Thursday, September 30, 2010

Too many things going on!

I'm late.

I had weird dreams last night and after the 2nd time I woke up the dream actually ended - like a movie - it all made so much sense and I vowed to remember it as the dream would make a great short story.

Too bad I can't remember the weird parts. The basic premise (I guess) was that I was doing some rescue thing and the entire dream was me remembering something. But then I came back to the here and now (DJ probably kicked me) and I found that my memories were so weird because I was inhaling gas which was coming out of the pipe and with one mighty whack I stopped it and all was well.

WHEW!! Or it could have been because Blake kept getting up and wandering around the house clicky clicky clicky.

He was feeling real good last night and as I let him into the house for the last time and he spots his buddy Milo and RUNS into the living room hurting his leg again YELP!!!!

Those pain killers are way way to good!

Took this yesterday at the Farmers Market.  I'm getting tired of all this blasted blue sky!
 I've been waiting for rainy weather for some photos. At least November is almost here LOL

I have a spot 9 floors up overlooking the NW side of the Isthmus - unobstructed view which I'm waiting for more fall colors in Madison.   Daylight Savings time ends November 7th (if anyone is wondering) and on that date the sun will set at 4:42.  November 6th the sun rises at 7:39.   OUCH

The earliest the sun sets is on Pearl Harbor day Dec 7th at 4:22.

This has been on my mind because  I want "dusk" shots where there is enough light to take photos but street lights and businesses lights are on.
Maybe I'll move to that new planet that they discovered that can support life.  They are calling it Glies 581g and is only 120 trillion miles away. Wouldn't that be a hoot if they discovered life?  Talk about rocking the foundation of life as we know it.  The crazies would really come out.   Finding life is one of my most favorite reads. First Contact books.  Can't turn them down. 

I guess a "year" on Glies 581 is 37 days.  Talk about a quick winter.

In October 2008 we beamed " A Message from Earth" to Glies 581 and it should get there in 2029 and the earliest response would get back to Earth in 2049.  The good thing is that I will be so old by then that when they reply "F U Earthlings we will eat you", I won't really care that much (or probably not even understand what is going on in the first place).
Art Fairs

My preliminary group for 2011 will be

ArtWorks - March26th in Madison
Deforest Dragonfest in June - actually looks like a very good show
Spring Green Arts and Craft late June
Lake Mills Art Festival mid July

Baraboo Summer Art Classic Mid August
Fitchburg Agora Art Fair a week later
Sun Prairie  Main Street Art Fair Mid Sept
Horicon - Autumn Art last week of Setember.

OK - gotta run - late as it is!


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Retire in Ecuador Report?

It's always interesting to see what those little worthless Google ad's are touting. Even though I have decided that I will retire (from State Service) in late March I don't think I will take the family to Ecuador . . .although it would be blog worthy.


Blake loves his pain meds. We got home last night and he was still limping drastically and I gave him a RIMADYL that I got from the vet. One hour later he is PRANCING into the living room with a big smile and I open the door and he RUNS out! Then a while later he is jumping up the deck steps to eat Milo's leftover outside food.

Two hours later he is sound asleep!

This morning he got up and was a tiny bit limpy and hoping for another one of those fun treats I gave him.

Last night I was going over next years schedule for Fairs and decided that any fair that only had the word CRAFT would be X'ed out. I will also add the words "Flea Market" as a no no along with "Bake Sale".

The Baraboo Faire on The Square was crossed out also. When I went to the website I noticed that the organizers, after 22 years were pulling out which raises a red flag. They said it was only about 10% artists with the rest Crafters anyway when I contacted them.


We watched Hawaii Five-O - one of our favorite new shows. Also like The Defenders and I like Detroit 1-8-7. Outsourced - sucks HOWEVER - if that whole concept intrigues you, the movie Outsourced is one of those hidden gems that did not get much attention but I really liked it.

I see Lone Star has already been canceled and The Apprentice is one of the Biggest Losers. Undercover Boss had a series low and well, it seems every episode is the same just a different company. HBO's Boardwalk tanked (good - I will never forgive HBO for killing Deadwood AND lying to everybody about an upcoming movie to end the series).

Last night I saw part of the new Ken Burns documentary on baseball called The Tenth Inning. Fascinating! When you are living in the moment you never see the whole scope. I did not realize that Cal Ripken basically save baseball after the strike. I know that strike killed baseball for me for 6 years! I played in Strat-o-Matic baseball leagues for 25 years and when the strike hit I was so disgusted never played another game and did not even care about baseball until 2000.


I'm going to stop typing - my left hand is really hurting. Where is that RIMADYL LOL. Maybe I should raise my seat more, I tried standing up but can't reach the keyboard.

Have a nice warm Wednesday

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Football - The Bears STILL suck.

All I'm going to say about the Packers is that the Bears did not impress me! I believe a very unlucky bounce and 17 penalties were the kicker on a loss last night! Along with zero running game and poor special teams and a handful of interceptions that were nullified by said penalties.

We basically HANDED them the game and they STILL had problems winning.

With that said I have an "A" pick for all of you gamblers out there. At one point in my life I was a tout and one little system, over the years" has kept on ticking like a little pink bunny. It's record now is 51-15 Against The Spread. I only get 4 or 5 picks a year but they are gold. This week I have my first "A" game. Play the NY Giants over the Bears and you are even giving the Bears 4 points.


Watched two movie's in the past week. "Shutter Island" and "The Book of Eli". Both were very very good and the endings leave you wishing there was more.


Ken Burns has his Baseball special on tonight on PBS - The Tenth Inning. This continues the BIG baseball documentary (which you can not get on Netflix)and covers the last 20ish years, the strike, steroids and so forth.


Has anyone ever been to the Baraboo "Faire on the Square" in the Spring? I'm now looking into shows for NEXT year and X-ing out all fairs with the word CRAFT in them. Also - looking at what sold this year it seems people really like city scenes so once I start zoning in on the Fairs for next year I have to get to the towns and take artsy photos!

Tooting my own horn alert.

If there is one thing I have taken away from this summer of fairs is that all the compliments seem to have the same general language.  In fact this email encapsulates most of the compliments I recieve.  It's sort of creepy actually.

In my opinion most paintings bore me. Most photography displays bore me too - but your work method is like a whole new “type” of art. 

The color tricks me into thinking it’s a painting and then suddenly I’m struck with the truth that it’s a photo. Then once I recognize the subject location, I get a kind of nostalgic impression that, most likely, everybody interprets differently. Some may go back in time while others may see it as now or possibly in the future.  Or I just experience a different mood to a common place I see every day. 

Your stuff is really exciting to see.  


Blake hurt himself. He was running around all excited and as he came around the corner YELP!! and he tumbles.  He can't put any weight on his front left paw.  I think we will have to take him to the vet tonight after work.  Poor guy, deaf and now limping.  Being a 14 year old is tough!  He is in pretty good shape for being an old dog though, still runs around and is very happy. Sleeps a lot because of no noise stimulation.

Look who sits up on her own.  A little camera shy and loves to smile AFTER the flash!! 

Caydence is an accomplished roller and rolls all over the place now!  She has become mobile and a whole knew stress for Jenny has reared it's head.  No longer content on just laying around. Caydence is Roller Girl.
On the way home from Green Lake I saw some farm equipment in operation and stopped. The sun was in the wrong place and my camera was on the worst setting possible but I did not realize it.  So I was snapping away and didn't get much.

About 10 miles farther I saw the perfect shots with great light . . .but as I got closer I saw it was a manure spreader with crap flying EVERYWHERE.  I thought about stopping but then felt that was there really anyone who would buy fine art of poop flying through the air. . . . .hmmmm maybe there IS!!

Anyway - this is an image from my first non-poopy shot! 

BTW - getting some comments on that photo - I'll put a poll up in a few minutes - I just never know if something is worth exploring further. 

Nuff said

Have a To Too Tuesday!

Monday, September 27, 2010

The World Series of Football

All year long I've been playing it smart when it comes to Festivals and my photography.  After getting a huge response from my work hanging in Starbucks and last September people telling me to "get out there", so I spent a good amount of money preparing for a test year of "being out there".

So it started in Portage and I worked my way to bigger and bigger and more prestigious fairs all summer.

This past weekend was my final fair of the season and it was the biggest.  I was calling it my World Series, a two day event in Green Lake with 10,000 people in attendance.  After the Sun Prairie Art fair which was very very good to me I really made sure I had enough "product" to sell and was raring to go.

Friday I spent the day getting special sand bags and so forth because I was setting up my canopy at 5:00 Friday night in 40mph winds. 

I get to Green Lake and they tell me that most crafters are not even going to try to put up their tents but I figure I'm there, go for it.  I get to my spot and it's beautiful . . and windy.  Long story short I got everything up with not that much of a problem.  My trimeline is a fantastic canopy and EZUp's would have been shreaded.

The photo on the right is what I was looking at as I set up.

Green Lake can be described as Door County Lite.   Sort of a Fish Creek thing going on.  It can also be called Little Illinois (more on that later).

Saturday is the big day and DJ and I dress in 5 layers of clothing and make the hour drive north.  Do not take 73 to Green Lake - it's the long way.  Outside of Randolph take a right on 33 and a left on "A".  MUCH faster.

Anyway we get there and my canopy is still up and we hang the art in the cold and wait for thigns to happen.  

The first woman enters the canopy and is looking around and smiles and says something on the order of "I really like your work, how do you get that "paint by number" look".  

WHAT?   I think I did pretty well once the blood re-entered my brain but then the woman got this big shit eating smile on her face and started laughing.  It was Kitty B'Gosh a commentor from the Monkey Gallery here.  It was great meeting you kitty!  You had me going!!!!  

Well - we soon realize that this was a true CRAFT Fair and the place was PACKED.  I was between the marshmallow shooters and the dog puppets who seemed to be selling like hot cakes.  Me? - people were not even slowing down when they saw my booth.  No one was even ENTERING!

That was so odd because in Sun Prairie it was the opposite and people were stopping in their tracks, coming in, getting all jelly-like and buying smaller 8x12's by the handful.  Here? I could not even get people to acknowledge me.  They were too interested in the magnetic jewelry, handbags and pre packaged photos of Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt Jr.

The place was PACKED with people and about 30 yards from me people would try to sink the Bismark.  They would hit golf balls at a boat 58 yards away in the water and every time some one hit it they would light off a canon which made woman and pee and dogs bark.

During all of this we had to endure a karaoke disk jockey who could really hit one note but all the rest were not really close.  Seriously,  he sang one RUSH tune and had everyone laughing (he was far away so we could laugh and he did not know it). But the creepy thing was that we were next to a children's games area and every hour he would have a hoola-hoop contest and get all creepy.

"come on up all of you little girls and get some candy, do you want some candy, I need more little girls and you will all get candy".   and then he would start singing all creepy like again.  FOR 7 HOURS!

We realized that while this might the World Series for me . . .I was a football team and this was the wrong venue.  

After 7 hours and two sales which covered my expenses we tucked everything in and drove home looking forward to do it all AGAIN Sunday!!  Whoo Hoo! 

Sunday the weather was MUCH nicer and there was a car show.  Not just any car show but a HUGE car show.  The entire town was filled with hot rods, hundreds of them and the crowds were even bigger - - -an different.

These people actually came in to the booth and did not buy stuff.  But at least they were looking and complimenting.  One woman was telling her husband as they left empty handed that she wanted to design her bedroom around one of my images.  A ton of real compliments (as opposed to polite compliments. 

I sold one more large image - the Umbrella shot which REALLY draws males.  Woman like it but it's always the males that are most attracted to it.  If I could figure out what it was that attracted the male of the species to that particular photo . . . . .

I sold TWO of those and ONE 8x12.  The REALLY weird thing was the 8x12 was of the Union Chair.

So here is the weird thing - the couple were buying it and I asked if they were from Madison and no they were not . . . .so they must have gone to school in Madison . . . no they had not . . . OK?  So the story about that snow . . . OH YEA - they had not noticed the snow on the chair . . . . . .

I should have asked if they new the significance of that chair but they seemed happy with it so let I just shut up and let them go on their way as the DJ in a low porno voice is saying "How low can you go little girl you all get candy when we are finished" in a limbo contest.

Lesson learned. NO MORE CRAFT FAIRS!!  I will attended the ART Fair in Green Lake.  OH there were more Chicago Bear sweatshirts among the crowd then Packer.  There is a lot of money in that tiny town. 

And in other news - I hope you all saw the article about me in The Columbus Journal.  It was on the Front page of the paper if you read the paper backwards.

"Melotte and friend landscaping area around the water tower"

Basically a retelling of the my newest blog Two Guys And a Beer  but with one thing I must correct.

In the article it says "We want three or four different ones so there will be a large splashes of color," Melotte say. "We want it took look almost nature and beautiful".    Now I know the press is always right but I'm not so sure I actually said those exact words. Perhaps I did as I was angry at Kestrel Ridge Golf at the time but I'm not even sure what I WANTED to say there.

But I thank the Columbus Journal for their article.  I hope more people will take it upon themselves to make Columbus beautiful.  Take control.  Do some gorilla gardening.

Have a nice day.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

I'm not Grumpy damn it!

I've been told that I sound rather pissy lately. Well - I suppose a few things have bothered me and I had to get them off my chest. Not that that is a good personality trait I suppose. Sort of like Survivor when people think that stating their mind and not being able to control the vast amount of insults that spew from their mouths is just "me being me". They don't realize that sometimes "me being me" means you are just being an ass which means . . . your an ass.

ANYWAY - I'm not all crabby but man - looking at that first paragraph I seem crabby again!! Maybe I'm turning into an old man. HEY YOU KIDS GET OFF MY FUCKING LAWN! oops - - did I say that out loud?

Maybe I'm crabby because I have a two day Art Fair this weekend which pretty much blows my weekend. I'm not sure I really appreciate two day Art Fairs as much as I should. Maybe when I retire I'll like them more. I did go to a retirement meeting this week and I now know everything there is about retiring from State Service. 57 is a magic number for age but there is no ultra magic number (like 87) when it comes to age and years of service.

57 is magic because the earliest you can retire is 55 but the penalty is great. However from 55 to 56 the penalty is 5% less and 5% less again up to 57. Once you hit 57 the yearly penalty increases at a much slower rate of 1% a year.

Anyway retiring does not mean sitting at home watching TV. Means looking for a part time job. I'm just retiring from what I've been doing for 23 years.Lately work has been getting in the way of photography.

But then - if I retire I won't see cool things like this at random time.  

I have yet to see the Weinermobile in Columbus!  Can that not make you smile? . . unless you are a vegetarian and loath wieners!   Yea - ever see a Lettucemobile, no, you know why?  Because it's a stupid idea! Plus I suspect the first windy day it would be tough to drive.  Wieners were created to be aerodynamic.  


This is one of the funniest articles I have read concerning our favorite villian Brett the Viking.

One of the most daunting challenges for any family involves what to do when an elderly member begins to slip. It's a sensitive issue, and inevitably every family has to deal with it. The situation needs to be handled with dignity, because that old person you put out to pasture will be you someday.

Magic Appears to Have Run Out  for Favre 


Football Outsiders is a site that rates team efficiency.  They look at every play by every player on the field and if he won or lost the battle on that particular play.  After Week #2 Green Bay is ranked as the #2 best team in  efficiency in the NFL behind Atlanta.  Offense is #4, defense is #11 and special teams is #11

At this point the Packers have a 84.6% chance to make the playoffs, Bears  65.9%, Vikings 11.7%.   Packers have a 15.1% chance to WIN the Superbowl,  Bears 5.8% chance to win the SB.  Minnesota have a 1.5% chance to have the #1 pick in the draft.

At the moment there is a 2.5% chance that Green Bay will play New England in the Super Bowl.

Off to the dentist! 


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Kestrel Ridge Golf Course Piss's Me Off

Just before I'm to go and get interviewed by Capitol Newspapers on a Two Men and A Beer Landscaping article (more on that later) I come home and have a piece of paper stuck in my door "Thanking me" for understanding why the Kestrel Ridge Golf Course will now allow it's member's to grip it and rip it again on the 16th fairway so errant golf balls will once again ping off our houses.

The reason was that the 5 yard wide wild area 40 yards from the center of the fairway was catching way to many balls and because the balls were no longer going into peoples yards where they could be picked up by people walking into our yards, they were becoming lost.

So because the members complained that because the hole no longer was driving range wide, the management decided to cut down the beautiful wild area that ALL the home owners loved.

In 2009 I collected 27 golf balls from my yard. In 2010 after they let that 5 yards go wild - I collected 7. I'm sure the little white line they will draw on the grass will really help. I'm not complaining about balls in the yard - we knew when we purchased the land it was goign to happen.  But after fixing the problem - they revoke it?

Furthermore - during heavy rains that area becomes a swift downhill river and floods near the tee box but this spring when we had that amazing downpour that area soaked up tons (literally) of water. Talk about a step environmentally backwards.

I had talked to Lori Marcks the General Manager of Kestrel Ridge Golf and complimented her on the brilliant solution to an ongoing problem and that all the home owners were very happy.  Well . . .screw us I guess. It's more important for the members to hang on to their balls.   

So after I read the "Thank you for understanding" (I wrote back saying I do NOT understand and do not except their Thank You) letter I'm off to be interviewed for the Columbus Journal who must be scrambling for something to put in the paper OR they need a brilliant public interest piece.  It would be nice if Elwood and I were catalyst for others to start beautifying Columbus on their own. Got an empty space? Plant something, become a Gorilla Gardner, there is plenty of urban blight to go around, public ground just wasting away looking for some tender loving care. Maybe I can take some photos of spots that someone could plant some flowers.


After my interview and mug shot I was walking to the car and saw that Napoli Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria had their sign up and I took a few photos before the Manager came out (with a smile . . unlike what the manager of Club LeMark said "What the f*ck do you think you are doing") and was curious. I said I wrote a blog and yada yada yada and she said "YOUR the guy with photos at Julies Java House" and I said "yes I am" and she said "I LOVE your work" and I instantly liked her and would spend money in her restaurant.

ANYWAY - they are opening NEXT Tuesday and will feature many kinds of pasta, pizza, a bar with very good wine and many Martini's and while they will have SOME craft beer on tap (Fat Tire, Spotted Cow) nothing GREAT yet.  I did stress to her that the one thing Columbus does not have is a place to drink good craft beer.  But then again . . it's an Italian place and wine goes with Italian food.

She was very enthusiastic and was from Fall River and I BELIEVE Napoli is sort of a upscale chain. She mentioned that there is another one opening in Beaver Dam and googling I see a number of Napoli Italian Restruant - (OH - you are all saying I spelled Restaurant wrong but the first Napoli I see on google THEY spelled it wrong on their front page LOL). I'm thinking it's an upscale Olive Garden type place.

ANYWAY - this could be the shot in the arm downtown needs.

Todd has be blogging about the need to get Columbus more presentable and while public urination seems to run rampant because of all the dive bars (which seem to run the town) my feeling is that all we need is for ONE place to be hip and trendy and bring people into the area and the place will start to clean up on it's own.  It's tough to whip it out and pee on the cop station while people are around walking you right? (not that I have ever actually tried).

If you drive around you see groups of houses with great landscaping and then groups with nothing. All it takes is one place to beautify and it catches on to others.

SPEAKING OF PUBLIC URINATION- maybe if Kestrel Ridge did not HIDE their outhouses people would not whip it out in front of our neighbors house on the golf course!! 

I had to use a flash this morning to get this but I thought I would post a photo of the Sweet Autumn Clematis. The word SWEET is misleading.  All the words we read said that it has a WONDERFUL aroma. Well - this got me worried about the bee problem (still a problem in the basement).  So I put my face up the the bouquet of million tiny flowers and took a big whiff.


Have a great day today

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Is Columbus Illiterate? Or just Lazy!


Boyd Kraemer was speaking to the City Council with one of his pep-talk speechs (I believe . . I can only imagine . . . OH OH  was the CDA meeting last night? Did I miss it?) and he was talking about city streets and repairing them.  Seems many people want them repaired and would embrace being taxed for the repairs.

Wait - would they?  Well there was a survey that went out to 1137 random citizens (I was one) but get this - only 447 were completed and returned.  That is total BULLSHIT!  39% were returned?  I want a survey to see who could not spend 10 minutes to fill out an important survey.  Can people not read?   No one!  NO ONE can complain about the city doing whatever the hell they want to do.  It just pisses me off when I see 690 surveys were tossed out and not looked at.

And Todd wonders why the town can not get it's act together?  There ya go.  OH - everybody can come out for the 4th of July Parade but spend 10 minutes to fill out a survey?  Sorry!  way to busy.   I know people that would have LOVED to take a survey.  Maybe next time they should only have people that want to respond, they are the only ones that care.  Fuck the rest of the non-responders.

sigh - got that off my chest!
I picked Elwood up in Madison Saturday and as normal we took a drive into the country between Sun Prairie and Columbus.  I get some nice shots from time to time on the drives. I took this after climbing a 15 foot embankment.

Did not come out as I imagined but after tricking it out a little it became blog worth at least.  


Anybody see the ending of the football game last night? If you did you witnessed some brand new technology in action. The 2nd week this technology has been in place it was use to decide a game - what luck.  

What you saw was the final 2 point conversion where the current cameras could not get a perfect shot on whether the ball had crossed the goal line.  Enter new technology.  32 brand new cameras the size of business cards (but thicker I would think) are located around the stadium in entrance ways and corridors and all focused on the goal line.  Then if needed they can stitch all the images into one for a perfect shot on where the ball was.  Worked out fantastic last night!

also watched Hawaii Five-O last night and I liked it.  Pretty action-y but Jin from LOST is a star along with Grace Park from Battlestar Galactica (the best Scince Fiction show ever) with Scott Caan (son of James Caan) and some other Navy Seal dude!

 I'm not going to mention poker - QUADS?  really?  You had QUADS?  sigh!  at some point my opponents have some big ol whoop ass coming their way.  I'm getting tired of sets killing my hands and now QUADS?  

OH - I'm due! 


Monday, September 20, 2010

Two Guys and a Beer Landscaping

My buddy and I received permission to terra-form the rock wall under the water tower on Tower Drive.  At first we were thinking  we could just take out ALL the rocks out and rearrange them in some semblance of order.  If you have ever tried to groom a rock wall you know it's a pretty hard thing to make pretty.  Usually because of the lack of dirt between the boulders.  The main problem was that each boulder weighted like  over a ton and the fear of the water tower collapsing and becoming known throughout the world as the two guys that toppled a water tower trying to plant phlox  . . . .we decided to use them in the current configuration.

Another problem both Elwood and I had was the fact that neither of us had ever tried repelling down a cliff, but after seeing the wall again it was not as daunting as our imaginations had led us to believe.  No repelling would be involved.


The step BEFORE the 1st step was to document what was there already (for insurance reason I suppose)   so this is what we were working with.

If you look closely you will see a lot of weeds which we both agreed was actually a good thing. Weeds mean dirt and most rock walls are lacking dirt.

We already have a quasi-plan in place on the types of ground cover.  We will need some drought resistant plants as there will be no watering available, even though it is under a water tower and tapping into the tower was discussed but . . .that might be construed as an act of terrorism or something and we were already on the lookout for the local gendarmes.     

After getting an overall view it was time to jump in and get to know the rocks. We climbed around looking at our canvas and discussing what cover would work best and where.  Some ground covers like to hang and some like to climb and some need shelves while others need holes and it looks like at some point in the past someone had tried to plant a few things which died. 

The trick in this type of no tend garden is to find the right plant for the right place as they will be on their own for the most part. 

One of the great things we discovered is that the wall is RIPE for this type of work. The wall is not straight vertical and there are all sorts of wonderful nooks and crevices which are wonderful.

One section near the top has a wonderful feature and with more dirt will be a center piece and as luck would have it . . it's in the center.

It was time to dig in and begin Phase One ripping out all the weeds.  So we went back to our place, opened a couple Scotch Ales (Robert the Bruce brewed by Three Floyds - we drink nothing but the best while on the job) and created a plan. 

The car was loaded with worker stuff and off we went to unweed the Tower Rocks.

We then spent the next couple hours ripping out weeds, collecting pop cans and garbage which had made it into the rockery and creating a mess.  Oddly - no bugs or vermin's were spotted.

Car's were slowing down and rubber necking trying to see what we were doing and every so often we would see a walker switch sides and walk on the other side of the street as weeds were flying right and left.

We ripped out three large black garbage bags of garbage, racked everything up and completed Phase One.

PHASE TWO, which will begin October 2nd is the beginning of the augmentation phase as we mix the clay with top soil and compost. We want to have a chance for dirt to sit and settle for the winter before we plant anything.

And I should add this is all volunteer work, the city and Water and Light who own the property are getting this for free . . . of course any donations of good dirt would be welcome . . just sayin. 

The actual plants will come from purchases next year along with plants we have grown in my rock wall.  We plan on only 3 or 4 varieties.  The last thing we want is a polka-dot wall with 10 different plants.  This will be covered with only a few perfect plants and will be amazingly beautiful down the road with cascading color matching the rocks and when not in flower will have a wonderful texture.

The below is the main rock wall (one of 4 at our house) and is sort of a testing area to see what plants actually do. This is a combination of 1 and 2 years old ground covers.

Stay tuned.
OK - I just saw this and I'll post it - HOWEVER -  . . .The title of the link says it all - and they are


Speaking of Sports - I find it amazing that a guy that was universally loved by 80% of the males in pro football (20% still hated him) has turned into one of the most despised football players in the NFL.  BRETT!! DUDE!!  Talk about ruining a legacy!  Having sex with a bunch of woman (or man) would have been better then what you are doing to yourself. 

The talking heads on TV having you in the "Old man not having fun" category! 

Packers - blah blah - they blew out Buffalo and it was not even a surprise.  Pack is 3 point favs in Chicago.
InSpire Magazine might have a full page advertisement which will feature (well . . not FEATURE  . . more like HAVE) a photo of mine for West James Gallery.  In the next few days I'll post some shots and you can vote which one would work the best.  I'm also goign to find out more about InSpire and who and where the readers are.

More in the next few days.

Watch the weather this week - lot's of activity - we could have the last OR the next to last 80 degree day this week. Maybe two in the 80s - either way - it's probably the last times for the next 6 months!! BOO HOO!!


Friday, September 17, 2010

This and That Friday

Want to know what it's like to work on the worlds tallest tower? I bet these guys make a LOT of money - the area after about -2.50 remaining is INSANE!! Good thing they are wearing helmets to protect them if they fall. I watched this from the beginning and felt - yea - I could do that, not a problem . . . but they keep up UP and UP!!  

I avoided watching The Apprentice last night as I did not want to get sucked in . . . .but DJ went to bed and I walked out as they were in the board room and . . . . damn it it was interesting. sigh

At least it's not Celebrity Apprentice which totally sucked. I tried watching a new show called  Nikita on Hulu but it kept freezing. We have Charter Cable but still it froze.  


On this date in 1983 Vanessa Williams becomes first black Miss America. I did not know that!

In 1862 this day marked the bloodiest day in American History as the Battle of Antietam begins in the American Civil war. The total of losses for both sides is a staggering 24,000.  Tthis is the battle that included the sunken road that became known as "Bloody Lane". Because of the horrific amount of blood on this road after this particular battle was over, the sunken road was nicknamed Bloody Lane. It was told that the Blood was literally "flowing like a river" with casualties in the 5000 range.

WELL - that is certainly uplifting isn't it!

Out Sweet Autumn Clematis is starting to flower. This is it's second year growing and the plan is to have two more. However I have been putting the breaks on the plan as I want to make sure this vine does not become a problem. It's rather . . robust.

I estimate maybe 5% of the flowers are in bloom and when it gets in full gear it could be breath taking. It also has a fantastic aroma.

HA - in boredom  last night  I started to watch an old TV show called The Rat Patrol. I love this show when I was a kid.  After 3 minutes I realized that this 1966 show was much better 40 years ago.  Of note the bad guy was Eric Braeden from The Young and Restless (he is not one of the young ones I guess) but back then he used his real name Hans Gudegast.

I Netflixed Shutter Island and will watch it tonight once DJ is out of the room. After watching Biography with Leonardo DiCaprio I felt the need to see a movie of his. I've seen Blood Diamond and I loved The Aviator.

OK - nuff said - I have nothing

Have a great weekend

Thursday, September 16, 2010


O'Man - we are driving home and turn the corner and . . . .WHAT IS THAT SMELL!!! I instantly think of my feet and what did I step on but then realize I had not had that odoriferously malodorus smell earlier in the car . . is it outside? Is the car burning up?

So we get into our driveway and I go to get the mail and OH MY GOD!!! Are we under attack?

OH YUCK - I just drank yesterdays cold coffee - excuse me


So of course what is the first thing you do? Log on to Facebook and complain or comment actually about the joys of country living. I believe it had to be National manure spreading day.

hmmmmm thinking out loud here . . .it was suggested I get more action farm machinery photos, I bet a manure spreading operation would look AWESOME!! shit flying through the air!!! 
Remember a long while ago I was whining about not being able to find flat paper clips? Well - my good friends at Discount Office Items (over 65,000 office products) had them.  And they are having a Facebook contest.  In 10 words or less "Why do you heart Discount Office Items".

My question is - is the symbol for a heart a word? Does it count?  I'm thinking there could be some loopholes I might be able to exploit.

I also have mixed feelings about their elephant!  It seems that on most of the images the elephant is like a normal elephant holding a sign.  But then on one photo the elephant is wearing a shirt and tie. Can I assume that the other elephants are naked and he is holding a sign just to cover himself?  Is this exploitation?

(James is now regretting his comment)

Wait - I hear the word donuts floating around - I must investigate.
mmmmmmmmm - old fashion sugar  donuts the kind my mom used to make, Donuts from an unknown hero.  I love you man!

SO - if you are in need of anything office (I'm actually looking for 12x16 inch manila envelopes and 24x34 inch boxes for my framed prints) check out the worlds largest office supply place RIGHT HERE I COLUMBUS!

And - James - I'll take you up on that tour and I'll see if I can get some trendy photos of the International Headquarters.
now I must eat my donut. 
oh my - this is so good!!

ANYWAY - for all of you Big Brother fans - could last nights finale be ANY LONGER?  SNOOZE   And for Survivor fans.  Jimmy Johnson ROCKS!!!  I won't say anything because I know people record it (in fact if anyone has a tape can I borrow it? I cannot record a VHS tape and my mom does not get CH 3 in Fort Atkinson - she was bummed.  Ever since the digital revolution happened CH 3 is a no show for her.

The new shows for the most part start next week.

Here is my list of new shows I'll check out,

Hawaii Five-O - Monday
Detroit 1-8-7 Tuesday
Undercovers Wednesday (Hulu it)
The Defenders Wednesday
The Shit my Dad Says (horrible reviews from EVERYBODY but - I gotta see the Shat) Thursdays
Nikita Thursday
Blue Blood - Tom Selleck and I'll have a beer in me - Friday

OH - I see Undercovers will encore Saturdays

I like TV
I think I'm getting the upper hand on the yellow jackets in the basement problems (wow - I just typed  5 words wrong in that sentence - my good friend Edwin Newman is rolling in his grave. ) And why do I get a photo of a naked Richard Hatch when I Google images of Edwin Newman.

Seriously - cut me some slack Google.

I wonder if there are any more donuts left - you know what the problem is with this blog. I sold a framed print at Starbucks this morning and I am WIRED on coffee! 

Happy birthday Amy Poehler- when is her show on??  If you live in Columbus you MUST watch Parks and Recreation - it's like watching Columbus! 

This is the most amazing video I have seen in a while - if you are a dog over you will be astounded.  

Dog Saves Dog.

Many people have called authorities to adopt the hero dog but  he/she was a stray and no know knows where he is now. 

AND FINALLY - the big silver water tower on Dix Street will be getting some TLC. My buddy Elweed has become an expert in boulder gardens which are actually very hard to garden.  He ask me if I could contact someone about having him sort of gorilla garden that big boulder wall.   He has tried to adopt a few walls in Madison but maintenance seems to rather have weeds.

We got the OK to beautify the wall. Probably be a 4 year project but if you look now it's rather weedy and ugly.  This weekend we'll take a good look and start making plans for next spring. In the mean time we will start adding and amending the soil.      
It's weird - the image everyone seems to be gravitating too at Starbucks is this one which looks MUCH better live!   In fact a few odd things have been mentioned to me lately. The first is that my images look BETTER live rather on a computer which is weird. Also one guy last Saturday kept moving close, then backing up, then moving close. 

He said "most of the time a photo looks great from a distance but as you get near it gets fuzzy, but yours seem to actually get clearer the closer you get"  then he walked out without buying anything. 

Have a great day

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I'm conflicted

I'm not sure how I feel about Ryan Grant going down for the season. OH! don't get me wrong, I would rather he was not out but is it THAT big of a deal? It's not that the Packers rely on the running game.

I feel Jackson brings something to the table as long as he is healthy and I like John Kuhn as he is totally different then Jackson. Jax is also a better pass receiver the Grant. Some will say that Grant kept the defense honest . . .I don't think that defenses were playing that honest anyway - they are terrified of Rogers.

The Packers picked up Dimitri Nance from the Falcons practice squad which many people poo poo because it's, well, "the practice squad" but the Falcons are REALLY deep in running backs and Nance is suppose to be a real good inside runner.

remember - no one heard of Grant either when the Packers got him.

All is not lost.

I posted this image yesterday and am curious on what others think. It's not going to be anything more then a blog photo but this combination of techniques might show some promise. So let me know how ya feel. 


Politics - HEY - I should have run as a Democrat for Sheriff - I might have won.  I don't understand why political affiliation really comes into play when running for Sheriff.  I could not actually VOTE for Sheriff even if I wanted too!  What's up with that???

Did you know that under Walker, County workers took a 10% pay cut by being forced to take 26 furlough days a year. Government employees have THAT to look forward too.  

DJ said it best this morning when she said one of the things she hates about many Republicans candidates is that they are fear mongers.  On the other side of the coin I don't like many Democrats candidates either with their holier then thou I'm better then you attitude.

The one thing I am going to do is not get upset.  All you can do is vote and move on. Getting upset and angry is a waste of energy and does absolutely nothing( well, they are but . . . )
I tried to take a couple of photos of Caydence last night as she was having a wonderful time "singing" and waving her arms but my timing was off.  However I figured I'd post this just to show much mush she has grown.


There is a new post on the new Historic Downtown Columbus blog which is a food for thought post.

And speaking of Columbus - Mayor Bob (who I am now a pro-Bob person) met with Amtrak government affair official, Charles Monte Verde (what kind of freaking name is that, "Hello I am Charles Monte Verde?") and the news is  that Amtrak has absolutely no plans to close the Columbus Amtrak station and reroute the Empire Builder line through Madison. There has been a 16% increase in ridership n Cbus, far out percenting Portage, Wisconsin Dells and Tomah.

In other news Columbus has experience 10 million dollars in Capitol investments recently.

Columbus also has the fastest growing company in the Madison area and #628 in the entire country, Discount Office Items.Com which also happens to be Americas largest online Office Equipment store. Their catalog comes with one of those big leather belts to carry it around.

I found the German wasp (also called Yellow Jacket's) nest in the basement and sprayed killer on it before I ran away in fear. OH - IT'S ON WASPS!! I was incorrect when I call them bee's as they are actually wasps.
OH OH - survivor starts tonight!! Jimmy Johnson is on the island. What male would ever vote him off.

Have a good day - prepare for crummy weather tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

B's Bee's and Bea's


We have a little problem developing at our place with a variety of bee's invading our basement and setting up hotels inside our walls.

Now I'm not against bee's typically but when I literally have to duck and cover when I go in the basement and have wasps setting up multistory hotels in our intake vents and any other cracks and crevices in our house that is a different story.

Then we saw our neighbor outside with a can and he tipped over his child's play equipment which had a hive in it and he said there was also one in his grill . . . it was time to get serious.

I went to True Value and walked up to an empty shelf which used to contain Wasp and Bee killer. They said it was the same shelf that was emptied of mosquito spray earlier this summer.

It seems this time of year spiders and caterpillars and other insects are dieing leaving wasps and yellow jackets getting frantic for food to keep their queen alive.

Eric C. Mussen, a specialist on bees says that while stings hurt, bee's can actually bite people which is a much more bloody affair. His best advice is to STAY AWAY and wait for frost which will kill most. Bee's are attracted to food, trash, lights, pet excrement, dried leaves, overgrown shrubbery, or grease built up on a grill.

I came in 3rd place in all three of my pools this week.

Packer game - I never saw the injury to Leonard Weaver on PHI - Did I miss it? They said that they showed the replay on the jumbo vision and several players became ill and others were praying on the field. I read on other forums and one guys wife actually threw up and on Football Outsiders Mike Tanier said he never ever wants to see that replay again.

And about the Lions/Bears. I've been trying to figure out how I felt about the apparent non-TD to win the game pass and wanted to wait.

Here is the interview with the ref that made the call.

Q. What is the rule used on the near-Detroit touchdown at the end of the game?
A. The ruling is that in order for the catch to be completed he has got to maintain possession of the ball throughout the entire process of the catch.

Q, He was on his behind before he rolled over. If he stayed on his behind, would it have been a touchdown?
A. No. We don't play with the two feet or one knee or anything of that scenario. We're talking now about the process of the catch. He's catching the football; as he goes to the ground, he must maintain possession of the ball throughout the entire process. So as he continues to fall, if he fell with two feet and his elbow hit the ground and came out, it would be incomplete.

Q. It looked like he had the ball up in one hand while on his rear end, but there was continuation?
A. Well, the process was not finished until he finished that roll and the entire process of that catch.
OK - so the problem I have is that while you can run the ball and have 1 millimeter go over the goal line and then drop it for a TD. So is catching a pass SO different?

On one hand common sense says it was a Touch Down but on the other hand the Lions REALLY should have lost that game ANYWAY as they sort of suck more then the Bears suck.

And by the way = Packers are 13 point favorites next week.

I'm voting for Neuman after work.  In fact many people are because Walker is SO over the top anti-government employee.  Barret in the real elections but I loath Walker for his double standards.  Walker is just another guy that induces fear for votes.

Remember - Walker was in charge of maintaining the Zoo Interchange in Milwaukee but because of government cuts they let it go!   Vote for Neumann to beat Walker and Barrett to beat Neumann if you are on the left and just vote Neumann to beat Walker if you are on the right!  
Ironman has come and gone and one of my favorite past times the day AFTER Ironman is running up to one of them and pushing them over, then run like hell.  There is no way they can catch me.  It's like pushing over cows (I suppose).  In fact I had to laugh because I was standing at a light and there was a break in traffic.  I calmly jogged across the street and all the Ironman could only watch.

I met with an Ironman as he was looking to buy a 20x30 canvas images and there were some interesting things I did not know.

When they swim the 2.5 miles they do not use their legs.  They try to keep them still and ONLY use their upper body saving their legs for 125 miles of bike riding and 25 miles if running.   Those goofy socks they all wear are compression socks and most wear them for a day after the race to keel the acid from building in their legs.

The guy I talked to drank a gallon of chocolate milk after the race which seems to something a LOT of racers do.  Chocolate milk has been proven to be the best at replacing all the lost nutrients.

I HAVE to get down to Ironman next year and take photos - this is from Ironman village. Seems the participants LOVE Madison and some say that they have done a number of different Ironman's and this is the best once besides Hawaii.  

My friend (who purchased a huge canvas image) said he was from Denver and the hills on this course are way bigger then anything people in Denver can train on. He said remember - east of Denver is all flat and west is straight up hills.  No in-between.

I better get'r done today.

have a great Tuesday!

Monday, September 13, 2010

That's the best play we can think of?

What a fine and tiring weekend.

Packers - so you watched the game and said "wow - Packer offense looked sort of out of whack - I'm concerned". Well - if the offense can look sluggish and out of whack and score 27 points and win. I'm happy.

What really concerned me was when Vick started the 2nd half. I told DJ I was concerned. You create a defense against a certain QB and then the other team has a completely different scrambling QB. Problems will happen.

I had to laugh on that 4th down play that basically ended the game and Andy Reid is looking at the playbook thinking "that is the best play we could come up with?"

Clay Mathews is the Cover Boy in the USA Today. Remember - he is who we got in compensation for Favre. Speaking of Favre - he is getting RAILED on in the Minnesota Newspapers. Pin this loss on Favre's belated arrival   

And from reports I have heard from the Viking broadcasters are very unhappy with entire Favre's attitude.

And the Cowboys lost - what a wonderful football weekend - except for balderdahs  being ahead of me in a football pool.

I attended the Main Street Sun Prairie Art Fair and was surprised that people who saw my work in Starbucks actually drove to Sun Prairie to see more.  In fact the person who is in charge of post cards for the State Capitol is considering my Cap images for the new postcards for our State Capitol. 

I had my best show yet selling 21 images. I had one woman tell me some of my work looked like Thomas Kinkade. One of my coworkers said that was meant to be an insult (like the woman that once said my work looked like paint by numbers).   One thing I have to start doing more of is signing my stuff as people kept making me take things out of packages and signing.

Next stop -Green Lake for a big big show on September 25-26.  I'm a little concerned about how much "product" I'll need.  If I sold 21 images in a 2000 att. show - this next one is 10,000.   

Columbus News from Steve Sobiak.  Some of it I understand.

Napoli Pizza and Pasta, 128 E. James St,  (former James Street Dining Co) is expected to open September 20.

Recent new business openings in downtown Columbus include Cheese Heads Pizza, Just the Number Accounting Firm, Odd Fellows, and the Black Kettle Restaurant and Bar -- managed by the owner of the former Dos Gringos Restaurant in Ripon that closed this past year.   Also something about the white and pink former Firemen’s Tavern building on E. James Street.

 Watch for a new ice cream, cheese and country craft, along with other exciting handcrafted furniture items, to open in downtown Columbus in the coming months.
 In the I'm not sure what this is category 
This past month, I have met with a number of individuals interested in starting or supporting a ‘community cannery’ in Columbus. Such a business or cooperative enterprise would have some synergy with the Columbus  community garden, and the area’s  sustainable local agriculture community, including Kathy Raatz’s new business. A downtown location is being considered.

This is real funny.

Gotta run and meet someone
Have a great Monday

Friday, September 10, 2010

Talking head Minnesota team rant

Grinders Warehouse - the original Poker blog is back up and getting attention in case you are looking for poker thoughts and my current attitudes towards poker.

This is not a Favre rant. More of a Talking head Minnesota team rant.  I thought Farve was OK in this game. Flashes of goodness.

The thing was that the announcers kept making excuses for Favre about how he does not "know" the receivers and he got tired because practice is not like real game experience.

ummmmm - is this not what the preseason is for?  Perhaps instead of sitting all the starters on the last preseason game so they don't get hurt, it would have been a good time to get in shape and learn MORE about the receivers. The Saints were ripe for the picking.  Because Favre got tired and did not "know" his receivers they lost the game.  Sitting your starters in the preseason LOST one real season game!

Rogers hung out with his receivers in the off season, had cook outs and formed relationships!  Did Favre?
HA - I am SO lucky.

On Facebook I had commented that I found my 1972 Sophomore yearbook and I compared  what I looked like in 1972 to what I looked like in 1973 -  - something happened and I went from Geek to Freak. 

I also found a photo of Elweed in 1972 . . .WITH HAIR!!  So I took some photos this morning but my ScanDisk corrupted. You will have to wait.

Watching more of Inside 911 they say that a typical Fire fighter in New York carries 110 pounds of extra equipment and "on average" they would take 1 hour for every 25 floors to climb.  So they were figuring the main group of fire fighters would take about 4 hours to reach the blaze in the towers.  In interviews no one even considered the towers would collapse.
poor mans car AC


Speaking of Columbus - a former friend (use to be friend but since his most current blog could be fuel for him being shunned I must shun him also even though it's only a shunning on the outside and I will secretly call him a friend to selected people)  . . . . . is that too long to be in parentheses?   ANYWAY - a different friend of mine called me over and said HEY - MR. Columbus - I have a bone to pick with you.

Seems he was all pumped up to come to the Columbus Free Market as it was their last one or something. He get's there at 11:00 and they were all starting to pack up. So - he decided to go downtown to look at the stores. He drives and sees an Antique store with OPEN in the window. He parks the car, and goes to the store but wait . . . they are in reality CLOSED!!  So he walks around the corner and see's another OPEN sign . . . . .NOPE - it's actually CLOSED!!!   WTF!!!

But on the other side of the street is a place that will open SOON but are also having a closing sale.  He waits and they really do open and have GREAT stuff . . but then he is told that this is their last day and they will be closed until Christmas!


I bring your attention to

A Walk Through Downtown Columbus


And since I have nothing to say that is not poker related this is a very good article

"There's American sailors back on the fantail, catching babies like basketballs!"

Forgotten Ship: A Daring Rescue As Saigon Fell

 Don't forget - Main Street Sun Prairie Art Fair Saturday!!!


Thursday, September 9, 2010


According to the Wisconsin State Climatology Office "Wisconsin has established a new record in 2010 for the average statewide summer rainfall:18.65 inches. This top rank is based upon summer (June-August) data for the past 116 years.  The old average statewide summer rainfall amount was 16.24 inches set back in 1980."

Here in Columbus we accumulated 22.74 inches of rain in those months with 29 dates of measurable rain.  

"Summer temperatures averaged a bit above normal, particularly at night, due to abnormally high humidity levels.  The combination of these conditions produced energy for frequent heavy rains, strong storms, and an unusually large count of 40 tornadoes, with only four of them reaching the damaging EF2 level. This large number is nearly twice the modern normal number, and ranks 2010 as the third most active summer in recent decades."

Hmmmmmm - there it is again - tendon pain.  I think I know what the problem is.  I'm not playing poker THAT much - seriously - maybe an hour a night.  But last night I noticed that my index finger on my left hand is placed on the 1 for a raise and my left two fingers are "comfortably" stretched at an odd angle . . . .like a Vulcan.  I think I must be stressing my hand - I'll have to watch that.

BTW - played like a dumb ass - NEVER lose your stack with top pair!  DAAAA!   I'm down to winning 94 big blinds per hour.  I also lost a HUGE HUGE HUGE hand when a guy hit his miracle 10 on the river for a set.

ANYWAY - Ironman is setting up next to my work and I have to decide if I'll do it this year.  2.6 mile swim followed with a 112 mile bike race and finishing with a 26.2 mile run.  I have not actually worked out or anything but I have a few days yet.  The event is Sunday, I wonder if I could golf after I got done with the race.  hmmmm     No - no I don't think I could - I better not do Ironman as I have a golf outing Sunday.

I see the course record is from some guy from Australia - NOT EVEN AN AMERICAN - that makes my blood boil - I'm shaving my legs at break - maybe I WILL do it.!

FOOTBALL!!!!  Football Outsiders - the Bill James of Football prognosticators have come out with their projections.

They say Chicago will actually win more games the Minnesota. Packers 6th best in the NFL and 2nd best in the NFC behind Atlanta.  Packers have the 6th best offense, 14th best defense and 28th best Special Teams.

Just curious what you guys think of this.  It's a rescue photo from a 1 mega pix camera.  I can't blow it up any larger then 8x10 so I thought I would matte it and frame it.  Just curious on thoughts!

And this morning I was drawn to a scene on the square - I just liked the lighting . . but then I took out the color!   hmmmmm  maybe I like it better colorized.

Looks like an old postcard - I wish a 1940 car would have driven buy at that moment - NO LUCK!

Actually I have this as my background now and like it larger. The more I look at it . . . . . 

That's it - I actually have work to do!

Have a great game tonight - GO SAINTS!


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Rush Poker

I'm not sure how much I'm typing today. I'm pretty much doing this one handed. My left hand seems to have a tendon (or the Exterior Indicsis Proprius) that is hurting every time I use the finger next to mt pinky finger.Probebly due to to much raising at Rush Poker last night!

DJ walked into the photo room about 9:30 and she said "you must be having a good night".  I said why do you say that, a little too loudly and she said I sort of had wild eyes.

In Rush Poker you play in a pool of players on one table. In a short handed game the pool is perhaps 300. As SOON as you fold, or win or lose a hand 5 new players are zipped to your table and cards are dealt.  Typically I play 5 hands per minute.  You never see the outcome of any hand you fold. As soon as you fold 5 new players and two new cards. BAM!
The weird thing are blinds! They are sort of random.  I have payed the small blind 3 hands in a row.  What I have learned is  you'll post the big blind upon joining a table. After that, the big blind is assigned to the player who has gone the most hands without posting.  I'm going to look to see how that evens out in the long run.  More on that soon.

Well back to the story - the reason was I  had JUST gotten down with a hand where I had QQ and some VERY deep stack was trying to push me around.  I knew the only hand he could have to beat me was AA or KK and since I raised him, he reraise me, I re reraise him and he stopped! So I took him off those two hands.

The flop is sort of garbage and I bet into him - he goes ALL IN.  Only thing I see is is MAYBE a set?  but it would be a low set and he would not be pushing me around pre flop with a low pocket pair . . . . unless that is why he backed down pre flop.  DAMN IT!

BUT - then I remember he is a VERY deep stacked and typically people with a ton of money are either bullies or bad players that got lucky!  SO - he pushes all $180 into the middle of the virtual table.  I follow suit with my much much smaller stack.  I have to think I surprised him as MOST players at Rush Poker are tight/weak meaning they only play good hands, push the money out but if they get resistance they fold.

Not me! I know he is just being a bully.  FU bully!  We show our cards.  I have QQ and he has an inside straight draw . . . nothing else.  All the money flows to me and DJ walks in and says I look a little  . . wild!

What I have found at Rush is that you can not read players for the most part but you can read the group as a whole. Do they come back at you when your reraise? Do they fold to blind steals or give resistance? Also since most are playing MUCH tighter then a normal short handed table you know they are playing any ace high cards or pocket pairs.

So this leaves all sorts of possibilities. Anytime I get checked too auto bet for me. He who blinks first loses! IF I get raised and I have a good hand - I reraise and normally the aggressor folds.  Since MOST people are there for FAST games they do not want to get into a pissing match with inferior cards or with someone who wants the hand more then they do.  The speed of the game works against them. It makes them not want to have to draw to win (which is a good strategy actually).

I feel I'm once again in a situation where I am a better player then most - or at least I know how to play THIS game at THIS time. Before people figure out how to play.  

The short handed games are averaging about 27% pre flop which is WAY tight for a short handed game.  But the fish stay in the hand. 27% seems like a good number because you can get SO many hands in an hour.  Pots are about 12 Big Blinds and there are 300 per hour meaning 3600 big blinds per hour are flashing buy your seat.

I'm liking it! So far.


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Who passed the wind!

I see The Bridges Golf Course has a Windy Day Special - $18 for 18 holes and a cart. What they are not telling you is you will lose 20 golf balls at $2 apiece in the 45-50mph gusts today! The Atmospheric Oceanic and Space Science Building and had a gust to 46 so with a constant wind speed of 31 at this moment.
Happy post Labor Day.  Well - who is REALLY happy today.  hmmmmmm raise your hands!  Not seeign too many!
I have heard no news on the new Italian/Pizza place opening on East James. Rumor was "after Labor Day". WELL HERE WE ARE!!!  And there is another place opening but it's unknown the exact contents!  Also - DJ and I were walking around town and noticed that the building that held the Extras for the movie was pretty clean (across from Anchor Bank on North Ludington). Is it always that way?  They had a couple tables and chairs and was spotless.  Is it always that way?

Chedder Heads - my favorite Pizza place in Columbus (920-623-9100) now has slices for lunch ($2.50 I believe) and Cinnamon sticks!  
I gotta get a franchise for this - it will make me MILLIONS!!  

This weekend I was watching a few 911 shows detailing what was happening, insider stories and so forth.  Why would I watch such a horrible thing?  Because I wanted to remember it.  So many people don't even acknowledge December 7th, "a date which will live in infamy". It seems many people have forgotten even though 81 percent of American homes tuned in to hear the President Roosevelt's speech.

Now?  Oh yea - it's Pearl Harbor day.

I don't want to forget September 11th.

The one thing I will always remember was how America came together as one unit.  No petty arguing and bickering. No anti-government Tea Party.   I want to remember that when things truly got ugly, Americans can band together for one common cause.  In a very weird way 911 was good for America, it gave us a smack on the ass, a wake up call.

OH YEA - I'm tired of Scott Walker blaming the economy on government employees. LET'S FIRE ALL STATE EMPLOYEES AND CREATE JOBS FOR REAL PEOPLE.  FU dude! Did you know your  eyes cross when you think?  You look like a blithering idiot.  You are a penny-pinching, anti-growth, anti-business out-of-touch knuckle-head spouting inane and inaccurate rhetoric.

Did you know he gave himself a $50,000 pay raise in 2008?

I have to give a shout out to Michelle Martin. A friend in Columbus.  We met in the early hours of the morning March 18th 2008 during the filming of Public Enemies and the first time I saw her images I was impressed.

Now she has morphed into a Wedding/Event photographer (Michelle Martin Photography) and I have to share a couple of her new images. I do this because we are not competitors. If she was - forget it  LOL  This is like Cassius Callender - a fantastic photographer who while he COULD be a competitor his photography is so distant from mine we attract different clients.   

I wanted to share a couple images Michelle did that stick in my brain.

I'm often asked to shoot weddings and I typically say no way - to much work for to much money.  So if you know of anyone needing a wedding photographer . . . . . . .

On a side note - check out Starbucks on the Square in Madison- I had a stranger this morning come up to me once he found out I was the artist and he told me that crowds of people were hovering around my images on the wall discussing them and trying to figure out HOW I created them.  I actually think it is because they are arranged in a Nike swoosh.   

OH - Sun Prairie Main Street Art Fair Saturday.   :-) 

The Columbus Historical Society will be meeting next Tuesday at the Columbus Visitor Center. This is only the beginning of the club. If you wish to be involved with preserving the history of Columbus call Kim at 920-623-5235.

In the "I love this town" section I see that on September 3rd 1970 the Newspaper had an article about how Columbus is becoming the Red Bud City  . . . . . not the more accurate Redbud City.  Of course it's not as bad as Red Bud IL who strangely call themselves Blossom City but not once do they actually say they have any Redbud trees.

I love this town because there are so many misspellings on signs.  The big Welcome to Red Bud City along with the misspelling of roles (rolls) on a new plaque in Firemans Park. It's like a town made up of me!!

OH MAN - I was in heaven last night for 40 minutes as I played 232 hands of poker . . . IN 40 MINUTES!!

Rush Poker is a new off shoot of Full Tilt and MAN - what a wild ride. You play against 300 other players 9 at a time.  As soon as you fold you get 9 brand new players BAM.  So you are constantly playing against 9 random players.  I averaged 5 hands a minute and made $24 an hour.  The trick is figuring out the strategy knowing everybody else is trying to figure it out!

It was a load of fun and very profitable. 

I'll have more on this as I play more!

OH - football pools - 16-1 and I tied for 1st place.  If Boise State would have lost I would have won the tie breaker.  grrrrr

Friday, September 3, 2010


BBBRRRRRRRRRRRR - it ain't even gonna hit 60 today!! At least there are 30 mph winds!! It'll warm up - today is the bottom and we'll be in the 80's by Monday.
Packers - YUP - pretty much as I expected last night so I was not disappointed. I thought the game was rather entertaining actually. The team I'm really curious off this year are the Bears. With Martz leading the offense an Cutler at QB it'll be sort of a love hate thing. Martz's high powered throw down the field Offense (remember what he did to the Packers when he was coach of St. Louis)and Cutlers inability to throw to the right team.

Probably 8-8 right behind the Vikings at 9-7. Neither team making the playoffs. Packers 12-4 Superbowl bound (I honestly think that - even if I take my homer 'tude out of the equation).


I want to thank you for voting on Wilson's sign. The average was 3.7 which was 0.3 lower then I voted but since I worked on the shot I'm allowed an extra 0.3. What this does is help me confirm my own feelings. After working on a photo I become numb. It's like making a Thanksgiving dinner - after 4 hours you really don't want to eat any turkey . . . or at least I think that is how it is since I've never actually MADE a Thanksgiving dinner.

Today I have a shot that has intrigued me and I wonder if I should take it further. Let me know what you think.

On a side note have you seen my newest label for a Brown Ale?

I'm off work today but I did manage to put up my art Work in Starbucks last night during the Monsoon.  Madison had almost 2 inches of rain while Columbus only had about  0.64. 

That's it - gotta get some chores done.  Need to get Chocolate Nibs for a Oatmeal Chocolate Coffee Stout I'm brewing hopefully today (DJ does not know that yet).

Have a great long weekend.


Thursday, September 2, 2010

New Book for Columbus! The Ring - Bobby's Story

The Columbus 45th Class Reunion is coming up and I have been sort of involved with it with some photographs. I delivered a few yesterday and one thing leads to another and I find out that Columbus is featured in a new book.

The book is called "The Ring - Bobby's Story" and is a memoir of Robert J LeClaire who grew up in Columbus. When I was being told of the story I have to admit that I was not paying enough attention to detail (a dog was licking my toes - it happens way to often) but once my attention returned and I played back the last 12 sentences it was an amazing story.

Well I felt this was a pretty big deal for Columbus and I started to do some research and found basically zip!!!

So I'm not going to try to retell this story but with the help of a Fall River resident Lori Caswell and her blog Dollycas's Thoughts maybe I can give a few cut an paste moments to peak your interest.

The part about Columbus is particulary interesting to me.  Lori writes:

As part of the story the author describes Columbus as it was then (the late 50's).  Things hadn't changed much when I growing up.  The memories of days long gone brought tears to my eyes.  Friday nights the place to be in Columbus was downtown.  The stores stayed open late, the popcorn wagon was parked on the corner, everyone knew each other and stopped to visit.  Reading the book I could smell the old feed store as well as the popcorn.  The population was about 1400 at the time and the entire town was surrounded by cornfields. 

The rest of the book was not as easy to read, it was well written, but the pain the little boy endured will grab your heart and hold on tight.  College boxing was the main backdrop of this story and I know nothing about that subject, but the story had me from page one.  I do have to say that reading about the old days of my home town were the major factor in why I loved this book, but Columbus was much like any other small town at that time.  This book is well crafted and a very short read at 118 pages and will touch your heart no matter where you may be from.  

I hope Lori forgives me for taking her words.  She mentions that the backdrop is college boxing.  In 1960 college boxing was pretty hot at the UW with 10,000 people attending a tournament. What happened on April 9, 1960 changed boxing forever.  The story is not about this event but what happened next to Bobby, a 12 year old from Columbus.

Amazon does not have any copies of the book but if you contact Nancy Miller at Janus Equipment (608-825-4616) she has one hundred or so copies. You see she is in charge of the Class Reunion and long lost Bobby is coming to the event.

Back to Lori's little blurb. She writes " Friday nights the place to be in Columbus was downtown."  I grew up in Fort Atkinson and remember Friday nights in Fort. What happened to stores being open on Friday nights!! It does seem magical. A number of years ago I went to State Street in Madison and was surprised that all the stores were closed. Seems stores only want to be open when everyone is at work.

I'm creating something new.  This image is being printed on Aluminum as an 8x10.  I had one person order one (with their name of course).  It'll hang on their door.

I have something new I'm going to try on you guys and I need you to be honest.

As you know I have this whole photograph thing going on and I need honest feedback.  So I'm going to put a poll up when I have something I need feedback on.  A rating system of 1 to 7 with 7 being LOVE IT and 1 being STOP WASTING MY TIME.

Don't worry about giving bad grades, it's all anonymous  and I'm only using it to justify my existence . . no no really just to confirm what I already believe the image is . . . . .worth.   Sometimes I LVOE something but do not know if it's just because I did it.  And sometimes, like Rainy Day in Madison (the Umbrella's on the square)I fail to see that something might be better then I expected.  Balderdash contacted me on that one and said he LOVED it.  It's one of my best sellers but it never occurred to me that others might like it.  

So let's try this out. - This is for all you guys that go to Door County and will be meaningless for the rest of you.  I'm going to make this into smaller 8x12s (no posters of anything). Maybe tourists might like it.  

Have a nice Thursday and stay warm tomorrow - not sure about a blog tomorrow - day off!