Monday, April 23, 2007

How did the Yankees do this weekend?

Has anyone heard how the Red Sox/Yankees series went this weekend? Oh, wait a minute, the broom was in use last night as the Sox took all 3 games from the Bronz Bombers.

Not only did the Sox win, but all three victories were come from behind wins. And last nights game featured a record breaking ( for the Red Sox, tied the Major league record) 4 home runs in a row by the Red Sox. I do feel somewhat bad for the Yankees Rookie pitcher who gave up all 4 homers though, and hope this has no lasting psychological affect on him. This was the first time in 17 years that the Sox have swept the Yankees in a series at Fenwaypark.

The pendulum has swung back onto the Red Sox side right now. I was at one of the games last year in August when the Yankees had what was then called "The Boston Masacre" which effectively ended the Red Sox season, so I will revel in the latest battle won by the Red Sox between these two great teams.

Stay tuned to see what happens next weekend when the Sox visit the Evil Empire. Meanwhile this is one Sox fan who will be sleeping well this week. :)

Sto Lat - Stephanie and Gary

Stephanie & Gary

After an entire week of flooded and washed out roads, the weather turned warm and sunny just in time for a party in honor of the upcoming marriage of my niece Stephanie B. and her fiancee Gary T. Because the wedding will be held in Colorado the party offered an opportunity for the East coast relatives to meet Gary and his parents. My sister had planned a Polish celebration complete with traditional food and customs. Music was provided by accordionist and Polka Party host Gary Sredzienski.

Friends and family helped with decorations, food and entertainment. It was a pleasant way to spend a bug-free spring evening in New Hampshire.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Spring Nor'easter - too much rain

April Flooding 2007

We are having a pre-wedding party this saturday in New Boston. In addition to planning a menu and decorations, we now need to think about washed out roads and bridges. The Piscataqua river has overflowed it's banks into town, flooding businesses and destroying some of the roads. When my mother settled into town she was considering one of the homes located along this river but wisely chose a location on higher ground. Thankfully the predictions for the weekend are for warm sunny weather.

We have the advantage of living upstream. The head waters of the Souhegan river originate in New Ipswich. There are several flood control dams that slow the flow into the towns located downstream. We take a morning walk along a trail that circles the dam. The entire trail and part of the overflow area is now underwater.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Yankees / Red Sox Rivalry - the season begins

It's early in the season but the Red Sox and the Yankees are in a tie right now. We might have to get used to this for much of the season. The Yankees have a great offensive lineup but their pitching is suspect and Mussina is on the DL already. The Red Sox have some aging pitchers (as far as baseball is concerned anyways) but if they can hold up and Dice-K is the real deal (and it looks like he is) and Schilling and Beckett hold their own, it could be a long season for the Bronz Bombers. I hope so anyways. Yup, I am Red Sox fan, true blue, always have been, always will be. The funny thing is that both the Yankees and the Red Sox are looking up at the Toronto Blue Jays, who are in first place. The Jays are a force to reckon with this year, so its going to be quite a fun season.

I did read that the Yankees are not offering to extend A-Rod's contract. Although I can't verify this I heard a rumor that as part of the extension he was demanding a laced handbag (sorry ManPurse) outlined in pearls as part of the deal. Apparently the old manpurse is not in fashion any more. :)

Oh well, I am anxious to hear everyones thoughts on the Yankees and Redsox and how they will both do this year. Meanwhile the unbelievable thing is that if you go up to a Blue Jays game in Toronto, you can park for less than $5 and buy a ticket for as low as $8. Of course you have to get there and gas is so darn expensive, but that' a whole other topic.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Help! Bacteria is eating my 35mm transparencies

Something is living on the film emulsion, Yikes!

There is a lot than can go wrong in the trail from raw film to a developed
transparency. I have been scanning groups of family slides that span a period of over 4 decades. Some of the early Kodachrome slides from the late 1940's have kept their deep colors and the color rendition is very good. But in some of the later slides I started to notice a strange greenish spider type growth embedded in the emulsion. The green globs can be easily erased with photo-editing when they appear on a wall or the sky, but these globs seem to prefer to grow on people's faces and bodies. I was fairly consistent with my choice of films, Kodachrome, Ektachrome and Fujichrome. During my Navy Service I preferred to use a fine grained Kodachrome with a very slow speed of ASA 25. The resultant transparencies from this film have wonderful deep colors and have held up well over the years (see below).

Spices and Grains in Singapore

So what went wrong with some of the transparencies? I'm guessing bad dyes, stale film, stale developing chemicals, storage that was too hot, too wet, too dirty....probably all of that. Some of the results of the "Seattle Filmworks" brand film that I tried were dreadful, over the years they developed a garish greenish tinge. Some of the transparencies that my sister gave me to scan suffered some unimaginable trial of a badly designed slide projector (not the preferred Kodak Carousel), water damage and perhaps rodent abuse.

Water is no friend to slides

Thankfully we have entered the era of digital photography. Images are kept as 1's and 0's written in a proprietory format on a thin spinning disc of oxide coated aluminum being read by a magnetic coil flying over them at 7200 rpm or faster. What possibly could go wrong? Computers running realiable software maintain the whole system, it is completely foolproof.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Obama stops by in Peterborough, NH

2008 is just around the corner. Here come the candidates! I received an email this morning that presidential candidate Barack Obama was going to make an unofficial stop in nearby Peterborough. He was going to get something to eat at the Peterborough diner and visit the bookstore before heading off to a town meeting in Keene, NH. The Peterborough Diner has served as a backdrop to many a candidate. It is a classic diner with ornate gold lettering on a green background. The typical scenario involves the candidate stopping in a diner (usually during the breakfast hour) and chatting with the locals about weighty issues. Out of camera range there are the media consultants, the satellite trucks and the entourage of interns handing out buttons and stickers. Thankfully none of that was evident on this visit.

My impression is that the guy does have great people skills. He did a good job with the crowds (poor John Kerry lacked that). I'm a sucker for political celebrities, so I put down my $25 (no sales tax in NH) to buy his book and got him to sign it. This isn't just a ploy to immediately resell it on eBay, I think the guy has an interesting personal history and I intend to read the book before I resell it on eBay.