Category Archives: Nature

Running over others on purpose

img_20190414_171038~28970938557018527861..jpg

This is the third maxed out size wise momma snapper turtle that I’ve seen in the last couple of weeks looking to find a place to lay her eggs crossing the road and ending up getting run over on purpose. I say that because people would have had to swerve to have their tires hit the ones I saw. And I did see one crossing the road in the middle of a lane and the knucklehead did just that, swerved so as to hit it with a tire. I hate that.

This ol’ gal didn’t look too badly damaged. I figured with a little help she could at least crawl to a place to lay her eggs and then die of an infection some weeks later. I stopped, as did a number of other vehicles on the side of the road, and we all got her safely into the ditch and crawling away. Huge turtle.

I’ve seen the same thing with Mountain rattlers, with the knuckleheads first running the snake over, then stopping and cutting the head and the rattler off. People can be so mean.

Stats have it that people who are mean to animals like this do exactly the same thing to the human beings around them, hitting them, smacking them down, yes, running them over on purpose. And they don’t have to start with animals, just go right to being violent with human beings.

Oh. I forgot. I was so busy being sanctimonious that I didn’t want to notice that my sins did that to Jesus. Sorry, dear Lord.

2 Comments

Filed under Confession, Nature

The Nebraska Flood

Nebraska flooding March 2019

From a reader:

“I thought you would be interested in what caused a lot of the damage during the flooding. This is my brother in law […]. The ice chunk he is leaning on is actually made up of several sheets of river ice that were broken loose from the edges of the river then they refroze together. By the way this is a smaller one.

“MANY bridges gone. Parts of roads gone. Homes gone. Whole herds of cattle gone. A man and his house, barn, bait shop, and saloon business gone. Spring calves dead or gone.

“One man was crossing a bridge to rescue his brother when the bridge washed out taking his 8430 John Deere tractor and him away. They say his body washed up right where he lived on the river.

“We talked to […] and […]. 2/3 of the 24,000 residents of Norfolk we evacuated but they did not evacuate. The evacuation line was at the end of their street. We talked to […]’s brother […] and life is getting back to normal in our little town of Stuart.

“They took a backhoe and cut two 6 foot wide trenches right through the road to let some of the water out of town. I guess a lot of folks are without power because some of the power lines crossed the river. Several little towns have lost their town wells because now they are contaminated.”

Hail Mary…

1 Comment

Filed under Nature

Ultra Super Wolf Blood Moon (twice)

img_20190120_234424446~26936244251239004993..jpg

Sorry, I guess the phone camera moved slightly and got a double digital exposure while trying to collect more light.

wolf angry

Werewolves and lunatics… a commonality among diverse and disparate cultures geographically and across the millennia. Interesting, that. I recall also that The Woman clothed with the sun stands upon the moon. Haha.

guadalupe-

Leave a comment

Filed under Nature

Toxic-gas clouds zipping over WNC from Oak Ridge research corridor?

img_20181213_163322112_hdr~22940205335822458037..jpg

It’s fun to have a good imagination. Let’s play “What if?”

These pictures were taken late afternoon 13 December 2018. Moving relatively quickly. Note, above, how the other surrounding, higher clouds, move away from the darker clouds in a circular fashion, pushed away by the darker clouds below. That‘s an indicator that something serious is amiss. The darker clouds aren’t dropping, but rather moving over the terrain. I’m guessing that the length of this event, from nearer to farther away, just of the darker stuff, is about a mile all told. Give it a couple of miles for the spreading of the upper clouds. Give it more for whatever effect on the ground. Remember, these are moving relatively quickly. I was really fumbling to get my camera in traffic as I didn’t want to just let them fly by. They are roiling and boiling but staying together.

img_20181213_163322112_hdr~31023531186707673706..jpg

At first glance I thought these were clouds of trillions of starlings. If you’ve ever seen the shows they put on – common in Rome, Italy – you would know what I mean. But these didn’t have the ever changing shapes of starling acrobatics. You’ll notice that there seems to be a more concentrated opaque center of the “clouds” with a weird semi-transparent “net” – if you will – draped over the opaqueness. But, let’s look closer:

img_20181213_163347311_hdr~25316927829161958507..jpg

The outer “net” is not liquid, like rain, as it defies gravity, and equally surrounds the center both below and above, all around, like roiling boiling fumes, not H20 based, with H20 opaqueness, but more like gasoline fumes that roil and boil and are transparent, providing a more blotchy appearance. What you’re looking at is not the wispiness of H20 clouds, but the the messiness of roiling boiling fumes. Let’s tweak the raw picture a bit to make it darker:

img_20181213_163323071_hdr~21753083326234153977..jpg

This is just 50 miles as-the-toxic-cloud-flies from Oak Ridge, TN, with all of their testing sites. These were coming from exactly that direction. This defies further description. By the time I got home, just a stone’s throw away, these darker clouds had already raced away.

That’s the entertainment of imagination for the day. I’m sure there’s a name for such meteorological formations for both upper lighter and lower darker clouds, something like “downburst” or some such ill fitted name. There was no down and no burst. All was at a dead calm. I’m sure there’s a reason why the wispiness did not have H20 opaqueness but was transparent and not at all wispy, but rather roiling and boiling. I’m sure there’s a reason why they were flying relatively quickly.

It’s just that I’ve never seen anything like this in clouds since I was born. Anyway, if these were toxic and just a test, there’s no reason to question it. After all, there’s no one important who lives in these remote mountains, right? //off sarcasm

Again, just my fun imagination.

7 Comments

Filed under Humor, Nature

Counterintel Vultures vs Crux Kryptos

img_20181106_161114606~2680542546020761479..jpg

The locals call these guys turkey buzzards, which buzz around big as wild turkeys. I just call them vultures. I’ve seen as many as seventy in a “kettle” (as if swirling in a kettle up in the sky) above an active landfill that handles household garbage. But in the midst of the back forest ridges near the hermitage on any day off  I might see just a few on the road, like bandits. They’ve been here at the exact same spot on the gravel one-lane hermitage mountain road near the waterfall for the seven or eight years I’ve been driving this road, never with road kill, just owning the place. They’ll move just off the road for a vehicle that dares approach them. I’ve wondered what they would do if I were walking alone on the road and acted with timidity, skittish, hesitant, backing up a step, and then another. What I don’t have to wonder about is that acting with confidence is 99% of any success in dealing with any would-be adverse encounter, and can pretty much control any outcome. Bravely walk up to these monsters and they’ll run away.

Dealing with the dark side is one thing. Quite another is dealing with human beings who are not perceptive to mind tricks, but are instead wasted on drugs, especially the drug of, say, counterintel, and it is a drug, with all the same effects, unless… And, by the way, we’re all lost to mind games on every level of our lives, unless… unless we have a constant which cuts through all mind games, that which is more powerful than mind games, more powerful than anything we hold dear in this world, including life here. That Constant is the Cross. Love, like Wisdom, cuts through idiocy. The world spins about while the Cross remains a constant.

Solving Kryptos – Part 4 – Coriolis effect – Crux stat dum volvitur orbis

Kryptos 1

Don’t be lost to a palimpsestic faith. Truth is Love is God, ever ancient, ever new, always the same, always full of Life. Our thinking that we can edit Truth, edit Love, edit Life is where all our shattered ways bring darkness. In our stupidity, we think that spreadsheeting analysis of stats based on fallen human nature takes account of all reality and is the key to unlocking mysteries. Pffft. Soooo NOT. When it comes to Truth who is Love who is Life, so that we walk with Truth, with Love, with Life, then it’s no longer an iffy confidence manipulating success 99% of the time, then there is success 100% of the time, with success not being measured in this world, but by being drawn into eternal life.

There’s no greater joy before the angels of heaven than when…

Didn’t expect that, did you?

;-)

 

2 Comments

Filed under Intelligence Community, Nature

Flowers for the Immaculate Conception (If these were chickens edition)

img_20180911_113012925~27182257532260922563..jpg

These were seen near the hermitage on the last kind-of-day-off. (I haven’t been able to target practice for the last number of weeks, so any day-off isn’t really a day-off.)

If this is a dead red oak tree (hard to tell because the mushrooms are so thick) there’s a good chance that these are little baby Laetiporus sulphureus, otherwise known as Chicken of the Woods shelf mushrooms. “Chicken” because, just like rattle snakes, they taste like chicken. They can get big (from Wikipedia:).

chicken of the woods

Each shelf is like a chicken breast, prepared just the same way. Delicious. I used to fry these up on the wood stove in the hermitage.

O.K. These are not quite “flowers” if you have to be technical about it. But, if these were Chicken of the Woods and I was a kid with a chainsaw, I would cut the tree so that it wouldn’t quite fall all the way down. I’d get the bed of the truck near to one end and tie up the log with a chain to the back of the truck so that when the rest of it fell it wouldn’t hit the ground except for just the far end. Then I would drag it back to the house and prop it up on one end with some other logs, and then watch the proliferation of chickens, as bright as any flowers could ever be.

Then, when the chickens are all eaten up, the log is still great for firewood if you chop it up right away. Otherwise the roots of the mushrooms will rot the wood fast.

I don’t think Jesus’ good mom would object to such a monstrosity in her garden. It might even put a bit of a smile on her face. Sometimes a little imagination, a little thinking outside the box goes a long way.

Leave a comment

Filed under Flores, Nature

Of snakes and souvenirs

img_20180911_110300109~2-17900785531702803989..jpg

There is a couple of miles high up in the mountains in which it is as likely as not to see a Timber Rattler, alive or dead, on the curvy simple road that is made of loose gravel sprayed with oil.

Locals have a penchant for running over snakes and turtles and anything else they can steer into perhaps without wrecking their vehicles in order to do so. As often as not, if it is a snake, especially a rattler, they’ll cut the head off, and the rattle, for souvenirs.

Jesus has His own souvenirs after His own encounter with the snake mentioned in Genesis 3:15. Jesus’ souvenirs are in the form of five wounds in hands and feet and in His side, His Heart. But Jesus otherwise doesn’t parade around a snake head or tail.

What a strange lot we are. But God loved the world so much that…

Leave a comment

Filed under Jesus, Nature

Florence and Francis

093018_5day_cone_no_line_and_wind3329229798193229496.png

The 2:00 AM Monday marked with a black-circled “D” for a Tropical Cyclone having winds of less than 39 miles per hour is right over the parish in Andrews, NC. There is a threat of some flooding, though not at any of our church campuses or the rectory. There is no threat from the wind.

However, the weird thing with lots of rain and even no wind is that trees simply fall down. The root system cannot grab anything steadfast. The mountain cliffs against which the roads are forged are the super weak shale. As the trees fall in their dozens, roads are blocked throughout the mountains, and, of course, power lines are snapped in half.

What’s different about this storm is that FEMA has decided to pre-position crews to either side of Wilmington NC, so that they can get to work right away. I gotta wonder how well that will work, since the flooding is the real problem in south-eastern NC. The waters build up and recede over something like six weeks. For the first couple of weeks, if I remember rightly, the water can be so high that emergency vehicles simply can’t move. Anyway, all our emergency utility crews are moving down to the coast.

Some close friends live in Wilmington, but they have moved away from the worst areas for the next days or weeks, depending. They helped me with some communication logistics so that I could put together a certain dossier, one of the two packages to bring over to the Holy Father the other week. I’m thinking that the two packages I delivered to him backed him into a corner and lit a bit of a fire under him. I don’t mean to put pressure on him. After all I did deliver it to him, not to some newspaper or some blog.

1 Comment

Filed under Missionaries of Mercy, Nature, Pope Francis

Cicada calls caption call

img_20180820_160015018~25897872489399195087..jpg

A cicada just out of his cocoon, wings still unfolding, a first look at the world after been one and seventeen years (depending: I’m no entomologist), wondering what sort of creature is holding him up, trying to take in the scene with ultra super wide scope eye pods. What could he possibly be thinking? I guess that’s a caption call… I’m guessing he’s saying “Hello!” since he’s waving in a friendly manner with his right front… claw.

4 Comments

Filed under Nature

The fool says in his heart… [but then…]

img_20180814_155309789_burst000_cover~2189677769656041013..jpg

I was having a chat about the ways of God with the neighbor to the hermitage on the day off when of a sudden a critical incident unfolded before us with a battle falling from the tree down to our feet all in a wrestling agonizing roiling heap. “Crunch-crunch.” The jaws of the Great American Hornet could be heard snapping off wings and legs. One recalls the psalmist mocking the arrogant in the midst of times of continuous critical incidents:

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.”
They are corrupt, and their ways are vile;
there is no one who does good.

God looks down from heaven on all mankind
to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God.
Everyone has turned away, all have become corrupt;
there is no one who does good, not even one.

Do all these evildoers know nothing?
They devour my people as though eating bread;
they never call on God.

But there they are, overwhelmed with dread,
where there was nothing to dread.

God scattered the bones of those who attacked you;
you put them to shame, for God despised them.

Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion!
When God restores his people, let Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad!

Leave a comment

Filed under Day Off, Nature, Terrorism

Weird, the things you might see…

img_20180805_184524221~32279126540959052329..jpg

The cloud above would be over Andrews on the far side of the mountains. Below shows the very same spot with what’s happening below the clouds with a downpour right over Andrews. Yikes! I love nature.

img_20180809_154027806_hdr~23914923917043938324..jpg

1 Comment

Filed under Nature

Joyce Kilmer’s Trees Sheet Music 1922

img_20180804_154609721~27544759161266793962..jpg

img_20180804_154551517~27205992470800652285..jpg

Bonus: Joyce Kilmer Centennial Memorial 30 July 2018 at the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest: Listen up, CIA! Dedicatio par aevum Heroic history: Joyce Kilmer Centennial

 

 

 

 

2 Comments

Filed under Nature

Lost in paradise

img_20180802_134429525~28832531143549513457..jpg

The directions I received to go do a house blessings were: “You know, we’re up 143, like, you know, Snow Bird.” I will find it. Meanwhile, on my first attempt, going the length of 143 and Snow Bird, I stopped at this waterfall to share with you some of the screamingly beautiful beauty of my parish. If you follow the water up the picture you’ll come almost to the top of the ridge. I don’t mind getting lost in paradise. It’s an occasion to sing:

O felix culpa quae talem et tantum meruit habere redemptorem.

1 Comment

Filed under Nature

Crotalus Horridus Timber Rattler

img_20180703_220449647~21389859697563278028..jpg

“You brood of vipers!” – Saint John the Baptist

I came upon this guy near the hermitage on the “day-off” yesterday. Not quite four feet long [correction: 50.5 inches] but really quite hefty. He’s been eating very well. I’m guessing a few pounds. Quite the set of fangs. Quite the rattler, from which you can tell he’s only a youngster:

img_20180703_220226130~25460701739134100647..jpg

Timber Rattlers, everywhere in this area of the Blue Mountains, can also be almost totally black, but this guy had only a black tail. The rest was the usual spectacular golden color and black markings:

img_20180703_220244731~24038230726819167104..jpg

Meanwhile, getting back to the rectory late at night, another suspicious pattern, but actually just a baby black snake faking being a Timber Rattler. This is just a section of the body. He’s been ripped apart before I got back from the “day-off.” Poor thing.

img_20180704_073124422_burst001~38921081883548398752..jpg

Leave a comment

Filed under Nature

Saving snakes from the birds

img_20180623_194956757_burst020~28639705926946970410..jpg

So, there I was, driving up to the bank Night Deposit just before nightfall after the Saturday Vigil Mass, and I saw a murder in progress, a huge raven was attacking a small and friendly Black-Snake, Rat-Snake, Bull-Snake, Eastern Racer, whatever name you have. These guys have no poison, no fangs, if they bite it doesn’t hurt. Super-friendly.

img_20180623_195041539~2704401659383858528..jpg

The raven didn’t want to give up. I almost had to physically remove him, but he finally flew away and then around, squawking and scolding at me the whole time. He was not happy with me at all. Meanwhile, I gently let the snake slither away into the parking lot bushes. I was happy for the snake. The ol’ raven can get another meal somewhere else. I want Rat-Snakes around as one of my neighbors has rats. The bank is in eye-shot of the rectory. Be as clever as a snake in making friends with unexpectedly helpful people. But be as innocent as a dove. Monsters might attack you. But you might get help from an unexpected source. Note the background picture of the blog and the header picture.

2 Comments

Filed under Birds, Nature

Monsters, little kids, and God

img_20180609_060904719~21828090479..jpg

Monsters from the lagoon. Female above, methinks. I don’t know if these are poisonous or not, but I bet they can bite dog-tongue painfully. They’re in the water bowl. They’re always in the water bowl. So, they’ve been removed. Again. They had an egg sack. Poor things. Here’s the male:

img_20180609_060844309~2899419027..jpg

In other monster news, it’s just a guess, but was this one of those very long black beetles who’s now hatched into this flying machine? Looks like he could pinch a pencil in two:

img_20180607_083238513~2134795485..jpg

I think it’s good to be fascinated with nature (step one), and be in awe and wonder at the Creator of it all (step two). Only those who are childlike shall enter the Kingdom of the Heavens. Go ahead and take the first step. But do go on to the second step. This two-step is a very healing process.

4 Comments

Filed under Nature

Democrats: Abortionists, MS13, Cartels

So, I won’t put up comparative pictures of D&C abortions and MS13 butchering of their victims. They look exactly the same. Democrats love abortionists and MS13 activities.

Are they all animals? No. They are less than animals. So say the great saints of the Church. Animals do what they are meant to do by our good Creator. Abortionists and MS13 members do not act like human beings, making them less than everything in creation, making them less than animals.

Sure, our Lord redeemed us. He would love to save us. But we should not praise sin nor the sinner. Our Lord wants us to repent, agreeing to be turned by Him to Him, away from sin, away from the way we were, so that we become one with God.

2 Comments

Filed under Nature, Politics, Pro-Life

Seeing goodness in all, even in…

img_20180517_171001012~21726124031..jpg

Hanging from a spider web, very much alive, jaws ready to clamp down on anything or anyone who comes near. Some people would say, “Eeeeww!”, and have to deploy a parachute, you know, the kind drag racers use to slow down after a race. Some people, like me, would say, “COOL!” and examine whatever it is all the more closely, provoking this monster in particular to get its jaws moving. “COOL!”

I see goodness in all things, even in Satan. Does that make me bad and evil? Well, not in and of itself. One can appreciate how God created this once good angel with extreme intelligence, with infused knowledge. He hasn’t lost that, just the wisdom that should go along with it. That changes everything for him. But I can still praise God for Satan’s awesome attributes which Satan did not acquire, but were given to him, like, say, determination, like, say, well, it’s difficult to think of anything more than that!

This goes back to the clarity of Saint Thomas Aquinas, who insisted that evil was not something, but a lack of goodness that ought to be there, so that the good that remains, though out of context and bound to be unappreciated by that sinful subject, is still nevertheless good in itself. And in regard to Satan being in hell forever and ever (where he himself wants to be, with all the damned), we will praise God because of that, that is, for God’s justice and power and majesty.

Indeed, God’s love is everywhere. There are those who don’t like God’s love, those who suffer because of God’s love for them, such as those in hell, who perceive that love as incrimination and therefore their damnation, but it is only God’s love all the time, just like in heaven, but those in hell don’t see this. They lack the foundation of the wisdom they ought to have. But I can still appreciate whatever good it is that they have left in order for them to exist. That goodness comes from God.

Just to be clear, let me say this: Satan truly is very bad, and, so to speak, evil. Get it?

Saint Michael Department of Homeland Security

3 Comments

Filed under heaven, Hell, Nature

Lake Wobegon in the fountains of Saint Peter’s

4 Comments

Filed under Nature

Just inches tall: not a donkey, but cool

img_20180323_124230218~2423367376..jpg

My neighbor next to the rectory has a ultra-super-miniature-pony in his back yard, just a hand-full of hands high. What’s cool is that Shadow-dog and Laudie-dog are totally cool with that: no barking. I guess this grass eating machine, so tiny, is not a rival or threat, though I’m sure it packs a pretty powerful kick. The neighbor, a firefighter, has a kid who is small enough though just old enough to ride this “horse” (by species). Breed horses like that all you want. But, please, don’t do that to donkeydom. Then I would object.

Do the analogy. We’re all born a little bit – how to say it? – off the mark, not because God made a mistake but because of original sin. We get socked with all sorts of things. Too tall, too short, blind, crippled… or challenged in a thousand different ways… But, given that we’re all smacked down in this world. Given that we all have something, can we not just use these things in service of the Lord. The little guy in the picture above gives joy to the likes of a little kid which he otherwise couldn’t do.

Leave a comment

Filed under Nature