Tuesday, May 3, 2016


This is one of my very favorite pictures (not mine). Thought I would join it to the following little ditty sent me by my son Zack (not his), seemed right somehow.

“We did not ask for this room or this music; we were invited in.
Therefore, because the dark surrounds us,
Let us turn our faces toward the light.
Let us endure hardship to be grateful for plenty.
We have been given pain to be astounded by joy.
We have been given life to deny death.
We did not ask for this room or this music.
But because we are here, let us dance.”

The following picture is mine and has the same flavor. I took it in Ireland while attending an environmental conference in ’92. I’ve posted it before I know but I just love it. A wonderful story goes with it but too long for the post so you will have to catch me sometime when I can tell it – it’s a favorite.

 Young fairie dancing in the ruins of the university on Innis Fallen....unbeknownest to her!

The whale season is almost over though a few stragglers (or maybe “residents”) are still about. My friend Luis told me he saw one out in front of Cardonal just the other day. I am going out this coming Thursday (May 5th) due to what appears to be a very calm day and if there are any whales around I have a good chance of spotting them. It’s been a good but not record year by any means. My best year was about three years ago when I got 82 IDs. In the back of my mind I’m holding out for 100 IDs someday – not an obsession, just would be fun.

There’s been a fair amount of press regarding whales lately and though some of it is sad it is terribly nice to see “The Whale People” beginning to be recognized as to who and what they really are. Read my book – THE OTHERS – to get a taste.

There are more whale strandings, entanglements and boat strikes than ever but action is being taken to prevent those as much as possible. The problem continues to be that what I told all my classes at the college regarding most all environmental problems – human over population and its consequent habitat destruction. But let’s keep on fighting for them and all the other critters out there that are finding it tougher to make do than before.

Stranded Sperm Whales filled with plastic

These two sperm whales died stranded on a beach and when autopsied their stomachs were filled with plastic.

That’s all of the negative stuff for this post but we must stay vigilant and speak up against the crimes we commit in the name of progress.

Here are a couple of wonderful whale related stories to peruse.

A very, very rare whale species (Omura’s Whale) has been “rediscovered” – recall that by best estimates we humans have only investigated 10% of the oceans volume, might there be yet more to discover out there? The site below has some great footage.

 Omura's Whale

Here’s another really informative and beautifully inspiring article describing the process by which a dead whale’s body nourishes an entire ecosystem as it descends into the abyss – fascinating.

Last piece of whale news. A couple of weeks ago I posted on FB that I had a great day searching for whales with my buddy Alan Pomeroy. What I didn’t say was that not just once but twice I “called up” a whale. Now Alan doesn’t believe in that kind of thing and ribs me about it when I do it but he’s my friend and he does it kindly.....however, we were on our way back to El Cardonal after checking the south end of the grid and as we were motoring along I said to Alan, “there’s a whale very near here”. Granted that’s pretty general but I could just feel it in my head. I gave a knowing smile to Alan and waited. Well just a few seconds after that - yes! Lo and behold up comes a humpback only a few hundred meters to the starboard. After following it for a while it fluked up and went down. As we waited for it to come up again I once again said “he’s coming up now” and yes he did. I laughed along with Alan as he gave me his skeptical look and I tucked the experience away in my “special memory” section.

Here’s the ID I got from him.

 A "called up" whale?

An interesting bit of archeology for those Egyptophiles out there – of which I am one after seeing my first National Geographic years and years ago. Thank you, thank you National Geographic for so many years of pleasure.


BTW: I would like to recommend a book to those who have an interest in history. It is titled “Hero” by Michael Korda and delves deeply into the events (military and political) of the Arab Revolt against The Turks during the first world war and the very complex character of T.E. Lawrence (The Lawrence of Arabia). Perhaps some of you have read Lawrence’s book “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom” in which he describes, absolutely candidly, his role in that revolt. Korda’s book fills in all the political background (think oil, Israel/Palestine) both of the revolt and of the intelligence, courage and terrible internal conflict of the man Lawrence for those who wanted to know more after reading Lawrence’s book.

 Well worth reading!

For we Californians “The Big One” has become a legend of our time. Now it appears that it best be called “The Really Big One” because new geologic evidence shows that there is a fault line nearby that is so huge that if it were to slip it would be truly cataclysmic or as my skiing and climbing buddy from long ago, Darrel Hammerton, called “a tear ass rattler” when describing earth quakes.

The “Baja 1000” race goes through El Cardonal each year and for about 8 hrs it is mayhem on our road. My old friend Vicente got hit by one of the competitors last week. He’s OK but his truck needs some work. I caught this guy, “War Horse”, going by my drive.

 "War Horse"

 I’ll end with these two beauties:

 Helen Mirren at 70

I fell in love with Helen Mirren after seeing the movie Excalibur where she played the part of the terribly evil and incredibly luscious Morgana and I find her just getting more beautiful, magical, clever and sensual as she ages. Here she is at 70. And this is how she makes me feel.

And this beauty – talk about RED!!

Northern Cardinal