Author: Neal Ross Attinson

Neal Ross Attinson is one of those compulsive writers who feels naked without a pad and pencil. He lives with companion and cat and library in Sonoma, California.

Why I Love: Geology

IT’S THE SMELL OF THE rocks. It’s knowing what everything on the surface is sitting on. It’s the finding of hand-samples. (It’s also the finding of fossils.) It’s the divisions of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic. It’s the appreciation of Deep…

“Return to the Breath”

SOMETHING ANN AND I SAY to each other when life seems fretful and jagged is “Return to the Breath.” It’s a compact admonition against spiraling out of control with what-ifs and oh-my-gods. Return to the Breath means sit (or stand,…

365 Names: Providence

PROVIDENCE literally means “that which/one Who provides.” It’s a comfortable and comforting image: G?d as Supplier of Necessities. For some reason, it pops up a lot in 18th- and 19th-Century literature and life, including as a proper name. Perhaps it’s…

First Graf: The Jewish Catalog

WHAT HAPPENED WHEN THE COUNTER-CULTURAL agents of the 1960s (re)discovered their Yiddishkeit (Jewishness)? A trio of them (and many others) produced the now-classic The Jewish Catalog: a do-it-yourself kit. As the subtitle implies, the book is chock-full of homemade ways…

5 Thoughts: Blogging Life

1. THINK OF IT AS TRAINING. If you’re blogging the equivalent of a perzine, don’t expect a lot of readers, at least at the beginning. During the first decade of The Metaphorager‘s existence, my maximum readership was about 30 people;…

All opinions are not equal. Some are a very great deal more robust, sophisticated and well-supported in logic and argument than others.”
~ Douglas Adams

Aside

SO: INYOURHAND.ORG WAS THIS PROJECT I started when I was all hopped up on Prednisone following my 2002 cancer surgery/Grave’s disease bout. Inyourhand.org (along with the tagline “Be, Jewishly“) was devoted to teaching people about the mitzvot, the sacred obligations which bind Jews together and to that-which-some-people-call-God, or at least to Jewish tradition. I even made a T-shirt that had the inyourhand.org URL emblazoned on the back (along with the tagline “Be, Jewishly“), but I then went through a poor period where I could no longer afford to pay for hosting inyourhand.org. Thus, I never wore the inyourhand.org T-shirt (along with the tagline “Be, Jewishly“).

“Tzom B’kavanna!”

A TRADITIONAL PRE-YOM KIPPUR ADMONITION is “tzom kal (have an easy fast)” But as a friend in an online forum once pointed out, “easy” misses the point. A proper Yom Kippur fast should be difficult; examining your past year’s mistakes…