Open Thread WE 25 MAY 22 ~ Cairns


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Cairn - a word that derives from the Gaelic term for heap of rocks
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Welcome to this rocky start of another mid-week OT Not sure if you have ever been wandering down a wooded stream or striding along a rocky shoreline and came across some wizardry
with stacked rocks. They sometimes seem to defy gravity. I find them fascinating.

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Examples of these sculptures date back thousands of years. They were used as trail markers, navigation aids and burial markers, among other things. My Scottish grandmother used to
refer to ancient castles in ruins as keeps or piles. Here in New England, when the settlers
cleared the fields for agriculture, the stones were unearthed and stacked around the fields
as a type of boundary. Many were built by the native peoples.

Materials used in Native American art are inextricably tied to geography. Many dialects had no
separate word for art. It is a concept intertwined with spirit and ancestral heritage.

"Stones are the record keepers. They are the first things on the earth. They hold our memory. If we know how to read the stones and understand them, they will teach us something".

Grandmother SaSa, an Abenaki healer in West Ossipee, NH

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previously posted, but more on point ..

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As always, this is a far ranging open thread for you to express whichever subjects you have
to ignite clarity of mind and value.

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QMS's picture

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Lookout's picture

Those are some nice sculptures. Someone on the mountain has a turtle of stacked stone, and there are several ancient piles thought to be made to honor individuals who died. The bigger the pile the more respected the person..at least that's the hypothesis.

Take care of your ankle and I'll see you next week!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

QMS's picture

1810 - In the May Revolution, citizens of Buenos Aires expel the Spanish Viceroy Cisneros during Semana de Mayo
1837 - The Patriots of Lower Canada (Quebec) rebel against the British for freedom
1895 - Oscar Wilde sentenced to 2 years imprisonment for gross indecency
1911 - Revolution in Mexico overthrows President Jose Porfirio Diaz
1919 - Casey Stengel releases a sparrow from under his baseball cap
1927 - Henry Ford announces that he is ending production of the Model T Ford

model-t-600.jpg

1936 - The Remington Rand strike, led by the American Federation of Labor, begins
1986 - Hands Across America - 6.5 million people hold hands from California to NY

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I enjoyed a morning at Stonehenge years ago. There was buzz back then that it may come to some harm with the construction of a highway. Haven't kept up with the controversy to see who won.
This may be the last day of cool temps. It will start climbing up to the usual Texas Summer Hell from now until September.
School mass shootings 10 days apart. Glad I don't have kids.
Rock on!

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care should be taken not to disturb them, or to erect “your very own” cairn on a whim. Once, on an early summer Mt Washington hike above the tree line, our group found ourself in a frigid horizontal rain with heavy fog. Cairns were our only markers, spaced far enough apart that we could not see the next cairn. We had to proceed on faith, continuing in the same direction we had approached the last. Boy, was I ever glad to see the next cairn before I found a slippery slope

Our guide on another walk in Utah had a serious issue with cairn molesters and cairn impostors. Getting lost in the wilderness can be life threatening. Build your own cairns in your own back yard!

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“We have a very small window in which we need to make a fundamental shift away from capitalism.” Kshama Sawant

enhydra lutris's picture

trail marker cairns "Ducks". Much later (early Eighties), I traveled to Cairns, "gateway to the Barrier Reef", also to some rainforest. Then still a pretty groovy little town, where one could get while you wait fish and chips from fresh reef fish with a massive amount of chips and some Swan's Extra Double Stout to wash it down with. OK, I'm largely Irish, and large, and proximity to the ocean raises everybody's appetite and I love fries, In my youth I always ordered double fries because nobody ever made enough. So I did, and got funny looks and "are you sure" and I was sure and I couldn't even begin to finish the second helping - truly massive loads of fries.

So, as noted in the OT, rocks have been with us forever, hence

so just Rock it!

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

QMS's picture

@enhydra lutris

Gets a rocket in the mental pocket.
You want fries with that?
Thanks!

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QMS's picture

Back in the real world, Russia, slowly but surely has been rewriting the Art of Hybrid War. Yet within the carnival of NATO psyops, aggressive cognitive infiltration, and stunning media sycophancy, much is being made of the new $40 billion US ‘aid’ package to Ukraine, deemed capable of becoming a game-changer in the war. This ‘game-changing’ narrative comes courtesy of the same people who burned though trillions of dollars to secure Afghanistan and Iraq. And we saw how that went down. Ukraine is the Holy Grail of international corruption.

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A quick breakdown of the $40 billion reveals $8.7 billion will go to replenish the US weapons stockpile (thus not going to Ukraine at all); $3.9 billion for USEUCOM (the ‘office’ that dictates military tactics to Kiev); $5 billion for a fuzzy, unspecified “global food supply chain”; $6 billion for actual weapons and “training” to Ukraine; $9 billion in “economic assistance” (which will disappear into selected pockets); and $0.9 billion for refugees.

https://thesaker.is/nato-vs-russia-what-happens-next/

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dystopian's picture

WARNING: a red button may have been pushed. Wink

Captain Buzzkill here... from the Anti-Cairn Society. Wink

Historical cairns, trail marker cairns, and the such are fine. I have no problem with them. They have a purpose, a reason, that made sense. Unlike the new millennia senseless cairn craze, which I am not cairn for.

I am firmly in the 'leave nothing but footprints' camp. I go to nature and the outdoors to NOT see the hand of man. The cairn people are everywhere spoiling the natural view for *everyone* behind them. They take a perfectly natural setting and insert man's hands, with typical arrogance. Surely its a tremendous monument, no doubt. No one ever stacked that pile of rocks like that. But which completely 100% alters the view, the ambiance, the feeling, of being somewhere untouched by man in nature. Instead I see a monument to man's ego, intelligence, and respect of nature. It is not a good monument.

It is defacing nature and the natural environment to my eye. As a youth I was always impressed when I found boy scouts that had been properly taught about being in nature, in that, if you turn a rock or log over, you put it back the way you found it. Because there are things living under it whether you see them or not. There is an ecosystem there too. The cairn people do not understand basic good stewardship of the environment and ecosystem. They certainly don't respect it. They are tearing the land up the same as a bulldozer on the micro-scale where they build their monuments, to all the myriad of things that live under the rocks. There are a million cairn people doing this. Especially in streams where there are invariably copious numbers of various invertebrates, generally in larval stages, attached to the undersides of the rocks. All of a sudden put in the sun to dry and die. This is how one communes with nature? It is vandalizing the habitat and ecosystem.

It is incredibly egocentric to think the view of nature, the natural world as whoever made it, is improved by this folly. And that one thinks they have a right to alter that for all that come behind them. When cairnman walked up to that spot there was nothing but natural. But when I got there after them, they had taken that away from me. You have the freedom to go out into nature and see the natural world. Does that give you the right to take that away from me? Freedom not License. Great book.

Recently walked a mile or two of beautiful creekside natural habitat (in a State Natural Area where it is illegal to remove a fallen fall maple leaf). On the way back at least, the two dozen cairn monuments my wife and I kicked over on the way upcreek were not there to despoil our view of the natural world. Finally at least on the way back we got to see it the way it looked for the last 30, er, 30,000 years. Before the cairn people. Not the last 3-4 where man's ugly hand is everywhere. You can't get away from it, even out in nature. Does Fred Flintstone really think they made the creek look better? That their hand did better than God or Gaia?

For Green Kingfisher which habitually flies a foot or so above the water they made an obstacle course. It is asinine that the native birds after thousands of years, can't even fly the creek without having to waste energy dodging all the hazards man put there for no good reason, but for satisfying his ego.

end rant mode -
y'all should be more careful about settin' me off... Wink

Sorry for this hit and run, am buried in work, gotta fly.
will try to get back by later...

peace and love, even to the cairn people

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

@dystopian

that those cairns are as much of an issue with kingfishers as they seem to be with you...

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used as trail markers. If I do, they will not be disturbed.
I have concerns about various and sundry posters who have health problems ranging from aggravating to debilitating.
I sincerely wish for everyone to get help, get well.
I went to 6 different doctors before I was able to get help for a rash. Now, it didn't just itch. It hurt, interrupted sleep, work, concentration, at times, was so hideous i had to cover it with long sleeves and slacks, (in 100 deg. summer), and at times, my skin on the bottom of my feet cracked, bled into my shoes, or on the floor, with every step. But, it is a rash. I am not gonna die, not gonna have surgery, and am 90% of the time, pain-free. With Dr. No. 6, I may never have an issue with it again. I am LUCKY to be able to afford the Magic Compound Salve that costs $520 per tube.
And, if I can help, reach out.

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@on the cusp

tried ivermectin topical cream ( at maybe twenty bucks versus $520). No guarantee, of course, but not much downside risk, either. Extremely good safety profile and over-the-counter on most of the planet - including a couple US states now (NH & TN, I think) and in sunny Mexico.

I've been taking oral IVM for about nine months with no noticeable downside and supplementing that with topical cream to see how that might do with some skin and other issues for the last month and a half or so - seems to be helping.

Maybe not related to your particular situation (which sounds like no fun at all), but:

Pharmacol Res. 2021 Jan; 163: 105207.
Published online 2020 Sep 21. doi: 10.1016/j.phrs.2020.105207
PMCID: PMC7505114
PMID: 32971268
Ivermectin, a potential anticancer drug derived from an antiparasitic drug

Ivermectin has powerful antitumor effects, including the inhibition of proliferation, metastasis, and angiogenic activity, in a variety of cancer cells. This may be related to the regulation of multiple signaling pathways by ivermectin through PAK1 kinase. On the other hand, ivermectin promotes programmed cancer cell death, including apoptosis, autophagy and pyroptosis. Ivermectin induces apoptosis and autophagy is mutually regulated. Interestingly, ivermectin can also inhibit tumor stem cells and reverse multidrug resistance and exerts the optimal effect when used in combination with other chemotherapy drugs.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7505114/

Which might help explain the level of hostility to IVM from Big Med/Big Pharma...

Best of luck dealing with that - you and those others with serious health issues.

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@Blue Republic

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@ban nock

a little less specific?

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With an exception for established trails, even below treeline sometimes trails are so seldom used and overgrown that a cairn at a crucial point can show the way, I saw them used that way in the bighorns.

Besides being unsightly they are one more disturbance. I'm of the "don't even leave footprints" type.

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snoopydawg's picture

@ban nock

when I see your comments.

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It is not until the tide goes out that you discover who has been swimming naked.

QMS's picture

not advocating for people to build pyramids where ever there are loose rocks
belittling creative sculpture in nature is a bit over the bend
if the hand of man offends you, try to remember where you came from

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