Girl Arrested 1917

October 24, 1917 The Pueblo Colorado Chieftan (author uncredited) Dressed in a complete boy's suit from top to toe, a rather pretty 17-year-old north side girl was arrested yesterday by Deputy Sheriff Roddy, and soon thereafter was taken to the county farm where she will be held until the county court can take proper action concerning her case, which it is expected will result in a sentence to the State Reform School for girls at Morrison. This is the same girl who six weeks ago, after being missed from home for a week, was found doing man's work for the Fitts Manufacturing company. At that time she had secured a horse and buggy and driven eight miles in the country to the home of a family she knew; there she appropriated a serge suit belonging to the young man of the family, and after bobbing off her luxuriant head of hair, came to town and secured and up-to-date boys' haircut. She then hunted a job and got it. Upon being discovered, she was returned home. Last Friday, after having been given $85 dollars by her mother to pay bills (which she did not pay) and after "borrowing"$20 more from the home, making a total of $105, she donned the suit she first wore and went down town and bought a complete set of boy's attire, including toilet articles, candy, gum, pocket knife with "loud" pictures on the handle, and watch and fob, secured a room on Union avenue, and was probably hunting a remunerative job. Roddy hove across her path and took her into custody. This girl belongs to a good family, has a good and prosperous home, but she just wants to be a boy. .


St. Orville of the Garden on the topic of Sin


 Desert Primrose - oenothera primiveris


My father taught Sunday school for my entire childhood. Between him and my mother, I probably had them as Sunday morning teachers for half of those 18 years. But my father’s best lessons were always taught in the garden.

My father always said that a weed was usually a flower that did not know its place.                       

 He pulled some, he left some, he almost never used poison.

While weeding with me, he taught me the names of the plants, even the ones we were pulling. 

“This is called Deadly Nightshade – nuff said”

I played with that plant all the time – its little red berries made a nice dye.

“Jeepers, will it kill me?”

“Not unless you eat it – You are too smart to eat something called Deadly Nightshade – right?”


He almost always veered into the spiritual.

“Weeds are a lot like sin. You have to pull them out. Try to get the roots, or you are just pruning, and they will bounce back stronger. But make no mistake, you will never get them all. Weeding is a forever job. So is uprooting sin. You only get to weed your own garden. Don’t get all proud because someone else has more weeds than you.  You also do not have to let anyone else tell you what to weed out of your own garden. That’s your job.  And remember some plants that people call weeds are actually wildflowers. Nothing wrong with wildflowers, honey – they are a gift from God the shows that He loves us.”

I was smart enough not to eat poison berries. I was also smart enough to know that he was talking about other Christians, and preachers, and the doctrine of entire sanctification.

My father planted a lot of seeds. Some of them were seeds of revolution.






It’s a nice spring day here at the pool. Sitting with those who wait.

The pool is empty. As usual.

Most of us glance intermittently at the pool, some stare.

There are circles around the pool. Those on the edge sit or lay right on the precipice, so they can throw themselves in at the first sign of Movement.


My mother always said that I think too much. She was probably right.

I figure the pool has to be spring fed. But you can’t see from where. I’ve looked.

Once in a while a great bubble comes up from somewhere below. They say it is the Holy One’s own breath. I’m not sure what That One would be doing down below. I’ve always been told That One was somewhere up above.

Anyway, sometimes the earth belches, and then the front row dives or falls in as fast as they can. They say if you get in first - it helps. Can’t say as I’ve seen that - But there are stories. Hard to tell who is first most of the time. Just a big splash. And then we have to fish out all the not-firsts before they drown.

I’m in the third row. I don’t have much of a chance. But it’s less boring and lonely than laying around the house. We get our news here. We tell jokes. And people drop off food and it's passed around by the halt but not-completely lame.


Some go home at night, for some this is home.  People’s spots are saved – this is sacred.  Ancient Asher died of old age waiting – his crippled son took his place, so I guess your spot can be hereditary.


We get our amusement where we can.  Front row people are supposed to be vigilant. But it gets boring, and guys don’t feel good, and they sleep. If someone is leaning, and sleeping, and in danger of falling, we usually nudge them or roll them back from the edge. But this afternoon Levi, Levi was perched.  Like perfectly balanced into the lean. And sound asleep. Everyone stopped watching the pool and started watching Levi. It was silent. It was like the whole world got silent.

Levi wavered, he teetered.

Then that smartass Dan started count backwards.

Kahmesh (5)… he whispered.

Arbah (4)…

Shalosh (3)…

Shta’im (2)…

And right then Levi started to fall. And the entire host shouted  AKHAT!

Right as Levi’s nose touched the water.

And everyone to the fourth circle who could move jumped in right after him!

The bowl was full of bodies. All the water was out of the pool.

But the laughter, and the shouting!  What a din!

I am sure that we disturbed the prayers in the Holy Places.

It took many minutes to extricate everyone. Unbending limbs. Shaking out beards.

We put everyone back in their places.

And then we noticed.

I shouted, Where is Levi? 

Great hubbub and searching.

Levi was nowhere to be found.


It took days for the pool to refill, up from below, slowly.

Someone said they saw Levi, walking on the road to Bethany.

But that is probably just a story.





Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom


Albuquerque is all about the billboards - the one pictured above is ginormous and the centipede is three dimensional. Their new one has a giant (at least 25 ft) scorpion threatening 1-25 traffic. These warnings say a lot about the environment here. 

We recently had a different company take care of our black widows after we found more than a few and those mate-killers and they had egg sacks ready to go. 

Speaking of mate-killers I came out onto the deck one evening and saw this.


 At first I thought that finding a praying mantis on the hummingbird feeder was a good thing - it meant that the black widow poison had not killed all the beneficial bug eaters. I left her where she was. But something was poking at the back of my brain. So I put "Mantis vs. hummingbird" into Google.

Up popped this from none other than the Audubon Society

"It’s rare, but it’s gruesome." Occasionally a PREYING mantis does snatch a hummingbird out of the air. I guess they have tasty brains or something.  (photo from Audubon site)

 SO...  I went back out on the deck with a flashlight and a broom and made the ambitious mantis move along. Danged if she wasn't right back in the same spot in the morning. Apparently our resident mantis is an aspiring big game hunter.  This time I took her to the farthest spot in the yard.

On the way back I saw one of our two resident bunnies - a juvenile (about 6 inches.)

 Not much cuter than a baby bunny.


I have mixed feelings about the bunnies, because they can eat your garden clean in a night, but so far the two who live with  us have taken a reasonable tithe.

I stepped back up on the deck and watched the bun for a minute or two. A dose of cute did me good at that point. But soon I had a weird feeling of having eyes on me. I looked left - and there - six feet from my head sitting on the deck screen was a very larger raptor. Raptor looked at me and I looked at bun. Raptor looked at bun.

I clapped by hands and yelled "RUN!"  and she did.

Big bad bird gave me a dirty look and lazily flew off. 

Not today, Mr. Hawk - Not today.

I did not get a pic of the hawk.





Our Lady of Junction

 So There I was… Halfway across the state of Texas working on a spiritual discipline. I am mildly allergic to the entire concept of discipline. It smacks of work. It stinks of tedium. These things do not call to me. 

But I do desire to be a deeply spiritual person. Not the kind of pop-faith consumer who has a new guru or path with every season. I am ready to settle down: to choose one path and stick to it, and spend the second half of my life mastering it. To do this I am afraid that I must practice a spiritual discipline or two. The purpose of practicing any spiritual discipline is twofold: to aerobically exercise the soul and to increase awareness of The Divine. The traditional practices of prayer, fasting, simplicity, and so on, have great merit, and I occasionally work at them.

  I have found a new discipline that suits me, and stretches me in ways I never thought possible. It is the discipline of Spiritual Adventure. The Discipline of Spiritual Adventure is not just simple thrill seeking, but the intentional choosing of the less certain way in order to allow the Divine maximum room to move

When we are outside of our comfort zone, when we are on an unknown path, our senses are heightened, including our spiritual senses that so often lay dormant as we proceed through life on autopilot. We pay more attention to detail. We are aware of, and communicate our thoughts and desires, more diligently to our Designer. We listen better. Choice is an essential piece of Spiritual Adventure. We must acknowledge, embrace, and take responsibility for the freedom we are given as eternal children of a Divine Creator. An adventure that is not freely chosen is a detour at best, and sometimes a nightmare. 

Many of us use our freedom to so fill our lives with busyness, structure and control that there is no room for adventure. We do this almost with out thinking, unconsciously barricading our life against the unknown. But I tell you, it is still choice; it is intentional, and intention counts. It is not a spiritual adventure if you are treading a well-worn path. Fresh road is required. Navigating not by memory, but by a combination of reason and trust.

To practice this discipline you must become aware of crossroads when you come to them. Often they are not marked or obvious. Daily we make decisions that will change our entire future; often it is only in hindsight that we see it. The discipline of Spiritual Adventure says that we can develop foresight and a present awareness that allows us to be fully conscious participants in our choices. And beyond that it tells us that the universe is trustworthy and that we can renounce fear, and trust our Creator and our own spiritual senses to keep us away from real disaster when we choose uncertain paths. A crossroads is a pivotal place where fear wrestles with obedience. It is one of the best places I know of to develop discernment, or wisdom listening. But we do not seek this discipline purposeless, we seek it with the desire, the craving, to see with our own eyes the movement, influence, and evidence of the Divine. 

We can only see this when we get our plans, agendas and ourselves out of the way. There are no preplanned spaces in my calendar for miracles. Spiritual adventure can be fun, but often it isn’t. It is always stretching. Even a genuine miracle can be scary at the time -- just ask Jonah. It doesn’t always feel safe, but practiced properly it is safe. In fact, it is much safer than living a spiritually unaware, unawake life. 

Simple risk taking is betting on your luck, or your skill; and like any bet the odds can be good, or the shot can be a long one. Spiritual Adventure presumes that there is another player, and that the other has your true best interests as its goal and guiding principle. This is an essential truth: yes, the house always wins, but you and the house have intimate connections.


In Loco Parentis


I was married on my twentieth birthday. Back in the Mesozoic Era (1977). On that day my parents ceased to have any legal authority over me, they no longer had legal parental care responsibilities for me, and would not have been the first choice to make legal or medical decisions on my behalf if need be.  All those rights and responsibilities conveyed to my 24 year old husband. When my father walked me down the aisle and handed me over to the young man of my youthful choice, the symbolism was real.  For one year there were certain ways in which he was both my spouse and legal parent. I thought getting married would make me an adult - I wasn't prepared for the ways in it would continue my childhood.

We were students in New Mexico (where I once again live.) When the college had a river-rafting field trip - I could not sign my own liability waiver - he had to sign a permission slip for me. I thought that was kind of funny.

I was not old enough to buy alcohol, but in any restaurant in the state he could say "...and I would like to buy a margarita for my wife." and no questions were asked. I had a ring on my left hand. If we ever did get carded - they carded him - not me - because my age did not matter if he was buying for me. I could have been sixteen, and if legally married - which my father could have consented to - I could drink  - or not - as my husband wished. The legal doctrine for this is In Loco Parentis - he was legally acting in the place of a parent. In New Mexico at that time - a Pater Familias could put wine on the table and pour out to the children - he decided how much they could handle. I thought it was kind of cool to have what I thought were adult privileges early.

When I was a single girl, especially a white girl,  I could open a bank account  - I had one in Illinois when I was a child, and got checks made when I was 16.  At 18 they added a question - to all women opening accounts - "Are you married?" because if you were, you needed your husband's signature. Hmm.

Shortly after the wedding I went down to the women's clinic and had a check up and asked for birth control pills. "Are you married? oh, then we need your husband to fill out and sign this form saying he approves." This time it did not matter if I was was 20 or 21. I did not like this one bit - but I had him fill out the form.

Ten years, and two children later - Now in Oregon, I told my doctor that I was satisfied with two children and wanted to have my tubes tied. My doctor wanted assurances that my husband was also satisfied. Then or now, a man can walk into his doctor's office and ask for a vasectomy and no one else's opinion matters. 

In 2005 after my father's passing and receiving my inheritance, I asked my bank for a credit card in my own name. They wanted my husband to co-sign. But my rights had changed by this time and I made a stink, and quoted law, and got my own line of credit. What I did not know was that inheritance did not count as marital property - I could have put that money away in an account in my own name, but I did not. My inheritance got spent on marital expenses and was gone by the time of the divorce 2 years later.

Rights, as it turns out are temporal, and sometimes fragile. You can't buy booze for kids in a restaurant in New Mexico anymore. And as of this year, a women's fertility may not be in her own control.

There is a contingent of misogynistic, patriarchal people in this country (and they are not all men,) who want to turn back time. Make sure that women can only marry men. Make sure that men control women's finances and fertility. They would prefer that women don't vote. They would make women legally children if they could. Maybe even decide if they can get a drink.

We are not so far from having women who appear to be of child bearing age being denied alcohol, or plane tickets, because they 'might' be pregnant and the decision should not be theirs to make.

Ten years ago, deep in the Obama years, I would have laughed at this notion.

I am not laughing any more.

Because I remember being a married child. 







Monsoon Love



Albuquerque, New Mexico is high desert. It is at the tippy top of the Chihauhuan Desert which is mostly in Mexico, but flows up the Rio Grande Valley. This allows a wonderful, miraculous thing to happen every summer. Just when the summer gets really hot and unbearable, moisture flows into Mexico from the Gulf to the East, or the Gulf to the West, and flows landward; it hits the mountains and mixed with all the heat, forms thunder heads which rain on the dry lands. Because of the mountains of the continental divide, this weather pattern comes north into Arizona and New Mexico. It doesn't really so much move, like storms across the great plains - it blossoms, it bubbles up, and then it pours down. 

The people who have lived here the longest call these the male rains. They are blustery, and involve a lot of lighting and thunder. Winter rains, female rains, are less dramatic. Winter rains are also more prudent, and stockpile in the mountains in the form of snow and feed the valleys for months. And just when that winter bounty runs out, the noisy, fast, loud rains come. This is when you need to stay out of the arroyos. Believe the Earth. When you see what looks like a riverbed, believe it is a riverbed at least sometimes. If you pitch you tent on that nice flat sandy ground, when the daddy rains come he can make you very sorry.

The National Weather Service calls these rains monsoons. They are regular and yet notoriously difficult to predict in the specific. They can be very specific. Your neighbor an acre away can be experiencing a microburst that drops a couple of inches of rain in minutes and might include hail. You can watch this from sun-drenched, thirsty ground. Today may not be your day - tomorrow you may be bailing out the garage. We are on the edge of a Mesa with a view of the mountain. She gets wet more often than we do. We watch her and try not to be envious.

The first rain, whenever it come to you, is joyous. If you are oriented to your place, you go out and stand in it, or even dance a bit. 

Every day we watch for the clouds to build. The monsoon is like a toddler working up to a fit. Sometimes he gets distracted, and calms down. Sometime he reaches full torment. Sometimes it's over the top and gets destructive. You never know. 

You plant your beans and corn and squash and you hope. 

But this you should know. You can't do anything about it. You can stay out of the arroyos, but you cannot make the rain come to your beans. This is a higher power. The oceans and the mountains and the deserts are old hands at this. This is an earth loving - life giving - somewhat dangerous - process. You can pray, and hope, and dance. But it is not about you. You cannot control it. Life itself is not really controlling this.

But I tell you, 

love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 

 that you may be children of God.    

God who causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, 

and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 

- Jesus, according to Matthew.