Sunday, July 31, 2011

Summer Evenings are Full of Lights and Shadows

Here are pictures from a summer evening spent at a local pub. I haven't been in school for about five years now but I still seek out that feeling of carefree ease that use to accompany every summer evening. It never is the same though, but sometimes warm air and the sound of swirling fans almost tricks me.

The other day I was at a grocery store wandering through the fruit section in hopes all my favorite fruits were on sale. I over heard a part of a conversation in which a man in his mid thirties said "I just saw it last night. I couldn't believe Darth Vader was his father!"

Friday, July 29, 2011

Birthdays and BBQ's.

My friend Lucas had a birthday BBQ. Sometimes I wish I was born in Summer so I could have a birthday full of swimming and BBQs. But when it comes down to it, Fall is my favorite season and I quite enjoy having birthdays full of colorful leaves and cinnamon smelling gusts of wind.

(This dog really liked Stephanie. I was a bit jealous.)

(She was a very sweet dog.)

When I was at this BBQ, Stephanie told me that while she was at the lake earlier that day, she witnessed a blood thirsty crow swoop down and kidnap a poor duckling in order to consume the little bird. This has been my summer of 'encounters with crows eating strange things.' First, I saw a crow attack an innocent song bird in my yard. I tried to scare it off from the defenseless little creature, but I was too late. The bird was already dead. The crow flew away due to my hollering, but he returned later to consume his kill. Next, while walking home I heard the familiar flap of crows wings overhead. I looked up and saw a crow flying with what appeared to be a tail danging from his beak. When he landed on top a street lamp, I was able to inspect more thoroughly from my distance on the ground. He had captured a little mouse and was now proceeding to munch upon it. I actually got a picture of this occurrence and I will probably upload the picture on some later date. Then, just the other day, I saw a mother crow feeding her babies (who just looked like grown up crows with lighter colored feathers.) It looked as if she was feeding her babies a bright piece of red plastic, but maybe it was a rose petal. She would chew up the 'food' and spit it into her hungry babies open beaks. One of her babies was especially loud and that bird go the most. The other two birds docilely stood by while their greedy sibling got most of the food. It made me think of that old saying 'The squeaky wheel gets the oil.'
 I have a friend who views crows as his animal nemesis. He has better reason than most. Crows seem to always dive bomb him. But after witnessing the aggressive nature of crows, I have a greater understanding of his perspective. Despite this, I think crows are a very fascinating bird! I saw an episode of 'Nature' that was all about crows. The narrator referred to the crow as 'The Feathered Ape' due to their high intelligence. They are indeed smart! They have their own language, they can recognize human faces and they can count up to four.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Take, meee out, to the, ballll game!

I went to my first ever baseball game recently. I'm not much of a sports fan and most of my knowledge comes from the old song 'Take Me Out To the Ball Game.' Based on this song, I knew I wanted peanuts and cracker jacks to go along with my baseball game. Those were two goals that were easily accomplished! My favorite player to watch was Ichiro. He's so graceful. He moves like a dancer. Although, I have not developed an overwhelming love for the sport, it was a good time. I felt like I was really embracing the summer season. (Even if the dreary Seattle summer weather isn't embracing me.)

Remember in the 1990's there were all these baseball movies that came out, especially for kids? The nineties were the golden age for baseball movies. My favorite was 'The Sandlot.' It made me wish I had a crew of mischievous baseball loving friends who were always up to summer time hijinks. What was it about the 1990's that made baseball movies so prevalent? Here are my theories:
* In the 90's, people who were children in the fifties were now on the brink of old age. Any semblance of childhood had vanished years ago. The fifties were also a time often connected with the sport of baseball. So in the nineties, the baseball movies popularity was partially connected to the nostalgic indulgence of people in their fifties and sixties.
*In the nineties, things were good for America! Well, at least in comparison to other decades. The economy was soaring, technological advances were zooming us toward a new way of life, living standards were high, and international affairs were relatively stable. All the good times were making the American populous swell with pride. And baseball, of course, is thought of as a very all-American sport. You might even say as American as apple pie. The love for baseball was just a spill over from a general love for everything that represented America.
When I talked to D about this, he said that baseball movies and baseball in general have always popular. But then in the nineties there was a baseball strike that made people loose interest in baseball. So rather than an increased interest in the nineties, there has been a decrease in interest in the proceeding years.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Delphine Ushers the Penguins Through the Forest

The penguins have spent their entire lives in the arctic. They don't even really understand what the concept of 'hot' means. The color green is foreign to them. Actually, most colors are foreign to them except bleary white and it's shades of gray, and sometimes the blue of sky. A trio of especially curious penguins decided it was time to explore the world! They want to visit all the different habitats of earth: the desert, the sea, the grasslands, and whatever other strange worlds exist in the unknown that lays past the arctic tundra. The first habitat the penguins decide to visit is the forest. Unfortunately, their sense of direction and keen intuition is less refined than they thought. They wander merrily through the trees but soon discover they are lost! It is lucky they run in to Delphine. Delphine has lived in the forest all her life, but has never seen a penguin. In all her life, she has never even heard of a penguins and has little familiarity with the arctic. She suggests that next time they find themselves lost they should fly past the tree line and look down to see which direction they should go. The penguins give her a menacing look. Delphine wanders what it is she has said to offend them.