venus.

A big to-do about an Earth-based “new year” is no longer really appropriate since it’s not the monumental thing it was before space exploration.  And, that’s not to mention much about the actual limited area of Christianity, which, especially in earlier days, consisted of people who didn’t live somewhat world-wide as they have for several generations now.  That doesn’t mean an Earth-based new year should be ignored or even somehow be re-numbered.  It just means it needs to be remembered things are different daily.

Good wishes for the new year to all. 🙂

All Those Christmas Cards

Holiday cards were a great invention.  Writing out stuff even if it doesn’t take much of a hunt for the right words is time consuming, which isn’t too much of a concern only if there’s just one or two messages to send.  If there are many, even if the same message is used for all, doing such can even create other problems from writer’s cramp to the likes of spilled coffee.

Furthermore, written out stuff doesn’t usually immediately create the quick cheery personal state that charming or lovely pictures can create.  The written word can create thoughtful and touching moments, but not the nearly instantaneous happy or peaceful feeling that comes with a good image.  Words, no matter how good they are, have to be mentally processed.

Seasonally, people often hang cards around amid other decorations; but, once it’s time for the decorations to come down, it seems a waste to just throw the cards away.  And, there is always the added factor that a person who sent greetings might not be around at a future time.  A card, then, could be a gentle memento of that person worth saving just for a recollection.

Some people do save the cards.  There are various ideas “out there somewhere” of what to do with them, including things like putting them (or at least some of them) in an album or pasting them on something for decoration.  If pasted on something like a plain paper box, a coat of shellac over it will help keep them from tearing up.  Just a bit of thought needed in this.

Time to say Happy New Year!  🙂