Window and door
Our house needed replacement parts – a new (upper left) bedroom balcony door and a new (upper middle) studio window. Needless to say, Colleen wasn’t about to let me try to install the new ones. It was way too heavy (weight) a task for me to tackle. So, instead a couple of (small) guys came to do the job. Ha ha, these guys were good and this was not their first job. In one day, just one day, they removed and installed a door; and they removed a door, built a knee wall, and installed a double window. Slick! They don’t paint and spackle. Ok! I did it the next day. We matched paint and it was covered up. We have storage benches (brown). They are not made anymore. So, I built a bench the next day custom fit to the new height. A matching set of blinds will follow and you might never notice there was a door there before.
I hate power tools. In fact the spiffy nail gun popped one into my finger. Ouch! In all my years of surgery, I constantly had to use power tools in critical spots – no mistakes allowed. Since retirement, the table saw, router, and chop saw have been constant companion tools. Ok! Just do it. Fortunately, it has gone well. Meanwhile, I am used to finishing projects quickly. Brain surgery ain’t like auto repair, “The car will be ready next week, mam.” Nope, brain surgery with few exceptions is a one day completion too.
I just glanced up to see this fast-moving storm coming from the west. No doubt. We got the rain a few minutes later. No need for a weather warning or a weather report. We got the expected driving rain in sheets. Dramatic! Yes, it was. I’ve been trying to get a night star shot of the passing comet. Not on this night.
After the initial run – on water and toilet paper – it seems that the gods laughed. It couldn’t be the Republicans. It was all a hoax to them… Indeed, it was science fiction of my youth. You know, the disbelieving folks, laughing, till the monster ate their car. Folks were out and about in at least six states completely in denial as I write this about a couple month before posting. By now, I hope there is free access to TP. Come to think of it, maybe the Republicans made this sh*t up? Nah? It was short people. The last rolls were on the top shelf. Water? My cats throw up when they drink tap water. Dunno? So, we had to find bottled water. Crazy. Yup.
(Note: Meat, or, TP. YOU, choose. It ain’t over by a long shot. People are out and about. Armed protesters have been encouraged by our fearless leadership to stand in state capitals. What the f’k are you worried about. Remember when Bush Sr said, “It’s the economy, stupid.” No, it was Clinton’s campaign who coined the phrase against one term President Bush. It ain’t over and it’s not better. At all! Be afraid. Be….)
I guess it’s nice to keep looking back. There was a time when we were less cluttered. Ahem. Would that be: are we more or less organized now than once before? It’s interesting to see how things were and compare to now. No matter, that bare wall is not bare any longer.
I have two light fixtures casting feeble light onto the main room from about 16 feet above. Not my idea, it was the design of the retard architect who thought up this idiocy. (There were ample other examples in other places.) The room is a north facing room and so is in shadow most of the day. We need some light. I put in plenty of floor lamps and even a track light on my newly constructed bookcase. But those bulbs…. And then I read up on the new LED’s. Brilliant! I got a pair of 2500 lumen LED bulbs. Bright! And low wattage! What could go wrong. I could not get the bulbs in or out. They don’t make 16 foot ladders. Whatever! We got the bulbs in. it was not easy. I say again, not easy!! I tumbled from the ladder once. Only pride was injured. It scared the hell out of Colleen. Of course! The end result, (it was a long story), we got light. it’s better. Less worse. Yay! And LED’s, they will last for years and years – good, ‘cause by the next go around I will have misplaced the light bulb changer.
It breaks your heart. We drove by a house. A power backhoe was destroying an evergreen (holly?) tree. It just bashed the major dividing trunks and smashed them to the ground unceremoniously. I have been (my kids) admonished about being green. Destroying things, especially trees, is not in my psyche. I suppose this (cutting) was for good reason. You can’t make an omelet with breaking eggs… it still breaks me up to see destruction of nature.
Chicken or the egg
Which came first? Was the dent there or was it customized after the accident? I did a double take when I saw the back of this truck. That is Wile E. Coyote, right? I had trouble driving and taking the pic. No no, it wasn’t my driving. It was the rain that obscured my focusing. Ha! We got it. I got help. Colleen got the shot. Then we continued to speculate.
In the middle of the end of impeachment trial in congress… someone let their feelings be known. We live in a republican neighborhood. Trump signs are common. Good. It’s nice to see. Obtuse? You bet. I polled my only republican friend who’s not paying attention and doesn’t give a shit. So, I was as uninformed as before. … November’s coming. … and game of thrones has never been so apropos.
I like the action. There are telephoto effect images to make it look more crowded. And there are people to populate the beach with activities like kite flying and fishing. It’s all interesting. Meanwhile we can stroll unimpeded. I would admit I miss the bikinis but Colleen would pinch me. Hey! Right about now it’s new year’s and they are readying to go into the ocean for new year’s day. Nope, not me.
We almost moved… not. But, there was one Saturday when the water rose and we didn’t know it. We are at sea level. And storms can come and raise the water level. But, on this particular day we were caught unaware. No rain and no storm, all the weather was out to sea. And the flooding was impressive. And the beach was gone. The water was right up to the dunes. And I thought that if the sea rose – with climate change – we would be underwater, and, perhaps we should be gone (from the neighborhood) before that sad day. Colleen had a new place picked out before the day was done. Scotland or Maine, pick. I’m sticking – for now. Packing is too nerve wracking.
It’s been done
Mike and Jen took us to the traveling “wall.” It’s ¾ scale to the original wall in Washington DC. All the names are there. the “picture” is the reflection. I’ve done it. I did it. I discovered it on my own. I discovered a lot of people did it before me as they will do it after me. I am of an age where the contemporaries to the Vietnam war are diminishing more rapidly. There’s nothing pithy to say about the memorial but one thinks about how many lives on the wall were never fulfilled. It moves me to think of what might have been and the cost we have paid.
Perspective. I have written about this in the past. It’s not so easy to achieve. I did it again. The beach looks like it’s teeming with people. That would be telescopic perspective bringing the fore and background crowding together. There weren’t as many people as the picture implies. Mermaids! That is what struck me about this beach cover-up. Ha! She made me look! It was the end of summer weekend at the beach.
We went down to the beach at sunset. The beach faces east; there’s no real sunset view. It had rained the day before. No big deal, it rains. But we are entering fall and the turbulent waves had done a number on the beach sand. There was a three-foot ledge from wave erosion overnight. A lot of sand had been washed away. There goes millions $$$ in beach replenishment. The towers in the distance are the bridge at the inlet. The waves speak for themselves. Our otherwise tranquil beach was roiling. I have often read about telephoto perspective. “It” compresses the scene to make things look crowded upon themselves. I did it! With a point and shoot! Sometimes, I surprise myself.
I have been struggling to get wave pictures. My timing… is poor. I just figured out how to get a higher % of good shots. Pan! If you don’t know what that is, sorry. Stupid! Me! I should’ve been doing this all along. Pan the wave as it breaks. Voila! (Panning is moving the camera and following the action as you press the shutter. Move the camera in the direction – right or left – as the wave breaks.) Oh boy! This was a silly lightbulb moment for me.
I’m workin’ on it
Waves. I am trying to catch the “curl.” We’re not talking Hawaii. I have no lofty surfer goal. But… well, I’ve been pretty hit and miss to catch a good wave shot. It finally dawned on me to pan the camera. As the wave breaks, I pan and I got a much higher number of shots of the waves breaking. It’s work in progress. A movie would probably be challenging too. Hey! I’m working all of this out on my own. It was another “Duh!” moment. How did I never think of panning before? Afterwards, I feel silly for not thinking. If not for an occasional “Aha!” moment photography wouldn’t be so challenging.
This pair lined up perpendicular to the incoming wave and backed their way onto the beach. As you can see they took a tumble. I saw it coming. I got one shot. They both fell out. It seemed that was the plan. I think you could be more elegant. I’m ok. I got a shot. Embarrassed? Not me. Maybe, they will work on better technique?
I already have a tomato picture. My complaint is that by the time they are ripe it’s anticlimactic. The farmer’s markets are full of ripe tomatoes. And, mine come ripe too many at a time. It’s a nice problem to have. I should not complain. This is my first time with sweet banana peppers. They are good too. They are a bit less fragile. There are some jalapenos out there. I will save them for the kids. They like it hot.
It reminds me of the civil war. But no, it’s something else. These figures in front of a restaurant represent? It appears random. Maybe the owner acquired them and simply painted them whimsically. We would not have seen them had I not been stopped at a traffic light. And then, I noticed my camera battery was dead. Just two shots.
We saw a beach ad on a billboard. The beach, our beach, was full of umbrellas. Wow! It was crowded. Not really, the picture makes the beach look worse than it is. There’s plenty of space. Really! The umbrellas cover a lot of area. There’s plenty of sand to go around. I kid you not. Now go away!
Ripe red juicy! Imagine that! I watered the plant that bore these beauties. Proud! I can hardly believe my green thumb. Yes, they taste as good as they look!
I’d like to remember 9/11. I got married (the first time) on that date. And now, it’s completely different because of terrorism. The raw pain and anguish has finally subsided this year. Life has moved on. Like other historical horrors, this event has lost its edge. I suppose for an entire generation it will have about the same historical meaning as “Pearl Harbor” which occurred years before my birth. In past years I would post a pic from that fateful day in 2001. Now, it was the beach on that day last year. This year I will be in Scotland. Nothing to note yet, I schedule posts in advance because of my busy schedule. I haven’t forgotten the day…
Oh! I am reminded that we are not neat. Well, about once a year… for company coming to visit. Ordinary! It’s a state of chaos. Our life. We live it. What you see are ongoing projects. We fiber. At least I do and Colleen does and has for quite some time. I spin now. It’s by default. The only way we could ever convert fleece to yarn is with my help. We simply are overwhelmed with too much raw material. Meanwhile we got company. Things were clean for a moment. If you host five little kids, it’s sure to be a mess, just a different sort. Neat for a day: that’s the motto.
This was another joke. We found it in the nursery near the end of the spring planting season. It’s taller than me. There were tomatoes on it. I figured the cost per tomato vs the cost. I came to less than the retail price at the farmer’s market. We had a lot of fun with the plant but the joke has since faded. Some of the family liked eating the tomatoes. The blight took most of the leaves. The top wilted and the whole plant wilted shorter and shorter. Tomato worms provided more color photos. All in all I would not repeat the joke. The other Walmart (special) tomato plant is thriving without blight but there are few tomatoes. Me ‘n tomatoes? We are not a match.
After the first, I kept at it, moved on, and tried to improve. It’s mileage. The more you spin, the better you feel the fiber in your hands. Ha ha. It’s a zen thing. And I got better. Of course, the first was worst, so there was only better to go. And indeed, I am. Ha! I am my own worst critic. It’s only that honesty is a necessary trait in order to improve. I’m not prime time yet. But, there is a great promise. No, one cannot achieve what the industrial mechanical machinery can spin. But, I am happy with imperfections of handmade, custom made home spun yarn. I suspect time will tell as I get better. We have a good many spinning wheels both antique and modern. At least they are all in use.