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Are you playing "Follow the Leader" or are you just trying to keep up! - 01/31/09 07:11 AM
Okay, I admit that I just had to have a catchy title for the photo of the Canadian Geese. But I really wanted to use this picture and I think that I can contrive a life lesson from it! The fact is that there are usually few leaders and many followers. And generally, those in leadership positions earn them by honing their skills and gaining experience in their chosen fields. And many that seek leadership often fail because they try to short-cut the process, and strike out on their own with no direction or not enough experience to fly on their own. (36 comments)
Another not so wordless weekday ... Wildflowers in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park! - 01/28/09 09:48 PM
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park features some of the highest peaks in the Appalachians, as well as a tremendous diversity of flora and fauna. The Park also offers some of the largest stands of virgin forests in the Eastern United States. And because the park is within a day's drive of 50% of the country's population, it is the most visited national park in the system. Now is the time to plan your Spring Wildflower pilgrimage to the park, with late March and early April being the peak time for seeing the most blooms!
All Photos courtesy of Richard (22 comments)
Sometimes too much help leads to dependency. Why too much of a good thing is not always helpful. - 01/28/09 07:11 AM
I have always enjoyed the presence of songbirds, and have kept feeders out for them year ‘round for as long as I can remember. It's a lot of fun to see both the regular visitors and the exotic travelers as they migrate though our locale, and it's also a nice distraction for my cats that enjoy stalking the creatures on the other side of the glass. But there are also problems with regularly feeding wildlife. These creatures become dependent on you for their sustenance, and once they have adapted to your benevolence their lives depend on you. If you stop the (36 comments)
Exploring the marvelous mysteries of creation, or, what are the odds?? - 01/27/09 07:24 AM
Coincidence is a strange and vague concept. The laws of probability state that if you have a sufficient number of observable candidates needed to meet any specific criteria, you will likely find a match for the given parameters. And if nothing else, the universe certainly meets the quantity test, with billions and billions of stars and goodness knows how many planetary systems are out there in the vastness of space. Yet, what are the odds, that a single lump of iron would be just the right distance, from just the right sized star? And what are the odds that this serendipitous (22 comments)
My first gig in 35 years! I was a little nervous, but the story has a happy ending! - 01/25/09 08:34 AM
I would never dare to call myself a musician. I'm pretty well rounded, and so a lot of different things, but I don't really excel at any of them. But I keep three guitars in my office at work, and some of the slow hours have been passed with a tune or two, and occasionally a few of my coworkers pop in for some pickin' and singing. I also play occasionally with a former client, who was kind enough to invite me to a few Friday night jam sessions, in which four or five of us do round robins by taking (39 comments)
The metamorphosis of fantasy to reality ... but when is the reality check coming? - 01/24/09 07:54 AM
When I was a lad, I read science fiction novels that were set in a future rife with marvelous technologies mined from the deepest recesses of creative artist's imaginations. The boundaries of space and time were not hindered by physical realities, but only by the reader's own limitations on what might actually be possible after given years to create and develop. I remember showing my mother an advertisement in a magazine that claimed that an oven powered by microwaves could fry crisp bacon in ninety seconds. Mother laughed, and said it was just a gimmick to steal people's money, because such a (64 comments)
Sometimes the most exotic destinations are those that are closest to home! - 01/23/09 07:14 AM
There are many awe inspiring destinations to see around the globe. Many an hour is spent carefully planning and making expensive travel arrangements to far off places in an effort to capture the sights and sounds of exotic destinations. And in doing so, we often overlook the scenic treasures that are closest to home. Every locale has it local "spots" that define the region, and most of us drive past these landmarks every day without so much as a passing glance. But that which is common in one region, is foreign in another, and with the miracle of digital photography and (27 comments)
No snow in Newnan this year ...yet! - 01/22/09 06:45 AM
Although we have had a few flurries here and there in 2009, and additionally we have had many sub-freezing nights and icy cold winds from the north, we have not experienced any measurable snowfall in Newnan yet this year. Which is too bad, because in this part of Georgia, a snowfall event is considered a to be a work holiday! People that move here from the northern areas of the country laugh as the entire business community is paralyzed by an inch of snow. You will hear the excuse that we "don't have the snow removal equipment" but the truth is, (33 comments)
We have a new President, and I am looking forward to the future with a greater sense of encouragement. - 01/20/09 12:25 PM
President Obama's inaugural address left ME speechless. What a magnificent orator, and what a great presidential presence. I was inspired almost to tears. This was the most inspiring political speech I have ever heard since John F. Kennedy's "ask not what your country can do for you" 1961 inaugural offering. I did not support the President during the election. But as of noon today, the 44th President of the United States has earned my full confidence and respect and I wish him all the best. God bless America! All content, including text, original art, photographs and images, is the exclusive property (36 comments)
Bridging the gap between Adam Smith and John Maynard Keynes. Should we control our markets? - 01/20/09 07:26 AM
As we move forward into a new administration, our economy is one of the paramount issues facing our new president. The general consensus among the electorate is that something needs to be done, and many are suggesting drastic measures and government expenditures of unprecedented proportions. This Keynesian approach to intervention in the marketplace had been both a blessing and a curse at times, as any attempt at controlling the cyclical nature of economies can have long term devastating effects on future generations, who must eventually foot the bill for each and every course correction. Whether the piper is paid in the (20 comments)
The inauguration of a new President is an exciting time in the United States! It's a time of renewal, and a time to look forward to the future with great anticipation, and sometimes, a little apprehension. There are a multitude of problems facing our country right now. And these have been addressed ad nauseum by the pundits and prognosticators throughout the realm. But, what seems a minor issue to some, is a crisis that will affect future generations for centuries to come. Our National Parks are treasures that need to be preserved and protected for all time! They are the (27 comments)
Sunday mornings are a time for quiet reflection and looking forward to the week ahead! - 01/18/09 07:06 AM
Sunday mornings are the calm before the storm. It's always a quiet time, as the world seems to pause for a few hours before religious services or weekend chores. It's a great time to both catch your breath and to get a grip on your plans for the upcoming week. And it's going to be a very interesting week. The NFL Conference Championship games on Sunday will determine which two teams go on to the Super Bowl. Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday, followed on Tuesday by the historic inauguration of our new president. Add to that some interesting twists (38 comments)
Light speed and relativity ... will the light on the train shine or not? - 01/17/09 10:07 PM
In today's edition of "Dear Richard" I provided a tongue in cheek answer to this question: If you are standing on the front of a train that is moving the speed of light, and your turn on a flashlight, will that light then be moving twice the speed of light? As it turns out, many readers wanted to know the real answer to the question. Fortunately, as an amateur theoretical physicist, I can offer a reasonable explanation to the conundrum. In physics, forces, motion and time are relative to the system in which they occur. Everything inside the system appears normal (10 comments)
The "Miracle on the Hudson." It makes you stop and wonder: "What would I have done?". - 01/16/09 06:44 AM
The saga of US Airways Flight 1549 is one of those episodes that really make you stop and think. A lot of things went wrong on that ill-fated flight, but more importantly; a lot of things went right. Passenger after passenger was quoted as saying that there was no panic on the airplane. Everyone, from the captain to the children on board, assessed their situation accurately and responded accordingly. As a result of the controlled reaction of the people on board the aircraft, there was no loss of life. What should have been a tragedy was instead a tale of heroism (40 comments)
Does the stress of everyday life get you down? Chill out and go with the flow! - 01/15/09 07:10 AM
Have you been a little uptight lately? Is the stress of the current economic cataclysm getting you down? Is the tension mounting every day? Well, here's some simple advice: Stop worrying about the things that you cannot change. There are immutable forces in the world that are outside our sphere and totally out of our control. There is nothing we can do to have any effect on the powers that be whatsoever. Sometimes we get so wound up in everything that is happening around us, that we lose track of this simple truth: We need to focus on the thing s (31 comments)
A not so wordless Weekday. Photos from my collection! - 01/14/09 05:06 PM
As most of you know, I love taking photos. I try to see beauty in everyday life, and if an average subject turns out fabulous when translate to 2d, then so much the better! I always have my camera bag with me, including my lenses and filters, ready at all times to capture a memorable visual image. Here's a rather random selection from my portfolio. Some you might have seen before, some you may not, but I'll let the photos speak for themselves!
All content, including text, original art, photographs and images, is the exclusive (25 comments)
What exactly is a fixer-upper or a handyman's special? - 01/11/09 07:19 PM
We have all seen those terms used to advertise a property that may be in the need of repair. The problem is, the expressions can refer to anything from needing paint and flooring to tearing down the walls and starting from scratch. With that being said, caveat emptor used to be the rule of the day. It was the buyer's responsibility to make certain that the property was suitable for purchase. Over time, the process shifted towards due diligence. Still, it was the purchaser's responsibility to diligently inspect the property to determine if the sale should be consummated, renegotiated, or terminated. (24 comments)
We never know what's in store for us around the bend until we get there! - 01/11/09 06:52 AM
Life is full of uncertainties. And despite our best efforts to maintain full control of our destinies, we often find ourselves facing an unexpected obstacle to our ultimate goals. Our response to these impediments determines whether we will either continue forward, or whether we will be derailed from our track to success. Having contingency plans prepared in advance is one way to easily negotiate our progress. Better to be proactive in the beginning than to be forced to be reactive at a critical juncture during our journey. So although we can't predict the future, we can prepare for multiple scenarios with different (35 comments)
Taking a short break from work can yield excellent benefits. Ada-Hi Falls at Black Rock Mountain State Park - 01/10/09 11:53 PM
Although I was very busy in the last few days showing property, I always manage to to take a few photos here and there. Today, my adventures took me near Black Rock Mountain State Park in Clayton Georgia. So I decided to take a quick detour and take the short hike to Ada-Hi Falls. The falls don't have a lot of volume, but they are over 50 feet tall and easily accesses after a quarter mile hike. Although the short trek consumed less then an hour of my time, I was refreshed and a bit invigorated after the climb back to (21 comments)
Withstanding the test of time ... technology and longevity often collide. - 01/05/09 06:48 AM
In a world rife with the demands of instant gratification and despite the fact that many are jumping on the latest bandwagon to possess each and every technological fad, there is one underlying principle that is over overlooked: Will that new piece of technology withstand the test of time? For example, the covered bridge in this photo was built in the 1840's, and has survived at least two floods up to the roof level. It is still in daily use today, The photo was taken on Saturday, January 3 2009. At the time it was constructed, the technology was state-of-the-art, and (30 comments)
This train has got the disappearing railroad blues...and I'll miss it! - 01/04/09 07:59 PM
I love everything about railroads! I love the feel of tons of iron and steel making the earth tremble by virtue of their sheer immensity. I love the smell of creosote and grease, and the distant sound of the horns blaring as they approach crossing grades! I love the appearance of mile after mile of perfectly parallel rails running off into the distance, floating on a bed of crushed rock and held in place with square spikes! There is also a magnificent serpentine quality of a long string of rolling stock meandering through the countryside. Our country expanded during the industrial (36 comments)
The "Dark Days of Winter" are upon us! And I don't like it one bit. - 01/03/09 09:27 PM
It's the time of year when the Christmas lights come down and the streets in the neighborhood become dark again. The realization that cold, wet, dreary winter is upon us without the mitigation of festive lighting can be very disconcerting. The decay cycle from electric nirvana to pitch black and darkness can deter even the most optimistic soul from experiencing thoughts of gaiety or exuberance. Instead, it casts an ethereal gloom that compels us to remain indoors to seek refuge from the darkness. So as we bathe in the glow of plasma and liquid crystal displays, we begin to count the (35 comments)
For the first time in a LONG time, I’m running out of gas… - 01/03/09 07:31 AM
Every morning I usually get up and look forward to writing my A/M. blog post. It's a daily ritual that I have been doing for over ten months now, without a single omission. I had set a lofty goal for myself in 2008 which I was able to achieve, although just barely. But it was that goal that drove me to relentlessly adhere to my self-imposed regimen. Now, I am a bit deflated. The drive is just not there. I know that I still have a lot of things to say but they're just not bubbling up to the surface as (53 comments)
My secondary New Year's Resolution... cut back on TV watching...I'll get around to this one if I have a chance! - 01/01/09 06:25 PM
2009 is here, whether we want it to be or not. And although I have resolved to do some very positive things, there are also one "secondary" areas that need some work in the improvement department: I need to spend a lot less time watching television. I love TV, I always have. I grew up in the infancy of the medium, when there were only three channels and the entire world was black and white. Some in the family say that I was named after little Ricky Ricardo, the fictional TV son of Lucy and Ricky in the series "I Love (32 comments)
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