Movies: Some Favorites.

I have quite a few movies I can watch over and over again because the story is well written and the photography and acting is good. Here is a sample of a few of my favs.

Clouds of Sils Maria (2014), is a great movie with excellent acting by Juliette Binoche and Kristen Stewart. The movie is about coming to terms with aging, death, youth with a new perspective and all done in a very artistic manner.

Into The Wild (2007) starring Emile Hirsch along with some other great actors. Jena Malone narrates throughout the movie in a most interesting way as the sister of Chris McCandless who is interpreted by Hirsch, and explains the true life story about living off the land and making his way to Alaska. The movie is about the outer and inner journey of McCandless.

Arrival (2016) This science fiction movie that stars Amy Adams along with other good actors, and is a very interesting and unique take on the arrival of aliens from outer-space who land strategically around the world and attempt to communicate with different cultures. A well made movie worth the watch.

Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) I know that a lot of people I talked to did not like the movie, but I liked it because of the original characters from the very first Terminator movie with some twists and turns in the storyline. It is action with Sci- Fi elements and what you would expect from the Terminator Franchise.

I have many more favorites, but these are some highlights.


Spring is Almost Here

Lines Written in Early Spring

BY William Wordsworth

I heard a thousand blended notes,
While in a grove I sate reclined,
In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts
Bring sad thoughts to the mind.

To her fair works did Nature link
The human soul that through me ran;
And much it grieved my heart to think
What man has made of man.

Through primrose tufts, in that green bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And ’tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.

The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure:—
But the least motion which they made
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.

The budding twigs spread out their fan,
To catch the breezy air;
And I must think, do all I can,
That there was pleasure there.

If this belief from heaven be sent,
If such be Nature’s holy plan,
Have I not reason to lament
What man has made of man?

New life begins to grow and bloom. Birds feed on seeds and blossoms.

I love the Orioles that visit every year and make a nest.

I am so happy Spring is right around the corner.

Thoughts about Dr. Zhivago

Dr. Zhivago is a Russian novel published in 1957 by Boris Pasternak and takes place between the Russian Revolution of 1905 and World War 2.

Some quotes from Dr. Zhivago.

“It’s impossible, without its affecting your health, to show yourself day after day contrary to what you feel.”

“I used to be in a very revolutionary mood, but now I think that we’ll gain nothing by violence.”

“All that was metaphorical has become literal, and the children are children, and the terrors are terrifying.”

“Just now I was looking out the window of the train and thinking. What can be higher than peace in the family and work? The rest isn’t in our power.”

“Every herd is a refuge for giftlessness . . . Only the solitary seek the truth, and they break with those who don’t love it sufficiently.”


It seems to me that respect has been lost. It has not happened suddenly, but slowly and over time.

People go through the motions of being civil, but most of the time, have no respect for others, including members of their own family. More often than not, people lack respect online and in person. They insult instead of listening to other people’s opinions, insult just because of where someone lives, what country they are from, how they speak, look, skin color, ideas they embrace, etc.

A big and important point to respect is having self-respect. If you have dignity and self-respect, it becomes easier to hear and respect other points of view. This does not mean you will accept views that hurt others, but listening and learning from each other can lead to a more peaceful existence.

People, however, seem to love to fight and judge because they lack self-respect and dignity. I hope this can change one day.

Star Trek

I like all of the Star Trek series beginning with the Original Series on through Star Trek Picard. I thought I would share some of my favorite characters.

Capt. Kirk and Spock from The Original Series
Data and Dr. Crusher from The Next Generation
Worf and Jadzia Dax from Deep Space Nine
Capt. Janeway and B’Elanna Torres, Star Trek Voyager
Capt. Archer and T’Pol Star Trek Enterprise
Ensign Tilly and Michael Burnham Star Trek Discovery
7 of 9 and Picard from Star Trek Picard ( 7 of 9 from Voyager)
Riker and Troi from Star Trek Picard (and The Next Generation)

I enjoy watching all of the series and the movies because they keep the history and characters from the previous series intact and more or less accurate. It is nice to see characters from The Next Generation in Picard!

Women Presidents in the World and History

Inspired by the recent elections in the United States of America for President and Vice President, I started remembering all of the women presidents and prime ministers in the world. The list is so long it cannot fit in a single post, but here is a link to a list well worth a peruse.

Madame Sirimavo BandaranaikePrime Minister of Sri Lanka, first female head of government in the world.
Indira Gandhi Prime Minister of India in 1966
Benazir Bhutto Prime Minister of Pakistan 1988
Michelle Bachelet President of Chile 2006
Dilma Rousseff President of Brazil 2011

There are so many more female leaders and some we still see in the news quite often. It is a good step for the USA to have a woman vice president, I am not downplaying it, but the US needs to move a little faster to catch up with the rest of the world in that regard.

Congratulations to the new administration in the USA.

Kamala Harris is sworn in as vice president by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor as her husband Doug Emhoff holds the Bible during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021.

Mercury, Saturn, and Jupiter form Triangle

Tonight, 10 Jan 2021, at sunset, you will be able to see three planets form a triangle in the sky. Mercury, Saturn, and Jupiter will appear from our vantage point to form a triangle.

A spectacular gathering of bright planets will be the chief celestial attraction in the evening sky this weekend as JupiterSaturn and Mercury appear to crowd into tight quarters. 

Low in the southwestern evening sky just 30 to 45 minutes after sundown, we’ll be treated to what might be referred to as a celestial summit meeting, a triple conjunction, with the three planets fitting within a circle smaller than 5 degrees. 

Enjoy the show and please stay safe.

Health in the New Year

This year, 2021, we are still in a pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2. More than ever, we need to have health in our lives.

I plan on making healthier food choices. I will still have my occasional guilty pleasure foods but overall, better choices.

I also plan to get in nature more often, especially in the backyard, since I do not want to be in a crowded park. Some people walk in their neighborhood street, or at isolated nature paths. Whatever it takes, get near plants and in the sun for mental and physical health.

If I get sick, I will go to my private doctor for proper care and prescriptions. I know people are afraid to see a doctor because of the risk of Covid, but sometimes it is necessary.

I wish you a happy and healthy New Year and hope that we can get through this pandemic.

William Shakespeare

I have been in the mood for some wise words from Shakespeare.

“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”

—Hamlet in Hamlet

“From women’s eyes this doctrine I derive:

They sparkle still the right Promethean fire;

They are the books, the arts, the academes,

That show, contain, and nourish all the world.”

—Berowne in Love’s Labor’s Lost

“The wheel is come full circle: I am here.”

—Edmund in King Lear

This quote is one of my favorites:

“All the world’s a stage,

And all the men and women merely players:

They have their exits and their entrances;

And one man in his time plays many parts.”

—Jaques in As You Like It

“Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall.”

—Escalus in Measure for Measure

“I burn, I pine, I perish.”

—Lucentio in The Taming of the Shrew

The Saturn-Jupiter Great Conjunction 2020

Monday the 21st of December 2020, is the Winter Solstice. A solstice is an event that occurs when the Sun appears to reach its most northerly or southerly excursion relative to the celestial equator on the celestial sphere. Two solstices occur annually, around June 21 and December 21.

This year on the same date, the 21st of December, we are going to witness a Great Conjunction. A great conjunction is a conjunction of the planets Jupiter and Saturn, when the two planets appear closest together in the sky.

How often do these two planets come as close as that? Some websites say it has been nearly 400 years, while others say it’s been almost 800 years. Indeed, the last time these two planets appeared so close was on July 16, 1623, when they were only 5 arc minutes apart — that’s actually 397 years ago.

The last time most of the world’s population had a favorable view of these two planets coming so close to each other was on March 5, 1226, when they were even closer together (just 2 arc minutes) compared to what we will see on Dec. 21.  

So, this year right after sunset, we should be able to get a decent view of this Great Conjunction without the need for a telescope or binoculars. I hope everyone can have a clear sky and the ability to witness such a special celestial event.

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