Saturday, August 16, 2014

"Yard is for the birds"

August 10, 2014 12:00 am  • 
"It seems I have become a bird-watcher.

"Don’t get me wrong.

"I don’t have binoculars dangling from my neck, and I don’t carry a little notebook. I do not wear baggy khaki shorts, nor a jacket with ‘leventy-seven pockets.

"(That, at least, is how I imagine a 'real' bird-watcher is tricked out — based on dozens of 1960s sitcoms.)

"But I do spend a lot of time in the backyard and tending the gardens, and there’s seldom anyone to keep me company except the birds."

Read more:  http://poststar.com/lifestyles/columns/natl/houseworks/yard-is-for-the-birds/article_23235db4-1f34-11e4-bda9-001a4bcf887a.html

Related: http://www.jtirregulars.com/2013/08/houseworks-by-steve-batie.html


Does drew have "baggy khaki shorts" or "a jacket with ‘leventy-seven pockets"?

Have you noticed the increase in bird photos and stories in the Journal Times?

Open Blog - Weekend


Enjoy yours!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Tucson Rainbow

Haven't got the chance to do much photography...partly due to schedule, partly due to weather. Tonight got a break...just before I left for the theater, got a couple of shots of a rainbow.


You can see there was a double rainbow in the second shot...never quite got a full double but pretty close. You can also tell this was pretty close to sunset. The center of a rainbow is opposite the Sun. Therefore, as the Sun gets lower in the sky, the rainbow gets higher and you see a taller, wider arc.

Rainbows are usually seen in the west before sunset or the east after sunrise. However they can appear anywhere if the geometry is correct. You can get a rainbow in the north at noon if you get rain at the right time. I saw this shortly after I moved to Tucson and was surprised by it. I wondered why I had never seen it growing up and realized that rain is much more common in the winter in Tucson than where I grew up so it was just probability.

Looking forward to better weather coming up once this rainy season ends!

"THE DONUT QUANDRUM:"

From Racine County Corruption:

THE DONUT QUANDRUM:

Ponder this:
What if donuts were square?

Could it be called the…………
donut quadrum instead?

Donuts are a lot like pendulums……….
As the donut pendulum swings, so does the inference of the donut!

Today we take a break from 50 shades of brown to talk about the “donut pendulum”.


Today in greater Racine, at the Dunkin Donuts on Washington Ave. was an event to raise cash to benefit Special Olympics.


Coffee, donuts and cops have had a long and colorful relationship in the United States, some say going back as far as Benjamin Franklin.


The efforts of numerous government agencies working together to foster donations for the additionally challenged and greater good of our community was a success.
As the donut pendulum goes, the donut pendulum that swung today was a proud donut that represents the good our community servants do for all of us.

Thanks Dunkin Donuts for hosting this community event.

AND

Thanks to all of you for your efforts and for all the public support and contributions to this worthy cause.

I Tried it



Not sure if you have seen this one or not. To me it looked pretty good until we (My Grandson and I) tried it.

The skins came out tough and the insides were just like having a baked potato, nothing impressive at all.


.......SER

"What do you want to be when you grow up?"


A teacher asked the kids in her 3rd grade class, "What do you want to be when you grow up?"
 
Little Kevin answered: "I wanna start out as a Marine Pilot, then be a billionaire, go to the most expensive clubs, find me the finest whore, give her a Ferrari worth over a million bucks, an apartment in Copacabana, a mansion in Paris, a jet to travel throughout Europe, an Infinite Visa Card, and all the while banging her like a loose screen door in a hurricane."
 
The teacher, shocked, and not knowing what to do with this horrible response from little Kevin, decided not to acknowledge what he said and simply tried to continue with the lesson . . . .

"And how about you, Sarah?"

"I wanna be Kevin’s whore."
 

"School Answering Machine"

Submitted by legal stranger:

Four for Fridays!

1. What is your favorite Robin Williams movie?

2. When was the last time you had to look a word up in the dictionary?

3. When was the last time you went to the fair?

4. When have you seen history made either in person or on t.v?

Have a good weekend!

Open Blog - Friday


Is your first one "food"?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Get together

One of the coolest things about our "family" here,
is that we are all so different, and yet, have a bond.
This summer has gotten away from me, 
and I'm guessing, from many of you as well. 
HOW in the world is it not only August, but MID August already???
My mind is still in June. Maybe I had a black out?

Who's invited? EVERYBODY!
Can you bring someone? ABSOLUTELY!

Maybe you have a friend that you think 
would be interested in our group. 
Maybe you've been a bystander, 
or haven't come out to meet the gang yet. 
Maybe you have a significant someone 
or family member you'd like to introduce to our gang.
Maybe you're intrigued by us and want to check us out. 

Info, once it's established, will only be sent to those interested. 
While we're open to welcoming in anyone, we also want to not open ourselves to just any nut out in cyber world. 

1st things 1st, we need to find out what day(s) and times work for the majority. We also need your input as to what you'd like to do, whether it be a cookout, a pot luck, something we haven't thought of or tried before, let's get this family reunion rolling!

I would love to see Jed again, as well as hoping to finally meet Dodgeboy and Jeff Hayes. We're not a scary bunch, I promise!
I think that's why we are who we are,most of us have met, so our interactions with each other is on such a different level that other anonymous places.
 

Please give input ASAP before the snow comes,
which at the speed of the summer, could be tomorrow!

Alltime10s Thursdays

Open Blog -Thursday


Stop thinking and start drinking,

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Wildflowers Pt 8!

Hello everyone I hope you are enjoying the nice cool weather. This kind of weather is starting to bring out the Fall wildflowers and we are out looking for them to share with everyone. This past weekend we took a trip out to Whitewater because that is the only place we have found one of Drews favorite fall wildflowers. Here are the wildflowers that we found this past weekend:

          This is a Morning Glory the picture was taken behind the Racine Zoo by the beach in Racine Wi.

                  This is a Firewheel the picture was taken at Whitewater College in Whitewater Wi.

                     This is a Trumpet Creeper the picture was taken on 4Mile Rd in Caledonia Wi.

                This is an Indian Blanket the picture was taken at Whitewater College in Whitewater Wi.

                This is a Cornflower the picture was taken at Whitewater College in Whitewater Wi.

                This is a Red Poppy the picture was taken at Whitewater College in Whitewater Wi.

        This is a Scarlet Pinpernel the picture was taken at Whitewater College in Whitewater Wi.

            This is a Tawny Daylily the picture was taken at Whitewater College in Whitewater Wi.

Dear Madame Zoltar

Hello, my dear dear dears!  How are you?  It was chilly yesterday, but today is supposed to get to mid-70’s.  I was at a friend’s home yesterday, and he got his first ripe tomato from his plants.  A walk through his backyard is always beautiful because he plants the plants to bloom seasonally.  A lot of effort goes into the landscape around his home, and it’s just a regular city lot.   When we shook hands, I could feel the coarseness and calluses on his hand.  Gardening is hard work.  But I think the effort is well worth it.

Our yard is nothing like my friend’s, but we put some effort into it.  SeƱor Zanza keeps the shrubs trimmed.  I plant a small vegetable garden.  Junior mows and waters.  It’s not a showcase, but it meets our needs.  We grill outdoors occasionally.  You can lie in the backyard and no one will be watching you.  Our little slice of heaven.

Speaking of heaven (I hope), R.I.P. Robin Williams.  I was unaware of his struggles with addiction and depression.  What a loss for all of us.

Oh no, I just read that Lauren Bacall died.  R.I.P.

Did you hear the news that Journal Times print subscribers will now receive “free” access to the online version?  http://journaltimes.com/news/local/to-our-readers-new-ways-for-you-to-connect/article_2320d86e-b6c9-5800-a405-30ff63ed774b.html  There will be a print subscription price increase, but they aren’t telling us how much yet.  My take on this is that the Journal Times essentially is forcing its print readers to subsidize online operations.  I wonder if ours is the only market that Lee Enterprises is trying this in?

As long as I’m talking about the news, I keep reading and hearing about the wars and atrocities occurring in foreign lands.  It’s overwhelming.  It seems as if everyone is fighting.  For what?  Oil?  The civilians take the brunt of the trauma.  I’m so sick of this.  Humans have been slaughtering each other for hundreds of thousands of years.  Let’s try something different.  Let’s try not slaughtering each other.  Maybe there’s some lesson to learn there.

I’m especially upset with the use of U.S. Armed Forces to fight the battles that corporate America has instigated.  They should be forced to hire their own mercenaries.  Or pay us to fight their wars for them. 

Sorry.  How did I drift into such depressing subjects?  Thank you for stopping by to read my blog.  I love visitors.

Sewer backed-up?  Don’t contact: madamezoltar@jtirregulars.com

Enjoy summer winding down.  I never felt it wound up.  There’s still plenty of time to roast some weenies.  Macaronic!             

Open Blog - Wednesday


Oh no!

Monday, August 11, 2014

"Heroin Anonymous meetings start August 21st"

From RacineUncovered:

"Heroin Anonymous group/meeting starting August 21st at the ZCI Center (ZCI is only hosting the location meeting space) If you have any questions please contact Dustin at 262-676-4311"

Credit: Racine Uncovered

Read more: http://racineuncovered.org/2014/08/heroin-anonymous-meetings-start-august-21st/

Cryo Cream!

I was on a trip to San Francisco last week and stayed at a hotel near the airport for the meetings (didn't even get into the city!) The last night there, I went out to dinner in Burlingame with some friends. The hotel had a free shuttle and it dropped us off right in front of a place we all knew we had to try: Cryo Cream.
 Cryo Cream makes your ice cream fresh after your order it using liquid nitrogen. Pick your flavor, everything gets put into the machine and then the liquid nitrogen is added to freeze it in a puff of steam.
 Water vapor from the atmosphere condenses and forms ice on the very cold tubes carrying the liquid nitrogen.
 And the back wall is decorated kind of retro-sciencey.
Somehow the ice cream did not get a picture taken...it went too fast. What a great concept for an ice cream shop with uber nerd appeal!

Everyone's Dream Throne

Open Blog - Monday


I've had a few like that.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Pretty Bird! Grosbeaks and Allies

It has been awhile since I ran a birding post up here... I'd like to turn the attention to some of the prettier birds in Wisconsin, some of which people are familiar with, grosbeaks, cardinals and tanagers. Under the classification  name of Cardinalidae, these beautiful birds are characterized for their strong, robust seed eating bills and colorful plumage. There are 11 Wisconsin species...

The first one and personal favorite is the the Scarlet Tanager (see pictures below-male taken at Horicon Marsh 5 17 2014 and female at Shoop Park 5 16 2014) and it's easy to see why. The male's bold blood red body offset by jet black wings make them eye candy for me. Look for them high in the trees in large forested areas in the spring and summer months across the state. They are more common than most people think.



Perhaps America's most popular and recognized bird, it's the state bird to seven states, is the Northern Cardinal ( pictures below - male taken at Bong SRA 2 9 2013 female taken at Bong SRA 4 15 2013). Not only their territorial call appeals to many, their bold red plumage and crest makes them stand out. Abundant year round in the state, this bird is a treat to forests, backyards and feeders.



Black and white with a rosy red breast are the identifying marks of a male Rose Breasted Grosbeak (see picture below taken by the Wind Point Lighthouse 5 14 2014). The female is quite different, brown with pale underparts and thin, dark breast streaks (see picture below the male taken at Horicon Marsh 5 25 2013). They are found all areas of the state. Look for them on forest edges and woodlots. Their song is similar to the Robin's, but more melodious.



Please forgive my picture (see below taken at Grant Park, South Milwaukee 5 9 2014), it's the only one I have of this brilliantly blue Indigo Bunting. While the male looks stunning, the female (see picture below the male taken at Horicon Marsh 7 2 2013) is just basically brown with a white throat and faint streaks. Look for the Indigo Buntings on the edges of woods and fields across the state, especially in hedgerows. Males will typically sing from the tallest perch in sight.

 
 
    
Resembling like a miniature Meadowlark, the Dickcissel (see picture below taken at Buena Vista Grasslands near Stevens Point, WI) is a prairie grosbeak of sorts. Brown on the back with yellow on the underside and a black 'V' on the chest would be their basic description.  Look for these guys in the prairies and grassland across the state (they are especially plentiful at Buena Vista) during the summer months. Males can be seen singing away on telephone wires and fence posts.


Other grosbeak species that have been seen in Wisconsin are: the Summer Tanager, Western Tanager, Black Headed Grosbeak, Blue Grosbeak, Lazuli Bunting and the Painted Bunting. All are considered accidental at this point, meaning only a handful of sightings of each are reported. These birds are out of their normal range. However, evidence shows that the Summer Tanager and the Blue Grosbeak may be extending their range.

I've been meaning to ask this on my other blogs, but I'll ask now.... Which of these birds have you seen? And where? When? I'd LOVE to hear stories about animals. Please share questions and thoughts!