After a slow first five months, I'm back to blogging in earnest. In the forthcoming few months I plan to keep on tracking the blooming of wildflowers, the activities of bugs and reptiles and any other critters I'm quick enough or lucky enough to photograph, and to comment on ecological relationships. Since there is an increasing sense of ecological crisis among many people and more vigorous denial of such on the part of others, I will inevitably comment on the social and political dimensions of survival as I see them.
I am still an adjunct instructor in the English Department at Feather River College, but time permitting, I am available for hire as a nature guide in the region in and around Plumas County. A brochure describing my usual kinds of natural history adventures is in development. Email me c/o email@example.com with your mailing address and a statement of interests, and I'll send you a rough draft.
I have been teaching since 1965 and have recently joined the English Department as an Associate Faculty member at Feather River College. Recently taught Nature Literature in America and am currently teaching Interpersonal Communication and Basic Reading and Writing.
I do a lot of my best creative thinking on the other side of the wall behind this coolest of cats. Watching this cat assume his/her position in front the Alley Cat cafe, I was reminded of two things. First, an old poem by Lawrence Ferlinghetti that begins "Sometime during eternity...." The poet uses jazz musician terminology to describe a Christmas theme. Jesus is a cool cat, and "the cat who really laid it on us is his Dad...." At least one theme in the poem is the futility of petitionary prayer. Knowing Ferlinghetti, there are probably several more themes that I missed. Second, I'm reminded of a wonderful passage in Hannah Hinchman's book, A Trail Through Leaves, in which she compares getting used to various artists' tools to learning the idiosyncrasies of individual cats in terms of what they and their owners expect out of their relationships. The way one cat likes to be stroked might make another cat angry. Likewise, we need to learn the nuances of different pens, brushes, papers, etc., and make sure our expectations of their performance fits with what they are capable of delivering. To me, Hinchman's description of this process reads like poetry. I am finding that humans' relationships with pets, just as their relationships with the wilderness, reveals more about us that warrants introspection.
With that said, our youngest cat is due to be neutered. After the process is completed, I suspect I'll have more to report on cat positions.