Tuesday, May 31, 2016


I worked for a radio station in Indianapolis from 1969 to 1972.

I started in late April, just after my 29th birthday, and I had no idea what I was getting into.

The Indy 500 is always in late May, around the Memorial Day weekend, and the track is open for the entire month of May as race crews practice and fine tune their cars getting ready for Qualifying Day when only 33 drivers and cars will make the field.

My friend from North Dakota had gone to work at the same radio station about three months before me.

One day we went out to the track to watch the practice sessions.

With our media passes we were allowed to walk right out onto pit row.

So there is the blond-maned and bearded Orly Knutson, known on the radio as The Happy Norwegian.

And, as I have said before, that really was his name.

People often asked him if it was real and his response was always the same - "If I wanted to make up a name for the radio, do you think I'd pick something like Orly Knutson?"

Orly retired after 50 years on the radio in various markets.

Monday, May 30, 2016


At the house with the red door

Sunday, May 29, 2016


Within sight of my house!

Saturday, May 28, 2016


You're possibly wondering why I call this photo post "Goldie".

If you're old enough, it's really quite easy to figure out.

In 1969, this young actress was in a movie that earned her an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

The actress is Goldie Hawn.

And the movie was "Cactus Flower".

And now you know the rest of the story.

(Oh, and for you younger Gentle Readers, she is the mother of actors Oliver Hudson, Wyatt Russell, and Kate Hudson.)

Friday, May 27, 2016


Here we go again.

Get your chuckler ready.

And with that pleasant thought we will bid you adieu.

Contributors: thanks!

To everyone, enjoy the long weekend and always remember to keep laughing.

Here, kitty-kitty.


Thursday, May 26, 2016


Many people I've met have had a favorite uncle, a sometimes mysterious, romantic character who seemed as if he came out of a novel.

Mine was my late uncle, Zenas Howland Taylor.

He was born in Faribault, Minnesota in 1899.

But he moved to California, probably in the 1920's and spent the rest of his life in San Francisco.

About his name.

He was named for an ancestor, Zenas Howland (actually there were two of them in that family tree) who was a direct descendant of John Howland of the Mayflower group.

Zeke, as my dad sometimes called him, was an accountant and eventually became the head accountant for San Francisco's Water Department.

For the youngsters who may be reading here, those devices in front of him were an adding machine, a forerunner to today's computers, and a dial telephone.

When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor Zenas enlisted in the army (at age 42) and served in Burma and India.

Many in the family thought he was crazy to join the army at his age but he felt he had a patriotic duty.

His nickname in the army was "Pops".

He was a sergeant when he was discharged.

During his lifetime in San Francisco, Zenas joined the Olympic Club and won many medals in swimming competitions.

From what I've heard, he was also a pretty good handball player.

He was a bit of a "health nut", swimming in San Francisco Bay year round, hiking in Yosemite Park and worshipping the sun whenever he could.

He told me once that he used to spend 15 or 20 minutes sunning on top of the downtown Olympic Club during his noon lunch hours whenever the sky was clear.

But in his later years, perhaps dating back to his days in Burma and India, he also enjoyed a daquiri with his wife before dinner each evening.

He was 83 when he died.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Tuesday, May 24, 2016


When you're following one of these it's a good idea to keep your distance and have sharp awareness!

As I followed this student driver she seemed to be doing relatively well.

Monday, May 23, 2016


Yes, my new-found friend, the Mountain Jay, came back a few minutes ago.

But this time he didn't want a drink.

He wanted a swim!

Oh, yes, he did!

And he dares any bird in the vicinity to try to share the pool while he's occupying it.

What a rascal.

Sunday, May 22, 2016


A Mountain jay dropped in for a brief visit, showing off his colors.

Montana Mike says these are called Camp Robbers up in his part of the world.

Saturday, May 21, 2016


Away out here they've got a name
For rain and wind and fire
The rain is Tess,
The fire's Joe
And they call the wind Maria

That was the opening of a popular song by the Kingston Trio back in the 1960's.

Maria was pronounced not like the heroine of West Side Story - Mah-REE-ah, but as Mah-RIGH-ah.

Regardless of pronunciation, away out here where I live, Maria is a bitch.

I know.

I shouldn't complain.

And generally I don't.

After all, I am not plagued by hurricanes or earthquakes or ice storms or blizzards or tornadoes or (I am 80 miles from Phoenix and something over 4,000 feet higher) extreme heat or (I am 80 miles from Flagstaff and something over 2,000 feet lower) extreme cold.

But I do have wind.

Fierce, gusting wind.

The past couple of days there has been a High Wind Alert issued by the Weather Service for our area, with gusts of 50 miles per hour.

It's above 70 degrees and I sat out on the front porch for awhile this evening with a cool drink and watched the wind whipping the trees around.

It's supposed to die down some tomorrow.

Only 10 to 20 miles per hour.

Or more.

Don't trust the Weather Gods.

And don't sing me that damn song any more.

Unless you change the wind's name to Lucretia!

Friday, May 20, 2016


When I lived in Mexico I used to frequently lose track of what day it was.

I would ask SWMBO "what day is this?"

She would laugh because the answer was always the same.

It was always Thursday.

I don't know why that was unless it was an omen about the day we now know as Throwback Thursday.

At any rate, today is Friday and you know what that means.

The FRIDAY FUNNIES!!!! (he shouted loudly)

I assume, and I can only assume, that you are laughing hysterically by now.

So I'll leave you on that happy note.

Thanks again to all of my contributors and theft victims, have a fantastically satisfying weekend and always remember to keep laughing.

Oh, and sorry I was late with these.

Here, kitty-kitty.


Thursday, May 19, 2016


When I started working in television back in the early 1960's, it was an entirely different world.

At the third station I worked for, KFYR in Bismarck, North Dakota, the news department consisted of two people, plus an announcer or two and a couple of part-time photographers that we had to share with the sales department.

And we were supposed to provide for the needs of an AM radio station as well as the tv station.

Later an FM station was added to the mix.

So we "newsmen" were the voices of the many daily broadcasts, we wrote and produced the newscasts, we shot and edited the film, we covered meetings and events and the police stations and sheriff's departments.

But since we were in the state capitol, politics and government often made up the bulk of our work.

In this photo, I'm the film photographer in the middle of the group of three.

Our cameras are all focused on the governor, William L. "Bill" Guy, as he comes into the legislature to give his annual State of the State address.

I find it interesting that three "photographers" are using the same basic camera but we each have our own way of gripping the device.

In the upper right corner of this picture, my boss at the time, News Director Larry Mills, is doing a live broadcast on radio of the event.

The fellow with the headset sitting next to him was an engineer.

One other thing I learned in those early days was how to shoot film while walking backwards.

That's me on the far right with my camera focused on Vice-President Hubert H. Humphrey.

He's walking with the governor's wife while the governor, on the left,  is accompanying Mrs. Humphrey, Muriel.

In the center is U.S. Senator Quentin Burdick.

In some ways it was a much simpler era.

In others it was vastly more complicated.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016


Sad news today.

Guy Clark has died at 74.

The New York Times referred to him as a Texas Troubadour.

And that he was, coming out of the group that included Townes Van Zandt and Jerry Jeff Walker.

He wrote many songs that other artists made hits.

One of my favorites was "Desperados Waiting for a Train."

I first discovered Clark when I lived in Austin, Texas.

I never saw him perform but I would hear his music on the radio.

Guy had a sense of humor that was displayed, for example, in this song that has been performed by many artists.

Guy, we'll miss you but we'll have your music forever.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016


Today's journey takes us to one of the wonders of the world, the Golden Gate Bridge.

(Photo by RyanJWilmot)

The bridge links the city of San Francisco, California to Marin County.

It was begun in 1933 and opened to the public 4 years later.

But I have a surprise for you.

The following pictures were taken in 1935, halfway through the construction.

The views of the construction of the bridge were taken from either Marshall or Baker Beach by my uncle, Zenas Howland Taylor.

He was an accountant for the city water department and along with a group of adventurous friends made his way down the bluff to the beaches where they would swim in the ocean, work on their tans and build constructions from driftwood and whatever else they found.

A sturdy group of young men were these.

But also a bit wacky as they escaped from their workaday world and camped out on the beach on their weekends.

(See. I'm not the first one in my family to go in for those short shorts!)

Monday, May 16, 2016


When I was a young 'un, I had to have my hair flattened down, my ears washed, a tie knotted around my neck in a shirt with a ridiculous collar and taken to church for Easter services.

Why on earth I was smiling through this torturous experience is something I surely don't know to this day.

I don't remember any chocolate bunnies in my youth though there may have been some.

After church finally got out (it was only an hour but in my Presbyterian church with its dour Scottish preacher it seemed to last forever), we came home to a baked ham dinner.

I still like baked ham.

If I ever had a chocolate bunny I haven't had one for many, many years.

But I spotted a real one in our backyard the other day.

I first saw him as I opened the blinds and pulled them back on the slider door in the living room.

I hurried around to my den and opened and slowly pulled the blinds back there and the dumb bunny just sat their, frozen, as I got my camera and took several shots.

Lori Down the Street, hates the bunnies because they eat her plants.

We have only a few herbs in a pot and I don't think the bunnies have found them.

Or they don't like them.

Anyway, I enjoy seeing the bunnies.

And none of them are missing their ears or their butts.

Though I've always thought that they seem about as smart as the damnable mourning doves that hang around, wooing and cooing.

Speaking of which, I wonder how many of you remember the Singing Cowboy, Gene Autry.

Sunday, May 15, 2016


After the phenomenal success of her dessert,

SWMBO graciously came into my hole den yesterday morning and requested that I make a loaf of my legendary whole wheat bread.

Knowing, as I do, that the bread machine does 95% of the work, I immediately agreed.

Those dark spots are not rot.

They are dried Craisins (cranberry raisins).

They still migrate to the bottom of the loaf but they're a tasty addition to the bread.

And nothing tastes better than homemade bread, right?

That's what SWMBO would tell you as she saws off the domed top, dabs it with margarine and digs in to the still hot product.

Personal goof: it is a day later now and I just realized I haven't even tasted it yet!