The Featured Image is bit of a metaphor—and not one I considered when composing. On Sept. 1, 2020, while walking along Mission at Mississippi in San Diego’s University Heights neighborhood, I observed what looked like […]
Yesterday, as my wife and I walked down Alabama towards the languishing bearded tree, we were surprised to see Guido approach. He more typically is standoffish with us, but times aren’t normal in his household and maybe he longed for extra affection. The dark-striped tabby lives with Bruce and Little—and on another street. The first two cats, Little less frequently, often walked with their owner and her dog. The troupe was always a delightful sight, and I stopped to talk with the woman whenever possible (as a matter of privacy, neighbors’ names are purposely withheld).
I use past tense, because she let her beloved canine go to doggie heaven around Christmas, following a decline from old-age-related infirmities. The loss caused the tiger tabbies great distress—absence of their larger companion and dramatic change to their walking routine. I know that for a time she tried to continue the practice with the kitties alone. She may have stopped, but I will need to ask to confirm—whenever, if ever, the time feels right. The family’s loss is too soon now. BTW, she put out the Squirrel Italiano feeder that I wrote about 10 days ago.
Along campus—outside a condominium where once lived Blue, Chipper, and Copper (before a dog mauled her) and where resides Valentine—I spied a black on Jan. 10, 2021. The Featured Image comes from Leica Q2. Vitals, aperture manually set: f5.6, ISO 125, 1/125 sec, 28mm; 3:21 p.m. PST.
For the shimmer from the fur and glowing green eyes, the kitty earns nickname Gleam.
Over the past year or so, I regret not having taken photos of trees that were unceremoniously and needlessly cut down. There is a relentless culling that makes no sense when Southern California society obsesses about Climate Change. Aren’t carbon-dioxide-breathers that exhale oxygen good for the health of the planet and everything living on it? Ah, yeah. So why mercilessly hack them to pieces?
Another tree in my San Diego neighborhood of University Heights is in peril of being chopped down—but unlike the others maybe for legitimate safety reasons. Few months ago, during heavy rains and winds, some of the dead fronds covering the trunk ripped away about fourth-tenths the distance to the top. Overnight and throughout this brisk Monday, winds raged 48-64 kilometers per hour (30-40 mph) with fairly consistent gusts to 97 kph (60 mph). The few fallen fronds are now many, exposing the trunk. When viewed a half-block or more away, the top portion of the tree leans from the section laid mostly bare.
A year ago, the Chinese government locked down the city of Wuhan for what would be 76 days in response to a virus later given name SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2); COVID-19 is the disease that results from infection. For some reason, perhaps then-President Donald Trump’s first impeachment trial as distraction, I didn’t see news about China’s action until three days later. I immediately recognized the implications: Supply-chain disruptions being one—and another, as I told my wife: “Fear is the contagion”. That statement is even more true as the Novel Coronavirus crisis enters its second year.
We started stocking supplies—things we anticipated wanting but possibly would be unavailable if SARS-CoV-2 disrupted Chinese manufacturing and shipping, which later occurred. By early February, I religiously watched Prepper videos on YouTube in preparation for a pandemic—either real or result of widespread fear. Annie and I came upon an apartment we wanted to rent, which delayed our buying foodstuffs. On February 28, we chose not to take the place and finally starting stocking up. As such, we beat the long lines and supply shortages resulting from the World Health Organization declaring a pandemic (March 11); Trump proclaiming a National Emergency (Friday the 13th); and Governor Gavin Newsom closing California for business and ordering citizens to stay home (March 16).
What a surprise this kitty is. In the same house where I saw Cricket looking out a window (onto Maryland)—May 27, 2019—here is another but peering out to Monroe. I wonder: Are there two (or more) beasties living in the home and do they territorially sit at windows facing different streets?
This fine feline is the series‘ fifty-eighth seen behind door or window. Because of the nickname given to the (presumed) house mate, let’s call her (or him) Grasshopper. I used Leica Q2 to capture the Featured Image, yesterday. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/1250 sec, 28mm; 10:24 a.m. PST.
Four days ago, I posted about the clever entrepreneur selling double-layer, home-made face masks for a buck. They’re a bargain no more! Since seeing the unattended sales display on Jan. 9, 2021 along Maryland Street in San Diego’s University Heights neighborhood, something changed—the price! Four dollars more—a 400-percent increase! Granted, the presentation is fancier, and Venmo payment is now accepted—with QR code option, no less.
Smooth sales tactics, reminiscent of retail operations everywhere, are evident in the “originally $10 each”, too. That’s not the price I photographed last week, hehe. I wonder why the change. Were too many selling at $1? Was the price below product cost? Were passersby abusing the honor system and stealing them? (Behavioral studies show that people are less likely to swipe things that are more valuable.)
The the fifty-seventh beastie seen behind window or door appeared unexpectedly in the alley between Campus and Cleveland off Tyler on Nov. 25, 2020. Yep, we’re still plowing through a backlog of photographed but unpublished kitties. I used Leica Q2 to capture the Featured Image. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/250 sec, 28mm; 9:27 a.m. PST.
This fine feline earns nickname Demure.
Since June 11, 2020, I have held back posting this serene Siamese, presuming it to be Sly—seen on parallel, adjacent street Alabama in late February 2019. But on re-inspection, a subtle but significant difference (finally) […]
On the same day—May 20, 2020—that I captured the official Boulevard sign near where El Cajon begins in San Diego’s University Heights neighborhood, my Leica Q2 also pointed along the comically named BLVD North Park. In real estate, location is everything, and if you can’t get the one you want, pretend and hope no one cares. The apartment complex emphatically is located in UH. But, hey, don’t tell the residents paying as much as $4,295 monthly for the birds-eye view of the graffiti art on abandoned commercial real estate, pandemic-lockdown zombified unemployed, or the ever-perennial homeless.
But from the tidy Featured Image (warning: 23MB file), with manicured sidewalk, big b, l, v, d, letters, and trendy corner brewery, you wouldn’t know what’s across El Cajon or up the way going towards Texas Street. This is my community, and I don’t really mean to diss it so much as croak some snark for people paying exorbitantly for the wrong neighborhood and when doing so driving up rental prices all across UH.
Today, as my wife and I walked along Florida somewhere near Howard, Annie spotted a black-and-white shorthair strutting down the sidewalk and then jumping into the bushes—where we found it about 30 seconds later. While a little gruff looking in the Featured Image, this fine feline isn’t a stray. He (or she) wore a collar with bell and name tag (which I couldn’t read).
I understand if you roll your eyes at my calling the cat Peek-a-Boo. Okay, moving along, I manually focused Leica Q2 to make the moment. Vitals, aperture accidentally changed: f/6.3, ISO 200, 1/125 sec, 28mm; 10:15 a.m. PST.
I am a big fan of public transportation, particularly subway and trolley transits. No argument from me: During the SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)—better known as COVID-19—pandemic, public transportation is a necessary service that gets people without cars to the grocery store, pharmacy, or, if essential workers, to their jobs.
Something bothers me: If San Diegans are safe enough riding in an enclosed bus for, say, 20 to 40 minutes, why does California Governor Gavin “Gruesome” Newsom consider open-air dining to be risker and, therefore, is prohibited? I surely would worry much more about being inside a bus for any length of time, where riders feeling asphyxiated—particularly older folks who are more likely to be on board and are high-risk to catch COVID-19—pull down masks below their noses and even their mouths. Can you say super-spreader event? Because I surely can.