Eight Legged Architects: Spider Silk and Shelter

Nature At Work

Strength and Flexibility. Construction work done right at its ultimate level.

Spider webs serve different purposes. The most well known is that a spider web is created to attract its prey. Think big and you get big results. The larger the web the more promise at snagging insects. The spider web is comparable to steel, relative to weight. Efficient in gathering food using its glandular sticky silk for trapping or wrapping its prey yet, can be energetically consuming in the production of protein required to make silk.

Hydration. Droplets of glue form orb weaver spiders sticky webs. Self-made hydrogel aggregate of organic and non-organic compounds and water produce this glue. Humidity keeps the silk soft and tacky.

Sustainability. Spiders are able to ingest and digest their silk and recycle it.

Spider Web Production Inspiration.

Flexible, light, strong and water resistant: Medical devices, parts, supplies are created for products that need to be stretchy and/or sticky such as, artificial tendons, ligaments, implants, sutures, adhesives and bandages. Protein in spider aides in textile design and protective products such as body armor (bullet proof vests), athletic helmets and airbags due to its flexibility and its lightweight abilities.

Spiders are natural born contractors, structural master engineers and architects. Always changing, adapting to its environment and redesigning to produce the best functional design that serves its purpose. Architecture is about adapting to the environment, design and function. Mother nature offers her little workers in order to produce and sustain their habits and to capture their food. As architects we learn from nature and the spider web has allowed for us to study and incorporate its strength and beauty in the building industry in providing strong and sustainable shelter without compromising the environment. What we must remember is to be conscious and not to destroy or deplete our natural resources and maintain ecological balance. There is structure all around our natural habitat.

Architecture and Nature

Architecture teaches us to observe. To the architect a camera is a great tool. It allows you to see what the naked eye may observe but the camera details. To look for what nature provides so that ideas and design are created in producing a great building. Part of the architectural process is to see these things, for all around us creativity is abundant. From the inside of a red pepper a cozy seating area, the interior of a cave or even the shape of a floor plan may be evident. From an exotic flower with holes, patterns for exterior cladding or simply a funnel may be created for light to pass through thereby, forming an interesting light pattern on a wall. Wild mushrooms may shape what is to be of a modern roof top and the formation of several mushroom patches along a green field can be the embodiment for what is to be a community of buildings with rounded roof structures and how they may be laid out. Architecture is an art and to have an intent behind what you design is good practice for a successful project to manifest. There is no limit to the generosity that nature bestows upon us. This is why I can never get bored creating for that is the beauty architecture gives me and how the architect produces our environment. The Golden Ratio allows for the composition to be aesthetically pleasing. By placing elements you see you can divide the subject in perfect proportions by using the Golden mean, the Golden spiral and the Golden Triangle. Something present in all we see in nature.

Experience Travel

Abroad and within.  Travel is not only a physical experience but also a creative journey. As we travel to new places our travel experience becomes a deeper and more meaningful path.  Follow that path whether it be into a Gothic Cathedral, a labyrinth or a drive through a country road full of lavender.  It’s sure to awaken that desire to see more and take you to places you never thought imaginable.  When we travel we stumble across places that sometimes feels like deja vu, although you know this is the first time you have ever visited that place.  Sometimes we run into the most mysterious places that just resonate so deeply in you that unless you visit the place you may never have had that feeling. You never know where that path will lead you.


Even if the road is a winding path take it and it will open up to a more luminous window.

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Mother Nature is to be respected so why don’t we respect humanity?

I have read that it will cost approximately $160 billion to address the destruction left behind in Texas, due to Hurricane Harvey.  Mother Nature is to be respected so why don’t we respect humanity?  I find it unbelievable, after all these massive hurricanes we have had in the past 25 years, that virtually every time, rebuilding continues with the same methodology in other areas outside of South Florida.  South Florida learned its lesson 25 years ago after Hurricane Andrew took a toll on the South Florida community.  We basically have the strictest building codes in the country now, because we considered how important it was to keep the safety of the public at hand and our building codes continue to become stricter. It is bewildering when we see wood construction along coastal areas after such devastating events.  It isn’t that wood construction can’t withstand water and wind but it is the power and magnitude of these hurricanes we have all been experiencing, that the type of rebuilding must be considered.  Therefore, we must go to the experience others have had to face and endure to learn from.   Building with concrete block, concrete and impact doors and windows makes more sense along these coastal communities.

Wood has its limitations, as all materials do.  It is important that the public understand that certain materials function better in different areas.  We build with wood and brick in the North because they are colder climates and these materials are readily available due to the proximity of forests.  However, we must think sustainability, as well.  Are we doing justice to the people or the environment, or neither?  How many more does it take for us to understand that certain things work in some areas and others, in other areas.  It is unsustainable anyway due to deforestation.  Waste! Our lives are a consumption based economy, which is unsustainable.  Therefore, we should really consider what is important to all of us and not just ourselves.  Another concern that has always bothered me is why build in wood in tornado areas.  Why not build a stronger foundation and skeleton?  Think of it this way, “Our human body is made up of a skeleton which protects our organs and without this skeleton we literally would collapse for there would be nothing to sustain our body”.  So why would we build the way we do when Mother Nature continually keeps on telling us not to mess with her.  It is common sense and she could not be more explicit for all we have to do is look at the photos posted everywhere .

As Harvey has passed and rebuilding is in its presence, we now face Irma and what she can possibly inflict.  Thanks to the continual hard work of the South Florida community, the care and concern our local leaders have depicted, their organization and their fast responses and concerns we have much to be thankful for and it is these actions that together we all reach out and help one another.

Humanity learns from trial and error.  We are visual learners, so the photos of devastation could not be clearer.  So, what can we do?  Ask questions, become informed for an informed public is an educated public.  It is the people of our country that make the world go around.  We must protect them because in doing so we help each other.  We can in turn, make it a more efficient and sustainable place for all of us.

Super Girls and Halos: My Companions on the Quest for Truth, Justice, and Heroic Virtue

I would like to share with my readers a wonderful book that shall be coming out this September 8th, on the day of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Super Girls and Halos: My Companions on the Quest for Truth, Justice, and Heroic Virtue by Maria Morera Johnson award winning author of “My Badass Book of Saints”. 

If you have read “My Badass Book of Saints”, then you know this next book is sure to be as exciting and fun as her first.  Johnson is an eloquent writer, creative and full of imagination.  She keeps you intrigued and captures her audiences attention from beginning to end.  In her new book she focuses on heroines and unlikely combinations of saints and our favorite science fiction, comic and fantasy characters, all of whom have influenced her life and deepened her understanding of the Church’s cardinal virtues.

She examines the good virtues of these popular heroines and how she admired them but also recognizes how exciting and interesting the lives of saints were and how their lives are also worth imitating.  This association between heroines, saints, cardinal virtues and Our Lady of Guadalupe is what I find interesting.

You can visit her site at http://mariamjohnson.com/i-have-this-book-yall/

In celebration of her new book she will be giving away a Wonder Woman plush doll since she is one of the comic heroine characters in her first chapter that she came to admire.

And follow the rules below and enter to win a t-shirt of the Blessed Mother being the original Wonder Woman.  NerdyCatholicTees.com  Have fun and enjoy her book!


library wall

Our eyes make of what we wish to see.

We see a library full of literature and education.

Doors partially opening inviting us to come in and experience this knowledge.

However, this is nothing more than an architectural model, within a picture frame, of a library with fake books and two passages at either side leading nowhere except the imaginary.  An optical illusion.

They are mirror reflections giving us a false perception of reality.

Our lives are filled with illusions. What is real and what is not.  It is easy to be mislead.

After all, life is an illusion!

Munich Germany Train Station

Munich Germany’s Central Train Station’s Location is for the Adventurous & Simple Travelers

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Imagine eating the most delicious ham and cheese or Camembert and cucumber sandwich between two scrumptious all grain wheat breads in a train station, as you observe the excitement of travelers rushing past you on their way to their destinations in Munich Germany. In the meantime, you have been captivated by all the energy and you still have not stepped outside the station to a world of pure adventure, history and culture that awaits you, in this great city, all the while in a train station. You are fascinated by its grandeur, diversity of shops, food, its function and the smell.

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As We Contemplate Some Peace and Freedom

20160911_082858The water ever so calm

My Thoughts so clear

The seagulls breeze by spanning their wings

Free at Last!

The boats idle in the wake

The buoy is left behind as the engines roar pass them in total excitement, into the open sea, its vastness, in infinite directions.

Ah, Freedom!

The coconut trees stand overlooking the water , as if they were guarding their territory with such pride, knowing that where they stand is such a divine place for they know the greatness of their being, their nature.

The sun glitters on the water in the horizon.

Its warmth illuminates my being.

You can almost hear it sizzle on the water while a bird crows in the background, reaching out to its fellow mates as they are all too thrilled, and respond back.

Oh yes, free to communicate to one another in their language. Free, to express in a song.

A fish flies out of the water in total joy as it swiftly dives in and wanders on.

The flight!


A breeze begins to blow past my face as I hear the branches of the palm trees briskly brush up against each other.

The smell of the air

The peace!

Endless Lifetimes

As time passes, I feel I have loved you in endless lifetimes.


As I watch my heart flow with the clear water stream, I can’t help but wonder where our heart has wandered.   As it glides through new adventures, where is it going to now?

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The passage is clear, surrounded by all of God’s fruits as it meanders through the green brushes sweeping over the water, going with the flow.  Allowing itself just to be in the NOW.  Whatever happens it will keep pumping towards full happiness and LOVE.  We have been through many lifetimes together, which has brought us to this reality.  God only knows how many thousands of lifetimes it took to reach this moment in our lives.

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So the heart continues to flow with all its ups and downs through this illusion we call life.


Where we are headed now, God only knows.  I can only say that the ride has been  fulfilling and await the endless Love this era has in store for us.


As the heart finds its Truth.