Friday, May 26, 2017

The Start of 2017's Memorial Day Weekend


The cartoon (by Bramhall) that's posted atop today's blog entry might look familiar to you, dear reader, as I've featured it at the start of the Memorial Day weekend (which is today), in bygone years.

This cartoon is so poignant, that it bears repeating as we embark upon another Memorial Day holiday.

Wiki reminds its readers that, "Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country's armed forces.The holiday, which is currently observed every year on the last Monday of May, originated as Decoration Day after the American Civil War in 1868, when the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of Union veterans founded in Decatur, Illinois, established it as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the Union war dead with flowers. By the 20th century, competing Union and Confederate holiday traditions, celebrated on different days, had merged, and Memorial Day eventually extended to honor all Americans who died while in the military service.It marks the start of the unofficial summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.

Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, particularly to honor those who have died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in national cemeteries.

Annual Decoration Days for particular cemeteries are held on a Sunday in late spring or early summer in some rural areas of the American South, notably in the mountain areas. In cases involving a family graveyard where remote ancestors as well as those who were deceased more recently are buried, this may take on the character of an extended family reunion to which some people travel hundreds of miles. People gather on the designated day and put flowers on graves and renew contacts with relatives and others. There often is a religious service and a picnic-like "dinner on the grounds," the traditional term for a potluck meal at a church. It is believed that this practice began before the American Civil War and thus may reflect the real origin of the 'memorial day' idea."

Memorial Day is not to be confused with Veterans Day; Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving, while Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Thursday's Tandem-Cycling Tale: Inwood Park


The photograph atop this entry features Trudy Hutter, an avid (understatement) cyclist, who is also a coordinator for The Weekday Cyclists in NYC. They meet on Tuesdays to ride in Central Park and on Thursdays, they ride to different locations in NYC and its surrounding areas.

I am not a member of this group, because, due to my visual challenges I am not able to ride a bicycle; unless it is as a stoker on a tandem. Therefore, I'm grateful to say that I have been able to participate in tandem cycling, ever since the opportunity was presented (2009) to persons with vision loss. At that time ZW was assigned to be my captain, and we've been cycling ever since.

It is through ZW that I met Trudy, and she she has joined us on her single bike on occasion, including when we've ridden to Piermont, a popular cycling destination for New Yorkers. The town is north of the hamlet of Palisades, east of Sparkill, and south of Grand View-on-Hudson, on the west bank of the Hudson River.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

AND, Still More Stuff RE Wednesday's Wisdom! (Facts about "Mary had a little lamb...")


Earlier today in an announcement (here on Blogger) re Wednesday's Wisdom, I explained that today, May the 24th, is the start of Fleet Week in NYC.

In the aforementioned entry, I included images of figurines related to sailors. It has now been brought to my attention by another figurine (the lamb featured in the image atop this entry), that in addition to 2017's Fleet Week beginning on May 24th, another event occurred in years long gone by. In 1830, on May the 24th, the nursery rhyme, Mary Had a Little Lamb, was first published by the Boston publishing firm Marsh, Capen & Lyon, as an original poem by Sarah Josepha Hale; and this poem was inspired by an actual incident!

More INFO Re Wednesday's Wisdom: Celebrating the Brooklyn Bridge


The three bridges in the photograph atop this entry are, The Brooklyn Bridge, The Manhattan Bridge and The Williamsburg Bridge as they appear (respectively) when one looks north up the East River in Manhattan. In this picture Brooklyn is on the right-hand side; Manhattan's on the left.

It's easy to remember the order of these bridges when facing this direction if you think of the automobile known as The BMW.

I'm sharing this fun fact today, May 24th, because on this very day, in the year of 1883 (or 134 years ago), The Brooklyn Bridge opened! Happy Birthday, dear Brooklyn Bridge, Happy Birthday to you!

Wednesday's Wisdom: The Onset of Fleet WK


The image atop this entry is from a tweet that I noticed in my Twitter feed. As you can see it pays homage to the fact that Fleet Week kicks off in NYC today, Wednesday May 24th, 2017.

According to a web-page (silive) "the Parade of Ships moving up the Narrows and into New York Harbor beginning at about 8:15 (in the morning.)"

A Wiki page explains that "The Narrows is the tidal strait separating the boroughs of Staten Island and Brooklyn in New York City. It connects the Upper New York Bay and Lower New York Bay and forms the principal channel by which the Hudson River empties into the Atlantic Ocean. It has long been considered to be the maritime "gateway" to New York City and historically has been one of the most important entrances into the harbors of the Port of New York and New Jersey." 

The aforementioned Wiki page also proclaims "in 1964 the Narrows was spanned by the Verrazano–Narrows Bridge, the longest suspension bridge in the world at the time, and still the longest suspension bridge in the United States (by length of the main span). "

I have been across The Verrazano–Narrows Bridge as a passenger in a car. However, in the years 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013, I crossed it as a tandem cyclist.

The occasion for all of those cycling experiences is due to my participation in an annual event known as The Five Boro Bike Tour (TFBBT). During the last year of my participating in the tour, I took the following picture of The Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.


You may recognize this image (which was taken on the Staten Island side of the bridge), dear reader, as I included in in a prior entry here on Blogger. I have another photo of the bridge (which was taken by an unknown cyclist at a rest-stop in 2011's TFBBT).

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Tuesday's Truths: The Forty-Fourth Week (Honoring World Turtle Day!)


Welcome to week forty-four of my Tuesday's Truths series with a post dedicated to World Turtle Day, which is a holiday that is celebrated on the twenty-third day of May. Hence the photo atop this entry featuring a turtle working on his/her tan in Central Park. I've written about World Turtle Day in prior entries here on Blogger, including a post you may reference by clicking here.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Climbing Roses Create Another Urban Hedge!


The image atop this entry of my white climbing roses, is very similar to one I included in an FB entry for my author page, as well as in my post here on Blogger, this past Saturday.

As I indicated in both of the aforementioned cyber-venues, these rose are in a box-style container and trail up a trellis which has been attached to the railing that surrounds my rooftop garden. They are in between my Avellana corylus AKA Contorted Hazel Nut (which is to their left) and my Continus Coggygria AKA Smokey Bush (which to their right). It was the intent of Juan V and I to create an urban hedge to give me some privacy in my garden.

In bygone years I wrote a series of posts for hometalk which discussed various ways to construct urban hedges; and I thought my urban and non-urban dwelling friends who have and/or appreciate gardens, might enjoy reading this series.* For as you know, Benjamin Franklin once said, "Love thy neighbor — but don't pull down your hedge. " 

*LINKS to my Urban Hedge series:
Part One:
SHELVING
Part Two:
BAMBOO TRELLIS
Part Three-A:
KIWI VINES
Part Three-B:
KIWI VINES

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Oh, the weather outside's been frightful! (BUT....)


The image atop this entry was taken by Juan V when he was here eleven days ago on May 9th, on his third visit for the 2017 growing season. I featured it in an entry on TLLG's FB page at that time; and I discussed certain attributes of the H.F. Young Clematis vine. This particular vine climbs up a pole which in the northwest corner of my rooftop garden. It produces strikingly beautiful purple flowers which can be seen in Juan's image. Moreover, I have a number of close-ups of this vine's blooms within my May 9th entry here on Blogger. Unfortunately, only four days after Juan worked with me in my garden, and after my publishing posts re the flowers of my H.F. Young clematis, a Nor'Easter struck NYC and surrounding areas.

Last Saturday, May 13th 2016, "a moisture-packed coastal storm that hit the New Jersey region on Saturday dumped almost a month's worth of rain in just one day in parts of the area." I've been try to find out how much rain fell in the NYC area.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Honoring Albert Elmer Herman Louis Melahn (B 5-19-1903)


In honor of my dearly departed maternal grandfather, Albert Elmer Herman Louis Melahn, who was born on this day in 1903, I'd like to refer you to posts I've written over the years re this wonderful man.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Thursday's Testimony: Ghost Bikes are a part of National Bike month.


The month of May is full of a number of observations, including raising awareness regarding the medical condition known as Neurofibromatosis (NF) which I discussed in yesterday's blog post, as the day of May 17th is World NF Awareness Day.

May is also known as National Bike Month, which I mentioned in an entry that I published in the beginning of the month, prior to my first opportunity to tandem cycle since my accident (not related to cycling) in 2016. And according to The League Of American Cyclists, the third week of May, which we are currently in, is designated as bike to work week. Biking to work is not an option for me because I don't have a bicycle and I work from home. Moreover, I only have vision in one eye, hence my cycling is limited to being a stoker on a tandem bike. I'm thrilled that I get to do this and grateful to have a competent captain (ZW). ZW is the one who pointed out the bike featured in the image atop this entry. She noticed it as we were cycling north on the portion of the greenway which runs along the Hudson River.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Wednesday's Wisdom: NF Awareness Day


One individual out of every three or four thousand folks has Neurofibromatosis (NF). I happen to be one of those three or four thousand people. As a web-base article states NF is "a genetic disorder in which benign tumors grow within the nervous system. These tumors could be anywhere in the body, including the brain, and spine but not limited to the feet..." (NF is the abbreviation for Neurofibromatosis, which is quite appropriate, for having NF is NOT FUN.)

My experiences with how people have treated me as result of having this condition have often been more painful than the tumors, which is something you may have surmised, dear reader, if you have read my Blogger entries re this subject. Additionally, a number of years ago I wrote a book length piece about the inner experiences of having NF in hopes of raising awareness about this condition.

I mention NF today as the month of May is dedicated to enlightening others about NF and May17th is World Awareness Day for NF. From the encounters I gave had with others as a result of my having NF, there is a lot to be done. Raising awareness is one aspect, but teaching people not to be cruel is going to take a long, long time.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Tuesday's Truths: The Forty-Third Week (Honoring Love A Tree Day!)


Welcome to week forty-three of my Tuesday's Truths series with a post dedicated to Love a Tree Day,  for, according to Holiday Insights (HI), the event is always celebrated on May16th, which is "several days after Arbor Day." 

I discussed Arbor Day in a recent post here on Blogger; and if you'd like to refer to the entry, please click here. In my Arbor Day blog entry, I mentioned the trees which were once in my rooftop garden, including an Acer shirasawanum (Autumn Moon), as well as a Physocarpus opulifolius (Coppertina).  

In the aforementioned posting, I also discussed the trees which are currently flourishing in my place. These include a bonsai-ed Fig, an Acer palmatum ('Shisitatsu' Sawa), as well as a Crabapple, a Fagus sylvatica (Beech Tree), a Japanese Larch (Larix Kaempferi); and a 'Tamukeyama' (AKA) Japanese Maple.

The latter of these trees can be seen in the image atop this blog entry. As you can see, the container housing my 'Tamukeyama,' has cracked; so, the tree needs to be repotted. Last week I traveled to Brooklyn to get a replacement clay pot, and I hope it will fit in the stand! I'll find out next week when Juan V comes to my garden to help me maintain it.

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Fifteenth Of May (among other things)


In honor of this date, of May the 15th, I'm giving a shout out to the  delightful Dr. Seuss's book known as Horton Hears A Who (pictured above)which, is a book I quoted in a prior entry here on Blogger in 2011. As you may know, this book begins with the following words:

"On the fifteenth of May
In the jungle of Nool
In the heat of the day
In the cool of the pool,
He was splashing... enjoying the jungle's great joys...
When Horton the elephant heard a small noise."

According to Seuss Blog, "the date at the beginning of Horton Hears a Who, May 15th, is mentioned, not only  in this book, but also in The Seven Lady Godivas and in If I Ran the Zoo. It was also the day that Seuss was elected as editor-in-chief of the Dartmouth school newspaper, The Jack-O’-Lantern."

As for the moral in Horton Hears A Who, the line, "A person's a person, no matter how small...," came to my mind this past weekend, after I noticed that the Continus Coggygria (Smokey Bush), (a shrub which I've had in my rooftop garden since 2006) had produced numerous flowers which can be seen in the following pictures.





Upon my seeing my Smokey Bush's flowers, I put on spin on Seuss's wisdom and proclaimed, a flower is a flower no matter how small.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Mother's Day 2017



In honor of Mother's Day, I've posted a You-Tube video atop this blog entry. It features one of my favorite books, Are You My Mother?, by P.D. Eastman.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Finding a Place for WIOB-Volume One


As I mentioned earlier this morning, here on Blogger, today would be my dad's 82nd birthday, (had he not died at age 69 in 1995). He is very much on my mind on this rainy Saturday. The picture atop this entry is one O have featured in other posts on this blog. It is an image of a birthday card my father sent me after I had moved into the apartment (1992) where I am currently living. Finding a place to live in NYC had been a real struggle for me, and the drawing on the card of finding a space is  quite meaningful. The card has been put into a picture frame and hangs in a prominent spot in my home.

And now, I'm in need of another type of space; a place that will agree to sell, Words In Our Beak Volume One, (WIOBV-1) the book I wrote with Cam.


This past Thursday, in a post here on Blogger, I discussed the fact that by chance, while I was tandem cycling in Brooklyn, I came upon Unameable Books.


I now have the guidelines as to how to query them re their being willing to place (WIOBV-1) in their store.

Moreover, as of last evening, I found another book store on The Upper Eastside of NYC, who may consider placing my book in their shop. The place is called The Corner Bookstore.

Remembering my Dad: Albert Loth Youngquist


In honor of what would have been my dad's 82nd birthday (had he not died at age 69 in 1995), I am posting this image of him with my mother when she was pregnant with me. (I featured the image in a prior entry here on Blogger.)

Unfortunately, they divorced when I was in elementary school, so he was not as involved in my life as I had wanted him to be. But I do seem to have inherited his quick wit for which I am most grateful.

Friday, May 12, 2017

A Friday Follow-Up Re Edward Lear


Last year, on May 12th 2016, in honor of Limerick Day, which is today, I discussed some facts about Edward Lear in my blog entry. As you may know, dear reader, Lear was a writer of limericks; and an author of books, including The Owl and the Pussycat. He was also an illustrator. One of his creations can be seen in the image atop this entry, which was also included in last year's blog post.

This year, in honor of Edward Lear, I'm posting a copy of his poem, The Jumblies (directly below);

I

They went to sea in a Sieve, they did,
   In a Sieve they went to sea:
In spite of all their friends could say,
On a winter’s morn, on a stormy day,
   In a Sieve they went to sea!
And when the Sieve turned round and round,
And every one cried, ‘You’ll all be drowned!’
They called aloud, ‘Our Sieve ain’t big,
But we don’t care a button! we don’t care a fig!
   In a Sieve we’ll go to sea!’
      Far and few, far and few,
         Are the lands where the Jumblies live;
      Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
         And they went to sea in a Sieve.
 II

They sailed away in a Sieve, they did,
   In a Sieve they sailed so fast,
With only a beautiful pea-green veil
Tied with a riband by way of a sail,
   To a small tobacco-pipe mast;
And every one said, who saw them go,
‘O won’t they be soon upset, you know!
For the sky is dark, and the voyage is long,
And happen what may, it’s extremely wrong
   In a Sieve to sail so fast!’
      Far and few, far and few,
         Are the lands where the Jumblies live;
      Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
         And they went to sea in a Sieve.
III

The water it soon came in, it did,
   The water it soon came in;
So to keep them dry, they wrapped their feet
In a pinky paper all folded neat,
   And they fastened it down with a pin.
And they passed the night in a crockery-jar,
And each of them said, ‘How wise we are!
Though the sky be dark, and the voyage be long,
Yet we never can think we were rash or wrong,
   While round in our Sieve we spin!’
      Far and few, far and few,
         Are the lands where the Jumblies live;
      Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
         And they went to sea in a Sieve.
IV

And all night long they sailed away;
   And when the sun went down,
They whistled and warbled a moony song
To the echoing sound of a coppery gong,
   In the shade of the mountains brown.
‘O Timballo! How happy we are,
When we live in a sieve and a crockery-jar,
And all night long in the moonlight pale,
We sail away with a pea-green sail,
   In the shade of the mountains brown!’
      Far and few, far and few,
         Are the lands where the Jumblies live;
     Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
         And they went to sea in a Sieve.
V

They sailed to the Western Sea, they did,
   To a land all covered with trees,
And they bought an Owl, and a useful Cart,
And a pound of Rice, and a Cranberry Tart,
   And a hive of silvery Bees.
And they bought a Pig, and some green Jack-daws,
And a lovely Monkey with lollipop paws,
And forty bottles of Ring-Bo-Ree,
   And no end of Stilton Cheese.
      Far and few, far and few,
         Are the lands where the Jumblies live;
      Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
         And they went to sea in a Sieve.
VI

And in twenty years they all came back,
   In twenty years or more,
And every one said, ‘How tall they’ve grown!’
For they’ve been to the Lakes, and the Torrible Zone,
   And the hills of the Chankly Bore;
And they drank their health, and gave them a feast
Of dumplings made of beautiful yeast;
And everyone said, ‘If we only live,
We too will go to sea in a Sieve,—
   To the hills of the Chankly Bore!’
      Far and few, far and few,
         Are the lands where the Jumblies live;
      Their heads are green, and their hands are blue,
         And they went to sea in a Sieve.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Thursday's Testimony: Completed Ride Two (Since Being Back in the Saddle)


As I mentioned last week in an entry here on Blogger, the month of May, is National Bike Month. I also discussed the fact that on Tuesday, May 2nd, I went tandem cycling with my captain, ZW, for the first time since I had an accident (not related to bike riding) in May of 2016. And I spoke about the aforementioned bike ride, recalling that ZW and I cycled up the portion of the greenway which runs parallel to the Hudson River and made our way to The Little Red Lighthouse

Last evening and into the night, I returned to the saddle for the second time since my accident; and instead of heading north on the greenway, which had become our routine, we cycled through the West Village heading towards the East Village; and then cycled through Soho; as well as the Lower Eastside, before cycling up the ramp of The Manhattan Bridge; in order to head to Prospect Park in Brooklyn. 

It is a route we've done on a number of occasions, including times when we met up with a group of cyclists to cycle through The Lights (Christmas) in the Heights during the cold winter months. We have also taken this route to witness a ceremony of Mayor Bloomberg lighting the menorah; and we've done the course with reasons in mind that were the same as our motivation for last night: to enjoy cycling a loop in Prospect Park, while being serenaded by an array of birds.

After we completed our Tour de Prospect Park last night, ZW parked her tandem, against a lamp post (as seen in the photo atop this entry); and we enjoyed a picnic of May Day Pesto atop a baguette, while a statue stood behind us who seemed to be interested in the tangerines we were having with our meal. 

The statue I am referring to is statue erected in the likeness of James S. T. Stranahan, and it can be seen in the following picture.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Wednesday's Wisdom: Taking Some Time OFF (Even if something is undone!)


This afternoon an American robin, who was visiting my rooftop garden, called upon me to once again follow the wisdom of Elizabeth Lawrence. Ms. Lawrence is known to remind folks that "even if something is left undone, everyone must take time to sit still and watch the leaves turn."

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Tuesday's Truths: The FORTY-SECOND Week: H.F. YOUNG is Queen of the Vines!


The photograph atop this blog entry features details of two of the many H.F. Young Clematis flowers that are currently thriving in my rooftop garden. Welcome to week forty-two of my Tuesday's Truths series with a post dedicated to this particular flora variety, which is known to be Queen of the Vines.

Monday, May 8, 2017

It's Iris Day!


I've just learned that today is Iris Day. Therefore, I am including a copy (posted directly above) of Vincent van Gough's painting, Irises, which can always be seen at The Metropolitan Art Museum in NYC.

Wiki states that "Van Gogh started painting irises within a week of entering the asylum, in May 1889, working from nature in the hospital garden... He called painting 'the lightning conductor for my illness,' because he felt that he could keep himself from going insane by continuing to paint."

American Meadows points out that "because of the great elegance of the iris bloom, it has been the symbol of monarchs and royal families throughout history. In fact, one of the earliest known artworks of an iris is a fresco in King Minos' palace on the Greek Island of Crete. The palace dates from 2100 BC."

The aforementioned source also claim that in addition to van Gough, "the iris has probably second place (they claim the first is the rose) as the favored flower in great art... irises appear in paintings by Leonardo daVinci, Durer, Renoir, Cezanne, Gauguin, and Claude Monet."

However, another painter, Georgia O'Keefe who often used flowers (including irises) as her subject, did not see flowers as a "lightning conductor," rather she supposedly once said, "I hate flowers - I paint them because they're cheaper than models and they don't move."

In any event, regarding information pertaining to Iris Day itself, a number of sources, including Holiday Insights, proclaim that this occasion is always observed on May 8th. Another web-page suggests that "the celebration of Iris Day might have Japanese roots because this flower has spiritual meaning in Japan. It is a symbol for creativity, great power and good news to come." 

Upon learning this, I am tempted to go to my local bodega (they sell flowers in bunches) and stare at their irises (since I don't have them in my rooftop garden), so I can reflect on their symbol of "creativity, great power and good news to come." 

In Honor of Peggy Wood


Today, May the 8th, is the birthday of  my dearly departed editor, Peggy Wood, who passed away in December of 2014. She can be seen in the image directly above, which I've included in many posts here on Blogger, as well as in the iBook version of Words In Our Beak, Volume One,


which she helped me edit. Peggy was excellent in recognizing typos as well as punctuation errors.

However, our friendship went far beyond any discussions about my writing, so we shared many good times, at her home as well as mine, including those when her brother (Robert) and sister-in-law (Lynda) came to see her here in NYC.

Friday, May 5, 2017

FLASH BACK FRIDAY Cinco de Mayo in 2013


Today is Cinco de Mayo. Re this holiday, USA Today states "For many Americans, Cinco de Mayo is a day for enjoying Mexican food, culture — and maybe some margaritas. Its historical origin is quite different: Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army's victory over French forces on May 5, 1862, at the Battle of Puebla. Contrary to popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico's independence day, which is Sept. 16."

In 2013, the holiday coincided with The Five Boro Bike Tour (TFBBT), which I participated in for the fourth time! The image atop this entry features me with my bike captain, ZW, and another cyclist as we posed at the start-line before the event took place. As you can see, scores (thousands) of cyclists are behind us, many of them wore sombreros over their helmet in honor of Cinco de Mayo.

And, a number of participants, including yours truly, wore a "solidarity" badge, as a way of paying homage to those who were severely injured and/or lost their lives during the bombing at The Boston Marathon,


This tragic event had occurred a few weeks prior to the time of the 2013 of the TFBBT. Therefore, security was especially tight! But all that were involved, made an effort to enjoy the opportunity to participate in this awesome event; topping it off a margarita to toast Cinco de Mayo!


This coming Sunday, another TFBBT, will take place but I won't participate this year. However I will always be grateful for all the times I was able to do so! AND, meanwhile, Happy Cinco de Mayo to you and yours, dear reader!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Wednesday's Wisdom: Back in the Saddle (After all, May is National Bike Month)


Last evening I went tandem cycling with my captain, ZW, for the first time since I had an accident (not related to bike riding) in May of 2016. (Btw, the photograph atop this entry is of an unknown cyclist who rode in front of me as I was trying to take a picture of last night's sunset!)

In any event, prior to the last time that ZW and I cycled (4-14-2016), she and I had been cycling on a frequent basis since 2009! Much of this has been chronicled in posts on my social media venues. ZW and I have participated in large cycling events that covered between fifty and seventy-five miles; including The Five Boro Bike Tour (five times), The Tour de Bronx (twice), and Twin Lights Ride (once).

Additionally we have participated in smaller group rides in the winter time, including one which took us to The Lights in the Heights (twice). Moreover, we have had persons join us when we cycled to Piermont as well as to the State Park off River Road. And, on our own we have cycled many miles around and outside the city, including a trip to the beach at Coney Island. However, our usual route is to cycle up the greenway (along the Hudson River)


to The Little Red Lighthouse which is in close proximity to The GW (George Washington Bridge).


And our usual route was what we did last evening. I am very grateful that I was able to endure the ride (with energy to spare) after not having cycled for over one year; and near to the time of the anniversary of my accident. What a great way to ring in the month of May, which happens to be National Cycling Month!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Tuesday's Truths: The FORTY-FIRST Week: (RETURNING TO TANDEM-CYCLING)


Welcome to week forty-one of my Tuesday's Truths series with a post dedicated to my anticipated return to tandem cycling. One of these types of bikes can be seen in the image atop this blog entry.

This photograph was taken (in bygone years) by yours truly, just before I was about to have an evening picnic, very near The Little Red Lighthouse, which I had cycled to with my bike captain, ZW, owner of the tandem, which she stores on her ceiling!


In any event, ZW and I had ridden to The Little Red Lighthouse via the portion of the greenway which runs parallel to the Hudson River in NYC. And, now, I am dedicating a post to cycling because the month of May is National Bike Month. Moreover, weather permitting, I plan to be doing my first tandem cycling since my accident in May of 2016!

Even though the accident I had was nearly one year ago, and was not cycling related, a result of my injuries (and the time needed to recuperate from them), means that I have not cycled since that event occurred.

Therefore, I am more than a little apprehensive to cycle, for my accident has made me aware of my vulnerability. However, because the last time I cycled was April 14, 2016, it's high time I return to my routine of tandem cycling on a frequent basis. I'll leave it here for now, dear reader, and I hope to report good experiences in upcoming posts.

Monday, May 1, 2017

"It's May! It's May! The lusty month of May!" (AND The Month for The Lily of The Valley)



"It's May! It's May!," as Ms. Guinevere proclaimed in Camelot. This is something I discussed in 2011 here on Blogger, and if you'd like to refer to my entry, please click here. However, on this May 1st, I'd like to share with you some cool facts that I just learned about the flowers that are known as lily of the valley, which is the flower associated with this month. These flowers are featured in the image atop this entry in a photo I took of them springing up in front of a brownstone on the UWS of NYC.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

SOON IT WILL BE MOTHER'S DAY!


In two weeks time, it will be Mother's Day! Therefore, dear reader, if you still have your mother, or have a sister who is a mother, an aunt who is a mother, a niece or a cousin who is a mother, a daughter or daughter-in-law who is a mother; this is a good time to think about a gift that you might want to give these special people!

Saturday, April 29, 2017

The Hippo Ballerina isn't the first NYC hippo!



It's been nearly three weeks since Bissera Antikarov posted an image on her FB Page of NYC's hippo ballerina featured in the photos atop this entry which I took this past Thursday, when I went to visit the statue.

The first image of mine features a view of the hippo ballerina that is similar to the photo that Bissera Antikarov posted. And the following picture of the dancer,


features her gazing at the Lincoln Center building where the ballet is performed. I imagined her to be wistful about opportunities to perform there, but the sculptor, Bjørn Okholm Skaarup, had a different character in mind,

Friday, April 28, 2017

It's Arbor Day!


Since my posting an entry re the eyes of Northern mockingbirds this morning, it has been brought to my attention that today is Arbor Day. It always falls on the last Friday of April, which is today.

Remembering Author Harper Lee' s Birthday (With A Cool Fact Re Mockingbirds' Eyes)


Every time I see a Northern mockingbird in my rooftop garden (which is what is featured in the picture atop this entry), I think of Harper Lee, for her writing the book, "To Kill A Mockingbird."

Ms. Lee was born on this day of April 28th in 1926 and died on February the 19th in 2016. In honor of Lee's birthday, I'm featuring a cool fact regarding this bird type, who as you can see appears to have eyes on the side of his head. This a trait other bird types also have and it is described in a page from Quora.

According to Sam Greydanus, a contributor to the aforementioned page (who addressed a question re the fact that most birds have eyes on the sides of their heads, not on the front), "Birds, insects, and many mammals that have eyes on the sides of their heads actually depend heavily on motion parallax, which is one of these types of depth perception. Motion parallax is when you move your head from side to side and objects close to you appear to move more than objects in the distance."

I have also read that "most birds that have eyes on the side of the head have only one fovea. Fast flying biers have a temporal fovia. This temporal fovia allows them to see light from in front of them through each eye. This in turn helps with depth perception. Birds without this have to turn their head to get the same light in both eyes."

And because the mockingbird pictured above and below, is turning his head, I would assume he does not have a temporal fovia, however I am waiting to hear back from a few naturalists regarding my assumption.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

Some never get a chance to be May flowers! (This is due to April showers.)



In mid April of this year, I was thrilled to see that the Prairefire crabapple tree (AKA Malus 'Prairfire') which I bought in March of 2016 was flourishing (as evidenced in the photos atop this entry.) And it continued to burst with blooms for a few days as seen below.




However, fifteen days after my tree produced such lovely flowers, NYC, where I live and have my rooftop garden, was the target of heavy rainfall. This occurred for a little over two days in a row with nonstop showers. And April showers took away my potential May flowers!