Saturday, June 28, 2014

Day is done; Radio days; Very very

Day is done, gone the sun
From the lakes, from the hills, from the sky
All is well, safely rest
God is nigh.
Fading light dims the sight
And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright
From afar, drawing near
Falls the night.
Thanks and praise for our days
Neath the sun, neath the stars, neath the sky
As we go, this we know


KD cat
black panther
rests on a limb from above
seeking unsuspecting prey

fading light dims the sight
the doves are long gone from 
the sill feeder

As we go, this we know

Our sentinel will hunt
through the night

Our guardians on duty

Happy July the 4th !

a song by Irving Berlin

When you live long enough....
(DIX.Z, in 1943)


The Benefits of an Active Lifestyle

You seem to like things the most
if you can do them while you're sitting,
Father said. It doesn't seem like it's
the books you're reading that give
you pleasure, but that you read them
while you're sitting down. You
get most of your satisfaction from doing
things that require very little physical effort.
It's not that your brain needs to be filled
with new facts, but that you have grown
accustomed to being lazy. You can learn
just as much from being active. And since
that'll put you with other active people,
none of them will have the time to sit down
& read a book to prove that the information you got was wrong.

"The Benefits of an Active Lifestyle" by Hal Sirowitz from Father Said. © Soft Skull Press


First Cong. Church Waukesha
votes Opening and Affirming
- officially -

A correspondence with a raccoon reader
and old friend:

On Wednesday, June 18, 2014 9:24 AM, David Dix < > wrote:
Heigh-Ho Nelder, H-a  W-a-a-a-y!
Well Berry/Barry, the Open and Affirming vote took place at the Congo last Sunday.  There were 78 voting members present, and by secret ballot (!) it was 74 yea, 3 nay and one (1) abstention.  This matter has been ‘gentled in’ for over a year or more, with careful CAREFUL opportunities for dissenters to speak up before the vote was finally taken Sunday.  There has been little negative commentary I gather, and none at the vote-taking.
In our denomination – The UCC – each church is autonomous even though the nat’l UCC hdqtrs out of Cincinatti has blanketing annual synod general policy, as does the WI conference which just met and voted to go opening and affirming last week.
With the given set-up, the Waukesha UCC 1st Congo didn't have to adopt that ‘state ruling”, because we are self-governing old time Congregationists as to our constitution etc.  That goes for all the UCC individual churches.  Now it will be interesting to see how other UCC churches go?
I think the handwriting has long been on the fast changing wall, and same-sex issues are a fait accompli.
As a 78 yr old Waukeshan, I have been through this alphabet incompletely, but from A to Z.  That is, I have been the beneficiary (?) of a highly prejudiced childhood but pleased to say I never engaged in name-calling as many friends did.  Faggot, fairy, etc were never part of my lexicon. (exception:
  College underscored fair treatment, and even the US Army helped me have a broader view.  In re blacks/whites in my barracks and at my side as I played the drum on the formations. marches and parades.  Some fellows washed out before graduating from those 1st 6 weeks of basic raining at Fort Leonard Wood MO.
I, a survivor, demonstrated my drumming talent to the 1st Sergeant (a black) and got to choose who had to carry my rifle and pack on those marching days.
Then when I took a post in my step-father’s home furnishings/interior decorating business I guess a focal avenue
of realizing my equality or often lesser status with gays - were the ‘probably gay’ mdse Co. Reps/conveyors out of NY NY .  Great fashion senses, sensitive demeanors, the old creative bit I loved….
So, elderly now, I’ve had good grounding for voting Yes on the overdue churchly question.
I hope you and Jill log many happy years of matrimony, therefore.  Have said it before; will say it again.
Dix, Z.

From: Kate O'Neil [mailto: ]
Sent: Thursday, June 19, 2014 9:00 AM
To: David Dix
Subject: Re: Very very

Great results from the vote.  I too was raised in an atmosphere where prejudice was the norm, although not meant maliciously.  The Li'l Black Sambo story was not sanitized to just Sambo, you didn't catch tigers by the toe, and interracial marriage was pretty horrifying.  But superior attitudes weren't preached in the home, in fact they were discouraged.  Coming from the "poor side of town" there wasn't a whole lot of room or time for superiority.  Still the WWII attitudes that were prevalent in my parent's generation were the norm then, and even during my last degree program I was chastised a few times for my use of incorrect "disparaging"  language.  It's hard to change the vocabulary that was in place when you learned to talk!  Specifically, one time I used the term "handicapped" rather than "disabled" in a discussion and was pounced upon by the professor for my lip slip. I did point out that if they found the term so offensive it might be wise to remove it from the drinking fountain down the hall and the parking places outside the door. Still I was sensitized to the error of my ways and eschew that word these days.  

As I do research for my book I am reliving the "days of yore" immersing myself in the attitudes of society during the 60's and 70's and becoming more painfully aware of the inequities that existed than I was at the time I was living them.  Coming of age at what I think of as the cusp of the change from the old attitudes toward women and the new attitudes created a conflict internally for me best exemplified by the rather abrupt change from the Women's Army Corps to the Regular Army.  Everything I was brought up to believe, and trained to be was invalidated in the sweep of that change.  Mind you I'm not complaining about the result, but for a woman trained and raised to be one way then virtually overnight  told to be another way with a different set of norms and values that were politically dictated, the result was a lot of internal conflict.  Attempting to portray that conflict through the lens of living it in addition to some of the other conflicts that were going on throughout my military service is going to be quite a challenge.  Everyone has a story though, and this one is mine to tell. And that's what i'm trying to do.  

Let's see where it goes!


Excellent work here.  Permission sought to run it as is in the raccoon this Sat.

Will understand if you would rather that I not, but I hope you say yes.  You describe my own slightly earlier experience to a T…..

Dix, Z.

Wow.  Totally missed this transmission, probably due to the problematical nature of my yahoo mail.  I check it less often because it is "unable to connect" half the time.  Isn't that the way of the connected, so disconnected.  In any case, I wouldn't mind your publishing the note.  I am continuing to refine my concept for the memoir, and it is moving in the direction of addressing the overarching inequities prevalent at the time, as they were a part of my life, and the conflicts I carried both internally as well as those imposed externally.  It's sort of like whittling a redwood with a pocket knife, but with persistence I am making progress.   At the core of the message is living a lie and the conflict between personal ethics and survival.  Now that's about as clear as Missouri mud, isn't it. 

Anyway, I'm moving forward getting some episode ideas defined.  Soon I may actually write something!*/:) raised eyebrows

Nelder, a few years back
trains with US Army

Now a retired Major
and after a Masters a counsellor
of troubled vets etc

Has put her life to good use

(More later)