sea grass
blogging, Environment

“It’s Not Just a Crisis of Climate” – Guest Martin Fredricks IV

It’s Not Just a Crisis of Climate: by Martin C. Fredricks IV

Everything I need to know about the climate crisis and the need to speak positively about what can be done I’ve seen in my daughters’ eyes.

Martin C. Fredricks IV

One is 19 and the other is 13. Both, at different times, have had a slightly fearful but determined look in their eyes while telling me they don’t plan on having children. Each followed it up with, “Why would I….”

“The world’s going to be uninhabitable soon,” each has said in her own way. “Why would I bring kids into that.”

It’s not a question, but a statement of moral conviction. They don’t want it this way, but they’re looking to the future with eyes wide open. They reason it would be wrong to put any additional human beings through what looks likely to be coming.

But there’s no anger or disappointment from me. Just sadness. Not because my wife and I might never have grandchildren, but because our daughters and people their age around their world have to think this way. Theirs is the first generation forced to look at Armageddon not as some far-off, theoretical threat, but as a real possibility within their lifetimes.

I’m partially to blame. I talk, think and write about the climate crisis all the time; no doubt I’ve been too bitter and graphic about it too many times around the dinner table.

But in truth we all share some blame. We’ve enabled the politicians and governments that have their heads stuck deep into the sand, not to mention the lobbying slush funds of fossil-fuels companies. They’re blindly, happily and willfully ignorant of the damage we’re already experiencing.

Think about the power outages in Texas. The fires on the west coast of the USA, in the Amazon and across Australia. The flooding in Indonesia. Or the Covid-19 pandemic around the world. Scientists tell us this particular coronavirus strain was able to jump from animals to humans at least partly because of climate-related habitat loss.

Better still, read scientific reports like “Special Report: Global Warming of 1.5°C” by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the “Fourth National Climate Assessment” by the U.S. Global Change Research Program. They paint a clear, fact-based picture of what’s coming if people do not curtail carbon emissions at least 45 percent by 2030 and down to net zero by 2050.

Yet we still hear officials say climate change is a deception, and we still see social media posts like this from our neighbors:

To which I always respond:

Fortunately, there are starting to be more that say things like:

Which is on the right track. The false debate about climate change’s existence is over.

It’s now time to act.

I’ve been doing what I can, and now, with my daughters’ eyes haunting me, I’m recommitted. That look is in my mind’s eye every time I write a post, march for climate action or attend a meeting about sustainability.

It’s also why I’ve started telling them the good news about the climate crisis –

If human beings start doing the right things right now, there’s still time. We can save our planet and ourselves by electing the right people, pressuring the wrong ones through peaceful protest, stopping financial support for corporations that fund fossil fuel extraction, and doing everything else we can in our own lives and communities.

Because, remember: what we say and what we do make a difference, especially to the people we love most.

So how are you talking about the climate crisis with the most important people in your life?

© 2021 Martin C. Fredricks IV

Every post on Martin’s blog, IV Words, is a foreword to what comes next with the climate crisis, environment, politics, progressive causes, social justice and “the way it is.”

Martin is also an avid photographer.

Check out Martin’s blog at IVWords.com.

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blogging, Environment

Friendly Friday Blogging Challenge – Something Different

Friendly Friday Blogging Challenge

Sandy set a Friendly Friday challenge to come up with Something different and I was convinced I’d failed to find anything noteworthy until I read Ally Bean’s Rudolph Framework which she’s adapted from a marketing analysis by author Ann Handley.

reindeer encased in glass bubbles art
Not ‘Rudolph’ but quirky namesake

The Rudolph Marketing Framework

The Rudolph Framework “helps you understand the actual problem you and your business solve for your customers– not the one you *think* you solve.” Click HERE to be taken to her fun explanation of this framework.

thespectacledbean.com/2021/02/23/applying-a-business-framework-to-this-personal-blog-to-tell-a-tale/

Most know, or will quickly find out, I am no blog business guru and to be frank, StPA is purely self-expression via my own mindful meanderings covering a multitude of topics from the environment to photography.

Therefore, you might, as I initially did, think this Rudolph exercise holds little relevance in the blogging world and is akin to writing one of those verbose, but glib ‘mission statements.’ [Groan]

Photo by Christina Morillo on Pexels.com

Those two words, ‘mission statement,’ is enough for me to tune out and yet, reading further, I quickly realized that I did want to know where I might be headed blog-wise, and that a little blogging self-examination may indeed be useful, at least to me. Add to that, Ally mentioned that she was curious to see where the framework would take other bloggers. Thus, I’d dive right in. I may have taken it in a tangent way off the original intention, but it IS an experiment so who knows where we will end up.

Following are the Framework questions. One fills in the blanks for how it pertains to your blog. Like one of those grammar exercises back in school. Easy, right?

Something to Ponder About Blog’s Rudolph Framework

  1. Once upon a time, there was a blog focused on information important enough to share with others that promoted open, independent discussion called Something to Ponder About.
  2. It has the capacity to question, to inform, to frustrate and possibly to validate aspects of environmental change, in addition to various other topics.
  3. Some people doubt it because they’re sure technology will be the saviour in any environmental disaster and the blogosphere is merely filled with rank amateurs who not only ignore contradictory information and opinions, but seem hell-bent on locking up the planet, subverting business progress or fixate on their own capitalistic endeavours. [which is incorrect].
  4. But one day, the earth shouts at ALL its people so loudly that heads turn and deaf ears and closed eyes open.
  5. Which means that more folks become interested in environmental change and start to connect with bloggers and others who recognize we all live on one heavenly body.
  6. To help the awareness of planetary health and survival for all sentient beings.
  7. And that matters because the global population needs access to independent information and different opinions, from many diverse sources which results in an informed global community, who might be more proactive about positive change, mindful of equity and respectful of differences.
  8. In the process, you help coalesce a community of global cohesiveness and egalitarian understanding with blogs being one small catalyst.
  9. The Planet gets a kiss!

Applying the Rudolph Framework to Your Own Blog

If you wish to try this writing experiment with your own blog, check in with Ally. Blogger etiquette would suggest you cite Ann Handley and include a pingback to The Spectacled Bean.

reflecion in glass ball
Something Different

If you wish to join in with the Friendly Friday Challenge, check the instructions, or visit Sandy’s Friendly Friday post.

I will be back with another Friendly Friday challenge theme on Friday 12th March, 2021.

Amanda

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beach
Environment

Can We Defeat Climate Change?

Our parents and grandparents say,

“Why blame us for global warming?”

They point out they never had all our cars, air conditioning, computers and devices.

That is true.

Ron Mueck
Ron Mueck Sculptures

However, it is not the damage of past generations so much as the story of the last thirty years and the speed of increase is concerning, as David Wallace-Wells points out:

Half of the all the emissions that have ever been produced from the burning of fossil fuels, in the entire history of humanity, have been produced in just the last thirty years.

More than in all the centuries and millennia before.

D.Wallace Wells

Wallace-Wells believes we are on the brink of catastrophe. He states this is not the work of our ancestors, it is more so the work of a single generation – his. [Despite this we are all responsible for the future.]

He also points out that it is a reflection of how much power we wield over this planet, so we can do something to help.

The obstacles may be enormous, but the main driver of global warming is human action and how much carbon we put into the atmosphere. And we can do something about that!

Because –

We will be writing the climate change story whether we like it or not.

Inaction is not a choice. I prefer alternatives and solutions.

Environmental Emissions Problems and Solutions

Photo by American Public Power Association on Unsplash

Problem: 2/3 of the carbon emissions can be attributed to the burning of fossil fuels!

Solution: Employ solar arrays or increase uptake of renewable energy sources. A sliver of Sahara Desert can absorb enough solar energy to power the world’s energy needs.

Problem: 2/3 of power generation is lost to waste heat so a new electric grid is needed.

Solution: Renewables is the cheaper default for energy needs and are now cheaper than fossil fuels

350.org/why-a-managed-shift-away-from-fossil-fuels-is-essential-and-urgent-including-for-petrostates/

Problem: The fuel companies have political and lobbying power ans influence over policy and stocks and shares are invested heavily in coal and fossil fuel companies.

Solution: – Divest from fossil fuels eg. Was Macht Mein.De

Problem: Methane and Carbon emissions from agriculture.

Solution:Turn cattle producing farms into carbon sinks and feed cattle seaweed which will gives a 90% reduction of methane

Problem: Rising sea levels from Global warming melting polar ice caps

Solution: Build seawalls and levies to protect coastal areas

Problem: An alternative type of air travel that doesn’t produce carbon is needed.

Solution: ? Unknown

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

We hold the future of planet in our hands.

We won’t beat climate change – but we can modulate and live with it. The only obstacles to that are human ones.

Do YOU believe you can make a difference?

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Where am I
blogging, Mental Health, Motivational, Philosophy

Thoughts

Photo by jasmin chew on Pexels.com

“How many slams in an old screen door?

Depends how loud you shut it.

How many slices in a bread?

Depends how thin you cut it.

How much good inside a day?

Depends how good you live ’em.

How much love inside a friend? Depends how much you give ’em.”

It’s all about interpretation and perspective isn’t it? Each person’s perspective is shaped by the way they have lived their various life experiences.

The way we see the world is via our own idiosyncratic lens,so it begs the question as to why so many expect others to understand and perhaps agree with them?

Many thanks to Yvette ~ Priorhouse Blog for supplying the inspiration for today’s post.

Mental Health, Motivational

What We Can and Cannot Change

Do you ever think about what you want to happen in a forthcoming situation? Or does worry get in the way and you tend to focus on what you don’t want to happen?

The Ego and Finding Fault

It seems our ego focuses naturally on the negative aspects, due to an outdated evolutionary adaptation and we are then in a postion that makes us hard-pressed to see positives.

Fault finding comes from believing your happiness comes from the world according to your liking.

We then tend to find fault with whatever is going on, to blame others or circumstances, especially where the outcome has been less than, what we consider, satisfactory.

This may have helped us survive in pre-historic times, where man-eating beasts lurked close by, but is hardly relevant to modern life. Now, our egos flood our brains with self-critical thoughts, most of which are not terribly accurate and anxiety quickly follows.

Photo by Anete Lusina on Pexels.com

Lee Jampolsky once asked a stressed-out salesman,

“What is the real purpose of a sale?

Replying about his own needs and that he wanted to boost his sale stats, Jampolsky then encouraged the salesman to instead direct his thought focus outwards – ie. so that his real purpose in a transaction or interaction would be that he was genuinely interested in the person he was selling to, in being patient and kind and, to try to ‘see’ the customer’s heart.

To the salesman’s surprise, his sales rose significantly and he was no longer so stressed when he followed that sageful advice. His customers picked up on those non-verbal and verbal signals that he ‘cared.’

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Contemplating Goals

Without the ego naturally defaulting to negative, there is room in our minds for all sorts of alternative thoughts.

Contemplating a more positive goal at the beginning of any situation may help influence the outcome, (even if you are not convinced of its worth, at first).

What Went Wrong?

Don’t waste your precious time on analysing what went wrong with a situation. Ignore those feelings that you have been short-changed in lifeas they tend promulgate the victim concept, which only makes you feel worse.

Think about what your goal is, making it pertinent to your perception and personal actions and see what happens.

We can attract the exact things that we give thought oxygen to or dwell on.

Jampolsky believes that we can direct ourselves to be peaceful inside regardless of what is happening outside.

Do you Agree?

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blogging, Photography

Friendly Friday – Special Treat Challenge

We are in the midst of a casual baking challenge in a (time-unlimited) bake-off with Sandy, Moon and Ju-Lyn. Sandy has issued a counter challenge for me to make a Dacquoise ( See Sandy’s pic below). I have to summon up a little more courage before making that. All in good fun though.

Dacquoise dessert from The Sandy Chronicles

Whilst it is somewhat of a cross-cultural event, spanning Canada, USA, and Singapore, my Pavlova recipe was very traditional, originating in the Australian Women’s Weekly Cookbook.

If you are curious and want to try this – here is my version of the Australian Pavlova recipe.

The Pavlova was my Special treat for Friendly Friday

Pavlova

Read more about how I made this particular pavlova here.

I will be back in week’s time with a new theme for Friendly Friday. Come visit StPA then.

beach sunrise with motivation saying to unite bloggers around the world
blogging, Community, Motivational, Travel

Morning World Blogger Video

When Vero from LesFrenchChronicles started a Vlogging collaboration, Bloggers with a View, it was a fun idea that connected bloggers around the world.

Taking a look into the snippets of another’s life, another’s world. People that we only knew through words on a screen.

That is one reason why we yearn to travel isn’t it? To see different perspectives and sights?

To meet and get to know other people?

The first Bloggers with a View video not only was fun to think about and to make, it connected us in new ways.

If one shakey video has the power to connect people from opposite sides of the globe, then what would happen if we did it again, and possibly again?

Thanks to Vero, the Vlogging Project was born. The theme for my Video ‘Vlog’ collaboration was ‘Morning.

Blogger Video Collaboration themed Morning
Blogger Video Collaboration – Morning

Contributing bloggers were from France, Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

Let’s take a look at how different parts of the world greeted the January morning.

Joining Something to Ponder About in this collaboration were the following bloggers. Thanks so very much for your supportive efforts. Well done!

Sandy – The Sandy Chronicles

Ushasita – Le coin des bobby

‘Toon’ Sarah – Travel with Me

Vero – Les French Chronicles

Are you a blogger who would you like to join in with the next collaboration?

Visit here to find out more

fjord norway with jetty
blogging, Philosophy

The World in Our Mind

Experts lay the origin of certain mental health complaints squarely at the foot of one’s early life experiences. That said, can they really account for as much as is suggested? If not, should psychological interventions be tailored to take this thought into account?

responsibility quote Gabor Mate

Environment and Genetics – Nature versus Nurture.

Marsha hosts a Writer’s Quotes Wednesday Writing Challenge –#WQWWC which I am joining in a little early today – as it is Wednesday here, already.

I believe the theme this week is Trustworthiness. My take on this theme is a little skewed, but I thought – Can I trust my intuition, my own thoughts? Should I trust my intuition?

Yesterday two things came to mind, nothing serious, just thoughts and today, those two things were most significant in events, both, in my house and the larger region where I live.

Intuition or coincidence?

Does this ever happen to you?

If you have pre-cognitive thoughts, do you or should you, trust them?

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Something to Ponder about. Blog about Arts, crafts, Cooking Travel and Photography
blogging, Photography

Friendly Friday Challenge Returns

The Friendly Friday Challenge is a fortnightly challenge co-hosted by myself and Sandy from The Sandy Chronicles.

Get Ready for the Friendly Friday Challenge

The first challenge for 2021 will commence this coming Friday 29th January over at Sandy’s blog.

Friendly Friday Challenge 2021

We are opening up the challenge a little more this year, making its focus not purely on photography but making it a little more varied, a little more open and interesting.

Every other week we will post a topic to inspire a post featuring a story, a photo, a recipe or anything else that captures your imagination.  

You can post once, twice or as many times as you’re inspired by the topic.

Sandy and I will take turns in posting challenges.  Keep notified  by following both our blog’s at  Something to Ponder About  and  The Sandy Chronicles

How to join the Challenge

  • Write a post titled ‘Friendly Friday- xxx Prompt name xxx’ with tag ‘Friendly Friday’
  • Include a link to the original Friendly Friendly Challenge post on the host’s blog
  • Optionally, you can include the latest Friendly Friday Challenge logo. Download it here.
  • Comment on the host’s Friendly Friday post, so that other readers can find and read your response.
  • Remember to include a link to your post in your comment. This will guarantee a visit, in the event the automatic ping-back does not work.
  • Visit other Friendly Friday entries by following their links. It’s fun!
  • Follow the host blogs to see future Friendly Friday Challenges

The Benefits

  • Increase your exposure in our blogging communities
  • Inspire and be inspired by diverse blog articles
  • Challenge your creativity
  • Make new friends and keep in touch with old ones

Are you joining in this year?

Australia

Australian Slang – Lost in Translation, Mate

Sometimes, Australian Slang causes problems. Every Aussie uses it. When you’re born here, the meaning of those strange, shortened words are absorbed by osmosis. We are hardly even cognizant we’re saying them. We assume everyone understands what we mean.

australia meme
Photo Credit: Facebook

However, being so different to standard English words, the Australian Vernacular makes it difficult for non-native English speakers to understand, especially for those whose exposure to English has only been within the classroom, or via TV sit-coms. The full meaning of slang is often lost.

Mail Order Brides in Australia

Before the days of Tinder and dating agencies becoming mainstream, older single or widowed Aussie men might meet a prospective wife via a newspaper ad and through letters from The Philippines. Mail Order Brides wasn’t a nice social practice, but this story is not so much about that issue, as it is about the language barrier where slang is concerned.

The Moth’s (Man of the House), elderly Aunt had been divorced from her husband, Bob for some time, even though he still attended family gatherings. As Bob aged, he longed for company, so no one was particularly surprised when a delightful older lady, named Mary, accepted his offer to leave the Philippines, marry him and live in Australia.

country farm australia

Australia Day Family Barbeque

One Australia Day, Mary and Bob attended a family barbeque not far from their new home. Most of the farmers in the area were also extended family members, so Bob introduced his new wife to the family and also to country hospitality: ie barbeque food: meat, sausages, pavlova and loads of Beer. Very traditional, if you are Australian.

A few hours later, it was clear to all that Mary’s new husband had consumed far too many beers to drive either of them home.

Lost in Translation

As Mary was impatient to leave, she started walking home along the long, dusty road, herself. As she went to leave, an approaching car pulled over. Leaning out the car window, a neighbouring farmer shouted:

“Where ya headed, luv?”

“I go home,” Mary answered, eyes a little downcast. Guessing she was the newcomer who lived at least a half hour’s walk away, the old farmer flashed a big grin and said:

“Come with me, luv. I’ll run you over.”

Terrified, with eyes as big as saucers, Mary turned around and dashed back to her husband’s side, crying,

“I not want to die. He kill me.”

Aghast and confused, Bob stuttered, “Steady on, luvie ….Whad, whadya mean?

Pointing to the farmer’s car, Mary said:

“I not want to die. He said, He’d run me over!”

That’s ‘Straya,’ mate!

blogging

Morning Vlog Collaboration

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

We all crave connections with others. It is a basic human need.

Connection with the people we live with, friends and within our community.

Corona Virus makes that much more difficult.Travel is restricted or non existant and there is an ongoing threat to our health. Our mental and physical health takes a battering.

Many of us turn to online classes, meetings and get-togethers to maintain the human to human connections and interactions with others.

To this end, Vero from lesfrenchchronicles and other bloggers wanted, in a small way, to counteract isolation with a video collaboration from bloggers all over the world, including myself. The result was a compilation of video excerpts from each blogger’s life, as seen through a window, door, or hatch!

It was fun, fresh and well, take a look and see for yourself.

Why make a Collaborative Video?

Through sharing small snippets of life in the different regions of the world, a collaborative video may create visual links, may improve connections, bridge misunderstandings and assist in breaking barriers between people from different regions. We all live in the one world, right?

How to Participate in a Collaborative Video

You will need to prepare a 20 second Instagram like video in landscape mode, based on your interpretation of the theme of “morning.”

The video needs to reach my inbox before Tuesday 2nd February and does not need to show you in it. [ie. you can be behind the camera].

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Video Theme of Morning

The video should portray your idea of ‘morning.”

‘Morning’ might mean something vastly different, when compared to my morning of an early sunrise breaking over the choppy waves on the Pacific Ocean; it might mean a quiet cuppa whilst reading the news. Or, snuggling with your pet, driving/walking to work, (even if you wfh), or preparing breakfast or a family ritual?

Interested?

Contact me here and I’ll email you further details.

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historic rosemaling art norway
History & Traditions

Wisdom from the Past in Traditional Art

Norwegian Decorative Art of Rosemaling

In traditional art, it was a custom to have a saying or Proverb decorating the border of a bowl, utensil or piece of furniture. Especially this is seen in the old decorative art of Norway, called Rosemaling.

Telemark Rosemaling
Rosemaling by Bjorn Pettersen

The following words of wisdom were indicative of a social art history as they were penned by the artist of that time and reflected their thoughts and values. A time capsule of advice.

Norwegian Proverbs on Rosemaling Decorative Art

Wording old traditional art rosemaling norway wall

Here are a few to ponder:

Alderen kjem ikkje aleine; han fører så mye med seg.

Age comes not alone; it brings so much with it.

 –Det gror ikke til på veien mellon gode venner.

On the road between the homes of friends, grass does not grow.

 –Ingen kan hjelp den som ikke vil hjelpe seg sjøl.

Noone can help someone who will not help him/herself

Too much cleverness is foolishness.

For mye klokskap er dårskap.

Norwegian Traditional art form Rosmaling on wooden plate with proverb saying on border

Curious to know more about Rosemaling, an art form that has experienced a Renaissance in America, particularly the Norwegian areas of the Mid-West?

Find more here