Letter From New York 01 16 15 Settling into a winter evening…

The setting sun is casting golden slashes of light across my snow-covered drive. The day is ending, a little later than yesterday. The days are growing slightly longer and I can see it, here at my desk, working, caught here almost every night about the time the sun begins to set. The cold-water faucet in my kitchen is set to drip continuously as a way to keep it from freezing again. The temperature tonight will fall again into negative territory, a sure danger place for the kitchen pipes.

While the temperature rose into the mid-20’s today, it felt much colder. That troublesome wind chill factor…

When I drove down into Hudson on an errand earlier, I found that Warren Street, which usually starts coming alive on Friday afternoons, was pretty deserted – people probably staying huddled in, as I have been doing. The Franklin Stove is helping warm the cottage; I have gone through most of the wood I have in the house and will have to haul in more tomorrow. For a while, big, puffy flakes of snow fell and I thought we might be in for a good snowfall but they didn’t last long and the forecast is for a chill but dry day tomorrow.

My work today was to edit some pages on my website and that I did, with more work to go. I have left my website go fallow these past months as I was doing a long consulting assignment. Have to spruce them up to reflect what I have been doing recently.

While I have been doing that, there was another hostage situation in Paris at a post office. No word yet that it was terror related or not. Cameron and Obama today announced they would take on the “poisonous ideology” of radical Islam. The Paris attacks against Charlie Hebdo have accelerated and focused the attention of governments.

Late this afternoon, while I was out doing my errands, SCOTUS [Supreme Court of the United States] determined it would take on gay marriage. The world will watch. 70% of Americans now live in states where gay marriage is sanctioned. Something I never expected in my lifetime. I doubt anyone expected it would happen as quickly as it has over the last few years.

We live in an interesting world in which some rights, like gay marriage, are expanding while privacy is whittled away. In many ways, we are giving it up ourselves. Is there anything Facebook doesn’t know about us or that we haven’t confessed on Facebook? I’ve read some of the posts from my friends’ children and I wince. They admit things I wouldn’t publicly admit even now. It’s stunning how much I know about some of them, much which I don’t think I need to know. But they are of an age when they have no qualms about surrendering this kind of information. I don’t know whether to admire them or not but certainly I note their audacity.

Soft jazz plays in the background, a playful counterpoint to the encroaching evening. And while I listen to the jazz I peruse the news, which is interesting.

Elon Musk has committed ten million dollars to help stop a robot uprising in the future. Many leading thinkers and movers are getting nervous about the rise of AI and want to stop a “Terminator” scenario. I signed on online petition about it yesterday. God forbid an Arnold Schwarzenegger coming back from the future! He’s frightening enough as is.

And speaking of science fiction sorts of things, my favorite news posting of the day was from the International Space Station. Recently, there was an ammonia leak that forced everyone to get together in one module while the trouble was sorted out. While they were there, footage surfaced of a UFO flying by the space station. What it was, I don’t know. CBS aired it. Now you know about it.

Love stuff like that. So while UFO believers and doubters debate the footage, I am going to go add another log to my fire and curl up for a quiet evening in the country. Dinner with friends at their house and then some Netflix or Amazon Prime after.

A good evening, I’d say.

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