Invention 43097: The Standing Desk Swing

I’ve long been an advocate of standing desks. Sitting all day not only makes my legs ache, it’s considered bad for your heart and circulation too. Of course standing in one place all day is almost as bad.

Movement is the key. That’s why I always have a chair and a wobble board available when I’m at my standing desk.

Standing desks are old news. The concept needs to be refreshed. Click To Tweet

But let’s face it, standing desks are old news. The concept needs to be refreshed. That’s why I came up with the Standing Desk Swing. It’s like a hammock except you don’t lie down, there’s no netting and you’re working instead of relaxing. So it’s really only like a hammock in that it swings.

It’s probably more like a playground swing. Except that you’re standing instead of sitting, you have a computer on a pedestal and you’re not 8 years old. I guess it really doesn’t need an analogy after all. It’s a standing desk swing. That describes it well enough.

It’s Always Possible to be Positive

I found myself in an oncology waiting room with my wife yesterday. Thankfully we were only there for her to see a hematologist about a much less serious situation than cancer.

We were told to arrive 30 minutes before our scheduled appointment to allow time for filling out paperwork. Then the appointment time came and went. We ended up waiting for a total of one hour before seeing the doctor.

But the entire time we were waiting I couldn’t bring myself to get frustrated or annoyed. The patients that kept coming in stopped me by their attitudes when they were checking in and being taken back for appointments.

When the check-in staff or nurses asked how they were doing, all but a few responded with phrases like “I’m doing great, how about you?” or “I’m keeping positive” or “I’m better than yesterday”.

The relatively short amount of time I spent sitting reading a magazine is nothing compared to the time most of these people spend in doctor’s offices waiting and getting treated. When you see others who keep a positive attitude in the face of serious illness, it puts your own discomforts in perspective.

Too often I find myself complaining either inwardly or outwardly about minor inconveniences. But the patients I was overhearing taught, through their attitudes, that whatever the situation it’s always possible to be positive.

The Secret Life of Dandelions

It’s unfortunate that so many people see dandelions as nothing more than weeds. Yes, they’re incredibly invasive and don’t make for an attractive lawn most of the year. But they do have redeeming qualities.

First of all, when they flower they add a nice pop of yellow color to the landscape. It’s easy to see them and ignore them because of how common they are. But if you get really close, they reveal a tiny, intricate and unique landscape of their own.

Besides visual enjoyment, dandelions are a great food source too. The leaves make for a slightly bitter but tasty salad component. They pack a lot of nutrition like vitamin A and C, fiber and a whole host of other nutrients.

My favorite part of the dandelion is the root. I regularly drink roasted dandelion root tea. It has a great flavor and there might be some evidence that it has anti-cancer properties.


So this spring and summer, when you see those white seed heads popping up all over the place, pick a handful and blow the seeds all over your neighborhood. That guy screaming at you with the Roundup bottle in his hand won’t like it. But what does he know anyway.

A Nest In the Rocks

I try to take at least one walk around my neighborhood each day. I do it for exercise but I also enjoy observing all of the little intricacies of daily life for the few hundred people and animals that live around my street. For several days now I have noticed a couple of birds hanging out in the same area by a retention pond. Every time I walk by they throw a terrible fit. But they never fly away.

So yesterday I took my camera on the walk and stopped to see if I could get some pictures. I knelt down to take the picture and the bird went crazy. It made a lot of noise, turned its back on me and spread its feathers. When that failed to scare me away it made attempts at charging me while yelling spreading its wings.

My wife was along and commented that there must be a nest nearby. I couldn’t understand why it was making such a ruckus when I was still standing on the sidewalk. Then my wife pointed and asked “are those eggs?” Sure enough, right there in the rocks next to the sidewalk were four eggs. I had been standing about six inches from them. They were a black and cream spotted egg and they blended in really well with the rocks and dirt.

No wonder the bird was angry. But really, it was poor planning on her part. I’m not very good at identifying birds off the top of my head. I was, however, able to do a bit of research and discovered this is a pair of Killdeer. Killdeer are a type of Plover. I’ll be checking on the eggs now when I walk by. Hopefully some dog or other animal doesn’t get to them before they can hatch.

Raspberry Leaf

I was surprised to wake up Saturday morning and find it had rained during the night. It was a light rain as evidenced by the not quite soaked chair cushions and outdoor rug. But it was enough to leave droplets on the raspberry leaves that are starting to grow up in one of my garden pots.

Each leaf is unique with its own patterns and colors. I spent some time working my way around the small cluster of canes, finding leaves that were well shaped and facing the right direction. I worked with the composition of the subjects to see if I liked them centered or offset, clustered or single. Then I had to think about where the light was and if the image had enough in it. It was only 7:00am so there were plenty of shadows amongst the leaves to contend with.

I made several images that I really liked. But in the end I chose the one below for this post because of its simplicity, color and angle. I love being able to find such beautiful subjects right in my own back yard.

Categorically Uncategorized

Ideally, a blog like this one should have every post neatly organized into a succinct set of categories. This kind of organization makes it easier for readers to find the posts that interest them according to topic. But there are always those pieces that just don’t fit neatly into any of the blog’s established categories.

By default, most blogs contain the catch all category called uncategorized. Uncategorized is where one off blog posts go to die. It’s the anti-category that, when come upon by an unsuspecting reader, screams of an uncaring or ignorant author.

In the case of this site there really are posts that don’t belong in any of the already too many categories I have. But those posts still make up an important part of what this site is. While I do have a carousel of topics I enjoy writing on, sometimes I want to hop off the ride and see what else the carnival has to offer.

I wasn’t going to try sticking every oddball post into an ill-fitted category. Instead, I decided to change “Uncategorized” into a real category that gives some indication of the atopical nature of the posts it contains.

After thinking on it for some time, I came up with the play-on-words Composts. I like it because like a bit of this and bit of that goes into a garden compost to make a fertile soil amendment, so these posts, when taken together, create a fertile environment for this blog to grow. Time will tell if it stays the default category name. But for now, I’m going with it.