When I was wondering what the characteristics of a person of faith are, the first attribute which came to mind was a lack of fear. Throughout the Bible, whenever there is a divine-human encounter, the angel’s first words are: “Fear not.” So living life courageously seems essential. Then I remembered that courage derives from the French word for “heart.” So in order to live without fear requires a heart in the right place, so to speak. The words on the tomb of Nikos Kazantzakis came to mind, “Sans peur, sans espoir, je suis libre.” Without fear, without hope, I am free. That’s puzzling. What does he mean “without hope”? Hope seems to be another essential. Maybe misguided or unrealistic hope is not a good thing.
In a world where addiction is associated with “abuse” and addicts are often depicted as morally depraved, physically unfit and mentally unsound, it’s not difficult to figure out why addicted people — and their family members — are in denial.
Curiosity and other missions sent to Mars have discovered evidence that Mars was a wetter planet in the past, with a thick atmosphere.
Every creative, risk-taking entrepreneur with big dreams needs a solid, organized, nose-to-the-grindstone person who will build a sturdy framework to make those dreams a reality. That is a good description of my friend, Roger Vitrano. When I met Roger he had just been hired to work in the financial aid office of the university we were attending. In those days students had to walk around campus and stand in long lines at registration. By the time they reached our office, the students were hot, tired and impatient. Roger had to meet with students whose Pell grants had problems. Telling one student after another that they have incomplete paperwork for a grant is a tough job. But with just a little training behind him Roger was an efficient and calming presence in the office. Within days he was known as the go-to guy for students with financial aid problems.
Hospitals are one of the blessings that adorn our society and make us wealthy. Not wealthy in money, because they take a lot of money just to keep the doors open. I mean wealthy in opportunity to be helped and rescued. Not everyone in the world can receive medical care. Have you ever been very far from a hospital? Once I traveled in a large country in Asia. Although there were tens of thousands of people, it was a five-hour drive by Jeep to get to the nearest hospital. There was no ambulance service for the sick. In other words, sick people either got well on their own, or died. Ask yourself, “Where do hospitals come from?” Why did some countries start to build hospitals and not others? The historic answer is that hospitals were the gift of Christianity to the world.
When the sandstone facade of the 1902 Odd Fellows Temple was moved to Heritage Park, a subtle change was made.
One of the most useful concepts in physics is a property of matter called entropy. It is useful for understanding topics as diverse as how steam engines work to the fate of structure in the universe. Just as one wouldn’t say an individual atom has a certain temperature or possesses a defined amount of heat, neither would one say it has a specified amount of entropy. Rather these parameters characterize the physical state of conglomerates of atoms and molecules, be they in the form of solids, liquids or gases. These are emergent macroscopic properties reflecting the collective behavior of all the constituents within a system. While temperature measures the average kinetic energy of all the system’s particles, heat specifies the total amount of kinetic energy possessed by all the particles in the system. Similarly, entropy quantitates disorder within a system. Saying the entropy of something increases is equivalent to saying the constituents making it up have become more random, chaotic or disordered; the system has lost structure. Solids are generally composed of parts arranged in a regular structure. This is especially the case with solid crystals where individual atoms are arranged in repeating patterns. Liquids and gases typically are more free-form. Consequently, the entropy of a solid increases as its warmer surroundings cause it to melt and then vaporize.
My desk looks like the dog arranged it. She suspects that there’s food somewhere in that mess, but it’s mostly scientific stuff that’s hard to chew on.
I didn’t hear about it right away. Mom wouldn’t have told me except she had to explain why Dad was forbidden to drive after dusk. Seems he ran a stop sign and, when turning right, he ran into a bicyclist who flew up onto his hood and windshield. It was just after sunset, when his eyesight was at its worst because of macular degeneration. This condition causes loss of vision in the center of the visual field, but peripheral vision remains somewhat intact. Recognition of faces, reading and driving become very difficult to impossible. The bicyclist had some bruises but was otherwise all right. The police were called, however, and Dad was written up for failure to heed a stop sign. Eventually the judge ordered him not to drive after dusk.
How much does personality affect your chance for success? If the boss likes you, then your quirks are part of your charm and your mistakes are minor flaws. You get the benefit of the doubt. But if you and the boss don’t hit it off; well, then your mistakes are horrible and your personality quirks are annoying.
Facts and tips on water usage and conservation are presented weekly by the City of Walla Walla, in partnership with Walla Walla Community College and the Union-Bulletin.
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