Thursday, November 20, 2008


Meet Ariel. Born ever so overdue, my belated Valentine came into this realm on February 16, 1984 with a cast of thousands looking on. Being a month old when he was born, he got off to a roaring start and impatiently tackled all of the human baby milestones (creeping, walking/running, talking) so early that it seemed almost impossible for someone so tiny to be having coherent conversations with everyone. For example, he would be nestled comfortably in my arms while I was talking to a friend, and when it came time to say goodbye... he would reach out one of those sticky little paws and place it on his or her arm and watch them leap with surprise as he said in all seriousness, "Give me a call. We'll do wunch." Thank God, he hadn't mastered L's or it would have been too frightening.

Ah, but the soft palette proved impossible to overwhelm with intent. His earliest name for me was not Mama or Gaga or anything resembling a child's interpretation of Mother. It was RIBASUS. It took me a while, being sleep deprived and soft in the head, to divine what he was saying. He would get red in the face with frustration, repeating this word over and over. It finally dawned on me. He was doing is best to say Elizabeth.

I should have known...

Ariel would prove to be ahead of the curve on many things. Why settle for Mama when you know her real name? Well, he conquered the pronounciation and found it disappointing somehow. He went for variety instead in his variations on Mother. These have included saying "Mother" (and you can hear the quotation marks around it...) and the ever popular, "Hey, Lady!" which worked very well at the grocery store or some other public venue. But friends and most of the children I meet now call me Ribasus. I like it. I answer to it.

And how about Ariel? Is it any surprise that my little angel is pursuing a career in entertainment? Where will the big break come? Who knows? In the meantime, he is honing his standup comedy and performing live as much as possible, appearing in the miniseries Doc West, reading for roles and flashing his dynamic presence on the runway. GO ARIEL!!!!!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Perfect Bat

Last week, we experienced the quintessential New Mexico monsoon. An end-of-the-world thunderstorm which lasted for a good three hours, plus rain which was so solid that there was negligible distance between the drops. It was the kind of storm which both awes and causes one to doubt oneself: Nature at its best. Storms such as this might disorient the most steady of creatures, cause ships to go off course, evoke a sense of temporary suspension from the rules, blast paint from the top of one’s truck… ahem!

A tiny, velvety bat sought refuge on the landing outside my second floor dwelling. I believe her home is just across the way, under the eaves of my neighbor’s studio. Caught in the maelstrom, this place must have felt vaguely familiar and, at least, high up. She slumbered fitfully behind a rattan chair all the next day. At twilight, she vanished.

The bat is a good sign. In the medicine cards, bat is rebirth. I have always considered them magical. The Chinese consider bats to be great good fortune. SO… there you have it. Bats have it all. I am so grateful that this perfect little bat came to visit.

Big Wall, Small Bat

Monday, May 5, 2008


Caught (but not maimed) by Javin the Cat, escaped indoors only to be chased by Javin’s human, forced by panic and survival instincts to navigate the circuitous and dusty catacombs of the heating ducts to the second floor world of Ribasus…

Now that alone would be more than sufficient trauma and excitement in the life of a young mouse. But, there’s always more, isn’t there?

Emerging from the heating vent and concealed behind the curtains, our hero was intrepid enough to climb further and view his new world from atop the curtain rod. Alas, there was no escape route above. Suddenly, another human appeared causing a mad scramble down miles upon miles of curtain and a fearless dive into the plants. Whew!

And then, a week of exploration and new snacks. Wow. The human’s loud food storing units were a treasure trove, but that noise and heat increased the element of danger. There was even a pond, sometimes two ponds. If it wasn’t for that pan that shifted and made a clattering sound… It was then that The Mouse Called Peter Griffin got his name, as his fat behind was nearly stuck in the crack between the counter and the stove, back legs peddling like a cartoon mouse and that human, the Ribasus, collapsing with laughter.

Then came the demands. Rent? Groceries? An otherwise very reasonable unmouse, Ribasus would not be shifted as to PG’s making a meaningful contribution to the household. It seems that the entertainment factor was not enough, and Peter Griffin quickly used up all his best material… A silvery house appeared on the kitchen counter late one night, filled with a rare delicacy: cashew butter on a rice cake.

As soon as the lights were out, just like a trained mouse, Peter Griffin went into the silvery house to dine and parts of the roof came down! The house then became airborne and a new environment, somewhat familiar, was presented. Trapped but able to eat himself into a stupor, the night outside in the cool breezes didn’t seem so bad. And the next day, there was more flying, then a ride in a house on wheels with MUSIC playing.

Finally, in the unforgiving light of day with the winds howling, the silvery house flew to the ground. The collapsed roofing rose to reveal not one, but two doorways. Taking a deep breath and giving a farewell glance at the mountain of leftovers, The Mouse Called Peter Griffin made a run for the nearest clump of grasses where he huddled until night fell hundreds of hours later.

It may have been Peter Griffin’s destiny to escape death by cat, face hardships which would have stopped the heart of a lesser mouse, and eventually be transported to a new world. In mouse reality, this was a miracle. For Ribasus, it was second nature to make sure Peter Griffin was given a chance to live. It makes one want to ponder the nature of miracles as well as destiny.

Everything under the Sun seems to have a freedom and randomness about it as mysterious as the appearance of a miracle. Yet everything which happens in the course of a life has this solidity and undeniable quality to it which we call fate. Once made manifest in this particular reality, it cannot be undone. But where do these events come from? And what is doing the steering?

This is the last known location of The Mouse Named Peter Griffin..... but we did hear something yesterday over near the bookcase.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Leap To Show Your Faith

I am really feeling this photograph. Faith has been the focus of my curiousity lately. I still do not have it worked out, but it goes something like this:
Thoughts are what bring the world to you. Faith is intimately involved in the action which makes those thought borne things REAL.

I'm working on it...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Free The Peeps

This is a tough season for peeps everywhere, so I decided to stage a catch and release. You would not believe how hard they were to find! Peeps are in short supply at 3 in the afternoon the day before Easter. I finally found some among the pillaged shelves of a local CVS. It was a sad sight, indeed, as they were in the company of giant shattered chocolate bunnies for whom there would be no salvation. Alas, I kept to my mission.

As soon as we were out the door, we headed up Camino de las Crucitas to the former site of Refrigerator Henge (more on that at a later date). This is a high place with 360 degree views and lots of junipers and low bushes for the peeps to seek cover.

At first, the peeps were hesitant to explore and looked at me quizzically.

But then, they began to pull apart from the safety of the peep pod and hop around in the junipers. Only one of them got hung up on a high pointy branch and decided to just stay put while the nesting pair and a single male stayed close together. I was feeling mighty confident about this release program until I heard a terrible screech from above.

My enthusiasm and the joyful peeps had caused me to forget about the pterodactyls which live in the mountains overlooking Santa Fe.

As you can see, one of the peeps paid the ultimate price. If you magnify the picture, you can see that he stood tall and took it like a peep.

Undaunted and down two peeps, they headed out into the bush. The nesting pair found their dream home. But one decided to head back.

Larry. Larry the Peep.

He stopped to say farewell to the peep who was now adhered to the juniper bush. Prefering not to be photographed, the most philosophical of the five, he felt it was his fate. Oddly, his name happened to be Socrates.

Larry took one last look and blew kisses to his friends from the mirror of my magic driving machine.

Larry desired the home life. So, he came with me, watching the passing scenery with excitement as we made our way to my home.

Larry enters in.

After scoping the place out, Larry finds the ideal perch.

And so, that is the saga of the release program. The life of Larry the Peep is the only one we will be able to track.

The life of a peep is a rare and refreshing insight into the real meaning of 'law of the jungle'... or in this case, desert... as well as the old saw: no good deed goes unpunished.


Let's end with a pretty picture:

Have a wonderful Easter.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Who Rocks?

Here. Listen to this while I figure out what to write about next. Full moon madness is at its peak of crunchy goodness.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Birth of An Old World

Those of you who are privy to the goings on in Ribasus World have gotten major ear massages about the untimely and bizarre demise of my constant companion: a little 5.1 megapixel Olympus digital camera. The picture to the left is the last one taken with DCV1 (Digital Camera Volume 1). This camera took a hit for me! It gets all honors and a proper burial. A moment of silence, please.

OK. That's enough.

It is the first day of Spring, and I have a replacement camera as of noon today. It is an exact replica of the one which martyred itself by leaping off a chair and faceplanting on its lens. Ouch! I am more of a find-a-winner-and-stick-with-it person than most people would ever suspect. An intrepid and experimental cook, I always have the same thing when I go out to eat. No expensive and disruptive surprises for me! NNnnnooOOOOOooooo. I did get brand new camera immediately, since I cannot function without one. But, it just didn't do it for me. Why? It was too fussy, and it was unfamiliar. Plus, it did not like the color red and that was a dealbreaker. If I am going to dive into a steep learning curve, I am going to get into some seriously deep and wide waters... the waters of high end digital SLR's. I can do that now and at my leisure, and the right one will present itself in due course.

The journey of utter stress that being sans camera buddy for an entire week and a day provided for me was to see how deeply my creative process is invested with my tools. When the camera committed hari kari, I felt as though I had lost a colleague. I thought of all the good times... the magazine work, the photoshoots, the stills of my work, the portraits... all things which were way WAY beyond the capabilities of a point-and-shoot and yet, this little camera was able to produce professional results. I realized that I had a glass and metal appendage which I was dependant upon for a daily outlet of creativity. That's heavy.

Simplistic Spiritual Insight of the Day:
So, you see, there is really no such thing as channeling. It is all about partnership between you and other-than-you. Whether it is a camera or a conceptualization of Great Spirit, it is still the same partnership... and that is how we define our reality.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Tabula Rasa

It is 4:38PM Mountain Daylight Time, and this blog is brand new...untouched by human hands. It is the epitome of the blank slate, even to the color.

But Ribasus World is a very colorful place...full of surprises and unique things and thoughts. This is a free zone!

We can talk about anything here. I only ask that if you move the furniture so you can dance, that you put it back when you are finished. And, please, no fires and no cruelty.

This is also a venue for my online business endeavors. This is a way to reach out with my art and my love of service.

There is so much! And, there is always more.

Next time, pictures and links.