Category Archives: Art

The Windy City: Day 1C

Today is Kalista’s birthday, so happy birthday Kalista!



Hope your day is as amazing as you want it to be!

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We begin where we left off last Friday. Kim, Lowell, Tony, and I were hanging out by The Bean after having supper at Giordano’s.


Chicago, Illinois
The Bean is one of the few touristy things I’ve seen in my life that didn’t disappoint. But something else on this trip did disappoint.

Chicago, Illinois
Underneath The Bean.

Chicago, Illinois
In Las Vegas I never found a mailbox. I marked this one so I could actually mail postcards from Chicago this time.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
I loved this clock.

Chicago, Illinois
I think the Nederlander Theater was called The Orient Theater, before they realized that was racist.

Chicago, Illinois
Jagged Little Pill was playing, which Jesse wants to go see in Minneapolis.

Chicago, Illinois
Right next door to it is a Garrett’s popcorn, which I would go to twice on this trip.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
The historic Chicago Theater.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
I wanted to hit up the Torture Museum so bad, but I never made it. And that is what regrets are made of.

Chicago, Illinois
Reverse angle, Chicago Theater.

Chicago, Illinois
There was a wide variety of acts that played here while we were there.

Chicago, Illinois
Window shopping at the Torture Museum.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Across the street from the Chicago Theater was this alley with a bunch of sweet murals.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
This mural may have given me nightmares.

Chicago, Illinois

After this we went back to our hotel rooms. I think Tony and I watched the Minnesota Timberwolves get crushed in their playoff game. I dozed off after a pretty good Day 1 in Chicago.

Next Friday we will start in on Day 2.

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REMINDER THAT NEXT MONDAY IS MEMORIAL DAY. WHILE YOUR BANK AND THE GOVERNMENT AND A BUNCH OF OTHER BUSINESSES TAKE THE DAY OFF, THERE IS NO REST FOR PHOTOGRAPHY 139. RISE AND GRIND EVERY SINGLE DAY. I DON’T KNOW WHAT MY PLANS ARE FOR MEMORIAL DAY (OTHER THAN MAYBE SLEEPING LATE AFTER WHAT I HOPE IS AN EPIC MOVIE NIGHT ON SUNDAY) BUT IT MIGHT INCLUDE A ROAD TRIP OR A BARBECUE OR A FEW OTHER OPTIONS THAT MIGHT KEEP ME BUSY. LIKEWISE YOU MIGHT BE ENGAGED IN A SIMILAR ACTIVITY ON MONDAY MORNING. YOU MIGHT NOT GET A REMINDER AND YOU MIGHT NOT BE IN A POSITION TO SUBMIT. PLAN ACCORDINGLY.

This is your reminder that this week’s THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme is PARK:


WEEK 402 - PARK
PARK

PARK! What a great theme for Year 10 of THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE!

But what in the John Culbertson is a PARK image? Simply put, it is a picture taken in a PARK. And there are all sorts of PARKs. There are city, state, national, baseball, softball, playgrounds, nature preserves, urban, pocket, sculpture gardens, cultural… just to name a few. Of course, there is more than one definition of PARK.

Also, if you take a picture of a PARK, let me know the name of the park and I will include it in the entry on Monday. If you don’t, I might ask you.

PARK has only been a theme one other time in the 10 year history of THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE/RANDOM WEEKLY PHOTO EXPERIMENT. I was actually surprised, because I thought that it had never been a theme before. I guess this makes it the second time.

Here are some previous submissions that will hopefully inspire your submission this time:


WEEK 195 - PARK - MICKY AUGUSTIN
Micky Augustin – Week 195

WEEK 195 - PARK - CATHIE RALEY
Cathie Raley – Week 195

WEEK 195 - PARK - KIM BARKER
Kim Barker – Week 195

WEEK 195 - PARK - ANDY SHARP
Andy Sharp – Week 195

WEEK 195 - PARK - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett – Week 195

Happy photo harvesting!

Henry & Jefferson County Aux. – Vol. 2

Time for another collection of images from my road trip to harvest the town signs of Henry and Jefferson County I took with Teresa. The majority of these pictures were taken in Mount Pleasant. We met up with Doug and Jodie for lunch in Mount Pleasant. Afterwards, Doug went back to work and Jodie gave us a tour of Mount Pleasant. This was the highlight of the trip.


Henry County - Winfield

Henry County - New London
New London

Henry County - New London

Henry County - New London

Henry County - New London

Henry County - New London

Henry County - New London

Henry County - New London

Henry County - New London

Henry County - Mount Pleasant
Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

Henry County - Mount Pleasant

The statue of Belle Babb Mansfield is located on the campus of Iowa Wesleyan. That school recently went out of business. Like a couple weeks ago. Which is a shame, because of the rich history of Iowa Wesleyan. It was founded in 1842. The only college in Iowa older than Iowa Wesleyan is Loras College in Dubuque. It is older than the University of Iowa by 5 years. Iowa State University by 16 years. Northern Iowa by 34 years. Drake by 39 years.

Iowa Wesleyan was Iowa’s first co-educational institution. The oldest west of the Mississippi River. Its campus houses the summer of of Abraham Lincoln’s son Robert Todd Lincoln. Notable alumni include Belle Babb Mansfield, Davey Lopes, Dana Holgorsen, James Van Allen and Peggy Whitson.

The school will forfeit on its loan and the campus will become property of the United States Department of Agriculture.

With its closing, Clarke University in Dubuque becomes the 2nd oldest college in Iowa.

Fountain of the Four Seasons – Night

Because the Fountain of the Four Seasons in being restored and replaced, I made two trips to photograph it before it left. I already shared the pictures I took during the day. Here I’m going to share the pictures I took at night. But first, here is some information about the restoration and replacement from the Iowa State University Memorial Union website:

The Fountain of the Four Seasons by Christian Petersen, Iowa State’s artist-in-residence from 1934-55, has been an iconic landmark on campus for 80 years. The fountain and pool itself were donated by the VEISHEA committee in 1937 and the Maidens were added later in 1941. This beautiful fountain at the north entrance of the Memorial Union is cherished by students and campus visitors alike, typically being a popular spot for graduation photos, or a place to relax between classes. The President’s Office has commissioned a conservation project to place the original 1941 Maidens from the Fountain of the Four Seasons indoors and have a replica carved and placed in the fountain.

Once the replicas are completed, the original Maidens will return to campus and be placed in a building yet to be determined by University Museums. The replicas will also be installed onto the fountain. This project is estimated to be done by Fall 2023. However, the replicas will need to cure for 30 – 40 days upon installation. Due to this being close to the winter season, the fountain will not be turned on until Spring 2024.

Here are the pictures:


Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

Fountain of Four Seasons

The campus won’t be the same until the fountain returns.

The Windy City: Day 1B

I need to start out by thanking everyone that wished me a happy birthday. I believe this is a comprehensive list of everybody that wished me a happy birthday.

+ Kim and also thank you for buying me birthday Buffalo Chicken tots and the card.
+ Ron, Clevenger, Jordan, and Aaron. Although I may have bought those birthday wishes with donuts.
+ Elizabeth and also thanks for buying me candy bars I know you don’t like but the real thanks goes for looking for my favorite candy bars the Whatchamacallit and the Take 5! You are the real hero! Also, glad you are digging SHRINKING! Such a great show!
+ Steph. My birthday buddy, I hope FAST X was everything you wanted to be and I’m trying not to lose just a smidge of respect that you went to it.
+ Jesse – Sorry I was so aggressive in accusing you of eating all the mystery cheese.
+ Nader – Thanks for the frog statue!
+ Shannon- half credit for including a picture of a gross cat with your birthday wishes.
+ Michelle – good job taking a three day weekend to celebrate my birth.
+ Jay – doesn’t look like you got any rhubarb. It isn’t going to pick itself.
+ Kelly – thanks for the kind words. Not necessary, but thanks.
+ Angie – hope the postcard arrives soon.
+ Monica – thanks for sending me the picture of me in my Hulkster phase.
+ Suzie – thanks for knowing the proper animal to include in a happy birthday wish!
+ Jason – glad you are feeling better!
+ Bill – thanks for replying “no problem” when I said “thanks”. Don’t know why, but that amused me.
+ Sara Lockner – thanks for almost using enough exclamation marks in your birthday wishes!
+ Shawn – I’m sorry your wife used up all the world’s supply of punctuation in her birthday wishes and there wasn’t any punctuation left for yours.
+ Faust – thanks for pretending that banking sounds fun.
+ Teresa – thanks but I have my doubts you know who Dwight Schrute is.
+ Anders – I don’t know if it was a great one, but I’m sure May Movie Night will be.
+ Sarah Toot – Thanks for thinking I have the slightest clue what emoticons mean. Don’t feel pressure to do better next year.
+ Alexis – thanks for letting me think today was my day.
+ Baier and Dre – We didn’t have much interaction, but thanks for thinking of me.
+ Micky – thanks for multiple birthday wishes. It isn’t a contest, but if it was I think Elizabeth won. At least I think that is what she yelled at me as I walked out the door. But your message was the closest I came to having cake today. So that is something.
+ Lori – thanks, no need to apologize for transferring me my favorite kind of call, even if I really shouldn’t have been first in queue. Hope things went well today.
+ Mark – thanks. I suppose I should learn when your birthday is. Also stop using your desk for storage. Nah!
+ Lowell – thanks for the gift card. I like to think you would get me one even if the company didn’t require it.
+ Carla – thanks for getting your birthday wishes in right before the buzzer.
+ Nathanial – thanks for the final birthday wishes of my day.

I think that is the list. I think that is everybody that wished me a happy birthday! Thanks everyone!

If you are wondering what I did for my birthday, it was nothing super spectacular. It was mostly an average day.

I woke up about 5:54 AM. A little late for me. I was up late last night watching the NBA Playoffs. Then trying to watch the season finale of THE CURSE OF OAK ISLAND. Dang it! This wasn’t the season they actually found treasure. And I was so sure! I also ate fried food the night before. I’m trying to eat healthier, so it is fairly rare I eat fried food these days, he said hoping that there were people that believed him. Point is I slept in. It was my birthday. Cut me some slack!

I’m not sure what I did when I first got out of bed. I think I moved to the couch and watched the news for a little bit. Then I went outside and watered the flowers. I also took apart the trunk in the Camry. I had a slight gas spill in the trunk the night before and it was creating a pretty strong smell in the rest of the car. Then I took a shower. Brushed my teeth. Got dressed. But on cologne option #2. Said goodbye to Naima. Got in the Camry. Headed out.

There is an old birthday tradition at the Computer Mine where on your birthday you bring in food for the other employees. On a good day, there are about 10 employees in the building. (On a great day there is less.) On this day, half those people were gone for various reasons. On my way to work I stopped at the Dutch Oven Bakery and picked up a dozen donuts for my co-workers.

This is a small detail of what transpired on my birthday, but perhaps one of my favorite things that happened.

I left the donuts in the breakroom and then sent an email out to the people I knew would be in the building. Here is the backstory.

About 2 weeks, Elizabeth brought in a dozen donuts from a bakery in Nevada. (For the record, and I might get rode out of Boone on a rail for saying this, these donuts buried the ones from Dutch Oven.) She cut all the donuts in half. Now I feel like I shouldn’t have to explain why, but I will. She cut them in half so that people could try multiple donuts and multiple people could try the same donut.

Back to my birthday. Based on my current work schedule, Ron gets to the building about 30 minutes before I do. Elizabeth gets to the office about 15-30 minutes after me. She is in Special Forces so she can come and go as she pleases. I guess that is really more backstory, for what I’m promising you isn’t much payoff.

So back to that email. I explained in the email that there were donuts in the breakroom for my birthday. I didn’t cut them in half (cause I’m lazy – I didn’t write that, but it was in the subtext) but maybe when Elizabeth got here she would cut the donuts in half. I added that this wasn’t sexist on my part, just she is very passionate about the donut cutting thing.

Here is the “payoff”. I’m telling you that the ink wasn’t dry on that email before Ron was standing next to my cubicle. He wished me a happy birthday and then said that he was going to go get a donut quick before Elizabeth got here and cut them in half.

I said it wasn’t much of a payoff, but I thought it was hilarious.

I think it was somewhere in here I went to take a Snap of the donuts to keep my Streaks going with Logan (501), Brandon (257), Nathanial (89), Fran (37), and Alexis (23).

Somewhere after this, Elizabeth did come in. She did not cut all the donuts in half, but she did cut the donuts she tried in half. Take that Ron! She also brought me candy! So the day was off to a great start.

After that I put in a good solid 8 hours for The Man. I was a problem solving machine. Well to be honest, in the morning I mostly did a lot of rando stuff. I think the highlight of my morning (besides the other stuff I’ve highlighted) was being on hold with a customer for about 30 minutes as they repeatedly rebooted their computer before announcing, I’ll have to call you back.

Then came my lunchbreak. I did point out that I am trying to eat healthier. That means (amongst other things) that I only drink pop once a week. I’m pretty much completely off fast food. I rarely eat fried foods. This means that one of my favorite haunts, B-Bop’s has been off the table. But I figured it was my birthday, I could treat myself to B-Bop’s.

I drove halfway across Ames and got the #2 with Cheese with a Large Pepsi.

Sidebar: A great birthday present would have been the B-Bops across the street from the Computer Mine opening back up so I don’t have to drive completely across tarnation to get B-Bops goodness. They have been remodeling for months now! How long does it take to remodel a restaurant that doesn’t have a dining room?!?!?

It was just as good as I remembered. Although, I could feel the salad place next door judging me a little bit. But I literally ate there the day before. Asian Crunch Salad, no protein. So I think we’re square. Stop looking at me lettuce!

After I got back to the work I was a machine. Updating Server Managers. Modifying hosts files. Attaching SQL databases. All a beauty of motion, while sitting in a desk chair staring at 3 monitors. Barely taking a break to try to solve the mystery of what happened to the missing (I failed).

I called it a day, leaving many a satisfied customer in my wake. (Which means next time I work I won’t be able to solve anybody’s problems.) I drove home. I like to take a route home (sometimes called Old 30) where I drive by a bunch of railroad cars just parked along the highway to see if there is any interesting graffiti to photograph. There wasn’t anything transcendent like a painting of a dog or a clown or characters from The Simpsons, but there was one I found photo worthy. I pulled over and snapped a photo. I’m collecting these images and when I hit about 20 or so I will share them. This is what passes for an art scene in Boone.

Got home. Said hello to Naima. Then mowed my back yard. Which needed to be done before it became a 3 man job… again. I was supposed to have a meeting with my friend Kelli. She is opening a wine bar and wants to use my photography on her walls. I was supposed to look at the space and kind of figure out what we wanted to put there, but that meeting got postponed cause, from what I’m gathering, one of her kids did something dumb. Like go to Grand Junction.

The cancellation opened up a hole in my schedule and I was able to take Naima to Dickcissel for a walk and some wading for her. It was also a good time for me to take the theme reveal image for next week’s THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme.

There was a decent rain coming down on us when we completed the loop. Which meant Naima was soaked all over. I consider this to be a positive though, because the smell of wet dog masked the smell of gas. Not much of a trade up, but small victories.

I decided to go to Dairy Queen for ice cream on our way home since I’m eating healthier. Unfortunately, the line in the DQ drive-thru was crazy long, so instead I drove across town to Big Kahuna’s. This is a considerable upgrade in the quality of the ice cream for me, but it meant Naima didn’t get a pup cup. Sorry, Naima. Don’t feel too bad for her. She did get a full pork chop for supper. Me? I had a cherry amaretto ice cream waffle cone for supper. The supper of champions!

I came home and started watching the Lakers-Nuggets game to finish off my night. While sitting there I got a snap from Nathanial asking for my opinion on his options for the Iowa State Fair Photography Salon. He is the second person to ask for my opinion. Meanwhile, humble narrator, hasn’t even given any consideration to what he will enter. Usually at this point I at least know at least 2 of the pictures I will enter. This year I have absolutely no clue. I mean that could be a weekend project, but I don’t know I’ll have much time this weekend either. I guess we’ll see what happens.

After the Nuggets won, I watched a little bit of “90s Nation” on MTV Classic and called it a night. Nodding off into a golden slumber listening to the “Morbid” podcast on H.H. Holmes. Part 4. All in all, a pretty good birthday.

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We begin where we left off last Friday. Lowell, Tony, and I were walking around Chicago waiting for Kim to get done getting good union employees fired for smoking a joint while putting up our booth. Kim has no chill. We were going to checkout a place called Zombie Taco as a potential place for supper. Kim had told us that we were to pick the place for supper. Tacos are always a good choice. That is free advice that I’m giving you, that I wish I had listened to on Day 3 of this trip. Unfortunately when we found Zombie Taco it seemed to be only a walk-up window and on top of that, it seemed to be closed.

But back to the walkabout.


Chicago, Illinois
A play on “This American Life”. My favorite radio show. But I’m not sure what it means.

Chicago, Illinois
I think this place was abandoned.

Chicago, Illinois
Never let anybody tell you, wearing Skechers is not cool. I wear them. Snoop wears them. Tony wears them. Elizabeth’s Grandma used to wear them.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
My greatest regret from the trip to Chicago is not taking a river cruise.

Chicago, Illinois
I wonder if this was the boat that the Dave Matthews Band dumped their poop on. As awful as that must have been, still better than listening to their music.

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago has a fair collection of interesting bridges.

Chicago, Illinois
More street art.

Chicago, Illinois
Down to the River Walk.

Chicago, Illinois
Another interesting bridge.

Chicago, Illinois
It was around here I met a lady that was walking a golden retriever. Such a good dog. Also, more street art.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
I’m guessing this is to protect you from Dave Matthews dumping his poop on your head. Now if they could devise a way to protect you from his awful music.

Chicago, Illinois
I assume Dave Matthews put that there.

Chicago, Illinois
I’d tell you what I think of Salesforce, but enough work talk.

Chicago, Illinois
There is also a Dick’s Last Resort on the San Antonio River Walk. This parking garage is an excellent example of why I would never want to live in a city.

Chicago, Illinois
But it is pretty to look at.

Chicago, Illinois
My #1 goal of the Chicago Trip was to see The Bean. Crossed it off the list Day 1.

Chicago, Illinois
After telling us to pick the restaurant, Kim picked the restaurant. Which fortunately, was 1 block from The Bean.

Chicago, Illinois
The WPC theme this week was FRIENDS. Nathanial told me I could take a picture of my reflection and I could be my own FRIEND(S). I have FRIENDS Nathanial. Still a cool shot.

Chicago, Illinois
The sculptor (Anish Kapoor) of The Bean at first hated that people called it that. It’s official name is Cloud Gate.

Chicago, Illinois
It is made out of 168 stainless steel plates welded together.

Chicago, Illinois
It’s highly polished exterior has no visible seams.

Chicago, Illinois
It measures 33 x 66 x 42 feet.

Chicago, Illinois
The design was inspired by liquid mercury.

Chicago, Illinois

I still have one more collection of images to share from Day 1 of the trip to Chicago.

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This is your reminder that this week’s THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme is HAPPY!


WEEK 400 - HAPPY
HAPPY

HAPPY! What a great theme for Year 10 of THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE!

But what in the Dave Rauker is a HAPPY photo? Simply put, it is a picture of somebody that is HAPPY or a picture of something that makes you HAPPY. HAPPY is, well it is a feeling of pleasure or contentment. In case you aren’t sure you know what it means to be HAPPY.

HAPPY has been a theme one other time. Here are a few of the submissions from that time to provide you with some inspiration:


WEEK 71 - HAPPY - SUZIE BRANNEN
Suzie Brannen – Week 71

WEEK 71 - HAPPY - KIM BARKER
Kim Barker – Week 71

WEEK 71 - HAPPY - STEPHANIE KIM
Stephanie Kim – Week 71

WEEK 71 - HAPPY - ANGIE DEWAARD
Angie DeWaard – Week 71

WEEK 71 - HAPPY - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett – Week 71

In fact, that was pretty much every submission I received for HAPPY. I bet there will be more submissions this time.

Happy photo harvesting!

Henry & Jefferson County Aux. – Vol. 1

Way back in August, Teresa joined me on a road trip to harvest the town signs of Henry County and Jefferson County. It was a good trip where met up with Doug and Jodie for lunch. We also saw the campus of the now closed Iowa Wesleyan. However, the first stop on the trip was to one of my favorite places to visit in Iowa, Kalona. When I’m in that part of the state I have to get some cheese curds and some buttermilk cookies. Just thinking about those cookies is making my mouth water.

Here is the first collection of images:


Washington County - Kalona
Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Washington County - Kalona

Henry County -Swedesburg
Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County -Swedesburg

Henry County - Winfield
Winfield

Still plenty more pictures from this road trip left to go.

Jack and the Zodiac

A few months back I went around Iowa State and took a few pictures. I started at Jack Trice Stadium to see the new Jack Trice Sculpture. It was around this time that they unveiled the new sculpture “Breaking Barriers” to honor Jack Trice.

Here is the public art statement on a beautiful piece of art:

By all accounts, Jack Trice was an exceptional student and a skilled athlete. In the pocket of a jacket he wore before his first game, was a note he had written to himself: “My thoughts just before the first real college game of my life: The honor of my race, family & self is at stake. Everyone is expecting me to do big things. I will.” Jack Trice, the first Black student athlete at Iowa State, died two days later on October 8,1923 as a result of injuries sustained on the football field during that game.

At the time that Jack enrolled at Iowa State, only a handful of African Americans attended Iowa State, in a state in which less than one percent of the population was Black. Nationally, only a few African Americans played collegiate football at that time, with many schools having policies – formal or informal – against integrated teams. Jack was mindful of the risks, but also committed to rising to and above the challenges before him. “My whole body & and soul are to be thrown recklessly about on the field tomorrow,” he wrote. “Every time the ball is snapped I will be trying to do more than my part.” Jack Trice had overcome substantial odds to don the Iowa State uniform.

Jack Trice has been seen as both a hero and as a victim, and his story is one that remains relevant today. The legacy of Jack Trice is at once that of a yet-unrealized dream and an unfulfilled promise, as well as a call to the same bravery and conviction he showed. It is a legacy for our student athletes, for our students of color, for our institution, and for all members of the Iowa State community who make sacrifices to pursue their dreams against difficult circumstances.

At the same time they unveiled “Breaking Barriers” they also renamed the road that is south of Jack Trice Stadium after Jack Trice.

After taking a few pictures there I went to the campus and took a few pictures around the Memorial Union.


Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

Iowa State University

If you aren’t steeped in Iowa State University lore, first of all – how dare you! Secondly, you might be wandering about the Zodiac. Don’t worry baby birds, I’ll feed you.

From the Iowa State Memorial Union website:


Architect/designer William T. Proudfoot chose to incorporate the ancient symbols of the zodiac into the north entry floor — classic Greek/Roman mythology for a classic-Greek/Roman-style building. In the 20’s, the zodiac was not as well known as it is now. Proudfoot planned for intentional wearing away of the bronze forms by placing them above the surface of the floor – to be sculpted further by building users until, eventually, they would be the same level as the floor. We know that by 1929, students had decided that if you stepped on the zodiac, it was unlucky – that you’d flunk your next test. Rumor has it that the students created this “curse” because they liked the raised effect of the zodiac and they wanted to preserve the zodiac signs even though it went against what the architect originally intended. Now most students, hedging their bets, walk around. If you accidentally invoke the curse, you can throw a coin in the fountain to take it away!

Take that Proudfoot!

Currently The Fountain of the Four Seasons is being restored, so it is gone. Current Iowa State students can’t reverse the curse because there is no fountain to throw a coin in. If they walk across the zodiac, I guess they should just drop out of school or try transferring to a lesser academic institution. Good thing for them, there are a ton of those out there.

The Windy City: Day 1A

I’m going to cover my recent work trip to Chicago in a different format than I covered my work trip to Las Vegas. I’m going to mix the camera images with the cell phone pictures. I’m also going to try to tell the story mostly through the pictures. Rather than telling the story and then sharing the pictures. I’m also not going to include the food pictures. I’m going to put all my Chicago food pictures together in one big Sunday food adventure entry.

Here are the first collection of images from my Day 1 of my work trip to Chicago:


Chicago, Illinois
I was dreading parking in the Gray Lot, but I got stuck there again. But now I’ve been there a couple of times I’m starting to dig it. Especially when I get paid by the hour.

Chicago, Illinois
Even though I parked approximately 15 miles from the terminal, I got to my gate in plenty of time.

Chicago, Illinois
I’m roughly 6 foot 4. Tony is pushing 6 foot 8. Putting us next to each other in one of the world’s smallest planes is the height of cruelty. The type of thing you would see in a museum dedicated to torture.

Chicago, Illinois
The hotel.

Chicago, Illinois
This time we didn’t have to wait 3 hours to get into our room. We dropped off our stuff and looked for food, but that meal will be covered later.

Chicago, Illinois
The hotel was straight across the street from the river and a half block from the Chicago Theater. A good location.

Chicago, Illinois
I never ate here, but reminded me that my favorite restaurant on my trip to NYC was Empanada Mamas.

Chicago, Illinois
A dispensary. I’m not into marijuana cause I have elements of a control freak, but seeing one reminded me how backwards thinking Iowa has become.

Chicago, Illinois
True words.

Chicago, Illinois
At Naima’s age, she might benefit, but she is such a dang picky eater, I’m not spending that much money for her not to eat it.

Chicago, Illinois
Wake and bake.

Chicago, Illinois
I do love the names of marijuana products.

Chicago, Illinois
Day 1 was the day before International Pot Smokers Holiday.

Chicago, Illinois
That is over 50% off!

Chicago, Illinois
Just looking up and trying not to run into somebody on the street. Full disclosure, I don’t care if run into somebody on the street.

Chicago, Illinois
I love street art so much!

Chicago, Illinois
Art in the hotel. The hotel was much nicer than the one we stayed at in Miami Beach, but less interesting. So a wash.

Chicago, Illinois
Taxi up close.

Chicago, Illinois
“Staytion”. Lame.

Chicago, Illinois
I don’t know if Kim hates me but I always get a “view” of a parking garage. Lowell’s view was so much better.

Chicago, Illinois
Wasn’t as loud as expected.

Chicago, Illinois
For people who don’t know how elevators work. Much better elevators than in Las Vegas though.

Chicago, Illinois
While waiting for Kim to get done, so we could go get supper, Lowell, Tony, and I went for a walkabout. That is a lot of commas, probably not used properly.

Chicago, Illinois
I miss this guy.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Two more collections of images from just Day 1 of this trip are in the hopper. I hope you like Chicago!

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This is your reminder that this week’s THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme is RUINS:


WEEK 400 - RUINS
RUINS

RUINS! What a great theme for Year 10 of THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE!

But what in the Ron Harris is a RUINS image? Simply put, it is a picture of something that is in the state of physical destruction or disintegration. Something that is in bad shape.

RUINS has been a theme a few times before. Take a look back at some previous submissions for inspiration:


WEEK 30 - RUINS - BILL WENTWORTH
Bill Wentworth – Week 30

WEEK 103 - RUINS - DAWN KRAUSE 1
Dawn Krause – Week 103

WEEK 121 - RUINS - CARLA STENSLAND
Carla Stensland – Week 121

WEEK 211 - RUINS - JEN ENSLEY-GORSHE
Jen Ensley Gorshe – Week 211

WEEK 362 - WEEKENDS - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett – Week 362

Happy photo harvesting!

Muscatine County Aux. – Vol. 5

Since my trip to Chicago I know I have missed celebrating a few birthdays on this website, but the bleeding stops today.

Happy birthday to my awesome sister-in-law and fellow Brandi Carlile fan Becca!


Minnesota State Fair - 2019

I hope you have a birthday that is as tremendous as you are! Lots of Brandi Carlile music and lots of adventures for you and Jonah!

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Also, happy birthday to my favorite Editor Michelle!


Day 318 - November 14, 2021

I hope you don’t slave away at the Computer Mine too hard today!

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Today I am sharing the final collection of auxiliary images I took on my trip to Muscatine County to harvest their town signs. Including. Finally. The picture of the dragon that sold me the best watermelon I’ve ever had in my life.


Muscatine County  - Muscatine
Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine
Tasted better than it looks.

Muscatine County
This dragon knows its watermelon!

Muscatine County

Muscatine County

Muscatine County

Muscatine County  - Conesville
Conesville

Muscatine County  - Conesville

Muscatine County  - Conesville

Muscatine County  - Conesville
I have questions, but every time I ask a Catholic about Catholic things they don’t know anything.

Muscatine County  - Conesville

Muscatine County  - Conesville

Muscatine County  - Conesville

Muscatine County  - Conesville

Muscatine County  - Conesville

I definitely enjoyed Muscatine County. I might have to make a watermelon run again this year, or commission Micky to bring back a melon. Hashtag watermelonlife!

Next time we hit the open road for auxiliary images from THE TOWN SIGN PROJECT, we will visit Henry County and Jefferson County.

The Fountain of the Four Seasons – Day

Last year I took some pictures of the The Fountain of the Four Season at Iowa State University as they were getting ready to take it down and do some restoration work to the fountain.

Here is a little history of the Fountain of the Four Seasons from the Iowa State Museums website:

According to Dr. Lea Rosson DeLong in her book Christian Petersen, Sculptor (2001), the Fountain was inspired by Petersen’s work in 1936 illustrating a children’s book, Cha-Ki-Shi, with the Meskwaki tribe at the Tama settlement. Petersen “consulted with geneticist-poet friend J.C. Cunningham, who shared that interest.” The professor soon supplied a four-line Osage chant:

Lo, I come to the tender planting
Lo, a tender shoot breaks forth
Lo, I collect the golden harvest
Lo, there is joy in my house.

First created in plaster for consideration by President Friley, these sculptures were sent to the national cornhusking championship in Davenport, where they were met with approval. The four plaster Maiden models can be found in Curtiss Hall.

The central ring of terra cotta surrounding the fountainhead features corn shoots beginning to grow. This connects the chant of Osage harvest to the educational and agricultural heritage of Iowa and Iowa State University through the cultivation of corn as a symbol of the cultivation of an education.

Along with the Maidens and the terra cotta ring, even the design of the spray of water was created by Petersen.

Petersen rarely described his works, but in this case, he explained how the curving jets that spout inward toward the center column of water reflect the shapes of nature, that the sculptures and water together with the poetry of the chant express balance and harmony with nature. -curator Dr. Lea Rosson De Long

I don’t know anything about J.C. Cunningham, but I do always worry when I see somebody referred to a “geneticist” in the 1930s. It was definitely not the golden age of genetics. To say the very least.

I also took some night pictures of the fountain. I will get into the restoration effort of the fountain when I share those pictures.

Here are some daytime pictures of the fountain:


Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

Fountain of the Four Seasons

I won’t pretend to be a huge fan of Christian Peterson. There is something about the hands of his sculptures that creep me out. However The Fountain of the Four Season is truly one the treasures of Iowa State University and their public art program. Which is one of the largest campus public art programs in the United States. I will be excited when the fountain “returns”. But it is going to be a minute.

Muscatine County Aux. – Vol. 4

Time for yet another collection of images from my road trip to Muscatine County to harvest their town signs. At this point on the trip, I had left Wildcat Den State Park and rolled into Muscatine. All of the pictures in this collection were taken in Muscatine.


Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine
I once entered a picture of this street sign in the Ogden Fun Days Photo Contest.

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

Muscatine County  - Muscatine

There is still one more collection of picture of this road trip left to share. Including finally sharing the picture of the dragon I bought the best watermelon I’ve eaten from. It was almost a mythological experience.