Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Random Musings of a Ramblin' Fool XLI

It is 2012 and a new year has broken forth. It finds this space experiencing a notable increase in readership. I am grateful for the interest and participation. One of the two primary reasons for this increase is the growing inventory of columns here that cover a growing range of topics. Consequently, various search engines function as a net bringing in many of those searching any particular topic covered here. I have noted that many/most topics covered here have one or more entrees in the first ten entries in a Google Search for that given topic. Needless to say, Google is a friend. Another significant reason for the significantly growing readership is that I now regularly share my content on Reddit which has opened up this blog to a much younger and hipper audience. Yahoo Groups where I have been since the beginning is an older and more mature audience whereas Facebook where I'm also heavily involved overlaps into both Reddit and Yahoo Groups' market.

Autumn 2011 Semester Results

Last semester I took 10 units in three classes. In my  3-unit History 207A class I earned an A. In my 3-unit Economics 201A class I earned an A. In my 4-unit Spanish 201 class I earned a B, the first grade less than an A that I have received since returning to college.

Spring 2012 Semester Has Arrived

Today I start classes at Cuesta College for the fourth semester since I started going back to college a couple of years ago and for the first time this time around I will be a full-time student with 14 units. I was able to schedule all four of my classes at the North County Campus on Mondays and Wednesdays in order to accommodate my work schedule. This past Monday was a national holiday and thus the semester began for me today. I am taking a 3-unit dumb-dumb Math 7 class because it has been 22 years since I was last in a math class and have forgotten much. This class was the one I fell into based upon my placement exam results. I did better on my English comp placement exams results and fell into a 4-unit English 201A class. I am continuing my Spanish studies with another 4-unit Spanish 202 class with the beloved Yolanda Solis. Last but not least I am continuing my romp through history with Dennis Judd taking the only remaining class he teaches that I have not already taken which in this case is History 207B. That class is a 3-hour ordeal on Monday nights.

Things Are Getting A Wee Bit Better

I'm still poor as a church mouse but things have gotten better for me in a year's time. This time last year, indeed, at the start of even the last semester I was not in a position to purchase all my books right at the beginning of the semester as I was able to do today as well as pay all my fees and permits which amounted to $48. Not only is my financial act together more to start this semester than at any time previous but I got motivated to sign up for my classes earlier than at any time previous in the past two years so that despite taking more classes and units this semester than the previous three semesters I did not need to crash any classes to get in as I did the previous two semesters by the skin of my teeth.

On Another Positive Note

Last week I finally managed to bestir myself into action on finishing the landscaping in my tiny backyard and the results exceeded my expectations. I utilized a bunch of eucalyptus logs my mother generously donated for the cause. Next up, Winter plantings for the Spring. Already, I have noted after trimming trees in Atascadero that up in the tops of fruitless mulberry trees there are already buds forming ready to burst forth. The warm days are tricking some plants into believing it is early Spring, bitter cold nights nothwithstanding. This was even recently noted in the Southern California news media market.

Rain Schmain

This has been one of the driest recorded rain seasons in California's history. It has also been one of the most climatologically consistent Autumn/Winter periods I can remember. It feels as if for months on end it has been brutally dry producing pleasant days with a quick warm-up into the 60's once the Sun rises but once it sets the temperatures plunge into the 20's and sometimes down to the upper teens. Rain is predicted for the end of the work week into the weekend but I'm a Doubting Thomas... I'll believe it when I see it. In the meantime, the fire season has been creeping back into California wending its way even as far north as North Ops. Wildfires of increasing size and in increasingly frequency have been breaking out in recent weeks. For the first time in a few years Santa Ana Winds have been a regular visitor to Southern California and to a lesser extent Diablo Winds to Northern California.

An Ominous Quiescence 

This seemingly extended period of no significant earthquakes occurring in California won't last forever. It has been weighing on my thoughts with gradual but inexorably increasingly gravity over the course of the past year or so. I so wonder where the next significant quake will strike California and how great it shall be and what it shall do and where I shall be when it happens. This is the calm before the storm.

On Another Ominous Note

Has there ever been such an anemic group of candidates as the current crop of Republicans vying to topple an otherwise impotent President? What should be a routine firing of a feckless President might not even happen given this crop of losers. Paleo-Conservatives in their zeal for ideological purity are turning off the Great Middle and assuring the reelection of the current President. Thanks, Assholes!

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