Friday, November 4, 2011


We have reached that time of year when it is all right to rhapsodize about food.  I love November.  Actually, I'm cheating.  This pumpkin pie was made by my blushing bride in late October and I had the last piece, smothered in whipped cream, for breakfast yesterday.

Some years ago, when SWMBO was married to someone else, she and her husband and their three kids used to travel from near Indianapolis to Detroit to visit his parents.  The kids always delighted in the fact that their grandfather would eat cookies with his coffee for breakfast.

But back to November.  It's not just Thanksgiving.  With family spread here and there it's a pretty low key holiday for us.  SWMBO still feels an obligation to make a pretty expansive (in more ways than one) meal for the day, even if it's just the two of us.  But she's not a big fan of turkey and she absolutely refuses to deal with the carcass.  So she's been doing a turkey breast for years.  (Not the same one.)  It's only white meat, which we both prefer, and it's a lot less mess.  Occasionally in recent years, I have bought a whole chicken and roasted it in the oven.  But I have to promise to pick the carcass, and I do.  (Just more for me.)

But pie.  Especially pumpkin pie, is one of my true pleasures.  We had the BRD and her Beau Jack over for brunch recently and SWMBO planned on serving lemon tart for dessert.  For some reason she didn't seem sure of it so we made, and devoured, two of them prior to the big day and the third tart.  As several people told me the other day, "Bruce, you are a lucky man!"

Now here's the kicker.  I don't really pay any attention to my weight other than to grieve when I'm looking in a mirror after a shower.  I don't diet, don't really watch what I eat and I ignore most of the wife (and chief nag's) comments on what I'm stuffing in my face.  I rarely weigh myself but the other day I was going to the doctor and decided to weigh myself at home before I left the house.  I HAD LOST 15 POUNDS!  Just in the last couple of months and I have no idea how it happened.  The doctor was very complimentary as I told him, oh, yes, I exercise, I'd been lifting weights, etc.  (That's another one karma, if it truly works, will bite me for some day.) 

SWMBO was happy but jealous.  She's the one who tries so hard to lose weight and usually has no luck at it.

But I felt so good about it that after I left the doctor's office I went straight to Jack in the Box to celebrate!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


I had forgotten that today, November 2nd, is the Day of the Dead.  That's kind of strange, since I lived in Mexico for nearly 5 years back in the '80's.

And even more so because I have this picture hanging on the wall of my den.

I bought in an art gallery several years ago.  I'm a big fan of Day of the Dead art and Frida Kahlo.  My wife (see previous post) does not like this artwork.  Just a couple of days ago she was sitting in here and said, out of the blue, "Y'know, I really hate that thing."  Well, it's my art and my room and it's staying.  But if you look at the lower right corner of the frame, you'll see it's added some panache.  That's a product of not enough dusting but I think it fits right in.

Here's a closer look.

Looks kind ghosty, doesn't it?

By the way, I discovered something as I was cruising the web today.  Today is also a palindrome day:  11-02-2011.  See it reads the same left to right or right to left, when you take out the hyphens.  Some guy says there will be only 4 eight-digit palindrome dates in the entire century.

So there you are.


I teasingly call her SWMBO, which stands for "She Who Must Be Obeyed."  That term comes from an English television show of some years back "Rumpole of the Bailey".  It was how the rumpled British barrister, Horace Rumpole, referred to his own dear wife.

She is difficult to photograph, mainly because she hates photos of herself.  But I got lucky the other day, in part because the new digital cameras allow one to take shot after shot after shot until you get one right.  She has a flicker of a smile . . possibly anticipating that much-ballyhooed tiramisu.

I think she's beautiful and she is the love of my life.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011


Looking at this picture may make you wonder whether that electrical cord is plugged into the Jack-o-lantern or into the cat.

It is Halloween and our black cat, Blackwell, seems intent on something.  I wonder if it's a mouse.

Aha!  It's his little sister, Muggles.  You will notice how cautiously she enters the room.

She circles around, keeping a close eye on Jack and Blackwell.

Having circumvented the two perceived threats, she settles down at a safe distance to study this bizarre creature.  Blackwell appears to have gone to get something to eat.

Having satisfied her curiousity and abated her fear, she heads for the other room for a nap, taking one last closer look at Jack.

But, is she safe?  She may think so but she's apparently forgotten Blackwell.  He, however, hasn't forgotten her. 


That's the end of my Halloween story.  If you can do better, have at it!


Sunday, October 30, 2011


This is called a Halloween Hop. It allows you to check out a number of blogs and join the ones you enjoy. Give it a try.

Friday, October 28, 2011


Google has come up with an amazing way to promote their LG Optimus Android phone.  (I think that's the correct way to describe it but I'm not real tech savvy on these things.)  Anyway, they showed a phenomenal 3-D video on the wall of a building in Berlin that you just have to see to believe.  And even then you may not believe what you've seen.  Anyway, take a look.


I spotted this Roadrunner the other day and grabbed my camera.  Amazingly he just stood and posed for me while I took several photos.  This one was the best.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


It is softer, somehow.

The leaves are changing color, going from green to gold.

They are beautiful though they presage the days of no leaves at all, of much colder weather, of snow.  But for now . . a lot of green and gold . . . and RED?????

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Construction on the much demanded and much maligned Trader Joe's store is moving right along just below the Gateway Mall in Prescott.  Here are a couple of views.

The store has been much demanded by people who have shopped at Trader Joe's stores elsewhere and have come to love them.  The much maligned part comes from those people who object to the city offering tax advantages to the parent company to lure the store to our area.  Most of these people have never darkened the doors of a TJ's, as evidenced by their comments about the high prices in stores that are only supported by the well-off.  Nothing could be further from the proof but if those folks choose not to shop at the store it will just make it that much easier for folks like me, who can't wait for the store to open.

We got one of their Fearless Flyer's in the mail the other day and after going through it, SWMBO exclaimed "It just makes you want to go to a store right away."  She, and I, are among those anxious shoppers waiting for the store to open.

Sometime in 2012, according to a sign at the site.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Believe it or not, this is a chrysanthemum.

Part of a beautiful plant brought to our Sunday brunch by our guests, the BRD and her Beau Jack.

As I was photographing them this morning, I was being carefully observed by my assistant, Blackwell.  He's always Johnny-on-the-spot when something new is happening.

Sunday, October 23, 2011


We had a brunch today.  SWMBO and I and the BRD and her Beau Jack.  BJ had a new jersey.

That's Larry Fitzgerald's number with the Arizona Cardinals.  Unfortunately the Cardinals were playing the Pittsburgh Steelers today.

But that's okay with the BRD, who has long been a Steelers' fan.

But the true objective of this event was FOOD.  SWMBO outdid herself.

A couple of quiches, ham steak, muffins, Bloody Mary's, Mimosas.

Good food, good drinks, good friends.

A good day.

Friday, October 21, 2011


Here it is Friday eve and I can't think of a thing to blog about.  So, in times of stress, do what I do.  Turn up your volume and hit the arrow and dance like no one is watching.  You'll feel better.

Thursday, October 20, 2011


Apparently the wind has shifted.  Today the smoke from the continuing controlled burn south of Prescott is blowing over Prescott Valley, making for a very smoky day.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Sometimes, with the profusion of buildings and cars, one forgets that we still live in the country.  Witness, for example . . .

Did you see him?  Way down there at the far end of this meager stretch of grass next to a medical building and its adjoining parking lot?

Take a closer look.

Yes it's a bunny rabbit.

He would hop a few steps, then stop and look around, nose twitching, checking for any sign of danger.  But I stayed quietly inside my car as he kept hopping closer.  Finally, he stopped directly in front of me.

And, thanks to the marvels of photo editing, I got my close-up.

It's a long time until Easter, granted, but . . . oh, heck, Gene, sing it!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


This is not fog.  Nor is it a low-lying cloud.  It's smoke.

Here's a pulled-back view that gives you a better idea of its scope.

The smoke is billowing up over the Bradshaw Mountains from a controlled burn in the Prescott National Forest south of Prescott. The Forest Service hopes, by doing these burns, to prevent an out-of-control wildfire. The forest comes right up to Prescott and could do serious damage.

A few years ago, just such a fire scared the daylights out of a lot of people in Prescott and several outlying homes were lost.

So, in spite of a certain number of people who complain about the smoke drifting into town every time there is a controlled burn, it's probably a pretty good idea.

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Some afternoon sunlight through a screen door.

Changing colors in a bamboo plant

Fall colors on leaves

Ivy climbs a fence

Pampas against a blue sky

A wider screen view

The underside of a mimosa tree

And a mimosa pod

Autumn, sweet autumn

Saturday, October 15, 2011


This is a shrine, probably about a mile or less from where I live.

Wednesday evening, around 7:30, a vehicle was being driven at a high rate of speed, went out of control and overturned on the passenger side.  A 12 year old boy who was a passenger was ejected and was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.  Another passenger, a 9 year old boy, had a broken leg.  The 21 year old driver of the car suffered only minor injuries.  He is in jail, facing a number of serious charges.  Police say drugs and alcohol may have been involved.

These shrines erected at the site of fatal accidents have been growing.  I can remember seeing much more simple ones from much earlier days.  This one has stuffed animals, notes to the deceased, candles and other decorations.

It was a tragedy, regardless of the cause, for many people.  The driver of the vehicle probably will go to prison.  The 9 year old will be haunted by the experience for years.  The family and friends of the dead boy will suffer.  And a young life has been snuffed out for no good reason.

It is all very, very sad.

Friday, October 14, 2011


I swear this will be the last post I do for awhile with amusing (?) photos of birds.  So, let's get started.

"O.K.  Is everybody on board?  Staying dry?"

"Say, that's not a bad idea."

"That's the dumbest thing I've ever seen."

"Oh, just shut your trap, willya."

"In my Easter bonnet . . ."

"Heh-heh-heh.  That's all, folks!"