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Tuesday, January 1, 2002
(11:37 pm)

I had a lot to say earlier, but now it's left me. We took the Christmas decorations and the tree down today. I made the traditional cabbage dish for dinner today. This year I made something with cabbage, parsnips, celery, onion, red bell pepper, stewed tomatoes, beef boullion cubes, turkey smoked sausage, and various herbs and spices. I called it New Year's Soup. It was pretty good, albeit a tad heavy on the cumin.

Happy New Year everyone.

The alien aviator who lives on top of my television in the living room.  (C-062)

Wednesday, January 2, 2002
(10:05 pm)

News: I had three photographs on the Gallery page at the Porter's Camera web page for the week beginning December 31, 2001. For those who've followed my maze of twisty passages, all alike, on this web page, you're already seen them, so the only thing you'd get from going to see is a new perspective.

I've had a sketch book lying open on my drawing table for over a week now, and nothing suggests itself to me. It seems like I'm always running here and there, doing things for everyone else, so that I don't have the time and peace of mind to do what I need to do. I still have to have some work done on the car, too. That will probably kill the better part of at least two days. My mom's in the hospital, too, and my daughter wants me to drive to Washington, DC to pick up her friend. I wish I was more a traditional artist who just sketches willy nilly. I could fill volumes and not need any solitude or reflection to work on my oeuvre.

Thursday, January 3, 2002
(11:51 am)

On this date in 1847 San Francisco, California got it's present name. Prior to that, it was called Yerba Buena. For those of you who don't understand Spanish, that's Good Herb in English. Damn! You think they mean. . . nahhhhh. Probably cilantro.

Datura Inoxia (called Toloache by the Aztecs) (C-003)
"Yerba del Diablo"

Saturday, January 5, 2002
(9:48 pm)

I don't think I mentioned it before, but the photographs I posted on December 26, 29, 30, and the first of January were taken using a new film to me. It's Mitsubishi MX-II ISO 400. I'd like to try out some slower film. I think the quality is pretty good. And it's cheap! I think the 400 speed is about $250 a roll. The 100 and 200 should be even less. I really want to find some of this film is slower speeds.

Does it seem ironic to anyone but me that they abbreviate Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)?

It really gets me that everything gets shortened. Now they're showing ads on television about Rheumatoid Arthritis. They are referring to it as RA now. RA? Resident Assistant? Regular Army? Good grief!

Sunday, January 6, 2002
(3:56 pm)

It's a snow day. It started out this morning with mixed rain/sleet/snow. Then for several hours it was huge clumps of wet snow on top of the slush layer. Now we have a finer snow, but at least it's not snowing as hard. I've shovelled the driveway, sidewalk and part of the alley twice now. I bought two 50-pound bags of urea last week to melt snow, but it doesn't seem to be doing much to this mess.

It's a good day to make chili.

Monday, January 7, 2002
(12:17 pm)

The chili came out really good, and right around 250 calories per bowl and only 4 grams of fat. The heat index was fairly high. I used three of the dark yellow habaneros and three red chilis in it.

More of my asemics series, this one in inks.

India and other inks on clay coat paper

Tuesday, January 8, 2002
(10:10 am)

Happy Birthday, Elvis. . . wherever you are.

Wednesday, January 9, 2002
(7:16 pm)

I got up this morning, opened the loaf of bread from the Big Bear Deli to make toast and here's what I found. . .

Flour Power

There is a story in the January 8, 2002 edition of the Christian Science Monitor about FBI agents showing up at an art gallery in Houston that was displaying art that was critical of Dubya Bush (See here)

This is the second such incident I've read about in recent days. We'd best be on our guard. It may end up like the repressive times that gave rise to the Free Speech Movement in Berkeley. May we do as well opposing it as they did.

Friday, January 11, 2002
(6:25 pm)

It may be a few days before anything substantive shows up here. I have some family matters to attend to, along with the attending stress and mental strain. See you soon.

Monday, January 14, 2002
(12:42 pm)

Family matters continue to primarily occupy my mind and consume my time. It's funny, though, that when I am engaged in things unpleasant or undesirable, my mind steps up its activity and I think of many things. My dreams become more vivid as well, and I tend to remember them more than usual.

Has it occurred to anyone else that Dubyah may have possibly gotten drunk and passed out during the Ravens-Miami game yesterday? Choked on a pretzel? Uh huh. . .

There was a several year long stink and outrage over a $20,000 involvement in a land deal in Arkansas gone bad and some sexual indiscretions on the part of Bill Clinton. Millions of dollars were spent by a zealot prosecutor. An impeachment was initiated and a trial held. The ostracism continues. People are speculating that the former president was responsible for or in some way negligent in the death of his dog. The Clinton bashers never quit. So, then, how come the nearly deafening silence about Dubyah's friendship with Kenneth Lay and his connections to the Enron debacle. With this mess, we're talking billions of dollars, thousands of people hurt financially, impropriety piled on top of impropriety and Dubyah at the swirling center of the whole thing, yet there is still nowhere near the hue and cry as there was about Bill Clinton getting a blow job. What's wrong with this picture?

Thursday, January 17, 2002
(1:03 pm)

If anyone has sent me e-mail over the past few days and has not received a reply, please be assured I'm not ignoring you nor are things so bad that I'm not checking my mail on a regular basis. It's merely that Charter Communications West Virginia e-mail server has not been working right since sometime Tuesday. Since Charter's mail server is my only SMTP pipe to the world at present, I'm not able to send mail even when I receive it via my POP3 server at I plan to talk to the people at my webhosting company to see if they might possibly consider putting up an SMTP server. I need to do something.

Whether you believe in astrology or not, it's likely that the daily blurbs in the newspapers are not really specific enough to pertain to any given individual, regardless of sun sign. One thing I would advise, however, is that when your newspaper horroscope suggests that you hold your tongue or be especially nice to loved ones or strangers or the world in general, that you take it as gospel. It might not be accurate to you or your circumstances, but it surely couldn't hurt, and the more we are considerate of each other the better off all of us will be.

Here's a piece I did with a photo of a Rose of Sharon blossom I took last summer. I duplicated and manipulated the photo using Photoshop LE or Photopaint. I don't really recall which.


Sunday, January 20, 2002
(9:29 pm)

My new motto: "Injuries heal eventually. A lost shot is gone forever." -- Jim Slater (National Geographic Photographer)

We drove down to Babcock State Park this afternoon. It's one of our favorite places to go. I've gotten photographs of the mill there in spring, summer, and fall. Now I have several with snow on the ground. It was icy. The road off State Route 41 down the hill to the lodge and mill was well traveled and packed to slick ice. I wasn't real sure I'd be able to get back up the hill. It's amazing what an extra 50 pounds over the rear axle and good tires can do.

If it wasn't so early I'd go to bed. I'm tired to my bones. I don't know why. I really didn't exert myself a lot today. Must be the weather.

It's amazing to me coming across the bridge over the Gauley River there between Gauley Bridge and Charleton Heights. The newly formed Kanawha River is so wide and still before it hits the falls. With the mountains covered in snow and the houses along the road it looks more like a mountain lake than a river. With this image in my eye I understand how people could compare West Virginia to Switzerland. The only thing I want to know is "Where's the cheese?"

Tuesday, January 22, 2002
(7:23 pm)

I'm tired. In the past three days I've driven enough miles to be in New York, maybe Boston. . . I drove from Charleston to Clarksburg (125 miles) to pick my mom up at the hospital there, back to Charleston (250), back to Fairmont (which is 30 miles past Clarksburg -- 405) to take my son back to school, and back to Charleston (560). There were a couple of side trips, too, probably amounting to 25 miles. That's 585 miles. Since New York City is 560 miles from here, that would be enough plus a comfortable allowance to find a parking space. That doesn't count the trip we took Sunday to Babcock State Park.

Speaking of Babcock. . . That's one of my favorite places. The mill there is so photogenic. I think I have photos of it for all four seasons now. Here's the snow shot:

Grist Mill at Babcock State Park.  The lastest in a series. . . (C-064)

That's one of four I took of the mill Sunday. Ann shot it several times too.

Thursday, January 24, 2002
(9:33 am)

I had a lot to do and a lot on my mind yesterday so I missed making an entry here. I fall prey to SAD sometimes in winter. It usually happens right before my birthday. I don't know if it being my birthday has any bearing on it, but that's when it seems to pop up. This year I'm feeling the saddness and lethargy a little early. I expect that's due to stress and aggravation, though. I got the new GE Reveal light bulbs and have installed them in the places in the house where I am most of the time. I'm hoping that will help. I understand SAD is primarily due to lack of light. Anyway, it's worth a shot.

Here's another angle on the mill at Babcock State Park:

From the parking lot across the creek (C-064)

(1:24 pm)

Does anyone know what will neutralize hot pepper oil on skin? Please e-mail me!

I had some Habañero Pepper and Hot Red Pepper seeds drying. I put them in vials for storage a while ago and didn't think to wear gloves. I washed my hands thoroughly, but my nose was itching so I rubbed it. Now it's on fire. Such is life.

Friday, January 25, 2002
(10:19 am)

First, my thanks to Mark Hammer for introducing me to Fuji NPH professional film last summer. It has to be the best ISO 400 film I've ever used. Because of this introduction to the Fuji professional films, I also tried the NPS (ISO 160) and find it to be my favorite film of all. Having made my thanks and stated my opinion of favorites, I'd like to mention another film I've recently discovered: Mitsubishi MX-II color print film. The above photographs of the mill at Babcock State Park were taken using the 400 speed film. It comes close to the NPH as far as grain and color reproduction. I'm very pleased with it. It also comes in 100 and 200 speed. I've got a roll of each of those and will try them both very soon. Did I mention it's cheap? Did I mention I am?

In the newspaper today, editorials about Bush's bad ideas (i.e., energy plan and more tax cuts for the rich), the state legislature paving the way for public school uniforms, a local middle school's "creation science" (talk about an oxymoron!) class, Bush and the Supreme's taking aim at Rowe v. Wade. I don't like the way things are going.

Yesterday I watched CNN a little. There were all sorts of "average" people calling in and speaking from the audience of "Talk Back Live," calling for the harshest possible treatment of John Walker Lindh for his alledged crimes. On websites today I read about the rest of the world's chagrin at the USA's treatment of the prisoners we shipped to Cuba, a disgust at "our" making up the rules as we go. This whole "war on terrorism" is very much like the movie "Wag the Dog." It's a farce and a distraction, I think, engineered entirely to raise Dubyah's popularity while directing attention away from the serious problems his domestic policies have initiated. Vote democratic for the House and Senate. Vote for a Yellow Dog for President in 2004 if necessary.

(11:59 am)

Day three of "Grist Mill in the Snow."

Last one, I promise.  (C-064)

Monday, January 28, 2002
(10:17 pm)

I'm sorry things have been sparce here lately. My mom's been sick, so naturally that's been occupying my time and energies.

I do have more recent photographs to share, so I'll try to at least put one of them up here every day.

From our recent brush with winter weather:

The C&H building across the street from my house (C-064)
"No Two Alike"

Tuesday, January 29, 2002
(11:58 pm)

Just under the wire. . .

Just another shot of the sky from the alley out back (C-064)

Thursday, January 31, 2002
(6:13 pm)

Tomorrow's February! Well, I'll be. . .

Outside my house under a leaky gardenhose, do I need to mention it was cold? (C-064)
"Azalea Ice"

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