Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Dirt Has A New Home

For years, whenever Carl and I drove to Marietta to go to our boat, 
we'd pass through long areas of Interstate 70 as it 
was being revised, repaved and rebuilt. 
I was especially fascinated by the methods used 
to construct the roadbed. Since we went nearly every week, 
I could watch the process unfold but was always 
frustrated because we couldn't stop to explore or ask questions.

Now, the process is going on just outside my door, so to speak. 
I took the opportunity, meaning to take some pictures of the barriers
only and found myself exploring the materials 
used to construct a roadbed. Woo hoo!

The green stuff is ReBar, used to strengthen
and reinforce the concrete. The bent bars resembling
large hairpins, are poked into the roadbed with straight lengths
of the same material woven among them, 
as well as wire mesh resembling fencing.
 The concrete is then poured to a specified depth
 amid and over the pins/rebar.  

Of course, we've all had to deal with these concrete barriers,
which make up the temporary lane dividers as the work is being done.
Sometimes, it feels like passing through an obstacle course, where 
every motorized conveyance from staid limo to mad hooptie
is funneled through a gerbil trail. Here the segments are
stacked, awaiting duty 

All day, dump trucks full of dirt and other debris enter 
this cordoned area about a quarter mile south of home. 
They've created a mountain range of soil which will form 
the base of a new exit ramp. I don't know 
where it comes from, but there's a lot of it.
 I hope they plant flowers and trees in it.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Textured Tuesday: Graphic Colors

There's a store in the neighborhood mall that sells cheap 
inexpensive clothing meant for teen-age girls.
I'm always surprised how much I'm attracted to the bright
colors and graphics.

Monday, February 27, 2012


In a world of corporate logos and trademarked design excellence, 
it is often refreshing to encounter handpainted, vintage 
and homemade signage. I saw these three examples within
a four block stretch along West Michigan Street. 

It's such a treat to find that the sign for Jung's Red Heart Beer
still appears on the side of the building where it
was painted many years ago.

And here is a homemade treat for a neighborhood
motorcycle shop. I can't decide whether the yellow 
things are two pair of blonde-haired boobies
or the nether ends of a couple flaming dicks.
Oh. Oh, yeah. Well, I guess they're exhaust pipes.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Filling A Hole

One day last month, I was downtown for an appointment 
and found I had some extra time to look for photos. At the time,
the city was more active than usual, preparing for 
the Super Bowl. This group of men was working to fill an area
where some duct work had been repaired. 

The truck driver was carefully spotting his truck 
so as to better aim the concrete into the hole, with the crew
men working to quickly spread the concrete mixture
around and amid the new pipes and base layers.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

The Prettiest Part of the Day

I rescued this amaryllis several years ago from my grocer's 
discount bin. It was just after Christmas and the time
for this seasonal bloom had passed. I brought it home and have 
been rewarded every year since with a long stalk or two of blossoms.
The graceful, crimson flowers generally show themselves 
just when the weather is at its most drearand frigid, 
adding a bright spot to my day. 

Friday, February 24, 2012

Sidewalk of Smiles and Stars

On Sunday night in Los Angeles, the year's Academy Awards 
will be handed out to the hard-working people who are
employed in the motion picture industry. In addition to the
actors and actresses who form the front line of our 
consciousness, are scores of people who go unrecognized
by most of us, but who may be among the joyful
few to receive one of the golden statuettes.

While their frozen smiles will not likely make the morning news, 
and their stars will not be embedded into the sidewalk outside Grauman's
Chinese Theater, their pride will not be felt any less, 
nor their achievements diminished.

Here's to the folks who surround the stars, who get the film
onto the screen for the rest of the world to enjoy. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

A Molar Grid

Graffiti reminding me of giant, evil molars have appeared
at various places around town. Had the tagger intended
to leave biting commentary? 
Otherwise, the varied sizes and colors of the bricks
provide the interest in this wall.

In other places, the hidden drunks would have left
their empty bottles shattered in the gutter. Here,
they were capped and left on the limestone sill,
a lonely, empty couple.

Generally, the alleyways of Indy seem to be 
comparatively tidy, with some of them actually being 
little side streets, left over from earlier centuries.
This one may seem longer because of the 
slanted lines of the parking garage 
sweeping into the distance. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Trembling Light

So light, so fragile I almost missed it, 
this feather clung to a twig.
I was determined to get a picture of it
and this was the only image 
that was in focus.
I liked the way the afternoon sun
shown through the feather,
creating a small spot of trembling light,
shimmering in the cool breeze.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Textured Tuesday: Thorny Issue

Actually, I went out today to find a "blue" picture
to put with this video, but to find blue and
thorns, too, was just about right, considering.

Just keep singin' the blues, guys.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Neutral Colors and the Three Amigos

While deciding what pictures I would use for today's post, 
I realized that the colors of the abandoned nest were
repeated in that of the three Golden Retrievers.

I found the nest among the brush in the Coke Field 
while the Goldens live about a block away,
across the road from the field.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Shiny Things

It's cheap and tacky, glittery and shiny,
but somehow so damn pretty I just stand in 
awe of it's colorful sparkle.
I wouldn't wear it, but somehow
it inspires fantasies that a flash of sequins 
will still, somehow, suddenly make me 
the most desirable woman in history.

Look out world! Cheap rhinestones, nylon and 
polyester lace is suddenly going to restore 
perky boobs and long legs.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

What I Saw

I spent yesterday kvetching (bitching) about 
everything being some shade of brown.
Today, I went for a walk with the intention of
stalking the heron I saw a couple days
ago in the Coke Field creek.
The weather was clear, the sky was very blue 
and stems that the other day looked
brown now took on purple and red hues.
Out of the corner of my eye I saw brief flashes
of red and blue, a cardinal and blue jay 
that were flitting among the bare branches.

Out in the field, I heard the calls in the distance 
of a large number of birds. I had trouble locating them,
but very high above, I saw hundreds of them, in a flock
that seemed more like a swarm than the tidy V's
made by geese. They were sand hill cranes,
heading north to their breeding grounds, so far up
in the sky I could only recognize them by their voice.

This flock was far more easy to identify:
a group of teen-age boys spending a nice February
afternoon playing basketball in a driveway. 
And in their shirt-sleeves!

Friday, February 17, 2012

A Brown Wonderland

Brown, brown, brown.
Taupe, sienna, russet and umber.
Straw, dried or sodden.
Chocolate, cocoa, cafe au lait.
Tweedy, slippery, rough.
Leaves, musty, mulched and matted.
Ochre, fawn, and gray.
Subdued, hidden, rainy day.
Torpor, quiet and serene.
Misty sky and clear, cold water.
Inversion, waiting and renewal.
Stalks and stems, hats and coats.
Winter's slumber.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Winter Doldrums

Criminy, we've made it this far through winter
with few problems; the weather has seemed to vary
between tolerable to cutting temperatures.
Right now, winter is gray but tolerable.

I startled a blue heron out of the creek bed yesterday. 
He's really quite large and slow, but still too
fast for my little camera. Damn.
I'm going to have to become more quiet
and sneaky if I want more than just a picture 
of his footprints.

Later this afternoon, I am going to meet 
other people who, like me, are conditioning
to run and/or walk the Mini Marathon next May.
I'm definitely in the "walk" division.
We work in the 16-minutes per mile category,
with intentions of improving on that time.
My butt already aches.

Returning to the fitness center, I stopped
briefly to take this picture of Downtown Indy.
We were walking east across the New York Street
bridge crossing the White River.
It was about a quarter to seven.   

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Yellow Barrier/Berries

The nearby highway interchange is being widened 
and reconfigured to accommodate the increased traffic.
In the process, Crawfordsville Road is also being 
updated, with temporary barriers installed
while the new lanes are constructed.
While crossing the road last week, I noticed the 
bright yellow bull-nose on the barrier
was the same hue as the berries just beside my feet.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

No Joy

Looking through the store window, 
the trunks of the bamboo trees look like bars.
The trees have been strung with lighted hearts
 and beyond there are masses of balloons
and bouquets. None of it for me.
Unless I buy it for myself.

Thoroughly jilted a few years back by a man 
I'd trusted with my life for over ten years, 
I am only now beginning to emerge from the haze 
of confusion and hurt he left behind.

I guess he thought I didn't need him. I didn't.
I wanted him and that's a big difference.
I paid my own rent, dreamed my own dreams
and didn't need another person to "fulfill" me.
What he did leave me with was a better
sense of myself, increased self-confidence
and an odd sort of courage; I am comfortable 
in my own skinin a way I never was 
before I met him.

I suppose one might say, then, that I got 
the better end of the deal.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Brick Mitten

I try to have my little Canon with me at all times. 
On the occasions I've forgotten it, I've found myself reaching 
into my pocket, then patting all my pockets 
like a driver who's mislaid her keys.
Among the best times to have my camera are when I find
unintended art, such as this patch of bared brick.
The building where I saw it is undergoing a remodeling
and renovation, which evidently includes repairs
to its stucco surface.

I loved the subtle traces of the brick 
underlying the beige coloration of the cement, 
the way the white garage door balances 
the red shape of the mitten. And that one red
brick anchors the mitten, giving it
the weight to stand with the white square.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Waiting for the Bus

Bundled up, with mid-day temperatures 
in the mid-teens, I waited for the bus. 
This stop is a couple miles from home, a distance
I usually walk, but I'm not a fan of the cold
so take the bus it is. 

The stop is just a few feet from a planter 
full of dried flowers and around the corner 
from "Mean Maxine's," a shop specializing
in costumes and footwear for "exotic" dancers.
Until a few years ago, the costumes were
displayed in the store window, their bright
colors and sequins a brazen contrast
to the otherwise modest appearance
of this neighborhood.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Uh, I Forgot ...

With only one month left in the season, 
winter has finally arrived.
The air has been misty with fine snow
all afternoon, and all I've wanted
to do is curl up on the couch
with a cup of coffee and a good book.

It's not so much hibernation as it is a state of torpor.
I just stare into space, waiting for the air
to become warmer, as the Earth and 
myself become rested and renewed.
I'm already anticipating spring.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Linear Winter

On gray days such as we've had this week, 
it's hard to find much color. 
Other than cardinals, even the birds
blend into their surroundings more than usual.
However, the gray sky has a touch of blue in it,
while the trees seem to show tinges of 
red or brown. Well ... maybe.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A Flash of Red Amid the Gray

I just liked the contrast of the feathery grass 
against the rough stucco wall.

And the warmer than normal temperatures 
may have confused the rose bushes 
outside the post office because a few
tiny red leafs seem to have sprouted 
on some stems. I noticed them because
they really stood out against 
the black mulch.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Expressionist Fence

During the two weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, 
the city enjoyed warmer than usual temperatures, 
as well as sunny days. Today, has been leaden gray
with some snowfall anticipated over night.
I went for a walk, not expecting to find much
in the way of pictures, and was pleasantly surprised
to find beautiful colors in a privacy fence
a couple blocks down the street.

I was also intrigued by the lattice with its
grid pattern backed by horizontal lines
and dark curvy vines woven into
the grid to break up the pattern.
I don't know that it works as well as I
would have preferred, but the notion of what
it might be kept it interesting.