We could be in Maine eating lobster and sinking into torpidity by a lake on a long planned vacay. But the best laid plans don't come to fruition...Anita strained her back some weeks ago and it has been a slow recovery involving massage, chiro visits, and some drugs. Getting better but likely another month to go. Didn't immobilize her but as she usually carries all the luggage while I consult my phone, we decided to err on the side of caution and call it off. You can read below about the latest on low back pain and recovery.
The Dog Days of Summer has arrived. Lethargy has settled upon me much like a cat slinking in the door. Some years my garden energizes me. This year has been vexing, hence the torpor. I have two peach trees, one of which gives me yellow peaches in early July and white peaches in August-an accident of nursery double graftingunknown when I bought it. The birds got all the yellow peaches early this year before ripening and before I put up netting-a first in my yard. One iridescent fig beetle that visited and I let be because I thought was so pretty, turned out to be a scout and put out a call to the tribe and two days later two dozen descended like a bad family reunion to have a buffet on a portion of my other tree. They generously left enough for two peach pies and one cobbler. I over-fertilized my tomatoes so although my three plots of some 60 plants look lush with big leaf growth there is not a lot of flowers that will turn to 'maters. And it is already August! Contrary to some people who write about gardens, but do no actual gardening, the life of a gardener is constant vigilance and violent war by ethical means.
Ahhhh but the monsoons skies bring tears of beauty.
CITY MANAGER'S REPORT contact info: email@example.com The first couple of weeks from the new interim city manager. This link was posted on the Bisbee Mayor facebook page. http://www.bisbeeaz.gov/DocumentCenter/Home/View/3675 CITY OF BISBEE YOUTUBE CHANNEL Past council meetings and -real time soon -will be available at this site. Nina Williams in the clerk's office set this up at no cost to the city. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoKAHjI_5kCJ5FTBp4eC7ng
<><><><><><><><><><><><>< IWW-A personal footnote and extensive comments on my San Diego years IWW Deportation Project was truly excellent-thanks to the organizers for a really wonderful series of events.
In the late 60's myself, and several other people, were members of a Wobblies IWW local (IWW slogan, One Big Union) We published a weekly underground radical newspaper called the San Diego Street Journal, shining investigative light on the nefarious dealings in the city (including a national story about Nixon's funding from Mexico). We sold our paper in stores and on street corners. We formed a IWW chapter to push for rights to distribute our paper. However the San Diego powers-that-be were not enamored with our expose's of city sleaze and the police 'red squad'-a staple of many police depts through the 70''s-that 'exposed' commie influence and activities-began putting our communal houses under surveillance, stopping some of us every day as we went about our business. One of us was stopped 45 days in a row and not arrested. The FBI of J. Edgar Hoover was commie-obsessed, and they aided the SDPD with tactics and personnel. (As has subsequently come to light Mr. Hoover enjoyed wearing dresses, so the thought of that pugnacious little man that caused so much harm to so many innocent people, directing operations wearing a dress is an unwelcome image that remains embedded in my poor mind.
We were occasionally were charged with minor infractions but once we were charged with were Criminal Syndicalism. Criminal Syndicalism was defined as a doctrine of criminal acts for political, industrial, and social change. These criminal acts include advocating of crime, sabotage, violence, and other unlawful methods of terrorism. This charge was used most frequently, from 1908 to the 40's, against the IWW, particularly when there was strike activity. In the 60's it was used to oppose the radical new left movement.
It didn't even get to trial we beat them and beat them badly with a combination of American Civil Liberty Attorneys, organizing, accurate info, public events, protests, and exposes of skeletons in the closet. Their loss had the effect of forcing the police to back off from harassment of our group and severely weakened the red-squad.
We occasionally sang songs from the 35th edition of a series of IWW songbooks began in 1909.
their slogan was "To Fan the Flames of Discontent.
A verse from the song Solidarity Forever:
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
They have taken untold millions that they never toiled to earn, But without our brain and muscle not a single wheel can turn, We can break their haughty power: gain our freedom when we learn that the Union makes us strong. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
The San Diego Street Journal was only one project of many that our larger group of about 30-40 people were involved in. Called the People's Commune, we did antiwar organizing around military guys coming back from Vietnam andestablished a GI coffee shop, among women needing reproductive services by establishing a Woman's Center, supporting the Black Panthers, as well as the Brown Berets. Our intellectual mentors were Wilhelm Reich-The Mass Psychology of Fascism-and proponent of liberation through orgasms (hear hear!) Herbert Marcuse-a new left Marxist, Chairman Mao, Sun Tzu, and the New York Women's Liberation group. We flourished from 1967-1970 where we disbanded and went our separate ways. Those are the San Diego Years.
Myself and a few others made our way to Eugene OR where we helped begin a forestry workers cooperative, Hodads, that eventually grew to 300 workers. A chapter in the book of Fred I may write about in subsequent newsletters.
And I may write about prior years to San Diego, co-owning a store in Long Beach that sold dope paraphernalia, cultural & political posters, radical books, and was a hub for leftie politics.
(I just know you are on the edge of your seats waiting for each chapter.)
TREATING BACK PAIN: SUMMATION OF RESEARCH
These two articles sum up tons of research on low back pain and reach some practical understanding as well as suggestions for alleviation. If you have, as Anita has, non-specific low back pain and what to do something about it. Thanks to Debbie Gardner for the citations. Read on....
Consumer Reports June 2017 has an excellent series of articles https://www.consumerreports.org/back-pain/the-better-way-to-get-back-pain-relief/ and vox.com has a comprehensive article
<><><><><><><><><>><><><>< LEARNING HOW TO LEARN
Learning how to Learn is a website that recommends MOOCs (Massive Online Open Courses) for learning new stuff. It has free courses and paid courses. A tremendous range of interests. It is valuable if you are interested in continuing to acquire knowledge. (Of course if you are interested in sticking in your same ole rut, then ignore.) Their free offerings have a wide range of topics. Very interesting if you are interested in the pure joy of learning as well as the new mechanics on brain research and how to learn. This bunch of articles and recommendations comes from Learning how to Learn https://www.coursera.org/learn/learning-how-to-learn
An article on the founder of Learning How to Learn https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/04/education/edlife/learning-how-to-learn-barbara-oakley.html?_r=1&utm_medium=email&utm_source=other&utm_campaign=opencourse.GdeNrll1EeSROyIACtiVvg.announcements%7Eopencourse.GdeNrll1EeSROyIACtiVvg.muW3sXOqEeetjg76OjXjzA
An Exerpt: Four Techniques to Help You Learn
FOCUS/DON’T The brain has two modes of thinking that Dr. Oakley simplifies as “focused,” in which learners concentrate on the material, and “diffuse,” a neural resting state in which consolidation occurs — that is, the new information can settle into the brain. (Cognitive scientists talk about task-positive networks and default-mode networks, respectively, in describing the two states.) In diffuse mode, connections between bits of information, and unexpected insights, can occur. That’s why it’s helpful to take a brief break after a burst of focused work.
TAKE A BREAK To accomplish those periods of focused and diffuse-mode thinking, Dr. Oakley recommends what is known as the Pomodoro Technique, developed by one Francesco Cirillo. Set a kitchen timer for a 25-minute stretch of focused work, followed by a brief reward, which includes a break for diffuse reflection. (“Pomodoro” is Italian for tomato — some timers look like tomatoes.) The reward — listening to a song, taking a walk, anything to enter a relaxed state — takes your mind off the task at hand. Precisely because you’re not thinking about the task, the brain can subconsciously consolidate the new knowledge. Dr. Oakley compares this process to “a librarian filing books away on shelves for later retrieval.”
As a bonus, the ritual of setting the timer can also help overcome procrastination. Dr. Oakley teaches that even thinking about doing things we dislike activates the pain centers of the brain. The Pomodoro Technique, she said, “helps the mind slip into focus and begin work without thinking about the work.”
“Virtually anyone can focus for 25 minutes, and the more you practice, the easier it gets.”
PRACTICE “Chunking” is the process of creating a neural pattern that can be reactivated when needed. It might be an equation or a phrase in French or a guitar chord. Research shows that having a mental library of well-practiced neural chunks is necessary for developing expertise.
Practice brings procedural fluency, says Dr. Oakley, who compares the process to backing up a car. “When you first are learning to back up, your working memory is overwhelmed with input.” In time, “you don’t even need to think more than ‘Hey, back up,’ ” and the mind is free to think about other things.
Chunks build on chunks, and, she says, the neural network built upon that knowledge grows bigger. “You remember longer bits of music, for example, or more complex phrases in French.” Mastering low-level math concepts allows tackling more complex mental acrobatics. “You can easily bring them to mind even while your active focus is grappling with newer, more difficult information.”
KNOW THYSELF Dr. Oakley urges her students to understand that people learn in different ways. Those who have “racecar brains” snap up information; those with “hiker brains” take longer to assimilate information but, like a hiker, perceive more details along the way. Recognizing the advantages and disadvantages, she says, is the first step in learning how to approach unfamiliar material.
A BOOK FOR EDUCATORS
From the Laboratory to the Classroom: Translating Science of Learning for Teachers, edited by Jared Cooney Horvath, et al. This book provides a first-rate overview of what we know from research about how to teach so that university as well as K-12 level students really learn. If you’re doing research in the area, you’ll find hundreds of great recent references on topics ranging from the benefits of interleaving and memory consolidation to the effective use of imagery.
A BOOK FOR LIBRARIANS AND OTHER LEARNERS
(MOOC=Massive Online Open Courses)
Also of interest is MOOCs Now: Everything You Need to Know to Design, Set Up, and Run a Massive Open Online Course, edited by Susan Webreck and Jennifer Jumba. The importance or power of MOOCs for libraries. Written generally from a librarian’s perspective, provides an unusual perspective on MOOCs that we hadn’t realized before.
HOW TO REMEMBER (it may be too late for me)
An interesting video from 4-time US Memory Champion Nelson Dellis on how to memorize. You can also take the Extreme Memory Challenge.)
THE METHODOLOGY OF LYING
RUSSIA AND TRUMP: A TIMELINE
JEFF FLAKE AND THE FAUSTIAN BARGAIN
(strike a Faustian bargain” is to be willing to sacrifice anything to satisfy a limitless desire for knowledge or power)
THE RENEGADE CONSERVATIVES: BUILDING TRUMPISM