A day of stuff

I like the word “stuff” . . . it offers an easy out when I can’t come up with a title for a post. It also sports a nonchalantness that speaks to confidence and aloofness while at the same time connects with the ordinariness of life, especially when referencing July 28th, a well known ordinary day. 

They call those “helmet urchins” and sometimes “shingle urchins” and they’re found at the boundary formed by immovable rocks clashing with dynamic oceans. These guys know something about holding on for dear life as powerful waves assault the shores of this island. 

. . . er . . . actually — at least on this side of the island — waves have been mighty scarce. We’re now on our sixth or seventh week without significant waves. No waves, no surfers . . . it’s been a long spell — a powerful long time — since I last snapped a photo of a surfer. Every day, the water sports a slight chop but is — for the most part — surprisingly calm. 

Anyway, on this ordinary day, I walked the shoreline near Casa de Emdeko, the place where we usually stayed when visiting the Big Island. I was hoping for some tidal pools dispersed along the rocky shores, but I came away somewhat disappointed. I mean, I saw some interesting things. Things like, for instance, my old friend Elephant Log . . . 

. . . and yet another bleached coral looking like a face (tilt your head sideways; if you don’t see it, try the other way) . . . 

In fact, everywhere I looked there were faces . . . 

By the way, that’s blatant false advertising . . . that object was easily identifiable; it’s a parasail . . . I could see the people hanging from it . . .  

Yes, all of these shots are from the Nikon P900. It was a very hot day and I didn’t feel like lugging around 15 pounds of photo equipment in a black shoulder pack. As it was, after forty minutes, I was literally drenched from dripping sweat. 

Here are some shots of the helmet urchins on shores caressed by gentle swells. 

I might have left you with the impression that I didn’t see much by way of tidepools, and that is correct . . . but I did see some. I’ll show most of the photos, but all of the photos are both in the gallery below and in the SmugMug Gallery HERE

A couple of things with those photos . . . those little black fish — they range from half-inch to as long as 4-5 inches — are very quick at hiding whenever you near the pools. You then have to stand there, not moving, for a little while before they venture out again.

The other things to note are all the shells. You can see it in a couple of instances, but those are all hermit crabs. 

Something else amazes me about these fish . . . they jump from pool to pool. I’m talking a couple of feet and occasionally more. So, for instance, it was common for me to walk up to a little pool and have the fish take running . . . er . . . swimming leaps into the next pool over. Sometimes, they jump two or three pools in quick succession.

So, here’s the thing . . . how do they know? How do they know about the other pool, where it is, and how far to jump? The explanation I have is that they “learn” the lay of the land — so to speak — when its underwater and then remember it when the tide recedes and all that’s left are the pools. 

Still, it seems like a leap of faith because they have no way of knowing if there’s water in the next pool over or — if there is — how much. Leap of faith . . . get it? They jump . . . nevermind, it’s not important. 

Anyway, I’m impressed. They always seem to know which way to jump and land in the middle of the next pool. I’ve never seen one jump and land on dry lava.

You might have noticed the water is limpid . . . 

Overall, the ocean is pretty clear . . . except, you know, for all the fish excrement, microorganism, and FSM knows what else swims around in there that we cannot see. It also helped that I was shooting with a circular polarizer, thus eliminating most of the reflection from the top of the water.  

As usual, lots of crabs around . . . 

Most are small, but a few — like that last one — were a good size. They also blend in pretty well.

. . . and they are quick, hence why some of the shots are blurred. Yeah, that’s right. It’s not the photographer’s fault; it’s the subjects that screw things up. 

But, back to the pools . . . 

It sure looks like there’s not much happening, don’t it?

Don’t you envy them? A pretty simple life, completely unaware of two idiots threatening nuclear destruction on each other. 

Oops! . . . I really don’t want to go there. Maybe I’ll do a post about the human condition and the assholes who actively diminish its quality. But not today. 

Today, we watch these little suckers — literally.

Here’s another short clip . . . 

For them interested, the above — save the limpid water shot — are all from this one pool . . . 

A microcosm all onto itself, roughly four feet by one foot wide. 

This next shot is of the Kona Body Glove, one of Kona’s tour boats, coming back from an excursion. The photo is grainy because it was at maximum zoom; the boat was about 150 yards or so from my position on shore. 

I’m only showing it as an intro to the video of it . . . 

I find it interesting that the videos appear better than the still photos. Then again, the videos are seldom shot at maximum magnification. 

Let me show you a few more things you see when walking with your eyes looking down.

Something that looks like a potato stuck in the lava . . . 

. . . a sea slug in a shallow pool . . . 

. . . a very interesting collage of broken coral along with a larger piece that must have been worn smooth by the wave action . . . 

Here’s a closeup of the broken coral pieces along with a mixture of shell remains . . . 

But, that grapefruit-sized piece of coral really held my interest. I very much wanted to grab it and add it to my 10-20 pounds worth of samples from beaches around the island. Except, I don’t know what I would do with it . . . still, I now regret not grabbing it. 

If you click on the photo, you can see its interesting texture. I think it would have made for an excellent macro subject. 

These next three shots were snapped because I plan on using them for some of the Deep Dream combinations. Plus, you know, they look interesting. 

Same area with a progressively longer zoom. If the sequence seems to get darker, that’s because the sun decided to hide behind a cloud as I was shooting. 

I’ll end with a series of shots of a gate. That’s right; one of them rolling gates that keep people from coming into your driveway. 

There are three gates I’ve been meaning to photograph, and this is one of them. You got to admit it’s pretty cool.

The waterfront house sits on a small private lot. At 1,400 square feet, it’s larger than most, and it looks well maintained. It can be yours for a mere $1,999,900. A bargain, really; I mean, it looks much better than many of the homes along Aliʻi drive, including some of the shacks directly opposite it  . . . plus, you get the neat gate with it. But, you know, it must cost a lot to insure for even a small tsunami will do some damage.

Here are a few close-ups of some of the features. There are a few more photos in the gallery below. 

And that was a day of stuff. Well, really, only a few hours of it. The rest of the day we were back at the condo, sitting in front of multiple fans and trying not to move too much.

Here is the gallery of all the photos from July 28, 2017.

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


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.


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.

About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
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22 Responses to A day of stuff

  1. Eddy Winko says:

    A very impressive gate, weld art! I bet it takes some upkeep as well, although I guess they have someone who comes in and cleans and paints it for them.


  2. seekraz says:

    What a fascinating bunch of stuff…wonderfully captured, Emilio. :)


  3. PiedType says:

    Helmet urchins. Good-looking little … things. The fish that know where to jump for the next pool — fascinating. And that gate is truly inspired. I wonder if some billionaire up in Aspen has done something similar, with an appropriate mountain decor.


    • disperser says:

      The other gates I like (here) have similar sea motifs. I imagine there are others who want a reflection of their environment as decoration to their homes.

      I’ve seen wood carvings at the entrances of drives when I was in Colorado (eagles, bears, pumas) but have not seen gates as ornate as this one depicting mountain wildlife.


  4. I’m glad you went exploring on July 28th. Nice pics!


  5. AnnMarie says:

    I went to the SmugMug gallery and viewed most of these in Original . . . all the texture shots (most of this post) would do splendid in Deep Dream. The helmet urchins are especially a treat in Original. Good stuff here!


    • disperser says:

      I was pleased with the quality of the P900 shots. Still off from the D7000 with a lens that itself costs more than the P900, but overall very usable shots. I’m thinking of not carrying the full complement of gear for the trip. We’ll see.


  6. Life everywhere you look! Thanks for taking amazing photos of it, Emilio!
    Love all the little creatures you found and getting a glimpse into their neck-of-the-world! :-)
    Love seeing the helmet urchins! Wow!
    HA! Love the faces…especially the beached coral! That one must be a female face…it’s mouth is open and chattering away! :-D
    HUGS and Happy Whee-kend to you and Melisa! We are having a very rainy weekend here! :-)


    • disperser says:

      Thanks, diem3 and a wish you a nice weekend as well.

      We’re also supposed to have rain, but it usually comes overnight.

      As for the critters, yes, lots of life everywhere you look. Occasionally, more than one wants, but I suppose that’s better than no life.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. One of your better lots of stuff, pity about the sound on those denizons of the deep clips, even blasted my ears, christ knows what it did to those with normal hearing.

    Don’t you ever check these things and consider the comfort of the few viewers that you still have?


  8. PiedType says:

    Forgot to mention that your opening reminded me immediately of George Carlin’s routine on “Stuff.” Available on YouTube and elsewhere.


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