Tuesday, March 31, 2009


This is called a Dandelion Spherical Clock. I took the picture on the Bear Valley Trail this morning. I never cease to be in total wonder of what nature creates. The name "Dandelion" is a corruption of the French "dent de lion", meaning "lion's tooth", referring to the coarsely-toothed leaves of the plant. In German it is called "Löwenzahn", meaning the same thing. Children (and adults like me) love to pick the spheres and blow away the seed-carrying parachutes, a fun thing to do, and appreciated by the plants which want to propagate!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Red-winged Blackbird

This guy was definitely posing for me this morning at the Ponds. And he insisted on Mount Tamalpais as a backdrop.
How do I know it was a he? It's really simple. You see, female Red-winged Blackbirds don't have red wings!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Freeway Sign

They sure don't fool around in Illinois! A little chilling, don't ya think?

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Sandstone Cliff

The George B. Fell Nature Preserve, in the Castle Rock State Park, located along the Rock River in Ogle County, Illinois, features some very interesting sandstone cliffs, such as the one shown in my photograph.
And remember, while admiring my picture, that Illinois is known as the "Land of Lincoln". Could it be that nature mimics history?

Friday, March 27, 2009


Question ~ Are wildflowers that have been planted still called wildflowers?
Whatever the answer, the flowers along the Corte Madera Creek, near the Marin Rowing Association building, are gorgeous! And their sweetish smell is lovely (a word that real men are not supposed to use) and intoxicating (that's an OK word). And, of course, that's Mount Tamalpais in the background.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


Wondering what a Californian was doing in Byron, Il, elicited a sheepish look.
Did you know that sheep were first domesticated 7,000 years ago?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


I'm back from visiting my daughter, son-in-law, and grand-daughter, in Byron, IL. While driving around nearby Dixon (one of Ronald Reagan's boyhood homes), my daughter, Judi, pointed out this stop-sign to me. In case you're not quite with the program, the sign has you stop atop the railroad-track! I thought it was special!

Friday, March 20, 2009


I know this will be hard for you to take, but I'll be outtta town for a few days, returning next Wednesday (March 25th). I hope you will survive!
I took today's picture of the beautiful yellow mustard growing near the Nicasio Reservoir a few days ago. It always seems to me that the mustard attracts sunshine. Unfortunately, the display is short-lived.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Young Artists

These kids were posing for a picture in front of the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University yesterday. Each kid is holding a papier-mache figurine that he/she created. Some of the dolls reminded me of Hopi Kachina dolls. Do I sound old-fashioned if I opine that creating artwork like this may, just perhaps, be better for the kids than playing shoot-em-up video games?

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Here's another one of my, now famous, shadow pictures. I took this one at noon today at Stanford University's Rodin Sculpture Garden.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Bath

This morning at the Point Reyes Bear Valley Trail trailhead, Madame Blackbird was taking a bath, while Monsieur waited. Blackbirds bathe at all times of year to keep their feathers in top condition. They love to splash and create a shower by flipping their wings. Once they are done, they shake off and fly somewhere to dry and preen.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Holocaust Memorial

Last Saturday I photographed a man taking a picture of "The Holocaust Memorial" at the Palace of the Legion of Honor Museum in San Francisco. It was created in 1984 by Pop Art sculptor George Segal. The standing figure is looking at the Pacific Ocean through a barbed-wire fence. At his feet (not visible in my picture) are sprawled the bodies of about ten corpses. All in white plaster. Over the years, the memorial has been desecrated several times, probably by hate groups. And by the way, this sculpture is not one of my favorites.
Once again, I wish to remind you that, in my mind's eye, I saw a picture which I wanted to share. The story above, is merely the icing on the cake, not the cake.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Tres charmante

"May I take your picture?" I asked. "I would love it!" she answered and posed. It happened yesterday, at the Yves Saint Laurent show gift shop in the de Young Museum. I didn't ask her name, but she volunteered that she was visiting from Montreal (I think) and had stopped at the museum while on a bike ride around San Francisco.
Sometimes I'm surprised at my own audacity, but I'm a real sucker for beautiful women. When I take pictures of flowers or birds, people say "oh, what a great picture!" When I take pictures of beautiful women, people say "you're a dirty old man!" I don't understand!
Now look at the picture again. Can you blame me for having forced myself to overcome my natural shyness?

Saturday, March 14, 2009


I think she was just telling him "you never listen to me!"
At the Taiwan Restaurant on Clement Street in S.F. yesterday.

Friday, March 13, 2009


You just never know where love will pop up next. To prove my point ~ when I entered my living-room this morning, I surprised the bronze Art Nouveau figurine and the wooden mannequin in an embrace, worthy of mention in PEOPLE MAGAZINE. The amazing thing is, that the two have been standing just inches apart, for at least three years, never letting on that there was something going on. It just goes to show you!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Sometimes I don't know

Is it a couple of guys/gals playing chess, or is it farm-machinery? The older I get, the more fertile my imagination!
I took this picture out at the LGVSD* Ponds about a week ago.
*Las Gallinas Valley Sanitary District.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

High-Wire Art

High-Wire Art

High-Wire Art

High-Wire Art

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Back after a short hiatus and making up for lost time with a multiple autoritratto. Ya jes' gotta love this guy!

Thursday, March 5, 2009


I believe it's mustard, but I know it's beautiful! At the Las Gallinas Valley Sanitary Ponds in San Rafael. The Civic Center and Mount Tamalpais in the background.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


One of my hobbies is collecting old photographs. I hunt for them at flea markets and garage sales, both here and abroad. Here for a change of pace is one of my favorites. On the back it says "1906 = X sweet sixteen" (in English) and then "Excursion to Tunkendorf, Silesia" (in English). Just think, this picture was taken 103 years ago!
It is possible that some of you are not quite up to date on your Silesian history, and are just dying to get up to speed, here's what I found with the help of Google

Region of Europe that has long been disputed because of its geographical position, mineral resources, and industrial potential; now in Poland and the Czech Republic with metallurgical industries and a coalfield in Polish Silesia. Dispute began in the 17th century with claims on the area by both Austria and Prussia. It was seized by Prussia's Frederick the Great, which started the War of the Austrian Succession; this was finally recognized by Austria in 1763, after the Seven Years' War. After World War I, it was divided in 1919 among newly formed Czechoslovakia, revived Poland, and Germany, which retained the largest part. In 1945, after World War II, all German Silesia east of the Oder-Neisse line was transferred to Polish administration; about 10 million inhabitants of German origin, both there and in Czechoslovak Silesia, were expelled.


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

House Finches

A couple of female House Finches flanked by a couple of males. Are they hams, or were they merely sitting there? And why is it that, in the bird world, the males are usually more colorful that the females?
I took this picture at the Ponds, a couple of days ago.

Monday, March 2, 2009

In My Backyard

Here's a Roenauica Bogus Vipera which I found in my backyard.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Big Wheel

McInnis Park in San Rafael is not only a great place for birders, there are other adventures to be had as well. My favorite spot and a veritable photographer's treasure trove, is a storage area for farm equipment, both old and new. Yes, there is a fence, and yes, there is a locked gate, and a sign prohibiting trespassing, but next to the gate is a two-foot opening for foot-traffic, and fortunately, the nasty sign just happens to be on the wrong side of the gate! I spent over an hour there yesterday, and once again thanked my maker (Nikon) for digital!
The attached picture of an old truck wheel requires no comment!