Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Cloudy Mountain

Cloudy Mountain, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Yeah, I'm cheating and playing it forward. Here's what the weather looked like a few hours ago, when we were heading south down I 25.

Fresh snow

fresh snow, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
Wow, yeah I know, this is way early in the day, and I even put stuff up yesterday. It snowed some last night, and it seems that we got all of half an inch of accumulation. So that meant I knew what my daily photo would be for today. I included my foot to show scale. And yes, the sun is to the right, the speed light to the left, and on camera flash for fill.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Tardis, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

As I'm sure all two of the regular readers have noticed, I haven't kept up with my idea of shooting interesting things daily to post on this blog. I've even spent the past few days with fast internet and the camera have all been on standby, but the shootingI have done was totally mundane, and I haven't even done much of that. I've been taking it easy with lots of tea and a bit of coffee, added to a diet rich in cookies and turkey. Throw in some extra family, computer stuffs and a house full of good reading, and you see where I'm at. I should be doing better with a return to 'burque and a leave from reliable internet.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Computer Time

Computer Time, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
Christmas tree highlighted from one SB-900. Otherwise, ambient lighting.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Mini me works!

So, now that christmas is here, I can talk about the Dell Mini 10v that I now have running on Mac OS X 10.6. I used Network Boot Maker and EP45UD3P to make a bootable USB stick with an image of Snow Leopard. Gizmodo and Lifehacker both have clear guides for the process, and they probably are better explainers than I. Anyhows, it seems to be a decent stable build, and there haven't been any problems, yet.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Tree Vortex

Tree vortex, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
Let's just hope Santa doesn't get too dizzy…

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Snow, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
From the storm of the month in Albuquerque.

Monday, December 21, 2009


Vista, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
December 21

So, yeah, you might be noticing the lack of anything for Sunday. Well, I admit, I didn't do any shooting Sunday. I was watching football and being lazy. Today, to make up for that, I took the Gila Monster and a couple friends up Cedro to the Vista. The melting snow up there has left mud on the tires. The air was clear, cold and clean, and the usual mountain burgers turned out alright, even though we kept the fire rather tiny at the bottom of our pit. More stuff from this weekend on my Flickr page.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

College Students Need Sleep Too!

College Students Need Sleep Too!, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
December 19 (Cheating, it's on the 19th, but in the AM of the same shoot as the 18th's pic)

Friday, December 18, 2009

And That's How I…

And That's How I…, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
December 18

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Oh Boy

Fun Times in The Valley

(‘Twas not this trip)

So we’re done in McAllen for now, which means I’ll be getting to internet soon. I know that I’m remiss, I’ve shot days of daily photos, but they aren’t online yet. We just stopped at a fruit stand, where I completely missed a great photo opportunity with the crates of fresh fruit, the proud owner trying to eek a meager living and the various other accoutrements of the business. Now, five dollars richer, he watches us leave with twenty pounds of grapefruit stuffed into a mesh sack. Ah, grapefruit. There’s something great about something so sweet, tart tender and flavorful, especially when it comes prepackaged in it’s own biodegradable wrapper.
Falfurrias Border Patrol Checkpoint, lots of questions and searching, then eventually, “Have a good day, sir.” They don’t like having pictures taken. Oh well.


Empty, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
Today's pic came into being while I was sitting in the back seat, riding in the car as we drove up the road through George West in southern Texas. It was a very grey day, especially coming after a week of heavy rains and days of stress on us, trying to deal with events unfolding as they come down the pipe. This reflects the way I feel lately, with things going on beyond my control.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Hard Light

Hard Light, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
Well, I'm trying to keep up with Self Portrait (insert day of week here). Also, this is Wednesday's Daily Picture.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Lamp, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
The lamp in the Old Soldier's home.

Visitor count update

 Who's next?

Monday, December 14, 2009


Hologram?, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.
Yeah, that's where I'm at. Down in the southern Rio Grande valley. To be more specific, we are here:

View Larger Map

Anyway, I'm trying to do more frequent photos, maybe even getting to a daily frequency, and hopefully I can get things up earlier in the day too.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Portrait of a Cat

Hey, kitty kitty, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

While I was in Albuquerque, I took a few minutes to take some pictures. I got Dulce in a quiet mode, snoozing on the back of a chair. I bounced the light from the SB 900 off the wall behind and to my right.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Relocation Update

Sometime tomorrow, a package should arrive. As soon as it does, I depart Tempe for Cooler climes. I've been going over gear, equipment, vehicular preparedness, routes, timing and weather, while creating an USB OS X boot stick and trying to transfer a few datas from my hard drives up to the internet and retrieve other bits from the internet down to my machine. Lots going on, and more to come, too.

I think it's time for a travel checklist:
1.    Weather                        So far, things look rather good for travel. Low chances of precipitation, with generally clear skies. There could be wind, however, so I’m watching out for that.

2.    Vehicle                          I’ve been getting the Gila Monster ready for a long trip. Tires, gas, oil have been checked, and the problem with the battery not holding a charge was easily fixed by replacing the six year old battery with a brand new one (it wasn’t covered anymore by the two year warranty, but the auto parts guy took $15 for trading in the old one at the time of sale).

3.    Equipment                     The equipment is the stuff that lives in or near the Gila Monster, so this includes the five gallon water can, tools, blankets, a tent, camping stove, fuel, matches, some canned food and such. This also includes the Gila Monster’s extensive ten-year-old highway map library for the western United States and a few National Forests too.

4.    Gear                             Yeah, this includes the photo stuff, tripods, and cameras, off camera flash, film holders, film (yes, 35mm and 4”x5”), batteries, chargers, bags and sleeves. This also covers clothes, laptop, hard drives, accessories and the accompanying goodies.

5.    Other Goodies                The catchall for things that missed the other super broad categories. These include coffee! (I think the exclamation point should become the final character in any good spelling of the word), the package, a couple good books, Green Chile, window cleaning rag and a GPS for backup.

So now I’m trying to think of a way to attach the point and shoot to the dash and have it record a low-res video of my drive. I’ve got room for days of crappy movie footage, but there would be a plan going in to shooting, and I’ve got space for editing. Time will tell on that project.

 I will be tweeting progress, so stay tuned for departure and trip info!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Dell, you failed.

Yeah, I can't say much now, but they have annoyed me.

Hint to Dell: If you read this, I want you to communicate about important things, which you didn't even attempt, even though you had all of my contact information. What you did sucks, and by not giving me the slightest hint of any problems, I sat here blissfully ignorant of your ineptitude, which apparently started last week and will not be resolved until next week. So, yeah, please let me know next time you want to screw me over. Maybe by talking to the customer you could fix your errors. Or better yet, don't drop the ball in the first place.

Monday, November 30, 2009


Refreshing, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

That's Little Joe loosing his sunglasses.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Fun on Trapeze

Fun on Trapeze, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Stacey hangs out while sailing during the Viper Demo Day at lake Pleasant, Arizona.

Oh Yeah

Oh Yeah, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Viper Sailing, Lake Pleasant, Arizona

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Scorpion, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Although biologists don't know why, scorpions like this one fluoresce i UV light. Krya was holding a UV flashlight while I shot away. At first the scorpion was reluctant to raise his tail, so we had to get him a bit more awake.

Fangs a lot

Fangs a lot, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Rattlesnakes, scorpions and me!

Last week I shot the snakes and critters at the Red Mountain campus of MCC. Krya Perry was my guide, and I got to learn about the snakes.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving Aproaches

It's almost Turkey Day, and I've only got the faintest outlines of a plan.

So far my plan has one solid chunk and a possible second event. The main event will be family dinner with my parents at Monti's Casa Vieja. It's in the oldest standing building in the Valley, so the name fits.

The other idea would probably be either solo or with friends. I'm talking about the MADCAP Theaters' Thanksgiving Film Feast. Twelve hours of back-to back-to-back cult classic horror flicks, energy drinks, games and food. That would keep me busy well into Black Friday.

I'll be shoving some more photo's toward the internets soon, so keep a lookout posted!

Friday, November 20, 2009

This Mast's Tall

This Mast's Tall, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Again, an old photo dug up from the recesses of my drive. The boat is a big Hunter, well suited to lake life, and yes, that is me way up there. That is Marty's mast, which I got to climb to retreive a halyard. The view up there is great.

From the Vault

At the VLA

At the VLA, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

So I don't have new photos up yet, check this out from some time a time or two ago. Old photos from the vault that is the hidden corners of my hard drive.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Return to Phoenix and Bad Drivers

We arrived back in Phoenix earlier this evening, after getting a set of tires for Jake's van at a local tire shop.  The rest of the trip was uneventful. How is it that I can go hundreds of miles, be okay most of the time, and yet, without fail, things go south upon my return to home. I bike back home from Jake's place, and I meet a bad driver just blocks from the apartment. Meh…. I'm ok, and the bike is too.

What happened as recorded by Tempe Police follows:

I was biking back home from my trip so I had a stuffed backpack full of gear and my camera in it's bag weighing me down so I wasn't exactly fast. After crossing Mill Ave. on 6th St., I continued and turned right (northbound) on Maple Ave. I saw a car start to pull out of a parking space right in front of me, but he stopped just as I passed and I yelled, "Watch out!" When it was clear, he pulled out and drove next to me on my left. He swerved violently into me, hitting me and my bike, throwing me to the ground. He drove off and turned right onto 5th St., but I couldn't see the plate number when I got up.


A few other people tried to stop him because they saw what happened, and they also made statements, but none looked for or saw the plate number.

Anyway, if you are that incredibly idiotic driver who got the license in a Cracker Jack box, please stop driving. If you can't control yourself while interacting with the rest of the people on the road, you will end up taking someone out. The police informed me that what you did is a felony with guaranteed time in prison. It's serious. So if you read this and you want to apologize, you can find how to contact me through the blurb about me in the corner. Also, I need new pants. These jeans are full of holes down the right side where I slid on the asphalt. Any moist healing environment stuff would be good too.

I'm not really mad at this guy, but I am rather annoyed and somewhat disillusioned about biking in "America's Most Bicycle Friendly City." I hope that at some  point, bicycle questions will show up on driver's license tests. I don't know if they do currently, but too many drivers act like they don't have to pay attention to bikes while on the road.

The followup

Last night, driving through LA on I 10, we had a blowout on Jake's van. It was the right rear tire, but it went fast and we were in the furthest left lane on the freeway, with no breaks to get to the right. So we were stuck in the median until a highway patrol officer saw us and blocked all traffic for us by driving in a zig-zag pattern across all lanes of the freeway. That also happened at the same time that AAA's tow truck got to us. The spare is just a doughnut, so as soon as places here open, we'll be getting new tires. The tow truck guy was really helpful, and instead of just going about his business when done, he stuck around to try to get a tire for us at 8:30 on a Sunday night. After an hour of tire searching, we decided to call it a night and find a motel. So we are in Fontana, California, at a reasonable hotel by I 15, waiting for places to open. We'll be back in Phoenix soon, especially since we've already taken care of the worst few hours of our driving.

Here's where it happened, more to come…

More to come later…

View Larger Map

Friday, November 13, 2009

Got into Santa Barbara

No, this isn't where we're at right now, but it will be one of tomorrow's visits (I hope). Of course, it is La Super-Rica, the best little place just about anywhere. Great authentic Mexican food and reasonable prices.

View Larger Map

Anyway, the drive to get here from Tempe was ultimately uneventful, we left around 11, hit LA from 4:30 to 6:00, and got to the hotel around 7:15. Tomorrow is our regatta, with a pretty light forecast.

Forecast here.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Last month's sailing in San Diego

Last month's photos are sitting comfortably on my hard drive, and I think it's been time to put them online. Our hosts were UC San Diego and the Mission Bay Yacht Club, and both were very hospitable, as usual. The weather was generally unseasonable, overcast, cool and rather foggy. Fortunately, the fog wore off to a thin veil and at time was completely gone. Since we are coming from Arizona, it was a bit different for us. There was very light wind, which we found was to our advantage.

Now for the photos:

Bell from the Mission Bay

This bell came from the U.S.S. Mission Bay, and now it hangs in front of the Mission Bay Yacht Club, in Mission Bay.

And we sail forth

So we set sail, in the very light shifty wind-like fog. Oh yeah, most of the distance shots came through Andy's 80-400 mm VR lens. So objects are not anywhere near as close as they appear. Anyway, clicking on the larger photos up there will take you to the Flickr page for each one. From there, go explore. Also, look in the top of the sidebar for the photo slideshow, which always gets the freshest pics.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Happenings and Goings On

Not too many happenings actually, but there has been constant wind at the lake for the past couple weeks. Unfortunately, it's been an even 0.2-1.6 mph wind that comes consistently from any direction it pleases. None the less, I've gotten practice launching, sailing and drifting around TTL with a minimum of wind. Coming up this weekend is the regatta in Santa Barbara, where we will probably not face this kind of light air that we've been used to drifting through. So, between studying for that and trying to Blogger's layout tool to work not much has happened today.

Well, I've been trying to upload this to the interwebs, but that's just not happening. Meh.


Just a quickie, to explain the new little thing in the sidebar. I won a free annual membership through ASU to use the zipcar service, and referring people gets credit for both myself and whoever joins in. Now, one must have zipcar in your area in order to use the service. It's like a second car, but cheaper, and you don't have to pay for gas or insurance. Plus, they've got cool cars in the fleet.

Join Zipcar and get $25 in free driving!

So, yeah, good stuff.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A thought…

I just did a google search for Omnipotent Panda Cult, and I found that no one has much of relevance there. So now, by saying the phrase Omnipotent Panda Cult again, i'll help my google ranking for that search.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Update, and Computer Repair!

Yeah, I've been busy. My computer broke, but things worked out well in the end.

Ok, now I can brag about how nice Apple is to me. I had a hinge crack and get really loose on me a few days ago, so I too my Air to the technical repair shop on campus. I turns out that the hinges on this computer are an integrated part of the display and that the display unit would have to be replaced. Estimated Cost: $800. My warranty expired six months ago so no coverage, or so I thought. The repair guy told me to call Apple and ask to talk to a customer service rep. So I explained that the problem was not caused be abuse but just heavy, normal use, and that I needed the computer for school because I'm a starving college student. The lady decided to give me a warranty exception and have Apple cover the repair as if I were still under warranty. So, I had my computer repaired at no cost to me. How awesome is that?

Thursday, October 01, 2009


I don't know why, but this group in my ads just made me smile, so I snapped it just to put into a post.

One more for the critiques

Yes, uno mas! Two in one day! I'm going post crazy! I'm using exclamation points like nobody's business! Sweet!

Ok, so normal, indoor voices now. I've been shooting just as much if not more than usual, but it's been pretty heavily film, and I have no means of digitizing the awesomeness that can come from full manual 35 mm printing. And, since I don't even have enough chemistry to develop my films from the 4x5, I have absolutely no idea how that's working out. I have done some digital stuff, even with the speedlight now and then, and some of that will get here in time. In time for what, I'm not sure yet.

Writing: I've been doing lots of it, but again, it's in an analog format. No software is anywhere near powerful enough to break my cacography into text. I am pouring all kinds of thinking and thought into my Molskine, but now I have to break it out into the 0 and 1 world. Oh boy.

IDM 194 photomontage

This is what I get to do for class. Isn't CS4 awesome?

Monday, September 21, 2009


Cello, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I got a speedlight!

I got a speedlight!, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

And the tree is lit during an early morning sunrise at ASU, near the Art Museum and Galvin Playhouse. I used one SB-900 and built in flash on my D-90. Man, this strobe stuff is fun!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Time to scare parents

Self Portrait, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Time to update teh blog, scare parents,mention devious schemes, debate debauchery and write about writing.

So general overview: Life goes on, I've been doing homework, coffee drinks and food, with some class, lab and sleep thrown in for a healthy mixed salad. Photography's been a blast, and I'm also working through English, math, art history and digital media.

The biggest stress is actually coming from ASU's financial department. Due to our familial work(less) situation and extra burdens from extended family (Hint: the Old Soldier), I'm due to receive a fair amount of aid (I hope anyway). But, so far ASU has decided to not decide how much I am to receive.

I've bee going for bike rides around town with a camera and tripod. It's a cool way to explore more of what this town has to offer. I've gotten to meet new people and see some pretty cool stuff.

In my neighborhood there's a coffee place that's got awesome coffee. The Cartel Coffee Lab buys organic and roasts it on site. Saying that they take coffee seriously would be understatement.

Warning: Rebellion Section!

Friday's events lead to Living Canvas Tattoos on Mill Ave in Tempe. It was a clean quiet place. They'd just moved into a new, larger location a couple buildings down the street from the previous one. The procedure was pretty quick, it took longer to scrub the area to be pierced and to unwrap all of the surgical equipment, the needle and the barbell. The piercing was pretty straightforward, and apparently there aren't so many nerve endings in the eyebrow. Everything went well and I'm in the clear as long as I practice good hygiene and keep it clean.

I am really happy with the piercing and I've had no issues with it so far.

Saturday was our first sailing practice. Attendance was great and even though wind was light, we had a good time with all of our fleet in the water, both FJs, the Coronado 15, the Hobie and teh Martin.

Sunday we raced in the AYC series. My biggest adventure was a capsize, but I kept all but my ankles dry by hopping onto the daggerboard as the boat rolled under and hopping back once it started coming up.

I think it's gonna be a good week.

White River Canyon

White River Canyon, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

This is where "Oh my beautiful, that's God," happened.

Monday, August 17, 2009

HDR from the plane

HDR from the plane, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Last one from the Eclipse trip, I guess now I have to go back to shooting new stuff. Actually, I have fresh shots waiting in the wings.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Wooden dippers

Wooden dippers, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Hey, look!

Hey, look!, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Monday, August 10, 2009


Lumir, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

And one more, since it may be a while until internet comes my way again.

There we go again, Dupes.

There we go again, Dupes., originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Family pictures time! Here's Dupes when he gets to the cheese puffs.


Moon, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Thursday, August 06, 2009


Earthshine, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

What you've been waiting for.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Wide Sunset at Sea

Wide Sunset at Sea, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Oh, yeah, some clouds.

Classica Bow

Classica Bow, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

It's the pointy end.

Sunset over Wake

Sunset over Wake, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Gotta put this one up!

Kagoshima's Neighbor

Kagoshima's Neighbor, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

This is from our first landfall in Japan. We docked at the port island in Kagoshima, and we could see quite a bit of teh city and this mountain, whose presence is always there.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Tug in motion

Tug in motion, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

This Chinese tugboat in Tianjin port. Four tugs escorted the Costa Classica as we left the harbor. This is the night we left port, with a light, misty rain accompanying us out to sea.

Glorious Embarkation

Glorious Embarkation, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Here we are embarking aboard the Costa Classica for an eclipse cruise. There was much joy after an hours long wait to clear customs and immigration to leave China. Of course, that's been documented elsewhere, so I'll just say that it was a bother and a half.

Update: Eclipse Cruise

So I just spent the last couple weeks out of town. I was on an eclipse cruise, aboard the Costa Classica, an Italian cruise ship. The totality of this eclipse lasted sim minutes and forty-two seconds, making it the longest of the century. Muddled Ramblings has written descriptions of events that express the daily goings-on better than I can hope to cover through language. I plan on sticking to what I've been doing already, which is to cover the photos of what was happening. I shot over two thousand photos, and weeding has cut things down dramatically to 5.6 gigs of disc space. As you can imagine, I can't possibly put everything up, but I will put some goodies up. Enjoy those that come up over the next few weeks.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Tianjin Port

Tianjin Port, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Yes, the port of Tianjin. More coming in a bit…

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Ponderosa Towers

Ponderosa Towers, originally uploaded by Gerald5970.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

San Jose church in Los Ojos (Again)