Thursday, April 30, 2009

Back in My Hometown

Here I am in Moscow, Idaho. Mom and Katherine picked me up in Spokane after an uneventful flight from BWI.

Katherine and I went out to her studio. Although her show closed a few days ago, it was still up, and I got to see it. I liked the show because it showed paintings from all stages of her work as a watercolorist. It was a treat to see that range of work in one setting.

Later Kat and I had a light dinner and drinks at a Mexican restaurant. I enjoyed just catching up and talking. I'm glad she's my sister.

Monday, April 27, 2009

My New Camera

Sometime toward the end of last year, my pocket camera disappeared. I've finally gotten around to replacing it with a Canon PowerShot SD890 IS Digital Elph. I've already taken about a hundred pictures with it over the weekend, and so far, I like it. It fits easily in my pocket, and the controls are similar to my old camera. I haven't figured out how to do much with it yet, but I'm taking the user guide as reading material on my flight to Idaho this week.

I really enjoy digital photography. I'm not the best photographer, but if you take hundreds of photos, sooner or later you will take a spectacular picture. You just have to wade through a lot of bad photos. I always process the pictures that I take, and that's part of the fun (and drudgery), too. The picture is not what a camera records, it's what the mind imagines, and I have to add that to the camera's record. It's not great art, but it can be great fun.

Breakfast - That's a poached egg

Tim in his backyard

Tim's Garden

The back side of Bucknell Terrace

The Dogwoods

Catch me if you can!

Joe, thinking green


Sunday, April 26, 2009


Our neighbor installed a huge concrete patio and parking area behind his house last week. The construction tore up what little yard remained, but it was certainly a stimulus package for the neighborhood: a lot of industrious activity going on.

Friday evening, a mysterious Moon Bounce appeared in the backyard, and Saturday, all kinds of pink bows and pretty tablecloths were being spread. About 4:30 in the afternoon, the sound and light crews descended and finished the preparations.

Ron and I were going out to a concert last evening, and as I was getting ready, I could look out my window and see the quinceanera party unfolding on the patio below. The Moon Bounce was full of kids, and the princess was all decked out in pink and sitting on her improvised throne. A whole lot of people were eating a feast that had a tantalizing aroma, and the music was playing very loud.

The music was mostly pop-rock from a couple of decades back. I enjoyed listening to it while getting ready. Ron and I left for the concert, and afterwards went out to the Hollywood Diner with some friends. We arrived back home at 12:15 a.m. and the music was still playing.

I thought to myself that this might end up being a long night. Promptly at 12:30, the music stopped, the little princess in the pink dress slipped away in her glass slippers, and we all went to sleep, peacefully.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Happy Anniversary, Sweetheart

Okay, I admit, the only reason I remember our anniversary is because I put it on my Google Calendar. Technology saves my butt once again! Ron read a timely Ask Amy in the Washington Post about a man who forgot his 18th wedding anniversary. The man and his wife both handled it badly.

Ron, thanks for a wonderful life. I love you, and more than anyone else, you have affected, changed, and enriched my life. Thank you. And you're still smiling!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

DC Diamond Circulate, II

Gee, time flies when you're having a good time. This square dance convention is just about history. I am suffering from extreme sleep deprivation, but all of my friends here assure me that they can't tell any difference. The dancing has been good (what little I've done), and this event is a combination high school reunion, family picnic, cruise bar dancefest all rolled into one.

My sister, Grace, couldn't attend because she's on a cruise in the Caribbean. Several people asked me where she was. We all agreed that she should have been here. This is a SCANDAL in my OWN FAMILY! I'm working on it, and I hope to have MY reputation repaired by next year. I'm not sure how CHEEZ DOODLE is going to repair HER reputation....

The entertainment turned out wonderful. The DC Different Drummers Swing Band is fabulous. Their music, the dance class, the energy of the dancers made it a perfect foil to the Honky Tonk Queen Contest. Which has its own history, quite separate from entertainment.

Last night, we had a country-western dance and a karaoke room. BJ Brown, the CW DJ, kept the energy up and the people moving. RJ, the karaoke guy, coaxed the best out the singers. Mein and I got up and sang a happily forgotten version of Happy Talk.

And the DC Cowboys, wow. The crowd pretty much stepped on their tongues and slobbered on the floor. I actually got to touch one of the hot, sweaty bodies, afterwards. The Cowboys danced two sets during the CW dance, and the crowd pretty much had a collective orgasm. At least the guys did.

I felt good about the entertainment. I think the dancers enjoyed it. I don't know if I want to manage events like this in the future, but it was a growing experience.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

DC Diamond Circulate

The gay square dance convention, DC Diamond Circulate, is just about to begin. It's here in Washington, DC, and I've been doing nothing but convention-related stuff for a couple of days. Make that daze. I couldn't do this for a living. But, the entertainers are booked, confirmed, and ready. The programs are finished and only need to be printed. I'm doing laundry so that I'll have plenty of wardrobe choices. It's all coming together. Now if I can just figure out an easy way to get downtown....

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Guns out of Control

Thirteen more people were killed in a mass shooting yesterday. In the last month, 40 people have been killed, and others have been grievously injured. Our politicians have been thunderously silent about these deaths. Oh, there's been some tut-tutting, politicians expressing regret and outrage, and praying for the victims, until the next shooting occurs, and the whole sorry charade is replayed.

We can do better on this one. Waiting periods, background checks, and automatic weapon bans work. None of this should imperil the constitutional rights of deer hunters and skeet shooters. Until reasonable regulations are implemented, the killings will continue. We know the NRA's position on gun control. What's the NRA's position on mass shootings?

Friday, April 3, 2009

April Madness

Well, at least insanity. I haven't done my taxes yet, and the DC Diamond Circulate Convention, gay square dancing's premiere annual event, is next week. I'm on the convention committee. I've been averaging 50 - 100 emails per day.

The committee had a "stuffing" party yesterday during club night. Many fingers make light work, and it gave me a chance to flirt with one of the other dancers. This morning, I've been sending out emails to performers and to the committee, once again confirming entertainment details. I also have one Silver Daddy Date lined up for convention. I may be busy, but I'm a busybody, too.