Saturday, April 30, 2011

No mention of the half inch of snow on the ground this morning.

Boredom breeds creativity.  For me at least.  We had an auditorium rental at the school last night and I got to run the lights and sound for it.  Not a hard job; turn the stage lights on, turn the house lights down when ready and turn on the microphone every time somebody walked up to it, which was a whole 4 times in the 2 hours.  It was a performance by the Taylorsville City Symphony, so they only needed to be lit up and have a mic to introduce the pieces.
They were pretty good, I actually enjoyed the music, but I did get a little bored waiting for them to show up and while they were setting and warming up.
So what did I do?  Why, pulled out the camera and played with it.  Here’s some of the pictures that grew out of that boredom.
A shot of the auditorium, lit by nothing but the emergency lighting.
Emergency lighting on stairs in the balcony.
Not a futuristic city from some sci-fi movie, just looking level at the knobs on the soundboard.
Lights on the soundboard.  This one caught my eye because I had just finished inputting the data from my benchmark tests.  Every term we give the kids a pre test at the beginning and a post test at the end, and compare how much they learned.
More colorful knobs on the soundboard.  I took a couple pictures like these of the light board, but it’s knobs are flatter and monochromatic.  None of the pictures came out interesting to me.
This button is for the microphone.  When I took this picture I thought “Hmm, how much easier would teaching be if I had one of these buttons for each student?”
And finally, the symphony.

Friday, April 29, 2011

He who laughs last..

Ok, so the laugh’s on me. (You should read the post right before this for this to make better sense).

I woke up this morning, flipped on the TV, tuned to my favorite morning news show (the lesser of all the vacuous evils) and prepared to lay down on the couch, coffee cup in hand and enjoy my usual morning routine.

Not so much.  My favorite station happens to be the one televising the royal wedding live.  Lucky me.

But I did find out one interesting thing as I was watching it to see if it was just a segment on the news.  I tuned in just as the bride and groom were showing up.  First glimpse of the royal party.

Which means that all those who got up at 2 AM lost those 3+ hours of sleep for the sake of preliminary activity.  I got my usual sleep and could be watching the good part right now if I wanted to.

Who did get the last laugh?

It’s 2 AM, do you know where you are?

To all of you out there watching the latest Royal Wedding live and as it happens, I say:

I’m still snoozing it in my nice comfy, warm bed AND, (if I gave a crap), I’ll still be able to watch the whole thing, over and over and over … again, on the news, on somebody’s blog and on YouTube.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

City Seats

For this theme I decided to go take a walk around the city by my house, there is a set of city benches that have always fascinated and confused me.  I’ll get to those later, but I’ll start with some of the other sitting spots I found on my way.

The creek that runs through Sugarhouse Park, that I wrote about here, goes under 13th East and comes out to go through Hidden Hollow and a small shopping area before going under the city again.  Hidden Hollow is the victory of a group of kids from the elementary school nearby.  By now they are probably seniors in high school, but at the time they fought to get the city to purchase the property, they cleaned it up and helped plan it out and name it.  They also convinced the city to require the developer of the shopping area to keep the water flowing above ground, for the most part, as it weaves it’s way through.  As a result you can sit in the outdoor seats at several of the restaurants there and listen to the water flow.

This first bench is in Hidden Hollow itself.  A nice rustic bench to sit on and watch the water go by.

Another bench in hidden hollow, most of the benches in the park and shopping area are of this type.

A different view of the same bench.

Your basic, everyday bus bench.

In several places in Sugarhouse, those basic benches have been replaced by these cushy, comfy (looking) benches.

Unfortunately, they may look comfortable, but they are actually somewhat uncomfortable, in my opinion.

When I first saw one of them, while driving down 21st South, I imagined people falling asleep on them and missing their bus.  But when I went to sit on one to wait for a bus I realized they’re made of concrete.  Not fluffy.  Not comfy.  Instead, hard as rock.  And when I sat on it, I discovered that it was quite uncomfortable.  Talk about a let-down.

I had walked past these benches (there are two of them on opposite sides of this building) many times, and until this theme, I had never looked close enough at them to see that their purpose is not just for sitting.

It’s other purpose, probably the primarily one, is for covering the gas meters.  Pretty ingenious if you ask me.

Wanna see some more pictures of seats, or show off your own?  Click on the banner below for Carmi’s Thematic Photographic.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Ancestors Eve

It’s not an official holiday, yet.  Theoretically, in 365 years it will be, but not yet.  Yeah, it’s a Star Trek thing, Neelix thinks it up in one of my favorite Voyager episodes (Kate Mulgrew drives a ‘71 Ford LTD Country Squire in it) and I kind of liked the idea behind it.

“An evening of reflection in honor of those who had come before.”

So, here’s to my parents, grandparents and all their grandparents before.  Without you, I wouldn’t be here.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

1983 all over again.

If it warms up quickly we will have floods the like of which prompted then Governor Scott Matheson to say to the press “It’s a hellova way to run a desert.”

I went over to Sugarhouse Park yesterday and got a few pictures of the pond, which is several feet above it’s banks right now.  To this first picture I just have to say “No kidding?” (Click on it to see what the sign says):

I took this picture in June of 2008, the water just reaches the path around it, like it’s supposed to be:

Here is the mouth of the creek that runs through the park and into the pond, taken yesterday:

Here it is back in 2009, when the water level was lower than usual:

This bench along the side of the pond actually sits outside, and on a platform a little above, the path around the pond:

These last two I took as the sun was setting and thought “Hmmm, crop them right and they’d look like opening pictures on “CSI Miami”.

So, as bad as I want the warm weather to get here soon, I do hope that the weather warms up slowly.  That way the snowpack, which is around 150% of normal, will have time to melt off without overloading the rivers and streams that go through the cities along the Wasatch Front.

Evil Step-mothers can be funny.

You’ve probably seen this before:

It’s one of those funny test answers I’ve seen several times floating around the email world.

Recently my step-mom told about a test answer she saw in a college anatomy class.  I don’t remember the exact wording of either the question or the answer, but you’ll get the idea anyhow.

Q: What are “gonads”

A: Roaming tribes of humans, but I have no idea what this question is doing in an anatomy test.

College students are supposed to be taught to think outside the box, but frankly, I think that a little too far out of the box.

P.S. – My step-mom really isn’t evil, we just call her that because she used to leave messages on our voicemail like “This is your evil step mother, just calling to see if you can come up to dinner Saturday”.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Construction; Continued.

Whew, what a night.  So incredibly glad that it is spring break right now.
The pounding continued for another 45 minutes, until right around midnight.  I couldn’t hear anything back in my bedroom, other than the fan going that I sleep with anyways.  White noise.  But I could feel it all the way back there.  Nothing enough to rattle things off the walls or anything, but just enough, and just irregular enough, to be annoying.  Fortunately I had my CSI DVDs to keep me from getting too frustrated with it.
Shortly after the pounding stopped I fell asleep.  But I kept waking up every half hour or so, expecting the pounding to start again, and would go out to the front window to see if they were still there.  They finally left around 2:00 in the morning and I finally got to sleep.
Again, for me it was really no big deal.  Didn’t have to get up early in the morning and I often stay up late watching DVDs when I have the next day off.  But I can imagine how I would have felt if that 5:00 AM alarm was looming and I knew I had to go to work.  Which is why I could just picture my neighbors furiously pacing their homes wondering who they could freak out at over this.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Construction at 10:00 PM

Yeah, right in front of the house next door to mine.  Damn good thing I don’t have to go to work in the morning, but what about all my neighbors who do?
I can understand that they want to do it at a time that will have the least impact on traffic.  I live on a pretty busy street, it’s a main route for commuters downtown and to the University of Utah.  But at 10 O’clock at night?  And without any warning?  Though, in my ever-eternal quest to assume the best, I am going with the belief that it is an unpredicted, emergency repair they just had to do.  At least I hope so, or they will probably have a slew of irate citizens.
Right now (10:45) they are pounding at the street hard enough that I can feel it in my house.  It’s like a mini-earthquake.  Fortunately, with the new windows I put in about four years ago, the sound isn’t that bad.  My computer room is in the front of the house, I’m figuring that when I finally do make it to bed, it shouldn’t be too bad back there.  This video kind of shows the difference in sound with the front door closed and then opened.
As you can see, I didn’t even move the camera, the only difference was that I opened the front door for the second piece.  It’s quarter past eleven right now, they’re still pounding away out there.  I’m going to try to go to sleep.  Wish me luck.
If I find out what it’s all about, you’ll be sure to hear.

Tissue in hand…


Click HERE.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Interesting Graffiti

Seriously folks, it’s the year 2011, why should I have to remind people that they are not supposed to smoke around the gas pumps?  I asked this lady to get away from the pumps with her lit cigarette today, and her response was “well, can I smoke in my car?”  I should have said “No, Federal law prohibits smoking anywhere near a gas pump.”  Or even “Yeah, as long as you keep the windows up.”  But it was one of those cases where a response completely dumbfounded me and all I could say was “Just stay in the car.”

On the funnier side I found this inside the car wash.  Every month or so we have a service that comes out and power-washes the parking stalls, driveway, around the pumps and inside the car wash.  They use high pressure hot water to get the stains out.  Whoever came this week got creative and left this picture in the car wash.

I don’t know if it is supposed to be a self portrait, or someone he knows, but we’re now calling him the “Powerwash Picasso”.

Before and After

I was cleaning up the office the other day and came across an old filmstrip that must have been from a high school Driver’s Ed course.  It was made in ‘78 or ‘79 for the Motor Vehicle Division of the Utah State Tax Commission.  All I have are the pictures, no dialog that is supposed to go along with them, but one of the pictures simply said “Registering your vehicle”, so my guess is it had to do with, well, registering your vehicle.  One of the slides was taken on 3900 So and Wasatch Blvd, right by the Olympus Hills Mall.  I was up in that area yesterday, so I decided to get a current shot from the same spot.  Here are the before and after shots:

taken sometime in 1978 or 1979

taken on 4/17/11

At some point this summer, I’m going to try to recreate as many of the city shots as possible both from this filmstrip and ones I took, circa 2011.  So, expect to see them on here.  If you want to see the filmstrip in it’s entirety, you can go HERE to see it.  Use the scroll bar on the right side of the projector screen to scroll through the pictures.

Sunday, April 17, 2011