Saturday, June 30, 2012

how to spot moose

you can't.

that dark spot in front of you where you can't see the road and you can't see anything else? that big thing that looks like the outline of a shadow?

and you're looking for the outline of a deer because you thought you saw something move?

slow down. that's the moose.

a moose is an oddly non-reflective animal. when what you see in the road ahead of you is a shadow and your brights won't penetrate it, you are looking directly at the moose.

see how the large invisible area moves off into the woods? and you still can't see it, but as it moves away, you begin to see the road and the outlines of other things?

you might think it's a rupture in space/time, a place where there is nothing, not even light, a dark spot passing over the earth.

but it's not. it's a moose. it is crossing the road to drink. you would be wise to let it pass.

Friday, June 29, 2012

friday in richmond

we returned today to the house we worked on last week. you look it up yourself if you want the pictures.

sometimes life is like somebody takes a huge dump on a fan and leave it turned off but still plugged in on one side of the room and it's only a matter of time before the switch gets thrown.

and sometimes when that happens the only thing to do is go pick up a hammer.

or a chop saw.

or something.

anyway, here are a few pictures from today.

on the front of the house we put up siding. on the back of the house they built some more stairs and started building the deck railing.

it is a gift to be useful, to have work to do.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

key fob

i've been thinking for a while that if i need to turn off the alarm on my car or use the panic button or something, i won't remember how to do it and be left wildly pushing the buttons.

and then i noticed:

oh, look. the instructions are printed on the back of the key fob.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012


the town guys came today and mowed down hundreds of yards of daylillies all along the road.

since the worst of the carnage is right outside the town clerk's house, i will be interested to hear what she will have to say about that.

probably i will not get to hear any of it, but i am cranky about the lillies.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

pack a lunch

i wasn't expecting it to be a good day, but neither was i expecting it to be a cataclysmic day in hell.


i have not had any diner and it isn't quite dark out yet, but i am going to bed.

tomorrow it won't be any better.

the day after that it won't be any better.

at some point in the next few weeks, though, it will start to get better.

Monday, June 25, 2012

sofa surfing

for reasons i'd just as well not go into right now, i'm spending a lot of time one the sofa watching youtube.

here are my five favorites.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

i'm doing it.

over a year ago they put up a teeter-totter next to the parking lot at catamount.

i have been looking at that thing all this while knowing i can do it, but too afraid do do it.

it's not that hard. you ride your bike up the giant ramp and after you cross the center, it pivots down and you ride it down.

and i have ridden up to it and turned away. i have stared at it from across the lot. i have thought, over and over: i am going to do this.

and i haven't.

i have been having a hard week, coming apart faster than i can put myself back together.

and today in the shop i asked shopgirl (who has a real name that i know) "what's it like?"

and she told me. she is a coach and teacher. she knows how to tell you things.

and i went for my ride and came in and when i got back to the parking i rode up to it and then veered off at the last minute, before i was committed to going up the huge ramp, because once you're on the huge ramp, you have to go through with it.

and then i came beside it, tested the feel of it by pressing down with my hands.

and i went around for another approach and somehow didn't veer off again and i said out loud "i'm going to do it.", which was less a cry of determination and more a realization that at this point i couldn't NOT do it, not even if i wanted to, not without some possibility of serious injury, and i got over the fulcrum, expecting it to tip down and let me ride off, but it didn't tip down, not soon enough for me and i was running out of board before i dropped to the ground

...and it tipped.

a lot faster than i expected it to.

and suddenly i was not riding up a thing five feet in the air, i was riding down a thing that was smooth and a foot and a half high, a thing i do all the time.

i will not pretend i did it smoothly.

i will not pretend i did not scream loud enough for them to hear me across the road.

but i did it.

i went up and over.

it scared the hell out of me.

and i did it.

it's about two feet high at the fulcrum.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

without explanation

right. so i answered the ad from the classifieds and i was pretty sure i was applying for the 2d chair percussion position with the fenneq regional symphony which is just one step above the outer balzare municipal band, but i recently took a bath when the plank market tanked and i needed a job.

so i put on my pinstripe suit and everything and show up with my briefcase of mallets and my repertoire of orchestral excerpts but i got there and it's a dumpy hotel suite out by eastern approach and the place stinks of stale pumpkin ale and this purple hair person is passed out in the corner.

"excuse me? i'm here for the percussion position?", i say, and all i hear is some broken laughter or maybe racking sobs coming from under the bed and purple hair waves a hand peremptorily in my direction and mutters 

"we already have a drummer."

and i do a double take, because this is not the fenneq regional symphony; these are the SLOTH KNOCKERS. the fucking sloth knockers.

and i'm all, like, "what?!?! no honkin' WAY!" and they laugh and someone says they like my look and asks if i do anything amusing.

"AMUSING???? how's this for amusing?" and  i play the xylophone part for the william tell overture on every glass surface i can find and for good measure i throw the TV out the window.

"if i'd KNOWN," i say with some venom, "that i was applying for a freakin' variety show, i'd have brought my soft shoes and my trombone."

"you play trombone?" purple hair asks.

"yeah, and also uilleann pipes and kazoo."

"cool. we need a trombone player."

so we all downed some wine of the dead to seal the deal and went tomato shopping with trisor.

hey, is that a sammich? 'coz i'm a little toasty for something...

*wanders off, working out a nono crash*

Thursday, June 21, 2012

of course

it was 99 degrees at the venue yesterday afternoon when i finished my bike race.

i wasn't sure how i was going to do because my blood pressure felt a little high, but not crazy high like on tuesday when i didn't finish the run. and it was hot.

but barb had bumped down to one lap and i thought maybe it would be a little like old times. a long time ago she used to kick my butt, every time. and then for a while she only finished just ahead of me, every time.

and then i trained real hard and left her in the dust.

and then not so much.

i can't even keep her in sight anymore, but i'm working to keep up with her sometimes maybe.

and last night since we started in the same wave i rode like i was on fire to keep her in view and didn't lose her until moosepoop but i was rolling very fast (for me) but when i caught mike on the smooth singletrack he said she'd gone by maybe four minutes ahead, so i knew that i could ride until my heart blew up and i wasn't going to catch her.

now here's a thing about our race venue: they put us all out on the course at the same time.

if you ride half lap, you start at 6:00. if you ride two laps, you start at 6:15. one lap riders go out at 6:17, and four and three lap riders go out at 6:30 and 6:32.

if you are a former national downhill champion and 70 years old, if you are a former national cx champ and you are 55 years old, if you are a retired four-time tour de france finisher, a middle aged lady, a someday professional hopeful, or a seven year old girl with fringe on your handlebars, you ride the same course, at the same time.

there are no prizes for winning, but there are prizes for showing up every week.

and after i lost barb, i started looking for that kid on the orange bike. the one that rides like a demon because he doesn't care if you're older than his mom; he wants to beat you.

see, certain places on that course i NEED to be ahead of that kid. it's not abut pride. i know he will toast me before it's done.

but i am heavy and carry a lot of inertia. i fly downhill and am skilled on a singletrack. i CANNOT afford to give up any momentum because i'm stuck behind a 50 pund kid+. i just can't. so i go real hard while i can, just to keep him behind me on the downhills because speed you lose is speed you have to make up and i don't have that much to spare.

but last night he didn't catch me until just AFTER ridgerun and since i was having a good night, i busted a hump catching him up on cliffs of insanity (trail map) and i said, between gasps for air:

"hey, kid. i want you to ride like hell and when you catch up to the lady in the ben and jerry's shirt, i want you to tell her "tag, you're it." i can't catch her, but i think you can."

and he said "i think i can!" and he was off like a blaze.

at the finish line he told me he didn't get her in time.

there'll be other weeks, i told him.

and thanks for the pull.

pull, i explained, is often what we call it when a rider ahead of you makes you ride faster than you otherwise would.  and i said that catching him had been my pull.

and the light came on in his eyes and he said "yeah. thanks for the pull".

and we looked over at barb and i said "she's tougher than she looks, isn't she?"
"yeah, she is.",  he said.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

crashing the markets

in glitch, you can sell things three ways: you can sell in player to player trade, which is convenient for things you cannot auction or for special items.

you can sell at auction for whatever the going price is, and with some items you can make a handsome profit.

but you can also sell to non-player characters called the vendors, that will buy ans sell goods at fixed prices. different vendors have different rates of pay but it is well known that the tool vendor in cebarkul and the toolie in the caverns have the best pay rate.

so it follows that if people are selling at auction at a price below the toolie, you can buy that up and sell it to the toolie and make a good profit.

sometimes if i need to unload goods quickly, i sell below market and i know the buyer is only taking it to the toolie, but, hey, that's two of us getting rich and not just me.

but i have been playing a game called "let's mess with the market and see what happens".

i decided to alternately inflate and crash the market for planks.

there are a couple of reasons for this: one is that planks come from wood trees and there are comparatively few wood trees in ur, so when you force market fluctuations in planks it's easier to see what the effect on the wood trees are, especially since wood trees (unlike other trees) can be harvested to death and require special maintenance).

also i do not like the wood trees. every time one dies, i smile.

so anyway, beans and cherries and bubbles  and all manner of tree fruits sell at the toolie for 1 currant each, but cherries regularly sell on auction for 3.9, beans for 4.5, and bubbles and gas and spice for more than that, although they don't move as fast, so it's kind of a wash.

planks used to sell for a lot. the toolie buys them for 4, and when you sell at auction you pay a fee, so 4.1 at auction is roughly equivalent to the toolie's price.

and for my amusement i was pumping up the price as high as it would go and then crashing it down to 4.1, just to see how fast i could make the market flutter and what effect it would have on the wood trees.

and then this guy tried buying up my whole stock when i was underselling and he tried flooding the market when i was overselling, but what he failed to realize was that i had WAY more capital and WAY more planks than he did, so the end result was after he was done trying to fight me, i ended up with a large profit and a large store of planks.

that guy decided that planks should sell at 5.5.

so i decided that for all time planks will now sell for 4.1, which means it's pretty slim profit and wood trees are expensive to maintain.

some people wishing to sell planks are selling at 3.8, which i take by the thousands daily and sell for 4 at the toolie.

i now have a big enough surplus of planks that i am in the process of crashing the markets on plank-related goods.

it's good news for furniture makers ans other plank consumers, but very, very bad news for growers of wood trees and wood tree speculators.

...except me, because i control the market.

it's not that hard, because of people's competitive and greedy nature. when i am inflating prices, i do it by buying up all the cheap planks and selling progressively higher, which is only profitable before that bubble bursts and when you sell too high eventually the market won't bear that and then everybody who bought when the price was rising takes a bath.

so when i was overselling market price, greedy people jumped on to list lots for MORE than i was charging, thinking they were actually going to sell!

and then when i was underselling, some people were getting very good deals on cheap planks, so then poeple with a lot of planks wanted to undersell me and as long as i was willing to keep listing planks below their price, they were willing to try to undersell me, and when they got below 4, i just took up all those planks and either held them in reserve or sold them at the toolie.

i made a LOT of currants, and the price of planks has now permanently fallen to 4.1.

and nobody likes wood trees, because they take up space that might otherwise be occupied by much more profitable trees.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

power tools

today i kinda felt bad when i woke up, but decided to go with the group from my church to do flood relief.

i haven't done any of that work since i came home from wilmington last october with the chest infection, and rebuilding has a very different emotional dynamic than demolition.

i think i STILL have not processed the pictures or told you about the week in wilmington, so if you're scratching you head trying to remember when you read about that, i'm afraid it is squarely my fault in the (not) telling.

honest, as i get caught up bit by bit i'll get to those pictures and videos and i'll tell you about it.

anyway, today we worked on building some steps and preparing the front of a house for siding.

i spent most of the day hauling, measuring and cutting old balusters that the homeowner got on craigslist for use on the new deck.

and i took some pictures, which i will organize and assemble, but for now, a few images of the day.

Monday, June 18, 2012


typically my blood pressure runs at high teens over high seventies. you know, like 117/78.

and these past few months i have felt as if my blood pressure is high, but since i've never had high blood pressure, i could only guess.

and then a few weeks ago i was at my doctor's office for a prescription refill and she took my blood pressure and said "wow. that's a little high" wherein "a little high" means "i''d like to check it again later in the visit, have you drop by the lab for a panel of tests and i'd like to to monitor your blood pressure and i'll see you for a follow-up in six weeks."

i dont remember exactly what it was, but it was in the neighborhood of 160/100.

so the next time i was at the pharmacy, i used the machine thingy, and i've lost the little slip of paper where it wrote it down, but it was still high.

and then the next time it was only one-forty-something over ninety-something, which was good, because i was feeling better and last night i felt like it was THROUGH THE ROOF but i wasn't near a sphygmo-thingy (i know how to spell it but i'm too damn lazy and i like the way "sphygmo-thingy" sounds anyway, so that's gonna be my term), so i wasn't able to check, but today after my bike ride and feeling much more relaxed and calmed down and all done shopping for my groceries i checked while i was at the pharmacy, and while it's not as high as it was, it was still kind of "wow. that's a little high".


crap. that's what it's gonna be when i'm feeling good?

what was it last night, i wonder?

'coz i felt like my brain was gonna 'splode.

Sunday, June 17, 2012


all right. to tell you about this, i am going to have to 'splain a couple o' things to you, because neither of you probably plays glitch.

let's start as if you came in today: it's a game i play. no, you can't play it too right now, because you can't get in. i got in during the first beta and then the game went public and now it's back to beta AND nobody can invite you in like they used to be able to do, because there's a current moratorium on new players until they fix some things.

get your own links if you want them.

but it's interesting.

it is a very open ended MMO, and it turns out that a lot of people in it are actually playing different games.

for instance, some people are playing the "i have more stuff than you" game. some people are playing the "i am at a higher level than you" game. some are playing "i have as much stuff as possible and compulsively collect things" and some people are playing the "i've been everywhere and knoweverything" game. some people play the "isn't my outfit cute?" game, and yet others are playing "hang out and chat. here's a rainbow."

it's further complicated in that there are three currencies in ur (the name of the world), one (currants; isn't that cute?) that buys objects, like beans and cherries and tools, one (imagination) that buys intangibles, like the ability to plant more trees in your yard, or speed up your learning of skills, and a third currency (credits) that buys cosmetic things like outfits for your character and snazzy decorative furniture for your house.

currants and imagination are earned through ingame mechanics, and credits are bought with actual cash money.

i play a lot of games in ur. one of the games i like to play is to run secret contests that do not appear to be contests. recently i left a series of whiny little notes around that said "i never seem to have enough currants. if you would like to help me with this, please send me some."

and then when unsuspecting people sent me money, i sent them a note that said "your kindness is rewarded. i have taken the liberty of multiplying your donation by ten and returning it to you."

i sent them the money, of course.

but recently i have been enjoying a game i call "let's mess with the markets and see what happens".

i think this post is enough for you to try to digest as it is.

tomorrow, maybe, i will tell you about the markets.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

feminist frequency

so. i watch the feminist frequency youtube channel. anita sarkeesian has some interesting things to say and says them well.

i missed the flap about the opening of her kickstarter campaign -i am so behind in my reading/watching that it will be a while before i catch up- but while i was having my yummy bowl of mac 'n' cheese, i happened to see this video by jay smooth, and thought i would like to pass it along to you while i get caught up on all the particulars.

Friday, June 15, 2012

images from glitch

i hope you will both forgive me, but i'm going to write a couple of posts about the game i'm playing online.

i've spoken of it before and neither of you understands what the point of it is, but it's a very nice little open-ended MMO sans PVP combat, plus it is a very pretty clever little world to explore, so i like it.

in recent developments we all have new houses, and our old houses disappeared, which is a thing i'm a little ambivalent about. i love the customization of the new house, but i liked having had to work to buy my old house and i liked that it was in a place in the world; new houses exist in some other plane that don't seem to have actual locations, so there's no real neighborhood anymore.

still, i will always live in groddle meadow in my heart.

but i thought i'd show you some of the pictures:

farewell, groddle meadow home.

my new home, with moving box
moving day
what a mess!

just unpacked my pumpkins.
package delivery at my house.

estevan meadows, 5100 block after the great housing decay
my house at zilleoween, year 22

Thursday, June 14, 2012

non-adventures with 911

governeor chittenden road is a public road, what they call a "town highway". it is only open from may 1 to november 1, but it is a public road.

the posted speed limit is 25, but down there in the seasonal part if you have half a brain you're not going that fast, because it's really only a lane and a half wide with no shoulder and has two or three blind curves and is frequently used by cyclists, pedestrians, and people on horseback.

it is also the shortest way from point A to point B wherein point A is my house and point B is my favorite mountain biking venue.

so today i was coming up the road and on maybe the second blind curve when -surprise!- there's an extra wide pickup standing still on the outside of the curve.

and wait! he's not just standing, he's parked!

you know, in the travelled lane.

of a road that isn't quite two lanes wide.

so i'm annoyed by that.

and then i notice he's IN the truck, mouth open, eyes closed and head sagging.

probably he's asleep. or sleeping something off.

but it's not a good place to do either of those things.

but then i'm also thinking: you know, he could be sick. and if i hear later that a guy had to be hauled out of there and i just drove on by without doing anything, it would not sit easy on my soul.

i did not feel comfortable stopping, so i called 911.

"i don't know if this is an emergency at all," i said, "but there's a guy either asleep or passed out in the road on governor chittenden road"

and i describe the location more precisely and the dispatcher hands me over to the local PD and everyone agrees that somebody (meaning the police and the rescue squad) ought to come over and have a look.

two minutes later two cruisers and the truck went by.

fifteen minutes later the truck came back out, which is good news, because its lights were off and that means no patient aboard.

i imagine that after the police woke him up, they probably gave him a ticket, because according to my understanding it is not legal to just stop your truck and sleep in the travelled lane of a public road.

i may be wrong about that, but i'm pretty sure it's not ok.

i am sorry to have caused the gentleman inconvenience, but a) you can't sleep there, and b) if you're sleeping or passed out because you are sick and you are on an out of the way backroad, someone ought to help you.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

pain/ not pain

last night was maybe my best run ever.

i have not checked my time yet, but i was doing a thing other people might identify as running, and not just people familiar with the kind of running done at the tail end of marathons.

and the pain did not even start until almost halfway through, so that was a bonus.

but with the death of my red bike, i am riding the blue hardtail which, while it is a fantastic bike, i am reminded very much WHY i went to a full suspension in the first place.

you lose a lot of your pedaling power when you're using a lot of your strength just for pain abatement. you have to absorb the shock of rocks and roots all in your body without the suspension there to suck it up, and i tell you, it makes a DIFFERENCE.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

moon over seboeis

so i'm sorting out the pictures and videos. here's a video of the super moon rising over endless lake from my campsite on the seboeis unit.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

it's dead, jim.

after it happened i wandered like a lost soul looking for my friend jim because it's his land and i thought it would make me feel better to have said "it's dead, jim."

i call jim when i'm in a fix and have messed up my derailleur or don't understand a piece of legislation.

my red bike is dead.

i know, just things, right?

but i am guilty of anthropomorphizing the inanimate and bike is not just thing to me. bike is not person, but way more than thing.

a bike is an extension of me, just as much as a hand. to ride a bike is to feel lithe and graceful and powerful. to ride a bike is to feel freedom. to ride a bike is to feel mastery and fear and doubt and mastery again.

to ride a bike is to cheat death.

and i love each of my bikes; i know where we were when i first fell in love with them. i talk to them and i remember where they carried me, how many thousands of miles they carried me, in health and sickness and back to health again and in defeat and in championship and just for the hell of it,

and the red bike, it knew every trail at catamount, it knew me.

and i loved it.

and today when i was about a mile from the parking, late in my ride, just spinning the pedals on smooth fast singletrack i heard the pop and then the horrible noise that comes when something has gone wrong and  the tire is dragging on an edge somewhere, but the tire wasn't flat but the chain had jumped to the big ring and i could not figure the noise and i was crippled but still moving and then i wasn't.

i was very suddenly not moving and toppled over on the trailside, banging the seat into my butt (there will be a bruise) and then i saw the heartbreaking thing: the frame was broken. not cracked; broken all the way through and a guy came up outta nowhere on the trail and asked if i was ok and i said i wan't hurt, but this was the death of my bike and he said he didn't see what was wrong and i said "look here."


he asked if i would be all right and i said i was kinda busted up about the bike but otherwise fine.

he said he hoped i could get a new frame under warranty and he moved on.

and i started to walk out rolling it beside me and then i was thinking of all the thousands of miles it carried me and decided it deserved a better exit, and i took it up on my shoulder and carried it out.

a full suspension mountain bike is not a light thing, and it is not designed for carrying, but i carried it all the way. halfway i stopped and fixed the dangling chain to make it look more dignified. i stood tall like a pallbearer, proud to carry it the last mile it was ever going to go. there wasn't anyone to see me do it, not until i got to the parking lot, and i'm glad i didn't have to explain a mechanical bad enough to walk and a bike so loved as to be carried.

i must have been a sight, resolutely carrying a bike, covered in mud and tears and snot.

i racked it for the last time and i brought it home.

i do not know what will happen next.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

what the hail?

yesterday afternoon i was talking to my dad on the phone and he said something about a band of thunderstorms that passed him,and even though he lives west of me, he lives significantly south of me, too, so when my sky got cloudy and then cleared i didn't think much of it, because he said it was powerful windy at his house.

you couldn't turn a pinwheel here.

and because of topography, often the bands of weather that cross this state divide neatly into above route two, between routes two and four, and below route four.

i live above route two. my dad lives between routes two and four.

and then after a number of complacent calm hours, all hail broke loose. the sky just turned black, with little warning and all of a sudden it was WINDY and all of a sudden we were being pelted with hail like i've never seen before.

i've seen large hail, and i've seen hail that accumulates, and i've seen hail that goes on for most of the afternoon, but i had never seen hail this big (dime and quarter sized) fall so densely for so long and stick so much.

i wanted to go out and put my car in the garage, but i was afraid i'd be hurt. it sounded like i was going to lose windows, from the pounding of it.

but of course i ran to grab my camera, to go out on the porch under shelter and LOOk at that thing.

of course all the neighbors did, too. nobody wanted to go out in it. everybody was worried about the cars. and everybody was on the porches.

along with the hail was buckets and buckets of water and nowhere for it to go so i wondered if i was finally going to get flooded, but after a little while the force of it subsided and it was just moderately heavy rain. and then some less impressive hail. and then more rain. and a little more hail. and then rain until late into the evening when the fog rose.

Friday, June 08, 2012

must be something in the water

i drink mostly out of a sigg water bottle. i used to drink out of a plastic water bottle that i just kept refilling with tap water until it began to leak, which took about two years and that thing looked NASTY so by way of bribery toward weaning me of that habit my mom bought me some very nice sigg bottles.

i love them.

anyway, i was filling one of mine before bed the other night and an icky-lookin' pale blue thing floated to the top and although my first thought was "uh-oh, that doesn't look good", my immediate next thought was "better get my camera".

because, you know, if i've been drinking out of a bottle witha slimy blue thing in it, i better get pictures.

turns out it was an omeprazole capsule, and thinking back to when i COULD have lost it in the water bottle, it had been hanging out in there unnoticed for four days.

i fished it out not yet knowing what it was an admired its goopiness and of course took pictures to share with you.

...because i'm sweet that way.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

pinhole transit

tuesday was the big transit of venus.

here's my shoebox.
i made a little pinhole viewer.

well, two actually. i made one to leave at the church on my way by since cr had a meeting there and i took one to my race venue.

pinhole and eyehole
it's pretty cool, actually. it's a tiny little image, but it's there all the same and you really can look at the sun with it. you can project anything else, if you have enough light.

i took a basic shoebox and put a little hole in one side of the end. i would have cut a larger hoe in the other side of the same end, but there was already a convenient one in the box.

i taped white paper to the far end on the inside to serve as the projection screen and taped up the box to keep out the extra light.

white paper taped to back
of course the duct tape i have at my house is red, because of these.

taped to block extra light

self-portrait thorough viewer
trees and clouds

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

best comments

sometimes i get the best spam.

the best.

after all the usual vacation home real estate viagra cheap comments, there are the ones i honestly have NO idea what is going on. maybe they are posting something to establish a spambot as a legitimate account?

does this fool anybody?

so here are some of my recent favorites, links removed, of course.

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "morning in the children's garden": 

Tender thanks you very much in regard to the relieve forum. I academic a lot and got to know the right with interesting people. I'll be a iterative visitor. 

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "moved":
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Tuesday, June 05, 2012

on the back of the turtle

i just wrote you about my morning in the ithaca children's garden, and posted my pictures from the day, but i do not think i linked you to the video of the back of that huge turtle sculpture.

the edge of her shell is inlaid with moon mosaics so you can walk around her perimeter and follow the cycle of the moon.

now, i'm wild about turtles and mosaics and phases of the moon, and sculptures you can walk on, so of course i think it would be AWESOME to make a little video of the walk around.

so here.

Monday, June 04, 2012

morning in the children's garden

by daylight i had a better look at the gardens and was unable to walk the labyrinth because the daffodils that marked the path had not sufficiently sprouted to give me confidence that i could find my way and not crush new shoots, so i let it be.

i went to find some geocaches and then thought i'd have a little lunch and do some light shopping.

then i went up to look at the sod labyrinth at foundation of light, but i was having trouble finding the path. ordinarily when i am in a labyrinth i consider whatever happens to be the thing that is supposed to happen, so it's not like me to try too hard to force a thing like that, but at my church we were  doing a study of labyrinths and i felt it was sort of like doing my homework.

i have been having trouble finding my path of late, and that failure reflected in the labyrinth was no huge surprise.

yet because of the study group i wanted to sort the thing out, and i remembered that i had in my car a book about labyrinths, with an 11 circuit labyrinth on the cover that i might use for a map.

and returning from the car, there were people at the nearby stone circle, as i came up the walk.

"hello", the man said, and he told me his name. i said hello. "i built this", he said. "back in 1972 and then again 20 years later."

and he told the story of how as a five year old he had been part of the group that had made the original stone circle at this spot and then how they came back to update it with more monolithic stones taken from the quarry uspstreet.

it was fascinating.

i described my problem with the labyrinth and with my path of late and they were very kind and gentle.

we talked of rocks and the quarry and paths and cameras and we looked each of the rocks in the ring in some detail and went our separate ways.

i found a few geocaches after that, played eight holes of disc golf, and went to get dinner before washing up for the concert.

Sunday, June 03, 2012

in the place of my misspent youth

it's june now, but i'm going back through my photos and such to catch up on my geocaching logs and also to pick out the things i was going to tell you about before and since neither of you read me for current events (i hope), it won't matter a lick of difference whether i did this thing yesterday or four months ago.

in march time came for me to go to the home concert of the IC choir, but i maybe wasn't going to go. i mentioned the concert here in case you want to review.

i wrote to larry and told him i maybe wasn't going to go, and he wrote back right away saying he hoped i would. i have been to the home concert every year i am able since 1984 and this is the last one ever.

next year larry is retiring and instead of the home concert they're having a little do at lincoln center.

but really, if larry hopes i will come to a thing, i pack my bags and i go.

so i did.

i told you that on that day my car turned 100,000 miles.

and the evening went without incident. i got into ithaca just before sundown on a friday night in spring and if coming into your old college town on a friday night in spring doesn't fill you with nostalgia, nothing will.

but friday was my day to run, and having driven most of the day, running wasn't such a bad idea. so i went down to the octopus, out to cass park and found a reasonable looking parking lot and ran a long loop along the lakeshore and back on the inland side of the park and i was coming around a corner in the dark when a monstrous, lizardlike face loomed huge and suddenly out of the light mist and darkness; now-you-don't-see-it, now-you-DO.


it is, of course, the giant snapping turtle sculpture at the ithaca children's garden.

and i thought i'd come back in the morning to look, and then i came across a thing that in the darkness looked like the outline of maybe a traditional eleven-circuit labyrinth, but in the dark and the path outlined just by sprouting flowers i didn't want to mess with that.

so fer sure i'm coming back in the morning.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

on its way

if you live west of here, you know what we have been suspecting all night:

the storm is coming. there was a little wind and then a loot of wind and now i am watching pieces of my neighbors' gardens fly by, but so far the rain has not started in earnest.

it will.

Friday, June 01, 2012


the big news, i guess, is that after all that dithering i have moved my website.

it still looks a lot like it always did, only now it's on a different server and has a shiny new address. neither of you would notice that, since if you ever go there from here, chances are you travel by link and that's that.

over time i hope to get it cleaned up as i learn coding, but you wouldn't notice that much either since i want it to look pretty much the way it does now, but run on cleaner code.

sure, there will be a few cosmetic details changed, but it will still be pretty much the same.

as for blogger, i'm keeping it. i could put my blog on my own server, but it works just fine here. i see a lot of things in people's blogs about the dashboard and how hard it is to use, but i keep thinking: what? are we looking at the same dashboard? "coz mine looks clean and simple, but then again i'm not messing with the goofy dynamic views.

and the awesome thing about blogger is that if you can do a little coding, you can get under the hood and make things that already exist work the way you want them to. do you ever look at a template and think it would be perfect for you if only it had a thing that did this, and if it got rid of that one goofy-looking thing?

well, blogger lets you go in there and customize things, although they don't make any promises if you break something the site needs to run it, and they sure don't care if your third party template breaks on you, but you can get pretty crafty if you have some basic skills.


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