Astronomy Picture of the Day

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Image from the Hubble


Mystic Mountain Nebula
the view in infrared by the Hubble
It is what used to appear to astronomers
as a dark cloud or black hole.
thanks to the Hubble,
we can see more clearly
a magical new mystery.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Low Rays of Winter

A February archive photo

The Low Rays of Winter
offer all gradiations of gray to white and
blues made better by cold.

Still milder than normal
and windy, gusts at times.

We missed the Aurora Borealis last week
with cloud cover each of the possible nights.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Sunday Music Link

Saw this posted on youtube
and have heard before on my CD's but nothing like this...

Saturday, January 28, 2012

I am a Blogger, Don't Mind Me

i am just a blogger, don't mind me, take your big newspaper and sell it, I am Free

You might hear
"those damn bloggers.

how dare they

have opinions or

voice them

what do they think?

that they can think? "

copyright 2012 mary e gerdt

in spite of that you may distribute ad lib

for non for profit reasons

[i am a blogger and support bloggers. When I heard Bob Schiefer
cry out Bloggers as if a dirty word, this poem came to me. Come on,
bloggers are expressing their right to self express. If you do not like the message,
turn it off. If you want to control my messages, then I believe we have a difference of opinion.
mary.e.gerdt 1.28.2012]

Friday, January 27, 2012

Interview with a Clone Chapter 2

Alice looked out the window of the frosted beach house, huddled in a down filled sleeping bag and sipping schnapps as her solar powered lamp flickered and died. Tomorrow she would start the generator again, it was too late tonight and she was exhausted. Her cat snuggled near her neck as the wind howled and palm trees creaked and cast off pieces in the night winds.
Alice felt comforted here, reminded again that it was not so bad, winter in Bermuda, after enduring that horrible interview with Gigi Fairweather who is on Mars. Gigi and the Mars community have partially lost touch with Earth by losing the shuttle service. Gigi knew Alice's Clone Mom when she was Susan Wolf, before she was Dr. Wolf. They were in military training academy together.
Alice thought they might like to hear from Dr. Wolf's daughter who was cloned and now doing research at her mother's lab in Bermuda. Perhaps it would break up the sometimes monotonous life on Mars.
Still, she felt hostility from Gigi, or just an edge that cut Alice wrong.
Was she being overly sensitive?
It was just an interview.
Alice fell asleep fretting.
her mother used to do that too.

for chapter 1:

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Best cats

Buddy was one of our
Best Cats

He lived to be at least 23 years
and has been gone a few years.
Was looking for a picture to post
Buddy was our old neighbor's cat
and when we moved down here and the neighbors moved away,
Buddy showed up one day and
walked right in
and we loved him
as did Sean, our small black cat.
Best cats know how to mouse, keep clean,
not do stupid things,
more intelligent,
wise eyes,

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Color of Pain

Today before I even read the Psalm of the day on
Psalm Challenge
I wanted to post some Sunday thoughts about pain,
then see if they coincide at all.

Pain has many colors.
Black, red, blue,
ripped, torn, diseased,
hurt, yellow,
vicious, sharp, biting,
deep, constant, persistent.

Some make you wish you were dead.

Pain ripped me out of bed in the wee hours again,
and standing on my leg re calibrated something,
my MS dance.

My mother's pain, invisible or hazy to some,
I perceive on full wavelengths,
as if I had the channel tuned in better.

I thought this morning,
how pain,
in all it's colors,
can be invisible to others.
We are all so different in how we perceive pain.

As a new nurse, over 30 solar years ago,
I decided to lay my hand on people in pain
and try to
ground it.

And if I was successful, it would make their life

I was worried there would be damage done to me,
all that pain flowing to ground into the Earth, our Mother
(like on the old sin eater's version of twilight zone or one of those shows).
And I decided,
it could not hurt me,
it was channeling someone else's pain.

Do you feel how comforting a hand is on the shoulder?
Or the catharsis of letting a story go,
or just knowing someone
how much you hurt?

Some cannot see the colors of pain I do,
and I guess that really is something I had
to learn and have to live with.

I do pray someone sees the colors of their pain and
puts a gentle hand on their shoulder
and lets it go.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Grief Resources in ASL

A Friend blogger
posted some you tube videos.
Sherry's videos can help guide deaf persons
who use ASL to process grief and feel connected.
Here is one video in ASL although I could get some of the words
and expression comes out clearly. Please share far and wide.
Nice job Sherry!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Electronic Freedom Foundation

Go tell them...

What if We could not have a voice? Would the story all change?
Would we be slaves to the media controller? did nothing.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Plainman’s Creed

double click to see the words...
This I found at a garage sale
and was taken in by it’s simple message.
At first confused by the words:
“a white man’s room on earth”
until I realized that is the best that it gets.
This author and artist deserves the credit
and here it is, though
copyright is hard to read:

Monday, January 16, 2012

I Had a Dream

I listened to Martin Luther King's speech again
since I knew he would have it on.
Just as MLK talked about the mountaintops,
a tear came to my eye,
such a perfect speech in form, content,
feeling, message.
The sun came up over the mountains
and I snapped this one, above.

I wanted to tell a story today of my dream.

In the Second grade, I had a dream.
It was 1965 or so.
I had suffered the first grade with learning to play with others,
something I still struggle with.

My 2nd grade teacher was always there, smiling and loving us.
We knew all of us were loved.
The words I was learning to write,
and their meaning.
the words together,
started catching my interest more
and more.

One day, a fellow student
(he is a black child, though I have no idea he is different in anyway)
and I decided we would write a book.
That was one of the most exciting thoughts to me.
A Book,
like the ones on Mom's bookshelf,
like the ones in the library,
like the ones that made people famous,
We made plans to meet after school,
We were writing a

Fast forward to my neuro appointment last week,
My doctor saying,
"You missed your calling,
you are a good writer"
and me sitting there,
thinking of my little friend
in the second grade
I am 3rd from right in the front row.
Many years later, I saw this photo again and realized he
was the only male black child in my class.

When I announced to my father that I was going to write a book
with this young black child,
My father went ballistic.

That is when I learned what racism was.
I fought with him hard and lost.
I could not go to
that neighborhood...
lower town...

I was so angry with him and have had a little anger in there left.
Still my father grew up in the south side of St Louis
in a German neighborhood. As time went on, urban blight
destroyed some of the neighborhoods. Blamed on black people.
Dad also delivered mail and told me he knew a lot
about people by the mail they received.
That confused me more than reassured me.
Now I know it is a lie.
You really do not know what people are about
by their mail.

I had a dream to write a book,
missed my calling, and gave up a fight with my father,
All while 7 years old.

Today, the dream,
through MLK's voice,

My father,
I will always love dearly,
and I forgive,
in all his prejudice,
he was trying to protect me and was there for me.
He did not know it is not the color of a person's skin
that tells their character.
he learned it,
prejudice is learned
and can be

Them is us
We are them
We are all
I have a dream.

for Martin Luther King's info:

Sunday, January 15, 2012



Fred has been nurturing our new sourdough starter

and we have had success baking some great bread on a baking stone…




I felt this dough livelier than many in the past.

The strands that binds good bread are long and strong.

The taste is sublime.

F found recipes on Sour dough recipes

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Saturday Night Music Link

Beautiful link to Allen Toussaint doing Southern Nights...
Going below Zero F hear...

Winter & Vermont Ski Report

The winter has been weirdly mild and I keep hesitating saying that because we are a little superstitious and when we say open winter, we get a dump of snow.
Well , we got some snow, wind, rain and sleet in the valley,
the effect of temperatures
back to normal January.
Much fresh snow up in the mountains,
the storm yesterday was vicious and powerful.
Morning photo from last week

It is a good thing to help promote Vermont skiing, snowboarding, etc.
I found this informative site & you can load on your mobile device:

Enjoy winter!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Music Link

Friday Music link,
This week a link to Ollabelle,
a great band in NYC area.
video by Anthony Pepitone-looks like a great night.
Now buy their music....

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Monday, January 9, 2012

Mountain Top Film Festival

The Mountain Top Film Festival is running
January 13-19th, 2012 at the Big Picture Theater in Waitsfield, Vermont
I found out from co-workers that they will be showing
Wretches & Jabberers,
a film about 2 men living with autism and raising awareness through their travels in film.
More on their website...

Looks great!
and other films too
see the film festival schedule:

Here is  part of their press release:
9th Annual MountainTop Film Festival:

"I still have a dream: I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed" - MLK speech at civil rights march on Washington, August 28, 1963

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr., the 9th annual MountainTop Film Festival will once again offer a diverse program of documentary and dramatic films, addressing social and environmental issues from around the world. The festival takes place at the Big Picture Theater in Waitsfield, Vermont January 13-19, 2012.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Link to article Re: Vermont embezzlement

Here is a link to an opinion piece in the Addison Eagle.
Auditor Salmon makes a lot of sense.
There is a problem in Vermont and individuals are powerless
to affect these practices.
Hoping again for reform.

Then, just as I thought the Auditor said it all,
David Usher steps up and really nails it:|newswell|text|FRONTPAGE|s

I appreciated reading and linking both articles.
There is a problem....

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Music Link

From Richie across the pond,
a link to a great performance
Thanks Richie & Herrad!

Friday, January 6, 2012


Will cut to the chase.
I was taking a placebo and Copaxone after all.
The power of imagination, suggestion, hope?
Makes the placebo effect.
I was totally shocked and the clinic staff were comforting to me,
happens to the best of us!
Also relieved that Copaxone has been very effective for me.
I have undergone 4 years serial MRI's, exams, etc.
My stability is a welcome thing and not having to fund 2 meds,
also welcome.
my day:
All morning I wondered, while engaged in work which helped distract my thoughts.
Then the trip up the valley to the clinic.
I brought the camera and wanted to snap one at the Overlook on Spear St. It is a nice little park with the only remaining public lake view.
Been wanting to get a panoramic on a nice day.
It was, alas, overcast but still beautiful. Some trees have grown up, cutting the view up.
Too bad.
Then I took one by the fountain where my Dad & Mom took pictures

Then one more southerly,
Adirondacks in the distance across lake Champlain
Then I got the news at the clinic and have a weird relief
and surprise.
So thought I would google Placebo when I got home.
I know the clinical thing. We used to actually adminster
placebos, years ago, and they were sometimes more effective
than the real thing.
This band Placebo was more interesting,
although the video link may not be
appropriate for some audiences,
watch at your own risk.
I found it telling of some of the times and
have heard this song before but never with this intensity.
Have a great day

Final last clinic visit

I have one more final last visit paid for by research.
It was like having another job, being free from copays, etc.
Being able to say to the registration people that I did not
have to conform. I am a studied patient. Doing shots and journals,
tests, blood draws, MRI's, etc.
It was all for killing the dragon, an image that I found in a condensed book about King Arthur
by Howard Pyle. The image of the dragon was so much more real than
cartoon images of immune processes using colored blobs with complex initials arrows
and explanations.
So I want to urge everyone to keep the image of slaying the dragon
known as Multiple Sclerosis as a simpler way to think about a cure.
So I wrote a poem for my MS clinic staff pasted below
and will schedule to post tomorrow,
when I finally find out what I have been on and plan for the next steps.
I still miss Dr. Hillel Panitch too and thank him wherever he may be present.

If MS was a dragon,

And I was King Arthur,

That sucker would be dead

Thanks sincerely to the entire MS clinic for making a stab at killing the beast.

Best wishes to you all!

Mary Gerdt

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Peace Be With You: Below the Surface

A link to friend
Judy, who writes
to explain..
Here, Judy
breaks down the
essentials of
describing pain.
Peace Be With You: Below the Surface

Quote of the Day

As I randomly travel the www
and visit others,
some with similar viewpoints,
some with seemingly opposite viewpoints,
all travelers really,
on ground like quicksand,
walking on air,
feeling the cold
of the wind on our faces,
finding a quote from an old wise man
who made a bomb
and left  pearls like this one:

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” ¯ Albert Einstein

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

News from Russia

News from TV via DC & LA.

This law is not good,
best behave.
who can I complain to?
is this a done deal?
excellent news coverage...



one thought was
all i had to find
to do a post,

when one
after another
would come and

then one,
kept returning,
a thought like no other
like no other
more important


one thought
Vermont Property Tax reform.

are you with me?

dreaming of a day when Vermonters
recognize the importance of property ownership,
and how the present system steadily,
erodes what you own.

2012-the year of fees?
How about those late property tax fees,
sales and
shame of publication,
Call your vermont rep to tell them
your first priority is affordable
property ownership
and stop the VT property tax endless

Sunday, January 1, 2012

January 1st

January 1st, 2012
and it seemed weird to be so far past
2001, (do you remember the book/movie 2001: a space odyssey?)

With a new year, I wanted to spruce up the blog.
So I added an aquarium with seven fish, (scroll way down)
they do like to be fed...
Then added a link to Michael Terry's blues I found on smokestack lightning.
Then because good things happen in three's
I added the end of the world calculator, not because I think the end of the world is good,
it is just that I find this particular gadget something that amuses and may excite some people.

There, January 1st has started the clock ticking here, at the Monkton Chronicles headquarters,
where tired post holiday travelers rest in front of the wood pellet stove.
I meant us...
Happy travels for you & yours in 2012...