Misc Shorts (100)
by Teresa Jordan
After Brooke Hopkins' life-altering accident, he and wife Peggy Battin write a new life together.
In the fall of 2008, at the age of 66, Brooke Hopkins retired as a professor of English literature at the University of Utah. Much beloved by his students and the recipient of every teaching award the University had to offer, he was also an avid outdoorsman and traveler. He and his wife, Peggy Battin, a renowned medical ethicist, had plans.
But first, as a retirement gift to himself, he bought a new bike. Less than a month later, he was sailing down City Creek Canyon above Salt Lake City when he came around a curve and collided with another rider. The other man was unhurt though the impact snapped his bike in two. Brooke, however, landed face down, unable to breathe. He had broken his neck and was paralyzed from the neck down.
by Swami Beyondananda
The shift has hit the fan...and all heaven has broken loose.
You say, “Heaven?? Where the hell do you see heaven?”
And yes, if you look at the news headlines from the past year, you’d have a hell of a time finding any heaven. It’s a dogma-eat-dogma world out there, and everyone seems caught up in the bipolar insanity. Even Poland is polarized—the North Poles and the South Poles. We talk about peace in the Middle East and we can’t even make peace in the Middle West. Here in America, we have a deeply divided body politic. Half the population believes our election system is broken; the other half believes it is fixed.
by Jana Lee Frazier
Calling Monty back: A meditation on a dog gone too soon.
The fallen apples smell like cider in the hot yellow autumn air, as I move back and forth along the line, hanging clothes and calling his name.
The wind whips the words right out of my mouth. The other dogs, his mother among them, look at me, wide-eyed and confused. They bolt away, the bright light bronzing their sleek sinewy backs, their ears awry, fast-moving feet making confetti out of the freshly cut grass.
I put down a sodden shirt and begin to walk. Wet leaves skim my forehead, kiss my lips, stick to my tears.
by Daniel Schmidt
Do these Feldenkrais-based exercises and improve your slope skills.
I am in my office, dressed in a shirt, jeans and downhill boots, about to clip into my skis. I can’t always get to the mountain, and sometimes I need some practice. A few quick minutes in the office with my skis can help me keep my body ready for the slopes. You can play along. All you need is enough clear space on a carpet or towel for your skis, and a little room on each side. Before we start, you might want to know why you would do this. These exercises are based in the Feldenkrais Method, an incredibly sophisticated system for learning movement (and more). The moves you use at home are the same as what you use on the mountain. It is easier to make improvements in a controlled environment—the good habits you start at home will show up naturally on the slopes.
by Machiel Klerk
Dreams can tell us much about ourselves—better retention of our dreams is all in the attitude.
I am engaged in a discussion with Bill Clinton. Then the mailman brings me a letter that says I am drafted to fight in Vietnam. The next moment I am in full combat in the jungle. When I wake up, I think I will remember this dream. In this space between dreaming and waking, the dream experience still feels real. It also makes total sense to me that I am in a conversation with Clinton and running through the jungle. Nothing about it seems strange, and I am not sure if it requires writing down. Plus, I am not convinced there is much more meaning in it than I already know. I am confident I will remember all of it. But if I don’t write it down, the dream experience will probably evaporate, as so many dreams do within minutes after awakening. The moment I reach my desk to jot down the dream, I notice that already some images I was sure I would remember have become very vague.
by Todd Mangum, M.D.
It's your body—here's some good information to help you decide.
I’m continuously asked, especially as flu season approaches, about the pros and cons of vaccinations. Since vaccines were first introduced, there has been ceaseless debate over both their necessity and their safety. Opinions on the ubiquitous use of inoculations span the gamut from those who think the practice is completely innocuous, to those who believe it is downright iniquitous. Good medicine, rather than good marketing, should influence your decisions. The benefits versus the risks should be evaluated for each individual, as well as for every vaccine. Because a vaccine exists is not reason enough to get it.
by Garrett Alberico
Over the past few years, the maple at 362 E Broadway became known in the neighborhood for the trinkets and treasures it bestowed on passerby. The gardener who tended the tree tells about the Giving Tree's final days.
They finally arrived in mid-August. Men in grey T-shirts and white hard hats. Urban Forestry had left the notice on the door when summer had just barely arrived; a rather thoughtful and compassionate note considering its bureaucratic origins. It informed us that after years of decline, the once-lovely maple in the parking strip had indeed died over the winter, and that the Dept. of Urban Forestry would remove the tree soon. They kindly thanked us for providing a home and caring for such a valued tree and acknowledged that it had served the community well.
by Steve Chambers
You walk, they follow. Sort of. Leaving it all behind with a High Uintas goat pack trip.
At 10,000 feet, the air has about half the oxygen it does at sea level, which explains my pounding heart and burning lungs. My backpack is lighter than usual, though, thanks to Shorty, who is carrying about 30 pounds of my 45 pounds of gear. Shorty is my goat.
by Diane Olson
It's hard to be benevolent when you're sharing your yard with a pocket gopher.
Rose bushes and shrubs topple, suddenly rootless. Carrots, beets and turnips are reduced to green-topped stubs. Entire plants vanish, dragged into the rodential underworld. Mounds of dirt sprout like oversized mushrooms, suffocating the plants beneath them. It’s usually the mounds that get to people. Especially people who like having a manicured lawn. A single pocket gopher can move four tons of soil to the surface in a year, making as many 300 mounds. Pretty impressive for a rodent the size of a guinea pig.
by Todd Mangum
Relaxed awareness creates a presence in the body.
It is key to good health. Shamanistic practices, meditation, breating exercises and being in nature are as good for the body as for the soul. Shamanism, our most ancient spiritual tradition, has been practiced by all indigenous populations on the planet. If we go back far enough, everyone comes from an indigenous culture. Indigenous wisdom is the knowledge of how to live sustainably on this planet, as we did for tens of thousands of years, without destroying the web of life.