Sunday, March 27, 2011

it's about time

In my house, there are four digital clocks.
There's one on the computer and another on the cell phone. One is on the oven and the last is on the microwave.

Now I've never been much of a clock watcher.
Mostly, especially since I've lived in Key West, unless I've got a meeting or a date, I don't care what time it is.
Still every once in a while my eye will catch a glimpse of one or either of my kitchen clocks and it seems like, since we sprang forward to daylight savings time again, my clocks are having a little fun with me.

If I look at a clock three times in a day (which is about right),
two out of those three times the green LED will read in seemingly whimsical ways.

For example. . .
1 - 1 - 1, 2 - 2 - 2 or 3 - 3 - 3
And it doesn't stop there. . .
10 - 10, 11 - 11 and 12 - 12
Then it gets more interesting. . .
9 - 10, 10 - 11, 11 - 12, 12 - 13
or. . .
2 - 3 - 4 or 4 - 3 - 2
and 4 - 5 - 6 or 6 - 5 - 4
Then, there's my all time favorite. . .
1 - 2 - 3 - 4

To me, it just seems a little peculiar.
I mean, what are the odds?
Glance at a clock maybe three times in a day and at least two of those times seeing static or sequential numerical patterns.
Are the clocks timing me or am I timing the clocks?

It's nothing I spend too much "time" thinking about (I'm not a numerologist after all), it's just something to make you say, "hmmm. . ."

"Tempus Fugit"



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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

sugarloaf 's bat tower

During my last visit to Sugarloaf Key, I took a little down-time to visit the "elephant in the room". See, I always knew the
Bat Tower was there; I'd even seen it; but I figured
"what's the big deal"
.
But, on this particular occasion, the Bat Tower seemed to be calling out to me and I surrendered to the summons. . .

As it happens, Sugarloaf's Bat Tower was one of fourteen
Bat Towers worldwide.
Bat Towers were the brainchild of a Texas doctor named Charles Campbell who's intention was to house bats, that can eat up to 1000 mosquitoes in an hour.
An organic attempt at mosquito control intended to lessen the spread of malaria.

Anyway, in the mid to late 1920's a fairly well-to-do business-guy named Richter Clyde Perky bought a bunch of land on Lower Sugarloaf. On that land he built a fishing lodge (which, I'm guessing is what we call Sugarloaf Lodge today - but feel welcome to check me on that), then cleared and paved what is now called Sugarloaf Boulevard to give his fishing visitors easy access to the Atlantic side of the island.

But even with all that accommodation, Mr. Perky
had a problem.
He couldn't get anyone to stay at the lodge because it was crazy with mosquitoes.
So in 1929, borrowing Dr. Campbell's design, Perky built the 35 foot tall Bat Tower and imported a pant-load of bats
from Cuba and Texas to roost in it and control the
mosquito population,
(remember, 1 bat can eat up to 1000 mosquitoes in an hour)
.

Unfortunately for Perky though, apparently his bats weren't hungry and when he released them into the tower they flew up and out of the thing and just kept on going, never to return. (oops!) . .
. . .and with them, went the guests at the lodge.

So there stands “Perky’s Folly” (as some locals called it at the time), out in the middle of almost nowhere. An organic attempt at mosquito control that didn't work.
All the same, the Sugarloaf Bat Tower was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places in 1982 and for me, yielded some interesting research and a few good pictures.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

everything else is crap

During the last couple of months I've been visited by quite a few ghosts from Artman's past. Old acquaintances who've found me through FaceBook and distant relatives phone calling out of the blue. I've bumped into a few past lovers
(in one case literally) and was visited by an old friend and former band mate who I hadn't seen in 40 years.

Now, I accept, as an axiom, the proposition that all we create our own realities. But sometimes it boggles my mind how
that works.
Like now, with all these recent "blasts from the past".
As far as I knew, I was happily living my low-key island life when all these chance encounters came along. What the hell did I do to manifest this stuff? I'm not saying any of this is bad stuff, just very curious.

Understandably, revisiting one's past can run the mind through a gauntlet of memories and emotions, re-open old wounds or re-live past joys, reawaken former pains and prejudices, issues unresolved and unfinished business.
Then there's the boatload of "what ifs" and "whys".
"How could this or that situation been better or worse?" "What difference might it have made to have turned right instead of left?"


Selfish questions all steeped in ego; a sort of feeble attempt to over-master memories of the past and surely not the best of all places for the mind to dwell too long.

Anyway, I put myself through that gauntlet and, in the end, happily came to the place where mind is right, heart is healed and soul is satisfied.
Detached from ego, it's an easy thing to be grateful for those children of God whose lives I've touched and who's lives have touched mine.

Our courses had crossed, drifted their separate ways and now, for some God only knows reason, have briefly crossed again. In the end, all that really matters is the happy knowledge that we're all still weathering the waves and making way
under sail.

Everything else is crap.