Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Make it Rain

photo by Steve Barbour

Doubt there is a drought?  While people are watering their lawns (gaw!) and living in ignorant bliss, one look at Folsom Lake will astound you.  A couple of friends and I went out there to take photographs.  Mouths agape, we witnessed a post apocalyptic world, with people wandering the barren landscape with their dogs and children.  Overhead, wispy clouds mocked the scene below.

A veritable moonscape, water levels are 15 percent of normal.  It puts a whole new spin on the Tunnels project, which would divert water from Northern California to Southern California, land of deserts.  Why it took the Governor so long to pronounce a water emergency in the state is beyond me....unless he wanted to protect the Tunnels project.

Mormon Island is now accessible by foot.  What remains there are ruins of a cemetery that was moved when plans to create the lake took place.

The rangers we spoke to talked about how many people have come to view the dry lake bed.  The park service is raking in the money (good for them) in a season where they usually get very few visitors. 

A sobering trip, for sure.  So, whether you live north or south, you'd better be taking this drought thing seriously.  Fill buckets of shower water to flush your toilet or water your plants.  There is a meteorological rumor that we may get rain later this week.  Even if we do, we're still deep in mucky ground that is Folsom Lake.

Thursday, January 23, 2014


portraits of old,
the reclining flesh of women and men on lush oceans of velvet.
today, mother reclines with a ruby red cape about her shoulders
napping in her favorite chair with the newspaper fallen to the floor.
the six pound 3 legged dog creature sprawls in the sun by the door,
great swaths of sunlight through the glass and onto the oriental carpet.
I am vertical, but wistfully remember my morning recline
in the soft warm bed that moved me to hit snooze three times (a record).
my favorites: naps with dogs on the chilly back porch of my grandparents' house;
lazy afternoons in the arms of a lover;
cuddling up with my baby after her fill of mother's milk;
head bobbing to the beat of the train racing south along the coast while I dozed ever so lightly.
All of life's moments in repose throughout the ages,
we succumb to our sleep in fields,
on hammocks,
even the bloody trenches of our wars.
The world outside left behind while the life of the mind explodes,
or rests silently, waiting for the next waking dream.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Stuck in Love

Don't know how I missed this movie when it was out, but I watched it the other night on Netflix. What a gem. Great soundtrack, a literature lover's dream, a lover's faith and a coming-of-age story as well. Old love, new love -- love, love, love. I loved it. Greg Kinnear is one of those highly under valued actors. Remember when he was the host on "The Soup," a weekly wrap up of televisions worst talk shows? A lifetime ago. Now he acts beautifully. "Home is when I am with you." How is that for deluxe sweetness?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Whistle While You Work

There is something supremely satisfying in cleaning house while listening to music.  I have several play lists I've made for the task, but this my latest and best.  All these songs compel my body to move.

Where Not to Look for Freedom - The Belle Brigade
Get the Party Started - P!nk Greatest Hits...So Far!!!             
This Magic Moment-Lake Street Dive-Fun Machine 
Oh, Pretty Woman - Roy Orbison-Black & White Night
Defying Gravity (Glee Cast Version)
Frim Fram Sauce-Diana Krall -The Very Best of Diana Krall
That Better Day - ByrdJones - Radio Soul
Thing Called Love- Bonnie Raitt-The Best of Bonnie Raitt
Faith-Lake Street Dive     Fun Machine - EP           
Shawn Colvin   -These Four Walls           
Sweet Caprice-Mumbo Gumbo  Fun Pak
Emerald Street-Eliza Gilkyson  - Beautiful World        
We Belong Together  -Rickie Lee Jones   Pirates
Ecstasy-George Fenton   Living Out Loud Soundtrack
I'll Fly Away-Gillian Welch & Alison Krauss-O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Keep On the Sunny Side-The Whites O Brother, Where Art Thou? (Music from the Film)
Hey, Soul Sister-Train  - Hey, Soul Sister
Common Threads-Bobby McFerrin  - Medicine Music
Going up the Country-Canned Heat  The Best of Canned Heat           
100 Years-Five for Fighting  -The Battle for Everything           
Dancing With Myself (Glee Cast Version)
Hollaback Girl- Gwen Stefani Love, Angel, Music, Baby
Wild Night-John Mellencamp - Words & Music - John Mellencamp's Greatest Hits
Julie's House-Leo Kottke - Leo Kottke: Essential Folk           
Daughter-Loudon Wainwright III   - Daughter
Walkin' After Midnight-Patsy Cline - Best of Patsy Cline
Me and That Train-Patty Larkin- A Gogo
Cigarettes and Chocolate Milk  Rufus Wainwright  - Poses           
You Got the Silver-Susan Tedeschi - Hope and Desire
Burning Down the House-Talking Heads - Stop Making Sense
What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger)-Kelly Clarkson  - Stronger
Take Me to the River-Talking Heads- Stop Making Sense
Ho Hey-The Lumineers  - Ho Hey - Single           
Royals -Lorde  - Pure Heroine            

Quite a mix of musical styles -- I do have eclectic tastes.

Today I've been really organizing, throwing out junk, and making room for a new desk to hold my new computer that's coming on Monday.  I purchased a 27 inch iMac and am very excited!  I currently work on a MacBook Pro laptop, which is a great computer and has served me well for 4 years.  I want a large screen in order to process my photographs, and after checking out a couple of friends' iMacs, I knew that was the right move for me.  I'll be able to view the photos in large format, which is what I want when making corrections with Lightroom or Photoshop.

And so, house organization in my small apartment is a must.  Where to fit in such a monster? After considering many spots, I've selected the best location and the work is on to make it fit.  And the music is keeping me buoyant and joyful.

Friday, January 3, 2014


First TGIF of 2014. I continue to find inspiring things, such as this: Focus on people who make you feel loved, connected, cared for, and worthy.

That's from the site Tiny Buddha, which I love. Sometimes it's so difficult to pull away from people who make you feel bad about yourself, or consistently disappoint you. The reasons vary, but the end result is sticking around for more of the same is just a waste of our precious time.

On this Friday, I am going to be spending time with two great friends who are reliably fun to be with Freight and Storage in Berkeley. The artist is Eve Decker, whose latest cd has just dropped and this is the release party. I donated to Eve's cd fundraising site, and so I received a free ticket to go, and decided to include my friends. 
and with whom I can be my authentic self. We're going to a concert at

It should be a very good TGIF, indeed.  Hope yours is as well, and enjoy the weekend ahead!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


  A friend is grieving the loss of her long time love and life partner.  It is wrenching, but she is remembering the good times, their trave...