Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I've rambled on over to http://shiaria.wordpress.com/

Even whales do it ...

Stories of team-work and collaboration just keep falling into my lap these days! Guess it's on my mind...

Here's one I stumbled on today - yet another story of individual creatures working together to ensure survival of the group. Today's story is about whales and how they use tag-teaming tactics when hunting.

And just as a side-note, while reading this story I was reminded of another I read a while back about the fossil evidence which suggests that the whale evolved from a wolf-like animal that used to run around on land -- Whales tag-team, wolves hunt in packs ... all kinds of collaboration going on out there in the wild.

Of course, people collaborate too. And just to balance out all the hunting imagery I just gave you, here's a photo of a friend's barn-raising - an activity that is wholly dependent on a slew of collaborating folk, and always seems to involve lots of music and food ...

Styer Barn Raising (mid-lift) by nils_peterson.

(Check out the other photos, and you'll see a barn-house that Nils built. I stayed in it once for a few days when visiting, and fell it love with it. He refused to sell it to me, or anyone else for that matter, but I still like him anyway ;-)

Monday, February 22, 2010

speaking of collaboration...

Here's another fine example, some 42+ students and a ship's crew credit collaboration and cooperation for their having survived the sinking of the tall ship they were on.

So it's clear we cooperate well when we're so young we do it instinctively or when we find ourselves in dire straits -- in other words, in situations when our survival depends on our ability to work together.

but other times, the opposite end of that spectrum, the competitive survival of the fittest, rules. It's learning to find the right tension between those two opposing forces that's the real challenge. Today I have to deal with several issues that stem from the more competitive end of the spectrum, and it's my job to figure out how to maintain balance in the face of that ...

Monday, monday. La da da, la da da!


I watched this episode of The Human Spark this weekend, and was really struck by the way little babies prefer collaborative creatures over self-serving ones. On this Monday morning, that little glimpse into a tiny piece of our fundamental make-up gives me hope...

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Winter ...

Well, it's been a while since I posted here... Last one was what, September? And it's now February ... a new season and, in fact, a whole new year!

There have been a good number of hikes since last I posted. It's been a mile winter weather-wise, I've had what I consider to be over and above my share of colds and illnesses. I've added a pair of snowshoes to my collection of gear, have sold my car after my mechanic informed me the brakes were rotting from lack of use (which means I am now foot-loose and car-free, and yes I know that's not all that witty a phrase but I like it and am going to keep saying it so just bear with it!).

Challenges and change abound!

There should be more, and there will be. Just not quite yet ;-)

Saturday, September 19, 2009


In my last post, almost a month ago, I said I love summer. And I do. But I also love Autumn, which seems to bring with it a sense of completion, a kind of closure almost (somehow, even here in Montreal we are aware however vaguely of the harvest), and all feels calm, secure, comfortable. Last fall found me on the highway quite a bit, and I loved watching the trees turn. This year, I will watch from the heights of the Adirondacks.

Hence the new hiking books. Dunno what
happened to the old ones. The ssports guy who helped me select the new ones said the old ones are still in great condition, ready to do quite a few more hikes before I retire them, but for some odd reason, they do not fit. Too small. Do feet grow even at my age? Can hiking boots shrink? how very odd ...

Here are the new ones. Lowa Topeka, in burgandy. These, my friends, are BOOTS! Providing my feet don't go through another growth spurt (or that hiking up some waterfall doesn't shrink my new boots) these should last a while. And they feel great. I got smart socks to go with them. Can't believe I've been wearing dumb socks all this time. Who knew?!

Friday, August 21, 2009


Pictures of the flowers that appeared on my hibiscus this week.

And of the lemon plant I've started from seed... I love summer ;-)