Sunday, June 28, 2009

Momma, ok you can take my Kodachrome now.

Kodak announces the end of Kodachrome. Reading that article had me searching my archives to find an unused roll of Kodachrome. No luck but I did take a bit of a trip down memory lane. Pictures of our lil bird when she was actually a little bird. Family long gone. Family and friends, including myself, no longer young. Ah photography, thanks Louis Daguerre, and while I'm at it, thanks George Eastman. "They give us those nice bright colors. They give us the greens of summers. Makes you think all the world's a sunny day," Paul Simon sang.

Now, the replacement: digital. Not as sensual as developing your own film. Long hours in the dark room replaced with snap out the disc, stick it the computer, open a file, choose print. Amazing for someone like me because I can look at a black and white I labored over in the dark room remembering each exposure I tried, each area I dodged or burned. There was something magical about controlling the light in the dark and it was a feeling I don't get from Photoshop.

Digital is what we have, what I use and actually what I'm happy with but, I do long for a darkroom session, again. Anyone out there feel the same?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Buddy: The poor little doggy

He might have had a reaction to the non-itch meds he's been taking so they gave him Valium, put him on IVs for a while, and now he's home. He's asleep and not puking or shaking so there was an immediate improvement. We'll see how he's doing tomorrow. I thought he was a goner.

Accepting good wishes and cookies

When our thirteen-year-old wire haired terrorist walked away from his usual piece of toast this morning I told my beloved there was something wrong.

He's been seeing the Vet for a "chewing" problem and the meds seemed to have slowed it down but he's not his usual self. I goog'ed (this is my new word for research on Google) his meds and one of the side effects is lethargy but I'll give the Vet a call today because walking away from a handout is something he'd never do if he felt good.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Two and a half months

I had a visit from the lil guy and his mom on Tuesday. This time he was wide awake and ready to smile. What a cutie he is. He's 14 pounds and 24 inches long and he won't be three months until July 3rd. We won't be able to call him lil guy much longer.

Friday, June 19, 2009

When parents die

So many times when adversity visits a friend I can't say, yes I know what you are going through because I don't. I don't have Cancer. I've not lost my job. My child is alive. I can only be a witness to the pain and hold a hand or lend an ear. I guess you could call me lucky in that respect. Sure, I've had adversities but none so powerful as the loss of your mother and this is the journey a good friend is experiencing right now.

Both my parents lived to an age where you wouldn't say they died young but any age is difficult to lose your parents. The title daughter isn't something you earn it is bestowed on you by your parents and, eventually, it is them that takes it away.

Death steals from the living and hopefully, gives peace to the dying. So to all my dear friends who've lost that title I wish peace as well.

Di, Ingrid, Sandi, my darling sister, and now Kathleen your memory will never replace their presence but it will soothe your heart.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Right in the middle of the stinkin' valley

On Monday I was feeling rather tense. Honestly, I was in a hateful mood. I hated my representatives in Sacramento and wrote them.* I hated the idiots in Thugville for rioting after a stupid basketball game. I hated the city of Los Angeles for wanting to spend way too much money on the parade to honor the Lakers and wrote the mayor. I hated Iran but didn't know who to write. About the time I was ready to hate the whole world my beloved walked into my office, sat down and said let's go somewhere. Quickly I Googled, "What to do in San Fernando Valley" and came up with a few gardens to visit. We chose The Japanese Garden at the Tillman Water Reclamation plant in Van Nuys.

Skip this part if you don't care what happens to your poop.
Don't know what goes on at a water reclamation plant? Neither did I but check the link to find out. It's quite interesting. Let me give the highlights. You flush your toilet or run your garbage disposal and all this stuff goes to the sewer. Eventually it makes to 6100 Woodley Ave, Van Nuys, CA. There it goes into a series of holding tanks where it is screened and sifted and aerated and then some stuff heads off to another plant, the sludge, and the water is cleaned so it can be used to water golf courses and landscaping. This water is not for drinking though they say it would be safe but some of the water is used in the Japanese Garden.

All of this is done in large open tanks and yes, it smells like crap, because that is what most of it is. They have life preservers hanging on the fence around the open tanks but honestly, would you want to live after falling in? Lets move away from here and go to the garden.

We parked in the lot, payed our senior price of $2, and walked to the entry of the garden. It's a small door, traditional to a Japanese garden, made so you can't see what's in there just yet. When you walk through the whole expanse opens to this wonder garden of lakes, streams, water falls all beautifully and skillfully landscaped. Huge Koi swim in the water and there is an occasional water fowl. I can't describe everything because ever path we took had a different water feature or exquisite grouping of plants. The more than six acres was peaceful and, even though a group of pre-school children followed us into the garden, we found some quiet places to sit and watch the water; sometimes moving, other times calm. Ok, this was what I needed and when I left I felt calm and relaxed.

* If you want, you can e-mail your representatives in Sacrament and tell them they better get busy and do their jobs while we still have a state to do it in. Don't know who they are?

Find your CA state rep.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Lakers win, LA Citizens, losers

Look at this fat bastard. He has expensive shoes, a Lakers jersey, and a Lakers jacket. He could afford to pay for the damage he's done. I hope they threw his sorry ass in jail so he can celebrate with Bubba who would love this wanna-be punk.

Los Angeles, in as tight a financial situation as most of California, is going to co-host a Lakers victory parade. Why? 1 milbucks could very easily be spent on something equally as good for the city, couldn't they? LA aleady payed overtime for the rioting last night. Some please make the connection for me between pride in "your" team winning a championship and destroying a city bus.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Kitchen stories: Thanks for the move

The first settlers to the area was the Miami nation and village became their traditional capital. The settlement, at the Maumee, St Joseph and St Marys Rivers, was called Kekionga and the Miami lived there peacefully until around 1676 when the French missionaries found them.

In 1790 President George Washington ordered that Indiana be "secured", which meant the native population better skedaddle or die. After two losses to the Miami tribes General "Mad" Anthony Wayne routed the tribe, established a fort at the three rivers, and named the fort after himself. Fort Wayne was established and was a moderately successful venture.

By the mid-20th century it was a strong manufacturing center with the likes of GE, Westinghouse, Magnavox, and a variety of auto manufacturing support industries. At the end of the century Ft Wayne went the way of the other mid-west cities and became part of the country know as the Rust Belt. General Electric was the death knell for Ft Wayne and it has struggled ever since.

My family left in 1957 and not because they were visionaries but only because my father was stationed in Port Hueneme for a portion of 1944. He'd never gotten over California and they finally made the move more than ten years later.

In 1995 and divorced for many years, my mother found the need to be with her brothers and sisters and moved back to the town where she grew up. While visiting her I found the area beautiful but stifling. It felt as if the town was stuck in a fifties era mentality of segregation and ignorance. All my relatives, plain and simple, were bigots. Because of that President Obama carrying the state of Indiana, great though it maybe, was a shock. Growing up in California was the best education our parents could have given us. Thanks Mom and Dad.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Hot flash for him

Man discovers hot flashes and cravings from the other side. This story, though only humorous to women of a certain age, is so painfully honest I thought some might enjoy reading what menopause is like.

My Brief Life as a Woman

Monday, June 08, 2009

Moon and K go to town

Friday found two friends on public transportation heading East under cloudy skies. Since my traveling companion posted about the trip on her blog, I don't have to.

She took some very good snaps.

San Antonio Winery

Friday, June 05, 2009

Here comes the pole

Editor's note: While chatting with some friends I related the funny story of the electric company replacing a power pole in our back yard in late 2005.

To find the exact date I looked on my blog and to my amazement could not find the original post. Very new to blogging then I could have deleted the post. Luckily I still had the text and photos from the event. I'm republishing the story even though it's over three years old.

You can rock my cradle just don't kick my cribs

Cribs, in this instance, are platforms the outriggers of HUGE cranes sit on while they lift a power pole over your house. Let me say it again, over your house.

We have a power pole in our back yard and two weeks ago Edison, our power company, came and dug a new hole next to the old pole. The existing pole also carries the TV cable and over the years had gotten pretty beat up so they had plans to replace it. The next week we received a notice that next Monday the power would be off for most of the day. On Thursday they delivered the pole along with street signs warning Monday morning, bright and early, the street would be closed. Don't park on the street or they'll tow your car. Amazing how many didn't read the notice but the crew gave them time to get their cars moved anyway.

I can't say enough about how nice these guys were. After they got the serious business of setting up the crane they were kind enough to talk with us and answer some questions; I always have questions. I was totally fascinated with just the idea of lifting a forty foot pole over my house and I'll admit, a bit nervous. I had a vision of the pole crashing down through my almost-finished new kitchen but after talking with the guys, and seeing their attention to detail and safety, knew that wouldn't happen.

Here are the guys when they were done.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Now blooming at the Getty Center Central Garden

This plant, Geranium Maderense is a true geranium. Hard to believe for it doesn't look like and geranium I'm used to. It has a long woody trunk that ends in a two to three foot head of blossoms. It's blooming right now at the edge of the stream, as well as other locations in the Central Garden. By the looks of it it will flower for a few more weeks. Very showy.