Is it really food violence to eat a chicken?

Lucy, one of the hens in my flock.

Last week I was in a hurry to get to a meeting and needed to get something quick for dinner, so I bought a ready-to-eat rotisserie chicken from the grocery. As I pushed my cart through the store, I kept looking at the chicken and seeing my hen Lucy's head on the lemony peppered chicken body.Seeing a whole chicken is different than a package of parts. It reminded me that my food came from a living animal, that I care about how the animal was raised and where it came from and how that affected … [Read more...]

Researchers develop cloaking device – for real!

Whenever I'm asked what super power I wish I had, flying and invisibility are usually at the top of the list. The ability to just leap into the air and soar like a bird satisfies a deep desire for total freedom.But invisibility? Now that's real freedom.  To be in a room and be able enjoy what's going on without having to actually participate - or feel like I'm the obvious wallflower - would certainly appeal to introverts like me.Turns out that might not be such a crazy thought. Right he … [Read more...]

Writing, technology and the beauty of the pen

I'm an avid scribbler. I'm constantly making notes in small notebooks tucked in my purse, on scrap paper and receipts, and when paper can't be found, I write on my hand.I joke a lot about how I hate technology, but that's not necessarily true. I hate the way technology has become a crutch for most Americans, replacing our own ability to think, to solve problems, and to record thoughts and ideas.So I love this TEDTalk by Master Penman Jake Weidmann, in which he extolls not only the … [Read more...]

Mrs. Robin and her babies: the final chapter, part 3

The last robin baby stands alone.

If you're following along with today's story, we saw the robin babies getting more active in the nest, and then venturing out onto the window ledge. (See Part One)I've been fascinated the last few days with how much the birds had grown in the two weeks since they hatched. But I was even more surprised by the progress just this morning. They went from awkwardly falling all over themselves to purposely getting out of the nest onto the ledge. (See Part Two) When I left them at about 1 PM, all … [Read more...]

Supercell forms in Wyoming – video

I generally stay out of the global warming debate. I'm not a scientist and I wouldn't try to argue science or research with people smarter than I am.But when I saw this video today I had to share a thought:I get that the temperature of the earth is changing. I get that climates shift geographically. I get that weather patterns go wonky every few or hundred or thousand years. What I don't get? The notion that man is so powerful that he can cause it to happen.Check out this video of a s … [Read more...]

Introducing a drinkable book

I'm an avid reader of real books. You know, pages of paper between a paper or cardboard cover. While I get the need for electronic books, they'll never be a replacement for an actual book you can hold in your hand, with paper pages you can fold over to mark spots you want to remember, pages filled with pencil notes and fingerprints in chocolate and splashes of water from reading in the bath.I'm also very supportive of humanitarian causes, giving to others and helping whenever possible to … [Read more...]

Andy Griffith dies at 86 (video of The Andy Griffith Show episode, Dogs Dogs Dogs)

It's with a heavy heart that Mayberry fans learned today that actor Andy Griffith passed away this morning at age 86. With decades of success on television and stage, to many Griffith will always be remembered Sheriff Andy Taylor, everybody's loving father, the man who could handle any problem with grace and calm -- whether it's a quirky deputy or a son's questions about life.So what better way to remember Griffith today than with this episode of The Andy Griffith Show, "Dogs Dogs Dogs", in w … [Read more...]

The results of positive dog training (video)

(Video of Bandit and Bailey; I'm not really that fat ... it's an apron filled with treats ... honest ...)Those of you who have been following along with the dog adventures at my house - Scout's illness last year and his death in January along with the very serious behavior problems we've been dealing with between Bandit and Bailey, problems that for their own safety have prevented the two dogs from occupying the same rooms since last November - will rejoice with us when you see this video. ( … [Read more...]

Just another day at the Funny Farm (video)

 Regular readers of my columns and personal blog (ie: my friends and family) know there's a reason I've dubbed my house "the funny farm." Not only do I write humor ... it's just madness over here. Disorganization, clutter and chaos. And that's just me. Add in the animals and it's a non-stop barrel of fun. (No, I don't have a monkey, but that would be fun, wouldn't it?)So I thought you'd enjoy this little video I captured of our rescue pup Bailey. I think she learned this trick from the … [Read more...]

Scientists use MRI to see what Fido is thinking

What do you think Bandit is thinking right now?

There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t look at my quirky Border collie, Bandit, and say, “I wish I knew what you were thinking right now.” My guess is that, if you have dogs, you often think the same thing.Well, researchers at Emory University have found a way to study what’s going on in Fido’s brain with what is likely the first functional MRI performed on a dog.In this kind of brain scan, dogs were studied while they were awake and unrestrained – no sedation, no leashes. Just a dog … [Read more...]


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