Archive for June, 2005

Human Nature?

Last year I was hiking in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon near Mount Hood. Near the side of the trail I came across a hollowed out stump of a tree. The stump was about 5 feet high and 3 feet across. You could see into the stump through an archway at the base and it was quite striking the way the sun light spilled in from the opening at the top bringing out the rich red color of the rotting wood. Stumps like this are very common throughout the Pacific Northwest.

What was uncommon was that someone had piled a number of river rocks of varying sizes one on top of the other in the center of this stump. It looked like a pagoda bathed in the red glow of the sunlight.

I remember thinking, “What would cause someone to do this?”

“Is it human nature for people to want to create something beautiful?”

As I walked away I felt good about human nature. I was glad that some anonymous person was trying to make the world a prettier place.

A little later we turned around and were hiking back along the same stretch of trail. We came across the same stump, but this time, the stack of pagoda rocks had been knocked down. In the hour since we had passed this random act of beauty, someone simply destroyed it in another random act. Why? For what purpose? Now I was struck with my second thought:

“Is it human nature for people to want to destroy something beautiful?”

Which case was true? Create or Destroy? Did people have one nature or the other? Did people have both at the same time? Was one urge stronger than the other? Is it simply easier to destroy than create? What makes a person want to take the harder route? Is it a conflict in everyone or just part of the balance of life?

What is your nature? Which impulse wins out for you?

Washington DC for July 4th?

Spring Cherry blossoms and the Jefferson Memorial, Washington, DC
Picture taken with a Canon Digital Rebel.

I am thinking about taking the family to Washington, DC for July 4th. I haven’t been in many years.

-It’s crazy
-It’s crowded
-It’s hot

-It’s crazy
-It’s spectacular
-It’s historic

If you plan to go, you may want to check Hotwire for deals.

New York City

We found ourselves in New York City briefly this past weekend. Kept getting stuck in the Puerto Rican Day parade traffic, but I did manage to get a couple of pictures of Central Park.

Central Park

Central Park

Puerto Rican Day Parade

Pictures taken with a Canon Digital Rebel.

Seattle, Washington

View of Seattle from the ferry.

Seattle is a great town. Lot’s of stuff to do, very pretty, good beer and food. What else could you want? We usually stay at the Sheraton right down town. Using we’ve been able to rates as low as 70 or 80 bucks a night.

Picture taken with an old but reliable Kodak DC280.

More Songs for Pirates…

Captain Bogg and Salty have another CD for buccaneers of all ages.

In addition to stories of adventure on the high seas, the crew of the Pollywogg takes us on an adventure in musical styles. All of the songs have pirate and nautical themes (except Nellie the Elephant but it is so fun we can forgive them) but alongside the sea chanteys and pirate rock we have come to expect from these fun-loving pirates, we have songs in the style of beach rock, elvis rock, a tango and more ballads.

The first time I heard this CD I thought it was a bit of a departure, but after listening to it a couple times it is easy to see the continuity and the evolution that led to it. Now I think I like it better than the first CD Bedtime Stories for Pirates

My favorite tracks are:
What It?s Really Like On A Ship
Sea Monster
Weigh Anchor
Pieces of 8ight
Nellie the Elephant
Sea Kings
Pull Away Home

I recommend that you get this CD for yourself or the little pirates in your life. If you are ever in Portland, Oregon, keep an eye out for a live show.

Captain Bogg and Salty Pegleg Tango