Bridges are burning all around us; bridges to responses that might have mitigated the already brutal (and just beginning) ravages of Peak Oil; bridges to reduce the likelihood of war and famine; bridges to avoid our selectively chosen suicide; bridges to change at least a part of energy infrastructure and consumption; bridges to becoming something better than we are or have been; bridges to non-violence. Those bridges are effectively gone.
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When bridges seem to give way, we fall into Christ's safe arms, true bridge, and not into hopelessness. It is safe to trust! We can be too weak to go on because His strength is made perfect in utter brokenness and nail-pierced hands help up. It is safe to trust! We can give thanks in everything because there's a good God leading, working all things into good. It is safe to trust! The million bridges behind us may seem flattened to the earthly eye, but all bridges ultimately hold, fastened by nails. It is safe to trust.
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Vulgarized knowledge characteristically gives birth to a feeling that everything is understandable and explained. It is like a system of bridges built over chasms. One can travel boldly ahead over these bridges, ignoring the chasms. It is forbidden to look down into them; but that, alas, does not alter the fact that they exist.
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The songs sort of come out spontaneously and it'll take me awhile to figure out what exactly is happening lyrically, what kind of story I'm telling. Then I start building little bridges - word bridges - to make everything go from one point to the next point to the next point until it reaches the end.
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He only wishes there were something that would heal the scars in his mind, which he can still feel. He sees his mind now as an archipelago of islands that he labors to build bridges between - and while he's had great success engineering the most spectacular of bridges, he suspects there are some islands that he'll never reach.
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Typically, highway bridges have about 50 years. But over in England, they have iron bridges approaching 250 years. In France, there are Roman aqueducts that are approaching 2,000 years old. So a bridge can last a very long time if it's built properly in the first place and then maintained properly.
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The I-95 bridges were built in the early 1960s and are now more than 50 years old. The same vintage as the I-35 bridge that collapsed in Minnesota back in 2007, killing 13 people and injuring 145. The antiquated Skagit River Bridge in Washington state that collapsed last May after a truck hit one of the trusses was even older. And it's not just bridges. According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, 32 percent of the major roads in America are now in poor condition and in need of major repairs.
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I don't play the lottery. I don't care what my horoscope says. I think most things about the world could be improved if people thought more about what they're doing. When someone gets upset with their computer, I tend to side with the computer. I think art is overrated, and bridges are underrated. In fact, I don't understand why bridges aren't art. It seems to me they're penalized for having a use. If I make a bridge that ends in midair, that's a sculpture. But put it between two landmasses and let it ferry two hundred thousand cars per day and it's infrastructure. That makes no sense.
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Every person you meet has been assigned to play a role in your story as you are assigned to play one in someone else's. I often say that the people we come across can be one of the four kinds. They can be like pebbles, fountains, quagmire or bridges. Pebbles are those who you meet commonly and in abundance. They do not facilitate anything great but they help you continue walking on this journey of life. Everyone you cross in life without really connecting with them are pebbles. Then there are fountains - who spring water of happiness on you. They bring positivity and joy; they nourish your soul and irrigate the seeds of good thoughts. Your friends, well-wishers are all fountains. Then, on the other end of the spectrum, you have quagmires. These are the people who cause you pain. Now, even some pebbles may have caused you pain as it happens if you tread on a barbed pebble but the difference is that quagmires do that on purpose. They pull you down, induce fear and negativity by discouraging you and worrying you. They will not let you move on - that's why they keep you bogged down in your failures. Finally, the rarest ones are the bridges - they connect you to unchartered ground that you wouldn't have reached on your own. They unite you to your destiny. With them, your plane of consciousness expands, you see things you have not seen before; your life becomes more aware, more enlightened. Your parents, your teachers and anyone who touches your life and transcends it into something more beautiful - they are all bridges.
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(2002) In Rome, month upon month, I struggled with how to structure the book about my father (He already had the water, he just had to discover jars). At one point I laid each chapter out on the terrazzo floor, eighty-three in all, arranged them like the map of an imaginary city. Some of the piles of paper, I imagined, were freestanding buildings, some were clustered into neighborhoods, and some were open space. On the outskirts, of course, were the tenements-abandoned, ramshackled. The spaces between the piles were the roads, the alleyways, the footpaths, the rivers. The bridges to other neighborhoods, the bridges out... In this way I could get a sense if one could find their way through the book, if the map I was creating made sense, if it was a place one would want to spend some time in. If one could wander there, if one could get lost.
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