Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Ice fishing countdown

My new ice auger is on back order. Until then, ice fishing poetry will have to suffice.

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Monday, December 29, 2014

Bennidito's Car-nage Continues!

Before the big Lincoln Street construction project,  Bennidito's parking lot was a little smaller. Walking to the grocery store, we would always pass cement parking curbs which had been pushed into the street by, what I would assume, were patrons who partook too many beer buddies and the beer to which the beer buddies are buddied. These hunks of precast cement were scattered about the sidewalk and street. Occasionally they would be replaced, only to, once again, suffer the same fate that very night. Apparently, if your SUV is big enough, and your bar tab is big enough, you don't notice the whole curb thing.

Now that the parking lot has been enlarged, it also features a beautifully ornate street lamp. Yellow poles have been wisely placed to protect the street light. Here is the result:

It's a smorgasbord of various broken taillights - both foreign and domestic. I would like to make something out of them. If I did, I would gift it to Bennidito's. Still my favorite restaurant.

But here's the thing, and I don't want to sound like an ass,  but you probably would never bust out your taillights at Bennidito's, if you rode a bike, took the bus or walked to Spokane's best pizza and beer. One of the reasons we moved where we did 18 years ago was so we could easily walk to the grocery store, restaurants, parks, etc. We could only afford a reasonably-sized house because of this decision. And that too, has been a very good thing. When Bennidito's moved into the neighborhood shortly after we did, we considered ourselves even more fortunate.

There are bus stops all around Bennidito's. If you live close by it's walkable. There are places to lock your bike. You could even drive your big-ass vehicle and park it in the very large Rosauer's parking lot and walk up the one flight of stairs to Bennidito's.

If you have too good of a time (which is easy to do, I know) you could easily do more than just hit some inanimate yellow poles while backing out a car or truck which barely fit in the lot when you were sober.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Christmas Eve

Jack really likes books. I have never seen a kid who likes being read to more than him. Robert the Rose Horse is an old favorite. Yes, that is an ugly Christmas sweater/vest. Hope everyone's Christmas was great and it keeps on going for a while!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Holiday Lights

Don't forget to visit the Gaiser Conservatory's holiday light display. Always a beautiful spectacle. There are some changes from years past, including a new water feature. Details are here.

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Saturday, December 13, 2014

Morning ride to work.

When you drive to work in the fog of a predawn morning, it's unremarkable at best. On a bike, though, you taste the mist. You feel gradients of temperature on your face. Unfiltered strangeness in a murky sky. There's a light close to its horizon. You want to follow it. But the shrouded trees form a picket. On foot, standing with them, under and in, you know this is where you were meant to be.

Monday, December 08, 2014

3D Downtown Christmas

Some 3D pictures from last night. The Davenport Trees of Opulent Elegant Christmastude and the new holiday light show in Riverfront Park.

I have heard from some that they are unable to do the cross-eyed 3D thing. I was unable to do the "magic-eye" puzzles from the 90s. I feel your pain. Unless you have some 3D glasses on hand, this is probably the only way I can get these pictures to you online.  However, if you do have 3D glasses, I will put some pictures up in a format of your choosing.

The gist of the cross-eyed method is to stare at the two pictures and cross your eyes so a third is formed in the middle of the two. Then relax a little and just look at the middle one. 3D! Here is a link to a more expansive lesson on how to do this.

Click on the pictures of your choice to make bigger:

Friday, November 28, 2014

Portal into the primeval.

Was riding my bike home this morning when I saw what looked like an ordinary pothole, 2'x2.5', in the middle of the street, just north of Manito pond at the 18th and Division curve.

Upon further inspection it looks like it is about 2 to 2.5 feet deep, extending into a little cave, maybe 6 feet long heading toward the pond. The roof of the cave is pretty much the two inches of asphalt. Yesterday, the hole might have swallowed Turkey Trotters on their way to the run. 

I called Dispatch and asked for the Street Department to block off the road and then stopped in to let Station 9 know what the dealio was. When those guys got there to cone it off, the Street Department already had it blocked off.

No sign of buried treasure or even any dinosaur eggs in the cave.  Still pretty cool to see. Usually I only see cavitation like this around broken water mains. There you go.

Update. Looks like the street will be shut down for a while:

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Nice little play!

If you are looking for something different to do, check out Stage Left's production of  The Thread Men. I have been wanting to go to this theater for quite a while, and finally Sarah and I got the chance last night. The Thread Men is a one-act play that has a neat plot and some fine acting. It costs $10 to see. I liked this production and the theater itself - a lot.

I have really been getting back into live theater lately. We saw The Glass Menagerie at The Modern Theater (formerly known as Interplayers) last week. I find it very engrossing to be that close to the actors and am always very moved by their courage and their work.

The Thread Men will be Stage Left's entry for Washington State Kaleidoscope Theatre Festival.

If you want to see the transformation from a small storefront to a very cool theater, click here. 

Stage Left, in their mission statement, lets us know that the reason they are doing what they are doing is to make theater a transformative experience for all. I think this is a very noble goal and Spokane needs them to keep hammering away. Please support them and go see a play!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Hello my name is...

 The United Federation of Planets has opened the door for many to serve in Star Fleet.

Juli, here, from the Gamma Quadrant, may seem alien to us Terrans, but back on her home planet, she's a beauty. Juli, thanks for your service. Welcome to Spokane!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Award winning...

Bought this can of steel cut oatmeal. We have a new pressure cooker, and the machine cuts the cooking time down to about 7 minutes. It usually takes significantly longer to make the steel cut stuff on the stove. 

McCann's won a "Uniformity of Granulation" certificate in 1893 at the Chicago Exhibition. And nothing tastes better than uniform granulation.  I know that "they," not "me," won the award, but I feel like this uniformity of granulation is now inside of me, and today I felt proud to be a part of something bigger, something more uniform and granulated. It fueled a 12.5 mile run quite nicely, to boot.

Saturday, November 01, 2014

My nephew Joey's love of Halloween

My nephew, Joey, and his girlfriend made an amazing Halloween Haunted House. He says that over 1000 people visited it last night. He was also collecting food for the food bank and there were tons of donated canned goods for Second Harvest. Joey is leaning on the auctioneer's podium. In a few hours there will be a man in a top hat standing there, auctioning off zombies. The zombie holding pen is to the right of Joey.

 You can click this picture. Make it bigger. Cross your eyes, and be 3Demented. "Ooooh Scary!" - Count Floyd.

Joey's efforts made the local news last week too. You can watch the video or read the story here.

Now that it's the day after Halloween, I will give you a little daylight tour without the actors, without the lights and special effects. I am really impressed by the work Joey and April did. They really are artists and worked hard to give something to their community.

 Really big spider meal.
 You don't want to pick any of these apples.
 Really cool fence that they made around the compound.
 Repurposed Santa finds gnome duty delicious.
 Lots of inanimate stuff with real actors mixed in when you least expect it.
 Vampire chickens!
They even have a daycare available.
Through the swamp.
 Hanford Swamp.
 Witches enjoying their dinner.
 Must be Chinese food because those look like chopsticks.
Until next year.

The pictures don't really do justice to the project. There are also a lot of tunnels, sound effects, lighting effects and it sounds like about 20 live actors too. Joey was going to zombie flash mob the place later in the night. Very cool!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Sunday, October 19, 2014

3 brews

Here's what I have going right now:

From left to right: An imperial ipa, an apricot mead and a just-brewed cream ale. In the secondary, I will be adding cranberries and cayenne pepper to the cream ale for a little holiday goodness.

This is what the backyard looked like on Friday, making the cream ale:

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Always a rainbow!

Sometimes you have to make your own or maybe even two.  Took this picture while we are out training the other day. A very warm October afternoon. What a great summer and fall it's been.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Terrain in 3D

Click on the picture to make it big. Cross your eyes to make a third image in between the two preexisting images. Enjoy the 3Dness.