barking at the moon

barking at the moon

What does barking at the moon mean?
bark at the moon – To labor or protest in vain; to choose an ineffectual means to achieve a desired end, or to attempt the impossible, thereby making any effort futile by definition; also often bay at the moon. The phrase refers to the common practice of dogs to bay at the moon, as if to frighten or provoke it

barking at the moon – I’ve been “barking at the moon” lately…to no avail other than soliciting concerned looks from family…

I try to remind myself of something I read recently – “Life is like rolling vistas..” I have always tried to pin moments…

“You will never reach your destination if you step and throw stones at every barking dog.” -Winston Churchill

May you have great dignity,
Sense how free you are;
Above all, may you be given the wonderful gift
Of meeting the eternal light that is within you

A blessing for Old Age.. John O’Donohue

barking at the moon…..

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I have a friend. And he will not run Boston today.

I have a friend.  And he will not run Boston today.

For a lot of runners, the Boston Marathon is our Mecca pilgrimage.  For most runners It’s aspirational if not attainable.  There is a reverence reserved for the Boston Marathon.

According to Wikipedia “…The Boston Marathon was first run in April 1897, having been inspired by the revival of the marathon for the 1896 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. It is the oldest continuously running marathon (US).”

 Because of its storied history and popularity, it requires a qualifying time based on your age.  Running 26.2 miles is an incredible accomplishment – Running 26.2 miles under a qualifying time is Herculean.

Unless you are superhuman, training for a marathon takes literally months of preparation with focused planning, a physical/mental commitment, discipline and desire – All of which will be challenged daily.  Those who have endeavored will attest to mental toughness as being 90% of your success.

My running buddy qualified for Boston in April last year (2019) in the 65-69 age group.  He needed to run under 4 h 05 min, which he did.  We trained together leading up to his qualifying race.   For 3 months prior, we shared part of our training runs – 2-3 times each week.    That’s a lot of running time together.

You get to know someone pretty well training like this.  So, I understood his plan- his focus and commitment. His aspiration.  I understood what this meant to him.  I watched his progress.  I celebrated this training milestones and listened intently to the challenges he encountered.

We traveled to the race together, sharing a hotel room the night before.

I took this picture of an enthusiastic Boston hopeful at the starting line. 

scott 2


And this picture of a Boston qualifier approximately 4 hours later.

Scott 1

He won’t be running Boston today, but he has accomplished something that he has earned and can take great pride in.  I personally am very proud to call him a friend and running buddy!

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Enjoy that Vodka and Ginger ale John! Cheers!! and Thank You!!

Maybe it’s just this time we are living in…maybe… but I have never mourned the loss of an artist more then the passing of John Prine

Running today listening to “Fair and Square” I had to stop and gather myself..

His genius is so natural and comfortable.

“Sam Stone” was the 1st song I heard

Johnny Cash recorded it but refused to sing the line
“There’s a hole in daddy’s arm where all the money goes,
Jesus Christ died for nothin I suppose.”

The story goes that John (Prine) was OK with that..

There’s really not one song I love more then any others he wrote and sang.  Love them all. 

Pure Genius


Enjoy that Vodka and Ginger ale John! Cheers!! and Thank You!!


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Twilight I believe in YOU

Twilight is the name given to the period between dawn and sunrise, or between sunset and dusk, when light is still visible in the sky due to sunlight scattering off the atmosphere.

I thought about twilight on my morning run. I thought about the pulsing stars that appear in twilight and couldn’t decide if I wanted them to symbolize family and friends who are gone or my four granddaughters who light my life up.

I decide that they are both and that they are all here now all together filling the darkness with promise.

Burl Ives once said/sang “mister in-between makes a fellow mean…” –
A state in sailing when you are “stuck” in between tacks called “stays”
Twilighting – staying at home.

Twilight becomes darkness and then again daylight.

Recently in my home office at my computer,
concentrating on something (I don’t remember what),
My wife walked in – stood there quietly demanding my attention.
After a moment…
I acquiesced turning to fixed eye contact

“I love you” she said.
Her words hung in the twilight of that moment,
Turning the space around us into the warmth that sunlight brings.
Demanding that we both acknowledge these words
That hung in this twilight of the moment.

Please “THANK” those of us who are working to get us out of “stays” – you know who they are- those medical professionals on the front lines to those folks who are stocking shelves
all working to move us into daylight.

“I believe in you”
“I believe in you”
“I believe in you”

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I ran in the rain today – nothing like a rainy summer run…

Puddle… What a funny word…Puddle…Once 5’11” and 9 ½ shoe size, am now 5’ 9“ with a size 11 shoe….The longer I run , the older I get, the closer to a Puddle I am….It’s mortality that’s in my way, otherwise I’d eventually liquefy….and what a wonderful thought…  it happens just a the crest of a long down hill…..swish…..I’ll gather at the feet of my three granddaughters rippling from their laughter and consumed with JOY as they jump and splash….


PS -A tear for Charlottesville…….

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George is back…

George (Jorge) is back from his stay in Nicaragua. He left in late October of last year and returned home (Camden) the beginning of this April. We ran around Cooper River together this morning….

Photo of Cooper River Park - Collingswood, NJ, United States

I first met George a number of years ago. He was running around Cooper River (3.65 Miles) – I caught up to him and asked if he’d mind if I stayed on his shoulder. Happy to have the company, we began what has become a warm friendship. I know a little Spanish and George speaks English with a heavy accent requiring concentration by both of us while conversing. This tends to make our running time together fly by.

George is in his late 50s..maybe even early sixties by now..  I need to ask him next time I see him.  He runs around CR three of four times a week.  In the summer he’ll typically do two loops (sometimes three).  His pace is about ten minutes per mile but he can press when he wants to.

We talk about many things, but mostly life, health and family.  As most runners do, we talk about our injures and our running. George is also very religious, so occasionally our conversations are heavy with “God”.  I tend not to be religious, but when George decides he wants to talk about “God and Faith”, I politely listen with respect.  George has TWENTY grandchildren!  I kid him with challenges to name them all.  He can.  He also talks about values a lot.  Not righteousness, but fundamental values and how they are important to him in teaching his children and grandchildren.

George asked me to visit him in Nicaragua next year.  It most likely won’t happen but what a nice gesture.  Am glad George is back and look forward to many more runs together around CR. Am Glad George (Jorge) is my friend.

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“Music is a moral law….”

“Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.” – Plato

I owned one of these….

So, according to this article, Music before and after your run/race is beneficial – but not so much during hard racing, unless it’s slow music…

I have been wanting to post about music- The music I grew up with in the late 50s and then thru the 60s and 70s… and what I typically listen to now.. running or sitting….

This will require some focus and I’ll post about this next….

Until then…Music is the movement of sound to reach the soul for the education of its virtue. Plato




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Hate Has No Home Here

I’ve been displaying this sign on our front door for about a week now. Yesterday HATE knocked on the door of the JCC center where my granddaughter attends child care. Hate Has No Home Here – South Jersey/Camden County

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If you smile at me I will understand

If you smile at me I will understand
‘Cause that is something
Everybody everywhere does in the same language

Wooden Ships
On my morning run today, with the sunshine plentiful and a pleasant 58 degrees, I made note of all the folks and runners I passed who offered smiles.  I love this!  Smiling expresses kindness.  It’s not only the mouth that communicates but the eyes smile as well.  I chose to believe its in the nature of all people to smile – it’s undeniably deep inside us.  Travailing in countries where English is not the 1st language, smiling is essential.
Primatologist Signe Preuschoft traces the smile back over 30 million years of evolution to a “fear grin” stemming from monkeys and apes who often used barely clenched teeth to portray to predators that they were harmless, or to signal submission to more dominant group members. The smile may have evolved differently among species and especially among humans.
I plan on smiling a lot more….
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Some random thoughts from a now senior citizen (who votes) about current issues

Some random thoughts from a now senior citizen (who votes) about current issues – This is a way for me to think thru my own thoughts on current issues – Please know that my thoughts and comments are not made with the intent to “bash” or to incite..

I think we are at a point in history where we are trying to figure out “who we are” as a country…The older I get the more I reach back into history to try to understand where and why we are where we are today..Recent history (75 years) can tell us a lot about who we are.  For some this is just someone else’s memory and not relevant to today.  If ever there were a time for history lessons, it certainly seems that now is a good time.

Health Care – I truly believe Health Care has become a right (and an economic necessity) for every citizen. Our nation and our culture has grown to the point where it’s not only desirable but doable. Leadership -Please find a way to lead on this issue.

I’ve always wondered how the insurance companies, publicly traded corporations with a fiduciary obligation to their shareholders to produce a profit, can square this mandate with providing health services that are in the best interest of the patient / insured.

Medicare – Increase the payroll tax rate – Health Cost has gone up so should our dues…hopefully this will put the focus on the COST not the payment… (BTW – Medicare is the best healthcare I’ve ever had…Maybe break the notion that single payer is bad and you may be able to have a true impact on healthcare for all….)

Taxes – I don’t mind paying my fair share of taxes- I understand the need for funding government services (schools, infrastructure, defense, etc..) – The important word here is fair. It seems there is inequity between the wealthy and the rest of us. The American way -I am all for aspiring and obtaining wealth but there must be a fairness to this that does not dis-proportionally hurt the middle class or less fortunate. It was the middle class that has sustained (and defended) this country after all. To continue on this path of inequality will (is now) eventually tear apart the fabric of our country and is unsustainable. The wild west and gold rush days are behind us…

Social Security – Increase the wage base limit!!!! This is a no-brainer….

Defense – There’s no doubt it’s a scary world we live in – In and outside our borders…Leadership-please be SMART about this – Bullying existed, but never worked when I was growing up – there was always a tougher quite guy who would stare down the bullies. I am not naive to the threats, but suggest we position ourselves with strength not bravado..Diplomacy first please…

Immigration – Our freedom, universities, economy, technology companies, opportunities attract the best of the best. Don’t scare them away. Compassion please… especially with existing illegals. I know you guys are smart – figure this out….BTW -If I don’t want a wall built, do I still have to pay for of today, looks like the taxpayers are footing the 13-14 Billion dollar bill for this.  Just seems we could spend this money (Assuming we have it) in a much more productive way.  In someways, the immigrant realizes the value of citizenship more acutely then those of us who are birthrights.

Education – Like healthcare, this is a right in my mind. Educational mantra to live by.. “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” There are a multitude of intelligence’s – adapt our educational system to this condition. Earned (not free) higher education…. And please – Wall street should NOT profit from our kids education needs…!!!

Foreign Policy /NATO – I lived thru the “Bay of Pigs” and “Duck and Cover” exercises- Scared me -and I presume a lot of people.  Once launched there may very well be no turning back….A delicate situation to say the least.  Strength comes from consistency not unpredictability.  We have always been the calming force in the world – don’t let that change.

Controversial war cost -500K+ American lives in Vietnam.  Just shy of 5k in Iraq.  PLEASE – this is NOT just ink on paper.  Whether you believe these interventions were justified or not…Let’s not allow our leadership to act in a way that puts your Son / Daughter / Father / Mother / loved one in harms way without reflection on this.

I also believe that where there is injustice in the world, we should identify it and position ourselves with our friends and allies to expose and aid those who are victims..

In the course of a day, in my children’s company,  they will know that Dad will inevitability tell them to ..”Be a Gentleman..or Be a Lady..”  Our discourse needs to be more civil as well as open to those whose opinions we may not agree with.  My opinions run deep but I will not stop listening to opposing views – For me this is so very important – it helps me understand others.  I assume their concerns are as valid to them as mine our to me.  I will not dismiss them.  I want to understand.

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