Thursday, February 26, 2015

Frank keeps getting better

A couple of days ago I was emptying the dishwasher when kabam!!!, I started hearing Sinatra singing "The Summer Wind." Talk about a powerful ear worm.  Of course I immediately went to this blog and entered it as my current ear worm on my home page.  But all day yesterday and into this morning I kept hearing it, right down to the groovy Nelson Riddle arrangement.  Nothing else to do at that point than actually listen to the real thing, which I did right here.  Yep, it was just as great as always -- Frank at a time (for my money) that his chops were probably the best they ever were.  "Chops" encompasses the whole package including tone, timbre, confidence, and especially phrasing.  He just kills "The Summer Wind" in less than three minutes. Dang, as I get older Frank just keeps getting better and better.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Some stunning magic!

I am a big fan of magic and the magicians who ply the trade.  I am always intrigued with magic that incorporates modern technology, yet is performed in an intimate setting where the tricks are real practical magic as opposed to clever "CG" presentations.  Accordingly, I was totally blown away, yet charmed by this wonderful bit of magic.  Realize that this dude is doing all this with Ellen sitting right next to him, a proximate audience (love the selfie bit), and close, unforgiving camera work. I have no idea how he is pulling this stuff off.  Too cool.

Friday, February 20, 2015

More right wing shenanigans

"A knowledge of syphilis is not an instruction to get it" -- Lenny Bruce from a monologue about the South.

In that context read this article from today's WAPO.  Could we please just let these States secede!! And why is Colorado running with this Luddite crowd?  Weed is legal there now so please smoke a bowl and maybe it will restore your sanity.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015


Gee, I just noticed that time has slipped by and I have not posted for over a week!  I did change my "current ear worm" a couple of times but that doesn't really qualify as a post.  So today I'm going to show you my estuary.  If you've been following this blog you have seen quite a few posts showing views of the San Francisco Bay, with bridges, boats, birds, and buildings on display.  These pictures were all taken after I walked a block from my house and then turned left.  But what happens if I turn right instead.  The answer is that I walk toward the Bay Farm Bridge which crosses an area where the Bay meets an estuary.  From that point there is a paved path that goes for about a mile, but the estuary goes on for quite a ways after that, toward the Oakland Airport.  So here are a couple of shots of the estuary that I took last Sunday.

That's the estuary on the left and the paved path on the right.  If you enlarge the photo by clicking on it you will be able to see the Oracle Arena where the Warriors NBA team calls home and just behind that you can see portions of the Oakland Coliseum where the Oakland Raiders play their home games.

Now this is a shot looking back toward the San Francisco Bay. You can clearly see the Bay Farm Bridge (it's a draw bridge) with the mouth of the estuary on the near side and the Bay on the far side.  

As I've said many times, I really love where I live and I'm grateful for it each and every day.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Mind boggling bat facts

I am a proud and long-time member of The Nature Conservancy.  It does wonderful work all around the world and has the reputation of a charity with a very high percentage of its revenue actually going to the work it does rather than to the people who run it.  Anyway, they publish a beautiful  bi-monthly magazine, which is always packed with interesting stories and facts.  Here is an amazing item that appears on page 19 of the February/March issue (my italics included for emphasis):

In October, the world's largest colony of bats got more protected space to roam at night. The Nature Conservancy, Bat Conservation International and the city of San Antonio paid $20 million for more the 1,500 acres adjacent to the Bracken Bat Cave, home to 15 million Mexican free-tailed bats.  The land, which had been slated for a 3,500 home subdivision, is directly in the flight path of the bats as they emerge from the cave each evening.  Bracken Cave's winged residents eat more than a quarter of a million pounds of insects each evening.  The Conservancy and  Bat Conservation International will own the property and incorporate it into nearby preserves.  
I'm still thinkin' those figures are misprints but they are not.  I'd hate to live in San Antonio if the bats all of a sudden disappeared.  I'd be contending with 250,000+ pounds of insects!

Friday, February 6, 2015

Bay and city photo

Well, it's Friday and it looks like we may actually get some rain today.  It's raining and the skies are gray, with a stiff wind adding to the reasons to stay inside and perhaps do some binge watching.  To cheer things up, here is a photo I took last Saturday (Jan. 31) while taking a walk along the San Francisco Bay, shot from Alameda looking west across the bay to the City, which is several miles away.  I sure do love living where I live.  (Be sure to click on the photo to enlarge to full effect.)

Monday, February 2, 2015

Some nice Obama moments

After six years of enduring relentless attacks and inexcusable sabotage against the President, I'll admit I was tired and worn.  It seemed like it was getting harder and harder to muster up joy and hope over him and his presidency.  Then today I ran across this slideshow [you'll need to scroll to the bottom of the page to "Most Iconic Photoes ..."] and I could not help but smile and feel pride, remembering that I had never expected to live long enough to see a black man elected as President.  Just think what our lives would be like if he would have had a Democratic Congress.