Image Slider

shine on

| On
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
The moon is so full and right out my window - right out my window! (I just pinched it with my fingers.) Is the man in the moon singing the same song as me? It sort of looks like a flashlight - does that mean there's a sky detective investigating? ("Not to worry, miss. Sky detective is on the case.") Gigantic Nancy Drew and/or Hardy Boys? Can I claim tax exemption for my new religion?

Maybe this is too much wondering about a regularly occurring celestial event, but it's been raining a lot and now it's not and wow is it beautiful. I'm going to pinch it again.

gouge eye v. the rancher’s daughter

| On
Sunday, April 25, 2010
starvation creek
This is Starvation Creek, which is at the bottom of Starvation Falls. I think it’s so pretty! I’m finding that it’s really hard, at least with my camera and level of skill, to get a good picture once I'm in the forest. This isn’t even that deep in - it’s a highway rest area, for crying out loud! (and state park, and hooked into a series of trails but I digress...) It’s dark in there, is what I’m saying. Not dark as night dark, but the light is very green since it’s filtered through a lot of trees. I like how this one turned out.

How did Starvation Creek get its name? Let’s consult the experts. Here’s the Oregon Geographic Names book entry on the falls (since the creek isn’t listed in the edition I have): STARVATION FALLS, Hood River County. These falls were so named because it was at this place west of Dog (Hood) River that a party of pioneer travelers suffered because of some defection in their commissary.

I love the Oregon Geographic Names book, which is not only fantastic for finding out how things got their names, but also features the opinionated dry wit of the “compiler.” The edition I’m looking at right now is the 3rd, and used to be my dad’s so there are notes and arrows all over it. For example, here’s one with an arrow for the town of Drewsey:

DREWSEY, Harney County. Abner Robbins started a store at this place in the summer of 1883 and called it Gouge Eye, apparently to commemorate the frontier method for settling disputes. About a year later Robbins applied for a post office, but postal authorities were reluctant to accept the original name, so he substituted a new name, Drusy. Eventually the office was named Drewsey. Oregon, End of the Trail (Oregon Guide), page 468, says the new name was in compliment to Drewsey Miller, the daughter of a rancher. In 1926 the compiler was told the name submitted to Washington was Drusy, which authorities changed to Drewsey. Drusy seems more like a girl’s name. The Oregon Guide calles the name Gouge Eye unpleasant, but the compiler thinks it a stout, picturesque bit of nomenclature, much better than some of the gutless expressions of today.

GREEN! many textures, many shades of green on one tree.

tip toe to the water
Doesn’t it look like this tree is out for a stroll? I’m pretty sure it was still moving when I took this picture, only it’s moving in tree time (like bullet time in the Matrix, only MUCH SLOWER).

These photos are all from Martina’s celebratory birthday day trip out the gorge.
more to come - I haven’t even gotten to the peacocks yet. (or stonehenge!)

like this a lot

| On
Friday, April 23, 2010

Yours Truly Presents: The Morning Benders "Excuses" from Yours Truly on Vimeo.

I love this Morning Benders video - it's been weeks since I first saw it and I still wake up with this song in my head all the time. Apparently my sleeping mind is a fan of the wall of sound style! I'm also fond of the video for the idea of gathering ones musical contemporaries, friends, friends of friends and that one guy you met that time and making something beautiful. Here's what this video, with its assemblage of beardy and non beardy guys, long haired and short haired girls, smiling and serious strummers and drummers and singers, makes me want to do: assume that every single person I cross in my everyday wanderings is on their way to meet a bunch of other people and make something AMAZING. (they could also be on their way home or to their studio or town square to make something amazing by themselves!)

foot plate
(...visual segue...)

I AM SO TIRED! So tired. This week kicked my ass. The good news is that my blackberry scratches are just past the itchy stage and therefore about to disappear and I have the next 2-3 days off from work. I have a lot (A LOT) of things to catch up on. I'm going to drink water and sleep in and be industrious!

p.s. here are two things that made me happy just yesterday:

lightning cat vs. the iceland volcano

"Occasional lumpiness has its charm, but do we really want to be less sassy than our Victorian ancestors?" (fishnet socks!!!)

blackberry warrior

| On
Sunday, April 18, 2010
THE SUN IS SHINING. I just came in from a vigorous and hard fought blackberry battle. (I try to pull them up by the roots, they try to peel the flesh from my bones. We're pretty evenly matched, although I think they have a slight runner root advantage on my 'I will beat you with a shovel!' technique.)

As it turns out, there's a lot more garden once it's not covered in blackberry. This is good news because I just bought one of these yesterday:
purple and gold
It's not going directly where the blackberries are, but like everything else lately in order to do one little thing I have to do 15 other things first.

three things about monday

| On
Monday, April 12, 2010
1. I ate a miniature cupcake in honor of Beverly Cleary's 94th birthday. The library I worked at is in Ramona Quimby's neighborhood, so naturally there was a party. There were mini cupcakes, stickers, many rounds of Happy Birthday, and some sugared up but smiling parents and children.

2. April is national poetry month - I signed up to get a poem a day for the month and today's was lovely: a dream language adventure that spans continents and seasons in one short prose poem. Read it here: Postcard to I. Kaminsky from a Dream at the Edge of the Sea by Cecilia Woloch. "My own bags were full of salt, which made them shifty, hard to lift."

3. I want to see this Edwardian lady adventurer movie right now - she definitely looks capable of thwapping someone (be they man, mummy, or flying dinosaur) with a parasol. After I watched this trailer the first time I thought "hey! this reminds me of The Professor's Daughter," but then saw that Adèle Blanc-Sec has her own comics of extraordinary adventures. Wikipedia describes her as "A cynical heroine, she is initially a novelist of popular fiction, who turns to investigative journalism as her research and subsequent adventures reveal further details of the mystical world of crime." Subsequent adventures! Mystical world of crime! Must learn more. (do you think they'll reissue because of the movie?) This looks to fill an Indiana Jones shaped hole in summer movie viewing.

pyxie cups

| On
Sunday, April 11, 2010
little green forest

In the learn something new every day category, I discovered that these little stylish plant dudes are called pyxie cups or goblet lichen. Now I know! Here's some more info:"Pyxie cup or Goblet Lichen is common on rocks, soil, and rotten wood. This lobed, scaly thallus has stalked, upright cups (to 1 in.)... Many varieties in N.A."

I found this out while flipping through the freaking adorable Golden Nature Guide (non-flowering plants), which I found at the Friends of the Library sale today for a QUARTER. (it was half off day.) It's such a great little book - I love the illustrations. It is now my goal to find all the Golden Nature Guides - I love having something to look for at book sales.

Here's a picture of the cover of my 1967 edition. SO CUTE! How did it last to the second day of the sale?

(do you suppose there are ever any lichen misunderstandings?)

crazy person: I'm a lichen
innocent bystander: a lycan? like a werewolf or something? (mimes scary werewolf face and claws)
crazy person: no, a LICHEN. (does best lichen impression which isn't very good)
innocent bystander: I think that might even be worse.
crazy person: it is, it is. There are no books or movies about sexy lichens, that's for sure. It's hard out here for a fungus and symbiotic algae. That's what a lichen is you know.
innocent bystander: indeed. (flees)

here's some further LICHEN INFORMATION, because The More You Know and all that jazz... Under the chapter heading of LICHENS I learned that "Lichens are pioneer plants which usually grow where other plants do not furnish competition. ... These slow-growing, long-lived, sun-loving plants flourish in cold, dry climates, in forests and on mountains--wherever the air is clean and unpolluted. Reindeer and caribou eat some lichens; extracts from a few species are used as antibiotics. The best known use of lichens has been in making dyes for Harris tweeds and for litmus paper."

HARRIS TWEED! LITMUS PAPER! This is the kind of bizarre fact I'm delighted to know. Thank you Golden Guide.

project status report

| On
Thursday, April 08, 2010
hair hoppers on parade
Hello internet! I’ve fallen so far behind on things I wanted to post and do - I kind of made a deal with myself that I would stop talking about all the stuff I haven’t done and just DO IT, but it was stressing me out. Apparently keeping a complaint vent open is IMPORTANT or there will be a complaint explosion that will take out a city block AND a country mile. So the way I see it, it’s my duty as a sometime citizen of crazy-town to vent the reactor core! or you know, consequences.

So here’s my keeping myself honest project post of THE TRUTH, mostly unvarnished. (I never hear about the varnished truth or the lacquered truth, but have heard the liquored truth. If I had a Truth Detective on retainer, I’d get him on the case.)

project status report:

bookcase project: The new bookcases are in place and mostly arranged. It’s the mostly part that bothers me here - why not spend the couple of hours it would take to finish this project? good question. I’m very pleased with how the project went so far, so why not be REALLY PLEASED and finish it? It’s like I exist to irritate myself.

quilt I started at the end of last year: I have been working on this! Again, a couple of hours would probably get the top finished, and for me that’s the hard part. Once the top is as big as I want it, the rest of it is more or less not a problem because the decision making is done.

blog book reviews/movie reviews: I used to talk about books, movies and tv a lot more here and I miss it. I got burned out when I tried to talk about EVERY SINGLE book I’d read in a year so I quit, but now I’m having a hard time easing into a middle ground. Same thing with movies (although I never talked about every movie) - but I think it would be fun to make a record of it all, even if it’s just a weekly list. Not everything has to have it’s own review or mini-review - I know this! I just need to figure out how to relay this information to that part of my brain. (see above, re: existing to irritate myself.)

NaNo 2009: Yes! I completed another year. And by completed I mean I reached 50k words on the last day, then dropped it like something heavy. As I keep doing this (4 times now), I do think I’ve learned a lot - this one was closer in tone to what I was attempting than any of my previous efforts, which is progress. This project/process brought home that it's good for me to dive right in and get to work, but I also need some time to think about what it is I want to do. Some decisions can be made on the fly, but not all. The deadline is key for me getting any work done at all - this urgency is something I need to be able to generate within myself but haven't quite figured out how. (so annoying!) I also need to develop my outlining skills or at least figure out a way to pair my mostly intuitive story instincts with a way to keep things moving forward. Short targets, or something. Which brings me to…

Script Frenzy 2010: I had ZERO plans to do this. I was encouraging Maggie to do it and she said “you should do it too!” and since I was just saying that I needed external deadlines because otherwise I transform, transformer style, into Endless Excuseatron, I said OKAY! Woo! I’m glad I did, even though I have no idea what I’m doing and it’s hard and makes me a little nauseated when I realize how much I don’t know what I’m doing and, and, and. I could go on and on. I’m really uncomfortable and embarrassed (who am I to try this?) and in a general state of low-level panic. But weirdly enough, this is all good - I don’t push out of my comfort zone often enough, and this is… if my comfort zone was the sun, this project is one of those cold little rocks out by pluto. BUT (I’m saying “but” a lot) I can already tell that this is going to help me with my outlining problem. So, I give a queasy right on to this project. I think the NaNo people maybe need to make a Poetry writing month for their next endeavor. Yeah!

ANYWAY. Confession is good for the soul or something like that. Just writing this out I can see I have a problem finishing things. Most likely for the typical boring reason that if it’s done everyone can see that it sucks, whereas if it’s in process I can just say “shut up! it’s not done.” Or, as is my usual practice, I never tell anyone what I’m doing so I don’t even have to say “shut up! it’s not done.” ha ha ha! Oh, man. Onward!

hello, springtime

| On
Sunday, April 04, 2010
Here's the thing I've decided: I've got to be better about managing my time. I can do it! I just need to ... do it. I see a lot of concentrated Freedom in my future.

Anyway - here are some springtime pictures. I'm posting them NOW because it's still springtime, although maybe not quite the exact same phase of spring as it was when I took these photos. Close enough, I say.

cherry pink
Wheeee! I took these out of the passenger seat of a car in one of the less attractive parts of town. You'd never know it was all gas stations and parking lots looking here, though.

cherry pink
... see what I mean? (I still love those trees! I love that they're standing for beauty and biology against an ugly bank of america sign.)

white bleeding heart
!!! This plant still makes me crazy in the good way. Pink bleeding hearts (smaller, more feathery foliage) are native to this area and I love those too, but these are just too much. (not really too much - they are just exactly enough.)

pink petals
I can't remember what kind of tree these petals came off of, but I like the way they look against the sidewalk. Nature's confetti!

park tree
This tree is at the park I go to the most often. It really doesn't look like much 11 months of the year, but that 12th month is spectacular. It's light pink, but looks more white here against the cloudy sky.

park tree
slightly pinker, here.