Rude Awakenings

by Dave Hanks

        The gifted high school athlete
			is in a situation unique.
	His ego is on display
			for any recruiter to "tweak".

	They will "wine and dine" him,
			and his parents as well.
	His past and future glories
			they labor hard to tell.

	He feels so extra-ordinary,
			from all they have to say.
	But little does he know,
			that there's going to come a day -

	When that gigantic bubble,
			laid on him from the first;
	Has about run its course.
			It is just about to burst!

	'Cause when they finally "land him" 
			(when they get him there) -
	He becomes "their game"
			and anything is fair.

	Life will suddenly change.
			It will take on a different "feel".
	Coaches are now ranting, and cussing!
			"Is that now part of the deal?"

	He is no longer grandiose,
			no longer the favored "son".
	Amid all the many bodies,
			he is just another one.
	And in life a lesson,
			now hits him "stark and plain",
	That any inner, glowing comfort
			can quickly become a pain.
	Human nature is so freakish.
			animalistic to see.
	Because they will only love you:
			“For what you do for me!"


#75:Running Interference

The Importance of Sequence

by Dave Hanks

The basic building blocks of all forms of life are cells. Cells are made out of protein. Protein is made out of amino acids. Amino acids are made out of the four basic elements of life: Carbon, Hydrogen, Oxygen, and Nitrogen.

DNA is made out of nucleotides – symbolized as A, C, G, and T. RNA is half as wide as DNA and made out of nucleotides. RNA serves as DNA’s messenger to carry the code to synthesize the proteins needed – by matching the DNA nucleotides. The specific amino acids that each different protein molecule is made up of is controlled by the SEQUENCE of nucleotides within the section of DNA that is responsible for creating that particular protein. The nucleotides A, C, G, and T can be arranged (in groups of three) in many different ways. RNA has matched the DNA code, and as amino acids are released from food through digestion, they fall into place along the RNA strip where they match to form the protein molecules being synthesized.

So, what does all the above information I’ve laid on you mean? And, how does it all relate to the tremendous variations in the earth’s lifeforms, and the variations between individuals of each specific species? It all depends on the SEQUENCE of the DNA nucleotides; which in turn determines the types of amino acids produced, which in turn determines what we are and what we look like. Body tissue must continually be replaced – thus the need for nourishment to furnish the replacement materials. We literally have different C-H-O-N atoms in us than we had years ago.

We had a ham roast over the holidays. Meat is muscle, but that pig’s muscle had a different texture than mine. How did my body change the ham into the muscle that is in my body, or into my hair type? It all comes down once again to SEQUENCE. My DNA code caused my body to rearrange the SEQUENCE of the ham’s amino acids to the SEQUENCE that my body demands. That just a few basic building materials can be arranged in so many different ways is indeed mind boggling.

The BLACK BEAR CUB is eating berries and its body will cause the berries to become bear – all because of a change in the SEQUENCE of the materials eaten as directed by the bear’s DNA. What a striking contrast between the bear and the little ANOLE lizard, even though both are made from the same materials.

THIS EARTH: Some Thoughts

Van Gogh stated that the creation was a study – a roughed-in sketch. Perhaps that is one reason that his art looks roughed-in. But his view doesn’t seem to be true! The earth is supremely & meticulously put-together; abundantly, extravagantly, and in fine.

While observing the intricacy of form, nothing seems to be ridiculous. The variety of form itself and the multiplicity of forms is mind “boggling”! It seems that anything goes. Form follows function, and function is nature’s only aesthetic consideration. Freedom is the earth’s water and weather, the world’s nourishment freely given, its soil and sap. It definitely has pizzazz!

But only ten percent of the earth’s life forms are still here. Were some forms made with extinction in mind? Created as test models so to speak, to be refined as the adaptation process progresses?

Also, the globe (viewed from afar) may appear smooth but it is anything but smooth. It is jagged and rough. Anything less would be frightfully dull and also very non-utilitarian. Texture is extremely important – both for beauty and for function. The looping, rough inside, nature of intestines is not only necessary for nutrient absorption, but creates more area in a limited space to facilitate the process. Good fishing streams operate on this same principle; and we all would die of thirst if watersheds were smooth and even. In fact there would be no watersheds. .

The tremendous diversity in the earth, points out how important variety is. Why would anyone want to minimize it?

Form and function are important for our physical well-being.

Beauty is important for our mental and emotional well-being.

(The beauty and diversity of REVELSTOKE Park, B.C.)