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Howdy, pilgrim! You're in the ^zhurnal — since 1999, a journal of musings on mind, method, metaphor, and matters miscellaneous — previous volume = 0.9945. Click headlines to browse, comment, or edit the ^zhurnalyWiki. Page-top links provide random mantras, tarots, unicorns, power thoughts, and meditative suggestions. For a lovely little mint-tin deck of mindfulness reminders see Open Mind OM Cards.



Power of Intention

From A Morning Cup of Yoga, Jane Goad Trechsel thoughts on the value of aspiration:

... Intentions have great power. We all get off track and lose the path we want to be on. If we keep coming back to our intention, eventually the road will go that way. Here are some sample intentions, but you will know what your heart yearns for.

... and intentions need not become narrow goals to cling to!

(cf Finding the Quiet (2009-12-05),Without Effort, Analysis, or Expectation (2010-08-04), Intentional Attention (2014-07-29), Aspiration, not Expectation (2014-12-12), Aspire without Attachment (2015-12-28), No Goals (2016-06-08), ...)

- Saturday, July 24, 2021 at 06:19:15 (EDT)


2021-06-29 - National Park Seminary Statuary

~4.7 mi @ ~13.8 min/mi

National Park Seminary mermaid fountain and cicada tree damage"The statues are still there!" At 90°F+ a Tuesday evening sunset circuit is sweaty and slow. Joan of Arc is in the shade; the fountain of seahorses and mermaids casts a lovely long shadow in front of trees attacked by cicada Brood X.
Initial attempts to jog 60 sec + walk 60 sec decelerate after a couple of miles. Neighborhood daylilies open wide.http://zhurnaly.com/images/arty/daylilies_2021-06-29.jpg

(trackfile)

- Friday, July 23, 2021 at 07:13:42 (EDT)


2021-06-27 - Go, Be

~3.8 mi @ ~17.8 min/mi

"Go Be!" says the fence around Bethesda Outdoor Pool where the Barracudas swim and fill the parking lot. 🐻-y gets one of the last open spaces; 🥃 leaves her car at the secret lot on Little Falls Parkway. A warm and cheery Sunday morning walk-jog ensues.

(trackfile)

- Thursday, July 22, 2021 at 05:39:01 (EDT)


2021-06-26 - Cicada Damage

~3.0 mi @ ~17.4 min/mi

"Dead branches are from larvae feeding, before they drop to the ground and burrow in for 17 years!" 🥃 explains cicada Facts of Life to 🐻 during a Saturday morning walk-run. Showers are hyperlocal, with downpours a few miles to the west and dry ground in Garrett Park. 🥃 recalls a humid trek a decade ago (2010-08-21_-_Megan's_Loop_Plus) and the lessons it taught on patience and pace control. At the farmers market "Free Range Eggs" don't seem to be ranging very far from their cartons!

(trackfile)

- Thursday, July 22, 2021 at 05:37:08 (EDT)


Closeness Generation Questions

A psychological experiment "The Experimental Generation of Closeness: A Procedure and Some Preliminary Findings" (Arthur Aron et al., Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, April 1997) describes a "practical methodology for ... creating closeness" based on 45 minutes of "self-disclosure and relationship-building tasks" performed by a pair of individuals. The study uses three dozen questions to provoke the sharing of ideas and experiences. It was recently described in an abridged form in [1] and half a dozen years ago in [2] and [3]. The questions are quite fascinating:

Set I

1. Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?
2. Would you like to be famous? In what way?
3. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why?
4. What would constitute a "perfect" day for you?
5. When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?
6. If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want?
7. Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?
8. Name three things you and your partner appear to have in common.
9. For what in your life do you feel most grateful?
10. If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?
11. Take four minutes and tell your partner your life story in as much detail as possible.
12. If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?

Set II

13. If a crystal ball could tell you the truth about yourself, your life, the future or anything else, what would you want to know?
14. Is there something that you've dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven't you done it?
15. What is the greatest accomplishment of your life?
16. What do you value most in a friendship?
17. What is your most treasured memory?
18. What is your most terrible memory?
19. If you knew that in one year you would die suddenly, would you change anything about the way you are now living? Why?
20. What does friendship mean to you?
21. What roles do love and affection play in your life?
22. Alternate sharing something you consider a positive characteristic of your partner. Share a total of 5 items.
23. How close and warm is your family? Do you feel your childhood was happier than most other people's?
24. How do you feel about your relationship with your mother?

Set III

25. Make three true "we" statements each. For instance, "We are both in this room feeling ..."
26. Complete this sentence: "I wish I had someone with whom I could share ..."
27. If you were going to become a close friend with your partner, please share what would be important for him or her to know.
28. Tell your partner what you like about them; be very honest this time, saying things that you might not say to someone you've just met.
29. Share with your partner an embarrassing moment in your life.
30. When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself?
31. Tell your partner something that you like about them already.
32. What, if anything, is too serious to be joked about?
33. If you were to die this evening with no opportunity to communicate with anyone, what would you most regret not having told someone? Why haven't you told them yet?
34. Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you have time to safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why?
35. Of all the people in your family, whose death would you find most disturbing? Why?
36. Share a personal problem and ask your partner's advice on how he or she might handle it. Also, ask your partner to reflect back to you how you seem to be feeling about the problem you have chosen.

... and the best answer to many of these is, perhaps, "I don't know!"

(cf Check Mate 1 (2001-11-26), Check Mate 2 (2001-11-30), Life Partner Criteria (2014-05-15), ...)

- Tuesday, July 20, 2021 at 07:05:18 (EDT)


2021-06-25 - Sligo Survey

~3.4 mi @ ~13.4 min/mi

"Can you run any slower?" 🐻y asks a question with many interpretations! He starts behind 🤖 and catches up after a mile. Sligo Creek Parkway is closed to cars late Friday and the lanes are wide; nevertheless a hasty cyclist almost collides with a walker. Crepuscular creatures are out early as sunset shines final beams on an alabaster statue of the Virgin Mary overlooking the valley.

(trackfile)

- Tuesday, July 20, 2021 at 06:35:52 (EDT)


2021-06-24 - Spit Take

~3.7 mi @ ~14.2 min/mi

"Max Scherzer was right!" says 🤖. Spitballs are tough; spitting requires practice. Ditto hill climbs, as two repeats on Belvedere Blvd remind. 🐻y joins to survey Sligo Creek Trail: no turtles or geese on Friday's Eve, but lots of runners. After a mile together the twins part ways. 30-40 seconds of jogging with 90 second walk breaks makes a sinusoidal pace graph.

(trackfile)

- Monday, July 19, 2021 at 05:58:49 (EDT)


2021-06-22 - Bunny Bunny Ears

~4.4 mi @ ~13.7 min/mi

"Child, come over here. Do you have a cigarette?" asks an elderly lady on the front steps of an apartment building. Tuesday afternoon's Takoma trek leads to DC's Calvin Coolidge Senior High School track, where a football team practices pushing heavy objects across the turf. A lap in lane 7 at ~10.0 min/mi pace amuses the onlookers. Lawn art features a big wooden bird guarding its nest and a bunny doing bunny-ears behind another bunny.http://zhurnaly.com/images/walk/Bunny-bunny-ears_DC_2021-06-22.jpg

(trackfile)

- Sunday, July 18, 2021 at 07:36:54 (EDT)


Morning Cup of Yoga

Jane Goad Trechsel in A Morning Cup of Yoga (2002) writes about how yoga helped her "... generally settle down and become calmer, less judgmental, and less caught up in the little dramas of life." She emphasizes liberation and optimism:

... I learned that when the negative voice inside said, "I can't do this!" another, wiser voice could say instead, "This looks difficult. What part of it can I do?" This was a completely different attitude, which freed me to try anything. ...

... and focuses on possibility, awareness, joy in the present:

... Stand quietly, appreciating the gentle, natural flowing rhythm of your breath and what your body could do today. When at last you open your eyes, let them be soft and settled back into the skull, so that you look out at the world from a deep place within. Open your ears and allow hearing, noting the various sounds that arise and pass away. Experience the world directly.

You may occasionally experience brief moments of absolute stillness and peace, feeling yourself at home in your body and at home with your breath, in the safe harbor of your deepest self.

... beautiful wisdom!

(cf Yoga and Mudra (2010-08-08), Yoga for Busy People (2011-01-03), Let Go (2013-10-18), ...)

- Saturday, July 17, 2021 at 05:08:54 (EDT)


2021-06-20 - Rabbit, Meet Track

~9.3 mi @ ~17.9 min/mi

Barry and Kerry at Silver Spring International Middle School"A fellow Glaswegian javelin-thrower tried out for the US Olympic team last week," 🐻y reports on a steamy Sunday morning, and reminisces about legendary Hayward Field where he finished a marathon a few years ago. Some runner-dude named "Prefontaine" reputedly did shorter distances there, for some coach-dude named "Bowerman". 🐻y leads 🔥 down Sligo Creek Trail to the middle school for an anticipatory victory lap in his Missoula Virtual Half. 🤖 follows the duo, diverting to test a water fountain and then finding a short-cut to arrive first.
At sunrise Strava's GPS awards 🔥 & 🤖 a free bonus mile inside Starbucks as they get iced coffee. They set their cups carefully on the bleacher steps before a 400m calibration circuit at the cushioned track. Much room for improvement! "Now i know how you and 🦖 felt when you were just starting to train and i was your 🐇", says 🤖.http://zhurnaly.com/images/run/Demonic_sundial_2021-06-20.jpg

(trackfile)

- Friday, July 16, 2021 at 06:35:41 (EDT)


2021-06-19 - Run from Roses

~1.0 mi @ ~14.0 min/mi & ~2.4 mi @ ~11.6 min/mi

"Water ahead! Less than a mile to go! Mostly downhill!" Crew at the aid station shout encouragement to participants in the woman-only MCRRC "Run for Roses" 5k race on Saturday morning. After they've passed by 🤖 helps pick up empty cups, takes down signs, and walks-jogs back to the start-finish area. A few late cicadas flit, and another six-legged friend helps with data entry on a club computer.

"WARNING: Do Not Eat Infill Mix in Artificial Turf as It May Be Harmful to Your Health!" cautions the sign at Blair High School football field that evening. At the cushioned track 6 x 400m intervals flow, thanks to clouds and breezes and a few light raindrops, with robins and wrens watching from the grass. Miniature Eiffel Tower, Great Pyramid, Washington Monument, and Gateway Arch decorate an outdoor dining area. College amateur baseball is the post-run cooldown.

(trackfile & trackfile)

- Thursday, July 15, 2021 at 06:46:24 (EDT)


2021-06-17 - Kemp Mill Overshoot

~3.4 mi @ ~13.4 min/mi

"You missed the turn!" 🐻 runs by the narrow path from Ladd St to Sligo Creek while 🤖, sitting cool-down in the car, is distracted and doesn't notice. Half a mile later they find each other. Small world! Earlier on Thursday evening 🤖 walks 90 seconds and jogs 30 seconds for a happy Kemp Mill neighborhood loop. By chance Tristram and Yuval greet him in the final mile.

(trackfile)

- Thursday, July 15, 2021 at 06:40:41 (EDT)


Best Frever

Silly slang shared almost a decade ago:

Best Frever

... cited in the "Urban Dictionary" as Best Frever:

What you call someone who's not your friEND (because even friEND has an end to it), but a person that will be there for you forever (because forever doesnt end in END). A person that is like your sister/brother, not someone that will stop being there for you when you're out of high school or college, but someone who will continue to be there for you forever. "You're not my best friEND, you're my best frever."

(grammar & typos fixed; cf Mantra - Be Your Own Best Friend (2016-02-16), Unicorn - Best Friends, ...)

- Wednesday, July 14, 2021 at 07:07:41 (EDT)


2021-06-15 - Taco Tuesday Trek

~4.2 mi @ ~13.7 min/mi

"Stations of the Cross!" Meditative marker-reminders are overgrown with brush around their bases, images faded, at the edge of the woods west of St Andrew Apostle School. Traffic backs up along Arcola Ave as 🤖 jogs 30 seconds and walks 90 seconds on a Taco Tuesday afternoon mission: deliver letters to #1 Son! A turtle family suns itself on a log in Pine Lake. Big gray goslings nestle near their parents on the shoreside.

(trackfile)

- Tuesday, July 13, 2021 at 06:30:50 (EDT)


2021-06-13 - Sunrise Cicada Slalom

~2.5 mi @ ~12.9 min/mi & ~2.9 mi @ ~19.2 min/mi

"Cicada steeplechase, lane 2!" Seventeen-year-locusts from Brood X mandate don't-tread-on-me swerving skills at the high school track early Sunday morning. After five laps with half-lap recovery breaks, 🤖 joins Mike, Gretchen, Karen, and Katherine for a cooldown walk. Then it's time to meet 🦀 for a stroll along Sligo Creek, with 🐻 & 🥃 running ahead and circling back.

(trackfile & trackfile)

- Monday, July 12, 2021 at 07:08:42 (EDT)


2021-06-12 - Needwood Nessie and Bethesda Banter

~2.8 mi @ ~22.3 min/mi & ~3.7 mi - ~23.4 min/mi

"Crow!" - "Owl!" - "Tiny Loch Ness Monster!" - 🦘spies the first two perched nearby during the first mile of a Saturday dawn walk. 🤖 notes the last on the surface of Lake Needwood, neck curved S-shape. Then it turns into a cormorant and takes off. Hmmmm! The platform in the center of a playground web tips and pours rainwater as someone attempts a climb. Oops!

"No, just marathons and halfs!" An hour later, 🦀 disavows any plans to do ultras; 🐻 & 🤖 suggest reconsideration. The longer the run, the nicer the people! Bethesda Outdoor Pool parking lot is full on Saturday morning as swim team activities recommence. A happy meander northward encounters sporty wheels and arty fountain sculpture.

(trackfile & trackfile)

- Sunday, July 11, 2021 at 05:07:25 (EDT)


2021-06-10 - Pre-Atonement

~1.7 mi @ ~12.1 min/mi

"Was that thunder, or my stomach?" Thursday late-afternoon rain brings puddles to the old middle-school asphalt track. A grounds-keeper shovels mud off the long-jump path and then, to the smell of gasoline, wields a weed-whacker and trims the baseball field border. A young runner does sit-ups on the bleachers between sprints. A couple shares one umbrella as they walk laps. Four soggy 400m intervals at ~9 min/mi pace pre-atone for gyros and pizza.

(trackfile)

- Sunday, July 11, 2021 at 04:59:44 (EDT)


William Stafford Wisdom

Clues from poet William Stafford (1914-1993) on some important things:

Thank you for those gifts, and many others, Mr Stafford – and for the example you set of soft, steady sharing ...

(cf In My Journal (2005-01-29), The Way It Is (2021-03-19), When I Met My Muse (2021-05-06), Aggressive Courtesy (2021-05-20), ...)

- Friday, July 09, 2021 at 05:54:04 (EDT)


2021-06-09 - RIO Lakefront and Downtown Crown

~2.9 mi @ ~19.1 min/mi

"Does it say 'Hope'? Or 'Nope'?" Wednesday afternoon's sunny-sweaty walkabout, awaiting carry-out 🦬 at Ted's Montana Grill in Gaithersburg, finds window art by @lwart = Luther Wright = "Louie Wri" in a tony zone of shops. An enthusiastic birder named Kofi, armed with new Nikon D6 and 200-500mm long lens, monitors an artificial pond. He points out a juvenile Great Blue Heron and shares recent pics. A cut-through behind tennis courts offers escape from a fancy 'hood. A cicada lands on a pink shirt and photobombs the scratched-thumb "Best Blood" after a brushy downhill scramble. Oops!

(trackfile)

- Friday, July 09, 2021 at 05:34:32 (EDT)


2021-06-07 - Fruity Shopping

~1.6 mi @ ~22.1 min/mi

"Rugelach and macaroons!" An evening walk to the neighborhood grocery store for a few apples and ... uh ... chocolate is a fruit, isn't it? ... and so are peanuts, no? ... coconuts, obviously yes!

(trackfile)

- Wednesday, July 07, 2021 at 06:56:54 (EDT)


2021-06-06 - Dr Fonda Sighting

~6.5 mi @ ~15.2 min/mi

"Heck-fire!" - "Are you actually allowed to run?" - "Most physicians are far too certain!" - "Shall we try to reach the next patch of shade?" - "You move like Grandpa McCoy!" - "A cicada flew into my shirt!" Flippant banter flows fast as 🥃 & 🐻 & 🤖 walk/trot along Rock Creek, joined by 🫕 in a happy-fortuitous encounter. At the turnaround a sign announces the end of Closure – which in psychology means the urge for sure answers and the fear of ambiguity. Maybe, or maybe not? Zen suggests: "Not Always So!"

(trackfile)

- Tuesday, July 06, 2021 at 07:00:33 (EDT)




For back issues of the ^zhurnal see Volumes v.01 (April-May 1999), v.02 (May-July 1999), v.03 (July-September 1999), v.04 (September-November 1999), v.05 (November 1999 - January 2000), v.06 (January-March 2000), v.07 (March-May 2000), v.08 (May-June 2000), v.09 (June-July 2000), v.10 (August-October 2000), v.11 (October-December 2000), v.12 (December 2000 - February 2001), v.13 (February-April 2001), v.14 (April-June 2001), 0.15 (June-August 2001), 0.16 (August-September 2001), 0.17 (September-November 2001), 0.18 (November-December 2001), 0.19 (December 2001 - February 2002), 0.20 (February-April 2002), 0.21 (April-May 2002), 0.22 (May-July 2002), 0.23 (July-September 2002), 0.24 (September-October 2002), 0.25 (October-November 2002), 0.26 (November 2002 - January 2003), 0.27 (January-February 2003), 0.28 (February-April 2003), 0.29 (April-June 2003), 0.30 (June-July 2003), 0.31 (July-September 2003), 0.32 (September-October 2003), 0.33 (October-November 2003), 0.34 (November 2003 - January 2004), 0.35 (January-February 2004), 0.36 (February-March 2004), 0.37 (March-April 2004), 0.38 (April-June 2004), 0.39 (June-July 2004), 0.40 (July-August 2004), 0.41 (August-September 2004), 0.42 (September-November 2004), 0.43 (November-December 2004), 0.44 (December 2004 - February 2005), 0.45 (February-March 2005), 0.46 (March-May 2005), 0.47 (May-June 2005), 0.48 (June-August 2005), 0.49 (August-September 2005), 0.50 (September-November 2005), 0.51 (November 2005 - January 2006), 0.52 (January-February 2006), 0.53 (February-April 2006), 0.54 (April-June 2006), 0.55 (June-July 2006), 0.56 (July-September 2006), 0.57 (September-November 2006), 0.58 (November-December 2006), 0.59 (December 2006 - February 2007), 0.60 (February-May 2007), 0.61 (April-May 2007), 0.62 (May-July 2007), 0.63 (July-September 2007), 0.64 (September-November 2007), 0.65 (November 2007 - January 2008), 0.66 (January-March 2008), 0.67 (March-April 2008), 0.68 (April-June 2008), 0.69 (July-August 2008), 0.70 (August-September 2008), 0.71 (September-October 2008), 0.72 (October-November 2008), 0.73 (November 2008 - January 2009), 0.74 (January-February 2009), 0.75 (February-April 2009), 0.76 (April-June 2009), 0.77 (June-August 2009), 0.78 (August-September 2009), 0.79 (September-November 2009), 0.80 (November-December 2009), 0.81 (December 2009 - February 2010), 0.82 (February-April 2010), 0.83 (April-May 2010), 0.84 (May-July 2010), 0.85 (July-September 2010), 0.86 (September-October 2010), 0.87 (October-December 2010), 0.88 (December 2010 - February 2011), 0.89 (February-April 2011), 0.90 (April-June 2011), 0.91 (June-August 2011), 0.92 (August-October 2011), 0.93 (October-December 2011), 0.94 (December 2011-January 2012), 0.95 (January-March 2012), 0.96 (March-April 2012), 0.97 (April-June 2012), 0.98 (June-September 2012), 0.99 (September-November 2012), 0.9901 (November-December 2012), 0.9902 (December 2012-February 2013), 0.9903 (February-March 2013), 0.9904 (March-May 2013), 0.9905 (May-July 2013), 0.9906 (July-September 2013), 0.9907 (September-October 2013), 0.9908 (October-December 2013), 0.9909 (December 2013-February 2014), 0.9910 (February-May 2014), 0.9911 (May-July 2014), 0.9912 (July-August 2014), 0.9913 (August-October 2014), 0.9914 (November 2014-January 2015), 0.9915 (January-April 2015), 0.9916 (April-July 2015), 0.9917 (July-September 2015), 0.9918 (September-November 2015), 0.9919 (November 2015-January 2016), 0.9920 (January-April 2016), 0.9921 (April-June 2016), 0.9922 (June-July 2016), 0.9923 (July-September 2016), 0.9924 (October-December 2016), 0.9925 (January-February 2017), 0.9926 (March-April 2017), 0.9927 (May-June 2017), 0.9928 (June-October 2017), 0.9929 (October-December 2017), 0.9930 (December 2017-March 2018), 0.9931 (March-April 2018), 0.9932 (May-July 2018), 0.9933 (July-September 2018), 0.9934 (September-December 2018), 0.9935 (December 2018-February 2019), 0.9936 (February-April 2019), 0.9937 (April-July 2019), 0.9938 (July-August 2019), 0.9939 (August-November 2019), 0.9940 (November 2019-February 2020), 0.9941 (February-June 2020), 0.9942 (June-August 2020), 0.9943 (August-November 2020), 0.9944 (November 2020-March 2021), 0.9945 (March-July 2021), ... Current Volume. Send comments and suggestions to z (at) his.com. Thank you! (Copyright © 1999-2021 by Mark Zimmermann.)