About me

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A little late, but here it is: Pink Moon

Here is our latest installment in the moon project. Our fourth month into the project, and watching the evolution is humbling. I sit in silence, wondering what next month will bring us.

Monday, April 25, 2011

One blossom left

After all that weather, there is but one blossum left. I doubt you can see it. Moments ago, I was thinking that I'll need to wait a year to behold this sight again, but then I remembered we have the Rapture coming up next month, 21 May. Assuming I make the cut, and there's no reason to think otherwise, I'll need to arrange a visit from heaven next spring. Do you suppose Jesus can do without me that long?

Of course, I'm more planning to make the pre-rapture cut. These are the people who will work on the planning details, you know.

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Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter flowers

It was our custom growing up to take flowers to the dead at Easter. Well, come to think of it, we only visited my mother's mother at Easter. She was buried some 30 miles away.

Every Easter. Directly after church. Still dressed for church. In a car without air conditioning.

The good part was we'd stop to eat somewhere. Usually fried chicken of some sort. Once I failed to count the change from the purchase. It was a long time before we heard the end of that. I cost the family ten bucks at a time when ten dollars was worth something.

I'm not sure I could find that church now. Perhaps this summer we can recovery that little bit of family history.

Not to worry. I won't be stopping for fried chicken this time. More likely, fried chicken livers.

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The end of an era

I left AT&T about two months ago, and to do so, I had to buy out the remainder of my contract. However, I expected to have to pay some residual amount, even though I had been careful to stop using data a few months earlier. Data charges often come in a few months after the fact, or at least they did.

I did not expect to receive a refund, and I certainly did not expect to receive a refund check for a single cent.

Of course, they have to draw the line somewhere, and you can see the lawyers at work here, driving the costs ever higher to protect the company from complaints from people like me.

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Monday, April 18, 2011

A Peace Rose

I extended this evening's walk by an extra bit, and that put me passing KMart where I noticed a Peace rose.

Yellow with a hint of red, especially at the edges of the petals. The red is more visible on the slightly closed buds, and even more so in the light of day. The florescent bulbs really don't do the color justice.

These were my mother's favorite, and she always had a few in the yard. Now, when I manage to find yellow roses with a hint of red on the petals in the grocery store for her , I always lie and tell her they are Peace roses. She never argues.

There's probably some Biblical prohibition going against me there, but I'll take my chances.

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Sunday, April 17, 2011

A freeman lies here

Very likely a freedman also. Check the dates. Born well before the American Civil started. Died well after it. Given where we are, I expect he knew the taste of freedom like few of us ever will. Of course, this is total conjecture on my part. There are a thousand other histories he could have lived.

Whatever and whichever it was, I hope he lived it well. He does now rest at the head of the class, so to speak. (He's in the front row.)

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Counting time

We stopped to see the sundial in Chapel Hill, the one by the Morehead Planetarium, and yes, we checked the time, adjusting for DST, and the estimate was within about 10 minutes of the cell phone time.

I proclaimed that close enough, and was promptly corrected regarding the need for more accurate measures of time. I responded with the observation that not many, except perhaps me, record time in seasons any more.

I did not mention the engineer and old soul from The Soul Of A New Machine, though it was on the tip of my tongue. The reference to ancient literature from the 80s might have gotten me the look.

It certainly does elsewhere. Instead, I stood there and savored a moment with #1 Daughter. We don't get many like that.

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Silent Sam remained silent

Silent Sam is the local name for the Confederate War Memorial on the Chapel Hill campus. The story is that he fires his rifle every time a virgin walks by. Hence, the name.

Many southern US cities have such a memorial. Some cities have recently removed their memorials lest we be reminded of our past. This strikes me as silly. We are all no more than what we've learned from the sum total of our past, and the pasts before us. Those who seek to deny the ugly side, and we all have ugly sides, do a sad disservice to first themselves and worse, their children.

However, we do not have to revisit the American Civil War to learn this. Read Tea Party literature. Check the current news in China.

But enough of that.

As I walked by with Lily, Sam remained silent. No father of a daughter needs to hear that.

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Many seek their refuge under this bridge. Very few, though, are here in the light of day. One fellow is, and he has been there so much that he's dug holes for his feet. (He sits on the white cardboard to keep his pants cleaner.)

He works in the building adjacent to the bridge. I've occasionally seen him making the trek over. He will have a drink, perhaps Pepsi, and a pack of smokes. Metholated. I suppose he gets a morning and afternoon break.

All I can really report is that he has the introverted road warrior social rebuff down pat, and I doubt he is even aware of it. I, however, give him the space he appears to need because I know exactly how that can feel.

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Minnie needs your help

I doubt the tornado from yesterday did this, and it probably wasn't the lightning strike of last summer. More likely, some idiot thought it was funny.

Of course, it's only the one that's overturned. Perhaps it was a scuffle or something.

Or maybe Minnie just rolled over when she found out Obama was elected.

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Unfortunate and garish

I do like me some huge azaleas, and taken individually, the colors are a delight. It's the mixing that simply fails.

Nevertheless, the blooms will soon fall, and the bushes will come into their own. Perfect, they would be, screening a porch, perhaps with a swing and surely with several rockers. There, shielded from the weather, we could have coffee with the morning paper. A bit of lunch and a nap. Later, an evening nightcap and lies, ok, stories, with friends.

Of course, Sunday afternoon is reserved for hand-churned ice cream, vanilla most times but banana if I'm feeling frisky.

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A little wind, a little rain

Soon to be a lot of both, not that we need any more to carry the jasmine from spring to almost summer. The cascade of yellow is mostly a fading memory now. A revisit next spring is in order.

Meanwhile, the green will grow further. Perhaps a bird will set up housekeeping. If so, a cat will have an easy meal.

Unless the chatty preacher here gets involved. An interesting man, a gardner, unmistakably a minister, and aside from that, probably harmless.

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One big turtle

Well, more likely a terrapin. We would call it a snapping turtle. He demonstrated his bite when I poked him with a stick. Just wait! I need him to move.

He was within feet of a major street, and getting closer. I doubt my interference did more than to raise his blood pressure and motivate him to dig under the leaves.

I say "him." I will leave it to you to flip the beast over for inspection.

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The roses are ready

The roses have just started here. The arb has a small rose garden with an entrance dominated by this large yellow climbing rose that is native to a couple of provinces in China.

For as outstanding as it is, it appears to have no thorns. No, I do not know how it defends the blooms. Perhaps that is why it climbs, to be out of reach and all.

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Friday, April 15, 2011

Consort for men

Let's try this again. I'll hold on the send until WiFi is available. My unlimited data from Virgin Mobile is a bit unforgiving of actual data usage.

Meanwhile, the consort runs about a buck fifty on sale. I think I'll take all they have, except I'm sure each will be a disappointment.

No. I have no idea why it decided to post sideways. Ain't life a thrill a minute?

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Some color for Ann

Ann has been here about four years now, being some 70 years and a month upon arrival. They say she was a good mother, grandmother, sister, and friend. And yes, it's carved in stone.

Some called her Puddin, and I like to think she could make a sweet potato puddin from which we would date.

Meanwhile, my old bones could sure use a little of that descanso eternal, but more likely, a prescription and manipulation of some sort will have to do for now.

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If this were weed

If this were what it resembles at first blush, the state would be out of the economic woods with a big surplus. Frankly, if the old tobacco farms were recommissioned for weed, and the product sold with liquor, this state would be in tall cotton, and crime in Mexico would disappear.

Regardless, this is a Japanese Maple, a smaller one of the several growing here, here being the J. C. Ralston Arboretum in Raleigh.

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The flowers not for me

So the gal at work received flowers from her beau. Very dark red roses. Almost black at the edges. She would not disclose what she did to earn these flowers, though there was mention of a year or something. That is a very long time to be good.

I received flowers some twenty years ago. Perhaps it's time for me to try my hand at being good again.

Probably not.

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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Taxes are lower here

That a train goes through it is the first sign. That some organization can get by with leaving a mess like this is the second sign.

Despite the poverty and perhaps because of it, I find this part of town far more liveable than most of the others. The sterility I of so many other locations is less if not absent.

Now, if Neomonde would just sell beer at this location, my life would be complete.

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The modern pariah

I worked the first 30 summers of my life in tobacco fields. I am no stranger to nicotine. However if you want to be a pariah in this world, at least in the US and Canada, light up a smoke.

Not in most hotels. Not on most airports. Never on an airplane. People will cross the street to avoid the plume of smoke rising above your head.

Regardless, I do prefer my breathing less labored. My clothes less smelly. My food more flavorful.

Oh but to inhale another cigar from the Caribbean...Of course, no one appears to keep their stogies and lighter out in the grass.

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First roses

This year's first roses.

They grow along the fence that keeps marauders like me away from the heavy machinery. Otherwise, I might get all hopped up on espresso and take an earthmover out for a joy ride, not that a rusting chain link fence could stop the determined marauder.

So the ancient roses bloom again. I suppose, then, that one thing remains right with this old world, at least for another day our so.

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So not cool

A Harley would look so much better, and it should as it costs forty times as much. What little is left of my delicate reputation would never survive the onslaught of public ridicule. Not the pubic ridicule either.

Of course, gasoline every on the rise will likely change my outlook much sooner than later. This is so gonna hurt.

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Mamie is dead

Mamie died 22 years ago at 50 years and 4 days. She was very likely a grandchild of southern slavery.

Someone left a vase of plastic lilies for her a long time back. Perhaps it's the kindly soul who planted a low growing azalea by the stone. Neither decoration appears threatened by the grounds keepers.

I like to think Mamie approves.

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Stinky bush

This is the stinking hedge by an office park near where I live. The shade of Mr. Pylon, whose name this office park carries, should rise and smite the place for all the ugly it brings to the world, or at least smite the cheap bean counter who would not pay for decent landscaping, especially along the sidewalk I use every day.

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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Look closely toward the center

There's a turtle dove sitting on the ground just to the side of the metal plant market. They can be hard to see. They are also hard to get so close to, and I assume this one is injured in some manner. Otherwise, I would have been scared out of a year's growth when it blasted out from under the bush as I turned the corner.

For a moment, I thought about catching the bird, calling wildlife rehabilitation, and leaving it in someone's TLC, but I didn't, leaving it to somehow fend for itself through the evening.

In a flurry of grade school angst, I had a vision of a feral cat dining on fresh turtle dove this evening. Let's hope the bird does better tonight than I did back then.

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Mama's Baby's Breath

My mother would call this bush a Baby's Breath. I'd have to backtrack to read the sign to be sure, but neither of us will contradict my mama over this name. Nope.

She had a pair of these growing by the back door of the house we lived in after we left Tink's tenant house. Tink wanted rent. My uncle wanted someone to tend his land for free, if free rent is really free.

So there we lived with the Baby's Breath. My brother and I with the parents. Sometimes Bro and I got into it, as brothers will. When Mama had enough, she would send us to the Baby's Breath to fetch switches.

I doubt I'd ever encourage another Baby's Breath to live, lest out be made into switches that sting and scar the legs and more of children born to parents who can do no better.

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Wild and accidental

Wild pansies. Imagine that. And stop laughing.

I doubt anyone intentionally started this bed of pansies. More likely, the pansies of previous years went to seed as plants are want to do, and at some point the gardner noticed the pleasant happenstance, leaving the area undisturbed so the wildlings could thrive.

These are my favorite. Typically, pansies don't do so much for me, probably because landscapers overuse them so for temporary splashes of early color.

What I especially like here is how by leaving the space alone, the plants can revert to the residual beauty of a previous and now forgotten generation, which I find superior to any other pansy display I've seen.

We need more of leave it alone kind of beauty.

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The Florida Silverbell and Brothel

I never knew Florida had it's own kind of silverbell, much less there was even such a plant, but behind nevermind, and avert your eyes. There is a pair of turtle doves frolicking just above. A lot.

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A fine bear grass

Buck would call this a fine piece of bear grass. It's very similar to that which grows wild back home. I used a few pieces to mark a spot near the drive where once I lived. It was a spot with a sharp drop by a cement drain with a taste for car tire sidewalls.

I never did try to make tequila from it. Cousin Lon might have though. He'd ferment and distill about anything.

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Summer storage of winter coats

Someone left this blue coat under a bush several weeks ago. It looks like a reasonable place to stash a coat for the season.

However, the coat is in a different position every time I walk by, and I doubt it's the owner picking it up for a cool evening. Might be a squirrel. Maybe a possum. Most likely a snarling, venomous serpent with fangs dripping life-ending poison just waiting for my curiosity to get the better of me.

I am surely doomed.

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Such the good citizen

I took the stairs instead of the elevator. I guess that makes me green. It also makes be a little sweatier and, possibly, a little lighter. It also kept my plane-woozie head out of an elevator full of people.

On the way, I found a plastic shopping bag from KMart. I suppose a neighbor lost it. Somewhere, a fish in the ocean should be thanking me, not knowing that I'd settle for tuna steak.

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And so ends a season

Though I'm not sure which season it might be. The coming rain will take care of what's left of this yellow jasmine, which will not be much at this rate. Yet, I was glad to dance while the music lasted.

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A sack full of lucky money

People leave things in the laundry room for others to take. Usually, it's clothes of some kind. Today, I found two small bowls, a plastic spear, a 100K web cam, and this small bag of accumulated pocket change.

I don't need a bowl. The spear just seemed an odd thing to give a child these days. Good luck finding the driver for the unused ten year old web cam.

The bag of money is another matter. It will do well in my lucky money jar until June when I'll cash it in for an Amazon gift card, though I doubt my purchase will be toilet paper this time. I'm thinking it'll be toothpaste or something.

Oh yeah, there's also a red baseball cap on the table. Let me know if you want it.

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Monday, April 11, 2011

A complete surprise

So I was standing by an old church waiting for pictures of azaleas to upload to Foursquare, and I needed to step aside so the parishioners could pass on the sidewalk. Turning to do so, I nearly tripped all over this iris. It seems a little early for this bloom, but I noticed there had been two other blooms already.

This place wasted no time moving into spring while I was away.

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This little splash of pink

As a specimen, this little fellow would be hard to beat. However, it's seriously scotched under a ravaging little evergreen, and it will never have the chance to come into it's own.

Whoever planted the azalea this way was probably thinking about the contrast of colors between the pink and green, not about the relative growth patterns of the pink and green.

Sadness. Another sample of a simple beauty lost in the maelstrom of poor planning and little foresight.

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I left two

Upon my arrival in New Orleans, I went shopping. We needed beer. Abita Amber, to be exact. They make this beer just for me, too much for one little me, and I share it with others in the area.

There were twelve bottles in the box. I labored mightily, but I failed in my mission, leaving two in the fridge. I hope the maid peeps handle them with care.

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In my absence

Well, look at this. I'm gone for a week, and the azalea blooms and fade without me here to mock and ridicule the virginal whiteness of it all.

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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Yet another compilation in the making

Yep, a whole nuther blog.

At the suggestion of a dear friend, I'm going to document the back stories of some of my stuff. You were warned.

My bathroom at the Clover Grill

I'm no stranger to non-gendered bathrooms, and neither is the Clover Grill. The world would be a better place with more of such. However, I'm not convinced many women would go there, clean though it was.

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Eating in New Orleans

I'm sure they have it somewhere, probably secreted away for the richly deserving, but I do not know where the bad food is in New Orleans. Just stop and eat. It's all good.

This of the Clover Grill, way towards the end of Bourbon. Burgers cooked under a hubcap. You know you want some. With fries.

Just be nice. They know me here.

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The best laid plans

On the approach to New Orleans with about 20 minutes left, my skull proceeded to explode, much like it did a decade ago when I had a whopper sinus infection. Only this time I don't have a sinus infection.

My seatmate will have a new travel story to tell his buds.

The nose bleed started as my traveling companion arrived. She is lucky that way, don't you think?

So instead of waltzing down Bourbon Street with an official Big Ass beer and getting some serious happy feet, I'm piled up watching TV while I wait to stop being a walking biohazard. Just lovely.

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God only knows where I am

Think higher that a Georgia pine. That is how my daddy would phrase it. I'm headed to New Orleans by way of Orlando. First time in two years. My role is to get smarter. And to sorta stay out of jail. Given my current vices, mathematics and rum, I might succeed.

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Monday, April 4, 2011

Azaleas are next

It appears the azaleas are next up to bloom. Further east towards Wilmington, they are probably in full regalia. And more colors than this show off little white bush.

I'll be needing a hoof about towards State where larger examples line the street and sidewalk.

Of course, I shouldn't speak too ill of this one. It has the courage to sneak out a little earlier than the rest. We will see how it fairs tonight with the storm that's coming.

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