July 2014 Flowers and a Bit of Flash

I’m getting a tad disillusioned with WordPress. There are so many things I liked when I first started using it; a lot of things that made it a clear choice. However, as they strive for “improvement”, I find that my experience if going away from ‘happy and satisfied‘ and approaching ‘ok bordering on annoyed‘. The latest thing is the removal of the sliding bar in the editing window. You used to be able to scroll what you were writing independent of the surrounding content; real useful that for those people (like me) who prefer to do long posts.

By removing the slider, one now has to use the window slider to scroll, and guess what? The side menu goes out of the screen. Overall it makes the editing experience more awkward and annoying.

WordPress seems to have recognized the segment of bloggers who, like me, like to put up long posts. In fact, they suggested tags for these long posts so others who like something more than the single-picture-post can find these entries.

It then seems strange to me WordPress would implement a change that specifically and negatively affects the long-posts people.

I gave feedback, and what I got back was a little strange . . . I respectfully suggest the statement “WordPress.com is always experimenting to try to get better” seems to contradict the other statement I got “If the changes we make here are disruptive in a way that requires you leave WordPress.com, we’ll be sad to see you go, but we understand.

For one, few people choose to leave when things “get better”.

Second, that sounds to me like a strong suggestion that I should in fact depart, and that perhaps WP won’t be overly sad to see me go. It reads exactly like “so long, and good riddance.

. . . of course, I’m easily insulted, so I could be misreading that . . . But, onto flowers.

flowers

Ah, carnations . . . they be doing very well this year.

Flowers

So much so, that I am moved to write a flash piece about them. I thought of this just now, so give me a moment . . .

Rose and Joe
Copyright E. J. D’Alise – 2014

Rose felt silly. And uncomfortable. And nervous. 

She looked around one more time, and then stole a glance at her watch. He was a half hour late. How long should she wait? She knew this was a bad idea when Joe had suggested they meet. She was comfortable with the relationship they had; e-mails, status updates, chats . . . all safe, all under her control. 

This was neither. She had checked him out, of course, but you never knew if a person’s online persona was real or not. She could take care of herself, so that was not even her biggest worry. Her biggest worry was that this was real life, and real life is messy. It was one of the reasons she never posted a photo of herself online, never gave personal information, and what she liked about Joe; he never did either. 

Nothing public online gave away who they were. Sure, there was lots of information out there, but nothing intimate, nothing overly personal. And now this would change. This would get messy. Emotions, expressions, comportment . . . all of it was more intimate than she was used to. The chats and e-mails were also intimate, but more controlled. 

Should she hug him? Would he try to hug her? Were they friends, or a bit more? It felt like more, but he was not here.

Rose looked at her watch again. Forty five minutes. This was enough. She checked her phone, but there was no reply to her instant message, no e-mail, no voicemail. She  headed toward the exit of the museum, disappointed but with a touch of relief. She tossed the pink carnation into the bin by the stairs.

Always aware of her surroundings, she almost missed it. A man sitting on a bench. He looked up, then casually looked away. That she saw. What she almost missed was the pink carnation sticking out of his pocket. She could only see a bit of it, but she was sure that’s what it was.

She changed course, and headed for the man. He had not noticed, and was startled when she sat next to him.

“Hi,” she said. “Do you have the time?”

The man looked flustered, but glanced at his watch.

“. . . uh . . . almost 11:00 . . . “

Rose had been studying the man, and when he looked up and met her eyes he immediately looked away. 

“I . . . I have to go.” The man made to get up.

“I’m starving. Would you like to have lunch with me?” She asked the question as she stood, partially blocking his way.

“I . . . uh . . . I already ate.” He leaned a bit away from her as he slid sideways.

“I know a great place where you can get crepes with granulated sugar . . . just like you like them.” The edge in her voice was plainly heard, and practically felt by the man.

He stopped as if sucker-punched.

“Rose . . . I . . . let me explain . . . I mean . . . ” Joe felt the blood rush up his neck and onto his face. He knew he was blushing, and knew a small bead of sweat was forming on his forehead.

Rose invited him to sit by sitting back down and pointing to a spot on the bench next to her.

“I’m waiting.” She did not cut him any slack, even as she noticed his physical reaction. Friends don’t do this to each other. He’d better have a good explanation.

“. . . this was a bad idea . . . “

“That’s not an explanation. We talked about that, and it was you who insisted otherwise.”

“I know . . . ” Joe looked down to his hands, and repeated it. “I know.”

“Well?”

“I saw you drive up. I mean . . . I did not know it was you, but noticed the car, noticed you walking up the stairs just ahead of me. And I noticed the carnation you were carrying.”

” . . . ?” Rose gave him a look and silent question. 

“You’re . . . rich. You are classy. You are . . .” Joe looked even more uncomfortable as he continued. “I . . . I don’t have much. I mean, I’m not poor, but . . . I  . . .” Joe took a deep breath, and looked at Rose squarely in the eyes. “I didn’t want to face your reaction.”

“My reaction?” Rose was incredulous. “My reaction? We’re friends. My reaction is that we’re friends. Besides, you knew I was well off.”

“You’re driving a . . . what is that, anyway?”

“. . . it’s a Veyron . . . I like fast cars.” Rose too now blushed. She had not thought of how that car would look to others. She didn’t care about others. But she cared about Joe.

“Look, it’s a car, and yes, I have money. I can’t help being born rich. Parents made a ton of money, and gave me some. How is that a problem? You did not seem like someone who cared about money, or cared who has more.” She paused, leaning back before continuing. “Is this one of those manly-macho things where the man should provide for the woman?”

Rose had actually surreptitiously danced around that subject in some of their chats, and she was sure he was not the type . . . then again, she had a lot of money.

“No . . . no, it’s not that.” 

“OK then, what is it?” 

Joe looked at her. He took in her face, her hair, the curve of her chin. Even stern, even bordering on being mad . . . 

“You are beautiful.”

“Wha . . . come again?”

Joe looked down at his hand. He continued very softly.

“You are the most beautiful woman I ever saw. I mean, I liked you as a person, but . . . ” Joe looked up at her. “You probably don’t even realize it, but you’re . . . I . . .” Joe stood before she could move, and started to walk away.

She stood and yelled out after him. 

“One of my boobs is smaller than the other. And I have a scar on my rear end from a burn.”

A couple of old ladies looked sharply at her, but she ignored them. 

Joe stopped, and stood still. Rose walked up behind him. 

“You can check if you don’t believe me.”

He snorted, and then his shoulders shook for a second or two before she heard him laugh out loud.

He turned, still smiling broadly.

“Lets go get that crepe.” Rose took his hand, and walked beside him toward the exit.

“I can’t believe you yelled that out.”

“It worked, didn’t it?”

“Yeah, but now I can’t think of . . . ” 

The two old ladies missed the rest as Joe’s and Rose’s voices got outside hearing range. They looked at each other, smiled, shook their heads, and continued toward the Hall of Nude Statues. It was their favorite place in the whole museum.

The End.

Forty minutes worth of writing, and here’s the last of the carnations.

Flowers, bees,insects,

There lots of buds around, so there’s the promise of many more carnations to come.

Of course, no flower post would be complete without (one of) my favorites . . .

Flowers, bees,insects,

And here, for the ‘soft focus’ crowd . . . or is it the ‘out of focus crowd’? Whatever . . .

Flowers, bees,insects,

The peonies are gone now, but these were the last two blooms . . .

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

Somehow I managed to miss all of the salsify seed balls. But I did get a nice flower in the short time that it bloomed.

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

Now, while I don’t claim these are masterpieces, some people will say something like “wow; how do you take such beautiful photos?”

When they do, BAAM! . . . I hit them with this.

Flowers, bees,insects,

If I had a kid, and if she hated photography, and if I could convince her to pick up a camera, even she could do better than that. Right!?

By the way, we’re at the stage where nearly every flower photo I take has a bug somewhere in it. Sometimes they are obvious . . .

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

That ladybug had just landed, and was in the process of folding its wings under the spotted shell . . . it does not seem like they would fit under there, but they do . . . check this out.

Everyone knows these guys from photos from previous years.

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

Sometimes the place gets pretty busy . . . two bugs a-mating, a ladybug a-foraging, and a bee a-pollinating.

Flowers, bees,insects,

Sometimes there are no visible bugs  . . .

Flowers, bees,insects,

. . . and sometimes they jump right out at you.

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

Actually, there are two bugs on that flower.

This West Coast Lady was stingy with the open wings poses . . .

Flowers, bees,insects,

. . . and when she offered one up, it was quick.

Flowers, bees,insects,

But she did give me lots of great closeups . . .

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

By the way, as usual one can click on the photo to have a larger version open onto a new window or tab. Conversely, one can go to the SmugMug Gallery HERE. for the full size photos and better views.

This brings up a question . . . I try to get all the links open in new windows or tabs, and someone on the support forum mentioned this could cause problems in older browsers. I’ve tested my posts on different platforms, browsers, and operating systems back to XP. I’ve not tested on Safari or IOS devices, but I doubt they look at my stuff since it’s PC-based. Besides, had they had problems I would have heard no end to it, them enjoying pointing out how my equipment is old and decrepit. 

I would insert a poll, but that’s not working right now, part of WordPress ‘making things better’.  So, if anyone is having issues or has an opinion about links and pictures opening in new windows or tabs, let me know in the comments . . . presuming those still work.

As I was shooting the butterfly, I felt big eyes, and big ears, on me. I slowly turned . . .

Flowers, bees,insects,

Huh! . . . it looked at me for a few moments, and then took off hopping like a kangaroo, but instead of using its hind legs, it used its front legs! Really!

Flowers, bees,insects,

SEE!

Anyway, back to the . . . Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!

Flowers, bees,insects,

No wonder it didn’t want to open its wings! . . . is that a little hatch?! 

I’m thinking that’s a drone sent by a nervous government to spy on me!

Flowers, bees,insects,

Pretty good replica, though..

Uh-oh . . . the drone butterfly is being stalked by the drone bee . . . 

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

It all happened so fast; I could not change the focus. However, even out of focus, the bee is obviously not real; bees don’t fly like that!

Flowers, bees,insects,

What looks like a leg is probably the antenna.

Hey, look! . . . a fly!

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

I walked over to one of the Stella D’Oros, and took a half-assed photo.

Flowers, bees,insects,

Guess who followed me and landed on the salvia right next to me?

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

Come on! No real butterfly would let me get that close. Drone. I’m thinking CIA . . . they’re always doing that kind of stuff.

Now I wonder if the flowers are real . . . I mean, this looks kind of like a banana bin.

Flowers, bees,insects,

No? How about this?

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

However, I bet these are difficult to fake . . . 

Flowers, bees,insects,

And these too . . . 

Flowers, bees,insects,

They would probably fool me with these.

Flowers, bees,insects,

But these?

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

Just too weird to be real.

OK, it’s late, and I need to wind this down. Beside, I probably lost all but a few readers, so it’s time for . . . verbena!

Flowers, bees,insects,

And more carnation!

Flowers, bees,insects,

And a flower from a bush whose name I don’t know . . . with a bug on it.

Flowers, bees,insects,

Here’s one sans bug . . . 

Flowers, bees,insects,

. . . unless you count the tiny one at the end of the petal.

These petunia are very interesting, and they look pretty good in their vases, flanking our front entryway.

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

Did you believe this was winding down? Suckers!

Here’s our purple petunias and some potted geraniums.

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

And of course, the plant whose name I’ve also forgotten despite having posted it in prior years. It don’t matter none . . . people just want the pictures.

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

The wild geraniums are mostly done flowering  . . . 

Flowers, bees,insects,

When the petals fall away, this is what’s left . . . 

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

OK, I was serious after all. It’s almost midnight, and I need to proof this puppy before scheduling it for publication tomorrow morning.

So, here’s a burst of photos . . . 

Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects, Flowers, bees,insects,

And now I go back and try to find errors . . . I’ll probably miss a bunch, but what the heck, I’m doing this for the fun of it.

Just a reminder about the SmugMug gallery HERE. It has a few more photos than what I posted here (hard to believe, right?).

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

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ o o o o o o ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Anvils and Friends

Anvils and Friends

Astute persons might have noticed these doodles, and correctly surmised they hold some significance for me, and perhaps for humanity at large.  

If you click on the doodle, and nothing happens, this is the link it’s supposed to go to: https://disperser.wordpress.com/2011/12/26/palm-vx-and-i/.

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Note: if you are not reading this blog post at Disperser.Wordpress.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.

About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
This entry was posted in Fiction, Flash Fiction, Flowers, Macro Photography, Photography, Photography Stuff, Short Stories, Writing Stuff and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to July 2014 Flowers and a Bit of Flash

  1. sandra getgood says:

    Hahahaha! You can’t DO a short post! Love the flowers, love the bunny… although how you got it to pose for that picture is beyond me…you even make the bugs fun (and several are really elegant!) Great post…. laughed all the way through it, and am saving it for any days that come along that need brightening up.

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Thanks, Sandy.

      . . . and yes, ever since I read that to get more followers one needs to keep it short and interesting I’ve been on a mission to keep most of my posts long.

      I’m sure people miss some of the details of the photos because of it.

      Like

  2. Carissa says:

    Great photos. Loved the story!

    Like

  3. oneowner says:

    Some of the flower photos are among your best. Really fine work.
    I’ve noticed subtle changes in WordPress lately that aren’t really improvements. More annoyances in some case. Not enough to jump ship but enough to check out the competition.

    Like

  4. Emily Heath says:

    I too found the removal of the sliding editing bar annoying, hard to see how it could be considered an improvement.

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Big discussion going on in the boards. Apparently folks are having a heap more problems with it than I’m having. For me it remains an annoyance, and one I will get used to (until I decide if I’m moving).

      The change, apparently, was to accommodate the people who use tablets or phones to blog . . . don’t know why they would do that, but I’m not them.

      Like

  5. AnnMarie says:

    Very nice flash piece about Rose and Joe!!! Totally enjoyed it and the photos and the narrative. But since it’s getting late, I’ll have to postpone the visit to the SmugMug gallery for another time.

    Like

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