Redneck Windchimes

October 02, 2009 at 12:00 PM in: artifacts, photos

Assembled from bits found cleaning up a campsite this summer...

lead, brass, fishing line

materials: copper, lead, brass, fishing line

The rANch: moist, not crispy

August 31, 2009 at 12:00 PM in: photos

Another chapter in the improbable history of Cataclysmic Megashear RaNCh.

Yesterday a four-alarm fire destroyed four warehouses and damaged three others on our block in Bayview. The rAnch was unburned, in spite of fire burning on two sides. Water damage was minimal, in spite of the ladder truck overhead and firefighters tearing out the two windows in the great room in order to hose down the building in back. Here's a view through one of those windows:

Unbelievable. Our guardian angel(s) (not to mention the SF Fire Dept) were working overtime. Mauricia's painting hanging next to the window escaped with nothing more than some spray. Her studio in the next room was completely dry. The wood shop downstairs looks like it will be ok after it dries out.

We started some cleanup last night, in a surreal atmosphere of mist and smoke and floodlights as the fire trucks continued to pour water on the smoldering wreckage next door. Nobody was hurt and no residences burned.

Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to be shot at without result.
- Winston Churchill


March 30, 2009 at 12:00 PM in: photos

Sand from the base of Eureka Dunes

Desert sand has sharper edges than water-tumbled beach sand.

More exotic sand photos at

Cloud shadow

February 25, 2009 at 12:00 PM in: photos

This shadow of a cloud near the horizon stretched halfway across the sky.

This is the most pronounced cloud shadow I've ever seen. The cloud in question appears to be the bright white streak near the horizon, which is almost but not exactly lined up with the shadow. But why the strange alignment of the original cloud? It could be a contrail, but it's very thick and fluffy and seems to start very suddenly.

The shadow stretched halfway across the sky.

Aspen Palette

November 24, 2008 at 12:00 PM in: color, photos
Aspen Palette - Lake Sabrina, September 24 2008

Aspen Palette - Lake Sabrina, September 24 2008

Leaves collected near Lake Sabrina in the Eastern Sierras (at about 9200' elevation). Arrangement inspired by Andy Goldsworthy, of course.

The orange/peach colored leaves are new to me - in Colorado and New Mexico I've only seen the golden yellows.

Guidance for next year: California Fall color reports - Fall color updates for the Eastern Sierras