Friday, September 26, 2008

Lol-bun off


vs. lol-bun:
I don't know why you think that's funny. That's not funny. That bunneh is dumb.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I go bald!

Yesterday on my way to State College, I saw this along Rt 220:
Click all pics for eagle-iciously large

So of course I yanked the car over to the shoulder and started snapping!

I hoped I could get him taking flight, but he just perched there, looking majestic.

These are my first-ever photographs of a bald eagle. I've only seen one in the wild a few times, usually way too far away to get a photo. I'm getting all tingly just thinking about it.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Around the town, Part 1

Here are some photos from my little walk around downtown Bellefonte on Saturday:

Looking down Allegheny Street from the Brockerhoff House:

The Bellefonte Courthouse (Bellefonte is the county seat):

A really cool architectural feature at the corner of High St and Spring:

The corner of Allegheny and High Street, with another cool little spire thingy:
I'm doubtful that this stone was laid in 1710, but who knows?

It was laid into a stone staircase for this building:

And here's the info on the building; how (or more importantly, WHY) did a women's temperance organization erect a building?
Looking back at the corner of Allegheny and High:

I went into a neat old antique mall that is housed in a former theatre called The Plaza. There were movie posters everywhere--for Doctor Zhivago, Hello Dolly, West Side Story, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. You've all seen those things, so I focused my camera on some other highlights:
The animal kingdom was well represented...
I love that cow

a must-have

Niblet's biography? were the seedier members of our society:
Good lord.

I'm sure Creepy "Uncle" Arthur tells lots of stories to the kiddies while they sit on his lap.

This woman is snorting the aroma right. out. of. the. cup.

There were even some gifts for a certain blogger who's always wanted one of these:

A history book that McFossil is probably in, as he invented the Blackberry and all:

And a photo of a guy who's just had it:

Here's where I'll be on Friday night:

Sadly, this moron will not be there:

I wanted to pull a Matty and spit on the car, but I refrained. (And yes, that's Dr. Matty McMatterson, recent PhD in Social Psych, who spits on cars with offensive bumper stickers on them. What can I tell you? We don't call him the Gay Tasmanian Devil for nothing.)

Monday, September 22, 2008

The first day of fall

Today is the first day of my favorite season, autumn. Leaves are not yet turning, but they will be soon. I hope to get some good pics around the house, as we're lousy with maples and other great trees.
I looked in my photos folders for an old picture of autumn leaves, but I couldn't find any. Have I never taken photos of the red and gold leaves?

I walked around my new little town on Saturday and took some photos, but I forgot to bring my camera cord. Tomorrow, I'll have pics of "Victorian Bellefonte" for you.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Finally! Fotos!

If stupid Blogger will let me post them! It's been persnickety all morning long, not even letting me post text, much less photos.

So -- I finally have some pics of the new homestead. First of all, here's the Nibble eating his dinner:

Here are the various rooms in my apartment:
my big-ass kitchen:

It goes back about 15 or more feet! I could park a car in here!

my study:
music area
computer area
book area

The cool thing about the study is that it has these doors
so Niblet can't get in there and chew every single guitar and computer cord into little pieces! He's rather frustrated with me when I go in there, and he stands at the doors and scratches on the glass with his claws.

The bathroom:

My very dull bedroom:
I need some framed bird prints or something in here!

Thus endeth the inside tour. Here's some outside pics:
train tracks across the street behind my house
looking down the steps outside that lead to my "patio" of broken concrete

So--my revised bird list thus far:
American Goldfinch
House Finch
Carolina Wren (haven't heard him in a few days)
Mourning Dove
Turkey Vulture
Chimney Swift

I'm planning to wander around our quaint little downtown this weekend and show you what that's like.

Preliminary New Yard Bird List

Susan asked me a while back to talk about what birds I can see in the trees around my new little apartment. I haven't done an extensive (with binocs) look around, but here is a preliminary list:

Tufted Titmouse (seen this morning--been a while since I've seen one of these guys)
Eastern Starling
Chimney Swift (these are legion in downtown Bellefonte, a block away from me)
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow

There are a lot of weird bird sounds in the morning, but I've always had to get up, get ready, and go someplace (work, etc.) so I haven't sat outside and just tried to ID these weird sounds. I'm guessing they're probably just starlings or house finches, but I'm not sure. They sound very different from the starling and house finch calling I used to hear out at the marsh house. Of course, that's probably about ten or more miles to the southeast of me and in a different valley. Maybe that makes a difference.
I'm planning for a very low-key weekend, so I'm hoping to get up early and do a little yard-birding to get a more detailed list. The trees all around the house are maples, pretty much to the exclusion of all other kinds of trees. I imagine that might make some difference as well. Still--I'll look around and report back to you. I'll also FINALLY post pictures of the new nest.
Until then, happy birding!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Welcome to the Songstress Dictatorship!

Well, recent polls notwithstanding, I--your own supreme bird leader!--have taken it upon myself to choose the best female singer of all freakin' time! Rejoice with me as I present...

Judy Garland, 1944

WHAT? you ask. We voted! We elected someone else! Judy freakin' Garland didn't even get mentioned, not even once! She didn't make the cut! This is ridiculous! you say, your little fists all balled up at indignity and unfairness of it all.

But I tell you, my little fledglings, my eyes have been opened. I--your fearless and supreme bird leader!--have seen, I--the greatness of me--have heard, and I--the leader of the world!--have decided!

Judy Garland, you little Frances Gumm you -- you are the best singer of all time!Judy singing The Man That Got Away
Judy singing Smile (if you don't cry during this one, you have no soul!)
and of course: Judy singing Over the Rainbow
(Sorry, I can't embed the yootoobes. Such technology is beyond the firewalls your fearless bird leader lives behind while at work.)

Remember, little songbirds: Judy Garland. She's the best. Period.

P.S.--this post composed after reading George Orwell's 1984. Perhaps that had something to do with it...

Monday, September 15, 2008

My first hawk watch

I went on my first-ever hawk watch yesterday on Jack's Mountain, a beautiful spot south of State College near Belleville. The only bad thing was that I didn't get to take any photos, thanks to the whole lost-camera-battery-charger thing. However, I did find the charger finally! It was in my bad-ass birding bag along with my binocs and my Stokes guide. Duh.

Sadly, I didn't have time to charge it up, so I'll share this photo that a fellow watcher took:

We saw almost 300 of these broadwing hawks in the time we were on the mountain! Local birder Chet Gottfried took this pic with his Pentax and humongoolous lens. I wish he'd sent a pic of the view from Jack's Mtn into Ferguson Valley, because it was breathtaking.

I went with a few people from the bird club, including my atlassing pal Roana. We got there a little after 10 in the morning and stayed until about 1 p.m. It was freaking HOT out there--about 90 degrees with high humidity. We saw a ton of broadwings, plus a couple of ospreys and sharpies. The view was spectacular, and aside from the indignity (not to mention the whole germy thing) of having to pee in the woods, it was a really great way to spend a Sunday!

Ron Singer, the official counter at the site, said that was the best day so far this year, though he was expecting even MORE today and tomorrow. Amazing. I'd only ever gotten a glimpse at a broadwing back at Cape May last fall with the Flock, so to study these guys as they soared and kettled on the thermals of Jack's Mountain was really a treat.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Still alive!

Hey everyone. Just wanted to let you know I'm still alive, but I seem to have lost my camera battery charger and download cable in the move. I'm still trying to find that stuff, but I'm kinda running out of unpacked boxes to look in....

Once I find these items (or buy replacements--ugh), I'll be able to show you the new apartment as well as a very energized Niblet! He is really enjoying having more space to run around in, I guess. At the Marsh House, he stuck to his 5x8 carpeted area because he didn't like the wood floors. The apt, however, is all carpeted (except for kitchen and bath), so he has the run of two rooms and a hallway.

Perhaps as a result of this, he's been super hyper lately, binkying around the apartment and on the bed (nothing like waking up with a bunny jumping on your face). He's been very affectionate too, letting me pet him and snuggle him for long periods of time while we watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer (his favorite show) on DVD.
(not too bad for using MS Paint!)
Not even the most ardent Buffy trivia buffs (buffys?) know that Niblet almost had a small role in Season 5. He was going to play a substance that hurts the god Glorificus, much like kryptonite to Superman. It was decided that this plot device was a little implausible, as there are pretty much bunnies everywhere in Sunnydale (which meant that Glory wouldn't be able to kick Buffy's butt all the time), as well as the fact that Anya had an overwhelming fear of bunnies.
But I digress.

Niblet and I will be back on Ted Stevens' (Series of) Intertubes soon!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

This space reserved...

for photos and descriptions of the new nest! Details and said photos to come! I'm still swamped at work with this technical editing stuff, so please pardon my absence on your blogs.