Archive for July, 2011


Morning Road Trip

   Posted by: John    in Outdoors

Before cresting the hill on Highway 16 that heads to Emmett, there is a road going East that leads to Pearl.  I don’t remember the name of the road, but according to the map, it is Jackass Gulch Road.  For a long time I have wanted to drive down there and take some pictures.  This morning I did. 

The first mile is paved, then it changes to gravel.  It is high desert scenery, lots of sagebrush and dry plants, but for quite a while the road just goes by rolling little hills before doing down into the gulch.  Very pretty drive.  Click on the pictures to see them full size.


Sagebrush Central

Big Sagebrush Plant

Lots of these holes everywhere

Gravel road through the desert

No breeze so the dust stays for a long time

What's left of a fence

Rock face before entering the gulch

Down the gulch

Flowers in the gulch

Trail up the hill

Old building

Old building and shack



   Posted by: John    in Fun Stuff

I am not a huge NASCAR fan, but I know people who are.  Including one of my best friends.  Mark, I don’t know if you heard this guy give the invocation before a race before, but…well, just listen!

Boogety, boogety, boogety!


A new wedding ceremony

   Posted by: John    in Fun Stuff

Some of you know that my wife has a piece of paper that says she is an ordained minister and is able to perform wedding ceremonies in Idaho.  This came about when my son and daughter-in-law were here from Oregon and there was some question as to whether the person who we asked to perform the wedding could.  As a backup, she obtained the proper stuff to do the wedding.  As it turned out, she did not need to do it.  Since then she decided to use that new-found legal authority to perform weddings for other people.  To date, she has done a dozen or so.  Not a lot of money, doing it for donations.  She has done “secret” weddings, where the people did not want their families to know right away.  Small weddings, with a few people, and a couple of larger ones.  She makes them as religious or non-religious as the people would like, but has done more non-religious ones.

One of the more interesting weddings was done at the jail.  A guy who was in jail and a gal who wasn’t wanted to get married.  (I know, the idea of getting married at the jail during visiting hours and when you can’t touch each other or kiss at the end…kind of odd.  Much less as to why someone is marrying someone else who is locked up for who knows what.) 

Being the twisted sort that I am, I have been thinking about how a jail wedding ceremony would go.

Minister: “We are gathered together today in the sight of God and these closed circuit TV cameras to unite this pair in holy matrimony, an honorable estate, not to be entered into, um, unadvisedly.  Who gives this woman to be married to this prisoner?”

Prison Guard: “The warden and I do.”

Minister: “We will be pleased to listen to a song, a favorite of the prisoner, er, groom, ‘Unchained Melody.’”

Song commences

Minister: “As Tom is behind the glass, and you can’t hold hands, both of you place your hands on the glass across from each other.”

Bride: “Tom, I take you to be my husband, to have and to hold whenever you are released, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, forsaking all others, as long as we both shall live.

Groom: “Amy, I take you to be my wife, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, forsaking all others, except possibly for Bubba, from which there is apparently no escape, as long as we both shall live.

Minister:  “The ring is the symbol of the commitment that binds these two together.  We only have one ring, as Tom is not allowed jewelry in prison.  Amy, take your ring and place it on your own finger, saying ‘I give myself this ring because you are unable to reach through the glass to give it to me yourself.’”

Bride:  “I give myself this ring because you are unable to reach through the glass to give it to me yourself.”

Minister:  “ I now pronounce you felon and wife.  You may kiss the glass.”

Prison Guard: “Visiting time’s up…back to the cell!”



   Posted by: John    in Critters

Um….this guy is in all kinds of trouble!

Swim Faster!

Probably the best comment on the site:  “Diver…the other white meat!”


Makes you wonder…

   Posted by: John    in Fun Stuff

We were wandering around WalMart and I happened to look in the freezer at the ice cream…and just cracked up.  (Of course, it was late, we had just finished the Steve Martin concert and we had sat in the sun for several hours…I am sure my brain was fried beyond belief!) 

Ice Cream

Yes, big letters on a yellow background, letting you know the Original Taste IS BACK!!!  So, I have to wonder…where did it go to begin with?  And what had replaced it for whatever period of time?  Just curious.

Speaking of things that make you wonder,  I found these at Target some time ago.

Charmin Basic

Charmin Ultra

Who knew that the same brand of TP came in different “trim levels”?  Base level vs. plush?  120 vs 320 grit?  As near as I could tell, there was only $1 difference between the two.

(And notice the bears seem absolutely overwhelmed with happiness about using either one!)


Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers

   Posted by: John    in Fun Stuff, Music

Karen won tickets to go see Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers.  Yes, that Steve Martin.  At the time she got the tickets I did not know that he was a banjo player and bluegrass musician.  Well, he is.  And he’s good at it too!  So we braved the heat and sat on the grass at the outdoor place and listened to some pretty dang good music.  He put some comedy into it as well.  All of the songs except for one (Orange Blossom Special, and that was an encore) were his music.  Some were straight instrumentals, but they sang some songs as well.  The Steep Canyon Rangers sing 4 part barbershop style very good.  The vocal songs were almost all comedic.  I mean, when you can sing about being happy about breaking up with someone (Jubilation Day)…that’s fun stuff.  Or, a song inspired by a dog that wanted his owner to chuck a ball for him. 

Anyway, they aren’t the best pictures, but here’s a couple of Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers.  Click to see them full size.

Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers

Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers


Going Japanese

   Posted by: John    in Food I won't eat!

The other day we decided to go out for supper.  Karen picked the Fujiyami Japanese restaurant in Boise.  It’s a sushi house, but they have other things as well.  Good thing…I don’t like sushi.  So, while I had Teriyaki steak and chicken, Karen got this dragon thing.  Click to embiggen!

Japanese dragon for supper

It’s not sushi I guess, but it is quite the work of art! 

Details...that's why it costs so much!


Somewhere in Idaho

   Posted by: John    in Pictures

Highway to somewhere


Sunrise and other pictures

   Posted by: John    in Outdoors, Pictures

While I was out and about today, I took these pictures.  Click to see them full size.


Airport Tower

Looking towards Meridian.

Observation shelter on the hill.

Nikon D-1 with the 105mm lens.


Apricot Tree

   Posted by: John    in Outdoors, Pictures

I went to a client early this morning and as I was walking to their building I noticed all of these small apricots on the driveway.  I had never noticed that they have this huge apricot tree in the yard.  It mus be 60 feet tall.  I pulled out the camera and took a picture of it.

Apricot Tree

Here’s a closer view of the apricots.

Little yellow targets

Personally, I am just as happy to see every last apricot on the ground and smashed.  I hate apricots!

Nikon D-1 camera with the 105mm lens.  The lens I have is the previous version of this one but the specs are almost identical, as was the price tag.   1/2000 sec,  f/2.8,  ISO-400.


Nice Tree

   Posted by: John    in Outdoors

Because it was there


Almost Full Moon

   Posted by: John    in Outdoors

I think tomorrow is the full moon, but this is pretty close.


Taken with the Nikon D1 with the 100-500 mm telephoto lens, clear at 500 mm.  1/100 sec, f/7.1 at ISO-400.  Not too bad for a purely manual lens!  Oh yeah, and on the tripod, as there is virtually to way to hold 5 pounds of camera and lens steady enough to take a shot like this!