Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Things at the office were quiet. Get my battle plan about the next few days together and that's a wrap.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
I catch up on my email and call it a night.
More Later .....
Saturday, December 27, 2008
I arrive at the airport ~10h00 and no one is at the Continental Gate. I press the button, nope. I'm finally told they are just finishing their morning coffee and will be out in a couple moments. 10h15 there was a swarm of activity and they setup inspection tables etc. They inspect my checked bag that I had so carefully packed and in the process of helping the girl close my bag I caught my finger nail on the zipper and torn part of it off .... OWWWWWW!!!!.... I get a concha (a yummy sweet bun) and a double espresso, and go into the secured area.
They inspect all my carryons and confiscate 4 AA batteries that I had in my fanny pack...WTF, the fanny pack cleared Canadian and American Customs as is .... ahh well. I grab a can of mineral water while I'm waiting in the gate area. Finally the Imigration booth opens and I get cleared and now just have to wait for my boarding call. I notice in one of the papers they were questioning the cost of the festival of lights (~20million pesos) compared to the benifits of tourism. I didn't read the article since I'm just not that useful in spanish. There are a whack of kids under 10 running around screaming at the top of their lungs, please god don't let them be on my flight.
Boarding time and they re-open all my carry ons?! WTF!! I get boarded, DAMN, the kids are on the plane, this is gonna be a long loud flight I can feel it. The plane is an Embraer 145, same as plane comming down, and it's full but atleast I'm in the row of singles. There was the cutie on the plan be she was a couple rows ahead of me and engrossed in her magazines. About an hour into the flight this 5 or 6 year old starts screaming at the top of her lungs trying to get her dads attention, and it continues until we land an IAH, wheres my dramamine. I thought the babies were going to be the issue nope, was the yard apes.
Friday, December 26, 2008
On route to the park I see a mamey vendor, I shout mamey, take note of the location but we didn't stop, D'OH!!! We make our way to Tangamanga Park.
Tangamanga Park, is San Luis' equivalent of Central Park, or Stanley Park etc. People running, an RC Plane/Car area, BMX Track, tennis courts etc. It's mostly irrigated so it's an nice green oasis in the middle of the mexican desert. They also have a botanical garden of the native flora of the state. We stroll around the garden, and then head out, we get a couple of frozen fruit bars (I forget which type, something we normally don't see here ... sniff.) Now to find that mamey cart. Nope, gone, no sign of him, I'm left wanting. I'm still kicking myself, I should have bought more mamey that first time.
We get back to the house enjoy our fruit bar and then clean the house. Out we go, for lunch, mariscos y tostadas. Yummy, A large seafood cocktail with a splash of salsa and advocado. Sooo goood. Why can't we get food like this backhome. MickeyDees or BurgerKing is just not the same. Fastfood that is fast and flavourful and nutritious.
A little more cleaning, now as each room meets mama's approval I snap off the photos.Unfortunately we never got mama's room upto scratch... ahhh welll. Supper time and the quest for Tripitas, tripe tacos. We find the place, yeaaaaahhhh!! So Good, Nelvin and I need seconds. I've noticed the sodas I've been drinking here in Mexico are much less sweet than stuff in Canada and the US. Come to think of it the cereal I ate as well. Stupid yanks and the high fructose corn syrup ( watch King Corn.)
Thursday, December 25, 2008
I do photos of Marcela, Nevlin, and Cristina as well as Estefania in the park across the street. It's great to see Cristina with her family.
Back to the kitchen I prepare potato pancakes with capers, smoked salmon, sour cream, minced onion and parsley. Mama had sent her skillet back to Monterrey, D'OH!! We find a smaller skillet in the house, and manage to make do, it just takes longer to cook all of the pancakes. Everyone loved them so it was worth the work.
Most of the group heads to the festival of lights, while I baby sit Estef.
Another great day, too bad my time is comming to an end.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
We clean up from breakfast and it's time to make the bacalao. I get the basic tomato sauce going and then enlist the help of Isaac to be my sous-chef. Shredding the salt cod takes a long time, but we do it. It simmers for a while, then we shut off the heat. I head back to the hotel to get cleaned up for the evening.
When I return, the pork is on and the house smells amazing. While everyone else is doing their thing I head over to another mercado and picked up a pointsettia. Luis arrives with his family, and now we get supper on the fire. I takes forever to get the water boiling to make the spaghetti, but we get it. Mama makes, this amazing punch with poached fruit. Supper was spaghetti with garlic butter, Apple salad, bacalao, bollitos, and slow roasted pork with a parsley.
After supper, we did a gift exchange. They got me a cookbook of typical mexican cuisine (in spanish) it will take me a while to make my way through it. It's a cool book, and has some history of food in mexico as well.
Overall another amazing day....
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
As the cabbie takes us to the mercado Cristina asks him about rat stew. He was less than enthusiastic, if the locals aren't up for it, it's probably not good for me and my tender tummy. I get some "Queso de Tuna", basically fruit leather made from cactus fruit. I like it, Cristina's not such a big fan. I finally find some souvenirs for people. We walk to the next mercado, it's full of homeopathic stuff, and I find a couple more souvenirs. One of the merchants had a couple of pet horned lizards. We walk out and hit the street mercado that I was at yesterday. After picking up a couple of odds-and-sods we cab it back to the house.
I head back to the Sorianas to get everything I need for Bacalao, I end up with canned tomatoes since I didn't like any of the fresh ones. I also get what I need for making some potato pancakes.
Isaac prepared a couple of potatoe fritatas that are typical spanish fair, one onions, the other ham and tuna. They were very nice, I'll have to make them at home for myself.
Back to the hotel, tomorrow will be a busy day.
Monday, December 22, 2008
An hour and a half in, I get to the church I used as a landmark. Unfortunately there was a wedding in progress when I arrived, so I didn't spend too much time. I try to take a couple of HDR sequences since the church is in shadow and backlight by the midday sun. I head off to the next. Again I tried a few HDR sequences, and off on my way.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Today is a quiet day, we ate left overs from the yesterdays fiesta, and then spent the day socializing, as a family. We played some cards, and wrap the day up.
Today my tummy is a little soft, but nothing to get worried about, I'll just add an additional acidophilus cap to my regiment.
I love this place, and I love these people ....
Saturday, December 20, 2008
OK, I'll just hang in the lobby, there is a lady with a cute little 5 month old, so I amuse myself. I was thinking, should I run to the taqueira for a snack, or locate something other than instant coffee, but I fear, my ride will be waiting for me and we will be late. Turns out someone decided to get her hair done starting at noon.... about 13h00 I start getting concerned since I really don't know all the plans for the day since I just do and follow what I'm told.
Finally, one of Cristina's cousins and I hop a cab and book it to the church. I totally missed everyone getting gussied up, but I made it to the church with 5 minutes to spare... grumble. There are a number of families there and more or less it's an assembly line. There is the church photographer following the priest, a nice older chap shooting film, and the assorted people from each of the other families. Things were a bit crowded but I managed.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Thursday, December 18, 2008
YEG to MSPIt's -21 and far too early, I forget there is a second 5:00 durring the day. My bags are packed and I've called for a cab to get me to the airport. I waited for 15 minutes and the cab finally arrived. It's dark and there was an abundance of ice crystals in the air. The cabbie is happy for an airport run to start the day ( ~$50 CAD fare.) We start heading down Calgary Trail and he suggests a detour to 91st claiming issues on further south -- in retrospect I think he was just trying to pad the meter -- so we cut over to 91st via the Whitemud, the streets were in ok winter conditions but the dude is driving a little more conservative that I expected, but ok. Then we had to stop for gas, freaking moron. My 90 minute buffer is quickly eroding as this idiot is fussing around.
I finally get to the Edmonton International (YEG) and check in, the flight is full because weather on each of the coasts has caused issues, NWA was picking up the slack so the flight was full. The A319 was a cattle car and I got stuck in a middle seat and was sitting beside the African Lady on route to who knows where ( I suspect NYC and then ??) Unfortunately she didn't speak English, or French, or Spanish, Swedish so communication was very difficult between her, myself and the airline staff. I'm barely functional in any language either, but I can ask a few questions and get myself food or drink in a couple ways. Eventually through a mixture of mime and charades the lady and I were able to at least get her beverages etc. She was wearing the most exquisite gold jewelry, and I wish I had unpacked my camera from the overhead bins... hindsight... ahh well.
I hop onto my next A319, again a middle seat (sigh.....) There is the cute little Carribean girl with a rainbow of colours of berettes in her hair and her dad in the row in front of me. My aislemates, some younger dude, and the old rancher.
The Rancher was very interesting, I looked at his mitts and said "Those look like the hands of a rancher." He got this big grin on his face and said they sure are. So we spent then next couple of hours chatting. He was from Montana and on his way to visit his kids. His ranch was 70miles west of Great Falls, but he has long since retired (he was in his late 80s). His wife was from Banff (smallish world eh!?) Before he converted to raising Angus, he sold his Simmental herd to a rancher near High Prairie, so he was no stranger to Albertans. He also tried a small herd of Canchim, but ultimately ended up raising Angus.
My other aislemate slept until ~25 minutes out of IAH so didn't interact with him much. Unfortunately for me there was this poor woman behind me with a little snot machine that kept freaking out durring the trip.
IAH to SLP
I don't understand why people are freaking out against the poor CSRs standing at the desks. They are going as fast as they can, and it's not the CSRs fault the weather messed up your flight or connection. Get a grip, if you are nice to them they will help you. I learned this when I got snow delayed comming back from Quito. I was nice to the CSR, I worked with them to find a solution without freaking out, and they upgraded me to First Class for being so cooperative.
While sitting in IAH I tried using one of the WiFi kiosks but the supid credit card proccessing engine didn't ask me for me CCV2 code so I could validate my Mastercard and use the wifi. A four hour lay over without internet sucked. There were theese carts helping people get around and there was this one older black lady "'Scuse cart please, 'scuse cart please" was just too funny. Because of all the delays there were far too many ugly crying babies in the chaos of the gate. I'm sorry, a shave monkey screetching at the top of it's lungs just grates on my nervs, and parents seem to be desensitised against it. I'm not!! I was ready to find a bunch of dramamine, and just dose the kids to shut them the hell up.
Finally get boarded, an Embraer ERJ-145, little thing with no head room, and full. Our flight attendant was a blast. He made the flight quite enjoyable. One of the crying babies from the gate was in the aisle in front of me. But I managed to make him laugh and the parents were so sorry, but I saw they were making an effort so I was able to cut them some slack.
I clear customs and Nelvin gave me ride to the hotel. I was staying at the "Hotel California" but not the one of Eagle's Fame in Cabo, I don't even think this is actually affiliated with that hotel in anyway. I drop my bags off, and we head out for tacos. I have a couple types of tacos, with a couple different kinds of meats. I'm so happy with my attempt at tacos el pastor now that I've had the real deal.
It's official I'm in México.... my adventure begins.
Sunday, December 14, 2008
- Lozen of the Chiricahua
- Joan of Arc
- 花木蘭 — Hua Mulan
I will have to do some more research, but it was very interesting, and tragic since the Chiricahua were basically rounded up from New Mexico and shipped to a prison in Florida.
Government StupidityThe Prime Minister of Canada prorogued parliament. Basically, because he tried to bully the opposition parties, they began to fight back by trying to form a coalition. The coalition would have been able to over throw the government. So the Prime Minister suspended parliament, rather than face a non-confidence vote, only 1 week into the post election session.
RecessionWith the general economic conditions around the world, Canada's Central Bank finally said the "R" word, and dropped interest rates. I will have to wait until later to cuss on this topic.
WeatherWe went from 10°C above seasonal to 10°C below seasonal in 24 hours. I don't mind -25°C weather but only after I've had a couple days at -10°C and a couple at -15°C. Also, on the night of the moon perigee, we had overcast blowing crap as the weather fronts moved through. So I didn't get a chance to try the obligatory full moon pix and now have to wait for another ~16 years. I forgot about the perigee until I started scanning articles on New Scientist web site.
When the weather was above seasonal, it was messy and slushy outside, so I wasn't super amused. I want snow, but I want it to be -10°C with 30cm of snow, not +1°C with freezing rain, and then a melting mess. I guess I'm just never satisfied.
PS: as I'm writing this post, it is -30°C with the effective temperature hovering around -38°C (-36°F), it should be -15°C (~5°F).
Saturday, December 13, 2008
When I started, I was on my high-horse about don't edit, don't adjust, don't enhance blah blah blah. What a prat, I've gotten over myself. I now think of my RAWs as a digital negative (as they are intended), and an unrefined image. Now, my job is to take the raw image and create the best photograph possible from that image. If I need to do some colour correction, or enhancements, so be it. Crop it, rotate it, I don't care, just get the best quality final piece of art possible. Find the photograph that is hiding in the picture.
More Later ....
NB: 2010/06/21, I have retired my self-hosted stuff, but not by choice.
Monday, December 8, 2008
and all of us seniors were looking our best.
Our glasses, how sparkly, our wrinkles, how merry;
Our punchbowl held prune juice plus three drops of sherry.
A bedsock was taped to each walker, in hope
That Santa would bring us soft candy and soap.
We surely were lucky to be there with friends,
Secure in this residence and in our Depends.
Our grandkids had sent us some Christmasy crafts,
Like angels in snowsuits and penguins on rafts.
The dental assistant had borrowed our teeth,
And from them she'd crafted a holiday wreath.
The bed pans, so shiny, all stood in a row,
Reflecting our candle's magnificent glow.
Our supper so festive -- the joy wouldn't stop --
Was creamy warm oatmeal with sprinkles on top.
Our salad was Jell-O, so jiggly and great,
Then puree of fruitcake was spooned on each plate.
The social director then had us play games,
Like "Where Are You Living?" and "What Are Your Names?"
Old Grandfather Looper was feeling his oats,
Proclaiming that reindeer were nothing but goats.
Our resident wand'rer was tied to her chair,
In hopes that at bedtime she still would be there.
Security lights on the new fallen snow
Made outdoors seem noon to the old folks below.
Then out on the porch there arose quite a clatter
(But we are so deaf that it just didn't matter).
A strange little fellow flew in through the door,
Then tripped on the sill and fell flat on the floor.
'Twas just our director, all togged out in red.
He jiggled and chuckled and patted each head.
We knew from the way that he strutted and jived
Our social- security checks had arrived.
We sang -- how we sang -- in our monotone croak,
Till the clock tinkled out its soft eight-p.m. stroke.
And soon we were snuggling deep in our beds,
While nurses distributed nocturnal meds.
And so ends our Christmas at Rock-Away Rest.
'fore long you'll be with us, We wish you the best!
Friday, December 5, 2008
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Richard Attenborough. I don't know why I've been thinking about them, just have. I recall the first time I saw Gandhi in the theatre with my mom, there was an intermission because of the length of the film. I don't know if they would even consider such a thing now, granted I don't recall many 3 hour movies either, each of the LoTR movies are om the ball park, but they didn't have an intermission. Even more strange is why I was thinking about Cry of Freedom it is mostly about Donald Woods, a newspaper editor that had to flee South Africa durring apartheid. It is in passing about Bantu Stephen Biko, a black activist that died in custody while in a South African prison. At somepoint I want to read the Donald Woods book Biko -- Cry of Freedom.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
I was out of the fiber glass wadding, so I used a couple of old polyester socks, I was young and wasn't thinking of the thermal properties of polyester, my concern was the plastic parachute.
It was an unusually calm day, we counted down, swooosh, and off it went. The rocket hit the coasting phase, things were looking good. All of a sudden boom. My rocket exploded on its maiden flight. I think the polyester socks fused to the body and the pressure of the ejection charge was too much. I didn't have the heart to launch any of my other rockets ever since. We ended up doing much more dangerous things with the leftover motors...picture die-cast cars, duct tape and long empty allies.... or action figure du jour and duct tape and long empty allies ....
I think I should get back into rocketry again we can get the larger motors now and some of the stuff is just too cool for school....
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
More Later ....
More Later ....
Monday, December 1, 2008
Now there is a distinct possibility of another election, far too soon for the Canadian public. There may also be a possibility of a coalition government, but we see how well those work in say Italy or Israel.
It doesn't help that people have to via for media attention, and since we are now in the age of the sound byte, and everyone is seeking their 15 megabytes of fame. So now the playground bully mentality wins so that people can make their point and get their media spotlight.
Friday, November 28, 2008
If you want a couple hours of good music and great musical insight you should also just listen to the program.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
More Later .....
Well there is an upside to no snow. Snow owls are more easily seen. I had been bombing up and down some of my usual haunts. I spotted this guy, and was able to pop a couple of frames off, before he got out of range. I really wish I had some longer glass I would have been able to spend more time with birds like this one.
While I'm not unhappy with my 100-400, a 400 f/2.8 would make it so I could use my teleconverters and get little more reach. Ideally a 600 f/4, or even a 800 f/5.6 would be cool. This was cropped out of a shot at 400mm. I was maybe 10m from him and managed to get this frame just as he had enough of me a headed for some peace and quiet.
More Later ....
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
I was able to do a drive by of Astotin Lake in Elk Island National Park. OMG, the water levels, they are non-existent. While I can't exactly walk to a couple of the "islands", mostly because the ground is still fairly saturated, once the frost sets in, definitely. So depressing, you don't have water fowl without water. It won't be too long and we will end up having a big old alkali flat. Reminds me of Pakowki Lake, in Southern Alberta. A large intermittent lake that we tried to visit a number of times in my childhood without success.
Let it snow, let it snow, let it snoooowwwww.....
Sunday, November 23, 2008
This is against everything I personally believe in, but seems to be an important survival skill and strategy in larger organizations. My friend has many many stories on this subject but I will leave their telling to him.
- José Jalapeño
The Christmas special had a set by Jeff himself, then with Walter, Achmed the Dead Terrorist, Bubba J... and of course Peanut with José Jalapeño.
I realize, that in Canada, we don't have as many undisclosed financial transactions as part of our daily life compared to some places. Bribes are more common here than people think, but we have our blinders on, and think that it's only a practice of the few. Many of my foreign friends laugh at our naivety, undisclosed commissions are an expected part of doing business and life is so many places. I've begun to accept it, and the more I open my eyes, the worse everthing really appears.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
A maid could be seen hanging their favourite clothes in the closet.
They gasped in astonishment when he said, 'Welcome to Heaven. This will be your home now.'
The old man asked Peter how much all this was going to cost.
'Why, nothing,' Peter replied, 'remember, this is your reward in Heaven.'
The old man looked out the window and right there he saw a championship golf course, finer and more beautiful than any ever built on Earth.
'What are the greens fees?,' grumbled the old man.
'This is heaven,' St. Peter replied. You can play for free, every day.'
Next they went to the clubhouse and saw the lavish buffet lunch, with every imaginable cuisine laid out before them, from seafood to steaks to exotic deserts, free flowing beverages.
'Don't even ask,' said St. Peter to the man. This is Heaven, it is all free for you to enjoy.'
The old man looked around and glanced nervously at his wife.
'Well, where are the low fat and low cholesterol foods, and the decaffeinated tea?,' he asked.
'That's the best part,' St. Peter replied. 'You can eat and drink as much as you like of whatever you like, and you will never get fat or sick. This is Heaven!'
The old man pushed, 'No gym to work out at?' 'Not unless you want to,' was the answer. 'No testing my sugar or blood pressure or...'
'Never again. All you do here is enjoy yourself.'
The old man glared at his wife and said, 'You and your bran muffins. We could have been here ten years ago!'
Monday, November 17, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Thursday, October 2, 2008
About junior high age, when we were sufficiently independent from mom and dad to dodge homework, chores, and just about everything else, there was a number of us in a 10 block radius that started to really hangout. We would congregate near the center of the region and we would often spend hours playing kick the can (a fancy version of hide-and-seek). Most of the neighbours were pretty cool about having a number of kids hopping fences, cutting through yards and being kids. There was the odd yard that was off limits, for various reasons, but most of the people didn't give us too much hassel. A game would start after supper and would last until after dark (unless someone's mom called).
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Now my real point, I've been at a cross road for awhile, when my mind is unsettled I run to the outdoors. Nothing like the power and tranquility of nature. Sitting on a bluff, or a ridge, hilltop or mountain top. My bush craft isn't up to the point that I could just drop off the face of civilization and disappear into the woods and walk a lifetime in Proenneke's footsteps. I need to practice starting a fire with a bow drill. I would have to decide to actually hunt, instead of just stalk for photos. Most importantly, I need to learn plant and mushroom identification. In the Into the Wild movie the dood mistook Inedible wild sweet pea, hedysarum mackenzii, with Edible Wild potatoe, hedysarum alpinum. I have far too much to learn on the plant and mushroom front to survive without a garden, or a super market. At some point, I also need to learn how to better dress meat, then smoke or dry it. While I understand how to dress most game, it has just been far too long since I last tried that, I would probably spoil more meat than I could butcher, again like the d00d in the movie.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Ya, some days I'll get the drively ballads pumpin' through my brain, please give me some insulin, but some days I like 'em.
I can tell you the story of my life via ballads. Or if I hear a ballad, I can recount many more memories of yesteryear. Another set of keys to unlock my mind. Now to go flush my brain with some Yngwie Malmsteen, or Metallica, possibly some Brecker Brothers, and follow it up with a nice dose of my fave, Frank Zappa or possibly some David Bowie.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
How do you get tougher on crime I don't have an easy or simple answers, but people that are going to blatantly skirt the law, are not going to give a damn about a tougher law. Ultimately people with legal firearms just won't be allowed to have them, and the criminals will still be armed to the hilt.
Monday, September 22, 2008
Baby BlueThis early 70's navy blue Toyota Corolla was the other part of the replacement of the Olds. The wagon was a big boat, and really didn't handle well. Dad normally drove the mickey mouse truck, so this was mom's car. 2 Door and compact this little 4 speed was the car of most of our errands. Soccer, music lessons, trips through the Burger Baron Drive through, or the A&W Drive in with the tray hanging on the window (yummy frost mug of root beer, better still a root beer float). So many miles. This is the car both myself and my bro learned to drive in. Engine Rebuilds, bearings repacked, regular oil changes, was a great little car.
Green BeanThe wagon, and the mickey mouse truck got replaced. Chev 3/4 ton Crew Cab, Scottsdale 20 with a topper. This was dad's transport, or special occasion transport, and of course the vacation mobile. You could comfortably seat 6 in the cab, but 4 was much more comfortable. We put a foldout bed in the box and things were good. Little bro and I would bounce between the back seat and the box. Parent would sleep in the box on the flip-flop (foldout bed), little bro got the drivers seat, I go the passenger seat. Life was good. Lots of miles in the mountains, to Northern BC, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
Eventually we got rid of the topper, and installed a Fifth-Wheel hitch. That became our weekend and vacation home. Installed a 100 gallon gas tank and we could for what seemed like ever.
Had my first serious (in my world) accident in the green bean while learning to drive. I had mastered baby blue, and my dad was feeling generous. We were camping in the castle falls camp ground and we needed to make a water run. Dad tossed me the keys. I was nervous. Down the hill, picking up speed. I didn't adjust the seat or the wheel for me it was still setup for my dad. I couldn't quite brake hard enough and on the dirt loop was going too fast. Bang into the trees. I keep going, and my dad freaked. I side swiped half of the forest (or at least that what it felt like). Was another couple of years before I would get handed the keys again.
Finally it got converted to propane. So many road trips (on my own or with the family). So many miles driving to job sites. Green bean served us well.
Cars do seem to carry a lot of keys to your memories. Unlock them, enjoy them, maybe even share them.
Old Brown PontiacThis was the first car of my parents I remember. I vividly remember my parents putting down a piece of plywood in the backseat making it a bed for my little bro and I. We would bounce and play on the plywood, and then it made the seat deep enough that we could both lie down. Made cross country trips, or trips to the Drive-In possible.
Old 53 Chev Truck with a set of lights on the roof that made it look like it had mouse ears. Riding in the box on trips to the dump, or the lumber yard. This old baby blue guy with 3 in the tree, starter peddle on the floor, no seat belts, brought no end of amusement. I recall one trip, returning home from hockey practice, I was still in full kit. My jersey hooked on to the door handle, my dad hit a bump and whoooosh, out I went. My hockey equipment took the brunt of the road rash, but I still have a little scar on my wrist where the gloves didn't fully protect me.
Mickey Mouse Truck
I also recall an adventure where dad ran into the lumber yard. My brother and I managed to pop it out of gear, and had to steer it to saftey approximately half a block down the road. Dad freaked. But the best to me was riding in the box. Damn uptight insurance people and government taking away my fun.
Brown, Simulated Wood, Ford Station WagonThis replaced the old Pontiac, my bro and I were getting bigger. Bouncing from the back seat to our toys in the very ample back of the station wagon. This was the Vacation Vehicle or the special occasion vehicle. 4 Door, bench seats and the back ment there was lots of room for adults and kids.
My biggest memory from the wagon was the first trip through the Okanogan, the main fruit growing region in Western Canada. My little bro and I had gorged ourselves on fresh fruit. It was hot. The roads are very curvy and in the mountains. Lots of opportunity to be car sick. I don't recall for how long, but my little bro and I spent a number of miles hanging our heads out the back of the wagon puking our guts out. We actually peeled the paint off the back bumper, we had puked so much. Mostly cherries, but I think there were some apricots and peaches in the mix. Then at one of the orchards, someones dog licking all the vomit off the back bumper. Good times.
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Chuck replied, "Well, then, just give me my money back."
The farmer said, "Can't do that I've spent it already."
Chuck said, "Ok, then, just bring me the donkey."
The farmer asked, "What ya gonna do with him?"
Chuck said, "I'm going to raffle him off."
The farmer said, "You can't raffle off a dead donkey!"
Chuck said, "Sure I can. Watch me. I just won't tell anybody he's dead."
A month later, the farmer met up with Chuck and asked, "What happened with that dead donkey"
Chuck said, "I raffled him off. I sold 500 tickets at two dollars a piece and made a profit of $998.00."
The farmer said, "Didn't anyone complain?"
Chuck said, "Just the guy who won. So I gave him his two dollars back."
Chuck grew up and works for the government.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
As a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, 6-years old, were all very attached to Belker; and they were hoping for a miracle.
I found Belker was dying of cancer and told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker, but offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.
As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it might be good for Shane to observe the procedure to learn something from the experience.
The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.
The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker's death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, "I know why."
Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation.
He said,"People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life -- like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?"
Shane continued, "Well, dogs already know how to do that; so they don't have to stay as long."
- Live simply.
- Love generously.
- Care deeply.
- Speak kindly.
If a dog were our teacher, we'd learn things like:
- When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.
- Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.
- Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy.
- Take naps.
- Stretch before rising.
- Run, romp, and play daily.
- Thrive on attention and let people touch you.
- Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.
- On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.
- On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.
- When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
- Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.
- Be loyal.
- Never pretend to be something you're not.
- If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.
- When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by, and nuzzle them gently.
- ENJOY EVERY MOMENT OF EVERY DAY!
Friday, September 19, 2008
- 2008/09/21 - Joey Moss Cup
- 2008/09/22 - Edmonton Oilers Preseason Vs Canucks
- 2008/09/24 - Edmonton Oilers Preseason Vs Panthers
- 2008/09/25 - Edmonton Oilers Preseason Vs Panthers
- 2008/09/30 - Edmonton Oilers Preseason Vs Flames
- 2008/10/12 - Edmonton Oilers Home Opener vs Avalanche.
My cameras are at the ready, and I hope to have a good season of shooting for Edmontonoilers.com
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
And God said, I will create a companion for you that will be with you and who will be a reflection of my love for you, so that you will love me even when you cannot see me. Regardless of how selfish or childish or unlovable you may be, this new companion will accept you as you are and will love you as I do, in spite of yourselves.'
And God created a new animal to be a companion for Adam and Eve.
And it was a good animal.
And God was pleased.
And the new animal was pleased to be with Adam and Eve and he wagged his tail.
And Adam said, 'Lord, I have already named all the animals in the Kingdom and I cannot think of a name for this new animal.'
And God said, 'I have created this new animal to be a reflection of my love for you, his name will be a reflection of my own name, and you will call him DOG.'
And Dog lived with Adam and Eve and was a companion to them and loved them.
And they were comforted.
And God was pleased.
And Dog was content and wagged his tail.
After a while, it came to pass that an angel came to the Lord and said, 'Lord, Adam and Eve have become filled with pride. They strut and preen like peacocks and they believe they are worthy of adoration. Dog has indeed taught them that they are loved, but perhaps too well.'
And God said, I will create for them a companion who will be with them and who will see them as they are.
The companion will remind them of their limitations, so they will know that they are not always worthy of adoration..'
And God created CAT to be a companion to Adam and Eve.
And Cat would not obey them. And when Adam and Eve gazed into Cat's eyes, they were reminded that they were not the supreme beings.
And Adam and Eve learned humility.
And they were greatly improved.
And God was pleased.
And Dog was happy. . . . .
And Cat didn't give a shit one way or other....
Monday, September 1, 2008
A: Your heart is only good for so many beats, and that's it... Don't waste them on exercise. Everything wears out eventually. Speeding up your heart will not make you live longer; that's like saying you can extend the life of your car by driving it faster. Want to live longer? Take a nap.
A: You must grasp logistical efficiencies. What does a cow eat? Hay and corn. And what are these? Vegetables. So a steak is nothing more than an efficient mechanism of delivering vegetables to your system. Need grain? Eat chicken. Beef is also a good source of field grass (green leafy vegetable ). And a pork chop can give you 100% of your recommended daily allowance of vegetable products.
Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?
A: No, not at all. Wine is made from fruit. Brandy is distilled wine, that means they take the water out of the fruity bit so you get even more of the goodness that way. Beer is also made out of grain. Bottoms up!
A: Well, if you have a body and you have fat your ratio is one to one. If you have two bodies, your ratio is two to one, etc.
Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?
A: Can't think of a single one, sorry. My philosophy is: No Pain...Good!
Q: Aren't fried foods bad for you?
A: YOU'RE NOT LISTENING!!! . Foods are fried these days in vegetable oil. In fact, they're permeated in it. How could getting more vegetables be bad for you?
Q: Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle?
A: Definitely not! When you exercise a muscle, it gets bigger. You should only be doing sit-ups if you want a bigger stomach.
Q: Is chocolate bad for me?
A: Are you crazy? HELLO -- Cocoa beans! Another vegetable!!! It's the best feel-good food around!
Q: Is swimming good for your figure?
A: If swimming is good for your figure, explain whales to me.
Well, I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.
'Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways - Chardonnay in one hand - chocolate in the other - body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming 'WOO HOO, What a Ride!'
For those of you who watch what you eat, here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies.
- The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
- The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
- The Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
- The Italians drink a lot of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
- The Germans drink a lot of beers and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
68, and 78?
At 8 -- You take her to bed and tell her a story.
At 18 -- You tell her a story and take her to bed.
At 28 -- You don't need to tell her a story to take her to bed.
At 38 -- She tells you a story and takes you to bed.
At 48 -- She tells you a story to avoid going to bed.
At 58 -- You stay in bed to avoid her story.
At 68 -- If you take her to bed, that'll be a story!
At 78 -- What story??? What bed??? Who the hell are you???
Sunday, April 20, 2008
I tried going out durring the first one, and well, I parked my car in the ditch, and no photos to show for the adventure.
This weekend, the roads in the area where I would be eagle spotting, were closed. The eagles, follow the bird migrations, and so the window of oportunity to catch them is small. I was too late last year, only a couple of "look what I saw" pix, nothing that I would now deem as usable. A few years ago maybe, but not now.
If April showers bring May flowers, what do April blizaards bring? I don't care about the cold, and the snow is great. just not when the hiways have zero visiblity. It looks like snow all week as well... maybe next weekend, and hopefully the eagles are still around, and I can find them....
They were around Calgary area, a couple weeks back, so I may already be too late for the spring migrations.... but there is always fall....
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
I also need to contemplate a couple of long primes 200f/2, 400f/2.8, 600f/4, 800f/5.6. The 200 and 400 being my prime candidates.
Monday, March 10, 2008
"If you're going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning."
2. My mother taught me RELIGION.
"You better pray that will come out of the carpet."
3. My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL .
"If you don't straighten up, I' m going to knock you into the middle of next week!"
4. My mother taught me LOGIC.
" Because I said so, that's why."
5. My mother taught me MORE LOGIC.
"If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you're not going to the store with me."
6. My mother taught me FORESIGHT.
"Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you're in an accident."
7. My mother taught me IRONY .
"Keep crying, and I'll give you something to cry about."
8. My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS .
"Shut your mouth and eat your supper."
9. My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM.
"Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!"
10. My mother taught me about STAMINA .
"You'll sit there until all that spinach is gone."
11 My mother taught me about WEATHER.
"This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it."
12. My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY.
"If I told you once, I've told you a million times. Don't exaggerate!"
13. My mother taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE.
"I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."
14. My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION.
"Stop acting like your father!"
15. My mother taught me about ENVY.
"There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don't have wonderful parents like you do."
16. My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.
"Just wait until we get home."
17. My mother taught me about RECEIVING .
"You are going to get it when you get home!"
18. My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE.
"If you don't stop crossing your eyes, they are going to get stuck that way."
19 My mother taught me ESP.
"Put your sweater on; don't you think I know when you are cold?"
20. My mother taught me HUMOR.
"When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me."
21. My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT .
"If you don't eat your vegetables, you'll never grow up."
22. My mother taught me GENETICS.
"You're just like your father."
23. My mother taught me about my ROOTS.
"Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?"
24. My mother taught me WISDOM.
"When you get to be my age, you'll understand."
25. And my favorite: My mother taught me about JUSTICE .
"One day you'll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you"
No more gift registries. You know, it used to be just for weddings. Now it's for babies and new homes and graduations from rehab. Picking out the stuff you want and having other people buy it for you isn't gift giving, it's the white people version of looting.
Stop giving me that pop-up ad for classmates.com! There's a reason you don't talk to people for 25 years. Because you don't particularly like them! Besides, I already know what the captain of the football team is doing these days --- mowing my lawn.
New Rule 3:
Don't eat anything that's served to you out a window unless you're a seagull. People are acting all shocked that a human finger was found in a bowl of Wendy's chili. Hey, it cost less than a dollar. What did you expect it to contain? Lobster?
New Rule 4:
Stop saying that teenage boys who have sex with their hot, blonde teachers are permanently damaged. I have a better description for these kids: "Lucky bastards."
New Rule 5:
If you need to shave and you still collect baseball cards, you're a dope. If you're a kid, the cards are keepsakes of your idols. If you're a grown man, they're pictures of men.
New Rule 6:
Ladies, leave your eyebrows alone. Here's how much men care about your eyebrows: Do you have two of them? Good. We're done.
New Rule 7:
There's no such thing as flavored water. There's a whole aisle of this crap at the supermarket -water, but without that watery taste. Sorry, but flavored water is called a soft drink. You want flavored water? Pour some scotch over ice and let it melt. That's your flavored water.
New Rule 8:
Stop screwing with old people. Target is introducing a redesigned pill bottle that's square, with a bigger label. And the top is now the bottom. And by the time grandpa figures out how to open it, his ass will be in the morgue. Congratulations, Target, you just solved the Social Security crisis.
New Rule 9:
The more complicated the Starbucks order, the bigger the asshole. If you walk into a Starbucks and order a 'decaf grandee, half-soy, half-low fat, iced vanilla, double-shot, gingerbread cappuccino, extra dry, light ice, with one Sweet-n'-Low, and One NutraSweet, 'ooooh, you're a huge asshole.
New Rule 10:
I'm not the cashier! By the time I look up from sliding my card, entering My PIN number, pressing 'Enter,' verifying the amount, deciding, no, I don't want Cash back, and pressing 'Enter' again, the kid who is supposed to be ringing me up is standing there eating my Almond Joy.
New Rule 11:
Just because your tattoo has Chinese characters in it doesn't make you spiritual. It's right above the crack of your ass. And it translates as 'beef with broccoli. 'The last time you did anything spiritual, you were praying to God you weren't pregnant. You're not spiritual. You're just high.
New Rule 12:
Competitive eating isn't a sport. It's one of the seven deadly sins. ESPN recently televised the U.S. Open of Competitive Eating, because watching those athletes at the poker table was just too damned exciting. What's next, competitive farting? Oh wait, they're already doing that. It's called "The Howard Stern Show."
New Rule 13:
I don't need a bigger "mega" M&Ms. If I'm extra hungry for M&Ms, I'll go nuts and eat two.
New Rule 14:
If you're going to insist on making movies based on crappy old television shows, then you have to give everyone in the Cineplex a remote so we can see what's playing on the other screens. Let's remember the reason something was a television show in the first place is that the idea wasn't good enough to be a movie.
New Rule 15:
And this one is long overdue: No more bathroom attendants. After I zip up, some guy is offering me a towel and a mint like I just had sex with George Michael. I can't even tell if he's supposed to be there, or just some freak with a fetish. I don't want to be on your webcam, Dude. I just want to wash my hands.
New Rule 16:
If you ever hope to be a credible adult and want a job that pays better than minimum wage, then for God's sake don't pierce or tattoo every available piece of flesh. If so, then plan your future around saying, "Do you want fries with that?"
Friday, January 4, 2008
On the photo front, I've broken down and have a new laptop (a Dell XPS), and most importantly Adobe PhotoShop and Adobe Ligthroom. Let me start off with saying Lightroom rocks. No knock to gimp and dcraw, but I never quite got the juju for messing with RAW files on my FreeBSD boxes. Additionally not have any real colour management has been an issue. Now that I've been shooting RAW and comparing to the JPEG output, it's making me kick my ass that I didn't shoot RAW all the time. To use a photographer pun
Now I've seen the light!!