Indian Scouts Are Looking Great

I took a break from the computer for a few days. We had around 60 degree days in January in Central Ohio. Needless to say, I rode.

Indian Scouts On The Showroom Floor

Here’s what I ran into at a stop on a ride to Columbus, Ohio. Beautiful Indians.

Indian Scout motorcycles on the showroom floor.
Indian Scouts shining on the showroom floor.

I’m really pulling for this company. My reason for not supporting them by buying one yet is that they just don’t have anything comparable to a Goldwing. It’s all comparable to Harley-Davidson. Beating HD is all fine and good, but until they get competitive with a Goldwing, they’re just pretty motocycles.

Indian is making a stunningly beautiful motorcycle. I’ve haven’t ridden one yet. That’s another ding on Indian. Their dealers pretty much ignore me. Maybe I’m just not what Indian is into either?

A Sunday Walk In The Woods Turns Exciting When An Eagle Appears

Fungus on an Old Log
Fungus grows on an old log in the forest.

The walk started out boring. The western end of The Blackhand Gorge trail is that way. If you’re quiet, you can catch deer out in the field or even a Hooded Merganser Duck in the river. Most of the time though, it’s just a well-shaded, level walk down an old railroad bed. This time was different. I’ve heard about an eagle in the area, but I never was lucky enough to see them.

We heard a loud clap on the water. Soon, we seen the huge wing span making it’s way through the woods. I thought it might be a buzzard, but the clap on the water made me pretty sure it was an eagle. Then I seen the white tail feathers to confirm that it was an eagle.

An eagle flying over Blackhand Gorge Nature Preserve
An eagle flying at Blackhand Gorge Nature Preserve near Newark, Ohio.

By the time we confirmed it was an eagle, it was far away. I could only make out a tiny speck on a branch. With my camera equipment, I need light and at least a monopod. I didn’t have either to get any great photos, but I love that I could at least capture a recognizable shot with what I did have.

An eagle fishing in The Licking River
Eagle scanning The Licking River for more fish.

My camera was good enough to see that he was eating a fish. I watched him for a while as he scanned for more. My wife walked down near towards him to get him to fly. It worked, but he had seen us and just moved further away. It didn’t take long for me to figure out that we were annoying the bird’s fishing so we turned and left him alone.

It’s great to see some of Ohio’s wildlife return and to be as common as this. I remember when seeing a deer was somewhat rare when I was a boy believe it or not. I still get excited when I get a chance to take photos of deer too. It’s these shots that make me wonder why I’m not in the woods more.

Bright Government Idea

The Lighting Of The Tarp In Newark, Ohio.

Lights on the fountain Newark, Ohio.
The tarped fountain is elegantly lit.

History Of The Newark Tarp

The tarp is covering a $100,000 fountain. The fountain started running a few years back at the same time that the United States Government had shut down. The federal government had graciously endowed this fountain with $20,000 dollars of funding, but it could not manage to keep the World War 2 monument open for visitors among many other valid government operations during the same time period.

For this, I keep a healthy bit of contempt for this fountain. That slight contempt would go away of the local government would just fix this thing or admit defeat and demolish the eyesore.

I’ve named it Federal Fountain.

Let’s Keep The Lights On

I’m not sure why we maintain the lighting when it’s covered with a tarp. To prove that at least something on it works? An eternal flame type of situation for us to remember that glitch’s in government occur? An interesting valid reason only fountain maintenance workers would understand?

Whatever the answer is, I’ll be awaiting the warmer weather where we can once again enjoy the untarped version of the Newark, Ohio federal grant funded fountain.


Squirrels on the powerline.
Squirrels Scramble down the powerline outside my house.

Backyard Squirrels

The squirrels around here are fun. I watch them scramble from my dogs and succeed in escaping them every time. Sometimes it’s close.

Squirrels only seem to have a few tools in their survival kit. Speed, agility, and energy. When I watch them take risks at darting around the dogs for no good reason, I have to wonder what stupidity brings that on. Certainly they’re not just daredevils.

They’re good photography practice. Finding them in the viewer and getting the shot is a challenge. Nearly as difficult as birds, but easy enough to get practice.

Squirrels only live 2-5 years and many probably die quicker due to predators and other early demises. Animals like this don’t get a lot of time in this world to hone their smarts. Like all rodents, what intelligence they do have is centered around obtaining food. Nothing is safe from these little omnivores.

Winter Deer

Deer in a Winter field.
Deer in winter in an Ohio field.

These deer ran in front of my car on a country road. There wasn’t any traffic around so I stopped and watched them for a while.

Whitetail Deer Facts

  • Like common cattle, deer have four chambers in their stomachs for eating things like grass.
  • Deer can run 40mph, jump 9 feet high, and broad jump 30 feet. Kind of like woodland super heroes.
  • Their ears can rotate in any direction without moving their head.
  • They taste great.

The Power Of Being Creative.

Today started a little cold and slow. At 4 degrees, not even my Husky mix dog wanted to venture out much.

Dog looking out the door at snow.
Hunter peeking out at the 10 degree snowy day.

I ventured out and scraped the windows while my junk Dodge warmed up.

Scraping the ice from the car window.
Scraping the windows this morning.

I am trying to write more. There’s only one way to get better at it and that is practice. Even on a cold, mundane winter day. Sometimes I think about how I wish I was more creative, but then I consider the competition. What they’re up to is awful.

I watched a horrible movie not long ago. I won’t name it to give it one bit of publicity. It was popular and mainstream.

A tired plot of a troubled young person who is selected by military, law enforcement group, super-hero, etc. who makes them into a hero who does wonderful things. This movie made fun of itself for picking up on a tired plot.

Hollywood throws in making fun of the disabled, promoting every bit of the Liberal agenda you could shove in a movie, demonizing Christians, and  killing a church full of people. At the end, the hero received anal sex from royalty for a reward. I am serious.

This is mainstream now. This is what everyday people watch. It’s not creative and it’s subversive to a healthy culture.

So how does creativity fit in here? If you are a creative person, you don’t have time for this stuff. It is the first full movie I’ve watched in many years. I was happy to see that independent creative people have a good chance at success. Their competition from Hollywood is dead.

Write about your mundane life. It’s exercise for other works. You start to realize if you’re out of material to write about, you need to change this by doing something worthy of a story. Share it too! It’s more interesting than the fakery major media outlets are producing. Take the photos. Make the YouTube videos. There is a  chance you can come up with a content that’s better than these few media giants. Royalty giving out anal sex favors as a prize? That’s what they’re coming up with. Just about anything is much better than that.

We have all the tools. Just quit feeding your mind garbage and start creating something. If nothing else, it keeps you busy and removes the power they have over you when they get your attention.

Cold Ohio January Snow

Cold January Snow

The inevitable has happened. It’s January 5th, it’s 23 degrees, it’s snowing. No surprise, just bewildering.

By the time this posts, It will be later in the month and probably colder.

Snow covered windshield.
My snow covered windshield.

A Cold January Day

How To Get Through It

When friends come from warmer climates, they often ask, “How the hell do you live like this?”. In Ohio, that’s the easier answer is to just wait it out. It never seems to be that long until the weather reverts to something that isn’t painful.

As I age, I get more wisdom on these matters. Have projects. Keeping your mind busy is important. Writing, computer work, editing photos, and other indoor hobbies work.

Cabin fever is going to happen no matter what. For that, toughen up. Go outside. Walk and take photos. Go see a friend. Go have a beer. Forget that it’s miserable for a little while and just go. I have to do go out more than others.

Enjoy the atmosphere too. Snow deadens sound, so enjoy the quiet. The light is different. The speed of everything is slower. It’s a magical thing that just weather can change your world like this.

Doing What Suzukis Are Created For

Suzuki Hayabusa. Worlds fastest production bike.
Suzuki Hayabusa. Worlds fastest production motorcycle.

“I was rocketing through the New Mexico desert’s pre-dawn light. My only source of company and comfort in this dark and desolate landscape was the machine I was astride. The big Suzuki was howling at the wide-open throttle, singing in ecstasy at doing what it was created for.” – Daniel Meyer from Life On The Road, The Soul Is A Motorcycle

Chromebook “Fanboy”.

Why I’m A Chromebook “Fanboy”.

Why A Chromebook

I hate these modern terms that come about, but I am considered a Chromebook “Fanboy”. I’ve written about Chromebooks 2 years ago or so, but I just do not get any takers when I’m asked for advice.

The main reason for rejecting the idea of a Chromebook is that they are less than a PC. They can’t do everything a PC Does. Most do not need these extra things that PC’s do. They spend much more for extra functionality and many don’t have the extra funds to spend in this manner.

Who Can Use Them?

If you do not download and install programs to your computer a Chromebook is all you need. It’s that simple. Do you use a web browser for the important things that you do on a computer? If so a Chromebook will work.

It goes a little further than that. If you just do simple things in Microsoft Office, Chromebook has similar alternatives. There may be a short learning curve with the programs, but they are free.

Also, they are great travel and backup computers.  An Internet connection is often needed. In today’s world, connectivity is everywhere. Wifi is in so many places.

Who Cannot Use Them?

Most who can’t use a Chromebook, already know. If you download games and programs that are Windows specific, you can’t. For me, Adobe Programs and work programs don’t allow for a connection. I still use the Chromebook for convenience in many situations though. This blog is often completed on a Chromebook.

How Much Cheaper Are They?

The initial cost is lower. A small Chromebook is $200-$500. Powerful Pixel Chromebooks are a little more expensive. That is just the initial cost though.

No anti-virus software required. Far few hardware and software breakdowns occur. The cost of these add up if problems arise. Computer diagnosis can be expensive. With a Chromebook, you just reset to factory settings. Your work remains available on the cloud.

These repair costs can leave a person stranded without a computer to pay their bills and perform other important computing tasks. If you’re on a low or fixed income, this can be a tragic inconvenience for a while. It’s a high price to pay for Windows functionality that you may not even need.

Way Beyond Traditional.

To tech folks, these Chromebooks will not be surprising. Linux based, small form factor computers have been around for a long time. They just haven’t been available to the average user in a formats that are easy to use. Google Chromebooks have fixed that.

Here are a few that go beyond the standard Notebook computer layout. I don’t recommend these for everyone as they are not portable options. If portability isn’t an issue, these are great solutions.

This small box combined with a keyboard, monitor, and mouse will work as a desktop computer.

The Chromebit just plugs into an HDMI port in any modern monitor or TV and works as a computer. Adding this wireless keyboard and touchpad combo makes this an inexpensive computer solution.

This all-in-one solution is a nice alternative too.

What If It Doesn’t Do What I Need?

The worst that could happen if a Chromebook doesn’t do all that you need is that you have a very functional backup computer to perform at least the basics. If the power goes out, you have a small computer that can run for 6-8 hours on battery and it’s portable.

Mark Spearman's Journal Of Photography, Motorcycles, And Other Cool Things