Saturday, June 23, 2018

It's National Pink Day!



Here's a piece of trivia for this next to the last Saturday in June:

"National Pink Day is observed annually on June 23rd. This day is set aside for the color pink and all it represents."*

As for my rooftop garden, the pink trimmed leaves on my Smoke Bush represent protection for my Mouse Ears! AND The Mouse Ears (mini hostas) are in bloom again!

Friday, June 22, 2018

Friday Follow-Up


At the presentation that I made at Iona Prep (Lower) School this past Tuesday, I included a total of two hundred and three slides. These slides featured a number of views of nineteen different bird types who have visited my rooftop garden, as well as a few slides that showed a Red-Tailed Hawk.

She is one who kept her eyes on the comings and goings of creatures visiting my place from either the vantage point of an Ailanthus Tree in a nearby courtyard or from atop an air-conditioner that is in the window of a building which is across that courtyard (as seen in the images of my slides that are posted atop this entry).

As you can see in the first slide above, I included the common and scientific name of the hawk, which is something I did for each bird type (along with giving the students interesting facts re a given bird variety within the featured birds).

There was a student in the audience who was very good at pronouncing the Latin (scientific) names of the birds and there was also a staff member who had an interesting point upon seeing the image (below) on my slide,


of a lone Northern mockingbird in my garden.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Summer Solstice in the Western Hemisphere (For the Year 2018)


The 2018 Summer Solstice began in this hemisphere a few hours ago (EST). It is the longest day of daylight, as many of you know. I know of professional gardeners who do not like this day because going forward, every subsequent day it will turn darker and darker at an earlier hour.

Therefore, they prefer the Winter Solstice, which is the darkest day of the year and every subsequent day it turns lighter and lighter at an earlier hour.

What are your thoughts on the Summer and Winter Solstice, dear reader?

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Yesterday's Presentation at Iona Prep



Sorry to have missed my Tuesday's Truths series yesterday (that I provide here on Blogger), dear reader, but as I stated a few weeks ago, the regularity of my publishing posts is being reduced until further notice.

Yesterday, as opposed to being in cyber-space, I was in the space of an auditorium on the campus of Iona Prep making a presentation. The following is a copy of a tweet I sent (earlier today) regarding the experience:

"@IonaPrep What an honor it was to make a presentation yesterday (re birds that spend time in NYC + the areas near your campus). The boys in attendance made a terrific audience (thoughtful, respectful, inquisitive) and I'm sure each of them will be offering much value to society."

As I subsequently explained on both of my Facebook pages (author and personal) and am reiterating here: My tweet only included the "Who am I?" chart seen in the first atop this blog posting. The photograph of some of the audience (about 45 boys from grades first-fifth who were in attendance) was taken by a woman who was working at the school. I'm waiting for the principal to send me her name so I can update this entry with a photo credit.

Now, I can only pray that all the groups that might hear my presentation in the future are as respectful and intelligent as these boys...

Monday, June 18, 2018

WEATHER ALERT with a way to keep cool! (Monday's Memo)






According to a number of reports (including one that you can reference here), New York City "will be under an air quality advisory for much of today (Monday, June 18th) as temperatures approach a record high. The mercury will reach near 92 degrees with a heat index temperature that feels as hot as 95, according to the National Weather Service. The state Department of Environmental Conservation issued an air quality advisory for 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday as the temperature gets up near the 1929 record of 95 degrees...High ozone levels in the air will come with the hot weather, meaning young kids and people with medical issues such as asthma or heart disease should be careful in the heat, state officials warn."

Upon learning this, I immediately thought of a scene that I came upon this past Saturday, when I was on a pier located near the Boat Basin at the Hudson River.

On that day, I discovered a female Mallard duck being very attentive to her newborn ducklings, as evidenced in the images atop this entry.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Father's Day 2018








On Father's Day is good to remember, one cannot (probably) be a good father without a good mother on hand. Canadian Geese realize this, and as parents, they work together.

A blogger states, "to me they (geese) came to represent the commitment of families – parents who do their best to stay together, who are always there for their children, who help each other and who are predictably where they are supposed to be."

Another web-page points out that "the parents will lead the goslings to the safety of open water within 24 hours of birth. Goslings are able to dive and swim 30-40 feet underwater when they are just 1 day old."

It appears that what this web-page describes what night've been happening when I encountered geese and their goslings in Central Park last summer (as evidenced by the photos I'm featuring atop this entry and some of these are featured in a prior post here on Blogger).

Saturday, June 16, 2018

The Inspiration of Lewis Carroll (PRESENTATION UPDATE)


As I mentioned in a prior entry here on Blogger, I am scheduled to give a talk at an assembly that is taking place at an all boys lower prep school.

My talk will be on all the wild birds featured in book series: Words In Our Beak

I will have a number of slides for the students to view via a presentation that I created in the Keynote Ap on my Mac.

Twenty-one bird types are included and each variety begins with a given bird asking, "Who am I?"

As I prepared the upcoming presentation, a caterpillar's question to Alice (in Lewis Carroll's famous book) re who she was came to my mind (as evidenced in the image atop this entry).

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Reminder: June is National Rose Month

 

Two days ago, June 12, was Red Rose Day and in belated honor of the occasion, I've posted an image  (directly above) of this flower (taken in bygone years) that was growing in my rooftop garden).

Red Rose Day is not the only homage given to roses during the month of June, the entire month is known as National Rose Month and since tomorrow the month of June will be halfway over, its about time that I remind readers of this fact.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Feeling like a Fiscal Fiasco



The clip atop this entry is from the movie, Bye Bye Birdie, and it should've been what I posted yesterday (Tuesday June 12th) since that was the day for another segment of my Tuesday's Truths series!

However, I was unable to post on Blogger yesterday as I was preoccupied with a "dress rehearsal" for an upcoming presentation that I will be making. But, as I've announced in a prior entry here on Blogger, my publishing posts with the regularity, which has been my custom, had to be scaled back due to a variety of circumstances, this upcoming presentation is one of them.

The reason I mention that I should've posted this clip in my Tuesday's Truth series is because the truth is that I'm feeling like a "fiscal fiasco!" This was apparently also the case with one of the movie's lead characters, Albert (played by Dick Van Dyke).

Albert was labeled a "fiscal fiasco" by his accountant and he agreed.  Moreover, Albert was mortified that he hadn't sold any songs (which he'd composed) in six years.

Unfortunately, I relate to that. I've poured all my available monies into dental procedures (literally putting my money where my mouth is) and am not at a point of any making profit (and have invested quite a bit) on my Words In Our Beak book series. At this point, I hope I can hang on to my home!

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Update (Follow Up to 5-8-2018's Posting)


Many thanks to those of you who have inquired re my upcoming second eye surgery of 2018. As you may have recalled, the first surgical procedure took place this past May.

The next operation on my eye is scheduled for tomorrow, June 8th, which is exactly one month since the aforementioned procedure. Info re this is posted on my FB Author (TLLG) Page.

This surgical procedure is just one of the many reasons for my reduced blog posting schedule.

ADDENDUM 6-9-2018: The surgery is behind me (details posted here). Once again, thanks for your concern, dear reader.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

It's WED* 2018! (*World Environment Day) Tuesdays Truths WK 86



As I mentioned in this past Sunday's blog entry, at this time, I am unable to publish entries here on blogger with the frequency that has been my standard for quite some time. I will, at minimum, try and keep my Tuesday's Truths series going.

Today, June 5th, marks my eighty-sixth entry within this series and it happens to coincide with 2018's World Environment Day (WED).

June 5 has been designated by the United Nations as World Environment Day, a day set aside since 1974 to promote “worldwide awareness and action for the protection of our environment.”

This year’s theme is “beat plastic pollution," and the photos stop this entry, are a small reminder of how plastics can hurt the avian community. The first picture is one I took in bygone years when I was at Long Beach. The second image (also taken in bygone years) features a Mallard duck, "caught" in debris within NYC's Hudson River.

More info on 2018's WED theme of “beat plastic pollution," can be found within the following three links: https://theatln.tc/2sJsxya and http://bit.ly/2JeDG5l as well as https://ind.pn/2syboIG.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

My Posting Schedule

IMAGE CREDIT
If you follow this blog with any regularity,  dear reader, then most likely you know that for the past couple of years, my norm has been to publish an entry on a daily basis.

This posting is just a heads up to let you know that in the coming week and until further notice — due to some medical issues and deadlines related to my Words In Our Beak book series —  (pictured below), I will not be publishing so frequently.


Saturday, June 2, 2018

Soon it will be Father's Day!


Fifteen days from now it will be June 17th, which is Father's Day. Therefore, if you are fortunate enough to still have your father or grandfather, you might want to consider giving them a copy of either volume of the Words In Our Beak book series, which can be seen in the image atop this entry.

Of course anyone you know who is a father, be it a spouse, an offspring, a sibling, a neighbor, a colleague, or a friend, these books make the perfect gift to honor them on this occasion.

Should you decide to get either book (or both of them) in this series, and want to include a bookmark, I have designed one which can be seen (front and back respectively) in the next two photos.



As of now, I'm offering to send anyone who purchases (or has already purchased) any version of the Words In Our Beak book series a complimentary bookmark.

Friday, June 1, 2018

"The time has flewn..."


I've shared this Dr. Seuss quote but it bears repeating, because after today, we only have twenty-nine days left until we reach the half-way mark for the half year eve for 2018.

Consider the turtles...

On September 20th 2017, when I took a  walk for pleasure in Central Park, (at someone's advice), I came across an array of animals including the turtles seen below.



Observing creatures puts me in a better frame of mind. However, Central Park was far from relaxing on that day. This is because there were a number of barricades and detours, due to an event that was set to occur in the coming days; however the turtles did not concern themselves with the chaos, their wisdom was not lost on me.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Clarifying a Quote Attributed to Sylvia Plath (Wednesday's Wisdom)


I'm using this episode of Wednesday's Wisdom as an opportunity to clarify the quotation which can be sen in the text based image posted above. Evidently the quote is associated with Sylvia Plath, a poet that I've written about in here on Blogger. If you'd like tp reference my posts about her, please click here and if you'd like to read what The Poetry Foundation has written about her, please click here.

As for the quote-based image, I first saw it on someone's Facebook Page. There was no commentary, only this image. Since I'm often plagued with self doubt, I was drawn to the quotation, but something about it didn't ring true in my perception of Sylvia Plath; so I turned to Goodreads and learned that this is not the full quote, which evidently is this:

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt." 

According to Goodreads, the full quotation is from The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath. She died from suicide on February 11, 1963.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

A Gray Catbird is on "the pink carpet!" Tuesday's Truths for Week Eighty-Six


As I stated in this past Sunday's post, I  recently encountered a Great Egret for the first time in my long life. This brought the number of new birds I've seen in this Year of the Bird up to ten. 

The other first time meeting of avian creatures that I've seen during this Year of the Bird, include (in alphabetical order) an American Coot, a Bufflehead Duck, a Great Blue Heron, a Northern Pintail, a Red-Bellied Woodpecker, a Red-Tailed Hawk, a Red-Winged Black Bird, a Ruddy Duck, and a couple of Wooden Ducks. 

And, now I've met my eleventh bird, who happens to be a Gray Catbird. My encounter with this bird type actually occurred shortly after I saw my first Great Egret, a little over three weeks ago, when I was in Central Park, This creature can be seen in the image atop this entry, he/she seems to be watching me as I watch him/her.

The Inaugural Event at THERE



This past Friday, May 25th, I attended "the inaugural event at THERE" which took place in NYC. At the event I saw the painting featured in the image atop this entry. The piece is titled Veils #4, and was created by Phyllis Floyd, one of the founders of an association named Zeuxis.

One of the reasons Floyd's art association fascinates me is its name. I've always been interested in the painter, Zeuxis, who flourished during the fifth century BC. Of the many "stories" associated with this artist, I think this is my favorite:

"According to the Naturalis Historia of Pliny the Elder, Zeuxis and his contemporary Parrhasius (of Ephesus and later Athens) staged a contest to determine the greater artist. When Zeuxis unveiled his painting of grapes, they appeared so real that birds flew down to peck at them. But when Parrhasius, whose painting was concealed behind a curtain, asked Zeuxis to pull aside that curtain, the curtain itself turned out to be a painted illusion. Parrhasius won, and Zeuxis said, 'I have deceived the birds, but Parrhasius has deceived Zeuxis.' This story was commonly referred to in 18th- and 19th-century art theory to promote spatial illusion in painting. A similar anecdote says that Zeuxis once drew a boy holding grapes, and when birds, once again, tried to peck them, he was extremely displeased, stating that he must have painted the boy with less skill, since the birds would have feared to approach otherwise."

I've never asked Phyllis Floyd if the name of her art association had anything to do with the fifth century painter, nor did I ask her if her painting, Drawing the Curtain #10, that is included in the exhibition (and can be seen below) was influenced by Zeuxis's (the painter) curtain experience.



Be that as it may, in the exhibition, these two paintings of Floyd's are grouped with two of her other paintings, Drawing the Curtain #3 and Drawing the Curtain # 8, as seen in the next photograph.



Admittedly, my images do not reflect the colors of Floyd's work as I took them with a "pocket" camera, but am including them here to give you a sense of how they look in the exhibition. I highly encourage you to go to the exhibit so that you can see Floyd's works with your own eyes, not through the lenses of any of the images included here. In the meantime, I'd like to share a few of the other works of art that I saw at last Friday's inaugural event.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Memorial Day 2018


Another Memorial Day is upon us. As you may know, it was once celebrated on May 30th, no matter what day of the week that date occurred but The Uniform Holiday Act changed all that.

The Uniform Monday Holiday Act (Pub.L. 90–363) "is an Act of Congress that amended the federal holiday provisions of the United States Code to establish the observance of certain holidays on Mondays. The Act was signed into law on June 28, 1968, and took effect on January 1, 1971."

I appreciate long weekends just like anyone else, but unfortunately, the solemnity of holidays such as Memorial Day can be lost in what has become "the unofficial start of summer."

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Another Sunday in the Park WITHOUT George! (But there was a Great Egret ...)




Last Sunday, which was a gloomy rainy day (just as it is today), I was walking with a friend in Central Park, and we came upon a Great Egret. This creature can be seen in the photographs atop this entry. The first two images feature him/her spending time amongst Mallard ducks.

However, that was not my first time seeing a Great Egret. The first time in my long life for seeing an Egret was a little over three weeks ago (on May 11th) when I was also in the park. That Egret can be seen in the next image, where he/she seems to be watching me as I watch him/her.


In the Words In Our Beak book series (pictured below), Cam the cardinal who narrates the stories has a term for the activity of birds watching people: people-ing.


The birds featured in her published stories are mostly ones whom she has met when spending her time in my rooftop garden, not the ones who frequent Central Park.

However, in Volume Two, she does include a story about Canadian Geese and their goslings who enjoy the bodies of water in the park. Moreover, after she finishes volume three (scheduled to be published this fall), Cam may "spread her wings" and tell stories of the birds who frequent NYC's parks.