Saturday, April 30, 2005

Dean from Australia

Some of you, I know, like to read adventure stories. Well, if the previous entry about seeing the Summer tanager wasn’t enough . . .
On my bike ride this afternoon I saw a Scaled quail and a Curve-billed thrasher. Not long after seeing these birds I was coasting down Tramway – the north end - when my rear tire blew. I laughed because I had earlier been thinking about how silly I was to go for a ride without a pump, spare tire, patch kit, cell phone, or money. Walking in cycling shoes is difficult, slow and bad for the shoes. I was ready to hitch when a couple of friendly cyclists came to my aid. Unfortunately, I have wheels that have deep rims and require special long valve stemmed inner tubes. Fortunately, one of the Samaritans had a long stemmed tube. Unfortunately, my rear wheel requires an even longer stemmed tube than he had. So we patched the offending tube, but it didn’t take. Then another cyclist, an older gentleman, stronger and vastly more experienced than the rest of us, stopped to help. We tried to warn him that I was beyond help and he wouldn’t hear of it. He said that he had everything we could possibly need. He did. He had a long stemmed tube and a stem extender. The stem extender did not work, but he had a longer one that did work. Sadly, my valve stem broke while removing the extender. Meanwhile, the other cyclists took turns keeping my precious bike from touching the ground (while their bikes were lying on the asphalt). He did manage to leave me with a tire about half full of air. I rode a few miles until the tire was flat again and I started walking. I had about a five mile walk ahead of me. During the walk I was damning my luck and stupidity and trying to be upset about the situation but I couldn’t help partially enjoy the walk, even in cycling shoes. I saw more birds - eight White-faced ibises probing someone’s flooded field. After walking about two miles, another cyclist stopped, Dean from Australia, to help. His efforts failed too, so he went home, got his car, and drove me home. That was awfully nice.
As a side note, Dean had a teeny pit bull (Staffordshire terrier).


Summer Tanager

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Recently I realized that the Black-headed grosbeak has a robin-like song. Today I was walking along the bosque (which in Albuquerque is the forest along the Rio Grande) and I heard a robin-like song but it did not sound like a black-headed grosbeak. I started to think it might be a robin – a bird that also has a robin-like song. I am aware that Western tanagers also have a similar song but this was louder than what I am used to hearing from a Western tanager. When the sound was loudest I stopped and scanned the trees where I saw my first summer tanager sitting on a bare branch at about eye level. Then I saw a Western bluebird, Gambel’s quail, and Ash-throated flycatchers.

P.S. I stole the picture from, I think, The Birds of Oklahoma website.

Friday, April 29, 2005

More on the Ivory-billed Woodpecker

Next time you play cribbage with your ivory cribbage board, or comb your hair with your ivory comb, or rob a liquor store with your ivory handled revolver, think about the Ivory-billed woodpecker. For it is not just the obnoxious elephant and the overindulgent walrus that are effected by the Ivory trade; the majestic (and sometimes silly) Ivory-billed woodpecker has suffered to the point of extinction (almost!) at the hands of greedy ivory traders. Sure, some were legally picked off by Eskimos trying to eek out an existence in the swamps of the Deep South.

Woops. Apparently the Ivory-billed woodpecker (Giganticus woodpeckerus), is named for the color of its bill and not for the ivory in its bill which I believe amounts to very little (none).

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Ivory Billed Woodpecker

Not extinct.

Click on this blog entry's title to read more.
Or click on the Nature Conservancy link to your right where you can even watch a video!


Wednesday, April 27, 2005


I dropped Chuck off at the Greyhound station, which is one of the worst places to leave a friend. Sorry Chuck. On the trip from Chuck at the ticket counter back to my car (a journey of about ten seconds) I saw a woman wearing headphones singing loudly, “Don’t judge me until you get to know me…” Sadly, I had already done the former and had no interest in the latter. Then I passed a young man with no container for his cigarettes. He had one tucked behind an ear, one between his pinky and ring finger, one between his index and middle finger and one in his mouth, poor guy. That’s what I saw. I am sure there were more things of interest but I walk with blinders in Greyhound stations.

Better this week

Last week I mentioned Robert’s extra spaciness. At the
time I was concerned that he had taken big step in the
wrong direction health-wise. A friend of mine,
Chuckie, came to town and we took a road trip to
California. When we got back Robert looked much better
and said, “I haven’t seen you in a while.” He was
happy to see me and I was happy to see him. In the
last couple of days he has been impressively together.
Chuckie asked him if he had ever hiked and he said
that he had a little in Denver. When he heard us
mention Denver again he said, “I was born in Denver.”
Last week, for days, he never said anything that had
anything to do with anything – as far as I could tell.
Just now he is looking at an art piece he made and he
turned to me a said, “I’m studying this,” which he is.
Robert is a huge part of my life and I love taking
care of him but I admit it was much more difficult
last week. Seeing him like that was like seeing the
future; the future is not as good as it used to be.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Border crossing

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
This is me on my way back from Mexico.

Monday, April 18, 2005

The Southwest

Some of the classified ads in the Albuquerque Journal:
Rifle, AK47 2 30 round clips, pistol grip $400.
Moose Hide Tanned & smoked $1200.
Rifles Norinco SKS unissued, clean, bayo $ mt, $250.00
SNAKE Ball Python, 3 $55ea, Forest Chameleon 1 $45. Baby Alligators 2 $150ea . . .
WOLF PUPS $450, 1 male & one female, high percentage.

Recently there was an article about a compound (some trailers and outbuildings) in the desert where authorities discovered elk heads, bobcat hides, a meat drying operation (for selling carne seca (jerky), from poached animals) and more that I cannot recall.
Also common in the Journal are articles about mistreated dogs along with articles about dogs attacking children. One woman recently got rid of her dog because it did not match her carpet. New Mexico is considering outlawing cockfighting; if that happens the closest state to catch a legal cockfight will be all the way over in Oklahoma, but not for long. Wait! This just in: Oklahoma is considering allowing cockfighting with little chicken boxing gloves that electronically record hits. Regular or “Old School” cockfighting is still legal in OK as of 1963 when a judge ruled that chickens where not animals and therefore not subject to Oklahoma’s animal fighting laws. But I digress.


Sunday, April 17, 2005

What's inside your shoe?

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Rumor has it that Gandhi could fit all of his worldly possessions in a shoebox. My mentor/guru/spiritual advisor can fit them in a shoe. In your face Mahatma!

Note: the penny is for scale.


Friday, April 15, 2005

Kinda spacey (more kinda spacey than usual)

Robert has been a little spacey these past few days. Just now I was trying to get him to put his pants back on. Imagine where I might stand for such a procedure. Yes, you got it; directly in front of the subject. I said, “Here, put your pants on.” He said, “Come in!” After a few minutes, the conversation continuing as it started, I got his pants and his missing sock back on. He curled up sideways on the bed and said, “Thank you, both of you.”

Twice today he smoked a cigarette with out lighting it. He took long drags and blew out invisible smoke. While putting his pants on, I took a cigarette out of his hand and he said, "Why would you . . . that's my hard work?”

Number 1 Hummingbird

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
Yesterday, April 14, I saw the first hummingbird of the season. I went out and bought a new feeder and a shepherd's hook so I could hang the feeders in front of the kitchen window. Today I have had one male black-chinned hummingbird eating from the feeder off and on. Also yesterday, there was a May fly hatch. So in Albuquerque when you see May flies start looking for hummingbirds.
The photo is of the first hummingbird I've seen this year. What? Oh me? I am a photographer, why?



Thursday, April 14, 2005

Our Mascot

Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
This little guy or gal quickly made a web in my water glass while I was carpeting my floor. Justin and I decided to make him or her our mascot. But he or she cared not about his or her status as mascot to such a fine organization and left without so much as spelling out a good-bye in her or his web. I think we're better off without her. I don't even miss her. I don't.


Wednesday, April 13, 2005


Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
We had to build a fence around the garden for obvious reasons.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Garden Talk

I can see how gardening can get addictive. Justin, Manuel and I prepared a vegetable garden. We planted some lettuces, spinach, arugala, potatoes, sugar peas and onions. As soon as the danger of frost has past we will plant more. The last frost here is of course debatable. One fellow told us it was safe and then it snowed two days later. Everyday I want to go to the nursery and I do go about every other day. Even at the hardware store I am confronted with plants, seeds and gardening tools that I have to restrain myself from buying. Today I bought some terracotta pots for basil. I bought bamboo to make teepees for the peas to climb. Robert assumed that we went to the nursery to use their restroom and when I finally took him to it he was so happy that we finally found it. We did it. Mission accomplished.
We (Joy) ordered 24 lavender plants. We ordered enough thyme to plant a decent sized lawn. Unfortunately there already is a lawn that I will have to remove to plant the thyme. We do get a thank you magnet and mug free with our order.
I was just looking at the names of apple trees available on line. Jonathan, Jonagold, Jonafree, Northern Spy. I would be tempted to plant apples for their names regardless of taste. The flowers may be my favorite thing about apple trees anyway.



Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.

While we are on the subject birds, I saw some swallows today - the first I’ve seen this spring. And there is a pair of Cooper’s hawks nesting in one of the neighbor’s cottonwoods. While one bird sits in the nest, the other clucks at us from a different but nearby tree. That might be why some people call them chicken hawks.* And did you know that Sharp-shinned hawks used to be called pigeon hawks? And Peregrine falcons were sometimes called duck hawks.

*I realize it is probably because they eat chickens and not because they sound kind of like chickens.



Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
The Dogs did not kill this Screech owl. A car did.

Friday, April 08, 2005


Robert started talking to me in smooth flowing, complete sentences this afternoon. Unfortunately the words he used to make the sentences were unknown to me. I wish I could have recorded him. It went something like this but much better (and I do not even know what I am about to write): “There’s a snorble . . .” he said pointing toward the snorble. “Sweaten slog nocht the dogs, which was fine, ‘we vahje the drawing on the camp.’ It fell out of the pencil.” It went on much longer and was much more inventive. As we passed a restaurant called “Geezambonis,” Robert said, “Gasgozoom Rastrom we have to eat sometime.” He just walked in as I write and I said, “Hi Boss,” to which Robert replied, “There’s maybe thirty dollars,” and then started to leave. I asked him where he was going and he said, “Oh really,” and shut the door behind him.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Happy Birthday Laurie and Angelina

My niece had a baby this morning. The baby has some problems. She is missing a finger and has almost no chin. She can only breath if she is on her belly. I do not know much more. When my mother called this morning, the normal baby questions did not occur to me. I have no idea how much she weighs or how long she is. Her name is Angelina.
I just talked to my sister who told me that sometimes babies born with underdeveloped chins will grow them later. (One per baby).

Today is my sister Laurie's birthday. She's 39 again.

Sunday, April 03, 2005


Self-Iconolatry #3
Originally uploaded by Jonathansadler.
This is a self-portrait my friend Rob Thurlow did on plywood. I think it is one of the most successful liquid emulsion photos ever.

Friday, April 01, 2005

My Night Out

First, you’ll want to know what I wore. Levi’s button fly jeans, my brand new western shirt (white with blue stripes and some really fine lavender stripes), Redwing shoes, American Apparel sweatshirt (black), and a silver Timex watch with Indiglo. So I was looking pretty good. I got in the Taurus and headed downtown. First stop: the new Flying Star Restaurant (for those of you not from Albuquerque, the Flying Star is a local chain known for its large magazine selection, mediocre entrĂ©es, and pretty good deserts). The line was long so I left. I drove for a while not knowing where I was going and decided to get on Interstate 25 North. I took the Montgomery exit and spotted a well-lit restaurant called IHOP. Why not I thought. I had the stuffed crepes. Here’s what the do: they take a light, thin, French pancake and fill it with a mixture of scrambled eggs, pork sausage, pork ham and pork bacon! That’s not all. Then they sprinkle finely grated yellow and white cheese on top. If that wasn’t enough, the crepes are topped with a generous dollop of sour cream. Oh, and the coffee; real diner flavored coffee. It really tastes like a diner – linoleum with hints of tobacco. But they give you a whole pot. Can’t complain about that. All this for under $12.00! (Including tip). And if someone weren’t standing behind me while I wrote this you would see, where it tells the time and date of posting, that I was home before 9:30

The Pope is Dead

or will be. Fox News said he was dead and then said they were mistaken. Perhaps it was an April fools joke. Not that funny, but I do not turn to Fox News for humor. I turn to Fox news by accident when looking for the Simpsons.

Terri Schaivo is dead. Not very funny either, but comforting.

I may not have been to North Dakota, Luke. Maybe we should go.