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I’ll Be Scarce For A Week… February 25, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Love and Death.

…unless I find unsecured wireless service in the desert!

Yep, I’m off to SoCal in the morning (or actually, off to Eastern Massachusetts in the morning, flying to Vegas on Friday.)  And though I’m hoping to get occasional internet access, I’m assuming that my postings will be light at best; Frau Biergut and I have a lot to do in not that much time.

I’ll do my best to keep you folks in the loop, but either way, you’re gonna get a faceful when I get back and have time to process my captures properly.

So hold the fort while I’m gone, and I’ll see you all the second week in March at the latest!



Dinner With TCR! February 25, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Dinner with TCR.
1 comment so far

OK, now I’m eating my refrigerator clean in preparation for my week away.

It happened that I had some fresh raviolis in there, so they bit the dust tonight:

raviolis with celery and pine nuts

Spinach, asiago and roasted garlic raviolis, topped with leeks, celery, yellow peppers, enoki mushrooms, garlic and pine nuts simmered in vegetable stock and white wine.

Came out not half bad for a rush job on a busy night!

A Belated Ruby Tuesday! February 25, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Ruby Tuesday!.

Because Ruby Wednesday ain’t got no mojo.

And because I’ve been busy with ‘puter problems and have to be out of here for my adventure soon, and I’m just getting to it.

So I have a folder on my desktop where I put random photographs whose Most Redeeming Feature® is that they include something RED,  though I’m not ruling out the presence of other virtues.

So let’s see what’s in the “Ruby File” for this week.

Oh, look!  It’s a local bank:


…with a Big Red Bow on a Dried Out Wreath.  Make that two bows on two dried out wreaths.

Still, it’s semi-cheesy as a “Ruby” shot.  But there it is.

And how’s this for a stretch – The Book Mill in Montague, Massachusetts:


What the hell is this, “Salmon Tuesday???” I mean, come on,  Ralph!

But hey, what else am I going to do with that photograph?

OK, so here’s a Variation on the Failed Theme of “wreaths on buildings at the end of February.”  It’s a nearby Fancy House:

fancy house

…with the requisite Ruby wreath, of course!

Since the house is indeed fancy and the ribbon is indeed red, this shot ended up here.  Go figure.

And as long as you have your “figurin’ head” on, tell me why this:

orange flower

…and this:

pink flower

…were allowed to sneak in here, ’cause they’re clearly not rubilicious!?!?

I’ll tell ya why.  It’s ’cause they’re not blue.  They’re on the red end of the spectrum, and they needed a home, and I took them in.

And again I say, Happy Ruby Tuesday, with apologies to Mary at Work of the Poet for abusing her Ruby Hospitality.  😉

Der Golem! February 23, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Love and Death, music.

Here’s something I found interesting on a number of levels.

Firstly, it’s a 1920 black and white film of epic import, directed by Paul Wegener, and representing the pinnacle of German expressionist film making of the day.  The plot is something of a Frankenstein’s monster scenario and involves the persecution of the Jews in 16th century Prague, with Rabbi Loew creating a Golem out of clay to protect His people.  Predictably, the Golem runs amok, wreaking havoc on his creator, until he is subdued by a little girl.

Photographically, this film is amazing for both what it shows and what it implies,  the latter being a hallmark of late-silent-era black and white films and a skill set largely lost in today’s cinematic world.

Secondly, every bit of the sound you’ll hear in this clip was created live on stage in a single take by the amazing Gary Lucas, one of my all-time favorite guitar players.  He honed this piece and took it on tour with the film, earning kudos from critics and guitar monsters alike, and deservedly so; it’s almost incomprehensible that this is a live solo performance.

Anyway, here’s a five minute excerpt (the beginning) of the silent classic, Der Golum, with live accompaniment by Gary Lucas:

If you’re interested in guitar playing, you might want to see what else this guy Gary Lucas can do with one.  Check out this four part 1998 Slovenian documentary series to see.

But really, it’s for serious guitar afficionados, so don’t feel obliged to check it out if that’s not your thing.

NoHo On Dance Night. February 23, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.

On Friday nights we dance, usually well into Saturday, at a fourth-floor ballroom in downtown Northampton.  The warm-up starts around 8:30 with DJs spinning slow music to stretch and move by, and by 10pm the place is a riot of free souls churning together a mix of free-form/modern, disco, country swing, contact improv and fill-in-the-blank.

I suck at this, having no clue about how to dance.  But if the music grabs me (as is frightfully often the case,) I can be danced, disappearing into another dimension and emerging from my trance surrounded by slack-jawed onlookers muttering stuff like, “Jee-zhus, Dude, how did you DO that???

To which my standard reply is, “Wha…?

Then, as the Witching Hour of One approaches, the music slows and Susan and I spiral into each others’ orbits like a pair of neutron stars, generating a wave of heat and gamma rays which sends all but the heartiest of observers to the water cooler, fanning themselves and gasping for air.

But this post isn’t about that.

It’s about trying to get a handle on the urban landscape and interior photography.

So this past Friday I arrived around 7pm and snapped a few off.

Here’s the building across the street from Dance, at the corner of Bridge Street and the fabled Pearl Street:

pearl streetscape

I found balancing the low-light urban nightscape and the intense pin-point illumination difficult, and was grateful for the opportunity to practice.

Here’s an interior shot, one in which the shadows struck me more than the pedestrian objects which cast them:

chair and shadows

That was in the dance building’s central core, a glass-topped light shaft with an overall geometry which I found compelling:

skylight at dance

This architectural feature was the reason I brought my camera to town, having noticed it from a fourth floor window on the upper right the previous week.

These may be the last interior shots for a couple of weeks, as I’ll be largely without an interior to shoot.

Which is, of course, another post entirely.


Dinner With TCR! February 22, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Dinner with TCR.
Tags: , , , ,

Tonight, fresh pumpkin-sage raviolis, topped with a ratatouille of leeks, roasted red peppers and some of my own dried wild mushrooms, in this case a medley of boletes, the fabled cèpe of French culinary fame:

raviolis and cepes

…with a few other flavors thrown into the sauté, like garlic and anchovies and vegetable broth and white wine, in this case a decent Gruner Veltliner, 2007.

Came out pretty good for blind gastronomic groping.

The Amherst Orchid Show… February 22, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, macro photos.

…albeit in Northampton,  Massachusetts.

Amherst orchid show

Go figure.

This was a nice date – Susan loves (and grows) orchids!

Anyway, all of these shots are hand-held, hence the soft focuses in most cases, with available light.  And because the natural light was quite subdued, I needed to boot the ISO to between 1000 and 3200; hence the graininess.  Sorry, but I wasn’t comfortable setting up a tripod at this one.  Too much of a sense of entitlement for this amateur.  Maybe some day I’ll get over that.

But of the sixty or so shots I took, here are a few which were salvageable, mostly by cropping:

star orchid (my name for it)

This one had me breathing hard:

wingfed orchid

I apologise for not getting her name – I was having enough trouble remembering my own!

Susan has a fondness for the large pink and purple and white ones, but I like them little and different and beautiful and amazing.  And I told her so.   😉

These grew in large clusters and were very fragrant:

purple and white

…while these grew singularly, each one an island of color nestled in amidst a swell of sea-grass:

orange orchid

I liked that one a lot.  I tend to like the ones which look like a very lucky person might stumble across them in the local forest, rather than the exotic looking ones.

These were nice though, despite being showy in that exotic way:

pink things

And this one took my breath away:

frilled lily

It looks like a magical version of the Lady’s Slippers we have locally, though they’re becoming less common by the year.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy looking at these as much as I enjoyed photographing them.

That’s it for now; I might have more cleaned up for you later.

Peace, Out.


Dinner With TCR! February 20, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Dinner with TCR.
Tags: , , , ,

As promised, tonight’s repast is Pan Seared Scallops and Walnuts in a Lemon Beurre Blanc,  served over a bed of field greens and fennel:


Came out purddy guuud!

Coronation. February 20, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Love and Death, poetry.
Tags: ,


Outside the wind howls,

An east-bound train on rippling blue rails.

Maroon sheets surround my back, hold me still

As your angel hair traces my meridian, dances across my chest,

Swirls in the candlelight while your warm lips find

Each depression in my man-belly, Oh!

What a delightful turn of fate

To be so lovingly crowned

King of The World!

And Still, It’s Winter. February 19, 2009

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.

We had another “snow event” last night and into this morning, getting perhaps four inches of messy wet stuff.

The sunrise was cloaked in clouds and thus unremarkable, until the mists climbed the draws toward the light:

morning fog

…and eventually dissipated into a patchwork of blues and grays:

ridgeline in snow

A red-tailed hawk waits patiently for breakfast:

red-tailed hawk

Even still, Spring is hovering nearby, and I’m inclined to enjoy the last of this Season of the Long Nights.