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What is the Crack-in-the-Ground in Christmas Valley, OR?

Another interesting geological formation in Lake County. The Crack-in-the-Ground is one of the many geological attractions in Lake County, Oregon. Managed by the Bureau of Land Management, it has a small dirt parking lot with an on-site bathroom, a well-beaten path, and beautiful views. The Crack-in-the-Ground is a volcanic fissure formed long ago and preserved in the high-desert surroundings around Christmas Valley, OR. There is a 2-mile-long hiking trail that runs through the formation that goes as far down as 70 feet below the surface; the average width between the stone walls is 10 ft. Visitors will have to traverse a rocky dirt road that leads up the hills surrounding the basin area where Christmas Valley and Fort Rock are located. The parking area and start of the hiking trail are around five miles from Christmas Valley and 102 miles southeast of Bend. Once visitors are past the short, rocky, hundred-foot climb, they will be on a smoother dirt road that winds its way to the tra
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The Power of Sharing on Reddit

Are you sharing articles on this social site? Above is one of my posts on Reddit. As you can see, it has over 35k views and 369 more upvotes than downvotes. It also has 53 shares. This is in a subreddit community called Oregon. It has 168k members. Not all of my posts to this subreddit do this well, but this shows the potential Reddit offers. This link share is from a NewsBreak article and I have noticed traffic coming to the articles when I post here. I write mostly about local news in Oregon. My experience at Reddit hasn’t always been so beneficial. For most of the nine years I’ve been there I gained no traction and my posts to subreddits were almost always removed for some reason. I began to think Reddit was a puzzle I couldn’t figure out. Nevertheless, I kept trying and finally found some subreddits that work. The key is to find a subreddit, read all the directions for posting, and then once find one that doesn’t remove your link, you now have a good place to share content on that

The Medium Experience So Far

Analyzing the holistic enterprise with stats and generalities. I started syndicating my blog content on Medium around 2017 with my first account, which has gone by the wayside since. The account I’m using now is my second account which I started around August 2018. I posted around 12 articles here from then until December 2022. Like a long-lost treasure realized, I started writing seriously on Medium around early December 2022. I’ve now been writing regularly here for around 5 weeks. The total article count I’ve amassed is 46 at this point in my Medium journey. When I came back to Medium after 4.5 years of neglect, I had 34 followers and wasn’t a member. I became a member and then soon enough reached the 100-follower threshold to apply for monetization. I really appreciate how quickly Medium approves this part of the journey. How I Got 48 Followers on Medium in 4.5 Years Some sarcasm mixed with sincerity. medium.com At this point, I have 242 followers and am up to 1,580 views in the pa

Staying Optimistic While Being Realistic

Learning to be positive without being false.  O ne of the most challenging tasks in life is to look at ourselves and the world truthfully while remaining optimistic.  We don’t have to look very far to find trouble in the world and within ourselves.  Some people try to shield themselves from all negative news, thoughts, and people. Others tend to dwell on the negative aspects of life. Neither of these extremes teaches us how to cope with life in a balanced way.  If we are in a helping profession or are a counselor-type of person, we will find ourselves dealing with troubled people and realities often. Just dealing with the realities of day-to-day life with family, friends, and community asks us to look at the problems of life.  So how do we look truthfully at the problems of life while staying optimistic?  We can see what happens to people when they aren’t able to figure this question out, they often become: addicted to substances and bad habits negative and mean people everyone avoids

The Information Machine vs. the Creative Thinker

The AI-curated online world has created a new breed, yet some hold on to their creative uniqueness despite the pervasive trend. The stormtrooper gazes at the flower wondering with awe at the natural creativity found within it. The internet is conditioning human thought and behavior and creating information machines among us. These are humans who have given over to the influences of the hive mind.  The hive mind is the personification of the internet and the big data brain behind its user-friendly interfaces. The hive mind is the holistic sum of the digital age and the internet of things (IoT). On the other side of the human spectrum is the Luddite creative thinker who is detached from the influences of the hive mind, even though part of it in some measure.  The most important aspect of the creative thinker is they are not led by the influences of the hive mind, at least not overtly and consciously.  The information machine-human is keen to know the secrets of the hive mind; they obsess

The Privilege of Writing on Medium

Maybe this is a perspective only older people can relate to.  When I was in high school in the mid-90s, I used a typewriter to accomplish my essay assignments that needed to be typed. This really wasn’t that long ago, yet how things have changed. Part of this change is people’s perspectives when it comes to being entitled to write online. Not only do they now expect to be published on sites like Medium, but also make money. And if the money isn’t enough for them to make a living they are critical of the entire platform, like it owes them something. I realize writers need to make money to live, so write a book or submit articles to magazines and other paying publications. Sign a book deal with a publishing house or self-publish, etc. There are so many different ways to make money writing now; the difficult part is everyone else is doing it too, which makes it hard to stand out and find an audience. Even on Medium, the competition is thick with so many different types of people trying to

The Boxing Years in Eugene, OR

Learning how to fight helped me be more confident in life.  I learned from Rocky Marciano to get out of the game before you lose. With a 3–0 amateur record, I hung up the gloves and headgear and called it good.  Actually, I didn’t even know who Rocky Marciano was when I started boxing at 21 years old. I come from a time when the internet and smartphones weren’t a thing and we never had cable, so I wasn’t a depository of information like the youth today.  The Boxing Idea It was around the year 2001 when I had the idea to box and started scoping out boxing gyms in the Eugene, Oregon area. I found two gyms to choose from.  I chose the smaller gym with fewer boxers; it was located close to the downtown area yet hidden behind some commercial businesses in an old metal shed. The West Eugene Boxing Club.  Going to community college in the area right after getting out of the Air Force, I felt the need to learn how to fight better.  I was a security forces member in the AF (military police) so