Oh Deer!

So you really don’t want a deer ending up on the grill of your car. 

Not good for the deer (dead meat!) and not good for your car. 

My daughter and son-in-law just gave me Deer Warning Whistles. 

They are supposed to emit ultrasonic sound waves that warn the deer away. 

Anything that keeps the deer away is welcome in my neck of the woods. 😉

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Nature Boy

When I was a kid and I went to the supermarket with my mom, I remember always seeing the “Andy Boy Broccoli” in the produce aisle. 


Of course, I was always curious why Broccoli was called Andy Boy–what boy or any kid for that matter likes to eat broccoli???


And like most things in life, there really wasn’t a good answer except that this company, “Andy Boy” grows and distributes it. 


Anyway, I was always a nature boy feeling most at home and at peace in the countryside. 


I love being in nature, surrounded by G-d’s amazing beauty, and at one with the universe and with G-d.  


In building all our great cities, buildings, and structures, aside from the crowding, pollution, crime and traffic that we have consequently, we have also lost something elementary to our lives with the absence of real nature. 


A park is not a forest.  A pond is not a river.  A plant is a not a lush valley.  A garden is not a farm.  A hill is not a mountain range.  A pet is not a teeming ecosystem of diverse life.  


The city is man made and fake, but nature is from G-d and real. 😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Oh Baby, It’s Warm Outside?

I love when people can communicate through pictures effectively. 


Truly, a picture is worth a thousand words–probably more. 


This was a simple drawing to depict I assume global warming. 


– 2000 some nice mountain glaciers.


– 2020 the snow is melted.


It’s like the person didn’t have to say a word. 


But I get it. 


Also, I know there is supposedly a lot of scientific evidence for global warming.


But for me personally, I don’t see it or feel it.  


The summers, if anything, feel cooler and the Winters feel colder to me. 


I know that is anecdotal and not representative of the world. 


However, it is hard to reconcile what the scientists say, when your own eyes aren’t seeing it. 


Granted, I’m not in Alaska where, for example, the glaciers are melting, 


Still wouldn’t we be feeling something here?


Maybe a few degrees really isn’t perceptible. 


I guess time will tell us for certain. 


Hopefully, by the time we do see it, we won’t get run over by the speeding train.  😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Alligator Govie

So this was a little surprising. 


In the courtyard (next to the cafeteria) at work, there is a nice seating area open during the Spring/Summer seasons. 


Pretty trees, flowers, and a pond. 


In the pond, next to the water lilies, there was a what?


Alligator.  


Not a full alligator.


But someone put an alligator’s head in to make things interesting. 


It’s nice at work when people are normal and have a sense of humor. 


An Alligator Govie that’s what it is. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Triad of Determinants: Nature, Nurture, and Soul

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, “Nature, Nurture, and Soul.”

We are not just what nature and nurture make us–but rather, there is a third leg of this triad of factors that make us who we are, and that third and most important element is that we each have a soul. The soul of each person guides us to choose between right and wrong, good and evil, and sacred and impure, and to not just give in to our weaknesses, which each person has.

Hope you enjoy the article! 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

America’s Great Disappointment

City.jpeg

So the Wall Street Journal asks today,”Why [Is] This Recovery Is So Lousy“?


They say that with Obama, “No president was ever better positioned to lead a strong recovery…no resources were spared…yet not once in the last seven years has annual economic growth ever reached [even] 3%.”


But the news gets worse, in fact, “U.S. GDP grew a disappointing 1.2% in the second quarter…[and] economic growth is now tracking at a 1% rate in 2016…that makes for an average annual 2.1% rate since the end of the recession.”


And that is after Obama’s $836 billion stimulus and $3 trillion in Federal reserves injected into the economy!


The Great Recession may be the most disastrous economic results short of the Great Depression itself.


However, this is not the only reason Americas are disappointed with what they are getting from Washington (and we won’t even talk about the candidates).


80% say we are heading in the wrong direction!  Let’s repeat that again, 80% say we are heading in the wrong direction.


Harvard Business Review says it’s not just the economy stupid, since we still [despite ourselves–with failing policies of enormous tax and spend and over-regulation] rank #5 on GDP per capita. 


Yet that doesn’t translate into overall social progress for us.


Get this, the U.S. ranks 19th in social progress in the world–just one place above Slovena!


Why???


– We rank 26th on personal rights because of restrictions on freedoms like the right of assembly. 


– We rank 27th on personal safety because of high homicides and poor road safety.


– We rank 36th on environmental quality because of high greenhouse gases and poor water quality.


– We rank 40th on basic knowledge because of poor education and high dropout rates.


– We rank 68th on health and wellness because of suicides, obesity, cancer, and heart disease.


HBR points out that there may be individual reasons for each of these, but overall this is a bleak “troubling picture” and Trump isn’t the one who painted it.


The sad fact is that one of the only things that the U.S. is ranking #1 in the world in is our national debt to everyone else…and this is being squandered. 


Think good and hard about the nation you are leaving your children and grandchildren…this is a horrible performance scorecard for America, the superpower!  😉


(Source of the amazing photo: Minna Blumenthal)

Conflicts That Challenge Us

Woman

My wife told me something good today (first time ever, haha).  


There are three types of conflicts:


1) Between Man and Himself — these are our internal conflicts or demons (fears, anxieties, guilt, compulsions, and evil impulses) that we must conquer. 


2) Between Man and Man — these are conflicts we have with others and we must resolve them with either empathy, compromise, giving, and forgiveness or at the other end of the spectrum with fight or flight.


3) Between Man and His Environment — these are conflicts that are man-made or natural in our surroundings and may involve scarcity, harsh or destructive conditions, and obstacles to overcome with scientific and engineering problem-solving. 


I would add a 4th type of conflict:


4) Between Man and G-d — these are conflicts we have in trying to understand why we are here, what G-d wants from us, and “why bad things happen,” and involve our relationship and reconciliation with and service to our maker. 


Basically, these four conflicts are more than enough to keep us busy day-in and -out for our entire lifetime, and either we resolve them and go to the afterworld, or perhaps we have to come back to do some more work on resolving them again. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)