On the Levels of Moving

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Most readers have moved sometime in their life. No matter within a town or to a different town; across the state or to a different state; cross-country or to a different country – one thing for sure, moving is very stressful.

We moved over a year ago. Yes, it was only 6-7 miles (10 km), but it was after 27 years in the same house. Fortunately, we had a lot of lead time, and we took advantage of it – but moving is very stressful.

I had a lot of time to think while packing, which included reflecting about previous moves. Little did I realize that the thoughts would lead me to this post about establishing the following 6 Levels of Moving.

Level 1: The Car Move
Usually one’s first move. You don’t own much, so several suitcases in the trunk and boxes in the backseat suffice. If you’re lucky, you rent a smaller trailer for some larger items.

Level 2: The Beer-and-Pizza Move
You own more, but to save money, you contact friends to provide the labor, and probably rent a truck for the day. Given everyone’s youthful nature, it works, and you are more than willing to provide the food and drinks for the laborers.

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Level 3: The Two-Men-and-a-Truck Move
Three things have happened since the previous move: the accumulation of more stuff, everyone is older, and friends have more family obligations … all leading to hiring movers. Two Men And A Truck is in my area, and the name says what you get. You do the packing, and the two mean are doing the lifting and carrying at each end of the move. On the downside, one may question the two men’s knowledge and reliability about moving. After all, how hard can moving be?

Level 4: Professional Movers
Time passes, everyone is older and with even more stuff – so it’s time to upgrade the moving experience. You contact various professional movers who visit to develop a quote for their services using a team of movers. They offer to pack, but as a money saver, you decide to do attack the time-consuming task. On moving day, boxes fill the home, but the team of movers do the carrying, carefully pack the truck, and unload at the new location.

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Level 5: Professional Pack and Move
Recalling the amount of time and energy involved in packing, you’ve decided to spend the money to give the professional movers the packing responsibility. In general, a one-day pack followed by a one-day move … and it’s done! The movers can also unpack, after all, the task is negotiable. Those having experienced a corporate move may be familiar with this move.

Level 6: The Ultimate Move
Your older now and hopefully your last move. Minimal packing, minimal lifting, and only minimal unpacking because you sold most of your belonging. Suitcases into the trunk, boxes into the backseat and you are on your way to the new location to buy new furnishings. It’s interesting how much of life goes full circle.

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On Exploring Dimensions

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Life has its dimensions in the mysterious. (Jesse Jackson, activist)

A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions. (Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.. judge)

The key to growth is the introduction of higher dimensions of consciousness into our awareness. (Lao Tzu, philosopher)

I’ve always been thinking in three dimensions, ever since I started working with computer animation in the early ’80s. (John Lasseter, director)

In the final analysis, a drawing simply is no longer a drawing, no matter how self-sufficient its execution may be. It is a symbol, and the more profoundly the imaginary lines of projection meet higher dimensions, the better. (Paul Klee, artist)

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 264

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Jeb Bush (R-FL) ended the suspense (and Super PAC fundraising) by officially announcing his candidacy for president. Here’s The Onion’s profile on him.

Donald Trump (R-NY) officially announced his candidacy with buffoonery. The process requires candidates to provide certain disclosures, so time will tell he is serious, thus complies. He loves attention, so announcing gave him that, thus I hedge on him actually being in the race. As a bombastic egotistical Bloviator-In-Chief, talking with conviction doesn’t mean he’s truthful. Here’s the Fact-Check on his speech and his profile from The Onion. For those needing more, a reminder that The Nincompop (aka Sarah Palin) praised Trump’s candidacy.

It’s easy to find something odd in the news, but the Rachel Dolezal (the former NAACP chapter leader) has my head spinning.

My post about what initially attracts one person to another (On Selection) fostered good discussion. I encourage everyone to start taking note of your casual observation when you encounter people at the grocery store, walking down the street, or at any gathering.

The US Open, my favorite golf tournament, is this weekend. After the first day of competition, I’m withholding my endorsement of the course and layout until later.

Remember the mural honoring Martha, the last passenger pigeon? ArtWorks recently announced 10 new murals for downtown Cincinnati. Click this link to see the current look and projected new mural. The slidebar on the images provides an opportunity to see before and after.

Some personal updates

  • For those recalling my eye issue of a year ago, it never fully recovered, thus giving me a new normal
  • I’m involved with a major watering project in the neighborhood
  • Next week I’m transitioning from a sub in the golf league to a regular
  • After boasting last week about visiting many blogs, this week wasn’t very good
  • Yes … we’re still dancing

Meals: The Musical continues next week with an act featuring songs with an alcoholic drink in the title. Act 7 starts Wednesday, 9:30 pm (Eastern US). In case you forget, there’s always the Hear Ye page.

Another Explore will appear on Saturday.

For those of you that get email notification regarding Likes, I’m curious … which 3 posts are listed for me?

To lead you into The Onion, here’s the Republican response to climate change statement made by Pope Francis. The headline is worth the look.

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This Week’s Headlines from The Onion (Combos welcome)
Sexist pig had no idea when Team USA plays Nigeria
Co-worker who threw fit and stormed out of room looked like total badass
Man forced to come up with 45 seconds of facial expressions while server lists menu specials
New law determines bullets no longer responsibility of owner once fired from gun
Dept of Interior sets aside 50,000 acres of Federal land for anonymous sexual encounters

Interesting Reads
How each US President viewed God 
Europeans and the Bronze Age
800 years since the Magna Carta
Language of Apes
(Photo Gallery) California drought (Washington Post)

Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On Selection

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What initially attracts a person to another? To some, it’s the eyes. To others, it’s the face, physique, height, or butt. Then again, it could be breasts, hair, skin tone, or a combination of any of the listed. We could get into the finer details involving hands, personality, or cheekbones, yet the question remains – What initially attracts a person to another?

From a biology perspective, I see human commonality with the rest of the living world. After all, organisms select mates based on color, strength, the ability to sing or dance, and rituals. in the end, it’s about the best genes getting together to increase the odds of the species’ best genes being passed on to the next generation. Keep in mind that the biological purpose of any organism is to grow and survive so the species can perpetuate.

Yes, that’s natural selection – as opposed to artificial selection when humans decide which domestic organisms breed. In terms of passing along the best genes, artificial selection is similar to natural selection, but it occurs outside of the rules of nature. Breeding dogs and other domestic animals is big money because pedigree is important. Breeding race horses is even bigger money, but in the end, it’s artificial selection.

In general, celebrities fascinate the masses – and how often to we see attractive celebrities with another attractive person. The parents pass these attractive genes to their offspring, but that’s natural selection, not artificial selection.

But the initial question remains – What initially attracts a person to another?

A ratio is a relationship between two numbers. Mathematics provides the Golden Ratio, which some artists, designers, architects, and others apply this because they believe the Golden Ratio is the most beautiful and most pleasing shape.

Maybe a ratio is what first attracts one person to another. If so, which one?

Various ratios influence what a person finds attractive. Shoulder-waist ratio, waist-hip ratio, torso length to leg length, face length to face width, and other facial ratios.

Whatever the ratio or body feature that initially captures one’s attention, it’s different for each of us. Gender, age, and culture account for some of the differences in our preferences. In the end, these are selection factors – yep – natural selection.

… and I couldn’t resist these fitting musical selections …

On Letters to a Skeptic

The father grew up with church being part of his life. Over time, he withdrew, so the son grew up without church. While attending during college, church become part of the son’s life. In time, he became a pastor and a professor.

As one would expect, father and son would have religious discussions, and many went nowhere. Eventually, the son invited his father into an honest dialogue through written letters – and the father agree. Their format was simple – the father asks a question, then the son answers. As with any meaningful dialogue, answer lead to more questions.

Letters to a Skeptic (Gregory Boyd and Edward Boyd) is the collection of letters of such a journey. The father (Ed) asks good questions, and provides thoughts around his questions. Ed’s responses to his son Leters2aSkepticCover(Greg) are also direct, poignant, and relevant. Greg’s replies are respectful and (generally) easy for a layman to understand. However, the responses are also debatable within the Christian community because one size does not fit all.

The father’s questions are good, such as;

  • Why has Christianity done so much harm?
  • Why is the world so full of suffering?
  • Does God know the future?
  • Is you God all-powerful?
  • Why does God create earthquakes and famines?
  • Are the Gospels full of contradictions?
  • Isn’t the Bible full of myths and God’s vengeance?
  • Do all non-Christians go to Hell?

Given the content and the situation/circumstances of the characters involved, one would think this is a book for any atheist or agnostic – or even as a toolbox for Christians when discussing religion with atheists and agnostics. Although this may be applicable to somebody in some circumstances, I see Letters to a Skeptic as an excellent read for Christians – especially in a discussion format. (Note: I read this book this book and participated in a discussion group. The book also provides discussion questions to consider.)

The discussion between father and son is sincere, respectful, and thought-provoking. Every Christian won’t agree with every point made by the son or the father – let alone by others in a discussion group. After all, theological disagreements exist with Christianity.

This book enhanced my Christian perspective, it also caused me to question the thoughts said by others – yes, the others in my own church – and that’s OK. In the end, reading and discussing Letters to a Skeptic was worthwhile – therefore, I recommend this book for those who might be interested in learning more.