December 10th, 2020

“Rahajeng semeng!”, or “Good Morning!”in Balinese (Basa Bali), a Malayo-Polynesian language spoken mainly in Bali in Indonesia. It is Day 266 since the first California Lock Down. We are back under a “stay at home order” again. There are 40 days more days of national shame to endure (Inauguration Day!).

This week we have another sad date to memorialize. December 7th, 1941, 79 years ago, the Japanese attached Pearl Harbor. Over 3000 people will killed in that attack

I hope everyone had a socially distanced but wonderful Thanksgiving. We really do have a great deal to be thankful for…starting with all of us. Our little band of folks who enjoy the slightly purple shade of the Jacaranda. I am grateful for all my time on the planet and that is all about you and all of the other people who have made my time so enjoyable! Thank you.

Did you know this week we celebrated

This week I learned some stuff:
• I learned not to use Walmart’s new Mixed Frozen Seafood. It’s not even in the same solar system as Costco’s version but of course fresh is the best but under lock down we must adapt.
• We still haven’t used all the new features of our bed yet. But already I have notices that much of congestion and breathing problems that my wife has been having seem relieved. She reported the best night sleep that she has had in years.
• I decided to take down my last Saltwater Aquarium this week. I have been enjoying my own little ocean first in the living room and then in my office for over 20years. I started with freshwater tanks but moved into saltwater about 30 years ago. The fish, corals, crabs and other stuff are much more colorful and varied than freshwater. For most of that time, once the saltwater tank was set up and stabilize, it seemed actually easier to maintain than the freshwater set ups I have had. But this year something changed in my supply water and we started to have a tremendous algae problem that made it tedious to maintain the tank. It would look really nice for about 8 hours after a water change and then the algae would take off. It slid over into the “Not Worth the Trouble” column. So I returned the remaining fish to the pet shop and will give away my tank set up to someone when I get it all taken down and cleaned up. And so it goes… • December 3rd is the 345th day of the year (because 2020 is a leap year – but there still only 15 days till Christmas!). Today in 1778, the first Encyclopedia Britannica is published; On this day in 1817, Mississippi became the 20th state in the union; Today in 1884, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain is published; In 1901, the first Nobel Prize ceremony is held in Stockholm on the fifth anniversary of Alfred Nobel’s death; On this day in 1906, U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt wins the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in the mediation of the Russo-Japanese War, becoming the first American to win a Nobel Prize; Today in 1907, the worst night of the Brown Dog riots in London, when 1,000 medical students clash with 400 police officers over the existence of a memorial for animals that have been vivisected for scientific and educational purposes; In 1979, In Cincinnati, 11 fans are suffocated in a crush for seats on the concourse outside Riverfront Coliseum before a Who concert; On this day in 1953, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill receives the Nobel Prize in literature (for his “History of English Speaking Peoples”; Today in 1996, the new Constitution of South Africa is promulgated by Nelson Mandela; Emily Dickinson, American poet was born today in 1830; Ray Collins, American actor (AKA Lt. Tragg of Perry Mason) is born today in 1889; Chet Huntley, American journalist was born today in 1911; Dorothy Lamour, American actress and singer who stared in all the Bing Crosby/Bob Hope “Road to…” movies was born today in 1914; Red Cloud, Lakota tribal chief died today in 1894; Otis Redding, American singer-songwriter and producer died in an airplane crash today in 1967;And finally, Angry Grandpa, American Internet personality passed away today in 2017.

Website Update:
This week we made the following changes:
• A new UJT Vocabulary Quiz!!!!
• Week 2 for the Musical Trivia Quiz.
• This week I added some new recipes. The frozen Walmart Mixed Seafood was a bust but the Japanese Seafood Curry recipe calling for real seafood is on the website. I also added a recipe that I have been cooking for years but wrote down for you this week – White Chicken Chili is on the UTJ now.

Writing, Ceramics, Stained Glass and Painting Update:
• My stained glass project has resumed. The alternative method is working although my process still is working out some bugs but I think before I am done I will get at least one of these things right!
• This week I managed to miss my watercolor classes again!
• Grandpa Stories is still not re-published.

• John Lennon was murdered this week 40 years ago. For me this was a personal loss. I never met John but it was such a pleasure being alive when he was. I still feel the loss.
• This week I realized something about myself that I wasn’t clear on before. “Of Service” two words that have always kind of guided my actions without my being aware of them specifically. This function has been the key to my enjoyment for a very long time in all aspects of my life. I used to refer to it as a “mission orientation”. Which is true but really doesn’t explain it very well. I had missions that were not all that satisfying or rewarding. I have enjoyed a number of different volunteer activities over the years but I also enjoyed being of service on a compensated basis too. The key is when I feel I am adding unique value to the activity. For me making money or getting recognition has never been enough to satisfy this ingredient to my happiness. I have made money and been recognized for what I have done but they were side affects more than objectives of my participation in the endeavors that I enjoyed. Its weird that I have lived this way for as long as I remember and not understood it fully until now.

Music Update:

Once again, your fossilized DJ takes you on another meander through the dusty cobwebs of my music library. This week selections are perhaps even more eclectic than usual. but all favorites that I hope you will enjoy.

This week’s UJT Radio Program:
 • Boxing Gandhis — Roll —For some reason this song just popped into my head this week and would not go away. This is a really cool soulful reprise of about 3 or 4 R&B genres in one song. Very tight and very nice .. from their 1996 release, “Howard”.
• John Lennon — Imagine —  I truly wish we could do this together. All of us, imagine the world he describes in this song and then get busy building it. This remastered version comes from the “Songs for Japan” album.
• Stevie Wonder — Creepin’ — This is one of my favorite cuts from one of my favorite records by one of my favorite artists! This from his 1974 release, “Fulfillingness’ First Finale”. Just when you thought no one could top his earlier release, “Innervisions”…
• Jackson Browne – Lawyers In Love — This is the title cut from his 1983 release. This song has always made me smile.
• Jimmy Buffett — Off to See the Lizard — This one is the title track for one of my favorite JB albums. He always finds the little kid in me and makes him come out to play whenever I hear his music. I hope you still make sand castles on nice beaches at least in your soul when you are alone late at night and maybe you had a bit too much to drink. Go ahead, smile..
• Savoy Brown — Sitting An’ Thinking — This short sweet little ditty comes from the boys’ “Looking In” album released in 1970.

That’s it… Do the best you can;  Laugh every chance you get;  And always remember …  The best is yet to come!  As always, thank you for being my friend!