The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories seems to mirror another race that’s going on, with the lead changing hands almost daily. For a while, only one point separated the three stories. As of this writing, two points. As I wrote this, one story surged ahead and taken a three-votes lead. Impressive move this late in the round.

Regardless of who wins this round, it’s nice to see a good turnout at a time when people’s lives have many other pressing considerations.

I’ve been meaning to let all the procrastinators know of the impending deadline, but I’ve been putting it off . . . until now.

At noon tomorrow, this race will be called. If you plan to vote, please engage your posterior and get a move-on.  

If you are a reader of our stories and have a strong opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon (Chicago time) tomorrow.

Yesterday I posted a few “Westernized” photos. The bold colors are a big part of the characterization . . . but would they still be Western landscapes in monochrome? Well, let’s see . . .

Western scenery in monochrome
. . . You know what? It still do looks kinda Western-like . . . in fact, it reminds me a bit of the Tex Willard(link) comics I used to read.

The voting for the best of The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories poll continues to be close. This either means the stories are near-equally good . . . or near-equally bad. 

Regardless of who wins this round, it’s nice to see a close race. For them keeping track, there are two more days before this round’s voting closes in two days.  

If you are a reader of our stories and have a strong opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

I’m going to post a few “Westernized” photos. I mean, the post-processing is such that it gives the photos a “Western” look (or so I imagine).

Colorado scenery - fence and some red rocks
. . . Don’t know if I succeeded. I mean, the photos are all of Western scenery (Colorado), but I don’t know if these conform to people’s idea of Western paintings  . . .

The voting is unusually close (at the time of this writing) for The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories poll. Perhaps as a reflection of what’s happening elsewhere, the race for the top spot is tight. Unlike what might be happening elsewhere, this voting is not fraught with contention, and voters are not under any pressure since the results won’t matter much to anyone other than the writers.  

If you are a reader of our stories and have a strong opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE(link) Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

So, I was having some issues with the theme I had chosen. Specifically, photos were not being presented as I liked, especially in older posts.

Red-tailed hawk perched on fencepost
. . . so, here it is, a different theme. There are a few things I like with this theme . . .

The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories poll has picked up steam and is now a hotly contested race the likes of which I can’t imagine being matched in the real world.  

If you are a reader of our stories and have a strong opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

I’m still trying to digest the change in theme. I’ll be trying some new ones, possibly tomorrow.


I’ve seen some interesting themes and I’m actually considering exploring some drastic departures from the usual . . .

A quick reminder that The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories poll is still lagging in votes with only five days remaining. Of course, I realize we’re probably all a little occupied with a little election that’s going on. 

Still, if you are a reader of our stories and someone who would like to express an opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

And . . . readers who are on a PC might have noticed something . . . a different look for the blog. But, before I discuss that, here’s a photo . . .

Yellow VW Beetle covered in snowBack in the days when we were still living in Colorado and I was still working, we’d experience our first snows in September . . .

After a small surge, The Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories polling has again lagged. We’re now hoping for the usual late-voting surge, but I fear all the talk of voting may have put some people off.

You see, it might be they assume this has to do with some election or other. I wouldn’t know much about that, but I thought it best to change vote/voting to poll/polling . . . although that too can have negative associations.

Still, if you are a reader of our stories and someone who would like to express an opinion about which of the stories you liked the best (or disliked the least), and if you participate in the poll, thank you in advance. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for the “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

OK, there be no photos on this blog post . . . only screen captures.

Let me explain . . .

Because the Alphabet Challenge “S” Stories voting round is off to a very slow start, I decided I’d do a few more reminders. I suppose it’s to be expected, what with the Big Scary Day approaching . . . and just a few days before that, Halloween.   

If you are a reader of our stories and someone who votes, thank you in advance for casting a vote for your favorite of the three despite all that’s probably occupying your mind. Links to the stories and the poll for voting for “Alphabet Challenge S-Stories” are HERE.<<<Link Votes will be accepted until noon on November 8th.

I redid the voting post so that it looks more like what it used to look like. Perhaps that was the problem and not the possibility we might suck as writers.

And now, a horse . . .

That’s a photo captured on the first day I owned my Nikon D200.

Anyway, in case no one noticed, the fonts in the blog are different. Until last week, the Adobe toolkit was available to us bloggers . . . specifically, we could set what fonts to use on the title of the blog (above the header photo), what fonts to use for the menu and post titles, and what font to use for the body of the post. Now . . .

In the last few days, a few people have told me they voted . . . but I didn’t see the vote counter change. At first, I thought the poll might have had a time limit but these polls aren’t time-limited. I went back to a poll from a 2013 post to test if it still registered votes and it does.

Click for larger view in new tab or window.

So, just in case, here are the details on how to vote. Also, I’d appreciate if readers let me know when they vote and if their votes are not being counted.

*** WARNING – many, many photos below mean this post might be slow loading for them with spotty internet connections. If still interested, go grab a coffee as this loads. If you don’t drink coffee, consider waxing the car or calling a long-forgotten family member or friend. ***

Looking back at 2018 offers me both an easy post and something that might motivate me for the coming year. 

For the purpose of this review, I’ll be leaving off all of the Project 313 posts since the project has its own mid-project review and will feature an end-of-project review.

That probably means that I won’t have that much to show in this review . . . or so most readers hope.

The year begins with me still enjoying the amazing zoom capability of the Nikon P900. That ship is about four miles away from where I was standing when I snapped that photo.