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December 23, 2022: How Reading Informs Thinking

The wind here has picked up, as was predicted. The weather service indicated that there would be blizzard conditions – defined, a blizzard is high winds and falling snow and extreme cold combined. We are in the midst of two out of three – the snow that’s blowing around is from the three previous storms.

Out the back door

The weather forecasters didn’t say, exclusively, high winds because they did not want to scare us. We don’t usually get blizzards here, and if we knew one was coming, we might freak.

All across the country right now, blizzard conditions persist. And right before the holidays.

Here, the sun is shining, and the snow is blowing, and the wind is roaring. It does not howl here; rather, it roars. Okay. So it’s a low rumble.

Pete’s under the stairs, fixing the fan or shoring it up, with red duct tape. I began my day by making sure the animals were fed and in their shelters, and Pete began his day by making what we call a grand slam breakfast – eggs, last night’s potatoes, and homemade bread.

Bob Dylan once said, “you don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.” He was then referring the SDS, the students for a Democratic Society – they were the weathermen.

See how reading informs thinking? I have, this winter, read a great deal about mountaineering and bicycling expeditions. And so, in my head I’ve been thinking about the conditions that various individuals have encountered, and wondering – how would any of them do in weather like this? And how would I do in weather like this? I have no basis for comparison, others or self-included, so I can just speculate. I don’t think that I could handle going a long distance in these extremes. So this makes me a wuss.

I’m now reading (for the first time) Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. It’s a most amazing book – she wrote it when she was a part of a literary circle that included her husband, Percy Bysshe Shelly and Lord Byron. All have been lumped into the category Romantic writers. Hence, the focus on the self in relation to nature.

Mary Shelley was also the daughter of two radical thinkers, Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin and William Godwin. I have not, but I am going to read the former’s book The Vindication of the Rights of Women.

The book is far different than the movie. We have the movie, and I am going to watch it again. Victor Frankenstein is the monster in the movie. And Victor Frankenstein is the created being in the book.

The movie stereotype in the movie is what most are familiar with.

I’ve been thinking about weather as metaphor in the book version of Frankenstein. Victor Frankenstein’s perception of it changes given his current mental and physical condition. Nature is sublime when he is not dealing with adversity. Conversely, nature is a force to be reckoned when he is dealing with adversity.

Me, right now, I see nature as being sublime. But then again, I am not dealing with hardship of any kind right now.

Next: 353. 12/24/22: Christmas Eve Heave

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