Posts Tagged With: Abraham Lincoln

Day 2612: A House Divided

Abraham Lincoln’s “House Divided” speech included this quote:

A house divided against itself, cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure, permanently, half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other. Either the opponents of slavery will arrest the further spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction; or its advocates will push it forward, till it shall become lawful in all the States, old as well as new — North as well as South.

Today, the USA government seems like a house divided, again. The whole country, the whole planet, seems like a house divided, which cannot stand.

Yesterday, I saw this:

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That “house divided”  is very close to the Atlantic ocean, so I don’t know how long that’s going to stand, either.

I don’t know how to unite this house we all live in, except to keep blogging and sharing photos like these:

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This comes up when I search YouTube for “A House Divided”:

 

On this Martin Luther King  Jr. Day 2020, thanks to all who help me create this daily blog from our house (including YOU).

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Day 2590: Clouds

While I’ve been in the clouds about my December 27th wedding to Michael, I’ve also been noticing clouds, including these:

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What do those clouds look like to you? Do you see

  • a unicorn?
  • a dragon?
  • a face?
  • hope?
  • threats?
  • something else?

What does this look like to you?

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Some people have been like dark clouds in my life, and when they disappear, it IS a brighter day.

Maybe my new socks have something to say to dark clouds.

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I don’t want to cloud the issue, but I actually do care. I wish to be aware of all clouds and do what’s in my power to deal with them.

Here are some quotes about clouds:

“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.” — Rabindranath Tagore

“I know that I shall meet my fate somewhere among the clouds above; those that I fight I do not hate and those that I guard I do not love.” — William Butler Yeats

” Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending.  You plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility.” — St. Augustine

“It is better to have your heads in the clouds and know where you are … than to breathe the clearer atmosphere below them, and think that you are in paradise.” — Henry David Thoreau

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.”  — Edward Abbey

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.” —  John Lubbock

“Clouds do not really look like camels or sailing ships or castles in the sky.  They are simply a natural process at work. So too, perhaps, are our lives.” — Roger Ebert

“Mirth is like a flash of lightening, that breaks through a gloom of clouds, and glitters for a moment; cheerfulness keeps up a kind of daylight in the mind, and fills it with a steady and perpetual serenity.” — Joseph Addison

“Let the people on both sides keep their self-possession, and just as other clouds have cleared away in due time, so will this, and this great nation will continue to prosper as before.” — Abraham Lincoln

“I, like everybody else, have a certain fear of heights, and I have to be very careful when I’m in the clouds, but it is also what I love; it is my domain, so when you love something, you don’t have fear.” —Philippe Petit

“Who cares about the clouds when we’re together? Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.” — Dale Evans

Do you see any clouds in these other recent photos?

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It’s nice to see a squirrel in a cloud of lace.

Here‘s a song about clouds:

 

Here‘s another song that’s hovering in the clouds of this post, above:

 

If you were to comment on this post, I’d be on Cloud 9.

Now it’s time to end this post in a cloud of gratitude, so thanks and happy trails to all who help me find my way through the clouds to blog every day, including YOU.

 

 

Categories: gratitude, personal growth, photojournalism, quotes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Day 2096: What’s the title of today’s post?

Today’s post could have been titled

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Day 2096: Welcome y’all, come on in and stay awhile,

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Day 2096: News & Blog,

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Day 2096: Essential Knowledge,

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Day 2096: Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn,

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Day 2096: Dude!  September isn’t even over,

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Day 2096: So Far So Good,

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Day 2096: That’s What She Said,

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Day 2096: Creating a Buzz,

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Day 2096: Whatever you are, be a good one,

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Day 2096: What Do YOU Care What Other People Think?,

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Day 2096: Outliers/Being Mortal,

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Day 2096: Self-care for the real world,

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or Day 2096: There’s beauty in simplicity, BUT I prefer the title

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Day 2096: Bloom where you are planted.

Do you like that title or do you prefer another?

 

Since I bloom where I am planted, I bought something at the Brookline Booksmith yesterday. Any guesses?

Today’s post also could have been titled

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Day 2096: JAZPNO or Day 2096: Jazz Piano, because this comes up on YouTube when I search for “Jazz piano bloom where you are planted.”

 

Today’s post could also have been titled Day 2096: Thanks to everybody who helped me create this post and — of course! — YOU.

 

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Day 2078: Preparing for the worst-case scenario

Yesterday, as I was preparing for several worst-case scenarios, I noticed this headline in a local newspaper:

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I captured that image, preparing for the worst-case scenario of people getting confused, angry, or annoyed that I was inexplicably snapping a photo of a folded newspaper in a busy restaurant, perhaps momentarily inconveniencing people going about their business.

I wanted to photograph that “Preparing for the Worst-Case Scenario” headline — despite the worst-case scenario of bothering other people — because  I believe that I am not alone in preparing for the worst-case scenario, consciously and unconsciously, every day.

Preparing for the worst-case scenario that the previous paragraph was either confusing or otherwise inadequate, I will now redirect you to many blog posts about the cognitive distortion of catastrophizing (here, herehere, here, here, here, here,  here, and here).

Preparing for the worst-case scenario that nobody will look at those previous posts I’ve written, I shall now prepare a list of my current thoughts and feelings about preparing for the worst-case scenario, as follows:

  • People who want to sell you something often do so by seemingly preparing you for the worst-case scenario.
  • Action movies, like the latest Mission Impossible film (which I saw yesterday), are built on worst-case scenarios (e.g., the destruction of the world)  being thwarted, at the last possible second,  by super human actions performed by people who are much stronger and smarter than anybody I know.  My mind then goes to this worst-case scenario: what chance do actual human beings have in averting disaster in real time and real life?
  • Some reader might chastise me with this: why can’t you just enjoy a great action movie without all this thinking about worst-case scenarios?
  • It’s difficult to prepare for the worst-case scenario when so many seem possible in the moment. How do we even  choose what the worst-case scenario is, from moment to moment and day to day?  And then, how do we prepare for it amid all these shifting sands and different opinions out there?
  • Whenever I listen to or watch the news, I notice people preparing for worst-case scenarios that are often diametrically opposed from each other.
  • A nation (and world!)  so polarized and conflicted is — according to Abraham Lincoln —  a worst-case scenario: “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”
  • I’m preparing for the worst-case scenario that my readers might think I haven’t done my homework in preparing this post by pointing out that “A house divided against itself cannot stand” originally appeared in the New Testament.
  • Preparing for worst-case scenarios in our daily lives (e.g., my health is declining,  my money is running out, I won’t be able to survive this latest loss, I may fail miserably in this venture, people will judge and/or abandon me) may seem to prepare and arm us for difficulties, but it also depletes and sometimes defeats us, even before we’ve tried.

Should I be preparing you for any worst-case scenarios in my other photos from yesterday?

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Last night, as I watched the fabulous fireworks celebrating the opening of the new Hancock Adams Park in historic Quincy, Massachusetts, USA, I was preparing myself for the worst-case scenario that I wouldn’t capture any of the wonderful smiley-face fireworks that were a part of the display. Despite preparing for that worst-case scenario, I loved every moment of those fireworks.

So I guess that’s the best I can do, these days: realize that my mind is going to naturally be preparing for the worst-case scenario but also getting as much as I can from every moment I’m still alive.

I’m now preparing for the worst-case scenario that people will notice all the flaws I see in this performance of my second original song “Catatrophizing” from two months ago …

… and this more recent performance, listed under the title “How not to be a busker, by Ann Koplow” on YouTube (and starting at 4:04):

How are you preparing for the worst-case scenario, these days?

As always, I’m preparing for the worst-case scenario by focusing on gratitude for what I do have. Thanks to all who helped me prepare this worst-case scenario post and — of course! — YOU, from the bottom of my catastrophizing heart.

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Categories: cognitive behavioral therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 27 Comments

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