Nikon P900 Trip Report

We were gone from August 30th to September 16th and — as mentioned in THIS post — of the 8,859 photos I shot, 4,273 were shot with the Nikon P900. In fact, up to the very last, I had considered not even bringing my D7000 and associated lenses. 

I compromised by bringing only a couple of the lenses. I did use the D7000 and the individual lenses mostly to compare their photos to those of the P900. I’ll explore those comparisons in future posts about the trip, but this post is about photos that while taken on my way to, or while in, Alaska, are not necessarily tied to the Alaska experience. 

All of the photos on this post are from the P900 (116 photos in all) and they are presented as a service to those who might — as I am — increasingly consider using “less capable” equipment than the prosumer offerings out there. 

Each section will have its own gallery so as to “split up” the onslaught of visual goodness. It should go without mention — but it won’t — this is not a short post. 

Let’s get to it.

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Posted in Animals, Birds, Flowers, Macro Photography, Photography, Photography How To, Photography Stuff | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

I think all the time

That’s not unique, and yet . . . I get the feeling most people aren’t thinking about the things I think about or — if they are — they’re not thinking about them the same way.

Let me get the following out of the way: I am not saying I’m right, not claiming to be better, not asking anyone to agree with me.  

In fact, I welcome contrarian and dissenting opinions. Mind you, “welcome” means that I’ll engage you in a discussion. If you think differently, if you think I’m wrong, if you find fault with my logic, the kindest thing you can do is to make me see the light.

What do I think about? Why, everything and anything, of course. My mind is like a butterfly in a vast flowering field, each flower representing a different opportunity to “taste” new ideas.

I imagine some of what I ponder is common with other people’s interests. It’s difficult making the case that what’s happening — both here in the US and globally — is of little consequence to our lives so it makes sense that it should occupy a fair amount of our attention.

I am, perhaps, more pessimistic than most when it comes to our future as a society and as a species. Except, maybe, the people who believe the world will end today. That’s not hyperbole. Some people figure September 23, 2017, marks either the end or the beginning of the end of the world, literally. Furthermore, they’re happy — even giddy — at the prospect. You see, their imaginary friend is supposed to show up and basically mass-execute the majority of humanity. Yay!

My pessimism, however, stems from considering many interconnected factors. I suppose the big elephant in the room is the government, and before assumptions are made as to my stance on particular individuals, please understand my contempt for politicians is broad-based and indiscriminate.

It’s true that I have zero respect for the buffoon currently in the Whitehouse, zero respect for the party he represents, and zero respect for lingering supporters, but don’t take that to mean I hold any favorable views about the opposition party.

. . . do you know what’s funny about that last paragraph? I could have written that during the terms of any of the last seven presidents and it would be just as valid as it is today.

Why only the last seven? Well, that takes me to my late twenties; before that, my brain was not fully developed[1] [2] and hence actions and decisions and opinions and beliefs before then are suspect. Any opinion I could offer about Ford and Nixon is due more to reading history than relying on personal experience I could trust.

That, by the way, is one of the reasons I’m not as worried as some are about what they see happening on many campuses . . . them kid’s brains are still forming.

I guess the difference between me knowing everything back when I was in my early twenties versus now at my current ripe age of sixty-four is that now there’s a better chance of it being true.  

~ ~ ~ o o o ~ ~ ~

Levity aside, the election of Trump has exposed something that might be useful, namely, just how dysfunctional our government is in the face of any challenge of note. I say it *might* be useful because all evidence points to us not making use of the information.

Of course, we get what we sow[3]. Meaning, we get the government we deserve, the government we elect, the government that not only reflects but also magnifies who we are.

Before readers start claiming they did or didn’t vote for this or that other candidate, know that I speak of generalities. Like it or not, we are a fractured society, split apart by overwhelming self-interest reinforced by ignorance, driven by a sense of entitlement fed by a false narrative, and hampered by a lack of grit, self-reliance, and fortitude.

Today, everyone is a victim of this or that injustice, usually perpetrated by others who, coincidentally, feel exactly the same way. The key word is “victim.” Honest, is there anyone left who is not a victim of something or other?

Be it this presidency or the last or the prior ones, people elect into office candidates who confirm the voter’s victimhood and promise not just restitution, but retribution.

Before you argue, be prepared to defend specific actions on behalf of specific groups, be they arranged by gender, ethnicity, or religious affiliation. Sure, the players change, but that just deepens the divide as we transition from one administration to the next.

I don’t know if there is an actual “they” other than as a loosely organized block of special (business) interests and crooked politicians, but regardless, I’ll say that “they” like it like this.

~ ~ ~ o o o ~ ~ ~

There is a case to be made that identity politics is at the root of a lot of the strife and is pushed because it takes attention away from bigger and more systemic problems.

The term is probably overused by some and misused by others, but for the purpose of this discussion, I refer to the Wikipedia definition whereas identity politics “refers to political positions based on the interests and perspectives of social groups with which people identify.”  

On the surface, it seems like a good idea but — per my observation — the benefits quickly get swallowed up by a common problem.

Let me illustrate it thus . . . let’s say there’s a population of hungry people. Now, let’s say people start grouping themselves by weight.  

As a population, they have to solve the problem of being hungry, but they instead get tangled in arguments about who is hungrier based on weight disparity and how that disparity should be addressed. The lighter people maintain they are the most deprived and hence should get extra food. The heavier people maintain they have the higher requirement of caloric intake and hence they should get extra food. People in between the extreme side with one side or the other depending on where they fall from the mean.

Soon, no one is working on solving the hunger problem as they’re all too busy arguing about who deserves special treatment in the form of more access to food which no one is working to get.

It’s an oversimplification, but that’s where I see us now . . . people no longer debate how to solve problems, but rather debate who can claim the greatest victimhood.  

While there are real problems with disparities based on gender, ethnicity, and so-called “racial” characteristics, they pale in comparison to the fact the majority of people face similar economic struggles.

To my tired eyes, we all lose when the argument shifts from how do we feed everyone, to which group is more deserving to be fed first/better/more/etc.   

This group-self-identification — often fueled by people who stand to personally gain from promoting such views — is what has contributed to an increasing divide in the US population.

Now, sure as shit, someone is thinking something along the lines of “yeah, but you’re white, so everything else being equal, you’re always going to fare better.”

I got news for you; I’ll fare better because I’m educated and have some money and that is somewhat tied to me having a bit of brain and even more to have come here to the US as opposed to remaining in what is now Slovenia.

“Because you’re white!” someone still yells.

Except, and this is the key point I’m trying to make, there are whites who fare no better than anyone else despite their whiteness, and there are nonwhites who fare better than I do despite their non-whiteness.

“But, but, ratios, numbers, trends, statistics!” someone yells even louder.

I guess it depends on what you choose to look at. More whites are poor (18.8 million[4]) than other races. Switch to percentages within individual groups, and there is a lower percentage of the white population that is poor compared to other ethnic/racial groups.[5]

At this point, someone starts throwing the “racist” label my way and explaining how I don’t understand white privilege. Rest assured I understand all sorts of privileges, some that I have and many I don’t. When talking about privilege, people concentrate on race, but ignore other characteristics leading to unearned privilege . . . in general, tall people fare better than short people in most careers, as do “beautiful people” (as currently defined by a fickle society), as do people who are born into wealth (regardless of other markers), as do people who are fit as opposed to overweight, and people who are smart could be accused of cognitive privilege. There are all sorts of privilege that is unearned and my point is that the answer is not to add more categories but to even the playing field. 

Americal Indians have the highest rate of poverty than African-Americans, and African-Americans have a higher rate than Hispanics. Some groups are not even mentioned in the national news, but they too fill the ranks of the poor.

But, let me ask you this . . . say you are poor — and unless you are an American Indian — do you feel any better or worse knowing there might be a greater or lesser percentage of poor in a group other than your own?

I’m going to call it a strong “NO!” . . . you are still poor. At that point, you’re not so much interested how your “group” is doing as much as how you and the rest of the poor people are doing, regardless which group you belong to.

 I think identity victimhood is derailing our discussion about what to do about problems we all face. Also, when someone starts demanding more help for one group versus another, it can — and does — cause resentment, suspicion, and more victimhood.

Some might ask “Tell us, oh sage one, what is the answer?”

Weren’t you listening? There is no answer, at least not in the near future. As I see it, once we depart from rationality, compromise, reasoned and honest discourse, once we splinter into groups and groups within groups, and more groups, we’re all gonna eventually go the way of the Dodo. That’s the heading we’re on now, per my estimation.

We’ve been there before, to be sure, and we’ve survived it but living through it — as we are now — is pretty shitty. Plus, I still say there’s a good chance one of these times we don’t survive it, and the US will be no more. At least not as it was conceived and idealized.

Where will all those groups be then?

~ ~ ~ o o o ~ ~ ~

Besides, if we’re going to talk about groups that are maligned, mistrusted, and generally despised, I give you . . . atheists. Heck, one-in-five Americans don’t think citizens who are atheists have the same rights as other citizens. [3]

The chances of an openly atheist politician getting elected to any office are slim . . . to the Presidency? . . . 100% . . . no one is going to convince me Trump is religious even though he ran with the Bible (pristine, unread, and upsidedown) in his hand. Without the support of the Fanatical Christians . . . er . . . Evangelical Christians, he would have lost. And, don’t tell me they voted for him because they saw Trump as an astute politician. Nope. He promised them religious tyranny . . . er . . . religious freedom.

You can argue — and I do — that religion is one of the pillars (the other being race) supporting identity politics.

I don’t think I’ve been as worried as I am now about the possibility of a Taliban-like Christian faction taking power here in the US.

Again, not hyperbole. I mentioned before . . . for Christians, god comes before country. It even comes before family. The Christian god, of course. I stand by my statement that their condemnation of Sharia Law is based on envy and not on hating the idea that religious law should replace secular laws.

It amazes me that in this day and age we still hear religious leaders blame the unfaithful for having drawn god’s punishment in the form of natural disasters.[6][7][8] There are elected officials who have voiced similar concerns.

That is of particular concern because I have no desire to serve the role of scapegoat in the eyes of irrational and delusional people.

Wait . . . I hear it’s insensitive and insulting calling people who believe in made-up stuff delusional. Why, some people are even proposing laws to punish anyone who says things like that. They can’t very well pass a blasphemy law[9] (not yet), but they are working their way to it by expanding the idea of Hate Speech. All you need is to claim to be offended, and you might be able to put someone in jail for calling you delusional. Perhaps I should smile when I say these things. You know, one of my disarming smiles that end up making me look like a hyena about to feast on a carcass.

. . . perhaps I should just be quiet . . . people would like that.

But no . . . I also have opinions about out international affairs. Luckily, that’s gonna wait for a different post.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.

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Note: if you are not reading this blog post at DisperserTracks.com, know that it has been copied without permission, and likely is being used by someone with nefarious intention, like attracting you to a malware-infested website.  Could be they also torture small mammals.

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Please, if you are considering bestowing me recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so.  I will decline blogger-to-blogger awards.   I appreciate the intent behind it, but I prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way.  That would mean something to me.

If you wish to know more, please read below.

About awards: Blogger Awards
About “likes”:   Of “Likes”, Subscriptions, and Stuff

Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.

. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

Finally, if you interpret anything on this blog as me asking or wanting pity, sympathy, or complaining about my life, or asking for help and advice, know you’re  likely missing my subtle mix of irony, sarcasm, and humor.

Posted in Musings Stuff, Opinion, Personal, Politics, Religion, Writing Stuff | Tagged , , , , , | 15 Comments

Deep Dream Generator — The Animal Files

I could be losing it, but I thought I posted the animal files already . . . but I can’t find the post. Man, I hate getting old. Sure, there’s the excitement of everything being new again as the memory function detariorates, but there’s also the nagging suspicion one is just going in circles.  

Of course, it could also be that I use the same photos for multiple styles applications and I’ve done so many that they are all starting to blend together. Yeah, that’s it! It’s not that I’m losing my mind . . . it’s that I’m too prolific!

Anyway, welcome to yet another Deep Dream post. This might be the last one for a while because this set is the last of the DD I’ve run to date. To be sure, I’ll be running others, but not for a little while.  

So, here we go . . . 

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Posted in Photography, Photography Stuff | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

Alaska Cruise – General Thoughts

Edited to Add: I’ve added a gallery at the bottom of the post for them who are just interested in the photos.

~ ~ ~ o o o ~ ~ ~

“Where is he?!” no one asked.

I’ve been back since Sunday evening but other than reading a few blogs and adding my 1.34¢ here and there, I’ve been mostly concentrating on fighting a hitchhiker from my trip. 

Nope, not that very nice dog — although I wouldn’t mind it. The hitchhiker is some kind of bug. 

It’s been a few days of coughing, sneezing, suffering a running nose, getting older, and getting uglier — although, I can’t rightly blame the bug for the last two. Last night I thought I had “gotten over the hump” but it turns out it was only the lull before the big assault. This morning I woke up with a very sore throat and a painful cough that seems to come all the way up from my toes. Yes, yes; also, older and uglier. 

I can tell you about the cruise as a way of getting my mind off the incessant use of tissues, sipping on water to minimize having to cough, going to the bathroom because of the constant sipping, wiping every surface I touch with a Clorox wipe and washing my hands whenever I blow my nose or cough or plan to touch anything in the condo (trying to spare Melisa what I’m going through). And, I can tell you about the cruise in a very long post. Good luck getting through it all. Not a snarky challenge, by the way; an actual wish for the fortitude to finish it all. 

By the way, a little hint . . . well, a couple of hints. Some tissue makers try to sell you tissues with lotion. Don’t bother. Buy Puff’s “Ultra Soft” tissues. Your nose will thank you for it (it won’t get raw from the constant blowing) and they won’t disintegrate in your hands whenever you use them. The other hint is to mix up a solution of water and 10% bleach . . . I dip a Bounty (actually, a cheaper brand paper towel) in it, wring it, and then use it as I grab things like coffee pots or water pitchers. The goal is to irritate the bugs as much as they annoy me.

The photos in this post are a sampling of the 8,859 photos I snapped during the trip. This includes photos from our visit to Illinois, where we touched base with our respective families. 

Yes, 8,859 photos, broken down thus:

1,478 (3.8 GB) from the Samsung Note II using the Open Camera App.
3,108 (28.5 GB) from the Nikon D7000 with either the 50mm or the 70-200mm lens.
4,273 (28.0 GB) from the Nikon P900

In all fairness, many of those are bracketed shots (especially the phone as I used it mostly on the ship) that increase the chances of getting at least one properly exposed shot out of the three, and failing that, perhaps join the photos using an HDR program.

By the way, the photos in this post are presented in the order they were shot and I’m not identifying if they are from the phone, the D7000, or the P900. You can take a guess, and future posts will let you know if you guessed right. Some people claim the ability to tell them all apart (a photographer I met on the cruise). 

Each photo can be clicked for a larger version and there’s a SmugMug Gallery HERE with these same photos in their original size. If you go to SmugMug, your chances of guessing the source of each photo is a bit better as the sizes jump by a factor of two between each one. The photos on this post are all sized the same (1280 pixel for the longest dimension)

That said, I won’t be talking about any specific photo; this post is more about general impressions of the ship, the cruise, and the sights. 

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Posted in Alaska, Alaska, Cruise Ship, Machines, Macro Photography, Photography, Photography Stuff, Scenery, Travel Stuff | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Juneau – The Phone Files

We’re in Vancouver . . . great city, fast-paced, and I’ve had one of the best hamburgers I can remember at a place called Doolin’s Irish Pub (connected to the hotel we’re staying in, so not far to go — although, we did go for a walk-about).

Melisa had the Fish-n-Chips which was also good. Even got to listen to one of our favorite Pogues songs. 

But, this post — if I can finish it before I crash –is about Juneau.

That’s dawn looking out of our balcony . . . the things is, while I like that shot, I missed a number of better ones as the light changed and I watched in awe . . . and forgot I had two cameras plus the phone and none of them were in use. Still, as I said, I like that shot. 

Invariably, people get off the boat and hit the shops. I do as well, but my main interest are the various bits that capture my photographic interest . . . 

Occasionally, I spruce them up a bit using Pixlr.

I also like to photograph signs and displays adorning the various walkways.

. . . I spruce them up as well . . . 

The visitor center provided me with a number of texture photos for when I do more Deep Dreams.

That’s the building, but I took closeups of the various textures. They should work well.

Sometimes, certain buildings attract my interest . . . I can’t explain why, but I obediently snap a photo. 

That last photo reminded me a bit of the Abbey Road (?) Beatle’s album Probably, because of the mountain.

Those metalworks figures adorn the wall of the parking garage and Library. 

Here’s another version of it.

I mentioned before there is a fish culture here; lots of decoration featuring fish or fish-related activities. 

However, bears are a close second.

I missed this Saloon the last time we were here. Not that we went in now, but I did snap a photo.

Despite the obvious lack of customers, this was a busy place. 

I don’t know what that building is, but I like the colors combinations. 

But, as I said, shops and suveniers. 

So, that looked primed for some work . . . 

That is a quilt. If there’s a quilting shop in the area, Melisa will usually find it . . . and I don’t mind. These too will be used for some of my Deep Dreams efforts. 

But, I can also play with them here . . . 

Not a very involved variation, but one I liked.

Given my gravatar, this quilt I had to snap.

Honest, I thought this was a penguin until I looked at the photo . . . But, no penguins up here, but there are whales and there’s a history tying whales to both the original tribes in the areas and the subsequent explorers.

Here’s a variation of the above.

I thought the star on the “penguin’s” beak was great . . . But I suppose it’s passable as a whale’s tail.

OK, one more quilt, also about an iconic animal of the North.

Enough inside and quilts; let’s head outside . . . 

This is a sculpture or decoration outside the visitor center. It intrigued me enough to play with it more than once. 

Here’s another angle . . . 

These shots were all shot with the phone with this post in mind.  I did shoot a nuber of other photos  . . . A word of advice for people considering the P900; excellent camera, but it chews up batteries. I was shooting an egle when my first battery died. By the time I replaced the battery, the bird was gone.

This sign deserves multiple treatments. 

More photos from the P900, but not really that many more. 

Considering these are all from the phone — a now ancient Samsung Note II — and at least to my poor and tired eyes, they look pretty good. 

As usual please excuse errors. 

I mean, feel free to mention them so that I can correct them, but don’t feel that you have to. 

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A quick update from Ketchikan

Don’t mean to mislead people, but the title refers to the location where this is being composed, and it’s not — in fact — a post about Ketchikan. 

By the way, in this Internet Age, I won’t be including a whole lot of background information about the places we visit. That’s what Google is for. 

That’s one of le lounges on the ship. I beautified it a bit, but it looks pretty nice all on its own. 

As I mentioned before, the visit to Glacier Bay was very nice because the weather was just about perfect for both viewing and for photography. By that, I mean it was bright enough to get decent photos, but not so bright that the ice would reflect back too bright. 

Once back to the condo, I’ll do proper updates with names and better photos. The panoramas from the phone as not as good as I would like because each app has different speeds they prefer. 

My current app of choice for shooting photos with the phone is Open Camera

The Captain said this was the closest they have ever got to the glacier . . . 600 feet. 

The face of the glacier is about 400 feet tall. We did see a bit of calving and it’s both visually and aurally impressive (sure hope I spelled the word correctly . . . and used correctly, too). The ice makes a *very* loud sound when it cracks; a sound that travels across the water and hits with a level disproportionate to what you imagine given the distance and scales involved.

We saw more than one, but we only got close to two of them.

I snapped hundreds of photos with both my D7000 and the P900. One comment about the P900 for anyone interested in purchasing one. Get extra batteries. 

Wait, one more comment, this one directed at the Nikon engineers responsible for arranging buttons in the back . . . move the movie record/stop button to a location better suited and more natural to rest one’s thumb. I will have to edit most of the movies because the act of hitting stop jostles the camera when hand-held. If using a tripod, it’s no problem.

The other button is the one switching between the viewfinder and the preview screen. Move that button next to the new location for the video record/stop button. 

Oh, and add RAW processing while you’re at it. 

Seriously, I’ll take the buttons as they are if you add RAW. 

Having said that, given a cursury review of the photos, I think I’ll be happy with most of them. 

And now, a selfie.

That’s me, sitting at the back of the ship as we left Glacier Bay and headed toward Haines. 

This is Haines . . . 

These were taken whilst standing in the middle of the street pretty much in front of the local IGA (for all you foreigners, it’s a supermarket). Surprisingly, the prices were not outrageous despite this being pretty much in the middle of nowhere. 

Also, Sheldon has a museum here. 

They wanted $15 to visit the inside . . . I opted for a few outdoor photos. 

That is a neat polished rock and a small evergreen. Across the street, there are a couple of colorful buildings . . . 

I thought that combining the two might be a good idea.

There were a number of sculptures adorning the space around the museum . . . 

Most of the scenery photos were shot with the P900, so this will have more close-ups and macros than anything else. But, don’t worry . . . you’ll eventually see about 300 other hotos from Haines. Some might even be good.

This next photo is of a coring(?) or boring(?) machine called The Keystone Driller. It was used to sample the ground by drilling out a bunch of dirt and checking for gold content. 

This was taken during a walk to the “new” part of the town. The “old” part consists of the original fort. Again, more when I do proper post. 

I didn’t make it down to read the little sign accopanying this display, but my guess is that it has something to do with either dogs or wagons or both.

This next shot is of the ship moored to one of the piers. As I mentioned, we stopped in Haines because a rock slide hit the pier in Skagway. That means that ships scheduled for Skagway were redirected to other ports. Haines usually gets one ship a week, so they were happy for the business. In contrast, Skagway can get up to four ships a day. 

While I’m at it, here are some signage . . . 

Noth sure what that’s supposed to signify since most people do that without being told. 

Here is one more of the ship.

The Coral is one of the last remaining jet-powered cruise ships. The sucker can really move when it wants to, but the noise can be verwhelming . . . that’s why they give you earplugs for when it’s under sail. 

The fort part of Haines is a mix of beautiful Victorian-style homes . . . 

. . . Homes that are being renovated, and older still historical buildings. Some people have old stuff on display in their yards.

To the upper right of the frame, you can see a small cannon . . . I presume it’s a version of a harpoon gun for whalers, but I suppose it could also be an actual cannon from the original fort. 

. . . I wish I could have cannons in my front yard . . . 

I also saw a number of fun guys during our walk . . . 

At the center of the historical area there are ruins of the original bunkhouse. Within those ruins, there are works of art. Had I not been told about it, I would have assumed it was just an area where people threw their junk. 

I’ll have the brochure of the place when I do a proper update, but meanwhile, enjoy some of the art. 

I call that “time stands still” . . . the crank and chain used to turn the hourglass were rusted and inoperable. 

There were some art pieces I couldn’t get to because of overgrown plants and rubble blocking the way. I think this is a work in progress.

Here are a few more things . . . 

One of those photos is a panorama, but since both are scaled down to the same size, they are indistinguishable from each other. 

It’s difficult to see because I’m shooting against the light, but that is the ship in the distance. In the foreground is a tidewater pool where I skipped a few rocks. From there, I headed back to the ship, taking a lot of macro shots along the way. 

Some of them with the phone.

That last one is the end of a piece of driftwood . . . actually, a piece of driftree. 

I played around with it a bit . . . 

It kind of looks like a wood waterfall . . . or maybe, some type of cosmic cloud. 

So, tomorrow we are at sea, and Saturday we are in Vancouver. That means no Internet. Our phones will be off lest Canadians steal our data. 

If I have a chance and am bored, I might do a quick post before we leave, but it’s not likely.

Thank you for spending some time with me and my photos.

Posted in Writing Stuff | 8 Comments

Deep Dreams “Other” Files.

We are in Juneau and the Internet here is excellent. However, we just got back from walking around and we’re scheduled to leave in a bit longer than an hour from now. That doesn’t leave me with much time to prep and load up photos.

Ergo, I’m posting my Objects and Other Deep Dream Files. I know people are expecting Alaska updates, but for a variety of reasons — chief among them the fact we’re on a cruise — preparing posts is not high on my list of priorities . . . if I even had a list of priorities . . . and if preparing posts were on that list.

Believe me, there’ll be time enough for that once I get back to the condo. Suffice it to say the weather has been nice, we like the ship, and each stop so far has been nice.

With that said, Objects & Other . . . 

Don’t ask me which style photo I used because I don’t remember. Just enjoy this gruesome remnant of a horse (I think).

This is a treatment of my fly ashtray . . . and here are two more. 

I’m flying through these because the laundry will be ready soon and it will eat into my Internet-Is-Good time.

This is a photo of a bell we purchased in Maine — or one of them other New England states — back in the last Century. 

Here are three more variations . . . 

Next up, one of my thrift stores photos treated with something or other . . . 

That reminds me . . . cruise people are — an occasion — an annoying bunch. My main complaint is a lack of situational awareness. By that, I mean the propensity for a group of people to stand and talk at crucial parts of the passageways connecting different parts of the ship. Also, when walking down aisles, walking slowly and abreast so as to block the whole aisle. 

By far and away, the most annoying are the zig-zaggers. Employing stealth radar, they know when you’re trying to pass them on one side or another and they pull Galdalf’s “You. Shall. Not. Pass.”

Most annoyingly, when you do manage to pass them, they give you a dirty look. 

The ones I deal with most easily are those walking abreast toward me. Rather than move over and hug the wall as they swagger past, I stop on my tracks and do a Rock of Gibraltar to their Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean; they have to walk around me. I generally smile, but occasionally give them the “you are a waste of human flesh look” . . . not that they care.

That’s a mural from a bar in Canon City combined with a drawing of mine.

This next one is of the Hula Dancers in Kona.

This clown is usually employed in the role of style photo, but here it’s used as the main subject.

It’s combined with the sewing machine style photo. 

Few would recognize this above original photo as being a tree trunk shot during one of our Florida trips from a few years ago. Here’s another version of it using the sewing machine style.

By the way, one of the things I did while on the ship is take photos of every piece of art and decoration that I found interesting . . . and you readers will suffer through in the coming weeks.

You’ll be practically chained to artsy stuff, and speaking of chains . . . 

That’s the chain from a whaling ship anchor on display in Kona. 

Here are a few more versions . . . 

Those two are pretty close to each other as far as effects go. 

Here are a couple of abstracts I won’t even try to explain . . . 

Oh, OK . . . the first is the sewing machine treatment of a snow drift. The second is a flower treatment of a log.

The ship is moving, so I need to put this up before I lose the Internet connection.

I don’t have time to proofread, so please excuse any spelling mistakes. The phone is not conducive to great typing.

Let me leave you with another treatment of snow. The original of this shot is in B&W.

Yes, yet another sewing machine treatment. 

Thanks for reading.

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