1 week ago
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
When you travel with a nursing baby you stop often. I never contemplated the ramifications of this until just recent. I think it is a skill I should like to explore more. It's actually a wonderful kind of game played in an uncertain number of innings between the start and stop of each days journey where Ruby initiates the start of every new round. You have three minutes to decide. Maybe five. Where do you stop to start the inning?
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
This illustration is by Arwin Provonsha with the Purdue Department of Entomology. It's an illustration of a Say's firefly. There are more than 175 species of fireflies (actually beetles) in the U.S. but that number may be decreasing.
This summer I sat out in my yard patiently waiting for little Ruby to arrive. For some things there's not much you can do but wait.
Each evening I was treated to a massive display of firefly luminosity. But my backyard was the only place in the neighborhood where they were in such abundance. I attribute that to my tall grass areas where I'm establishing a native grassland.
I want little Ruby to be able to catch fireflies in a jar when she gets older. So I'm asking a favor of you. Quit cutting your grass please. The neighbors may complain but the fireflys won't.
One time when I was a kid we smuggled a bag full of fireflies into a movie theater and let them go. It wasn't as dramatic as we had hoped it would be. Mostly they didn't do anything. But it was a fun project none the less. I still remember it.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
The whole is more than the sum of the parts. But the parts are so damn cute. Babies remind me of how simian we are. Toes reflexively squeeze around some imagined branch. Arms grab ahold of mom when startled. One day these hands will paint a picture or write a poem or dig a weed out of a garden. These toes will learn to pick up underwear from the floor without bending over or trace circles in the sand of a beach. For now they flail about without control or even awareness. How does that happen?
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Top picture: 21 different options for the Times Square New Years ball lit by LED lights. (Photo captured from the New York Times web site. Photo by Ian Hardy.)
Bottom Picture: Neon sign captured at 8:15 on 9-1-08 along Bardstown Road.
I love the glow of neon and I can't remember a time when I didn't. The vivid glow of neon in the wanning evening light is magical. But it is a living fossil that feeds on a steady diet of fossil carbon. It takes tons of carbon to keep neon going night after night, year after year. I doubt there will be many more years left in the neon history books. Go capture images of them while you can. And if you don't mind sharing those images I would love to have you send them to me.
The future of commercial lighting is the LED. At mere fractions of the energy cost of neon you can create signs that flash ever changing patterns of light. Entire buildings could be covered in LED lights for the same cost of one large neon sign.
But even though I want to see our global energy budget reduced I will still miss neon.