Category Archives: Uncategorized

Our World – The Flowers of Woodward Park

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Here in Tulsa we are under a an order to Shelter in Place except for essential trips and outside activities away from people are one of the essential trips allowed in addition to the real ones like going to the doctor, grocery store, pharmacy, liquor store, and marijuana dispensary (not kidding!) So one day I ventured off to Tulsa’s Woodward Park. The playgrounds are closed but the flower beds are open.

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There were not very many people there. The ones that were kept their distance.

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There are always flower pickers (they say the flowers are there for everybody!) but not this trip, thank goodness. One lady was making me nervous as she waded into the beds but as far as I could tell she didn’t trample any.

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I don’t know anything about flowers in general or tulips in particular except that I love them. I have no desire to grow them, nope I will enjoy the fruit of other peoples’ labors.

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It took a while but I had my fill.

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They have great trees as well.

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I love this stone bridge. You come to t he park on a nice sunny day and often there is a bride and a whole posse of bridesmaids all arranged on it. You can tell if the photographer is a pro by how nervous they look. The pro’s have to pay a fee to shoot here, they just charge it to the bride’s family as part of the cost. Hacks like me, well I can shoot to heart’s content (but not weddding parties.)

That’s it for today. Everybody stay safe, wash your hands, and hold your loved ones close. (Those that live in your household, others, just kind of wave for now) and come over to Our World Tuesday and join the fun.

Sources of Covid 19 Data for the World, Nations, States, Cities

Image from page 343 of "Anatomy and physiology : designed for academies and families" (1847)
Courtesy of Flickr Commons

I started tracking data for Oklahoma by using the State Health Department web site. That’s okay but it is just a fixed point in time every day. It would be like trying to figure out what is happening in drag race by measuring the speed a hundred yards out of the start. The sites below track the spread of the virus in real time.

If you have your own credible sources of data let me know and I’ll consider adding it.

Johns Hopkins University might be the gold standard. Reportedly some government agencies use it.

Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University (JHU)

1point3 acres has a great site focused on the US and Canada

Covid 19 in US and Canada

Here’s a site bopping around on Facebook that seems legit. It says “Use at your own risk” so I am passing that info along as well.

GIS Surfer 2.0

Worldometer has a great site with lots of data and curves. Lots of ads as well but not too bad.

Worldometer

GitHub, somehow related to the New York Times is a great source of data if you want t o create your own visualizations. It’s kind of a nerdy site but worth checking out.

GitHub

Our World – Family Hike at Keystone State Park

Tulsa went into social isolation mode last week. All the bars, restaurants, theaters, bowling alleys and other places were ordered shut to help slow the spread of the Corona virus. My employer had already ordered those that could, to start working at home. Our son’s college has gone online and the various gyms where Heather teaches classes have closed so we were home except for trips the grocery store and to check on my brother at the hospital and Heather’s mother.

The weather was kind of crappy as well so our exercise was limited to walking our one healthy dog in the neighborhood. Saturday we were ready to check out the great outdoors so we ventured to Keystone State Park about 30 minutes away. We went out there and there were only three cars in the parking lot so we figured that we were ethically fine to go hiking without endangering ourselves or others.

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Here are Logan and Heather right after we started.

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The trail was a little wet in places but in great shape. The state takes really good care of it with the help of volunteers. I helped out a week or so ago, lopping branches and picking up litter. What also helps is that the trails are designed as opposed to Turkey Mountain where the trails just kind of happened. It makes a difference you know making sure that water flows across a trail rather than down it.

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Keystone features rocks and trees with a healthy amount of water. This tree looks to be growing right out of the rock.

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The water level was up a little. We did about three fords. We didn’t get our feet too wet.

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Here are Heather and Logan doing a little social distancing during a rest break.

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Another tree growing out of a rock.

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And my favorite, dancing trees. When we got back to the trail head our car was the only one there. We hopped in and drove straight home. I hope everybody is being safe as we go through this Corona Virus thing together in the entire world.

Check out the World Health Organization for the straight facts. Don’t be disseminating bad information. Too much of that going on already.

I’m linking with Our World Tuesday, come join in the fun!!

Skywatch Friday – Springtime is Near

Arkansas River Edit

This weekend I went down south of Tulsa to the banks of the Arkansas River. Away from Tulsa and the low water dam it starts to reclaim its identity as a wild, braided, prairie River. Lots of sandbars and funky currents and other things to get kayakers and canoeists in trouble if they are not careful.

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I find me some dancing trees on the bank. I love spring but I love seeing the structure of trees.

March 2020

I went hunting for a geocache in some woods away from the river. There was no trail and lots of bushwhacking. I didn’t find the cache, but that is okay. I loved the view.

March 2020

I did find these worn out baseballs placed together. It amazes me what one finds in the middle of the woods in hard to reach areas. I have no idea what the story is with these balls. I left them there if you want to go looking for them.

March 2020

Hmm, I caught a glimpse of something else out there.

March 2020

I went for a closer look. I don’t know why but I think it is a portal to another dimension. A dimension away from adulting. Adulting is hard. You already know that. I decided not to go through the portal. I didn’t know if the wi-fi was any good or not.

Red Full Moon

We had a super moon the other night. Great!! But we also had lots of fast moving clouds that was kind of messing things up. So I did the best I could. I tinted it pink because I could and I liked the way the light ended up.

Cloudy Full Moon

I got better results the next night.

How about you? Have you ever been tempted to enter a portal to another dimension? I am linking to Skywatch Friday

Our World Tuesday – Post Oak Lodge and the Race that Wasn’t

Friday after work I headed up to Post Oak Lodge north of Tulsa to get my runners packet for the quarter marathon event on Sunday as part of their three day Post Oak Challenge series of races this past weekend.

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Post Oak Lodge is a privately run event and retreat center and it is absolutely beautiful and their races are some of my favorites. I took these pics after picking up my packet.

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Strangely enough, through some unforeseen circumstances I didn’t run the race on Sunday. That’s okay, they’ll have the race again next year and I’ll be there. In the meantime I have my memories. Four years ago I won second in my age group in the race. Next year I will be in an older age group!!

I’m linking with Our World Tuesday

Snow Daze

We woke up to snow this morning. It has been five years since we had a winter storm warning so have been lucky.

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I broke my lensball out and took a few photos. Not too bad. This is our one remaining tree in the front yard.

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And the street in front of our house.

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And our front porch

Shoveling Snow

This is before I shoveled our driveway of the inch or two of snow we had.

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And after. Maybe it didn’t need it but I’m a big believer in shoveling. Growing up in snow country it is sign of moral lassitude if you don’t shovel your driveway and sidewalk. So you can tell I am living an upright life as least as far as shoveling goes.

“Grass, Soil, and Hope – A Journey Through Carbon Country” by Courtney White

Grass Soil Hope Cover

This book caught my eye at the “Quick Pick” section in our local library. It piqued my interest as I am really interested in climate change and what can be done about it and of course Carbon is at the center of that debate.

The book is about a lot of things including carbon sequestration in soil via sustainable agriculture that builds up the soil and reduces the amount of fuel and fertilizer used while maintaining the the productivity of the land to provide food. I like win/win solutions to problems and reframing conflicts into cooperation and the practices and principles put forth in this book makes me very hopeful. I am very much interested in hope now.

You can get Grass, Soil, and Hope at the library!

Our World – Traffic

I took a little bit different route to work the other day. I wanted to drive up Riverside Drive parallel to the Arkansas River for some reason.

January 2020

When I got to the river I saw Turkey Mountain covered up with mist so I pulled off the road and took this photo. I thought it would be neat to be up in the misted part but hey I had to go to work.

Want to see what the opposite view was. I turned 180 degrees and this is what I saw.

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And that is why we call Turkey Mountain an Urban Wilderness. It’s a refuge in the midst of madness.

I am linking with Our World Tuesday

Our World – Mystery House 2016

For good or bad I have over 75,000 images in my archives. Of these, maybe three or four are really good. But I’m keeping all of them. The thing about image archives is that if they are not tagged then they are not of any use. even though I can literally remember taking every single one of the photos. Every once in a while I run across one that I don’t remember like the following.

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When I am sitting down commenting on posts and such I also open up my untagged photo part of my archive. I have over 10,000 photos without tags. At least I have dates to kick start my my memory and I jump around the dates to keep things interesting. Doing that I came across the above photo. No tags but a date of April 17, 2016. Also, I can tell that I edited the photo and probably posted it on instagram. I started to remember being in New Orleans back then and taking a street car from downtown to Audubon Park and seeing this bar. And then I started looking at other photos I uploaded that day.

Update, Mystery Solved, In the great way that Al Gore’s Interwebs works, a facebook friend of mine, had a friend, a professional photographer who lives in New Orleans who knew immediately that this was the Circle Bar on St. Charles Avenue. I love serendipity.

French Quarter, April 2016

This bar with the beautiful doors and mysterious interior. New Orleans is a photographers paradise.

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These prehistoric looking birds at Audobon Park. Cormorants. Their feathers get wet so they hang them out there like that to dry them out. Good luck drying anything in New Orleans, the air is so thick and humid.

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And the big beautiful trees. The park itself is not that much. Hardpacked ground and kind of scruffy. That is just like most of the south though and that is its appeal.

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And the streetcars. It’s hard to take a bad photo of a New Orleans street car.

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K Paul’s restaurant in the French Quarter. A few years before my wife was with me and we had dinner there. We ate at one of the tables on the balcony. We spent hours and a had a great time. One of the most expensive dinners I ever had and worth every dime.

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Even the bicycles have style in New Orleans.

As you can tell I am a big fan of the city. I hope to be back soon. Meanwhile I am linking with Our World Tuesday