Valley High

We had a new client today that lives high in the Eastern foothills above 5000 South. Actually, the guy tried to ride with me in the dead of winter earlier but we are not 4-wheel drive (I turned him down) and I was in 2nd gear going up that mountain today.

It was worth the drive. The views in those hills are spectacular and I see why he built his home there back in the 90’s. He just never planned on his vision going bad and losing his driver’s license…

Categorized as The Bus

Leigh Meadows

There’s a sub-division off N 500 W by Hatches Corner called Leigh Meadows that I pass by every morning. I’ve been watching it come alive with a new home under construction, sparkling ponds and spacious land. It gets it’s name from the nearby waterway called Leigh Creek, but it has a personal meaning to me, as Leigh is my real first name.

My Texas daddy was named ET (Eugene Thomas) and my birth name was Leigh James. Divorce happened, but if I’d grown up in Texas I would have been LJ, ET’s boy! Somewhere along the way it got changed to James Leigh with a new surname popped on the end, and ultimately shortened to Jim. Hmmm,

And the view’s not bad either…

Categorized as The Valley

Red Flags

The ability to recognize red flags while conducting business transactions is a good thing to have. I’ve been contemplating a new canopy for my travel truck since the old one blew off in the Arizona desert over Spring Break and after a couple of high-priced local proposals I found an outfit in King County, WA.

This is my old stomping grounds and my son the auto body guy lives there so I thought I could get a canopy and have it installed in early June while I visit. I called them and talked to a lady who quoted me a decent price for a custom made aluminum canopy. I then gave her my email and asked her to send me a picture of the canopy because their website was challenged. (it sucks!) I heard her moan over the phone like she’d heard this way too often and I made a mental note. Red flag…

Several days later after no pictures arrived I emailed her, and this was her response: Jim, I'm glad you e-mailed me. Someone thought they would do me a" favor" and clean my desk area. I am missing notes I took on our conversation. My recollection is that we were discussing a smooth aluminum canopy. I will send you an estimate for that and we will go from there. Red flag…

Finally, I got some pictures and it looked pretty nice, mounted on a Ford Ranger:

I asked her to send me a photo of the inside and I got this:

It was sent from her phone so obviously she just walked out to her yard and took a shot of one from the outfit that makes them. These things are custom made by a local company and I know it’s aluminum and only weighs a hundred pounds and probably needs internal re-inforcement, but…

I could see me banging my head on those supports many times, the overall construction looked questionable and, red flag…

I called her yesterday to discuss a whole bunch of issues I had made a list of and got a message that the voicemail inbox I had reached was full and not accepting any more messages. Excuse me, there are no more red flags left, this deal is over and out…

Perhaps I need to explore other creative options for my truck bed…

Categorized as Vehicles

Weird Cloud

I was out at Hatch’s Corner bright and early this morning, picking up my first ride of the day, when I spotted this weird cloud off to the West. Just sharing…

Categorized as The Bus

Bmap8 Places

I’ve just created some pretty cool code. The Bmap8 program now shows surrounding entities when you click the Zip Code in the slide-in box. Just run the app, type in a place and select or click anywhere, and then click the Zip Code.

What you get depends on where you are. If you’re in a major metropolitan area, the items that show up on the map, when clicked, will probably take you to the website for that place! If the item has no website you’ll get a Wikipedia article, or something more.

Below are overlayed linkable places on a map of San Francisco:

Explore your own area! Bmap8!

Categorized as Site Stuff

Brians Pics

My nephew Brian and his lady Andrea dragged me out of my hunkered down Bing Maps coding state today and we had wings and drinks downtown. Brian recently got back from a Honduras snorkeling vacation with Drew and shared a couple of pictures with me, which I now share with you…

Categorized as Family

Mystery Pic

I’ll bet I could leave this image up for a year and nobody would guess this location.

So, I’ll tell you. Wait for it…

This is the parking lot above the iconic, formally secretive, nude beach near San Diego, Blacks Beach.

Categorized as Various

Watch Cat

This was the best day of the year so far here, around 70°. Piper took it upon herself to brace her back up against the dead hot-tub and guard the deck intently.

Or not…

Categorized as Piper

Last Snow

This is the last snow on Earth. Well, for our little patch of earth anyway…

Steph commented on yesterday’s video of the brief downpour, speculating that the snow below my office window, which never sees the sun in Spring, should finally be gone. Well, almost…

Speaking of Steph commenting, she used to comment on this blog frequently until I suggested that if she had something to say about a post she could walk around the corner to my office and tell me in person.

She stopped. Gee I hope I didn’t hurt her feelings because the only comments she makes now are when she’s on the road. Am I bad? :-)

Categorized as House

Eastern Flop

That Eastern Storm floated over the Tetons this morning and just hung out as clouds most of the day. Our neighbors to the West basked in the seventies today and finally we had a short downpour around 1600. This is why weather around here doesn’t faze me…

Categorized as The Valley

From The East

I’m watching the news tonight and they’re talking about a storm coming in from the East. Huh? Storms always go from West to East so, intrigued, I brought up my weather maps and sure enough, there it was. I really don’t care much about weather around here, it is what it is, but this is interesting…

Our weather guy said it’s due to an Omega Block pattern, so I checked it out:

Learn something new every day, I say…

Categorized as The Valley


Here’s a list of my latest code creations:

  • Bmap8
    Uses Microsoft’s recent preview version of Bing Maps V8.
  • TetonValleyMap
    Teton Valley addresses by city.
  • DahMap
    Just a cool eclectic map app.
  • ZipDown
    Find places surrounding a location.
  • Freq
    Tech news presented as you choose.
  • Symegry
    The latest news from around the world.
Categorized as Site Stuff

Hot Lamb Stew

Consuming a teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper most every day for the last couple of years has upped my tolerance for hot things. I use the hottest barbeque sauce and the hottest salsas I can find, lately.

Today I’m making a large pot of spicy hot lamb stew which I’ll eat over the next few days as I play bachelor. I started out browning some fresh lamb stew meat, tossed in a half tube of Chorizo, a diced jalapeno pepper, some of my kickass Cajun seasoning and some Cayenne of course.

Then I sauteed up my veggies (onion, red peppers, garlic and mushrooms) and then mixed the meat in. Potatoes, carrots and celery were already boiling so I combined everything together into the stew pot and it’s slow simmering now.

Categorized as House

Excuse Me?

Piper likes to hang out on my bed in the late afternoon and groom her private areas. When I open the door and peek in on her, she gives me this look. Priceless…

Categorized as Piper

Valley View

Steph’s in Washington State meeting her newest grand-daughter and her sisters grand-daughter, so I’m the designated keeper of the cat. Nothing wrong with that, I can certainly run the house and take care of my kitty!

I drove down to Idaho Falls this morning to check out a few things and on the way back I stopped at our Lookout Point, just like a tourist, and took the shot below. The valley’s looking good, the land is clear of snow and the Teton River has thawed out.

I’ve survived another winter here…

I also picked up a nice little radio:

Categorized as The Valley