Here’s a moment after a lengthy hike in Canada, coming back to central Vancouver, looking to the sky on a short ferry ride.
The time was near the end of last year and has been on my phone for a bit. I apologize for not sharing sooner, as time moves faster with more else is happening in 2023. But looking back on my phone to delete pictures, I narrow what I should have been sharing here on my sadly neglected blog of lately.
And then, I see this moment. What a site, coming back from North Vancouver to the Central Area to have dinner with an old friend. The sun is setting and the air is cold. I look to my destination, to the sky in awe. There is a perfect split in wait, the day letting the night cover itself like a blanket. The sun would peek in and out, very playful in this golden hour.
This is just another amazing moment to be shared, as it’s never too late to enjoy a saved beautiful moment.
Flying periodically between Southern California and Washington, I constantly look down with awe and wonder. I love a good view, and window seat delivers well. Then, comes two usual questions as I stare down; where am I, and what is that?
I often notice these large man-made circles upon rural flat farmlands of the western U.S. These circles are large and many, very even, and filled with variances of light-dark earthy tones, often adjacent to each other. In clusters, the perfect geometric shapes are wonderous to behold, unreal as part of some gigantic artwork in the grand museum that is our modern world. Or if I imagine hard enough, a surreal game of Connect 4 played by giants.
I learned these man-made wonders are actually center-pivot irrigation circles, where farmland is watered in rotation from a rotating sprinkler anchored at the center. This supposedly cuts down on labor costs and remains an alternative to ground irrigation. I can’t say I understand much more. Irrigation is a complex subject with debates on what is best and the future for our world challenged with climate change and continuous droughts. But, seeing the patterns from above, I see the impact humans have upon the very landscape, where they are microscopic in comparison. Our impact for better or worse, is its own unintended art.
Sorry, I am not truly punctual with this timing. 2022 was a helluva year for me, and some of that is seeping through this fresh 2023 year.
But not alone lately, as my great time felt plentiful yet mixed with others in a flurry of cheers and goofy moments, close around and through social networks. These times are worthwhile, but time management with what’s left to me is difficult.
That ties into a huge side endeavor I’ve been sporadically building, simply titled Stranger Worlds. This is set on a long road with ambitious goals, sharing a love for (and promoting) indie creativity in genre art and literature. I will share more when details, planning, and funding are a bit more solid. I will occasionally do more as Traveling Orion, as I still have exciting adventures and much to tell. And, I do have some exciting adventures to share!
But for now, I am typing with oily fingers while eating the greasiest pizza ever, in the midst of a layover at the San Francisco airport. My laptop has some strange lag issues. Every sentence is a bit sluggish. But, this is my only chance for a while to reach out, before I return to Seattle. Then, I must catch up and move forward with 2023!
I am very excited and will share more soon. In the meantime, I hope 2023 will be a great and exciting year for you too.
It’s another fine festive day, though cold and wet across much of the Pacific Northwest. The freezing rain days ago brought a little shut down through the streets of Seattle. The weather, reminding us of the necessity to have our holiday season through the Winter Solstice. The air is colder and the sky darker. We do our best to keep warm and illuminate, both in spirit and body to be vibrant enough to endure well. That calls for a little extra cocoa for me.
Soon, I will be far and away on an almost cancelled place ride twice, and still a delay. The destination is Los Angeles with many hours by rail, while I have little sleep from the night before. I shall meet with friends and family for dinner with both eyes open and a warm heart, then likely pass out shortly after.
And so, the Merry Christmas. I wish the same of yours, as warm and bright as can be.
Christmas season lights, everywhere again. I love it all.
They bring a necessity of cheer to the coldest, wettest time of the year to our northern hemisphere. These colorful beacons repeal the peak darkness and gloom that can be a bit rough sometimes, especially here in the Pacific Northwest. In Seattle, I welcome them especially under the heavy rain. they inspire fantasy and magic, an extra sparkle to the surroundings with dazzling reflections. The more the rain and darker the air, the more mystical magic I see of the holiday season.
Of course, I take some phone pictures for sharing….
May these visions brighten your season too, or go out look for lights in your area!!
– Orion T
Pics were taken at the Westlake Center in Seattle, a fine spot to enjoy the Holiday Season with shopping and happy rain!
I love small press and homegrown creativity, especially from the Short Run Comix and Arts Festival.
This recent annual event, at its 10th Anniversary in Seattle, drew hundreds of people to a big room to share in that support to meet and shop. Through the many tables, a chance to buy small and limited runs of books, zines, prints, stickers, and a lot of other cool oddities mostly from Pacific Northwest residents. To partake in the joy of creativity and discovery of fresh literature and art, especially the sequential, is delightful.
I have missed this much, as the Covid pandemic has kept the Short Run away for over two years. Now, it’s back to the Fisher Pavilion at the Seattle Center, bigger than ever.
There was an awesome variety of homegrown material for anyone, any age to take in on pretty much any subject. However, much of it is not cheap, as creators often take a difficult path in their devotion to their craft, often taking sacrifice in time and funds of their own. The best we can do to keep them going in offering such driven creativity, is support by paying the extra bucks. The opportunity through the Short Run is most grand.
Also, the Short Run Comix & Arts Festival is a free event. I think that’s a big reason for the support. Accessibility for all, feels more open and inviting. Though the lines during the prime hours to get in were quite long, with at least 15 minutes wait to get in…worth it.
So here are some great moments of the show, including some of the wonderful people I chatted with, and some purchases from me (last picture).
That means Happy Day of the Dead, an important holiday observed in Mexico, Latin America, parts of South America, and the southwest of Europe, happening now.
El Día de los Muertos is actually more than a day, stretching for both November the 1st and the 2nd. This day is of heavy cultural interest to me, but never quite connected to. I think it goes beyond the cool visuals and artistical appeal, but the ancient roots in Mayan, Aztec cultures and ideas of the afterlife mixing with the Catholic beliefs brought on from colonization. There results a sort of a bond in themes through many religions, that death is a part of life and we simply move on. What I childishly enjoy about the Day of the Dead, is that playful and exciting nature of our own spooky imaginations, bringing light to the darkness that may scare us when thinking about death. And there is much life that carries on from these visions of death, and in return we can be visited by spirits if our minds can open up enough.
Here is a little video I would like to share, on the beauty and wonder of this grand tradition.
– Orion T
The picture up top is a weird little unicorn (or Unicorno of the Tokidoki blind box collectibles) toy that sits on my shelf now. this of course, celebrates the traditions and appeal of el Día de los Muertos. I took it off its usual place and brought it with me to work, because I can be pretty weird sometimes.
“It’s as much fun to scare as to be scared.” – Vincent Price.
With much truth in that shining quote, there is more to appreciate in leading up to this day of All Hallow’s Eve. This spookiest day built itself heavily from a Celtic pagan festival, to a preparation on the eve of All Saint’s Day for Catholics, an eventual connecting to All Soul’s Day started by Christian missionaries, then the heavily commercialized push from capitalizing retailers. There is much more history behind every Halloween with it’s many traditions involving wacky costumes, carving pumpkins, and devouring excessive sugary treats.
Halloween is all in good fun, though how much one puts into it is an individual taste. One’s dedication to entertain others through extravagant appearance of one’s self and surrounding to get at least a chuckle, and perhaps a little spooky vibe, says much on how wonderful a beating heart can be. To share in a scare, to delight in disguise, to celebrate a little darkness in each other by making light over much of it, can be healthy for the gloomy days ahead.
So that being said, I hope all have a safe and thrilling Halloween, no matter how we each take part in (or ignore) it.
– Orion T
The picture above was from somewhere near Volunteer Park in Seattle, last Halloween in 2021. In that area was, and probably there again this year, some truly spooktacular displays upon some beautiful vintage houses. I may check that area out again this year, if time and weather allow.
You will always find me in the past. I can be created in the present, but the future will never taint me. What am I?
And, where am I?
That’s where one may find bits and pieces of the past, with stories we leave behind wherever in whatever. But my favorite found is in the dirt and rocks, because they reveal much in story. Sometimes in plain sight on site, uncovered and waiting to be be seen.
That all brings me back to one my favorite places visited multiple times through my summer adventures in San Diego of southern California, just south of the Ocean Beach Pier. There is this rough, rocky area stretching far among the tide pools, not easily accessible. Just walk south of the long pier during the low tide, over what initial may look like a closed off area, and watch your step. Then tread across some much more stable ground, but still be careful…
Then comes my favorite parts, the stories the ground tell there. There are markings etched in the sandstone that tell partly of memories and sentiments. They tell of marriage proposals, memorials to lost loved ones, bindings of friendships, and many other moments that may be insignificant to many, but important enough to leave carved for the many to still notice. Also, there are curious bits of man-made remains of what I guess belong to aged structures, parts of things, many curiosities that bring about imagination. There’s definitely deep history there.
Then, there is nature itself, shaped and defiant to the high cliffs and made-made sea walls. The ever-crashing ocean waves reshaping the land slowly, choosing what to preserve and taken away. Look closer, and you will observe tiny little crabs in the little pools and crevices, sharing in their own little stories of preservation and striving in crazy times of changing climates.
These markings and shapings are all wonderful little story fragments, that I left behind but keep treasured together.
There is an aspect of advertising that may add a surreal atmosphere to a grand event, especially the San Diego Comic-Con. With this big crazy thing I go to when a pandemic is not overwhelming, I expect the the crazy hands of big production studios to hype (and overhype) new TV shows and movies. Afterall, the SDCC gathers a ridiculous amount of attention as over 100,000 attend, and exponentially more gather to the connected outside events spread throughout the downtown San Diego area.
The most noticeable is the ridiculous display on surrounding hotels, turning them into ridiculous oversized billboards. Does it work? I wonder if they do, given the probable high costs. But advertising can be an art too.
Here are some noticeable adds that I think worked for their purpose in San Diego during the SDCC, catering to some very distinct audience. I personally welcome the return of Beavis and Butthead, curious about Severance, will give any animated work a chance, and always take in new Star Trek for better or worse.
Also closely related, love the nearby weird giant statues of Ozzy Osborne and a robot Cookie Monster from Sesame Street. It’s a visual you can only get at this San Diego Comic Con.
Very noticeable overall, and mission accomplished!
I appreciate the forming of whatever can be made from any loose and building dirt. The natural process can be mesmerizing, but often slow for those impatient. That’s where the artfulness come in, with an instinct built from childhood, to shape from the imagination into reality. To look at a pile of the most basic of supplies, build with their own hands to shape and create anew, to create create work is what humans are meant to do.
So here, are my initial pics of my most recent trip to southern California for the San Diego Comic Con. This show, I will write much about and finally share, after a very busy two weeks. But for now, enjoy my pics of these temporary sand castles just outside the SDCC, promoting new original audio books from Amazon’s Audible service.
That’s all for now. Look forward to more pics and notes of my recent adventures soon.
“All in all, it was a never-to-be-forgotten summer — one of those summers which come seldom into any life, but leave a rich heritage of beautiful memories in their going — one of those summers which, in a fortunate combination of delightful weather, delightful friends and delightful doing, come as near to perfection as anything can come in this world.” – L.M. Montgomery
What a pleasant quote from the famed author of Anne of Green Gables! Though, I am often a bit more of a Fall or Spring favored person, as I love those variances in weather and the changes they bring, Yet, I feel a special, unforgettable summer that works best with all it brings with the awesome raised warm of the Pacific Northwest. a break for many, a time to spend with friends and family on big adventures can be delightful and near perfection.
That being said, I am enjoying this summer of 2022 so far, despite the worries of the world. I have pulled myself further from the claws of the social media beasts, to long escapes to waterfronts and large parks. My times are private, almost selfish as I enjoy my along time in self-reflections, figuring that’s next for the months of ahead. And soon, I shall take a much needed travel trip, to make all this even better.
I hope you are enjoying this summer as well.
– Orion T
The picture was taken by me a few days ago from Gasworks Park, a wonderful little spot on the north side of Lake Union in the Seattle city. The slight combined with the warm ready made that time, near perfect.
I think fast junky food is evidence of dark magic in our modern time, summoning consumables that represents everything that is good and terrible of our human guilty pleasures. We think it out of the thin air of the most basic of thoughts to what we or others can put together using the alchemy of dead animals, vegetables, wheat, fire, grease, and whatever consumable liquids or powders of taste additives. It’s weird as such sudden existence of convenience is often irresistible. The smell of a good burger, a deep dish pizza, garlic fries can enchant a hungry soul. We forget how bad and how processed it is, and seek its bliss just when suddenly in our presence. Sometimes, the more the more quantity, the more flavor, the more we should resist. Then may come regret, but there is that moment with the actual consumption right before that means more, is happiness. This strange process, is wonderful.
– Orion T
Picture was taken a couple weeks ago at the Washington Summer Con, in the townsy town of Puyallup, Washington. A lot of people cosplayed for the event. I took less pictures and focused more on treasure hunting. But love this little surreal moment, as I was also hungry for fast food.
It’s another day perhaps, except many of will not work and observe the event of 245 years ago, where a gathering of local American colonists in 1777 felt they had enough of King George III’s British rule and took it upon themselves to draft a nicely written document, declaring independence. The rest is history, and still ongoing for the United States of America. Let’s enjoy this.
Today, I see much shouting on the social medias over what independence means with the much news that I need not explain. People are frustrated, with anger at our government and system for many reasons just and unjust. To also feel our democratic systems tainted by the corruption from the top wealthy, the influence of the forcibly dogmatic, an imperfect justice system, a decline of education in many areas, imbalances…is troubling.
And, it’s healthy to vent to a point because we could be more independent. History is full of many fights of independence all over the world that Americans are still dealing with. Voting rights, reproductive rights, right to protest, right to privacy, right of sex/gender preference, right to survive, right to party, and the list goes on. While it’s understandable to hate a system for failing to protect those rights, it’s still okay to celebrate a large moment when an independent declaration for “we the people” was successful, and something was born good out of it. Every moment of independence from oppression is worthy of celebration.
The United States of America is still a great country, with much details to be worked out to be truly “the land of the free.” Much yet needs to happen for all to achieve equality and justice for all. In the meantime, take this day to understand what freedom does look like for each other to what we do have, celebrate with family or friends with patriotic traditions, or just enjoy some solitude. Freedom should always be celebrated, and continue to strive towards for yourself and others.
– Orion T
Picture above is from a July 4th beach party 11 years ago at Pismo Beach with friends and Sam the Eagle. Good times to remember as I stay home today, and enjoy a little solitude.
I love a local street fair, especially the annual University District Street Fair here in Seattle. I attended, absorbing the sights and sounds of free entertainment and random happenings. But even more so, I enjoy the smells and tastes the food choices of this street fair brought. The weather, perfect.
I love the food options this street fair offered. Here tended much extra special dishes with a variety of culture from many local businesses. One takes chances from each, be a little brave in trying new things, wait in line for and pay a little more. Every disappointment can be a notable experience. Every tasty surprise, a euphoric reward to that street fair experience.
So, I took pictures of some choice food from this fair, with both visual appeal and invite curious taste. Many have links on where you can learn more from the business that served each. Enjoy, and let them encourage you to check out some street fair food stands…
Some dessert made with liquid nitrogen, from 320 Below!
So with all that delight in mind, I would love to know your favorite street fair food. Please share in our comments!
Though, by the time you read this, the day probably passed for 2022. Still, a positive message brought to you by the peak of pop-culture nerd fandom. This is Star Wars Day, as fans come to recognize as a play on words, being the Fourth exchangeable for the Force. It’s dorky, but whatever. There is much in our world to keep us stressed and sad, and sci-fi escapism is sometimes a necessary distraction, and to sometimes help keep us positive in tough times.
So, today among friends who love and cherish many things Star Wars, we looked back on the best ways the Force full franchise touched our lives. I realized, going through every era of its development, from the original trilogy to the Disney Plus era. Many games, books, fan films in between, I have delved into its extremely extensive lore, digged the memes, can pinpoint and recognize nearly every obscure character from the movies. I love the Star Wars, as George Luca’s vision grown, expanded, giving us much to ponder in our imaginations to further shape and dive into. Star Wars is the work of many, cultivated by its fandom.
Looking back to the beginning of my love for Star Wars, and I would like to share some memories of where it all began for me:
My first Star Wars movie is The Empire Strikes Back. I saw it on VHS as in my earliest Elementary school days at a friend’s house slumber party. Yes, I would have been shocked to learn Vader was Luke’s father in the pivotal moment, if it wasn’t spoiled by every other kid in the room. My love for space reptilian men, started with Bossk.
My first Star Wars toys were some old early Kenner figures from the early 80s. I recall first having Darth Vader, Obi Wan, Han Solo, Artoo, and Pruneface. Eventually, I would find more, and put them into a very used Millennium Falcon, Kenner brand playset with missing parts.
My first Star Wars book was a Return of the Jedi Star Wars storybook. For reasons I best not go into now, I was not able to see Return of the Jedi in theaters when it came out. So, I learned the story with great delight from the children’s text with full pictures. I reread it many times, very thrilled and satisfied at the conclusion. Boba Fett was the coolest, even though he played a small, and very sad part.
My first Star Wars video game was the super awesome video arcade machine with the 3D vector graphics. I loved the steering control, movie realistic sounds, and thrill of blowing up the Death Star three times usually, with one quarter. To this day, it’s still an awesome game!
My first Star Wars movie in theaters was the Special Edition of Episode IV in the movie theaters. Seeing this first, even with the changes, on the big screen felt right.
I would like to write more about Star Wars in good time, as the Force I feel will always be with me. I have much to share on the current stuff, my growing weird love for the prequels, and a lot of obscure stuff. In good time, I will. But for now, may the Star Wars be with you too.
I have to enjoy these fresh blossoms while they last…
And, the best place for the grandest trees in Seattle, are foremost at the Quad in the University of Washington. Here, a grand gathering of cheery cherry trees stand tall in top bloom through this week. Nearly every year, I take time out to enjoy the awesome view. But this year, it seem many were present to share in their glory.
The new spring season has finally arrived, and its new atmosphere feels absolutely great.
Slightly warmer weather, a time change giving more light to our evenings, more outside sports actions, and very notably come the fresh blooms.
My favorite visuals of this new season are the many cherry trees adorn with their brightest blooms, of which I have wrote about many times, and did a little video last year.. Yet, I can never express enough the wonders and atmosphere these sakuras bring at such a perfect time. I am often drawn to them. My imagination is brought to visions where I will someday witness see their grandest display in the Land of the Rising Sun.
But for now, I shall continue to appreciate this annual natural tradition, well appreciated in the PNW where cherry blossoms are plenty. Cherry blossom festivals are coming, with a new one this weekend at the University of Washington. I may check that out.
But if you see a cherry tree or grove, stop and enjoy what’s freshly given in the narrow time seen. Look close, and appreciate every branch, every petal whether resilient or loosely falling. Then get lost in the overall picture…
That joy was from the local annual parade here in Seattle, returning to full spirit with the marching and convoy entertainment to a cheering crowd. I think this may be the first of its kind to a regular cheering crowd since before the pandemic. I was a surprised with the huge public reception!
The event, was for the coming St. Patrick’s day. All hosted by an awesome variety of mostly local Irish culture groups, celebrating different facets of Ireland traditions, music, dance, spirited ideals, and non-profit backed charity.
Overall, a good time. I wish I brought a better camera, but still I took pictures worth sharing. Here below, are my favorite shots for your amusement.
Today, marks the last day of the 2022 Lunar New Year festivities as we welcome the Year of the Tiger. I hope many readers caught some part of this longtime 15-day tradition. I almost missed out with schedule complications and untimely weather.
But, I was fortunate to be around the Seattle Center last Sunday, getting some fresh air. I wasn’t very excited about this year’s Super Bowl this year, but did enjoy the halftime special later. This day was the only chance I had for a while to spend extensive time outside, and that’s important to me.
So, I felt rewarded in that time, for I witnessed a glorious gathering for the continued Lunar New Year celebrations with the White Lotus Dragon & Lion Dance group. These are very talented performers in colorful costumes, from Portland, Oregon. They do a variety of dances, musical numbers, sharing of Asian culture rooted from longtime traditions, for entertainment and promotions.
This stylish lion dancing dates back over a 1000 years, rooted in ancient China, backed by related folktales that add mystique to this creature rarely seen by locals. Traditions have remained steady since, with regional variations, promoting Chinese culture around the world now. Unlike Chinese Dragons who need many to animate the creature movement, Chinese Lions only unit persons per unit. Music is added, often introduced with fireworks, and stunts may be performed. To witness these lions in action, is an awesome spectacle.
I enjoyed this colorful display, of which I share further with these pics from my camera.
The White Lotus Dragon & Lion Dance group performs for many events, and remain local to the Pacific Northwest. For more info, visit www.whitelotusliondance.com.
Sadly, a recent weather report concluded to zero chance of lowland Seattle, for the coming days, and likely the rest of this month. The weather will warm up instead.
Which is too bad for those who don’t get enough snow in their life, but enjoy what it brings. Meanwhile, I do love those pics of the northeast U.S snowfall. And then I remember, that I have pics to look back on, with many I have yet to publish on travelingorion.com.
Last year here in Seattle, we received much low-land snow where in Seattle. I posted some pictures here, and here. But, I held back on many pictures of handmade snowpeople, with an intention to feature in a separate post. But sadly, the plan was set aside in favor of editing and producing a video. I was hoping to revive the theme with the recent snowfall, but didn’t quite find any more snowpersons, and also was a bit too busy to seek any out. So, I remembered last year’s adventures, and now would like to share these special pics.
What a nice bunch! Someday, I will build one of my own. That’s on my bucket list now.
I love podcasts, and will someday elaborate further with some personal favorites listened to.
But for now, surprise! I’m a special guest on Junk Food Dinner, an awesome, long-running podcast reviewing pop-culture, cult, obscure movies of the past and present. Hosts (currently Kevin Moss, Sean Byron, Parker Bowman) cover related news, share commentary, slice of life stuff with wit and fun bits of trivia. Usually each week, three movie works are chosen and discussed. For movies fans, I highly recommend you add Junk Food Dinner to your podcast list, or check out their vast 10 plus years of over 600 episodes.
For episode #604, I co-host as cover for Parker Bowman, keeping its trio formula. I have covered for Kevin Moss on Junk Food Dinner many years ago. Keep in mind though, I am not a podcasting professional. Talking with no script for public consumption with the least stress for the editor is tough work, and takes practice and skill to get that radio-quality banter and confidence. To be a guest with less experience takes bravery, but also super fun. I think I did better this latest time.
For this episode, we kick off their Junk Food Dinner’s “Sci-Fi-ebruary,” focused on science fiction movies. But this year, JFD delves into various films focused on various Afro-centric, Afro-futurism, and African American cultural themes. For #604, we cover The Last Angel of History, Welcome II the Terrordome,Attack the Block. I also share my thoughts and views on recent cult movie/TV news, having a good time with personal tidbits on my cultural background. You can give that a listen by clicking on the link on the picture below the following disclaimer, or seeking out JFD on various podcast apps and check out #604.
Disclaimer: The podcast contains some profanity, body humor, sometimes crude humor (while doing their best to keep things positive) with some subject matter that may not be family friendly. The JFD audience may differ from the Traveling Orion audience. Much of my input is a side of that I don’t share often share here.
I brought in The Last Angel of History for discussion, an amazing short film from the mid 90s. It’s a meta lined art documentary with a fictional outline, but with real life perspectives on the relation of Black contributions to science fiction, music, writing, and futurist ideals. We get a plethora of guest input from important culture contributors including George Clinton, Derrick May, Samuel R. Delany, Octavia E. Butler, Nichelle Nichols, Juan Atkins, DJ Spooky, Goldie, Ishmael Reed, Greg Tate, Bernard Harris, Kodwo Eshun, Carl Craig, and more.
Here’s a trailer. I highly recommend you check this out if such things interest you.
Overall, I had a wonderful time being a podcast co-host, and would love to do this again. But, I would definitely need to improve, taking each broadcast as an experience. If I had the time and funds to do it, I would also love to take this Traveling Orion blog on the road as a podcast (also do more filming shorts). That’s all still possible someday, so please help encourage me if you think I should!
I love a good bookstore, especially with a staircase that leads to room with more books.
One favorite staircase is from Ophelia Books in the Fremont neighborhood in Seattle, located one block north of the Fremont Bridge. It’s got a nice collection of used books at very decent prices.
But the coolest aside from the books, is that awesome staircase noticeable at entrance. It’s a narrow spiral, and important that you watch your step going down. Take it downstairs, then browse their science fiction, mystery, lots of non-fiction books of many subjects.
I was there recently, filling in time before a meeting. I found some good books on journalism history, and The Dictionary of Science Fiction Places. I would take the past and future with me, back up the spiral staircase. I will travel this way again.
And now I ask. Do you have any favorite used book stores with cool book cases? Or just favorite book stores? Please share with me in the comments!
I appreciate a surprising, grand visual moment where you stop thinking and just admire its beauty.
The above picture shot was taken a few weeks ago, between the Snoqualmie forest and Issaquah, an hour east of Seattle. At the time and depending on your direction on the 91 freeway, you will witness an amazing change 15 minutes later in continuous driving. The forest scenery either switches to damp green bareness or all covered in lush white snow. The landscape change is gasping to see witness, seeing how nature can change with the ever-changing, deeply varied Pacific Northwest weather.
That long snowline is unreal, perfectly straight at a very distinct level. I stared, trying to figure out…how? There’s a science in that somewhere, probably with the atmosphere and density. I tried to find more information online, with no immediate answers. I welcome any explanation below in the comments.
I love reading new comic books and graphic novels, which has been a constant for over three decades now. I support the sequential arts industry, its creators, the publishers, and all that moves this form of storytelling.
For my annual tradition, I share again my list of the best comic books and graphic novels, released and fresh last year. The list is on strangerworlds.com, a site I contribute too.
If you have any favorite comics, graphics novels of 2021 that I missed, or just books I should read….please tell me below (or in the link). And I would love to hear your opinions on my reads, or if you add them to your list.
But most of all, keep on the book shelves and enjoy those new reads!
Here’s a special theme for this post…walking together in the snow. Trailing through a beautiful place where snow cover is an amazing, poetic experience meant to be shared.
So, I hereby mix up today’s pictures recently taken by me, with a poem (Velvet Shoes) by Elinor Wylie, an American poet and novelist of the early 1900s. She lived an interesting yet shortened life of 43 years; married three times, wrote five novels and multiple poems. This poem is timeless, and perfect for a snow walk through the woods.
I will share more details on the pics, at the end.
“Let us walk in the white snow In a soundless space; With footsteps quiet and slow, At a tranquil pace, Under veils of white lace.
I shall go shod in silk, And you in wool, White as white cow’s milk, More beautiful Than the breast of a gull.“
“We shall walk through the still town In a windless peace; We shall step upon white down, Upon silver fleece, Upon softer than these.
We shall walk in velvet shoes: Wherever we go Silence will fall like dews On white silence below. We shall walk in the snow.“
The candid pictures were taken at Ravenna Park, a beautiful little ravine forest in north Seattle. The park is a 1/2 mile stretch where you can spend a day not admiring it enough. I can never visit there enough and will take any excuse to trail again. The recent snow here was amazing, and a lot of fun for photography. The first shot was taken above the Ravenna Bridge. The others are of the main path through the park. have more pictures, which I will share soon. These three pics with the theme of others walking though, just deserved its own special post.
I’m having fun again, with my old and slowly outdated DSLR camera.
Show me fresh shapes, crazy lights, tricky angles, strange surfaces. With the right camera, fun will will happen, as I shall go for some interesting shots.
Recently here in downtown Seattle, I took my old Canon T5 with a 24mm lens for an evening walk. The weather remained chilly, as some recent snow remained scattered through the streets. I originally looked around for some dramatic themes of cold winter weather, while also picking up some food to go. But upon checking for what remained open, I read on some “SLU After Dark” displays in the South Lake Union area. These were four light-up, interactive art installations. All of which were temporary on display until the end of 2021, and then likely moved elsewhere.
The display labeled Prismatica caught my eye the most, by RAW, a Canadian architecture firm. Prismatica is a series of prisms filled with color lights, where anyone near may give each a spin. It’s simple yet dazzling amusement with an incalculable amount of experiences in visual joy brought with variances of light, motion, position, and your reaction.
So, I took pictures with my camera. At first, very difficult to get a good angle many, while the snow also distracted in each shot. Yet, I was a surprised at some results of myself trying, but up close. Depending on what you looked through, what reflected, finding yourself in them, and different cam settings; some very interesting results. Here are some favorites through different glass layers using a combination of bouncing of colors, reflections, focus depths…
That was all good fun. I love to try this again soon, but with warmer weather.
Let’s welcome 2022 with cheerful optimism and a positive outlook. Everything we hope and should strive for should be better, right? I plan to, because I am tired of complaining about the previous years, and feeling burned out through each. 2022 has a great ring to it all, because the number and the end of many things are usually great.
I recall 1982, 1992, 2002, 2012 were all great years in my life. Great things often in 2s. The best movie sequels that surpass the first, for example – Terminator 2, Back to the Future 2, Toy Story 2, Spider-Man 2 (of the Raimi trilogy), Godfather 2, Superman 2, Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan. 2 also means you have the initial momentum in succession of something, breaking away from the loneliness that is associated with just 1.
So, that means we can expect better things with twice the 2.
22 is also a mathematical wonder. It’s an even composite number and a semiprime. 22 is also a pentagonal number and a centered heptagonal number. 22 divided by 7 is also Pi (π). The atomic number of titanium is 22. The Paramount Pictures logo has 22 stars. The 22nd letter of the English alphabet is a V, a shape that can symbolize victory or peace. 22 is the number on the legendary football player Emmitt Smith’s jersey of the Dallas Cowboys.
So, I foresee 22 and 2 shared in the same breathe as something that achieve greatness. With that, I have no resolutions for this year. This Calvin and Hobbes moment from Bill Watterson best sums up my plans ahead…
Happy New Year and look forward to 2022, with a smile.