Tag Archives: winter

Tuesday’s Tumultuous Tribute

Howdy, dudes and dudettes.

I’m not here. Well, I’m not ever really here, but I’m even less here than normal today. Yeah, in case you didn’t notice, today is, in fact, Tuesday.

Which means, or at least has meant for the last couple of months, that I’m over at Charlotte Parent, blogging under our Stay-At-Home Dudes column.

This time around, I’m going to talk a little about why I thought Captain America: The Winter Soldier was such a fantastic movie.

Go read that column, then, once you do, come back here on Friday for the full-strength version of the thing. I think you’ll like both of them.

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Making The Time To Find The Rhyme

Poetry is only for snobs, right?

Um, no. Not quite. Well, sort of. I mean, not all the time, you know?

It’s possible I might be the slightest bit confused on the role of poetry in society these days, dudes. It is conceivable I need to devote more thought to it, but, honestly, do any of us believe I’m actually going to devote more than the next hour or so to thinking about poetry?

No. No we don’t.

The thing is, I think as school kids, we were given “important” poetry and told that this is a poem and it is good for you and you will like it, but first you need to understand all about rhyme, meter, iambic pentameter and blank verse and. . .

Well, you get my point. Poetry in language arts classes is like a lot of things in language arts classes: It’s had the fun and the juice sucked right out of it and all that’s left is a husk that we feel obligated to consume.

But it really shouldn’t be like that. I mean, how many of you dudes can remember just laughing your head off while rhyming silly word after silly word? Of reading Dr. Seuss and realizing that it’s not only possible, but it’s okay to make up words to fit your rhymes and people will actually tell you, “Good job!”

The thing about poetry that’s different from regular prose, from fiction or non-fiction, is that poetry is an idea stripped down to its bare bones and then painted in gaudy colors. Whereas, comparatively speaking, prose is a giant, stomping around the landscape, leaving footprints and broken trees in her wake.

That is, in a poem, each line — each word — is there only to move forward the central idea. It’s sparse, even if it’s in flowery language. As far as I’m concerned, poetry can be as hard or as easy as you make it.

For instance: Haikus are wonderful. They’re a style of poetry from Japan and consist of three lines. The first line is five syllables, followed by a line with seven syllables, ending with a final line of five syllables. Each line illuminates the central idea. I love ’em because I can write a poem in only three lines.

Poetry, Schmoetry
Haikus? Not easy.
Despite the number of lines
Being only three

See? Fun. My interest in poetry in general and haikus in particular was rekindled on some early morning walks with Buzz, the garbage disposal that walks like a dog. I’d see these shadows full of frosted grass, which were still frozen only because they were not yet exposed to the sun and I tried to think of how to describe them. Which led to the following haiku.

Winter Morning, Buzz
Frozen shadows steam
Edges disappearing quickly
As the sun rises

So what do you dudes and dudettes think? Anyone interested in a haiku-off? Or maybe just a favorite short poem you’d like to share? Join me in the comments and let’s see if language arts class has managed to kill off all interest in poetry.

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Hydration, Hydration, Hydration

by Richard

We’re coming in on the last part of August, which means fall is around the corner, dudes. But it’s a long, long corner and we’ve got lots of ground to cover before we get there.

Which means it’s still summer out there and you still need to be careful.

Although the killer days of more than 100 degree F temperatures seem to have calmed down a bit, at least here around Charlotte, it’s still at or near it’s summer peak, and that means you’re going to be taking your life in your hands when you go outside.

Well, all right. Probably it’s not that drastic, but you do need to take some precautions you don’t have to do in the fall or spring. Or the winter for that matter.

There’s two things you need to do before you go out in the summer. You need to put on some sunblock and you need to make sure you drink enough water.

You’re going to be in the sun and, if you don’t put sunblock on you and on your little dudes, you’re risking a big problem later on down the line. You do not want to have to keep going to the dermatologist to get skin cancers taken off. Or worse. And you certainly want to do everything you can to make sure your little dudette keeps the soft, silky skin she was born with for as long as possible.

Wear sunscreen. You know the drill by now. I’m just here to remind you that it’s a good idea.

Secondly, make sure you drink enough water. No, I’m not going to push the 8 glasses of water a day theory, because I’m pretty sure that’s been, if not debunked, then at least slightly discredited.

However, remember that it’s summer and you will sweat when you go outside. If you’re outside for a while, you’re going to sweat for a while. And when that water rushes out your pores to evaporate in the hot summer air to cool down your skin, you’re going to need to replace it. If you don’t replace the fluids you lose while sweating, you’re heading for some severe medical problems in the immediate future.

Two simple things that can prevent so much harm to you and to your family.

Sunscreen.

Hydration.

Get to it.

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