Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Heart Strings

Photo by K-Nine

Whilst out Christmas shopping I happened to run across this abandoned banjo from the 1920's.  I asked if it would care to come home with me.
"Meh" it said in a most uninterested way.
I touched its head and a muted but echoing snare drum sound sprang forth.
"Hmm?", said the Banjo.
I plucked gently at one of the two strings it had left and a louder than expected twang issued from its resonator.
"Ah..." the banjo sighed.
"Come with me," I cajoled. "Your life has not yet ended, you have but slept."
"Very well" replied the banjo, "but though I have slept, I am still greatly tired.  I may never sing as you want me to."
Home we came and I tuned the remaining strings as best I could and I played simple melodies a single note at a time.
Then we went to the music store. "I knew it!" wailed the banjo.  "It's been too long since I was loved".
"No," I soothed.  "This is but a short trip from home."
The young man at the store offered to replace the head which was split and stained.  I refused.  Strings and tuning were all that I required I assured him.
Now the banjo sings.  It feels at home with its neighbors of antiques and instruments and it is happy.

Sunday, December 18, 2011



Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Happy Pictures

The Red Queen is up in NYC right now, soon to be winging it to the west coast.  Sometimes when she's stressed she texts me and asks for "happy pictures".  I  usually do a series of the cast of the cast of characters she loves depending on where I am and what's happening.  Tonight I happened to be in the kitchen with all our boys close by.
Mother Egan.  Removed from the wall of one of my favorite Irish pubs (Mother Egan's) on the night they closed their doors for the last time.  Mother now hangs in our kitchen, TRQ's favorite room in the house (for now)

Big Jack.  TRQ's Bouvier.  Notoriously camera shy, sometimes I can catch him in a pose that doesn't make him look like a big black shaggy blur.  It's much like trying to get Bigfoot or Nessie to pose for you.

Merlin.  Easy.  He's as photogenic as he is arrogant.

Blue Jack.  My boy.

And me.  Sorry, it's been a long day.
We don't have to be happy in the pictures to make her happy...  Thank God.  I have two days left to get the living room ready for Christmas and I feel like I'm going Backwards.  Argh.  I may need a happy picture or two of my own pretty soon.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Oh Tannenbaum

 I never thought it was such a bad little tree. It's not bad at all, really. Maybe it just needs a little love.- Linus Van Pelt


Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Seventy Years...

My Dad, Schofield Barracks ca. 1941

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Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Negative Into A positive

I have been experimenting with scanning old negatives and then manipulating them into real pictures.  An inexact process considering I'm using equipment that wasn't designed for the task.  I usually get a washed out blurry picture with a lot of background noise and a fingerprint or two.
Well no longer.  Check this baby out.
The secret?  Well, I noticed the scanner wasn't picking up the detail that I could see on the negatives.  I was sorting negatives by holding them up to the window...  picture against a clear blue sky...  Just like...  X-RAYS!
So.  I took a sheet of white paper and placed it over a spotlight.  Placed the negative on the paper and details were plainly visible.  I then took a picture of said negative, uploaded it to the computer, clicked on negative image and...  instant picture.  almost no fuss, no muss and a MUCH clearer image.  In fact I can now tell that this young lad is holding a 1950's model Sawyer Viewmaster.
Possibly, if my educated guesses are right, the very same Viewmaster that was once used to view this particular disk:  Adventures of Sam Sawyer, Sam In The Land Of Ice.  Sam was a character (clay without the mation) invented by Sawyer to increase the sales of Viewmasters.  Disk 1 had him off to the moon long before NASA...  Sadly not a disk I have.
Last trip home, Ma gave me MY old Viewmaster, itself probably a Christmas present.  Now I can view my old disks of Tom and Jerry, The Six Million Dollar Man and Treasure Island as well as the disks that once belonged to the one in the picture of Sam Sawyer, Roy Rogers and baseball stars of the Major Leagues ca 1953.

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Monday, December 05, 2011

Ghosts Of Christmas Past

This is just a continuation of the old photos that I've been posting, I'm calling them ghosts because they are essentially abandoned memories.  Several of these, this one included, are nothing more than negatives that I'm scanning and manipulating with equipment that isn't designed to do that. Many of them are poor quality.  I don't care.  They deserve to be appreciated again.  Hope you enjoy.  Merry Christmas!

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