Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Iron mom

I've added a new blog to my sidebar. Her husband is an Ironman triathlete, and COURTNEY is an Iron mom with new twins. She's very impressive as I've seen her in action!

Elmo Montana

Here's picture of Elmo Montana Saturday night, home of the Elmo alpine ski team. (me) Come to think of it, Curt deserves a spot on the Elmo "development" team. He's the only other person to ski out of Elmo with me, but he hasn't started to race yet.

I grew up fishing along that shore on the right. A native american lady owns that land. If she didn't, it would all be developed by now.

I've added this photo to my Flathead Lake photos on the side bar.

I retain all rights to my photos.  Please do not use any of my photos without permission.

Monday, October 29, 2007

The middle of nowhere

I was out in the middle of nowhere yesterday. They marked the spot with this sign on a fence post. There wasn't much going on as you might suspect. That's what I like about Montana.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

A new day

I got up early this morning and went down to the shore to participate in life, take a few snapshots, and watch a new day break over the bay. It was very cold and probably around 20 deg F. Frost on everything so I had to watch my step while walking on the piers. There are lots of Canada Geese that winter on Flathead Lake. They are interesting and beautiful birds. They would be floating around in the water and one of them would get an itch and start to honk. Soon it would build into a frenzy of honking and they would all take wing and go for a fly about. There are leaders and followers. Not long after that they would all return and land back in the same location on the water. There's something to be learned from this but I'm not sure what it is.

I think I'll add this picture to my Flathead Lake photos on the side bar. Click on it to see it bigger.

I found out that they are called Canada Geese, not Canadian Geese. Thanks Steve.

I retain all rights to my photos.  Please do not use any of my photos without permission.

Friday, October 26, 2007

You me and the fence post

It has been an interesting week. It started with some conflict resolution. Then disease and pestilence swept through. I did get some miles in on the bike, and outside it was beautiful. Every morning the sun would come up burn off the fog that hung low along the river. I stopped on my way to work to take some snaps one morning. This is a block or so away from my place. The river is below the bank of fog.

Just between you, me and the fence post,... I'm glad this week is over.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Wrinkle free

Meeting yesterday, wore my good shirt. Wrinkle free. Makes me look like Al Gore, or so I've been told. We did serve bottled water so it wasn't an environmentally friendly meeting. I can't remember ever buying bottled water. But then I've never gone anywhere that you couldn't trust the water. We have great water here so as long as I can get water for free I'm not going to buy it. At the next staff meeting, I'm going to suggest that we get a pitcher and glasses for future meetings. That would have been nicer I think. Look better on the table too.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A don's eye view

7:45 Tuesday morning, 39 degrees. legwarmers and booties. One mile left to go.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Wood stoves and dogs

I wrote a post tonight and then deleted it. You're not missing anything. Then I went outside to check and see that my truck was locked up. I could hear a train going by in the distance. Other people's dogs were responding to the sound of its horn. There is a chill in the air and I could smell wood smoke. Most of my neighbors have wood stoves. Wood stoves and dogs.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Breakfast of sportsmen

Today on the breakfast menu,.. tail of brown trout and eggs, fried red potatoes, salsa and lemon. Now the rest of the fish can go in the smoker :) But first,.. a short bike ride.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Fishing trip

Instead of hunting, we decided to go fishing this weekend. My friend and co-worker, Gar, took me fishing to Rock Lake on his boat. It's called Rock Lake because there are lots and lots of rocks. They rise up in the middle of the lake. Gar hit one last week and got the boat stuck and broke a shear pin on the prop. So as we left the so called boat launch this morning he watched to make sure he missed the submerged rocks as we made our way out. It was cold and in the 30s when day broke on the lake. The water was in the mid 50s so you could see mist rising into the air. It was really cool!

Then the wind and rain came up. It was a good thing we had a full canopy on the boat. It was very nice out of the weather. This picture is after the rain and wind ended and we made our way back to the launch. We fished for a couple of hours in the morning and only got a couple of bites. I was starting to doubt. But then our luck started to change. Gar decided to change lures and that did the trick.

Here is our catch. 2 rainbow trout and 4 german browns. Tomorrow I'll be smoking fish!

Friday, October 19, 2007

The public is divided

Tonight on the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric,..Hemingway cats, in Key West, and how much the government has been spending to decide wheather or not to lock them up at night.

I'm not sure if that is even interesting to me, and I have a so called HEMINGWAY CAT. Plus they never did say how much the government has spent on this problem, but it must be in the thousands! It's like they didn't even finish the legwork on the story. And this IS a very big problem. There are around 40 cats we are talking about. Imagine, there are almost 40 cats on the loose in Key West every night. Something must be done!

Who in the heck is the CBS news director?! No wonder Katie is so low in the ratings. And they ran this story just before the Hillary needs to get the women vote story.

I can just hear the meeting before the deadline,.. "Lets run with the cat story,.. There's lots of cat lovers and haters out there, the public is divided on this issue... Then follow up with the Hillary story..."

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The phone booth

When we are up in the woods at hunt club, someone will run around and find a place where you can get cell phone coverage to call back home. The spot is marked and becomes known as the "phone booth". I took my buddy up to the phone booth with my camper for him to check in with the Mrs. It was way up on a logging road.

"It really sucks up here in the woods,..You wouldn't like it honey, there are mice in the tent... I miss you XXX!"

I'm just kidding! :)

A few things considered

I think I've figured it out...Not broasted chicken. I was wrong about that. I asked my mom today what broasted chicken was and she said chicken made in the oven with the broiler. So we clearly have that all wrong... It's a Montana thing :)

No, I think I've figured out why the news isn't news. It's the same as with network coverage of the Olympics. If it isn't a sport we can relate to like baseball, basketball, and football, we really don't have the attention span to view it. We need entertainment. So the networks won't show much of these sports because people might not watch and they won't make money. But human interest stories sell product. So on the Olympics they show a little of the actual competition and then a big long human interest story about the best person. I hate that. I want to see the sports just like I want to see the news. I want to see all of the people in a ski race for example. I want to see the difference between the fastest person and the slowest person.

What if you went to the Olympics in ski racing for example and they didn't show you on TV because you weren't in the top three? I think that sucks. Everyone back home wants to see you.

Tonight on Brian Williams they had a story about one of his co-workers who had breast cancer and had a breast removed. It was a good story but should have been on a different channel. I see why they put it on because most of the sponsors sell meds. Then there was the story about a train fron China to Tibet. That should have been on the Travel Channel.

The News Hour on PBS had solid news on the other hand. But PBS and NPR have been under attack by the right since the so called Contract With America. There was a joke going around back then, All Things Considered, would become, Just A Few Things Considered.

I just don't think that the news should be "for profit". The end result is that we don't get real news. The powers that be medicate us with what they want, like stories that the drug companies want us to get. I guess I can live with the Olympics.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

And now the news

I've been thinking about how pathetic our so called news is. There is so much going on in the world, and we report a car wreck in California and Ellen giving her dog away and then having it taken away because she broke her contract with the dog rescue place. Is that the most important thing going on in the world? What in the heck is going on with the war in Afganistan? One guy got the medal of honor I know that. But what actually went on over there this week? Was there any progress? And what about Iraq? What happened there today? I just assume more people got killed. But who knows if there was any progress? There was a story about kids learning to speak Chinese, I guess that's news?

It's no wonder nobody knows what's going on in the world. The network news consists of human intrest stories punctuated by medication comercials. The whole package is medicating us into not knowing what is going on.

"We interupt the Ellen Degeneres story to tell you that Bush has just started WWIII with Iran." What? Does Ellen get her dog back?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

When a tree falls

Here is another photo from the weekend. This is an old mining cabin from the 1940s or before. It's along a stream with cedars deep in the forest. A few years ago a tree fell in the winter and broke down the roof. Before that you could go inside and get out of the weather if it was snowing or raining.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

October cyber tree

I was wandering around in the woods aimlessly this weekend and came out into a clearing and saw this red tree next to this dead tree in juxtaposition. One of these trees is the October cyber tree. Pick your poison! to borrow a term from Dr. C.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

The first of two things

There are a couple of things on my mind tonight. Not important things, just things. The first thing was,..I was watching this TV show,.it was a music TV show. Like Austin City Limits but it wasn't that. The host was a musician himself and he introduced other musicians and bands. One of them was really good and I'm going to get her CD. Her name is Holly Brooke. I think I'm spelling that right. I really suck at spelling. If you read me you already know that. Plus I don't bother too much about it. If I could thump my foot on the ground and you understood what I was saying I'd be good with it.

We had this guy at work. He wasn't very well spoken. He'd just look at you and make a noise. "Uh." he would say. Almost a grunt, but you usually knew what he meant.

Anway this host guy, on the TV show had clearly dyed his hair. And his beard. But the thing of it was, his beard didn't match his hair. His hair was jet black and his beard was redish brown. I'm thinking, how could that be? Did it have to do with the food he ate as mouth is close to his beard? Like he's eating carrots or something and it makes his beard red. No I don't think it works that way. To make matters worse one of the bands on his program had a lead singer who shaved his head, and this guy with the black hair made a crack about it. "He's got the kojak thing going on." What the heck! I thought. I would have fired right back at that remark if I'd been the bald guy.

So there's that. The second thing on my mind can wait now.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Keeping the glass

We are getting rid of our copy camera and dark room at work. The camera is a great big industrial thing that takes up a whole room. I must say that I'm just a little sad, because with it goes a bunch of skills that I've developed over time. I already regret it but developing film takes chemicals and they become hazardous waste. I can do things with this camera that I can't do on the computer. Not only that, a camera becomes kind of personal. Like an instrument. You learn ways to make it sing for you. Also, it's just nice working in a dark room. It was a safe place where magical things happened. I always felt lucky to be able to work in a darkroom.

They are letting me keep the glass. It was used to focus and tweek the object before you exposed the film. The camera is so good that you don't really have to worry about focus or size, but I used it a lot. One time I broke it and it was really expensive to have it replaced. Far more than the camera is worth now. I felt really bad when that happened. The glass is a cool industrial object in it's own right and in a black metal frame. I can think of a number of things to do with it. But I'll probably just hang it on the wall or in the window of my studio. It's work is now done. Here is a detail of it. It's kind of hard to take a photo of it. I spent a lot of time looking into this fragile thing. I'm very glad to have it now.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Someone's daughter

The first date I went on with the use of a motor vehicle was with Heidi. That's her real first name too. I usually tweek the names but Iove her name so much that I can't bring my self to call her Hilde. I had lots of "dates" if you will before I could drive, but this is the one I consider my first date. I took her out in an old Intenational Scout four weel drive. Heidi was such a beautiful girl, and she's a beautiful woman now.

When I got to her house to pick her up, and she lived in a very cool house, (a big A frame house next to a hill) she told me I had to go an meet her parents. So she drug me into the front room and I sat down. Her mom and dad came in and eyeballed me. They looked very concerned. I tried to answer all of their questions. I can still see them in my minds eye. Her mom looked almost sick about this date.

We got that over with and Heidi drug me out of there and we left. I thought she managed the situation very well. I was impressed.

On the other end of the date, before I left my house my dad had a talk with me. Here is what he said. "Remember that this girl is someone's daughter. You get her back home safely and in the same condition that you took her out in. That's a big resonsibility." I took it to heart.

I always remembered those words every time I went out on a date. This is someone's daughter.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Monitor problems

The other day my monitor at work started to konk out. It's a really nice NEC CRT monitor. Very good dot pitch resolution. I do drafting, cad and graphics on it. So I thought I'd try a flat screen. I got one and set it up. But it really sucks in compairison for what I'm doing. So I'm going to try and take it back tomorrow and get another NEC CRT. I see that Dell has them still, but I'm sure there will be a day when you can't get them. I have an NEC CRT here at home also, so I guess I"m spoiled. Everyone says flat screens are so great and all of that. But they aren't in compairison to a nice CRT, at least not yet.

Update: I pawned the NEW MONITOR off on another artist, so I won't have to return it. It works better with his system as he has a new tower. But I still like this old one better as lines in cad and text are much more crisp. So I'll get another one of THESE while I still can.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

My truck

Ok so here is a photo I took of my truck last weekend on my way home from Montana. Notice the big sky mudflaps. Not only is it a towing, hauling son of a gun, it's also a big block hot rod.

I'm not against these things. It's just not the sort of thing we should drive to work every day.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Great seats

I was going to go to Montana today but I realized that I had more to do here than over there. Plus I wanted to go for a bike ride. I cleaned out my truck, and tomorrow I'm going to put the camper on it for hunting camp/ camps that start next weekend. I was just going to vacuum the truck out but the old seat cover was torn, so I decided to put a new one on. Several years ago I had bought a new one at a liquidation place. I've never had the old cover off so I got a look at how the factory seats looked. Here is the photo. Turkey in the straw comes to mind. I think they are kind of cool actually. Can you imagine buying a truck with seats like this now?

And this brings to mind a conversation I once had,.."You need a new truck don!" Jane said. "This here's a good truck." I replied with a puzzled look on my face. "It's old!" Jane said. "You can afford a new truck!". "Don't need a new one." I responded.

Well I still have the truck. Don't know where Jane is.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Marion Jones

Man, just when I was thinking only guys in sport were doping... I was thinking it was a guy thing, and women were above it. Why I thought this I don't know. First Genevieve Jeanson World Campion cyclist comes out and admits to doping and now Marion Jones. I seem to remember that Jones had a coach/ husband who was questionable as did Jeanson. I can't really explain why I feel more sympathy for women than men when it comes to this. Marion Jones is such a beautiful woman. That might be it. Something tells me that she wouldn't have ever admitted to it had she not been forced to.

I had the fastest 75 yard sprint ever at Willard school when I was in 8th grade (and I did it clean.) 8.2 seconds. That record stood for exactly one year. But for years and years I was the fastest guy and person for that matter to ever walk throught the doors of Willard school, and I beat some very fast people. That meant something to me. The guy who beat me the next year was Tim MacD. 8.1. I had to lump it. I do admit that I always questioned the timing as it was done by hand and Tim never could beat me when he ran against me. I could always pour on a little more. What the heck, I know he didn't cheat and he was a good sport and a nice guy. Not long after that they closed the school and his record stands. I've always thought about this all of these years. How I finished second. It makes me wonder about how people who finished second to Marion Jones feel now. Nobody knows who they are.

I have to say that I was really put off by the track athletes wraping themselves in the flag at the Sydney Olympics. It really bothered me. It's just poor sportsmanship to run around the track wearing the flag. Tacky at best.

Gus Rambo

I was in this bar several years ago minding my own business. It was a wedding reception or something. It's not like I just hang out in bars or anything. This was in my home town in Montana and I was visiting. Anway, this guy came up to me. A short guy but all buffed. "You don?" he asked in a loud voice. "Yes, do I know you?" I didn't recognize him. "Gus Rambo!" he said as he reached out to shake my hand. Then he just crushed my hand. I drew a blank look,.. "Sally Rambo's brother!" he said. Well Sally was my age in grade school and she did have a little brother that was about two years younger I guess, but I paid very little attention to kids who were two years younger than me in gradeschool. "Oh yeah, now I remember you. How's Sally?" I actually remember nothing about him other than Sally had a little shrimp brother.

"Well what have you been up to?". Then Gus went on to tell me how he'd been working out and how much weight he could lift and on and on. I'd heard enough and wanted to blow him off. I began to think he was going to pick a fight with me, he'd already crushed my hand. I was expecting him to pull out a machine gun and mow everyone down including all of the bottles of booze behind the bar. It made me wonder, had I done something to upset him back in gradeschool? I always got along good with Sally. Perhaps this guy was on steroids or something? Small man complex I thought.

A few years later I was at work and having a conversation with a sales guy, and it came up in conversation that I'm from Montana. "Do you know Gus Rambo!?" He asked all excited. "I knew his sister." I replied. I got the impression that Gus is this body builder weight lifter guy that everyone from Montana is supposed to know. What the heck? I would have never known who he was.

But Gus Rambo knows who I am...

Thursday, October 04, 2007

I always go back

I'm afraid I'm coming down with a cold. My body doesn't feel normal. I guess I never really feel normal. I haven't felt like riding. An artist I know who has been a mentor once told me that he always had his art to fall back on. A safe place. I've never thought of art that way. I can't think of the way he put it, but I know what he was getting at. For me it was always the bike. A safe place that wasn't ever really safe. But I always go back.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

A strange dream

I had a strange dream last night. In my dream I had a wife and a little daughter. We lived in an apartment way up high in a tall apartment building in a big city. My daughter had brown curly hair that was parted on the side (her left side) and she wore a green and black plaid dress white socks and black shoes (the only time I saw her. as I only saw her once in the dream.) My wife looked just like my daughter except bigger, (about 6 feet tall) with the same hair parted on the side but just wore slacks and a green blouse. I had a conversation with my wife about how we thought our daughter was artistic so we decided to buy her a paint set. Then my daughter went crazy and painted the whole apartment olive green, black and silver, and she just threw the paint around in no order. It looked kind of cool actually. I was at work and my wife called me on her cell phone and was frantic about this and I could see the apartment despite not being there and I was saying "I know, I know, calm down, I'll be home after work, we'll talk to her about it then." Our daughter was in her bedroom still just making a mess. I guess we bought her too much paint.

Here is another photo from my boat ride last weekend. I wasn't going to, but I think I'll add this to my Flathead Lake photos on the side bar as it meets the sky land lake criteria, plus it will add a little contrast to that group.

I retain all rights to my photos.  Please do not use any of my photos without permission.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Fall is here

Fall is finally here. I was going to cycle today but the wind gusts were up to 35 mph. It was serious wind. I felt justified in not riding and then on my way home from work I saw two guys out on bikes as if it the wind was no big deal. Just shows you what a wuss I am.

Here is a photo I took of a whitetail doe on Saturday. She had a little fawn close by. This was up Prospect Creek in Montana not far from Thompson Falls. It's a beautiful area. Great big mountains that drop straight down to the Clark Fork River. They have lots animals there including moose, elk, deer, bighorns, bear, wild turkeys and cougars to name a few. Very few people.

Italian meat balls

I guess I should say something about this. When I cook, I keep everything in my head. I told myself that I wanted a vocabulary of things to cook but all in my head. I don't keep recipes written down. I might until I learn it and I only learn it if I want to do it again. The only reason I wrote this one down is so I can give it out. So when I say 1/2 cup of this or that, it might be more or less. I like to cook that way. I can usually remember what to do.

Italian Meat Balls

½ lb. Ground pork shoulder. Substitute with turkey
½ lb. Ground beef, lean.
1 large can of Italian tomatoes
Fresh Italian parsley. Substitute with fresh oregano or use both. Needs to be fresh however. 1/2 cup
Soft Mozzarella
1 egg
1 cup bread crumbs
garlic cloves
olive oil

In a bowl, mix ground pork and beef together
Chop garlic and parsley together to make green and white mixture then mix into meat (by hand)
Add one egg mix into meat (by hand)
In a bowl soften bread crumbs with milk. Squeeze milk out of bread and add bread to meat and mix it in.

(I suppose you could skip the bread crumbs if you wanted, or substitute with something else, It just makes it softer)
Salt and pepper.

Cut or form Mozzarella into 1 inch pieces.
Form meat around Mozzarella so that you have a meat ball with a cheese center, total size is 2.5 to 3 inch dia
In a fry pan heat up ¼ inch of olive oil.
Carefully place meat balls in and turn until brown all sides. I use a table spoon to turn them as they are soft.
I usually add them to the pan as I form them.
In a baking dish simmer Italian tomatoes and garlic.
Then place meat balls on top of tomatoes, grate cheese on top. cover and bake 45 min 350
Serve tomatoes and meatballs with one vegetable, or green salad (No pasta.) Some garlic bread.

I usually have it with broccoi and garlic bread.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Retro range

Here is a photo of the Gouchenour kitchen. It's the kitchen in the Gochenour cabin where I stay while I'm at Flathead Lake in Montana. It has a Kelvinator stove and matching refrigerator. I guess Kelvinator merged with Nash motors in 1937. These things were built to last, and are attractive objects. I really like the stove. The refrigerator is kind of old tech however, and clearly older than the stove, but it still works and was made in the 1940s or perhaps 30s. It has an older logo on it. I'd like a newer refrigerator but I'll just work around this one as it is so cool. (pardon the pun), a new one just wouldn't be the same. The first thing I do when I get to the Geouchenour cabin is plug the refrigerator in and turn on the power, and it rumbles back to life. If it ever konks out I'll get a more modern one from the 1950s.