Surfer, Encinitas

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Lou Gottlieb

The year was 1974. I had dropped out of high school and was hitchhiking around and across the northwest. For about three or four months I camped out at what became known as a Rainbow Gathering, a big hippie free for all located at a place called Highbridge Park in Spokane. Music, free love, the works.

Lots of school buses and hippies of all feather abound. And it was here that I met Lou Gottlieb, the late Limelighter bass player who is singing in this video, who piloted the Morning Star Ranch school bus. Very funny and charming guy and very fun days.

Everything from tin to tiffany*

It is that time again. The Calendar Antique Show this Friday through Sunday at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Please come visit. More info here.

*tiffany is a fourteen year old girl from lakeside.

Save and print this free admission pass for two.

Savoy Brown

Ideological silos

I walked by the husband and wife and smiled at the hardware store yesterday. He returned the smile, she grimaced and would not look me in the eye. The hatred she exuded was a palpable thing, even though we had barely ever interacted.

Wealthy, I had seen them around a few fundraisers and Art Center functions and don't think I had ever been unpleasant. But you never know. Maybe it was what I represent to them? Or the false rumor going around last year that I hated christians.

The town is getting wealthier and more conservative and I am neither. And I don't go to church. My wife heard whispers a few months ago that some women wouldn't shop at her store because she was a (shudder) liberal. Her retort was that they could take their business elsewhere. And I don't really care to hang out with nasty people either.

A new Pew poll out that shows that Americans increasingly do not want to live or fraternize with those of the opposite political persuasion, Political Polarization in the American Public.

It is a shame really. Many of my best friends are staunch Republicans and it has never got in the way of our friendship or frivolity. We agree to disagree. My own beliefs are closer to the center. But the center is becoming an increasingly lonely place to be. And what were once mere differences of opinion are becoming increasingly weaponized.

We don't just dislike each other, we now loathe each other. Another good article on the subject with a really good graphic at Axios, How American Politics went Batshit Crazy. It breaks down some of the factors that led to the current ideological civil war. Sad state of affairs.

Funky #7

Why do people still think the world is flat?

Nice little video from the BBC. See it here.

"Don't take my word for it. I could be a mental patient, escaped from an institution."

Monday, November 13, 2017

White Freight liner Blues

Still life #3

Ten Years After - Here They Come

Oceanside Harbor Sunset

I want to thank all of my friends that helped Leslie and I celebrate my birthday yesterday.

Although we got skunked on the whale watching trip, the water was calm, the day was great and everybody had a good time.

The crew and staff at Oceanside Adventures could not have been nicer or better. They gave us free tickets for another round and I can't wait to be back out on the water!

We will wait until the grey whales are really moving and try again.

Robin Adler
Great action packed weekend. SDSU basketball with Kent Friday and a fantastic Robin Adler and Mutts of the Planet concert at Dizzy's Saturday.

Then brunch, ocean, whale watching and fish and chips yesterday with my pals and a lovely cake courtesy of my incredible wife.

Thanks all!

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Trickle down Trump

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein thinks that Americans are too savvy to be influenced by fake ads on social media.
I think what people need to keep in mind is that there’s a distinction between people trying to sway American elections and succeeding in swaying American elections. I think one of our responsibilities is to make sure that people understand, you know, what the risks are, but also that they make their own determinations. You know, American citizens are pretty savvy, and they decide who to vote for. I don’t think they’d be influenced by ads posted by foreign governments. I think people are more thoughtful about that in the way that they make their decisions. But, nonetheless, you know, if we have foreign countries that are seeking to interfere in our elections, I think we need to take appropriate action in response.
Really Rod? Too savvy? Americans?

A year ago, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg had this to say:
“Personally, I think the idea that fake news on Facebook ― of which it’s a small amount of content ― influenced the election in any way is a pretty crazy idea.” 
Zuckerberg has since recanted and apologized, now knowing full well that Russia paid for three thousand targeted ads, which were estimated to reach 126 million Americans, as well as an additional 80,000 Facebook posts, linked to 120 actively managed Facebook pages. There were said to be an additional 20 million Americans who saw the content on Instagram. This amounts to about half the American voting population.

I want to be on record here - Americans aren't that savvy, they are that stupid and could be convinced that the world was flat, sky was pink and Jesus rode a pet dinosaur with a minimal amount of time and effort. I am disappointed in Rosenstein for going ostrich and burying his head in the Kremlin's sand. At one time I thought that he was beyond running political interference.

The supreme leader today continues to deny Russian collusion and influence. Why? Because he looked his bromantic pal Putin in the eye and Vlad said so. Three times. This of course cuts across what American intelligence services unanimously know, that there was definite Russian collusion but Trump is still not buying it.

From WaPo:
HANOI — President Trump said Saturday that Russian President Vladimir Putin again denied that Moscow tampered in the U.S. presidential campaign last year.
The two men had brief conversations during a larger meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Danang, Vietnam, before Trump flew to Hanoi for a bilateral meeting Sunday with Vietnamese leaders.
Trump said that he had “two or three” brief conversations with Putin mostly centered on the war in Syria, but added that he pressed the Russian leader on Moscow’s role in attempting to interfere in the 2016 election.
“He said he didn’t meddle,” Trump said, answering questions in the press cabin on Air Force One. “I asked him again. You can only ask so many times. . . . He said he absolutely did not meddle in our election. He did not do what they are saying he did.”
Trump said that he believed Putin was “sincere” in his denials, and that Putin seemed to find the question insulting. Suggesting that what he called the “artificial Democratic hit job” of investigations of his campaign were preventing U.S.-Russian cooperation on a range of issues, including North Korea, Trump said that it is “a shame, because people will die because of it.”
And this:
President Trump on Saturday lashed out at U.S. intelligence leaders for their conclusion that Russia interfered in the 2016 election, calling them “political hacks” and slamming the investigations into Russian interference as a “Democratic hit job.”
Speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One, Trump blasted former U.S. intelligence officials by name, including former CIA Director John Brennan, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former FBI Director James Comey.
"I mean, give me a break, they are political hacks," Trump said, according to White House pool reports. He was discussing the U.S. intelligence community's conclusion that Russia sought to influence the 2016 election in favor of Trump.
"So you look at it, I mean, you have Brennan, you have Clapper and you have Comey," he continued. "Comey is proven now to be a liar and he is proven now to be a leaker.”
“So you look at that and you have President Putin very strongly, vehemently says he had nothing to do with them," he continued, referring to Russian president Vladimir Putin.
The current CIA director is obviously not quite as convinced as Trump. Mike Pompeo issued this statement today:
"The Director stands by and has always stood by the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment entitled: Assessing Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent U.S. Elections," the CIA said in a statement when asked for reaction to the president's remarks. "The intelligence assessment with regard to Russian election meddling has not changed."
I have a lot of Republican and conservative readers and appreciate you all very much. Fess up. You down with Trump making all these goo goo eyes at Russia? You going to pretend that none of this Russia stuff ever happened too?

достаточно с мочи.
Which just leads me to wonder - could the Steele dossier be true? Is there damning evidence out there of some depraved Russian slut in a babushka giving Donald a Volga style golden shower? 

Is it impossible to be pissed off when you so much prefer to get pissed on?

Why would a guy who insults everybody else and always talks so tough somehow manage to, excuse the phrase, piss himself every time someone brings up Soviet shenanigans? Unfortunately the more I hear the more plausible the sodden possibility seems.

Wave the flag

Another face

This is one of my favorite shots from this morning. This striking young girl was sitting by the side of the building and I asked if she wouldn't mind me taking her picture. Glad she allowed me to.

Glenn Miller - When Johnny Comes Marching Home (1942)

Veteran's Day Parade, Fallbrook

Today we had our Veteran's Day Parade in Fallbrook. I have shot it many times in the past, I enjoy the pageantry and patriotism in my small town. Comes in many shapes, sizes and colors.

It also gives me a good opportunity to take people shots. I had my seldom used but super sharp Nikkor 70-200mm 2.8 GII on the Nikon D810 and clicked off a few pictures.

I shot this majorette wide open at ƒ2.8. This aperture narrows the depth of field and gives you a nice background blur.

Michele Verdugo

Lila and son

I don't always agree with my country but I will always support its veterans and revere those who have given their lives in service to the United States of America.

Fallbrook, which stands at the back gate of Camp Pendleton, certainly supports its veterans and military.


Friday, November 10, 2017


Torches and pitchforks

Boy are we in the harvest sexual predators season or what? Taking Spacey out of a film that is already shot and completed, ready for release?

My goodness, are we going to pull all the Picasso paintings out of the museum? Burn Bill Clinton at the stake? Destroy all the old Darryl Zanuck movies? Lots of dastardly people throughout history that took advantage.

Should we expunge them all and pretend they never happened?

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Blues on a west side

Dopamine Feedback Loop

From Business Insider:

Sean Parker, the first president of Facebook, has a disturbing warning about the social network: "God only knows what it's doing to our children's brains."

Speaking to the news website Axios, the entrepreneur and executive talked openly about what he perceives as the dangers of social media and how it exploits human "vulnerability."

"The thought process that went into building these applications, Facebook being the first of them ... was all about: 'How do we consume as much of your time and conscious attention as possible?'" said Parker, who joined Facebook in 2004, when it was less than a year old.

"And that means that we need to sort of give you a little dopamine hit every once in a while, because someone liked or commented on a photo or a post or whatever," he told Axios. "And that's going to get you to contribute more content, and that's going to get you ... more likes and comments."

Parker added: "It's a social-validation feedback loop ... exactly the kind of thing that a hacker like myself would come up with, because you're exploiting a vulnerability in human psychology."

"The inventors, creators — it's me, it's Mark [Zuckerberg], it's Kevin Systrom on Instagram, it's all of these people — understood this consciously," he said. "And we did it anyway."

Thar she blows.

Still lots of tickets available if you would like to join me on a birthday whale watching trip this Sunday. Two hour trip.

Oceanside Adventures
2:30 p.m.

Can't guarantee we will see any whales but do know that we will have a good time. Fish and chips on the pier afterwards.

Haven't been a lot of whales seen lately but lots of dolphin showing up every day.

Driftin' and Driftin'

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Elbow striker

Theo Moudakise - Toronto Star

Humans are such a funny bunch. Many of us have petty prejudices and preconceptions that might not be altogether accurate or stand closer inspection in stronger light. One of mine is that I rarely encounter children of the privileged that amount to that much. (Not that I add up to all that much.) Perhaps it is because they have been largely shielded during their lives from the real possibility of disaster or failure.

Now I admit it is a gross generalization. I have seen super driven and wonderful children of the upper classes that have persevered and driven themselves to real greatness. I have seen it but it is relatively rare. Can we focus on the other ones for the purpose of this spiel??

Not their fault, but the existence of a safety net might be an impingement to the real building of character for those scions in the former group. If you know that somebody is always there to catch you...

Not that it is the progeny's fault. But when you start out at the bottom, say executive vice president of the family's corporation and your fellow troops are so terrified of Daddy's wrath that you receive a steady regimen of ass moochin' and back slapping, so nobody gets crosswise with the old man.

Then the danger is that you start thinking that maybe you are really that good. And that smart. When you're not. And maybe you even picked a trick or two up from pop about making the little people squeal.

Take Donald Trump. If I may be permitted, it seems like the guy was emotionally retarded way back in say, kindergarten and never learned about that basic play well with others thing. Out of all the President's many failings and missteps, not to mention the horrid policy positions, which I am not going to get into right now, perhaps the most egregious failing is this one.

Jack Ohman - Tribune

The guy always leads with his elbows. That strike back ten times harder at anyone who crosses you, even if it is a poor grandmother trying to cross the street stuff. The most childish and infantile behavior and character trait that I have ever seen out of Washington in my now sixty years on the planet. Such a lack of nuance and sensitivity.

An enabled delinquent who somehow got convinced that he was smarter than everybody somewhere along the way. Now that is delusional. And has never apologized for anything, or said or done anything that required apology for that matter, not to mention that the Donald lacks a scintilla of humility or human sympathy. Somebody needed to knock the shit out of him when he was growing up and unfortunately it apparently never happened.

The problem with an elbow striker is that people have a long memory after they have taken one. They hurt. Corker, Flake, McCain, McConnell, Cruz have all been on the receiving end and that's just from his own party.

It's kindergarten rule number one, be mean to everybody and no one will like you. They will remember. Don't be an asshole.

Donald Trump is going to need allies in his last three years in office. If he somehow skips impeachment or indictment anyway. How many allies you think he has left?

Seatrain - Waiting for Elijah

The wonderful Peter Rowan on lead vocal.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Old Pics

Postcards of the hanging

Three bad shows, four weeks. Lot of work, driving, great expense, not much to show for it. Have all sorts of questions about models, sustainability, inevitability. Had a good run while it lasted.

Didn't take any pictures past Half Moon Bay, didn't feel like it, certainly tried to resonate with customers, but the engine somehow failed to fire.

Please do me a favor and don't ask me about the show, or my birthday either for that matter. They both sucked and I don't feel like engaging in a post mortem or even hearing about your great ideas on how to fix the whole thing at the moment.

I know that no one promised me a rose garden but pardon me for feeling downright pissy.

Get one more swing at the piñata next week.

Desolation Row

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Peregrine falcon, Torrey Pines

The peregrine nearly faced extinction during the last century due to pesticides.
The Torrey Pine is far rarer, growing only here in San Diego county on the La Jolla preserve and on one of the near by Channel Islands, Santa Rosa.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Tax cuts create economic growth?

Methinks we have heard this tune before. Kansas Republican Says 'Reckless' State Tax Cuts Offer Warning For U.S. Fiscal conservatives decide to add another trillion or two to the national deficit, based upon a rosy economic scenario and projection that has been repeatably shown to not work in real life. Let's not forget the grand Kansas experiment. When it all goes to hell and the projections go awry, as they certainly will, certain congressmen and women will go to bed knowing they peddled America a false bill of goods, knowingly drank the kool-aid and served their masters' bidding very well.