hummana hummuna

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Les and Snoop Dogg

My wife Leslie was at a retail buying show in Las Vegas this weekend and ran into her new friend Snoop.

She said that he was a wonderful soul. Great vibe.

I live the life I love

This is a Willy Dixon composition written for Muddy Waters. Willy Dixon wrote so many iconic songs, his contributions to the musical lexicon must never be forgotten.

Cañon Mezzotint

Chastened rainbows

It took forever to get home in the rain. The Paschal supermoon was rising brightly in the sky as I made my way down the narrow canyon road to my little hacienda de refugio.

I fell asleep on my couch, exhausted. Unbeknownst to me, Leslie had covered me up with a blanket but I still woke up freezing around two in the morning and finally stumbled my way to bed.

Four hours later I was up for what was gearing up to be a busy morning. When I hit the mailbox in the dawn light I saw a beautiful ridge of palm trees peaking out from over an occluded fog bank.

It was really lovely. I jumped out of the car, fumbled with the iso on the camera and grabbed some shots. Stuck the zoom on and got closer.

The sky was lovely and sherbet in the early dawn hours.

no processing
I continued my way towards coffee and camaraderie. As I got up to Mission Rd. I saw continuing pyrotechnics, a gorgeous and intense vertical rainbow immediately bearing down on the hilltop ridge to the north. I needed a shot. I couldn't stop on Mission or I would cause on accident, pulled off on Davis Rd., a road I have actually never been on before. Rainbow was of course, now gone, I nearly ended up in a ditch trying to pull out of a tight squeeze at the end of the road. I tried. Foiled again.

Oh well, at least I saw it.

Vern and Reneé have been hitting the poppy fields of Elsinore with vigor. Here are a couple shots they sent.

Lincoln Heights

I had lunch with a friend and sold a few things up in Orange yesterday. I then drove up to Los Angeles to see a friend's son. He lives in a work/live loft off the 110. Dropped off oranges and picked up some baskets and paintings. Hit rain, hail and lightning while I was there, it was very dynamic weather.

When I left his house and made my way back to wherever my gps was leading me, I noticed a couple things.  Number one, there were beautiful bungalows and victorian houses around, number two, the area was very cool and I knew absolutely nothing about it.

Out of the corner of my eye I see a sculpture of what looks like Pancho Villa.

Hmmm, would have to check into that.

As I continued on Valley Blvd. I noticed a beautiful park on my left, one that I had never seen before. It had a water feature and a lovely mission bell in an adobe gate. Where the hell was I?
I called a friend who went to USC and he said he knew the general area but not the name of the park. When I got home I did some checking.

What I was looking at was actually the little known Lincoln Park, once known as the crown jewel of Los Angeles area parks. Built in 1901 from land donated by John Strother Griffin. Griffin was a surgeon who worked with General Kearney. He was awarded the land for his work curing the smallpox epidemic. He called the land Enchanted Hill.

The original name for the park was East Los Angeles Park, then Eastlake Park. More on it here.

It once had a zoo, a sulphur bath, an ostrich and alligator farm and was located on an old stagecoach road to the San Gabriel Mission.

Forgive me but the Pancho Villa statue was actually of Emiliano Zapata, the bronze created in 1980 by artist Ignacio Asunsolo and it is located in the El Parque de Mexico. The park has or had work by some very important artists, including Francisco Zuniga and Julia Bracken Wendt.

And Lincoln Heights just might be the oldest neighborhood in Los Angeles outside of downtown, started in the 1830's within the original 40 league Spanish land grant.

Not far from Boyle Heights and Brooklyn Heights, both once home to large Irish and Jewish immigrant populations.

Of course the native Tongva or Gabrielinos lived on the land for at least fourteen hundred years before that.

I am intrigued with this place. I am planning on coming back soon with my camera and I'm going to take my time and get to know it a bit. Very cool area.


Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Food shapes speech

A new study, Human sound systems are shaped by post-Neolithic changes in bite configuration
suggests that with humans' change from hunter gathering to farming, our food got softer and our bite and speech changed.

As one commenter pointed out in the New York Times, presumably some sibilants were lost to the world as well.

And on a similar front, how you pronounce the letter R might say a lot about your familial origin. Rhotics.


Unmasked by your fricative phonemes - One day soon, Siri will be able to distinguish you from your speech patterns.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019


Fill the frame

Loggins and Messina

Thanks, pal.

Two very nice female deputies showed up after my phone call. Did I wish to press charges if the culprit was found and hauled in? Yes, I did.

The graffiti miscreant known as Mase decided for some unknown reason to etch his initials deeply into the plate glass window in front of my store. What a wonderful person.

Swear it wasn't there that morning, I had just stepped out for a second. I think I might have even seen him sitting on the bench outside.

Too deep to rub out, it will probably cost me a grand or so that I don't have to replace the window. Not enough to submit to insurance, in any case.  Like a stupid dog pissing on a tree stump to mark territory, this delinquent a-hole left his cursive calling card right on the front of my shop window.

What kind of idiot criminal signs their work?

Monday, March 18, 2019

Space Hymn

Beto O'Rourke denied ever taking LSD yesterday. I have no way of knowing if he was telling the truth or not and frankly don't care. It's really none of my business. Well I think it would have been nice for him to admit if he had but I don't blame the guy for lying, considering the circumstances. He can always repent later on or go to tripster confession.

I do think it shows you how far we have come, ten years ago, it was have you ever smoked weed? Now that's pretty much a given.

The new politico taboo is obviously psychedelic exploration, although that makes little sense. We have no problem with you if you are a hard core lush who beats his wife but if you took acid before, horrors! Not sure I want a glazed president juggling the nuclear football while listening to Dark Star but I have no problem with a little youthful exploration.

Early adherents like Steve Allen and Cary Grant were administered acid by the good Dr. Janiger to cure and heal them and the substance did surprisingly well, was quite effective actually, especially with the treatment of alcoholism.

Not really sure why the subject was even broached but there are reports that a younger Beto once wrote fiction online under the nom de plume "Psychedelic Warlord." Hmmm.


West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band - Eighteen Is Over The Hill

Spring colors

The approach of spring has touched my Santa Margarita River valley. Ceanothus, or purple lilac bushes, are starting to paint the hillsides in their lovely shades of aubergine. Echium, the pride of Madeira, are starting to flower in the gardens with their towering blue purple spikes. As you can see from the picture above, the wisteria has opened its lilac spikes high in my oak tree. Canterbury bells and lupine grace the boundaries of our canyon road, accented by the ubiquitous golden California poppies.

I had a house call in town in the early afternoon and decided to pick up my camera gear and take a few shots in my garden afterwards.

I had bought a bunch of ranunculus and Icelandic poppies and planted them when I got home, along with some salvias and leptospermum.

The orange and yellow hues seem quite congenial with the dominant purple rubric.

Southern California is awash this week with painted lady butterflies, the remnants of which dot many a windshield. I set my camera up in the garden and caught a cavalcade of birds, bees and butters. Even a friendly mockingbird.

Hunting with a camera is a lot like hunting with a rifle or hunting anything else in life, if you are going to have wins, you are damn sure going to have a bunch of failures.

I had a mess of them yesterday. Didn't care a bit. Saw plenty and don't have to record everything I experience. Not a paying gig.

I do wish that I had stopped my aperture up to ƒ22 when this red tailed hawk flew by the moon.

But I didn't. I wasn't expecting it, didn't have the presence of mind. The hawk was being mobbed by a couple of crows. Here's the photoshopped version anyway. A little sloppy. Same moon, seconds later.

Live and learn. The hawk itself was very lovely.

I was thinking about corvids and raptors, how funny that fierce hawks allow themselves to be dominated by crows with their superior brainpower.

At that moment a kingbird flew out of the cedar and attacked the crow. So maybe the kingbird is the actual king? Or more likely, every dog has his day, nature merely a gigantic game of rock, paper, scissors.

Watched the feeders for a while, the house finches always willing to put on a comical show.

Until they were chased away by the super macho doves anyway. Never figured out how they got this peaceful reputation, doves? They can be little bastards.

I sat for hours, tried to lure the hummingbirds in with a sprinkler, never fails.

Until yesterday.

I adjusted my vantage, sat for hours in different spots, managed to grab a few shots. Grabbed a few super sweet navel oranges off the tree for sustenance. Didn't go inside until evening.

Shooting hummingbirds is actually quite humbling.

You hear this little mechanical snick or a rush of their wings and you turn around and they have just done a figure eight around you and flew into the sunset.

If you do manage to get a decent shot it is either because you were lucky or they decided to allow it.

Could swear I've heard them laughing at me...

You have to be very patient, in any case. Little green gems.

Not sure what this guy is, have to get my book or ask Ken or Beth. He says California Towhee, I should have known...

Not a bad day, me hanging around the garden with my friends.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

The American Metaphysical Circus

from wicki: 

Among the musicians featured on the record are prominent West Coast studio musicians Tom Scott and the late Ted Greene, who is credited with the album's stellar guitar work in one of his few recorded appearances. Meyer Hirsch was a member of the Buddy Rich Big Band and is an experimental composer. Vocalist Victoria Bond has gone on to a prominent career as a classical composer, conductor and vocalist. Fred Selden, a student of Byrd's at UCLA, joined the Don EllisOrchestra (led by Byrd's partner in the UCLA New Music Workshop), received a Grammy nomination, and later returned to UCLA to receive his Ph.D.

House of cards

As a U.S. senator, I cannot justify providing the executive with more ways to bypass Congress. Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC)

North Carolina Republickan Senator Thom Tillis was certainly adamant in his opposition to Trump's National Emergency declaration. It was bad policy and would likely come back to bite the party in the future.
Republicans need to realize that this will lead inevitably to regret when a Democrat once again controls the White House, cites the precedent set by Trump, and declares his or her own national emergency to advance a policy that couldn’t gain congressional approval. Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC)
Capitol Broadcasting
Empty words. Tillis's opposition lasted about as long as a fart in a windstorm. When push came to shove he caved like a cheap hooker chasing a sawbuck. So did Corey Gardner, Martha McSalley, Joni Ernst, Ted Cruz, John Cornyn and Ben Sasse.

Why the change of heart? Tillis claimed that he heard serious discussion that would prevent future left wing presidents from using the insidious power that he was now allowing Trump to use. One time only.
The concerns I’ve raised were never about what President Trump is trying to accomplish but rather with setting a precedent that a future Democratic president would exploit to bypass Congress to implement policies well outside the mainstream. Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC)
As in; it's only okay when we do it. Purple state Republicans voted with Trump in every case except for Susan Collins of Maine. They were obviously more afraid of the GOP Trumpites and getting primaried than they were afraid of losing a general election, as Jonathan Bernstein articulately points out at Bloomberg.
There is no intellectual honesty in now turning around and arguing that there’s an imaginary asterisk attached to executive overreach — that it’s acceptable for my party but not thy party. Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC)
Oops, changed his mind. These folks are a bunch of gutless wonders. They are so afraid of Donald Trump that they would sell out their mother, cross any ethical line for the opportunity to give their leader a fat smooch on the hind quarters.

Salon has a good article that explains the phenomenon.
A national Quinnipiac University poll, released March 6, found that 66 percent of voters disapproved of Trump’s use of emergency powers to fund a border wall. But a different survey taken a few days later by Morning Consult found that seven in 10 Republican voters said they would be more likely to vote for senators or representatives who supported Trump’s declaration.
Rather than working on a moderate position that appeals to the majority of Americans, the GOP wants to double down on the hard right. Party over nation. It will be interesting to see if and how they get burned during the next election cycle.


Stretchy face

I didn't follow Katherine Helmond much after Soap but really admired her work as an actress.

This surreal image from the movie Brazil always tripped me out.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Say what?


Fun while it lasted

Sharp eyed blog readers will notice that there is no longer a link to my photography page Past Captures on Google +.

I stored roughly 800 best of shots there for my readers' viewing pleasure.

I had several thousand followers, alas, the number is now 2449 and shrinking every day. Because Google + will soon be no more. April 2, 2019, it is pow.

Google has this way of pulling the rug out from under platforms just when they were settling into a good groove.

Now its one time adherents are in cyber free fall. I lose followers now on a daily basis, at the end of the month the whole platform will be toast.

Social Media death is emotionally debilitating to most of us. I was on the Well and Prodigy way back when, sort of an early adopter. Watched them die and then did Facebook for a tour or two.

Wasn't for me, nor was Twitter. But I learned to pull the plug. Sort of liberating to get away from the chatter.

But it hits some folks real hard, especially those of us that are prone to oversharing.

Google + was great because for some reason, its patrons were unfailingly kind and supportive of each other. No slagging. The forum allowed photos to be put up in high resolution uncrunched and uncompressed.

I learned a lot about the world of ours. There are talented people on every continent, island and archipelago and they are every shade you could think of and also members of every clan and creed too. From Sri Lanka to Iceland I met a lot of people online I respect greatly, both as people and artists.

People are running scared now. Many are going to MeWe. I think that I will lay off social media for a while, do my blog thing and see if an even better forum shows itself. I don't like the instagram aspect ratio. Don't like the closed and insular nature of Facebookland.

Really liked Google +.

The Blues Project - Goin' Down Louisiana

Hodges shoreline

I saw Garry Cohen in a dream the other night. He was very nonchalant and relaxed, growing a beard. I miss my late friend a lot, driving through Del Dios makes me quite sad.

Was nice to talk with him again, even if it was in my own head.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Hal Blaine (Usa, 1967) - Psychedelic Percussion

Trump makes fun of Beto's hand gestures

“Well, I think he’s got a lot of hand movement. I’ve never seen so much hand movement. Is he crazy or is that just the way he acts?” Donald Trump on Beto O'Rourke.


Remember this one? Seems to be a habit with this guy, mocking other people.
So very classy. Anybody think he is remotely funny? People in glass houses...

Not to belabor but the it better not get violent because I have the cops, military and bikers on my side argument is a new low in the already putrid legacy of this man. Sounds like he was emotionally arrested in junior high and thinks we are actually living in a West Side Story fight scene.

Flying High

Happy Pi day but don't forget the circle constant

Google employee Emma Iwao has used a program called ychuncher to figure pi out to 31.4 trillion decimal places, or π * 1013. A new world record.

Good for her. Quite a feat. Took four months of calculating on 25 virtual machines run through Google Cloud's Compute Engine.

Pi, the ratio of a diameter to a circumference admittedly gets a lot of love. And it should. But some say that Tau 2π is a more accurate arbiter of the ratio.


Tau gets a day too but it is in June sometime and nobody really gives a hoot about it. Not sexy like pi. I will leave it to the mathematicians to deconstruct:
It should be obvious that π is not “wrong” in the sense of being factually incorrect; the number π is perfectly well-defined, and it has all the properties normally ascribed to it by mathematicians. When we say that “π is wrong”, we mean that π is a confusing and unnatural choice for the circle constant. In particular, a circle is defined as the set of points a fixed distance—the radius—from a given point, the center (Figure 1). While there are infinitely many shapes with constant width (Figure 2),3 there is only one shape with constant radius. This suggests that a more natural definition for the circle constant might use r in place of D:

Easy as pi.