Column Archives:

July 14, 2010

Black Feathered Phoenix

Month 7 of my new format featuring a monthly update on me, my community, and the environment.


From the Ashes…I thought I had written a column about recreating myself a few years back, but a google search revealed that the words “ashes” and “phoenix” never appear on my site. That’s strange since these are two of my favorite words. Sometimes I write columns and don’t publish them, and other times I delete old columns, but whatever happened to the old column has left room for me to use these words now.

I’m in Lubbock now for the foreseeable future recreating my sense of self and forming a new community. I’ve set up great bachelor pad now with a full bar, 100 inch projection screen TV, full surround sound satellite radio and vinyl records, motorcycle and scooter all within walking distance of campus and the only dog park in town. Dixie already has a whole pack of new friends that we see every evening.

Things are progressing very well here despite recent setbacks and trials. Given the conditions of my move and the state I was in during the transition period, I truly feel like a phoenix (with black wings) rising from the ashes.


After a couple weekends and one full week in town, I’m not qualified to comment on Lubbock as a whole, but from what I’ve seen so far I feel good about my potential here. The people are nice and the weather has been amazing. If College Station is Neverland, as I called it back in the day, then Lubbock must be Tir Na Nog and I am Oisin chronicling my adventures here.


It’s something like 84 days for the uncapped well with the gulf in dire trouble. I think the Ridley sea turtle is going the way of the boss villain of the same name in the 8-bit Metroid when I have my screw attack.

The heat wave on the East coast was spectacular, but we had a cold winter and summer has been mild in the center of the country. I don’t know what’s going on this year; it’s difficult to get a clear read at this point. Lubbock is having a 100-year rainfall for the second time in three years. My advisor today told me that the only certainty is variability. We used to be able to make closer predictions, but now we have higher highs, lower lows, more snow, more rainfall, longer droughts, longer heat waves, and more powerful storms. The variability in the system is increased with a general trend towards a hotter global average temperature. Glaciers predicted to last 100 more years five years ago are predicted to last only 30 years now.

And still climate change deniers keep their heads in the sand.

Song of the month:

I leave you now with an excerpt from a poem instead of a song. Yeats has long been my favorite poet and The Wanderings of Oisin is one of my favorite works. Coincidentally I’m drinking a Rob Roy while writing this column, which was invented in 1889, the same year the poem was published.

     Those merry couples dancing in tune,
     And the white body that lay by mine;
     But the tale, though words be lighter than air.
     Must live to be old like the wandering moon.