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SNOW MONKEYS & CHERRY BLOSSOMS IN JAPAN

Just before the world turned upside down, I returned from an incredible adventure that took me to wildlife sanctuaries at different sites around the world. The first stop was Japan where I was able to visit the surprisingly famous Snow Monkeys and enjoy an early viewing of cherry blossoms. The extremes of winter and spring

Saints & Snakes

Tomorrow is St. Patrick’s Day. A day to drink green beer, catch a leprechaun, and cheer the Emerald Isle and it’s legends. So, of course, this blog has something to do with St. Patrick, but it has more to do with snakes. In the Christian tradition, it’s fair to say snakes have a bad rap.

Beware the Ides of March

When I was in high school during the last century, students studied Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in 10th grade. Besides grappling with impossible language and syntax, we encountered the soothsayer’s warning in Act 1, Scene 2. Caesar and his advisors make their way through a crowd on a festival day, perhaps the festival of Lupercalia, an

Women’s History Month: An Unfinished Revolution

Fifty years ago, with some notable exceptions like Eleanor Roosevelt, women were invisible in history. White males led corporate America while secretaries took notes and made coffee. And marriage was the goal of most college educated middle class young women. Though many issues remain unsolved, Women’s History Month is an opportunity to celebrate positive changes

Jumpin’ Jiminy: It’s Leap Year

You may not have noticed, but we have an extra day this month. Leap Day, February 29, is this Saturday. For most of us, it’s just another day, but it’s existence is what keeps our solar calendar in sync with the earth’s orbit around the sun. So let’s do some calendrical history. The Ancient Romans

Practice Random Acts of Kindness

It seems that every event has its boosters which is why there are so many commemorative days like Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day which happened on Feb. 1 (not an entirely bad idea) or National Chopsticks Day that inspired a previous blog. But today shines light on a practice we would all benefit from.

Romantic Love in the Digital Age

GOOD NIGHT, GOOD NIGHT. PARTING IS SUCH SWEET SORROW, THAT I SHALL SAY GOOD NIGHT TILL IT BE TOMORROW. Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, written in 1594,  encapsulates romantic love at its most appealing. Juliet speaks these words as Romeo departs from her balcony, her longing and complete surrender a match for Romeo’s intense commitment. Unfortunately,

The History & Impact of Chopsticks

Did you know February 6 is National Chopstick Day? It’s an obscure commemoration for unique eating utensils used by about one-third of the world’s population. Chopstick use requires a surprising amount of dexterity, and involves 30 joints and 50 muscles in the right-hand fingers, wrist, arm, and shoulder.  In other words, using chopsticks is harder

How Do Groundhogs Predict Weather? Not very well.

Sunday is Groundhog Day, the day when a large rodent leaves his burrow, looks around, and decides whether or not winter will continue another six weeks. Some folks say the groundhog is correct about 37 percent of the time, though that could be pure luck. Groundhogs are actually squirrels, commonly known as marmots. Groundhogs are

Welcome the Year of the Rat

The official date for Chinese New Year is this Saturday, January 25, though preparations began last Thursday. Each year corresponds to an animal in the Chinese zodiac created by the celestial Jade Emperor who invited twelve animals to serve as his guards. The earlier an animal passed through the heavenly gate, the higher rank it