Immerse Yourself in a Forest for Better Health

So I shared a meditation on the company of trees.  But it’s more important to tell you that it’s not just my personal mythology, preferences and inclinations.  It is science applicable to everybody: hanging out in the forest is good for you in many ways.  You come out of the woods better than you went in.  Seriously.  Get the goods on it here.

With gratitude to its authors, from the article (below): Immerse Yourself in a Forest for Better Health.  Copyright © 2014 New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.  Includes a huge list of research documents and links.  Read on …

Continue reading

A Meditation on the Company of Trees, Aided by Forest Nymphs

During a slow sylvan saunter, if I stand still more than move, in bodily senses and in palpable transcendent essences I find reminders that nature made me to thrive among immortal woodland spirits, in refuge from the illusory blessings of merely mortal society.  I cannot exceed the company of trees, nor regret deep solitude among them.

Each phase of nature, while not invisible, is yet not too distinct and obtrusive. It is there to be found when we look for it, but not demanding our attention. It is like a silent but sympathizing companion in whose company we retain most of the advantages of solitude … — Henry David Thoreau, Journal, November 8, 1858

Continue reading

The Beef: Juvenile Life Sentence Without Parole is Insane day after my first post on this topic, NPR did a feature story on it.  Here are my favorite excerpts from the transcript, plus educational videos, infographics, law articles, brain science facts, sentencing alternatives, and more.  (Get a cup of coffee and sit back.  This is about 3,600 words.  But lots of eye candy, too.)

Listen to the NPR piece, States Are Spotty in Following High Court Lead on Juvenile Sentencing (April 16, 2014),  an interview by Robert Siegel with Dr. Cara Drinan, law professor at Catholic University in Washington, D.C.  You can see Dr. Drinan discussing the issue with John McArdle at C-SPAN TV, in their January 25, 2014 program, Young Offenders and Life Sentences.  In that show, she responded to viewer inquiries on the topic.

TakePart-Infographic-1Robert Siegel reports, “As the [U.S. Supreme Court] held … children are constitutionally different from adults, for purposes of sentencing, because juveniles have diminished culpability and greater prospects for reform.”

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on aspects of the matter in 2010 and 2012.  In 2010 the court found it unconstitutional for juveniles to be sentenced to life imprisonment without parole except in cases of murder.  (Kids are adults when they murder people.)  In 2012, it held that mandatory sentences of life without the possibility of parole are unconstitutional for juvenile offenders, even for murder.  In 2005 they got the bright idea that capital punishment was unfair to kids, too.  Killing a kid for killing is just killing.  Putting a kid away for life without possibility of parole is just revenge for something we don’t know how to cope with in other ways … but there are other ways (more on that at the end of this post)

TakePart-Infographic-2 Continue reading

Sentenced to adulthood without an adolescent trial period

I forget who said it. Kids know where babies come from, but they can’t figure out where adults are coming from.

We hear that the school stab-and-slash kid will be “tried as an adult.” What does that mean?

  • It takes an adult to commit such a horrible crime.
  • His brain suddenly matured to adult physiology a moment before he committed the crimes.
  • All his teachers said he was such a mature young man.

Just how do you put someone on trial years in advance? What if there’s a Minority Report?

(Link to this video:

Is he a child until proven adult, or an adult until proven child?
Continue reading

Rabbits GIVEN BACK to enter other tournaments

From Jay Vol. Fire Dept 2012 Rabbit Tournament (in Jay, they are more sophisticated than to call it a DERBY) …

“Rabbits GIVEN BACK so you can enter other tournaments.”

I bet anglers are wishing THEY could do that at fishing tourneys.  Actually, I was thinking about freezing my award-winning rabbit for next year.

Feeling their deaths: Seeger and Hoffman … mainly Hoffman

Among so many other things, Philip Seymour Hoffman’s life and death are evidence of the ability of mental illness to create and to kill with stunning power simultaneously.

“Be honest and unmerciful.”

When a famous, important contributor to culture dies, I usually don’t have a visceral reaction.  Recently, the unusual reaction came twice.

Continue reading

Large Socks and Other Notes, Notions and Novelties

Usually I’m not keen on this kind of blog post, but I’ll try it and see if I don’t hate it next week.  Actually, it is a perfect fit with my idea of a true scribblement.  Just some random things coming to mind lately that probably don’t call for a post of their own, or I’m feeling too lazy to create one for each.

Continue reading