Travis Smith: my resume, bio and photos back to the main blog page


posted at 7:33 pm
on Oct. 18, 2004

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Let’s discuss the word “cloudburst” for a second, shall we?

If you’re like most people, you haven’t ever given the word “cloudburst” much consideration, because you’re in a car or a house.

But today, I was in a different situation, and I suddenly started thinking a lot about the word.

I don’t know if it’s because I’m more literate, more prone to philosophizing, just really smart or what exactly, but one minute, I was walking to the local grocery store, and minutes later, there I was thinking about “cloudbursts” and standing under a “Don’t Walk” light.

“Cloudburst” is a compound word that comes from two roots: cloud, meaning, thing made of water that floats around all day and gradually seems to clear up in the afternoon until at 6:30 you have a great view even though it’s not sunny, and “burst,” meaning rupture like a water balloon.

So my trip home from the local grocery store, where I bought milk and ketchup, took about the same amount of time as my walk there, but I got about wetter by about infinity percent.

* * *

I am beginning to develop an operating assumption, which is that, no matter how nice the weather looks in Vancouver, you simply must take along something that can serve as a water-proof layer, such as a jacket and hat, or a vehicle and a parking garage. (Side note: They call them parkades here. Just so you know.)

So my University of Montana sweat shirt, while it did a great job of keeping me warm despite the autumn chill in the air, was not an adequate preparation for an extra-apartment excursion. And I know that now.

Live and learn and dry off and try again, I say.

Next time: We’ll discuss the history of the word “downpour.”



Previous entry:
Aimee Goes AWOL

Next entry:
The Cat’s Meow


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“Almost every American I know does trade large portions of his life for entertainment, hour by weeknight hour, binge by Saturday binge, Facebook check by Facebook check. I’m one of them. In the course of writing this I’ve watched all 13 episodes of House of Cards and who knows how many more West Wing episodes, and I’ve spent any number of blurred hours falling down internet rabbit holes. All instead of reading, or writing, or working, or spending real time with people I love.”

...who said it?

“Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.”

...who said it?

“I play with variables constantly.”

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“Only the person who has learned Continual Love coming from a heart of Gratitude/Worship can effectively deal with the problem of loneliness.”

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