Irene North

Writings

I still miss this guy

Yellow and blue and sunflowers

Translation: Russian warship, go fuck yourself.

Whenever tragedy occurs, humans attempt to make sense of the chaos it creates and often look for places of comfort when they feel helpless in meaningless tragedy. As the world watches the war in Ukraine unfold, artists have found their voices in art, regardless of its medium, to express themselves.

A picture worth a thousand tears

When I saw this picture this morning, it made me cry. British Neuroscientist Matthew Cobb, who occasionally blogs on Evolutionary Biologist Jerry Coyne’s “Why Evolution is True” blog, sent this picture to Jerry. It’s from a wall in Paris.

It’s time to stand against religion before it’s too late

About three months ago, I had a conversation with someone about religion. I told this person about another conversation I had with a friend about the dark and dangerous turn America has taken. My friend remarked they were ready to leave the country permanently if the loud minority of conservative evangelical Christians get to have everything they want.

My friend worried these Christian Nationalists would come for people like me and him. I, too, have had these worries for quite some time. We’ve seen it time and again with authoritarian regimes. The intellectuals, the educated, the atheists, anyone who stands counter to what they demand are rounded up and executed.

I told the person I was having a conversation with there was still hope in the back of my mind that Americans would rise up against Christian Nationalism, but I’m not entirely sure this will happen. I also mentioned I do not like Christianity nor many of its adherents. It’s something I’ve struggled with for a long time. I wish I didn’t, but I do.

2022: the first 50 days

Today is the 50th day of the year and I thought I would take some time to reflect on how the year is going, especially since 2020 and 2021, were more bad than good.

Banned books are the best books

A selection of books Paul and I own.

My grandmother taught me many lessons. The one I have never forgotten and took notice of was the day she pointed to her head and said, “Whatever you put up here, no one can ever take away from you.”

I’m not sure if it was an innate desire to learn, my grandmother’s guidance, or a little of both, but I have always loved to read and to learn. The majority of books I own and have read in life are nonfiction. The fiction I read has to have meaning and it has to teach me something.

Monkeying around at Cedar Canyon

The Cedar Canyon Wildlife Management Area (WMA) provides a great opportunity to see animals, big and small, during any of the hikes you can take in the area. You can choose from hikes along a clearly marked trail, hikes along two tracks and hikes to the top of the butte for spectacular views of the valley.

Since I am only a small monkey, I go wherever my adventurous humans go. They seem to always choose the game trail, which humans also use to the top. It’s a 45-minute trek straight up where you can see some pretty views. We usually walk at least halfway across the top, where you can see even more.

When you lose your voice, find another way to speak

I have never had writer’s block. I have had plenty of instances of “this is stupid and why are you making me write this garbage,” but I’ve always been able to write. On Thursday, December, 2, 2021, that all changed.

What I will be reading in 2022

Each January, I gather together suggestions for books and make a list of the things I want to read. I typically read 18-24 books a year, plus scientific studies and podcasts as they come along, but the past two years have been a bit difficult for me and my focus was not quite there. This year, I’ve gathered 10 books. If I can get back on track, I’ll be finished with them halfway through 2022, but I want to be realistic in my goals, so this list is a good way to achieve it.

I’m kind of angry right now

December was an unexpectedly terrible month, beginning with my brother-in-law, David, informing Paul about their dad’s fall.

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