Stuff of little interest and hair

So, the other morning one of my painful calf cramps woke me up. When I experience a cramp, I now react with vigor to try and get rid of it before it morphs into a repeat of what happened four years ago (torn muscles, a visit to the Emergency Room, ultrasounds, physical rehabilitation for a month, and more than four months before I was near 95% again). 

That means a cramp has me now immediately jump out of bed and forcing myself to walk and flex muscles and moves bones as normally as possible . . . successful, I was, at averting another Big One but with the unwanted result of becoming fully awake. Not a big deal except I’d been up late and the event cut my normal five hours of sleep to a tad less than four hours. 

. . . but, there was one benefit to being up early . . . 

It was all I could do to grab my phone and try an capture a rapidly-changing sunrise.

By rapidly changing I mean that it was going from red to orange to yellow in what I thought was a relatively fast pace . . . or my eyes hadn’t quite yet caught up to the idea of being fully operational at that unFSMly hour. 

It’s all I could do to remember I occasionally pass for a competent photographer and that I should make a half-assed attempt at clever compositions. 

. . . or, I could take a lot of photos and hope some of them looked decent enough. 

OK — I thought — including the tree is a nice touch . . . and so is the panoramic composition.

Note that the light was already changing . . . the scene was still nice but more of the clouds were transitioning to gray and the reds were ceding ground to the yellows (nothing wrong with yellow . . . except, maybe, if it’s underarm sweat stains on a white shirt). 

Clearly, it was time to stop letting in the 25° F breeze and close the window (I’d opened it to get a better photo).

But, you know, I couldn’t just leave it at that. For sure FSM wanted me to do something more with these photos! I mean, why else would It have woken me with that cramp?

Note to FSM: there are other — less painful — ways to wake someone. Like, maybe, a phone call letting them know they’ve been made Emperor of the Known Universe. 

Well, I knew just the thing . . . the MirrorLab app on my Samsung Note 8. 

Hmm . . . that’s too close to looking like FSM Itself. I might be charged with blasphemy and get attacked by colander-wearing fanatics. 

How about this one . . . 

OK, that’s too scary. I can see me having nightmares about being chased by one of them things . . . they probably wouldn’t be after an autograph. 

Now, this next one has a recognizable visage (or two) embedded in the patterns.

It’s OK if you don’t see it . . . but, if you want to see it, either step back from the screen a bit or squint your eyes. To me, it looks a bit like King Tutankhamun . . . but then I’ve been told I have a strange imagination. No, wait . . . not imagination; they said mind . . . and not strange; they said weird. Come to think of it, they just said “weird” and left out mind altogether.   

Anyway, I wanted to play with MirrorLab a bit more but needed another subject. Preferably, one with a tree since this one worked out so well. 

How about this one from a recent Project 313 post? 

The End Is Near — Bold

Let’s see what MirrorLab can do with it . . . 

True to its name, those are all variations of the mirror theme . . . but the app can do more.

I particularly like its glass blocks look . . . 

But, you ask, what about feathers? Or, specifically, one feather?

Well, it’s OK but I prefer wood . . . 

I mean, how often do you see a piece of wood with a piercing? How about the lion head? Do you see the lion head?

I mean, you see growth on wood all the time and it looks normal . . . 

. . . although, sometimes it looks abnormal . . .

. . . but still interesting . . . Can you see the elephant? . . . the piglet (or, possibly, the dog)? How about the Manatee or the baby dragon?

I’m sure there’s more but I just don’t have the imagination for finding faces and figures. 

I certainly don’t know what this next thing is . . . 

Whatever it was, I didn’t wait around for it to hatch. 

Ok, that’s a lot of weird stuff . . . but, can you guess what this next thing is?

Hint . . . it’s going gray. 

So, I normally cut my hair about once every three (or, if I’m lazy) four weeks. I’m sure people still have nightmares about my “convict photo” in THIS post (toward the end of the post).

That was me right after I clipped my hair. For the curious folks, I use the ⅛” setting on a cheap Wahl clipper. I suppose I could shave my head but that’s actually more work as far as maintenance goes. 

Anyway, we’ve been traveling so it’s been two months since my last (self-inflicted) haircut . . . and this is what I looked like yesterday morning.

I know; I look hideous . . . I mean, it’s been years since I’ve been able to part my hair and that’s the problem . . . my hair grew to the point of actually needing maintenance. And that’s atop looking like a hippie.  

So, I got me a pair of shears and went to work and that’s how the hair atop my head ended up on the paper I’d laid down to ensure an easy cleanup. 

What do I look like now, you ask? . . . well, I don’t want to set too many hearts aflutter so I’ll hide the “now” photo behind THIS link figuring not many people will click on it and banking on them who do click on it will look beyond the handsome visage and see the person behind the face.

Here’s something to close out the post. Yup! . . . it’s palm flowers and a cartoon . . . 

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


Note: if you are not reading this blog post at, 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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About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
This entry was posted in Android apps, Effects and Filters, Mirror Lab, Photo Post-processing, Photography Stuff, Smartphone Photography, Software and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Stuff of little interest and hair

  1. colonialist says:

    still white-faced and shaking after following the link
    Some lovely shots and inventive developments.
    Maybe your cramp has different causes, but when I get one (often in the foot or calf) I dash for the salt storage and feed myself with half a teaspoon. Instant — and I do mean INSTANT — relief. I’m back asleep before I register that I’ve woken up.


    • disperser says:

      . . . maybe it’s the dash and not the salt . . .

      There’s some scientific basis for it but it doesn’t work on everyone – and salty water has the same effect; many people recommend pickle juice which makes sense since it’s salty.

      The thinking is cramping is a result of an electrolyte imbalance and the tasting of strong salt solution tricks the (stupid) brain into thinking it got what it needs. Again, this doesn’t work on everyone.

      There’s a product that uses a combination of various pepper products and it works as a cramp preventer. Again, for some, not all.

      One of the problems with the salt theory is that people with a salt imbalance show the signs of it (cramps and spasms) in all the muscles, not just some.

      Another theory has to do with exercise but — at least in my case — I don’t work my calf muscles any more than any other muscle group (and usually, much less).

      Probably 90% of my calf cramps are a result of dreams, specifically running, jumping, or otherwise flexing the leg (in my dream, not actuality).

      My unproven hypothesis is that a short-circuit occurs in the nervous system that locks up your muscles when you sleep. Or, there’s a conflict between the system that locks up the motion during sleep and the system that activates muscles during waking hours.

      . . . or, FSM has it in for me . . .

      By the way, when I had my massive thigh cramp, I tried all sorts of stuff (pickle juice, spicy stuff, massaging, trying to stretch it) before I briefly passed out from the pain.

      That particular cramp started as a “regular” cramp on my calf and then traveled to my thigh but there it felt less like a cramp and more like some sort of a nerve issue since it felt like the inner portion of my leg (from my groin to my knee) was on fire or being electrocuted.

      I tore two of my hamstring muscles causing massive internal bleeding. It’s the most pain I’ve ever felt in my life and I hope I never feel it again . . . but live in dread of it.

      Just for fun: (password: summabirch)



      • colonialist says:

        Funny, in my own experience the salt is infallible. Before I discovered it I used to hobble around painfully for ages trying not to scream, as gentle exercise did make it go away, but terribly slowly. Very often the cause was blankets or a cat that had kept a leg or foot in one place for too long, and when I straightened it — AAAGHHH!


      • disperser says:

        I’ll try it again . . . keep both a bit of salt and some salt water at hand, but it didn’t work before.

        I still think the main culprit (for me) is misfiring nerves, a theory supported by the neurologist I consulted after the Big One. Basically, it’s the brain sending messed-up signals to the muscles.

        It could be in combination with other triggers, but the consistency is not there nor does any remedy appear to have much of a preventative effect (keeping hydrated, stretching, eating bananas, taking magnesium, etc. etc . . . I’ve tried it all and all to no avail).


  2. AnnMarie says:

    I’m still laughing about your linked photo . . . I’m trying to describe why, but words fail me . . . though the word Dickens is floating around me mind.

    Very lovely sunrise and ensuing photos . . . mirrored and not. Your doodle ones get thumbs up!


  3. Eddy Winko says:

    If you are still looking for a house then can I suggest you buy the place with that view.
    Good to see you have progressed for T-shirt design to tiles, I’d imagine that there is more money in it once you have found your market.


    • disperser says:

      Well, that’s already owned by someone.

      However, while I like water (lakes, rivers, and seas), I don’t like the premium associated with a view of one. Especially since we’re not “water people”. Meaning, other than look at it, we don’t have any interests involving water. The only advantage it offers for me is that it attracts critters but you can do the same by leaving a carcass in the middle of the yard.

      . . . of course, I don’t know the cost of carcasses these days and making your own can get you in some trouble.

      What?! I haven’t even got the T-shirt business off the ground yet and you want me to switch?


  4. HA! Your link-ed photo made me jump! And then I laughed! I was NOT expecting THAT expression! (insert laughing-face here)

    OH! I’m so sorry to hear about the painful cramps that got you out of bed. (sad-face inserted here) BUT, the photos and doodles you created are so cool!

    In the photo of the abnormal-wood-growth…I saw a shark face, a baby dragon face, and a frog face! What fun!

    Don’t be so hard on ye’erself! I’ve seen hideous before and ye are NOT it!
    HUGS for you and Melisa!!! :-)


    • disperser says:

      I elicit that reaction in many people (them being startled and then laughing at me) so I’m used to it.

      It was short-lived so not a big event and one easily managed . . . But, yes . . . fortuitous.

      Although, I still would have preferred some other event waking me . . . like, maybe, money bundles falling from the sky or trumpets announcing my coronation to Absolute Ruler . . . not that I’m ambitious or anything; I would just enjoy having my own private roads to drive on.

      I’ll still continue the odds shapes and textures that trigger pareidolia because I do enjoy the hunt.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Worth getting up early I would say and that is a pretty good haircut!


    • disperser says:

      Yes, it was. One of the few negative aspects of staying up late is missing sunrises.

      Yup! I was pretty happy with the effort. They’re new clippers and much easier to use and with better results as far as an even cut with just one pass . . . almost wanted to go beyond my head, it was so much nicer to use.


  6. oneowner says:

    Nice mug shots! I should try that sometime. Give me a moment….

    Liked by 1 person

  7. macquie says:

    Ohhh…! If such a gorgeous golden dawn welcomes you, I would also try to see the bright side of why I got cramp. By the way, would magnesium supplement not help you easing it?


    • disperser says:

      Well, I was certainly happy with the photo opportunity but, as I said, there could have been other ways I could have woken and seen it.

      I did take magnesium supplements and they seemed to have no effect. I eat a fairly varied and balanced diet so it’s unlikely I’m deficient in any minerals or vitamins., but thanks for the suggestion.

      Liked by 1 person

      • macquie says:

        I stopped taking supplements since I did not feel any difference before and after I consumed them. Some say human can take vitamins and minerals only by foods or liquid thats naturally subsistent on the earth. I used to have cramp very often, and at that time I craved and ate chocolates regularly (high in cacao and less sugar) and I understood the relationships of the two factors later as to why. Only suggestion though, homeopathy might be worth to try, as the method is to give clicks to your body to remind what’s been missed in your body and to start consume from food or natural substances.. Sorry for being long this message, but in short I hope there is a good solution found for you giving you back peaceful sleep in early morning. :-)


        • disperser says:

          Hmm . . . If you read my FAQ you might notice I’m not a believer in superstition and nonsensical hypothesis. Homeopathic remedies are one such thing.

          Easily and often proven by intentionally overdosing and suffering no ill consequences other than a sugar high.

          I do appreciate your concern and desire to help, so for that, I thank you.

          Liked by 1 person

        • macquie says:

          You are welcome, there will be various reasons that could trigger the cramps and i hope it won’t bother you often. 🙂


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