Late November: Hearing Distant Horses

Holiday time separates agin’ single girls wearing their big girl underpants from those wearing thongs.

(PS. Planetross doesn’t think single or married agin’ girls should be wearing thongs anyway–just orthopedic shoes)

Like old age itself, it’s not for sissies, but on the other hand, there’s time to create a new video blog, “The Bad Chef” because no one, married or single, is more consistently a dunderhead in the kitchen as I am.

There’s time, too, to create a way that anyone interested in buying my photographs or illustrations can do so on line:, (The shopping cart is not there today but will be by Tuesday)

Time, too, (and with this post) to begin a new holiday SFAR series geared to the vistas of singledom that I am uniquely qualified to describe.

The title was going to be “Single, Solitary. Ah, the view!” mostly because I liked this image above that I created late yesterday.

Then, I decided on another title.

I read on a government website (It has to be true, right?) that only 4% of the population in the United States will never have married by the time they are 65.  Since I am only two months away from being 65, I appear to be headed steadily, ok– hurtling– into that 4% category.

But, there must be a study some where that breaks down that 4% further.  Those who never married but are currently living with someone, for example.  Ok, with that screening analytic, I’m guessing now I’m in the 2% category.

But, another study breaking down the remaining 2% would surely focus on single people who have never married nor are currently living with a significant other but who live with animals and birds.  I believe that this 2% of population who never marry nor are living with anyone by the time they are 65 invariably and in some spectacular quantities,  do bond with a cat, dog or a bird.

It’s unscientific, I realize,  but since I don’t have a dog, cat, bird or significant other, this lack of a dog-cat-birdie-or human live-in bond pretty much puts me in a category all by myself, don’t you think?

So, I feel confident in titling this new series, either  “My One Percent Guide to Happiness” or “Single, Solitary and I Hate Cats.”

Which do you think is best?

Hey, we all want to be unique and important and this is my niche.  Most of us satisfy this human need with some combination of significant others, children, friends, animals and meaningful work.

Since I’ve lived long enough to observe that at the end of life being married or a parent doesn’t insulate you from feeling alone, my niche might even have some survival skills for the other 99% of the population.

Google Analytics has nothing on me.

I can tell you that one true thing absolutely positootley on this late November Sunday when the sound of distant hoofbeats is unmistakable.

©Pat Coakley 2009


16 comments on “Late November: Hearing Distant Horses”

  1. fabulously fun! the photo is breathtaking, as if you have a finemesh sieve through which you carefully sift the light. (ha ha sifting, as in flour, for sticky buns. i didnt mean for that to slip in, i was just amazed at how fine and subtle the light is and then i thought of the contrasting baking results you’d described)

    • Tipota, the use of the term “sifting” really applies to this image. That is exactly what I did in post production work. I’m much better at light sifting than sifting things in the kitchen!

  2. Photo is stunning (as per normal). Your thoughts…I can’t help but read them with both a smile and an ache. Maybe my thoughts are deep at the moment… this strikes me.

    Thanks Pat. Personally I like… Single and hates cats. :) Though people will think you are a curmudgeon – and noooooo thats not true! lol

    • Amber, smile, ache, it is all there. I think I like the suggestion from L below which is a bit long but funny and true. Single, Solitary, One Percent and Happy”!

  3. The “One-percenter’s guide to happiness” sounds good to me… more positive and upbeat. But I really like the mystery and suggestiveness of “Hearing Distant Horses”. You seem to have a strong network of family and friend connections, despite (or perhaps because of) your single-ness. Who needs cats anyway? The photo is lovely satin… a perfect view of a November pond soon to ice over.

    • Don, Razz says there’s some association with bikers with One Percent on it’s own and to tell you the truth I’d rather stick pins in my eyes than write one of those positive and upbeat things! Not that I want to depress the s out of folks but cheeriness seems to be a trend…”My cancer is a gift” sorta thing. Anyway, I know you didn’t mean an exaggerated thing but you are definitely right, “Who needs cats anyway?”

  4. I think you’re right in that we are all alone in a cosmic sense and the need to belong is strong. For me, at least, I feel that a shared experience with another person I care about, is always a richer experience.

    Although I don’t own a cat, I do respect their, “forget you and feed me” attitude. Dogs on the other hand are too emotionally dependent and I don’t really respect their indiscriminate unconditional love for those who feed them and forget about them in the back yard most of the time.

    As for the titles, I’d drop the “one percent”, one because that term is similar to one used by bikers and you may be misunderstood.

    The hoofbeats are a reminder that, “we’re here for a good time, not a long time”.

    I’m also interested in how your on-line photo sales go. Good luck!

    • Razz, I mean alone, not just in the cosmic sense, but in the very real on this earth sense in this post. That is what I have observed as I’ve been the witness to many who have grappled with old age and illness. I’ll let you know how this photo sales on line thing goes…I have very low expectations but it has taken a lot of friggin’ work (and more to do before Tuesday) to get it looking right and configured for search engines etc..Oi.

  5. Nice photo.

    And if I may, I suggest “Single, Solitary, One Percent and Happy” What can I say? I’m indecisive at the moment, so I combined the two choices.

    It’s nice to see you are still around in the land of blogs and still taking great photos.

    (of WayTMI)

  6. How about naming the new series Living Single by Design?? Just a thought. The photograph is spectacular. Keep in close connection with your little ones during the holidays they are better medicine than taking happy pills.

  7. Cousin Mary, That would be a great name IF it were true, but it isn’t. Unless it was unconscious and those theories are so tiresome! It just has worked out this way and I have found its charms as well as downside. As with all choices, I guess! Your second suggestion, tho, is a great one. My next post in this series is about “feeling important”.

  8. OK Patty, one more thought on this, I believe the catholic priests may fall into this category, and in fact may become devout followers of that blog, look out!

    • Mary, I think the priests are already devout followers of other internet sites that cater more to their, ahem, specific interests than this one!

  9. Wonderful picture, brought back many memories of Franklin. (I recognized the beach). I vote for Single, Solitary, One Percent and Happy. I think I have a daughter in the same category.

  10. Chris, It’s nice to hear from someone who knows this area as well as your recommendation! If you are interested in more Franklin photos, go to and scoll down to the “My Franklin” gallery. Or click on this specific link to the Franklin gallery:

    There are many of this same pond and beach. I call Franklin the New England town with the Montana skies!

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