I spent an enjoyable afternoon at the Long Beach Opera last Sunday 5/21/2017. The performers were quite skilled and did an amazing job. The endurance of all the performers was extraordinary. The male lead was particularly talented and really did his part well.
I was also impressed by the musicians. The gal on the violin was inspirational. at one point I almost got fatigued just watching her.
As always I was fascinated by the choreographed lighting. This opera had only a few props, however they where used to the fullest extent possible, harkening back to a time of childhood play.
It was too dark to get a good selfie in the theater, but I did get a few photos of me appreciating the art in the lobby.
Helping businesses and individual with video, community management, and social media
Andrew Ledford 562-423-1691
It just so happens that my first post for 2015 will be about what I have been reading online and posting to my personal G+ profile.
You know I am interested in archaeology so I think we will start with a new discovery in Egypt of over 1 million mummies. These mummies are different than your standard royal mummies. The mass of mummies are regular people who happened to be buried in the right conditions for natural mummification.
This archaeological site has shed some new light on what life in ancient Egypt must have been like. For one thing they found a Christian church at this site that was built 200 years earlier than any previously know churches. I believe I read that bit of information from a different article than the one posted. I often read many article about a story before I post it on my profile.
Another interesting discovery at this site is the diversity of ancient Egypt. Can you believe there where blonds and red heads who live in ancient Egypt? What contributes to the archaeological puzzle is that people with the unusual hair color were buried together.
Sticking with the Middle East but with a contemporary theme there is an article posted about how Saudi Arabia is using low oil prices as a political strategy to undermine Iran and Russia.
Talking about political we can’t ignore the North Korean cyber attack on Sony. It looks like the North Koreans helped make a not so good movie a lot more successful. Did any of you see the movie? What did you think? Was it worth seeing? Did it harm the North Koreans?
I seem to have been reading a lot about Vikings and Viking culture lately. The first article is about one of my favorite subjects Vikings in North America. There is new evidence that Vikings may have inhabited areas of North America much farther North than previously thought.
Another discovery indicates that Viking may have had colonies in Europe as far south as Spain. Those Northerners really got around.
There is also evidence that when Viking traveled to new lands they took Viking women with them. Now this seems very logical to me.
To top off the Viking posts I have a very nice photo of a Viking Comb and its case.
Some of you who know me probably know I like cars, especially classic cars. I have a few photos of some spectacular cars.
The first car is a 1955 Lincoln Indianapolis. I believe ths was a concept car, but I am not sure.
The second is a wonderful 1936-1942 Lincoln Zephyr. Now this car looks like an early Batmobile, it is very cool.
Next on the agenda is a custom 1955 Ford Bubbletop. This car was built by a custom car shop. I have met and talked with the people from this car shop at some of the local car show I‘ve attended.
Next we will travel to an exotic Polynesian location and a time in the distant past. This is a story about Easter Island and how sweet potatoes fooled scientist into thinking palm was a major food source for ancient Easter Islanders.
With all the discoveries coming out of China I can’t go without at least one article about that vast county. The ancient city Sizhou has been excavated. This city has been called the oriental Pompeii. But instead of being covered in volcanic ash it was buried by a great flood. Some of the photos are quite spectacular.
There was an amazing discovery of a baby woolly mammoth in Russia. There have been other frozen mammoth finds in Siberia. However this one is quite spectacular. The most incredible features of this particular mammoth is that it had an almost totally intact brain. The sad news is that there was most likely some damage done to the mammoths organs as it was transported from where it was found.
We finally come to the Turkey section. Yes I am still reading an awful lot about archaeological sites and discoveries in Turkey. It almost seems like someone is promoting this aspect of Turkish culture.
The first article is about a 5,000 year old underground city in Turkey’s Central Anatolian province of Nevşehir. The tunnel passages of this city could be up to seven kilometers long.
Next there is an article about coffee and coffee houses during the Ottoman Empire in Turkey’s ancient city of Constantinople. It seems that coffee caused quite a stir in ancient Turkey.
The third article is about a secret tunnel system associated with Tokat Castle This castle is Turkey’s second-largest castle in the northern province of Tokat and once held the original Dracula as a prisoner.
For some feel good dog happiness I am adding the Dogs community New Year Video
For help with your video, online content,
social media, and community management
Call me at
Helping businesses and individual with video, community management, and social media, Andrew Ledford 562-423-1691
It has been an exciting couple of weeks for both my personal profile and my business page. I have not had as much activity on either, but there has been quite a lot of important news on both.
One of the most important bits of information on my personal profile is about a very historic cave in Israel. There have been a lot of new and extraordinary discoveries from this particular Israeli cave. One such finding is making scientists rethink when humans started to use fire as a regular part of daily life. This is a huge new finding that suggests humans regular use of fire is a lot more recent than some belied it to be.
I talked a little about the Silk Road last time I posted about news on my profile, but did you know there was another silk road on the ocean? I have a new post about the discovery of an ancient Chinese ship that once sailed the Maritime Silk Road of The Song Dynasty
There is also an article about using Google Maps to find a Bronze Age site that may be responsible for the formation of some crop circles.
Do you enjoy ethnographic art? I have a spectacular photo of a dagger from the Native North American Tlingit culture.
If you like rock art you will find information about a new rock art find at a Pacific Northwest river spectacular. On my Google plus profile I have a link to an article about this amazing carved rock from the Native Americans who lived on the Pacific Northwest Coast. You can see more photos of the rock on my Tumblr.
Did you know that as droughts cause lakes to dry up new archaeological sites are exposed? Well that is exactly what is happening in Turkey. I have a link to an article about the ancient Urartian era of Turkey and how ruins are being exposed as lake waters disappear.
This post is a result of a conversation from the Animal Welfare and Social Change Google+ community. Specifically the statement “a main issue is with the way we treat animals in general. There is such cruelty in our world.” I almost used this as the first blog post for a new website I am working on called Life In The Garden. But I decided that I will wait until I that project is up and running before I start doing blog posts there.
When I think about cruelty and the indifference of people I think about a Greek Philosopher. The philosopher I am referring to is Epicurus. A guiding principle of Epicurean philosophy is that we should minimize harm to oneself and others as the way to maximize happiness.
The big question is what or who do we consider a suitable other? Are others, other people, as in other people of my In Group? Perhaps we would include all other people. Does it include other members of my household and family and exclude strangers? Perhaps it includes other life forms like a pet. Suitable others may even include a wide range of others, such as all mammals or mammals and birds. Some people may even include all higher life forms. If we carry this to its extreme we will reach a point where not harming others is harming ourselves. How do we justify this?
What is Other? Is there a distinction between suitable others and unsuitable others?
One point that was brought up in the discussion is that we should avoid hasty emotional reactions. In general I would agree with this advice. Also with this was the suggestion that we need to be more understanding. Both of these ideas are part of the philosophy of ancient Stoics. Stoicism is another school of Greek Philosophy.
Emotions short circuit critical thought. Often acting with an emotional knee jerk reaction leads to harming others and/or ourselves. Passively reacting to external events is giving up control. Giving up control means you have abandoned your Will to Freely choose a response. It seems the Stoics were quite concerned with a free will.
Even people who think they make their decisions based on critical thought are still controlled by emotions. Sometimes it is so subtle we don’t even realize it. I believe it is helpful if we can catch ourselves and examine the nature of our responses.
The Stoics believed that not only must we control ourselves but we need to understand. In particular we need to understand the processes of nature. This idea was adopted from the Cynics. Cynicism was yet another school of Greek Philosophy. It is interesting to note that the Cynics were also called dog-like. So originally Cynicism was the dog-like philosophy.
Not only must we understand but we need to accept. I see some similarities in Stoicisms idea of universal understanding and the phase “I seek a unity all-pervading” from the Confucian Analects. I may be a bit more familiar with the writings of Eastern traditions. However, many of the ancient Greek and Roman tradition are an everyday part of the culture I was born into. From the teaching of an all-pervading understanding I have developed an ideal of all-pervading acceptance. Acceptance is the key ingredient to love and happiness.
To accept is very hard to do. What is you tolerance level for acceptance. I must admit tolerance has not always been the best social strategy for success. We can see ancient examples of intolerance as the most successful social strategy as well as very recent examples.
Courteous and considerate behavior are both the glue and the lubricant needed for social harmony.
Courteous behavior is an impotent intermediate stage to a more permanent change toward overall goodness. The problem with courteous behavior is that it’s usually bound by cultural norms. Being courteous and knowing about different cultures is important. However, in the long run being considerate may be more valuable.
Being courteous is not enough. It has been my observation that courteous behavior is usually part of a pattern of ritualized aggression. While it makes for a more harmonious society, it does have some limitation. The next level is trust and acceptance. If we believe the other person means no harm and they act in a way that is not respectful of local customs, has it done any harm? Perhaps so or perhaps not.
If it has done harm then we get into another important and possibly related discussion. When courteous behavior leads to group conformity it can also create and us and them scenario. One of the biggest problems humans will face in the future will be the competitive forces of us verse them. This competition isn’t so bad when humans are killing each other with a chunk of stone. But when modern technology is introduced into the mix, you move toward an apocalyptic end. It is logical that societies would be better off if they did not glorify an apocalyptic end of time.
Wishing you the very best in dogs and in life,
I went out to buy a few things today. I needed average run of the mill stuff. A few food items, a trip by the bank, but what I really needed was to get is some new shampoo. The main goal of the shopping trip was to get shampoo.
I stopped by the bank first and that took forever. I should have taken the bank trip as the first sign of how this outing around town would go. Next I went to buy some food items. There was a line of cars about four mile long going in the opposite direction. When there are that many cars on the road people like to block intersections. This made turning into the store parking lot more difficult than it should have been. Then driving through the parking lot is an adventure. I wonder if the other drivers think we are playing bumper cars at the arcade. Do they still have those? Arcades that is. The lines in the store were not bad, but getting to the next store would be more challenging. You see, all the possible stores for the shampoo where in the direction of the four mile traffic jam.
I thought I would outsmart the traffic and get on a freeway. The only store option I would then have would be Wal-Mart. As I started to think about standing in a Wal-Mart line I saw a 99 cent store. I thought, I hate using 99 cent shampoo, but it’s better than waiting in line, and they could tell me how best to get on the freeway.
When I went in and saw the shampoo they had for sale I said to myself, there is a blog post. You see it is Horse shampoo, but not just any horse shampoo, it’s Hair vitalizing horse shampoo. That’s not all, it’s also safe for human use too. When I read that it was so unusual I bought it. Now you can wash your horse and shampoo all at the same time.
After buying the shampoo I got on the freeway and was home in about 8 minutes. It would have taken hours to get home the way I was originally planning. And I came home with horse shampoo.
I am wishing you the very best in life,
Dog training website
In my preteen to early teen years I had a friend named Rattlesnake Sam. He was an old time prospector. I met Rattlesnake Sam in an area where there used to be natural hot springs in the desert. Now the natural springs have been turned into spas of one sort or another.
Ever since a very young age I have loved the desert. I remember my parents once ask me where I wanted to go and I said the desert. They said where in the desert do you want to go? I remember saying I wanted to go to the Sahara Desert. I was probably around five or six years old at the time.
I don’t remember a whole lot of the stories Rattlesnake Sam told, but I do remember a few. I was always fascinated to hear about gold prospecting in the mountains that are now off limits to the public. He would tell stories of quartz veins, natural springs, and water tanks.
I am always interested in hearing about water supplies in the desert. When I would get back to the house I would take out a topo map and try to find the places he told me about. That was in the days before GPS and Google maps. We actually used paper maps and compasses. As I got older I would think about sneaking into the area and looking for the fabled water supplies.
Back then the bombing activity in those mountains was quite heavy. It was during the Vietnam War. Every day the ground would shake and the windows would rattle. At night the sky would first light up with flares then the bombing would begin. Man made thunder and lightning.
That was one big ground shaking light show. Every once in a while someone would drop a flare on our little community. After these more personal in your face light shows I always wondered if it was an accident or if they were using us for some harmless training exercise. Whatever the motivation, it was always exciting to have that flare slowly parachute down as it illuminated the surroundings. Each time the flare came down it was also a little scary. Because we know what happens after the flare is dropped. I can’t exactly remember, but I think that was before our community had paved roads or water. While we didn’t have water or paved roads we had electricity and a phone in ever bar.
Rattlesnake Sam also had some great fishing stories involving life south of the border. That is a story for another time.
I am wishing you the very best in life,
Dog training website
Or more precisely 5 percent. As I understand it 5 percent of a population will tend to be leaders. I think this is stable over several species including humans.
When working with police dogs I noticed an unusual kind of dog. what at the time I called super alphas. These dogs were few and far between. Fearless dog kings are quite an interesting deviation from your run of the mill alpha dog. What is interesting is that this type of personality can be found in people too.
A lot of how people develop their leadership personality is from the social rules they are guided by. But we can’t forget there are also biological functions at play. Physiology may be unique to individuals, such as super leaders.
We all respond to our physiological makeup as well as to the social environment we’re exposed to. Often we are so close to ourselves it’s difficult if not impossible to know why we do things or even if we are normal. I have not immersed myself into the writings of Einstein, but I have read several quotes where he professes being normal. An interesting fact is that Einstein’s brain was not average (normal). I am not talking about some abstract average I am talking about physical differences that can be seen and measured. But Einstein was normal to Einstein.
Our own behavior is often too difficult to observe simply because to us it is so normal. If we can’t observe our own behavior how can we know about our human nature?
One way is to use something that we are a bit detached from as a guide or model. We can ask does anything like this occur in that other one? The other could be a cultural or language group or it could be an entirely different species. Need I mention dogs have social structures surprisingly similar to humans.
What should we base our policies and rules on?
Once we understand that many traits are beyond the control of an individual we can try not to be too judgmental about people.
Our “by god” I’m right and your wrong judgment is easily seen in politics. Since we recently finished the presidential elections in the United States I have had a good chance to observe this behavior in all its intensity.
If we are ever to change these emotions we first need to acknowledge and accept that they are part of being human. It’s important that we also realize there are a lot of people who are highly incentivize to encourage hate and divisiveness. While it is good for making money and gaining power it is bad for humanity. It will take a very long time before being good will ever be as popular as being wealthy or exerting aversive control.
Now considering our frailty as humans it’s also important that we do not demonize those who are driven by power and wealth. As a class or type, they are going to be critical for humanity to advance. What we need to do is acknowledge these people as leaders and work at changing the system. Even when the system changes they will still have the opportunity to be wealthy and powerful. But it will be used for the good of humanity.
I know many very wealthy people and they are not bad people. Contrary to what the occupy movement believe, even people who are extremely competitive and wealthy are usually good people, just like the rest of us. I have talked to a few people at local Occupy groups and I can say they are no more enlightened than the rest of society. In fact I was rather disappointed with the personal goals and motivations of many of the occupy people. I always naively believe that a higher cause will have the majority of participants cultivating a higher nature. Cultivating a higher nature was not the case of Gandhi’s India and will probably not be the case for most noble endeavors.
One of my hopes when positive reinforcement dog training first began to get popular was that it would encourage the cultivation of humanity’s higher nature and thus a more just society. It has ended up as yet another reason to talk badly about other people and sow the seeds of hate.
A lot of people the Occupy Wall Streeters condemn are in reality our heroes. They are often the Winston Churchills and Theodore Roosevelts of our time. What made Churchill a hero instead of a villain are the social rules he followed.
Everyone in business knows how important systems are to success. When a system is out of statistical control it is unstable. I believe most people would describe this by saying it’s broken. If the unstable business is too variable in its output (the output/product doesn’t work) and there is any competition, the business is headed toward big trouble. How well is our system working?
We can’t simply blame another person or political party. We need to take responsibility for what we have control of. Every person, every decision, can make a difference. We need to make decisions that are good for ourselves and for the system to which we belong. We also have a responsibility to ensure that the system we belong to is not broken. If enough people make good decisions we’ll move in the right direction. Each of us has a responsibility to improve the operation of our economy, our country, and our world.
The occupy movement is part of America’s system for fixing itself before it’s completely broken. The occupy movement acts as a catalyst for making the system stable. There are other quality controls in place as well. What we can’t forget is who are the customers? Who does the system serve?
I am wishing you the very best in life,
Dog training website
“Warriors are those who choose to stand between their enemy and all that they love or hold sacred.” The sacred is often given and ordained by the *heavens.
The footnotes may make this post more potable to Americans, some other cultures might not like my notes
I received this quote in my social stream and it made me think a good deal of what I write about revolves around this subject. It encompasses the things no one in business should talk about – Religion, politics, and sex. Yet these three elements of the human condition drive all business.
An interesting observation is that much of this behavior has its equivalent in the world of animals. Although animals display these behaviors on a much simpler level. That is one reason animals can make a good model for understanding our own behavior.
Homo Sapien’s Warrior spirit is one of the biggest challenges humanity will need to overcome. Humanity’s willing to kill and be killed for what we hold dear #by god is a good strategy when fighting with sticks and hand axes. However, it becomes a bit less sustainable when people have the power of the sky god $Zeus, the power to create the apocalypse. As we develop better ways to kill large numbers of people perhaps we should begin to think about developing more tolerant and accepting social rules.
I am wishing you the very best in life,
Dog training website
* Heavens is in the contexts of Asian culture
# by god is in reference to old Nordic Culture
$ Zeus is in reference to ancient Greek culture
This is easily seen when training dogs, but it applies to other areas of life as well. Our dogs are following certain rules and so do the humans in the family. In order to change the dog’s rules, it’s the human’s responsibility to change the rules or add new ones. Changing the rules the dog lives by will require changing or adding to the rules the human lives by.
I was watching a video earlier today that was telling about a time when people held animals accountable for their behavior. This was done much in the manner that we hold people accountable. It even included trials. One interesting bit of information is that in the bible it recommends stoning animals that misbehave. Fortunately I have not known anyone to do that. But it is quite common to kill misbehaving animals.
How we treat animals says as much or more about people than it does about animals.
As always I am wishing you the very best in life,
dog training website
A thought for the day To be happy we must first find acceptance.
We must first accept our situation or problems before we can efficiently work through them. Without acceptance and understanding we’ll have a hard time making the commitment to practice self governance and faithfully follow stabilizing rules. People are Powerless over unsound Hazardous Emotions Without stabilizing rules.
It is important that we are true to ourselves. To do this requires that we understand. Once we know ourselves, to be happy we need to accept that person. We can change, but we need to start where we are at, in this moment of time.
Is there any interest in joining me in a self cultivation dog training Google hangout?
Got in quite late this evening so today’s post is very short
As always I am wishing you the very best in life,