Monday, October 31, 2011


This year was the first time in more than a decade that I carved a pumpkin for Halloween.  Even more surprising, it was the first time that Barbie ever carved a pumpkin.  This was one of those activities where the means were much more rewarding than the end.

We tried to make a “scary jack-o-lantern” but I think it became more of a “silly jack-o-lantern.”  So we used some photography tricks to make it scarier…

Out of the Dark Jack-o-Lantern

Glowing With Fire Jack-o-Lantern

Puppy Jack-o-Lantern

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A Baltimore Basket Of Cheer

Last week my office held an auction to raise money for the American Cancer Society.  The items that were auctioned were theme based baskets that were created by AOL employees as well as AOL’s partners.  All of the proceeds from the auctions went to the American Cancer Society.

Barbie and I ended up winning three items that we bid on.  The last of our one items arrived today and we laughed heartily when we got it into our house.  This basked was called the “Baltimore Basket of Cheer” since it was assembled by AOL’s Baltimore office.

The picture below was taken (appropriately) in what we are calling our “cantina”.

Evolution of “Poli-Marketing”

The 2011 November General Elections are quickly approaching and with them marks the culmination of the current election season.

I pride myself on being a good civic-minded citizen and try to research all of the issues and candidates for every election I can vote in.  The ability to to this research is occasionally inhibited by trite marketing that I find extremely annoying.

I think everyone has seen this “poli-marketing” all over this country – the signage and air-time that is dedicated to a marketing brand rather than the substance behind the options presented on a ballot.  I know that this trite-ness is by and large a by-product of the economics where political advertisements are competing for the same real estate (both literal and metaphorical) as businesses that are also advertising.

With that preface, I must admit that I am amazed that I found the video below captivating.  This video is one that was released just this week and it supports interim San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee in his candidacy for a second full term in that office.  This video doesn’t mention any of Lee’s qualifications or positions on anything that he will be entrusted with if he wins.  Instead, it is a 2:20 barrage of celebrity endorsements from the citizens where he is seeking election.  And it is a very elegant package of them.

The San Francisco celebrities in the video include:

  • Brian Wilson (Current SF Giants Pitcher)
  • MC Hammer (Rapper)
  • Will.I.Am (Pop Artist and Music Producer)
  • Biz Stone (Founder of SF-Based Twitter)
  • Ronnie Lott (Past SF 49ers Linebacker)
  • Willie Brown (former Mayor of SF)
  • Jed York (SF 49ers Owner)
  • Marissa Mayor (VP of SF-based Google)
  • Hunter Walk (Director of SF-based YouTube)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Following A Storm

Following three days of rain, we finally got a break from the weather this afternoon.  As luck would have it the rain stopped and the sun began to break through the clouds just as I got home from work today.

I decided to take a couple pictures of the rain as it sat on some of the plants in our back yard before they evaporated or fell to the ground.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

ESPN Sports Century

I saw this on Ted Leonsis’ blog with a comment about getting chills watching it.  I must say that by half way though the 7 minute video I was indeed sitting with goose bumps as I remembered watching some of these live and hearing about them from older family members.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Another Sign Of Autumn

After more than a week of cool temperatures (low's in the 40's) we have some nice weather this weekend. Today's high is close to 80.

I took this picture if one of the trees in our back yard this morning. It looks like the foliage around our home is quickly moving into "full burn" colors.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Our Moon

Last month Barbie got a telescope for her birthday.  Earlier this week we ordered a t-ring adapter so that we could mount our DSLR camera to it.  Today that adapter came in, and once connected we essentially have an extremely powerful lens on a camera body that can capture an incredible amount of information.

Below is one of the images I took with this new combination of technology.  This image is un-filtered and had had no changes other than size so that it would fit cleanly in our blog layout (I reduced it from 4372 x 2848 to 548 x 366).

Sunday, October 2, 2011

A Chill In The Air...

And a fire in the pit. We got a new fire pit for the back yard last week. With autumn temperatures here (high's in the 50's and low's in the 40's), we decided to take the new pit out for a spin.

This pit is different than our previous one in that we can cover it with several pieces of wood within it. This is something that we have really been looking for so that we could try to contain as much spark as possible.

After one night of use, this pit is working very well.