As I Walked Out One Evening by W. H. Auden

As I walked out one evening,
   Walking down Bristol Street,
The crowds upon the pavement
   Were fields of harvest wheat.

And down by the brimming river
   I heard a lover sing
Under an arch of the railway:
   ‘Love has no ending.

‘I’ll love you, dear, I’ll love you
   Till China and Africa meet,
And the river jumps over the mountain
   And the salmon sing in the street,

‘I’ll love you till the ocean
   Is folded and hung up to dry
And the seven stars go squawking
   Like geese about the sky.

‘The years shall run like rabbits,
   For in my arms I hold
The Flower of the Ages,
   And the first love of the world.'

But all the clocks in the city
   Began to whirr and chime:
‘O let not Time deceive you,
   You cannot conquer Time.

‘In the burrows of the Nightmare
   Where Justice naked is,
Time watches from the shadow
   And coughs when you would kiss.

‘In headaches and in worry
   Vaguely life leaks away,
And Time will have his fancy
   To-morrow or to-day.

‘Into many a green valley
   Drifts the appalling snow;
Time breaks the threaded dances
   And the diver’s brilliant bow.

‘O plunge your hands in water,
   Plunge them in up to the wrist;
Stare, stare in the basin
   And wonder what you’ve missed.

‘The glacier knocks in the cupboard,
   The desert sighs in the bed,
And the crack in the tea-cup opens
   A lane to the land of the dead.

‘Where the beggars raffle the banknotes
   And the Giant is enchanting to Jack,
And the Lily-white Boy is a Roarer,
   And Jill goes down on her back.

‘O look, look in the mirror,
   O look in your distress:
Life remains a blessing
   Although you cannot bless.

‘O stand, stand at the window
   As the tears scald and start;
You shall love your crooked neighbour
   With your crooked heart.'

It was late, late in the evening,
   The lovers they were gone;
The clocks had ceased their chiming,
   And the deep river ran on.

Quote for 5-31-15

“The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn’t being said. The art of reading between the lines is a life-long quest of the wise.”

-Shannon L. Alder

Growing Up Millennial

For anyone born in the 1990s this is an excellent read. We can’t control when we were born but we can control how we act.

The Captain's Speech

Screen Shot 2015-05-09 at 3.54.51 AMAs a person born in the 90s, I am classified as a millennial, which means I am everything that is wrong with the world today. I stare at a screen instead of talking to people. I expect everything handed to me. I am lazy. I binge watch television shows. I overuse the word “binge”. I expect a trophy when I fail. I take selfies everywhere. I am narcissistic. I am entitled. I don’t read the newspaper. I spend too much time on “The Twitter.”

Or at least that’s how I’m categorized.

As if I’m a book and my date of birth is the summary on the back, telling everyone exactly what I’m about.

I feel as though there is a sense of pride that people have for growing up when they did. I look back on the 90s and am thrilled to call that decade my childhood. Just as people born in…

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7 Reasons Why You Need To Take A Break From Social Media


By Moose A via Elite Daily

There’s no doubt social media is a significant part of our daily lives.

You can hardly go out for dinner without having people upload pictures of their meals to Instagram or take a quick selfie.

Our generation is defined by a culture of likes, tweets and snaps, which can all be very distracting at times (to say the least).

So, this begs the question: Do the benefits of social media really justify the amount of time we spend on it? Here are seven reasons why you should limit the amount of time you spend on social media:

1. Social media leads you to focus on others more than yourself.

One of the main problems with social media is you are often bombarded by others’ accomplishments.

Whether it’s someone uploading photos from his or her graduation or tweeting about an awesome new car, social media implicitly causes us to compare ourselves to others.

It’s not surprising that studies have shown individuals who spend a significant amount of time on social media report feelings of increased anxiety and low self-esteem.

The awareness for this type of problem has increased to the point where there’s now even a name for it: Social Media Anxiety Disorder.

Furthermore, many people we to whom we are connected on social media aren’t even what I would consider to be friends — I know the majority of my Facebook “friends” are really just old classmates I haven’t spoken to in several years.

The point is, we shouldn’t waste time scrutinizing what others are doing, especially if we aren’t even close with them to begin with.

Instead, we should focus on pursuing our own personal goals.

2. Social media presents us with a distorted version of reality.

As I mentioned in the previous point, it’s obvious the majority of what we see on social media doesn’t relate to positive thoughts or happy moments.

We tend not to see the struggles or low points in the lives of others, which makes us feel more conscious of our own flaws.

As a result, many people who use social media fall into the trap of trying to make their lives seem more glamorous than they really are.

In fact, I’ve heard many stories from friends who claim they are depressed or unhappy, despite those beautifully filtered pictures on their Instagram feeds.

We sometimes forget the fact that what we see on social media does not truly represent someone’s life; rather, it’s just a glimpse at one specifically chosen moment in it.

Once again, we should be more concerned with reality instead of trying to project a certain image via social media.

3. Social media causes your happiness to be too dependent on others.

Using social media is dangerous because you can easily get trapped in the mindset of seeking validation from others.

Your happiness should primarily depend on whether or not you enjoy a certain situation and not what others think.

For example, if you go out for dinner and eat an amazing meal, you should feel happy because it tasted great and not because you got over 100 likes on your photo of it.

Unfortunately, many people who use social media too much get accustomed to receiving this kind of attention, and it becomes almost like an addiction they need to satisfy.

While it’s a nice feeling to think people are paying attention to what you are doing, it is important to question how much it really matters.

Should you really care if someone you haven’t talked to in several years likes your newest profile picture?

Happiness should mainly come from within, and you should only really care about sharing your experiences with those closest to you.

4. Social media doesn’t allow you to interact with friends in a substantial way.

If you really consider people your friends, you should do more than post on their timelines for their birthdays and like their latest Instagram photos.

In fact, I would say I barely use social media to interact with my close friends.

The reason for this is simply because I actually spend time with them in real life or in more personal ways, like having a conversation via Skype.

What I’m trying to say is social media doesn’t actually help you develop or maintain real friendships with others. Interaction via social media is usually superficial and has no real effect on whether we consider someone a friend.

I hope you would not suddenly stop talking to your friends simply because they deactivated their social media accounts.

Posting on social media is simply the icing on the cake when it comes to true friendships, but it certainly is not what sustains them.

5. Social media can distract you from the moment.

Social media often prevents us from paying attention to what is actually happening.

I’m sure we’ve all had that one friend who spends more time checking his or her Facebook or Instagram feed for updates than actually talking when you go out for dinner.

As a result, the whole experience becomes less enjoyable. It’s easy to fall into the routine of checking social media sites whenever you have a chance, but by doing so, we tend to appreciate reality less.

If you attend a concert and are constantly tweeting about how great an artist is, aren’t you actually distracting yourself from the performance?

Or, if you go hiking but constantly stop every couple of minutes to take a selfie, aren’t you missing out on the natural beauty of wherever you are?

I realize these examples are exaggerated, but the bottom line is social media often detracts from the beauty of the moment. We should exercise caution when using it.

6. Social media tends to make your life too public.

Is it really important to upload those pictures from last night’s party that you can barely remember taking?

Should all of your 1,000 plus Facebook friends really know (or care) about what event you are going to next week?

We tend to forget almost everything we do on social media is recorded in some way.

This can be problematic, as it could be possible for individuals we would rather not share things with (like our parents or a potential employer) to see certain areas of our lives.

Even if you restrict who can view your social media account, it’s important to question whether it’s necessary or even safe, to reveal so much information about your life to individuals you barely know.

7. Social media can make it harder to move forward with your life.

Social media sometimes makes it hard to let go of our pasts. It’s difficult to get over your ex if you constantly see pictures of him or her with someone else or having fun without you.

Similarly, it might be difficult to buckle down and study when you notice all your friends are constantly posting pictures of themselves, enjoying the beautiful outdoor weather.

This relates back to the very first point in this article: Sometimes social media makes us less focused on our own lives and more focused on what others are doing.

In order to truly move forward, we need to limit the distractions around us.

While social media has the potential to be great, like by sharing interesting ideas or thoughts with others, most of us use it in very unproductive and unnecessary ways.

We could probably all benefit from limiting the time we spend on frivolous tasks related to social media and instead devote the time to the people and activities that matter to us.

Above all, we should remember there’s a whole physical world out there. We shouldn’t be afraid to put down our smart phones once in a while and explore it.

Invisibilia Podcast #1 :The Secret History of Thoughts

Stop what you’re doing and listen to this podcast.

I just recently discovered NPR’s podcast Invisibilia and it is excellent.  I’m going to start posting more podcasts I find on Of Whiskey and Words.  I find podcasts to be an excellent way to past the time whenever walking, driving, cleaning, cooking etc.

I’ll post more podcasts in the future (especially from Invisibilia) but this if their first one on the concept of thoughts.

How should we think about our thoughts?  Are we are thoughts?  Can we control them?  Do we need to?

They explore all these questions and more!