Friday, October 31, 2008


Margaret found this fellow dining on a grasshopper in our backyard just before nightfall.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


I fixed a sticky aperture on my Contaflex I. The camera was an early single lens reflex model built after the War by Zeiss. It is about the only one of its type that will fit in a pocket, and it sports the magnificent coated Tessar lens. I'm happy.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Faux Leica

I've been carrying around my FED 1g again now that the shutter is fixed. With the collapsible lens it fits comfortably in a pocket. The Elmar-copy Fed lens is fantastically sharp, though it tends to flare near the sun.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


Unless you live in a tent and move with the seasons, you will likely find yourself as part of travel preparations more or less formally arranging for the care of your possessions and pets.

We found ourselves recently explaining the surprising complexity of caring for our cats - three insiders and three outsiders. Our pet sitter was also instructed to bring in the mail and water the plants. Then, of course, we forgot to describe the quirks of the cats in sufficient detail, so we composed a note with the additional details to be left on the table before we departed for Seattle.

We ourselves are presently pet sitting for our daughter, and make two trips each day to feed their two dogs and the old cat, a task that requires a rather intricate choreography.

Simultaneously, we are car sitting for our neighbor who has flown off to South America.

Life in the city is complicated.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Autumn's Beginning

A couple frosty mornings have just touched the cottonwood bosque beside the Rio Grande. During my walk today I heard the calls of cranes passing overhead. A pair of Coopers Hawks darted through the canopy, and a Sharpshin spoke to me in a strange, small voice.

Zeiss Ikon Contaflex I

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Belly of the Beast

We walked over to the AT&SF 2926 Open House on Saturday morning. There has been a lot of progress on the locomotive's restoration, and the mood of the volunteers was very up-beat. I posted some more photos from the day in a thread at

Pentax Spotmatic with 24mm SMC Takumar

Thursday, October 09, 2008

We had a lunch of fry bread and pozole in the courtyard of the Maxwell Museum where this totem pole from the Pacific Northwest is located.

Vivitar Ultra Wide & Slim

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Pinhole Images

Making images with a pinhole camera is a good way to renew the mind's eye. Because of its imprecision the process sharpens awareness of subtleties in perspective and tonality and engages the imagination. Constraints of exposure and composition which are limiting factors in other forms of photography seem to recede, and nearly every image made through the pinhole has a compelling interest.

The photos were made at the Albuquerque Botanical Gardens.

Friday, October 03, 2008

In the 1980s I ran a computer bulletin board system (bbs) that was part of a network called Fidonet, a precursor to the World Wide Web. The inventor of Fidonet was a unique personality, Tom Jennings. Trolling around the net early this morning, I stumbled on his web site and this collection of images of nuclear tests which he harvested from a publicly-accessible computer at Los Alamos shortly before it was disappeared. The complete collection can be viewed along with Tom's notes on a page at his site.

Nuclear-Weapon States and Weapons:

United States: 5,914 strategic warheads, approximately 1,000 operational tactical weapons, and approximately 3,000 reserve strategic and tactical warheads.
Russia: 4,237 strategic warheads, approximately 2,000-3,000 operational tactical warheads, and approximately 8,000-10,000 stockpiled strategic and tactical warheads.
France: Approximately 350 strategic warheads.
China: 100-200 warheads.
United Kingdom: Less than 160 deployed strategic warheads.
India: Up to 100 nuclear warheads.
Israel: Between 75 to 200 nuclear warheads.
Pakistan: Up to 60 nuclear warheads.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008