Monday, November 20, 2017

Episode 395 (11-20-17): Thanks for the Water - Thanksgiving 2017 Edition

CLICK HERE to listen to episode audio (3:06).

Transcript of audio, notes on the audio, photos, and additional information follow below.

All Web addresses mentioned were functional as of 11-17-17.


From the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean, this is Virginia Water Radio for the week of November 20, 2017.

This week, to celebrate Thanksgiving, we hear from a series of guest voices, all naming something about water for which they’re thankful.   Have a listen for about 70 seconds to their choices, accompanied by “Bass Fisherman’s Reel,” by Williamburg musician Timothy Seaman.

VOICES and MUSIC - ~72 sec
~When I think of water, I think of life. I love the quote by Benjamin Franklin: “When the well is dry, [we will] know the worth of water.”
~I am thankful for the life water makes possible, including the life-enhancing connections it creates between people and communities.
~I’m thankful that I get to do water quality and water education as part of my job.
~The right to water is important for health, recreation, and agriculture.
~I’m thankful for the water that carries my kayak.
~For paddling a placid, calm stretch of river, knowing that at the end of that placid stretch, there will be a beautiful little waterfall.
~For the river by my house.
~For frogs calling in the rain.
~Photosynthesis and plant growth.
~Summer rain, thunderstorms, clouds, and swimming.
~The brilliant fall colors that a wetter autumn brings.
~The rich diversity of living things that water supports.
~Water is the most important product of the forest.
~Hey, I’m thankful that I finally got my well fixed. It’s pretty hard to live without water, and it’s pretty good water.

Thanks to these Virginians for reminding us of the diversity, utility, necessity, and vitality of our common wealth of water.

In recognition of the atmospheric source of all these water values, we close with a few seconds of “Flying Cloud Reel,” by the Blacksburg- and Roanoke-based band No Strings Attached.  Thanks to them and to Timothy Seaman for permission to use this week’s music. Happy Thanksgiving!

MUSIC - ~10 sec


For more Virginia water sounds, music, and information, visit us online at, or call us at (540) 231-5463.   Virginia Water Radio is produced by the Virginia Water Resources Research Center, part of Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment.  Thanks to Stewart Scales for his banjo version of Cripple Creek to open and close the show.  In Blacksburg, I’m Alan Raflo, thanking you for listening, and wishing you health, wisdom, and good water.


Voices were recorded by Virginia Water Radio on November 15-16, 2017, in Blacksburg with faculty and staff of the Virginia Tech College of Natural Resources and Environment; used with permission.  Virginia Water Radio thanks these co-workers for their participation.

“Flying Cloud Reel,” by No Strings Attached, is from the 1999 album “In the Vinyl Tradition—Volume I,” from Enessay Music, used with permission.  This music was also used in Episode 315, 5-9-16, on sandpipers.  More information about No Strings Attached is available online at

Click here if you’d like to hear the full version (1 min./11 sec.) of the “Cripple Creek” arrangement/performance by Stewart Scales that opens and closes this episode.  More information about Mr. Scales and the group New Standard, with which Mr. Scales plays, is available online at


Here’s a photographic sample of some of the water resources for which Virginians can be thankful.

Snow in Blacksburg, Va., December 30, 2016.
Rainbow over Blacksburg, Va., March 21, 2017.
Shooting Star and Bishop’s Cap wildflowers beside a small stream in Blacksburg, Va., April 28, 2017.
Clouds over Blacksburg, Va., July 1, 2017.
Thompson Creek from U.S. Route 39 in Bath County, Va., July 22, 2017.


Scott Cleary, “The Ethos Aquatic: Benjamin Franklin and the Art of Swimming,” Early American Literature, Vol. 46, No. 1, 2011, accessed at the Project MUSE Web site of Johns Hopkins University, online at  The Franklin quote in this episode is from Poor Richard’s Almanac in 1746.


All Water Radio episodes are listed by category at the Index link above (  See particularly the “Overall Importance of Water” subject category.

Following are links to previous episodes for Thanksgiving.
Episode 189, 11/25/13 – another series of guest voices with thanks for aspects of water.
Episode 291, 11/23/15 – recognizing various kinds of music related to water.
Episode 343, 11/21/16 – on the Wild Turkey.


The episode may help with Virginia 2013 Music SOLs at various grade levels that call for “examining the relationship of music to the other fine arts and other fields of knowledge.”

The episode may also help with the following Virginia 2010 English SOLs:

Reading Theme
8.4, 9.3, 10.3, 11.3, and 12.3 – knowledge of word origins, analogies, and figurative language to extend vocabulary development within authentic texts.

This episode may also help with the following Virginia 2010 Science SOLs:

Grades K-6 Earth Patterns, Cycles, and Change Theme
3.9 – Water cycle, including sources of water, energy driving water cycle, water essential for living things, and water limitations and conservation.

Grades K-6 Earth Resources Theme
4.9 - Va. natural resources, including watersheds, water resources, and organisms.

Grades K-6 Life Processes Theme
K.7 – basic needs and processes of plants and animals.
1.5 - animals’ basic needs and distinguishing characteristics.

Grades K-6 Living Systems Theme
6.7 - natural processes and human interactions that affect watershed systems; Va. watersheds, water bodies, and wetlands; health and safety issues; and water monitoring.

Earth Science Course
ES.6 – renewable vs. non-renewable resources (including energy resources).

The episode may also help with the following Virginia 2015 Social Studies SOLs:

Grades K-6 Economics Theme
2.8 – natural and capital resources described.
3.8 – understanding of cultures and of how natural, human, and capital resources are used for goods and services.

World Geography Course
WG.2 - how selected physical and ecological processes shape the Earth’s surface, including climate, weather, and how humans influence their environment and are influenced by it.
WG.4 - types and significance of natural, human, and capital resources.

Virginia’s SOLs are available from the Virginia Department of Education, online at

Following are links to previous Water Radio episodes (various topics) designed especially for certain K-12 grade levels.
Episode 249 (1-19-15) – on freezing and ice, for kindergarten through 3rd grade;
Episode 250 (1-26-15) – on boiling, for kindergarten through 3rd grade;
Episode 255 (3-2-15) – on density, for 5th and 6th grade;
Episode 282 (9-21-15) – on living vs. non-living, for kindergarten;
Episode 309 (3-28-16) – on temperature regulation in animals, for kindergarten through 12th grade; Episode 332 (9-12-16) – on dissolved gases, especially dissolved oxygen in aquatic habitats, for 5th grade.