Author Archives: katharineotto

About katharineotto

I vote with my big mouth, boycott packaging as much as possible, shop with a canvas "Acupuncture" bag, read to understand Humanland, do as much of my own cleaning, cooking, gardening, landscaping, clothes making, and home repairs as possible. My home is my laboratory, where I invent things out of the dribs and drabs of inheritance from my pack-rat parents. I also conduct animal behavior studies on three chickens and a cat, who study me while I feed all the other wildlife that likes chickens and chicken food, including mice. Mice like to eat wiring, too. There were no mice when my rat snake was still around, but I kept losing eggs.


When people start making predictions, I stop reading or listening.  When people use a series of letters to designate organizations, without telling what those letters stand for, I lose interest in anything more they might have to say.

If the purpose of language is to communicate ideas, I want to understand the idea behind the words.

Lately, within the last few years, words and terms seem to have lost former clarity.  People speak of "truth" or "reality" without explaining what they mean by those terms.  Whose truth?  Whose reality?

Layers upon layers of confusion lead to mass confusion and fear.  

I'm listening to birds chirping outside my open door.  Their voices are cheerful, on this warm and brightening day.  They remind me that language is a gift for many, not only human beings, and it need not be heard or acknowledged.  It is sometimes an expression of the joy of living in the Now.

Tweety the Tearorist

Tweety, my little two-and-a-half year-old hen, loves to tear at paper, stray threads on clothes or carpet fragments, gardening gloves, or whatever I'm attending to other than her.
   She is also a pick-pocket and a flutter-budget.  She can find tissue paper in my pockets or knock over coffee cups or water containers by the power of her excitement and joy in sharing.
   Today, Sunday, February 26, 2023, at 9 AM, EST, on this lightly overcast, 70F, 20C degree day, it is peaceful and quiet, but for the sounds of birds chirping and of Tweety-Pie agitating to be released from her coop.
   This conflicts with my ambition to think and write about those Deep Thoughts that play across my mind when my hands and body are busy serving animals or attending to all the other Here-and-Now's of human existence.
   Alas. Up.
   And, at 9:20 AM, I am back at the cell phone, having released Tweety and Speckles and watched Tweety chase Lollipop away from the chickens' empty treat dish.  So the stray cat I feed, Lollipop, is eating his own breakfast in a location hidden from other animals except rats, which are flourishing in this pre-spring warm and humid weather.
   I'm sitting on the porch stoop, protected by the banister from Tweety's insatiable curiosity, which takes her beak to everything of interest.
   This morning, I'm blessed with peace and quiet. I'm grateful that the Gun Clubbers down the street are resting or attending church, and that the military-industrial-complex at Hunter Army-Air Force base is not yet flying its planes and helicopters overhead.  
   But my little tearorist has now found my shoe to peck at, so I will bid the rest of the world a good day.

99% PROOF: There Are No Permanent Allies, Only Permanent Power – By Chris Hedges — RIELPOLITIK

Source – ‘…If we do not build left-right coalitions on issues such as militarism, health care, a living wage and union organizing, we will be impotent in the face of corporate power and the war machine…We will not topple corporate power and the war machine alone. There has to be a left-right coalition, which […]

99% PROOF: There Are No Permanent Allies, Only Permanent Power – By Chris Hedges — RIELPOLITIK
This is an experiment in sharing articles I like and generally agree with.  I have followed Chris Hedges for some time and, as he is, I am a committed pacifist.

A Matter of Time

February 1, 2023

In Beon's seven-dimensional universe, time is only one dimension.  Everyone is timeless in 7-D.  Vitality flows strong or weak, but it never stops.

Unfortunately for Beon, his interdimensional travels have exposed him to the disease of Solipsism, which leads its victims to deny any reality other than their own.  The disease convinced him he had control over his life.  

After he accidentally spread Solipsism throughout 7-D, Beon decided he could rid the dimensions of his perverse influence by plunging his Cosmo Cruiser into a black-triangle black hole and annihilate himself through suicide.

His attempt failed.  Beon found himself trapped in a 4-D universe, where cognizant beings believe in time and death.

Beon be-bopped around 4-D for forever, accompanied only by his immortal companions from 7-D:  Bud, his white cat; the Rev, a rooster; Sparky the parakeet; and an assortment of critters collected by Bud from life-sustaining planets, when Beon touched down to explore or to save a planet from itself.

During his perpetual incarceration in 4-D, Beon had also had time to design and build a number of robots, which he programmed to assist in his various planet-saving initiatives.  A few millennia ago, as Earthlings measure time, Beon had encountered Earth, a planet in great need of salvation from its human inhabitants.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
So this is the setting for my timeless novel, appropriately named "A Matter of Time:  Beon, Bud, and the Bots".

It's only a matter of time for me to evolve this novel concept to its denouement at some point in the mutable future.

In Real Earth Time, I must face the challenge of ever-changing technology, rules, and personal segues into Real Life but I do intend to follow up with descriptions of the Solipsism epidemic in 7-D, Beon's EarthSave Project, and Joe, Beon's super-duper wizard of artificial intelligence engineering, who is programmed to save these Earthlings from themselves.

Here's to the unknowable future . . .

Stoking Fear

The mass of humanity seems to be wallowing in fear. There are those who thrive on exploiting this insecurity. What pleasure do they derive from exacerbating feelings of doubt and insecurity? Don’t they realize that fearful people, or animals, for that matter, are dangerous, prone to strike out with little provocation?

It probably takes a creative mind to imagine all the things that can go wrong or cause harm to self or others. How many people have developed the habit of imagining rewarding results from their endeavors? Can they visualize what form those rewards will take?

It’s hard for me to imagine any rewarding scenario without caveats. I suppose the caveats can offer opportunities in themselves, challenges to be tackled and overcome, or not, but yet more lessons in living.

Thus do I soothe my fears.

How America looks from Bali, 1996

I Wonder

I don't have answers, but I have lots of questions, on this 18th day of January in the year 2023.
   First, I must orient myself in space and time, according to the conventions accepted by the US of A, a political entity with a relatively short history but encompassing multiple and far-ranging events.
   Obvious, you say?  Goes without saying?  Maybe it is so obvious that it begs to be highlighted, in order to show that the US of A--its human faction--dominates the mental and emotional field of the entire human world.
   This is not to brag, but to express humility for the influence US America wields, and its power to influence, if not to control, human and non-human lives around the world.
   The US president is the supposed head of this agglomeration of human beings, the symbolic voice of the USA, but it's impossible to determine how that is perceived by individuals or groups.  
   An article on claims the US is trying to provoke a war with China, Russia, and Iran, because it feels threatened about the political power suggested by an alliance between these Eastern hemisphere countries.
   Why, I wonder?  Wouldn't it be better for everyone if we could all learn to get along?  Who loses if we adopt the philosophy of "live and let live"?

The Grousers

A grouse is a game bird, but colloquially, it's a verb, meaning "to complain".
I've been doing a lot of grousing myself, mostly to myself and to my journal, which allows me to write whatever slips past the internal censors and editors.

Today, I read a book review on about the US miitary-industrial complex, which outgoing US President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned against in 1961.  I wanted to respond, but that site no longer accepts direct responses, apparently.
So, I'll grouse here, on my own blog, about my longstanding aversion to war and conflict.
The US of A was built on war and conquest.  Eisenhower, himself a general in the US Army, headed war campaigns in  Africa before he became president.  George Washington, first US president, wanted to join the British regular army but was rejected, so he started his own army here.
A study of US history proves the US has been instigator or participant in war almost constantly since the Europeans landed on the shores of the New World.
The article on notes that Bechtel, a private military contractor, has reaped enormous sums from the US government for construction of military equipment and bases around the world.  It has a huge presence at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, near Knoxville, and one of the sites of the Manhattan Project, where the first atomic bombs were developed in secret during WWII and under FD Roosevelt's last term as president.
The rielpolitik synopsis emphasizes the burgeoning military expenses, with the resultant indoctrination of all levels of US society into the notion that constant war is acceptable, even respectable, and certainly "good for the economy", or so the perpetrators claim.
What is this fascination with competition?  I look to the animal world, and to the plant world, and do not see a need or desire to compete merely for the sake of domination.
At the moment, my two chickens are resting beside me and at my feet, cleaning feathers,attending to our environment, but the Gun Clubbers down the street are blasting away with their boom-booms,in concert with all the human grousers who are addicted to fighting.

The Power of Fear

Those who promote or stoke fear use ancient control tactics, and for what?  Are they themselves afraid and want to share their emotion? Do they enjoy being afraid and wish to inspire others in a commonality of tension?

A man once told me he enjoyed being angry.  I wanted to ask why but didn't and have wondered since what might prompt feelings of pleasure from an emotion that is so unpleasant for me.

I've wondered if anger is a derivative of fear.  Is fear the first emotion that arises when something disturbs the status quo?

I have used my most recent blog title, "Fortune Tellers on the Payroll", before, in 2016.  Then, as now, I contested the predilection of some people to stoke fear by posting predictions of danger, even disaster, ahead.

Why? Does fear of the future tempt a person, group of people, or world to predict the most threatening outcome of any current situation?  Might we also be tempted to steer our lives into the very futures we fear?

Is it possible that we can meet whatever future with fortitude, courage, and the determination to learn and grow from whatever happens, and to inspire others similarly?

My life is a question.  I have no answers.

Fortune-Tellers on the Payroll

From the Museum of Appalachia, Norris, TN kco0406

Fact: 2023 has arrived, if you subscribe to the Western, mostly Anglo-Saxon convention of measuring time.

I have the pseudo-convenience of today’s technology, in the form of cell phone, internet, WordPress, and a comfortable chair and roof over my head to convey words that may communicate the wide-ranging explorations of my mind.

I’ve been reading predictions for the coming year, during which our Earth is predicted to continue its revolution around the sun we accept as the center of a solar system that includes the earth, other planets, moons, asteroids, and debris, like human-made satellites.

But the Living Now intrudes, as Miss Tweety Pie appears at my door, threatening to poop under any future placement of my foot. I step outside to the clearing fog of the first New Year’s morning, to hear the ebullient celebrations of the Gun Clubbers down the street, blasting away at clay pigeons, in an exercise some people believe is entertaining.

Who is knowldgeable about the future, any future, as “the future” is determined moment to moment by the unpredictable Now?

Miss Tweety-Pie is now busy preening her feathers, here on this wet bench, while Speckles watches from his spot under the building.

And now, machine noise starts up on the other side of my vibe space, promising Human inventiveness thrives, so far, in 2023.

Happy 2023 from Miss Tweety-Pie.