Saturday, June 30, 2012

Lotta nerve banning fireworks.

I’m sure that there are people out there that are incensed that our governor banned fireworks outside of the city limits.

I’m also, sadly, sure that there are people who are going to completely ignore the danger and the ban.

I hope they can find them and make them pay for all the costs that are incurred by the fire they are going to start.

From article, picture by Ravell Call, Deseret News

The latest article I read says we have 6 fires still burning, covering over 121,000 acres of land.  Close to, or even more than, 200 homes (and cabins) have been destroyed and I know of at least one life that has been lost.

  • Clay Springs Fire – 88,000 acres
  • Rosecrest Fire – 650 acres
  • Lost Lake Fire
  • Wood Hollow Fire – 47,295 acres
  • Seely Fire – 15,790 acres
  • New Harmony Fire – 1,826 acres
  • Pole Creek Fire – 1,868 acres
  • Church Camp Fire – 5,750 acres
  • Wolf Den Fire – 1,000 acres
  • Dump Fire

From what I’ve read a whole 3 (about 30%) of the fires were caused by natural phenomena.  That makes the other 70% caused by human mistakes and/or stupidity.

Update – Thanks to the link Lisa gave in her comment, I have a more accurate count on Human vs. Nature wildfires (Note: Previous stats were on all major wildfires that made the news.  The new stats include all reported wildfires):





















Maybe, just maybe, people will think before they set off fireworks and just not do it.  We’ll see.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Can you feel it?

The Earth is slowing down.  According to International Timekeepers and the U.S. Naval Observatory, over the last 100 years the Earth’s spin has slowed down so much that it has added almost 2 milliseconds to a day.

Now I have a response when my students complain about the day dragging on.

So, in order to keep “high noon” a valid label, we’re getting an extra second added to this Saturday.  It officially happens at midnight universal time, which will be at 6 pm here in Salt Lake City.  We will go from 5:59 pm, to 5:60 pm and then to 6:00 pm.

I don’t know about you, but I’m having a party that second.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Building real buildings with Legos.

Ok, they’re not really Legos, but they do snap together to make walls for buildings.

There’s a lot of construction going on in my neighborhood, and I’ve been watching and photographing it. 

I went by the site on the corner of 2100 South and View Street, where they’re building the aptly named 21&View complex.

They’re building it by making these hollow, styrofoam lego-type building blocks, and then filling them with concrete.

They’re referred to as “insulated concrete forms”, so I get the feeling that they are going to remain even after the concrete is dry.

I’m going to have to keep an eye on the progress, see exactly how things work out. 

Take nothing but pictures, and smile.  They’re watching.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Answer to a question.

I use Windows Live Writer for my blog posts.  I find it easier, quicker and more versatile than the blogger interface.

I’ve also been doing video Excel tutorials for an online class my dad is working on, so I’ll answer a question I got regarding Windows Live Writer using the system I have set up for those tutorials.  Hopefully it’s helpful, let me know if you have any more questions.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Summer of 2012.

Thematic Photographic 201: Welcome Summer. 

So what says summer better than a barbeque?

Maybe kids playing in the water?

Or kids chasing the adults around with that water toy that was meant to be stationary?

Who knows, but I love summer.

Monday, June 25, 2012


First I want to say that I do feel bad for the people in Duchesne County who owned the 100+ cabins that were just destroyed in the “Church Camp Fire”.   I have an idea how it feels, I got a small taste of it when I heard there was a wild fire on the mountains outside of Duchesne.  I imagined our property, nicely wooded over most of it, completely burned out, trees gone, shade gone, cabin and campers lost.

I’m sorry that not everyone gets the sense of relief I got when I came home, got on the internet and found out that the fire is at least 20 miles (32 km) from our property.  But I can’t help being happy that it is.

Sunday, June 24, 2012


Friday, June 22, 2012

One big campfire.

30 miles (48km) south of Salt Lake City a 4,000+ acre fire is burning, along the mountains that separate the Salt Lake Valley from Utah Valley.  With the winds coming from the south, the majority of the smoke is blowing right into our valley.

Salt Lake smells like one big campfire.  Now I like the smell of campfires, but only when I can move my chair around and get out of the smoke.

But one thing a smoke filled valley is good for is sunset pictures.  The smoke draws the oranges and reds of the sunset throughout the whole valley.  Here are some pictures from tonight’s sunset.

And a few other shots from tonight:

An airplane, seen through the smoke cloud.

Requisite moon shot.

The same airplane, out from behind the smoke, reflecting the sun.

Traffic on the I-215/I-80 interchange.

Here you can see the smoke cloud above the city.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

You’ve GOT to be kidding!

Since the introduction of the Cayenne, I’ve said it I thought it was ridiculous for Porsche to sell an SUV.  I know that the market for these vehicles is huge, and you almost can’t blame them for grabbing their share.  But it seems to be a sell out for a company that made it’s name producing nothing but high performance sports cars.  As bad as Cadillac and Lincoln selling pickup trucks.  Or Jeep selling 2 wheel drive passenger cars.

Now I find out that Maserati is going to join in the sell out.  They are planning the debut of the currently named Kubang, which they are going to produce and sell with another name in 2014.

To add insult to injury, they are literally going to take a Jeep Grand Wagoneer and put their own skin on it and engine in it.

What happened to doing one thing and doing it right.  A truck was a truck, not luxury cars with a bed.  A Porsche was a sports car and Jeep put all their effort into making awesome 4 wheel drives.

And people wonder why the newest car I own is a 1978 model.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Abstract concept.

The pictures are not abstract, but whatever these kids are doing seems to be.

Tuesday evening I was waiting for some friends for dinner at Rubio’s in the shopping center by Hidden Hollow in Sugarhouse.  I noticed a couple of high school students standing by a big cardboard box in one of the parking stalls.  Before I realized something really interesting was going to happen, two other kids showed up and they all climbed into the box, which had the top and bottom removed so they could pick it up and walk around in it.

They backed out of traffic and, following the normal flow of vehicular traffic, headed out of the parking lot and up 2100 South Street.

I got my camera out of the trunk of the car just in time to see them leaving the parking lot, and then ran around the back of some buildings in their direction and caught up to them about a half block up, at the Chick-fil-A.

They headed across their parking lot and got into the drive-thru line.

They noticed me taking pictures of them as they were being kicked out of the drive thru line by one of the Chick-fil-A employees, so I decided to head back to Rubio’s to see if my friends had shown up.

How did this whole thing start? What were they doing?  Where did they go from there?  Guess I’ll never know for sure.