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Showing posts from May, 2014

Flashback Friday - Cold Case

Going through the folk's archives I came across a couple of pictures that intrigued me.  First, let me say, that we were a baseball family.  Herb was fairly non-committal about his favorite team, but it seemed to dance around whoever was winning that particular year.  Phil and Mark were Cub's fans, but I don't really hold that against them.  Marj?  Well, she rooted for whoever would make rest of us happy.  And me, I was a Met's fan, only because the majority of family member's liked the Cubs.  Let me explain.  I recall a Sunday afternoon and for some reason I got totally disgusted with something about the Cubs, a path I was surely supposed to follow.  I don't know if it was the constant losing, or the constant winning, or the "all things Chicago", but I grabbed the newspaper and walked calmly to my room.  It was also the Wombie's room, but he must have been in the den watching the game.    
I looked at the standings and with my finger followed down …

The Florida Highwaymen

In the mid 50's down by Fort Pierce, Florida, an amazing thing happened.  A group of unemployed black men got together and started painting pictures and selling them from their cars along the side of the road.

They were self taught, and self-mentoring.  We have heard of enterprising people forming mowing groups, itinerants moving from farm to farm to help pick produce, and many other entrepreneurial endeavors.  But art?   

They started as nine original artists and their ranks swelled to 26 at one point.  The only reason I learned about this group was because one of the originals died a month or so ago.  His obituary was plastered all over the place down here and I was intrigued by the notion of these guys sitting around and deciding to form an art club of sorts.  

Imagine the initial conversation.  These guys are sitting around one day, no money, no prospects, no skills, and bleak futures in a South that was hard on blacks to start with, and out of that came guys who decided to buy w…


Early Morning on April 27th, just before sunrise, barely visible in the Eastern sky was an Old Moon.  This name is given to a moon whose cycle is about over.  In a day or so it will no longer be seen and then give way for a new one.   It was a nice morning here so I went down to Vinoy to take some pictures, but discovered the place was packed with runners convening in the area for the St. Anthony's Triathlon.
Easily fixed:  I went over to Demen's Landing which was much quieter, but was the place where St. Pete police met to take their Ski-doos out to patrol the Bay for the runners.  They weren't worried about an old guy with a camera, I discovered.   Anyway here are the shots I took.  It was a quick shoot (see? I even talk like a photographer!); I didn't want stranded downtown.  

Ever the detail guy, I have forgotten which planet this was to the right of the moon on this morning.  Of course I could have said any one of them and gotten by with it, but my journalistic integ…

Tidbit Tuesday

1.  I found this video of a 2010 putting match here between Jack Nicklaus and Johnny Miller.  I don't know what the event was or why they were doing this with live mic's but it is nevertheless quite priceless.    

2.  We are all refreshed from a week off and the staff is ready to start work again.  Vacation pics will be coming in the next few weeks.   

3.  Would someone please tell me why people lower their drawers below their ass cheeks.  Please!

This guy had just left Wal-Mart and was rearranging his bags.  His shorts were well below his boxers.  Now, I have no problem with the young challenging the establishment.  Hell, I did it myself.  But why the sagging?  
4.  In a Tuesday Tidbit a couple weeks or so ago I took a couple pictures of a guy dumpster-diving and enjoying someone's old soda and finding shoes at a Beall's store.  It wasn't more than a week later I was at McDonalds and a guy walked in, went to the trash can, found a cup and proceeded to fill it with sod…

Memorial Day 2014

Painting done after the Civil War
Memorial Day began in various places in the U.S. following the Civil War to commemorate the fallen of that war.  Since that time it has widened to include all war dead, and then to all veterans.  After that, it has seemed to include all those who we have lost in our lives.  Before she died a couple years ago my cousin Jan told me she made a day-long trip before Memorial Day weekend to all of the Blythe ancestral cemeteries in the state to place flowers on family member graves.  I sure hope someone has placed a flower on her's this year.  Her mother, my aunt Gladys, used to do it, then they did it together when Gladys became too frail to do it herself.  Now there is no one left, I suppose.  Some have a problem with Memorial Day now the official day to honor soldiers who died in battle as well as an all-inclusive day to remember everyone passed away.  I'm not sure it dilutes our respect for fallen soldiers all that much, but I see the argument. 

Taking This Week Off



Flashback Friday

Growing up we heard some of the exploits, legal or otherwise, of Herb and his college fraternity buddies.   His college career was interrupted by World War II and his service in the Navy and the Greatest generation.  So when he returned certain excesses could be excused.   
One of his stories was the fraternity needed a Christmas tree and he remembered there was one in the city park in Seaton, so he and his friends drove over, hooked it with a chain, and drove it out of town.  He liked to tell of the commotion it caused when he came back for a weekend shortly after this stunt.
Another time he told of hopping on a train around Monmouth and it travelled through Seaton, back when they had trains going through town.  The tracks went right by the grain elevator his Dad owned and as the train rolled by, his dad came out of the weigh house looked up and saw Herb.  I guess the story went that his Dad went back in and in a shocked voice said to the farmers and staff inside, "I think that wa…

Blood Moon

When I worked with Uncle Ed on the farm he could always tell which cow was which.  To me they all looked alike.  Today we have the Blood Moon pictures, a couple of which I posted on Facebook, also.  They may all look alike, but they are all different. Some have clouds around or in front, some are clear, some are right at the center of the eclipse, and some are coming out of it.  This was the lunar eclipse which turned the Moon into a rusty sphere, caused scientifically by the sunsets and sunrises of the earth reflecting back onto he moon.  
I almost missed the alarm going off at 3:20 ET and had to do a little scrambling to get the shot at around 3:30 which was the approximate center of the eclipse.  I didn't have to go far, just right outside my back door.   
I'm not going to expand on any of these: I simply wish for you to imagine the majesty of the heavens and the mystery of the universe.  

I still struggle with aperture, f-stops, ISO and white balance settings.   The camera is…

On The Kindle Now

"So that is the situation.  I'm stranded on Mars.  I have no way to communicate with Hermes or Earth.  Everyone thinks I'm dead.  I'm in a Hab that is designed to last thirty-one days.
If the oxygenator breaks down, I'll suffocate.  If the water reclaimer breaks down, I'll die of thirst.  If the Hab breaches, I'll kind of explode.  If none of those things happen, I'll eventually run out of food and starve to death.  
So, yea. I'm fucked."
I ran across this book somehow (maybe CSM weekly book review) and found it intriguing enough to give it a go.  And it's not bad.  After an accident the team of American astronauts leave poor Mark Watney by himself on Mars, thinking he has died.   It is a lot like Macguyver in that this guy has to fend for himself with whatever is at hand.  It is a clever story with perhaps too much technical jargon but when you get past those passages it revs up with plenty of suspense and ingenious plotting.  
I'll leave…

Tidbit Tuesday

1.  Hope you enjoy this week's worth of posts, because I have it on good authority that this place is shutting down next week for Safe Boating Week as well as Dementia Awareness Week.  We'll only be gone for a few days so in that period of time I want everyone to play nice or heads will roll when I return.  But this doesn't mean that you are without your homework assignments.  While I'm gone I have a couple projects for you and we will share when I get back.  More on that later.

(You sage long-time readers already know this, but for the newbies, I'm letting you in on a secret:  whenever we close down for a week, that usually means we are running out of material.  I must break the chains that bind me to Shawshank and find "stuff" to post.)

2.  While accompanying everyone to some shopping on Sunday,  I was at a place called Beall's (pronounced Bell's, oddly enough) and they have these chairs up toward the doors for the guys to sit if they aren't i…

The Lippinzaners - Part 2

We continue this morning with the second part of our journey to Myakka City to Hermann's Lippinzan Farm.  These guys, or at least the European branch, were saved by George Patton's 3rd Army during World War II.  The Nazi's were retreating and the Russians were advancing; history tells us they were saved from both the Germans and Soviets.
Operation Cowboy was really more the work of a Colonel reed rather than Patton himself.  Although an equestrian and lover of horses, Patton commented in his autobiography, after seeing a Lippinzan show on the day Hitler committed suicide, 
"It struck me as rather strange," he wrote, "that, in the midst of a world at war, some 20 young and middle-aged men in great physical condition...had spent their entire time teaching a group of horses to wiggle their butts and raise their feet.... Much as I like horses, this seemed to me wasted energy."

"Still, Patton was a horseman—he had competed, after all, in the 1912 Olympic m…