Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Bigger Than Life

There he stands, immortalized in bronze. Giant American flag as a backdrop. All that's missing is mom and apple pie.

John Wayne/Orange County Airport, Santa Ana, California.

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Sunday, October 28, 2007


The building is long gone, the memories faded. Just the foundation remains. For how long?

Friday, October 26, 2007

The View From Orange

Sorry, that I haven't posted recently, as my computer has been in for a rebuild.

This is a shot from the 16th floor of the Doubletree Hotel in Orange, California, taken last year. I was browsing through my collection on flickr, and this one resonated with me for two reasons. First, I'm heading back out to Orange on Tuesday and staying at this same hotel, and second has been the recent attention paid to this area in light of the wildfires that have been burning for several days.

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Monday, October 22, 2007

The Lady

Cincinnati businessman Henry Probasco dedicated the famous fountain “To the People of Cincinnati” in memory of his business partner and brother-in-law Tyler Davidson on October 6, 1871. Designed to rival the great fountains of Europe, the bronze and granite fountain glorifies the blessings of water. Streams of water flow from the outstretched hands of the nine-foot-tall Genius of Water, affectionately known as “The Lady.”

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Saturday, October 20, 2007

Mr. Deity Season Two Is Now

And now, the long awaited season premiere of the hot new internet comedy, Mr. Deity, is now online. One thing has changed, the producers got a deal with Crackle, and that's where their shows are. Not to worry, I got the link right here.

To set the scene: It's 2002, somewhere in an important building, a world leader gets his inspiration.

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Friday, October 19, 2007

Small Town Survival

From July 4 of this year.

Fischer's Department Store was the last family owned department store in Wisconsin. The Fischer family worked for years to keep the store going in the face of competition from all of the big retailers and the exodus of retail businesses from Main Street to the strip malls, including sizing the company down near the end to an internet operation. But it was too little, too late, and Fischer's closed after 112 years in business.

And small town America just got a little smaller.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Destined to Disappoint? Does a Bear Crap in the Woods?

A timely article in today's USA Today strikes a chord. In fact, it does well to strike many chords. And the airlines will continue to tap dance and blame everybody and everything but themselves for their problems.

Are U.S. airlines destined to disappoint? - USATODAY.com

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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Watch That First Step!

With credit to Bugs Bunny.

Binghamton, New York is a city with a brighter past than its future. It enjoyed a heyday during the Cold War as a cluster of defense contractors called the area home. But the end of the period also brought the collapse of the area economy, and the population has been shrinking ever since.

But what struck me about this photo is how, once upon a time, you could move from one building to the other, and what was once interior walls are now exterior walls.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Can You Smell It?

The last camping trip of the season. Cool, crisp weather (though it rained today and we had to pack up wet).

The bacon cooking on the grill. The coffee brewing on the stove. Smoke from campfires drifting by. Can you smell it?

Ottawa Lake Recreation Area, Wisconsin.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Report from the Road

As I was drifting off to sleep last night, it struck me that I don't write much about life on the road. I suppose something that is rather mundane and work related ought not be very interesting to the general public. But I also spend time reflecting and introspecting (read: talking to myself), and sometimes I find myself uttering things that are marginally profound. So here's some thoughts about this week.

In order to save the client some airfare, I flew to Panama City, Florida, instead of straight into Dothan, Alabama. That's what happens when only one airline serves a city, it really serves nobody but itself. A 90 minute drive through the heart of redneck country. Red soil and roadsides littered with decaying shotgun shacks. Some kick ass classic rock to keep me sane. Could be a lot worse. Like next month when I fly into Evansville, Indiana to drive 2 hours to Madisonville, Kentucky. No good radio there.

The only thing they talk about on the sports radio station is college football. Period. I now know more about the playing tendencies of 'Bama's left tackle than anybody north of the Mason-Dixon line.

Food. I normally eschew chains. But there are some higher end chains with excellent food. Bonefish Grill is one of them. If their food comes off a Sysco truck, you couldn't tell. The quality is great and the atmosphere and service are top notch. Another high quality chain is Legal Sea Foods, but you'll only find them along the east coast.

More random thoughts down the road.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Your Guess

Is as good as mine. I couldn't find anything about it.

Downtown Milwaukee.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Science and the Campaign

Being a tail-end Baby Boomer, I remember how technology and science research received high priority at the national level. And it seemed that both major political parties were firmly aware how our lead in science and technology made us a stronger nation against our avowed adversary, the Soviet Union.

But since then, special interests have conspired to erode our lead, and allow other nations (some unfriendly) to catch up with the United States and threaten our economic standing and way of life. Not to mention the health and well being of millions of my fellow citizens, including children.

I place technological education and advancement very high on my list of desired attributes for our next president. Any candidate who discounts the 150 years of scientific research supporting evolution is disqualified from receiving my vote.

In the article below, Dr. Phil tells us about a great example of what we should be hearing from a candidate to address my concerns and those of the scientific community. And not just because we learn more about the world around us, but because it makes our economy stronger. And like Dr. Phil, I have not made any decision yet about who I am going to vote for. But wouldn't it be nice if more candidates pledged to support science like Hillary Clinton?

Bad Astronomy Blog » Hillary Clinton on science

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Saturday, October 06, 2007

Point Counterpoint

Another view of the Denver Art Museum, Denver.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Moss Landing Sunset

Moss Landing, California.

To see a short video of this scene, click here.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Fat Albert

I arrived in Salinas, California earlier today for a routine business trip, and I decided to take a trip out to the local airport to have a look around. And look at what I spotted on the ramp. It was "Fat Albert", the support plane for the Navy Blue Angels.

"Fat Albert" is a C-130T Hercules cargo plane, capable of cruise at a speed of more than 320 knots (approximately 360 miles per hour) at 27,000 feet. Four Allison turboprop engines, which produce more than 16,000 shaft-horsepower, provide Fat Albert Airlines with the power to land and depart on runways as short as 2,500 feet.

Seems I got here a day late as the airport was host to the California International Airshow this past weekend, featuring performances by the Canadian Forces Snowbirds in addition to the Blue Angels. Both groups were staying an extra day or two in Salinas, giving me the opportunity to have a look.