Less than you’d think.  But more than I expected. 

I mentioned in this space about 2 weeks ago that I was trying to learn how to meditate. And because I fully buy into the idea that there’s an app for that, I downloaded Headspace, a super-well-designed app for iOS and Android.

Headspace gamifies mediation by tracking your daily sessions along a whimsical-bordering-on-the-twee timeline, awarding badges for consecutive days of use, completing ten sessions, and other milestones.

Along the way, Headspace’s founder and instructor Andy Puddicombe shares insights on what meditation is (making space), what it is not (sitting silently and willfully blocking out the everything) with short animations.  Then he talks you through a 10-minute session that follows a reassuringly consistent pattern.

So having just completed my 11th session, what’s the biggest thing I’ve noticed?

Strangely enough, I notice that my throat and jaw have relaxed.  During the first few sessions as Headspace had me breathing in through my nose and out through my mouth, I noticed my throat was tight as I concentrated on doing it right, “it” being Meditation and “right” being “with a Dahli lama level of expertise.“

But as the app repeatedly stresses, meditation – especially in the beginning – isn’t a right/wrong proposition. Instead, learning to mediate is about becoming present in the space that already exists around you. A space which is sometimes noisy. Or buzzy with mosquitos. Or just your front steps, sweaty after a run.

So what happened on Day 10?  Beyond getting a little graphic that reminded me that I’d spent a total of 100 minutes sitting still, actively NOT doing work, checking Facebook, reading a book, running, working, or grumping about a messy house?  Nothing.  Which is quite a lot, actually.

From the Tennessean:

Early voting totals in Tennessee lowest since 2008.

“Only 281,278 people — including 178,915 Republicans and 89,534 Democrats — participated in early voting, which ended Saturday, for Thursday’s primary.”

You know who is counting on this slackassed approach to #suffrage by Democrats county- and statewide?

Jeremy “Pants Candy” Durham.

Whoever this Glenn Starrett choad is.

Scott Dejarlais.

Glenn Casada.

A bunch of school board members who want to prevent a liberal caliphate from invading schoolkids’ textbooks and trans people from setting up recruiting stations in public bathrooms.

Voting. It’s a thing. You’ve GOT to do it. This Thursday especially, given the number of local and school board seats that are in play.

Because whether #OrangeyMcDouchetrumpet or #ImWithHer wins isn’t really going to change your day-to-day all that much.

But school boards and state reps? That’s serious. Those seats are often decided by only a few hundred (or even a few dozen) votes between smart people and dumb people who will be making decisions on how to spend your tax dollars.

I’m on a fast from the echo-chamber/amplifier of Facebook, and cross-posting this from my blog, so I won’t see your responses. Come over to webslog.com and tell me I’m full of it. I’ve got cookies.

“Selasphorus rustus.”

After a rufous hummingbird that flew into Long House and exhausted himself. Finn cared for him in his last hours, then wanted to collect the bones after he died.

This piece is my first exploration of a sort of rust-punk taxidermy vibe I’d like to start exploring. Think #NIN’s video “Closer” as the animal heads rotate slowly in the opening minutes of the video.

METHOD:

Angle-grinder removed all the existing rust from the head and added the bright rings to the eyes (galvanized steel). Force-oxidized and pitted the surface with multiple applications of salt and hydrogen peroxide. Rinsed, then fixed with 3 coats of #Penetrol then 2 coats of spray lacquer.

INSTALLATION:

Installed, it hangs by the crest from a 10-foot-tall tripod formed with #3 rebar. I used monofilament to hang it at 5 feet high and it rotated slowly in the breeze. In its final installation, I’ll probably use copper-coated steel wire pulled to tension with a buried rock or other heavy weight.