29 April 2011


the one at lower right has the most excellent aroma

28 April 2011

a window full of guinness

ri ra has a massive collection of old guinness bottles --- this is just one window --- but it was up too high for guinness to really appreciate it

27 April 2011

perpetual care

there are probably thousands of these little cemeteries in our national parks, tucked off in the middle of nowhere --- this is the scribner cemetery at chattahoochee's cochran shoals unit --- trying to budget for repairs and painting the fence, which has been vandalized in a couple of places ---


26 April 2011

another benefit of tax cuts for the rich

Astronomers at the SETI Institute said a steep drop in state and federal funds has forced the shutdown of the Allen Telescope Array, a powerful tool in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, an effort scientists refer to as SETI.

technological obsolescence

With only about 200 machines left -- and most of those in Arabic languages -- Godrej and Boyce shut down its plant in Mumbai, India, today. "Although typewriters became obsolete years ago in the west, they were still common in India -- until recently," according to the Daily Mail, which ran a special story this morning about the typewriters demise. "Demand for the machines has sunk in the last ten years as consumers switch to computers."

i still remember typing class in 1965 --- first, they take away our mimeograph machines (and that weird smell), now this --- how will people learn how to type if they don't have a typewriter?

"a national strategic narrative"

The paper argues persuasively that the tendency of Americans to broadly label the rest of the world has been hugely counterproductive. The authors point out that the tendency over the last decade by some Americans to view all Muslims as terrorists has made it more difficult to marginalize genuine extremism, while alienating vast swaths of the global Muslim community. In a world where credibility is so central to America's national interest and reach around the globe, the overheated domestic debate about the war on terror has never served it very well. Lastly, the narrative makes a clarion call for America to look forward, not back, in today's interconnected world:
And yet with globalization, we seem to have developed a strange apprehension about the efficacy of our ability to apply the innovation and hard work necessary to successfully compete in a complex security and economic environment. Further, we have misunderstood interdependence as a weakness rather than recognizing it as a strength. The key to sustaining our competitive edge, at home or on the world stage, is credibility -- and credibility is a difficult capital to foster. It cannot be won through intimidation and threat, it cannot be sustained through protectionism or exclusion. Credibility requires engagement, strength, and reliability -- imaginatively applied through the national tools of development, diplomacy, and defense.

and that from the pentagon!!!

24 April 2011

another big 'un

i've walked by this tree on eleventh street a lot and always thought it a great one but didn't realize until today when robert looked it up that it's the second largest southern red oak (quercus falcata) inside the perimeter --- 16.8' in circumference, 95' in height, 90' spread

iris, robert, and guinness

iris are the best

22 April 2011

easter greetings

"Some Scared Rejected Easter Eggs... I hope everyone has an eggcellent Easter!!"
thnx, doug, for this most twisted easter greeting

20 April 2011

signs of spring on p'tree

the rationalization of dis-union

robert e. lee resigned his commission in the u.s. army on this day in 1861, and southerners have always held that up as evidence of his great devotion to virginia --- a newly discovered letter from his daughter suggests that, maybe, it wasn't exactly like that --- his living depended on slavery after all

19 April 2011

holy crap

i just realized that there are five phalenopsis, a cattleya, an oncidium, a maxillaria, and an epidendrum in bloom right now --- little clouds of excellent fragrances here and there --- i am officially obsessing on orchids now

it's back . . . . .

this cattleya just bloomed in november, and now it's starting it again --- these blossoms opened during the day today and tomorrow morning there will be the most excellent fragrance in my study ---

semi-historic architecture

old fulton national bank (1959) --- the atl history ctr owns it but haven't been able to put it to get use since the economy crashed and they couldn't sell it to be torn down for new construction --- i walk by it twice almost every day and have been obsessing on the masonry --- there must be other examples, but i haven't seen them

16 April 2011

more park land

dog and i inspected the wetland restoration on the northeast side of the park and found it quite wonderful --- after all the privet was taken out, there were some great trees in there, now augmented with many, many more trees, native azaleas and other shrubs, marsh grasses, and native perennials --- as it grows, it will only be better

it's always something . . .

an overflowing washing machine can pour a lot of water into one's living space in ten or fifteen minutes --- now i have to do spring cleaning

15 April 2011

midtown roses

the mockingbirds

that's dog saying, what the hell was that? after the mockingbirds dive bombed him twice in a row --- there is a pair and they are a terror this time of year along that block of peachtree place, even going after pedestrians just walking down the sidewalk to the martha station --- there nest is at least thirty feet from the street and completely hidden, but they are taking no chances --- gotta love the mockingbirds

yo-yo ma and lil buck

give 'em hell, barry

caught on open mic --- the whole thing is good

I said, 'You want to repeal health care? Go at it. We'll have that debate. You're not going to be able to do that by nickel-and-diming me in the budget. You think we're stupid?'

14 April 2011

letters to the editor

cousin john sent this one to the wall street journal just now ----

Don't you realize how whiney you sound?  The day after the President laid out his view of the deficit problem,  the editorial staff of the WSJ, Mr. Boehner, Ryan et al are all dissolved in tears about that vicious speech by mean ol' Obama.  Poisoned the well, burnt the bridges, on and on, whine...whine...whine.  Yes he may have loosely characterized parts of Mr. Ryan's proposal, but no more so than the above crying chorus have mischaracterized every initiative that the President has proposed over the past two years.  Was it "cruel" to make those comments in Mr. Ryan's sensitive presence?  Does anybody remember Representative "you, lie..." Wilson?   Is it politics?  Well, duh!  Will compromise be required?  Certainly.  But for now, Obama has laid out in unmistakable terms how far he is willing to go to achieve that compromise.  His ringing statement that he is not willing to trade lower billionaire marginal tax rates for shrinking the Medicare commitment to seniors is both the morally right position and a brilliant political maneuver.  That's the real reason for all the wailing and pouting by the right.  Might I borrow one of Sarah Palin's trademark lines?  Man up, guys!

12 April 2011

another one

first time for this one to re-bloom, too

a day of shame

on this day in 1861, the civil war commenced with the confederate firing on fort sumter in charleston harbor--- by the war's end, over 600,000 americans had died, more than in both world wars combined --- yet that was what it took to end slavery in this country, and for that the civil war is worth remembering --- secession balls, battlefield re-enactments, and the scv notwithstanding, the 1860s  were not our nation's proudest time --- we were fortunate to have had lincoln at the helm to see us through the "war between the states" --- see the war of the rebellion: a compilation of the official records of the union and confederate armies (over a hundred volumes) now miraculously available online through the munificence of the internets ----

hope springs eternal . . .

PPP's newest national poll finds that after a little more than 3 months in charge House Republicans have fallen so far out of favor with the American public that it's entirely possible Democrats could take control of the House back next year.

kitty, kitty, kitty

thnx mr. sullivan

10 April 2011

09 April 2011

flower watch

the indica azaleas are purty swell right now ---

far side of the moon

07 April 2011

something to remember


and if it happens it will be because republicans want to put a bunch of their crap riders on the spending bill, just like they did in 1995 --- i think i've said it before: republicans are assholes

the new piedmont park

35 acres of new park opens april 12 (next tuesday) --- read all about it --- remember clear creek as a giant concrete sewer and the surrounding area a dump and all grown up in honeysuckle and privet? --- no more ---

05 April 2011

storm porn

it was roaring on the balcony last night, blowing the furniture around and turning the plants over --- there were some of those greenish skies like when the tornado went thru downtown, which provoked me and the guys to leave the bedroom for a more interior space ---but the power didn't go off and the windows didn't blow in, unlike most of the folks around 8th st. east of piedmont where the trees fell down and there's still no power this evening --- several squashed cars and a couple of residences within three blocks ---

04 April 2011

waiting on a storm

a great evening for the botanical garden --- 

maxillaria tenuifolia

this one small blossom, not quite1½"across, has my entire bedroom smelling like fresh coconut --- and more are on the way

03 April 2011

r & r: day 4

a fine day, a really fine day --- me and dog took robert to stumble around the north end of the palisades this afternoon --- the best thing was this giant pine tree, at least 4.5 ft in diameter, struck by lightning or something and most of the inside burned out, but still standing --- when you're there it is very hard to remember that you are still inside the perimeter


i think it is safe to say that i have stumbled upon appropriate growing conditions for these two units --- both in full flower today

02 April 2011

r & r: day 3

purty fine day today, if you like that sort of thing --- leisurely morning with the animals and then me and dog went to the river, west palisades, which is the best part --- an excellent time to be out now before the bugs come out --- spiderwort and buttercup, azalea, and great herds of mayapple

01 April 2011

r & r: day 2

drove to fayetteville in the afternoon and then out hwy. 92 to sweetwater creek --- passed through the wreckage of exurban real estate, with great stone-walled entrances to bankrupt subdivisions, landscaped but grown up in broom sage, streets and utilities to houses that aren't there ---- we had the creek purty much to ourselves