Old School Keyboarding

This young lad turns 8 today.  He is learning to type — called “keyboarding” nowadays.

For a lesson in ancient history, I dug out my Dad’s old typewriter (circa 1950); it’s what I learned to type on.  The beast must weigh 30 lbs!  He got to experience putting in the paper one page at a time, straightening it, setting the tab for indentation, the number row on top, reversing the ribbon, and hearing the bell telling him there were only five more spaces until a manual carriage return was required for the next line.  I showed him how to roll up the paper to correct a mistake with a hand eraser.  (Seriously, Papa?)   He knew what the home row was, but the raised rows of letters, like bleacher seats, was strange and, the strength it takes to make a key stroke … OH my!

Curses!  Another term paper!

Thought for the Day:  Happiness is tu6y\p8 ng in the search window of Google.

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Hoo Ray, Spring!

Spring has Sprung

Although we had a very mild winter, it’s always nice to see a Spring day.  As winter’s grip loosens its strangle hold on the Midwest, March’s warming trend brings wide swings in the weather.   Short periods of sub-freezing temperatures make warm sunny days like this even more special.

After being cooped up inside all winter, this 4 year old jumps for joy on the first warm day of spring.  Her flannels and snow boots do little to curb her enthusiasm.

Before long she’ll be in shorts and flip-flops … and going off to college.

Thought for the Day:  Your age today is the new 30.                                                                                                                                                      Unknown

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Where’s Waldo

Where’s Waldo?

James & pinata









Where’s Waldo?  Where’s Waldo when you need him?  Get Waldo in here to count the candles on the five year old’s birthday cake.  Oh well, the birthday boy didn’t notice.

Nothing beats a pinata for a five year olds’ birthday party.  I made this picture look like an old film shot … just to make the garage look new.

Thought for the Day:  Youth is a wonderful thing.  What a crime to waste it on children.  

George Bernard Shaw

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Nebraska Landscape

Northeast Nebraska

I needed a landscape for the theme of a photo contest.  One of the contest rules was the photo had to be taken after May, 2016.  I have plenty of sunsets, seascapes and landmarks, but no landscapes of exotic places.

What’s wrong with Verdigre, Nebraska!?   A farming community of Czech heritage in the northeast part of the state, where crops are a challenge in the sandy soil.  This scene typifies the area: a humble but well-kept farm surrounded by tall grass prairie mixed with rolling hills spotted with scrub oak and cedar woods.

An idyllic scene, I thought… might be postcard-worthy.

Thought for the Day:  The great fact was the land itself, which seemed to overwhelm the little beginnings of human society that struggled in its somber wastes.      Willa Cather

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Bubble Bath

Bubble Bath

Bubble Bath

Small waves rolled in on a regular basis as if controlled by a metronome.  Gentle waves, lazy enough to loll you to sleep in a beach chair, just loud enough to encourage day dreams.  A cloudless day and gently breeze made a walk on the beach irresistible.

Serenity was everywhere … except the shore line, where the surf ends and sand begins.   Even on a calm day, this little piece of the world is in constant chaos.  Always moving in or out, the shoreline is turbulent, depositing new treasures and withdrawing others with each new wave.

I couldn’t tell if this sea star was alive or dead; it was gone before I knew it.  The surf swept in and covered the sea star like a magician with his cape, then the surf rolled back and “Poof!” it was gone.  Just like dirty dishwater going down the drain.

Thought for the Day:  Water, taken in moderation, cannot hurt anybody.                                                                                                                                           Mark Twain


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Cat Walk

castle cat - Passau, Austria

castle cat – Passau, Austria

What exactly is a cat walk?  According to Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary, it is “a narrow walkway (as along a bridge)”.

When I was in high school, we would walk home sometimes, and to shorten the 3 mile walk, we’d cut through the Omaha Stockyards.  To do so, we had to use the “cat walks” on top of the acres and acres of cattle pens.  It was just a 2 x 6 board nailed horizontally to the top of the wooden pens, and some not in the best of shape.  They weren’t put there to facilitate long leisurely walks.

The term, cat walk, really sunk in when I spotted this cat atop the 15′ wall surrounding the fortress in Passau, Austria.  I think Webster should expand the definition to be more clear; i.e. “a narrow walkway where only cats feel comfortable.

Thought for the Day:  Be the reason someone smiles today … or the reason they drink.                                                                                                                         What ever works.


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Early morning, just after sunrise, I was walking along a gravel road on Florida’s Sanibel Island when I spotted this egret.  Hard to miss; its size is impressive, standing about 3 feet tall.

The water was shallow, maybe 4-6″ deep, swampy, almost stagnant.  The egret moved easily among the heavy brush, constantly stabbing at something in the water, his neck uncoiling rapidly, with snake-like strikes.  I watched it hunt for about 30 minutes.

The size of this bird implies big prey, like fish, but his mouth doesn’t look very big.  It was stabbing constantly, but I never saw anything in its beak.  I assumed he was eating insects, like an appetizer before the main course.

Thought for the Day:  All men are equal before fish.           Herbert Hoover

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