Blog Design Work

I’m redesigning some aspects of this blog, for quicker access. Dropped the Tetons header image and implemented the Google Font code, with shadows, for topic headers.

(Damn, if I can just get the cat hair off my keyboard, I’ll be able to type…) Steph’s off to Music On Main, with the girls, in Victor. Pipers laying on the floor here in my office, attacking my feet every time I get up.

Anyway, big weekend coming up and I want the blog in good shape because I’m going to throw a lot of media content at it. I’m also driving the Flickr API hard and coming up with some new apps, which will appear under the Photos menu item above.

And, if I could just remember what I had for dinner… (dementia is setting in, really)

Categorized as Site Stuff

Door 224 Is Haunted

I’ve been asking around town about Door 224, and several people thought it was haunted. Apparently, the door does open occasionally, and the walls start to shake.

I was driving by today and saw the door ajar! I pulled over quickly, shifting my camera into video mode, and this is what I shot. You need to watch this!

Click ↑ for Video

Steph just watched and asked me if I had opened the door and gone in. Hell no, I’m a working man, places to go, people to pick up… I was back in my bus within 3 seconds of turning off the camera. ;-)

Categorized as The Valley

Piper Gate

Guess who’s back, and laying at my feet. This cat story is getting stranger by the hour.

I can’t say I’m sorry she’s back, I did miss her. But, Steph and I had made a conscious decision to be non pet owners here. We have kids, we have grandkids, we’ve contributed to society! Yet we also return to an empty house when the other is not there. The Cat offered another dimension to our quiet, private little space.

Anyway, here’s the story: Megan, the girl that actually owns the cat, called me today and we chatted about Piper. Megan is from North Carolina (that’s what her cell phone says) and she’s living up the road in Tetonia in a place that doesn’t allow pets. Piper was staying at her sisters house in my neighborhood until August, at which point Megan was moving here to Driggs, and reclaiming the cat.

Megan then told me that Piper had run away again, and she might be heading my way. She also said that food was the driving force for her cat. Ya think? All Piper did while she was here was Eat and Sleep! (with a lot of relieving along the way…)

Sure enough, Piper was at the door when I came home on a break, and I let her in. We embraced, and she licked my hand with her sandpaper tongue. Then she started looking for food. Problem is, we gave all the food we had to Megan’s sister, who came and got her the other day. (Update: Steph just went to town for cat food…)

Megan asked me if we would like to share cat-sitting services with her sister, who lives up the road, and can’t seem to contain the cat, since we are so fond of her. Ahhh, you have to admire the boldness of this younger generation…

I kinda told her no, but if an emergency ever occurred, we’re here.

Anyway, she was supposed to be here to get Piper at 1530 and it’s now 1900.


Categorized as Piper

Door 224

One of the biggest mysteries around here, is what’s behind door 224. The door is locked from the inside, and nobody’s been in there for years.

Categorized as The Valley

Upcoming Weekend

Maybe I’m a bit biased, but I don’t think there’s a finer place to be on the 4th of July.
(Except maybe Riley’s house…)

  • Friday: Sunny, with a high near 71.
  • Friday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 46.
  • Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 80.
  • Saturday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 51.
  • Sunday: Sunny, with a high near 86.
  • Sunday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 50.
  • Independence Day: Sunny, with a high near 83.
  • Balloons – July 1st thru July 4th, Driggs Rodeo Grounds.
  • Concerts – July 1st thru July 3rd, Grand Targhee Resort.
  • Carnival – July 2nd, Huntsman Springs.
  • Fireworks – July 2nd, Huntsman Springs.
  • Parade – July 4th, Victor Main Street.

… and of course, Bus Driver Jim:

Categorized as The Valley

The Sign Worked

Steph was going to take the Lost Cat Sign down as she went to work this morning. At 7:15am I got a call. A girl said “I think you have my sisters cat.” Yep, the cats family has been located. The sign worked.

Turns out Kelly lives right down the road from us and she was watching Piper, aka Striper for her sister, and the cat took off. Kelly’s fiance saw the sign and called her saying “Piper’s alive!”.

The young lady just left with the cat, along with food supplies we had bought up. She told us that her sister rescued the cat when it was a week old and bottle fed her. The family was distraught over losing her, so it feels good to get her back home.

And I’m not going to cop to missing her already, nope…

Categorized as Piper

Fat Cat

Well, it looks like the Sweet Cat is home. I put a sign out at the subdivision entrance asking if anybody had lost a cat. No calls…

I’m actually growing fond of her, even if she does nothing but eat and sleep. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a cat, but this one is really lazy, and a little crazy. I let her outside for a minute and all she did was plop under a tree while the Robin’s screeched.

I came up with a name for her, Bandy, you know, like abandoned… Problem is, I keep calling her Widget.

Also, can anybody tell me how much food to give this cat? She’s eating dry food and seems happy with it. Lots of it!

And I’m not sure if she’s pregnant or fixed. Steph set up an appointment with the local vet to check her out, but we postponed it pending results from the sign.

Update: Taking the sign down…

Categorized as Piper

Magpies 101

I remember when I first drove into this county six years ago, I was struck by the beauty of the Magpie that makes it’s home here year round. I have since come to learn that they are really smart, and they’re first cousins to the Ravens that also spend the winter here, both being members of the Corvidae family.

I now strongly dislike them. A bunch of them nest in the large trees of our back forty, and they are the mortal enemy of the Robin families that live within our 58 trees. Over the years they have raided our nests, taking out entire families.

I came out one morning last year and found a momma dead on the ground next to our driveway, and her babies were gone. I would say good morning to her as I headed to work. She had no fear of me, and fought to her death against the Magpies.

Today we saw four adult Robins chasing a Magpie out of the yard. It worked. I went out to the big trees with a loaded pellet gun, and they must have seen me coming, because they were out of there.

Here’s our endless backyard, big trees on the left:

Categorized as House

Saturday Chores

Today I tackled one of my major chores: draining, cleaning and refilling the hottub. We’ve been here a few years so I know this drill well. All the while, I’m writing a new app in my head, bopping into my office to write code between each step.

I’m also going into the back forty, now and then, to intimidate the damned (Robin’s nest raiding) Magpies with the pellet rifle. Had dead aim on one but Steph hadn’t reloaded. My fault, I should check ammo before grabbing the gun.

Just finished the new app. It’s a Flickr Photo Set Viewer, just for my photos, that uses some very cool dynamic font code from Google, which shades the text.

It grabs all of my Photo Set titles when started and when you click on a title for the first time, it loads the thumbnails for that set. Subsequent clicks on a title simply redisplay the thumbnails. And, of course, clicking a thumbnail opens the Photo Viewer.

Check it out Here, feedback is welcome…

• Update 6/26: Fixed some cross-browser issues and implemented single tab code for the Photo Viewer. Once you open it the first time, leave it open and it will be reused with the next photo.

Friday Break

I had another one of those hour long breaks out by the horse therapy, so I headed north, this time along Stateline Road. I had to be really careful to stay on the left side of the road, I can’t veer into Wyoming, no insurance there!

Categorized as The Valley

FJ-4 Fury

The Driggs airport has some great old planes stashed away, including a couple of MIG’s. There’s nothing like the roar of two loud old jets taking off over Highway 33, to go play tag in the Big Holes.

Here’s a rare U.S Navy FJ-4 Fury, warming up.

This is the last flying North American FJ Fury left in the world! (Wiki)

I could hear the roar of the jet as I drove by. Had to stop and take a shot…

Update: Shot another unknown jet. If you know what it is, leave a comment.

Categorized as Vehicles

Bus 801

This is my main ride here in the valley. I’ve put most of the 36k miles on it, although it did a short stint as an Idaho Falls route bus. I’ve got three new buses here at my disposal, but this is the bigger one, and my favorite. I’m the only driver, so I get my pick.

I took a drive out Hastings Lane today and grabbed some shots:

Categorized as Vehicles

Mud Lake Trail

This is a local hiking trail east of Victor. I had a short break between pickups, on an otherwise very busy day, so I checked it out. The first shot is looking back toward Victor and the second shows the entrance to the trail head. The actual trail starts on the right, while the gated road goes down to some private property, I just liked the shot.

This area is famous for a plant called the PeyoteBud. I grabbed a couple of shots here:

I haven’t been up to the lake yet, but I think Steph and I should go this summer. Follow the trail to the right, and up to a little brown hole in the ground.

If you ever make it to this trail, be sure to chew a little PB before you make the climb.

Categorized as The Valley

Rileys Fathers Day Card

Got a very thoughtful Father’s Day card from my boy today, so I did what every good tech dad does and chopped it up into three pieces, scanned it, and shared it.

Categorized as Riley

Vegas Trouble

A picture has arrived in my inbox via Twitter. It shows me with two girls in Vegas. The tweet implies that something kinky occurred there on the strip. I strongly deny this! Hmmm, I wonder which night that was…

Categorized as Strip Notes