Sideglances
by SARAH GREENE
Apr 26, 2014 | 765 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
BEING HOUSEBOUND for whatever reason can open worlds that you never suspected were out there. I’m thinking of the Association of Professional Surfers.

We inland folks can easily lose track of our position in the universe, passengers on that “big blue marble” that floats on the edge of the universe.

Some of us grew up having to absorb the news the world was round and had a satellite called the moon that people might actually land on one day. Now that has happened, And, alas, the moon was so uninteresting that today’s amazingly adventurous explorers immediately looked for new worlds to conquer.

NEWEST addition to the Disney line-up of sitcom’s is called Dog With A Blog. First it was Air Bud, the dog who could play basketball. Now there is a dog that actually has its own online blog. Bloggers have come into the American culture as a recognizable force, so why not add a dog to the mix?

The background story is this: A psychologist father has a child and step-child, Avery and Tyler Jennings, and they can’t get along. At all. So, he buys them a dog, named Stan, to keep them from fighting and to actually help the two get along.

However, the dog can talk. And, of course, blog. The kids do know that the dog can talk, but they have to keep it a secret, for fear that the dog will be sent back to the shelter if their parents learn the dog can talk.

WE NEVER learn how or why Stan can blog. And one wonders if people under the age of 20 (which of course, is the target audience group) even know what a blog is?

During the pilot episode, Stan only appears in two small scenes blogging. Stan’s blog is like a blog for moms, only it’s a blog for other pets.

Stan discusses his owners, and offers reviews on animal products.

The show is filled with jokes and antics about kids trying to get away with keeping things from their parents But, there are some good messages about family bonds and the joy of having a pet.

FOR SOME REASON I am also easily reminded about the Tannenbaum, a fir tree (Die Tanne) or Christmas tree (der Weihnachtsbaun).

The qualities of this evergreen have inspired the composition of several Tannenbaum songs in German over the years. The best- known version was penned in 1824 by a Leipzig organist named Ernst Anschütz.

The melody is an old folk tune. The first known Tannenbaum song lyrics date back to 1550. A similar 1615 song by Melchior Franck (1573-1639) goes in part:

O Tannenbaum, o Tannenbaum,

wie treu sind deine Blätter!

Du grünst nicht nur

zur Sommerzeit,

Nein auch im Winter, wenn es schneit.

My command of German is not adequate for translation, but I gather that the Tannenbaum is a good kind of evergreen tree to have at any season, including in winter when it snows.

And as for those surfers, I learned that there are waves in the ocean off Australia that make our Texas gulf surf look like a kiddy play pool.
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