MeTransplanted from the San Francisco Bay Area to Portland, Oregon 14 years ago. It's a love-hate relationship. I'm still here so maybe it's more love than hate...maybe...jury's still out.
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Monthly Archives: April 2007
I’ve heard some pretty stupid shit from the wing-nuts over the past 6 years but this is downright disgusting.
This past Saturday we trekked over to Tillamook on a curd run. We’ve been purchasing cheese curds direct from Ellsworth Cooperative Creamery in Wisconsin but since they don’t have dry-ice containers for shipping, they’ll only send them during the winter months.
The trip to Tillamook runs along the beautifully, scenic and wild Wilson River and we usually stop at a few spots along the way so the dog can swim. Mac loves running against the current so the water splashes across his chest and face where he tries catching it in his mouth. If we stop at a relatively calm pool he’ll swim in circles, yelping for us to throw something for him to retrieve. But I think the activity I enjoy watchng the most is the doggie treadmill. He’ll find a nice deep spot just below some rapids and swim in place until he’s exhausted or we’re ready to move on. It’s usually the latter.
About a third of the way through the Coast Range we saw a sheriff parked along side the highway with his lights flashing. As we approached we could see he had a car pulled over so I slowed a bit and tried to hug the center line as the shoulder is rather narrow. As I was passing the sheriff looked directly at me and then began to move swiftly to his car. I thought it kind of strange so I watched him in the rearview mirror as he ran to his car, jumped in and sped up behind me. I mentioned it to Mark and he blamed it on my beard; he swears it makes me look like a terrorist. I laughed it off just as the sheriff threw on his lights to pull me over.
Now I haven’t been pulled over in more than 15 years so this was kind of unnerving. Not to mention that I was doing absolutely nothing wrong. So, the sheriff gets out of his car and walks slowly up to the back of the Subaru where the dog is sitting which causes Mac to start barking as viciously and loudly as possible. He then approached my window to tell me that the tags on the car were improperly displayed (Mark had put them on backward last time he renewed his registration) and asked us to stay in the car while he looked at the front plate as well. It was then that I realized he didn’t notice the problem when he looked at me from the side of the road. He actually did just see me and head for his car. Mark was right…I had been profiled.
After looking at the front plate he asks us to get out of the car so he can show us what was wrong with the tags. Then he ordered us back into the car and told me he’d just give me a warning this time but I must get this fixed on Monday. He kept repeating how lucky I am that he was such a nice guy and would not give me the $97 ticket, while all I could think was how unlucky I am not to be closer to Tillamook and that honking huge caramel praline crunch ice cream cone that had my name on it. About ten
hours minutes later I thought he was about to wrap things up when he decided he should see my license, registration and proof of insurance. I gave him the docs and he started questioning the insurance document. Finally, he took the documents to his car and we waited another ten minutes for him to find out we weren’t homicidal maniacs but just a couple of ‘mo’s out for a weekend drive.
Returning to the car he quickly reminded us to get the tags fixed and again mentioned how lucky we were that he was the one that pulled us over. I swear this yahoo needs to learn the meaning of the word lucky.
Needless to say the rest of the day continued without a hitch. The ice cream was every bit as delicious as I expected, the dog wore himself out in the river, lunch at Alice’s was scrumptious and we now have a freezer full of cheese curds. And, as Mark mentioning…I won’t attempt to fly anywhere until the beard comes off next month.
This is the wall of death.
Many, many birds come to the feeders and trees near where this photo was taken. There can be as many as a hundred birds feeding at one time and when they get spooked, they scatter in all directions as quickly as possible and occasionally one of them flies directly into the window thinking it’s headed for a tree. Usually they see their own reflection as they get closer and just brush the window as they change direction and sometimes they hit hard and die instantly. It’s always a little sad when that happens but it’s even sadder when they hit hard and don’t die instantly. They lie on the deck and try to gather their wits enough to fly to a tree for some protection. Some make it…some don’t.
This past weekend I awoke to find that a Goldfinch had hit the window and it appeared he had died. I made a note to pick her up when I went out and promptly forgot about her. A good hour had passed when I saw all the birds scatter and looked out to find this guy sitting on the shepherd’s hook that holds a couple feeders.
He flies so fast it’s hard to get a good view of the tail to see if he’s a Sharp-Shinned or Cooper’s Hawk but we’re leaning toward Sharp-Shinned.
I went to grab the camera certain he’d fly off as soon as I moved but that obviously wasn’t the case. In fact, he sat there while I put the camera on the tripod and began to shoot numerous photos. I was trying to figure out why he would sit there so long when Mark reminded me about the Goldfinch lying dead on the deck. I was sure he wasn’t interested in the dead bird because the hawks like their meat warm. No sooner had the words left my mouth when the hawk flew toward the house, snapped up the goldfinch and perched in the walnut tree. I looked up to see the finch twitching in the hawks grasp. It wasn’t dead after all. I tried to grab the camera off the tripod but he flew off to enjoy his dinner and possibly share a bit with his mate and newly hatched chick.
In the eleven plus years I’ve been feeding and watching birds here, I’ve seen a hawk catch only one bird and that was in full flight ending in an explosion of feathers; never have I seen one pick up a stunned or wounded bird from the deck. This explains why he returns to the deck every afternoon, not just to see if he can catch a slow or confused bird but to see who might fly into the wall of death.
House Bill 2007, which would allow civil unions for same-sex couples has cleared committee and was sent to the House floor today. A vote is expected early next week so now is the time to contact your representative for their support.
Watching the testimony last night was frustrating and comical. I quote one of my favorites…”The legislature should have better things than gays, lesbians, and homosexuals to discuss to spend the taxpayers money on. I think that they have all the rights that we have and I think If they want to be gays, they don’t have to prey on our children. They are going against what the bible says directly against them. Read in the first chapter of Romans in the New Testament and it’ll tell you about it.” I swear this woman has never left the ranch with the exception of her legislative appearances funded by her local church.
In fact the the demonstrations outside the capitol were funded by local churches who bussed in their entire congregations with the assistance of Scott Lively and the Oregon Citizen’s Alliance (OCA) which is being revived. Read this.
So now is the time…tell your friends, family and neighbors to contact their Representative and let’s get House Bill 2007 passed.
Every November I grow a beard. It keeps my face, and Mark’s thighs, warm for the winter. Mid-January I tired of trimming and it took on a life of it’s own.
On Friday I trimmed my hair tight with the intention of shaving my head.
Only to have friends tell me to keep this look. So, it looks like I’ll stick to the psycho bastard look before returning to my usual goatee come the first of May.
I’m still curious about the shaved head though…whaddya think…should I do it?
Yep..it’s happened again. Mac has decided to split the carpal pad on his right front paw. He split the pad on the left side about six months ago and the vet just cut it off. Dressing the wound tonight I see that he’ll have to do the same on this one. I’m not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing because he’ll still have half a pad which I’m sure he’ll find a way to split or tear again. I’d offer up a picture but I’m sure you’re as tired of seeing him with colorful wraps on his leg as I am taking them.
Speaking of taking pictures…I’m in the market for a DSLR and open to suggestions if anyone has experience with them. I’ve done all the research and I’m leaning toward the Canon EOS 30D. I know Nikon has a 10 megapixel camera available but it seems to have noise problems at fairly low ISO. A friend has lent me his 30D to play with for the week and it’s just making me want one sooner. I’ve also heard Canon will be releasing a 40D at some point which will have the dust removal system found on the 400XTI and it’s also supposed to be 10 mp. What to do?
If you have any info…send it my way.
I had family arrive last Wednesday and we played straight through the weekend. We spent Saturday night at “The Horrible House of Dr. Hadrian”. (That’s him above) The Castiron Carousel Marrionette Troupe performed at our favorite local hang out…Proper Eats. This is the first horror show I’ve ever seen performed by marrionettes and it was hysterical. I’ll have to keep an eye on these folks…they’re pretty twisted.