Laeti edimus qui nos subigant! Fri, 26 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 32 32 86008595 Exotic San Antonio Fri, 26 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000

Exotic San Antonio

To this day, it remains, Exotic San Antonio.

Exotic San Antonio

Vincit Qui Primum Gerit

“First to arrive gets the best deal.”

]]> 0 6856
Breakfast Sign Fri, 26 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000

Breakfast Sign

When I first saw the sign, I knew it was perfect image for San Antonio. A single sign, just a few words, so properly encapsulates what this town is, what is is like, and how it is a multicultural crosswords, of sorts.


Just evokes, in a single image, what makes this town what it is. Not even sure how pancakes figure in, but the other two are traditional fare.

As seen here — and here —

]]> 0 6498
Interview Thu, 25 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000


It’s an interview, podcast style, available here

The first section, in video, as well, is here. for details

]]> 0 6651
Boca Knights Thu, 25 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000 Boca Knights

Boca Knights

Boca Knights – Steven M. Forman

Advertised as wacky-crime, thriller hailing from Florida —

Then, as sidebar note, “When digital is better…”

The little chapter pieces of art, always repeated at the beginning or end of the chapters? In the digital version? Pink Flamingos. How nice is that.

While the introductory material is set in Boston, the action of the novel quickly graduates to Boca Raton, FL. North of Miami? My Florida geography isn’t very good, but then, most of Florida is all of about 20 feet above sea level.

With that much coastline and good fishing, why would anyone want to play golf?

While the original advertising suggested something along the lines of Hiaasen or Dorsey, the novel — looks like the first of a trilogy — wants to veer into grey areas, with a minimal hat-tip to terse prose and hard-boiled detectives from the days of yore.

Exactly when was “the days of yore?”

In some passages though, that’s what this harkens back to.

Interesting read, made more interesting by the author’s own backstory, adds definable verisimilitude to some passages. Seemed especially evocative of the gritty dock-side, war-zone version of Boston. Not bad for book set in Florida.

The conclusion left me vastly underwhelmed. Just a hook into the next book. Problem being, this was a pulp/paperback digital version, and I couldn’t find the next book in digital format yet.

Boca Knights

Boca Knights

For $1.99 digital read, it’s great.

Boca Knights

Boca Knights – Steven M. Forman

Boca Knights

]]> 0 6836
Separation of Church and State Wed, 24 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000

Separation of Church and State

Interesting spin on myth and fable.

Wait a few thousand years and maybe Christianity will be taught as old-time myths.

]]> 0 6818
Made in the USA Wed, 24 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000

Made in the USA

Near a decade old, but still.

Simply put, look closely, Mexican Flags, but Made in the USA.

Made in the USA

]]> 0 6751
At the Rock Shop Again Tue, 23 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000 Sparkle Faerie

At the Rock Shop Again

Sparkle Faerie

Sparkle Faerie

Looks like Austin, At the Rock Shop Again, at Nature’s Treasures, for a Tuesday.

Often in Austin

Tuesday at Nature’s Treasures.

Austin Shop Local

Austin Shop Local

4103 North IH-35 Austin, Texas 78722
Store phone: 512-472-5015
11:00 AM – 6:00 PM


  • Aperture: ƒ/1.8
  • Camera: iPhone 7
  • Focal length: 3.99mm
  • ISO: 40
  • Location: 30° 17′ 52.83″ N 97° 43′ 3″ W
  • Shutter speed: 1/24s
]]> 0 6709
Sparkle Faerie Mon, 22 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000 Store Copy

Sparkle Faerie

Or, as the help so evocatively phrased it, yes, just read for yourself.

Store Copy

Store Copy

Some of the text in the book might be older than the artist who called me “sparkle faerie.” Not that I’m complaining. Considering how far back this goes, I was, at one time, called “Delicate.”

So the sobriquet is sparkle faerie — one gets to a point in one’s life where such appellations and monikers, they really don’t matter. Believe me, I’ve been called much worse — I always took Fishing Guide to the Stars as a compliment.

Sparkle Faerie Roots


Two-Meat Tuesday – Kramer Wetzel

Two-Meat Tuesday: Astrofish.Net/Xenon

  • Aperture: ƒ/1.8
  • Camera: iPhone 7
  • Focal length: 3.99mm
  • ISO: 40
  • Location: 30° 17′ 52.14″ N 97° 43′ 2.97″ W
  • Shutter speed: 1/15s
]]> 0 6744
The Up-sell Mon, 22 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000

All about non-medicated meditation. Read between the lines, though, the author of the piece is selling his books about the topic.

Problem being, it’s true.

While I haven’t read his books, I know the described practice works.

Full details and meditation track, Nine Minute Audio File.


]]> 0 6806
Website Development in a Box Sun, 21 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000

Website Development in a Box

Really, this is just an update for myself.

The short form?

Buy (lease) a domain name here:

Then get a managed WordPress site here:


Techie enough to play with windows, frames, and network stuff?

Get this WordPress Theme framework:

Thesis Theme for WordPress:  Options Galore and a Helpful Support Community

Now, break it down. Recently, a client — unbeknownst — recommended a company called, so I gave it a spin. They do advertise 88 cent domains.

With the prices, I found that a .us (dot US) name was cheaper there. As were a few others, like — with a single warning to check the prices.

When I transferred a domain name from to NamesCheap, the first two transfers went through quickly, painlessly and saved me money. Alas, the third transfer was mired in digital ink paperwork for five days. Not quick, not easy, and slightly more expensive.

Not one to be daunted, NameCheap also offered a very inexpensive hosting package, and I give it a test run, as well. Not simple, not easy and not — in my mind — worth the effort required.

For Top Level Domain names? With security rolled into it?

However, for other varieties and flavors? Shop NameCheap. As a domain register, they are good. Not quite as good as my preference, but in some select examples, cheaper.

Looking for a cheap domain name? Get it from Namecheap! Prices start at $3.98/year

Better? All about the same. Matter of tastes. Still, for rock-solid reliability? For protection, care, and service? Start with

Website Development in a Box

The gamble I took on NameCheap further solidified my belief that (mt) was as good as it gets. Weird story?

I had to wrestle a client’s site on GoDaddy and summarily decided they weren’t worth the price. However, GoDaddy now owns (mt), as I understand it.

As a forgone conclusion, I do have a certain level and aptitude of technical expertise.

Still, the simplest way to do this?

Buy (lease) a domain name here:

Then get a managed WordPress site here:


It’s that easy. Unlike “free” sites, the domain and its contents is solely owned by the buyer.

A little legal disclaimer never hurt.

]]> 0 6808
Never Borrow Tools Sun, 21 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000

Never Borrow Tools

“The last guy who asked to borrow my tools is in the bottom drawer.”

Think that is part of the fineprint, as a general disclaimer. Harkens back to my earliest roots, shrouded in the mists of time.

Digital tools, that’s easier: see this link.

Meditation Audio | weekly mail

]]> 0 6666
Gemini 2017 Sat, 20 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000 Gemini 2017

“It’s that most wonderful time — of the year — Gemini!”

The Sun enters the tropical zodiac sign of Gemini around 3:30 PM, May 20, 2017.

Gemini 2017

Gemini 2017

Vincit Qui Primum Gerit

“First to arrive gets the best deal.”

]]> 0 6575 Mithras Fri, 19 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000


Gone, not forgotten, previously my image from Museum of London, The Cult of Mithras.


]]> 0 6800
Three Kings Fri, 19 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000 Three Kings

Three Kings

Inside joke, bit of tarot trivia, too. The image is a Thoth deck, and in its original version, it shipped with three versions of the Magus card, the designer’s original term for the #1 Major Arcana, typically called the Magician.

The faith I was raised in, a gentle and sweet — forgiving — lightweight, nominally Protestant branch of the Christian mythos, and I clearly recall, in the old sanctuary, communion was celebrated with a round loaf of bread, a goblet of grape juice, and candles. If there had only been a bread knife, the image would be complete.

That memory ties a typical Magician card to some elements in the Christian faiths. A refrain from Shakespeare comes to mind, “… by bell book and candle …” with the admonition that I can’t recall the correct play or attribute.

But each of the Magician Cards holds elements, like, there is a Wand (fire), Disks (earth), Swords (air), and Cups (water). The Magician, usually a wand in his hand and his other hand, palm open, pointing down at the table, as if he were chanting, “As above, so below…”

The Magician shows mastery over the four elements. The four elements are represented by the suits of the cards.

Three Kings

Three Kings

Three Kings

In an odd aside, usually delivered in readings, the four suits correspond with our current understanding of the states of matter. Solid, liquid, gaseous, and now, the fourth, where matter becomes energy, fire.

A day without a little quantum physics is a complete loss.

Previously? The Hanged Man.

Three Kings

Thoth Tarot Deck

Aleister Crowley Thoth Tarot (Pocket Edition)


  • Aperture: ƒ/2.4
  • Camera: iPad Pro
  • Focal length: 3.3mm
  • ISO: 200
  • Location: 30° 17′ 46.22″ N 97° 43′ 1.51″ W
  • Shutter speed: 1/30s
]]> 0 6730
Walled Garden Thu, 18 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000

Walled Garden

The term, “Walled Garden,” I first read that in respect to the original version of AOL, what started as the first membership-required kind of online presence. In retrospect, it wasn’t the first, but quickly ascended to the throne of best known.

There will always be that bittersweet tang, as AOL was my first righteous paying gig, and then after mergers and buy-outs, my “Free for Life” account got cancelled. Prior to 1998, that was the single, longest-standing email address I had.

“Free for life”
Some restrictions apply
See fineprint for details

That’s just business, too. Content might be king, but subsidiaries are subject to market whims.

The horoscopes, my horoscopes, are, by definition, then a Walled Garden, as is, for example other outlets like FaceBook. Yes, that is a Walled Garden, too. The Walled Garden approach has certain benefits, at least, for me as a content producer — I have control over who — or what — sees my material.

So few understand the need to make this a pay-per-view thing, but how it works? I get all kinds of crap mail from some people, and the Walled Grden engenders a tad more respect.

There always was another rejoinder I use only once, “Hey, where can I read the horoscopes you write online?”

The Walled Garden, when I realized that FaceBook was exactly that, too, the little lightbulb snapped. FB is nothing more than an aggregate of feeds, and posts, like the message boards in days of yore, but still, FB requires a password and valid email to access.

Kind of like what I have set-up, and both, are then, Walled Gardens.

Walled Garden

Still people complain.

Weekly Mailer

]]> 0 6792
Pour Over Coffee Stand Thu, 18 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000

Pour Over Coffee Stand

An idea from a lost link?

First draft here.

First iteration, here.

Pour Over Coffee Stand


Knock-off Melitta pour-over funnel, $6.99 at World Market.

Scratch that. Funnel.

100 mm Borosilicate Glass Funnel $8.99 on Amazon

SEOH GLASS FUNNEL Neutral glass 100 mm 100 mm stem

Black iron parts at Lowe’s

  • 1/2 inch Flange base $4.98
  • 1/2 inch 8-inch pipe $2.92
  • 1/2 inch – 3/8 elbow $2.37
  • 3/8 inch 2-inch pipe $1.78
  • 3/8 inch black iron Tee $2.58

Poplar Project Board $5.28

Spray can lacquer $5.78

Another iteration.

Other version.

Timing for effectiveness

Compare and contrast?

The Keurig Rivo Cappuccino and Latte System

Melitta Coffee Maker, Porcelain Cone Drip Brewer, (Pack of 4)

]]> 0 6723
Tenure Wed, 17 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000


The first is here, although, it is marked Two, for some arcane reason.

At an astrologically significant time, I bought, if I recall, three domain names. Of those three, remains.

For a decade.

Now, a single image a day. The current (WHOIS) record indicates I started it in 11/2006.

Bought the name, then didn’t do anything with it until May 2007.

The name was cute, and noted elsewhere, based upon a sign I started to see a lot, on my way from a trailer park in South Austin to San Antonio, or even further, going to and from the Gulf Coast.

The original premise had to do with an old girlfriend, and how I left a cheap camera in her glovebox, ready for weird images, like a sign that said, car crushing bump, which I though was the first image. In case the girlfriend motored off without me? No loss for that camera — this is before cell phone image devices got to be so good.

Ten years: tenure. A single image, every day. Some gorgeous. Some worthy of print. Some crap. Some that only held meaning for me.


The original logo, pretty much as I had it in mind, that decade back.

I do recall, for a period, the idea that a black background made the images “pop” more, and I used that kind of logo. Still, the site itself? More a simple text name as a placeholder for a simple idea that was born, an image a day.

Then, the last iteration? More a web-badge and button than anything else, although, there were, at one time, a handful for business cards, as well.

The ubiquitous side-project.


How much has changed? How much is the same? The original pattern and process, I would import images from various cheap cameras and a phone, click-edit, mostly just crop and hit “auto-adjust” in then iPhoto, and export the image as a 500-pixel width image file.

If memory serves, and there are sufficient bread-crumb-like clues to suggest this is true, there was a separate directory for images themselves, at the root of the site, so the site’s structure was even more simple. The easiest way to understand it? The WordPress motor would fetch the image and display that image, from a folder sitting at the base of the site’s file structure — making the images easy to find by any method.

I’m guessing I started on a late version 1 or even version 2 of WordPress, for the site’s motor, and I found a “City Daily Portal” that offered links to various sites that showcased a city’s daily image.

The growth and changes over the years, currently, the images are almost all from phones, and currently, the size is bloated to way beyond 500 pixels wide as that is much too narrow of a frame, within current web standards. While I still use the WordPress motor and design framework, the images themselves are all stored within the site’s structure, not in a separate folder.

Finally, in the last few years, I opted out of the daily and weekly meme rings, and while the idea of a daily image city image portal is, in fact, engaging, unless that kind of site is picking my material up automatically, I am unsure if I have the time — or mental bandwidth — to create the links, and post.

With the advent of iPads and so forth? I tend to do some light image editing on whatever is in hand, and at least three-quarters of the site’s images, upkeep, and maintenance is performed via an iPad.


The guidelines are similar to what I started with, and follow the exact same spirit, if not actual execution.

  1. One image daily.
  2. Image should be taken inside the lines of the Bexar County Line.
  3. Minimal editing.
  4. No “photoshopping,” as in no digital magic.
  5. Show case or exemplify Bexar County Line

The final one is tricky and after decamping downtown, a little more of a challenge. Still, those are the guidelines.

In its first few years, I went through a half-dozen cheap cameras. One remains, and I will still use it, mostly when fishing, but other times, just to see. Still, most of the work is now “cell phone,” and the editing process, this week, I’m working in Apple’s native Photo app, having used a handful of others, as well.

It is a single image from my lens, drawn from a collection that started maybe a few years back, enthralled with the art, culture, and visual textures of San Antonio, TX.


There is, as always a few interesting ideas, and perhaps an image of an image — I got hung up on a kind of image about pepper, as I was heavy into experimental cuisine. Experimental cuisine using peppers, mostly. So, at first, there I was, trying to be inconspicuously as possible, take a picture with a cheap camera of the various pepper bins at the store.

Makes this more amusing, one of the better images was from a certain superstore on Southwest Military, deep in the mostly latin neighborhoods. I was a foot taller than most, at the time, and, several shades paler, than most, at the time.

So there I would be, trying to be innocuous and inconsequential, poking around in the produce sections. I’m sure some security camera archive has me, trying to be sly, taking a picture of the peppers.


The premise remains, as the site supports the hypothesis, “San Antonio (Bexar County) is way weirder than Austin, but nobody cares.” It’s not going to be a Chamber of Commerce slogan.

Bexar County has served under nine different governments, now, “We got this.”

There it is, ten years old. Started at an auspicious time, and now, a full decade old. Still pumping along at one image per day.

I am a writer, first and foremost. I am not a painter, and I make no claims what-so-ever about being a photographer. This is place where I can play, without the worry — or judgement — as there are no suppositions about quality. No representation of expertise. It’s a digital playground with my images, loosely curated and collated, all drawn from within an adoptive home where I feel like perpetual tourist.

Works for me.


Best of the double aughts, available here, for free, for a short time.

Previous allusions and various notations.

Vincit Qui Primum Gerit

“First to arrive gets the best deal.”


]]> 0 6663
Chain Store Food Tue, 16 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000

Chain Store Food

Very few chains are acceptable, but there are some exceptions. Taco Cabana, Torchy’s Tacos, What-a-burger (with jalapeños and bacon, extra spicy ketchup), Blake’s, and Jim’s.

Taco Cabana originated in San Antonio, as did Jim’s. Blake’s is a New Mexico thing, Torchy’s is from a trailer park in Austin, and What-a-burger started in Corpus Christi. For that matter, as I understand it, What-a-burger’s corporate office is now located in San Antonio, all statements with zero fact checking.

I tend to shy way from chains, as there’s a remarkable colloquial feeling I get from the one-off, the weird, the strange, the hole-in-the-wall joints. Living for all those years in Austin with such world-class BBQ at my behest? Just an example. Good coffee, too, again, not a national — or ubiquitous international — corporate giant.

Chain Store Food

One of my favorite Taco Cabana recollections was walking in the one on Riverside, old South Austin, is that place still there? The restaurant, old South Austin has already reinvented itself, and walking in, before work one Sunday morning, with a buddy — I call him Bubba — walking in to the sight, sound, then the heady aroma of meat, cheap, greasy fajita meat, on the griddle.

So much for my vegan choices for that day.

When the local events were up on 410 (number indicates a local freeway loop address), Torchy’s in San Antonio became a new favorite. Kind of too cool with its, well, everything, but the food is good. Like the sign says, “Damn Good.”

What-a-burger compares to the chain, In and Out Burger, but What-a-burger has no secret menu. Portions of the menu items are so good, though, they are now sold in grocery stores. Some place, I’ve got an image of the West Texas sunset, bruised light fading fast over that orange/white sign.

I only know Blake’s — Blake’s Lot-a-burger, think that’s the name — only know them from three, maybe four locations. One in Santa Fe, one Albuquerque, one in El Paso, then one in Artesia or Portales, NM. Get the green chill burger.

I like my eggs, when I’m having a traditional American breakfast, I like my eggs over easy, lightly cooked, but runny. Toast, buttered and near burnt. Bacon, extra crispy. Grits, usually with a side of butter, but some prefer syrup.

Jim’s is a breakfast spot, some of them are 24-hour, so order breakfast, even at supper time. Can. Not. Go. Wrong. The proof is in the way the eggs are always cooked to perfection.

Chain Store Food

With more than three decades riding back and forth across the local landscape, the American Southwest, these are chains that I know are dependable. The added bonus, they are all local, in some variation of that idea.

Vincit Qui Primum Gerit

“First to arrive gets the best deal.”

]]> 0 6697
Avant Garde German Mon, 15 May 2017 09:20:00 +0000

Avant Garde German

A further thought about the Jukebox?

The process of curation. FM radio — when radio really mattered.

An electronic billboard advertised for a German New Wave band that should, technically, be called Electronica, but that was before the term was applied to a firmly striated selection of music. That band had one song that I was familiar with, from hearing it on the radio, the morning show — back when I was working in a motorcycle shop. Had the radio up loud, and the DJ was a motorcycle rider, too.

Seriously goes off the rails in a hurry?

The one song on the radio, that paved the way for another song that was an underground hit, and I recalled it, still have a digital version, someplace.

One hit: radio success begat one hit: underground legend. Then obscurity. A reunion tour that was playing mid-sized venues, and I thought about tickets, but other than those two songs? I have zero recollection of anything else. I can’t even say what the album cover looked like.

Still, it was a DJ who introduced me to the band. Or group. Or whatever a collective of musicians is called. Performers. Artists.

“I’m with the band.”

Joke didn’t work.

Avant Garde German

The Jukebox reminder has to do with curation — the process of finding and selecting the best of the best, and suggesting that this piece is the best, and worthy of brain bandwidth for whatever reason. Books, music, art works, websites, all of that. The process is curation.

The nature of the Avant Garden German group? Looking back with the rheumy eyes of time, obviously the band crept forward into the year 2009, listened to some tunes, maybe hung out at a club, then zipped back to 1979, trying to replicate the current sounds with the technology that was available, then.

Wouldn’t have heard about the band, ever, had it not been for a morning drive-time DJ, who, I might add, had a sweet ride of a super-bike. The motorcycle was best judged by the standards at the time. The music? I’m unsure if stands up over time, but the show was sold out.

Vincit Qui Primum Gerit

“First to arrive gets the best deal.”

]]> 0 6689
Comedy of Errors Sun, 14 May 2017 19:40:00 +0000 Comedy of Errors marquee

Comedy of Errors

“The shortest and most unified of all Shakespeare’s plays, The Comedy of Errors, is regarded by many scholars as his very first, which I tend to doubt. It show such skill, indeed mastery—in action, incipient character, and stagecraft—that it far outshines the three Henry VI plays and the rather lame comedy The Two Gentlemen of Verona” Page 21.

The opening lines from Bloom’s commentary in his Shakespeare, the Invention of the Human, seen here. I do not agree with the summary dismissal of The Two Gentlemen of Verona, though.

From other commentary, the simplest explanation is that the play is a fairly intricate weaving of high and low comedy, plus twins, a pair of twins, and then, slapstick.

There are two sets of identical of twins, and whichever twin is on stage is the wrong one for its partner. Three Stooges meets Fine Art — and should mete out a beating.

The other reference tome I tend towards?

“Like many of Shakespeare’s comedies, The Comedy of Errors begins with an inflexible law and the human dilemma caused by the law’s impersonal enforcement.” Page160.

First line from Garber’s Shakespeare After All, seen here.

In Austin? Under Austin’s Violet Crown?

Comedy of Errors marquee

Comedy of Errors marquee

Comedy of Errors


  • Aperture: ƒ/1.8
  • Camera: iPhone 7
  • Focal length: 3.99mm
  • ISO: 20
  • Location: 30° 15′ 51.87″ N 97° 46′ 19.87″ W
  • Shutter speed: 1/454s
]]> 0 6754