Posts Tagged With: Fresh Pond in Cambridge

Day 2756: Block Party

Yesterday, when my son Aaron and I were in Lexington, Massachusetts, we attended a block party.  Not the usual block party, but an Artwalk Block Party, in which store windows displayed painted and decorated blocks.











Speaking of nurturing creativity, Block Party is also a documentary film which follows comedian Dave Chappelle during the summer of 2004, ending in a block party he hosted in Brooklyn which featured musical artists including Erykah Badu, Mos DefCommon, The Fugees, The Roots, and the Central State University Marching Band.  Here‘s Wyclef Jean asking members of the CSU marching band what they would do if they were President before he performed If I Was President”:

If any of them were President instead of our current one, I’d be celebrating with a block party.

Wanting to block our current President from getting a second term reminds me of this video from Republican Voters Against Trump:

That reminds me of my other photos from the same block in Lexington yesterday:








Aaron and I had our own socially distanced block party in Lexington yesterday, celebrating near this guy …

IMG_5584 … with Cocoa Joel and Cake Batter ice cream from Rancatore’s.  I don’t have any photos of that celebration, but I do have these other photos from various blocks yesterday.





























After those walks around some blocks, Michael made us fish cakes with asparagus, turnips, and carrots.




I shall now invite you all to a commenting block party, below.

As always, I end each daily blog block party with gratitude for everyone who helps me party, including YOU.


Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Day 2435: Reduced guilt

For many of us, reduced guilt would be a blessing.


I love the idea of reduced guilt mac & cheese! I also love the idea of reduced guilt for

  • not being able to do it all,
  • making mistakes,
  • inadvertently hurting somebody’s feelings,
  • over eating,
  • wasting time,
  • wasting money,
  • making unhealthy choices,
  • not exercising enough,
  • being selfish sometimes,
  • getting angry,
  • being sad,
  • having moments of despair,
  • being ambivalent,
  • being needy,
  • not knowing,
  • making missteps,
  • making noise,
  • speaking up,
  • not speaking up,
  • eavesdropping,
  • being lazy,
  • missing people,
  • resenting unfairness,
  • making comparisons (and other cognitive distortions),
  • feeling less than,
  • feeling better than,
  • having a faulty memory,
  • just wanting to have fun,
  • not always following the rules,
  • not always getting what’s going on,
  • having unkind thoughts, and
  • being human.

Here and now, I’m practicing reduced guilt about all of the above, especially having unkind thoughts about some national leaders (who might benefit from having INCREASED guilt about their behaviors).

Because confessing my guilt reduces it, I have reduced guilt about the other photos I took yesterday.



















I have reduced guilt about buying that dress for my upcoming college reunion, because it was such a bargain!

For more reduced guilt, you could try this guided meditation by The Honest Guys:

Honestly, I don’t know those guys, so here’s  “Guilt” by Marianne Faithfull.

What are your thoughts and feelings about reduced guilt?

Increased gratitude to all who helped me create this “reduced guilt” post and — of course! — to YOU.




Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 1616: Beyond this moment

Many people believe that this moment is the best, safest, and only real place to be. If we go beyond this moment into the future, we might experience anxiety and dread.  If we go beyond this moment into the past, we might experience regret and depression. Beyond that, if we go beyond this moment, we’ll miss all the beautiful richness of this moment.

I’m going beyond this moment to a moment from yesterday:


In that case,  beyond this moment sounds like fun.

Let’s now go beyond that moment to these other moments from yesterday.









Music and dance might take us beyond this moment.

From those moments on, Bob Fosse was a dance superhero.

Beyond this moment, I’m looking forward to momentous comments from my readers.

For now, let’s not go beyond this moment of sincere gratitude for all who helped me create the moments in this post and — of course! — for YOU.

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

Day 1395: The Choice is Clear

Yesterday, the choice was clear that I needed to take this picture:


It’s clear that nobody should choose to try to clear that  barbed wire fence.  Also,  the choice is clear in the upcoming vote of the next U.S. president.  But is the choice ALWAYS clear?

As I chose to write yesterday, when the choice is NOT clear, that can be painful. This morning, I choose to believe that unclear choices, over time, will become clear enough for me to choose well enough.

The choice is clear! I clearly need to trust my ability to choose, even if it takes me some time to clear my way to the better choice.

If I asked you to choose a favorite from the 30-something other photos I chose to take yesterday, would the choice be clear? And if the choice isn’t clear, what will  you do?









































Yesterday, the choice was clear for me to post that last photo on Facebook with this caption:  “Scarred for life and happy about it.”

Because I’m going to see An American in Paris  in a Boston theater tonight with my friend Barbara, my musical choice is clear today:


If you’ve chosen to read my blog before, it’s clear that I choose to end each post with thanks to all  who help me create it  and to you — of course! — for choosing to join me, here and now.


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

Day 1070: Stroop

Yesterday, I saw an unfamiliar word: Stroop.

I reacted by googling “Stroop” with my trusty, stroop phone.

Now, I’m not saying that I  used “stroop” correctly in that previous paragraph.  But doesn’t “stroop” sound like it might mean something that fits there?

Anyway, Google quickly found this Stroop Wikipedia entry:

The Stroop effect is the finding that naming the color of the first set of words is easier and quicker than the second. In psychology, the Stroop effect is a demonstration of interference in the reaction time of a task.

I’ll name this: that Wikipedia definition of Stroop did not make it easier or quicker for me to identify the stroop I had just seen. Indeed, it interfered in my reaction time finding out what “stroop” meant.

Before I show you photos I took yesterday, I’ll give you this task: take some reaction time to consider what “stroop” sounds like it might mean, to you.

Okay? Ready?

Here are my photos:

No matter what you think stroop might mean, one of those photos does demonstrate stroop. Here’s my second set of words about that:  something shown above  inspired this entire stroop post.

Would you like to take a guess, before the big stroop reveal?









Stroop is a kind of waffles!

Whatever stroop set of words you leave in a comment, I hope my reaction time is quick enough.

Thanks to waffles and Wikipedia, to the Stroop effect, to everything else that helped me blog today,  and to you — of course! — no matter what your stroopy reactions are to this Stroop post.

Categories: definition, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , | 49 Comments

Day 945: Yellow

At first, I thought I’d be naming this post

Green and Yellow

… because I saw a lot of green and a lot of yellow yesterday.

Here are some of the greens:




Ahhhh. That was restful. Do you feel as green and renewed, now, as I did yesterday?

Yes, “Green” could easily be a part of my post title today, especially since the last photo I snapped yesterday was of a green cashier who was in training at the green supermarket Whole Foods at Fresh Pond in Cambridge (very close to all those green shots I’d taken earlier). Here is that  wonderfully green  cashier, Helena:

Helena, despite being green, bravely guessed that I was a psychotherapist and that my boyfriend Michael was a professor of Philosophy, just by engaging with us for five minutes. I, a psychotherapist, was green with envy at Helena’s powers of observation and guessing. Although Michael never went to college, he told Helena that an online IQ test  said he should be a “Visionary Philosopher.” I thought both Michael and Helena were the opposite of yellow (which can mean “cowardly”) and, before we left Whole Foods, I sought out Helena’s manager to praise Helena’s green and impressive skills.

Getting back to the point I made, above (when this post was still green), a green reader of this blog might insist that I include “Green” in the title of this post. Indeed, I even have some perfect images for “Green and Yellow”:

… assuming people know that “green” can also mean “money.”

However, I very recently published a post titled “Greens” and non-green readers know that I don’t like repeating myself.

Anyway, here are some more yellows I saw yesterday:

… before my non-green-and-yellow cell phone ran out of power.

It’s occurring to me now that, in  the English language, the word “yellow” doesn’t have a lot of positive connotations. My immediate associations with “yellow” are

  • Cowardly and
  • A “lemon” of a car.

Maybe that’s why I’ve never even considered getting a yellow car, before yesterday. However, this man

… Neran, helped me feel much braver about doing something green and new. Also, when I mentioned to Neran that I was a psychotherapist (even though Neran is less green than Helena, he didn’t guess that about me), I found out that Neran

  • also works with people with mental illness and
  • Neran’s supervisor, for that other job,  is MY long-time and brave supervisor, Ross, from a previous job.

Anyway, perhaps I could tie up this “Yellow” post with a perfect ribbon, but I need to get to work where — among other things — I have to find out if I have really have  the green to buy one of those yellow beauties, above.

Before, I do, what music matches the colors in this post?

How about “Me and the Boys” — performed by redhead Bonnie Raitt — from the album Green Light?

Yellow thanks to Bonnie, Helena, Michael, Neran, and Ross*, to colorful rides everywhere,  to all the boys in my life (including my 17-year-old son, Aaron), to the Fresh Pond area of Cambridge Massachusetts USA, and to you — of course! — for coming along for this green and yellow ride, today.

  • in alphabetical order, because I greenly and yellowly felt like it.
Categories: fun, gratitude, personal growth, photojournalism, taking a risk | Tags: , , , , | 33 Comments

Day 538: Shorter

This title of this post is inspired by a text exchange I had yesterday, with my friend Ray. Ray has shown up in this blog — along with his wife/my friend, Janet — in several previous posts, one of them being shorter.

IMG_0682 *

Here is the inspirational exchange:

Ray: Hi Ann!  We’re looking forward to seeing you tomorrow. We’re wondering if we could meet a little earlier for brunch. Maybe 9? We may go to open houses afterwards and want to get an earlier start. Let me know what you think.

Me: 9 is fine. I’ll just have to write a shorter and crappier post. See you then!

Ray: Thanks for lowering your standards for us! See you at 9. It’s called the Town Diner in Watertown, right?

Me: Deluxe town diner.

Ray: Ooh!  Deluxe!

Here’s what I’d like to point out about that dialogue:

  •  Ray and Janet are back in Massachusetts, after several years away in Ohio. Although their absence may have been shorter than it seems to me, it was still too long.
  • My favorite line, in the exchange between Ray and me,  is the one that is shorter than the others.
  • The other adjective I used in my message to Ray, after “shorter,” was on my mind  because of yesterday morning’s post, which marked the first appearance of bird poop in this blog:


  • The words “shorter and crappier” could be construed as judgmental, couldn’t they?

This reminds me of one of several discussions — some shorter than others — I had yesterday with my cousin, Lani:


That’s Lani and her precious cat, Jewel.  Lani and I haven’t seen each other for over a year, even though she lives a  shorter distance from me than Ray and Janet.

Lani and I had a terrific time yesterday — talking about people and judgment, our parents and other family members, my blog posts (Lani is a faithful reader), and other topics (short and long). I resolve to see Lani again soon, after a much shorter time.

That would be wonderful.

Although this post is probably going to be shorter than my usual weekend post, I still have time to post more images from yesterday:


That’s from brunch, with Lani, at Brio in Chestnut Hill. I took that photo because the butter there was shorter (height-wise) than I remember ever seeing before at any restaurant.

On my way home from my too-short-time with Lani yesterday, I snapped this picture:


The two tallest buildings in Boston — appearing above —  also showed up in yesterday’s post. Which do you think is shorter: the one on the left or the tower on the right?

Later in the day, bf Michael and I returned to Fresh Pond in Cambridge, also featured in several previous posts (some appearances being shorter than the others).  Our walk yesterday was shorter than usual, because of a restoration project:


I remarked to Michael that I had never heard the term “off-wheel vistors” before. It took me a moment to realize I was a member of that group, despite the helpful illustrations. I guess that was a shorter way to describe “those who aren’t riding bicycles.”  You know … walkers. (Or runners, too, I suppose.)

Despite the shorter route, we still saw several new and interesting things:






Maybe this post wasn’t so crappy, after all.

Thanks to Ray, Janet, Lani, Jewel, Michael, off-wheel visitors everywhere, story-tellers (and walkers), people with standards (no matter what their height), those who find their way home,  anybody letting go of unhelpful judgments (for shorter or longer amounts of time), and — especially! — to you, no matter how short your visit today.

* You  may notice that some of the photos in this post are shorter than others.  WordPresser AmyRose, at Petals Unfolding, has told me that the size of my photos might be slowing down post-loading for my readers and eating up storage space.  (Storage space DOES seem to be running shorter, everywhere.) Thanks for letting me know, Amy.

Another, shorter footnote: Those of you getting my posts via email — and finding me on WordPress Reader — might find those initial readings shorter today, assuming I successfully followed Mark Bialczak‘s helpful instructions about re-routing readers home, here.

Categories: inspiration, Nostalgia, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

Day 493: Dogged Determination

Our cat Harley saw a new veterinarian yesterday — Dr. Jake Tedaldi.   During the introductions,  I told Dr. Tedaldi that the vet at the shelter where we got Harley in October had written that Harley was “kind.”

I want to share with you the first sentence from Dr. Tedaldi’s visit description, which he left with us:

Harley is a cautious, possibly fretful fellow, but the term “kind” may actually be quite appropriate.

This strikes me as a helpful instance of the sometimes-not-so-helpful automatic process we humans have of labeling others (and ourselves).

Harley wasn’t the only one who saw a doctor yesterday. I saw one of mine, too, and it looks like I won’t be returning to work next week.

Now, might it not seem strange that this post —  describing a cat and a non-working human — has the title “Dogged Determination”?

Well, this post is about to take a turn, people.

Yesterday evening, I went for a leisurely walk with my boyfriend, Michael, at an outdoor location (rare in these parts) where dogs can run free, without leashes.

Here are some photos from that walk:













The next four photos show a dog determinedly retrieving a ball, from a pond (my apologies for shooting into the sun):






The next group of pictures features another water-loving dog. While we weren’t formally introduced to any of the other canines in this post, we were to this one:   Zoomy Bear.

When I first noticed Zoomy Bear, he was living up to his name — leaping over a fence to get to the water.  Unfortunately, I did not capture any of his impressive jumps on my iPhone. This was my first shot of him:


His zoomy-ness blurred him a little, there.

He became less blurry once he returned to the walkway. Here’s Zoomy Bear with his owner (whose name I did not get):









Here’s what I especially remember about that encounter:

  • Departing from my usual routine, I neither (a) explained I was taking photos for this blog nor (b) got her email to send her this post.
  • She told us several interesting things, including how she and Zoomy Bear celebrated his most recent birthday (which included doggy pastry),
  • When I requested photos of the two of them, she said, “Oh!  That will be a study in contrasts: He’s dirty and I’m clean.”
  • She used other labels about herself, including “loopy.” I disagreed with that label, in my thoughts and out loud.
  •  Zoomy Bear’s breed name  included the word “miniature” and (I think) “wolfhound.”
  • My phone died after that last photo, as I was trying to show her the images.
  • When I apologized for that (or, perhaps, for something else), she said, “Don’t worry.”

I am taking her advice.

I’m just glad that — despite not being able to record it on my phone — I remembered the name “Zoomy Bear.”*

Thanks to doctors who care for animals and humans,  kind creatures everywhere, dogs (unleashed and leashed),  those who zoom as best they can, and to you — of course! — for coming by here, today.

* I wonder if I’m spelling that correctly.  It might be “Zoomy-Bear.”

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 48 Comments

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