Short Little Attention Span

My foray into good news this morning led me, first, to a story of a 15-year-old lion returned to his natural habitat after being abandoned in a private zoo in Armenia for five years.  I then read about a way to reuse decommissioned wind turbine blades, rather than incinerating them or putting them in a landfill. From there, I renewed my long-lost acquaintance with the concept of brocken spectres, thanks to a fascinating article about a UK photo contest. As I explored brocken spectres, I wandered off to explore glories. My wandering did not end there, but I’ll leave the rest to another time when I have no demands on my time. This kind of exercise is akin to a treasure hunt in which each find leads to another search for yet another find. It feeds my need to accommodate my occasionally VERY short attention span—I get bored or disillusioned easily. But when I enter a rabbit warren with so many interconnected passages and rooms and options to follow, I can get lost for hours, exploring topics that are completely or only tangentially unrelated. The result? Temporary enthusiasm about information that has little or no practical value to me, but that causes interest and excitement for a time. I’ll probably check in with the largely negative news  services in a while, but for now I am satisfied to start the morning on an upbeat note.


The upbeat mood does not diminish yet, even though I just learned that a prolific writer of mysteries—a man who encouraged others to write—and who matter-of-factly proclaimed his atheism to me when I first attended the Unitarian Universalist Village Church, has died. John Achor retired at the rank of Lt. Colonel after twenty years as an Air Force pilot, accumulating more than 4,000 flying hours. I knew John for only a few years, but I grew to like and admire him soon after we met. After he and his wife moved to Nebraska, we kept in touch occasionally. I followed his writing of mystery novels, including One Two Kill a Few, Three Four Kill Some More, Five Six Deadly Mix, Assault on the President, and Assault on Reason. There were more, I think. RIP, John Achor. John was 89. He lived a long and interesting life.


A recent accidental discovery sparked my interest in an utterly useless pursuit—making huge soap bubbles. I watched a video of a teacher showing his students how to make enormous soap bubbles, using sticks and string dipped into very soapy water. The teacher and his students created what I call bubble-launching devices that, when held up on a windy day, caused monstrous soap bubbles to form. Some of the bubbles broke free of their launching devices, giant bubbles three times the size of the people creating them, sailing into the air. It is child’s play. I would rather play with sticks and strings and bubbles than toy guns. In fact, I’d rather do that than a lot of other things. When we return from our upcoming travels, I might give it a try. But I may have to wait until Spring, which I consider the best season to make giant bubbles and marvel at their size.


Depending on a variety of factors, I may take a fairly lengthy—several-days-long—break from this blog during an upcoming trip. Or I may not. Time will tell, as it always does.


Hmm. Seems I forgot to post this after I wrote that last bit. It’s a minute after 7 now, time for my shower and shave.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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