Tuesday, September 20, 2011


In August I took a road trip around Colorado and I went through the Great Sand Dunes, Crested Butte, and Salida.  Colorado has so much beauty.  I’m just going to throw in some photos here as opposed to much narrative.  The trip was amazing – enough said.

Sand Dunes

Inspirational card kind of sky on the way to the Dunes:

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Almost there!

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The view from the campsite:

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A few shots from a short hike that went around the dunes and allowed for some good photo opportunities:

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The forest surrounding the Sand Dunes had experienced some fires in years past, thus the problem of hazardous falling trees:

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Crested Butte

Crested Butte is a never ending photo opportunity.

Views from a hike:

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This has got to be the most amazing rainbow I have EVER seen:

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Views from town (Crested Butte):

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Finally, sunset in Salida:

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Monday, September 19, 2011


Is Twitter dying? An article at tipping point labs indicates that it is and that Tumblr is well-positioned to be next.  I’m not sure about the demise of Twitter, but I am Tumblr-curious.

Tumblr is another microblogging platform and is an interesting hybrid between a full blown blog and a spot where you can spew a few sentences (Twitter). What is “microblogging” you ask? Well, according to Wikipedia it’s:

a broadcast medium in the form of blogging. A microblog differs from a traditional blog in that its content is typically smaller in both actual and aggregate file size. Microblogs "allow users to exchange small elements of content such as short sentences, individual images, or video links.”

It feels more appropriate to post an interesting Oatmeal link and a sentence rather than a full-blown blog post on Tumblr. Here are a few examples of Tumblr pages:

The list goes on but these give you a sense of the brevity of a tumblr.  I never got into Twitter and I already have a blog, but that didn’t stop me from starting something on Tumblr! I now have an additional spot from which to yell into the void. 

And now for something completely different – I re-watched Rushmore recently and it has rekindled my love of Wes Anderson films.  I was reminded of the Jason Schwartzman-Natalie Portman couple in the Hotel Chevalier short and thought I’d share a moment from that:


Blogger app

There is an app for Blogger! I am testing it out...so this might not be a very worthwhile post. Basically, I can create blog posts from my iPhone.

I've tried to Insert some photos but I'm not sure how they will show up.

There's an app for this!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Almonds and string cheese

It’s Monday night.  Post-work in a rare spurt of energy, I’ve gone to yoga, done my laundry, hit the grocery store and made a beer-cheese bread (with manchego and jalapenos).  As the title of the post suggests, dinner was almonds and string cheese (with some Zinfandel).  I did have some hummus and pita earlier, so the dinner was my dynamic than you think!

Sometime between laundry runs and bread-making, I caught the cat (Yota) staring longingly at her catnip worm (see below).  I was overwhelmed because the sight of her summed up how I feel lately: longing.  A longing for…many things (not catnip or worms).  Longing creates a void that is not easily filled.


I’ve recently come across these two quotes about longing that stuck:

  • If some longing goes unmet, don't be astonished. We call that Life. (Anna Freud)
  • People of this world are deluded. They're always longing for something - always, in a word, seeking. (Bodhidharma)

I can buy this, that I am seeking, deluded, and just experiencing life.  Don’t we all long for something?  For some it’s birthday cake or a new computer or a car stereo, for others it’s a child.  Big and small, the sense of longing pervades life.  Doesn’t it?

I long to know the wisdom of the Druid hamster…

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Sunday, September 11, 2011

Canadian street stuff

I’m sitting in the Austin airport as I type this.  In my travels around Austin I got a total of three photos of stickers or street art.  Toronto on the other hand was rife with these street art things!

Not sure what this means but it was everywhere.  I didn’t love it but thought I must include it because it was so pervasive.

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This little heart was also pretty common (not quite as common as the black and white bird though). Here it’s in cardboard but it was also a sticker in some spots and just painted on in others.

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I love the robot below but I was equally intrigued by the OperationMaple.com sticker (Take Canada Back!)…

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College St was where the real action was though.  I found this:

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and my favorite – the two rabbits:

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There were other little ones here and there:

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I was pleased with the quantity and quality of finds in Toronto.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Toronto – various

As opposed to taking photos of buildings or neighborhoods or historical things, I end up taking photos of random signs, public art and so on.

For example, these two larger than life monsters below were in the Distillery Historic District:

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I found this “no trespassing” sign amusing because it looks like you aren’t supposed to lightly dance.  I don’t think it’s very intuitive…

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These turtle signs requesting motorists to drive slowly were all over.  At first I thought it was just the work of one specific neighborhood, but they were everywhere.

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This sign was slightly perplexing – was the kid looking for water or playing with a sling shot before he was zapped for touching something?

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So, I did take a photo of one building.  I walked through a neighborhood to get to an Indian area of Toronto.  This neighborhood had lots of row houses and duplexes.  The duplex below stood out because the two owners clearly did not agree on the design!

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When walking on Spadina Ave, I passed a store that had this human model in the window (see below).  Either the owner is really prudish or there is something really surprising beneath that square of paper towel!

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I do have some evidence that I was there – even though there are no Toronto-specific things in the background…here’s me!

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The public library had some interesting elements on the building – this owl was my favorite:

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On my way to breakfast one morning I passed Wendy’s, which had this little mural on its external wall. I liked it not only because I know a Wendy (and she’s amazing), but also because it’s cool – it has such a laid back feeling. 

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Finally, this is what I saw on my way home somewhere over the midwest:

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Stay tuned for the final installment – Toronto street art!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Toronto Tourist

In Toronto I walked around fairly aimlessly.  I picked a restaurant or a neighborhood and just set out.  I didn’t do any of the touristy stuff like go up in the CN Tower or take the ferry to the islands.  I just walked and ate basically.

On the way to the Distillery historic district I popped into the St. Lawrence Market – it was Sunday and it was the  “Sunday antique market.”  In perusing the items (see the three photos below), I didn’t find much that appealed to me but it was fun to look at everything. 

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This is the first time I saw a carving made out of deer antlers – I didn’t buy it.

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One of my favorite parts of Toronto was the transit!  They have streetcar and subway!

The streetcar was fun, extensive, and fascinating.  As you can see from the photo below, there are shelters/stops but because the streetcar runs in the center of the street customers have to mosey out into the travel lane to get on it.  I don’t know that such a “hazardous” boarding method would be allowed in the US. 

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Here’s what it looked like inside the streetcar:

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Extensive! Below is a mix of subway and streetcar but, of the 15 lines shown below 11 are streetcar! It went almost everywhere I wanted to go. 

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Here’s a photo of the streetcar in traffic.  You can also see that they have lots of the Vancouver-like glass house development in the background along the lake.

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I did take the subway too and enjoyed their version of the “mind the gap” sign:

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Toronto also has bike share!  They have the Bixi system but it’s very similar to the Bcycle in Denver.  I didn’t get a chance to ride it but was happy to see it there and saw quite a few people riding it.

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Speaking of bikes, there were these bikes all over town that were locked to signs and completely painted (various colors).  It turns out there is a story. Two artists did this to some abandoned bikes but were initially ticketed! The Mayor pardoned them and commissioned art in this form around the city.

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Another thing I saw were these plants with imploring messages stationed on top of bike racks near Union Station.

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To continue the non-motorized transit nerdiness, the pedestrian signal was a more laid back figure than we have in the states:

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Oh, the Canadians…stay tuned for more on Toronto!