Texas Liberal

All People Matter

Relationships Of Various Kinds Are The Start Of Things—3,000 Blog Posts Is A Lot Of Work

Earlier this week I reached 3,000 posts on Texas Liberal.  This is post # 3,003.

3,003 blog posts is a lot of work.

I thought it would be good to note 3,000 blog posts with pictures of many of the friends I saw on my trip to Cincinnati last week.

I’m also appreciative of the many folks I’ve met in Houston and elsewhere in Texas through this blog. There are very many good hopeful people in Texas.

Everything starts with relationships and with the acknowledgment that all things are connected.

From the very beginning of things, the elements of existence have moved in concert and in reaction to each other.

Our relationships are with other people, with the natural and man-made world (to the extent the natural and man-made world are separate), and with our own values, thoughts and aspirations.

And in any other way that I’m missing here and that makes a hopeful difference to you.

Everything you need to understand the world is around you each day. These things are accessible with effort and imagination.

Thanks for reading Texas Liberal and—as Ronald Reagan often said—Stay the course.

September 11, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Six Years Of Texas Liberal—A Conservative Such As Myself Focuses On Simple Things

(Blogger’s Note—July 25th marks the 6th anniversary of regular posting on Texas Liberal. I’m glad to say I’m nearing 2 million page views. That is pretty good for one yahoo sitting at home. I was thinking today of what I wanted to say for my blog anniversary. I came to the view that the post below that I wrote earlier this year would well-convey the spirit of the blog. Thanks to everybody who has read Texas Liberal. Please know that in addition to the blog, I have an artsy creative project I hope to have online later this year.  A conservative like myself focuses first on friendship and simple virtues such as sticking to something–such as a blog–one day after the other.)

On my recent visit home to Cincinnati, I met up with a number of friends.

In some cases I took their pictures. These are the pictures you see above.

I met some of these folks in the 1980′s. Two I have met since I left Cincinnati in 1998.

Strong and long-lasting relationships make us better able to deal with the hardships of life.

Also–if we pay attention– these relationships provide us with context to understand the lives that all sorts of people lead in our difficult world.

Everybody I met up with for lunch, dinner, coffee, or a drink had a story to tell.

This is no different from any person you know.

The lives my friends lead have great worth.

I like the people my friends have become over the years.

I work hard to keep up with my friends. I suggest you do the same. Don’t wait for others to act.

Every person has value. Every place has value. Every day has value.

July 25, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 3 Comments

I Like The People My Friends Have Become—Every Day Has Value

On my recent visit home to Cincinnati, I met up with a number of friends.

In some cases I took their pictures. These are the pictures you see above.

I met some of these folks in the 1980′s. Two I have met since I left Cincinnati in 1998.

Strong and long-lasting relationships make us better able to deal with the hardships of life.

Also–if we pay attention– these relationships provide us with context to understand the lives that all sorts of people lead in our difficult world.

Everybody I met up with for lunch, dinner, coffee, or a drink had a story to tell.

This is no different from any person you know.

The lives my friends lead have great worth.

I like the people my friends have become over the years.

I work hard to keep up with my friends. I’d suggest you do the same. Don’t wait for others to act.

Every person has value. Every place has value. Every day has value.

March 10, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 1 Comment

Still On The Road

I can be seen here standing and reading at The Comet. The Comet is a bar in Cincinnati, Ohio.

I was taking part in a book release event for the new Aurore Press book Living in the Lap of Labor. I have an essay in this book.

I’d provide a link, but I’m posting with my smart phone and don’t know how to add links when posting with the smart phone.

It was great to be with longtime friends. I can’t overstress the value of keeping up with people over the years

September 4, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Why Is It Hot In The Summer?—What Lessons Can We Draw From The Heat Of Summer?

Today is the first day of summer.

(Above–Summer. Photo by Kwanesum

Why does it get hot in the summer and colder in the winter?

Here is why from the Library of Congress

“It is all about the tilt of the Earth’s axis. Many people believe that the temperature changes because the Earth is closer to the sun in summer and farther from the sun in winter. In fact, the Earth is farthest from the sun in July and is closest to the sun in January! The Earth’s movement around the sun causes the seasons, but it does not affect the temperatures during the seasons. During the summer, the sun’s rays hit the Earth at a steep angle. The light does not spread out as much, thus increasing the amount of energy hitting any given spot. Also, the long daylight hours allow the Earth plenty of time to reach warm temperatures. During the winter, the sun’s rays hit the Earth at a shallow angle. These rays are more spread out, which minimizes the amount of energy that hits any given spot. Also, the long nights and short days prevent the Earth from warming up. Thus, we have winter!”

It is interesting to note that summer is hot not because the Earth moves towards the sun, but because the rays of the sun are more focused in summer and because longer days allow more time for heat to build up.

An analogy can be drawn here in favor of the importance of focus and hard work needed to accomplish important tasks in life.

Also shown by this example is that relationships can be maintained against the obstacle of distance if we apply effort and time to keeping them strong.

When it is hot, think of why it is hot and get to work on the things that matter most to you in life.

(Below–The seasons come and go. Drawing by Tau’olunga.)

June 21, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

The Airplane Trip I’m Taking Soon Has Value—Let Us Do Our Best In A Complicated World

I’m going to take an airplane trip in the next few days.

I’ll be flying on the type of plane you see above. That plane is a Embraer ERJ 145. ( Photo by n4451.)

Why will I be taking this airplane trip?

Because I’ve made the call that the money it costs to buy the ticket, the time it will take to make the flight, and the time I’ll spend in the place I am visiting, are worth the costs.

This is not to define what we do with our lives as no more than mere financial transactions. The power of money should conform to needs of people, not the other way around.

A nation governed on an opposing principle is a nation governed illegitimately.

Every decision we make has some basis. We have the ability as individuals to determine why we should act in one way and not in another. We have the ability as individuals to use our resources of money, time, and energy in the way we see fit.

Yet if the basis of our decisions extends no further than our own interests, we are giving up the best aspect sof our individuality.

As individuals, we have the ability to be with others in hopeful relationships, and to work with others for shared goals.

Every action has a cost. This is good. This helps assess the value of the way we spend our lives.

There is, of course, another question. Does the trip I’ll be taking merit the impact my flight will have on others I do not know?

On one hand, my ticket will help pay people’s salaries.  On the other hand, the airplane will emit pollution.

I don’t have the answer to the worth of this trip in this context.

I don’t have all the answers.

To say you do not have all the answers is not to abdicate responsibility for your actions.

Rather, it is a commitment to think life out to the extent you are able.

The things we need to assess the value and worth of our actions are all around us.

Our relationships, our thoughts, an airplane and other accessible technologies, our energy, our time, other people, our imaginations.

Let us do our best in a complicated world.

February 26, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

It Works Out Well

This book was given to me 22 years ago by the only person who ever broke my heart.  She wrote a very nice inscription in the book. Soon after we hit the rocks. Over the years we had some contact. and we found we had nothing in common anymore.  I found this book recently after having not seen it for many years. I enjoy the inscription and recalling our friendship, while at the same time feeling a disconnect from who she later became. It works out well.

January 17, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Just Kids Wins National Book Award—Woolly Mammoth Reflects On Life And Loss

As I noted a few days ago, Extinct, a Woolly Mammoth, is the newest contributor to Texas Liberal.

Extinct has been reading of late  Just Kids by the performer and artist Patti Smith.

This book tells the story of Ms. Smith’s youthful friendship with Robert Mapplethorpe.

Mr. Mapplethorpe, a well-known photographer, died of AIDS at age 43 in 1989.

As a Woolly Mammoth, Extinct knows all about the passing of time and about the value of longtime relationships.

Longtime friendships offer a measure of reply to death.

There is at least an illusion of permanence when someone knows us as we change with the years.

There is also memory.

The depth of memory when we know a person very well after many years allows us to transcend the passing time.

Just Kids was recently selected as the winner of the National Book Award.

I suggest that you read Just Kids. Just Kids is an instructive book about life, relationships, and death.

Extinct feels the same way about this book. Extinct has seen a lot of life and death.

November 19, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

You Need Not Spend Thanksgiving With Family—All People Matter

Thanksgiving is coming up. It’s a day we are supposed to spend with family, eating a large meal, and watching football. If that’s what you do, good for you. You’ll get no argument here. (Despite my dislike of football and the concussionsand long-term disability suffered by football players.)

However, for many, Thanksgiving is a different holiday than the popular image of the day.

Some spend the day with friends instead of family. Some are alone.

Maybe you don’t like your family or maybe your schedule and/or  budget does not allow travel to where your family lives. Maybe you’re alone at this point in life.

Whatever Thanksgiving is for you, it’s your choice or your circumstance. Many popular notions and conceptions are as unrealistic as the menu above. How many people are serving pumpkin bread in the shape of a pumpkin? Or mashed turnips?

Each year my wife goes to see her family in Chicago for Thanksgiving. For scheduling reasons, I’m unable to go with her to Chicago or to my parents home in Cincinnati. Most years I’m fortunate enough to get an offer from a co-worker here in Houston for Thanksgiving dinner. I politely decline.

Instead, I drive down to Galveston and have a day at the ocean. I eat at some seafood house. It’s always packed and I’m always the only person there alone. I survive just fine. People are too busy stuffing themselves to notice I’m alone.

One year I did not go to Galveston. Instead, I went to the House Of Pies on Kirby Drive in Houston. I had just purchased all three volumes of Robert Remini’s life of Andrew Jackson. I had a lot of reading to do. I sat in that restaurant for maybe three hours reading about President Jackson. It was a wonderful day.

In the House Of Pies that day were gay couples and folks of all types. There were all sorts of people in, I’d wager, all sorts of personal situations.

All good relationships between people have value.

All people have value.

Whatever Thanksgiving brings your way, make the best of it. Life is not like what is shown on TV commercials and TV shows. Life is what it is. You have great value.

Have a very good Thanksgiving.

November 11, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

People Don’t Use Pay Phones Much Anymore—But We Can Still Communicate

People don’t use pay phones so much anymore.

Above you see a picture I took a few days ago of a pay phone in Houston.

Over time and as technology changes, we use different methods to communicate.

That’s okay. The only thing that matters is that we communicate our values and our care for one another as best as we are able.

This is something we all can do regardless of the specifics of how we communicate.

It is just a matter of carving out the time needed and of making the effort.

October 28, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 1 Comment

See The Parts That Make The Whole

Above you see what is under the hood of my car.

There are many parts.

Each part has a specific function.

Here are some basic facts on how a car works. Here are more advanced facts on how a car works.)

The true value of the specific function that each part has, is, when all is said and done, realized by the fact of the smooth operation of the car.

Let’s see things as the sum of their parts. Let’s consider the greater function that can be achieved when all the parts are working as they should.

This is true for machines. This is true for individuals. This is true for society.

Yesterday I wrote a post in which I spoke of ideology, metaphor, advocacy and biography as 4 seemingly separate aspects of our existence that in fact tell one story.

What are the parts of your life that will make you the person that you want to be, and that will allow you make the difference in society that you are able to make?

What is required of a society to make it one where people have access to health care, quality education, and to a legitimate hope that life can be made better?

October 13, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Snow Cone–I’m Not Always My Own Person Anymore

This picture of a snow cone on the Galveston Seawall has proved popular when I’ve e-mailed it to friends.

So I thought that it might go over well with the blog reading public.

It was as hot as could be the day this summer  I took this picture.

I had to rush to take the picture before the snow cone melted.

I don’t suppose that answers the question of why I had to take a picture of the snow cone in the first place.

Not so long ago, I did not have e-mail so that I could sent things to my friends in an instant.

Nor did I have had a camera in my phone or a blog.

Now I have these things and I’m always looking for material.

It is like—at times— I’m not my own person anymore. I’m someone in frequent pursuit of words and images meant to appeal to others.

Here are some facts and history about snow cones.

September 29, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Present And The Future Demand A Past

There were a number of people I ate lunch with at this table in Cincinnati’s Fairview Park.

I also sat at this table alone a number of times.

Though when I often visited this table, it had four chairs. I wonder where the other two chairs went. I wonder if they will ever be replaced.

I took this picture last July.

This picture likely means nothing to you.

Maybe what this picture and this post can do is help you to think about the people and the places in your own life that have meaning.

Life requires context to have meaning. The present and the future demand a past.

September 25, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Here Is What Will Anchor Me

What will anchor me in the days ahead?

My relationships with my wife and friends will anchor me.

My political views, firmly on the left, will anchor me.

All people matter. Just like it says at the top of this blog.

The fact that the things we need to be hopeful and creative are all around us will anchor me.

I believe that, with effort, what we need to be optimistic and imaginative  are accessible to the average person.

This could be a park to enjoy, a free blog service that helps you communicate, or a library full of books and information.

Your own knowledge and a little time to think and collect your thoughts is the best source of hope and creativity.

These are some of the things that will anchor me in the days ahead.

You’ll have your own list.

The anchor in the picture can be found at the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma.

When in Tacoma, this is a good place to visit. And when you are in Seattle, you should make the time to visit Tacoma.

July 30, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Hamburger Wearing An Astros’ Hat Spending Day With Gulf Of Mexico Oil-Free Turtle—Good Friends Help In Difficult Times

Two close friends  of mine are Hamburger Wearing An Astros’ Hat and Gulf Of Mexico Oil-Free Turtle.

These two are hanging out over the holiday weekend.

Hamburger says that the Astros’ season so far this year is a disaster. But Oil-Free Turtle says that the oil spill is an even bigger disaster.

No matter—When good friends get together they are able to leave their problems behind.

May 29, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 139 other followers