I went to the Alamo today.

December 21st, 2014

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I have driven from west Texas back home to Houston many times, and I always pass the signs that lead to the Alamo as I go through San Antonio and remember the only time I had ever been there. I was only a child then. I keep saying that I will stop in and take a look again one of these times, but it never happens.
I still didn’t have time to go in and look around, but at least today I pulled over long enough to set up my camera and tripod. It was very difficult to navigate the one way streets with all the pedestrians without being turned in a direction you didn’t want to go for running someone down. But I managed to find the Alamo itself and then a $10 parking spots a couple of blocks away. I was only going to be there for a couple of minutes, but I paid the money and walked to the Alamo.
It took me a little while to set up my camera to where it needed to be pointed, and focus where it needed to be focused. Having done so I looked all around to find someone I could trust to take the picture while I walked away from a multi thousand dollar piece of equipment. I always told my children that if you keep safety, find a policeman. If you cannot find a policeman, find a mother with children. It’s usually a good bet.
I found a whole family! And the mother who was pushing a stroller had a Canon DSLR around her neck. She not only seemed trustworthy, but she seemed like she might know what she was doing with the camera.
I walked over to the Alamo I stood in my position and she took five pictures of me instead of just one. She really did know what she was doing because when I got back I realized the first one was completely out of focus. I asked her if I could return the favor. We traded cameras I put hers on my tripod and took a few pictures of her family. She seemed very pleased with the results.
It’s true that you can’t trust everyone but I really think you can trust most people. I could talk to a lot more strangers and make a lot more friends if there was only a reliable way to tell.

Minetest – Deep hole drop

October 22nd, 2014

I just want to see how well my site will host videos. Sometimes they are too small to bother with youtube.
Big Drop

Fireball!

October 21st, 2014

“That’s a lot of fire, isn’t it?” – Toph

We could see the flare from the highway. I had always wanted to see one up close, and this one looked particularly bright. My daughter and I decided to hunt it down. I mean, how far away could it be? TWENTY FIVE MILES! It was in another county! We arrived in a small town that was completely illuminated by this golden light. Even though it was the dead of night, everything was bright (and hot!) as noon. We took as many pictures and as much video as we dared and left before we got sunburns. This video was allowed down from 60 fps. Quite a while later, when I finally got the opportunity to return with a camera that could do 120fps, it was gone! Just a tiny candle is a flame where a sun had once stood. I may never know why this happened. But as least I got this video!

Moonbow

October 8th, 2014

This is the first time I ever wished I has a super wide angle lens.
moonbow0

Boredom is always one’s own fault

September 28th, 2014

Click for larger image!

Birds

August 21st, 2014

I was walking past the door and saw a bird. The glass is tinted and reflective from outside, so I don’t it could see me. Since it didn’t fly away, I went back to my office to grab my camera. When I returned, there were two birds.

f/9 1.1250 ISO2000 70mm

f/9 1.1250 ISO2000 70mm


I think it came out ok in spite of the fact that I had accidentally left the ISO on 2000 and was shooting through a dirty, tinted glass door. I wish I could have used f/3.5 and a much lower ISO.

I thought I knew what a ghost town was.

August 19th, 2014

Saguaro in Arizona

The Wikipedia defines a ghost town as

“…an abandoned village, town or city, usually one which contains substantial visible remains.”

The quick definition of ghost town from Merriam Webster says it is

“a town that no longer has any people living in it : an abandoned town”.

These agree with what I always thought it was. So when I saw a fast fact on some tweet that Texas has over 450 ghost towns, I decided I had to find out if one was close enough for me to go see. This led me to a Wikipedia list of Texas ghost towns.

I searched the page for counties near me. First thing I found was Pyote. Pyote is so close, I can probably walk there. It is in our school district! People live there! How is that a ghost town? There is a post office. There’s a grocery store. What am I missing? The next town to catch my eye was Terlingua. Isn’t that where the International Championship Chili Cookoff has been held for the last half century?!?

How many populated cities are in this list? I’m disgusted and I’m not going to check them all.

Science produces too many long words.

July 24th, 2014

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Light Curtain

May 23rd, 2014

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Do you see that curtain of light rays? Imagine what I could have gotten if I’d had my camera with me.

Pretty! Pretty! Shiny! Shiny!

May 14th, 2014

I got to thinking I own a lot of good purple stuff now, just like I always wanted to. Something still on the purple wish list is a car. So I googled “purple cars” to see if I could find a good one to show you the color I want. I found this:

1933 Ford 3 Window Coupe

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