new icn messageflickr-free-ic3d pan white
View allAll Photos Tagged paragraph

Engineer that. Flavors. Let me feed y’all, fruits of life, shut up and eat y’all. With real talk, vivid colors and excellence, Mook-Life Darts are once again thrown at you with the same trajectory of the bullet that killed John F Kennedy.

 

For those that are still wondering what we mean when we’re talking about them darts, let me refresh your dome for a hot minute one time. As much as darts may appear through a lyrical medium, we refer our darts to the pics of inappropriate subject matters we post and all the real talk we generate for each topic we touch and clutch. Feel me, Mook-Life gon’ massage your brain with slang, that’s cane. We provide rich paragraphs.

 

www.mook-life.com/hidden-darts/

With Twain's Very Special Guest:

Charly Keating !

 

Twain: Welcome

Charly: First. If I may.

Twain: Yes ?

Charly: I'd like to thank all the wonderful photo artists who support me and love me and surround me with their light and hugs .. and ...

Twain: ....[sighs]

Twain: ...yes, yes, yes .....

Twain: I'm sure you do ...

Charly: HMPH! You can be so rude !

Charly: I am being sincere ....

Twain: I am sure you are ... but this is only a twenty minute show .....

Twain: Now. May we talk about Landscapes and Textures ?

Charly: I suppose ....

Twain: ... and just how many men have had a gander at your model legs lately .. ?

Charly: What ?!!!

Charly: [pulls down hard on her long woolen skirt]

Charly: I'll have you know that only one man has had a 'gander' at these legs .. and I'm very picky . and it's none of your business ! ....

Twain: ... right .. right ... the, um, ... 'Elder' thing ...

Charly: [blushes and nods]

Twain: Tell me now ... as far as Textures go .. I would think that for a great texture .. back in the 1950's .. Dutch Boy paint would have had the best 'tack' or stickiness for application use.

Charly: [nods] Yes. Back in the day. Certainly not now.

Charly: Personally my go to paint of choice is Behr paints.

Twain: Hm ? [begins to write down furiously]

Charly: Yes. Behr has just the right amount of tact and colour that a true artist needs for a texture of high quality.

Charly: They still use high grade pigment in their products

Twain: ..... although Behr is quite expensive .. is it not ?

Twain: Sixty to Eighty per quart ?

Charly: Well .. if you want to be an artist .....

Twain: Hm .. yes .... your water scapes are amazing ...

Charly: I think you meant to say my Landscapes .....

Twain: [shakes his head no]

Twain: I think that all of you are under a huge misnomer

Twain: How can you possibly call them 'Landscapes' when seventy percent of the photo is of water ?

Twain: Where oh where is the land ?!

Twain: Many a time little Skippy shouts 'SHIP' .. how is that possible if it is on 'land' ?

Charly: Well .. I .....

Twain: [Takes out his new Bento Pipe Model 7.5.3.12 and begins to puff on it]

Twain: You are not at fault here

Twain: I will take it up with the powers that be and have a little sit down chit - chat ... fix this mistake in no time flat !

Charly: [adjusts her skirt]

Charly: I'd leave things well enough alone if I were you .....

Twain: Impossible !

Charly: [Looks at the new upload]

Charly: This looks like one of your older works

Twain: [nods and sighs]

Twain: Yes. It is. I've been very ill in real life .. fever the whole bit

Charly: Yes. I've noticed you have not been awarding your regulars .. except for me

Twain: Hm .. true.

Charly: A lot of yellow ....

Twain: Yes ... and it's not Behr

Charly: How do you expect it to be received ?

Twain: [ponders for a moment]

Twain: Most likely tank in the ratings ....

Charly: [nods]

Charly: Maybe if I flashed my model legs it could help ... ?

Twain: [shakes his head no]

Twain: Let it stand or sink on its own merit or lack there of

Twain: Now .. where do you come up with your inspirations for your 'waterscapes' ?

Charly: [sighs] My Landscapes?

Charly: I go from one sim to another and I look and look ... it's very difficult ...

Twain: Don't you just point your camera up into the sky, like Sandi Benelli does, ...

Twain: Take the raw shot and post it .. and get all those easy favs and awards ?

Charly: Nooooooo !!

Twain: [whispers to Charly]

Twain: I tried to 'friend' Sandi in SL once and she refused me ! Twain: She said I was too 'common place'

Charly: I don't believe you .. Sandi is not like that at all !

Twain: [takes a long draw on his Bento Pipe]

Twain: HMPH !

Charly: You don't know the first thing of how a real texture Artist works and I don't have time to explain it here !

Twain: You're right of course.

Twain: We've run out of script

Twain: People stopped reading about three paragraphs ago ......

Charly: .... that's because you are so rude to your guests !

Twain: ......that could be a minor factor ..... I'll check that out during 'sweeps week' ...

Charly: I'd like to once again thank all the wonderful artists that support my work and give my love and hugs .. and ...

Twain: .....dear lord ! ....

Twain: ..this concludes our interview ..

Twain: Thank you for coming by I do know how precious your time is ...

Charly: I do try to make time for everyone ..... I have some sim hopping to do now .... bye ..

 

[FIN]

 

Um... What the heck, Flickr? You've changed AGAIN??? At this point I've no idea whether I like or will dislike the changes made, but I must say I am irked by the fact you're ALWAYS changing. Seriously, what the heck? No time to find out, guess it'll have to wait til later.

 

Update: Well, so far so good with Flickr - that is to say, I've roamed around for a few minutes and I LIKE it here. The white type that killed my eyes is GONE. Yay! And you can now write again using paragraphs [HUGE plus for moi!]. Adding photographs to groups is a breeze now, one click and you're in. That's nice. This newer version looks pretty good to me. Still irked Flickr is ALWAYS changing. Believe me, I understand progression, but come on, Flickr changes its format far too often for this. I hope it stays this way for a good, long while. :)

 

By the way, HFF! :)

....flying off into the sunset In case you hadn't worked it out, this is a sandwich of two images (I would add more details but I can't work out how to add paragraphs with this new format!).

“I wonder which is preferable — to walk around all your life swollen up with your secrets until you burst from the pressure of them, or to have them sucked out of you, every paragraph, every sentence, every word for them, so at the end you’re depleted of all that was once as precious to you as hoarded gold, as close to you as your skin — everything that was of the deepest importance to you, everything that made you cringe and wish to conceal, everything that belonged to you alone — and must spend the rest of your days like an empty sack flapping in the wind, an empty sack branded with a bright fluorescent label so that everyone will know what sort of secrets used to be inside you?”

— Margaret Atwood

I don't like the new version of Flickr at all; at the moment I'm trying to find workable solutions to the problems, but I'm not happy!

 

***There's to be a FLICKR RED DAY on SUNDAY 6 APRIL ***

You can download the banner here:

www.flickr.com/photos/abstractartangel77/13467262444/

 

JOIN THE ANIT-BETA PROTEST GROUP here

www.flickr.com/groups/2575846@N24

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  

Seeing your admin invites

You can sometimes access these by going to your Recent Activity page BUT keep in mind that the Recent Activity tab only shows up the last 10 'activities' on any given image, which isn't much use at all.

 

You can also check your email to see if there are any admin invites issued to you.

 

Admins of groups can issue admin invites by hitting the G key on the keyboard; this will bring up a list of each group you're an admin of (but don't bank on the recipients ever seeing them! :-(

 

To continue seeing Flickr in the old version change your language to anything but English (but keep in mind that this is a short-term solution as the new version will be rolled out to all countries very soon).

 

To start a new paragraph in a comment box you need to press the SHIFT+ENTER keys

 

------------------------------------------------------------

Image created for Treat This 27 in the Kreative People group

www.flickr.com/groups/1752359@N21/discuss/72157642953288564/

 

Source image - my own, which you can see in the first comment box below or here:

flic.kr/p/mvWwE8

  

BRAIN TEASER

 

This is an unusual paragraph. I'm curious how quickly you can find out what is so unusual about it? It looks so plain you would think nothing was wrong with it! In fact, nothing is wrong with it! It is unusual though. Study it, and think about it, but you still may not find anything odd. But if you work at it a bit, you might find out! Try to do so without any coaching!

         

Answer:

 

The letter "e", which is the most common letter in the English language, does not appear once in the long paragraph.

In the forest of letters:

  

a road in cursive

dearest compass

  

a grid of clouds

paragraph

  

a leaf of moonlight

signature

  

a birdhouse of stars

postscript

  

Jenn Morea

  

The 'Pet' from Moonlight Road, above Middlemarch.

Last shot I'll put up of the Pet for a while :-)

 

'The Taieri Pet' is a cloud local to this area. It only forms in certain conditions, of which a strong NWerly wind (at high levels) is the big factor. The layered cloud doesn't seem to move...and although the wind blows through the layers at some speed, at ground level it can be calm.

 

If you're interested there's a paragraph about it here: www.otagocentralrailtrail.co.nz/places/Ngapuna-a19/index....

 

If you're interested in the technical side of these lenticular clouds...check out Peter Shepherd's great diagram: www.flickr.com/photos/peteshep/15639243110/

   

I've always wanted to take a spiderweb picture but could never get it quite right or the light wasn't nice and hitting it in the right places but finally the light decided to cooperate with me today and the light RAYS were perf yayayya so happy woooooooo!

 

This is completely irrelevant like most of my ~descriptions~ about my photos but I am gonna go for my learners test hooRAY omg see what I did there I talked about light rays before and linked it to this paragraph but including the word ray oh my gosh I should be a writer or something..... no I really shouldn't I don't use commas or fullstops

Used by Shamans during rituals sacred to the native Cahuilla, Luseño & Gabrielino people, this cave's ceiling was covered in pristine Native American pictographs, estimated to be between 1000 & 1500 years old by archaeologists.

 

I stumbled upon clues to this cave's existence accidentally while searching for data on Archaeological sites in Joshua Tree National Park. As with most sites, the ones in J. Tree are heavily guarded, and finding info on all the good ones is next to impossible. (Stay tuned: I have a good lead and will find them soon!) The rangers deny their existence, and the vast majority of explorers are extremely distrusting and tight-lipped, and rightfully so.

 

Almost every pictograph site known to the public is promptly destroyed by vandals. It never ceases to amaze just how demented and depraved some people are. The vandalization of (by "tagging," "graffiti," "street art," "carving initials" or any other vain and selfish destructive method) or removal of artifacts from any Native American historical site is a federal crime (a felony) punishable by time in federal prison, and yet still they do it.

Anyway, after searching the internet very carefully and thoroughly, I managed to find a single paragraph from a scanned page of an old archaeology book on a website that gave a clue to this cave's location — just 25 minutes from home!

 

So I went out to find it, and finally managed to locate this incredibly special place.

 

There were two other pictograph panels in a nearby area, but one had been faded by the elements, and the other destroyed completely by vandals with several layers of spray painted filth. It is extremely fortunate that this cave had escaped the malice of the vandals this long, and I truly hope it remains so.

 

While there, I picked up several pieces of broken glass, some spent 22 caliber shell casings, a shotgun shell, a thumbtack, a chip bag, and an empty gatorade bottle from the floor of the cave. The insane part is that there were houses on all sides and shooting is also extremely illegal and life threatening to the people who live in the area. Disgusting, but taking care of these special sites is everyone's job, and it has to start somewhere. Next time you're out in the wild and see some trash, stuff it in the back pocket of your pack and take it to a proper trashcan. Every little thing helps!

 

Technical backstory: This image is impossible to create with any lens. This tends to be an issue when creating images in small caves. It's simply impossible to capture the whole scene in a single frame. So, what I did was shoot 3 separate horizontal ultra-wide angle images with my 14mm rectilinear (non-fisheye) lens. Then, when I got home, I stitched the images together into a single hourglass-shaped (from the extreme angles involved) image. Once I had the hourglass panorama, I then had to use the Warp tool in Photoshop to carefully correct the hourglass back into the non-distorted rectangle form you see here. Finally, I balanced out the exposure using a bunch of methods to even out the highlight and shadow areas in the image to create a cohesive and balanced exposure.

A view of the Colosseum almost by evening.

The shadows were gathering fast; the crowd of tourists was as noisy as ever and I was trying to take a meaningful capture of the amphitheater- something different from the usual, something telling at least a part of the story of the place; something which was not too similar to a messy, unwilled group shot.

The paragraph of the story of the Colosseum I have chosen is interesting - the shot... well, I hope it is worth the effort.

 

The fact leaves me gaping every time I think about it: for centuries the inhabitants of Rome (and the Popes as well) has been using the Colosseum as a travertine quarry at their fingertips. They took away stone upon stone from the amphitheater, to reuse them in the construction of other buildings.

In our modern times we stress a lot the issue of recycling, but our sense of history makes us preserving historical heritage, while recycling our contemporary waste. However, so much of what we build and produce - even our architecture - will not be so long-lasting to be part of the history of our posterity :-(.

You can find some interesting information about this story of dismantling the past here.

 

I have blended three HDR images derived from a 3-bracketing, -1.67 ev/0/+1.67 ev, generated and tonemapped with Luminance HDR 2.4.0 (Mantiuk06, Fattal, and Reinhard05 operators).

 

Luminance HDR 2.4.0 tonemapping parameters:

Operator: Mantiuk06

Contrast Mapping factor: 0.24

Saturation Factor: 0.57

Detail Factor: 2.2

------

PreGamma: 0.67

 

Operator: Fattal

alpha: 1.73

beta: 0.86

Saturation: 0.42

Noiseredux: 0

fftsolver: 1

---

PreGamma: 0.79

 

Operator: Reinhard05

Brightness: 2.0

Chromatic adaptation: 0.91

Light adaptation: 0.28

---

PreGamma: 0.91

This first paragraph is the same on both posts today. Was thinking of taking the weekend off again but decided instead to treat it all far less seriously. Monday to Friday = serious. Saturday and Sunday = not. So because of the heat at the office I took some time off and took skytrain and bus down to Granville Island and wandered around. Was sunny and warm with a fabulous breeze. Saw turtles basking on a rock. Watched someone hand feeding gulls. You might get to see shots of those.

 

In the process of wandering around I came across this trendy little gardening shop. Had some nice garden accessories. Loved the turquoise fold up chair. It was apparently part of a set. It jiggled when I put out my hand and pushed against it... I checked the little red ticket hanging from it for the price. To be shocked as much as I was look at my note above.

100 more days until tori comes to texas :)

Thanks soooo very much to Angel Ana (PassasAoRum) for letting me adopt this girl!!! I have DREAMED of having her for a LONG time! Miss A and I send you thousands of kisses, Ana!!! She arrived safely earlier today!

 

I just lost paragraphs explaining more, but don't have time to re-type now! Will have to do that later, as workers are about to descend on the basement!! AND Horatio must be walked before then! AND...so many things happening at once! BUT I am a happy girl!

 

Cangaway sweater...we love it! Thanks, Blanca! Mango wore it first; will show those pix when I can! SUPER FAST shot of Miss A...had to share my excitement!!!!!

 

ETA: Okay, I am sort of hiding from the workmen atm! LOL! They freak me out! EEEK! People moving my things! BUT I am not moving...it is weird! Anyway....here is the rest of the story...I will try typing this again! SO...I have an EBL Holly who was all SET to make a journey to Sherri (Shershe) to become a faux Miss A...and you know what happens when we get serious about making a faux Miss A, right? You guessed it! A miracle occurred and I was able to adopt Miss A from the lovely Ana!!! SO...the legend continues of people finding their Miss A after they have decided to create a faux Miss A!

Okay, I really am just throwing this up here to direct everyone to my new group Pattern Shift - The Stories Inside Us All.

 

The idea is for each person who joins to write a sentence, paragraph, or chapter of a story that follows on the sentence, chapter or story written by the person that precedes them. That way, we will all collectively write a group story/novel.

 

An experiment in cooperative and coolaborative writing.

 

I wrote the first part today. There is a sign up thread for people to get in line to contribute.

 

And, yes, I know this may end in miserable embarrassing failure ... but I hope not.

 

Come by and check it out.

via WordPress ift.tt/2Bguslj

 

Enlarge / Delicious, non-cancerous, coffee. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

 

After a judge ruled in March that coffee should be served with jolting labels that alert drinkers to a cancer risk, the state of California seems to have woken up to the concern that its pervasive health warnings may have gone too far.

 

“There’s a danger to overwarning—it’s important to warn about real health risks,” Sam Delson told The New York Times.

 

Delson is the deputy director for external and legislative affairs for California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The office proposed a regulation shortly after a March ruling that would unequivocally declare that any cancer-linked components of roasted and brewed coffee “pose no significant risk of cancer.” Today, August 16, the proposed regulation is getting a public hearing in Sacramento.

 

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” syndicated from antitheftbackpacks.wordpress.com/

via WordPress ift.tt/2BcRb1L

 

Enlarge / Delicious, non-cancerous, coffee. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

 

After a judge ruled in March that coffee should be served with jolting labels that alert drinkers to a cancer risk, the state of California seems to have woken up to the concern that its pervasive health warnings may have gone too far.

 

“There’s a danger to overwarning—it’s important to warn about real health risks,” Sam Delson told The New York Times.

 

Delson is the deputy director for external and legislative affairs for California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The office proposed a regulation shortly after a March ruling that would unequivocally declare that any cancer-linked components of roasted and brewed coffee “pose no significant risk of cancer.” Today, August 16, the proposed regulation is getting a public hearing in Sacramento.

 

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” published first on antitheftbackpacks.tumblr.com/

via WordPress ift.tt/2Mu3PxF

 

Enlarge / Delicious, non-cancerous, coffee. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

 

After a judge ruled in March that coffee should be served with jolting labels that alert drinkers to a cancer risk, the state of California seems to have woken up to the concern that its pervasive health warnings may have gone too far.

 

“There’s a danger to overwarning—it’s important to warn about real health risks,” Sam Delson told The New York Times.

 

Delson is the deputy director for external and legislative affairs for California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The office proposed a regulation shortly after a March ruling that would unequivocally declare that any cancer-linked components of roasted and brewed coffee “pose no significant risk of cancer.” Today, August 16, the proposed regulation is getting a public hearing in Sacramento.

 

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” published first on antitheftbackpacks.tumblr.com/

life's not a paragraph...

for the world is puddle-wonderful.

― E.E. Cummings

This first paragraph is a repeat of the previous Othello tunnel shots - don't read if you already have: Went on an exploring trip on Friday. Someone had told us about a place called the Othello Tunnels and we thought we might give it a try. Was the most incredible experience The old Kettle Valley Railway used to start in Hope and head off to the interior of the province. Othello was the first stop on the route but in order to get there you had to travel through the mountains and across steep gorges in the coquilhala river. When the railway ceased to be used it was turned into a park and the old rail line itself was taken out and made into a graveled pathway that goes through four long unlit tunnels.

 

The first part of the trail from the parking lot travels through forest and then for a short time along the coquilhala river before the river went down into a gorge and the tunnels started. This was the my first view of the river. I was immediately taken with this very odd rock in the river bed that reminded me of a turtle or maybe an igloo. I took many shots of it from many angles. Like an ice cream scoop of rock and all it needed was whip cream, chocolate sauce and a cherry.

 

get a little closer

via WordPress ift.tt/2nCtEh2

 

Enlarge / From left to right, a time lapse of a Bose-Einstein condensate forming. (credit: NASA/JPL)

 

At the heart of Einstein’s theory of gravity (general relativity) is the equivalence principle. The equivalence principle says that there is no difference between being stationary and subject to gravity tugging you and accelerating in a vehicle that’s free of gravitational pull.

 

In practice, this means that there is no difference between inertial mass (the mass a rocket works on) and gravitational mass (the mass the Earth tugs on). This equivalence has been measured time and time again with no violation ever found. But these tests assumed that quantum mechanics didn’t change the equivalent principle: that assumption is partially wrong.

 

Some quantum in your equivalence

 

In relativity, mass and energy are two sides of the same coin. For very small objects, we need to think about that in terms of quantum mechanics, where a particle can be in a superposition of energy states. A particle in a superposition of energy states has two energies at the same time until it is measured, whereupon it has a single fixed energy. An object in a superposition of energetic states can have a superposition of inertial masses. But does it have the same superposition of gravitational masses?

 

Read 14 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

Einstein’s equivalence principle updated with a dash of quantum syndicated from antitheftbackpacks.wordpress.com/

The Taieri Pet with the Kakanui Ranges in the distance.

 

For the purists...the unmeddled-with version can be found here:

www.flickr.com/photos/birdcloud1/15173317314/ :-)

 

'The Pet' is a cloud local to this area. It only forms in certain conditions, of which a strong NWerly wind (at high levels) is the big factor. The layered cloud doesn't seem to move...and although the wind blows through the layers at some speed, at ground level it can be calm. As it was here (although severe gales had been forecast....they never came).

If you're interested there's a paragraph about it here: www.otagocentralrailtrail.co.nz/places/Ngapuna-a19/index....

 

Maggie, at the shop in Middlemarch, said she thought it used to be bigger.

And sometimes it's unbroken : natlib.govt.nz/records/23232388?search%5Bpath%5D=items&am...

  

via WordPress ift.tt/2Bguslj

 

Enlarge / Delicious, non-cancerous, coffee. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

 

After a judge ruled in March that coffee should be served with jolting labels that alert drinkers to a cancer risk, the state of California seems to have woken up to the concern that its pervasive health warnings may have gone too far.

 

“There’s a danger to overwarning—it’s important to warn about real health risks,” Sam Delson told The New York Times.

 

Delson is the deputy director for external and legislative affairs for California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The office proposed a regulation shortly after a March ruling that would unequivocally declare that any cancer-linked components of roasted and brewed coffee “pose no significant risk of cancer.” Today, August 16, the proposed regulation is getting a public hearing in Sacramento.

 

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” syndicated from antitheftbackpacks.wordpress.com/

via WordPress ift.tt/2Mu3PxF

 

Enlarge / Delicious, non-cancerous, coffee. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

 

After a judge ruled in March that coffee should be served with jolting labels that alert drinkers to a cancer risk, the state of California seems to have woken up to the concern that its pervasive health warnings may have gone too far.

 

“There’s a danger to overwarning—it’s important to warn about real health risks,” Sam Delson told The New York Times.

 

Delson is the deputy director for external and legislative affairs for California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The office proposed a regulation shortly after a March ruling that would unequivocally declare that any cancer-linked components of roasted and brewed coffee “pose no significant risk of cancer.” Today, August 16, the proposed regulation is getting a public hearing in Sacramento.

 

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” published first on antitheftbackpacks.tumblr.com/

via WordPress ift.tt/2KYvzG7

 

Enlarge / Delicious, non-cancerous, coffee. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

 

After a judge ruled in March that coffee should be served with jolting labels that alert drinkers to a cancer risk, the state of California seems to have woken up to the concern that its pervasive health warnings may have gone too far.

 

“There’s a danger to overwarning—it’s important to warn about real health risks,” Sam Delson told The New York Times.

 

Delson is the deputy director for external and legislative affairs for California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The office proposed a regulation shortly after a March ruling that would unequivocally declare that any cancer-linked components of roasted and brewed coffee “pose no significant risk of cancer.” Today, August 16, the proposed regulation is getting a public hearing in Sacramento.

 

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” syndicated from medium.com/@eooke

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” syndicated from barbarawalston.wordpress.com/

via WordPress ift.tt/2w4z4Fe

 

Readers who pay careful attention may have noticed a new byline attached to an article yesterday. And, if any of you follow physics—which seems to be a lot of you—they will be excited to have learned about our newest writer that way. For the rest of you, we’re pleased to announce that Jennifer Ouellette is joining the Ars staff.

 

Jennifer will be familiar to many of you because of her deep background in science coverage. She has contributed as a freelancer to more places than is convenient to list. She has blogged on the field at Cocktail Party Physics and shares a huge range of science stories on social media. Her most recent staff position was as a Senior Science Editor at Gizmodo. In short, she’s been immersed in science for years, and brings a wealth of experience to a field we don’t cover as thoroughly as we’d often like to.

 

But, if I could channel my best informercial voice, that’s not all. One of her interests in covering science has been to bring forward the science behind the everyday world around us—the sort of cocktail party physics that gave her blog its name. This is not something we’ve always done well (when we’ve done it at all). This is the sort of coverage that bleeds over into technology and our wider culture, which makes her a fantastic fit for Ars.

 

Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

Please join us in welcoming Ars’ newest contributor, Jennifer Ouellette syndicated from antitheftbackpacks.wordpress.com/

I fell asleep and read just about every paragraph.

 

Read the scene where gravity is pulling me around

Peel back the mountains peel back the sky

Stomp gravity into the floor

It's a Man Ray kind of sky

Let me show you what I can do with it

Time and distance are out of place here

 

Step up, step up, step up the sky is open-armed

When the light is mine, I felt gravity pull

 

Somewhere near the end it said

"You can't do this", I said "I can too"

Shift sway rivers shift, oceans fall and mountains drift

It's a Man Ray kind of sky

Let me show you what I can do with it

 

Step up, step up, step up the sky is open-armed

When the light is mine, I felt gravity pull onto my eyes,

holding my head straight (looking down).

This is the easiest task I've ever had to do...

 

I fell asleep and read just about every paragraph

 

Read the scene where gravity is pulling me around

Shift the swaying river's shift

Oceans fall and mountains drift

It's a Man Ray kind of sky

Let me show you what I can do with it

Time and distance are out of place here

 

Step up, step up, step up the sky is open-armed

When the light is mine, I felt gravity pull onto my eyes,

holding my head straight (looking down).

This is the easiest task I've ever had to do...

 

Reason had harnessed the tame

Holding the sky in their arms

Gravity pulls me down

 

Feeling Gravity's Pull, R.E.M. 1985

via WordPress ift.tt/2OZReAL

 

Enlarge (credit: Kari Greer/USFS Gila National Forest)

 

We tend to use “ice age” to mean a period where large ice sheets push south to what are now temperate regions. But from a geologist’s perspective, even current conditions are part of an ice age, since large ice sheets exist at the poles. The term provides a contrast to what are called hothouse conditions, which the Earth has experienced for periods that were long enough to entirely melt the poles. The planet hasn’t seen hothouse conditions for more than 2.5 million years.

 

But this week, headlines were full of discussion of a possible return of a hothouse Earth courtesy of climate change. The sudden worries weren’t the product of any new research; instead, they were simply the product of a perspective some researchers had written on our current understanding of the climate, plus some potential risks associated with it. The perspective argued that there are multiple tipping points in the climate, and we can’t rule out shooting past them even if we get emissions under control within a few decades.

 

Hot hot hot

 

So how seriously should we view this risk, and why are scientists suddenly talking about it now?

 

Read 9 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

Researchers suggest we could tip into a hothouse Earth—here’s what that means published first on antitheftbackpacks.tumblr.com/

HBW

 

The plan was to use my 50mm f/1.8 and blow a nice stream of bubbles in line with the lens creating a stream of bubbles and bubble bokeh against a dusk sky. In reality bubbles don't go where you want them to and the 2 or 3 beautifully exposed and focused bubbles were always right in the corner. So now it's just bubble bokeh. I've never used the word bubble in a single paragraph as much as I have here. Bubbles.

 

Strobist: SB-800 bounced into satin umbrella on the floor below and left of the bubbles. Shutter dragged for ambient. 50mm f/1.8

Grim Tales - Honor Among Thieves - Mother Grim Epilogue P4 - End of Book II

 

www.nexusmods.com/skyrim/Images/448524/?

 

Opening paragraph, "Grim smacked his lips, his thirst quenched by the crisp cold Berrywine Mead Erik had gotten for him. After a little cooling with a mild frost spell it had become the perfect accompaniment for storytelling. Erik was flipping through one of the ancient books on the Daedric Princes, looking for some information on Nocturnal to answer a question Lucia had asked. The two wolves had laid down by the fire pit, both keeping half-lidded eyes on the goings on in the rather unusual den these humans liked to spend their time in. From time to time Grunt would get up and explore the house as it was like nothing he had ever seen before."

via WordPress ift.tt/2Bguslj

 

Enlarge / Delicious, non-cancerous, coffee. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

 

After a judge ruled in March that coffee should be served with jolting labels that alert drinkers to a cancer risk, the state of California seems to have woken up to the concern that its pervasive health warnings may have gone too far.

 

“There’s a danger to overwarning—it’s important to warn about real health risks,” Sam Delson told The New York Times.

 

Delson is the deputy director for external and legislative affairs for California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. The office proposed a regulation shortly after a March ruling that would unequivocally declare that any cancer-linked components of roasted and brewed coffee “pose no significant risk of cancer.” Today, August 16, the proposed regulation is getting a public hearing in Sacramento.

 

Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong” syndicated from antitheftbackpacks.wordpress.com/

Climbing out of the valley and looking back at the two stacks of The Pet.

 

'The Pet' is a cloud local to this area. It only forms in certain conditions, of which a strong NWerly wind (at high levels) is the big factor. The layered cloud doesn't seem to move...and although the wind blows through the layers at some speed, at ground level it can be calm. As it was here (although severe gales had been forecast....they never came).

If you're interested there's a paragraph about it here: www.otagocentralrailtrail.co.nz/places/Ngapuna-a19/index....

 

Maggie, at the shop, said she thought it used to be bigger.

And sometimes it's unbroken : natlib.govt.nz/records/23232388?search%5Bpath%5D=items&am...

 

Struggled a bit with this one. And found it tricky to show the scale.

Looking at maps I think it's about 80-90km from this vantage point to the snow capped Kakanui range in the far distance.

And about 25km directly to Conical Hill (with the tree on top :-)

Today was a really really sad day. I don't understand how people can be so monstrous sometimes. It is truly the most horrifying thing in the entire world.

I typed out a really long paragraph about God. But then I decided to erase it.

 

comments off.

I fell asleep and read just about every paragraph

Read the scene where gravity is pulling me around

Let me show you what I can do with it

Time and distance are out of place here

When the light is mine

I felt gravity pull (into my eyes)

Holding my head straight (looking down)

This is the easiest task I've ever had to do

 

REM › FGP from Fables of the Reconstruction

via WordPress ift.tt/2w4z4Fe

 

Readers who pay careful attention may have noticed a new byline attached to an article yesterday. And, if any of you follow physics—which seems to be a lot of you—they will be excited to have learned about our newest writer that way. For the rest of you, we’re pleased to announce that Jennifer Ouellette is joining the Ars staff.

 

Jennifer will be familiar to many of you because of her deep background in science coverage. She has contributed as a freelancer to more places than is convenient to list. She has blogged on the field at Cocktail Party Physics and shares a huge range of science stories on social media. Her most recent staff position was as a Senior Science Editor at Gizmodo. In short, she’s been immersed in science for years, and brings a wealth of experience to a field we don’t cover as thoroughly as we’d often like to.

 

But, if I could channel my best informercial voice, that’s not all. One of her interests in covering science has been to bring forward the science behind the everyday world around us—the sort of cocktail party physics that gave her blog its name. This is not something we’ve always done well (when we’ve done it at all). This is the sort of coverage that bleeds over into technology and our wider culture, which makes her a fantastic fit for Ars.

 

Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

Please join us in welcoming Ars’ newest contributor, Jennifer Ouellette syndicated from antitheftbackpacks.wordpress.com/

and because I survived another exciting round of parent teacher interviews tonight! Some parents are super, but some just remind you that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree!! One encounter with them and it all makes sense! lol

 

Took this in the summer! These are the real colours of the fall leaves in the background. Warmed it up a smidgen. Love fences and love bokeh, so this photo had to be taken!

  

Don't let your soul get lonely child

It's only time, it will go by

Don't look for love in faces, places

It's in you, that's where you'll find kindness

 

Be here now, here now

Be here now, here now

 

The Cliffs of Moher: a place you can't help loving. (Insert entirely too personal of a paragraph describing all the other things in life that you can't help loving, contrasted against a desire to maybe be the kind of person who can help loving).

 

Image made with a Hasselblad 500 C/M. Similar image to one I posted a while back, but different enough that I'm still posting it. That line of springy, soft grass is one of my favorite parts.

 

Beautiful, beautiful song found here.

via WordPress ift.tt/2P0z1mP

 

Enlarge (credit: Kari Greer/USFS Gila National Forest)

 

We tend to use “ice age” to mean a period where large ice sheets push south to what are now temperate regions. But from a geologist’s perspective, even current conditions are part of an ice age, since large ice sheets exist at the poles. The term provides a contrast to what are called hothouse conditions, which the Earth has experienced for periods that were long enough to entirely melt the poles. The planet hasn’t seen hothouse conditions for more than 2.5 million years.

 

But this week, headlines were full of discussion of a possible return of a hothouse Earth courtesy of climate change. The sudden worries weren’t the product of any new research; instead, they were simply the product of a perspective some researchers had written on our current understanding of the climate, plus some potential risks associated with it. The perspective argued that there are multiple tipping points in the climate, and we can’t rule out shooting past them even if we get emissions under control within a few decades.

 

Hot hot hot

 

So how seriously should we view this risk, and why are scientists suddenly talking about it now?

 

Read 9 remaining paragraphs | Comments

 

Researchers suggest we could tip into a hothouse Earth—here’s what that means published first on antitheftbackpacks.tumblr.com/

Commander Berz was a member of the 173rd Battalion His missons were more complished than other legions, they were a legion of clones who fought on the underground, they were ment to be i the subsole expploding mmt and hacking them from the undergrond. They were in the battle of Coruscant when the Emperror gave the order to wipe out the jedis. So he and his fellow brother killed the jedi, master Jo-Jo.

 

Hey everyone this was my last custom figure, I know it's been a while since my last cusom (I think it was Zatanna) but anyway here is Commander Mole from the 173rd Batallion. This figure is 70% decaled and I've painted his facial hair and his helmet. Also the decals were designed by me.

 

The story that you've read in the first paragraph was invented by me aswell and this figure

 

Also if you drop a favourite, would you drop a comment too?

Stupid me has overlooked the second last paragraph. When I wanted to take the picture clicked on skyrim launcher accidentially to start the game and got every esp in data folder loaded, which made my game unable to start. Had to go through around 200 esp's via trial and error, but hey there is no situation a cold beer can't make acceptable...

We left the river behind. Climbing the hill the clouds became more dramatic....a strange kind of soft heaviness. We had no idea we were travelling under the jaws of the Taieri Pet ;-)

 

'The Pet' is a cloud local to this area. It only forms in certain conditions, of which a strong NWerly wind (at high levels) is the big factor. The layered cloud doesn't seem to move...and although the wind blows through the layers at some speed, at ground level it can be calm.

 

If you're interested there's a paragraph about it here: www.otagocentralrailtrail.co.nz/places/Ngapuna-a19/index....

 

Just a couple more to complete the 'Pet' series :-)

  

Amazing how amazing something like a tree farm can be.

 

This is the Orton effect applied digitally to a photo I took of this tree farm along I-84 on a recent trip to the Palouse.

 

On a related note I recently attended a display of photography, and as I usually do, I read the photographer's artist statement. He proceeded to take three paragraphs more than he needed to talk about how his work was supposedly so much more valid because he did everything by hand, all on film, in the darkroom, not so much as a lick of digital post processing to be had.

 

I thought the photography was kind of boring to tell you the truth. It wasn't bad, just not great for sure.

 

But apparently that whole digital vs. film argument is lurking out there still. It's silly. So I thought I would post this image, if nothing else, as a reminder of a few important points.

 

The first is that many of the things that people do in Photoshop these days could be done in the darkroom. Dodging? Yup. Burning? Double yup. Unsharp mask? That originated in the darkroom. Cloning? Sure. Montaging an image together? Go check out work by Scott Mutter or Jerry Uelsmann. While many of these things are certainly easier to do digitally, Photoshop also certainly did not invent them.

 

The Orton effect is a good point. You can do this in camera, in fact, that is how it started. It is quite simple:

 

1) Load a roll of slide film and set your meter to over expose by one stop. (In Photoshop this is called Apply Image --> Screen 100%)

 

2) Focus the first exposure and shoot it. Advance the film and take the second exposure out of focus completely. (In Photoshop this is called Duplicate, Filter --> Blur)

 

3) Develop the film, then take the two overexposed slides and sandwich them together, lining up crucial elements in the image. (Once again in Photoshop, View - Snap - Snap to document bounds, Move Image, Layer blending --> Multiply).

 

By sandwiching two overexposed slides it increases the color saturation and contrast, by using one image out of focus it spreads an ethereal glow across everything.

 

This technique has become very popular with digital photography, but it existed long before Photoshop in film photography too. In fact I Orton'd slides long before I used digital files. So nonsense this may be, but not just digital nonsense.

 

The second point I wanted to bring up is that any technique, no matter how blatant or subtle is a gimmick if not used well. A photo is always a balance between subject and style, and that style is very very rarely a good subject in itself.

 

And techniques vary from the simple like lens choice, ISO setting, standing or crouching to the more involved such as HDR, Orton, Texturing, etc. The point is, everything you do to a photo, should complement the subject of the photo, not try to replace it. That is sort of why HDR has gotten such a bad rap, many were trying to use it on mundane photos to spruce them up, trying to make them more interesting because they were HDR, and make them into something that wasn't there to begin with.

 

In the case of this photo, I wanted to use the Orton effect to emphasize the other worldliness of this place. It really was an amazing transition. One moment we were standing in a barren, dusting gravel parking lot and within 15 steps was in the forested other world. Yet I could turn around and still see that dusty parking lot behind me. It was sort of how it must have felt to have fallen into Narnia and still be able to see the wardrobe and bedroom beyond it. This photo had a sense of that before I applied the Orton technique to it, but Orton helped to emphasize it. It was working with something that was already present, rather than trying to make it out of nothing.

席慕容 時光九篇:《 我 》 / Murong-Xi/Time Ninetricles: 《 I 》

 

我喜歡出發 喜歡離開

喜歡一生中都能有新的夢想

千山萬水 隨意行去

不管星辰指引的是什麽方向

 

我喜歡停留 喜歡長久

喜歡在園裡種下千棵果樹

靜待冬雷夏雨 春華秋實

喜歡生命里只有單純的盼望

只有一種安定和緩慢的成長

 

我喜歡歲月漂洗過後的顏色

喜歡那沒有唱出來的歌

 

我喜歡在夜裡寫一首長詩

然後再來這清涼的早上

逐行逐段地檢視

慢慢刪去

每一個與你有著關聯的字

→ → → → → → → → →

I like to go out like to leave

like a lifetime can have a new dream of the mountains and seas,

whatever the direction of the stars…

 

I like to stay for a long time like in the garden planting thousand trees

to wait for Like thousands in campus planted tree…

Looking forward to winter thunder summer rain literary attainment…

like life only pure hope only a kind of stability and slow growth。

 

I like the years after the rinse color

Like a song without singing

 

I like to write a long poem in the night

and then come back to the cool morning and go through the paragraph by line and slowly delete every word you have associated with it…

(Translated by Translator )/

 

:notes:# 如果還有明天 /If there is tomorrow …

#SASA (莎莎) #KKBOX

www.kkbox.com/tw/tc/song/16900a119SYuUQ5uuUQ5u0XL-index.html

...or how Honky Tonk and Sister Bill got their nicknames. If it happened in the Hill Country, it probably happened at Mamacitas.

 

This is an essay about the Texas Hill Country, but it's going to take me a long way around to get to the Hill Country. I'll add a paragraph here and there as the spirit moves me. Nicknames are easy to come by in the Texas Hill Country. Any naming incident that sparks a full two minutes of laughter is apt to create a life long nick name.

 

I got mine early on when Sherry began her career as a Methodist minister. Churches she was assigned to by the Bishop had never or seldom had female pastors and for the most part the pastor was called Brother Smith, Brother John, Brother Ralph or Brother Bubba, maybe even Brother Slim or Brother whatever. At Sherry's first church one of the men was speaking to Sherry in front of a crowd and referred to her as Brother Sherry. The crowd erupted in laughter and that sparked me to ad lib, "Well I guess that makes me Sister Bill." It stuck, and from then on everywhere we've gone I've become Sister Bill. Strangly enough, the Brother Sherry didn't stick and she's always been Pastor Sherry. It's funny how that works. This system makes a good litmus test as to who you can trust too. Those who use it in derision are easy to pick up on and you can depend on it, they will become your enemies. It's always good to know who your enmies are. Next time I'm in the mood to post, I'll tell you who Honky Tonk is and how she got her nickname.

 

Joy got her name from British author,Ruth Hamilton. Joy is the pianist at the First United Methodist Church in Johnson City, Texas where Sherry and I spent nine exciting years before we moved to Kerrville five years ago. Joy is my age (80+-) and grew up in a series of Methodist churches. Her father was a Methodist preacher. When she was junior high age she was so good on piano, she started playing the church organ where her father preached. Joy became famous with her junior high school peers by playing the country-western/pop hit "Pistol Packing Mama" to a slow hymn cadence in church during certain parts of the service. Her father never was able to hear the plaintive admonition, "Laaaaaaay thaaaaaat pistooooool dooooown, baaaaabe, laaaaaay thaaaaaat pistoooooool doooooown; Pistooooooool Paaaaaaacking Maaaaaaama puuuuuut thaaaaaaat guuuuuuun awaaaaaaaaay." Of one thing you can be sure, every junior high kid in the Methodist church heard the message and nobody ever figured out why the kids would often become so giggly and out of control, especially when they heard the tune telling them, "Oh, she kicked out my windshield, she hit me over the head. She cussed and cried and said I'd lied and wished that I was dead. Lay that pistol down, babe, lay that pistol down, Pistol Packing Mama, put that gun away!"

 

Naturally Joy grew into a natural musician and could improvise without even having to consciously think about it. During the nine years we were rewarded with her weekly concerts, I noticed that she would often spontaneously begin the add character to the hymns. Some came out with the feel of honky tonk country western and some even took on a boogie beat. She did this naturally, but seemed not to be able to do it on demand. Perhaps demand made her self conscious. For that reason when Ruth Hamilton begged me to tape "Honky Tonk" (that's the name Ruth began to call her because she could never remember the name Joy Feuge) and send her the tape, I made a noble effort. I was never able to get a tape, but Ruth's name "Honky Tonk" stuck and that's what we call Joy to this day. Next, I'll tell you something about a Texas Hill Country institution, Mamacita's Mexican Restaurant, serving Mexican food, but owned and operated by an American Muslim Iranian. That gets him in trouble with the area's fundamentalist cowboy Christians from time to time, to which he pays no attention and simply continues to oeprate a superb small chain of Mexican restaurants. He operates one in San Antonio, one in San Marcos, one in Fredericksburg and one in Kerrville. It just goes to show, you can't hold a good man down.

 

I've been eating at Mamacita's restaurants for years now and when I began writing this piece couldn't even remember the owner and founder's name. Sherry found this link on the internet and it is so interesting and complete I'm going to post it word for word:

 

*********************

 

Mamacita’s Mexican Restaurant: Oh Mama!

Profile

By Kathryn Jones

Thursday, 24 January 2008

 

There are four Mamacita’s Mexican Restaurants in Texas, the largest of which seats 400 people.

Premier Business Partners:

DeCoty Coffee Co.

   

Known to most as simply “Hagi,” Hossein Hagigholam left Iran for the United States in 1976 with a dream to make it big in the land of opportunity.

 

His initial plan was to study civil engineering. But, as fate should have it, he now owns and operates four Mamacita’s Mexican Restaurants in Kerrville, Texas, with four other locations in Fredericksburg, New Braunfels, San Marcos and San Antonio, Texas. The smallest location seats 250 people and the largest seats 400 people.

 

In an interview with Food and Drink, Hagi reveals how he transitioned from a lonely dishwasher who could barely speak English to a successful entrepreneur with plans to turn his Tex-Mex restaurant into a nationally recognized franchise.

 

The ride has not been an easy one, he adds, but with a little faith and hard work, dreams really can come true.

 

Food and Drink: What brought you to the United States?

Hossein Hagigholam: From the time I was a boy, I wanted to come to America. Before the revolution in Iran, lots of Iranians came to the United States to become engineers and doctors, and then they went back home.

 

Without any knowledge of English, my first place to go was Houston. There was a school for English as a second language called ESL Houston.

 

If there were 40 students, 35 of them were Iranians, so the teachers learned how to speak our language instead of us learning English.

 

I knew in order to make it in the United States I had to learn the language, so I researched which college in Texas had less Iranians. Shreiner College had only one Iranian student, so that’s how I ended up in Kerrville. While I studied, I found a job in the restaurants.

 

If you are a foreigner and don’t know any English, the only job you have is washing dishes. I later became a bus boy and then a waiter.

 

As a waiter, that’s when you really make it big. I was so happy about how much money I was making as a waiter that I took three jobs: the breakfast shift in one restaurant, the lunch shift in another and the dinner shift in the third.

 

I remember one time a customer asked me if we took Visa, and I thought they were asking me if I had a visa. I thought I was in trouble somehow, so I ran home as fast as I could.

 

My manager called me the next day and asked, “What happened?” I said, “Someone wanted me to show him my visa.” He said, “No, you idiot! They were asking you if we accept Visa – the credit card.”

 

FAD: I can see how you would feel anxious about that. In 1979, American hostages were taken at the embassy in Tehran and President Jimmy Carter called for all Iranian students in the U.S. whose visas had expired to leave the country by the spring of 1980. You must have been devastated.

HH: The world just shattered on me, because now I had to go back. I had learned English, started earning money and I was dating Ruth.

 

The only way I could stay in the country was if she married me, and she wouldn’t marry me. She said, “Look, I’m 20 and you’re 21. We’re young and you come from another country and my parents won’t let me.”

 

I finally talked Ruth into marrying me. You talk about begging! Her parents gave their permission because of the difficult situation, but it was on the condition that we live apart for six months.

 

I tell people I really got married for the green card, but we’re still married after 25 years and we adopted two wonderful children. I think that says a lot.

 

FAD: Is it true you named the restaurant after Ruth?

HH: She is Spanish and I used to call her “Mamacita” when I was a waiter. I decided to name the restaurant Mamacita’s because it means grandmother, good-looking lady – all the goodies.

 

FAD: In 1985, you and a business partner opened the first Mamacita’s in Kerrville. Was it challenging to get it off the ground?

HH: Not really. We opened the second restaurant in Fredericksburg in 1988, followed by one in San Marcos in 1996, and then the biggest location, which is in San Antonio, in 2003.

 

And then, in 2005, we tore our original restaurant down and built a new restaurant. If there were a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for most expensive restaurant ever built per capita, it would be this restaurant, because we spent $10 million in a city with a population of only 25,000 people.

 

It is very tough to make money when you open a $10 million restaurant, but because of our confidence and if you treat people the way you want to be treated, anything can work. In fact, Kerrville is a German town. People say, “How could an Iranian come to the United States and build a Mexican restaurant in a German community and make it?” My answer to that is, “Only in America, of course.”

 

FAD: Can you share some tips in how to run a successful restaurant?

HH: If a restaurant has five elements, the owner will hit the jackpot in this business. If he has four out of five, he will make a living out of it. And if he has less than that, it is better not to mess with the restaurant business.

 

These elements are quality, service, location, atmosphere and reasonable prices.

 

Of course quality and service are always important, but I wanted to give an atmosphere that not every causal restaurant can do. In our Kerrville location, we have a third of the actual size of the Alamo inside of our restaurant.

 

A mechanical Davy Crockett sits on top of the roof that plays the music like the movie “Alamo.” Also, in our San Antonio location, we created a village that makes you feel like you are outside even though you are inside. It has fiber-optic stars and village shops and bakeries in it.

 

FAD: Having worked in restaurants when you were in college, would you say that makes you a more empathetic boss?

HH: Many casual restaurants have just one general manager that takes care of the quality of the food and the service.

 

When I used to work in the bottom line myself, I found that it was difficult to put all of this work on the shoulder of one person and expect him to control costs and increase sales.

 

So, this is why each of our locations has two general managers – one for back of house and one for front of house. We also took away any administrative work for them. Each of our locations has at least six managers.

 

This is what makes us different. I believe in spending money to make money when it comes to [hiring good employees.] We have a good 4 percent budgeted to training at all times.

 

We talk to them about the golden rule [of the restaurant business.] If you treat someone the way you want to be treated, it will increase the sales.

 

FAD: What is Mamacita’s perspective on providing customers with exceptional service?

HH: All of our customers can testify that no customer can walk out unless a manager has visited their table. We believe if a customer is unhappy, they will tell us when they leave.

 

Usually, if they are unhappy, they don’t say anything and just don’t come back.

 

But by having a manager shake hands and talk to them, they will feel comfortable enough to tell us what we did wrong.

 

We appreciate the compliments, but what we really want to hear is if there are any complaints.

 

I tell my management that when people go out to eat, they are in a good mood.

 

You never see a husband tell his wife, “Let’s go out to eat,” and the wife gets upset about it. Everybody is happy when they go out to eat, and if they choose your restaurant, you should feel honored. So, do whatever it takes to please them. They like attention.

 

You know, lots of Middle Eastern people that have businesses complain because they say we lost business because of the 9/11 terrorist action.

 

I disagree on that because my business has been doing well and I think it is because of how we treat people.

 

I make a lot of speeches about America, the land of opportunity. What I always emphasize at the end is this: Whoever doesn’t make it in this country, it is their own fault. I am one of those guys that really appreciate the country for what it has done for me.

 

FAD: What’s next for Mamacita’s?

HH: We would like to open locations in Austin, Houston and Dallas in the near future. We’ll do it one at a time. I don’t open a restaurant until I have its general managers ready. I have no plan after that yet.

 

You never know. Maybe a successful, nationally recognized chain will discover us and we could make a deal to take this nationwide.

 

********************

 

When Hagi shut down the Kerrville Mamacita's Restaurant to build that ten million dollar culinary mansion, some of the Shiite Christians in Kerrville became very upset because the architect had put a small, simple dome on the structure and it reminded them of a Muslim Mosque for some reason. They demanded the dome be removed, despite the fact the State Capitol in Austin has a dome, some churches have domes and the dome, while a Moorish design, is commonplace in Spain and Mexico AND this is a MEXICAN food restaurant, OK? My friend Frank Clark says Hagi told him, "I don't have the kind of money to buy this quality of advertising." As expected, the dome remained, the new reataurant opened and the furror subsided.

 

Second to the mechanical Davy Crockett who from time to time activates and play the fiddle on the ramparts of the similated Alamo in Mamacita's in Kerrville are the murals painted by Haigi's brother whose name I have never heard and can't find on the internet. Hagi's brother is a truly outstanding artist and at some time in the future I'm going to photograph some of the interior and post it here. Mexican restaurants around the Southwest are famous for their absolutely crude murals, but Mamacita's redeems them all. Hagi's brother is a wonderful muralist.

 

For almost fifteen years now, Mamacita's has been a part of Hill Country living for Sherry and me and the good people of the First Methodist Church in Johnson City Texas. We meet there to celebrate birthdays and for a long time after Sherry and I moved to Kerrville we met regularily at Mamacita's in Fredericksburg. Same driving distance from Kerrville and from Johnson City.

 

I recommend Mamacita's to anyone as being the best eating experience you'll ever have. Their New York strip is flawless and substitute the baked potatoe for guacamole salad and you'll have a low carb meal to die for. The Mamacita's salad is perfect weight control meal IF you'll skip the taco shell. If you're not on a diet the Mexican food is delicious, the tortillas are always hot and honey with butter is always available on request.

 

As Kathryn Jones described in her profile, I can't remember ever eating at Mamacita's without someone from management stopping by the table and asking if everything is alright, which reminds me of the only negative experience I've ever had at a Mamacita's restaurant.

 

Several years ago Sherry and I met seven or eight of the Johnson City folks at the Fredericksburg Mamacita's for one of our monthly reunions. As always I was low-carb dieting and ordered a Mamacita's Salad to get some healthy carbs as opposed to sugar laden carbs. Unlike any other Mamacita's salad I'd ever eaten this one was very short on vegetables. I mentioned it to the person next to me and when the waiter came around asking if everything was ok, that person told him my complaint. It has always been my policy NOT to complain at a restaurant, but I've worked too many police cases concerned with what a cook can do to a customer in way of retaliation. Spit in the food is the least of the possibilities. Whatever the revenge, there's always someone in the kitchen who wants to get even with the cook and so the retaliation gets reported. So, there I sit, not wanting to complain but really disappointed in the amount of vegetables I was served. My friend from Johnson City has spilled the beans and I'm forced to admit I thought the salad was skimpy. The waiter went to the kitchen and returned witha such a large plate of vegetables AND chicken which I hadn't complained about that it was obvious the cook was angered and this amount of food was his way of retaliating and an attempt to make me look foolish for daring to complain. I did eat some more vegetables and the shared the rest of the extra food with everyone at the table. Johnson City folks are not short on appetite, so nothing went to waste. I can see the cook's point of view. He or she probably sees tons of salad thrown out by customers who eat the grilled chicken, pick around on the vegetables and then send the remainder back to the kitchen to be disposed of. I was still disappointed in the arrogance of the cook and the attempt to make me look ridiculous. Maybe the cook was having trouble their spouse, who knows? In fifteen years that's the only negative experience I've had at a Mamacita's.

 

The Texas Hill Country is full of anomaly, so it's no wonder that an Iranian man can become a millionaire with Mexican restaurants in German communities. Fredericksburg is even more German than Kerrville. San Marcos and San Antonio have strong German influences too. Go figure. Now I want to tell you about a mystery writer who writes murder mysteries in and around Blanco County, yep, Blanco county where I was a reserve deputy for several years after I retired from SWT Police Dept. as an investigator.

 

At all those birthday parties at Mamacitas there was the "viewing of the presents and cards" ritual which I've described in the narrative of another ritual. Sherry always shops for certain people on our list and I shop for others, we've never discussed it, it just seemed to fall into place. One of the people I always bought the present for was "Honky Tonk" who is the pianist at the First Methodist Church in Johnson City and a very close friend as well. I always bought her music CDs and usually gospel music. She found out I collected author-signed books and so that's what she always gave me for my birthday.

 

My eyes were really bad for a long time and so I collected a bunch of those books without seriosly reading them. One set of books were by a young mystery writer named Ben Rehder. Joy (Honky-Tonk) went to several book signings and so I built up a collection Ben's novels. All of his novels take place in Blanco County of which Johnson City is not only the County Seat, but is the home town of former president, Lyndon B. Johnson.

 

When I retired in 1998 I was seventy-one years old and had never written anything more than a police report, but upon retiring I began to write essays and short stories and had so much fun I completely lost my identity as a police sketch artist and watercolorist. I've read a lot of the local Blanco county writing generated by the Blanco County Historical Society and others and I'm here to testify this stuff will put you to sleep quicker than prescription drugs. So you have the picture; there I was with faulty glasses, a collection of novels obviously done by a local guy...nothing here I can't wait a while for...right?

 

So, several years later and a new pair of glasses, this time prescribed by an optometrist and NOT a opthomologist...HURRAY, I can read again. So, I picked up a Ben Rehder novel and VIOLA' this guy is really good. This is really just like Blanco County. He's talking about the Sherrif's Office and I rode for several years as a reserve deputy with one of the full time deputies and we had experiences very similar to the ones Ben tells about in his novels.

 

I did feel like Ben's tales were a little tame though. Like in "Murder, She Wrote" it seemed like Blanco County might begin to compete with Cabot Cove for the title, Murder Capital of the World. I was tempted to write Ben and tell him to let go a little bit and make the cases really as bizarre as the ones we actually worked. There was the guy who carried female garments in his car and when he came up on a dead deer along the road, he'd dress the remains in the female attire and have his carnal way with them. A combination the density of cell phones and Baptists got the guy arrested pretty quickly and his case was investigated and taken to the district attorney.

 

Another case I wanted to tell Ben about was the one involving some young men who had small explosives used on coyote bait. They began a campaign to blow up all the rural mail boxes in the north part of the county. In this case the volume of the explosion plus the denisty of ranchers, pickup trucks and deer rifles brought about arrests before too many mail boxes had to be replaced or before someone was killed or injured getting their mail or before the county has to investigate the strange deaths of two young men blown up in a pickuptruck sitting in front of a rural mailbox. It would have probably been written up as a double suicide.

 

I had three of Ben's autographed books and read all three nonstop and was amazed at the quality of his writing and the universal appeal these books would have. When he spoke of eating at Ronny's Barbeque, it was like being home. I have eaten at Ronny's many times and it's just like Ben tells it.

 

When I finished each novel I passed them on to my best bud, Frank Clark, who wanted to read them because although he doesn't come from a law-enforcement background, he comes from a Central Texas deer hunting background. His wife called me and complained; she said she wasn't getting her sleep. He wakes her up all through the night laughing his ass off, so I decided I gotta get online and order everything this guy has written.

 

Online at Ben's website I was amazed to find out that Ben is writing these in a vein of HUMOR. It even cites the genre as being humorous mystery novels. What humor? These are serious law enforcement novels of Blanco County, just the way she is! Damn! Did I ever feel like a hick. I ordered everything he's written and Holy Moly which isn't even off the press yet.

 

As of today Holy Moly is the only one I haven't read. "Gun Shy" is my favorite, but there's not one in the set that isn't a fantastic read. In my case, I can't put them down and it's a good thing I'm retired, otherwise I'd have used up all my sick leave for the next two decades. Frank is still reading and Michele is beginning to look a little "red in the eye" but otherwise we'll just have to wait for "Holy Moly" to come out and hope Ben is presently working on a new novel. The main man is a game warden who helps with the Sherrif's Department's criminal cases. That's the truth or at least very close to reality, we had a game warden in Hays County who was skilled and certified in Forensic Hypnosis and worked with police sketch artists on all kinds of cases.

 

This ends my little essay on the 'Life in the Texas Hill Country" and I apologize for it being a lot longer than I intended it to be. In closing, I'll simply say, "If you're not already living in the Hill Country, start now making your plans to move here; the life you save may be your own."

 

I'm a terrible proof reader and it may be weeks before I get around to the first tip toe back through....be patient, I'm old...ok?

 

www.benrehder.com/

 

This is Ben Rehder's website and you'll be relieved to know Ben doesn't have to rely on the likes of me for his publicity. Kinky Friendman of Texas Monthly fame recommends Ben highly.

 

Hello!! Just back from living with the clouds. I MISSED you...

 

The cloud is an offshoot of the famous Strath Taieri Pet...a lenticular, standing wave cloud, I was lucky enough to meet.

How cool to have a pet cloud...

If you're interested there's a paragraph here: www.otagocentralrailtrail.co.nz/places/Ngapuna-a19/index....

 

The hill is known as Smooth Cone. "This unusual and symmetrical hill is a volcanic ash vent. The single pine tree (Pinus sp.) was planted on Armistice Day, 11th November 1918 to celebrate the end of WW1. Also known as Conical Hill, but never ‘One Tree Hill.’ "

www.middlemarch.co.nz/index.html

 

Looking forward to seeing all your images...just might take me a while to catch up proper-like.

In the meantime I'll catch up improperly.

See you soon ;-)

 

Canon SX10is

f8; 1/100; ISO 80.

Some dodge&burn.

   

Inspired by the opening paragraph of H.P. Lovecrafts story "The Thing on the Doorstep" please look at my Blog if you're interested

Very old Bible, well read, worn from use and time. If I were not a collector, I might have it rebound. But I love the obvious signs of caring, and devotion. Okay, so I bought it at auction. Maybe the caring and devotion part ended when the person who owned it passed to his Just Reward. But, oh what the heck (never use the other word in the same paragraph with the word Bible), I still like it. It's from around 1810, has that old time smell and feel.

1 3 4 5 6 7 ••• 79 80