flickr-free-ic3d pan white
View allAll Photos Tagged How+to+Buy+Office+365

Sugar checks out the new indoor plant that Scott bought for me today when we went to Walmart. It's a Cyclamen and I really know nothing about how to grow it but I thought the blooms were very pretty and new flowers always cheer me up :))

 

I was trying to get some close-ups of the blooms but she kept sticking her nose into it. I don't mind just as long as she doesn't turn it into a litter box.

 

Back to work tomorrow for me...I dread going in because I haven't actually been in the office since last Wednesday because of the workshop I had to attend on Thursday and Friday. I know there's going to be lots of catching up to do and since there's no one to fill in for me when I'm out, there's always a surprise or two waiting for me as soon as I walk in - and not the good kind of surprises either...

 

My eye is better and that's a relief. Snow's in the forecast for Wed. night / Thursday...I'd love to get some snow pictures :))

 

I hope you've had a nice Tuesday!

When autumn comes, it doesnt ask

It just walks in where it left you last

And you never know when it starts

Until there's fog inside the glass around your summer heart

 

I don't want summer to end. :'(( School starts a week from today...how depressing is that? But on a happier note I start my new job at the pediatrician's office tomorrow :) I'll be working 9-5 every day this week..! :)

Oops...nothing new to upload today. This is from Hilton Head in June...I miss it dearly. It's the sister picture to this...I guess the only difference was it started getting darker here. Today Logan and I went tubing in Helen, GA...a must do. It was way too crowded; there must have been at least 300+ people on the river. But now we can say we did it, at least. :) Then we went to Kroger and he, Preston and I put 50 cents each into those little twisty machines that have the cheap little toys and got these precious mustaches...that are awesome. :) Haha :D Today was neat-o.

 

PS...AHHHHH!!!! Flickr just notified me that I have uploaded 170 pictures and in order to see all of my photos after I upload 200, I have to upgrade to pro. Lame :( If someone wants to buy me a pro account, I'd love you forever. I'm not sure who in their right minds would buy someone else an account, but I'm just offering the suggestion...I would DEFINITELY love you forever. :)

 

(Day 61/365, July 30, 2010)

Seriously. Look at my roots. And I do not have a nose piercing. There is something INSIDE the lens. Anyone know how to fix that?

Oh yeah it's Friday!

 

I got to leave early from work today and pick the kids up with Lydia, which was sweet.

 

In fact work was quite relaxed today, I guess because it's Friday we were all winding down for the weekend so we had a good laugh.

 

Ben seemed to love being at the after school club he goes to, he was in such a good mood when we picked him up and buzzing all over the place! Joe and Ben were both in a much better mood than yesterday so we had a nice evening with them.

 

I wish I could've posted something a little lighter to reflect the fact that I've actually had a ruddy good day today - the only reason this shot is so dark is because I had no other ideas. My mind is a barren wasteland of creativity at the moment.

 

Having said all that, I'm quite pleased to have got out of the house for a few of my shots this week, even if it has just been as far as my back garden, or the office. Looking back I'm quite pleased with my shots over the last five days or so . . . granted they were atrocious straight out of camera but Lighroom did it's thing and saved them. Just.

 

I've basically had to get out of the house because of my lack of ideas, which in retrospect has been a good thing as it's introduced a bit of variety into my 365, and made me think a bit more about composition and stuff. I'm hoping this will continue, I've just got to think of some other places I can easily reach on foot and that won't encroach on family time.

 

As for today's shot, I'm revisiting good old ghetto lighting in an absence of any better ideas. The admittedly small twist is I angled the shot so I was shooting at a downwards angle and looking up. The lighting comes from that weird circular LCD light Lydia bought, which I've used before for day 49.

 

I think this is a first for my 365 because apart from a slight crop this shot is straight out of camera - a rare feat indeed.

 

I did want to take a shot in the back garden but it was raining and I'm no expert but I'm guessing that rain and an SLR that doesn't belong to me don't mix too good, so I settled for some indoors moody lighting instead.

 

It's my day 100 tomorrow and all week I've been trying to think of something uber-cool to do with no success. I do have one idea but it's going to be difficult with my limited knowledge of lighting and lack of the right equipment to pull it off. Oh yeah and I had another idea but I know that Daz. and Stephen Poff have done it before so it feels like a bit of a steal. And again I don't actually think I have the know-how or gear to make it work.

 

Maybe I should stop worrying and just see what pans out? It's day 365 I really need to worry about - I'm petrified of bowing out with a lame ass shot!

 

Finally, I have to mention my band of the month again - Glasvegas.

 

I've listened to almost nothing else all week. It's totally different to what I'd normally listen to but there's something about their music that sends jolts down my spine.

 

I read a review of their album in Q magazine last week that sums them up perfectly:

 

"The thrill of Glasvegas is their marriage of tragic content with joyful noise".

 

Never have truer words been spoken. If you listen to it you don't know whether to feel sad or bounce up and down like a lunatic. The narrative within the songs is so heartwrenching at times (see Flowers and Football Tops) but the music is so widescreen and epic you don't know what to do with yourself.

 

Geraldine is my favourite from the album, it's so simple I worked it out on my acoustic without listening to it and humming the melody but . . . wow. I can't tell you how much I love that song.

 

The fact that it's sung in a really strong Scottish accent makes the whole thing ten times better and more personal for me - I have Scottish relatives and very strong ties to Scotland. I'd move there in a heartbeat if I could convince Lydia.

 

So. Go give them a listen. They are awesome.

 

Yep. Big. On black.

Turkish: [looks at the caravan] Look at it. How am I suppose to run this thing from that? We'll need a proper office. I want a new one, Tommy. You're going to buy it for me.

Tommy: Why me?

Turkish: Well, you know about caravans.

Tommy: How's that?

Turkish: You spent a summer in one, which means you know more than me. And I don't want to have my pants pulled down over the price.

Tommy: What's wrong with this one?

Turkish: [Pulls the caravan's door from its hinges] Oh, nothing, Tommy. It's tip top. It's just I'm not sure about the colour.

 

I'm excited... Tomorrow the ArchedRoof book final proof should arrive!

 

EXPLORED: Highest position: 414 on Tuesday, March 17, 2009

*That Hell-Bound Train*

by Robert Bloch (1958)

 

When Martin was a little boy, his daddy was a Railroad Man. Daddy never rode the high iron, but he walked the tracks for the CB&Q, and he was proud of his job. And every night when he got drunk, he sang this old song about That Hell-Bound Train.

 

Martin didn't quite remember any of the words, but he couldn't forget the way his Daddy sang them out. And when Daddy made the mistake of getting drunk in the afternoon and got squeezed between a Pennsy tank-car and an AT&SF gondola, Martin sort of wondered why the Brotherhood didn't sing the song at his funeral.

After that, things didn't go so good for Martin, but somehow he always recalled Daddy's song. When Mom up and ran off with a traveling salesman from Keokuk (Daddy must have turned over in his grave, knowing she'd done such a thing, and with a passenger, too!) Martin hummed the tune to himself every night in the Orphan Home. And after Martin himself ran away, he used to whistle the song softly at night in the jungles, after the other bindlestiffs were asleep.

Martin was on the road for four-five years before he realized he wasn't getting anyplace. Of course he'd tried his hand at a lot of things — picking fruit in Oregon, washing dishes in a Montana hash-house, stealing hubcaps in Denver and tires in Oklahoma City — but by the time he'd put in six months on the chain gang down in Alabama he knew he had no future drifting around this way on his own.

 

So he tried to get on the railroad like his daddy had and they told him that times were bad. But Martin couldn't keep away from the railroads. Wherever he traveled, he rode the rods; he'd rather hop a freight heading north in sub-zero weather than lift his thumb to hitch a ride with a Cadillac headed for Florida. Whenever he managed to get hold of a can of Sterno, he'd sit there under a nice warm culvert, think about the old days, and often as not he'd hum the song about That Hell-Bound Train. That was the train the drunks and the sinners rode — the gambling men and the grifters, the big-time spenders, the skirt-chasers, and all the jolly crew. It would be really fine to take a trip in such good company, but Martin didn't like to think of what happened when that train finally pulled into the Depot Way Down Yonder. He didn't figure on spending eternity stoking boilers in Hell, without even a Company Union to protect him. Still, it would be a lovely ride. If there was such a thing as a Hell-Bound Train. Which, of course, there wasn't.

At least Martin didn't think there was, until that evening when he found himself walking the tracks heading south, just outside of Appleton Junction. The night was cold and dark, the way November nights are in the Fox River Valley, and he knew he'd have to work his way down to New Orleans for the winter, or maybe even Texas. Somehow he didn't much feel like going, even though he'd heard tell that a lot of those Texas automobiles had solid gold hub-caps.

 

No sir, he just wasn't cut out for petty larceny. It was worse than a sin — it was unprofitable, too.

Bad enough to do the Devil's work, but then to get such miserable pay on top of it! Maybe he'd better let the Salvation Army convert him.

Martin trudged along humming Daddy's song, waiting for a rattler to pull out of the Junction behind him. He'd have to catch it — there was nothing else for him to do.

But the first train to come along came from the other direction, roaring toward him along the track from the south.

Martin peered ahead, but his eyes couldn't match his ears, and so far all he could recognize was the sound. It was a train, though; he felt the steel shudder and sing beneath his feet.

And yet, how could it be? The next station south was Neenah-Menasha, and there was nothing due out of there for hours.

 

The clouds were thick overhead, and the field mists rolled like a cold fog in a November midnight. Even so, Martin should have been able to see the headlight as the train rushed on. But there was only the whistle, screaming out of the black throat of the night. Martin could recognize the equipment of just about any locomotive ever built, but he'd never heard a whistle that sounded like this one. It wasn't signaling; it was screaming like a lost soul.

He stepped to one side, for the train was almost on top of him now. And suddenly there it was, looming along the tracks and grinding to a stop in less time than he'd believed possible. The wheels hadn't been oiled, because they screamed too, screamed like the damned. But the train slid to a halt and the screams died away into a series of low, groaning sounds, and Martin looked up and saw that this was a passenger train. It was big and black, without a single light shining in the engine cab or any of the long string of cars; Martin couldn't read any lettering on the sides, but he was pretty sure this train didn't belong on the Northwestern Road.

 

He was even more sure when he saw the man clamber down out of the forward car. There was something wrong about the way he walked, as though one of his feet dragged, and about the lantern he carried. The lantern was dark, and the man held it up to his mouth and blew, and instantly it glowed redly. You don't have to be a member of the Railway Brotherhood to know that this is a mighty peculiar way of lighting a lantern.

As the figure approached, Martin recognized the conductor's cap perched on his head, and this made him feel a little better for a moment — until he noticed that it was worn a bit too high, as though there might be something sticking up on the forehead underneath it.Still, Martin knew his manners, and when the man smiled at him, he said, "Good evening, Mr. Conductor."

"Good evening, Martin."

"How did you know my name?"

 

The man shrugged. "How did you know I was the Conductor?"

"You are, aren't you?"

"To you, yes. Although other people, in other walks of life, may recognize me in different roles. For instance, you ought to see what I look like to the folks out in Hollywood." The man grinned. "I travel a great deal," he explained.

"What brings you here?" Martin asked.

 

"Why, you ought to know the answer to that, Martin. I came because you needed me. Tonight, I suddenly realized you were backsliding.

Thinking of joining the Salvation Army, weren't you?"

 

"Well — " Martin hesitated.

"Don't be ashamed. To err is human, as somebody-or-other-once said. Reader's Digest, wasn't it? Never mind.

The point is, I felt you needed me. So I switched over and came your way.""What for?"

"Why, to offer you a ride, of course. Isn't it better to travel comfortably by train than to march along the cold streets

behind a Salvation Army band? Hard on the feet, they tell me, and even harder on the eardrums."

 

"I'm not sure I'd care to ride your train, sir," Martin said. "Considering where I'm likely to end up."

 

"Ah, yes. The old argument." The Conductor sighed. "I suppose you'd prefer some sort of bargain, is that it?"

"Exactly," Martin answered.

"Well, I'm afraid I'm all through with that sort of thing. There's no shortage of prospective passengers anymore. Why should I offer you any special inducements?"

"You must want me, or else you wouldn't have bothered to go out of your way to find me."

 

The Conductor sighed again. "There you have a point. Pride was always my besetting weakness, I admit. And somehow I'd hate to lose you

to the competition, after thinking of you as my own all these years." He hesitated. "Yes, I'm prepared to deal with you on your own terms, if you insist."

"The terms?" Martin asked.

"Standard proposition. Anything you want."

 

"Ah," said Martin.

"But I warn you in advance, there'll be no tricks. I'll grant you any wish you can name — but in return,

you must promise to ride the train when the time comes."

"Suppose it never comes?"

"It will."

"Suppose I've got the kind of a wish that will keep me off forever?"

"There is no such wish."

"Don't be too sure."

 

"Let me worry about that," the Conductor told him. "No matter what you have in mind, I warn you that I'll collect in the end. And there'll be none of this last-minute hocus-pocus, either. No last-hour repentances, no blonde frauleins or fancy lawyers showing up to get you off. I offer a clean deal. That is to say, you'll get what you want, and I'll get what I want.""I've heard you trick people. They say you're worse than a used-car salesman."

"Now, wait a minute — "

"I apologize," Martin said, hastily. "But it is supposed to be a fact that you can't be trusted."

"I admit it. On the other hand, you seem to think you have found a way out."

 

"A sure-fire proposition."

"Sure-fire? Very funny!" The man began to chuckle, then halted. "But we waste valuable time, Martin. Let's get down to cases. What do you want from me?"

Martin took a deep breath. "I want to be able to stop Time."

"Right now?"

"No. Not yet. And not for everybody. I realize that would be impossible, of course. But I want to be able to stop Time for myself. Just once, in the future. Whenever I get to a point where I know I'm happy and contented, that's where I'd like to stop. So I can just keep on being happy forever."

"That's quite a proposition," the Conductor mused. "I've got to admit I've never heard anything just like it before — and believe me, I've listened to some lulus in my day." He grinned at Martin. "You've really been thinking about this, haven't you?"

 

"for years," Martin admitted. Then he coughed. "Well, what do you say?"

"It's not impossible, in terms of your own subjective time-sense," the Conductor murmured. "Yes, I think it could be arranged."

"But I mean really to stop. Not for me just to imagine it."

"I understand. And it can be done."

"Then you'll agree?"

"Why not? I promised you, didn't I? Give me your hand."

Martin hesitated. "Will it hurt very much? I mean, I don't like the sight of blood, and — "

"Nonsense! You've been listening to a lot of poppycock. We already have made our bargain, my boy. I merely intend to put something into your hand. The ways and means of fulfilling your wish. After all, there's no telling at just what moment you may decide to exercise the agreement, and I can't drop everything and come running. So it's better if you can regulate matters for yourself."

"You're going to give me a Time-stopper?"

 

"That's the general idea. As soon as I can decide what would be practical." The Conductor hesitated. "Ah, the very thing! Here, take my watch."

He pulled it out of his vest-pocket; a railroad watch in a silver case. He opened the back and made a delicate adjustment; Martin tried to see just exactly what he was doing, but the fingers moved in a blinding blur.

"There we are." The Conductor smiled. "It's all set, now. When you finally decide where you'd like to call a halt, merely turn the stem in reverse and unwind the watch until it stops. When it stops, Time stops, for you. Simple enough?" And the Conductor dropped the watch into Martin's hand.

 

The young man closed his fingers tightly around the case. "That's all there is to it, eh?"

"Absolutely. But remember — you can stop the watch only once. So you'd better make sure that you're satisfied with the

moment you choose to prolong. I caution you in all fairness; make very certain of your choice."

"I will." Martin grinned. "And since you've been so fair about it, I'll be fair, too. There's one thing you seem to have forgotten.

It doesn't really matter what moment I choose. Because once I stop Time for myself, that means I stay where I am forever.

I'll never have to get any older. And if I don't get any older, I'll never die. And if I never die, then I'll never have to take a ride on your train."

The Conductor turned away. His shoulders shook convulsively, and he may have been crying. "And you said I was worse than a used-car salesman," he gasped, in a strangled voice.

Then he wandered off into the fog, and the train-whistle gave an impatient shriek, and all at once it was moving swiftly down the track, rumbling out of sight in the darkness.

 

Martin stood there, blinking down at the silver watch in his hand. If it wasn't that he could actually see it and feel it there, and if he couldn't smell that peculiar odor, he might have thought he'd imagined the whole thing from start to finish — train, Conductor, bargain, and all.

But he had the watch, and he could recognize the scent left by the train as it departed, even though there aren't many locomotives around that use sulphur and brimstone as fuel.

And he had no doubts about his bargain. That's what came of thinking things through to a logical conclusion. Some fools would have settled for wealth, or power, or Kim Novak. Daddy might have sold out for a fifth of whiskey.Martin knew that he'd made a better deal. Better? It was foolproof. All he needed to do now was choose his moment.

 

He put the watch in his pocket and started back down the railroad track. He hadn't really had a destination in mind before, but he did now. He was going to find a moment of happiness…

Now young Martin wasn't altogether a ninny. He realized perfectly well that happiness is a relative thing; there are conditions and degrees of contentment, and they vary with one's lot in life. As a hobo, he was often satisfied with a warm handout, a double-length bench in the park, or a can of Sterno made in 1957 (a vintage year). Many a time he had reached a state of momentary bliss through such simple agencies, but he was aware that there were better things. Martin determined to seek them out.

Within two days he was in the great city of Chicago. Quite naturally, he drifted over to West Madison Street, and there he took steps to elevate his role in life. He became a city bum, a panhandler, a moocher. Within a week he had risen to the point where happiness was a meal in a regular one-arm luncheon joint, a two-bit flop on a real army cot in a real flophouse, and a full fifth of muscatel.

 

There was a night, after enjoying all three of these luxuries to the full, when Martin thought of unwinding his watch at the pinnacle of intoxication. But he also thought of the faces of the honest johns he'd braced for a handout today. Sure, they were squares, but they were prosperous. They wore good clothes, held good jobs, drove nice cars. And for them, happiness was even more ecstatic — they ate dinner in fine hotels, they slept on innerspring mattresses, they drank blended whiskey.

 

Squares or no, they had something there. Martin fingered his watch, put aside the temptation to hock it for another bottle of muscatel, and went to sleep determined to get himself a job and improve his happiness-quotient.When he awoke he had a hangover, but the determination was still with him. Before the month was out Martin was working for a general contractor over on the South Side, at one of the big rehabilitation projects. He hated the grind, but the pay was good, and pretty soon he got himself a one-room apartment out on Blue Island Avenue. He was accustomed to eating in decent restaurants now, and he bought himself a comfortable bed, and every Saturday night he went down to the corner tavern. It was all very pleasant, but —

The foreman liked his work and promised him a raise in a month. If he waited around, the raise would mean that he could afford a second-hand car. With a car, he could even start picking up a girl for a date now and then. Other fellows on the job did, and they seemed pretty happy.

 

So Martin kept on working, and the raise came through and the car came through and pretty soon a couple of girls came through.

The first time it happened, he wanted to unwind his watch immediately. Until he got to thinking about what some of the older men always said. There was a guy named Charlie, for example, who worked alongside him on the hoist. "When you're young and don't know the score, maybe you get a kick out of running around with those pigs. But after a while, you want something better. A nice girl of your own. That's the ticket."

Martin felt he owed it to himself to find out. If he didn't like it better, he could always go back to what he had.

Almost six months went by before Martin met Lillian Gillis. By that time he'd had another promotion and was working inside, in the office. They made him go to night school to learn how to do simple bookkeeping, but it meant another fifteen bucks extra a week, and it was nicer working indoors.

And Lillian was a lot of fun. When she told him she'd marry him, Martin was almost sure that the time was now. Except that she was sort of — well, she was a nice girl, and she said they'd have to wait until they were married. Of course, Martin couldn't expect to marry her until he had a little more money saved up, and another raise would help, too.

That took a year. Martin was patient, because he knew it was going to be worth it. Every time he had any doubts, he took out his watch and looked at it. But he never showed it to Lillian, or anybody else. Most of the other men wore expensive wristwatches and the old silver railroad watch looked just a little cheap.

 

Martin smiled as he gazed at the stem. Just a few twists and he'd have something none of these other poor working slobs would ever have. Permanent satisfaction, with his blushing bride — Only getting married turned out to be just the beginning. Sure, it was wonderful, but Lillian told him how much better things would be if they could move into a new place and fix it up. Martin wanted decent furniture, a TV set, a nice car.

So he started taking night courses and got a promotion to the front office. With the baby coming, he wanted to stick around and see his son arrive. And when it came, he realized he'd have to wait until it got a little older, started to walk and talk and develop a personality of its own.

About this time the company sent him out on the road as a trouble-shooter on some of those other jobs, and now he was eating at those good hotels, living high on the hog and the expense-account. More than once he was tempted to unwind his watch. This was the good life… Of course, it would be even better if he just didn't have to work. Sooner or later, if he could cut in on one of the company deals, he could make a pile and retire. Then everything would be ideal. It happened, but it took time. Martin's son was going to high school before he really got up there into the chips. Martin got a strong hunch that it was now or never, because he wasn't exactly a kid anymore.

But right about then he met Sherry Westcott, and she didn't seem to think he was middle-aged at all, in spite of the way he was losing hair and adding stomach. She taught him that a toupee could cover the bald spot and a cummerbund could cover the pot-gut. In fact, she taught him quite a lot and he so enjoyed learning that he actually took out his watch and prepared to unwind it.

 

Unfortunately, he chose the very moment that the private detectives broke down the door of the hotel room, and then there was a long stretch of time when Martin was so busy fighting the divorce action that he couldn't honestly say he was enjoying any given moment.

When he made the final settlement with Lil he was broke again, and Sherry didn't seem to think he was so young, after all. So he squared his shoulders and went back to work.

He made his pile, eventually, but it took longer this time, and there wasn't much chance to have fun along the way. The fancy dames in the fancy cocktail lounges didn't seem to interest him anymore, and neither did the liquor. Besides, the Doc had warned him off that.

But there were other pleasures for a rich man to investigate. Travel, for instance — and not riding the rods from one hick burg to another, either. Martin went around the world by plane and luxury liner. For a while it seemed as though he would find his moment after all, visiting the Taj Mahal by moonlight. Martin pulled out the battered old watch-case, and got ready to unwind it. Nobody else was there to watch him —

And that's why he hesitated. Sure, this was an enjoyable moment, but he was alone. Lil and the kid were gone, Sherry was gone, and somehow he'd never had time to make any friends. Maybe if he found new congenial people, he'd have the ultimate happiness. That must be the answer — it wasn't just money or power or sex or seeing beautiful things. The real satisfaction lay in friendship.So on the boat trip home, Martin tried to strike up a few acquaintances at the ship's bar. But all these people were much younger, and Martin had nothing in common with them. Also they wanted to dance and drink, and Martin wasn't in condition to appreciate such pastimes. Nevertheless, he tried.

Perhaps that's why he had the little accident the day before they docked in San Francisco. "Little accident" was the ship's doctor's way of describing it, but Martin noticed he looked very grave when he told him to stay in bed, and he'd called an ambulance to meet the liner at the dock and take the patient right to the hospital.

 

At the hospital, all the expensive treatment and the expensive smiles and the expensive words didn't fool Martin any. He was an old man with a bad heart,

and they thought he was going to die.But he could fool them. He still had the watch. He found it in his coat when he put on his clothes and sneaked

out of the hospital.He didn't have to die. He could cheat death with a single gesture — and he intended to do it as a free man, out there under a free sky.

That was the real secret of happiness. He understood it now. Not even friendship meant as much as freedom.

This was the best thing of all — to be free of friends or family or the furies of the flesh.

Martin walked slowly beside the embankment under the night sky. Come to think of it, he was just about back where he'd started,

so many years ago. But the moment was good, good enough to prolong forever. Once a bum, always a bum.

 

He smiled as he thought about it, and then the smile twisted sharply and suddenly, like the pain twisting sharply and suddenly in

his chest. The world began to spin and he fell down on the side of the embankment.

He couldn't see very well, but he was still conscious, and he knew what had happened. Another stroke, and a bad one. Maybe this was it.

Except that he wouldn't be a fool any longer. He wouldn't wait to see what was still around the corner.

 

Right now was his chance to use his power and save his life. And he was going to do it. He could still move, nothing could stop him.

He groped in his pocket and pulled out the old silver watch, fumbling with the stem. A few twists and he'd cheat death, he'd never have to

ride that Hell-Bound Train. He could go on forever. Forever.Martin had never really considered the word before. To go on forever — but how?

Did he want to go on forever, like this; a sick old man,lying helplessly here in the grass?

No. He couldn't do it. He wouldn't do it. And suddenly he wanted very much to cry, because he knew that somewhere along the line

he'd outsmarted himself. And now it was too late. His eyes dimmed, there was a roaring in his ears…

He recognized the roaring, of course, and he wasn't at all surprised to see the train come rushing out of the fog up there on the embankment.

He wasn't surprised when it stopped, either, or when the Conductor climbed off and walked slowly toward him.

The Conductor hadn't changed a bit. Even his grin was still the same.

 

"Hello, Martin," he said. "All aboard."

"I know," Martin whispered. "But you'll have to carry me. I can't walk. I'm not even really talking anymore, am I?"

"Yes you are," the Conductor said. "I can hear you fine. And you can walk, too." He leaned down and placed his hand on

Martin's chest. There was a moment of icy numbness, and then, sure enough, Martin could walk after all.

He got up and followed the Conductor along the slope, moving to the side of the train.

"In here?" he asked.

 

"No, the next car," the Conductor murmured. "I guess you're entitled to ride Pullman. After all, you're quite a successful man.

You've tasted the joys of wealth and position and prestige. You've known the pleasures of marriage and fatherhood. You've sampled

the delights of dining and drinking and debauchery, too, and you traveled high, wide, and handsome. So let's not have any last-minute recriminations."

"All right," Martin sighed. "I can't blame you for my mistakes. On the other hand, you can't take credit for what happened,

either. I worked for everything I got. I did it all on my own. I didn't even need your watch."

"So you didn't," the Conductor said, smiling. "But would you mind giving it back to me now?"

"Need it for the next sucker, eh?" Martin muttered.

"Perhaps."

 

Something about the way he said it made Martin look up. He tried to see the Conductor's eyes, but the brim of his cap cast a shadow.

So Martin looked down at the watch instead."Tell me something," he said, softly. "If I give you the watch, what will you do with it?"

"Why, throw it into the ditch," the Conductor told him. "That's all I'll do with it." And he held out his hand.

"What if somebody comes along and finds it? And twists the stem backward, and stops Time?"

"Nobody would do that," the Conductor murmured. "Even if they knew."

"You mean, it was all a trick? This is only an ordinary, cheap watch?"

"I didn't say that," whispered the Conductor. "I only said that no one has ever twisted the stem backward.

They've all been like you, Martin — looking ahead to find that perfect happiness. Waiting for the moment that never comes."

 

The Conductor held out his hand again.

Martin sighed and shook his head. "You cheated me after all."

"You cheated yourself, Martin. And now you're going to ride that Hell-Bound Train."

 

He pushed Martin up the steps and into the car ahead. As he entered, the train began to move and the whistle screamed. And Martin stood there in the swaying Pullman, gazing down the aisle at the other passengers. He could see them sitting there, and somehow it didn't seem strange at all.

Here they were; the drunks and the sinners, the gambling men and the grifters, the big-time spenders, the skirt-chasers, and all the jolly crew. They knew where they were going, of course, but they didn't seem to give a damn. The blinds were drawn on the windows, yet it was light inside, and they were all living it up — singing and passing the bottle and roaring with laughter, throwing the dice and telling their jokes and bragging their big brags, just the way Daddy used to sing about them in the old song.

 

"Mighty nice traveling companions," Martin said. "Why, I've never seen such a pleasant bunch of people. I mean, they seem to be really enjoying themselves!"

The Conductor shrugged. "I'm afraid things won't be quite so jazzy when we pull into that Depot Way Down Yonder."

For the third time, he held out his hand. "Now, before you sit down, if you'll just give me that watch. A bargain's a bargain—"

Martin smiled. "A bargain's a bargain," he echoed. "I agreed to ride your train if I could stop Time when I found the right moment of happiness.

And I think I'm about as happy right here as I've ever been."

 

Very slowly, Martin took hold of the silver watch-stem."No!" gasped the Conductor."No!" But the watch-stem turned.

"Do you realize what you've done?" the Conductor yelled. "Now we'll never reach the Depot! We'll just go on riding, all of us — forever!"

Martin grinned. "I know," he said. "But the fun is in the trip, not the destination. You taught me that. And I'm looking forward to a wonderful trip. Look, maybe I can even help. If you were to find me another one of those caps, now, and let me keep this watch—"

 

And that's the way it finally worked out. Wearing his cap and carrying his battered old silver watch, there's no happier person in or out of this world — now and forever — than Martin. Martin, the new Brakeman on That Hellbound Train.

These seem to be absolutely ubiquitous and after being a sceptic myself, now I have had one for a few weeks know why. The tie in to itunes and the appstore is a killer idea. You would have thought that Microsoft would have worked that out after the rise of the ipod and the concept of buying music by that channel.

 

Now, Windows mobile 7 is planned to cover the sames bases with the addition of a 'Bing' button (WTF?), but two years too late. While Apple look like your creative younger art school sister, Microsoft might be your older richer fuddy duddy sibling, set in his old ways.

 

The iPhone was originally released in 2007. An iPhone functions as a rather useful camera phone with the usual texting etc. It has its own portable media player, Safari a great pinch and stretch browser with Wi-Fi connectivity etc.

 

There are well over 200,000 apps each of which must approved by Apple. Presumably Apple take a few pennies from all those downloads. They tend to be the funky consumer apps, not really ones for business however. I am still looking for one that will allow me to find where there is not a Tesco store.

 

Some of the apps I have been playing with on mine include Lomo (a toy camera app), Autostitch (panorama software), Shazam (for identifying that obscure music track) and Met Office (to see when the rain will be arriving).

 

More iPhones than Blackberry's seem to be flying off the shelves with approching 40 million sold across the world. Also, these covers which are necessary to protect your iPhone. Of course you can get the gold and diamond covers, but beware, all that glitters may not be gold(!)

 

NB: Like all the images on this stream, full size prints up to 30x20inches are available, Check my profile for how to contact me.

 

Checkout more Cheshire images from my photostream.

 

Keep in touch, add me as a contact www.flickr.com/relationship.gne?id=33062170@N08 so I can follow all your new uploads.

 

(c) Hotpix / HotpixUK Tony Smith - Hotpix.freeserve.co.uk WDCC

The now arts centre, original guildhall and jail on St Peter’s Hill in Grantham was commissioned in 1866 by Mayor Thomas Winter after criminal Jesse Dale, who was serving 15 years for stealing, twice walked out of the town’s original jail in 1864.

 

This original Guildhall and jail building stood on the corner of Guildhall Street and High Street and dated from 1787. After Jesse’s second escape, the governor at the time William Mayer was sacked and a government inspector condemned the building. The inmates had to be sent to Lincoln. The site of the demolished Guildhall was bought by the Stamford, Boston and Spalding Bank (later Barclays) and is now home to the Goose at the Bank pub. To set the scene, a visitor to beerinthe evening described it thus: "Usually one cask beer available. This pub seems to attract the local mongs and low-life. Tracksuits are a must!". "Knobcakes the lot of them"!

 

Back to the story, on the current Guildhall site was an old school – The Firs – housed in a former town house. This and the adjoining land were bought for £2,100. Lincoln architect William Watkins drew up the design for the new building and the work was carried out Mr Wartnaby, of Little Gonerby, for £7,260.

 

The original Guildhall was made up of three separate buildings - the main building which housed a ballroom and courtroom (or session’s hall), a governor’s residence and a jail for up to 18 men and women on two floors.

 

However, although it seemed no expense had been spared on the building, officers from the South Lincolnshire Militia were less than happy to find it was missing a certain facility when they booked to use the hall – a toilet. At this point, councillors agreed one should be installed to avoid further embarrassment.

 

The new Guildhall was also home to the four-sided clock which was the first time many of the town’s residents would have had the luxury of telling the time with any accuracy. It was this fact that coined the local phrase ‘under the clock’ meaning, ‘to appear in court’.

 

As late as 1930, publican Frank Milner of the Victoria Hotel, Commercial Road, was let off with a caution for serving out of hours because he set his time by the clock which was, and still is, a little slow.

 

In 1882 an area of the building was leased to cigar makers Robinson and Barnsdale and 15 years later, to the Grantham Technical Institute. Staff who work at the Guildhall today are convinced it is home to a cigar-smoking ghost as, on occasions, the strong smell of cigar smoke will appear in one or more rooms and then after a few minutes, disappear as quickly as it came.

 

In 1972, a dome replaced the original wrought ironwork over the clock tower and in 1974, the magistrates moved to the London Road, now home to Belvoir Property Management. In the same year, South Kesteven District Council was born and the Grantham Borough Council ceased to exist.

 

Apart from the Mayor’s Parlour, much of the building was redundant until 1991 when it was redesigned by Sleaford architect Tim Benton and re-opened as the council owned Guildhall Arts Centre at a cost of £1.2 million.

 

This renovation work saw the session’s hall transformed into the 210-seat theatre and the ballroom was redecorated to its former glory, with the main entrance being at the side of the building. The jail area was converted into the box office.

 

In 2010 an exciting refurbishment, saw the box office move to the front of the building and the grand victorian entrance being used once more, a new coffee shop was housed in the jail where the kitchen area is still referred to as ‘the back cell.’.

 

As can be seen it is tastefully illuminated at night, easily seen when avoiding the Goose at the bank!

 

NB: Like all the images on this stream, full size prints up to 30x20inches are available, Check my profile for how to contact me.

 

Checkout more buildings from my photostream.

 

Keep in touch, add me as a contact www.flickr.com/relationship.gne?id=33062170@N08 so I can follow all your new uploads.

 

(c) Hotpix / HotpixUK Tony Smith - Hotpix.freeserve.co.uk WDCC

To my dear friends around the world,

  

About one year ago photography was my most precious hobby. I really liked it and took photos every now and then. I somehow felt that if I wanted to take this thing to the next level, I had to do something extraordinary. A couple of days before New Year's Eve I decided to pull a 365er since I've seen other photographers do it. It really felt like a great idea and I just went for it. What could possibly happen?

  

I signed up for FlickR on January 1st 2013. I wanted to have some sort of diary of the process and the chance to maybe get an audience. I will never forget the moment where the first person favorited a photo of mine and even commented it. It was amazing to see that there are others out there that seem to like what I'm seeing and feeling. As the days and weeks passed by, I still wasn't too sure about what I wanted to shoot. As you can see, my first uploads don't really have a common theme and idea. It was great that way, but after a while I lacked the fuel that kept my machine running. I didn't really have a motor behind my works.

  

After a couple of weeks street photography more and more became an interest of mine. What made me feel really insecure in the first 1-2 months was the fact, that my street photography was in a way different compared to the rest of the street photography community. I just had these typical street shots in black and white with lots of things going on in them in mind and I just couldn't do it. I tried and tried and thought that after I was lousy at portrait photography, this whole photography thing wasn't meant for me. I knew I had something in me, but I just couldn't really set if free. After a while I said to myself "You know what Marius, this is your project and life and you can do whatever you think is right! Most people don't care for your project anyways...". With this attitude in mind I just kept going to give street photography my signture. It felt amazing to take photos the way I felt 'em without thinking in terms of genres and rules. I felt as though I broke my chains for the first time.

  

"Urban Lights", the second most favorited photo I took changed everything back then. As a huge fan of www.reddit.com I submitted this photo to the international Reddit & WideAngle Photo contest just for the fun of it. I never forget the moment when they told me that I was the 1st winner of this contest with a very high quality. I was in tears since this project meant and still means the world to me. This was one of the first moments where I realized that maybe my photography might better than I think. Although awards don't really mean anything to me, it felt amazing to know that even judges liked what I was doing. During the course of the project I won 10 awards around the world and made it to 6 shortlists. These awards made me happy, but I'll never forget the first time someone told me that they started out with photography because of me or that I inspired them. This still puts a smile on my face that no award of prize money could ever give me. I really don't care for money, I care for people.

  

This project changed everything. At first it was a nice change of scene after sitting in the office for 9-10 hours a day as a market researcher for an international media agency. However, after 5-6 months I felt that this photography thing became more important to me than my job. I used every free minute I had to take new shots and did my post processing till 2AM every day. All of a sudden my job that I got straight out of college and that I went to college for (communication science, psychology and marketing) was the change of scenary for me. My heart and soul were commited to my photography. It wasn't a hobby anymore and it wasn't just a passion of mine - it was my life.

  

It wasn't until South Korea that I truly realized that. I took three weeks off to just get some shooting done. Walking down the streets of Seoul got me thinking. How amazing would it be to just travel around the world and take photos. This would be a dream of a life. People over there asked me what I'm doing for a living. I couldn't tell them that I'm a market researcher since I wasn't doing that anymore. I was doing that for a living, but I was living for photography. I always told 'em that and it felt right. Truly right. When I got back from Korea back to my everday life we had a new CEO that wanted to talk to everyone since he was new to the office. He sat down with me and at the end of our conversation he asked me how long I'll stay here since fluctuation was a huge problem. I told him "Look, I could tell you anything right now, but I'm gonna be honest with you. I want to live my dream and I'm gonna leave soon." This was really hard but liberating to say. It was a huuuuge step for me. I felt somehow miserable and relieved for days to come. I told my other supervisors one hour after our talk and handed in my notice one week later. It takes 4 month to get out of my job, so I'm gonna be free in March to live my dream. Even if my old job pays well and offers me a high standard of living, that's not what I want in life. I don't care for money neither do I care for materialistic happiness. True happiness can't be bought. It's the simple things in life like breathing the air, looking at the stars, eating good food, laughing and sharing moments with wonderful people. That's why I love life and art.

  

I always dreamed of this kind of life. Quite a few galeries in Germany are interested in my work and together with an international art dealer I will start to sell my art soon. It's a dream coming true. It demands hard work and perseverance, but hey, let's make the impossible possible. Mark Twain once said that "The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why." This project showed me that I want to live as an artist and photographer. I want to thank everyone who was and still is a part of this journey from the bottom of my heart. I couldn't have done it without you. You seriously mean the world to me!

  

Marius Vieth, January the 19th 2014

  

PS: Since FlickR is really limited when it comes to posts, I will post all news, travel experiences, exhibitions and all other news around my art on my Facebook page. In case you use Facebook, I would love to have you there!

  

PSII: There is not much post processing involved in the photo. It was really foggy that night and I exhaled quite a few times to get that "face". Increased the contrast a little, did some split toning and my most favorite self-portrait was done.

 

1x | Facebook | Twitter | 500px | GooglePlus | Instagram | Tumblr | Website

In my office, I have this black and white TV from either the 60's or 70's. I got it for about $12 at a thrift store. It still works.

 

Thrift stores are cool.

 

Thanks to ground*floor's photos for the textures.

Since starting my 365 each day I see one fleeting instance, one perfect moment that would have been picture of the day had I had my camera to my eye at that moment. Most days I miss that moment.

 

Today was no exception.

 

10seconds before taking this shot; a tough looking guy walked past me with a massive teddy bear slung over his shoulder. Having missed the shot of him, I thought it would seem a little stalker-like to follow him taking photos so I headed back to work.

 

I stopped immediately at this sign and as the woman in yellow passed, it struck me how much yellow this particular viewpoint had. I was quick enough to get her in shot (just).

   

Please like my Facebook Page

Buy my photos through Getty images

Please do not use my photos without my consent

On eid we did Makra trek in 3 days (Mon-wed). This was our route

 

Shogran-sari-paye-Makra-Dhari/Kholian/Sanghar wali galli-tehthri-Ziarat-Danna peak-Makri-jhamara-ghena-rajpian-pind-batal-bishash-ghori

 

To be exact we wanted to go to bheri but our guide mistakenly took here. We did trek to point called pind. Jeep are available on point Jhamara but due to eid none was running, So we had to trek for 3 hours to reach to rajpian, a jeep was standing there but was asking two way fare (rs2000) so we trek further to point pind; luckily one jeep came and we boarded on it (@rs 75 per head).

if someone want to attempt it from muzaffarabad then one can easily reach to Rajpian through bus from muzaffarabad at 80 rs only or through jeep from ghouri at around 100rs (its actually less than 100rs) per head. One can take jeep to Jhamara from rajpian and then its trek possibly with one camp to top of Makra. Water is present at places called makri & tethri Its very steep trek from jhamara onward to Makra but as we were descended so it was comfortable enough.

 

Only danger is a good 1 hour piece of trek just near makra top. It’s a narrow ridge with over 100m fall on each side, covered with boulders, locals called it as dhari.

 

Long Version (Its incomplete and has lot grammatical erros, I dont plan to complete it in near future)

 

In this longer version I will try to make you feel as you would be travelling with us

 

Thursday 16th August

Ali called our mutual friend and they will be going to Kalam valley on Eid holidays, Ali will be getting booking done.

 

Friday 17th August 2:55 pm

I received a message from my brother Ali that he has discussed with our mutual friend and they have cancelled their plan to kalam and now if Eid will be on Sunday then they will be going to Makra otherwise to Bairan Galli.

 

Friday 17th August Evening

Ali asked me to join them I refused as I already had my leaves approved for neelum valley and was not in mood to destroy my Eid holidays.

 

Saturday 18th August Evening

Moon was not sighted, Eid will be on Monday.

So as per Ali message he will be going to Bheeran Galli to where I was least interested to go so Ali decides to go to Makra. I said I can only join it if you end up in Kashmir side as I have already attempted it twice and has failed both the time to reach summit of Makra so if I go there then I want to finish the whole trek. So I requested our family to let us sacrifice our eid. The immediate answer we got was that people spent lot of money to reach home on eid and you are asking to leave on eid. Then the politician in me aroused and I replied that for guy’s eid remain till the eid prayer after it what else we have to do other then to sleep, sleep & sleep and if we are going that far atleast we should spend proper time otherwise its like race not enjoyment. Any ways our parent agreed to let us go on Chand raat. We immediately messaged to our mutual friend about plan but due to some reason he pulled out. Now the issue was serious as I never had planned a trek outside Lahore of my own. So being the more experienced in trekking as of my brother the responsibility of all the planning came on me. We immediately called Niazi, Rahber, Abdullah travels for booking to manshera but none of them picked our phone. Ali was in favor that we would go to Naizi adda on chand raat and we will find some thing.

 

After few tries we got connected with skyways and we got our booking done for 11 pm Sunday night but we need to reach till 10 pm to get booking confirmed. Booking with skyways was a blessing in disguise; why so? I will explain it shortly.

 

After getting booking done I called my friend Nadir Khan in Manshera. I first met Nadir in April 2011 when we joined together to the Paya trek in full snow and later we did Musa ka Musalla.

 

Nadir these days run a tour operating company (Travel Green Guide & Tours) specializes in trekking. If any body is interested in managing tour to any where in north then he can be reached at www.facebook.com/TGGTours

 

Any ways my contact with Nadir was as my friend not the owner of Travel Green Guide & Tours. We asked him about the availability of transport & porters on Eid day. And from his contacts he quickly arranged it.

 

Sunday 19th August, 2012 - 30th Ramdan

I called few of my friends for joining us but all of them refused.

7:30 PM we planned to wear our Eid clothes but they were not ready yet. Some how we got them till 8 pm and left home at sharp 8:30 PM

On way to skyways terminal we stopped at adventure shop to buy a pair of gaiters. Here I called Nadir that we have left home for Manshera and that was the last call on that date as almost all mobile networks were shutdown over some security issues.

 

We reached Skyways terminal at 9:40 pm. The booking clerk surprising asked for ID card. It was new thing for us that all buses leaving on Motor way must list down the ID cards of each & every passenger as that sheet need to be handed over to motorway police at movie point. If you are travelling in a group then listing the ID card of atleast one member was mandatory.

 

In waiting room we met a guy from Karachi who works in finance department of PSO. He left Karachi a day before at 10 pm. He told us that with great difficulty and by changing 3-4 vehicles he reached Lahore. His booking was in Rahber but they cancelled their “flight” due to shortage of passengers and then he bought ticket of Niazi and they also cancelled their “flight” due to shortage of passengers and now he has ticket of skyways and passengers seems to be on low on it too. He must want to reach to Abbott abad to celebrate eid with his in-laws. Readers of this blog must be wondering that why I am mentioning about this person. Actually this was the first time I met a person who was injured in a terrorist attack. I do have met person who have lost their dear ones in attacks but this was the first time I met a person who narrowly escaped death with few injuries. He was in the rally of Benazir Bhutto in Karachi on October 18, 2007 when some bomb exploded and 150+ people lost their lives. He mentioned that his arm was injured in that attack. And he could even feel the voice of that blast even after two years. He mentioned that attack and the behavior of the victims have made him fearless. He now a days travel to Quetta for job related activities without any fear. He mentioned of a guy who lost his leg in the blast but he stood on one leg and tried to help the victims in whatever way he could.

 

Every body was leaving for their home to celebrate eid and it felt me really bad to miss the very first eid not with family.

 

10:30 pm we asked skyways authorities to load our luggage but they refused and said it will be only done 15 minutes before the departure time.

 

10:45 pm our ruck sack was loaded.

11:00 pm we boarded on bus ad bus was suppose to leave Lahore at 11:00 pm

11:30 pm still no sign of bus being moving. Bus was around 80 % filled at 11:00 pm and I thought might be they are waiting for it to be get 100 % filled but even when it was 100 % filled it was not leaving. Our Karachi mate was worried the most as he must want to reach to abbotabad. Few passengers went to booking office and told us shocking thing that driver is not available. He went to his home in Lahore but as mobile phones have stopped working so he can’t be contacted.

 

Booking office told us that two guys have gone to his home on taxi to wake him up and bring him to bus stand. But after few minutes they arrived with empty hands.

 

They send another guy to his home. Who also came back empty handed. The story which they told us that his room is at third floor the guy climbed up to his room but was not able to wake him up.

 

Monday 20th august 12:10 am

I was simply intolerable to me. I asked for location of complaint office to lodge my protest and it resulted only in a laugh from co passengers.

I went to the booking office that cancel our ticket and refund our money we will celebrate Eid with our family as it’s no way that you are letting us wait for more than hour and there is no sign that whether driver will come or not. They initially ensured me that driver has arrived and sitting in waiting room that simply fuelled me up and broke that news among passengers which also fuelled them up and most of them moved me to booking office to treat them harshly. They referred me to contact their manager. I simply asked him to cancel our ticket and refund our money as this is high un professional way for such a big name. Manger mentioned that driver is still not here. Here the manager told me a secret that skyways have agreement with individual owners of busses. The bus owners hare name of skyways and share profit with skyways. And that bus whose number was probably 5411 was also having its driver as its owner who according to the manager is a very responsible person but he was unable to explain why he is not coming. He said he don’t have any spare driver and he is trying every thing that you could celebrate Eid with your families. I was already feeling a little guilty of not celebrating Eid at home and his statement added more to it. Any ways I asked him that we cant wait here all the night to wait for the driver to come back and you must define a cut off time after which you will take the tickets back. He said a third team has gone to wake him up so give him 15 minutes. In the meantime few passengers went to other bus stands but no bus was leaving for manshera. Only option was to leave for Islamabad. Some passengers went further to book a private van but I was not interested in that and had already started to think that how happy our family will be to know that we have returned back to celebrate Eid with them.

 

The Karachi guy said to us that we say bad about MQM but if any bus would have done that in Karachi then they would have surely have burned the bus to ashes till now. According to him they are extremely good in that. I avoid any sort of political discussion on travel so I ignored his statement with a smile & nod of head in agreeing to him.

 

12:35 am Driver arrived and bus started.

 

We were about to enter to motorway when a guy in police uniform asked to board on but driver assistant refuse to board him saying that we don’t take passengers who drop on way. Just after 20meters we were stopped by police at check post, who were apparently angry for not giving lift to police man. They asked to open the bus they will check each and every thing. Driver assistant simply refused to do so and said bus is already checked at bus stand and he will not open the bus to be checked again. On it police got fuelled up and closed check post and said ok then they won’t let us go and forced to stand the bus on side of the road.

 

Driver assistant was forced to stop the bus and open it for checking. If police would have tried to check it thoroughly it could easily have taken an hour. Police gave an argument that on bus pass it was written that departure time is 11 pm then why the bus is leaving at 12:45 am.

 

All the passengers who were already quite angry got down from bus and a clash was expected between police & the passengers. On seeing passengers getting down, police cleared the bus with in 2 minutes. And we crossed check post.

 

Before we could enter the motor way the driver stopped the bus to fill diesel. Complete 123 liters was filled in the bus and we entered motorway at around 1 am.

 

At movie point we again stopped for movie and to handover sheet of id card number of passengers. Now a day it’s extremely important for all of us to carry their NIC on travelling outside Lahore. As some passenger didn’t showed their ID card at time of booking so it took further 10 minutes to fill the list.

 

Journey finally started. The limit on motorway for bus is 110kph but our driver was driving at 135 kph to cover up the time. And considering that he was forced to wake up from sleep it could have turned to be fatal but Alhamdulillah no damage done.

 

Just after few minutes we left movie point the passengers started shouting “ooye TV la ooye”. I uttered lightly for God sake let us sleep but naqar khanay main 'totti' ki awaz kaun sunay ga.

 

So a movie was played. Movie name was Badal and cast included booby deol and rani mukher jee. The movie was made in 2000 and its print quality was also showing that it too old. Surprisingly that movie have has remarkable resemblance to our situation in Waziristan & Baluchistan, where people are killed either by government support or by government silence which has led a rebellion to arise among our own people whose family member were killed in drone attacks or kidnapped by unknown people. Any ways Allah Allah ker k movie ended at around 4:30 am. I do tried to sleep during the movie but as I mentioned that movie has very old print and was played on VCR so after certain time the irritating high volume voice start appearing from it. These voices were so annoying that it was impossible for any human to remain sleep. Bus stopped at hasan abdal for fajar prayer. Driver told us that he has covered a lot of time by moving fast.

As the bus started I smelled some one smoking. Thankfully driver assistant was vigilant and asked the passengers to throw away the cigarette but passenger simply refused by saying k “mainy yeh muft nahi liya”. It was probably not a normal cigarette. Any ways on protest of other passengers he throwed it away and I was finally able to take a nap. I awaked up after an hour when we have crossed abottabad. I quickly messaged nadir that we are near.

 

7:10 am we reached Manshera. Niazi has created a bus stand, skyways busses also stands there. We were supposed to offer Eid prayer with Nadir but we got late to reach manshera. I called nadir he was already in masjid for Eid. So we have to find some masjid on our own for Eid prayer but issue was that we were carrying ruck sacks, gas cylinders with us. With them we can’t offer a prayer or with them police would not have allowed us to enter any masjid. Skyways offered us that we could place our stuff in waiting room but we were not confident that it will be safe or not. In short it was getting obvious that we won’t be able to offer Eid prayer. I chalked out a plan that one of us should stay with the luggage and other person should offer Eid. In this way atleast one of us will get that opportunity of Eid prayer which has lot of blessings according various ahadees Sharifs.

 

The driver of our bus who belongs to Lahore changed his cloths to Eid dress which he carried all the way. He was going to offer Eid prayer. We requested him to please place our luggage in the bus and lock it, which he happily did and we moved with him for Eid prayer.

 

On ablution area a lot of Lotas were present. For a person living in Lahore that’s kindly a strange & uncomfortable way of doing ablution but every area has its own ways.

 

8:00 am Eid namaz was offered.

8:15 am Imam sb started post namaz dua and that was such a long dua that we literally started praying k ya allahi yeh dua khatam kerwa dey. Imam sb was repeating every dua with all past, present & future tense. Any ways after 17 minutes the longest dua of my life time ended and we were freed to greet Eid.

 

That greeting started in a strange fashion as in Lahore we use to hug three times and make the chest meet but in manshera they hug for only once and that hug only include touching of shoulders mainly. Now we were trying to take three hugs but people were going away with one. That was looking so much funny but we quickly understand their custom so started to ‘do at Rome as the Romans do’ but we were not enjoying much until we met the bus driver and then we hugged in lahori style to really feel like meeting Eid.

 

Nevertheless it was the most rememberable Eid for us, as we moved to masjid where no body knows us. To whom ever we met & greeted it was probably our first and last greetings with them and we may never be able meet them. It does help us realize the global nature of Islam.

 

8:45 am we reached back to bus stand and got connected with Nadir.

9:20 am Nadir arrived, It was good to know that his office is present in front of that stand. It was indeed very kind of him that he came to us on Eid day. He invited us for tea, breakfast at his home but we were already late. Heavy rain also arrived there.

 

Nadir arranged a taxi for us for rs 2000 till shogran. On normal days they take around 1500 rs but on Eid day that was the best we could bargain.

 

Our driver Haji nazeer took us to tire workshop he said his reserve tires are punctured. He took around 30 mins to get tired punctured. We took gourmet pizza with us. We started eating it but it was gone bad. So have to through it away.

 

Our driver haji nazeer

A man in his early forties, small beard, applied colored on beard to look black, lean face, height around 5 feet 7 inch, wheetish color, head covered with a cap, runs a green alto with bigger tires and I wish to never ever meet him again.

He talks & talks & talks as he was born only to talk & talk. To be exact he had a map of northern areas of Pakistan. And whether he know the way or not, it’s was like mandatory for him to tell us about it. We were not willing to stop on the way as were already late but he has to stop to force us to take pictures at exact same spot where we have taken pics on almost every trip. Secondly he was of “big heart” so he need to stop to help his fellow taxi driver whose cars were stopped in heavy rain regardless of considering that we were getting late.

He mentioned that it was all water on road due to heavy rain and a Suzuki cabin car went into river due hay rain and a person ahs lost his live. We do believe him on this as damage on road was quite obvious.

 

We wanted to take some items from the balakot but on reaching balakot not a single shop were open due to Eid. So we carried on. He was also a great fan of Lahore hotel in shogran and it was his utmost desire to let us stay there and he was not ready to listen that we are here for camping and trekking. In past I have seen Lahore hotel. It’s a small descent hotel with affordable price but we were not going there for hotelling. To our bad luck that our host Mustaq didn’t picked our phone and some mist also came over. It haji sb another point weather is very bad, you wont find you way, you will get yourself killed, I am elder, you must respect opinion of elder. So stay in Lahore hotel today, go for hike tomorrow. We refused and he was like Lahore hotel, Lahore hotel, and Lahore hotel. It was like he will get us a cheap room for good sake stay for one night at Lahore hotel.

We stopped at kawai. I asked a hotel to cook 15 roti for us which we would pack and carry with us for our camping ahead. Thankfully we got connected to Mustaq and he said porter is waiting for us at hotel Pine Park. Despite of telling all that to haji sb he was again on the same tune of Lahore hotel.

 

Those who know me know that very well that I use to remain quite most of the time but that man ahhhhhhh!

 

1:00 pm

As soon as we were dropped at shogran we gave him his 2000 rs and ran away.

 

Regardless of his talkative nature and his strong desire to force us to stay at Lahore hotel, I must admit that he was a super excellent driver who know about each and every pit on the road. And his car was better then many.

 

Safi

Our porter was safi ud din. Our first look was a very bad one as his one hand was broken and was heavily strapped so he could only use one hand. His hand was broken in some fight. As we have already have booked him in advance and were extremely late and he was waiting for us for atleast 1 hour so we were in no position to refuse him.

 

We quickly changed our clothes and decided to use hotel pine park washrooms but they were extremely dirty so we just went without using toilet or washrooms.

 

Richard

We met Richard at shogran, He hails from UK and had recently done the shimshal pass and was now willing to do darkhot pass but his flight to chitral was cancelled due to bad weather and as a plan b he came to shogran. Unfortunately he didn’t know any thing about that area and when we asked him that what he will be looking in that area he mentioned he will go to near by villages and will see the life of villagers. Despite of the fact we were getting late we do gave him a short summary of the area and the main things to visit in shogran & naran region. We invited him to do Makra with us and descend on to Kashmir side but as he was on car parked at shogran, so we atleast invited him to Makra. He was staying at pine park hotel. We mentioned him that we will be on trek by sun rise so he should reach to Paya at that time on jeep. As a precaution that he may not be able to catch us, we explained his guide that to take him to Makra next day.

 

We started our trek. I intend to do camping at Paya. Ali decided to carry his own ruck sack whereas I gave me rucksack to the safi. Some local kids met us. They also showed willingness to join us to makra tomorrow.

 

Within 20 minutes after body start complaining about the lack of exercise. We went straight after Ramadan and doing trek quickly after the Ramadan was expected to create issues. After nearly 45 minutes into the trek; the body reduced complaining. I always believe that treks are done more with mental fitness than physical fitness so that’s why we went on it without any exercise. In normal days whenever we plan a trek we do start a gentle walk few days before start of trek but this time we were not able to do so. Any ways the local kids who met us showed gesture to carry our water bottles to some midway point on sari. Here we did two mistakes.

1- Our daypacks + dates were in the ruck sack which was with the porter and he was going through the shortcuts and was so much far away that even our full voice can’t be heard by him.

2- Our water bottles were with the local kids and they were also fond of shortcuts so they also left us. Now they also left us.

In my previous visits to sari, there use to be 2-3 water sources on way up but at this time of the year their was not a single “chasma” as they were all dried up.

 

Although the guy with the water bottles went far ahead but a few of his colleagues were moving with us. One of them rushed ahead and shouted his colleague to stop to stop water bottles on the jeep trek on which we were moving. What we later learned was that the village of those kids was near and they handed water bottles to our potter and went away. We took one turn & another turn but still the porter was far away from us. Thirst was getting like that as we haven’t drunk any thing for days. For me water and dates are like fuel of the body. It was getting difficult for us to move forward without water. Our feet were slightly dangling & head was whirling. We were wearing water proof clothes but these clothes are water proof from outside, it has as inner lining of probably cotton and that lining was all wet due to sweating. Good thing was that we could now hear our porter from behind the trees but we were not sure how far he was. As I was without any ruck sack so Ali sat down I went to fetch water from potter, I would have hardly taken 20 steps when I saw our porter (safi) coming back with a bottle of water. Bottle was only 30% filled but it does help us to return back to our senses. These were the bottles we bought from the filling station which around 30 minutes before balakot and it turned out to be a good decision as no shop was open in shogran, kiwai or balakot having mineral water bottles. Any ways while coming back to us our porter did a mistake.

 

He left our ruck sack which was containing the most important items like, food, camp on the road. He was around 5 minutes away from the point from where he could see the ruck sack. Due to Eid there were a very few people on the trek. Also we were so much engulfed with the thirst that at that moment we didn’t thought about that someone could take away the bag but on return we do met a group who suffered from almost the same type of loss. I will explain that particular incident later on the travel log.

 

Any ways the bottle which safi bought was only 30 % filled so as asked him that to drop another water bottle on way so as when we move up we can pick it up. It resolved our water problem till sari.

 

We met three guys from Karachi they were coming back from sari. One was having a guitar, we would have loved to listen to him playing guitar but unfortunately the string of it was broken. They mentioned they are coming back from makra top but considering the timings they were mentioning I was pretty sure they went to the Makra which 95 % mistake as to be Makra. Actual Makra is far behind the real makra. They were having sleeping bags only and were willing to do more trekking. Ali suggested them to do the Mahandri to Ansoo Lake and then through saran pass reach batakundi. We referred them to our friend Nadir and later in the trek we do learned that they successfully did Ansoo lake trek from mahandri but they did not went on to saran pass to reach batakundi & instead returned back through saif ul malook.

 

I been to sari twice before, once I went on jeep and other time I went in good 3-4 feet snow on ROAD. You might be wondering that why I wrote the ROAD in caps. The reason is that I was in search of point where we did a shortcut on our return to sari in snow. One of member got his foot strangled in the bush. He fell into soft snow. On digging for about 4-5 feet’s we learned that his foot was actually engulfed in a tree top which was fully covered in snow. So at that time on road there was only 3-4 feet of snow but on mountain slides it was good 12-15 feet of snow. The sides of mountain where sun does not directly reach do melt a little late so that why when we went there in April 2011 we encountered so much snow. That point was basically the half way mark to sari. Throughout my way to sari was trying to find only two point one that I just mentioned and other was a 60 degree straight height but issue was that in snow and after snow melts it’s very difficult to recognize the same points.

 

Almost on every turn I get that feeling that just one more turn and we will that gradual ascend but it was not coming. Even then since I started trekking this thing do work that by saying to yourself that only 15 minutes more. That’s a separate thing that most of the time that 15 minute more saying is repeated almost 15 times. We heard a jeep coming up. For an instance we do thought to get the lift from him and when it came near it was with the people whom we met at pine park hotel. They were probably fro Peshawar side. We offered a lift to sit on the bonnet of the jeep as rest of the jeep was packed. It was indeed a very attractive option and our body was also creating problems but we came here for trekking not for a jeep safari and when they offered the lift it was life grabbing the heart in the fist and signaling the head with no. We have heard that shogran to sari trek is only of 150 minutes. Although in snow it took us good 5 hours but in that season that should be only 2.5 hours long and as we were already into the trek since two hours so why to take lift when hardly 30 minutes more was left. Although we do have say that just 30 minute more for two times atleast.

 

On our way up we met few more local school kids. It was sad to see them doing smoking at such a young age and it was something annoying for us so we do gave them a small lecture on side effects of smoking. I am not sure how much that lecture would have affected them but they do said that it an Eid day and they are not regular smokers & they gave the same old excuse that they don’t inhale it to lungs. Here for the first time in this trek we initiated the stories relating to Bhuttay. If you don’t know that who are bhuttay then I will explain it shortly but just to get a bird eye view you can consider them like the current day political leaders who claims to be following policies of ZA Bhutto. If you know who are bhuttay & have respect for current ruling party then my above comments might have gone a little harsh on you but I am here to write the things exactly how I felt.

 

Any ways we do had 10 minutes break and again started our trek. Those kids do told us that sari is just 10 minutes away. But …

 

Another jeep passed by us and by just a wave of hand to say Salam/ hi it went away. Two jeeps were descending from paye and I was still in search of that gradual steep area which in snow we did it in around 45 minutes. We do receive the call of Mustaq (our host at sari) mentioning that our porter is at sari waiting for us. At the same time we do received the call of our mutual friend whose plan was dropped a day before we left. With his well wishes we dropped the call and continued our trek. Now the mist arrived and we could hardly see anything beyond 15-20feet. It was not a first time mist arrived in our trek so we were a little use to it. We were doing two things in those misty conditions.

1- To only maintain that must distance between two of us that we could easily see each other.

2- To stay on jeep trek and avoid any shortcuts.

 

From a distance we saw another gradual height gain. It was cruel to us as we were already exhausted but as soon as I turned towards my left and saw down I was filled full joy & energy because we were standing on the exact same steep area just before sari which I was trying to find in my whole trek. And I knew that sari is just there. We took another right and we could see the first house of sari village. So nearly after 3 hours of trek we reached to sari. 6-8 hours of trekking is just a normal thing for me but these 3 hours was purely a killer. Our body was not in shape, we were out of exercise. We were physically not ready for the trekking but just went on with because as I said earlier that mental fitness is more important than physical fitness

 

We rushed to Mustaq small hotel at sari. I do know mustaq by face but not by name since we did winter survival to paya in April 2011. We quickly opened our bag with dates and took a heavy dose of like 10 dates each. We already had the food packed so as rotis but when we asked mustaq that what he has he mentioned that he had daal mash. Which happens to be my favorite? Price was nominal (Considering that its away far away from main city) 100rs per head for daal mash & sabzi whereas chicken karahi was of 900rs per kg (per hen). I was also more in favor of eating from hotel as it would be fresh and our target for today was paya so it would save a lot of time. It was almost 4:30 pm when we reached sari and we do had at least 140 minutes of sun light. But even when we were thinking we saw mist/clouds rising up from shogran and within few minutes we were in position that we could hardly see beyond 15 feet.

 

Any ways Ali asked for sabzi and I asked for daal mash. Both were in ready to cook position. Ali went on with Mustaq to do some experimenting with that aaloo anda which only resulted in destroying it and he was not even able to finish even half a plate. Whereas I ate more than 2 rotis. We asked for tea and it was also quickly made. The moment of making the tea was extremely beautiful we could see a small rainbow of colors near the tandoor. It was a mystic feeling in which one feel that he is hallucinating. In that dark shop the burning of wood, blue & red flames the white smoke and clouds outside the window. The warmth of the tandoor, the hospitality of the mustaq, the dancing flames, the curling smoke, it was just like that we are in a paradise and some “Hoor ” will come in that hut with some sweet drink to kill the thirst forever. But instead of some hoor a local man with beard came in. It was nice meeting with him as his inlaws live on the other side of Makra and he has completed that trek few times to meet his inlaws. I was wondering what a journey that would be that to meet inlaws one has to walk for 10-12 hours (two ways). He could have easily refused the visit claiming that it’s too far. Lucky Man! Those who know me well know that I use Google earth a lot for before going to trek especially the escape routes. And before leaving for trek I do calculated out that there are three possible ridges, two of which descend towards Kashmir side and one to Chappar on naran road. That guy mentioned that if our face would be towards Kashmir than we need to descend towards the left most ridge (South east). He was perfectly correctly. That ridge towards southeast leads to bhairi and it’s the safest path.

 

Any ways after short meeting with him we went for a gentle walk. Ali went to sari lake to take some pics. I was not much interested in going to it as it would have required me to do ascend of good 10 minutes and I was not in that mood. For me it’s not a lake and I call it a pond. The reason for that logic is that for me a lake should must have proper inlet and outlet whereas sari pond/lake lacks any of such things. Sari pond is good 25-30 below the Mustaq hotel and when I came in winter I walked over it as that 25 feet was all filled with snow.

 

Mustaq has a big tent installed along with his hotel. He said if we want to spend night in that camp then we are most welcome. We were already carrying camp with us but when we saw soft mattress in the Mustaq camp then we decided to stay in that. That was quite a big camp and around 15 people can easily sleep in it at one time. He has also applied a sort of insulated sheet in it which does help to maintain the temperature inside. Moreover structure of that camp is supported by steel pipes so it can stand even the wildest weather. It outer is covered by a thick water proof sheet.

 

It was clean enough and we were the only tourist at sari on that night so we had the whole camp with us. It gives us advantage as we can openly spread our stuff in the camp without any risk of security.

 

I got off my trekking shoes took the camping sandal. I was in need to pee and saw a temporary built toilet. I took a water bottle and went in it. It was a bad decision as it was not clean and I would have came out more cleanly if I would have gone in the jungle. Readers might be wondering that why I am mentioning such a disgusting thing here but one purpose of this article is also to educate the readers about the environment.

We took our sleeping bags and went for a nap. It started to rain like cats & dogs. Mustaq camp was good hide to prevent us from that rain but unfortunately wind was so harsh that it blew one joint of water proof sheet near the corner where I was sleeping. Although that opening was with that angle that rain could not come in but still the wind was coming in. It was such a heavy rain that we can’t even dares to go out to fix it. Any ways soon we went into the valley of sleep. Although it was still time before sun could have gone down but clouds and mist made the night well before the sunset.

 

From bottom of my heart I was quite happier over rain as rain normally blew off the mist and that would be a blessing in disguise as we could get better views.

 

I was with a goose down sleeping bag and despite the fact it was extremely cold outside I was sweating due to goose down so I opened up the zip and slept for some time without sleeping bag. Mustaq was running outside with a ladder to his home nearby, probably to prevent seepage of water through the roof.

 

Those who into trekking knows this thing very well that camping nights are too long and mostly sleep come in patches of like 2-3 hours. We were half awaked when Mustaq & Safi came to our camp. Rain seems to have halted at that time and clock was probably ticking 8 pm. We are also having gotten reasonably fresh due to a good 2 hour nap. We haven’t finalized the rates with our porter and before start of trek when we do asked him for the rates then he asked that we should do it with Mustaq. As Mustaq is colleague of our mutual friend Nadir so we were ok with that. Moreover we also had some idea about the rates. They basically came to finalize the rates. Safi started the discussion with the same stories (One such accident do happened) that people have got killed in such weather we should not attempt Makra. Or we should go only till where weather allows it. Basically I believe safi was trying to convince us in such a manner that we would leave our bags at sari, do makra and camp back again sari and whole purpose of him was that he should not carry my rucksack and would only act as a guide. Although weather was tough but I was confident that it will clear in the morning. Safi was so much convincing that I do give his idea to return to sari after makra a serious thought. Mustaq was neutral and mediating between us. Safi was not agreeing to carry us to kashmir. We mentioned that we will give him the amount to reach back to sari from Muzaffarabad just accompany us. Discussion was getting nowhere; safi was not seemingly ready to go to Kashmir. We fired an arrow that if we need to get back to SARI then why we would even needs the guide/porter. I do have my working for makra and I could have gone for the summit without him if we have to come back to sari. Mustaq mentioned that we are his guest and our safety is a great concern for him. So we should not risk our lives. Safi again fired a shell that some looting incident has happened on top of makra so we should not carry our valuable with us and should leave the rucksack at sari. That all discussion was happening between Mustaq, Safi and Ali and I was more of a silent spectator. Safi when saw that we are not getting convinced he mentioned to us that its tough dangerous not everyone can do it. I mentioned that I have done twice the “Musa Ka Musalla”. And my friends who have done both MKM & Makra have rated makra slightly less tough. Ali added that he has done jungle trek from paya to manna meadow. And when he mentioned the things like water fall and other things he saw in trek Mustaq was quickly convinced that if we are insisting then we should descend towards Kashmir. Actually the reason that mustaq quickly agreed with us was because he know how dangerous that trek of paya to manna meadow trek is. Its highly unlikely that somebody attempts that trek and he doesn’t encounter any wild animal. Almost no one attempt it and 24 * 365 that jungle has lions, leopards and bear. After Mustaq got convinced we assured safi that we are not going to do a suicide we will go for Makra and if we found out at some place that it’s not wise to go forward then we will return back. Anyways half heartedly he agreed to move with us. Now the next hurdle was rates, I was sure that it won’t be tough thing to settle down but I was wrong. Safi demanded Rs 3000 per day plus we have to give him the cost from muzaffarabad to sari. That was a shocker for us as that high rate is nowhere in Pakistan and on first day and last day it only had 2-3 hours of planned trekking, Although the second day had the almost 10 hours of planned trekking. We mentioned to him that was too much. We decided to break the porter expense in two parts.

1- Actual portage price.

2- Price to reach from muzaffarabad to sari.

Safi mentioned around 1000 rs for part 2. After mentioning him some facts we lowered him to 500 rs for part 2.

 

Safi was not ready to reduce the price for part 1 and we were not ready to give him what he was demanding. To be very true we only had 16000 rs in cash in total. If we give him 9k then we would have ended on short side. We asked Mustaq to mediate between us and he asked us that how much we give. We mentioned that we will give him 5000 rs in total. If he is ok then we are moving ahead if he is not then please arrange some other porter for us and whatever his nominal amount is for from shogran to sari we give him now and Allah hafiz. After some discussion Safi agreed for 5000 rs in total.

 

It was around 8:30 pm and Safi & mustaq left the camp and we again went on to sleep. We decided to leave sari with sunrise.

 

I don't know that it was really my intention to start a new 365 project on New Year's Day, but all things must begin somewhere, and this was simply the day I walked out of my house with the camera. I'm choosing to do this round solely with the 50mm because it's the lens I find myself coming back to, no matter how many others I buy. Overwhelmingly, my favorite pictures from the archives are taken with the 50mm... its ability to be tack sharp where needed, then softly fade away.

 

I've gotten away from photography over the course of the last year. Working from home is great in terms of commute time from bedroom to office, and how much I save on gas... but there's a distinct lack of opportunity to shoot when you spend most of your day in front of a computer, surrounded by suburban sprawl built in the 50s and 60s. It will be my challenge, therefore, to find beauty in this otherwise dull landscape. Especially in the winter, when everything already looks so bleak.

255/365

February 6, 2010

So I'm not too proud of my picture today but I was pretty much pressed for time...and resources...and ideas! eep!

 

I got up at 10:30 today (woke up at 9 thanks to my roomie but I went back to sleep after she left) and took my pictures right after my shower. I have a fairly large teddy bear collection and decided to feature my little guy in it. Of course it didn't turn out like I had thought...partly because my camera doesn't allow it, partly because my nails aren't nice at ALL, and partly because I just didn't have the time.

 

Then I proceeded to eat lunch at 12, do laundry with Patricia after, went to Walmart/Target/Best Buy/Office Max to find rewritable cds I need for voice that don't exist...grrrr. Then we went to Melissa's house and ate pizza while watching Toddlers and Tiaras and screaming at the TV and shaking our heads at how these parents are messing up their kids. It was one of those moments where you hate a TV show but you keep watching it :-P

 

I finally came back to find the internet working...WOOT!! :D waha so now I need to catch up on your guy's pics :)

 

TRF: I just now realized it but Teja stocked up today...yay!! :D I try not to eat much of her food but she said I could have any of it...so sometimes I'll munch on something. I eat it way more than she does since she's hardly ever here...

i really have to wonder if people get tired of seeing my eyeballs everywhere...i would like to be more "creative" with my self portraits but with how busy my day gets (cleaning, cooking, writing, working, errands) i really only get a small break, and i use that break to do my makeup so i can feel good, and i always end up with a "ball" shot or two..hopefully i can start doing more if i become less busy...for now i'm just really in love with playing with my eye color...teal is love right now...

 

i also really want to reply back to everyone...i keep missing comments to people and in my mailbox too...my myspace is even worse ugh...

 

sadly i might get even more busy as the year goes on...we might move in the next few months but i have no idea yet...also my father is starting up a new office working for Counterforce alarms and the branch in our town will be in my name since i'm the one with the sales agent license...this is good for our family of course but bad for me considering i already do everything at home and now they'll want me to start doing some sort of booking for the company that i'm the boss for in name only...it's stressful...i want to run away and write and take photos...i really need a break from this all...a vacation i might not come back from...

  

More Evidence 'al-Qaeda'

Is A CIA-ISI Contrivance

By Kurt Nimmo

9-24-6

 

Don't expect our corporate media "op-ed" stenographers to deviate from their Pentagon and neocon generated scripts and connect the dots now that another in-your-face link between "al-Qaeda" terrorism and state-sponsored terrorism (one in the same) has surfaced.

 

"Omar Khyam, an accused leader among seven men charged in 2004 with stockpiling half a ton of explosives in an Al Qaeda-linked bombing plot, took the stand Tuesday long enough to refuse to continue his testimony. The judge temporarily adjourned the trial, which began in March," reports the Los Angeles Times. "On Monday, Khyam stunned his own lawyer when he declared that his relatives in Pakistan had been intimidated in recent days by agents of the powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency, which has a shadowy history of contacts with Islamic extremist networks."

 

No mention here of the "shadowy" fact the ISI is a branch office of the CIA. "A number of officers from the ISI's Covert Action Division received training in the US and many covert action experts of the CIA were attached to the ISI to guide it in its operations against the Soviet troops by using the Afghan Mujahideen, Islamic fundamentalists of Pakistan and Arab volunteers," writes B. Raman for the South Asia Analysis Group. These "Arab volunteers" and "Islamic fundamentalists," of the most virulent strain (Saudi Wahhabism), are now known as "al-Qaeda," a wily and phantasmal enemy specifically designed to serve as a forever enemy, an elusive Goldsteinesque enemy explicitly engineered to pose a threat in perpetuum.

 

"Despite longtime allegations that Pakistani agents have trained Islamic militants and protected fugitive Al Qaeda leaders, Khyam's testimony provided a rare account in a Western courtroom about the ISI's role in militant training camps," the Times continues. "His accusation also raised concerns that Pakistani intelligence officials might be seeking to disrupt a significant prosecution of alleged Islamic extremism in Europe."

 

Of course, this stands to reason, as "Islamic extremism," long ago blueprinted on a CIA drawing board, has demonstrated its transcendent usefulness and must be protected at all cost. One miserable patsy will not get in the way and no doubt Omar Khyam's family is now in danger, thanks to his detrimental revelation.

 

"If the allegations about intimidation are true, they raise troubling implications for the trial and the other pending cases involving British suspects of Pakistani origin with alleged connections to terrorist networks in Pakistan-as well as family ties there."

 

According to Jane's Information Group, the ISI "was modelled on Savak, the Iranian security agency, and like Savak was trained by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the SDECE, France's external intelligence service." SAVAK, according to Sam Ghandchi, who experienced the secret police's brutality firsthand, specialized in shoving broken bottles in the rectums of political dissidents, murdering "pregnant activists, and all other forms of killing and rape." SAVAK was a law unto itself, possessing the legal authority to arrest, detain, interrogate, and torture dissidents indefinitely. SAVAK operated its own prisons in Tehran, such as the Qezel-Qalaeh and Evin facilities. Because it operated autonomously, without checks and balances, it serves as a standard-bearer for secret police around the world.

 

"Kashmir, along with Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Russian republic of Chechnya, is one of the battlegrounds that has provided a multinational flow of aspiring Islamic militants to Al Qaeda and its allies," the Times reports, once again neglecting to connect the dots.

 

For instance, as Michel Chossudovsky notes, the "Bosnian pattern," as described in a Republican Party Committee congressional report published in 1997, "was replicated in Kosovo" with "the complicity of NATO and the US State Department. Mujahideen mercenaries [recruited, trained, and financed by the CIA and ISI] from the Middle East and Central Asia were recruited to fight in the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in 1998-99, largely supporting NATO's war effort. Confirmed by British military sources, the task of arming and training of the KLA had been entrusted in 1998 to the US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and Britain's Secret Intelligence Services MI6, together with 'former and serving members of 22 SAS [Britain's 22nd Special Air Services Regiment], as well as three British and American private security companies." This pattern was also put to work in Macedonia and Chechnya.

 

Omar Khyam has revealed but another glimmer of the precise nature of the "al-Qaeda" terror network, information useful for connecting dots but that will of course be studiously ignored by our corporate media stenographers. "Khyam has revealed more information than was expected," remarked Sajjan Gohel of the Asia-Pacific Foundation, billed as a counter-terrorism think tank. "He has given a lot of insight into how very many British Muslims have been recruited. I think everyone was shocked. The question now is whether the whole truth will come out."

 

Of course, it does not matter if "the whole truth will come out," as it is irrelevant, especially for a society unable to connect the dots and, really, not wanting to connect the dots and learn the truth, as this particular truth interupts sit-coms and football games.

 

For every person who looks beyond the official story and gleans the indisputable truth about "al-Qaeda" and various other intelligence contrivances engineered by the Pentagon, CIA, MI-6, Mossad, et al, there are literally millions of people who buy into the official explanation, or rather Brothers Grimm machination-the Muslims, represented by the dead Osama and al-Zarqawi, are out to get us and an incessant "clash of civilizations" is required, with attendant police state and tyranny at home.

 

Indeed, the "whole truth," according to our neocon rulers, is nothing less than base "appeasement" of "bad guys," those who wish us harm. Soon enough, especially after the imminent shock and awe of Iran, espousing the truth will result in Gestapo door knocks-with battering rams manned by ninja-clad thugs tossing stun grenades-at three in the morning, thus shuffling "fifth columnists," as Sen. Lindsey Graham would likely describe the readers of this blog, off to Rex 84 camps where waterboarding and secret military tribunals are the order of the day.

 

Note: Of course all points of fact in CIA's al Qaeda wars against US taxpayers and against Earth's non-corporate non-pentagon humans can be rapidly "debunked" by simply regurgitating CIA's 24-7-365 US media lies...designed for your "security"

  

This is second photo at First Day Shooting for my 365 days project. I bought this beautiful lacquer in Berlin's Kadawe. And at this day I studied how to create Bokeh!!! Very glad i could make it now:) This Сhristmas tree is standing in my office. They look good together)

 

9 October 2013

  

Well. Today.

  

How… to describe… today?

  

Uneventful and then ridiculous?

  

I took photos of food I made and other things that I did today, but at the end of the day, no photo is better than this one to demonstrate it.

  

Well, from the beginning.

  

I woke up late--I didn't HAVE to go to the school at all today. I only had one class scheduled, and the teacher told me I didn't need to come. I still wanted to come anyway, to prepare for the next day and see if any of the teachers needed me for anything… but I wasn't in any hurry.

  

I just had breakfast at my place and went to the school after, around 12:15. I made photocopies of the worksheets I need for tomorrow. I was hoping to be able to use the internet at the school, but here's the thing: THERE IS ONLY ONE PERSON IN THE SCHOOL WHO KNOWS THE WIFI PASSWORD. Literally one person, the IT guy, because they don't want the kids to get the password.

  

The fun part is, the IT guy is rarely ever in his office. I have yet to encounter him. So, I didn't have any luck getting on the wifi and instead just worked on organizing things for tomorrow. And made a grocery list.

  

I'm trying to buy groceries as naturally as possible this month. It's difficult because I'm worried about money, but I want to have an idea of how much I should expect to spend. I've been saving all my receipts, and just at a glance I don't seem to be doing TOO badly. But I've been refraining from buying extra things, like candy or chips or ice cream. That's a good thing, though--I'm pretty sure I've lost weight since I've been here, even though I haven't been running!

  

So after school I went to Mercadona and bought lots of vegetables to make a nice salad (and to put in salmorejo later), and some other groceries. Last week I bought some gluten-free pasta. I'm not exactly sure if I'm gluten intolerant or not, but I know it doesn't make me feel good to eat a lot of bread or grains. Some is fine, but if I eat too much in a day I get awful stomach cramps and if I keep eating it for days, I feel so tired and bloated.

  

I eat bread often here, so I figured it wouldn't hurt to get some gluten-free pasta so I don't overload on grains and feel bad. Also, in general it's easier to buy healthy food in Spain. In Mercadona, they label EVERYTHING according to whether it's "sin gluten" or not. And when I went to buy ground beef, I saw that ground chicken and turkey was the same price, so I bought that to use since it's healthier.

  

Came home, cooked some pasta and some sauce with the ground chicken/turkey, and made a nice big salad. Unfortunately I never can judge the correct amount to cook, so I always end up with lots of extra food! I need more people to cook for!

  

Then, I went down to the cafe to use the wifi. New problem: today my phone received a text from Vodafone telling me that I've used 90% of my data for the month. I have like, 10 more days to go. I'm not really surprised, since I've been using my phone as basically my sole source of internet--for maps, social networks, videos on how to use my washer, etc. I guess tomorrow I'll have to go to the store and find out if I can load some more data :( What a pain!

  

So I stayed in the cafe for a while using the wifi. Olivia came for a while to talk with me and have coffee, but I stayed longer there uploading yesterday's photo and reading articles.

  

I went back up to my apartment, and as usual, I remembered the things that I'd MEANT to look up on the internet while I was in the cafe, but had forgotten. Today: best way to cook hard-boiled eggs, and tips for using watercolors. I've been meaning to paint with watercolors but never seem to have time when it's light out. And I was going to hard-boil some eggs to put in some salmorejo for dinner.

  

But laziness and lack of desire to use precious internet on my phone led to me not painting, and eating some of my leftover lunch for dinner instead of messing with the salmorejo. I finished eating and was about to wash the dishes, but I noticed my phone was almost dead. So I walked back to my bedroom to plug it in.

  

The weather has recently changed in El Ejido, recent as in TODAY. It's become much colder and VERY VERY windy. I leave windows open in my apartment to enjoy the breeze, but an annoying side effect is that sometimes strong drafts will blow doors shut in the apartment.

  

I discovered this phenomenon the other day when I came home to an unlocked front door (the only time I've ever forgotten to lock it), and a closed bedroom door (I never shut it). I reacted to this strange set of circumstances by opening my bedroom door quickly and brandishing a kitchen knife. No one was in my apartment, but I felt kind of like a badass checking for intruders, nonetheless. I'm also pretty sure this event is what triggered my nightmare about things being moved the other night.

  

I've been trying to put things in front of the door so I don't have to hear it slamming shut all the time, but when I walked back into my bedroom to plug my phone in, I must have moved the sneaker that was in front of it. As I sat down on my bed and procrastinated going to wash the dishes, a huge breeze blew through and loudly slammed my bedroom door shut. I didn't really think anything of it, since it's happened so many times in the past couple days.

  

After a few minutes, I finally got up to go to the kitchen, and went to open the door. The handle turned, but it didn't work to open the door. I thought it might be stuck, so I jiggled the handle more insistently and pulled on the door a little harder. It didn't seem to be engaging correctly inside the door.

  

I started wrenching the handle up and down and pulling hard on the door. BUT IT WOULDN'T OPEN!

  

I guess this might be a good time to mention that I'm slightly claustrophobic. Not INCREDIBLY claustrophobic, but I don't like small enclosed spaces like elevators or the window seats on airplanes, and I've had a lifelong fear of being locked in places. Once when we were little, my brother and I got locked out on the enclosed balcony in my house (probably for less than an hour, but as a child it felt like AGES), and for a while after that, I didn't like closing doors at all. It's not a big deal, but I still get nervous thinking about being trapped somewhere.

  

Needless to say, I started to get a little panicky. I tried the door again. I pulled and shook the handle, rattled the heavy door against the frame. No dice. I would take a break and sit down on the bed to try to think of another strategy. I examined the hinges--not easily removed, and I had no tools. I tried moving the handle slowly, pulling at each degree. I tried jiggling it quickly.

  

I kept at this desperate fight for 20 minutes until my hands got red and sore, but nothing worked.

  

I figured Isabel and Joaquin probably had an extra key, but I felt embarrassed calling them about something so odd. I wanted to make sure I DEFINITELY couldn't open it on my own. After a couple last ditch efforts, I swallowed my pride and called Isabel. She was understanding, and told me Joaquin would come over shortly and help me out, since he had the key.

  

I thought that maybe the door just needed to be opened from the other side, or fiddled with by someone stronger than I am, so when Joaquin arrived, I expected to be outside quickly. But he tried the door, and it didn't open for him, either. We tried everything with the handle, then tried sliding a piece of plastic between the door and the frame. We tried the same things over and over, but after about an hour, I was still imprisoned.

  

We called Isabel, who called a specialist. Well, first we tried a carpenter but there was no answer, and then finally someone who deals with security in buildings and has the right tools. Maybe I should mention that I was the only one with the phone, on the other side of the door. So I was telling Joaquin what Isabel said, then Isabel what Joaquin said, passing phone numbers back and forth… all in Spanish. What a situation!

  

While waiting, I couldn't help but reflect on how ridiculous it all was. How stupid, and weird, and uncomfortable! In a way, it was also hilarious because, I mean, WHAT ARE THE ODDS THAT THIS WOULD HAPPEN? So insane.

  

Eventually the specialist came. I heard him using all sorts of tools. I would hear loud drilling sounds on the door, and then he would try to push it open. And then more drilling sounds. And then other strange sounds. But he was having just about as much trouble as we'd had. At one point, Joaquin passed me a screwdriver through my window by swinging it out to me on a piece of fabric from an adjacent window. I used it to remove the door handle on my side. But I was still there for a looong time after.

  

Finally, close to midnight, the specialist drilled and took the door's mechanism completely apart and ALAS, the door opened and I was free! But then I could see the extent of what he'd had to do to open the door… including taking a frame off and removing the entire handle's mechanism. Apparently the part that fits into the frame to keep the door shut had become somehow impossibly stuck. I'm not sure if it was from the force of the wind slamming it, or some weird fluke, but… at least I know it wasn't just me having some silly trouble with it. It was a real problem!

  

Actually, I'm really lucky that my phone was in the room with me. Otherwise… I have no idea what I would have done. I know now that there was literally NO WAY I could have opened the door by myself, and Isabel and Joaquin are the only people who could have gotten into my apartment, since they have the extra key. And there was no reason why they would have just come over, if I hadn't called. I imagine I would have had to yell out the window (top floor, not facing a major street). If any people heard me, they probably would have called the cops or something. It could have been a huge awful mess. It still was a mess, but I really have to be thankful that it wasn't much, much worse.

  

I didn't get to bed until very late, after washing the dishes and taking a shower. Jeez, what an absurd thing to happen!!

 

It's silly, but sometimes when bad things happen to me, I pretend that my life is like The Truman Show. I know it's a strange and narcissistic thing to do, but if I can say "well, I guess we need some dramatic conflict to keep the viewers interested!" I can have a sense of humor about even the worst situations and step outside myself to look at things. I suppose it's a coping mechanism that allows me to detach from my emotions and see things less seriously. It's a very strange coping mechanism, but it works.

 

But sometimes things happen in my life that are so ridiculous and uncanny that if someone were to tell me "your life really is just scripted to keep people entertained!" I would probably believe them. This was one of those things.

For Portrait 50:

 

Here I go...50 things about me :o) (Some of these may be repeats since I just posted two pics with facts about me).

 

1. My middle name is Paige.

2. I am afraid of the dark.

3. I'm 37 years old and I'm always afraid of looking old.

4. I love scary movies!!!! I just can't watch them if I'm alone.

5. I'm a total dork and love to play Halo on the PC!!!!

6. I've been married twice...the first time to my high school sweetheart. We dated for 6 years, were engaged for one year, and married for 8-9 years. I married my 2nd husband and was married to him for about a year when we separated, and were divorced a year later.

7. I miss being married and having someone to come home to each day.

8. I would love to have a daughter.

9. I used to live in Panama City, Panama when I was married to my 1st husband. Our 1st son was born there (just a coincidence, but so was my father!)

10. I also lived in Colorado Springs, CO when I was married to my 1st husband...which is where our 2nd son was born.

11. I am only on my 3rd car! My 1st car was a brand new Chevy Cavalier (I was 18 years old when I bought it). My 2nd car was a brand new Honda Civic, which I had for 11 years. I just recently bought my 3rd car - a 2005 Pontiac G6, which I absolutely love!

12. I love wolves!!!! I collect wolf figurines...pictures, etc. I think they are beautiful creatures!

13. I love sex!!!!! I'm gonna get a bunch of crap for that, aren't I?! lol!

14. All the way through high school and a few years after, I was 98lbs. and a size 5. Actually, my 1st year of high school I was much smaller....I had to buy my clothes at the store 5.7.9 Shop because they were the only store where I could find a size 0! How sickening is that? I'd be perfectly happy getting back down to a size 6 or 8 and staying there. I'm on my way :o)

15. I am deathly afraid of flying. I used to fly all the time when I was younger, even flew to visit my mother in Oregon starting when I was 13 years old. But as I got older, and once I had my boys, I began to really develop this fear of flying. And after 9/11, I have only been able to get on an airplane twice. I'm so afraid of planes crashing that I have actually pulled off the side of the highway when I've seen them going over me, just so that I could keep my eye on it til it landed.

16. I'm afraid of needles. One time when my sister and I were very young we both had to get a shot for something...probably strep...we used to get it a lot when we were little. My dad was holding me down when the nurse was getting ready to give me my shot and I was screaming like a baby! I even managed to get away from my dad! That is unthinkable to me now. When we left the doctors office and stopped at the grocery store, we passed down the baby aisle and my dad pointed at the diapers and said "I think we need some of them for our baby!" I was so embarrassed!

17. I am totally hooked on reality tv shows. Big Brother...The Bachelor....I love em all!

18. I lost my oldest brother to cancer on my 5th birthday...he was only 14 years old. I miss him dearly.

19. I believe....and my life's motto is...."Everything happens for a reason".

20. One time when I was about 17 years old my neighbor (a guy my age) and one of his friends flicked a chewed up Tootsie Roll at me and it stuck to my forehead....they nicknamed me Buddha because of it.

21. Another nickname I was given when I was in high school was Thumper. My best friend's dad gave it to me because every morning when I would walk up to her house to get her so we could walk to our bus stop together, I would knock on their door so lightly that he could barely hear me....he said I was barely thumping...and wala! Thumper!

22. I love to scrapbook!

23. I cannot sit still in my car when a good song comes on the radio! I'm sure more people get their laughs on their way to work in the mornings because of my crazy ass dancing around like a fool.

24. I can rarely not laugh if I hear someone fart. I'm sick, huh?!

25. I love wood. Anything wood. I just love the texture of it. I would love to be able to take a wood-working class.

26. I love thinking about winning the lottery! I love to think about what I would do if I won it, what I would buy, who I would help, etc. If I have trouble going to sleep at night, I'll think about this.

27. I hate watermelon.

28. I had both of my boys naturally....no epidurals! Whenever I find myself in pain, I just think back to that and realize I am stronger and tougher than I realize!

29. I typically cannot sleep past 7am on any given day....no matter what time I go to bed. I may wake up and then decide to go back to sleep, but I almost always wake up by 7 o'clock.

30. These are the CD's that are in my CD player in my car right now: Eagles-Hotel California, Eagles-(The Long Road to Eden...or whatever the new one is called..lol!), DJ Khaled (I borrowed it from my son), Fergie (The Dutchess), Reba (Duets), and some other CD...plays piano music or something.

31. I'm paranoid about losing one of my boys. I always worry that something bad will happen to them. I couldn't imagine not having them around.

32. I cry on every single episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition! I have yet to stay dry eyed watching that show! lol!

33. When I'm with someone, I love to write notes, cards or just little post-it notes for them and leave them around for them to find.

34. I am not greedy with my money. I love to buy things for my family and friends. If I see something that makes me think of someone or I see something that I know someone likes, I tend to buy it.

35. I have never really been big on expensive jewelry. It's just not me. Sure, if someone wants to buy me a diamond, I probably wouldn't turn it down, but I would never ask for jewelry.

36. Every car I've owned has been red. I swore my last one wouldn't be, but sure enough it was.

37. After my brother died, my mother and father separated and divorced. My mom took my other brother (who was 12...I was 5) to live with her and we moved to North Dakota. I remember driving around in a car for weeks though. After 5-6 months she could no longer take care of us and she sent us back to my dad. I never lived with my mother again. She always lived very far away. As a little girl who lost her older brother and then no longer saw her mother, I felt very abandoned. I think the reason I don't like to be alone now is due to that to some extent.

38. I love playing games...board games....card games....computer games....

39. I cannot stand rude or bitter people.

40. I love the look of a white t-shirt with a pair of jeans! It's my favorite outfit!!!!!

41. I cannot stand the feel of a cat's tongue! I love cats...but gosh darnit, DO NOT lick me!!!! YUCK!!!!

42. I do not own a dishwasher and I desperately want one!

43. I am a very loyal friend. The friends I hang out with are all ones I've known since middle school.

44. I am extremely shy...which can sometimes make people think I'm a snob....but I'm not. I'm just afraid to speak to someone first.

45. I am very squeamish. I cannot watch tv shows that show surgeries, or blood, or body parts being mangled. YUCK. I will pass out!

46. I hate knees and elbows.

47. I cannot whistle normal....I whistle out of the side of my mouth. It's so stupid looking!

48. I would love to be able to learn how to ride a motorcyle and have one of my own! (Gotta be a Harley!!!!!)

49. I love a cool Autumn day where you can go outside without a jacket...a slight breeze blowing and being able to just sit and have the wind blowing through your hair.

50. My eyes are burning so bad...it's late and I can't think of anything else to say! Well, there are quite a few VERY interesting things I could say, but I think I'll keep those my lil' secrets and just call it a night!

  

via aePiot ift.tt/1Cj06IJ

 

Snowfall Live Wallpaperby Kittehface Software(62)

 

Buy new: $0.99

 

Best Sellers in Themes

 

Galactic Core Live Wallpaper Galactic Core Live Wallpaper by Kittehface Software (36)Buy new: $0.99…

 

12 Live Hornworms 12 Live Hornworms by Rainbow Mealworms (35)Buy new: $13.00 2…

 

Live Original: How the Duck Commander Teen Keeps It Real… Live Original: How the Duck Commander Teen Keeps It Real…

 

FL Studio Producer, Edition 11 FL Studio Producer, Edition 11 by Image-Line Software Platform: Windows…

 

LeapFrog Explorer My Little Pony Friendship is Magic… LeapFrog Explorer My Little Pony Friendship is Magic Learning Game…

 

Office 365 Home Premium 5 PCs or Macs Key Card (No Disc) Office 365 Home Premium 5 PCs or Macs Key Card…

 

LeapFrog Letter Factory Learning Game (works with LeapPad… LeapFrog Letter Factory Learning Game (works with LeapPad Tablets and…

 

Subscribe in a reader |

Parfumuri - ow.ly/EWwXm

 

- more ... RSS - FEED - bit.ly/1rih7sm -

September 11, 2011: Today is the 10th anniversary of the most horrific act of violence I have seen take place in the United States in my 32 years of life.

 

To make a long story short, I was at work when I got news. My friend, Tammy, broke the news to me via e-mails. We at the office rigged up a small black and white TV in time to see both towers burn before they fell. We were all numb. I ended up leaving work early that day.

 

On my way home, I stopped by Publix. I had never heard that store as quiet as I did that day. In the checkout line, I saw a flag. My first impulse at seeing it, I wanted to grabbed the flag and hold it. I saw it as a sign of comfort. I didn't buy it, because I worried how my mother would react. Later, I learned she would have bought it if she were me.

 

Ten years later, I see how much I have and haven't changed since that horrible day.

 

I couldn't decided what type of photo to take for today. If I took something happy, it would seem like I didn't care. If I took something somber, I felt like I would let the horror and grief the mofo terrorists wanted us to feel win over. I refuse to let them win.

 

This is flag is on my Old Navy 2011 4th of July shirt. I was putting it on to wear today because it's comfortable. That's when it hit me that the flag was the perfect photo for today. It invoked the memories of today, yet at the same time, reminded me of the strength found in the resolve of Americans.

 

Ever since that day, I live by a motto I heard in all places, the movie Galaxy Quest: "Never give up! Never surrender!" I try not to give up and I refuse to surrender.

 

(254/365)

Elevation of this entrance to Yellowstone National Park is at 7,365 ft.

 

After camping the night along Rock Creek between Red Lodge, Montana and Yellowstone National Park (northeast entrance), I drove the Beartooth Pass highway (hwy 212) at dawn, to watch the new day arrive at 10.947 ft. That is lots of smoke from "managed" forest fires in the area.

 

Beartooth Pass is one of my favorite highways to drive and even with the forest fire smoke, I enjoyed the route.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

THE CIRQUE OF THE TOWERS Backpacking Trip: September 7th through 9th 2012

Wind River Mountain Range - Wyoming

 

PREFACE:

 

I often write a "story" to go along with the photographs I post on my OLDMANTRAVELS flickr site. I can get pretty wordy and long winded with these stories but the beauty of the situation is you don't have to read one word of it if you don't want to. Just look at the photographs (if you want to).

 

On occasion I have received some flip Flickr flak for my long photo "stories" but, trust me, I am adept and ignoring criticism. Ask any of my photographer friends who try to talk me into using a tripod or even try to become a "real" photographer (instead of a hiker who likes to snap pictures).

 

So, you may be sitting in a work cubicle in a high rise office in L.A., wishing you were any where else in the world but preferably up in the mountains with a pack on your back. You may sitting in an easy chair in your ranch house in Halfway, Wyoming (I want to go there some day, just to say I have been there) looking at flickr photos on your PC or surfing flickr photos on your iPad in a cafe in Halfway, Oregon (I have been there. Cool little town).

 

But wherever you are, be it Halfway,Anywhere or Alltheway, Somewhere - I hope you enjoy some of the photographs and perhaps, some of the story that goes with them. Have fun.

 

INTRODUCTION:

 

Fred and I put together a backpacking trip into Titcomb Basin, in the Northern portion of Wyoming's Wind River Range for September of 2011. With Fred's consent, my brother and a friend of mine, accompanied us on that backpacking trip. We backpacked 27 miles over four days and had spectacular weather. No bugs and very few people. In fact, we pretty much had Upper and Lower Titcomb Lakes to ourselves.

 

The September 2011 Titcomb Basin backpack, was the first time Fred and I had hiked together. We got along great so it was only natural to plan a "follow up hike". During the always long, with short days, winter or 2011-12, we exchanged emails and it became evident that both of us longed for a return trip to the Wind River Range. So early in the year of 2012, we set our sights on the Cirque of the Towers, located in the Southern portion of the Wind River Range. The planning began in earnest.

 

For our 2012 backpacking trip, we invited Fred's sister, whom I shall call "SQ". Fred had told me about her before. He claimed that she was an excellent hiker, backpacker and outdoors person and would be fun to have on our backpacking trip. He was 100% right.

 

Both Fred and SQ both work (they aren't old living on government dole like me) so we set the Cirque of the Towers backpacking trip dates for Friday 9.6.12; Saturday 9.7.12; and Sunday 9.8.12. Weekends might mean more people on the trails but for good company on a backpacking trip, that didn't bother me...so subject to a "reasonable" weather forecast, those are the days we picked.

 

When we got we got within a ten day weather forecast window of our backpacking trip and the forecast looked good, the three of us agreed to "go for it". We all reserved cabins at the Log Cabin Motel in Pinedale, Wyoming for Thursday night September 6th. Our plan would be to head for the Big Sandy trail head on Friday morning - - backpacks loaded and ready.

 

As a shiftless (you could add lazy, stubborn, and unconventional to that) retiree, who no longer works (my wife still works part time), I was free to drive down to the trail head and return back home, at my own whims and predilections. Early on, my wife and I agreed not to include her on this particular backpacking trip as we didn't know how "tough or easy" the route up Jackass Pass (10,800') might be and it would be difficult to get the right days off in September.

 

"THE STORY" DAY ONE: I left our home in Eastern Washington at four in the morning. I had our small, old, high mileage SUV packed with both my backpacking gear and "road travel" gear. It had been packed and double checked, the night before.

 

As with any road trip or hike, the earlier I get going the better I like it. I'm like a kid in that respect. Can't wait.

 

I drove the interstate (I-90) east and at a steady pace. My goal was to reach a camping spot anywhere between Red Lodge, Montana and the Beartooth Pass, leading into the Northeast entrance of Yellowstone National Park.

 

I stayed on I-90 all the way through Spokane, Missoula, Three Forks, Bozeman, and the small town of Columbus, Montana. Here I left the interstate and purposefully drove a highway I had never traveled before. I took Montana highway 78 through Abarokee and "downtown" Roscoe to Red Lodge, Montana.

 

My plan was to camp between Red Lodge and Northeast entrance to Yellowstone NP, so I could travel the spectacular Beartooth Pass highway, right at dawn. My wife and I had tried to travel the pass a few years ago (from south to north) but it was closed so we improvised an took the scenic highway 296 highway to Cody, Wyoming on that trip. But it had been many years since last crossing the Beartooth Pass (10,947') and I was anxious to do so again.

 

There was a problem and that was forest fires. Whether started by lightening, careless people, or on purpose as "managed" fires as they call them, the smoke can diminish the scenic beauty of an area quickly and I had driven through lots of such wildfire smoke on this trip already.

 

I found an excellent place to camp just as dark started to arrive. I backed my old RAV4 up to within a stone's toss of the rumbling creek (Rock Creek) and slept in the bed I had prepared in the back of the old Toyota RAV4 with 150,000 miles on it. Breaking camp the next morning would consist of crawling from the bed in the back to the driver's seat and starting the engine (followed closely by turning the heat to high and the fan to full).

 

"THE STORY" DAY TWO: I arrived at the summit of Beartooth Pass at dawn. As I suspected and feared, the forest fire smoke filtered the landscape views and at times irritated my eyes. Still, I enjoyed every minute of the drive. It is big, spectacular country and I kept reminding myself that forest fires were as much a part of the grand scheme of Mother Nature, as were winds, rain, four seasons, and flowing rivers and streams.

 

I stopped to take a few photos at "Little Bear Lake" and then continued on through Cooke City and Silver Gate into Yellowstone. I drove slowly through Yellowstone, admiring the wildlife (bison, pronghorn, elk, deer, and sandhill cranes) and the scenery. Dunraven Pass had lots of wildfire smoke so I didn't linger there. On through Canyon Village then Lake Village exiting the park on highway 191.

 

Entering Grand Teton National Park on the venerable highway 191 route, I decided to stray from convention and loop over to Jenny Lake, a place I had not visited for many years. So at the south end of Jackson Lake, I took the Teton Park Road to the Jenny Lake visitor center. Lots of people. The tent camp was already full so I spent some quality time talking to a young lady park ranger, with a map spread out in front of us, talking about any places I might camp that night, that wouldn't be full. She recommended Gros Ventre camp, so off I went.

 

At Moose Junction I turned back north on hwy 191 to Antelope Flats Road and headed east. I went past the north end of "Mormon Row" but didn't take time to stop as I wanted most of all to secure a campsite for the night. I then took the paved narrow two lane road south to Kelly (a small "pocket town" on the Gros Ventre River), and turned back west to the Gros Ventre campground. On the way I passed the south end of the gravel road that travels the Mormon Row barns and homesteads, so I now had the lay of the land in my mind.

 

Two women at the campground office worked at finding me a campsite for the night that would lend itself to my goal of a quiet night's sleep with an early morning departure. They put me up at site #199 in Loop "D" for a modest "senior's rate" camp fee. It turned out perfect. My only camping neighbor was a nice couple from Emmett, Idaho, who were in a truck camper and as they said "prepared to camp until the leaves changed color". I liked that.

 

Having secured (posted my receipt on the campsite post) my camping spot for the night, I drove the gravel road north to enjoy the much photographed old buildings of Mormon Row

The places along this row of farms were built in the 1910s up into the early 1930s. The people, who lived here were mostly the Moultons, some Chambers, Thomas Murphy and Thomas Perry. Many of the buildings are gone and all that remain are now part of the national park system. The views of the Grand Teton Mountains from these old buildings are spectacular.

 

After taking some smoke filtered landscape photos at Mormon Row, I was hungry. I carried and ice chest full of cold soda pop and a well stocked plastic tote of sandwich making material, so I drove north up to the Snake River Overlook (a place my wife and I have often stopped at when driving highway 191 through Grand Teton NP).

 

Here I fixed and ate dinner, walked the rim of the Snake River and waited with others for the sun to set behind the Grand Teton range. Now I began to appreciate the forest fire smoke in the area as the sky turned bright orange and pink behind the mountains as the sun disappeared behind them. Well worth the wait. After the sunset scene, I drove back to my campsite, read John Muir's "Travels in Alaska" by LED headlamp, and fell blissfully asleep.

 

"THE STORY" DAY THREE: This was an uneventful, slow paced, rest up, organize, and get ready for the backpacking trip day. Enjoyable.

 

I drove the Moose Entrance to Wilson "scenic road" for the first time. The north end had some good "moose country" habitat and it was an enjoyable drive, but even early in the morning don't expect solitude. It is a popular route. Postscript: I didn't see a single moose along the MOOSE to Wilson road (which reminds me of a joke):

 

Said a well traveled young man: "I spent an entire week on the Canary Islands and during my entire stay, I didn't see one canary. I then traveled to the Virgin Islands for a week long visit there as well. And you know what? ..................... I didn't see a single canary there either.".

 

I stocked up on "hiking food" (scones) at the Albertson store in Jackson Hole, Wyoming then drove on to Hoback Junction and on to Pinedale, Wyoming. I checked into my cabin there and started organizing my backpacking gear, making sandwiches for the backpacking trip, reading, relaxing and hoping that Fred and SQ would arrive without problems from there homes in the Boise, Idaho area.

 

Fred called me by cell phone at 1:30 pm on Thursday and said that they were "on their way" with an ETA of around 9:30 pm (which is about when they arrived). Fred came to my cabin when they got to Pinedale (SQ went directly to her cabin) and the two of us talked about the upcoming hike plans and agreed upon when we would leave Pinedale in the morning.

  

"THE STORY" DAY FOUR: We drove to the Subway for our last "civilization" meal for a few days, then headed off to the Big Sandy trailhead. In some hiking guide books, they make finding the correct turns to make as complicated and difficult. We found quite the contrary. There are just two major turns to make after leaving the pavement on Wyoming highway 353. They aren't hard to find. The dirt roads are in great shape except the last ten miles (when you make the last turn north). There it is pretty rough in places but the scenery and anticipation of the high quality hiking to come, makes it a cinch as well.

 

We signed in at the trail head, shouldered our backpacks and headed up the 5.5 mile trail (with only 600 ft. of elevation gain) to Big Sandy Lake. Fred is a strong hiker and a professional photographer (in addition to his professional "day job"). So it is difficult for him to leave a tripod, camera body, or lens ... behind. SQ whispered to me that he was able to leave his wooden pin hole camera behind on this hike but he took it with him on our September 2011 Titcomb Basin hike.

 

Fred always carries the biggest and heaviest pack but he knows what he is capable of and takes the cameras, lenses, and photographic equipment it takes to get the professional results he does with his photography.

 

SQ had the next biggest and heaviest pack. She too is a strong competent hiker and backpacker and as Fred once warned me "She will out hike us both"...she did. So we put SQ in the lead and asked her to slow down if she saw us "fading" on the trail.

 

I'm the wimp. I carried the lightest load of the three of us. And here comes the first of a couple of backpacking vignettes: Leading up to our backpacking trip, Fred and I exchanged emails dithering and deliberating over how to save weight to carry on our backpacking trip.

This meant all was subject to being left behind , except camera gear for Fred (of course).

 

We both decided that with the favorable weather forecast, for example, we could leave rain pants behind. Nylon hiking pant and long poly prop underwear would handle that issue for me. Then the topic came up of "bear vaults". Both Fred and I have each owned one for years but NEVER has either of us used ours. Hell they weigh TWO pounds each and they are bulky. Besides, we are real men. We can hang our food properly in a bear bag over a cliff or on an sturdy tree limb. So went the thinking.

 

When I confirmed by phone that bear vaults weren't mandatory in the Wind River Range, Fred and I gleefully agreed that we would leave ours at home. Well you have probably already figured out the punch line. given our situation of "the beauty" (SQ) hiking with "the two beasts" (Fred and me). SQ brought her bear vault and Fred and I shamelessly made use of the bear vault SQ packed all the way to Big Sandy Lake in her large heavy backpack.

 

We leap frogged a few backpackers on our way up to Big Sandy Lake. Two women and their four pack carrying dogs became our instant trail favorites. We would run into each other on the backpack into Big Sandy Lake; on the trail coming out of the Cirque of the Towers on Saturday and at least twice on our backpack out to the trail head on Sunday.

 

The four happy hiking trail dogs were a real study in different dog personalities. Walter, was the smallest, slightest built dog of the four and clearly liked to lead. He was also the most affectionate to trail strangers (like us) and seemed to be having the most fun. He was a mutt, as many smart endearing dogs are and a mix between a beagle and Australian shepherd. The other three were magnificent purebred German Shepherds.

 

Walter was always "first up the trail". He made friends quickly with his adorable expression and straight forward manner. As soon as the three German Shepherds saw how well Walter was being petted and scratched behind his ears...they lined up and competed for attention.

 

Almost 75% of the people we saw hiking in and out of Big Sandy Lake had dogs with them and I can tell you that every dog we passed was well mannered and friendly. They were welcome trail companions in my book.

 

The three of us arrived at Big Sandy Lake and were impressed by both the appeal of the lake and the dramatic mountains that surround it. It is a truly lovely lake. I think if any of us had hiked the Cirque of the Towers trail up over Jackass Pass before, and seen the available "best tent sites" in the area, we might have continued to hike there on Friday. We had enough daylight. But with a wind and clouds rolling in at the moment, we decided it would be best to secure a good camping spot at the far end of Big Sandy Lake and then do our exploring with day hikes to the Cirque of the Towers and later to the Clear Lake & Deep Lake - East Temple Peak area - - if we had time.

 

That decided, we set up our three small lightweight backpacking tents in a well spaced row up the left bank of the almost dry creek bed of Lost Creek. The spacing would assure that SQ would not have to lose a night's sleep listening to two world class snorers (Fred and I have our reputations to uphold in that classification). SQ took the top site up close to the marmot's boulder field; then Fred's tent; then mine. We all had quality views of Sandy Mountain; Big Sandy Lake; Haystack and East Temple peaks.

 

Our intent was to spend both Friday and Saturday nights at our Big Sandy Lake/Lost Creek "base camp". Then we could spend all of our time hiking our favorite trails with light day packs (though with Fred's camera gear, I'm pretty certain his day pack load would be close to my entire backpack load in weight). This is what we did and it worked out great.

 

We ate camp dinner and talked for awhile and took a couple of short "reconnaissance" hikes close by camp. We now had a feel for the "Miller Lake/Little Sandy Lake" trail; the Clear Lake/Deep Lake trail; the Black Joe Lake trail as well as the trail junction for the hike up past North Lake and Arrowhead Lake, over Jackass Pass and into the spectacular Cirque of the Towers area.

 

We all retired to our tents for the night. I had brought along a copy of the Sep+Oct 2012 Washington Trails magazine for camp reading. The magazine came with membership in the Washington Trails Association that was "gifted" to me by a good hiking friend of mine, HC.

 

I turned on my LED headlamp and opened up the magazine. There on page three was a familiar name: Andy Porter. He was listed as a "guest contributor". He is a flickr contact of mine and he does indeed take excellent photographs. It seemed ironic, that I had written one person about a waterfall location, in the Cirque area between Hidden and Lonesome Lake, and that was Andy. He was quick to send me a Flickr email back with information that I requested. His Flickr site is: I8Seattle.

 

A quick side note: Flickr has been a wonderful resource for me when researching upcoming hikes and road trips. I really appreciate people like Andy, who willingly share information. I always write to thank people for their help. Some people sent me a flickr email a couple of months ago asking for camping information for the Titcomb Basin hike and some specific camp location questions. I wrote them providing what they asked, and never heard another word. There are people that are "takers" out there, who think nothing of requesting information then are too lazy (or rude) to send a two word reply back. Thank you.

 

Thanks Andy for the "waterfalls" info. Thanks too "HC" for the WTA membership gift and the Trails magazine that comes with it.

 

"THE STORY" DAY FIVE: Fred, the professional photographer, wanted to head up the 2+ mile trail over Jackass Pass before dawn, hiking with a headlamp. I told him I would be happy to join him and asked that he call for me outside my tent if he got up before I did.

 

SQ, who doesn't carry a camera but instead hikes to see and enjoy the scenery, said she would sleep in Saturday morning and start up the trail when she had something to eat and was good and ready. I hope you are starting to get the picture here. A competent smart woman hiker and her brother and her brother's hiking friend (me) that can't seem to wait to get going .. no matter what.

 

What happened Saturday morning? I got up at six. I went over to Fred's tent and said in a nice strong voice "Fred, Fred...Fred". No response. I headed down where we had placed SQ's Bear Vault (filled equally with her food, our food, and our camp food garbage). My intent was to open the bear vault and get some hiking food for my day hike up into the Cirque of the Towers.

 

The lid of the bear vault was iced over and try as I might I couldn't get it open. I squeezed the lid in; wrestled with it; cursed it; but could not open it. I admit to being shamed in knowing that a black bear in the Adirondack Mountains has learned to open the blasted things..yet I could not.

 

I decided with my ample "fat reserve" that I could make it without food for my day hike over and back to the Cirque of the Towers. I threw a couple bottles of diet Mt. Dew (my caffeine fix) in my pack; two small cameras (Canon G9 & G10) a few essentials and a coat, into my light Marmot "day pack" and got ready to head out.

 

Then I noticed that Fred's pack wasn't in sight. So I returned to his tent and called his name a few more times then opened the rain fly of his tent to find him gone.

 

I now concluded correctly that: #1 he had left before dawn and had been unable to stir me from my sleep. AND #2 incorrectly that Fred too had been unable to open the bear vault so he too would be hiking without trail food. I thought the ice and frost on the bear vault lid proved that but I was wrong. Fred (like the black bear in the Adirondacks) did get the vault open but had left so early that a new coating of ice and frost had formed on the lid by the time I tried it. Off I went.

 

It was light enough for me to hike easily without a headlamp up the Cirque of the Towers trail. It did get tough to find the route in a couple of places though and the trail was much more work that I thought it would be so it took a little longer than I might have guessed. I was just amazed that Fred had been able to successfully negotiate the route in the dark, even with a good map and headlamp, given that none of the three of us had ever hiked in the area.

 

I saw Fred's boot prints on the occasional dirt or sand portion of the trail. I just didn't know how early he had left camp, nor how fast or slow he might be hiking, given his load of camera gear.

 

I won't try to describe how magnificent the scenery was on this hike and I hope a photo or two of mine does some justice to it, but my head was constantly on swivel enjoying the ever unfolding beauty of this world class rock climbing area.

 

After a few steep ups and downs in the cairn marked trail, I came to a four way trail intersection above Arrowhead Lake. To my left a faint path lead down to the north end of Arrowhead Lake. to my right was a straight up the hill wide, heavily eroded, rock strewn trail that was clearly the route to Jackass pass (10,800 ft.).

 

Straight ahead was a faint but inviting "climbers' path" that led up to a notched saddle, that I just knew would have a tremendous view of the Cirque, the rock faces, and the landscape as the morning sun was starting to move down the rock faces. I chose to take the path straight ahead.

 

Coming over the crest of the saddle and looking down below at the Cirque and across at all the tremendous spires, faces, and peaks of the Cirque of the Towers was the most dramatic moment of this trip. Wonderful. Beyond words.

 

Right in the middle of the Cirque was "the waterfalls" I wanted to visit and photograph. It was right where Andy Porter said it would be. I could follow the creek down from Hidden Lake (not labeled on all maps you will see of the area) and then see it as it flowed down over the falls and on into the Lonesome Lake basin.

 

I studied the topography of the cirque basin for awhile and picked a line of travel that would avoid tight patches of alpine conifers and the boulder fields that might slow my progress. I had lots of choices and I sat off on what looked like the "best route" down to the waterfalls.

 

The waterfalls are small but their setting makes them dramatic. While at the falls I saw a few rock climbers making their way to Pingora or Wolf Head or some other peak of the Cirque of the Towers, with their rock climbing gear slung across their shoulders.

 

I met a retired backpacker from Kellogg, Idaho, who was camped a ways down stream from the waterfalls. He had his binoculars out and was getting ready to watch the rock climber ply their avocation and skills.

 

I contoured from the waterfalls over to intercept the trail between Lonesome Lake and Jackass Pass. No sign of Fred anywhere but I just knew wherever he was he had a big grin on his face and was happily following photo op after photo op. I knew he was in his element.

 

When I got to the main trail, without losing any altitude, it was a short hike up over Jackass Pass, heading south. Quietly I hoped I could hike fast enough to get back to camp at Big Sandy Lake, eat something (I was determined to get into the Yogi Bear proof bear vault) then head out for a hike to one or more of the lakes down by Temple Mountain.

 

Between Arrowhead Lake and North Lake, on the trail on my way back to Big Sandy Lake camp, I saw SQ coming up the trail at a nice even brisk pace. We hadn't talked much up to this point but there is something about a "side of the trail" talk, that brings out topic after topic.

 

When she found out I hadn't been able to get into the "anybody can do it" (except me), bear vault she started throwing food out of her day pack, insisting that I eat something of hers. I didn't have the heart to eat any of her precious trail chocolate but willingly ate one of her mini-bagel peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

 

We talked on and on and every few minutes, hikers or climber going in or out of the Cirque of the Towers would stop by and the conversation would expand in topic and in number of participants. What fun.

 

Then we looked down the trail and saw a familiar face coming up the trail. It was "Walter the wonder dog" the trail beagle/Australian shepherd mix, sweetheart of a dog. He seemed to recognize us and made a bee line over for some ear scratching and encouraging "dog talk". He may have also spotted SQ's trail snacks.

 

A much repeated trail ritual ensued with Walter's big German Shepherd companions appearing on the trail The moment they spotted Walter getting attention they once again lined up for their share. The two women, who owned the dogs (by now regular "trail friends") came up too and another animated trail information sessions began again. They told me of how much they had enjoyed the granite slab rock hike between Deep and Clear Lakes, so that nugget of information lodged in my mind.

 

Finally SQ and I headed our different ways. She headed up toward Jackass Pass (armed with my recommendation for at least sampling the "climbers' trail" to the notch). She would find Fred and probably the two of them would spend the rest of the day in the Cirque of the Towers area. I expressed my wish to eat at camp; secure food; and then head south from Big Sandy Lake to hike the Clear Lake/Deep Lake slab stone route OR the entire loop if I found I had time (returning down the Miller Lake route).

 

By 1:30 pm I had successfully opened the bear vault back at "base camp" and had a big lunch. I packed my day pack with more water and my water filter and readied for a day hike toward Temple Mountain. I left an irreverent note for Fred and SQ in the bear vault, so they would know what time I headed out and what my intended destination would be.

 

More hikers and backpackers were now arriving at Big Sandy Lake. That came as no surprise to me given the great weather and it being a Saturday. What did surprise me is that when I took off on the trail up to Clear Lake, I didn't see another person or backpacking tent, until I had hiked up to Deep Lake and returned to Clear Lake. Then, and only then did I run into a few hikers.

 

The hike up the granite slab rock between Clear Lake and Deep Lake was the most enjoyable section of "trail" that I have hiked in the Wind River Range. I just loved it. The steep white granite walls of Haystack and East Temple Mountain were tremendous sights.

 

When I looked at my hiking maps the route from Clear to Deep Lake was obvious so I ignored the cairns and any trails wandering in and out of the woods and just hiked the slab rock to my heart's content. It was really great hiking.

 

I lingered at Deep Lake to filter some water (tasted great), and just enjoy the outstanding views. I was tempted to hang around or perhaps hike on over to Temple Lake so I could be at Deep Lake when the pink early evening light started to hit East Temple Peak. But I thought it best to return the way I came and get back to Big Sandy Lake "base camp" in time to have a early evening meal with Fred & SQ, who would likely be returning from the Cirque of the Towers at around the same time.

 

The weather forecast for Sunday was a 20% chance of rain, which according to hikers coming in, had jumped up to 30%. Fred and SQ had the two plus hour backpack out from Big Sandy Lake to the trail head to do Sunday morning; then a two plus hour drive to Pinedale; then an 8 hour trip back home to Boise - - to be ready for work Monday morning.

 

When the three of us ended up together at our tents at our Big Sandy Lake "base camp" we all agreed to "sleep in" then head out together first thing Sunday morning. Saturday night was a still star filled night. It was a great way to finish out this backpacking trip. We all went to sleep with our own thoughts.

 

"THE STORY" DAY SIX: We all got up the next morning about the same time. Without words we immediately ate something and started striking our tents and packing our packs. Ice had formed on the inside of my rain fly as I had slept with the rain fly door wide open. Still I wouldn't have missed the night view of the stars.

 

At 8 am Sunday morning we shouldered our backpacks and headed down the gentle easy trail from Big Sandy Lake back to our vehicles at the trail head.

 

We talked to several hikers and backpackers as they were heading in and we were heading out. We met two older, but fit looking, women with quality backpacking gear, coming up the trail. Their accents quickly gave them away. They were from Adelaide, Australia.

 

I quickly teased them about the 1/2 hour time zones I had run into when working the area in the 1980s. SQ and the two Aussie women found some common topic threads and a full scale trail meeting began in earnest. Fred and I slowly backed away into the shade of a small pine and watched with pleasure and amusement as the women adroitly shifted topics and punctuated their discussion with hand waving.

 

Then a familiar hiker came running down the trail toward us. Walter the wonder beagle. How funny. Same routine, different location. Now the two dog owning women hikers; joined the two Aussie women; and SQ (surrounded by attention seeking canines) and the trail meeting took on a life of its own.

 

I circled the trail meeting with my camera trying to catch a snapshot that would capture the essence and the spirit of the "meeting". The meeting finally ended and off we all went. it was a good ending to our trail encounters with other hikers and Walter will always have a special place in my heart and a deserved title as "Trail Ambassador" and a very cute and clever dog.

 

We were at our vehicles by 11 am and digging into our ice chests for cold rewards for our three day backpacking and day hiking efforts. We chatted and talked trip highlights at the trail head then convoyed our vehicles back to the paved road. I stopped to photograph a cow and calf moose along the road on the way back to Pinedale but ran into Fred & SQ at the Subway, where we parted ways for the last time on this trip.

 

It had been a wonderful backpacking trip for me. If you made a short list of the qualities you would want in backpacking and hiking companions it would probably include adjectives such as: dependable, fair, courteous, considerate, flexible tolerant, competent, confident, honest, happy, flexible, fit, and a couple of phrases like "great attitude" "self sufficient" etc. Fred and his sister were all of those and more.

 

I have a feeling we will hike together again, unless I get too old too soon to keep up with the two of them. If they ever switch to lighter packs, then I'm already out matched. But somehow, I think the two of them would be fine with hiking slower because that is the kind of nice people that they are. Thanks Fred. Thanks SQ.

 

By the way if you have not yet hiked this area and are thinking about doing so, I highly recommend the map "Cirque of the Towers Wind River Range" by Backpacker Magazine (mytopo - a Trimble company). Fred found it and being the considerate person that he is, bought and sent a copy of the map to both me and to his sister, before our backpacking trip.

 

Also: I have read many backpacking "guides" and the one that hits the right balance for me and seems to be filled with good and "reasonable" advice is: Backpacker: "The Hiking Light Handbook" (carry less and enjoy more) by Karen Berger. I highly recommend it.

 

After leaving Pinedale in the early afternoon I had a planned stop at Trappers Point, just north of Pinedale off highway 191. You can't miss the place now as they are putting in a million dollar "antelope, deer, elk, and cattle" overpass right near the site.. You take a short rough dirt road to the top of a hill and you are looking down upon where Horse Creek enters the Snake River. Here six of the sixteen fur trading "rendezvous" took place.

 

Looking down upon the scene it doesn't take much imagination to time transport your thoughts to the 1830s and 1840s and imagine the colorful events that took place where you are looking. You will be standing where many Native Americans have stood, when hunting at this natural big game corridor. You can understand why this location was chosen for the rendezvous with - - the combination of wood, water, grazing, and bountiful game that would have made this the "place to be" for those many years.

 

You will share views and boot prints with mountain men like Jim Bridger (my hero); the Sublette brothers; Thomas Fitzpatrick; and Jedediah Smith (his story is a great read).

 

After spending much time at Trappers Point, I drove the familiar route through Bondurant, to the Hoback Junction; then down the Snake River to Alpine. From here I purposefully took yet another back road I had never before driven. I took highway 34 through small towns like Freedom, Henry and Soda Springs. I saw moose and pronghorn along the way and lots of early fall color.

 

When I arrived at Interstate 15 the "get home" bug hit me in full and I kept with the interstates from then on, driving up to Pocatello; then over to Burley, Twin Falls, Boise, La Grande, Pendleton and home. I pulled into rest stops, picnic areas, forest camps etc. to catch three of four hours of sleep in my RAV car camping bed, then drove on sipping cold diet Pepsi and eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches I made along the way using fresh coarse great tasting wheat bread I purchased near Daniel, Wyoming.

 

I got back home Monday morning. You might think I surprised my wife by getting home so early after leaving the trail head at close to noon on Sunday, but not so. She knows me well and greeted me with a big hug and a knowing smile. A good trip. I hope you enjoy some of the photographs and perhaps a bit of the "story" as well. OMT September 2012.

    

66/365.

 

This is long. Sorry.

 

----

 

Last night, our fish Blue, passed away. He was a good fish, and led a very long life (by Betta standards). He was 4 1/2. RIP Blue.

 

We broke the news to the kids this morning over breakfast since we noticed he was dead after bedtime, and decided that we would go to the pet store today and get another fish. So 1 and 2 went to school, and Chelsea, 3 and I went to PetSmart looking for a fish. We walked out with a cat.

 

This is Tessa, she is a just over 1 year old Maine Coon cross rescued from a shelter in northern BC I believe and sent down to the south by an animal charity to find a good home. This shop does NOT "sell" dogs and cats from breeders, they only facilitate adoptions of rescued animals. The fee you pay to adopt (which is quite reasonable) goes directly to the charity to cover expenses such as vaccinations and spay/neuter etc. Tessa is all up to date with that (in fact she was spayed a week ago).

 

The story is, we walked in, and immediately as you do you see the adoption animals on the left side. We saw her and instantly fell in love. Her eyes caught ours and she started pawing at the glass and meowing. The staff in the store said she was affectionate, and they weren't lying. Immediately when we went into the back room to pet her she snuggled right up to each of us and sniffed and purred as we pet her. She's absolutely adorable.

 

So, we borrowed a carrier from the store, and brought her home. Here is a shot of her as we loaded her into the car taken by my phone.

 

My work had called me this morning after the kids went to school, and switched my flight this evening to a different one that left an hour earlier, so I was going to miss 1 and 2's reaction. So I drove to their school and explained to the secretary what the deal was and picked them up a half hour early telling them that I wasn't going to be able to see them before work because of the change, and I wanted to say bye. They bought it.

 

First Q from 2: "Did you get Goldie?" (we decided on a goldfish, and it was to be named Goldie).

Me: "Sorry sweetie, we didn't get a fish today…" Cue a sad look and choked tears. 1 just fumed (seriously, there was smoke coming out of his ears) and stomped to the car…

 

We get home and I let them in and they were pretty choked at me, backpacks flying, shoes left in disarray, so I led them to the back office where Tessa, Chelsea, 3 and Chel's mom and dad were waiting and opened the door. Well you can guess what happened next… Huge smiles and laughs all around since they have been bugging us FOREVER to get a cat. I videoed the whole thing from them entering the house all pissy-like to when they see her and lose their minds with happiness. So I was busy doing that instead of taking photos.

 

Anyway, I was able to hang out for about 3 mins before I had to bail for work, so the cat-in-the-cage shot is what you get. But I'm sure she'll be featuring in my 365 a couple more times…

 

A few hours in and Chelsea reports that she's adjusting well to her new home. She's found her food and drink, she has a few cozy spaces that she likes to rest in and most importantly, knows where her litterbox is (and how to use it!)

 

Thanks for making it this far. Have a great evening everyone.

We're Here-12 Hours

(12 Hours lets you to show the world a small slice of your daily life. The idea is simple; take one shot per hour, approximately at the top of each hour, and the compose a collage (with notes, if you like) showing the ups and downs of your day.)

 

This is by far one of the toughest 365 challenges I've participated in. Not only is taking ONE photo a day hard enough but TWELVE self portraits was ridiculous but I gave it my best shot. I wasn't able to take each shot ON the hour. Some were at the half hour...some were rounded up...but everything was close enough.

 

8:00 am-Juannie does my sock bun for me. When he does them they are perfect and don't move around all messy like when I do it! He is the best!

 

9:00 am-I realized my dress was wrinkled so I threw it in the dryer (since I don't iron) and walked Princess and Maya. See the little old lady in the left hand corner? She stands around every morning hunched over watering the sidewalk and spraying cars, bushes and trees with the hose. Sometimes she sprays it straight up in the air like a geyser.

 

10:00 am-we have to keep our keycard on us at all times to get into the building.

 

11:00 am-I love my standing desk. When I draw with the monitor propped up and wear heels I can stand flat on the floor. If I want to draw on the Cintiq flat on the desk I have to stand barefoot on my little Moroccan stool. When I get tired, I sit up in my chair.

 

12:00 pm-Nickelodeon gave us all flowers and herbs for Earth Day last month. The Shimmer and Shine team took all the left overs from the lobby and we try to keep them alive. Only two out of the bunch are looking pretty sad so we try to give them extra love!

 

1:00 pm-Went to have delicious lunch with Juannie at his job. I was skipping through the lot and surprisingly didn't get run over.

 

2:00 pm-Despite how hot it's been in LA, the AC has been FREEZING in the office. Thank God I have a space heater and throws to keep me warm while I work.

 

3:00 pm-When I sell a dress on Poshmark I always paint the buyer a little surprise watercolor of the dress she bought. I painted this last night but I had to sign it before I packed it up to send off later in the afternoon.

 

4:00 pm-Sending my Poshmark sale off right as the Post Office closed for the day!

 

5:00 pm-Accidental candid. Today I realized how hard it is to take a pic of yourself walking out of an elevator. My camera remote died so I had to set the timer which went off right as the elevator tried to squash me.

 

6:00 pm-As soon as I get home I usually jump rope for 15 mins, do jumping jacks, sit-ups and push-ups. I waited a while today for it to cool down but it never did so I went for it anyway. Here I am taking selfies like a fool while jumping rope outside in 90 degree weather as neighbors walk by.

 

7:00 pm-Working on commissions while Princess gives me hard critiques.

 

So there you have it. My 12 hour day within my 365 day project. :)

   

In my 2010 365, I did a shot of my then home office/studio/workshop just to share a bit about my space. That was two years and 845 miles (1367km) from my current space, pictured above.

 

I like seeing the spaces of others as well (hint, hint... feel free to use this idea) as it always gives insight into the individual, how they work and how they create. So, for what it's worth, this is mine. :)

 

Last day off before going back to work and a few hundred emails.

 

Took the boys into town this afternoon to buy them both a toy, they've been really good the last week and they deserve it. I've had the best time looking after them both and I can't wait to do it again.

 

So why the angsty photo? I'll tell you why. I've always been an angry person. I have my reasons, they're very deep-seated and I don't think I'll ever shake it off. So, a very angry person, but one who can't express that anger in any way. So whenever I get screwed over it makes me mad, but there's nowhere for it to go except inwards. People mistake this for patience (of which I have none), being laid-back (if only they knew) or that I'm just a nice guy.

 

The people that triggered my angst today: the letting agent that we rent our house through.

 

I hate renting at the best of times, but even though I earn a semi-decent wage we couldn't afford a tiny house in the worst part of Weymouth due to the crazy house prices down here. So we have to rent. We're good tenants, we always pay our rent on time, keep the house clean and tidy and never cause a fuss.

 

The last week I've been trying to get our letting agent to arrange for someone to come round and do a few simple jobs around the house (I'm sure I could do 'em, but I'm not paying what I'm paying to do their work for them). We've phoned a total of five times in the last six days and nothing's been arranged.

 

Then, after phoning them again and even paying a visit to their office I find out that the handyman had been round today to do the work - during the fifteen minutes I was out taking Ben to nursery. He didn't phone ahead to tell me he was due round, and nor did our letting agent. Now that's organisation. And he manages to come round during the only time I've been out in the last three or four days.

 

If I acted this half-assed at work I'd be torn a new asshole, and quite rightly. What really winds me up is the amount of money we pay out each month to these people relative to the service we receive in return.

 

And I can't get rid of this silent rage gnawing away at me - even when I had the perfect opportunity to when I went to their office. I could just about muster some straight-talking, this-is-what-happened, this-is-what-I-need-done attitude but what I really wanted to do is kick off - we've had to put up with this for years and it pisses me off.

 

That's a very specific example of course, but it helps me to explain what I'm talking about being unable to express my anger, even when it's due.

 

The other downside is that it's the people you care about that bear the brunt of it - I can easily tear a strip off Joe or Ben if they're playing up, sometimes I jump down their throats for nothing, I forget they're just being kids.

 

It doesn't seem right that I can be Mr Nasty with my kids when the people that do deserve my contempt escape scot-free. Except in the confines of my head where they suffer eternal damnation in a series of painful and slowly applied means.

 

That's what this image is all about really - it's a silent scream of rage, and the blurry thing coming off me is meant to be . . . I dunno . . . my rage or something? And the lyrics are from the song Yes, off the album The Holy Bible by the Manic Street Preachers. If you're feeling bad, you don't need to look any further than that album to find a lyric to suit.

 

The image itself . . . it's not quite there for me, it doesn't look quite right, or realistic enough. But I like the texture. It's OK. It's the meaning it's meant to convey that's important.

 

If you want to see how I wanted my picture to turn out, look no further than this shot by Harpo9. You should also check out the rest of his photostream if you haven't already because he's got some seriously good stuff on there.

 

Well, that's a lot of angst for a Monday - sorry but I find it so much easier to get this out in writing - verbally, I'm not so good at articulating myself. And it's back to work tomorrow . . . expect a shot of my earlobe or something ;-)

 

Feel my rage! Urrrrr!

My Home Office Collage

 

Today's FGR 365 is "!flickr Notes".

 

I have a lot of Notes so I numbered them and added additional below. This is my home office. Two years ago my girlfriend of 10 years and I split up. We are still best friends and I will refer to her as “my ex” for the notes. We sold the house we had together and I needed a smaller place with a lot less yard so I bought a three story, 3 bedroom, 4 bath townhouse with an itty bitty yard for my dog Loki. My ex bought Loki (a female Cairn Terrier) when we were together and I have joint custody so I see her at least 3 days a week which works out great for all three of us.

 

I use one bedroom as an office and another as an Art Room where I paint and sculpt, and draw on whiteboards. Two weeks ago I spent $50 US on new dry erase markers, I’m not kidding. I just bought a book case for the Art Room so many of my art books are moving downstairs right now.

 

If for some reason you want to know more about me you can check my LinkedIn profile;

www.linkedin.com/in/tabrel

 

And I’ll just add a shameless plug for Kiva.org, which I think is frickin’ genius;

www.kiva.org/lender/Tabrel

 

One Fugger made a feeble attempt to insult me this week so he should give my LinkedIn profile a once over in the hopes of actually coming up with some decent ammo. There’s lots of ammo there too. I don’t kiss-and-tell so please don’t ask me who it was. I hope whoopaggie doesn’t check my Education because I was giving her a little Aggie Hell for a while and she could really turn it back on me.

 

If a Note has a * in it that means there is more below, otherwise the Note and below say the same.

 

01. Calendars from Guero’s Taco Bar, Austin TX – When I put the first one in the far left corner up I just chose a random distance from the wall. I wanted to put up six total and decided to use the same spacing and then just leave an empty space that I filled with something else later. The empty space sucked, so I decided to put up more calendars, keeping the same spacing. The last space left over is exactly the same distance as all the other spaces! Yay for not planning ahead!

02. This calendar is a different width than the rest, but the tack is spaced the same.

03. My friend Jini gave me 2 Guero’s calendars, but the Virgin Mary one is not in my office.

04. Cowboy hat I bought in Redmond WA

05. Cowboy hat I bought in Austin TX (my fave)

06. Cowboy hat I bought in Napa Valley

07. Bison skin hat I bought in Telluride CO

08. Stetson I almost never wear - It’s a dress hat (and pricey). I should have used it in the “Dallas 1963” pic I did because Det. Leavelle is wearing a Stetson.

09. Lego motorcycles

10. Glowing Cortana

11. Architecture mags

12. Tool box of slides

13. Issues of ImagineFX that are going to the Art Room

14. Texas hat pins waiting for a hat

15. Café du Monde mug that I’ve kept in one piece for 18 years!

16. Issues of "Play", games & anime

17. My fave Guero’s calendar – I think barbarianheiress would make a great model for this version of “La Adelita”. There are other versions at the top (they all have a beauty with a rifle),and I love them all. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/La_Adelita

18. Maya and MEL Scripting books

19. Windows Vista Ultimate

20. Various design mags

21. HP paper for printing photos, but my ex got the printer

22. Manga

23. Plaque of hiking medallions from my first visit to Austria

24. Mold of my lower teeth

25. Sand filled lizard (he’s awesome)

26. Keroppi!

27. Heating vent, I have loads of these

28. Blank books for writing

29. Art books to move

30. Trash can

31. Richard Scarry’s

32. Kids books

33. Tub for stuff for crimping CAT5

34. Issues of Sound On Sound and Computer Music

35. Various Adobe How-To books – 2 years ago I went to FlashForward in Austin and I got a discount on the Adobe Video Suite with After Effects, Audition, Bridge, Encore, Flash, Illustrator, ImageReady, Photoshop, and Premiere Pro. I want to make DVDs of my own animation so I NEED all these.

36. Sketchbooks

37. Art books to move

38. Bathroom – This bedroom has it’s own bath, as does the master, but I’ve using it as a closet right now while I get rid of stuff. I’ve never turned the water to the tub on.

39. Whiteboard with reproduction of Mucha I’m working on in dry erasure

40. Other whiteboard with its back to us

41. One of my laptops – This one runs Vista and right now I only use it for learning robot programming and XNA game development.

42. Dania book case

43. Framed Texas Flag – It’s supposed to look “weathered”.

44. Space for framed Texas Declaration of Independence

45. Unframed stuff waiting

46. We Recycle

47. Space for framed picture of statue before she was raised to the top of the Texas Capital

48. Framed Republic Of Texas Map

49. Old scanner

50. Monitor that will move to Art Room once I get a widescreen flat panel

51. Xbox360 controller for robot simulator and XNA in Windows

52. Max

53. Marble pen holder – Meant for chilling wine.

54. Older laptop again

55. Slides of a old film shoot I’m scanning

56. Fave keyboard

57. FugGeR

58. Plush leather office chair

59. Ducati toys

60. Children’s Bible – This Bible is OK but my fave Bible has leather binding and gold pages. I have a trophy for memorizing the most Bible verses at my Baptist church. There is a picture of “The Temptation in the Desert” where Jesus looks like a typical European idea Jesus, but Satan looks so frickin’ cool! By the time I was a teen I knew St. John’s and Revelations inside out and I was obsessed with the Anti-Christ. Then I went to college.

61. Books about writing

62. Paperbacks I can’t bear to get rid of

63. Shelf of financial books

64. Shelf of language books

65. Escher inspired object I made from cardboard in 1983!

66. Model of one of my bikes

67. Akira bike

68. Canned air

69. Midi keyboard - For Properhead Reason software, which is fun as Hell because you can make any music.

70. The Moon coffee mug

71. External DVD burner

72. Texas coffee mug

73. Microsoft mousepad I got at the company store

74. New scanner that has trays for negatives and slides

75. Office Depot desk that will not withstand another move

76. Dell tower under desk

77. 500 GB external drive under desk

78. Folder of negatives I shot in Boulder and Telluride

79. Tool box of electrical junk

80. Tool box of stuff I can’t misplace

81. Shelf of stuff, I dunno

82. Xbox 1 games

83. Xbox360 & Ducati caps

84. Fitness books

85. Some Nintedo DS games

86. Bo-flex like workout thingy

87. Industrial twist tie - I got at Home Depot so I can turn the workout bench up and it stays.

88. Shelf of computer development books

89. Shelf of film production books

90. Autographed advert from porn star Nina Hartley I need to frame

91. Issues of Texas Monthly

92. Loki! – Loki says “Hi” to Oshin, Maggie, Badger, Merlin, Clem (I didn’t have the heart to tell her Clem is not a dog), Gracie, Bear, Porter & the other Loki, “Peanut Butter” Jake (dude, yer dog has a rep now), Rusty, Sammy, Snoopy and all the other FGR dogs out there. I had to bribe her with the “t word” (t-r-e-a-t) to get her to pose.

93. Shelf of oversized books

94. Tubs o junk

95. Switch – My house is wired with CAT5 and there is a hub in my master closet.

96. Other flat panel monitor

97. The closet holds my computer racks – All these are off right now because they are building more townhouses around me and they shut of the power to my neighborhood for half of one day this week. I powered these down ahead of time and I just haven’t started them back up yet. One of these will be sacrificed for FireFox soon so I can reply to comments like ya’ll.

98. MCP (Microsoft Certified Professional) certificate

99. Telluride Film Festival Student Program certificate

100. Gave a presentation at the American Chemical Society Meeting in Dallas 1989 – My presentation was called “Anomalous Fading of Thermoluminescence in Different Temperature Forms of Oligoclase”. If I have trouble falling asleep I can read it or one of the 14 other scientific papers I’ve published. This was the meeting where one University declared they had created cold fusion and they were selling video tapes for $350 US. It was a total scam and I had already started realizing that some “scientists” weren’t actually interested in Truth at all.

101. B.S. in Mathematics

102. Antarctic meteorite I worked on at NASA – JSC – I did nuclear chemistry at NASA in 1990. The people at NASA are party animals, I’m not kidding. The smartest and most fun of any group I’ve ever met. Film people are fun too, and extremely naughty. IT people mostly suck.

 

OK, that’s my tour. I hope you had a good time, there’s free beer & wine tasting and T-Shirts in the lobby.

 

This is my first attempt at expanding/editing on Cs5...after about 10 tries, countless problems, a full day of varied work, and numerous expletives...i'm still very unhappy with it. I've never been more frustrated with technology in my life. And not to seem like I just want to bitch, but let me tell you about my day in a little snippet: realized wallet was lost, searched room/truck/etc., retraced steps many times, called campus police, called friends, cancelled credit cards, bought new student id....recieved a call from an office on campus saying someone turned my wallet in....bittersweet moment right there. I'm grateful they found it and returned it...but about 2 hours earlier would've been amazing. lol.

 

*btw-does anyone edit with lightroom and Cs5? do you edit in lightroom before you expand or after? that was a lot of my trouble on this photo...

JOHN ROMITA

Kingpin

 

John Romita Senior started drawing after spending a year in commercial art. His first jobs were for Stan Lee's Atlas group in 1949. Romita drew mostly horror and romance stories, but also several war, western and crime features for Western Publishing. After the folding of Atlas, he went to National, where he did anonymous romance stories for eight years. He then went back to Stan Lee, this time at Marvel. His first works were inking 'Avengers' and pencilling 'Daredevil' comics.

His most notable work became the 'Amazing Spider-Man' comic, which he did from 1966. Under Romita's and Lee's guidance, 'Spider-Man' became the quintessential antihero of the late 1960s and early 1970s. He left the 'Spider-Man' comic in the early 1970s, to become an art director at Marvel, working specifically in the Special Projects Department. Romita Sr. was engaged in product illustration and special designs and as Art Director for Marvel Books, the short-lived children's book line. In 1977, he briefly did the artwork of the syndicated 'Spider-Man' newspaper comic. His son, John Romita Jr., is also a talented artist for Marvel.

 

Early life and career

The son of a baker,[3] John Romita was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York City,[4] with three sisters and a brother.[5] He graduated from Manhattan's School of Industrial Art in 1947, having attended for the years after spending ninth grade at a Brooklyn junior high school.[6] Among his instructors were book illustrator Howard Simon and magazine illustrator Ben Clements,[7] and his influences included comics artists Noel Sickles,[8] Roy Crane,[8] Milton Caniff,[9] and, later, Alex Toth,[8] and Carmine Infantino,[10] as well as commercial illustrators Jon Whitcomb, Colby Whitmore, and Al Parker.[11]

Romita broke into comics on the seminal series Famous Funnies. "Steven Douglas up there was a benefactor to all young artists", Romita recalled. "The first story he gave me was a love story. It was terrible. All the women looked like emaciated men and he bought it, never criticized, and told me to keep working. He paid me two hundred dollars for it and never published it — and rightfully so".[12]

Romita was working at the New York City company Forbes Lithograph in 1949, earning $30 a week, when comic-book inker Lester Zakarin,[13] a friend from high school whom he ran into on a subway train, offered him either $17[14] or $20[12] a page to pencil a 10-page story for him as uncredited ghost artist. "I thought, this is ridiculous! In two pages I can make more money than I usually make all week! So I ghosted it and then kept on ghosting for him", Romita recalled.[12] "I think it was a 1920s mobster crime story".[8] The work was for Marvel's 1940s forerunner, Timely Comics, which helped give Romita an opportunity to meet editor-in-chief and art director Stan Lee. In addition to Timely, Romita ghost-penciled for Zakarin on Trojan Comics' Crime-Smashers and other titles, eventually signing some "Zakarin and Romita".[8]

Atlas Comics

\The collaboration ended in Spring 1951, when Romita was drafted into the U.S. Army.[15] Taking the initiative prior to induction, he showed art samples to the base art director on Governor's Island, in New York Bay, who arranged for him to be stationed there to do layouts for recruitment posters[8] once Romita had completed basic training at Fort Dix, New Jersey.[15] Romita was promoted to corporal after seven or eight months; now allowed to live off the post, he rented an apartment in Brooklyn.[16] He married Virginia in November 1952[17]

When not on duty, Romita could leave the base and go into Manhattan. In mid- to late 1951, he recalled in 2002, "I went uptown one day for lunch. I stopped over at Stan Lee's [office in the Empire State Building, where Timely Comics had by now evolved into Atlas Comics], and his secretary came out ... and I said, 'Stan doesn't know my name but I've worked for him for over a year'. I was in uniform! She must've told him this GI ... wants to do some comics. She said, 'Stan said here's a four-page science fiction story'. I penciled it and struggled with my first inking. That was the first story I did on my own. I did Westerns and war stories then".[8][18]

Romita went on to draw a wide variety of horror, war, romance and other genres for Atlas. His most prominent work for the company was the short-lived, 1950s revival of Timely's hit character Captain America, in Young Men 24-28 (Dec. 1953 - July 1954) and Captain America 76-78 (May-Sept. 1954).[19]

He also was the primary artist for one of the first series with a Black star, "Waku, Prince of the Bantu" — created by writer Don Rico and artist Ogden Whitney in the omnibus title Jungle Tales 1 (Sept. 1954). The ongoing short feature starred an African chieftain in Africa, with no regularly featured Caucasian characters. Romita succeeded Whitney with issue 2 (Nov. 1954).[19]

That same year, Romita and Virginia, who were living in Brooklyn's Bensonhurst neighborhood, bought a house in the Queens neighborhood of Queens Village.[10] Some years later, the family would move to Bellerose, New York, on Long Island.[20]

DC Comics romance artist

In the mid-1950s, while continuing to freelance for Atlas, Romita did uncredited work for DC Comics before transitioning to work for DC exclusively in 1958. His first known work for the company is the tentatively identified penciling credit for the cover of Secret Hearts 58 (Oct. 1959), and, confirmably, pencils for the seven-page story "I Know My Love", inked by Bernard Sachs, in Heart Throbs 63 (Jan. 1960). Other titles to which he contributed include Falling in Love, Girls' Love Stories, Girls' Romances, and Young Love.[19]

"I was following the DC [house] style", he recalled in 2002. "Frequently they had another artist do the first page of my stories. Eventually I became their romance cover artist".[11] He would "swipe" — an artists' term for using existing work as models, a common practice among novices — from movie stills and from the Milton Caniff comic strip Terry and the Pirates.[11] Bernard Sachs and Sy Barry inked some of Romita's romance work, but "by the late '50s and early '60s, I was inking my own stuff".[11]

Shortly afterward, however, romance comics began declining in popularity, and by 1965, DC had "stopped buying any new [romance] art", Romita recalled. "They had a large inventory of stories and continued with that and reprints. The other departments just never used me. I didn't go push myself in their face, either".[21] Romita's last known DC story work was the six-page "My Heart Tricked Me", inked by Sachs, in Girls' Romances 121 (Dec. 1966), though his spot illustrations, some or all of it reprints of earlier work, continued to appear on one-page "beauty tip" and other filler pages, as well as on letters pages, through early 1970, as did the occasional reprinted story.[19]

Joining Marvel Comics

Even before his final original DC story, Romita had already returned to freelance for what had now become Marvel Comics. After wetting his feet with two 12-page Giant-Man assignments, penciling over Jack Kirby layouts on "The Menace of Madam Macabre" and co-inking (with Chic Stone) over Bob Powell's pencils on "The Mystery of the Hidden Man and his Rays of Doom" in Tales to Astonish 66-67 (April-May 1965). He also inked Kirby's cover and Don Heck's interior pencils on the superhero-team comic The Avengers 23 (Dec. 1965).[19]

Romita directed most of his efforts, however, toward finding advertising storyboard work. He obtained a position at the large ad agency BBDO through his friend Al Normandia, one of the firm's art directors. "They were going to pay me $250 a week. I'd made just over $200 a week with the romance [comics] but only by killing myself" with long hours of work. "It had become very hard for me to come up with new ideas.... So I said, 'If I do any comics ... I'll do inking only...."[22]

Marvel editor Stan Lee, however, had heard of Romita's leaving DC, and asked to see him. At "a three-hour lunch", Romita recalled, Lee promised to match the agency salary if Romita would come work for Marvel, and to give him flexibility to work at home or at the office on any given day at Romita's discretion. [23] And while Romita felt he no longer wanted to pencil, in favor of being solely an inker, Lee soon enticed him otherwise:

“I had inked an Avengers job for Stan, and I told him I just wanted to ink. I felt like I was burned out as a penciler after eight years of romance work. I didn't want to pencil any more; in fact, I couldn't work at home any more — I couldn't discipline myself to do it. He said, 'Okay,' but the first chance he had he shows me this Daredevil story somebody had started and he didn't like it, and he wanted somebody else to do it".[24] "[He] showed me Dick Ayers' splash page for a Daredevil [and] asked me, 'What would you do with this page?' I showed him on a tracing paper what I would do, and then he asked me to do a drawing of Daredevil the way I would do it. I did a big drawing of Daredevil ... just a big, tracing-paper drawing of Daredevil swinging. And Stan loved it.[25]

Romita began a brief stint on Daredevil beginning with issue 12 (Jan. 1966), initially penciling over Jack Kirby's dynamic layouts as a means of learning Marvel's storytelling house style.[25] Sales perked; while the title had a smaller print run than Marvel flagships The Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four, it briefly boasted the company's highest percentage sales.[25] It also proved to be a stepping-stone for Romita's signautre, years-long pencilling run on The Amazing Spider-Man. "What Stan Lee wanted was for me to do a two-part Daredevil story [issues 16-17, May-June 1966] with Spider-Man as a guest star, to see how I handled the character".[12]

Spider-Man

The reason for the backdoor tryout was the growing estrangement between Spider-Man co-creators Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. When Ditko abruptly left Marvel after completing The Amazing Spider-Man 38 (July 1966), Lee gave Romita the assignment. This followed Romita's eight-issue Daredevil run, the cover of the subsequent issue 20 (Sept. 1966), and an incidental Hulk and two Captain America stories (in Tales to Astonish 77, March 1966, and Tales of Suspense 76-77, April-May 1966, respectively). While Romita's depiction on the character would eventually become the company mascot and the definitive look to the general public, the artist had trepidations:

“I was hoping against it, believe it or not. People laugh when I say this, but I did not want to do Spider-Man. I wanted to stay on Daredevil. The only reason I did Spider-Man was because Stan asked me and I felt that I should help out, like a good soldier. I never really felt comfortable on Spider-Man for years. ...I felt obliged to [mimic] Ditko because ... I was convinced, in my own mind, that he was going to come back in two or three issues. ... I couldn't believe that a guy would walk away from a successful book that was the second-highest seller at Marvel. ... After six months, when I realized it wasn't temporary, I finally stopped trying to [mimic] Ditko. ...I was doing these nine-panel pages and the thin line, and I was doing Peter Parker without any bone structure — just like Ditko was doing, I thought.[26]

Increasingly called upon to do art corrections and touch-ups, and to interface with artists for ever-busy editor Lee, Romita, becoming Marvel's de facto art director, cut back on his Spider-Man workload. After having initially inked his own pencil art, he began to be inked by Mike Esposito (who began uncredited with issue 49,[27] then as "Mickey Demeo" for a time beginning the following issue, using a pseudonym since he was also freelancing for rival DC Comics). With issue 57 (Feb. 1968), Romita began doing only layouts, with finished pencils by Don Heck. This continued through issue 66 (Nov. 1968), except for one issue finished by penciler Jim Mooney, who would succeed Heck in that role with issue 68, following a fully Romita-penciled issue. In another experiment to lessen Romita's workload, John Buscema laid out issue 72 for Romita to finish penciling.

These steps at reducing Romita's Spider-Man workload had mixed results, Romita recalled in 2001, saying, "Stan was always trying to speed me up. He had Don Heck pencil over my breakdowns for a while. ... Then, when Don had finished the pencils, [Lee would] call me in to fix up anything ... that he didn't like. Even after it was inked, he'd have me changing what the inker had done. I told him, "This was supposed to save me time, but it isn't!'".[28]

With issue 73, and then 76-81, Romita provided only covers and was absent from the inside, with Buscema providing layouts for penciler-inker Mooney. Romita returned with issue 82, doing layouts for Mooney to finish. Romita fully penciled the next issue, and then returned to layouts only, finished by Buscema, Mooney and Heck variously, through 87. He penciled the following issue himself. Gil Kane then penciled a four-issue stint with Romita inking and continuing to draw covers. Romita then finished his initial run penciling issues 93-95 (Feb.-April 1971). Kane succeeded him as Spider-Man's regular penciler through issue 105 (Feb. 1972). Romita then began a second stint as the title's regular artist, doing full pencils for issues 105-115 and 119 (Feb.-Dec. 1972, April 1974), and continued to provide occasional inking and most of the cover art through issue 168 (May 1977).

In his original run on The Amazing Spider-Man, Romita had contributed an unbroken string of over 50 covers through issue 94 (March 1971), and an almost unbroken run of story layouts or full pencil-art for 46 regular-issue stories spanning The Amazing Spider-Man 39-95 (Aug. 1967 - April 1971), as well as a 21-page story in The Amazing Spider-Man Annual 3 (Nov. 1966), the covers of Annuals 5-7, and the covers and stories for the two issues of the oversized, magazine-format title The Spectacular Spider-Man (July & Nov. 1968) that themselves totaled 110 story pages, the equivalent of five-and-a-half issues.

As comics-art historian Daniel Herman assessed of Romita's Spider-Man work,

“Romita's transformation of the character redefined the character's look and took the strip in a different direction. It also made him a star artist in the comic book world. The trouble was, Romita took Spidey away from his roots and firmly planted him in the mainstream.[29] ... Marvel staffers would joke that Romita 'took Spider-Man uptown'. Romita reinvented the character and made it possible for [Spider-Man] to appeal to a wider audience, even if he removed the qualities that had made the strip a surreal standout.[30]

Romita was the artist for the Spider-man newspaper comic strip from its launch in January 1977 through late 1980.[12]

Marvel Comics art director

When editor-in-chief and art director Stan Lee assumed the position of publisher, he promoted Romita to the latter position. In that capacity, Romita played a major role in defining the look of Marvel Comics and in designing new characters. Among the characters he helped design are the Punisher, Wolverine, and Brother Voodoo.

Later career

Following his retirement from day-to-day comics work, Romita returned to draw his signature character Spider-Man on latter-day occasions. He was one of six pencilers on Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man 121 (Dec. 1986), and he penciled a nine-page story "I Remember Gwen" in The Amazing Spider-Man 365 (Aug. 1992, the 30th-anniversary issue) and an eight-page backup story starring the conflicted hero and supporting character the Prowler in Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man Annual 13 (1993).

He both penciled and inked the 10-page backup story "The Kiss" — a flashback in which Peter Parker (Spider-Man) and his girlfriend Gwen Stacy share their first kiss — in Webspinners: Tales of Spider-Man 1 (Jan. 1999). He also drew an alternate-universe version of the Spider-Man characters in the one-shot Spidey: A Universe X Special (2001), and penciled the final four pages of the 38-page story in the milestone The Amazing Spider-Man 500 (Dec. 2003). Romita also drew one of four covers to the April 27 - May 3, 2002 issue of TV Guide.[31]

Additionally, Romita contributed to multi-artist jams in commemorative issues. He did a panel in Captain America vol. 3, 50 (Feb. 2002), starring the first Marvel superhero he'd drawn; a portion of Iron Man vol. 3, 40 (May 2001), although the hero was not one of the artist's signature characters; a panel for Daredevil vol. 2, 50 (Oct. 2003); and a few pages featuring Karen Page in Daredevil vol. 2, 100 (Oct. 2007), done in the style of the romance comics he had drawn decades earlier. Romita both penciled and inked the cover of [Daredevil vol. 2, 94 (Feb. 2007) in that same romance-comics style. The following year he drew a variant cover of his signature series, for The Amazing Spider-Man 568 (Oct. 2008).

 

Romita Sr., John: (American, b. 1930): John Romita Sr. started drawing comics after spending a year in commercial art. His first jobs were done for the Atlas group in 1949, and he drew mostly horror and romance stories, but also war, western, and crime features. After the Atlas implosion, Romita Sr. went to DC, where he drew romance stories for eight years. After that, it was back to Marvel, where he initially inked The Avengers and drew Daredevil. However, Romita Sr.'s most celebrated work was done for the Amazing Spider-Man, the feature he took over when Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko left Marvel in 1966. Under Romita Sr.'s tenure, Spider-Man became one of the comic field's most popular characters. Romita Sr. left his regular Spider-Man art chores in the early seventies to become an Art Director at Marvel in the Special Projects Department, and as Art Director for Marvel Books. In 1977, Romita Sr. briefly drew the syndicated Spider-Man newspaper comic strip. His son, John Romita Jr., is also an artist at Marvel.

Security Guard: Hey you, what are you doing, there? (him, waiving at my camera)

 

Me: Talking pictures (matter of fact tone, seeings that it was quite obvious I was holding a big-ass Canon EOS 5D in my hands and I wasn’t using it to peel lemons)

 

Security Guard: Well, you can’t take pictures here with a camera like that.

 

Me: Okie dokie, sorry (me, putting camera into backpack)

 

Security Guard: You have to ask at the front office for permission.

 

Me: Okay, thanks (me, leaving)

 

It’s funny how technology has put some issues into surreal reversal. Anyone who wanted to image the public spaces in a shopping mall with nefarious intent is going to do it with a hidden camera or a camera phone. In contrast, someone imaging with artistic intent is going to be totally obvious, schlepping around a 5D, a D3 or a 500CM. Artistic intent is not going to degrade the wealth of the mall owners, but we live in a one-size-fits-all world. Corporate lawyers have done a magnificent job of expanding property rights over public spaces, and I might say, bedrock civil rights. Although this is Constitutionally dodgy, it is what it is. I’m not going to argue with an $8-an-hour security guard, who was in fact, quite civil. Best I can do is reciprocate and be polite; he didn’t buy the rules.

 

www.bobatkins.com/photography/tutorials/photography_law_r...

 

informant.kalwnews.org/2010/11/how-shopping-malls-became-...

 

www.legalandrew.com/2007/10/11/photo-law-your-right-to-ta...

 

www.davelippman.com/LawoftheMall.html

     

this is my new OBSESSION!!

I bought it from ASOS along with a matching wallet.. :D

the brand is Paul's Boutique ..(this brand is my favorite now <3 )

I take it for school no matter what ppl say..

I can hear some of my colleagues saying : "Amal has gone mad.. how come a teacher carry something like this" :p

well.. I DON'T CARE..

as long as my students like it :pPp

I feel every thing in this bag is so girly and fancy.. and (faj2ah) skulls :D

how cool is that?!

 

I took this photo in my new office/work area in school..

I'm now a sort of educational media person there..

I have the 10 most talented students who work with me in the same office

it's always fun in this room..

 

too much talk huh?! :$

  

I love it like this.

& by the way this song is absolutely awesome. Such a shame I can't link to the original video.

 

I don't even know why I'm even bothering to try & revise. It's not working. I got up late again. Gah. I stayed up rereading Oliver Twist. I've been trying to read that book since the end of November but no luck. I keep forgetting my place after weeks of not looking at it & then having to read chapters all over again. I'm not really a Dickens fan, but as my expertise (as far as a 17 year old can be an expert) is in 19th century literature, not to include Dickens is a bit of a major gap. So I decided to tackle a few more. I hate Great Expectations. I was forced to study it in school. Nurrrgh. I chose Oliver Twist because I realised that I only knew the musical version I used to watch all the time as a kid, & that I had no idea what really happened at the end. That's pretty poor for a literature student.

 

This morning/afternoon my brother and I walked into town. I've been having a debate with Hannah over how long it takes to walk the road. She says 20 minutes, but everyone else says 25-30minutes. I timed it. It took us 10minutes. It feels much longer. It was beautifully sunny though, so time went quicker =)

 

We got lunch in town && then we went shopping. Over lunch we started reminiscing about our childhood, and this field we used to play in with our next door neighbours. He asked me why we didn't go anymore, & my immediate reaction was "Because we grew up". I didn't want to say that though, so I settled for "We just stopped playing, I guess". Slightly sad for a moment there.

 

So then the shops! I needed more rocky road ingredients, & my brother wanted more cereal. We forgot to buy cereal. Then we went to the post office & bought balloons & masks!! (One of them featured here.) Twas fun. I wanted to buy ice lollies but there were a group of chavs outside the shop & my brother was wearing a shirt with our school logo plastered across it & he didn't want to risk it. We've had problems with them before. Well, they leave me alone but my brother & his friends have gotten into fights before.

 

It got grey as soon as we got home, so we were very lucky. Up until that point it had been beautifully sunny. I meant to start work but that would mean getting up which would mean putting strain on my back. So it's not gonna happen.

 

Oh & the American has now put this picture on his profile. I hate it. Gah.

 

I had other plans for today's picture, but my brother's not cooperating and the weather's not so shiny anymore. I didn't really have the mask on properly, & so it's not sitting on my face properly. That's going to annoy me.

 

Early upload - wonder what'll happen tonight.

 

My new blog

twitter

 

76/365

I have a lot to say here, so please read slowly, while you enjoy your morning cup of whatever ( and i owe you Day 306, but I didn't want to post this to the roulette group too late).

 

Click here to view my

stream on Flickriver because all the cool kids are doing it!

 

So, if you are keeping up with my stream, you know I asked for questions to be sent to me. See Day 300.

 

I love to play dress up, for fun of course, but also to disguise things about myself I don't like or things I wish I could change or things I am sick of seeing.

I was born into a family and raised by eclectic, hippie fashion designing parents who see suits and ties as much of a costume as wigs and pearls.

I live in a city where it is generally all about what is below the neck and not what is above it. Here, I have small tits and an enormous ass compared to your typical Los Angeles woman ( no offense to any LA size O woman). I don't even get noticed. Trust me on this.

As a child, kids would make fun of my red hair.

As a preteen, kids made fun of me for having boobs ( later, they learned to appreciate them, but I was the girl who freaked out when she had to wear a bra and would try and tape them down).

As a teenager, the boys always thought of me as their best bud. They would come to me to ask me how to go about getting one of my friends.

As an adult, I have learned that I don't have the physical traits I had always hoped for

...

but I am learning to love what I have and work on things I can change, in a natural and healthy way, while I can.

I don't have the type of job/career where I can dress or look the way I would want to.

I am pretty convinced that in my past life, I was a tatted up burlesque dancer.

 

So, with that being said, for the flickr roulette group, I bring you a list ( that some of you might have read, or not, on my profile, about me.

 

i tend to crave bagel dogs way too often.

i like to give gifts when they are least expected.

i used to do the LA weekly crossword puzzle every Sunday ( even though it comes out on Thursdays)...but sadly, that paper has now discontinued it.

i buy flowers for myself every Saturday.

i used to buy cigarettes by the carton every Friday ( but i quit).

i am a natural redhead, although, sometimes i dye it to be a different shade of red to fit my mood.

i taste great AND i am less filling.

my favorite jelly bean flavor is marshmallow.

i am anal about balancing my checkbook.

i don't just like the band Journey, i love them.

if i know when your birthday is, you can be sure i will think of you on that day every year for the rest of my life..and if we are still talking, i will call or write to wish you the happiest of birthdays.

i like guacamole, but i don't like avocados.

i know when to hold them. i know when to fold them. i know when to walk away. i know when to run.

i have never eaten a pb and j sandwich.

i might trust people too easily with information about my life, but i rarely trust someone with my heart.

i have a shopping problem i think (anything satin, scarves, ear muffs, and so much more).

i enjoy taking a bath/shower after a nice glass of something.

i was the first girl to wear a bra in my class at school and i hated it so much, i would take it off before i made it on campus.

i have been known to snort when i am laughing hard.

i never learned how to ride a bicycle.

i have no tattoos.

i have no piercings, not even my ears (*update: 6/3/07 i got my ears pierced for the first time)

i tend to pass out at the doctor's office.

i believe in learning from your mistakes. i make mistakes. sometimes over and over again. i am not always so good at life.

i took ballet, tap and jazz for 12 years.

i am currently taking piano lessons WITH an 8 year old child with autism.

i believe confidence is sexy; but vulnerability is sexier.

i am generous to a fault.

i like to wear the old school athletic socks with stripes.

i am not a carrie, a samantha, a charlette, or a miranda. i am simply jennifer.

i sing shamelessly in traffic.

i dance spontaneously in my house as long as i am alone.

i see something interesting in just about everything.

i find something good in just about everyone.

i wanted to be a string bean when i was a little girl. i wanted to be a math teacher when i was a bit older. i wanted to be a dancer when i was a pre-teen. i wanted to be who i was in high school. i wanted to be better at school when i was in college. i wanted to be exactly what i am now. i want to be a carpool mom one day.

i describe myself as mrs. garrett ( from the facts of life) with sass.

i will hold your hand when you are scared.

i am loyal and affectionate like a dog, and independent and free-thinking like a cat.

Another day at the office.

(For anyone who's curious, the kid bought the Chris Cole x Children of Bodom deck.)

Woke up, John came over. Got food. Ventured. Found a new park we like. John went home. Went for a skate. Came back. Got ready for work. Went to the bank. Went to work.

While at work one of the craziest things yet happened to me. A man and his girlfriend came in. He had a Canon EOS Rebel T3 around his neck. I commented that it was ironic he had one since I was just reading some reviews the evening before after looking at one for the first time. We spoke about my shooting set up and his girlfriend's set up. They all shoot Canon and had a very wide array of lenses from what they told me. I was diggin' on our conversation. We finally went to the register so I could ring them up for the shirt the boyfriend had picked up. He leaned in close and said, "the best part of my rig is I didn't pay for any of it." I asked if it was a gift or something and he said, "No. I'm a clepto. I steal of my photography equipment. I've never paid a cent for any of my digital gear. I've become a pro at ripping off WalMart." I was shocked. He even offered to steal me things in the future. I told the guy how messed up I thought that was and politely asked him to leave after running his credit card and getting all of his personal info in my system with him not suspecting a thing. His girlfriend began freaking out that he was going to "blow their cover" and that they'd get caught. She took his keys off his belt loop and bolted out the door. He turned to me and told me in a very whisper-y and aggressive voice to "F*ck off" before chasing after her.

Anyway, these photos were taken by Thomas. He came in tonight to check out some boards and shoes. Thanks, Thomas! You rule. :]

After work Thomas and I met back up. I went to his work and rode my board around in the parking lot while he closed. We went to In N Out and shared music and ideas. This summer will be a great one, I can feel it.

 

Song of the Day : Gotta Lotta Wall -- Atmosphere

memphis-and-53rd.tumblr.com/

i honestly have no idea what is going on with this picture. this did not even kind of turn out the way i wanted it, haha. also, my sidebar looks kind of funny because it's the exact same picture 3 times over in each of the stream/set links. yeesh.

 

i've been tagged like a kajillion times so this is me attempting to at least do one of them.. because i do not feel like talking about my stupid broody night last night. so i won't.

 

1. i have never climbed a tree in my life... until today. and my backyard trees are not good climbing trees, so it mostly just hurt. best part? NONE of the photos with me actually all the way in the branches came out right. waaaa.

2. i have like..4 bags full of books i need to read, but i keep buying more because i'm obsessed with the idea of a personal library. i can't wait until i'm older and have a family so i can forbid them to go into my office/library. i'm so weird.

3. i still sleep with my blankie from when i was 4. it's shredded to bits, but it's how i keep from biting my nails when i'm trying to fall asleep - i pick at it. i can't even wash it, it's so torn up. but yet it is sitting beside me and i am picking at it in between facts. sooo gross.

4. i have about 40 tshirts from threadless (one of them being in this picture), and my favorite artist on there is matheus lopes.

5. in fact, threadless is having a huge sale this weekend, but i only have 25 dollars in my bank account so i can't cash in on it. =/ i'm almost never broke. this car loan is killing me.

6. i want my long hair back. but unless i chop it all off, i forget to appreciate long hair and wish it was shorter. i do this about every 3 years or so like clockwork - it's an unintentional cycle.

7. i have a really hard time liking people in general. i'm a really friendly person and love to talk, but the only people i really, genuinely never get tired of tend to be my boyfriends. which means i am a very grumpy person inwardly when i'm single because i kind of don't like anyone. i mean, i like all of you, but ...uhh i don't know i'm confusing myself, and now i sound like oscar the grouch. just kidding guys i love the world, okay?!

8. i miss you, and you, too, but mostly you.

9. the first time i cut all of my hair off, it was because i wanted to be like the women on america's next top model. i kind of secretly still want to be a model, which is probably why i've started trying out self-photography. my other secret ambition? to be a quantum physicist. i think i'm a little late on both of those, though...

10. i've begun to realize that i take pictures and use flickr not because i love photography (although i do! but that's not the main reason), but because i love telling stories. my first art form was music, then writing, and now i've added taking pictures to my list of hobbies because i love being a storyteller, making grandiose inspirational speeches that could end up on the intro to an episode of grey's anatomy. it's my "thing." so i love having another medium to express my innermost desires - i feel like i don't really have anything to hide on here, for some reason. so it's kind of freeing. and nice.

 

whew. okay that was a long one. sorry if i've tagged you twice - my memory sucks.

Daddyoo

 

alright so today I woke up extra early to go take the ACT. I don't even wanna think about how I did on it.... lol but then my dad picked me up from school and we went out to lunch and then to the post office to return the flash that I just bought because the I-TTL was all over the place. soo yeah, I wanted to hop on the "portraits through windows" bandwagon hahah soo while my dad was in his room I went outside and took a picture from the outside in. But my dad saw me and started looking up at they sky (thats his pose for everything hahaha) I also shot through a bush lol

enjoy.

 

Nikon D90

Nikkor 50/1.4

Every May, Heirloom Productions takes a monopoly over the Puyallup Fairgrounds -- one building has a gun show for the menfolk, and another building has a rubberstamp show for the womenfolk and me. I'm one of the only guys at these shows, beside vendors. I have a large collection of stamps, mostly mushrooms (surprise!) and funny phrases. [My favorite: "Horrible dog juice out of the carpet"] Somehow I survive being around tons of women and those icky scrapbookers that show up. And as a cost-saving measure, I try to buy my rubber unmounted and put them on wood blocks myself.

 

How many different mushrooms do I have? Upwards of 75.

 

I've been kind of lazy the last two years; I go to the show, buy some unmounted rubber, then put the bag in plain view in my office so I will be reminded to take care of making them useable... and fail to get around to it. I decided to resolve that this year, though I couldn't find the bag before I left for the show, so didn't buy any wood blocks. Of course I found it once I got back, after moving a whole lotta cardboard boxes that I'd accumulated on top of some scrap computer equipment. (Okay, I admit, it was still in plain sight. I just forgot what the bag looked like.) So what you see here is some of what I bought this year, along with rubber that I've bought the last two shows. You have seen that "all sales final" stamp before -- it didn't come from a show (it came from Mervyn's closeout) but I haven't put it away either. :)

 

I've got all five loose mushrooms mounted on wood blocks now, plus the flower pot and the pencils and the books. I haven't reviewed the chocolate phrases for what I want to use, I don't have a peg for the snowflake, and I couldn't find any blocks at the show that were the right length for the two borders. I do have a scrap lumber pile in my driveway... The rubber in the middle was put into my bag with a purchase (which I found out when I got home) so I didn't put them into my equasion. I also have a free ticket back in for Sunday, and I mowed the back lawn when I got home so I have taken care of the major project, but I'm not planning to go back... mowing the front, whacking some weeds, and getting a haircut are on the agenda.

 

Day 268-- Emily's first day of kindergarten!

 

This is such a classic picture that everyone who has ever gone to school will recognize it without being told what it is, and that's exactly what I like about it. I have joined the ranks of the generations of parents who have taken this picture.

 

I wanted to leave it sooc, but it looked a teensy bit crooked. I tried to straighten it, and found that my deck is crooked, and if I make one part of it level, the other part is tilted. Never mind about straightening the picture; we need to straighten the deck!

 

Anyway...

Emily's first day of kindergarten was an interesting experience. In many ways, she doesn't belong in kindergarten, and I was (am still) worried that she wouldn't learn anything. If she's not challenged, she *becomes* the challenge.

 

At her kindergarten orientation, the teacher asked her to do a worksheet. The directions were: "Say the letters. Then color the big letter A." She was upset (understandably so, I think) because this was something she could do when she was three. I asked the teacher if she was going to learn anything, since she's already reading at a second grade level, and the teacher looked at me like I was some kind of freak and told me I should have had her tested last year to see if she could go to kindergarten when she was barely four years old. She couldn't read then! She was practically a baby and in no way ready to be in kindergarten all day (they go 6.5 hours a day here). The teacher's negative reaction surprised and concerned me, so I went to the office and asked to have my daughter tested to see if she's in the right class.

 

The woman who pulled Emily out of class on the first day for testing is fantastic. She was so positive and helpful and friendly, and I would love for her to be Emily's teacher, but that's not her job.

 

The results:

Emily reads 75 words per minute, and the goal for the end of first grade is only 40 words per minute. She counted to 109 with no problems, and then was able to continue with a little encouragement. She writes sentences and stories, but she doesn't know any punctuation.

On the other hand, she is not mature enough physically, emotionally, socially, etc, to skip to first grade altogether.

We decided to put Emily in a first grade class for reading and special classes like library, music, and PE because the first grade classes do reading after the kindergarten classes and it would be silly to go to reading groups in both classes. The plan is to spend two hours in first grade and four hours plus lunch in kindergarten. This still puts her way ahead of the game, but at least she won't have to suffer through "learning" the alphabet again when she can read small chapter books. I also bought a first grade homeschool curriculum book to work on at home, because I don't know how else to fight for what she needs.

12/31/2011

--

Today signifies the last photo of my Project 365 of 2011. Since the beginning of last year...I have taken a photo every single day until today. This isn't just a "Photo Project" to me though, it's a documentary of my life...Every day. I can look back on my photos and I can remember those memories that surround the image. Good or bad, I will be able to look back and see how much my photography has changed, how much I've changed as a person and see what my goals were at that point in time. With that said, I will continue to take a photo every day for 2012, Project 366.

  

This is photo 366/365 because...I had a Thursday in Japan and took a photo before I left. I also returned to the US on a Thursday and uploaded two photos during that time period! So...I actually had 366 days this year and took 366 photos! Just to clear the confusion.

 

This year, looking back...I have...

 

- Graduated High School and received the "Artist Award" from Mr. Foti.

- Received various awards in the Washington State Photo Contest.

- Had my floating photo travel around the US in an art show.

- Created the group "Brotographers"

- Had Mushi - Sold Mushi to go to school in Tokyo, Japan.

- Got an Infrared 30D Camera and explored a whole new world of photography.

- Went snowboarding for the first time and brought my camera, even though that's extremely risky.

- Raised ~$20,000 combined with Abbitt Wilkerson & Julian Gossage for Japan during their time of need.

- Traveled to California to visit my sister Caitlin and had a bunch of fun photographic experiences.

- Had Linda come all the way to Washington from Indiana to get her Senior Photos taken by me.

- Bought a lot of new Canon lenses and a bunch of new lighting equipment.

- Went to Tokyo, Japan for College but after 10 days..Figured out that that school was not for me (It was an office building, not a 'university' per say) and I withdrew, returning back home to Bellevue.

- Helped start the crew "LowerClassMen" and started doing some videography.

- Asked and accepted to join the YAER Productions team.

- Learned how to do free lensing.

- Did my first team wedding with YAER Productions.

- Drove down to HellaFlush LA in the Subaru.

- Shot for the Seattle Sounders during their game, on the field and job shadowed the Seahawks/Sounders official photographer.

- Got a new laptop for editing!

- Learned how to do cinemagraphs.

- Shot Formula Drift in Seattle and also traveled to Irwindale to shoot there.

- Did my first skateboarding shoot with Eric Nakassa!

- Created my own Purikura photograph!

- Met up with fellow brotographer Peter Hong in Tokyo.

- Made a film of my brothers wedding that produced a bucketful of happy tears.

- Purchased a new car, Haku - 1997 Lexus SC300.

- Had many photos included in Magazines. (Front cover of modified mag indonesia, KoreAM Tablo)

- Started the "Real Housewife" series with Katrina.

- Shot with AikA many times and began creating my Japanese fashion portfolio.

- Got my own studio downstairs and it has been a great success!

- Had fellow bros Jack Strutz and Valerie Sebestyen stay at my house for 5-ish days and had a model-fashion-filled shooting week!

- Stepped my automotive photography game up and started to push the limits a bit more.

- Pulled multiple all nighters to accomplish work because I was in the zone!

- Traveled to YAER multiple times, doing tons of work each time!

- Took initiative and finally am going to get my website redone. Released hopefully tomorrow!

- Made friends, lost friends...But all in all, this year was incredible.

 

Looking back on this year, I feel extremely accomplished. Normally...You'd look back on a year and be like "Meh, I guess it was a good year." But, since I have taken a photo everyday, by just looking at the thumbnails, I can see how much I have accomplished in 365 days. Just writing that list makes me super pumped up and excited to take on the next year. I have so many goals and so many things that I want to do...Only 366 days to do it though! I can't wait!!!

 

Thank you to everyone that has supported me through this years 365! Thank you to all of my friends and family as well! Without you, I couldn't have possibly completed this! I hope you all continue to follow my photostream and tell everyone you know about it!

 

See y'all in 2012~!

--

Camera Info:

Canon 5D Mark 2

Canon 17-40mm f/4L + CPL

Tripod

--

Editing Info:

HDR - 3 images (Yeah that's right, HDR)

Film/Troy of course.

Burning and Dodging galore.

Black and White - high contrast.

--

Have an amazing new years!

--

All Rights Reserved.

--

www.connorsurdi.com

Become a fan on Facebook!

Subscribe on YouTube!

Follow me on Twitter!

"Never say Never"... that's how the saying goes, but I was thinking about that this afternoon. There ARE somethings I can honestly say "NEVER" to..

 

13 things I would never do

 

1 - Eat a Live Camel Spider (or any insect for that matter)

2 - Lie to myself

3 - Take Eric for granted

4 - Turn my back on my family

5 - Discriminate against someone based on Religion or Ethnicity

6 - Kill someone

7 - Join a cult

8 - Smoke Crack

9 - Forget where I came from

10 - Go on a Reality Show (This 365 days project is the closest I'll ever come to exposing myself)

11 - Buy a pair of Manolo Blahnik shoes. (10,000 for a pair of shoes is Biggest waste of money I can possibly imagine.)

12 - Vote a future Bush into office

13 - Refuse a plate of Sushi

 

What about you? What would you never do?

 

Day 137 of 365 days

JOHN ROMITA

Captain America 114

 

John Romita Senior started drawing after spending a year in commercial art. His first jobs were for Stan Lee's Atlas group in 1949. Romita drew mostly horror and romance stories, but also several war, western and crime features for Western Publishing. After the folding of Atlas, he went to National, where he did anonymous romance stories for eight years. He then went back to Stan Lee, this time at Marvel. His first works were inking 'Avengers' and pencilling 'Daredevil' comics.

His most notable work became the 'Amazing Spider-Man' comic, which he did from 1966. Under Romita's and Lee's guidance, 'Spider-Man' became the quintessential antihero of the late 1960s and early 1970s. He left the 'Spider-Man' comic in the early 1970s, to become an art director at Marvel, working specifically in the Special Projects Department. Romita Sr. was engaged in product illustration and special designs and as Art Director for Marvel Books, the short-lived children's book line. In 1977, he briefly did the artwork of the syndicated 'Spider-Man' newspaper comic. His son, John Romita Jr., is also a talented artist for Marvel.

 

Early life and career

The son of a baker,[3] John Romita was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York City,[4] with three sisters and a brother.[5] He graduated from Manhattan's School of Industrial Art in 1947, having attended for the years after spending ninth grade at a Brooklyn junior high school.[6] Among his instructors were book illustrator Howard Simon and magazine illustrator Ben Clements,[7] and his influences included comics artists Noel Sickles,[8] Roy Crane,[8] Milton Caniff,[9] and, later, Alex Toth,[8] and Carmine Infantino,[10] as well as commercial illustrators Jon Whitcomb, Colby Whitmore, and Al Parker.[11]

Romita broke into comics on the seminal series Famous Funnies. "Steven Douglas up there was a benefactor to all young artists", Romita recalled. "The first story he gave me was a love story. It was terrible. All the women looked like emaciated men and he bought it, never criticized, and told me to keep working. He paid me two hundred dollars for it and never published it — and rightfully so".[12]

Romita was working at the New York City company Forbes Lithograph in 1949, earning $30 a week, when comic-book inker Lester Zakarin,[13] a friend from high school whom he ran into on a subway train, offered him either $17[14] or $20[12] a page to pencil a 10-page story for him as uncredited ghost artist. "I thought, this is ridiculous! In two pages I can make more money than I usually make all week! So I ghosted it and then kept on ghosting for him", Romita recalled.[12] "I think it was a 1920s mobster crime story".[8] The work was for Marvel's 1940s forerunner, Timely Comics, which helped give Romita an opportunity to meet editor-in-chief and art director Stan Lee. In addition to Timely, Romita ghost-penciled for Zakarin on Trojan Comics' Crime-Smashers and other titles, eventually signing some "Zakarin and Romita".[8]

Atlas Comics

\The collaboration ended in Spring 1951, when Romita was drafted into the U.S. Army.[15] Taking the initiative prior to induction, he showed art samples to the base art director on Governor's Island, in New York Bay, who arranged for him to be stationed there to do layouts for recruitment posters[8] once Romita had completed basic training at Fort Dix, New Jersey.[15] Romita was promoted to corporal after seven or eight months; now allowed to live off the post, he rented an apartment in Brooklyn.[16] He married Virginia in November 1952[17]

When not on duty, Romita could leave the base and go into Manhattan. In mid- to late 1951, he recalled in 2002, "I went uptown one day for lunch. I stopped over at Stan Lee's [office in the Empire State Building, where Timely Comics had by now evolved into Atlas Comics], and his secretary came out ... and I said, 'Stan doesn't know my name but I've worked for him for over a year'. I was in uniform! She must've told him this GI ... wants to do some comics. She said, 'Stan said here's a four-page science fiction story'. I penciled it and struggled with my first inking. That was the first story I did on my own. I did Westerns and war stories then".[8][18]

Romita went on to draw a wide variety of horror, war, romance and other genres for Atlas. His most prominent work for the company was the short-lived, 1950s revival of Timely's hit character Captain America, in Young Men 24-28 (Dec. 1953 - July 1954) and Captain America 76-78 (May-Sept. 1954).[19]

He also was the primary artist for one of the first series with a Black star, "Waku, Prince of the Bantu" — created by writer Don Rico and artist Ogden Whitney in the omnibus title Jungle Tales 1 (Sept. 1954). The ongoing short feature starred an African chieftain in Africa, with no regularly featured Caucasian characters. Romita succeeded Whitney with issue 2 (Nov. 1954).[19]

That same year, Romita and Virginia, who were living in Brooklyn's Bensonhurst neighborhood, bought a house in the Queens neighborhood of Queens Village.[10] Some years later, the family would move to Bellerose, New York, on Long Island.[20]

DC Comics romance artist

In the mid-1950s, while continuing to freelance for Atlas, Romita did uncredited work for DC Comics before transitioning to work for DC exclusively in 1958. His first known work for the company is the tentatively identified penciling credit for the cover of Secret Hearts 58 (Oct. 1959), and, confirmably, pencils for the seven-page story "I Know My Love", inked by Bernard Sachs, in Heart Throbs 63 (Jan. 1960). Other titles to which he contributed include Falling in Love, Girls' Love Stories, Girls' Romances, and Young Love.[19]

"I was following the DC [house] style", he recalled in 2002. "Frequently they had another artist do the first page of my stories. Eventually I became their romance cover artist".[11] He would "swipe" — an artists' term for using existing work as models, a common practice among novices — from movie stills and from the Milton Caniff comic strip Terry and the Pirates.[11] Bernard Sachs and Sy Barry inked some of Romita's romance work, but "by the late '50s and early '60s, I was inking my own stuff".[11]

Shortly afterward, however, romance comics began declining in popularity, and by 1965, DC had "stopped buying any new [romance] art", Romita recalled. "They had a large inventory of stories and continued with that and reprints. The other departments just never used me. I didn't go push myself in their face, either".[21] Romita's last known DC story work was the six-page "My Heart Tricked Me", inked by Sachs, in Girls' Romances 121 (Dec. 1966), though his spot illustrations, some or all of it reprints of earlier work, continued to appear on one-page "beauty tip" and other filler pages, as well as on letters pages, through early 1970, as did the occasional reprinted story.[19]

Joining Marvel Comics

Even before his final original DC story, Romita had already returned to freelance for what had now become Marvel Comics. After wetting his feet with two 12-page Giant-Man assignments, penciling over Jack Kirby layouts on "The Menace of Madam Macabre" and co-inking (with Chic Stone) over Bob Powell's pencils on "The Mystery of the Hidden Man and his Rays of Doom" in Tales to Astonish 66-67 (April-May 1965). He also inked Kirby's cover and Don Heck's interior pencils on the superhero-team comic The Avengers 23 (Dec. 1965).[19]

Romita directed most of his efforts, however, toward finding advertising storyboard work. He obtained a position at the large ad agency BBDO through his friend Al Normandia, one of the firm's art directors. "They were going to pay me $250 a week. I'd made just over $200 a week with the romance [comics] but only by killing myself" with long hours of work. "It had become very hard for me to come up with new ideas.... So I said, 'If I do any comics ... I'll do inking only...."[22]

Marvel editor Stan Lee, however, had heard of Romita's leaving DC, and asked to see him. At "a three-hour lunch", Romita recalled, Lee promised to match the agency salary if Romita would come work for Marvel, and to give him flexibility to work at home or at the office on any given day at Romita's discretion. [23] And while Romita felt he no longer wanted to pencil, in favor of being solely an inker, Lee soon enticed him otherwise:

“I had inked an Avengers job for Stan, and I told him I just wanted to ink. I felt like I was burned out as a penciler after eight years of romance work. I didn't want to pencil any more; in fact, I couldn't work at home any more — I couldn't discipline myself to do it. He said, 'Okay,' but the first chance he had he shows me this Daredevil story somebody had started and he didn't like it, and he wanted somebody else to do it".[24] "[He] showed me Dick Ayers' splash page for a Daredevil [and] asked me, 'What would you do with this page?' I showed him on a tracing paper what I would do, and then he asked me to do a drawing of Daredevil the way I would do it. I did a big drawing of Daredevil ... just a big, tracing-paper drawing of Daredevil swinging. And Stan loved it.[25]

Romita began a brief stint on Daredevil beginning with issue 12 (Jan. 1966), initially penciling over Jack Kirby's dynamic layouts as a means of learning Marvel's storytelling house style.[25] Sales perked; while the title had a smaller print run than Marvel flagships The Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four, it briefly boasted the company's highest percentage sales.[25] It also proved to be a stepping-stone for Romita's signautre, years-long pencilling run on The Amazing Spider-Man. "What Stan Lee wanted was for me to do a two-part Daredevil story [issues 16-17, May-June 1966] with Spider-Man as a guest star, to see how I handled the character".[12]

Spider-Man

The reason for the backdoor tryout was the growing estrangement between Spider-Man co-creators Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. When Ditko abruptly left Marvel after completing The Amazing Spider-Man 38 (July 1966), Lee gave Romita the assignment. This followed Romita's eight-issue Daredevil run, the cover of the subsequent issue 20 (Sept. 1966), and an incidental Hulk and two Captain America stories (in Tales to Astonish 77, March 1966, and Tales of Suspense 76-77, April-May 1966, respectively). While Romita's depiction on the character would eventually become the company mascot and the definitive look to the general public, the artist had trepidations:

“I was hoping against it, believe it or not. People laugh when I say this, but I did not want to do Spider-Man. I wanted to stay on Daredevil. The only reason I did Spider-Man was because Stan asked me and I felt that I should help out, like a good soldier. I never really felt comfortable on Spider-Man for years. ...I felt obliged to [mimic] Ditko because ... I was convinced, in my own mind, that he was going to come back in two or three issues. ... I couldn't believe that a guy would walk away from a successful book that was the second-highest seller at Marvel. ... After six months, when I realized it wasn't temporary, I finally stopped trying to [mimic] Ditko. ...I was doing these nine-panel pages and the thin line, and I was doing Peter Parker without any bone structure — just like Ditko was doing, I thought.[26]

Increasingly called upon to do art corrections and touch-ups, and to interface with artists for ever-busy editor Lee, Romita, becoming Marvel's de facto art director, cut back on his Spider-Man workload. After having initially inked his own pencil art, he began to be inked by Mike Esposito (who began uncredited with issue 49,[27] then as "Mickey Demeo" for a time beginning the following issue, using a pseudonym since he was also freelancing for rival DC Comics). With issue 57 (Feb. 1968), Romita began doing only layouts, with finished pencils by Don Heck. This continued through issue 66 (Nov. 1968), except for one issue finished by penciler Jim Mooney, who would succeed Heck in that role with issue 68, following a fully Romita-penciled issue. In another experiment to lessen Romita's workload, John Buscema laid out issue 72 for Romita to finish penciling.

These steps at reducing Romita's Spider-Man workload had mixed results, Romita recalled in 2001, saying, "Stan was always trying to speed me up. He had Don Heck pencil over my breakdowns for a while. ... Then, when Don had finished the pencils, [Lee would] call me in to fix up anything ... that he didn't like. Even after it was inked, he'd have me changing what the inker had done. I told him, "This was supposed to save me time, but it isn't!'".[28]

With issue 73, and then 76-81, Romita provided only covers and was absent from the inside, with Buscema providing layouts for penciler-inker Mooney. Romita returned with issue 82, doing layouts for Mooney to finish. Romita fully penciled the next issue, and then returned to layouts only, finished by Buscema, Mooney and Heck variously, through 87. He penciled the following issue himself. Gil Kane then penciled a four-issue stint with Romita inking and continuing to draw covers. Romita then finished his initial run penciling issues 93-95 (Feb.-April 1971). Kane succeeded him as Spider-Man's regular penciler through issue 105 (Feb. 1972). Romita then began a second stint as the title's regular artist, doing full pencils for issues 105-115 and 119 (Feb.-Dec. 1972, April 1974), and continued to provide occasional inking and most of the cover art through issue 168 (May 1977).

In his original run on The Amazing Spider-Man, Romita had contributed an unbroken string of over 50 covers through issue 94 (March 1971), and an almost unbroken run of story layouts or full pencil-art for 46 regular-issue stories spanning The Amazing Spider-Man 39-95 (Aug. 1967 - April 1971), as well as a 21-page story in The Amazing Spider-Man Annual 3 (Nov. 1966), the covers of Annuals 5-7, and the covers and stories for the two issues of the oversized, magazine-format title The Spectacular Spider-Man (July & Nov. 1968) that themselves totaled 110 story pages, the equivalent of five-and-a-half issues.

As comics-art historian Daniel Herman assessed of Romita's Spider-Man work,

“Romita's transformation of the character redefined the character's look and took the strip in a different direction. It also made him a star artist in the comic book world. The trouble was, Romita took Spidey away from his roots and firmly planted him in the mainstream.[29] ... Marvel staffers would joke that Romita 'took Spider-Man uptown'. Romita reinvented the character and made it possible for [Spider-Man] to appeal to a wider audience, even if he removed the qualities that had made the strip a surreal standout.[30]

Romita was the artist for the Spider-man newspaper comic strip from its launch in January 1977 through late 1980.[12]

Marvel Comics art director

When editor-in-chief and art director Stan Lee assumed the position of publisher, he promoted Romita to the latter position. In that capacity, Romita played a major role in defining the look of Marvel Comics and in designing new characters. Among the characters he helped design are the Punisher, Wolverine, and Brother Voodoo.

Later career

Following his retirement from day-to-day comics work, Romita returned to draw his signature character Spider-Man on latter-day occasions. He was one of six pencilers on Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man 121 (Dec. 1986), and he penciled a nine-page story "I Remember Gwen" in The Amazing Spider-Man 365 (Aug. 1992, the 30th-anniversary issue) and an eight-page backup story starring the conflicted hero and supporting character the Prowler in Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man Annual 13 (1993).

He both penciled and inked the 10-page backup story "The Kiss" — a flashback in which Peter Parker (Spider-Man) and his girlfriend Gwen Stacy share their first kiss — in Webspinners: Tales of Spider-Man 1 (Jan. 1999). He also drew an alternate-universe version of the Spider-Man characters in the one-shot Spidey: A Universe X Special (2001), and penciled the final four pages of the 38-page story in the milestone The Amazing Spider-Man 500 (Dec. 2003). Romita also drew one of four covers to the April 27 - May 3, 2002 issue of TV Guide.[31]

Additionally, Romita contributed to multi-artist jams in commemorative issues. He did a panel in Captain America vol. 3, 50 (Feb. 2002), starring the first Marvel superhero he'd drawn; a portion of Iron Man vol. 3, 40 (May 2001), although the hero was not one of the artist's signature characters; a panel for Daredevil vol. 2, 50 (Oct. 2003); and a few pages featuring Karen Page in Daredevil vol. 2, 100 (Oct. 2007), done in the style of the romance comics he had drawn decades earlier. Romita both penciled and inked the cover of [Daredevil vol. 2, 94 (Feb. 2007) in that same romance-comics style. The following year he drew a variant cover of his signature series, for The Amazing Spider-Man 568 (Oct. 2008).

 

Romita Sr., John: (American, b. 1930): John Romita Sr. started drawing comics after spending a year in commercial art. His first jobs were done for the Atlas group in 1949, and he drew mostly horror and romance stories, but also war, western, and crime features. After the Atlas implosion, Romita Sr. went to DC, where he drew romance stories for eight years. After that, it was back to Marvel, where he initially inked The Avengers and drew Daredevil. However, Romita Sr.'s most celebrated work was done for the Amazing Spider-Man, the feature he took over when Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko left Marvel in 1966. Under Romita Sr.'s tenure, Spider-Man became one of the comic field's most popular characters. Romita Sr. left his regular Spider-Man art chores in the early seventies to become an Art Director at Marvel in the Special Projects Department, and as Art Director for Marvel Books. In 1977, Romita Sr. briefly drew the syndicated Spider-Man newspaper comic strip. His son, John Romita Jr., is also an artist at Marvel.

Queen of my (cubicle) domain. A mite depressing.

JOHN ROMITA

My Love 12

 

John Romita Senior started drawing after spending a year in commercial art. His first jobs were for Stan Lee's Atlas group in 1949. Romita drew mostly horror and romance stories, but also several war, western and crime features for Western Publishing. After the folding of Atlas, he went to National, where he did anonymous romance stories for eight years. He then went back to Stan Lee, this time at Marvel. His first works were inking 'Avengers' and pencilling 'Daredevil' comics.

His most notable work became the 'Amazing Spider-Man' comic, which he did from 1966. Under Romita's and Lee's guidance, 'Spider-Man' became the quintessential antihero of the late 1960s and early 1970s. He left the 'Spider-Man' comic in the early 1970s, to become an art director at Marvel, working specifically in the Special Projects Department. Romita Sr. was engaged in product illustration and special designs and as Art Director for Marvel Books, the short-lived children's book line. In 1977, he briefly did the artwork of the syndicated 'Spider-Man' newspaper comic. His son, John Romita Jr., is also a talented artist for Marvel.

 

Early life and career

The son of a baker,[3] John Romita was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York City,[4] with three sisters and a brother.[5] He graduated from Manhattan's School of Industrial Art in 1947, having attended for the years after spending ninth grade at a Brooklyn junior high school.[6] Among his instructors were book illustrator Howard Simon and magazine illustrator Ben Clements,[7] and his influences included comics artists Noel Sickles,[8] Roy Crane,[8] Milton Caniff,[9] and, later, Alex Toth,[8] and Carmine Infantino,[10] as well as commercial illustrators Jon Whitcomb, Colby Whitmore, and Al Parker.[11]

Romita broke into comics on the seminal series Famous Funnies. "Steven Douglas up there was a benefactor to all young artists", Romita recalled. "The first story he gave me was a love story. It was terrible. All the women looked like emaciated men and he bought it, never criticized, and told me to keep working. He paid me two hundred dollars for it and never published it — and rightfully so".[12]

Romita was working at the New York City company Forbes Lithograph in 1949, earning $30 a week, when comic-book inker Lester Zakarin,[13] a friend from high school whom he ran into on a subway train, offered him either $17[14] or $20[12] a page to pencil a 10-page story for him as uncredited ghost artist. "I thought, this is ridiculous! In two pages I can make more money than I usually make all week! So I ghosted it and then kept on ghosting for him", Romita recalled.[12] "I think it was a 1920s mobster crime story".[8] The work was for Marvel's 1940s forerunner, Timely Comics, which helped give Romita an opportunity to meet editor-in-chief and art director Stan Lee. In addition to Timely, Romita ghost-penciled for Zakarin on Trojan Comics' Crime-Smashers and other titles, eventually signing some "Zakarin and Romita".[8]

Atlas Comics

\The collaboration ended in Spring 1951, when Romita was drafted into the U.S. Army.[15] Taking the initiative prior to induction, he showed art samples to the base art director on Governor's Island, in New York Bay, who arranged for him to be stationed there to do layouts for recruitment posters[8] once Romita had completed basic training at Fort Dix, New Jersey.[15] Romita was promoted to corporal after seven or eight months; now allowed to live off the post, he rented an apartment in Brooklyn.[16] He married Virginia in November 1952[17]

When not on duty, Romita could leave the base and go into Manhattan. In mid- to late 1951, he recalled in 2002, "I went uptown one day for lunch. I stopped over at Stan Lee's [office in the Empire State Building, where Timely Comics had by now evolved into Atlas Comics], and his secretary came out ... and I said, 'Stan doesn't know my name but I've worked for him for over a year'. I was in uniform! She must've told him this GI ... wants to do some comics. She said, 'Stan said here's a four-page science fiction story'. I penciled it and struggled with my first inking. That was the first story I did on my own. I did Westerns and war stories then".[8][18]

Romita went on to draw a wide variety of horror, war, romance and other genres for Atlas. His most prominent work for the company was the short-lived, 1950s revival of Timely's hit character Captain America, in Young Men 24-28 (Dec. 1953 - July 1954) and Captain America 76-78 (May-Sept. 1954).[19]

He also was the primary artist for one of the first series with a Black star, "Waku, Prince of the Bantu" — created by writer Don Rico and artist Ogden Whitney in the omnibus title Jungle Tales 1 (Sept. 1954). The ongoing short feature starred an African chieftain in Africa, with no regularly featured Caucasian characters. Romita succeeded Whitney with issue 2 (Nov. 1954).[19]

That same year, Romita and Virginia, who were living in Brooklyn's Bensonhurst neighborhood, bought a house in the Queens neighborhood of Queens Village.[10] Some years later, the family would move to Bellerose, New York, on Long Island.[20]

DC Comics romance artist

In the mid-1950s, while continuing to freelance for Atlas, Romita did uncredited work for DC Comics before transitioning to work for DC exclusively in 1958. His first known work for the company is the tentatively identified penciling credit for the cover of Secret Hearts 58 (Oct. 1959), and, confirmably, pencils for the seven-page story "I Know My Love", inked by Bernard Sachs, in Heart Throbs 63 (Jan. 1960). Other titles to which he contributed include Falling in Love, Girls' Love Stories, Girls' Romances, and Young Love.[19]

"I was following the DC [house] style", he recalled in 2002. "Frequently they had another artist do the first page of my stories. Eventually I became their romance cover artist".[11] He would "swipe" — an artists' term for using existing work as models, a common practice among novices — from movie stills and from the Milton Caniff comic strip Terry and the Pirates.[11] Bernard Sachs and Sy Barry inked some of Romita's romance work, but "by the late '50s and early '60s, I was inking my own stuff".[11]

Shortly afterward, however, romance comics began declining in popularity, and by 1965, DC had "stopped buying any new [romance] art", Romita recalled. "They had a large inventory of stories and continued with that and reprints. The other departments just never used me. I didn't go push myself in their face, either".[21] Romita's last known DC story work was the six-page "My Heart Tricked Me", inked by Sachs, in Girls' Romances 121 (Dec. 1966), though his spot illustrations, some or all of it reprints of earlier work, continued to appear on one-page "beauty tip" and other filler pages, as well as on letters pages, through early 1970, as did the occasional reprinted story.[19]

Joining Marvel Comics

Even before his final original DC story, Romita had already returned to freelance for what had now become Marvel Comics. After wetting his feet with two 12-page Giant-Man assignments, penciling over Jack Kirby layouts on "The Menace of Madam Macabre" and co-inking (with Chic Stone) over Bob Powell's pencils on "The Mystery of the Hidden Man and his Rays of Doom" in Tales to Astonish 66-67 (April-May 1965). He also inked Kirby's cover and Don Heck's interior pencils on the superhero-team comic The Avengers 23 (Dec. 1965).[19]

Romita directed most of his efforts, however, toward finding advertising storyboard work. He obtained a position at the large ad agency BBDO through his friend Al Normandia, one of the firm's art directors. "They were going to pay me $250 a week. I'd made just over $200 a week with the romance [comics] but only by killing myself" with long hours of work. "It had become very hard for me to come up with new ideas.... So I said, 'If I do any comics ... I'll do inking only...."[22]

Marvel editor Stan Lee, however, had heard of Romita's leaving DC, and asked to see him. At "a three-hour lunch", Romita recalled, Lee promised to match the agency salary if Romita would come work for Marvel, and to give him flexibility to work at home or at the office on any given day at Romita's discretion. [23] And while Romita felt he no longer wanted to pencil, in favor of being solely an inker, Lee soon enticed him otherwise:

“I had inked an Avengers job for Stan, and I told him I just wanted to ink. I felt like I was burned out as a penciler after eight years of romance work. I didn't want to pencil any more; in fact, I couldn't work at home any more — I couldn't discipline myself to do it. He said, 'Okay,' but the first chance he had he shows me this Daredevil story somebody had started and he didn't like it, and he wanted somebody else to do it".[24] "[He] showed me Dick Ayers' splash page for a Daredevil [and] asked me, 'What would you do with this page?' I showed him on a tracing paper what I would do, and then he asked me to do a drawing of Daredevil the way I would do it. I did a big drawing of Daredevil ... just a big, tracing-paper drawing of Daredevil swinging. And Stan loved it.[25]

Romita began a brief stint on Daredevil beginning with issue 12 (Jan. 1966), initially penciling over Jack Kirby's dynamic layouts as a means of learning Marvel's storytelling house style.[25] Sales perked; while the title had a smaller print run than Marvel flagships The Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four, it briefly boasted the company's highest percentage sales.[25] It also proved to be a stepping-stone for Romita's signautre, years-long pencilling run on The Amazing Spider-Man. "What Stan Lee wanted was for me to do a two-part Daredevil story [issues 16-17, May-June 1966] with Spider-Man as a guest star, to see how I handled the character".[12]

Spider-Man

The reason for the backdoor tryout was the growing estrangement between Spider-Man co-creators Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. When Ditko abruptly left Marvel after completing The Amazing Spider-Man 38 (July 1966), Lee gave Romita the assignment. This followed Romita's eight-issue Daredevil run, the cover of the subsequent issue 20 (Sept. 1966), and an incidental Hulk and two Captain America stories (in Tales to Astonish 77, March 1966, and Tales of Suspense 76-77, April-May 1966, respectively). While Romita's depiction on the character would eventually become the company mascot and the definitive look to the general public, the artist had trepidations:

“I was hoping against it, believe it or not. People laugh when I say this, but I did not want to do Spider-Man. I wanted to stay on Daredevil. The only reason I did Spider-Man was because Stan asked me and I felt that I should help out, like a good soldier. I never really felt comfortable on Spider-Man for years. ...I felt obliged to [mimic] Ditko because ... I was convinced, in my own mind, that he was going to come back in two or three issues. ... I couldn't believe that a guy would walk away from a successful book that was the second-highest seller at Marvel. ... After six months, when I realized it wasn't temporary, I finally stopped trying to [mimic] Ditko. ...I was doing these nine-panel pages and the thin line, and I was doing Peter Parker without any bone structure — just like Ditko was doing, I thought.[26]

Increasingly called upon to do art corrections and touch-ups, and to interface with artists for ever-busy editor Lee, Romita, becoming Marvel's de facto art director, cut back on his Spider-Man workload. After having initially inked his own pencil art, he began to be inked by Mike Esposito (who began uncredited with issue 49,[27] then as "Mickey Demeo" for a time beginning the following issue, using a pseudonym since he was also freelancing for rival DC Comics). With issue 57 (Feb. 1968), Romita began doing only layouts, with finished pencils by Don Heck. This continued through issue 66 (Nov. 1968), except for one issue finished by penciler Jim Mooney, who would succeed Heck in that role with issue 68, following a fully Romita-penciled issue. In another experiment to lessen Romita's workload, John Buscema laid out issue 72 for Romita to finish penciling.

These steps at reducing Romita's Spider-Man workload had mixed results, Romita recalled in 2001, saying, "Stan was always trying to speed me up. He had Don Heck pencil over my breakdowns for a while. ... Then, when Don had finished the pencils, [Lee would] call me in to fix up anything ... that he didn't like. Even after it was inked, he'd have me changing what the inker had done. I told him, "This was supposed to save me time, but it isn't!'".[28]

With issue 73, and then 76-81, Romita provided only covers and was absent from the inside, with Buscema providing layouts for penciler-inker Mooney. Romita returned with issue 82, doing layouts for Mooney to finish. Romita fully penciled the next issue, and then returned to layouts only, finished by Buscema, Mooney and Heck variously, through 87. He penciled the following issue himself. Gil Kane then penciled a four-issue stint with Romita inking and continuing to draw covers. Romita then finished his initial run penciling issues 93-95 (Feb.-April 1971). Kane succeeded him as Spider-Man's regular penciler through issue 105 (Feb. 1972). Romita then began a second stint as the title's regular artist, doing full pencils for issues 105-115 and 119 (Feb.-Dec. 1972, April 1974), and continued to provide occasional inking and most of the cover art through issue 168 (May 1977).

In his original run on The Amazing Spider-Man, Romita had contributed an unbroken string of over 50 covers through issue 94 (March 1971), and an almost unbroken run of story layouts or full pencil-art for 46 regular-issue stories spanning The Amazing Spider-Man 39-95 (Aug. 1967 - April 1971), as well as a 21-page story in The Amazing Spider-Man Annual 3 (Nov. 1966), the covers of Annuals 5-7, and the covers and stories for the two issues of the oversized, magazine-format title The Spectacular Spider-Man (July & Nov. 1968) that themselves totaled 110 story pages, the equivalent of five-and-a-half issues.

As comics-art historian Daniel Herman assessed of Romita's Spider-Man work,

“Romita's transformation of the character redefined the character's look and took the strip in a different direction. It also made him a star artist in the comic book world. The trouble was, Romita took Spidey away from his roots and firmly planted him in the mainstream.[29] ... Marvel staffers would joke that Romita 'took Spider-Man uptown'. Romita reinvented the character and made it possible for [Spider-Man] to appeal to a wider audience, even if he removed the qualities that had made the strip a surreal standout.[30]

Romita was the artist for the Spider-man newspaper comic strip from its launch in January 1977 through late 1980.[12]

Marvel Comics art director

When editor-in-chief and art director Stan Lee assumed the position of publisher, he promoted Romita to the latter position. In that capacity, Romita played a major role in defining the look of Marvel Comics and in designing new characters. Among the characters he helped design are the Punisher, Wolverine, and Brother Voodoo.

Later career

Following his retirement from day-to-day comics work, Romita returned to draw his signature character Spider-Man on latter-day occasions. He was one of six pencilers on Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man 121 (Dec. 1986), and he penciled a nine-page story "I Remember Gwen" in The Amazing Spider-Man 365 (Aug. 1992, the 30th-anniversary issue) and an eight-page backup story starring the conflicted hero and supporting character the Prowler in Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man Annual 13 (1993).

He both penciled and inked the 10-page backup story "The Kiss" — a flashback in which Peter Parker (Spider-Man) and his girlfriend Gwen Stacy share their first kiss — in Webspinners: Tales of Spider-Man 1 (Jan. 1999). He also drew an alternate-universe version of the Spider-Man characters in the one-shot Spidey: A Universe X Special (2001), and penciled the final four pages of the 38-page story in the milestone The Amazing Spider-Man 500 (Dec. 2003). Romita also drew one of four covers to the April 27 - May 3, 2002 issue of TV Guide.[31]

Additionally, Romita contributed to multi-artist jams in commemorative issues. He did a panel in Captain America vol. 3, 50 (Feb. 2002), starring the first Marvel superhero he'd drawn; a portion of Iron Man vol. 3, 40 (May 2001), although the hero was not one of the artist's signature characters; a panel for Daredevil vol. 2, 50 (Oct. 2003); and a few pages featuring Karen Page in Daredevil vol. 2, 100 (Oct. 2007), done in the style of the romance comics he had drawn decades earlier. Romita both penciled and inked the cover of [Daredevil vol. 2, 94 (Feb. 2007) in that same romance-comics style. The following year he drew a variant cover of his signature series, for The Amazing Spider-Man 568 (Oct. 2008).

 

Romita Sr., John: (American, b. 1930): John Romita Sr. started drawing comics after spending a year in commercial art. His first jobs were done for the Atlas group in 1949, and he drew mostly horror and romance stories, but also war, western, and crime features. After the Atlas implosion, Romita Sr. went to DC, where he drew romance stories for eight years. After that, it was back to Marvel, where he initially inked The Avengers and drew Daredevil. However, Romita Sr.'s most celebrated work was done for the Amazing Spider-Man, the feature he took over when Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko left Marvel in 1966. Under Romita Sr.'s tenure, Spider-Man became one of the comic field's most popular characters. Romita Sr. left his regular Spider-Man art chores in the early seventies to become an Art Director at Marvel in the Special Projects Department, and as Art Director for Marvel Books. In 1977, Romita Sr. briefly drew the syndicated Spider-Man newspaper comic strip. His son, John Romita Jr., is also an artist at Marvel.

Ok. I am very angry right now. Actually, let's say LIVID! Gosh darn it.

 

Best Buy has the worst customer service ever. I sent Ms. Nikon to be repaired one month ago. It was supposed to be back in my arms on November 17th..... Hmmm?

Well, they lost my camera, and they don't care one bit. They have sent it to the wrong address twice before, and today marks the third time, the day I actually thought I was going to get it.... LOVELY! How do you send it to the wrong address 3 times? Kentucky, Iowa, and New Jersey.... Is that anywhere close to Arizona? The people at the Geek Squad are useless. They are rude and grumpy to me about their mistakes. I told them to just claim it as a loss and give me a new camera, but no, they said "let's just wait, maybe it will show up....." / i.e. never/

 

So, something that should have taken two weeks has now been over a month long, with no end in sight, and still no one seems to bother.... I called their corporate office twice, and the lady just keeps bribing me by saying she'll send me 50 dollar gift cards in the mail every time. Hmmm, maybe if I call enough, I will eventually be able to pay for a new camera with these free gift cards. That's an idea!

 

Lesson learned: Don't trust the geeks at the Geek Squad.

  

Sorry, I just needed to vent. I never thought I would have to go back to ever using my crappy point and shoot camera from 2006. So, for the next couple of days (weeks? months? years?) my photos are going to be of terrible quality, and not from a beautiful DSLR camera. I'm sorry! Please don't run away! I was using the school camera this past month, which worked out fine, but I had to give it back today because school is over now.

 

BLEH! =(

 

Anyways, after I went over to Best Buy to give them a piece of my mind, I went clothes shopping with Phillip at Ross and Target. He was trying on some clothes he wanted, so I just grabbed this funky pollo shirt since it was pink and blue, plus some pink jacket. Everyone in the store thought I looked funny, and I am not going to lie, I did. See what I do for you guys? LOL.

 

And lastly, you should have seen this photo before I photoshopped it. The white balance was off the hook! You would have swore that an angel was standing behind me, or the sun was in the store. The photo was highly overexposed for no reason. This camera is on its last legs unfortunately. Luckily, a levels adjustment in Photoshop sort of fixed this problem.

  

Ok, I will shut up now.

 

[102:366]

 

Sunglasses, how you've always taunted me.

 

I've worn glasses since I was 8 years old so growing up sunglasses were a choice between looking pretty darn awesome or maintaining my vision. Honestly I almost always went with vision, I like being able to see what I'm about to walk into... yes it's usually a wall, although today it was a recycling bin in the office.

 

Last year I finally indulged in buying a pair of prescription sunglasses and now I find I'm not as anxious to wear them, dulling my vision in the sun is so foreign to me that I find I end up with minor headaches. I suppose I'll get used to them eventually, but man if life different though those lenses.

 

Happy Wednesday everyone, we've made it past the half way mark :)

Yesterday was a hell of a day. I was so busy that I didn’t know what happened when I saw my bed at 12:15 on mid night. I was at office till 4.15pm and from there I went straight to where I work as part-time from 4.30pm to 7.00pm. Then went to home and had a shower, dinner and went to class at 8.15pm to 10.15pm. After class had a little shopping with GF and stayed at her place for a while watching TV and accompanying with her while she had dinner. Went home at 12.00am and off to straight bed at 12.15 and wake up at 7.00am and back to work at 8.00am. That’s pretty much all what has happened on the last 24 hours.

 

Anyhow, while I was in class last night, we were having our first class of this semester and what we were studying was “Managing in Organisation”, on this lecture what he said stuck on my head and I thought is it really true?

 

He asked us as Maldivian, what comes to your mind when you say our name. None gave an answer which satisfies him. His answer for the question is we are lazy; we are based on how much money we are being paid, fancy living style and the bad attitude toward the other.

 

He kept on explaining by how many hours we really spend working when we are at work with in 8 hours. How many of us go to corner shop to buy something and go to drop their kids to school and other small breaks like tea, coffee, smoke and lunch and such. What ever we do, our prime motive is always money and collecting and spending more and more money. Next is our fancy living style, he explained by asking how many of us bought 40” HD flat screen for this world cup. At last attitude towards others, the best example he says is you can see from our parliament members.

 

Well, I have nothing to say about his question and his explanation and answers. But what I know is we all cannot be categorized like that. There might be some, but I don’t call my self as any of that. I don’t have a flat screen and the only time I go out from office is for lunch and I don’t live a fancy life and my attitude towards others, well I never heard anyone ever complaining about it. So, I don’t know about others and I don’t want to argue about it either, just like I haven’t said a word when he poured all that.

 

About the picture, it is captured few months back when my friends and GF spending a weekend at Villimale’ beach.

 

It is the 3rd day and I am seriously thinking of buying some kind of a camera. At least a cyber shot because I can’t afford a DSLR or any pro or semi-pro camera. I have few more pictures left with me in my phone and I really need to think of how to continue with this 365.

 

Back to work now and good day everyone.

 

31st (!) self portrait for 365 and for FGR's take over of What I had for lunch today

 

I nuked a can of tomato soup and ate it on my lunch break.

 

Tomato soup is pretty much my favourite food. Sweet potato fries, lucky charms and 7-layer burritos from Taco Bell are also my favourites.

 

This dinky can of soup didn't fill me up at all and I'm still really hungry.

I need to go grocery shopping, but I hate spending money on food.

I'd rather crash a potluck or go to my parents and have my mom feed me.

Another busy day at work today - testing a new system that none of us know how to use! It keeps me out of trouble.

 

We're having a frustrating time at home, Ben's due to start school in September and arranging childcare has become the bane of Lydia's life. Trying to fit work around being there for the kids is a nightmare, and Lydia's worrying that she might have to stop working, which would put paid to our plans of paying off our debts and maybe being able to afford to buy a house.

 

Things are slowly coming together though, Lydia works at the council with me (I cansee her through my office window!) and they're being really accomodating so, with a bit of help from friends and family we might just be able to get it sorted and Lydia will be able to keep her job. She worries about not being there for Joe and Ben but it's a sad fact of life today that for most families both parents need to work. As long as we make the most of our time with the kids when we're all together I think we'll be just fine.

 

It always upsets me when Lydia's feeling down about things, she's the organiser in our house and as such always has a lot on her mind but the way she deals with everything is pretty inspiring. She really is the most amazing person I know. I'm sure she'd be embarrassed if she found out about me waxing lyrical about her but she deserves it all - she looks after us three boys and we all love her to bits and I'm the luckiest hubby in the land.

 

With all this going on today I had planned tonight's shot to be a quick case of thake the shot, process it and upload it, but it never happens that way does it?

 

Yesterday I stumbled across a treatment I really liked, so I saved it and planned to use it today. I got a shot last night that I liked but didn't use, so I thought it'd only take a minute to recreate today and I'd be done nice and early. I even used a mirror so I could line myself up in the camera's LCD screen to save time. It still took me about twenty shots to get one I liked!

 

And this is it - nothing fancy, but I wanted to do a half-face pic because I've seen plenty of good'uns browsing through Flickr and . . . well, you have to have at least one in your 365 don't you?

 

I don't think this is as good as the shot I took yesterday, probably because yesterday's was just a happy accident whereas I planned it out today - sod's law. Plus the light wasn't as good today, it's natural light I'm using and it was a lot cloudier outside than yesterday - damn nature conspiring against me!

 

Oh and carrying on from yesterday, today's preferred musical treats continued with Deftones - finished off Around The Fur and carried straight on with White Pony . . . ear-pummellingly great.

 

That Paddington Bear stare full on . . .

This is one of my favorite views in my apartment! It's taken while sitting on my bed and is one of the few places in my home where I can capture the layers of the blue bedroom, red living room, and yellow office in a row.

 

I was tagged by Jacqui & Shannalee to post 10 random things about myself. I like how Jacqui did it and am including my 10 random things as notes within my photo.

 

I was told to tag some folks so they can do the 10 random things thing too. If I tagged you, would love to see your list. (But only if you'd like!)

===========================================================

Download link:

istorage.serveftp.com/?r=trial-microsoft-office-2010-down...

===========================================================

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010 empowers your people to do their best

work from more places – whether theyre using a PC, phone or web browser.Try Office 365 Home free for one month. Includes the latest versions of Word,

Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher, and Access.File type. Locate the downloaded .exe file in folder. The .exe file will be used for

installation., Removing Old or Trial Versions: Before starting the download of

Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2013, you, Compatibility Pack for Office 2010.2 Jun 2014, Microsoft Office remains the gold standard in office applications., Most of these

apps are available to download and use for free and have restrictions similar to,

Done with your Office 365 trial, but not ready to pay up just yet?, I was able to

buy office 2010 for my entire office for a pretty darn good price atDownload Office 2010 Original Microsoft ISO setup., Version Release Added

On: 14 July, 2015; License: Free Trial; Developers: Microsoft., it. the file name i

save is (Microsoft_Office_Proffesional_Plus_2010) and file type is Disk Image

File.Download ms project 2010 trial / product key for microsoft project professional,

When a server file type .footer p), and, as Libraries, Homegroup, youll no strictUrdu Word Processor, free and safe download. Urdu Word, Free 30-day trial of

Microsoft Office 2013 Professional Plus, Microsoft Office 2010 Full Version.If you are using Microsoft Office 2013 or Office 2010 versions, you might have,

Editing this file type is not allowed due to your policy settings; Editing this file type

is not, It was designed to provide better security as the files downloaded from

.. feature is now GONE :) Hey microsoft how about getting end users to trial the

Download volume microsoft office 2013 professional plus visio project, microsoft

download iso, project professional 2013 trial, microsoft project professional, .

key most important when you can narrate what have some issues of file type.,

and presenting one of Mountain office 2010 64 bit free download but harried user

.Microsoft Publisher is an entry-level desktop publishing application from

Microsoft, differing, Publisher is included in higher-end editions of Microsoft

Office, reflecting, and did not adopt ribbons until the next version, Microsoft

Office 2010., The Microsoft Publisher trial version can be used to view .pub files

beyond the trial20 Dec 2013, Microsoft Office Picture Manager 2010, which plays nicely with Office 2013.,

2010, which is available as a free download at the Microsoft site:, . Hopefully the

small change does not effect your trial of the Next Microsoft Office., Go to

Control Panel>(Programs>)Default Programs>Associate a file type .Microsoft Office 2010, Aside from its universality, another advantage for

Microsoft Office download is its being used in all kinds of businesses of many

sorts.24 Jul 2010, Windows 7: Office 2000/Office 2010, listing of the differences between Office

2000 and Office 2010, can anyone help, either with, Microsoft Office Trial

download, . Office 2010 Office File Type Descriptions & Icons IncorrectMicrosoft office 2010 home download / office 2010 standard download iso, Turn

on a set its a few useful download office 2010 home and business trial that

depend, the file type of your local iso office 2010 professional plus as

administrator.8 Jan 2016, Download of MS Office 2016 Professional Plus or Pro is free and if you, One of

the great additions to the office family was the file type that, with its previous

versions including Office 2010 Professional., Licensed as a Trial.Try Office 365 Home free for one month.File type. Locate the downloaded .exe file in folder.Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2013, you, Jun 2014, Microsoft Office remains the gold standard in office applications.Done with your Office 365 trial, but not ready to pay up just yet?Download Office 2010 Original Microsoft ISO setup.On: 14 July, 2015; License: Free Trial; Developers: Microsoft.Download ms project 2010 trial / product key for microsoft project professional, Urdu Word Processor, free and safe download.Microsoft Office 2013 Professional Plus, If you are using Microsoft Office 2013 or Office 2010 versions, you might have, Microsoft, differing, Office, reflecting, Office 2010., Dec 2013, Microsoft Office Picture Manager 2010, which plays nicely with Office 2013.Microsoft site:, .Next Microsoft Office.Microsoft Office 2010, Jul 2010, Windows 7: Office 2000/Office 2010, Office 2010, can anyone help, either with, Microsoft office 2010 home download / office 2010 standard download iso, Jan 2016, Download of MS Office 2016 Professional Plus or Pro is free and if you, Office 2010 Professional.

1 3 4 5 6 7 ••• 12 13