Another day

April 23, 2017

As the sun set on a beautiful day I thanked the Lord for being
willing to allow me another sunset. The creek didn’t rise, the
birds were singing, and the flowers were blooming.

A little earlier while doing research something interesting
came up. Interesting to me at least. My camera of choice is a
a Nikon D3300 which is has a crop sensor. I also understand the
basics of ‘crop factor’.

The Nikon has an APS-c sensor and a crop factor of 1.5. That
means that because the sensor is smaller than the 35mm standard
that one multiplies the lens length by 1.5. Meaning when using
my 70-300mm lens what I see in the viewfinder is equal to 105-
450mm on a full frame camera, if I understand things correctly.

If that is true and I add a 2x tele-converter, instead of
giving me 140-600mm, it would be equal to 210-900mm using the
crop factor. I’m not sure if that is a good thing or a bad
thing, but I like the camera.

After perusing many forums and sites on the internet and being
more confused than ever I have come the conclusion that using
what works for me is the best route. Since this is a hobby for
me and not a career, sinking tons of money into equipment isn’t
my goal.

When, and if, I get back in the mood to do more research my
thoughts may change on the subject. But as the wife says, I
have to quit living in the 60s because prices went up. Don’t
know about you, but I kinda liked gas at 25.9 cents a gallon.

Enjoy the rest of our Sunday, the work week is only a dream
away. And now I go in search of the elusive bacon cheeseburger
pizza.
Comments are always welcome.


Stranger than fiction

April 21, 2017

I ran across a couple stories lately that had me shaking my
head. One was local and the other, regional. So let’s put my
thoughts out there and see what happens.

One of our Aldermen caused an uproar of sorts when he was
quoted saying the following “the homeless are bad for business”.
Or something close. Our local newspaper was outraged.

How could he say such a thing? How can he not feel sympathy
towards the downtrodden? Or words to that effect. Well, it
wasn’t that long ago we called them bums. Back when the
greatest generation was our age they didn’t mince words.

And whatever happened to freedom of speech? Today, just
because he says something others don’t like he gets put on the
10 most wanted list? I’d be willing to bet the writers from the
newspaper live nowhere near the area mentioned and wouldn’t
want the homeless congregating in their neighborhood either.

The other item concerns higher education in Wisconsin. At some
colleges they installed tampon dispensers in the mens bathrooms
in an effort to give equal treatment to all.

That got me so flustered I couldn’t talk, the wife laughing
so hard at my dilemma, it was crazy. This brought on a
discussion I never thought I’d have.

So I started with “there isn’t a man alive who needs tampons”.

The wife stated that a transgender man, who used to be a
woman, but hasn’t had the final operation would. Lord love a
duck.

So I countered “there isn’t a man alive who needs a tampon”.
During war time I supposed said sanitary items could be used
to stop heavy bleeding but I don’t believe Wisconsin has a war
on its college campuses.

I must be getting old. The more I follow the news the less I
understand. Enjoy our Friday, the weekend is upon us. Now I’m
making a thick salami sandwich to ease my suffering.
Comments are always welcome.


It keeps going, and going…

April 19, 2017

and going. The tale of our wayward Alderman is now at the
stage where the city council has to get involved. I can’t be
the only one amazed that the other members of the council who
were interviewed pulled a Sargaent Schultz again. “I knew
nothing”.

We’re not saying they’re flat out lying, but in most work
environments that involve a lot of people, it is hard to think
there weren’t at least rumors floating around. So after all
those willing to be interviewed denied prior knowledge, they
now have some work to do.

The city council can give 32 days notice and hold a special
election at a cost of about $30,000. If this is done the winner
of said special election would have to run again in November as
the term is up in January.

The city council could just appoint someone within 40 days,
unless there is a primary. They would then need a 60 day
notice. And whomever they appoint would have to run in the
November election to keep the seat.

As happens with our “transparent” city government, we doubt
anyone will know anything until something is released to the
media. Some who live here on the east coast of Iowa in our
tree lined city on the river should remember the drill.

At any rate, it will be an interesting few days until somebody
says something that amounts to nothing on the subject. Until
then, enjoy our Wednesday. The weekend will be here and gone
before we know it.
Comments are always welcome.


Just a thought

April 6, 2017

Today is the 96th day of the year meaning we’ll be adding a
year on forms in just 269 days. Time flies when we’re having fun.
And what a day our Thursday is, did you know…

On this date in 1808, John Jacob Astor incorporated the
American Fur Company and it would allow him to become America’s
first millionaire.

In 1862, on this date the Battle of Shiloh began.

On April 6, 1909, Robert Peary and Matthew Henson reached the
North Pole.

And on this very date in 1917, the United States declared war
on Germany.

Today is a day we celebrate New Beer’s Eve. Never heard of it
you say? It’s the night preceding the day beer became legal
again after Prohibition.

This is the day Merle Haggard was born in 1937 and the day he
died in 2016 at age 79.

There are many more things that happened in our past yet today
is also a day we’re the oldest we’ve ever been. If we woke up
breathing we’re ahead of the game. That’s certainly something
to celebrate. So enjoy our Thursday. We can’t control the
weather but we can learn how to enjoy it.

Now I’m going to watch my talk show on the radio, take a few
pictures, and enjoy the day before I snuggle up with a pizza
later.
Comments are always welcome.


Almost there

April 5, 2017

Here in Iowa the Stand Your Ground bill is one step closer to
the Governor’s desk. It must first go back to the House for a
vote on the changes made while going through the Senate. And of
course we have the uninformed saying passing this bill will
increase gun violence and racial tensions.

There is more to this bill than just stand your ground. A
minor under 14 would be able to use a handgun, with parental
supervision.

You will be allowed to concealed carry a pistol or revolver on
the Captial grounds.

And citizens can sue local government for enacting gun free
zones if said citizens feel adversly affected by the action.

This bill passed 33-17 and has some people worried. We’ve
heard it all before in one form or another. Gun violence will
increase, it will cause more racial unrest, we legal gun owners
will declare open war on the streets.

These folks never have the facts on their side, won’t listen
to reason, and make claims that rational thinkers can make no
sense of. I would really like to know how my being a legal gun
owner for decades suddenly endangers your children.

If you are among those who think passage of this bill will
somehow put targets on your children or increase gun violence,
please tell us how.

We’ll leave it there. Enjoy our Wednesday.
Comments are always welcome.


Shooting the moon

April 2, 2017

When I first got my DSLR the more research done just raised my
curiosity. Most of what I read stated one needed a tripod to
take a picture of the moon, and perfectly dark surroundings.
My naturally curious brain was left in doubt.

If the earth is orbiting the sun at around 67,000 mph and the
moon is orbiting us at about 2,290 mph, why does the camera
have to be on a tripod? Yet I was continually told it was a
necessity.

Now on top of the earth and moon being in motion there are
times when clouds will get in the way. The final piece of the
puzzle was these same articles telling me about the necessity
of a tripod also said you need at least a 600mm lens to take a
good picture of the moon.

I do have a tripod and longer lenses yet prefer my trusty
100-300 mm lens. If you are older and have used a long lens to
shoot hand held you will know why. So I decided to use what I
want and see how it worked.

The picture above was taken March 31, 2017 on a clear night
The settings were shutter 1/500 of a second, aperture f/5.6,
and ISO 400. It was taken with the lens at 300 mm. Not perfect
but I’m happy with it.

When I started this quest, using a kit lens, I started with
the settings at shutter 1/250, f/5.6, and ISO 200. I don’t
lower the shutter speed if the moon is too dark I raise the
ISO. If the moon looks too bright I raise the shutter speed.

There have been clearer shots and cloudy shots, but to start
I used the settings mentioned above. And I do use a tripod when
taking pictures of stars in the night sky. That may get mentioned
in another post.

Enjoy the rest of our Sunday as the work week starts tomorrow.
Now I’m going to enjoy the Snicker’s bar I have chilling in the
refrigerator.
Comments are always welcome.


Just a couple things

March 31, 2017

For any who don’t know and those interested in such things,
today and tomorrow Mecum Auctions is holding a tractor auction
at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds. There is rumored to be
400 tractors at the sale including a 1938 Minneapolis Moline
Comfortractor. One of about 40 left in existence.

So we went to get groceries earlier and the way they had half
the aisles blocked it looks like the store is preparing to move
the things we know how to find to a secret new location. We can
hardly wait.

After groceries got umpacked and stored in their designated
spots I took camera in hand to determine if I could locate any
colorful birds or new critters. It seemed like the birds and
other critters stayed in their living rooms to keep warm and
dry instead of venturing out into the drizzly chill.

But a critter was spotted, and although not among my favorite
species, I managed to get a few pictures.

Both pictures were taken on my Nikon and the settings were
shutter 1/500th of a second, aperture f/5.6 and ISO 900.

Not sure why this possum chose our neighborhood to scout but
it could be worse. There is a bright side to thinking about
this creature. And that is that possums are about eight times
less likely to carry rabies than wild dogs.

Of course to my knowledge we have no wild dogs in our area,
but this is one less thing to worry about. At any rate, this
one was too busy trying to be invisible to cause much harm.

Enjoy our Friday and the weekend. It will only seem like a
few fun days before Monday comes around. Now I have to find
a chocolate chip cookie for my sweet tooth.
Comments are always welcome.