Friday, September 30, 2011

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Big Sky?

Well, it's not Montana, but we had some pretty cool skies at the sports fields this evening.  Myson was playing, but I couldn't ignore the sun....  or clouds....  or moon...


Looking West, a few minutes before sunrise:

And, a glimpse of the setting moon, chasing the setting sun:

Sunday, September 25, 2011


Another oldie, from October 2003.  Seems like I had a lot of interesting photos that month, some of which nver got processed.  This one is from Spokane River Park, just outside Spokane, WA.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Headline in our local newspaper today:  "After a devil summer, fall could be sublime".  Really?  Sublime?  They expect fall to be "lofty, grand or exalted in thought expression or manner"?  Cool!

Regardless, here's an image from 10/14/2003, Maybe not sublime, but hopefully not too bad.....

click on image for parger view.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

On The Baker Trail

I've spent some time this evening tweaking a few old slides.  Well, actually tweaking scans of slides...  And listening to old music.  Works for me!

These are from my high-school days, pretty sure this was fall of '77.  I spent a weekend with a friend (Greg Highlands) at his family's place near Punxatawny, PA.  I wish I remembered the location a bit better.  Anyway, these images, are from ~33 years ago, when I was 17-ish.

You can click on the photos for larger views, btw...    Yep, when I was 17, my idea of a great weekend was to get out of the city and do some hiking.  This is the only time I ever spent on the Baker Trail, which is surprising, since it's closer to Pgh. than a lot of places we went...  And this was just a day hike.

You can tell I was pretty novice with my camera then.  I did a like twaeking, but not a ton.  The last one was quite badly off level, for example.  I like to think I've gotten better through the years.

Good? Bad? Or Just Boring?

I took this photo at lunch yesterday.  It's one of those where I'm just not sure if it works.  I like it, but I'm seeing it through biased eyes.  And the more I look at it, the more I second guess myself....

I keep wanting to write about what I was trying to "say" with this.  But I come back to:  "If you have to explain it, it didn't work".  And on that level, I don't think it works.

If you look at it full size, it exposes the deficiencies of my pocket camera. The sharpness just isn't there, the whites are blown out... The green is overpowering (I could tweak that ), The yellow flowers should be a stronger layer, the white flowers should "pop"....  That'll learn me to over-rely on the convenience factor...

I took a dozen or so images yesterday, none of them really "clicked" for me.  Most won't ever be seen.  I did come up with 2 others that are very "snapshoty" (here and here).  I remind myself of the old Ansel Adams quote:  Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop....  I'd settle for one!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

No Prize Contest

Several years ago, I was a regular participant at One ot the things I liked about it was their monthly photo contest. I gathered a few “Finalists” and a couple of 2nds. Over time BP evolved and I drifted away from that forum.  Meanwhile: I recently started posting photos at It seems to be an interesting site, with its own set of plusses and minuses. And they even have contests!

The past 2 months I’ve joined the NPC (No Prize Contest). The moderator picks a theme, you select your entry, and then your peers vote. This month’s theme was “The World At Night”. Looking through my portfolio, I only had 1 appropriate photo:

I ended up in a tie for 127th place (out of 159 entries). Not exactly “In The Hunt”, but probably appropriate. Lots of really outstanding photos: Win, Place, Show.

I did upload another better photo after entereing the contest, I'd like to think this one might've scored better.  But I have no expectation that it would've ended up near the top....

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Cades Cove, July 2002

I've Been looking through the archives this weekend, fornd this one from 2002.  This is Cades Cove, in Smokey Mountains, eastern TN.  Taken with my old Kodak DC210 camera. 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I'm So Tire-ed

Ok, horrible pun  I'm sorry.

My original title was the rather unimaginitive "Stack Of Tires, Lateral Ladder"  I suppose I could've been more aliterative and said "Tire Tower, Lateral Ladder".  But I decided to stick with the music reference.  Take your pick, Beatles or Kinks?

The photo is just a little slice of life.  Scene seen while sitting at a stop light on my afternoon commute....

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Could Stand A Little Rain...

We're finally having a good solid soaking rain today.  Not a flooding rain (at least not yet).  I think we're officially "moderate: drought, but I know it's been dry.  Despite the rain, I ran by Moody Park at lunch; still need a few minutes break from the office.  It was predictably quiet, peaceful, even.

The post title is from a Nitty Gritty Dirt Band song...

Monday, September 12, 2011

Pirates VS Cardinals

Regular readers may recall that I have a friendly wager with one of my old Pittsburgh freinds:  Head to head, Pittsburgh Pirates vs St. Louis Cardinals.  At the time we made the wager (just before the all star game) the teams were about 1 game apart.  Now?  Not so much.

After tonight's games:

STL  79 - 68 0.537  --
PIT   67 - 80 0.456  12

Pirates are 12 games back with 15 games left.  The Cardinal's magic number for clinching (the bet) is 4.

Looks like I'm going to win, but it is still disappointing.  Pirates out out of contention, and The Cardinals have only the slimmest of margins.  I was hoping the 2 teams would be fighting it out for the division crown.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


This is a repost of my blog post from 9/1/2006, the 5 year anniversary of the 9-11 terrorist attacks.  I'm reposting with only the number of years-past changed:

10 Years ago today, 9/11/2001, terrorists struck a series of coordinated attacks against the United States. Between the World Trade Center, The Pentagon and Flight 93 (which crashed in SW Pennsylvania), around 3,000 people were killed. Much like Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 (12/7), this day will go down in infamy. And much like the attack on Pearl Harbor, the attacks of 9/11 awakened a sleeping giant and filled him with a terrible resolve. The resulting War on Terror continues, time will test our resolve.

I was supposed to be on an airplane from St. Louis to Seattle that morning, should've been in the air at the same time as those planes. But a last minute glitch cancelled my trip. I was very thankful on that day that my wife didn't have to worry about "my flight" during all the confusion of that day.

Meanwhile, I was only in the WTC once, while on a business trip to NYC. I arrived by the subway, late afternoon, while most people were leaving. I was blown away by the swell of people, more people than live in my small suburb of St.Louis. On 9-11-2001, as we all watched the towers fall, I kept thinking about "all those people". It's franky a miracle that only 3,000 were killed.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Monday, September 05, 2011

Good? Bad? Or Ugly?

It was a beautiful afternoon today, so my son and I took a trip out to the West Alton area, to check out the Alton Slough, The Melvin Price Lock and Dam, and the Edward "Ted" and Pat Jones Confluence Point State Park...  My son was looking for birds for a Boy Scout Merit Badge.  I was enjoying the day, and the company.  Amd hoping for a few photograhic opportunties!

When I took this photo, I had high hopes.  When I first looked at it on the computer screen, I decided it was junk.  After some twaeking I think it might be in between.

What do YOU think?  Click here for location, and larger view, at Panaramio.

And is THIS ONE better or worse?

Autumn In The Air

It was in the low 60's this morning, bright and sunny.  Niceeeze, not hot, not humid....  Pretty nice for early September.  All of which had me thinking Autmn.  Then I was digging around on one of my backup drives, and came across some files from October 2003... 
This is from the hiking trail that starts at Pere Marquette Lodge, and heads up the hill.  I don't remember doing anything with this one back then, but it really struck me today.  I know it's kind of "Calendar-ish", but I don't consider that an insult....

There's a little bit of digital tweaking here, but noy much.  You can see a version at Panoramio that ionly has "autofix" run on it.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Barns In Brown

Digging through my hard drive this morning, I found a folder Pictures/blog/pending.  This is one of the images in there.  I'm pretty sure I've posted it before, but thought I'd at least repost. Taken May, 2010, not too far east of where I work.

What Is And What Should Never Be

One of the "fun" things about iPod/iTunes is the play count.  So, the other day I was listening to Led Zeppelin, and being the music geek that I am, I decided to see which Led Zeppelin albums I listen to most.  This is average play count per song for each album, over the last 14 months (last time I reset the counters).
  • II - 5.1
  • III - 4.8
  • Led Zeppelin (I) - 3.9
  • Presence - 3.0
  • Houses Of the Holy - 2.8
  • Zoso - 2.6
  • Physical Graffiti - 1.4
Does it mean I like "Presence" more than "Zoso"?  Not at all.  But LZ-III and Presence are 2 albums I didn't have on vinyl, and are less burned-into-my-brain.  Physical Graffiti has some of Zep's best stuff, but is a double album, and also some less wonderful....  

Now, which LedZep songs get played the most?
  • Immigrant Song - 13 plays
  • Whole Lotta Love - 11 plays
  • Ramble On - 9 plays
  • Living Loving Maid - 6 plays
  • Trampled Under Foot - 6 plays
Again, what does it mean?  Well, one this it means is that some songs are on playlists, like "Rolling STone's Top 500 Songs" or "American Top 40 Hits of 1969".... 

Anyway, none of it really "means" anything.  But I still get a kick out of it.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

The Nature Of God?

This is a photo taken about 3 weeks ago, on one of the "deep woods" trails at Pleasant Ridge Park.  It struck me as sort of... odd. 

Anyway, I decided to go on and share it, draw your own conclusions about what it all might mean to the person(s) who painted it.

Bridge Of Sighs

Last image from my excursion at Pleasant Ridge Park last week.  This is one of several bridges across the stream.  Well, stream is a bit generous.  It's been quite dry lately, and this was more of a gully with the occasional puddle.  I'll bet it is rockin' in the springtime...

The title (of course) is a reference to the old Robin Trower song.

Friday, September 02, 2011

A Walk In The Woods

This is along one of the trails that wind through the woods at Plesant Ridge Park.  I just recently discovered these trails.  As you can see, it's pretty "primative"...  or at least unkempt.

This is pretty cose to where I found the snake I posted yesterday...

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Spiders and Snakes...

Any snake experts out there?  I came across this guy while walking the woods at Plesant Ridge Park Tuesday:

I presume it's a Garter Snake, but that's based on Google images....  (click on photo for larger image)

He was basking on the trail, I'm glad I didn't step on him (her?).  I was going to try for a closer photo, but he/she/it was increasingly agitated at being disturbed, and made a quick retreat to the underbrush.