Sunday, November 15, 2009

2012 movie

I saw the 2012 movie.  And I did not have to be gagged and I was not thrown out. 
Crazy busy still on my History Channel application, plus it's November and I'm doing National Novel Writing Month, and I had pink eye AND the flu in the same week.  I will write a review or something about the movie in the next few days.

Thursday, November 05, 2009


Got an email from someone at the History Channel who is looking for a pair of people to host a new SERIES (not a one-off show!) on 2012 and related subjects.   Not sure I'd be the greatest HOST but I would be a great asset on their writing and research side.  
Working like mad on the application, trying to remember everything I've ever done and learned and where.   On paper I am pretty damn impressive, am I not? I'd hired me.  Hope they feel the same way! 
Nice to be recognized for all the hard work I've done for so long in relative obscurity.  Will keep you all informed.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Jaguar Nights 2010 is coming!

I started work on Jaguar Nights 2010 today.  Late this year, but it's coming!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

visit from a pair of swallowtails

Yesterday I noticed an awesome caterpillar on my front fence.  I could not remember what kind of butterfly it turned into, but I knew it was one not to kill.
Today, two of those caterpillars (or that one and a friend) had anchored themsevles to my house to become butterflies.  My friend was with me and together we remembered what they are: they are swallowtails.

I can't even remember last time I SAW a swallowtail. Or a butterfly of any kind. And here are two, growing in my yard. I looked it up and they are in their cocoons all winter and will hatch in the summer. I'll have to figure out how to protect them. The snowdrifts in that area will tear them to pieces.
I was on a website about swallowtail trying to figure out exactly what kind I have growing and it casually mentioned the importance of swallowtails in Mexican folklore and even provided a handy link for me to learn more.  I love it when people are organized.
From that site (emphasis mine):
 Many of the indigenous peoples of the New World hold butterflies in a special place in their culture. However, nowhere is the presence of butterfly motifs more prevalent than amongst the Aztec, Mixtec, Teotihuacan, Toltec, and Zapotec cultures of highland Mexico. For example, butterflies figured prominently in the life of the Aztecs, who dominated the Central Valley of Mexico between 1300 and 1523. At least two of their many deities were personifications of lepidoptera Xochiquetzal ("precious flower") and Itzpapalotl ("obsidian butterfly). The former closely resembles a Two-tailed Swallowtail while the latter is identified with the large silk moth, Rothschildia orizaba. Both deities were female and had many attributes.
   For example, Xochiquetzal was regarded as a mother goddess, goddess of love, goddess of flowers, as patron of all fine arts, as the symbol of beauty, as the symbol of fire, as the symbol of the spirits of the dead, as the patron of domestic laborers, and as the patron of warriors killed in battle. In fact, this goddess supposedly followed young warriors into battle and at their moment of death, coupled with them, clutching a butterfly between her lips!
   Itzpapalotl was a mother goddess, goddess of obsidian and knives, of human sacrifice and of war, the personification of the Earth, the patron of women who died in child birth, and more. The early Spanish chronicles state than when Quetzlcoatl (perhaps the Aztec's most beloved god-king) abolished human sacrifice as a response to Spanish dictates, butterflies were burnt alive as a sacred effigy.
Of course, I know all about Itzpapalotl (why else would my web site be called Obsidian Butterfly?) But I don't think I knew that Xochiquetzal was a butterfly goddess as well.   A swallowtail butterfly goddess.   Who symbolizes the spirits of the dead.  And in 2 days I saw 2, possibly 3, swallowtail caterpillars.
I am choosing to see this as a message from my beloved dead.  The caterpillars are to the west of my house, the home of the Pool of Souls, and one of my beloved dead crossed over 3 days ago. 

Sunday, September 20, 2009

I'm no longer a bird lady :(

This morning when I got up and went to feed Lance, he was still asleep.  Usually he is awake and yelling long before I get up.  I brought the cage into the bathroom and he didn't want to come out. I got his medicine into him but he really didn't fight much and I had a really bad feeling.  I fed him and he went right back into the cage, no kisses or playing.  We went to eat and when we got home he was in the corner of the cage on the floor.  We stayed close to him all day.  He slept and didn't want to wake up.  He didn't eat or drink and his poops were very few and solid white (not like they should be).  Around 7:30 Willy called upstairs that Lance was dying.  He had fallen off the perch.  I took the cage into the bathroom and took him out.  I held him and we petted him and talked to him and gave him kisses.  He was just lying limp in my hands, breath rasping, feet unable to grasp.  He kept opening his beak and moving his tongue and I'd like to think he was trying to make kissy noises back to us.  He kept his eyes on me.  His final seizure was very gentle and fairly quick and then he was gone. I got him exactly 21 years ago.
Yesterday he was happy.  He was talking to me and to the cats, making crazy kissy noises and complaining that we were eating in front of him--he liked people food.
His kidneys had been going for months; he'd been on medicine every day since May and been super-hydrated at the vet's three times.  I knew it was coming.  And that it would hurt.  I feel like my chest is crushed.
I don't have any birds anymore.   What will I call the bird room?  
(cross posted to my Alzheimer's blog)
added later:
The day Lance died was 12 Eb in the Mayan calendar. Eb is the road, the path. We all follow many roads and paths, and even that day I recognized that my 21-year path as a bird owner, and Lance's life path, were ending. I am hoping that this is the end of death in my life, for a while, the end of lack, loss and limitation, and the beginning of a new path of prosperity and peace.
I just came across this poem online.

All Is Well

Death is nothing at all,
I have only slipped into the next room
I am I and you are you
Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.
Call me by my old familiar name,
Speak to me in the easy way which you always used
Put no difference in your tone,
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow
Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together.
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was,
Let it be spoken without effect, without the trace of shadow on it.
Life means all that it ever meant.
It it the same as it ever was, there is unbroken continuity.
Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?
I am waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near,
Just around the corner.
All is well.
By Henry Scott Holland (1847-1918)
Canon of St Paul's Cathedral

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Welcome to the 9th gate and a new Tzolkin!

Today is the 9th of 13 gates leading up to the 2012 event. (The 13th gate is 12-21-2012.) Today another new burst of energy will permeate our universe. I wonder what it will be? Has everyone finished integrating gate 8's energies?
Advertising is increasing for the 2012 movie. It's good, I guess, to make more people aware that something is going to happen in 3 years, but at the same time I hate that what the movie is spreading/advocating is a bunch of lies. 19 Mol 1 Imix

Monday, September 07, 2009

Are you a pagan? Take the pagan census and pass on the word!

The Pagan Census - Revisited

Take the survey here:

We are conducting an international survey of contemporary Pagans. If you
are a Pagan we would appreciate your taking the time to complete this survey.

This survey builds on an earlier one completed over twenty years ago,
primarily in the United States, which was conducted by Helen A. Berger and
Andras Arthen (of the EarthSpirit Community) entitled the Pagan Census. At the
time it was hoped that we could do a census of the entire Pagan population.
Although that was not possible the data that was collected was the largest
of it type and served as the basis of a book, Voices from the Pagan Census
by Helen A. Berger (with Evan Leach and Leigh S. Shaffer). The survey data
is now available on line at Murray Research Archive at Harvard University.

A number of scholars have noted that it would be helpful to have a
follow-up of that survey to see if and how the community has changed or remained
the same. The survey that follows uses many, although not all of the same
questions that were in the original survey to provide that comparison. There
are also new questions, for instance about the Internet, something that was
of little interest 20 years ago but is now, and some from other studies,
that again permit a comparison. This has resulted in the survey being
somewhat long--we appreciate your taking the time to complete it.

We realize that the categories found in questionnaires like this one
frequently do not do justice to the complexities of real life. For this reason,
a number of open-ended items have been included that allow for more nuanced
responses. You are also welcome to contact Helen A. Berger directly at
HBerger@wcupa. edu

Please inform other Pagans about this research project and feel free to
pass it along via e-mail or to post a link on appropriate blogs or websites.

Thanks for your help.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

green burials

I hate modern death rituals.  I hate the waste of space of cemeteries, the overpriced and unnecessary accouterments of death, the fact that when you get buried, you don't decay--you grow mold and just sit there.  My grandpa died in 1987 and I know he is still there in his coffin, covered with mold and yuck, not nicely reduced to bones (or less) by nature.  Thinking of him like that--moldy--makes me want to cry.
That's one of the reasons why I pushed so hard to have my dad cremated.  All my pets have been cremated (their ashes are on my "pet cemetery shelf") and I want to be cremated too.  Me and all the pets who have gone before are going to get turned into an artificial reef.
I was browsing earlier and on the front page they had a link to an article about green burials.  I clicked on it, thinking to read about cardboard coffins and parklike cemeteries, but instead it was mostly about the reefs. And biodegradable coffins.
Even if you aren't anywhere near dying, consider doing a non-traditional burial.  Maybe by the time you do die, the non-traditional will be traditional.  We can only hope.
Green burials
(Picture source: Eternal Reefs)
(screenprint of original article) 13 Xul 7 Men

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Mayan crop circle found in England

A supposed Mayan apocalypse crop circle was found this week in England. A picture of it from the original article is above. How exactly this shape predicts the end of the world, I don't know. I am so sick of all these people who wouldn't know the Mayan calendar if it bit them on the ass talking about it. A supposed crop circle expert gushes: "This is one of the most interesting crop circles I have ever seen. It is definitely a Mayan symbol and we are sure it is linked to the Mayan calendar, which ends in 2012. It appears to be a warning about the world coming to an end when the calendar does. For the ancient Maya, reaching the end of a cycle was a momentous event, so we are taking this crop circle very seriously as an indicator of a possibly huge event in 2012."
Show me where ANY of that is on that crop circle. The Pi one, well, I might not exactly understand how it shows Pi, but I can see that it shows some sort of math thing.(Ironically, the Pi circle was found just about a year ago and not far from where this Mayan one is.)
Mayan crop circle
Screenprint of original article

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

happy 04:05:06 07/08/09 (and happy birthday to me)

Numerology can be fun.  Even more fun when, for once, one's birthday is part of a cool number combination.  I had always wished I was born a day earlier (7/7) but this works too, just for today.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

legless frogs not caused by pollution

I'm not implying that global warming doesn't exist or that pollution is not a problem.  I just think that it's interesting that the legless frogs found all over the world are not a product of pollution, but of nature vs nature:  dragonflies eat the frogs' legs when the frogs are still tiny!
Around the world, frogs are found with missing or misshaped limbs, a striking deformity that many researchers believe is caused by chemical pollution....The deformed frogs are actually victims of the predatory habits of dragonfly nymphs, which eat the legs of tadpoles. 
(R)esearchers (also) established that many amphibians with extra limbs were actually infected by small parasitic flatworms called Riberoria trematodes.These creatures burrow into the hindquarters of tadpoles where they physically rearrange the limb bud cells and thereby interfere with limb development. 
It seems strange that the dragonflies didn't start eating the tadpole legs until the 1980s or 90s.  Or maybe no one was paying attention to frogs with no legs before then?

image source=article source
screenprint of original
Note: the original article contains a video of a dragonfly eating a tadpole's legs.  Not sure how long it will stay available.

Friday, June 19, 2009

2012 movie, new trailer

There is a new trailer for the 2012 movie, now pushed back to a Nov 13, 2009 release date.
With the new trailer in mind (one version below, I think the one on Yahoo is slightly different), I can say I probably WON'T be yelling at the screen as much as I thought I would, because I don't think there is anything having to do with the Mayan calendar in it. It's just a how-many-ways-can-we-destroy-the-earth-in-one-movie movie. The trailer shows what I think is Palenque for a few seconds and says something like "the earth's oldest civilization tried to warn us". (What? Sumer? Babylon?) And then there are meteors, floods, buildings crashing down randomly, what is apparently California falling into the Pacific, and what I think is an aircraft carrier falling onto the White House from a tidal wave. All that's missing are volcanoes, or maybe they haven't finished the CGI for those yet.
I know this video blows my border, but I can't make it any smaller than 480 wide.

I'm still going to see it of course, but I can probably leave the duct tape home. As more trailers are released, I'll let you know.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Would you read this book? Children of the Deep: 2012

Working on yet another pitch for my Cthulhu Mythos end of the world novel:
Children of the Deep: 2012.
When the end of the world comes, who will you love?
It's 2012, and the world is ending. The meteor Ag-Noggoth burns in the sky, heading toward Earth, and the buzz in the New Age and Pagan communities is: Change or die. Meri, a freelance writer, mocks the miracle power beads and various Xochitl Tictl herbal concoctions that everyone seems to be addicted to. Then she falls in love with a man who is like no other she's ever encountered.
When the end of the world comes, who will you be?
Drawn by her lover and his mysterious family into the cult of Becoming, with its refrain of "change or die," Meri slowly slips from reporting the phenomena to being its figurehead. All over the world, people are becoming...but what will they finally be?
Is that enough or do I need to bring into it that there's another sentient humanoid race on earth who is going to take over?
I used this next pitch, which goes in a different direction, for a recent get-an-agent contest . I didn't win so I don't know if the pitch is crap or if they wanted something else. It had very specific rules--no more than 3 sentences/150 words which is why there's so much punctuation.
26,000 years ago, a race of aquatic humanoids crashed on Earth; abandoned by their god Ag-Noggoth, they hid—and waited. As the dawn of a new age approaches, humanity rapidly begins to evolve. Freelance writer Meri is caught in something bigger than she can imagine, in love with a man who isn't what he seems, and as the comet called Ag-Noggoth approaches Earth, Meri holds the fate of humanity—and that of the Children of the Deep—in her newly webbed fingers.
All comments welcome.
(Deep One plush toy from Toy Vault)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

new must see movie: Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus

OMG--I LOVE giant creature movies, the tackier the better.  My friend and I love to rent them from Blockbuster and then rip on how awful they are.  And this one looks to be the MOTHER of all bad giant creature movies.
I cannot make this up:  MEGA SHARK vs GIANT OCTOPUS.

Supposedly coming out May 26th?! Why is this the first I'm hearing about it?  And why isn't it called Megalodon vs Kraken, wouldn't that be much cooler? Or are people too stupid to know what Megalodons and Kraken are?

Color therapy

As I was going through all my books over the last few days, deciding which to keep and which to sell, I found a whole bunch on color therapy. I'd forgotten all about my interest in it. At one point I had even had a bunch of transparencies printed up in solid colors and experimented with sending various types of Reiki energy through the different colors to see if it changed. Yeah, that's me, trying science-type experimentation on things science claims to have disproved.
For now, the color therapy books remain in the sell pile, but it got me to thinking and I used my google-fu to see if anything new was being talked about on the web. I found an article on a health blog. It's not really from a new age perspective, like all my books are, so it was interesting to read.
The blog calls it "Chromotherapy" and claims it dates back to ancient China and Egypt. Which gets my attention, of course. Egypt! They did reflexology too, back in the days of pyramids. In the modern form, there is The Lüscher Color Test, a psychological tool.
During the test, patients are exposed to various colors. The colors they choose (and the order in which they are chosen) are believed to be associated with particular mental states.

Here’s a brief overview of what some of the colors represent (according to Dr. Luscher):

  • Blue is associated with contentment and belonging.
  • Green signifies self-esteem and willpower
  • Red represents confidence and a proactive attitude.
  • Yellow indicates eagerness to learn and to experience “new encounters”
That is too funny because I have always hated yellow. If I had to put all the colors in order on the table in front of me, I'd put yellow on the floor! But I am eager to learn. So what does that mean?
And then some crazy person like me decided to put color to the test. My tests were not scientific, of course. I'd lay the colored sheet on someone and run energy through it, then switch to a different color and ask if it felt different. I could see the colors and so could the person--no control, no double blind. Hey, it's not like I had an NIH grant to study it! Or any training in setting up experimental protocols.
I assume the people who did this other study has the credentials I lack. They found an interesting association between certain colors and altered mental functioning. The exposure to a blue background (led) to twice as much “creative output” as was found with a red background.

The color red promoted “attention to detail”. Red also improved proofreading ability and memory - as compared to the color blue. The rate of improvement was approximately 31%.

Hmm, maybe there is something to always doing proofreading with a red pen! And maybe I should take the color therapy books out of the sell pile...

Lego Fun--movie scenes

One of my friends does some work for Lego occasionally so I am always on the lookout for Lego-related items to send her.  And I am depressed and baffled still over the loss of Hogan, my perfect little perfect lorikeet.  So these pictures, found believe it or not on a natural health forum called NatMedTalk, cheered me up.  They are famous movie scenes done with Lego bricks.  Here's Titanic.  I used to LOVE that movie; haven't watched it in years. I'd probably cringe now!
And Edward Scissorhands:
Some people have too much time on their hands, that's all I can say.  But I'm glad they do, especially on days when I am down and need a laugh.
Funny that I never owned any Legos.  I had some kind of cheap generic type as a child.
(Both pictures are hosted on Flickr, BTW.) 

Off topic: I've entered almost 200 books, mostly new age, onto my book sale list.  Please check it out.  I still have an equal amount to list so look often.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

books for sale

Bert's Books for Sale:
 my own shelf

I've only added a few dozen out of the hundreds so keep checking back. Pretty much they are $5 each or 3 for $10 or make an offer if you want lots of them for new age, pagan, diet, writing & miscellaneous titles.
I'll add a bunch of paperback novels later, those will be $1 each or 12 for $10.
Right now my inclination is NOT to ship, you have to come and get them. If you are not local, we can negotiate something.

RIP Hogan

My little green bird died on Friday. Hogan was around 18, a perfect lorikeet (his breed, not his personality). He had never been sick, ever in his whole life, not even a cold, never had a blood test, never had missing or messy feathers. I thought I'd have him long after zombie-bird Lance (now 21) went into the wild blue yonder.
Thursday I gave Hogan and Lance each a corn tortilla. Lance wasn't interested, shoved his tortilla through the grate into the tray. Hogan attacked his, ate some of it, and then decided it was some sort of edible carpet and was sitting on it. He played with it all day.
Friday I got up early because I had a doctor's appointment. Around 7, 7:30 I heard a brief ruckus from one of the birds but it didn't sound serious. I did laundry and then around 8:15 went into to say hi to the birds and Hogan was dead on his tortilla bed. :( He was still warm so I think the noise I heard was him dying.
All I could think was that somehow the stupid tortilla killed him--bound up his intestines or something. I rushed him up to the vet, wrapped in a washcloth, and made an appointment to bring Lance in for his final visit with Dr Giddings, who is retiring.
Saturday the vet who did Hogan's necropsy called and said he was in perfect health...except for his liver, which was FOUR TIMES normal size. Poor little guy. He never acted sick, he was totally himself. His wife, Onnie, died in the fall, and she had a bad liver. Seems like that's what gets lories--liver or kidneys.
Let's do the dead lory rollcall:
  • Scarlett, red lory, kidneys
  • Goober, hybrid red-rainbow, kidneys
  • Zeebo, hybrid red-rainbow, unknown
  • Prism, rainbow lorikeet, liver
  • Guinevere, rainbow, liver
  • Onnie, perfect lorikeet, liver
  • Hogan, perfect, liver
Hogan's demise was not death by tortilla, thank the gods. I don't think I ever would have gotten over the guilt.
Lance is in the huge 18 SF cage by himself. I put him in the clean one (always the plan for this weekend) and moved all the toys and perches and rotated some in that he hadn't seen for a while. He's not fooled at all, though, he still knows Hogan is gone. Hogan was his last friend. My hope had been when I took them for their spring vet visit, I was going to let them play together at the vet and see if they fought. If they didn't, I was going to take the divider out.
I hate death and loss. A year ago I had FOUR lories, THREE cats and a full-time job. Now I have 1 elderly zombie lory, 2 cats and unemployment.
And this is a petty complaint, but only 2 of my 25 fakebook friends (all real friends, people I know in real life) acknowledged the loss of Hogan. And yeah, I spelled Facebook wrong on purpose.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

test book post

I am going to be selling a LOT of new age books and I'm thinking about starting a Goodreads or Shelfari account to list them all. Testing to see what would be more user-friendly for people to look at the list. These widgets show books I've read, NOT the books for sale yet.

This one links to my Goodreads list
my 'read' shelf:
 my read shelf
And it appears to be the winner. Links right to the list, shows covers and authors, and you can click on each book for more info.

This is a Goodreads widget with 200 book covers. I can tell it sucks from the crappy generated HTML code which includes each book title. Plus I have more than 200 books to sell so I'd have to make multiple accounts, pain the butt, so not happening.

This is the shelfari widget. It LOOKS cool but but will people want to click that many times to see all the books?:

Shelfari: Book reviews on your book blog