Wednesday, January 19, 2011

India and China's shares of global output over centuries

In the year 1000 A.D., China and India's combined share of global output was 75% of total.   It shrunk to 5 percent by 2000.   It is estimated to rebound to 34 percent by 2030.

....from Business Week, 1/23/2011

Sunday, January 9, 2011

A Reporter from New York Asks Edith Mae Chapman, Age Nine, What Her Daddy Tells Her about the Strike: Poem by Diane Gilliam Fisher

We ain't to go in the company store, mooning
over peppermint sticks, shaming ourselves like a dog
begging under the table.  They cut off our account
but we ain't no-accounts.   We ain't to go to school
so's the company teacher can tell us we are.
We ain't going to meeting and bow our heads
for the company preacher, who claims it is the meek
will inherit the coal fields, instead of telling
how the mountains will crumble and rocks
rain down like fire upon the heads
of the operators, like it says in the Bible.
We ain't to talk to no dirtscum scabs
and we ain't to talk to God.  My daddy
is very upset with the Lord.

Set in the WVa coalfields of Mingo County, 1920's

Friday, December 31, 2010

I need the sea.....Pablo Neruda

I need the sea because it teaches me.
I don't know if I learn music or awareness,
if it's a single wave or its vast existence,
or only its harsh voice or its shining one,
a suggestion of fishes and ships
The fact is that until I fall asleep,
in some magnetic way I move in
the university of the waves.

Friday, December 10, 2010

wood dad

My father could identify grain, but color, by either, by both.   He was rarely stumped.   I wish he had taught me.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Dinner Roll Deterrence

For nearly 55 years I've have struggled (as I did today) to open the refrigerated dough dinner rolls.   But I have never had smooth sailing.   The foil tears the wrong way, I can't rip to the "black line" even exposed sometimes won't break apart.   And the little the dough supposed to pull apart easily on those marks?   Mine comes out as twisted candle shaped things.

I grew up with dark jewish bread and rolls, and so in my assimilationist moments these "dinner rolls" represented everything we weren't:  light, cheerful, sweet, airy.

I guess entry into that world was never to be easy.   I still can't open the rolls.   But on the few occasions I have a yen I suffer and feel jewishly inadequate.   It must be something my mother forgot to teach me.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

If the necktie fits, wear it......

Click on the above title to link to a wonderful animated film.....with an accordion moral.

Monday, November 29, 2010

A Day in the Life of Daisy the Dog....Told to Abby Becker, age 9, 1998

As soon as I heard the familiar clip clop clip clop of someone on the stairs and knowing it was a person coming downstairs to eat breakfast, feed me let me outside and do many other things I started to shake my kennel, whimper, and bark to let most-like Papa know I wanted out.

He came over to open the kennel.  As soon as he opened it I began running around the house, jumping on him and wagging my tail (or what was left of it) like crazy.

Wait a second let me explain something.   I'm Dasy Mango Becker (Daisy for short) and my pedigree name is Daisy, Princess of All Flowers.   I'm a full-bred springer spaniel and my biological mother's pedigree name is Irrisias Wendella, but her people, or as they like to call themselves "owners" call her Spot.   My real Dad's pedigree name is Sir Joshua Pugsley of Brittany.   I don't know what his people call him.

Anyway back to this morning when Papa fed me, I instantlhy started devouring me meal.  After thay, Papa let me go to the outside room, and as soon as I was done I banged on the see-through, hard, opening, thing that people like to call a window to let whoever was in the inside room know I wanted in.

This time, Papa's wife came to the outside room to let me in.   When I came in I saw Abby, who is the closest thing to my mom (so I call her Mom) and Mom's brother Benny eating breakfast.  They both got up to say hello, saying things like, "Hello, Daisy" and "you're so sweet" to me.  When we were done, they finished their breakfast and left.

Papa had already left.   Papa's wife put me in the outside room.  Then she left.  This is the part of the day that I hate most.  I sit around forever in the outside room.   I and watch for birds, sleep, bark at other dogs, but mostly I'm B-O-R-E-D.

After several hours, Papa's wife came home and let in.   I jumped on her, my tail was out of control, and ran around, which is appropriate since I had been in the outside room for so long.   Soon Mom and Benny came home, and petted me till I almost died from love.

The familiar call from Pap's wife came out, and it was music to my ears.   She said, "Will someone feed Daisy?"   ' I will," Mom replied.   As soon as she fed me I dug in.

After tha, Papa came home, and ai said hello to him.  I jumped on him.   He said, "Off."   I hate the word "off."   When I jump on a person, I'm expressing happiness, and people aren't grateful.   Off is my least favorite word next to no.

Anyways, Papa let me in the outsideroom and when I was done I banged on the "window."   I went inside, begged for food at the dinner table, and got some leftover chicken.  Yum!

Then Papa put me in my kennel and I recited what I always say before I got to sleep:  the letter that mg biological Mom sent.

"Although I miss you, I'm sure you are very happy in your new home.   Are you being goo?   I wanted to let you know that I am fine.   Also my hips are now officially OFA certified.   (Please tell your owners and they will explain the term to you.)  Hope you like the picture.   Be a good little English Springer Spaniel for Momma. Woof-Woof-Woof.

Irrissias Wendella"