29 November 2009

RIP: Lee Frias

Sigh. Just heard from my mom that my uncle Lee just passed away. Not sure how old he was, but I'm guessing he was in his mid 90s. He was a beautiful man, always helping whenever people needed help, never a cross word, a gentle man who I only recently found out was in the Battle of the Bulge during World War II...

He and my aunt were the original reason I travel as I do. In their working days, they would work extremely hard for 10 or 11 months of the year, then take the off-time and simply go places. They were always cruising, flying to far-away locations, enjoying whatever culture they found.

They weren't rich in physical things, but so very wealthy in family and living life itself... They always had time for my mother and family when we needed someone...

I wish my aunt all the love and support she deserves for her future. The holidays simply won't be the same this year...

Vaya con dios, tio...

28 November 2009

Chewy, Bullet, and Callie

OK, hitting a carriage return early didn't do what I expected :)

Let's start with Callie, a Rat Terrier...

Bullet is a (muddy) Golden Doodle new to our canine portrait gallery...

And Chewy, the Rottie/Chow mix was just plain fun to photograph in the sunshine...

26 November 2009

Let Us Talk of Turkey Stuffing

One of my favourite television programs, with an incredible cast of actors and writers...

25 November 2009

Let Us Sing of Thanksgiving

Reminding people that the holiday song for Thanksgiving is Arlo Guthrie's "Alice's Restaurant Massacree". If you don't have a copy of the music at home, you can listen (or download) a 1997 version at http://www.arlo.net/massacree/ ...

please ignore the "buy" thingies underneath this fair-use image from wikipedia -- fotomoto doesn't quite recognize the difference between my stuff and other people's, and i have no idea how to remove it for just this one image :)


Do you know anyone who matches this description? :)

24 November 2009

Hoping to Win...

I'm a Facebookie. Yeah, hard to believe, but among the many reasons I've found to stay is a simple contest: Give up something dear to you for a chance to win airfare and a few nights in Amsterdam next year...

I've entered a poster I created using a local Australian Shepherd; if I win, the contest promoters will obtain the ownership rights to the poster, and I will receive the trip.


If you are on Facebook (and perhaps even if you aren't!), please vote for me. Often! Apparently, you can vote once every 24 hours until the contest is over (second week in December, if I remember correctly)... So, please, OFTEN! I haven't been to Amsterdam in a few years, and it may be the only way I'll make it there before I retire...

Here is the poster itself:

Glenn Gould's Mozart

Currently listening to Glenn Gould's interpretation of the first few Mozart Piano Sonatas... he certainly takes liberties with tempo; oh, and you can hear him humming along in the background, though not as pronounced (usually) as Errol Garner :)

23 November 2009

Chirp == Schroedinger's Cat?

Of the many quotations I have regarding felines, this one seemed the most appropriate for the photo in question :)

22 November 2009


As I was getting ready to do some grocery shopping, I happened to notice someone being very stalker-hunter in the bedroom... Not a lot of light in that room, so I'm surprised it turned out as well as it did; I had to open the ISO/ASA to 3200, then brace the lens and my arm against the door jamb for the 1/8 second shot...

It was worth it :)

20 November 2009

Honey and Lily

Lily is a Chocolate Lab who arrived with a safety cone on her head to protect the surgical stitches that were within days of being removed.

Lily doesn't know the word "slow".  Time after time, someone would throw a tennis ball, and each time you'd hear a loud KUTHUNK as the cone's outer edges contacted the ground at a good velocity while she grabbed the moving ball.

It had to hurt, and yet, she kept doing it.

Until...  :)

Honey was only slightly more sedate. Near the end of her visit, she was content to gnaw/chew/eat a small stick that couldn't have provided much in the way of useful calories.

And yet, she couldn't have been happier...

Amsterdam, I Shall Return

Will it be sooner than later, though? I've just entered a contest on Facebook that says I need to trade something of value for a chance to win a three-day visit (plus airfare) to that gorgeous city.

My choice? The ownership rights to a poster that I've only recently created, showing a beautiful Australian Shepherd named Mouser doing what Mouser does well: look happy... :)

The quote: Happiness isn't having everything you want. It's wanting what you have.

I'm trying to drum up word of mouth, see if my coterie of friends and family can create enough buzz to put the votes necessary to win the contest in my favour.

Here is the Facebook link... Once they validate my photo, it should be available for voting. Vote as often as is legal, and I hope the vote is for me! :)

19 November 2009

Lulu-Isis and Caesar

Hard to believe, it's been a week since my last posting. Life sure does seem to become cranky from time to time, eh?

Two of the larger Great Danes I've known came a'callin' to Beaver Lake last week: Lulu/Isis (not sure why she had two names), and Caesar, 160+ pounds of Big Dog...

Both enjoyed eating/playing with a Snoopy doll, though it wasn't theirs... :)

for all the enjoyment, the doll didn't seem the worse for wear at the end of the afternoon :)

11 November 2009

Dracula Feed and Blood Suck Birthday Party

Here is a fantastic way to spend an hour of your time, and have a fun time doing it:  Jeff Shuey is having a birthday party at the Puget Sound Blood Center in Bellevue, Wa...  His requested present?

A donation of food and/or a donation of blood...

What a great idea!

10 November 2009

Halloween Swinging

On Halloween, I was invited to photograph what I believe is called a Lindy Bomb, a congregation of like-minded dance enthusiasts engaged in a bit of spirited dancing at a locale that doesn't know they are coming.

I loved the idea.

Apologies in advance for the quality of the shots;  overall lighting was less than optimal.  Even so, a few turned out pretty nicely, I think, perhaps because of the slow shutterspeeds and said lighting "issues"...

Said establishment this night was the Lincoln Square Cinema's courtyard, just a few metres from their ticketing machines and vendors.  It was great fun to watch not only the dancers, but those who gathered before their movies to gaze at something you don't (sadly) see every day...

09 November 2009

Santa, in a Candid Moment

gotta say, this comic says it all for me.

especially since it was just after labour day that the first "holiday" items started to appear for sale in the seattle area...

05 November 2009

Char and Max

Two new (for me) canines for the Beaver Lake Hit Parade: Char (English Mastiff), and Max (Golden Retriever)

Char has such an adorable face, and a quiet (if fairly large) disposition. Max, on the other hand, is quite energetic, and the first Golden Retriever I've seen that is almost entirely cream white...

04 November 2009

Pet Names

Sometimes, it's hard to tell the players without a score card... A quick example from a few days ago, may I present Chewy and Chewy?

Chewy (the Australian Shepherd), shown here demonstrating some wrestling moves with Katie, a German Shorthair...

Chewy (the Chow - Rottweiler mix) is easily more distinctive, and (this is simply my own opinion) seems to match the original Chewy (Chewbacca) much more closely in size and appearance...

But, that's just me. Our small park has: Mia (> 2), Bella (> 2), Chloe (2), Cody (3), and Beau (3).

Most are different breeds, which sometimes helps. However: A week or two ago, I photographed two beagles named Snoopy on the same day, within 30 minutes of each other.

Air Traffic Control?

There are so many birds flying around my feeders the past few days, I feel there's a good need for professional air traffic control at times... I'm truly surprised there aren't many accidents, collisions, or raptors searching for appetizers...

03 November 2009

Jackson, Stanley, and Joey

Remember Hailey?  I think I've told you if you mention Jackson to her, Hailey goes nuts...  Well, here is Jackson:

Stanley seems a little territorial with this particular ball this afternoon. Not sure if the reason has anything to do with the grass, the grime, or the slobber...

And here we have Joey engaging in a little intellectual mind game with one of her playmates:

02 November 2009

Buddy on Halloween

You have to admit: dogs simply don't care. Whether they are at work or at play, they live in that moment, and damn the consequences.

Buddy was doing nothing more than playing with his canine pals at Beaver Lake on Satyrday. I suppose it wasn't his fault there were a few muddy patches on the green, but I seriously doubt he gave it a second thought...

Obviously. :)

He won't be lacking his minimum daily canine requires for mineral content today...  :)

Wow. An Honest Commercial!

You have to admire an honest individual...
[ thanx to grrlscientist for finding this jewel! ]

2009.11 Desktop Calendar Wallpaper

This month's desktop calendar wallpaper shows a fairly common event on Jetty Island during the summer:  an osprey taking a freshly-caught flounder back to its nest to feed its chicks.  For this photo, I was lucky enough to be fairly close to the target to see how its talons attach to the fish so it couldn't wriggle off the hook (if it were still alive).

It almost reminds me of how the NASA Shuttle attachs to the top of a unique 747 transport vehicle designed specifically to carry the Shuttle.  Of course, this flounder is in no condition to be capable of flying, much less transporting an osprey.

OK, bad analogy.  :)

Given the weather we have started to receive in the Northern Hemisphere, this image is a nice reminder of what we enjoyed back in August :)

Please feel free to download this photo for personal use on your computer's desktop. To download, just click once on the image, which will bring up the enlarged image on a new webpage. Then, right-click on the image and follow your operating system's instructions for pictures / images.