June 26, 2008

Letting the dog have his day

I was out taking more pictures after work yesterday and this peppy little guy caught my eye. He was just so obviously having such a great time playing and running around. I figured it was a good time for a little canine love to balance out the kittyness that usually reigns.

If you click on it to make it bigger, you can really see his beautiful eyes. I think he's an Australian Shepherd, but I'm not sure. A lot of people take their dogs to play and exercise in this area, so I hope to go back and take more pictures sometime soon.

This started off as a banner week for visitors here at OPO after being part of Five Star Friday (a new edition will be up very soon, by the way, so go visit), and got only better after joining a merry band of other bloggers over at AllMediocre, which is all about blogs that may be "Mediocre in comment level and traffic stats, but NOT mediocre in content." There's a lot of good and interesting content over there, so I hope you'll drop by sometime and share some comment joy with the other members. As I saw over there, "Comments are the currency of the blogosphere," so go pay your bills!

June 24, 2008

Breath of Fresh Air

It was delightful to be part of Five Star Friday this past week and have so many new visitors stopping by! I hope to see some of you back again; I know I found a few new blogs to keep up with by visiting my fellow "stars." I want to thank the ever-charming Schmutzie for putting such a great idea together and coordinating it each week.

Since then, however, I've been coming up a little empty in the blogging tank. I bought a new camera late last week -- a digital SLR from Canon, the kind I've been wanting to get for ages and finally could -- so I've been spending time with that and playing with the pictures quite a bit.

It's been a while since I posted one of my Finn, actually, so here's one of the very first ones I took after I got it out of the box.

Of course, I'd like to say that the image is straight out of the camera, but I did do a tiny bit of work on it before posting. Not to Finn, he's a gorgeous boy no matter what. No, I did some touching up of the poor ottoman he's resting on. It has been unintentionally abused by cat claws and the marks show up horribly with a flash.

Adobe Photoshop Express is fantastic for this, even more so because it's free. It doesn't, by any means, do all that Photoshop can do, but it's a great tool for those of us just wanting to play around and do minor work. I highly recommend it -- you can do a lot more than you can with MS Office Picture Manager, which is what I've used in the past.

June 16, 2008

Mercy post...kind of

A certain someone complained that he kept getting reminded of the subject of my last post because I hadn't written anything since to push it down the page. So, here you go, it has now been demoted to "old news." However, that's probably the only part of this you're going to like, B.

Today is a celebration. It's a celebration of love, a celebration of equality, a celebration of hopefulness and a celebration of victory over discrimination.

Today was the first day of legal same-sex marriage in California, and it's a day that I feel quite happy and satisfied to be a Californian, a state that is making a stride forward. This is only one of thousands of articles on the event, but it covers all the bases pretty well, if you haven't heard it dozens of times already. And if you feel similarly, here is something you can do to share your thoughts with the governor of your state.

I don't know anyone at this point who is planning to tie the knot, same-sex or opposite-sex, but I'm celebrating each of the people who are taking that step in love, in hope, in a new era of equality, right here from my living room.

I tried to be a lot more personally involved. I volunteered to perfom civil wedding ceremonies for the county clerk's office here because they are expecting more of an increase than the current staff can handle. I got all the information I needed to become a deputy marriage commissioner, but they held the training and swearing-in on a day I couldn't get there, much to my disappointment. I'm hoping there'll be another chance if they continue to need people and the anticipated challenges aren't successful.

And challenges there will be.

I'm not about to dive deeply into the whys and wherefores and my thoughts on people who see this as some sort of threat to them, their lives, their religion or whatever other reasons they hold, and will seek to go backwards. I'm not a part of the gay and lesbian community, I can't speak about it in a meaningful way other than to say how I feel; there are many others you can look to for more than that.

But to those of you who will mount these challenges or seek to support them: I disagree with you, with all my heart, and will be here to rise to that challenge.

It's people like me who will be standing there on the other side of the line you'll draw, engaging in the fight you'll bring, making sure we're heard just as loudly, just as strongly in numbers, if perhaps with less vitriol. Because, to me, your reasons are about intolerance, inequality, unfounded fear and, because it's the opposite of love, hate. If standing against those things isn't worthwhile, I'm not sure exactly what is.

June 05, 2008

Did you know...

...that tomorrow is National Doughnut Day? If you're so inclined, Krispy Kreme will be offering customers a free doughnut of their choice in participating stores throughout the U.S. But I'm sure that your favorite local place will be happy to provide you with a tasty treat for a fair price.

Go forth and doughnut!