Canned Butter

Use your imagination for good.

Worry is a misuse of your imagination images

A quote that I gave a decorative treatment to recently for a friend. For years I’ve tried to drill this into the brain of my worrisome mother.

Merry Christmas 2016

Merry Christmas calligraphy 2016
Merry Christmas calligraphy 2016

Someone please remind me why we buy a bunch of useless crap for people each year at this time?!?! I wish I could be ignorant sometimes. Like to be oblivious to not only all the previous crap from last year that people will be filling landfills with to make use of this years new crap, but also all the trees that were needed to create the miles of wrapping paper needed to wrap all this crap up in order to present some symbiotic emotional high for gift-giver and receiver.

I did recently come across some interesting information concerning the real reason for the season. Apparently way back during the ancient Egyptian civilization the observers of the sky began to correlate the Winter Solstice with another occasion that has had lasting effects upon our own civilization:

The shortest day of the year each time around is the Winter Solstice. Most of us know this to be true as it is the point in the Earth’s orbit in which the Northern Hemisphere is tilted furthest away from the the life-giving rays of the sun. Now it just so happens that around this time Sirius, the brightest star in the eastern night sky, became perfectly aligned with the three stars that comprise the belt of the constellation Orion. Furthermore, Sirius and these three stars of the belt, historically referred to as the Three Kings, in line all pointed to the location on the eastern horizon to where the sun was born the following morning. This sun was said to be the saviour because in the preceding months up until the Summer Solstice light would shine longer eventually bringing warmer temperatures and the essential growing season. With no other forms of entertainment such as gift unwrapping or football, this occasion was as epic as they came for the ancient civilization. So epic that myths were ingrained into cultures long before any myth of a virign, baby, and three wise men ever began to be told.
Believe or not.

We’re going to have some explaining to do…

The North Pole is Melting image

Think about this: By 2040 ships will be sailing over the North Pole and a timeless tale will sadly need to evolve.

Scientist Peter Wadhams suggests that the summers of 2017 and 2018 will actually see ice-free periods in the artic! Full article here: The Guardian article.

Perhaps by this time in the relatively near future when the North Pole is finally melted away and sea levels have risen, the profit driven powers of the world will recognize the damage that has been done. Ugh. Merry Christmas

Climate Change Has Arrived

Climate Change is Real image

After seeing the Leonardo DiCaprio doc “Before the Flood” I felt compelled to create something to send out across the social media streams. It’s hard to be optimistic about the future the more one goes out and learns about how horrible we as an infectious species treats our beautiful planet. Amazing creatures are being erased because of our stupidity. Sadly, like I always say, tragedy will forever be the greatest catalyst from change. What will the tragedy be that finally drives change though? That’s the scary part. Will humanity allow for the scene from Hieronymous Bosch’s third panel of “The Garden of Earthly Delights” to transpire before people wake up. It is arguable that we’re pretty close as it stands now.

Halloween 2016

Halloween 2016 - Uncle Fester image
Halloween 2016 - Uncle Fester Costume image

It was an Addam’s Family Halloween this year! I was invited to a themed-party and upon hearing there was yet to be an Uncle Fester rsvp, I replied saying I’d give it a go. I’ll tell you this: A bald cap is a tough endeavor. I had no choice but to get a haircut following the party due to the spirit gum sticky-shit that holds the baldness in place. What hell. I’m sure it’ll be easier next time if I ever go for the cue ball look again, but this first time was no joy ride. I wrapped my self in bubble wrap to buld up a bit as well. I’m pleased to report that the party was a a bash and my costume is well received. Until next year… happy haunting.

A tennis joke:

Tennis Couple image

Why should you never date a tennis player?

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Sleep When You Die #23 – Granada, Spain

Sleep When You Die #23 - Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #23 - Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #23 - Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #23 - Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #23 - Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #23 - Alhambra Castle image

The Granada expedition requires two entries because it was just such a brilliant morning.

After the arduous ascent that I was not entirely prepared for in the early morning hours, I reached the Alhambra gates at 8:40am to find that there was quite a queue already started since the 8:30 opening. Weary with nothing better to do I joined this queue to practice that ever precious virtue, patience. The queue moved slow. Very slow. At 9am I had moved probably a mere 20 paces closer to admission when an announcement come over the P.A. first in Espanol and then English, “The tickets for the Palacio Nueva have sold out for the day. However, you may still purchase admission to the gardens.” There was a collective deflative “umph” from the queued crowd and some people instantly packed it in and headed out. I was rather exhausted and the prospect of walking back to town was not as attractive as simply hunkering down for a bit in a sort of standing repose.

The queue crawled on, and I had pulled out my sketch pad and was putting more time towards an El Greco from El Prado when I was approached by an middle-aged woman along with a her younger colleague. After over-coming the routine language barrier, I came to understand that these two women had an extra ticket to the very recently sold-out palace! They explained that they had booked their admissions 5 months prior, and the third person in their party could not be present. Wow.

Turns out, these two fabulous ladies were in Granada for the weekend to lecture at the local university as they were both doctorates of Philosophy. I made friends with them quickly needless to say, and I ended up spending an entire tour of the castle with these angels. It was a truly amazing stroke of fortune… like Athena herself intervened. That is how patience and I received entrance to one of the most epic displays of geometric pattern-design I will ever witness.

Sleep when you die!

Sleep When You Die #22 – Granada, Spain

Sleep When You Die #22 - Atop Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #22 - Atop Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #22 - Atop Alhambra Castle image
Sleep When You Die #22 - Atop Alhambra Castle image

This morning I awoke and left an hour before dawn in order to hike up a steep foothill that overlooks the majestic Alhambra Castle here in Granada. It was still dark as I scooted across the ancient and empty cobblestone streets to the trail that was to lead my way. After coming across the largest snake I’ve ever seen outside of a cage the prior afternoon on the same hill I was excited but cautious as I snuck through the lonesome, dark woods.

Once out of the woods new cautions came into consideration as the trail at times was either overgrown, really steep upon the rocky slope, or lead up to make-shift shelters that I preferred not to know who was sleeping inside them. The Native American came to the forefront within me. Senses all firing.

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Self Actualization

Oscar Wilde Quote image

The aim of life is self-development.
To realize one’s nature perfectly—
that is what each of us is here for.

– Oscar Wilde

Sleep When You Die #21 – Barcelona, Spain

Sagrada Familia - Gaudí image
Casa Batlló - Gaudí image
Casa Mila - Gaudí image

I was promised loads of sunshine! Well, I didn’t get much of that. I did get some great early morning snaps of a few brilliant buildings that Barcelona holds dear: La Sagrada Familia, Casa Batlló, and Casa Milà. These three buildings were erected by one of the great visionaries in Spanish history: Antoni Gaudí. I stayed right across from the Mariana metro stop in northwest Barcelona so these three were in walking distance as I set out on this gloomy weekday morning to see the city in a much less bustling mood.

No one I talked to in Spain knew who Dr. Seuss was…
but I had to continuously make the comparison: the architectural equivalent of Dr. Seuss has to be Gaudí!