Vintage Remembrances of a Simpler Time

Vintage Antique Store scene
Vintage Antique Store – everything AND the kitchen sink!

That “debate” last night was awful. I think most people already knew who they are going to vote for anyway before last night, and if they didn’t, uhmm, what’s wrong with them? I think it’s pretty clear we need a change. I’m not thrilled with the candidate, but we can’t go on the way we’ve been going on. That’s really clear to me.

Yesterday I went over to Earth-1 to hang out and visit and while there I decided to pull out the old 8mm movies. I still remember how to run it! The old Keystone 98Z! My grandmother taught me how, and in fact, I think that was really the first time I got into shooting scenes although I didn’t realize it at the time. Unfortunately I couldn’t find the real good films of me and my immediate family – have to look around, there’s one where we all are in makeup as KISS circa 1978 with my mom as Gene Simmons and looks amazing – so we only watched ones of like my uncle’s wedding and my cousins little league games, and ones when they were newborns (boring). There were some gems scattered in there though. There was a scene of me, possibly aged 3 or 4, running around the bases after one of those little league games. I have no recollection of that event. There was also me riding some kind of duck but it didn’t have any eyes for some reason – also no recollection. I enjoyed looking at the cars in some of the shots from the early 1960s and the bouffant hairdos on the women. Some films we had no idea where or who the people were. Let’s just say my grandma’s film labelling wasn’t the greatest. There were some of my mom as a youngster and recently married – so young looking! And some of her practicing for upcoming performances back in the day (she was somewhat of an entertainer back then, her mother, my grandmother, even made all her costumes! Some of them were on these films and they looked killer!) I’ll have to do an entry on this someday because I think it’s pretty cool and I’d like to learn more about that.

One of my earlier appearances with my sister.

I was amazed that I remembered how to run the projector. Not sure if I’d remember how to run the camera, which we still have. I remember you’d load the film and wind it up as you filming the scene, of which you wouldn’t know how it came out until you got it developed and waited 2 or 3 weeks. I remember we would go to Sears and they would send it out and let us know 3 weeks later that it was ready for pickup. Since you couldn’t tell how the movie came out while filming, a lot of times the picture is too dark to see anything or overdeveloped and everything was too white and washed out. I learned early on that it doesn’t work well in darkened rooms. I remember at one point while filming you would have to stop, open the camera, and flip the film over for the second half. These films would them come back to you developed on a reel that you would place on the projector. You feed the film through and kind of thread it through, almost like a sewing machine, until you have enough film the get it onto the second reel, and then watch the movie. The films themselves are only a couple of minutes long, and none have sound. Also can I also mention the original bulb is still in there and still works like a charm? It has got to be over 50 years old! That’s craftsmanship!

Best Beach Find Treasure Ever!

Image of a heart shaped rock at the beach.
Finding this amazing heart shaped rock at the beach today was a high point.

Went to the beach this afternoon just to get some fresh air and some new surroundings for a little while. Walking along the shoreline looking for rocks I came upon this heart shaped rock and thought it was amazing. The little groove in the top was just perfect. I was so lucky to have seen it lying there in the sand among all the other rocks. As a plus it also looks like a whale if you tip it sideways. It was a great beach day, a little cloudy but not too cool, and the beach wasn’t busy at all. I thought taking a picture of it with the waves crashing in the background might make a cool shot and here it is.

Maybe this could be a sign, who knows, but even if not, I’m definitely keeping this one. For the longest time I told LD I could never find any decent heart shaped rocks at the beach, but then I find this!

What the Fluff? The Time I Met Cindy Brady

Meeting Susan Olsen, aka Cindy Brady

The story behind the photo: A few years ago, we went to the Fluffernutter Festival in my hometown of Somerville, MA. It’s a yearly celebration now honoring the invention of the product Fluffernutter, which was invented by a door to door salesman in town, Eventually he sold it to the company that still makes it today with their factory in Lynn but originally it all started right here. Anyways, this one particular year they somehow got Susan Olsen to come down and check it out, How could I not go? I grew up watching the Brady Bunch. I would get out from school and go home and put on Channel 56 which reran them everyday. I think it was a couple of cartoons, and then the Bradys and then the Monkees – amazing how TV has shaped me. In fact, I believe everything about life can be explained in various Brady Bunch episodes but that’s a discussion for another time. (Perhaps one day I will write a thesis about it but I digress.) Anyways, she was amazing. Kind of makes me want to meet the rest of the “Bradys”. As a side note, Florence Henderson visited the local hospital here a few years back and had I known this at the time I probably would have met Mrs. Brady, but it was sadly not to be. Also Peter Brady has visited Dedham a few times at Kings in Legacy Place so there was a possibility of seeing him as well. We missed Jan once in NYC, she apparently was downstairs from a restaurant we were frequenting at at the time but another miss. I figure Greg and Marcia would be the hardest to get to meet. I have no desire to meet Bobby (sorry!)

Nubble Shot and Killer Prom

Nubble Light, York, Maine
Nubble Light, York, Maine

While flipping around on the cable channels looking for anything to watch, I happened upon a gem entitled “Killer Prom” on the Lifetime channel of all places. This movie was so bad, it actually kept me interested, even though it really didn’t make any sense. Check it out if you want to cheesily entertained.

Whaleship Days

The author sitting aboard the whaleship.
My Whaleship Days

A while back I got into learning about the history of whaling and whalemen and the crazy tough lives they had to lead. You can get a part of it by reading Moby Dick but what really got me into it was learning about the whaleship Essex from In the Heart of the Sea which was sunk by a whale and was probably the inspiration for Melville to write his novel. That book was amazing, I should reread it actually. Don’t see the film, I heard it sucked. You can actually also read the original account of what happened from the first mate himself who was there.

Anyways, the point being that I have no idea how these guys did this. Imagine getting into a little rowboat and harpooning this giant creature, who would them take off at full throttle and take your boat for a ride, not to mention the real possibility of it’s tons of weight smashing down on you or drowning, eventually pulling it back to the main ship, peeling off its pieces and burning them in pots for hours in totally unsafe conditions. Many of them lost toes while doing this btw. But then on quiet days, the amazing artwork that a lot of them drew on the whale’s teeth, called scrimshaw. Really intricate amazing work on many of them. Plus just being away from home for months and years and a time (only had wind power back then – you had to sail to Portugal to get around South America to the Pacific) , not knowing if it’d be your last trip. And if you did make it back, unless you were an owner of the ship or captain, you got paid peanuts. It was ahard life for sure.

But then oil was discovered in the ground in Pennsylvania and hunting whales for oil wasn’t needed anymore – good for the whales as their population was decimating. I do find them to be fascinating creatures as well, I believe they are really quite intelligent. There’s a lot we still don’t know about them. They could smarter than us for all I know, their brains are definitely bigger than ours.

The Down Low for Today

Acorn Street Boston up close
Down Low

I’ve posted this image before, but I still like it, a low shot of the cobble stones on Acorn Street in Boston. Had to get pretty low to the ground to capture this angle. I like the little details though.

Went to the gas station early this morning to put air into my tires. I was starting to get annoyed that the low psi light would stay on. Come to find out, all 4 tires needed air and I was able to get all four filled just in time, as the last tire to reach the proper pressure made it just as time had run out, so I didn’t have to put in any more money.

Watched this really interesting show on Frontline last night comparing the backgrounds of Trump and Biden, where they come from, experiences, how they handled them, what their playbooks have been, etc. Talk about two people who couldn’t be more different. Catch it if you can, I learned some stuff about both of them.

I’m getting to the point where I really need to upgrade my phone, I’m still rocking the Samsung S5. The best bet would probably be to splurge for the S20 but that’s a lot of money. Still mulling the options, but I’m going to need to upgrade soon.

Silent is the Hunter

A Red-tailed Hawk silently hunts it’s prey.

The story behind the photo: I came upon this red-tailed hawk while walking around a wooded area in the town of Wellesley a little while back. He only stayed for a little while, but long enough so I could get a few shots of him, this one being one of the better ones. Completely random, I suppose that’s how most birding is. This guy seems laser focused on something although I couldn’t tell what.

Autumn Arrives

Thanks Boston FoxBoston25 for highlighting my pic today! I always get a thrill when some of my work gets shared around.

Installed iPadOS 14.0 last night on the iPad.

Learned that SiriusXM channel 302 is a channel devoted to playing covers by other musicians (24/7 Cover Songs) – I thought that was pretty cool, check it out if you have it.

It was kinda cold outside today. I did sit by the firepit for a bit this afternoon but mostly we stayed in and hibernated.

Visiting the Borderlands

Smith Farm at Boirderland

This afternoon we took a drive out to the Borderlands. Borderland State Park to be more exact. As an aside, parts of Mermaids, Knives Out and Shutter Island were filmed here. We hiked a couple of the trails, first checking out the stately Ames Manor on the property and then walking down the trails toward the pond. I went a little beyond over to the old farm house built in 1880. Coming back we took the Quiet Woods Trail which lead to the Pond Edge trail bordered along the edge of the pond. We even saw a guy playing guitar by himself on one of the little docks along the pond. Returning home (we are beat!) I fired up the grill and cooked up some turkey burgers along with some corn husks. Just felt like it. Might take a trip to a beach tomorrow for some more nature goodness,

Sunlight on the Horizon

Paine’s Creek

If you want to cast a vote for me for the cover of the town calendar then head on over here on facebook and like the image. I’m not expecting to get the cover since it’s a winter image but share some love anyway and boost my ego a little bit. The picture shows the luminary night where one night in December the town common is lit with bags that have candles inside them.


The Modern Theater in downtown Boston, MA.

I spent the day in Somerville yesterday and while there I was able to pick up the CO monitor at the Home Depot there in town as I looked on the website and it mentioned that that store had 5 left in stock of the kind I wanted. It also said exactly where in the store it would be, aisle and bay number. That is awesomely convenient. Once back I installed it and it’s good to go now.

What do you know, my photo for the town calendar was selected to be one of the 12 out of over 200 entries! Now the vote is on to see who gets the cover. I’m not expecting to be on the cover but if you want to vote for me I’ll put up the details shortly so please check back here. I’ll probably also link the details on my facebook page shortly.

Trying Not to Drown in the Monstrosity

Ocean waves approach the beach.
Ocean waves approach the beach.

“You never really know what’s coming. A small wave, or maybe a big one. All you can really do is hope that when it comes, you can surf over it, instead of drown in its monstrosity.”

I dreamt last of a barn owl flying in front of me, from right to left, but as it was flying it was directly looking right at me, not looking at where it was going. I looked up Owl Totem and it could mean a change in direction or insight about a moment of transition. Then again, it was just a dream so who knows, although I do know that I have never dreamed of an owl before.

Also it’s mums season, here’s a couple of pots of mums that we purchased recently:

Mums in bloom.
Mums in bloom.

One thing we have to get around here is more pumpkins and more mums. Give it that really nice autumn feel, although I personally don’t want summer to leave us. I removed some of the empty pots and ones that contained flowers that were past prime to the shed for winter storage and also weeded a bit out in front of the house. Typical fall tasks as the season gets nearer.

Late this afternoon I kept hearing this siren squeal and I was trying to discover what the hell it was, trying to locate the source of the sound. At first I thought it was outside but when it kept going off I needed to investigate. After a few minutes I found that in the cellar the CO detector was alerting that it was dying. It’s one of those lithium battery enclosed devices that you never have to fiddle with until it croaks (which is supposed to be 10 years but this one seemed to be less to me). Anyways I found that the Home Depot in Avon carries them so I’ll probably pick up a new one over the next week or so and take a ride out there, I want to get the same one so I can just mount it on the wall bracket that’s already there and will fit without having to redo stuff.

The west coast on fire, hurricanes in the south, pandemic killing hundreds of thousands, a leader who is taking us down the wrong path, Americans divided, killing and dying, businesses going down the drain, depression setting in the more you think about it. When will things finally get better and we live the way we all should?

Following the Path to the Sea

Hiking the sand dunes in Marshfield
Hiking the sand dunes in Marshfield

Of all the paths you take in life, make sure some of them are sandy.

We took a ride out to Marshfield this afternoon for some beach time. It was a wonderful day. We hiked about 2 miles along the shore and out back along the sandy dunes to the estuary. We picked up some rocks along the way, just because they looked really cool. I picked up one that to me had a pattern that reminded me of a map of a city and I also found a heart shaped rock. After all that we got our beach chairs and brought them down to the water’s edge, the waves crashing in front of us while the sea breezes blew. It was very relaxing. All in all we must have been there for about three or so hours. It was also the first outing of the new beach chair and I’m satisfied with it.

The sea air always knocks me out. I suspect we’ll be crashing earlier tonight than usual.

Came home and chilled for a bit before making a shepard’s pie for dinner. Watched 60 minutes. Just going to glide now the rest of the way.

My computer keeps wanting to run updates since this morning it finally updated itself to Windows 10 2004 which was the huge update that came out last May. To be honest most of the new features are things I would never use anyway.

Hawk Says Hello! A Different Kind of Chair Arrives

Scituate Light bathed in sunset.
Scituate Light bathed in sunset.

We actually had a hawk land on the back deck railing this morning! What a sight that was!

I unpacked my new beach/camping chair this afternoon and it wasn’t what I expected. It’s not the chair I ordered, however after trying it out and looking at it and it’s quality I’ve decided to keep it. Strangely the chair they sent me was actually more expensive than the one I had ordered. The only real difference is it doesn’t have the cooler and it appears to be of a really good build quality, so I’ll take it. Comes in a really nice carrying bag too.

NECN did a section on the news broadcast highlighting one of my photos (where the anchor actually called it beautiful). It was the scene from the Boston seaport with the gull lapping up some water from a puddle in the foreground. It’s always cool to see them highlight my stuff like that.

This afternoon’s movie watch was something a little different as it was animated, plus only I really watched it. Batman: The Killing Joke based off the graphic novel from the 1980s of the same name. Not as good as the book (but how could it be? Nothing could beat Bolland’s artwork from the original, plus they seem to have added some stuff for the whole first half the movie which really didn’t have anything to do with the original source material).

Today is 9-11. Never forget.

September Sunsets

Sunset picture taken at Harding's beach in Chatham, Massachusetts.
September Sunsets

“Summer’s lease hath all too short a date.”

– William Shakespeare

People in the lighthouse group seem to really like my lighthouse photos! Finally, some people who can really appreciate my art (LOL). The Nauset one so far has 381 likes, 40 comments and 29 shares. The Pemaquid one really took off with over 500 likes, 55 comments and 195 shares. That one really boggles my mind. I also recently uploaded one I have of Whaleback Light which so far has garnered 104 likes, 7 comments and 7 shares, and I just recently put up one I have at sunset at Scituate Light which is climbing the ranks at 74 likes, 11 comments and 4 shares, not that I’m counting or anything (!). Someone on the group actually messaged me with an interest in purchasing it so I’ve made it available. Fingers crossed!

My new beach chair arrived tonight. I’ll try unpacking it and trying out sometime tomorrow and see how it performs. If I’m satisfied with it, the old Big Boy can finally rest in peace. However I may cut out the Big Boy logo on the carrying back strap and attach it to this new bag as a honorific to a great chair that sadly is no longer available. Had a lot of great beach adventures with that chair, along with other outings. Speaking of beachy things, I did get around to repairing my inner tube with this yellow rope that goes around the perimeter. Not sure if I mentioned that before, it was a few days ago. You know you care.

Tonight I made a chicken sausage, sweet potato and kale soup with some herb butter toast. Not too bad.

Impressions I Created That People Like and Share

Facebook post going viral (available for purchase)

This is amazing. My photo on FB so far has become pretty well liked (for me anyway) but I was really blown away by the number of shares of this image so far, and climbing. Pemaquid Light is probably my favorite lighthouse out of the many I’ve visited. I enjoyed clambering along the cliffs just behind it. I can remember when I took this, we were leaving for the night when LD did one final pass and I just shot it from out the car window (ah, miss that old Saturn – many adventures in that automobile). I think what makes this one must be the cloudy sky and I also like that I got it just as the lighthouse flashed. So I feel a lot of my shots are just lucky and are taken right off the cuff. I’m just pleased they come out so well. This was also time we witnessed two skunks frolicking around the area and being amorous (and hopefully not malodorous) .

I downloaded the Star Trek Console Watch face for my Versa 2. I’m sharing it here in case you want to download it as well (it’s free) and you’re into Trek. I’ll use it for a little while before reverting back. The nice thing about the Versa is you can have up to 5 different watch faces. For those that care my current stats all time so far for the year are: 1,604,234 steps, 2140 floors, 679.37 miles and 793,033 calories burned.

I got an email back from those town calendar people. They seem to like what I sent them but we’ll see if they actually end up using it. There’s no monetary prize or anything like that, but I figure it’s just another way to get my name and work out there.

We appear to be having some small pumpkins growing, although not in the pumpkin patch we set up but rather in one of the raised boxes where I put some leftover seeds just to see what would happen if anything. These would be the 3rd generation of the “Sean the Pumpkin” that we had two years ago now – actually seeds from his “son”. LD has named this little pumpkin Penelope Pandemic. An apt description for the times I’d say.

My Love of Lighthouses

The Sisters of Nauset, Eastham MA

Update: I’ve added the Nauset shot now up for purchase.

I’ve always loved lighthouses, just everything about them, their location, their various looks, their history, the people who lived in the them and tended the light, their bravery. I just think it’s pretty cool. I’m sure many people feel the same way. I’m very lucky to live in new England where there are so many. Boston was home to the very first lighthouse in America after all (and it’s still there!)

I joined a lighthouse of New England group and posted my shot of Nauset Light from this summer. Seems to be getting a lot of traction, hundreds of likes and comments. Makes me feel good but also reinforced the fact to me that I need to focus some of my work toward the proper audiences. Anyways here’s a shot of two of the three sister lighthouses which originally were where the current Nauset Light is. You can read a history of it all here. There’s a nice trail you can walk between the current and former lighthouses. I like the vibe I created for this photo – I feel it looks a little spooky. Will probably do another Cape trip in the fall for a night or two. In somewhat unrelated photography news I submitted a photo for the local town calendar but we’ll see if any thing comes of it. I’ve submitted things before but never really got any traction out of them.

Made pizzas for lunch today using up the remainder of things in the fridge like roasted tomatoes and eggplant that we had made a few days ago. Last night we made a walnut encrusted chicken with honey mustard and a side of roasted broccoli with some bread with melted cheese and butter. Today I’ll probably grill some turkey burgers (had done a couple of those a few days ago as well). We also made apple sauce using the Instant Pot last night with some apples that had been in the fridge for a quite a while. It’s kinda good to get through and use all these items!

Enjoyed some nice quiet time out on the patio this afternoon, reading and I even napped at one point in the deck chair. Been trying to get through a book I purchased a couple of years ago on Giza and the Pyramids by Lehner and Hawass (two quite famous and respected egyptologists). It’s a huge tome with lots of amazing photographs and very many pages. It weighs 6 pounds!

Black Swan Peddle Boat

Black Swan pedddleboat docked
Black Swan pedddleboat docked

There it was, docked on the small wooden pier, alongside the edge of the river, surrounded by lily pads and a crisp September afternoon breeze. I knew I had to get in and take it for a spin. Someday maybe I’ll get the chance, just not today. But while at the Sanctuary, which we finally visited after not having been since February, we petted goats and they remembered us, got to see some other animals and re-upped our membership. It’s a special place.

I did buy some rope tonight to help re-add the old rope around my inner tube floatie. This time I picked a bright yellow so I’m hoping to not just fix it but make it better and look better as well. Also bought some bubbles for Carson although I probably won’t tackle these tasks until tomorrow.

Tonight’s movie watch was Precious. Pretty heavy subject matter.

Love Songs

At fine record stores everywhere.

It’s back! Reissued and remastered on De-Lite Records and Tapes. Once again available wherever fine music is sold! Sure to be a collectible item for lovers. Pick yours up today and groove!

Morpheus Turned Me into Rumpelstiltskin?

A boater off the coast of Thatcher's Island.
A boater off the coast of Thatcher’s Island.

I’ve been feeling so sleepy these days. Not sure why since I seem to be getting enough sleep. Maybe it’s residual from that last Sunday when the power went out over at Earth-1. Maybe it’s because I got t up early yesterday morning to get some yard work out of the way that I’ve been meaning to get to. I mowed and edges the front and cleaned up the back patio and weeded around the edges. All in all I think it looks pretty good! I also cleaned up some of the spearmint that was starting to invade. Maybe it’s a little bit of depression. No matter what’s causing it I feel like I’m dragging lately.

BBQ’d up a few items tonight for dinner. Also bought 3 pots of Mums. I like Mums but I also don’t like them just for the simple reason it means summer is ending. Finished the day off to a soothing fire burning in the pit.

I’m up to Level 117 of the first grouping of levels on SokoDroid, a game I posted about a few days ago. They’re getting really crazy now – sometimes takes me a day or two to solve, although I’m not playing it all day – just some minutes here and there. Keeps my brain busy for sure though.

Recorded a movie on the DVR called Lovelace, a story about the porn actress. Sounds interesting. Hopefully we’ll get to watch it tonight. Last night I just zoned out to Deadpool II.