Monthly Archives: December 2014

Happy New Year’s Eve! Be safe!

Picture of the Moment

Zoey the Cool Cat doesn’t much care about New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day.

They both have 24 hours and lots of opportunities for her to sleep, eat, and poop.

However, before she went to sleep on my desk, she wished everyone a safe New Year’s Eve.

Be safe this New Year's Eve!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

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Eliminate prehating by getting an interracial app for use on the world’s seventh mobile phone

A Piece Missing

I quit being a part of the Internet Grammar Patrol more than a decade ago. I figured if people didn’t want to learn how to construct an English sentence, or spell words correctly, or use the proper word, nothing I could do on the Internet would help them. I do wonder, though, when the poor grammar and spelling is in something that should be immaculate.

When I find a good example, I save it for posterity, not that there is, or will be, any posterity for me….

So, following, are three of the best grammar and spelling goofs I found this past week. Click on the images to get a larger version.

This first one from Fry’s Electronics didn’t get off to a good start with its description:

“Toaster Oven featuring double -inchInfrared Light-inch for cooking….”

Sounds futuristic!

As I continued reading, I discovered that it “eliminates prehating.” So that’s why there seems to be so much hate in the world. People are prehating! Eliminate prehating now!

Eliminate prehating

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

With all the interracial problems that we seem to be having here in the United States, it looks like 3D Issue at least has the solution to the “interracial part” of your marketing strategy: Branded Apps!

Interracial part of your marketing strategy

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Lastly, I don’t know if I want to be the seventh person….

Six of the world's seven billion people

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Maybe I can eliminate prehating by getting an interracial app for use on the world’s seventh mobile phone….

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Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.

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This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Music on Mondays (12-29-14)—An argument over politics

The Music Chronicles of Russel Ray

I have always liked music about actual historical events.

I am reminded of them each year because I get daily emails about historical events from history.com.

You can sign up here: This Day In History (scroll down one screen, red button, right side).

Yesterday, I learned (again!) about Stagger Lee.

“Stagger Lee,” Lloyd Price, 1959

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The song was first published in 1911 and first recorded in 1923 by Fred Warring’s Pennsylvanians.

Based on an actual murder on December 27, 1895, in a barroom in St. Louis, Missouri. There are been many renditions throughout the years, but the one by Lloyd Price made it to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1959. Prior to Lloyd Price, the most famous version was “Stack O’ Lee Blues” by Mississippi John Hurt, recorded in 1928. Other versions that I am familiar with include those by Woody Guthrie, Duke Ellington, Bob Dylan, The Clash, and the Grateful Dead.

From History.com:

Under the headline “Shot in Curtis’s Place,” the story that ran in the next day’s edition of the St. Louis Daily Globe-Democrat began, “William Lyons, 25, colored, a levee hand… was shot in the abdomen yesterday evening at 10 o’clock in the saloon of Bill Curtis… by Lee Sheldon, also colored.” According to the Globe-Democrat’s account, Billy Lyons and “Stag” Lee Sheldon “had been drinking and were in exuberant spirits” when an argument over “politics” boiled over, and Lyons “snatched Sheldon’s hat from his head.” While subsequent musical renditions of this story would depict the dispute as one over gambling, they would preserve the key detail of “Stag” Lee Sheldon’s headwear and of his matter-of-fact response to losing it: “Sheldon drew his revolver and shot Lyons in the abdomen… When his victim fell to the floor Sheldon took his hat from the hand of the wounded man and coolly walked away.”

Hmmmmm. An argument over politics. Things haven’t changed.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

San Diego Historical Landmarks—#9: The Davis-Horton House (part 3)

San Diego Historical Landmarks

For previous posts on the Davis-Horton House, see
The Davis-Horton House, part 2
The Davis-Horton House.

Location of Heath-Davis House

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The Davis-Horton House is a three-story structure with a basement, and the main entrance actually is in the basement.

Entrans to Gaslamp Museum

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Two things in that picture are unusual for San Diego, and they both begin with B: Basement and bricks.

On the brick wall to the right of the entrance was a beautiful mailbox.

Historic mailbox

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

They don’t make ’em like that anymore.

The basement is mostly the museum store and administrative areas. There was some pretty cool stuff on the walls, most of it concerning the historic Gaslamp Quarter (remember that the Davis-Horton House is the Gaslamp Museum). This warning sign ca. 1913 was my favorite:

Warning

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The Stingaree District existed mainly between the 1880s, when San Diego was booming, to a “cleanup” in 1912-1916. However, it remained a vice district until downtown redevelopment in the 1980s.

Vice districts existed throughout the West in response to the view by politicians and police that gambling, drug and alcohol addiction, and prostitution were vices that simply could not be eradicated. Thus, restricted districts were created in many cities where such vices could be practiced openly as long as they were within the district and that no greater crimes were committed. Illegal payments from the vice trades to police and politicians were common. Possibly the most famous of all vice districts was the Barbary Coast in San Francisco.

The exact boundaries of the Stingaree District are unknown, but the Health Department in 1912 identified the District as being bounded by First, Fifth, Market, and K Streets. The map below shows the current Gaslamp Quarter boundaries (red), the Stingaree District boundaries identified in 1912 (yellow), and the location of the Davis-Horton House/Gaslamp Museum (red arrow).

Stingaree and Gaslamp Quarter locations in San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I thought it interesting that, on the warning sign, only one anarchist was in the Stingaree District, and I really felt sorry for “loiters,” although I’m pretty sure they are the same as loiterers. Nonetheless, jail for 90 days for being a vagrant or loitering.

Ah, but what about “hop heads” and “those possessing hootch”?

Google and Wikipedia tell me that hopheads are people who like highly hopped beer, which I deduced to mean either “highly flavored” or “high in alcohol content.” Two other definitions, though, include an alcoholic whose choice of drink is beer, and an early 1900s American slang term for a user of opium. Since sources would not be specific, I’m going to presume that in this context it means drunks.

Hootch (more commonly now, “hooch”) is an alcoholic beverage produced by distillation. Distillation purifies an alcoholic beverage by removing diluting components, so the alcoholic content is much higher than beer, wine, or cider. The best definition I found was any alcoholic beverage that has been distilled and has an “alcohol by volume” content of at least 20%. So, whiskey, rum, vodka, gin, tequila…. In other words, every time I go to On The Border for a margarita, I’m possessing a little hooch………..

When the Davis-Horton House was renovated in the early 1970s in preparation for it becoming the Gaslamp Museum, an alcove behind a cutaway wall in the study revealed a working whiskey still, a replica of which is in the museum:

Replica of a whiskey still in the Davis-Horton House, San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Because research on the Davis-Horton House led me astray to the Stingaree District, my next post in the San Diego Historical Landmark series will be a tour of the inside of the House/Museum, originally slated to be this post. The Museum is fascinating.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

For the introductory blog post
to San Diego’s historical landmarks,
click on San Diego’s Historical Landmarks.

For previous posts in the
San Diego Historical Landmarks series,
go here.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift?
Anniversary? Birthday? Graduation? Marriage?
Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

2015 Birds Digital Calendar now available

I have been working all day on my digital calendars for 2015, trying to get my Photographic Art blog set up as an e-commerce site with shopping cart, payment processing, and instant download.

I believe I have succeeded.

Check it out:

2015 Monday-Sunday Birds Digital Calendar

Ninety percent of all product notices will be at Photographic Art, not here, so be sure to subscribe/follow me over there!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift?
Anniversary? Birthday? Graduation? Marriage?
Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.

Photographic Art logo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

I never grew up to be a mapologist

Halls of History

Many decades ago when I was but a youth of about 12, I wanted to be a “mapologist.”

It wasn’t an occupation then, and it’s still not an occupation.

However, there is such a thing as a cartographer….

I’m not sure why a cartographer creates maps instead of carts but I’m sure there’s an etymologist somewhere who can tell us, providing that said etymologist is actually studying words and not etyms. Oh, why does language have to be so complicated?

Recently, without really trying, I found an 1854 map of San Diego hanging on a wall in the historic Davis-Horton House, also known as the Gaslamp Museum. Map looks like this:

1854 map of San Diego

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The green arrow points to San Diego, “Old Town San Diego State Historic Park” as it is now known.

The red arrow points to “New Town,” founded by Alonzo Horton. Horton thought that San Diego was too far from the waters of the Pacific Ocean and San Diego harbor. So he created New Town about four miles south.

New Town is where downtown San Diego is now, specifically the historic Gaslamp Quarter, so Horton obviously was on to something.

For comparison, following is Google Maps presenting us with the same areas. In 1854, the long water channel running alongside Interstate 8, SeaWorld, and Mission Bay were not there. Picture all of that water removed and you can see how far inland Old Town actually was.

San Diego, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Friday Flower Fiesta (12-26-14)—Electric Avenue

Friday Flower Fiesta

When one takes an average of 300 pictures each day, there will be pictures that look good on the camera’s little LCD screen but, when seen on the much larger computer monitor, they lack the subjective quality known as composition, have something ugly in them that I don’t want to take the time to fix, or have poor backgrounds, something that I also don’t usually like to fix….

Such is the case with today’s Friday Flower Fiesta.

So I made Photographic Art out of them.

I used Redfield’s Fractalius plug-in for Photoshop to create electric flowers. Thus, “Electric Avenue” by Eddy Grant for your listening pleasure while viewing….

I don’t like all of these, but Fractalius takes several minutes to do its thing on a 5184×3456-pixel image, so I’ll just let you decide.

Fractalius works well when there are good focal points and colors, not to well when there’s too much of one color or not a clear focal point.

I have included the original picture below the Photographic Art so you can see what Fractalius does. I even tell you at the bottom of the original picture what I didn’t like about it so you can see my thought process.

My favorites are #10, #1, #3, and #5.

1Agapanthus or lily of the nile

Agapanthus or lily of the nile

Didn’t like all the bright spots at the left.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

2Agapanthus or lily of the nile

Agapanthus or lily of the nile

Didn’t like the background; too out of focus
and the purple doesn’t go with the blue.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

3Anemones

Anemones

Background too glary.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

4Alstroemeria

Alstroemeria

Dying leaves at left.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

5Anthurium

Anthurium

Too many partial flowers.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

6Alyssum and begonia

Alyssum and begonia

Too many background patterns.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

7Alyssum

Alyssum

A mound of white flowers. Uninspiring.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

8Artichoke

Artichoke

Background too busy;
busy focal points should not have busy backgrounds.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

9Amaryllis

Amaryllis

Almost a perfect example of symmetry…. almost.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

10Azalea

Azalea

Again, busy focal point with busy background.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift?
Birthday? Graduation? Marriage? Anniversary?
Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America.

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Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat