Saturday, August 19, 2006
Thursday, U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor, ruled that the NSA surveillance program unconstitutional. In the 43 page ruling, Judge Diggs went on to say that the government, in defending the program, "appeared to be saying the president had the inherent power to violate laws of Congress. It was never the intent of the framers to give the president such unfettered control... There are no hereditary Kings in America and no powers not created by the Constitution. So all 'inherent powers' must derive from that Constitution.
On Friday, Bush fired back with his displeasure. In speaking of the opponents of the surveillance program, Bush declared that they, "do not understand the nature of the world in which we live. I strongly disagree with that decision, strongly disagree. That's why I instructed the Justice Department to appeal immediately, and I believe our appeals will be upheld."
Sigh. I suspect they will. Bush will keep trying to get this, infraction of our Constitutional rights, turned back into his favor because he believes that he is indeed above the law. The thing is, we all know that America is no safer then pre 9/11, and that we will get no help from his administration in the event of another disaster natural or not. If he does manage to get things reversed back into his favor, it will set a precedent that will change the Constitution of the United States. He promised to protect and defend the Constitution, not rewrite it to suit his administration's agenda. Sigh. It will mean one more thing, it will mean that Osama Bin Laden will have been victorious, 5 years after he struck America, in bringing about a change to our Constitution, and our civil rights as Americans and the personal freedoms we have been fighting for. Ironic, isn't it? By the way, nearly 5 years has gone by, why haven't we captured Osama Bin Laden yet? Still waiting for an answer to that question.
"Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties."
Friday, August 18, 2006
AOL Journal Land is a happy place to be at the moment. This week they are celebrating 3 years of journaling excellence, concluding with a live chat on Sunday night. Like in past years, many talented and generous members of the land are pitching in to make it a great time for everyone. The First Lady of AOL Journals, Vivian, has all the details and links to the various members and journal/blogs which will be participating. See the official "3rd Anniversary Journal," for details. Steven has created a special AOL journal, "It's Raining Photos," and is currently making an online photo album from submitted member's photos. He has done some really amazing things for the land in the past, and this time around he has come through again. There is still time to participate, the cut-off date is Sunday, so be sure and drop by and have a look at all the work he has done.
I have an anniversary coming up this week as well. Next Wednesday, August 23rd will mark my three year anniversary as a blogger. In that time I have learned so much, about myself and others. I have made some wonderful friends, and some amazing memories. When I moved over here to Blogger, I wasn't sure what to do with the old Ellipsis. I thought about making a clean break by deleting it, but I never had the heart. I considered archiving it over here, but that had it's obstacles as well. Sigh. So, Ellipsis has sat in AOL mothballs since last November, without any visitors, except for myself when I want to feel close to the old neighborhood again. I had friends that had to leave us all too soon, but who will forever remain a part of the rich history of the land, such as Pam and Frank. Then there are the friends who simply slipped away, due to life, like Slomo and Gregg. Sometimes I still go by Slomo's to sit and read old entries, and most of all to wish her well. Sigh. If you are out there darlin...I still miss you so much, but most of all, I hope in my heart that you are safe and happy.
A lot happened when things exploded last November, but one thing never changed, at least for me, was the fact that I still care about the people in that land. I may have changed addresses, but I didn't change inside. AOL didn't define who I was or what I was about. I hope that makes sense. I still DO NOT support the higher ups at AOL who tried to decide for me what content would be displayed on my journal. I DO NOT support the way they treated us during the fall-out, and it still makes me a little sad to think that they put those ads on our journals, like a vandals in the middle of the night. But as awful as that was, that was merely the final straw as to why I left. Problems had been coming up for months, anyone else remember the porn spam that infected our blogs? By the time "Black Tuesday" came around, I knew in my heart it was time to move on.
Suddenly I landed over here at Blogger, which is why I named my blog here, " Ellipsis...Suddenly Carly." I have learned a lot over here. I have had great pals like Shelly and Karen to help me out, and I feel I have experienced a growth as a blogger here, I never would have back in the old neighborhood of AOL. But like with any old neighborhood, you don't forget your neighbors, or care about them any less. So, after thinking it over carefully, I decided to go ahead and submit my photo to Steven for his album project, and after talking to some good friends, like Vivian and Patrick, I can sit here with a smile, and think to myself that, that old saying isn't always true, "YOU CAN GO HOME AGAIN." :)
To celebrate my personal three years of Ellipsis, I have decided to dust the old girl off and reopen her for a week, beginning this coming Sunday, complete with typos and all. LOL. Remember when AOL didn't have spell checks? LOL. I am surprised anyone ever read me at all. Sheesh. LOL. So, if you began reading me here and never saw my old place, this is your chance to drop by and have a look around. If you used to enjoy reading me over at AOL...well...like I said...I'm still just me, I like hearing from you no matter where I am. :) The AOL Ellipsis, will be opened up early Sunday morning, if you want to come by. I expect that the content will be different then my entries here. I plan to do some looking back, but like I always do, I will probably just let the journal flow where it wants. Hope to see you there. :)
Thursday, August 17, 2006
"O great creator of being, grant us one more hour to perform our art and perfect our lives."
There are all kinds of art forms in the world, and I enjoy all of them. Granted some more then others, but one my favorite things about living in the Bay Area, is the fun of watching the performance art of the street performers. We have them here in Berkeley, but they are perhaps more often associated with San Francisco. There was a time when you couldn't visit Golden Gate Park, without seeing one form of street performer or another. Mimes, musicians, magicians. It was always great fun. Robin Williams in his early days, and mimes, Shields and Yarnell, just to name a few of the most famous. For a while, street performing had been discouraged, but slowly former San Francisco mayor, Willie Brown reintroduced them back to the city. Now you can see them along Pier 39, Golden Gate Park, and the Embarcadero.
When I was in Santa Cruz last week, I happened upon this fellow," The Great Morgani," who was performing at the Pacific Garden Mall, in downtown Santa Cruz. The Pacific Garden Mall, has to be one of the nicer open air malls I have seen in the area. It consists of three lovely tree lined streets and has a good bit of public art on display throughout. There are some lovely outdoor cafes, and several street performers to make things a little more interesting. As I was driving down Pacific avenue the other day, looking for a parking place, I heard someone playing, "Lady of Spain," on the accordion. LOL. Yep, that song was definitely meant for the accordion. LOL. I was lucky enough to find a spot just up the street from where the music was coming from, so I decided to check it out. I was ready for an average guy, maybe wearing a Burgundy suede tuxedo, circa 1952, but what I found was much more imaginative then that. I found "The Great Morgani Accordionist Extraordinaire," aka Frank Lima.
While his web site states clearly that he plays, "everything except Lady of Spain or Metallica," I distinctly remember hearing that particular song that day. Hmmm, but in that "The Great Morgani" is an affable guy, who takes requests, perhaps he made an exception for a grateful fan. Could be. LOL. He is a great family entertainer, who enjoys interacting with his audience, including the children. When asked by a parent of child of about 3 years old, to "play something for the kids," he happily played, "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star." You should have seen the smile on that child's face. Now that's art! :)
"The Great Morgani"
Santa Cruz, California
August 11, 2006
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
My goodness I do find adventure wherever I go. LOL. Last Friday, Alan and I drove down to Santa Cruz to attend the John Waite concert on the beach. I love those free summer concerts, and Santa Cruz is a really fun place to just relax, let your hair down and to enjoy watching people and the awesome seaside scenery. Last Friday however, I saw a little more scenery then I had intended! LOL. We left the house really early that day, so we could see both lighthouses in Santa Cruz, Walton, and the Surfer's Lighthouse and museum. We also decided to take a short ride north on HWY1 to the Natural Bridges beach, because come this autumn, it will be a great place to see the migration of the Monarch butterflies. Also, there is a lot of public art throughout the city and beach areas, and you know me, I can't pass up the chance to photograph public art. :) It's my passion.
When we first arrived in town, we drove down to the boardwalk area, to see the beach, and the crowd. Doing so, would help us determine how much time we had before we had to find a parking place for the concert. It was a cool day, and so the beach wasn't too crowded, so we continued on up the coast highway to Natural Bridges. About three miles or so up the road, I noticed an obelisk, sitting next to two benches that overlooked the ocean and a small cove. We stopped, and as I photographed the art, I noticed that there was a lovely little waterfall situated above the cove, so I moved a little closer to the cliff and looked over the side. Down below were two guys, playing Frisbee. I thought to myself, "Hey...they both have on the same kind of bathing suit. They are both wearing gold. Maybe it is some kind of club. How fun." So, I began to snap photos. The sun was bright, so I set the camera on zoom, and decided to check the photos when I got back to the car. Ut oh!
That wasn't gold bathing suits they were wearing...it was gold birthday suits! YIKES!! I couldn't help it...I started to laugh. It had been a mistake on my part, I had NO idea there was a nude beach that close to the town. LOL. Of course I didn't research it before I went because I wasn't looking for that...it found me! LOL. When I got home, I looked on the Internet, and to my amazement, there are several nude beaches between Santa Cruz and Davenport, along HWY 1. In fact, there are many nude beaches in the Bay Area, and northern California. I also discovered that here is also some etiquette involved, and most of the places have clear postings about how to conduct oneself on a nude beach, but there was no postings where I had been earlier in the day. Hmmm...
I have never actually been to a nude beach, but I have had many, many spontaneous clothing malfunctions. LOL. Never planned mind you. :) I don't know, they just kinda happend. Speaking for myself, it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world to visit a nude beach, and I might do so one day, or maybe I won't. I think it is good when folks can enjoy themselves, and feel good about just being who they are...clothed or not. I wasn't able to find out any information about the obelisk, so maybe it is just the marker for the beach. Of course just because it is a marker, doesn't mean it isn't it art I suppose. Those people were having fun that day, and that is a very good thing in this harsh world. There is a great beauty in seeing anyone simply enjoying a day. The act of living can be an art form unto itself. That's what I like about art, it provokes us to think about how we view life, and encourages us to look beyond the immediate. Sometimes life is art!
Four Mile Beach
Natural Bridges Beach
Concert On The Beach
Sunset on the Wharf
I saw a lot of fun things that day, including some awesome public art downtown at the Pacific Garden Mall. We never actually made it to the concert on the beach, we had been too busy that day, just letting the day happen. We ended the day with a nice dinner at Gilda's on the wharf, where we also listened to the concert. It was just across the bay, and you could hear the music quite well. I got to hear my favorite John Waite song, "Missing You," which brought back a lot of memories. :)
So tell me, if you happened along a nude beach, would you join in the fun, or simply walk away?
"Every time I think of you, I always catch my breath
And I'm still standing here and you're miles away
And I wonder why you left
And there's a storm that raging, through my frozen heart tonight
I hear your name in certain circles, and it always makes me smile
I spend my time thinking about you, and it's almost driving me wild
And there's a heart that's breaking, down this long distance line tonight
I ain't missing you at all, since you've been gone away
I ain't missing you...no matter what I might say."
- from Missing You
"Scenes from Santa Cruz"
Santa Cruz, California
August 11, 2006
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
"There wouldn't be a sky full of stars, if we were all meant to wish on the same one."
Your Monday Photo Shoot: Show off a favorite space photo from NASA. Challenge for the folks who participated in the Photo Shoot last year: Pick a new photo you love. Given all the amazing photos from NASA over the years of space explorations, this shouldn't be difficult.
-John Scalzi (By The Way)
For this assignment I chose the Cat's Eye Nebula (NGC 6543), which is in the constellation of Draco. According to the NASA web site, it is considered "one of the most complex nebulae known," and when viewed with the Hubble Telescope, you can see structures such as, "knots, jets, and sinewy arc-like features." It was discovered by William Herschel, on February 15th, 1786, and was the first planetary nebula whose spectrum was investigated by English amateur astronomer, William Huggins, in 1864. The brightness of this nebula has been set at 8.1. It is easily seen from most of the northern hemisphere. "The nebula is made up of mostly hydrogen and helium. The features of the Cat's Eye nebula are so complex, that astronomers suspect that the bright central object might actually be a binary star system."
I really like this particular heavenly a lot, but there are other photos of space I enjoyed as well...
"The stars are the jewels of the night, and perchance surpass anything which day has to show."
-Henry David Thoreau
Keplar's Supernova Remnant
"It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves."
Infared View of Saturn
"You must carry chaos inside you, to give birth to a dancing star."
The Moon (I took that photo) :)
"Every fool knows you can't touch the stars, but it doesn't stop a wise man from trying."
The Inside Of My Left Retina.
Ok, I know, I know, the inside of my left retina wasn't photographed by the Hubble Telescope, but it does help me see all that neat stuff in outer space, and here on earth as well. I thought my left eye deserved a mention. LOL. And it does kind of look like something you might see in outer space.
"Watch the stars, and learn from them
To the Master's honor all must turn,
each in it's track, without a sound
forever tracing Newton's ground."
Monday, August 14, 2006
Michel de Montaigne
In less then a month, America will observe the 5th anniversary of one of the darkest days in our history. The anniversary of the September 11th, terrorist strike against the United States. 2,996 people lost their lives that day. Some worked in the World Trade Center, some at the Pentagon, others aboard American Airlines Flights, 11, and 175, and United Airlines, Flights 77, and 93. Also killed that day, were members of the New York City Police department, and the New York City Fire department.
There is a project going on right now, which will honor those lost to us that day, it is called, "2,996 A Tribute To The Victims Of 9/11." And you can help. If you visit that web site, you can sign up to write a special tribute to one of people who were lost to the world that day, on your personal blog. The organizers of the project will email you the name of a person, who is still available from the list. It's not about politics, it's not an opportunity to express your opinion of the world, post 9/11, it's a chance to share about the life of someone who was among the 2996 murdered that day. It's an opportunity to share a little bit about who, and what we all lost that day. I already have the name of who I will be paying tribute to, and in a strange kind of way, it is helping me to heal a little to know I can share with you about someone who touched so many lives.
If you would like to help make a difference, and help us all heal a little more, simply click on the graphic below, or the one on my sidebar, and you will be redirected to the 2,996 Project site. I want to thank my friend Patrick, for telling me about this important project. He has also been assigned a name, and will be writing a tribute to one of the lost. I hope you will consider joining us. The project still needs volunteers, the last time I checked there was still over 1,000 names which had not been assigned to someone for tribute. As my friend Patrick said, "we can do better then that." We should always remember those we lost that day, and what they meant to the world.
Santa Cruz, California
August 11, 2006
Sunday, August 13, 2006
"Photography records the gamut of feelings written on the human face, the beauty of the earth and skies that man has inherited, and the wealth and confusion man has created. It is a major force in explaining man to man."
It has been quite a week. LOL. Funny thing, it has seemed to have a "vehicle" theme. A near miss accident I had on Wednesday, the announcement of our next Round Robin challenge of "Transportation," which was written by Karen on Thursday, John Scalzi's Weekend Assignment, "Learning To Drive, on Friday, and yesterday I wrote a promo entry for the Round Robins. LOL. So, it seemed like a natural to choose a photo that would finish out the weekend, while keeping to the current theme. LOL. Hey, I am thinking it must be fate! So, how about we have some fun, shall we? Instead of only having one choice to submit captions for, how about two choices? You may have seen both of these photos before, either on my journal on AOL, or on Alan's former journal, "F-Stop." Although they have been previously published, I still though it might be fun to see what you would have named them, if you had photographed them. :) The Photo above will be "Car A."
This one will be "Car B."
As always, you can submit as many guesses as you want, but you must enter each guess as a separate comment, and you MUST indicate which car you are submitting the caption for. Simply put "Car A," or "Car B." The winner will receive an original photograph by me, as their prize. You have until next Saturday, August 19th, at midnight, to submit your captions. The winner will be announced on Monday, August 21st. Good luck!