Category Archives: Joe

Remembered with Nostalgia

Now that I’ve been back to reality for 7 days, probably a good time to go over my vacation.

FRIDAY

Left work at 4 PM or so. Vacation starts.
Had FNSC with Willy. Ate at Colorado Grill.
After Colorado Grill. Started watching a new show, NARCOS.

SATURDAY

Breakfast at Legal Limit with Mom.
Photography for Amber and Steve’s Wedding.


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Not Steve pictured.

SUNDAY

Went to the Lutheran Church in Gilbert with Jesse and Nader to celebrate Nader’s 30th year in the United States.
Ate lunch at the church with some of the people that helped Nader when he got to the country.
Went to Gene’s farm to admire his car collection.


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Sent this picture to Russell of Youth Nazis harassing this old woman.

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Sent this picture to Logan because he sent me a picture trying to make me jealous of his lunch.

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A Studebaker with an El Camino back.

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Naima getting her pills.

Went to the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad and Shorty was there working it.


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While this food stand looks awesome, the ice cream isn’t that great.

MONDAY

Loaded up Mom’s car and headed for Mount Rushmore.
Stopped in Sioux Falls for gas, human fuel, and Falls Park. It rained all the way to Sioux Falls.


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Sent this picture to Jorge and Joe to remind them that I wasn’t at work.

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Falls Park

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Mom struggles with the selfie concept.

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Confused by the bridge they built to seemingly just to wreck the view.

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I wonder what this picture would look like with me in it.

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Oh. Like that.

I give Falls Park the thumbs up. I’ll have to go back when I have more time at some point.

Stopped for gas again next to 1880 town.


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Stopped at Wall Drug right before it closed.


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Still don’t have the selfie thing down.

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Free Water.

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Pretty horrible restaurant across the street from Wall Drug.

I’d give Wall Drug the bird. Don’t waste your time. A bunch of touristy garbage with ridiculous hours.

Got to Rapid City and checked into a hotel with free WI-FI and continental breakfast.

TUESDAY

Got up in the morning and ate continental breakfast at the hotel. Had a lengthy conversation with two women from Arizona that came up there for the Buffalo Roundup.
Left for Mount Rushmore.


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Posted on Instagram. #wafflelife

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First view of Mount Rushmore

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View from the parking lot.

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One armed woman took this picture for us.

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Getting better at the selfie game.

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What Mount Rushmore was supposed to look like, but they had to stop because of WWII. Another thing we can blame on Hitler.

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I give Mount Rushmore the thumbs up.

At the base of Mount Rushmore we ran into Brad Dighton. The cousin of a member of my church. He gave us several pro tips for the area. We weren’t able to get to all of them, but maybe next time.

One of his pro tips was take the Iron Mountain Road to Custer State Park.


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All of these tunnels point back to Mount Rushmore. You can’t tell in the picture, but trust me.

I give the Iron Mountain Road the thumbs up.

Custer State Park is a great example of white privilege. I have no clue why a park is named after Custer. His 2 claims to fame are graduating last in his class at West Point and then getting his buttocks handed to him at the Battle of Little Big Horn.

Custer Park (like the man) was more hype than pay off. We were told we would see hundreds of buffalo. We saw one. That being said, the feral donkeys and the prairie dogs made up for the lack of buffaloes.


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I give Custer Park a thumbs up, but it didn’t live up to the hype.

After we left Custer, we went to Needles Highway.


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Still working on the selfie game.

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We’re starting to get there.

Needles Highway is a road about the width of McHose Park road, but with a 400 foot drop to your death on one side. It is amazing!

I give Needles Highway a big thumbs up!

After that we went to Hill City to eat lunch/dinner at a place recommended to us by Brad Dighton. That place was closed, so instead we dined at the Hill City Cafe.


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We bought fudge there.

Hill City Cafe wasn’t terrible, but it certainly was not great. Thumb sideways.

After that, we went to the Crazy Horse Memorial.


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Almost there!

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We might’ve regressed on our selfie game.

I’d give Crazy Horse another big thumbs up! My only complaint is that all the information seems to be on the family carving the memorial and hardly anything on Crazy Horse himself. You know, the guy that ripped Custer’s buttocks off and handed them back to him. He took out Custer’s brothers while he was ate it. Crazy Horse was an OG.

Pro Tip: Pay for the $4 bus ride.

After leaving Crazy Horse, went back to Mount Rushmore for the lighting ceremony.


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Sent this picture of Thomas Jefferson ice cream to Russell since Russell hate Thomas Jefferson for being a slave owner and a rapist. True, but he also made a mean ice cream.

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Paid and extra dollar for the Thomas Jefferson ice cream.

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The lighting ceremony kind of drags on for awhile, but the part where they bring veterans on stage and take the flag down is powerful. While waiting (forever) for them to light up the mountain we became single serving friends with Lance Young. A former Iowa State wide receiver that played in the Dan MacCarney era.

After the lighting we went back to Rapid City and crashed.

WEDNESDAY

Got up in the morning and hit the continental breakfast. Hard. Going home day. No time for single serving friends. Ate and hit the road.

Stopped at Badlands National Park.


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This sign was all hype. No snake.

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Still working on it.

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I think we have it. At least we’re in striking distance.

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Taken by a woman who was friendly, but strangely afraid of falling down the side to her death. She has no future as a Photography 139 Assistant!

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“I’ll take one to the side and one of you in the middle.”

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Not afraid of the edge. Pimp.

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Badlands. 2 big thumbs up. They just need to work on their rattlesnake game.

Next stop on the way home was to see the Dignity Sculpture. It looks like the Big Jesus in Sioux City, only less creepy. I don’t have a picture with the cell phone, but when I unleash the camera pictures, there is one there.

The next stop was Mitchell. I was going to avoid the Corn Palace but it just lined up with when we needed gas and human fuel.


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Go home corn. You’re drunk.

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SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER in corn. Well, I can’t hate that.

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Mic Drop! I think we finally nailed it!

Last time I went to the Corn Palace, I gave it the bird. I’m going to upgrade it to just a thumbs down. It is worth seeing, if you don’t waste time going inside.

We stopped at a place called The Hungry Dog for lunch.


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The Hungry Dog was by far the best eating experience of the trip. 6 out of 5 Stars!!! It only seats about 5 people on the inside and after the only employee took our order, made our food, and delivered it; she locked the door and told us she’d be right back. She had to go pick up her kids from school.

I loved every second of my experience!


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On the way out of town we saw this Albert the Bull wannabe. Jason Baier will get that joke.

The last stop of the evening was in Jefferson for gas and human fuel.


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I wish so badly we had this sign when I worked for the evil clown empire. I can’t even count all the times some dirty white trash blew cigarette smoke in my face as soon as I opened the drive-thru window.

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1424.3 miles in 3 days.

Then home for sleep.

THURSDAY

Did not much in the day. Hung up a bunch of pictures in my bedroom. Cleaned out the guest bedroom now that Alexis has moved out.
Picked Derrick up for the Iowa State game.


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I don’t care what anybody says. I love the new Bugle Cyclone secondary logo.

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Well almost everything about that game sucked, except the company.

FRIDAY

I can’t remember next to anything that happened on Friday.
I visited Scottie D. to get a yard sign. He is running for City Council for Ward 5.


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Also had FNSC with Willy. Think it was at Jimmy’s Barbecue.

SATURDAY

Don’t remember much about Saturday either.

Went uptown during YesterBoone to complete another page of the Photo Journal Project.


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Sent this to Micky and offered to buy it in case he got shutout on his hunting trip in Wyoming.

Went out to McHose Park and with Jesse’s assistance completed yet another page of the Photo Journal Project.


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After that, we went to a Gender Reveal Party for one of the members of the Youth Group. It’s a Girl!!
Headed up to Jay’s for Chili Lab. Both Jay and Wily made great chilis and we enjoyed a viewing of KONG ISLAND.

SUNDAY

Got up and went to church at Boone First United Methodist Church.
Then lunch with the family.
Meeting for the Council to Elect Degeneffe.
Then I went to the Freedom Flight Send-off to see Jesse’s Dad.


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Derrick’s dad made an impromptu speech praising military spouses.

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Monica’s mom made a bouquet that they took with them to place on the tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

Then I went home. Sat on my couch and soaked up the last few hours of vacation, before being back at the grind on Monday.

I’ve been back to work one week. Already fantasizing about the next time I dip my toes into the PTO pool.

WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE – WEEK 106 – NATURE

I’m back from South Dakota, so it is time to reveal last week’s submissions for NATURE:


WEEK 106 - NATURE - ANGIE DEWAARD 1
ANGIE DEWAARD 1


WEEK 106 - NATURE - ANGIE DEWAARD 2
ANGIE DEWAARD 2


WEEK 106 - NATURE - CATHIE RALEY 1
CATHIE RALEY 1


WEEK 106 - NATURE - JOE DUFF
JOE DUFF


WEEK 106 - NATURE - CATHIE RALEY 2
CATHIE RALEY 2


WEEK 106 - NATURE - MICKY AUGUSTIN 1
MICKY AUGUSTIN 1


WEEK 106 - NATURE - MICHELLE HAUPT
MICHELLE HAUPT


WEEK 106 - NATURE - MICKY AUGUSTIN
MICKY AUGUSTIN 2


WEEK 106 - NATURE - SARAH KARBER
SARAH KARBER


WEEK 106 - NATURE - SHANNON BARDOLE
SHANNON BARDOLE


WEEK 106 - NATURE - TAMARA PETERSON
TAMARA PETERSON


WEEK 106 - NATURE - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT


WEEK 106 - NATURE - KIM BARKER
KIM BARKER


WEEK 106 - NATURE - ELIZABETH NORDEEN
ELIZABETH NORDEEN


NATURE is always one of my favorite week’s of SUBMISSIONS. Hoping WHITE is just as good!

Introducing… The Town Sign Project!

Because I don’t have enough photo projects going on I have recently decided to start a new photo project. It is a project that I have started in the past and then quit. n

Maybe I’m like Hollywood and I’m out of ideas, so I just reboot old ideas? Maybe I just never gave this idea its proper attention. Who knows? We’ll see if I make good on it.

This idea is mostly influenced by an old Welcome to Boone sign that I remember from youth. It had a man catching a fish on it. It could also be 100% a false memory. But my dream is to some day make a self-published coffee table book that nobody will buy. Dream big, I say.

Jay, Willy, and Joe were photo assistants at various parts of these photos. Well maybe not Jay. Pretty sure he was asleep in the bacxkseat.

Here are the first few signs I have photographed:


Pilot Mound, Iowa

Dayton, Iowa

Harcourt, Iowa

Boxholm, Iowa

Keystone, Iowa

Newhall, Iowa

Atkins, Iowa

Scotch Grove, Iowa

Stanhope, Iowa

As with many photo projects, it isn’t until I get back and start editing and curating images that I realize what style I think fits my vision for this project. Now that I’ve seen what I think works, I may have to go back and photograph some of these signs again.

I will also add that if you come across an interesting sign, text me a picture. I need my scouts everywhere.

What is interesting to me? I’m sure you’ve picked up on what I like by now. I like decrepit and falling apart. Or I like funny. Or I like original. Classy doesn’t really work for me. I’ve never been on too good of terms with classy.

For example, the nice stone signs on US30 as you enter Boone do nothing for me. The ugly sign on the corner of US30 and South Story Street is better. Although still pretty lame.

You have your assignment. Start lighting up my phone!

A Photo Journal – Henry Carroll – Page 5

On a recent trip to Algona with Joe we made a stop in West Bend and I knocked out Page 5 of THE PHOTO JOURNAL PROJECT:


Photo Journal - Page 5
Page 5 – Go somewhere really touristy and take nontouristy pictures.

Here are a few of the pictures I took but didn’t select to tape into the Photo Journal:


Page 5 - Reject

Page 5 - Reject

Page 5 - Reject

Page 5 - Reject

Page 5 - Reject

Page 5 - Reject

Page 5 - Reject

Page 5 - Reject

I honestly have no clue what page of the Photo Journal I will tackle next.

Selfie Project – June

Here we are in August and I haven’t checked back into THE SELFIE PROJECT for the month of June. Here are some of favorites from June:


June 2, 2017
June 2

June 5, 2017
June 5

June 8, 2017
June 8

June 9, 2017
June 9

June 10, 2017
June 10

June 11, 2017
June 11

June 13, 2017
June 13

June 15, 2017
June 15

June 16, 2017
June 16

June 17, 2017
June 17

June 18, 2017
June 18

June 20, 2017
June 20

June 23, 2017
June 23

June 24, 2017
June 24

June 25, 2017
June 25

June 26, 2017
June 26

June 27, 2017
June 27

June 28, 2017
June 28

June 29, 2017
June 29

June 30, 2017
June 30

One side effect of THE SELFIE PROJECT I wasn’t expecting is that there are times when I think that might life is boring and I don’t do all that much. Then I look back at these pictures and I can see that I DO get out of the office or off the couch every now and again.

If you want to see all THE SELFIE PROJECT images, you can go here:

SELFIE PROJECT – 2017


And of course, you can stay current on THE SELFIE PROJECT by following me on the Instagram:

@christopherdbennett

I hope my July ended up being as good/great as my June!

WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE – WEEK 95 – FLOWER

There was a virtual outburst of participation this week! FLOWER was a very popular theme!

But you didn’t come here to talk all tommyrot about participation rates, you came to see the submissions. Here they be:


WEEK 95 - FLOWER - BILL WENTWORTH
Bill Wentworth

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - ANGIE DEWAARD
Angie DeWaard

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - CATHIE RALEY 1
Cathie Raley 1

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - CATHIE RALEY 2
Cathie Raley 2

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - CATHIE RALEY 3
Cathie Raley 3

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - CARLA STENSLAND 1
Carla Stensland 1

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - CARLA STENSLAND 2
Carla Stensland 2

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - KIM BARKER 1
Kim Barker 1

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - KIM BARKER 2
Kim Barker 2

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - KIM BARKER 3
Kim Barker 3

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - SARAH KARBER
Sarah Karber

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - SHANNON BARDOLE
Shannon Bardole

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - STEPHANIE KIM 1
Stephanie Kim 1

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - STEPHANIE KIM 2
Stephanie Kim 2

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - SARA LOCKNER
Sara Lockner

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - MICKY AUGUSTIN
Micky Augustin 1

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - MICKY AUGUSTIN 2
Micky Augustin 2

WEEK 95 - FLOWER - MIKE VEST
Mike Vest

A solid week of submissions!

But enough dwelling on the past. Time to look to the future. We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future! This week’s theme:


WEEK 96 - SAD
SAD!


SAD! What a great theme! I don’t think I need to define SAD. It is an emotional state that almost everybody knows. Especially with the current state of the world. But SAD isn’t only an emotion, it can also be a description of something. Person X’s taste in music is SAD. The fact that they keep making FAST & FURIOUS movies is SAD.

As always, feel free to define the theme as you see fit.

I’m already not SAD anticipating all the different interpretations!

HOUSEKEEPING

A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 RULES DIVISION

1. The picture has to be taken the week of the theme. This isn’t a curate your pictures challenge. This is a get your butt off the couch (my personal experience) and put your camera in your hands challenge. Don’t send me a picture of you next to the Eiffel Tower, when I know you were in Iowa all week. I will point out that I have let that slide some in the past. I will not in the future. Since it is literally about the only rule.

2. Your submission needs to be emailed to bennett@photography139.com by 11 AM on the Monday of the challenge. It should be pointed out that this blog auto-publishes at 12:01 on Mondays. So it wouldn’t hurt to get your picture in earlier.

That is it, them’s the rules.

A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION DIVISION

Nothing new to report. I’ll try to do better next week.

Want your own Photography 139 email subscription? Call, email, or text me and I’ll get you the hook up.

A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 GALLERY DIVISION

Sometimes people send me descriptions of their photos. I’ve never done anything with that information in the past. However, if you send me a description in the future, I will add it to your image in the Weekly Photo Challenge Gallery that houses all the submissions.

A MESSAGE FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHY 139 MISSION DIVISION

For those of you that are observant of my schedule, I will be in Saint Paul on a mission trip next Monday. That doesn’t change the schedule of events. The deadline for inclusion of your submission will still be 11 AM on Monday. At 12:01, next week’s theme will be revealed. I won’t have much access to my email until I return to the Cyclone State on Friday, therefore I won’t reveal the submission until I return or until I feel that I have adequately recovered physically, emotionally, and psychologically.

**************************************

That’s all I got for today, so if the good Lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise, we will commune right here again next Monday. Hopefully it will be a very sad Monday!

Then I Wonder How Much I Can Spend

The final NATURE stop I made was to Lake Augstin. Here are those pictures:


LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

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LOSER - NATURE

LOSER - NATURE

Our run in with a snapping turtle reminds me of a story from my childhood.

One day a snapping turtle showed up in the driveway of my first boyhood home. In my mind it was tied down, but I’m not sure how you would do that. I apparently got very close to the turtle because, well turtles, despite being cowards, are awesome. This lead to a generalized freakout by my Mom.

But where did the turtle come from?

My Dad was riding home from work with a co-worker named Buzz Lee when they saw a snapping turtle crossing the road. They stopped. Picked it up and threw it in the trunk of Buzz Lee’s car. Eventually the turtle went to my Great Uncle Harold who cooked him up and we ate him for supper one night. While that turtle ended up as food, he did get his revenge. While in the trunk of Buzz’s car he at a bunch of the wiring to the car’s taillights. Everything had to be replaced.

I salute that turtle for not going down without a fight!