Tuesday, February 26, 2008

How My Garden Grows

The first seeds to germinate are Trophy tomatoes. Introduced in 1870 by Colonel George B. Waring Jr., of Newport, Rhode Island at the enormous price of $5.00 per packet, with a $100.00 reward for the largest tomato. Sweet, mild flavor, 5-7 ounce, round tomatoes, ideal for slicing...pardon me while I wipe the drool from my keyboard!
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-60.161 lat/29.990 lon

Yesterday's sunrise from the fantail of the Revelle.
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R/V Roger Revelle

1. 251000Z FEB 2008
2. Position: Lat: 58-30.0S, Long: 030-00.0E
3. Course: On Station
4. Speed: 11.0 Kts
5. Distance: 90.0 NM
6. Steaming Time: 08 H 12 M
7. Station Time: 15 H 48 M
8. Fuel: 3,506 gals
9. Sky: Couldy 8/8, Ns
10. Wind: 280T, 30 Kts
11. Sea: 280T, 4-5 FT
12. Swell: 270T, 15-20 Ft
13. Barometer: 993.2 mb
14. Temperature: Air: 4.3 C, Sea: 2.2 C
15. Equipment Status:F-77 not fully functional as back-up e-mail system.
GMDSS SSB has CPU/coupling error. AMOS system down.
16. Comments: CTD 06301 deployed. No icebergs on 24 NM radar range scale.

This is yesterday's report. Now, at 60 degrees S, they are about 375 nautical miles from the Antarctic circle. If they continue at their current rate they should reach the circle within 4 days or so.

Monday, February 25, 2008


See it, shoot it, change it...just have fun!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Planting Time

Well, we didn't get to see the eclipse but there is a full moon (full snow moon as Prairyerth says), and it is about 6 weeks til supposed last frost, so it seems time to put the seeds in the ground; in starter medium anyway. I rigged up an aluminum box with a lightbulb inside to provide heat to keep the soil at about 85 degrees til the seeds sprout. All peppers and tomatoes for now. Anything else will be planted directly in the garden after the soil warms enough.
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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

-50.498 Lat, 29.999 Lon

Brandon's location as of this posting. Following is an excerpt from correspondence:
Well, lemme tell you. Its getting real cold real fast. No standing ice on the ship yet, but we were blessed with light snow flurries this morning. We had a few days in the mid 40's where the weather could be likened to a crisp Autumn day, but were in full scale winter mode now. Im in my hoodie and thermal underwear mode right now. The others scoff, but Im setting fashion trends for the South Seas this Summer. I think I got the advice in Italian Vogue. We could supposidly be seeing "bergs" anytime now, but by definition a true iceberg has to be bigger than a house. "Bergie bits" are less than a house but bigger than a car and "Growlers" are anything smaller than a car. They were given the name because Captains typically choose to drive through "Growlers" and they create a ....any guesses.......Yes thats correct, a Growling sound as they scrape against the hull of the ship. The water has taken on a "Gun Metal" grey tone to match the low hanging cloud cover. Even the Albatros seem less than enthused about following the ship at this point. Maybe the scraps I dole out arent to their exacting standards of fine cuisine. I dont know why Im suprised by any of this, but I guess the cold of my romantic preconcieved notions was less cold. Im just being a big baby though. You might notice the piece of equipment on the fan tail now missing. It was the trace metals rosette. Well, its value WAS roughly 100K and its true value exists in its ability to double as fish habitat. Although, I have my doubts as to the type of species that might be able to exist at 14,000 feet down. The line broke and shes gone for good. So now a bunch of grad students are stuck without a project. They kind of suck anyway, so I guess I dont really care.

Just so you know, the internet connection is spotty at best and we are supposed to loose it for good in the near future and probably wont be back for a while. The PCT is a surreal thought right now. Its a distant cry from this reality, so Im having some level of anxiety about it. I know Ill be fine. I feel like a little kid on Christmas Day when I think about starting. Im working out nearly every single day. I love stairmaster day. Probably because afterwards I beat the snot out of the heavy bag. It has almost inspired me to take up boxing lessons. But another day perhaps. Im reading the 800 page autobiography of Nelson Mandella and hope to finish before Cape Town. I am not bragging about the thickness of the book, simply eluding to the free time I have available for such an undertaking.

So, days are melting together in an endless string of work and downtime and Im trying to lie back and go with the flow. Only 57 days and a wakeup left until I get off in Ft Lauderdale. I am thinking about trying to visit a friend who lives in KeY West before I fly back to San Diego, but it all depends on if the office will accomodate. It would be nice to decompress in the Carribean for a few days before diving into PCT land.

Thanks for the continuing encouragement. I really value it and look forward to your e-mails.

Birthday boy

All good things to you!
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Monday, February 18, 2008

Lunar Eclipse

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Hopefully the weather will co-operate. Click title for link to Sky and Telescope story.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Set 'em up, Knock 'em down...

...or at least keep the gutters clear.
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Friday, February 15, 2008

Thursday, February 14, 2008

In the Eye of the Beholder

Stop and smell the roses, just don't get too close!
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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Cave Art

The twins co-oped this painting, Alaina mostly drawing, Ivy mostly painting. It will soon be applied to their 'cave' as I get back to one of the on-going projects.
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Monday, February 11, 2008

A Little Weather

Looks like Brandon may be getting a little weather. Click title for link to global map.

News for the Southern Hemisphere

Hey Steve, glad to hear from you! Your powers of observation are keen. We had been dragging ass along the continental shelf of Africa, trying to fill in some gaps in data, but now we are moving a little faster. We only stop every 30 nautical miles to do CTD casts. That is the equipment you are seeing being lowered over. These large Rosettes with computer triggered bottles collect water samples from as far down as the bottom (which right now stands at roughly 14,000 feet below us). So to send them down and back can take a few hours. This is an extremly chemistry heavy trip with these thousands of seawater samples being analyzed for everything from CO2 to trace metals. It is called CLIVAR and it is basically the US contribution to the world community on understanding how all this climate change might be affecting the ocean. We have almost 40 scientists on board from Scripps, Florida State, Korea, Germany, China, England, Australia and NASA. Some of the equipment they are using for analysis is crazy. All sorts of tubes and vaccums and bottles splitting the sea water and mixing it with more chemicals. We are getting very near Latitude 40 South with the infamous nickname "The Roaring 40's". Its raining right now with a decent size sea throwing the ship around. Walking down the corridor, its like someone shoving you into the "bulkhead" every few minutes when you least expect it. This trip is way different than the last. Not much work to do, so I have to really drag my work out and pace myself to fill the hours. Life is good and I have less than 5 weeks until we hit our next port call in Cape Town. Single tear rolls down cheek. Its minimum security prison life in a maximum security setting. I know we are heading into the Southern Seas based on the Albatros that have been buzzing around the ship. Biggest seabirds I've ever seen. They have the bodies of monsterous white Thanksgiving turkeys with the wingspan of a ultralight. Also, while we were "on station" yesterday doing a cast, 2 Fin whales circled around us for a while. I wanted to get on the radio and let the japanese whaling fleet know, but decided to be a nice guy and let them avoid becoming "research" specimines. Ha

Maybe you can post this e-mail on blogger for me since my connection is so slow right now. I did see some of your latest posts on blogger and they are great. That morning time Okie sky was awesome. Hopefully it'll warm up soon for you. I will hopefully be able to get a pic or two posted before too long, but someone is always waiting to use the darn computer. I guess I should get up late at night and try....but the half of a twin size matress they let me sleep on is so cozy....



last march i goofed around with picasa - :) just for your amuzement..not amazement.
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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Seeing the Trees

Thanks for the comments and compliments. It's good to know you're looking in. I was inspired by PrairyErth's post, how not to walk in the prairie; now trying to see what is at my feet and near at hand as opposed to something on the far horizon. Sometimes we can "not see the forest for the trees" but I believe the reverse can also be true. We become so overwhelmed by the forest we become blind to the trees. My posts with 'purty pitchures' and disjointed prose are merely an attempt to stoke the engine in my heart and mind to create and enjoy. It's much more fun than wandering aimlessly in the forest. Looking forward to more comments as well as posts of your own meanderings.
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Saturday, February 9, 2008

Fifteen Minutes

With A. Warhol's quote in mind, I wondered if it would be possible to create a facsimile of one of his 'pop-art' prints in fifteen minutes. Using 3 programs and a photo already on my computer I did manage to get something reasonable but not satisfactory. Another 15 minutes or so and I managed to get this digital image ready for printing.
Not too long ago it would have taken at least several hours, if not days, and knowledge of darkroom technique and silk-screen printing to reproduce this image. Of course, art is not just the reproduction of someone else's concept. Now, if we are so inclined, we can take our 'idea' from drawing board to finished product in nearly no time. It's fun to pretend to be an artist,and with all the tools available, we all can.
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Friday, February 8, 2008

Hints of Spring

If you keep your eyes open, there's no telling what you'll see.
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Good Morning


Ivy alerted me to this great sky this morning at about 7:00.
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Thursday, February 7, 2008

Mixed Media


Baling wire twisted, photographed and twisted some more with Adobe software.
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Year of the Rat(s)

Picture this:

Tuesday evening. You inch forward in your car amidst dozens of cars filing into the muddy parking lot. A snowstorm is threatening, and the wind has a wicked bite - but you stand, dedicated, with a thousand other people in a long line that snakes around a huge building. After about half an hour you finally get to trudge inside and enjoy the warmth of thousands of people pressed shoulder to shoulder, cheering and glowing with excitement.

No, it's not a Jayhawks basketball game. It's the State Democratic Caucus!

It was very exciting to be in a room full of people who were so eager to create (here comes that c-word again) change and exercise our great privilege to vote. Enough dumb-ocracy -- we're ready for Democracy. Here's to a great Year of the Rat and a thrilling election year!

Photo courtesy of the Lawrence Journal-World

Wednesday, February 6, 2008



OK, so I take some artsy photos of old bottles and start editing for more artsy and the next thing you know I start seeing faces! Sheesh!!
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Sunday, February 3, 2008

Link to Revelle story

A Breath of Fresh Earth

Okay folks,

We are leaving Durban tommrow at 1600 local. I have had such an amazing time during this port call. All the BS from my previous experience ashore and all the hardships of my time at sea are 100% worth the hassle. I've also got a new boss and an entirely new ship mission and science crew to look forward too, so Im feeling good. Hopefully the ship will be on a heading agreeable to staying connected with the internet, but if not, it might be 2 or 3 weeks before you hear from me again. Hopefully thats not the case. But either way, South Africa is a dynamic, remote and beautiful powder keg of potential or tragedy and Im glad too have experienced this country, in this region, at this time.

So, by the looks of things, the ship is going to hit some big seas right out of the gate again, but I'm hopeful that my sealegs will be intact right off the bat. Otherwise I might be short a couple of meals worth of nutrients.

Ill fill in the details if we are still connected.