Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue

Something/Someone Old
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Good morning, all!

Here's another entry from the lovely mentalfloss article on old trees by Haley Sweetland Edwards, which I link here, but again, trigger warning for those of us who experience rage at wanton destruction, because she begins her article with a discussion of what happened to the Senator, a 3500-year-old cypress that used to live near Orlando, FL. So be advised.

http://mentalfloss.com/article/29879/6-oldest-trees-world

By the way, I just found out that Haley Sweetland Edwards came out last September with a book called Shadow Courts: The Tribunals That Rule Global Trade, about the tribunals included in all the agreements like NAFTA and the TPP. So she's apparently really good people. I don't know how she can continue to write in that vein and have Time still employ her, but I hope it continues.

Anyway, here's today's entry for Something Old:

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How amazing is that? It's a yew tree, and apparently they think it was deliberately planted--about 4,000 years ago. Here's what Edwards says about it:

Llangernyw, a lush, 4,000-year-old yew tree, was inducted into a list of 50 Great British Trees by the UK Tree Council in 2002, which, as far as tree honors are concerned, is a pretty big deal. Llangernyw was planted in what is now a North Wales churchyard way back when the Egyptian Pyramids were still considered a new development.

I can't pronounce Llangernyw. Welsh hard.

Something New
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As y'all have no doubt noticed, "new" is relative here on SOSNSBSB, or, for those who don't like doofy acronyms, my Open Thread. "New" can extend all the way back to 2014, and often does, because the more polluted and toxic the media stream gets, the more I get my information at a remove, or intermittently. This has the unfortunate side effect of making me less informed, and/or informed less quickly, but to my mind it's a necessity, at least until we in the truthteller part of the population figure out ways to deal with the psychological damage of being connected to poison (the Navajo came up with one for their people a while ago. It's called the Enemy Way, and was developed to aid those returning from foreign wars. I believe it started after World War II, but could be wrong about that.) We don't even discuss such things, but rather take such psychological damage as an unavoidable fact of life, or, occasionally, even as our due in some sort of odd penitential gesture in which we take on responsibility for the actions of an empire we are unfortunate enough to live in, but have no control over.

Anyway, my "Something New" this week dates from Feb 2016. It's a computer game called Stardew Valley, and I highly recommend it. You inherit a derelict farm in Stardew Valley from your grandfather at the beginning of the game:

“If you're reading this, you must be in dire need of a change. The same thing happened to me, long ago. I'd lost sight of what mattered most in life... real connections with other people and nature. So I dropped everything and moved to the place I truly belong.”
— Grandpa's Letter

Your task is to restore the farm, and the community, whose internal economy and relationships are being threatened by JojaMart, which does things like send representatives into the local grocery store waving 50%-off-everything-in-the-store JojaMart coupons to try to drive the man out of business. JojaMart also wants to buy the land the derelict Community Center sits on. The Mayor says that if one more person becomes a JojaMart Club member, he'll sell.

So you have a lot of work to do!

This is what I've been doing (mostly) while I'm sick. I heartily recommend this game. But watch out--it's highly addictive!

Something Borrowed
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Did you know that, while coffee originated in Ethiopia, the first known instance of roasting and boiling the beans to create the drink we now know happened in 15th-century Sufi monasteries? The Sufi mystics borrowed the coffee plant from Africa, though stories vary as to who did it and when:

Coffee beans were first exported from Karachi to Yemen. Yemeni traders brought coffee back to their homeland and began to cultivate the bean.[13] The word qahwa originally meant wine, and Sufis in Yemen used the beverage as an aid to concentration and as a kind of spiritual intoxication when they chanted the name of God.[14] Sufis used it to keep themselves alert during their nighttime devotions. A translation of Al-Jaziri's manuscript[15] traces the spread of coffee from Arabia Felix (the present day Yemen) northward to Mecca and Medina, and then to the larger cities of Cairo, Damascus, Baghdad, and Constantinople. By 1414, the beverage was known in Mecca, and in the early 1500s was spreading to the Mameluke Sultanate of Egypt and North Africa from the Yemeni port of Mocha.[8][14] Associated with Sufism, a myriad of coffee houses grew up in Cairo (Egypt) around the religious University of the Azhar. These coffee houses also opened in Syria, especially in the cosmopolitan city of Aleppo,[14] and then in Istanbul, the capital of the Ottoman Empire, in 1554.[14]

I knew about the coffeehouses in Istanbul, but had no idea that the Sufis were related to the spread of both coffee and coffeehouses. Good times!

Something Blue
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I really, really, really miss the beach. Specifically the beaches of my childhood on the Gulf coast of Florida off St. Pete. I'm only two and a half hours away from it, but am no longer in a headspace where driving 5 hours in a day for a couple of hours spent in a place seems feasible, and since I bought my house, I've felt I can't afford an actual vacation. But here it is, in all its beauty; today's Something Blue is the Gulf off St. Pete. Enjoy!

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Comments

Lookout's picture

too bad they bulldozed most of the dunes and built all the way to the shore. There are still protected places with dunes and the live oak maritime forests. Alabama has a couple of spots - here's one of my favorites.

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I also like Grayton Beach State Park in FL along the pan handle (not too far from you CSTMS)-
with dunes...
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And forests...
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http://www.graytonbeach.com/grayton-beach-state-park/
The cabins are $100/night (and sleep 6)...not terribly expensive for a beach vacation.

Last FL beach trip I took was to Cedar Key - not a great beach scene but sure is old timey FL. Hope all is well with all our FL c99 buddies and Irma wasn't too bad for any of you. Irma hit us much worse than Nate.

Glad you're feeling better CSTMS.

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

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Lookout So beautiful. I haven't really explored the Panhandle beaches, always having either gone back home to the St. Pete area or over to Crescent Beach (which is the closest).

I'd like to explore the Big Bend someday.

Best wishes to all of y'all in Alabama. Storms are the price we pay for living near this beauty, but they didn't have to be made this bad, or this frequent, and they were. The biggest crime that nobody responsible will pay for, ever.

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The part of John Edwards could easily be played by a burnt out light bulb.
--strollingone

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

dance you monster's picture

Views of St Pete will do that. Spent several vacations and one entire summer there as a kid.

Sufi connection and coffee, very cool. That yew tree, extraordinarily cool. And Stardew Valley is on the to-look-into list now. That may take a while to get to, as I have 400+ conversations to have with people after an online article touched on another project of mine. If I'm not around here much for a bit, it's nothing personal, folks. And I'll explain that project -- which I think the Resilience community would like -- when it takes further form. Crazy times in Danceland.

Have a great day, everybody. You sure deserve one.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@dance you monster Please do keep us in the loop. I too was going to post some thoughts along the resilience/sustainability line, but then various things intervened, in order: Charlottesville, which I stupidly let myself get drawn into; hurricane season, and a month of illness.

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5 users have voted.

The part of John Edwards could easily be played by a burnt out light bulb.
--strollingone

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

QMS's picture

worked at the St. Pete Yacht club for about a year mid seventies. Upside down pyramid, bike to the beach, quiet neighbourhoods filled with ancient souls, each with a poignant story to tell. Banyans and magnolias, the flowery air...

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“Free speech means the right to shout 'theatre' in a crowded fire.”
― Abbie Hoffman

is what I am. I avoid the tv like the plague and so did not know there were fires in N. California until yesterday when I ventured, unprotected from the onslaught of the tv, into the break-room at work.
Your description of 'The Enemy Way' and the psychological damage done by the poisonous seepage of lies from our media and the harmful way of life in our culture, is very interesting. Perhaps that is what we are all feeling, that poison.

Coffee is one of my favorite substances and in that bit of history you recounted, I'm hit over the head by the places you mention. Yemen, Syria, Baghdad, Aleppo, North Africa. What the hell is this empire doing? Can't we at least honor places and the gifts from those places? (Honoring the people there is unfathomable to TPTB which is of course unacceptable). Anyway the Sufis were pretty smart and I'm sure glad they figured out how to fix coffee.
Aleppo is also famous for the Aleppo pepper which is a highly regarded pepper among the culinarily inclined crowd.

That Yew tree is fabulous....what an awesome story. I will have to check out that book by Haley Sweetland Edwards. Another author that writes about trees is David Haskell. The Forest Unseen is his latest book I think, although he has several others.

Those Florida pictures are beautiful, you all have some wonderful memories of the beaches.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@randtntx A good way to be broken-hearted is to reflect on how the empire is attacking the birthplaces of civilization--at least the kinds of civilization that involve reading, writing, and cities. Except for those in east Asia, which we can't get at yet, because the Chinese are big and scary.

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5 users have voted.

The part of John Edwards could easily be played by a burnt out light bulb.
--strollingone

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

Arrow's picture

I miss St. Pete. Good thing I found another beach to be at.

You know you're making me post pictures. I can't resist.

Crap can't get Google to embed today.
That last one is way blurry...sorry.

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipOhdOGEE6F-JlChZUICC6EOj72V5ZQgJQZe...

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipOhdOGEE6F-JlChZUICC6EOj72V5ZQgJQZe...

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipOhdOGEE6F-JlChZUICC6EOj72V5ZQgJQZe...

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f you haven’t worked to become stringently honest with yourself, you won’t know the difference between an egoically comfortable worldview you’ve been given and an honest perception of what’s really going on. - Caitlen Johmstone

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Arrow Wow. That is freaking gorgeous, Arrow--but what's with the barbed wire in the second shot? ??

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4 users have voted.

The part of John Edwards could easily be played by a burnt out light bulb.
--strollingone

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

Arrow's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal The barbed wire has been there a long time by the looks of it.
It's Peru. Maybe they thought they would stop someone from jumping the fence. The entrance is wide open all the time. Just walk around. Now it just supports wind fence to keep the blowing sand from swamping the place under a big dune.

As for the pics...thanks...you were asking for it...so you got it...so there!

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4 users have voted.

f you haven’t worked to become stringently honest with yourself, you won’t know the difference between an egoically comfortable worldview you’ve been given and an honest perception of what’s really going on. - Caitlen Johmstone

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

Sorry for the extremely late start. I'm still under the weather and am going to go to one of those minute clinics. Hopefully they can look in my ears and see if I have an ear infection and if so give me an antibiotic, and test my blood pressure while they're at it just to make sure none of this is circulatory. Since I feel like hell when I get up in the morning, and progressively better and better as the day goes on, which is like no sickness I've ever heard of (who ever feels less sick at night?) I'm starting to think it might be a severe case of allergies following on the flu. Fall is often a bad time for me in that regard.

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6 users have voted.

The part of John Edwards could easily be played by a burnt out light bulb.
--strollingone

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

enhydra lutris's picture

I'm calling Yew-ew-ew-ew-ew-ew-ew.

Ah well, I'll drop back in when I'm sane.

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5 users have voted.

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 --

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@enhydra lutris LMFAO!

Please don't ever get sane.

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4 users have voted.

The part of John Edwards could easily be played by a burnt out light bulb.
--strollingone

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

riverlover's picture

I am still digging out of my personal gullywash and avoiding the same on my long driveway. I slept last night for the first night in 4 days. Barely functional during days as well. I read a book or two/night. So that cognitive ability may be one of the last to go. I do not feel particularly anxious, so it's a new and odd experience. Not medicated for that or pain now.

I ordered seeds for next spring. I have vowed to only do specialty foods if my garden will agree. I am running out of shade here. I ordered seeds for cucamelons and some herbs. All can be started inside. Those are cute! They might be good as little pickles! Or drinks garnish.

I saw my solar stove was delivered. My car was too packed to bring it up. But the thought once I can eat again (gallbladder) of being able to cook sans electicity is survivalist but practical. I have a mini-version on order (now design-revised) that can also boil water.

I am ambulating better today, but still insecure. My stair-climbing here has been successful. even with a Cairn terrierist nipping at my toes. How did I make it through human parenthood successfully? But I seem to have.

Amazing yew trees. They pull down Paradices. When do we get angry enough?

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Hey! my dear friends or soon-to-be's, JtC could use the donations to keep this site functioning for those of us who can still see the life preserver or flotsam in the water.

mimi's picture

What do the Navajos do to help those, who return from foreign wars? I need to know that.

Have all a good morning, day or evening, where ever you are. I am in the morning hours. Stay all as healthy as you can, please.

Peace.

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4 users have voted.

"“What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy?” - Ghandi

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@mimi Of course, I'm not a member of the Dine nor a friend of theirs, so I don't actually know what specifically goes on in the ceremony, but as I understand it, the Navajo use sand paintings and chanting, amongst (maybe) other things in their ceremonies. Here is what is available on the Internet on this ceremony:

Here you can read full description of the process of Enemy Way Ceremony:

http://www.manataka.org/page1671.html

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6 users have voted.

The part of John Edwards could easily be played by a burnt out light bulb.
--strollingone

The issue is patriotism. You've got to get back to your planet and stop the Commies. All it takes is a few good men.
--Q

mimi's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal @Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal
imagine the VA therapist crews would arrange for as many loving acts of community and family givings as the navajo people give to their patients sickened after their participation in foreign wars. ...

oh well ... what can I say.

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3 users have voted.

"“What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy?” - Ghandi

eyo's picture

Here's a little update on local situation:
POCKET FIRE (CENTRAL LNU COMPLEX)
This is the one I'm supposed to watch I guess. Just got back from the bank, the ATM had twenties, yay! The branch was closed for service though, four people turned away while I was getting cash. One guy kept yanking the door until I said "They're closed. There's a sign right there." Taped in front of his nose. Wow, people are stressed out and me too. Barely made it back the wind is blowing a gale directly south, almost went backward going uphill, had to get off and push to the top. Then it was Whee I can't see! the rest of the way home, so much crap is blowing around. Ugh. At least it is not smoky, sore throat from walking outside yesterday. Bad sinuses. sheesh Hope the wind dies down down down. Fire is blowing away from us right now, still going.

The house in Bennet Valley did burn, as did the RE agent's home across the street. My neighbors moved the very last load on Sunday afternoon, the cleaners were due Monday morning. That great LP collection did make it to climate controlled space, and it all was insured so that's good and less stressful. Everything else burned to the ground, nothing is there now but ashes.

Just talked to downstairs people here, they were kind and asked what my fire evac plan is. The water heater is definitely broken, none of us care right now. A replacement is supposedly on order, so if we don't burn there will be hot showers again, eventually.

good luck

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On a blog.

riverlover's picture

@eyo Stress, perceived, is circular and can continue to inflame. Try to continue forward towards a normal that may no longer exist. I did not mean to make that sound so bummer.

I predict another insurance company crisis. They get real whiney when things go against them. Things like weather. Or fires. Or hurricanes. Or profit loss.

Raining (again here). And I have boxed & bagged plants that I did not display under the dripping skies. NWS promises warmer and drier for the weekend. Maybe by then, I can get my diminishing acts together.

The beech tree that we protected outside of the front door is still stubbornly green. That works for me. It may hold brown leaves through the winter. And is a slow spring starter. Many youths in the woods.

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3 users have voted.

Hey! my dear friends or soon-to-be's, JtC could use the donations to keep this site functioning for those of us who can still see the life preserver or flotsam in the water.

zoebear's picture

Sounds like you might be suffering from allergies. I know prone positions like the one we are in when we are sleeping wreck havoc on my sinuses. Hope you remedy the not feeling good part of your day.

Enjoyed your tree essay. (What? You can't pronounce Llangernyw?). I'm a bit of a romantic when it comes to trees. And legends surrounding trees. If I ever wrote a story about nature taking on anthropomorphic qualities, I'd make trees the professors of the world.

I think you could write an entire essay on different coping skills we Truthtellers use to fend off the psychological damage being informed causes us. I chant. I also belong to a Buddhist community where we practice what we believe is the law of cause and effect. It's a nourishing antidote to the poison that is effusively pumped out into our airspace every minute of the day.

My favorite coast is Northern California. I miss it too. Something about the ocean that is both primal, sensual, and healing.

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enhydra lutris's picture

air is barely breathable. About 52 miles from nearest fire, but due downwind.

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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 --