Long and Winding Road

I decided to take this long and winding road which will lead me to her door.  I have been on this road before, and I can remember that wild and windy night when the rain washed it away.  That was the night that she threw me out, and legally the house was still mine for the duration of the lease, and a lot of the stuff inside is at least partially mine.  I think that her behavior was a bit excessive, but I know she will never appologize.  You will never know how many times I cried after losing her and the many times that I tried to get her back into my life.  I wish that I could take it all back, as we were arguing about household chores and she asked me to get up, so she could vacuum by the couch, and I was watching my show on TV.  I told her that she should be doing this while I am at work, not when I am trying to relax.  She complained about her back hurting, and she asked if I could help her with the dishes, as she felt it wasn’t right for me to just leave my dirty dishes in the sink for her to clean up like she was my personnel slave.  I wondered why she always had to blame me, as some of this was clearly her fault.

I walked out and left her standing here a long, long time ago, but this road always leads me back to her door.  I know that we are meant to be together, but I am not sure what is waiting for me at the end of this long and winding road.  The uncertainty of not knowing how my journey will end is difficult for me and I imagine that she will be there waiting with open arms, but I also envision her in the arms of another man, which would be very disappointing.  This road only goes to one place, but my heart is leading me in many different directions, due to these unforeseen circumstances of our separation, and my love being rejected.  I did my share of chores, cutting the grass and taking out the garbage and 99 percent of our arguments were over stupid stuff, but a man has to be a man and I knew that I had to put my foot down, even after I got kicked to the curb.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #135.

In a Dark Place

A school shooting ended the life of his only child, shattering his life forever.  The shooter marched through the building, shooting at random students and teachers, killing 15 and injuring 22 other people before ending his own life.  He couldn’t process how someone could do something that was so horrible, and this evil thing continued to haunt him.  His nightmares persisted about the deadly rampage and how this was so unfair to his daughter, who had her whole life ahead of her.  The shooting garnered massive media attention and this was becoming all too common place, and nobody was doing anything about it.  The school principal, the mayor and the governor all gave their condolences and said that their prayers were with the students that died and those that were injured in this tragedy.

No parent should ever have to lose a child and when it happens for no apparent reason, that brings more grief and pain.  He felt responsible for protecting her and he had no idea how he was going to carry on with his life, now that the most precious thing he had was taken away from him.  His wife passed away from cancer two years ago and he was still devasted from this event.  He understood that some people find ways of living with the loss, while others struggle to find meaning in their life, but he was sick of everything.  He punched the mirror on the wall, and it shattered into pieces, making him see how broken he had become.  He held up a piece of the broken mirror and he didn’t recognize his own reflection, as he was clearly in a dark place now.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #134.

Meteor Showers

Tiny streaks of light flash silently across the sky creating a spectacular show.  Space is far from empty and as the Earth orbits around the Sun, it encounters fields of debris, which it routinely plows through at about the same time each year.  Interplanetary space is filled with hundreds of tons of meteors per day, but most of them are no larger than a grain of sand.  Nearly all of them burn in Earth’s upper atmosphere, slamming into the air with so much energy that the debris vaporizes on contact.  Earth’s gravity tugs at any space rocks that are nearby.  They get pulled into the upper atmosphere, and they often leave a smoke trail behind, which can last from a few seconds to many minutes.  As a meteoroid hurtles through the vacuum of space, there’s nothing to slow the extraterrestrial rock down, but when they leave the emptiness of space and encounter drag from the air, they become extremely hot.  This friction releases an enormous amount of heat, igniting the meteor, resulting in a fiery blaze that can display a range of colors.

An asteroid can range from 33 feet (10 meters) across like the size of a boulder to 329 miles (530 kilometers) in diameter.  An asteroid is a large rocky body in space, that orbits around the Sun, and when a piece of it breaks off, it is called a meteoroid.  Meteors start out as a meteoroid in the sky, and when they fall to Earth, they are termed a meteor, or sometimes a shooting star, because of the flashing light.  When a meteor survives a trip through the atmosphere and hits the ground, it is then called a meteorite.  They are all the same thing and basically their name changes due to their location.  Our Earth has made 4.6 billion trips around the Sun, and it is a wonder that it keeps on vacuuming up debris that is in its orbital path.  Things were much worse during the heavy bombardment period just after the Sun and its planets formed, as so much junk rained down on Earth that heat from the persistent energy of impacts rendered Earth’s atmosphere hot and our crust molten.  Most of the solar system’s asteroids exist in the main asteroid belt, a roughly flat zone between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.  It’s very rare for a meteor to survive and crash into the ground, but each month on the average, one basketball-sized meteor falls to Earth’s surface.  Scientists think that an asteroid would have to be about 60 miles (96 km) wide to completely and utterly wipe out life on our planet.

Every named meteor shower has a radiant, which is a point in the sky from which all the meteors appear to come.  The name of the shower in most cases indicates the constellation from which the meteors appear.  Sporadic meteors are not named, and those random meteors are not associated with a particular shower, as they are the indiscriminate debris or waste that was left over from the creation of the solar system, or they are ancient, dispersed debris that is not recognizable today as shower meteors.  The dates for the named meteor showers will vary from year to year due to the leap year cycle.  These showers occur in both the northern and southern hemispheres.  Generally, showers whose radiants have positive declinations are best seen from the northern hemisphere, and those with negative declinations are best observed from the southern hemisphere.  Declination is the vertical angular distance between the center of a celestial body and the celestial equator.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #133.

Pondering His Future

Joshua sat on the stairs, gripping the railing and he wondered how his life was going to turn out.  Many things were bothering him, as his cousin just got sentenced to six years in prison for armed robbery and yes innocent people do get convicted.  It is estimated that between 2% to 10% of convicted individuals in US prisons are innocent.  Convicts that are proven innocent have served more than 23,950 years in prison, and out of 100 sentenced to death, 4 are likely innocent, but only 2 get exonerated.  Joshua was with his cousin Jake on the night in question when they entered the convenience store to purchase cigarettes.  The store camera clearly showed both of them leaving, but the clerk testified that Jake came back in wearing a mask demanding all the cash.  The police picked up Jake later that evening and he did have a gun on him.  Jake lived in the projects, and he always carried a gun for protection, as you never know what is going to happen there.

The clerk said that he was able to identify Jake by his voice and since he didn’t have any money, he got stuck with a public defender that was appointed by the court.  He seemed like a decent enough person, but he was overworked and underpaid and he had a large caseload, so he convinced Jake to take the plea deal that gave him six years.  Jake went back to his home after the cousins left the convenience store and he didn’t have an alibi.  Joshua felt bad for his cousin, but this was not the first family member of his to go to prison and it probably wouldn’t be the last.  Joshua had a job interview, so he put on his best clothes, because he needed to make money to help support his family.  He was applying for a position as a mail carrier at the post office and if he got this job, he could be making relatively good money.  Once he got in, he would have benefits and job security, but his resume was not all that impressive.

Joshua felt utterly helpless, although he kept praying that the world would give him some type of break, but he knew that God helps those who help themselves.  The news was filled with stories about protests that continued around the country against systemic racism and police brutality, and as a black American, Joshua felt fear, and anger and he was weary about all the tragic killings that were becoming so familiar.  Joshua didn’t want to be disrespected because of the color of his skin, but he needed to snap out of this disagreeable mood if he was going to have any chance of getting this job that he needed so badly.  He had to leave soon for the interview, so he wouldn’t be late, but first he looked at the play list on his phone and decided to listen to ‘The Middle’ by Jimmy Eat World, as that always made him feel better.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #132.

Identical Cousins

Except for one being a foot taller, they were indistinguishable from each other.  Not exact duplicates, but they did match in many ways.  You say tomato and I say tomahto, I say potato and you say sweet potato and potato salad.  OK, they are both adorable, but looks can be deceiving, because as human beings, we tend to make decisions and judgements based on very limited information, most of which is controlled by our personal belief system.  All that glitters is not gold, so you must look below the surface.  Beauty is only skin deep, and it is what is on the inside that really matters and that might not necessarily be attractive.  You can’t judge an apple by looking at a tree.  You can’t judge honey by looking at the bee.  You can’t judge a daughter by looking at the mother and you can’t judge a book by looking at its cover.  One should never judge the worth or value of something by its outward appearance alone.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #131.

Spinning Out of Control

The icy road caused havoc, as a late-spring cold front coated it in a layer of black ice.  The freak storm made the roads turn deadly in a matter of minutes and before he knew it, Jason was driving on a highway to hell.  His back wheels started sliding on the ice in these treacherous conditions and he saw a multicar pileup just ahead of him on the road.  He realized that this was a chain reaction crash, and he knew that once these things start, that it is impossible to avoid further collisions.  He also knew that these events are caused by drivers following each other too closely.  He left plenty of room in front of him and when his wheels slipped on the ice, he took his foot off of the accelerator and steered his vehicle gently into the direction of the skid, without applying his brakes.  Once he was able to get his car under control, he flipped on his flashers to warn the drivers behind him.  He was able to stop in time without smashing into the cars ahead of him.  Jason was used to snow and ice, because he grew up in Wisconsin and he did everything right.  He felt a moment of relief being able to stop in time, but the idiot behind him smashed into the back of his car.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #128.

Geometry Presentation

Frank asked his daughter Julie what she was carrying, and she responded by saying that these items were her props for her Geometry presentation.  She said that the protractor is an instrument that is used for measuring angles and the triangle ruler is often called an Architect scale and that it is usually made in either the 45-degree triangle, or the 30/60-degree triangle.  Julie went on to say that Geometry is a branch of mathematics that is concerned with the shapes, sizes, patterns, and positions of individual objects, and the spatial relationships among various objects, and the properties of surrounding space.  The Ancient Greeks didn’t invent geometry, they studied what had been discovered by the Ancient Egyptians, Babylonians, and made crucial advancements.  It is one of the oldest branches of mathematics, having arisen in response to such practical problems as those found in surveying, and its name is derived from Greek words meaning “Earth measurement.”  Knowing Geometry helps us to recognize shapes and Geometry is often defined as the mathematics of space.  Space gives us the geometry terms of distance or length, area and volume and this is sometimes called 1-dimensional, 2-dimensional flat surfaces (plane geometry) or 3-dimensional space (solid geometry), however mathematicians often work in higher dimensional spaces and abstract thoughts and images can also be represented and developed in geometric terms.

Mathematics is an exact science, so not only does the word mathematics need to be defined, but also the word definition needs a definition, and thus a definition is a statement of the meaning of a term (a word, phrase, or other set of symbols).  Mathematical English is often inconsistent with the normal English language, as mathematicians consider a straight line to be a special form of a curve.  Having a grasp on Math lingo is necessary to make formal mathematical statements, and to communicate specific terminology.  Math is a highly complex subject, but if you don’t understand the terminology, you will truly be lost.  The four labels that are given by mathematicians to statements that can be shown to be true are Corollary, Lemma, Proposition and Theorem.  They all basically mean the same thing, that some mathematical statements are called true, given some starting axioms or previous true statements once they are correctly deduced.  A proof will show that these statements are true.  Even the word “true” can be defined mathematically, as truth is a property of conclusions that are drawn which actually match reality.

An axiom is a statement or proposition that isn’t inclined to have a proof or a disproof because it is regarded as being established, accepted, or self-evidently true.  Axioms are rules that give the fundamental properties and relationships between mathematical objects.  Axioms are taken as mathematical facts, so deductions can be made from them.  An axiom is a basic assumption of a theory that is considered to be true, and it is often used as a basis for proving a theorem to be true.

Living around the time of 300 BC, Euclid of Alexandria was a Greek mathematician, and he is often referred to as the “father of geometry”, because he gathered up all of the knowledge that was developed in Greek mathematics before him and he combined this into a book that he wrote called ‘The Elements’.  This book contained thirteen volumes which covered a vast body of mathematical knowledge, spanning arithmetic, geometry and number theory.  As a starting point, Euclid established axioms by selecting the most important mathematical statements that were assumed true, but did not have proof, to which he offered his own proofs and demonstrated his thoughts in a clear, skillful, and highly logical manner.  Then he developed 465 propositions, and he went on to develop principles to the unknown in a series of steps, a process that he called the ‘Synthetic Approach’.  The first six of his books deal with plane geometry and the last seven books deal mainly with the more complicated number theory, irrational numbers, and solid geometry.

A proposition is a declaration that can be either true or false, but not both.  Using mathematical logic, a proposition can be categorized as either being true or false, although various exceptions may arise that would imply as a consequence or condition that a statement with a simple proof does satisfy given its requirements.  Propositions often take the form of implications, because they rely on ‘if’ ‘then’ scenarios.

Euclid proved that the ratio of the area of a circle to the square of its diameter is the same for all circles.  Euclid discovered through the method of exhaustion that the area of a circle is something times the square of the diameter and he wrote in his Elements Proposition 12.2 that circles are to one another as the squares on their diameters or the ratio of circular area is constant to the diameter squared.  The Euclidean plane was created by Euclid a Greek Mathematician and that is what mathematicians used, until Rene Descartes invented the Cartesian coordinate system.

Descartes is considered to be the father of modern philosophy, and he began looking at mathematics philosophically, hoping to find truth by the use of reason, as he believed that mathematics was the only thing that is certain or true, but only after it was proven.   Descartes thought that math could be used to reason complex ideas into simpler ideas.  Descartes’ study of mathematics resulted in the formulation of analytic geometry, and this is highlighted by the invention of the Cartesian Coordinate System in 1637, which gave us a new way of looking at numbers.

Frank realized that his daughter was very smart and that he would never be able to help her in her studies, so he wished her good luck with her Geometry presentation.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #124.

Woo Hoo Let’s Get a Room

We should check out that vacancy sign.  I got my tax return and although we have talked a lot about sex, we need to do more than just talking, as we both have sexual needs which need to be satisfied.  The first night that we spend together will be critical for our relationship to progress and you should not feel slutty about wanting this as much as I do.  We have made real progress in our relationship so far, but I have so many dirty things that I want to do with you.  I want to have my arms around you, surrounding you with warmth and reassuring you that I will always protect you.  A perfect world for me would be us laying together knowing that things will never change for us.  If we could just be together in the same bed for one night, forgetting about everything that is going on in the world, that is all that I want out of life.

I realize that this is an expensive way for us to have sex, but I am not talking about renting a room at the Four Seasons, or the Ritz-Carlton, or the Waldorf Astoria.  I am willing to shell out for a nice suite and a bottle of champagne.  I am thinking that something like the Hilton, Marriot, or Sheraton would be in my budget, something that comes with free wi-fi and cable TV.  I am not interested in a room that has a jacuzzi, as who knows what has been done in that, and all we really need is a fresh set of sheets.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #123.

The End of the World

Phil was a particle physicist, and he knew that that space could be bent, and he figured that since space can be bent, then why can’t spacetime also be bent, and if he could only figure out a way to bend the fabric of time, that would make it theoretically possible to go to the future or the past.  This idea of time travel via wormholes had been around for a while, but Phil had been working on some new experiments that manipulated magnetic fields, and he thought this could be the way to create this bridge between two points.  He was not sure what would happen, but one day he was able to create a wormhole in his lab and he was brave enough to step into it.

Phil went fast forward through time, and he got a glimpse into the future, where he witnesses the end of mankind, as a result of the apocalypse.  He knew that he had to return to his own time period, so he could warn everyone that they must change their ways, before it was too late.  While going back to his own time, he saw a spectacular aurora that was coming from a rogue magnetic field, and while he was fascinated at the site, he got bombarded with neutrons, which happened so fast that it turned him into a creature made out of iron and it also made him mute.  He made it back to his own time period, and although he was unable to talk, he still tried to warn people about the impending end of the world.  No one took him seriously, and they all mocked for not being able to express himself.  This made him angry and bitter, when nobody believed him, so he decided to take out his rage on the human race.  He was alive, but no longer human and he decided that he would cause the devastation that he was trying to warn everyone about.  He still had a human brain, but in his heart, he knew that he was a villain.  Phil’s frustrations over the way that people had treated him, were driving this Iron Man to take extreme action.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #122.

A Delicate Flower

This was their first date, but Jessica could already tell that this would be their last, as Eric was never going to be “the one”.  Jessica had been on her share of dead-end dates, and she learned how to spot the signs, so she was not going to waist her time falling in love with the wrong person again.  She wanted to be optimistic, but Eric was a busy man and it looked like their work schedules were never going to line up.  When they first met, Eric told her that he was happy to meet her and glad to see where this goes, which made her realize that this guy was never going to give her the commitment that she was looking for.  Eric handed Jessica a few long stem flowers and he told her that she would probably make an incredible bride for some poor sucker, but that was not his style.  This made Jessica mad, and she contemplated stabbing Eric in his eye with the flower stems, while he sipped his wine across the table from her and continued to brag about what a great guy he was.

Written for Sadje at Keep It Alive What Do You See #121.