At some point in your life, if you’re anything like me, you are sure to come to the realization that everything in Existence falls into one of two categories: things that you can punch in the face, and things that you cannot punch in the face. You can punch a squirrel, or a politician, or a banana tree; but you can’t punch the economy, an annoying sound, or a system of government. It is with this in mind that we must choose the nature of our battles, and you can be sure that it is from this dichotomy that I judge pathways of conflict resolution in virtually all situations.
Outlining alternate ways to raise children, keep bees, grow crops, and build a spaceship.
In search of a method of how to extract a valuable nut oil found in the Russian taiga, the author comes upon a young beautiful forest recluse named Anastasia. She has been living there alone (excepting visits from her grandfather and great-grandfather) since she was a child, because her parents’ brains exploded when they got too close to a tree.(pg 125) The story is presented as a true account, and the series (The Ringing Cedars of Russia) has apparently sold millions of copies and given rise to a religious movement.
I’d been looking forward to reading this book for years — for decades. All I knew was that there were three books: Red Mars, Green Mars, and Blue Mars, and that it was about the long term colonization and terraforming of the red planet.
It wasn’t exactly what I was expecting, but it did not disappoint.
I was back in Vancouver, and making my rounds through the libraries to snatch up books I’d put on hold while I was away. It was going pretty well — #1 on the list was The Vital Question in preparation for a book club meeting I had in a few days — but it was the hard cover (heavy and bulky). I managed to find the soft cover at another branch, and realized that each of these copies had one of my bookmarks. I’d taken out both of these books before.
I returned the hard cover, and held onto the soft cover — I hadn’t actually realized I’d lost that bookmark, but was glad to have it again. Later, I would meet the author and have the library copy signed, and later still I would fall asleep on the bus and again lose this bookmark that I was so very fond of.
But that’s not what this story is about.
You can dry your socks more quickly by wearing them and sitting on your feet. This utilizes the body heat of both foot and ass, working together, to dry your socks. You probably won’t find yourself using this method until you are completely out of dry socks. As is so often the case with this little Sherpa.
I was in Le Kef, Tunisia; I’d packed light for the short trip, and it was much colder and wetter than I’d planned for. It was cold enough that I was simply wearing everything I’d brought, and the little raincloud1 that’s been following me for the majority of the year made sure that my feet were wet for almost three days.
It was not a short trip back to Tunis, and I was still quite wet when I intercepted my friend, who needed some help bringing materials to her office.
Somehow, within an hour, I found myself sitting next to her in the back seat of a taxi on my way to the police station. The cabbie was in handcuffs in the passenger’s seat, and a man with a gun claiming to be a cop was at the wheel. My friend, a little confused. Myself, more than a little frustrated.
I was tired and hungry and had a bloody nose. I was still damp from my previous trip, and I was still wearing really wet socks.
I have decided to present the following document without any particular explanatory context…
Jesus strode in from the desert, a tired donkey upon his shoulders. “Attend my donkey!” he shouted. Several peasants rushed in and carried the creature to a place of shade and took turns fanning it with palm fronds.
Jesus laughed a great laugh, and strode into the plaza,”Food!” he demanded.
His apostles attended him. He drank of wine and ate of meat, and a large crowd gathered. They broke bread, ate, drank, laughed, and listened to the stories of his battles in the desert.
On Saturday I ate half a pound of peanuts. On Sunday I did the same. This food was supplemented by the complimentary breakfast that came with my hostel1; along with a Lindor Chocolate2 on Saturday and two apples on Sunday. On Sunday evening I walked back to my bed in the cold and rain, as I have done so very many times in this humble little lifetime. I decided the situation warranted additional calories, and so purchased a hunk of nice rye bread. I was prepared to eat it plain, but previous travellers had left butter and chocolate spread in the fridge. That, along with free herbal tea at the hostel allowed me to eat like a king without squandering resources like one.