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Thursday, May 31, 2012


One of the better Asian supermarkets in town, down at 3rd and Grand in the River Market.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012


It was cloudy when I left the office, but by the time I rode by Linwood and Broadway, Redemptorist was in a very flattering light.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Mullberry Run

When I was growing up, my parents didn't allow us to eat berries off trees we found. The prohibition stemmed from the notion that some berries are poisonous and you just never know.
I'm pretty sure most of what you'd have trouble from would taste bad enough to discourage binge eating. Alkaloids mostly, which should translate to bitter.
I'd like to learn a bit of wild mushroom hunting, but I think that can actually get dangerous.
But anyway, Corinna is big into the wild berry picking, grew up doing it. And while our yard has lots of blackberries, some raspberries and will soon also have grapes and blueberries, to get a great snack and some purple fingers, find a mulberry tree and have at the blackish ones.
We took Mo along in the trailer, which gave Corinna a fist rate workout and got Mo away from her computer. She dug it, and when we put her on picking all the black ones, she went into Task Completion Mode and had at it.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Just Another Bike Ride

Critical Mass was better than usual. Big turnout, fun route. I almost didn't go because I wanted to process pics I'd taken over the previous couple of days and blog a bit.
But I realized as when we got to the Nelson what a mistake it would have been.
I enjoy the creative outlet and all that, but especially when you consider the amount of income I generate off this endeavor (which is zero), documenting shouldn't take the place of doing.
We hit the Scout this time, which turned out to be a great place to take the party. Because it's on my commute, I probably take the Scout for granted; I stop there regularly on the way home.
But a lot of folks hadn't been to it before. And the view of downtown from there is fantastic.
One couple I met was making their first ever Critical Mass. The woman was a long-time cyclist out in Olathe, going on lots of roadie group rides, and recently started dating an urban cyclist. She was having the kind of epiphany-laden evening I remember from when I first started to date an urban cyclist.

An urban cyclist I gleefully married two weeks ago. It's amazing how fast the days lengthen with the change of season. Last month, the Mass broke up early, before we could get to the Scout really, in rain and darkness. In fact, the weather was enough of a damper last month, I partly forgot what a great party Critical Mass can be.
And I had fun with my Nikon, including getting some great portrait shots. Friendly bird-flips, the photogenic Sofia and her husband Tom, etc.

Actually, I had another great bird-flip portrait, but when I asked the girl if she was okay with being blogged/Facebooked, she said she'd just as soon not. So that one's not included in this collection.
We tried unsuccessfully to steer the finish to the bridge we got married on. The problem is cars, really.

For all the transportational cyclists who get to and from Critical Mass by bike, there are a lot of other folks who either park a car in Westport and ride back to it or park a car in the River Market and ride up to Westport.

The first group tends to peel off before we get all the way to the river; the latter group figures the river is the target.

And only a handful of the rest live over in KCK, where our bridge would be on the way home.

As I say, I'm enjoying my Nikon tremendously. Every time I've ridden Critical Mass, I've taken pictures down at the river, but mostly they end up being junk.

Some of my favorite images were taken with my Canon Powershot(s). I've worn out/broken several of them now, and probably put a combined total of 100,000+ clicks on them. I still keep one for situations where an SLR is not allowed, or where it's such a boat anchor it would be frustrating to have it (Worlds of Fun, for example).
But for hand-held pictures taken in really low light, I think I got some stuff that borders on photography Friday night.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Hash House Harriers

So I'm riding home from work, on safari looking for tags to shoot mainly. I'm not disappointed, I found some cool ones I hadn't seen down in the River Market area. But as I crossed the bridge by Ventolia Energy, where Grand becomes Front Street, I see a man in a Hawaiian shirt with a shark puppet on one hand and, hanging off the other arm, a broom, pornographic DVD, and plunger. He was blowing a whistle and barking orders at some joggers.

It reminded me of a story I heard about two guys taking acid who decided they'd been burned on the deal, that the acid wasn't inducing any hallucinations at all, so they went outside to have a lightning bolt war.

As I got to the far side of the bridge, I saw a man in a blond wig and grass skirt running. As I pulled parallel with him he jumped over the railing of the bridge and disappeared down the embankment.

I rode down under the bridge to a trailhead and there was the grass skirted guy and another guy in a kilt. There were several conventional-looking runners as well, or conventional by comparison at least. And the shark glove was along presently, the apparent ringleader or co-ringleader of the evening's festivities, and beers were being passed around.

I told them they looked to be an alleycat race that had lost its mounts. They'd never heard of an alleycat race, but I'd never heard of the Hash House Harriers, an international movement dating back to the 1930s described as 'a drinking group with a running problem.'

Several of them introduced themselves to me with handles along the lines of Chief Horse Pussy — I forget the specific handles these characters used, but here I was giving my real name. I pulled a can of Modus Hoperandi from my panniers, and they'd never seen a cyclist carting beer around, but I'd never seen a running group that stopped for beer breaks, either.

I gave a beer to the dude with the long black hair and the red mark on his chest which matched the markers for the hash, I gathered. Then I accidentally dropped a can and it started to leak. One of the hashers was on the case; I never saw a Ska beer shotgunned before, but he got it done.

After a few minutes they were off, running again, looking for marks laid down in advance by the event's disorganizers to show they were on the right track.

Just another one to file under Adventures You Won't Have Driving Home from Work.