2nd Quote of the Day: RULES OF ESTRANGEMENT

p. 94: “My therapist says you’re a narcissist.”

That is all.

Quote of the Day: DEAR MOM

This book is so fascinating. First you have to accept that the adult child will throw a lot of STUFF at you.

Exhibit A, p. 89:

Dear Mom,

I just thought you should know that I am so done with you and everything you stand for. You only do things if they’re going to make you seem like a good person, which we both know that you’re not. You’re actually a clueless, self-centered, self-absorbed person. After our lunch on Sunday where all I did was ask you for a loan, a LOAN, Mom, to your SON so he could start a business, something which, if you were to ask a few questions, he happens to know a lot about! And all you cared about was when you were going to be paid back. Really? I thought you were my mother, not a banker!!! So, yes, I’m copying in everyone in the family, so they can see you for who you are, because they really don’t know you the way I do and unlike me, they’ve all bought into your bullshit. I’m so sick and tired of your judgment and criticism and putting me down every chance you get. Even though you always act like you don’t, we both know that you do. So have fun with my siblings for now and everyone else in the family because they’ll find out about you soon enough and be done with you just as I am.


Ken (your son)

Wowee! Self loves American family melodrama! Nice job, Ken, signing off with “your son” in parentheses!

Stay cool, dear blog readers. Stay cool.


Self cannot believe she found this book as a result of an article in The Economist — which, as some readers might know, is not into New Age Psychology or anything so CALIFORNIA.

The author, Joshua Coleman (Ph.D. is after his name, so there’s that), is a psychologist with a private practice in Oakland, California.

p. 13:

  • My mission is to help you find healthy ways to reconcile. In general — and there are exceptions — I believe reconciliation is better than staying apart. Better for you and better for our society. And if a reconciliation isn’t possible, I want to help you have a happy, healthy life with or without your kid in it.

Finished INFERNO

Right eye’s been flickering, on and off, all day. Tired.

Next, she’s going to be reading a couple of self-help/psychology books recommended, improbably, by The Economist.


Inferno was excellent * excellent * excellent. Finished it a few minutes ago. The last chapter was about assigning guilt or blame.

Stay cool, dear blog readers. Stay cool.

Lens-Artists Challenge # 154: One Photo, Two Ways

Love the quote on the Travels and Trifles blog:

“A photographer’s eye is perpetually evaluating.”

Henri Cartier-Bresson

My One Shot, Two Ways is of Avila Beach, on the Central Coast.

I liked the wide angle shot of the beach, but the rescue station had such an interesting mural. I just had to zoom in. It seems to portray a rescue craft, heading away from a ship? I tried to find out the name of the artist, but so far I haven’t been able to find any information. I’ll keep looking.

It was my first post-pandemic beach trip. And it was a gorgeous day.

Stay cool, dear blog readers. Stay cool.

Sentence of the Day, p. 248

We are just a little past halfway, dear blog readers. So you will not be forever reading about WAR WAR WAR. Self’s next book is Rules of Estrangement, by Joshua Coleman, which is about “broken families.” The angst will be pure.

Without further ado:

  • Their plan of attack was significantly different from previous operations, and reflected their growing confidence in their destructive abilities.

The RAF prepares for a fourth wave of bombing raids on Hamburg (at this point, seems like overkill). Once again, the Brits send out a tiny little Mosquito to do recon. The Mosquito takes off at 6:45 p.m. and returns three hours later. Report: Skies “looked relatively clear” but there was “a huge cumulo-nimbus to the southwest . . . moving briskly . . . “

Stay cool, dear blog readers. Stay cool.

Monday Windows: Loft, San Luis Obispo

Took a road trip down the central coast last week.

Self loves windows, just in general.

More about this Photo Challenge:

  • Windows are all around us, windows to look into, windows to look out of. This challenge is to look AT windows, photograph interesting ones and share the images. You can either post new photos of windows or dig some out of your archives.

Still Reading

Still July, 1943: 3rd round of RAF bombing raids on the city of Hamburg

A Hamburg family takes shelter from the firestorm in the entrance to a shop. A man hurrying past points out that the shop sells “firelighters,” points to the display in the front window. The family has to scramble to find a different shelter.

Inferno, p. 239

A Photo A Week Challenge: Unedited

Love this photo challenge from Nancy Merrill’s A Photo a Week.

tbh, ALL self’s shots are unedited. She takes all her pictures on the fly.

Here are a few shots she took last week at the Legion of Honor. She went to see the exhibit Last Supper at Pompeii. On the way in, her attention was captured by these Wangechi Mutu sculptures, and there was no way to take pictures of those without including the bystanders. Not the ideal, but here they are anyway. The man in the blue jacket has a starring role:

Stay cool, dear blog readers. Stay cool.

I had never heard of

the bombing of Hamburg, not until I read this book.

I knew about Dresden. I had read Victor Klemperer’s diaries, decades ago but that kind of thing tends to stay with you.

But why hadn’t I heard about Hamburg? It seems so awful. The attacks were concentrated and relentless: four separate raids. I was amazed the city managed to rebuild.

To be fair, as Lowe points out, the British were only returning the favor. They learned from the Blitz, when the Luftwaffe “rained incendiaries down on London and other British cities, causing huge damage.” The British learned from the Germans that fires did more damage than explosions “and began experimenting accordingly.” For instance, they perfected delayed reaction incendiaries and two-step bombs, the kind that would start a fire and then, when someone tried to shovel it out a window, would explode, killing or maiming whoever was nearby.

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