Thursday, May 7, 2009

I am grateful for


Becoming a grandmother is wonderful.
One moment you're just a mother.
The next you are all-wise and prehistoric.
~Pam Brown

William Elliott Hazelgrove

Every book begins with Page One.

Hazelgrove wrote Ripples in 1992 (which is when I read it). I've been wondering how his writing has evolved and of course 'googled' him. I am especially interested in reading his novels Tobacco Sticks and Rocket Man.

So many books!

The following is copied from Ripples:

As I have gotten older, I have becoming increasingly aware of the painful inadequacies of the people around me, to whom I alone have assigned great expectations. It is no fault of theirs if they should fall short of this imaginary level which I set for them and they knew nothing about. My mother told me once it will come as quite a surprise to realize the world is not composed of people such as yourself, and that if I survive the ensuing crisis I just might learn something. She was right. I was surprised, and can only hope that I have learned something.

I love to cook . . . but some days . . . this would be nice

AFTER LONG DAYS AT WORK, JUDY McQueen and Buzzy Basch of Concord, N.H., were too tired to cook. But they got sick of pizza and Chinese takeout. So two months ago they hired Lisa Miner to whip up dinners like shiitake-stuffed chicken breasts and maple-mustard pork tenderloin. She mails them menus, shops, then visits their kitchen once every few weeks, fixing 10 reheatable dinners for two. The cost: $265. Says McQueen, "It's the next best thing to having your mom live next door."

The sign on the car in New Braunfels: "Personal Chef - Thyme and Wine Bill Waring 872-4653"

Beautiful Minds

Beautiful Minds
The Parallel Lives
of Great Apes and Dolphins

by Maddalena Bearzi and Craig B. Stanford

pp 2-4

...A gorilla and a bottlenose dolphin are about as closely related as a mouse and an elephant.

In spite of these differences, dolphins and apes--and by extension ourselves--share some strikingly similar and profoundly important traits. All three groups--the various dolphin species, the four great apes, and we humans--possess the acme of brains on Earth today. With due respect to a few other brainy animals like elephants, the cetaceans--dolphins and whales--and higher primates are the most cerebral of the world's creatures. We are all highly intelligent relative to the millions of other co-inhabitants of Earth. We live in highly complex, often fluid societies which defy the easy categories that apply to most other animals. The two creatures have evolved in parallel, exemplifying what biologists call convergent evolution. Although a casual observer won't see these parallels, research on dolphins and apes has produced increasingly abundant evidence for the comparison.

...However you define intelligence, apes and dolphins are second only to humans in brainpower. Their brains are enormous in comparison to the size of their bodies. This brainpower has allowed dolphins and apes to possess communication skills and social interactions so complex that we are only now beginning to understand how they work. Unlike most animals, apes and dolphins tend to live in flexible, open societies, and the relationships among individual animals are based on long-term memory of who is whose friend, and who owes whom a favor.