Monday, March 10, 2014

Photos so far this year

These are some of the better photos I've taken so far this year.

Lake Arbor Fairways, 14th hole, January 2, 2014.

Olympus SZ12, ISO 80, 1/400, f5.4, 140mm.

Funeral procession of Jefferson County Sherifs Officer Sgt. David Baldwin, February 3, 2014.

Canon Rebel T1i, ISO 100, 1/250, f9.0, 85mm.

Whitecaps on Stanley Lake with Boulder flatirons behind, March, 3, 2014.

Olympus SZ12, ISO 80, 1/640, f4.4, 66mm.

Bald Eagle at Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge, March 4, 2014.

Canon Rebel T1i, ISO 250, 1/2000, f6.3, 500mm.

My first oil painting in 45 years. March 7, 2014.
I just wanted to play with the paint. I don't know what it is but it must be something.

More to follow.

Monday, February 17, 2014

A quick ride

I got the motorcycle out yesterday and went for a quick ride. Come along with me.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Elver A. Barker

I was one of Mr. Barker's students when he was teaching art classes in Wyoming during the 1960's. My parents bought one of his paintings which I later inherited; it now hangs in my living room. I had a signed copy of his finger painting book for the longest time but I don't know where it's gone to.

I'll try to get a better photo.

I hadn't seen Mr. Barker since about 1968 and assumed he had died so I was surprised to meet him again in 2000. I introduced myself by asking him if he could remember what he was doing in 1965. He looked a little worried then said "No." I told him who I was and how I had been one of his students when he taught in Wyoming. He remembered both me and my parents.

While admiring his painting this afternoon I wondered what happened to him. An internet search found a web page dedicated to him. The paragraph and photos below were taken from Tyler Alpern's web site.

Elver Barker was and artist, teacher, gay and human rights activist who was one of the early officers of the Mattachine Society and an editor of the Mattachine Review. In 1953, he lost his job at the Alameda County welfare office when a supervisor figured out that Barker was gay. He then became among the most active members of the Mattachine Society. Out of fear for losing his job as a schoolteacher for being a gay activist, he operated under the name Carl B. Harding, which he signed to articles he wrote, letters to the editor of local newspapers and when quoted in newspaper reports. "We were afraid we'd lose our jobs," Barker recall to Westword on the occasion of the 1999 Gay Pride Parade. "I loved my work," Barker said of one lost job. "But one day, my supervisor said to me, 'We all live in glass houses around here.' And when he said that, I knew I was being discriminated against." Barker also edited the Mattachine Education Handbook, “a resource dedicated to fighting discriminatory policies such as a standard practice that law enforcement agencies used to illegally entrap gays.” In 1956, Elver moved to Denver to become a teacher and established a local Mattachine Society. His role with the Mattachine is documented in the book Behind the Mask of the Mattachine to be released in the Fall of 2006. His correspondence as a Mattachine Officer is preserved in the New York Public Library.

Above is what he looked like when I was his student.

The Newcastle mentioned above is Newcastle Wyoming.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas from Clyde & Puddin (cat)

I didn't think I would be able to do a calendar this year but last week I decide I had the funds to make one. I uploaded my photos and placed my order with VistaPrint.Com last week. I wasn't expecting them to arrive until next week but they were delivered yesterday! They look great!

Twenty Thirteen was quite a year for me. In March I bought an electronic piano that was on sale. I've been enjoying it quite a bit but I haven't done much practicing since I moved.

I created 2 photo books from the photos I took on the motorcycle trips I've taken. They turned out very well. I want to make another one of general photos I've taken but am looking for a more affordable printing option.

I had my first art show this year. I displayed 16 of my better photos at a local sandwich shop last February. I don't have any immediate plans for another show.

The rents started going up in Denver last year and this year they simply priced me out of the apartment. I couldn't afford to rent in Denver anymore. I calculated I could pay a mortgage, insurance, utilities, and other fees for less than I was paying in rent, so I bought a small townhouse in Arvada Colorado. I'm no longer in Denver. It is much, much quieter here; I don't have fire trucks, ambulances, and cop cars racing past at all hours of the day and night. I do miss the quick access to the Denver parks.

In late May I took a day trip to Scottsbluff to visit the Scott's Bluff National Monument. It was a fun ride except for the tornado. I went to the Sturgis bike rally for the first, and only, time this year. Sturgis was a major disappointment but it was a beautiful ride there and back.

I had a heart attack on June 5th at 1:35pm. It was not the grip your chest and scream type, instead I developed strong pain in both arms from my shoulder to my elbow and pain in both jaws. I tried shaking it off. I started making a pot of coffee thinking that would make me feel better, but before the coffee had finished brewing I realized it was serious and got help. The fire department arrived within 2 minutes followed immediately by the ambulance, and 10 minutes later I was in the emergency room. They were actually standing by waiting for me. Five minutes later I was in surgery ( the cath lab.) They installed a stint into my Left Anterior Descending. I had little or no damage and they kept telling me how lucky I was to react and get in so quickly. I don't want to think about how things would have turned out if I was on the road.

Cardiac rehab was just walking on a treadmill or stationary bike while they monitored my heart. I bought my own treadmill after I finished rehab. I prefer to walk outdoors but I don't like walking on concreate or in the cold. That's what the treadmill is for.

I haven't had a cat since 1980 and I've really missed having one. Pets weren't allowed in the apartment but now I have my own place so I adopted a cat from the shelter. We get along fine.

I wasn't affected by the biblical flood of 2013. There was flooding in north east Denver, all along the Platte river from Commerce City into Nebraska, and in Boulder, Longmont, Loveland, Fort Collins, Estes Park, and Lions. Those are all places where rivers and streams come down out of the mountains. Greeley got flooded by the Platte. The farmers along the streams and the Platte lost everything.

I am very fortunate to be alive, have my own home, am warm and dry, and have food on the table. This year was quite a year for me but it has still been a good year.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Jingle lights

Christmas lights through the dash cam. I didn't put any effort into this at all.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Sunday afternoon

The temperature got up to 55F (12.7C) and most of the ice has melted off the streets, so I took the motorcycle out for a spin. I got lunch at Big Mama's Burrito (72nd & Federal.) After lunch I road north a few blocks to the Pillar of Fire Castle on 83rd. The view of Longs Peak was stunning from the hill top.

Clyde has arrived (animated GIF, as is the cat on sidebar.)

Longs Peak from Westminster, Colorado.

Pillar of Fire Castle, Westminster, Colorado.

CNN: Grading the U.S. education system

As seen on CNN: Grading the U.S. education system

Education historian Diane Ravitch with CNN Your Money host Christine Romans, December 13, 2013.

Friday, December 13, 2013

An afternoon of lakes

I remembered I had the Vine application installed on my cell phone, so I took my phone and camera out for a trip to the lakes. I got a couple of good shots this afternoon.

Arbor Lake, Arvada Colorado

Arbor Lake.

Lake Mary, Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge
Commerce City, Colorado

Foot bridge at Lake Mary.

Waves on sea? No, Ice on Lake Mary.

Red tailed hawk at Rock Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge.

Standley Lake, Westminster, Colorado

Thursday, December 05, 2013

Just what you've been waiting for

Oh boy! Just what we've all been waiting for. Clyde's put up a webcam. Now we can watch him do absolutely nothing. Click on WebCam at the top of the page (below the banner photo.) You'll be impressed -- NOT. I hope to put the webcam outside someday but I need to get a weather proof one that can also handle bright & low light.