Adam Blatner

Words and Images from the Mind of Adam Blatner

Table of Contents:

My Favorite Things

Meadow Masters

Well, this is in the fooling-around sub-section, but it’s also myth-making, or giving a poetic spin on nature. We have two big ol’ trees who thrust their limbs in a gesture of “you go, kid” over the meadow. Those who project evil in the world will see these as going “boo” like Halloween monsters putting […]

Metaphysical Ontology

Ontology is the branch of philosophy that considers what is. Are dreams real? What is an illusion? Is mind real or an illusion? What is real? Metaphysical is a term that addresses principles that transcend the physical, that involve questions that go beyond what physics can elucidate.  Beyond the dynamics of matter and energy, time […]

Morbid Humor

I generally try to accentuate the positive, as the song lyric goes, but when I was younger (and still, a little) I cultivated a degree of morbid humor. I liked the characters of the cartoonist Charles Addams and the gross stuff in the EC horror comics line. In my own fantasy-art I have imagined various […]

More, Yet!

I am re-reading and continuing to enjoy and be proud of my son David’s new book, Spectrums. It expresses a proper appreciation of everything (or as I call it sometimes, The Everything Becoming. But on contemplating this, I also intuited a further category he didn’t address: We can open our minds  with awe and fun […]

My “Shadow” Complex Cartoon Characters

“The Shadow” complex is the English word for what Jung called all those parts of the usually unconscious psyche that are repressed, that are incompatible with healthy self-esteem. Yet I am somewhat aware that I played with characters associated with this complex in some of my old drawings and cartoons. I’m a bit embarrassed about […]

My Books of the “Bible”

The world is so full of a number of things, I should think we might all be as happy as kings! Robert Louis Stephenson said something like that is his children’s poetry book, which suggests several things: (1) The author of many esteemed books can be simple as a child! (2) The world is indeed […]

My Karma

I’ve had it easy. No, Uncle Bud says, You were given the stresses and challenges you could handle, precisely calibrated to your talents and potentials. A small part of this judges—erroneously—and compares myself to the cultural ideal of the courageous and stoical Marine who takes on stresses of the training and the battlefield that would […]

My Offspringing Kidlings

I was feeling apologetic about my inability to really get into kids, stimulated by a comparison with Allee (my wife) and my daughter, who are more people people. Allee said, Your writings are you “offspring-ings” and I later had the thought, “Verily, the are my “kid-lings.” (Well, I didn’t say verily, but you get the […]

My Role Repertoire

Frank Sinatra, in one of his performed songs, “That’s Life,” sings: “I’ve been a puppet, a pirate, a pauper, a poet, a pawn and a king,” —and the song goes on. I realized I, too, have played many roles: I am a fairly good ballroom dancer—or at least I was—a folk and square dancer for […]

My Visions for the Future

I am a visionary. I don’t claim to be all that great at it, but it’s what I do: I envision what could be. In terms of Jung’s theory of temperament, I’m an intuitive type, I naturally think about things in terms of future possible implications. I’ve also been exposes to a bunch of ideas […]

Mythmaking (The Great Pumpkin)

Recently I saw this “Peanuts” comic strip about Charlie Brown encountering Linus in the pumpkin patch as the latter awaits the arrival of the “Great Pumpkin.” What struck me about this is the reminder that even surprisingly precocious and intelligent people can have weird notions. For example, Linus, whose character I played in the 2010 […]

No More Psychiatry for Me

I became a physician because it fascinated me. It was wonder-full—really! Biology is one of the shining sources of wonder for my mind, and I’m privileged to have studied enough to know that what I learned was only the beginning! But I turned 80 recently and I sort of retired 20 years ago—but now I’ve […]

Peace and Quiet

Ahhh. We have disguised our little withdrawal space as an inoffensive bedroom within a little seemingly ordinary house on a suburban street in a nondescript section of an ordinary town in a quiet and stable region of a relatively peaceful country on an ecologically stable (for now) planet in a solar system in mid-process—neither beginning […]

Performance Studies

Those who are more skilled at dramatization know this: Adding  a little bit of performance, self-consciousness, exaggeration—just a tiny bit, but enough for you to notice!—enough to be impressive, subtly. This is very influential! People who know this intuitively recognize that a little bit of theatre is effective, But it must me subtle enough to […]

Permutations of Seven

Permutation is a good word. It invites you to sensuously enter into the possibilities of the figure, to feel out how many ways it can play out. The word “permutation” invites my mind to cast loose of its bearings and float in a multi-dimensional space, making new connections, forming new “shapes” that really drift like […]

Playfulness Included

I realized after reading that previous post that supported the spirit of intellectual rigor and critical thinking that readers might perceive my wife and me as being serious thinkers. We are, indeed, and that is part of our spirituality as well as our lives. We talk about all manner of things with great seriousness—but that’s […]

Playing With the World

“The world is so full of a number of things: I’m sure we should all be as happy as kings!” So wrote Robert Louis Stevenson, a 19th century author and poet, in his “Child’s Garden of Verses.” (Indeed, making things rhyme by having them “sound” the same became a basis for poetry, which shifts intellectual […]

Popular Songs (1940-1980 plus or minus)

I realize that I have not kept up with modern music, with a few exceptions. I’ve found the lyrics before that period a bit insipid and after that interval bewildering. That means I’m dated, I fear. I’m reconciled to that, though I am always open to being invited to reconsider a piece. I was looking […]


I just opened to the fact that I’m not just growing older, but I’m getting old. (I’m 80.6 or thereabouts.) What this means to me:   1. My mind is going a little. I can’t recall facts as well as I used to. I’m still pretty sharp, but not how I used to be. It’s […]

Priorities: A Scale

A friend asked about my priorities in life. After some pondering, this was my response, in the form of a mini-essay, after some pondering. (Such questions are truly food for thought!) Well, I have a bucket list, things I want to do before I kick the bucket. Really, there are fuzzy boundaries. But still, consider […]

Protozoal Elves

I imagine that all life is suffused with alternative reality levels that give it energy. People aren’t the only beings with “auras,” and auras are the extensions into other dimensions of existence. It might be better to say that what we take to be “us” or “stuff” is actually also an extension into 3-Dimensional space […]


Revising my “bucket list”—i.e., the things I want to do before I kick the bucket. Here’s how I think about it. Let’s say there are a thousand things I might do, and let’s plot them on a spectrum from 1 for things I hate to do to 100 for things I love to do. Most […]

Rich Inner Life

I’m tempted to think that everyone has a rich inner life, but my wife says that’s not so. She asked me to think about it, so I did. First, I am reminded that what’s true for me is most definitely not so for others. There are many differences in temperament and other variables. My autobiography […]

Roz Chast’s Cartoon Anthology

This lady whose cartoons often appear in the New Yorker makes me smile and want to share so many of her creations. I can’t technically worship her, but I can witness to how much I like what she does. She speaks especially to a part of me that identifies with the ordinary and slightly timid, […]

School Supplies

For the first time in ages I haven’t shopped in stationery stores or drug stores for school supplies. I have enough to last me, and I won’t purchase more. This “came home” to me yesterday when I was at a Dollar Tree store, when in the past I would buy school supplies. No longer: I […]