Thanks to Doug Gibson

Thanks to Doug Gibson, I learned to appreciate less the passive waterfowl as I went up to Montezuma all those times. Thanks to a story by James Thurber I came to pay attention to the Wood Duck in particular among the victims a certain Dynasty.

And so for the past, really several years, I have been aiming to get a decent picture of a Wood Duck, despite being an eagle/osprey guy.

Monday, I turned around, after a long ride to the Wildlife Refuge when I saw some ducks floating along in the local river. Turns out … Wood Ducks!

These are the best pictures I’ve taken of Wood Ducks so far. They really are a striking bird.

Posted in Arts, Fun, My New York, Photos | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Nuff said


“Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?” – Epicurus


Posted in Science | Leave a comment

Its that time again

Every year on Opening Day, I bring out a baseball quote. Typically its from Thomas Boswell, and often its “Judge slowly. No, more slowly than that.”

Today, a different one: “The crowd and its team had finally understood that in games, as in many things, the ending, the final score, is only part of what matters. The process, the pleasure, the grain of the game count too.”
― Thomas Boswell, Why Time Begins on Opening Day

Let us celebrate. Let us enjoy the process. Once again, time has begun!

Posted in Sports | Leave a comment

Tell me you haven’t seen this commercial

Then tell me corporations don’t have too much influence…

Posted in Economics, Politics | Leave a comment

Come on, its time to call Bullsh*t

Business is business. Business is not a person. Does not, cannot, except in fiction,and should not have the same rights. This crazy world turns toward the right wing nutjobs. This is nutty. The women say “I can believe I’m still protesting this.”

Right wing wealth continues to build. Continually providing more leverage, more power to corporations till we came to hear that businesses are people.

Come on, people?

Money is speech?

Now the persecutors are claiming persecution. The pile of wealth works only for the wealthy, ever a larger proportion of our economy. Ever more.

We need to get back to some real old fashioned conservative values like things are things and people are people.

We need a constitutional amendment (apparently) which holds this truth to be self evident. A thing is a thing and a person is a person. Business is a soulless thing.

Posted in Politics | Leave a comment

More Justin playing the violin – Bach Sonata No. 1 – Adagio

Well then. Wow. I know nothing about music, but this seems pretty special to me!

Posted in Arts, Max's Music Reviews | Leave a comment

My Day Off – or what happened to The View

So, sometimes when I have a day off I’ll waste a little time just channel surfing. Sometimes I’ve stopped at The View.

Yesterday I had off. I watched all Superbowl XLVIII coverage I could stand and turned, as I sometimes do to The View.

I know, but when I first found it I thought it was interesting and thoughtful. Its gotten bad. Yesterday they had some woman on who used to be a liberal *yay* and is now a conservative. That’s fine. People change. They had the obligatory shot of her shooting an assault rifle. Sigh.

The cast has changed a lot. Now they have Whoopi *yay* and they still have Barbara *yay*. And I understand if people become conservative as they get older. She’s got kids. She didn’t like September 11th. Of course no one challenged her on how much spying on Americans and drones over Afghanistan is acceptable. She was in favor of not sending her kids to religious school and didn’t trust public schools. *yay*. *sigh*.

That was the good part.

They also had that anti Vaccine person on there who’s name I forgot, but who’s body I remember from Playboy. *boo* *yay* who’s only real accomplishment was taking her clothes off.

And some crazy lady who said that she’s now sure God likes sports because of the weather window he provided for the game yesterday.


Posted in Arts | Leave a comment

Since the late 1970s real wages for the bottom half of the work force have stagnated or fallen,

“most of the gains of the top 1 percent have in fact gone to an even tinier elite, the top 0.1 percent.”

Taken from the NY TIMES Jan 20, 2014

Posted in Photos | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The Montgomery Improvement Association

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Borrowed from SLATE: This document, drafted by the Montgomery Improvement Association, advised victorious bus boycotters on best practices for riding the newly integrated city bus system.

More Galleries | Leave a comment

If the money is all at the top, the economy can’t grow.

Teddy Roosevelt warned about the corrupting power of big money and passed a lot of liberal legislation. His cousin did a lot when people were desperate in the 30′s.  Government action helped the poor.  Then in the 60′s it was anti war and equality that defined liberalism. Now, further equality (read gay marriage) is unstoppable. The new Liberalism is starting with the Minimum wage increase, which will happen, and hopefully in the future people will again consider bringing down the debt by raising taxes.

This is six minutes worth watching if you haven’t seen it.

Posted in Politics | Leave a comment

Welcome to our new look

This will probably change and change again. I have too many pictures that I’d like to use for the header. This is all about style. The substance, if you can call it that, of this blog will not change, just the look.

Welcome. Get on your soapbox!

Posted in Arts | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Commercial Watch

I still watch a lot of TV. Lately I’ve noticed that commercials are being edited, not only post production, but also post deployment.

There have been several, perhaps many, but right now I’m thinking of a credit card commercial with Sammuel L Jackson where he says something on the order of you can have these savings everywhere, anytime, every damn day! (That’s not in quotes, because I don’t have the exact quote)

You won’t see him saying that anymore. They run the commercial, but they have changed it. Now he says “every single day”. I noticed the word ‘damn’ the first time I heard it. Its shocking to some people to hear that. I am not offended, but I know people are, by this kind of language, and it generates a negative reaction. Companies don’t want adds that piss people off, (an Aflac add is on right now).

Sometimes adds are stupid.

I saw an add this morning, but in a way that you don’t pay attention while its on, because you’re getting ready for work. Here’s what I think I saw. “Cafe’ Flem’”. When I saw it I thought “Wait, what?”

I think it was a McDonalds commercial. I’m waiting to hear it again, but, as you see, I think they’ve realized that adding accent aigu’ doesn’t make “flem” any better.

which leads to here

Posted in Commercial Watch | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Beautiful music

My godson. Check it out, I’d like to hear more.

Posted in Arts, Max's Art Reviews, Videos | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Merry Christmas

Look it might be here 10 24 10 0032

Posted in Fun | Leave a comment

A poem I wrote

A Person

Last night I dreamed
I saw
A Person
He was standing on
the other side of the

She was trying to
sell her story
Face all covered
with hair.

He was blond
She was blond
He had a beard
He looked down

At her book. Her
He was trying to
sell his story.
She was trying to
sell her story.

It was all written
He just wanted
someone to notice it
To read his book.
And so she stood
alone. Next to him
On the
other side of the
table. Along with
everybody else.

In the basement of
the Hall trying
to get someone to
read their story

No one saw them

In their dark khakis
looking at the table.
Next to the table
In their shifts
Looking at the table
next to the table

At their book

All standing behind
a pillar
depending on which
way you looked.

I wonder if it had to do with me watching so much Karen Carpenter last night

I think Fire and Rain
was playing

(c) Steven G Shimer

Posted in Blogroll | Leave a comment

My all time favorite song

Sometimes I get caught up in YouTube. I seem to have discovered a mild controversy about my favorite song. Here is from what I think is in fact the original recording and following it will be a video that I think came from The Smothers Brothers Show, which, I just learned, Mason Williams wrote for and for whom he played music.

Which one do you think sounds better?

I like the production look on the second one, but I think the first one sounds better. If anyone holds a service for me when I’m gone, play this.

Posted in Arts, Max's Music Reviews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

In light of Fukishima – how do we go forward on nuclear power

One more from Gil Scott Heron. I didn’t realize he died two years ago. What a loss. Here is a link to some scary, relevant information, and a story from the 1966. This video is 13 minutes long, and you should really stay till the end. If you have any bejesus left in you, well check out Gil Scott Heron.

If you don’t listen to the whole thing, advance to minute 8:45 and listen to Dr Caldicott

(thanks to Nick S. for the lyrics transcription)
It stands out on a highway
like a Creature from another time.
It inspires the babies’ questions,
“What’s that?”
For their mothers as they ride.
But no one stopped to think about the babies
or how they would survive,
and we almost lost Detroit
this time.
How would we ever get over
loosing our minds?
Just thirty miles from Detroit
stands a giant power station.
It ticks each night as the city sleeps
seconds from anniahlation.
But no one stopped to think about the people
or how they would survive,
and we almost lost Detroit
this time.
How would we ever get over
over loosing our minds?
The sherrif of Monroe county had,
sure enough disasters on his mind,
and what would karen Silkwood say
if she was still alive?
That when it comes to people’s safety
money wins out every time.
and we almost lost Detroit
this time, this time.
How would we ever get over
over loosing our minds?
You see, we almost lost Detroit
that time.
Almost lost Detroit
that time.
And how would we ever get over…
Cause odds are,
we gonna loose somewhere, one time.
Odds are
we gonna loose somewhere sometime.
And how would we ever get over
loosing our minds?
And how would we ever get over
loosing our minds?
Didn’t they, didn’t they decide?
Almost lost Detroit
that time.
Damn near totally destroyed,
one time.
Didn’t all of the world know?
Say didn’t you know?
Didn’t all of the world know?
Say didn’t you know?
We almost lost detroit…

Posted in Blogroll, Changes in the World In My Lifetime, Economics, Max's Art Reviews, Max's Movie Reviews, Max's Theories, Other People's Theories, Politics | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

On Mandela – Ronald Reagan was wrong again

[play the music while you read these words]

When politics were a little more sane in this country the regretable Ronald Reagan’s veto of sanctions against a racist regime could be over-ridden by a Congress in which Republicans even opposed him.

” Reagan’s veto was attacked harshly by anti-Apartheid leaders like Desmond Tutu who said Reagan would be “judged harshly by history”. In the week leading up to the subsequent vote, President Reagan enlisted South African foreign minister Pik Botha to call Republicans on the fence, though this was seen to backfire.

Reagan’s veto was overridden by Congress (by the Senate 78 to 21, the House by 313 to 83) on October 2. This override marked the first time in the twentieth century that a president had a foreign policy veto overridden. Apartheid opponents in America and South Africa applauded the vote…”

Yes, as recently as 1986, Ronald Reagan voted against the economic boycott of the Apartheid regime of F.W. DeKlerk and his institutionalized racism in support of the white minority, racist government in South Africa.

And when I say racist, I mean they had a graduated system for measuring someone’s blackness and therefore, the appropriate level of government restrictions on their movement and other opportunities.

Late October 1986 – not so long ago really:
31 Republicans, including many conservative allies of Mr. Reagan, were not persuaded by his arguments.

A good example was Mitch McConnell, a first-term Republican from Kentucky, who said he was casting his first vote against the President on a foreign policy issue with ”great reluctance.” But on this question, the lawmaker said: ”I think he is ill-advised. I think he is wrong. We have waited long enough for him to come on board.”

Senator Lowell P. Weicker Jr., a Connecticut Republican, expressed a common feeling when he told the Senate that Mr. Reagan had failed to sense quickly enough the moral and emotional tide that had been rolling across the country on the apartheid issue.

”For this moment, at least, the President has become an irrelevancy to the ideals, heartfelt and spoken, of America,” he said.”

Posted in Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


Today, the first SciFi convention that I’m aware of at least, for hundreds of miles. Today was the first convention held at the Roberson Museum.

These are some photos from the event. Many many more people were there. Hopefully it will be bigger and better next year. I’d say this was a great first effort.

Here are some images:

Are too


Christine in steam punk

Girl from Upstate Image Cos Play

Godzilla best

Green man

Hello world

Helm from SCA

Iron Man

Jeff and Godzilla

Purple girl

Sand people 1

Troopers and tardis

Watch out Paula

Zombie shamble

Zombies at leisure

Zombies shamble

Posted in Arts, Fun | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Listen to the words

Republicans are all about message discipline. This one is subtle, but they’re all doing it.

They’re calling the Affordable Care Act, a “bill”. Its not a “bill”. Its the law. It was a bill, when it was “waiting up on Capital Hill”. But it passed the House, passed the Senate, passed the President’s signature and it passed muster in the Supreme Court. Its the law. And the Republicans are all calling it a bill as if it has a chance of being defeated.

One more thing. I think it was tactically not smart to call the law “Obamacare”. It is, The Affordable Care Act. Its not about Obama. Its about care.

Posted in Max's Theories, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment