Daily Archives: February 26, 2010

What is that ugly header?

This Sunday, 28 February 2010, I officially retire from Federal Government service. I am smack dab in the middle of the Baby Boom, but very lucky to retire from my, I hope, first life at the young age of 55.  As I ponder my choices for organizing my second life, I thought, what the heck, I should blog on what I seem to know something about–being a recovering Fed, although I reserve the right to write on other things that interest me.

So of what is this picture? Ah it is a picture I took about a year ago of the Mediterranean pine caterpillar, known as the procesionaria in Spain. If you’re hiking in Spain or France in pine forests in the spring you will see long trains of these caterpillars, they can be yards long, crawling across paths. They are blind I think and get very confused if the line is broken by a thoughtless mountain biker for example. What protects them from too many attacks is the poison they emit that can sicken your pets and small children. Here is a good resource on these little critters.

And I see them in some ways as a metaphor for many federal government executives, of which I was one.  The linear approach, the following (not always blind…but sometimes), and the defense mechanisms when threatened. More later…