Break Fast at Slates

I met Matt Stone at Hallowell's own famous Slate's Restaurant & Bakery for brunch. It has just reopened this month after a fire destroyed it last year.
Matt recently stopped fasting for Passover (aka Jewish Lent).
We started talking about levels of devotion. He said he wasn't really that devout (aka hasidic). But as a catholic I am familiar with far lesser levels of devotion.
I've seen an entire group of catholics (aka members of my family), order multiple pizzas on a Lent Friday -- all with meat. We had to eat them. Our catholic devotion to wastelessness outweighed our catholic devotion to superstition -- I mean tradition.
No need to live the story again. No need to keep these things alive. No sense in being John Malcovich. Can't we find ways other than religion to extend our lives into near eternity? Isn't technology taking the place of religion? Or if we had more responsible caretakers maybe cryogenics would.
We could combine different beliefs together to MAKE IT!
Are you with me?
Recipe for the eternalnaut:
Religion: in the person to make sure they have the spirit for the journey. (Because being that person would be #@& nuts!) Also religion and "spiritual beliefs" act well with the luck and superstition you would need to keep you from thinking, "Is this really worth it?" Science: in the cryogenic freezing process. To freeze us like frogs hibernating. And then waking us up every season. Technology: some sort of timeslessly simple technology. Something that has already worked for millions of years -- that would make sure our Eternal Rest was going as planned. Imagine them as robotic guardians or archangels waking us up every millennium or so and totally freaking out whatever is around.
Set the meat pizzas over there, here's a tip. See you in like 1,000 years.
Great story. I'll try to keep it alive in the Big Story. I'll run it right under the Big Picture. And contribute both as staff reports with special thanks to: Allah, Buddha, Stephen Hawking, Stephen King, Stephen Crowley, and my cousin Steven in Pittsburgh, Pa. (Who was "raised catholic" by my aunt, Veronica).
Our hearts are alive with the memory of the sacrifices of the ancestors and the predecessors. Amen.


Like Area 54

There is something about the Augusta Maine State Airport. ... Maybe it's the aliens? Or the cryogenic capsules?
Considering the terminal's architecture and small-townieness, the airport itself is enclosed in a Cold War-era cryogenic capsule buried between an old cemetery and a National Guard camp.


High Dynamic Range Attempt

/Looking out the window of the Thai Lanna Restaurant, Augusta Maine State Airport./
I recently read an article about something called High Dynamic Range Photography in a photojournalism magazine. I decided to attempt an HDR image using my own simplified technique. If you look at the HDR photographer Trey Ratcliff's website you will see what HDR is shooting for. Everything in the images seem to be vibrant and in focus.

Usually you use multiple images bracketed with different exposures to make one HDR image. I think in some cases it would give the same effect as having taken a crisp, bright exposure with a nearly-closed aperture.

The magazine article I read about HDR photography, and the article on Wikipedia fail to mention an early photographer that I think is a father on this technique, Gustave Le Gray. Specifically his 1857 image in which he takes 2 exposures of the same beach scene and combines them to make a single more realistic view. The Wikipedia article places the beginning of HDR photography in 1930s and 40s with photographer Charles Wyckoff. Wyckoff took early HDR-type photos of nuclear explosions that appeared on the cover of Life magazine.

Maine Wildlife Park

The Maine Wildlife Park opened for its first day this year yesterday. Many of the animals there are hurt and need to be taken care of.

A deer through the trees.

My neighbor Donna went too. According to a measurement at the Maine Wildlife Park she is not as tall as the shoulders of an adult moose.

Sometimes the wildlife park seemed a bazaar of bizarre -- roadside attractions.

There was a mountain lion (not pictured).

Some wildlife cages.

A lynx is camouflaged in a cage.

A moose is seen though a chain linked fence.

Of all the animals a bear seemed most secure. A good thing.

Is it white that's supposed to be all the colors combined? Yeah. That's a colorful peacock!

A fox poses for visitors.

More wildlife: Driving back there was a bald eagle flying along I-95. And I later found a tick on my leg.


Maine Yesterday

Super Lube's sign kept getting bigger and bigger, ultimately they had to move to a new building on Capitol Street. (Hi Walker Evans.)

Cell phone towers are a very visible part of Maine's landscape. And they help people way up here who often find themselves in life-threatening situations in the middle of nowhere.

Also, Today: Maine Farm from I-95. (also, check out eric powell's blogging from china.)


Things Reflecting Things

The high price of gas reflects a part of my decision to put a cap on my truck. No, not because I've heard that a cap can make a truck more fuel efficient, but because I'm headed to Venezuela if the price of fuel goes up much more.

Rear View

Side View


Augusta to Bangor to Augusta Maine

Passing a burnt up farmhouse along I-95 in Maine.

Maine Transport

Wrong Turn

Rail Cars

Guard Rails


Maine Landfill

Dysart's Truck Stop Maine

A bald eagle ... I mean osprey nest on a power line just south of mile marker 157 I-95 in Maine.

The awesome truck cap I bought in Bangor Maine.


Thai Lanna

Thai Lanna is a great place to eat in Augusta Maine.

The Thai iced tea tasted the same as any Thai iced tea I'd ever had, plus a straw wrapper made into a lotus blossom. Satay awesome. The drunken noodles were great, but lacked the traditional spiciness of drunken noodles (turning napkins into Kleenex).

The most unique thing about Thai Lanna is that it is in the same building as the Augusta Maine State Airport, they even share bathrooms. I got there at 8 p.m., so I was able to watch the last daily U.S. Airways flight land and tie down at the end of the night. You can check the schedule online to guarantee a plane landing while you eat.

Thai Lanna, Augusta Maine


Memories in Maine

On Water Street in Augusta Maine, scaffolding and caution tape remind me of more populated places. Cities. A tapestry of Jim Morrison reminds me of a time I was walking around Haight Street in San Francisco and saw Jim Morrison walking down the sidewalk (even though he died before I was born).

As I was walking up State Street I looked in the window of a tore up house and saw an old friend I knew from the Edward's House Inn, Phil. He showed me the remodeling work he was doing on the fire-damaged house.

We looked out the glassless windows at the street below. It reminded me of the ramshackle Demon House in D.C.

Spring in Maine

Spring has finally reached Maine, a month late. Better late than never.

Maine Capitol.


Good Lunch

The A-1 Diner Gardiner Maine.

I went to the A-1 Diner in Gardiner Maine with Matt Stone. It is a good place to eat. They have decent meatloaf.


Landscaping cloth, Kennebec Journal Building parking lot, Augusta Maine

Commuting to work, Western Avenue, Augusta Maine


Bad Lunch

I went to Gardiner Maine to meet Matt Stone for bad lunch.

Tea with high fructose corn syrup, bad but not too bad.

How to make a bad sandwich worse?
I think this hair displaced about half the meat in my chicken wrap, but I took it out anyway.

I rewrap my wrap and eat it. I think that girl uses Pantene. A lot of body in her hair. But none of her hair in my body.

Then got some coffee at Dunkin Donuts in Gardiner Maine, and looked down the riverbank at all the Dunkin Donuts' cups.