Saturday, May 31, 2014
Friday, May 30, 2014
Not just in the natural world either, but in the world that each of us walk through. Like a magnet with its pull, the moth being sucked to the flame, some people just can't help finding trouble. What's this all about anyway. We're bombarded with it from the celebrity world. Lohan, Cyrus, Bieber just can't seem to stop 'stepping in it'. That privileged lot. No tears shed for them here. My eyebrows won't rise much if one or all end up on a gurney soon. Closer to home, it can be sadder. A serial OUI driver just got a pretty stiff sentence: 7 years. Just twenty days after finishing up her latest intensive substance-abuse treatment program, you guessed it. She was back at it.
It's a killing pattern on our roads.
How do we solve this?
These repeat offenders are the worst problem on our highways.
It's not a pretty pattern.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
When the end of May hits, it's garden time. We usually head off to Broadway Gardens for our supply of seedings. We make our way through all the greenhouses looking for strong, vibrant cucumber, squashes, pumpkin, peppers, lettuce and tomato plants. The remainder of our plot goes in with seeds. It's been a wet end of May, so it's been been a bit of a struggle getting everything in. We're close. We've tried planting earlier, but the soil, most years, just isn't warm enough, and one year an early May rain rotted all our seeds. An end of May planting using does the trick for us in this southern Maine climate. When the seedings are planted, we throw in a healthy dose of manure. In years past, it was a handful of a product called Moo Doo. As the early summer moves along, I'll spread some around the garden just for good measure. This year I'm using a couple of bags of something called Moo Plus.
Don't ask me what makes it 'Plus'.
I have no idea.
I have been told to forget buying the store-bought manure.
Rely on the ol' 'Birdman Doo'.
There ALWAYS seems to be an ample supply of that around.
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
A silent time.
A special time.
You alone with yourself.
In a place where time forgot.
Soon, you'll return.
Enjoy , while you have it.
* this fleeting zen moment brought to you by Birdman.
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
I never really liked marmalade.
I never really understood it.
To tell you the truth, I still don't.
Heck, What is it?
Mom swore by it. She bought her orange marmalade in a large jar. She put it on everything toast, English muffins, in her cottage cheese. I even caught her, one time dipping a spoon in and eating it like jello. After an offer, I sampled it once, because I went through an 'orange period'. Orange sherbet, Orange Crush soda, sugared-orange candy slices, orange jello and more, more more. You name it, if it was flavored orange, I tried it. But something was up with this sticky, gooey concoction. It seemed too sweet, too stringy, too... orangey? (is that a new word?)
Well, fast-forward to yesterday. Elenka prepared our unofficial start to summer repast on our grill: Grilled Shrimp and Pineapple Skewers on a bed of white rice with a delicious... orange marmalade sauce.
I loved it!
So, let's see.
As an adult, I've 'mastered' creme cheese and olive, black olives, pecan ice cream and now orange marmalade.
Can a meal of lamb be my next mountain to climb?
Don't place a big wager on it.
Monday, May 26, 2014
From the Fallen
They shall grow not old,
as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them,
nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.
By Laurence Binyon
We're off to St. Hyacinth's Cemetery this afternoon to put geraniums on the family plot... and Remember.
Sunday, May 25, 2014
I told you I enjoy people WATCHing, didn't I?
While I'm in a fashion mood today, did you know that The Wizard of Oz is the ultimate chick flick?
Two women trying to kill each other over SHOES!
Saturday, May 24, 2014
Don't ask me why, but when I looked at this tree Zorro came racing back. For three seasons 1957-1959, I watched, as Don Diego de la Vega attempted to save his part of the world. Yes, I had a cape, made from an old towel. Yes, I had a whip fashioned with a stick and a piece of thin rope. I remember. If I got it wet by dipping it in a bit of water, I could really make it snap and render a great sound. I 'rode' on a stunning white stead, dressed all in black, at least in my mind, and saved beautiful maidens one after the other. I jumped from picnic table to stairs nimbly, as my black-caped hero and could never be caught. Well, a least until I heard the cowbell, and it was time for supper. Hey, even a hero needs to eat. Growing up, I spent a lot of hours in fantasy worlds.
Some believe, from time to time, fantasy is still my thing.
I can't debate that.
I just leave the mark of Z!
Friday, May 23, 2014
Don't get excited. No, it's not 'talk like a pirate day'. But the Portland Pirates, our American Hockey League team, are back in town. After a brief hiatus last season up the Maine Turnpike to Lewiston, the pissing match is apparently over between the Cumberland County Civic Center (CCCC) trustees and the owners of the team. The hissy fits on both sides have been soothed-over. What a waste of a season! If you follow hockey in this city, you knew it would end this way, with both sides worse for wear. Both the team and the trustees came out losers in my eyes. Both have work to do to repair the damage and their images. The Pirates already have stepped in the mud, by increasing some of their ticket prices. Oh well, maybe this newly designed lighthouse, outside of the renovated arena, can shine a light into some dark recesses of the CCCC.
One Way is not always the best way.
Hopefully, they won't drop the puck... this time.
Thursday, May 22, 2014
REAL birds can live in pink houses. I think it's the first time I've ever seen a pink birdhouse. It's clean and ready for occupancy this weekend!
"Pink Houses" by John Mellencamp. Talk about changes. He started out using the stage name Johnny Cougar, then to more sophisticated John Cougar. In the 1980s, he settled on John Cougar Mellencamp and soon after, until the present, to his given name of John Mellencamp. Wow! Talk about C-C-C-Changes! Love his writing. Rolling Stone Magazine ranked "Pink Houses" #439 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of all time. Wow again! He was inspired by a scene on the Interstate, heading back home to Bloomington, Indiana. Know that Interstate well. I've got connections.
Clever pink house.
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Usually, each spring and fall I get a burn permit from the town office and spend an evening tending the fire. I did last night. It's basically just a pile of brush that has accumulated over the last few months. Last night's fire took care of our discarded Christmas tree, limbs from trees that had fallen over the winter and the remnants of last summer's garden, especially the corn stalks. By 8:30, it was all but out, leaving only smoking ash. This weekend, I'll remove the ashes and do a second rototilling to ready the area for a planting. I wouldn't say I was a tree-hugging environmentalist. I recycle as much as I can, and I just refer to this as an other example. All this crap is back to mother earth now. In the old days, we just raked the leaves to the driveway and lit her up. Can't do that anymore. Everything is by regulation.
Some might take issue with my burning.
All I'll say is...
Get over it!
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
"Luck? I don't know anything about luck. I've never banked on it and I'm afraid of people who do. Luck to me is something else: Hard work - and realizing what is opportunity and what isn't." Lucille Ball
I love Lucy!
Monday, May 19, 2014
Heck, for those that had the ill luck to show up late for the sailing of the Titanic was it good or bad timing? I guess I'll just leave it to Twain to sort it all out for me.
"Indeed, none but the Deity can tell what is good luck and what is bad before the returns are all in."
Roll the dice.
Sunday, May 18, 2014
Spring ain't the only thing bursting forth in the city these days. Hotel rooms are too! In the last year, well over 300+ rooms have been added to downtown, with a couple more in the planning stages. The Old Port area is getting two the Hyatt Place here on Fore Street, in as they say in the 'heart of the old port', and another biggie a Courtyard Marriott to open this month on Commercial Street. Even the old Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram building will be resurrected in April of 2015 as the Press Hotel. And get this. It's being advertised already as a boutique hotel. Someone, please help me as to what that is. Adding more available rooms to the city? I say, Bring It On!
After all, we are talking Maine here.
Guarantee you this.
Not enough rooms in the summer.
Plenty of available room in winter.
Saturday, May 17, 2014
For me, I'm going to keep 'sailing' in this condition.
I'll just be careful not to attempt angry seas.
Friday, May 16, 2014
Middle of next week and all this blue and a few wispy clouds will make their way back.
Got inside work to do.
I can hold out.
Thursday, May 15, 2014
A red tulip in a field of yellow.
I like this. I've always appreciated seeing the uniqueness in the world around me. It doesn't happen all the time, but I have been reminded that at times I move to the 'beat of a different drummer'. I've always said that it's always one of the perks of the aging process. I'll often say of do something, and those nearby will simply roll their eyes and and mumble, "He's 60!" Then walk away, shaking their heads. That's me.
I'm comfortable in that skin.
Wednesday, May 14, 2014
After a five year hiatus without a ferry running from Portland to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia... it's baaaack! Well, sort of. The Nova Star, the $165 million ferry, will be sailing daily from Portland to the Maritimes starting tomorrow. Based on photos that have been released, this vessel is more along the lines of a small cruise ship then a taxi. The new prices have raised eyebrows around here too. An interesting happening took place Monday in Boston. There was a ribbon-cutting ceremony that included fireboats and dignitaries speaking. Only one problem, the ferry will not be stopping in Boston, ever. What was that all about? I think you know what was up. $$$$$$$.
I will not be sailing north this summer.
If it heads to the Caribbean, I might give it a look.
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Thirty-nine years and counting, you say?
Lock me up!
Monday, May 12, 2014
The expansive magnolia, at work, has exploded. Although the tree is not as commonly found as in the South, it does have some 'roots' here. Walking in the inner garden, the combined fragrance of vanilla and lemons permeates when you near it. Well, at least for me, that's the way I smell it. I find this aroma most evident in early mornings and afternoons. I'm not a connoisseur of the odor of trees, but I think I know what I breathe. This is pleasant.
I wish my room was closer to it.
Sunday, May 11, 2014
Luckily, we escaped unscathed.
My youth was a daring time.
Happy Mother's Day, Elenka!
Saturday, May 10, 2014
At first I thought, what is she up to?
Are there no other subjects out there to paint?
But I'm having second thoughts.
The structures are intriguing.
Friday, May 9, 2014
I'll drive out of my way, away from the lake, to smells and sounds of the ocean. Sure, immediately after getting home I need to jump in the shower to rid myself of the sand and smell. I admit it. I'm guilty. But I love it while I'm there. The sights, the sounds, the smells. Take them all in.
Thursday, May 8, 2014
As I said before, thought I'd seen it all.
I was wrong.
Maybe I have now.
I doubt it.
Wednesday, May 7, 2014
The imagination... the cheapest babysitter ever.
I also raised daydreaming to an art form.
Well, at least in my mind, I did.
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
These two look to have been tossed to the wayside.
They've been here for a few days now.
Tsk, tsk, tsk.
Monday, May 5, 2014
This month the Boston Globe usually runs an entire section of books that just have to be in your beach bag, as you venture off to the seaside. Reading the list always gets me excited... about summer! Sure, I'll make note of a few titles that I should acquire, but that seems to be it. When it comes to book buying, I consider myself an impulse shopper. I'll have a book traveling with me this summer, but what it'll be escapes me right now. When I make my way to a bookstore, there are authors and titles that I readily head towards.
How about you?
How do you make your choices?
Got a good selection for me?
These are not my nails, either.
Sunday, May 4, 2014
I don't drive an 18-wheeler.
Even if I did both of these, I don't think I'd go for a wallet like this. I have a fake alligator number in red-brown. When it comes to wallets, I like brown. Light brown, dark brown. No matter. Besides the wallet, I have a few accessories, that are a part of my limited ensemble and travel with me: like a brown, leather backpack and a brown, leather briefcase.
I like leather too.
It can all be traced back to my love of old westerns.
I have western roots, without ever living there.
I travel light, always.
I'm a simple man.
Saturday, May 3, 2014
In his autobiography, Henry Ford said, "Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black." I guess he was a visionary with a sense of humor.
Black was the preferred color, because it dried faster than colored paint jobs. If you wanted it, the Model T was actually offered in the color red. I did not know this. The Chevy my Dad pulled into our Allen Avenue apartment, his first car, was basic black, as was all the coupes my grandfather took me for spins in. He liked the Pontiac and I loved that Indian hood ornament. The Willy's Jeep that was parked at our Stevens Avenue address was a gray number with a convertible top, and later, as the family grew, the station wagon that was parked in the garage was a Chevy in cream with red highlights. These days, you'd be hard-pressed to find a new, black vehicle in any showroom, I bet.
Oh well, I like this pale green.
There's a bit of me in it too!
*It's a '39 Plymouth.
Friday, May 2, 2014
I don't suffer from gephyrophobia.
So, I can give or take going over this overpass.
Thursday, May 1, 2014
Pine trees in the middle of Florida?
An 'old faithful replica' bursting each hour?
A roaring fireplace?
A feeling of untamed wilderness?
Towering wood craftsmanship?
It's all here to enjoy.
Take a trip back in time with lots of SQUARES.