Monday, September 28, 2015

The United Nations

The 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly is meeting today.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Little Bird ( Птичка)

 Птичка (из поэмы "Цыгане") Виктория Иванова (1924 - 2002)

Little Bird (from the poem "Gypsies") Victoria Ivanova

From the poem:

Happily born to live for need,
God's birds in the world.
Without effort and without worry
they built their nests,
Dozing peacefully in the green trees.
God's morning cry rings.
Early red blazes in heaven's seams:
Birds shake themselves and sing.

After the springs short delight
Dwindles rapidly the summers glory,
Clouding mist covers the sun,
Already is the winter's night near.
For us it will be bleak,
for us it will be cloudy,
The birds fly to the south,
Across the blue ocean, they fly to a new spring.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Little Visitor

I saw a female Downy Woodpecker at the feeder this afternoon.  It was the fist female I've seen, and I imagine it was last Fall when I saw a male.

Picture from here.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Baha'i Faith and the Soviets

In "Religion in the Soviet Union" (1962), Walter Kolarz notes:

"Islam…is attacked by the communists because it is 'reactionary', encourages nationalist narrowmindness and obstructs the education and emancipation of women. Baha'iism (sic) has incurred communist displeasure for exactly the opposite reasons. It is dangerous to Communism because of its broadmindness, its tolerance, its international outlook, the attention it pays to women's education and its insistence on equality of the sexes. All this contradicts the communist thesis about the backwardness of all religions."

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Cobb, California

We stopped at Cobb on our motorcycle trip in Northern California a few lifetimes ago.

Friday, September 18, 2015

One more coyote

Was a cowboy I knew in south Texas
His face was burnt deep by the sun
Part history, part sage, part mesquit
He was there when Pancho Villa was young

And he'd tell you a tale of the old days
When the country was wild all around
Sit out under the stars of the Milky Way
And listen while the coyotes howl

And they go... poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo
poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo

Now the longhorns are gone
And the drovers are gone
The Comanches are gone
And the outlaws are gone
Geronimo is gone
And Sam Bass is gone
And the lion is gone
And the red wolf is gone

Well he cursed all the roads and the oil men
And he cursed the automobile
Said this is no place for an hombre like I am
In this new world of asphalt and steel

Then he'd look off some place in the distance
At something only he could see
He'd say all that's left now of the old days
Those damned old coyotes and me

And they go poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo
poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo

Now the long horns are gone
And the drovers are gone
The Comanches are gone
And the outlaws are gone
Now Quantah is gone
Stand Waite is gone
And the lion is gone
And the red wolf is gone

One morning they searched his adobe
He disappeared without even a word
But that night as the moon crossed the mountain
One more coyote was heard

And he'd go, poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo
poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo

poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo
poo yip poo yip poo
poodi hoo di yip poo di yip poo   

Thursday, September 17, 2015

моя птичка

I don't have a recent picture of my precious granddaughter Ella (She's six months old!!), but I've been thinking about her. What joy she has brought into this world!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Intoning the verses of God, and its effect

Intone, O My servant, the verses of God that have been received by thee,
as intoned by them who have drawn nigh unto Him,
that the sweetness of thy melody may kindle thine own soul,
and attract the hearts of all men. Whoso reciteth, in the privacy of his chamber,
the verses revealed by God, the scattering angels of the Almighty
shall scatter abroad the fragrance of the words uttered by his mouth,
and shall cause the heart of every righteous man to throb.
Though he may, at first, remain unaware of its effect, yet the virtue
of the grace vouchsafed unto him must needs sooner or later exercise
its influence upon his soul. Thus have the mysteries of the Revelation
of God been decreed by virtue of the Will of Him
Who is the Source of power and wisdom.  --Baha'u'llah

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Driving through Hell

COBB, Lake County — Investigators pinpointed a possible origin of the Valley Fire on Tuesday — a small shed outside a home in the all-but-destroyed town of Cobb — while firefighters gained ground on the 67,200-acre inferno.  SFGate

Monday, September 14, 2015

Black and White Photographs

Black and white images I've taken over the years.

San Juan Grade Road taken with a twin-lens 2 1/2" format Rolleiflex in 1970.  The road  takes you from Natividad in the Salinas Valley to San Juan Bautista.

This was taken looking north from Fireman's Park in Tacoma.  It's my favorite part of Tacoma. You can see Brown's Point in the upper right corner, and Vashon Island beyond.  

This picture of San Francisco from Twin Peaks was also taken in 1970 with my Rolleiflex.

Spreckels sugar factory and the Salinas River.

Sandstone erosion at Point Lobos.

This was taken at the Highland's Inn during a coffee break.  We were repairing a retaining wall that failed during the storms of 1969.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Saturday, September 12, 2015

A Phenomenal Athlete


Herb with Daughters

Herb with daughters in Pescadero.

(And Sarah)

Friday, September 11, 2015

One World Trade Center

One World Trade Center is a beautiful structure.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015



This was always the problem area.  I think I finally got a handle on it.  It will improve when the rhododendron grows a bit more as well as the cypress.

It looked a lot different  ten years ago.  The redbud and magnolia didn't work out at all.  I need to paint the studio and re-work the fence.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015



I saw a House Finch in the feeder today. The coloring wasn't as dramatic as this bird, but the contrast of the red and gray was very noticeable.  I It's been awhile since I've seen one.

Red and gray were the colors of my alma mater, Carmel High School. The 50th reunion will be held next week. It's hard to believe, but reality is setting in. Especially in the mornings.


Sunday, September 6, 2015


I secured a roost for the birds in the Armstrong Maple the other day.  It's designed to give at least 6 birds shelter during inclement winter weather.  It has a little ladder inside for the birds to perch on.

By coincidence*, there was a windstorm the other night, and the maple split from the acute crotch (about seven feet above ground level) almost to the ground.  

I've temporarily secured the tree, but the  trunk will require a number of bolts to securely hold the tree together (I'm thinking 1/2" threaded rods through drilled holes with plate washers).  

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Long Way from Brooklyn

LONG WAY FROM BROOKLYN -- by Down to the Bone

In concert

Friday, September 4, 2015

Killing a Mockingbird

“Atticus said to Jem one day, "I’d rather you shot at tin cans in the backyard, but I know you’ll go after birds. Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird." That was the only time I ever heard Atticus say it was a sin to do something, and I asked Miss Maudie about it. "Your father’s right," she said. "Mockingbirds don’t do one thing except make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corn cribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”

― Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Wednesday, September 2, 2015


I came across this picture of an old adobe in Tijuana, and it reminded me of my garage/studio.

I also found these examples of simple and appealing Mexican architecture.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015