Humor Me

To you this is a nothing photo of a tiny, blurry object.

To me it is a photo of the International Space Station as it passed 249 miles above Albuquerque a few minutes ago at 4.76 miles per second.


It’s fun to see. Get yourself a good astronomy app — I favor Sky Guide, which sends me a notice when the ISS is visible at my location.

Ho Hum

Just another sunset.

Always fearing I will miss the color, I don’t run down to get in front of the power pole. I should I suppose.

Tonight, instead I tried it with the zoom — no power pole, but still the wires. Both taken from the street in front of Casa NewMexiKen. Uncropped.

Focal length (35mm): 157 mm ISO 220
Focal length (35mm): 157 mm ISO 220
Focal length 35mm: 300 mm ISO 400
Focal length 35mm: 300 mm ISO 400


I can deal with bears in the backyard and bobcats on the courtyard wall — and the coyotes singing at night — but this creature scared me. The photo is poor and you can’t really see his stinger curled up — I hurried for fear he would scamper under the bed and I would have to move to Nova Scotia. 

According to Wikipedia, a scorpion sting does not require medical attention except for children or the elderly. I did not find that reassuring. 

I had never seen a scorpion before; this one was between my chair and my bed. 

September 30th

Angie Dickinson is 84 today.

Chances are Johnny Mathis is 80.

But here’s the scary one. Greg Brady (Barry Williams) is 61.

Die ZauberflöteThe Magic Flute — premiered in Vienna 224 years ago tonight; libretto by Emanuel Schikaneder, music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. That night Mozart conducted the orchestra, Schikaneder played Papageno. Mozart died less than 10 weeks later at age 35.

James Dean was killed 60 years ago today at the junction of California Highways 41 and 46. He was 24.

Goodness Gracious Great Balls of Fire

Jerry Lee Lewis is 80 today.

When he was 14, he made his public debut, playing with a local country & western band at a car dealer’s parking lot. In 1956, he went to Memphis to audition for Sam Phillips’ Sun Records label, whose stable of talent also included Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and Roy Orbison. After a country-flavored audition for Philips in 1956, Lewis was told that if he could come up with some rock and roll, “we could probably do something.” Lewis didn’t write much himself, but he transformed other people’s songs into unbridled rock and roll that even he called “the devil’s music.”

Lewis’ debut single was a rocking recasting of Ray Price’s country hit “Crazy Arms.” He followed it with “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On,” which sold 6 million copies and went to Number Three, and “Great Balls of Fire,” a 5-million seller that reached Number Two. Both songs were from 1957, a watershed year for Lewis, and both songs also made it to the Top Five on the pop, country and R&B charts. The next year yielded more hits – “Breathless” and “High School Confidential” – and a role in a movie titled after the latter song. …

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame


The British-published Rough Guides lists these 30 places/events as things not to miss in USA.

How many have you checked off?

Follow above link for photos.

  1. Monument Valley, AZ • Massive sandstone monoliths stand sentinel in this iconic southwestern landscape.
  2. Redwood National Park, CA • Soak up the quiet majesty of the world’s biggest trees, wide enough to drive through and soaring upwards like skyscrapers.
  3. Skiing in the Rocky Mountains • The Rockies make for some of the best skiing anywhere, with their glitzy resorts and atmospheric mining towns.
  4. Pike Place Market, Seattle, WA • Piled high with salmon, lobster, clams and crabs, the oldest public market in the nation is also home to some great seafood restaurants.
  5. Savannah, GA • Mint juleps on wide verandas, horse-drawn carriages on cobbled streets and lush foliage draped with Spanish moss; this historic cotton port remains the South’s loveliest town.
  6. Ancestral Puebloan sites • Scattered through desert landscapes like New Mexico’s magnificent Bandelier National Monument, the dwellings of the Ancestral Puebloans afford glimpses of an ancient and mysterious world.
  7. Yellowstone National Park, WY • The national park that started it all has it all, from steaming fluorescent hot springs and spouting geysers to sheer canyons and meadows filled with wildflowers and assorted beasts.
  8. Going to a Baseball Game • America’s summer pastime is a treat to watch wherever you are, from Chicago’s ivy-clad Wrigley Field to Boston’s Fenway Park, the oldest in the country.
  9. Graceland, Memphis, TN • Pilgrims from all over the world pay homage to the King by visiting his gravesite and endearingly modest home.
  10. Sweet Auburn, Atlanta, GA • This historic district holds the birthplace of Dr Martin Luther King Jr and other spots honouring his legacy.
  11. Niagara Falls, NY • The sheer power of Niagara Falls is overwhelming, whichever angle you view the mighty cataracts from.
  12. Driving Highway 1, CA • The rugged Big Sur coastline, pounded by Pacific waves, makes an exhilarating route between San Francisco and LA.
  13. Crater Lake, OR • Formed from the blown-out shell of volcanic Mount Mazama, this is one of the deepest and bluest lakes in the world, and offers some of the most evocative scenery anywhere.
  14. Crazy Horse Memorial, SD • A staggering monument to the revered Sioux leader, this colossal statue continues to be etched into the Black Hills of South Dakota.
  15. Las Vegas, NV • From the Strip’s erupting volcanoes, Eiffel Tower and Egyptian pyramid to its many casinos, Las Vegas will blow your mind as well as your wallet.
  16. Hiking in the Grand Canyon, AZ • Explore the innermost secrets of this wondrous spot on many of its superb hiking trails at the heart of one of America’s best-loved parks.
  17. Walt Disney World, Orlando, FL • Though each of Orlando’s theme parks strives to outdo the rest, Walt Disney World remains the one to beat.
  18. Glacier National Park, MT • Montana’s loveliest park holds not only fifty glaciers, but also two thousand lakes, a thousand miles of rivers and the exhilarating Going-to-the-Sun road.
  19. San Francisco, CA • Enchanting, fog-bound San Francisco remains bohemian and individualistic at heart.
  20. Hawaii’s volcanoes • Hawaii’s Big Island grows bigger by the minute, as the world’s most active volcano pours molten lava into the ocean.
  21. The National Mall, Washington DC • From the Lincoln Memorial to the US Capitol by way of the towering Washington Monument – this grand parkway is an awesome showcase of American culture and history.
  22. Mardi Gras, New Orleans, LA • Crazy, colourful, debauched and historic – this is the carnival to end them all.
  23. New York City, NY • With world-class museums, restaurants, nightlife and shops aplenty, the Big Apple is in a league of its own.
  24. Yosemite Valley, CA • Enclosed by near-vertical, mile-high cliffs and laced with hiking trails and climbing routes, the dramatic geology of Yosemite Valley is among the country’s finest scenery.
  25. Miami’s Art Deco, FL • This flamboyant city is deservedly famed for the colourful pastel architecture of its restored South Beach district.
  26. Driving US-1 to Key West, FL • Travel one of America’s most tantalizing highways from sleepy Key Largo to heaving Key West, cruising over the sharks and rays on giant causeways and bridges.
  27. BBQ • Perhaps no other cuisine is as essentially American as BBQ – smoked ribs, pulled pork and brisket – with the Carolinas, Texas and Kansas fighting it out as the nation’s top pit masters.
  28. Venice Beach, LA, CA • Combines wacky LA culture with Muscle Beach, surfing, sand and good food, all a short drive from the glitz of Beverly Hills and Hollywood.
  29. South by Southwest, TX • This thriving ten-day festival in Austin is one of the nation’s best music festivals and plays host to bands from around the world – and Texas, too.
  30. Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, OH • Housed inside this striking glass pyramid is an unparalleled collection of rock music’s finest mementoes, recordings, films and exhibitions.