Friday, October 29, 2010

There's you, there's me. Let's do this thing!

Hats off to Jesi and Marc!

I've known both of you longer than you've ve been together, and yet I am still proud as punch that you managed to hook up.

May you always listen to each other. May you cook when the other is tired. May you always find a new way to entertain the other, even when that entertainment consistests of the somebody trying to limbo just a little bit lower......

But mostly: My you always be in love.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Signs of the Season - Part 2

The wind comes off the waterfront like a dark knife, cutting even deeper through our clothes than the rain. While the big ships grind their way through Elliot Bay, the rest of us pull inward, hiding from the elements.

We know the cold. We know the wind, the relentless gray. We know the mist that drags the sky down to the ground, until it sits over us as a funeral cowl.

Wind, rain, sleet, fog: These are the things that define fall in the northwest.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Two Patches, Still No Pirates

Over the past three weeks, my grandfather has had cataract surgery on both eyes. So far, the difference has been striking. What used to be yellowish-gray is white again. Signs have words. People are more than indistinct blobs.

For someone who has spent most of their life making images, this is a very special thing, and I for one am very glad that we have the technology to do things like this.

Still, I think the patches would look better if they were made of black leather with a strap to keep them in place. Arr, matey!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Meet Kasey!

This is Kasey, a two-year old Australian Shepard mix, and the newest addition to the Johnson clan.

We rescued Kasey from the Seattle Humane Society. Like so many dogs brought to the pound, we have very little information on where she was before, other than the fact that she was brought in pregnant and severely underweight.

After weening her little brood (and subsequently being spayed), she was brought out into the adoption area, where we met her literally the second she was available.

From the moment I looked into the inquisitive brown eyes and felt her calm, curious nature, I knew this was the dog we were looking for.

Though it's been less than 12 hours since we've had her, she's already wormed her way into our hearts. She's incredibly quiet, happy to go in the car, very gentle with everybody (and animals) she meets, and all in all seems to be the perfect dog. This is not hyperbole, Suzette and I have spent most of today looking at each other and saying, "I've never had a dog like this."

There seems to be only two downsides to Kasey. One is that she sheds, and sheds a LOT. Thank goodness for the nice worker at PetSmart who turned us on to the FURminator, which is going to be a godsend for dealing with her long coat.

The only other issue? She seems to be camera shy.

That is going to change.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Signs of the Season - Part 1

When you come across a flatbed full of Halloween paraphernalia, it can only mean that October is in full swing and that fall is here.

Seeing these made me remember the times when my mom would take my sister and myself through the streets of Wallingford, going from house to house until we could barely lift our candy-laden plastic pumpkins.

I miss those times. I often think how much fun it would be to dress up as Batman, then traipse around the neighborhood begging for treats.

Now days, I fear I wouldn't get any treats, only jail time.


Monday, October 11, 2010

The Accoutrements of Beauty

Let's take a moment to think beyond "end use," to that very first impulse behind the urge to buy. What makes you want to purchase something? To give your money in return for a specific product, yes. But why that product? Why that moment to give away something you've worked hard for?

Often the answer is easy. Because it is necessary for survival: food; mortgage or rent; gas and electric bills so you can stay warm.

But why do we pay for stupid things? Products that nobody actually needs to live, but which may or may not inject a measure of satisfaction into one's daily life.

Pendelton makes a cologne. An artist creates an atomizer out of a dead sea urchin. They are both ways of making ourselves smell better. But why? This isn't the 18th century, when taking a bath was something you did on your wedding day, and rarely before or after. Indoor plumbing has made personal hygiene quick and easy.

Simply put, we want these products because somebody told us we want these products.

And isn't it amazing what happens when somebody tells us to do it? We start to feel an urge; a tingle; a deep-seated unrest that will not -- can not -- be filled until we possess the object in question.

That is why we buy these things, and it is the same reason why humans do so much of what we do.

Because somebody tells us we should.

And on that note: You should all hire me for your product pictures immediately. If you don't, that tingle you feel in the base of your skull will just get worse. Trust me.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Two Pies, No Waiting

Fall has blustered its way into the Pacific Northwest and that means only one thing. Pies!

My wife made two pies today, an amazing apple pie with the last of the apples from our yard, and a killer Shepard's Pie recipe by Gordon Ramsey.

A nice glass of hot chocolate, a good book, and some pie. That's what fall is about.