More Than I Need

I had enough toilet paper to last me till Thanksgiving and I was not worried when all the shelves were empty at the store, but yesterday when I went out, I saw that they had toilet paper available on the shelves again, and I bought more.  It is taking up the whole bottom space in my pantry and I can barely close the door and I figure that now I will be good through Easter and my pantry could be called the cupboard of abundance.  I certainly don’t want to run out of toilet paper and it looks like we have a long way to go with this Covid-19 pandemic, as it doesn’t seem to be going quietly away.  I wonder if I was stocking up, or have I become a hoarder.

It seems simple enough, wash your hands, avoid touching your face and when you are out in public, wear a mask and practice social distancing.  Trump came up with a deeply flawed argument, dismissing the severity of the pandemic, downplaying the effect of the disease even as infections continue to spread across the US.  He falsely claimed that 99% of the virus cases are totally harmless and I heard on the news that 4% of the people who get Covid-19 in the US, end up dead.  Almost 130,000 people have already died here from this so-called “harmless” virus and at about 2.9 million people have tested positive for the infection, so a simple observation along with some easy math says that it is closer to 4.5% of the people that contract this virus will end up dead.  These statistics don’t even account for the thousands of people who have spent weeks in the hospital or weeks at home with mild to moderate symptoms that caused debilitating health problems.

In Florida where many people are aging, test results showed that by July 3, that there has been a total of 190,052 positive COVID-19 cases with 3,702 of these resulting in death from the virus.  Since July 3rd, 18 more Florida residents have died from this pandemic.  It is not just the older populations and those with underlying health conditions that are at risk, as Covid-19 is having a severe impact on young people now.  In Florida, the median age of positive Covid-19 cases in March was 65 years old, but within the last week, it has dropped to 35 years old.  Florida has reopened and maybe this was done by Governor Ron DeSantis to oblige the Republican president, but if that is the case, this was done in bad taste.

A significant portion of Covid-19 patients are asymptomatic, so that means that there are a lot of people who are walking around with the virus, but since they are unaware of having it, but they are passing this infection on to others, so the transmission is still spreading.  The Novel Covid-19 is a silent killer and you may not know that you are infected, until it is too late.  The world is different now, especially in the stillness that was created by social distancing, quarantine, and isolation.  Many people feel loneliness and this is apparent in those who wear their heart on their sleeve, but everyone copes differently and you can’t tell a book by its cover.  It is not like we can put on a pair of ruby slippers and tap our heels together like Dorothy did in The Wizard of Oz and have everything go back to normal again, as the genie is not getting back in the bottle.

Written for Sheryl’s Daily Word Prompts – Oblige, for the Daily Spur prompt – Loneliness, for Eugi’s Weekly Prompt – Observation, for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #Week 142 prompt – The genie is not getting back in the bottle, for FOWC with Fandango – Taste, for Midwest Fantasy Devereaux Frazier and Beth Amanda Tuesday Writing Prompt Challenge – to write a poem or piece of prose around the words “in the stillness”, for Jibber Jabber by Sue – Quietly, for July Monthly Writing Prompts – The cupboard of abundance, for Ragtag Community – Ruby, for Di’s Three Things Challenge prompt words – Available Book Sleeve, for Linda G. Hill Life in progress What Day is it Anyway? July 7th, 2020 and for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Aging.

Sinks with the Boat

You only need to know a few folding tricks in order to make your own vessel to navigate the water’s currents.  I wanted to watch my paper boat which I painted green, as it made its way out to sea, that is if it didn’t get stuck in those waterlilies.  I opened up a bottle of Yoo-Hoo, because I wasn’t able to get hold of my dad’s rum and I poured some of the contents onto the bow to christen my boat Sea Biscuit, but I was not sure if would sink or float.  I launched it in the creek just under the bridge and since my favorite toy was Gumby and I knew how much he enjoyed going on adventures, I put him in my boat.

Gumby was flexible enough to pilot Sea Biscuit past the waterlilies and he looked like a champion as he steered past the rocks that were jutting up, making a classic move around them that showed his skill.  The rocks created turbulent zones, but Gumby maintained control as he went past a frog that just grabbed an insect with his long tongue.  I ran through the field alongside of the creek and I almost stepped on a snake which made me fumble my candy bar, which I got from the market.  That sneaky snake was a master at deception, but I was sipping on subterfuge as I knew his camouflage was no match for me.

The water started flowing more rapidly and I could hear the water falls ahead and I wanted to have a good spot to watch Gumby plunge over the falls.  Gumby was my favorite toy, but I had grown tired of him and besides that my friends made fun of me for having a stupid toy that didn’t ever do anything cool.  Well this would be a cool end for him and it would make me happy to see him bash his rubber head and drown.  I would not miss him, or get the Blues from him not being in my life, but on the other hand we were friends for many years and he would not be forgotten.  I wondered if Gumby might be eaten by a lobster after he sunk with the boat.

Written for Sheryl’s Daily Word Prompt – Fumble, for the Daily Spur prompt – Champion, for FOWC with Fandango – Classic, for May Writing Prompts – Sipping on subterfuge, for Ragtag Community – The Blues, for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #136 prompt – Painted “Sinks with the boat” where we are supposed to write about any one line from her poem, for Di’s Three Things Challenge prompt words – Field Skill Market, for Sue Vincent’s May 21, 2020 Thursday photo prompt and for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Forgotten.


She was afraid that her top would come undone, so she tested out her bathing suit under a torrent of water and to her surprise it held up.  She was not sure if she should embrace or conceal her feminine traits.  She loved the way her new bathing suit looked on her, but it was so revealing and she was basically a shy girl.  She wore it because it was in style, and girls all across the country started wearing bikinis.  She thought about wearing it as a mutiny against her parents, as her mom preferred her to wear more subdued clothing, which always made her feel as though her body was something to be ashamed of, and this caused her a lot of humiliation.  The suit would work out great for being in the water, but it did not hide an inch of her body, instead it exposed so much of her, all of those girly parts that she never wanted anyone to see.

She always heard people say that there was no need to have breasts any bigger than a mouthful, but at sixteen, she was still flat as a post.  The truth often hurts and she was tired of wearing A-cup size bras, but she knew there was no method available for her to flex her chest muscles to increase her breast size, as this could only be done by improving her posture, and pushing her breasts further forward to make them appear to be firmer and fuller.  She would never win a beauty pageant title and she was OK with that, but she had to get off this merry-go-round of hiding her body in public.

Written for Sheryl’s Daily Word Prompt – Mutiny, for the Daily Spur prompt – Post, for FOWC with Fandango – Top, for March Writing Prompts – The truth often hurts, for Ragtag Community – Afraid, for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #125 prompt – Women and womanhood, for Di’s Three Things Challenge prompt words – Flex Title Merry-Go-Round, for Sue Vincent’s Thursday photo prompt – Torrent and for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Country.


The scroll of the screen continued even after she closed her eyes.  The long and short arrows pointed left and right, up and down as the ophthalmologist measured the curvature of the front of her cornea by using a non-invasive medical imaging technique to map the surface curvature of the outer structure of her eye.  The test determined that her vision is blurred because her cornea (the clear front cover of her eye) is irregularly shaped, but she also had cataracts.  Jade was a popular blogger who wrote poetry and she also enjoyed the sound of music, participating in Song Lyric Sunday and the MM Music challenge every other Friday.  There was a vast wonderland out there and jade was missing some of it because of her vision, so she decided to schedule the surgery.

With the surgery and the new lenses implanted, she would be able to spot familiar faces again, drive her car with more confidence even if there was rain.  Jade had been making a lot of typos on her posts and after the operation, she hoped to cut down on these five finger fiascoes.  Jade wanted to dive into this new story about Mother Nature wanting to strike back against the fossil fuel companies who were ruining the Earth.  Jade knew that Global Warming was not false and she was embracing the impeachment process against Trump and she would shout, “Hurray”, when he was gone for good.

Written for Sheryl’s Daily Word Prompt – Vast, for Roger Shipp’s Daily Addictions prompt – Dive, for the Daily Spur prompt – Rain, for Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie First Line Friday hosted by Dylan prompt – The scroll of the screen continued even after she closed her eyes, for FOWC with Fandango – False, for Christine’s Daily Writing Prompt – The sound of music, for Linda G. Hill’s ‘Life in progress’ JusJoJan January prompt – Jade, for January Writing Prompts – Five finger fiascoes, for Ragtag Community – Wonderland, for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #118 prompt, for Di’s Three Things Challenge prompt words – Story Popular Strike and for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Hurray.

Shut Those Dogs Up

Jerry got his BB gun out and fired a shot that hit one of the dogs.  It yelped and then he shot the other dog and they finally settled down.  His wife Karen said, “I hope that you didn’t hurt them, but I am glad that you got them to quiet down.  I have to be at the hospital in another three hours and I am hoping to get another two more hours of sleep.”  Karen knew that Jerry did not hurt the dogs as he was an expert marksman, capable of shooting a flee off of the dogs, as he was raised in West Virginia and as a boy he spent his entire day hunting squirrels.  Jerry said that the only way he was going to be able to get back to sleep after all of that barking was if they made love.

Karen knew that Jerry was also getting up at the same time as her, so he could get to his job driving the bus and she figured a quickie might help both of them.  Jerry said, “I don’t have a rubber” and Karen responded by saying, “Just stick in in and get it over, so I can get back to sleep”, and then she wondered ‘Was that really me?’, as things were getting more and more frazzled and all the romance that they once shared, had all but disappeared.  They still shared superficial pleasantries, but most of their free time together was spent watching television.  Jerry finished and they both drifted off back to sleep, but Karen kept wondering about the nerve that her next-door neighbor had, to tie his dogs up outside and allow them to wake up the whole neighborhood every night.

Karen woke up before the alarm went off, because she realized that she still needed to iron a shirt for Jerry.  Karen made breakfast for her and Jerry, just cereal and coffee and she kissed Jerry goodbye and then she shut the front door and went to work.  There was unrest at the hospital, as a new administrator had just taken over the department that Karen worked in and he was starting a campaign to decrease spending.  The other ladies that worked with Karen felt that the hospital should be spending more money and improving customer satisfaction and this created a rivalry in her group.  The new administrator was kind of a quirk, as he went around singing show tunes all day and it was apparent that he must have just watched Guys and Dolls last night.

Written for Sheryl’s Daily Word Prompt – Quirk, for Roger Shipp’s Daily Addictions prompt – Shirt, for the Daily Spur prompt – Rivalry, for FOWC with Fandango – Rubber, for Christine’s Daily Writing Prompt – Guys and dolls, for Linda G. Hill’s ‘Life in progress’ JusJoJan prompt – Dogs, for January Writing Prompts – Superficial pleasantries, for Ragtag Community – Shut, for Reena’s Exploration Challenge prompt #117 – Was that really me?, for Di’s Three Things Challenge prompt words – Television Nerve Unrest and for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Campaign.

Built to Last

People need their independence and not every relationship is meant to last forever.  Nature intended us to be wild and free, not to be tied down to a life time commitment in a relationship.  Being single doesn’t mean that you are all alone, it is more of a matter of choosing your options.  Marriage is no longer the institution that it used to be and the average marriage in the United States now lasts 8 years and separation usually takes place after 7 years.  A new term “Starter marriage” has entered the vernacular, because marriages are no longer built to last like they were years ago.

There are times when you must beckon,
There are times when you must fall.
You can take a lot of wrecking,
But you can’t take it all.
There are times when I can help you out,
And times when you must fall.
There are times when you must live in doubt,
And I can’t help at all.
Two blue stars, shine o’er the hill.
Plead no more, now just be still.
Through the night, now safely there.
Show me something built to last.
Been held by the fire,
Yes and I’m, held by the ring.
You can walk on balls of fire,
But sometimes you might bleed.
There are times when I have begged you
And you do the same to me.
If you can’t or won’t admit it,
At least we pulled you through.
Three blue stars, set o’er the hill.
Call them back; you never will.
All these trials, soon be dead.
We all need something built to last.
Built to last ‘till time of seven,
Falls tumbling from the sky.
Built to last ‘till lightness fades,
And darkness falls on all.
Built to last ‘till years roll back
Our couch perched in the sky
Show me something different,
Or something built to try.
There are times when you get hit up on,
Try hard but you cannot give.
Other times, you’d gladly go
With what you need to give.
Don’t be afraid to save your face,
When you have done your best
Now I won’t forget,
Next day try the rest.
All the stars, are gone but one.
Morning dreams, we found the sun.
Show me something built to last
Two blue stones, shine o’er the hill.
Call it back; you never will
All these trials, now are dead.
Show me something built to last.
All the stars, are gone but one.
Morning dreams. here comes the sun.
Through the night, now sinking fast.
Show me something built to last.

Written for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #115, where she asks us to write something about when a person is tied down to somebody, that they can’t really be themselves for long.

Shame on the NFL

Colin Kaepernick is bad for football; he is a bad seed and I could readily do without him.  He is the guy who would not stand during the national anthem and LeBron James is among the celebrities who jumped on the bandwagon to support him.  He has alleged that NFL owners have conspired to keep him out of the league.  Pete Rose should be inducted into Baseball’s Hall of Fame way before Kaepernick is ever allowed back into the NFL.  Kaepernick claimed that he was protesting racial injustice and police brutality against people of color, but he was being paid to play a sport, not to be an activist.  He hasn’t played a game since becoming a free agent in the offseason of 2017.  The NFL has reached a settlement with Colin Kaepernick after he was blackballed.

Kaepernick said, “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color.  To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way.  There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”  Kaepernick disrespected all of the U.S. military service members and I think that he is a racist for feeling that Black lives matter more than any other lives.  He was not making America better; he was just drawing his own dividing line and I hope that he never gets back into football.  He is a disgrace that has been treated as a hero and if he is readmitted, I am willing to give up watching football.

Written for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #114 prompt QUESTIONNAIRE by Wendell Berry where I went with question #4.  In the name of patriotism and the flag, how much of our beloved land are you willing to desecrate?  List in the following spaces the mountains, rivers, owns, farms you could most readily do without.

Freedom from Eyeglasses

Aristotle thought that an old man would see as well as a young man if he had a youthful eye.  I have an appointment to discuss cataract surgery in January, but I still have not decided which way to go on that.  There are basically three options available to me and they are having my near-sightedness or my far-sightedness fixed or getting both fixed with Multifocal Intraocular Lenses.  The third option is the expensive one, but this would let me say goodbye to glasses forever.  If I choose to just get either my near-sightedness or my far-sightedness fixed, then it would require me to wear glasses for the one that wasn’t corrected.  Thus, if I get my distance vision corrected for driving, it would put my reading out of focus and I would need glasses for that and vice-a-versa.

Medicare will only cover the cost of standard monofocal intraocular lenses used in cataract surgery and the multifocal intraocular lenses will probably cost $2,500 per eye.  I want the freedom, but I am indecisive about how much I am willing to pay for that.  Having to wear glasses is a burden and even using extended wear contact lenses can be a pain.  The medical technology exists to improve the quality of my life and I could have the freedom to see at distance, intermediate and near without the need for glasses.  Everything should be fine, as I don’t develop an astigmatism, but there is no need to worry about that now.  Determining to wear glasses, or not to wear glasses is a Shakespearean decision for me, but not in the same realm as what Hamlet was considering.  Writing this has helped me to make up my mind and I want it all, so I will go the expensive route and get the multifocal intraocular lenses.

Around 1000 AD, Ibn al-Haytham known as Alhazen, an Arabian mathematician at Cairo, made significant contributions to the principles of optics and he became known as the “Father of Modern Optics.”  Fourteen of his works on optics have survived, including his Book of Optics and his Treatise on Light.  Several 11th century hoards found at Viking sites on the island of Gotland, Sweden, contained biconvex lenses made from rock-crystal.  These are called the Visby lenses and they provide evidence that sophisticated lens-making techniques were being used by craftsmen over 1,000 years ago, at a time when researchers had only just begun to explore the laws of refraction.  It is said that the lenses are of such high quality that they could have been used to make a telescope.

It is generally accepted that spectacles were ‘invented’ (more likely improvised) no later than the last quarter of the thirteenth century by the Italians (rather than the Dutch or the Chinese).  In 12th-century China, they started wearing flat panes made of smoky quartz, that were used as sunglasses and they were a status symbol, as they had no corrective properties.  In 1266, the English Franciscan Friar, Roger Bacon wrote about the scientific principles of corrective lenses in his Opus Majus, but there’s no evidence that he applied that knowledge.  Bacon described the magnifying properties of lenses (spectacles came into use soon after), and he elucidated the principles of reflection, refraction, and spherical aberration.  In 1286, the first eyeglasses were made in Pisa Northern Italy, by Friar Alessandro della Spina.  By 1301, there were guild regulations in Venice governing the sale of eyeglasses.

Written for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #113 image prompt where I went with glasses.

Reena’s Phrases Part Two

Yesterday I made a post covering the first four phrases in Reena’s Exploration Challenge and now I will write about the remaining phrases.
1. pockets of stillness
2. question your maps
3. cynical assertions
4. lost alphabet
5. was that really me?
6. crumbling thoughts
7. undulating patterns
8. free-flowing bonds
9. pregnant pause
10. potential of emptiness
I went to a party at my best friend’s house that was an outdoor barbecue.  Billy and I played bocce ball in his back yard which we both enjoyed and then we sat on his back porch to enjoy some beers.  My wife always got along really well with his wife, which made things nice.  The folding chair that I was sitting in collapsed and I fell over, but I didn’t get hurt.  I was embarrassed and I spilled my beer.  Billy got me another chair and another beer, but that chair also broke under my weight.  I’m a big guy, I wear triple extra-large shirts and I need a sturdy chair to sit in.  The gravity of the Earth makes up a person’s static weight and there is also the force used in sitting down that needs to be considered when determining how much of a load a chair can take and this is the dynamic weight.  All folding chairs have a maximum weight capacity which should equate to the amount of pressure that can be put on that chair before it collapses, but this only refers to the static weight.  The dynamic weight comes into consideration when someone plops their butt down into the chair, re-adjusts in it to feel more comfortable, or leans back on the chair.  Billy got me a third chair and I felt bad when I broke that one also.  I had to sit on his steps for the rest of the party, because I did not want to break any more of his cheap chairs.  I did not think it was my fault, but I did wonder was that really me?

Chairs can collapse and cookies can crumble, as sometimes things just don’t work out.  The world has a way of throwing many things at us, and often it can feel like everything is crumbling around you.  When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I’m feeling sad, I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don’t feel so bad.  I am usually in the mood to write and I try not to tie myself down into any specific structure, but every now and then I have crumbling thoughts.

Our solar system isn’t fixed in one position, it travels through space and our Sun eventually aligns with the center of the Milky Way galaxy.  All the stars in our galaxy rotate around a galactic center, but this happens at varying time periods because they are at different distances from the center and they are moving at different speeds.  It takes our solar system which is moving at a speed of about 155 miles per second or 486,000 miles per hour approximately 226 million years to orbit the Milky Way galaxy.  The Galactic Center of the Milky Way is it’s rotational center, this is the place where the super massive black hole is located which is estimated to be 2.6 to 3 million times more massive than the size of our Sun.  Earth appears to be located about 25,000 to 28,000 light years away from the from the Galactic Center.  This orbit of the Galactic Center has no negative effects on the Earth.  Our galaxy consists of undulating groupings of mass and intricate gravitational fields, so our orbit through the Milky Way is not a perfect circle or an ellipse.  The Milky Way galaxy is like a milkshake undulating up and down, and nobody knows why.  It is thought that the undulating patterns may be a lingering effect from a galaxy that smashed into ours in the past.

The way that atoms bond together affects the electrical properties of the materials they form.  Copper has the highest conductivity of any non-precious metal, it is highly ductal, it resists corrosion, and this makes copper the first choice as a conductor for electrical applications.  Current flow is the movement of electric charges along a conductor.  Copper has an atomic number of 29, meaning that the copper atom has 29 protons and 29 electrons.  The protons are concentrated in the nucleus while the electrons are distributed in the K, L, M, and N shells as 2 in K, 8 in L, 18 in M, leaving 1 electron in the outermost shell N of a copper atom, but this shell has room for 8 electrons.  The outermost electrons of atoms in the copper wire are not sure which atom they belong to.  They can move easily from one atom to the other in a random fashion.  Such electrons which can move easily from one atom to the other in a random fashion are called free electrons.  It is the movement of free electrons in a material like copper that constitutes flow of current.  As more free-flowing bonds develop between other atoms, more electrons will move along a conductor.

Setting the stage is a phrase used to mean that conditions have been made right for something to happen, or that something is likely to happen.  I never saw the play Hamilton, but it contains a song ‘Wait For It’ which is about the rivalry between Burr and Alexander Hamilton, and Theodosia choses Burr, but he doesn’t believe that he has won, so he has a pregnant pause wondering why she chose him.  Aaron Burr married Theodosia and they had a daughter who they named Theodosia.  A pregnant pause occurs when something that requires a sarcastic response happens, but no one quite knows what to say or do and an awkward silence follows.  On July 10, 1804, Aaron sat down at his desk and wrote his daughter Theodosia a goodbye letter saying “I am indebted to you, my dearest Theodosia, for a very great portion of the happiness which I have enjoyed in this life.  You have completely satisfied all that my heart and affections had hoped for or even wished.”  The next day, Aaron who was the Vice President of the United States killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel in Weehawken, New Jersey.

The universe is a pretty empty place, as all of the matter contained in the it would fit into about 1 billion cubic light years, meaning that only about 0.0000000000000000000042 percent of the universe contains any matter.  All the stars, planets and galaxies that can be seen today make up just 4 percent of the universe.  The other 96 percent is made of stuff astronomers can’t see, detect or even comprehend.  These mysterious substances are called dark energy and dark matter. Vera Rubin an American astronomer pioneered work on galaxy rotation rates uncovered a discrepancy between the predicted angular motion of galaxies and the observed motion, by studying galactic rotation curves.  Rubin’s observations differed from what Newtonian physics predicted, that stars on the outskirts of a galaxy would orbit more slowly than stars at the center and this led scientists to conclude that there must be much more matter in galaxies than what we can see.  We know that dark matter doesn’t interact with regular matter, or even light, and so it is invisible.  Yet it has mass that exerts a gravitational pull, just like normal matter, which is why the velocities of stars and other phenomena in the universe are affected.  It turns out that roughly 68% of the universe is dark energy.  Dark matter makes up about 27%.  The rest of everything is referred to as normal matter, everything ever observed with all of our instruments, and this adds up to less than 5% of the universe.  Albert Einstein was the first person to realize that empty space is not nothing.  We see gravity every day, but we still don’t really understand this force, as it has a potential of emptiness to it.

Written for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #112 where the prompt is a list of phrases.

Reena’s Phrases

Reena’s Exploration Challenge gives us a list of ten phrases this week to take us on a journey of inspiration. I will attempt to write something about the first four phrases.  Maybe I will do a part two later, but this ended up taking more time than I thought it would.

  1. pockets of stillness
  2. question your maps
  3. cynical assertions
  4. lost alphabet
  5. was that really me?
  6. crumbling thoughts
  7. undulating patterns
  8. free-flowing bonds
  9. pregnant pause
  10. potential of emptiness

Apollo 11 landed on the Moon in the Sea of Tranquility.  Early astronomers thought large bodies of water were present on the moon and this section Mare Tranquillitatis was named in 1651 by astronomers Francesco Grimaldi and Giovanni Battista Riccioli in their lunar map.  I imagine that when you are on the moon, you could feel tranquility, serenity and inner peace because of the pockets of stillness, stunning views and moon shadows.

Since the Earth is a three-dimensional shape, it is impossible to make a map on a flat sheet of paper.  A map presents information about the world in a simple, visual way indicating natural landforms and water-ways and it is supposed to show the shape, size, direction, distance and scale, but no map is perfect.  They are all distorted in some aspect, making a trade-off between the various properties, so you should always question your maps.

The Arab-Israeli conflict started when Sarah started fighting with her Egyptian handmaiden, Hagar who bore Ishmael as a son for Abraham.  God promised Abraham offspring, saying that he would be the ancestor of a multitude of nations, but Sara was old and still childless and Sara thought that she could obtain children from her slave.  After Hagar gave birth to Ishmael, Sara felt like Hagar was treating her in a contemptuous manor saying that she was barren because God rejected her, which spelled trouble for the city of Hebron.  Sara began to torment Hagar and make her work harder than necessary and when Hagar could no longer tolerate this she fled.  Eventually Sara conceived Isaac, a son for Abraham when Ishmael was fourteen.  When Isaac was five years old Ishmael intended to slay him with a bow and arrow.  Sara saw this and she told her husband to cast out Hagar and Ishmael.  All of this trouble started with Hagar’s cynical assertions.

The modern English alphabet is a Latin alphabet consisting of 26 letters, each having an upper- and lower-case form.  The Romans only had 23 letters lacking J, V, and W.  In the Middle Ages after book production started, literacy began growing. Only 12% of the people in the world could read and write in 1820, and today the literacy rate for all males and females that are at least 15 years old is 86.3%.  English has always been a living language, changing and evolving with use and over time some of the letters got dropped.  We used to have the letters Eth (ð), Thorn (þ), Thorn with a stroke (Ꝥ), Wynn (ƿ), Yogh (ȝ), Ash (æ), Ethel (œ), Insular G (ᵹ), Long S (ſ), Eng (Ɲ). Tironian “OND” (ꝛ) and ampersand (&) which is still on keyboards today.  These obsolete 12 letters make up our lost alphabet.  The long S became the integral sign for calculus.  There is some talk about eliminating the letter z from the alphabet, but then the Zorro movies would not make sense any more.

Written for Reena’s Exploration Challenge #112 where the prompt is a list of phrases.