Saturday, February 28, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
I can't eat, I can't talk
Drinking mean jake, Lord
I can't walk
- "Jake Walk Blues," recorded by the Allen Brothers, 1930
Barrie collects bottles, and has a number of very cool examples of glass containers in her collection. Including these two examples of Jamaica Ginger Extract. The photos were taken in her study early in the morning, with lamplight.
To read Dan Baum's article, click here (note: it opens a PDF file).
Monday, February 23, 2009
We once again bought a dog painting from Tim and Lisa Kluttz,
this one an homage to our yellow lab Enid.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Prine opened with "Spanish Pipedream" and "Six O'Clock News" from his first LP, which by any accounts is one of the great debut recordings by any singer/songwriter. By the end of the evening, over a nearly 2 hour set, Prine played a total of six songs from the album. After all, it's some of his finest work, and showcases his ability to create characters, strip raw emotions and situations down to plain language, and open up the listener's empathy with raw evocation that's never sappy or saccharine. For instance, halfway through the set, with a moderately rowdy bunch of fans shouting requests, Prine brought the crowd to a hushed whisper when he launched into the achingly beautiful "Angel From Montgomery," as potent evocation of an aging woman's feelings as any man is capable of writing. He also played "Sam Stone," about the drug addled veteran who comes home from "the conflict overseas" sporting "a hole in Daddy's arm where all the money goes."
As if that wasn't enough from his first album, he delivered another crowd-stilling moment with a version of "Hello In There," again about aging, lonely people, and wrapped up the show with "Paradise," his song about the lost town of Paradise, Kentucky, which was razed by a coal company.
But Prine didn't just bask in past glories - his set list was a balanced mix of earlier fare and songs from the last couple of decades, including his Grammy-winning 2005 album Fair & Square.
Prine sounded in fine form, even if his range isn't as great and his voice a bit huskier after his battle with throat cancer. All told, a great evening of music from an American legend.
John Prine Set List:
Roanoke, VA Feb 21, 2009
With Dave Jacques, electric and upright bass, backing vocals
Jason Wilber, guitars & mandolin, backing vocals
Six O’Clock News
Grandpa Was A Carpenter
Fish and Whistle
Glory of True Love
Far From Me
Angel from Montgomery
It’s A Big Old Goofy World
Please Don’t Bury Me
Bear Creek Blues
That’s Alright By Me
Ain’t Hurtin’ Nobody
Hello In There
Killing the Blues
In Spite of Ourselves (duet with Carrie Rodriguez)
Paradise (with Carrie Rodriguez, vocals, fiddle)Credit: Photo of John Prine live in 2008 from the JPShrine fan site.
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Scampering across the backyard at full speed.
Asta looks sideways at Bou.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Rain turned into sleet this morning about 6:45 or so, and by 7 there was a good coating of slushy sleet on the back deck. It soon developed into a mushy mixture of sleet, rain, and snow, while the temperature hovered right around freezing. By about 8:30 a heavy mess of big, wet snow was coming down with slushy flakes about the size of a nickel. Here's a few photos - the big white streaks are the slushy falling snow. It was all gone by mid-day.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
A few frosty crystals lingering on a dead holly leaf.
Frost doing that pine needle thing.
Monday, February 16, 2009
View from the library steps looking out on the quad. The bright spot in the bottom left corner was a small snowflake that flew onto the lens just as I took the photo.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Saturday, February 14, 2009
So we drove down to Mt Olive, NC, today and picked up Bou, an 11-year old beagle who's full of sweetness and beagle-esque mischief. We might have Bou with us for a while, so it was great to see that her and Asta got along pretty well on their first day as co-habitants. Here's some photos from our trip and Bou's first hour here:
Yes, we went to Mt. Olive, home of the famous Mt. Olive Pickle Company, as you might surmise when you see their town sign. You can see a very stylized image of the town of Mt. Olive, with their famous street intersection of Cucumber and Vine, by checking out their website.
Any ideas that we might be starting our own kennel here in Blacksburg were quickly put to rest when this truck passed us on Hwy 52 north of Winston-Salem. While we had one small bag of Science Diet with us as Bou's provisions, this truck passed us with a bed filled to the brim with bags of dog food. You can see from their license plate that these folks are serious about dogs. Hounds in particular, it appears:
Like a good beagle, as soon as we got here Bou immediately started to sniff the entire perimeter of the backyard. No smell went undocumented. Asta watched as Bou checked out her new foster home yard, occasionally trying to get Bou to play, to no avail.
In an expected twist to the FebPhoto project, I accidentally switched my camera to the video mode and, much to my surprise, ended up taking this 10 second video of Asta and Bou scurrying around each other in the kitchen. You can tell by how deftly I aimed the camera that I had no idea it was in video mode:
Friday, February 13, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
There's the old weather adage of "Red sky at night, sailor's delight; red sky at morning, sailor take warning." A front came through today, with winds gusting up to 37 mph and a forecast of severe thunderstorms tonight. There's a long history of the "red sky at morning" weather lore, and it's been well documented by the Library of Congress:
Shakespeare... said something similar in his play, Venus and Adonis. “Like a red morn that ever yet betokened, Wreck to the seaman, tempest to the field, Sorrow to the shepherds, woe unto the birds, Gusts and foul flaws to herdmen and to herds.”Source: Library Congress' "Everyday Mysteries: Fun Science Facts from the LOC"
In the Bible, (Matthew XVI: 2-3,) Jesus said, “When in evening, ye say, it will be fair weather: For the sky is red. And in the morning, it will be foul weather today; for the sky is red and lowering."
In order to understand why “Red sky at night, sailor’s delight. Red sky in morning, sailor’s warning” can predict the weather, we must understand more about weather and the colors in the sky.
Usually, weather moves from west to east, blown by the westerly trade winds. This means storm systems generally move in from the West.
The colors we see in the sky are due to the rays of sunlight being split into colors of the spectrum as they pass through the atmosphere and ricochet off the water vapor and particles in the atmosphere. The amounts of water vapor and dust particles in the atmosphere are good indicators of weather conditions. They also determine which colors we will see in the sky.
During sunrise and sunset the sun is low in the sky, and it transmits light through the thickest part of the atmosphere. A red sky suggests an atmosphere loaded with dust and moisture particles. We see the red, because red wavelengths (the longest in the color spectrum) are breaking through the atmosphere. The shorter wavelengths, such as blue, are scattered and broken up.
Red sky at night, sailors delight.
When we see a red sky at night, this means that the setting sun is sending its light through a high concentration of dust particles. This usually indicates high pressure and stable air coming in from the west. Basically good weather will follow.
Red sky in morning, sailor’s warning.
A red sunrise reflects the dust particles of a system that has just passed from the west. This indicates that a storm system may be moving to the east. If the morning sky is a deep fiery red, it means a high water content in the atmosphere. So, rain is on its way.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
And then, what should I find while walking across campus this afternoon? Amazingly, this iconic bit of American food lore. I couldn't have planned this one - it was just there, beside the parking lot, and behind the Alumni Garden:
Monday, February 9, 2009
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Gleefully running with the flippy flopper, with some funky mossy stuff dangling from it.