Sunday, April 29, 2012

Friday, April 27, 2012

Overheard #192

"I was searching for a nice word for irrelevant."

Thursday, April 26, 2012

New York, New York!

This afternoon, I leave for New York City with the high school choir. It should be a wonderful trip. There are a few blog post scheduled while I’m away, so I hope you’ll stop by Words and Pixels. See you next week.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Talent Show

Last weekend I attended a talent show that was a fundraiser for the local schools. A middle school girl came out on stage and started to sing, not realizing that her microphone wasn’t working. The auditorium was large, and her voice was inaudible over the recorded accompaniment. About halfway through her song, someone found a functional mike, and she finished her performance with poise and grace.

It struck me that my career as an unpublished writer is much like this. I’m doing the moves, singing from my heart and trying to perfect the melody and rhythms, yet no one can hear. It’s starting to look like I’ll never get a microphone, but I’m still singing.

Sunday, April 22, 2012


These butterflies enjoy the lilacs.


Friday, April 20, 2012

Overheard #192

"If you’re not a thinking ball player, you’re not going to hit it out of the park."

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Tracking Devices Revisited

I received a request for more information about micro tracking devices. Unfortunately, I don’t have many new facts. Commercially available tracing devices seem to be of two varieties: 1) small boxes equipped with magnets for attachment to cars and 2) collar tags designed to locate roaming pets. The grain-of-rice-sizedmicrochips that are injected under animals’ skin are used to identify lost pets once they are found. They need to be scanned at close range, and do not have a global positioning system (GPS) that could transmit the animal’s location. I read a spy novel in which the hero swallowed an encapsulated GPS before he was taken by the enemy. The book was fiction. I can’t verify whether the device was as well. 

The limitation on size reduction is probably the battery. The device swallowed by the spy wouldn’t have to transmit very long, because (without getting into gastrointestinal physiology) it wouldn’t stay with him. Pet collar and car tracking devices are larger because it is inconvenient to change batteries frequently.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Overheard #191

"I hate watching a computer think."

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Color My World

My current project takes place in the distant past, so I’ve been investigating the fashions of the time. Everyone knows styles change, but colors have too. In previous eras, the range of available colors for clothing was limited because fabric was dyed with natural substances instead of chemical pigments. Here’s a timeline of the development of fabric colors. Further research taught me that during some periods of history, colors like Tyrian Purple or Imperial Yellow were limited to people of high status or rank. In addition, the names of colors have changed with time. This article explains the name of Thomas Lawrence’s famous painting, Pinkie, Homer’s “wine red sea” and the origin of the term brunette.

Sunday, April 8, 2012


The wind was blowing when I photographed these maple seeds, and I had to take many shots before I got one that was in focus. I love the light, and the colors proclaim spring.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Overheard #190

"You don’t know if you’ve gone far enough until you’ve gone too far."

Sunday, April 1, 2012


Our last photography class was a photo shoot at a local park. The sky was overcast, making the lighting flat. I wasn't very pleased with that day's efforts, but after freezing my fingers, I decided to post a couple.

I aimed at the pitcher plant, but I liked the water patterns more.