My ratty Web Log - Comings and Goings

January 15, 2010

It's been a long time. All three of my wonderful critters are still with me. Dodger developed a slipped disk that required surgery at WSU's animal hospital in Pullman, WA. We are looking forward to a full recovery. Indy is now 7 years old and his father Heater, 11. And I am now in my "golden years" having turned 65 last May. In celebration, I went clean shaven.

December 19, 2008

Working with my dear old friend Danny Menezes, we are founding a video server company. Our early work is to enable video surveillance servers to be accessed on the Internet. Unfortunately, the servers we are using require a download of a so-called unsigned Active-X control to obtain the software. Write me for instructions and log on information.

My video server is http://marshallview.dvrdns.org 

Danny's server for Array Company is http://arraycompany.dvrdns.org

This is live video; not still. Let us know what you think.

Over time, we will be adding other public video servers that should be quite interesting. It is our goal to provide comprehensive Internet based video and control servers for customers of all kinds - personal and business. Please contact us for details on how we can help you meet your needs. For many people, these kinds of video servers add quality to their security and information access. For many businesses, they are foolish not taking advantage of this powerful technology.

October 19, 2007

This day rings in my memory for it is the very day in 1990 my wife Kathie passed away. My God, how can it be yet so present? There I was on the 14th floor of the Ellison building at the Massachusetts General Hospital collapsed to my knees howling and crying. This is the first time in my life I understood the true meaning of grief. How it changes reality.

Seventeen years years ago almost to the minute, Kathie took her last breath. The transformation is discontinuous. One instant it is us, and we. All verbs changed from is to was. Every friendship that knew us together forced to change.  From being in the closest bonded couple people said they knew, surrounded by laughter and good times together, I was alone. God bless the friends that stuck with me and God bless those that came into my life.  

December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas.

The short days of winter remind of of the long days of my life yielding so many wonderful people gone and present.
Thanks to all.

This year's doggie picture was delayed due to weather.

October 6, 2006

My good friend Brian Markey passed away from an awful disease called MSA - Multiple System Atrophy - at age 47. Brian was one of the most gifted people I ever knew. He played music fluently starting as a young child and was an excellent software engineer. Brian had a wonderful laugh and sense of humor we will all miss. Here is a picture I took of Brian with his wife, Diane.

June 28, 2006

Lots of good news. I am dating a new lady and we are clicking. It's a wonderful feeling loving someone that loves me in return. We both look forward to many happy times together.

E.J. Caplan is her name. We met on a flight from Dallas when I wound up sitting next to her. She made the flight last 10 minutes. We just got along. My eccentricities didn't bother her at all. She even asked to join me for the Knob Creek Machine Gun shoot.

Here is a neat picture of her taken by a co-worker. Just click on the thumbnail for the full sized image.

We are due to start the Great Resto-Beast during the first week of July. Mike Glover, the developer of the TwEECer is going to tune it for us in Texas. We are blessed to have his expertise on the project.

April 30, 2006

A distant neighbor I had the misfortune of befriending somehow got it in his mind it was OK to prune my beautiful pink flowing dogwood came over when I wasn't home and butchered my tree. What makes it so galling to me is that we never ever discussed him pruning my trees and he had no permission to do this and certainly was completely ignorant of how to properly prune these trees. When I look at the tree, it reflects a kind of violence that disturbs me to the point of breaking the harmonious flow in my home. The neighbor remains unrepentant and somehow believes he was "doing me a favor." When I tried to politely tell him what he did, all I got back was insults and snideness. Sweet Jesus. Last year my tree reached an amazing state of glory after over ten years of nursing her to create a huge crown of pink flowers. Now it is only a memory.

Now I am seriously thinking of moving to a place that allows me to enjoy all my activities and gives me the space and legal framework to comfortably do it. Northern Nevada comes to mind as ideal. We shall see.

Pink Dogwood

Just as she started to flower

Pink Dogwood

Another view of the magnificent dome

Pink Dogwood

In her former glory cascading with flowers

Pink Dogwood

Closeup of the flowers

Pink Dogwood

Even closer

Pink Dogwood

A view from the house.

February 27, 2006

It's hard to believe he is really gone. Corky, "Brother Corky" departed on February 18th after a short battle with lung cancer. This one hurts really badly.  I called Corky "brother" because he was like a brother to me. After he had a seizure right after Christmas and they discovered brain tumors from the lung cancer, he sent me a note, "my condition." It took me a long time to regain my composure.

I knew Corky loved smoking his cigars, but one wants to think the bad things are always tomorrow. Yet here is tomorrow. Brother Corky was dying.  I immediately took a trip to New Hampshire in order to help Corky and his wife Barbara as much as I could and to spend time with Corky helping him through the process of medical treatment, and the isolation people feel when they know death is facing them.

Shortly after my first trip, Barbara called to let me know that Corky was rapidly failing. Canceling my attendance to the SHOT show, I got back to New Hampshire as quickly as possible. Two weeks later the inevitable happened, Corky passed away. Corky never lost his humor even under the influence of morphine and in spite of the invasive nature of the brain tumors. This is a man for the ages and one who will always be an example of how to live life easily and gracefully. A consummate craftsman and just a plain good guy. Honest as the day is long. Filled with integrity. I mourn with his wife Barbara, his daughter Jessica, and Jessica's husband Shane. May Corky's spirit live on in those that his life touched. R.I.P.

Corky gets the corporate .50 M2HB ready to fire: (Click on the thumbnails to see the large image.)

 

Our accountant, Maria,  prepares to shoot the .50 BMG M2HB. (Click on the thumbnail to see the large image)

December 31, 2005

A somewhat reclusive period focused on my Mustang projects and getting my diet back under control. During the time my knee was bad, I badly slipped up and let my diet go back out of control. Fixed. This time I don't plan on being fanatic in the same way I was back in 1997.

The Texas 65 fastback being finished in Texas and managed by me, is finally making progress. Plans in Toys.

My cooking style leans more in the direction of small batch dry stir-fried dishes consisting of veggies like broccoli, Napa cabbage, mushrooms, asparagus, and a correct portion of a savory protein like chicken or shrimp.

Thanks to Steven Fell, this year's doggie picture is another hit. Steven has a gifted photographic eye and lots of patience. We all really appreciate his efforts, time, and skill in doing this.

We are setting up a web page for my dear friend, Charles Sinclair, (www.charlessinclair.net). The site will feature his art, both graphic and verbal.

I continue adjusting to my newly rebuilt eyes. It gets easier switching from reading to distant vision as my brain adjusts to the radical change. Cell growth at the edges of the lens implants create some streaking with point source light at night. Nothing too serious but at times annoying. They will remove these cells using a YAG laser until they stop growing. This is an easy office procedure. And all other parts of the body are working just fine.

October 2, 2005

No more glasses. It's done.

Last Tuesday, at the Mass Eye and Ear in Boston, I had the second lens implant done to finish fixing my left eye. This is my fourth and last eye surgery. Two vitrectomies to clear out the contents of both my eyes and two lens implants have done the trick. Thanks to the advances implantable lenses, I am blessed with amazing vision and will only need reading glasses for fine text. The hardest part to adapt is the brain. When I wake up, my eyes don't want to focus until I put on my glasses until the brain realizes it doesn't need them.

A huge thank you to the wonderful staff at the Mass Eye and Ear, Dr. Don D'Amico (vitrectomies), Dr. Ernesto Pineda (lens implants), Denajoy, Mary, Digney, Brian, and Robin for helping me out during the surgeries.

The improvement in my vision is astounding. Blues are quite different and soft blues that were gray are now in vivid color. Whites are clearer as well and my distant perception of depth greatly improved. I am using this laptop with crystal clarity.

Now to get a new driver's license, passport, and a new home page photograph.

The knee hardly bothers any longer. Just some lingering soreness under the knee cap reminds me of the catastrophe that was. That is the knee cap and about 25 pounds I gained. OY!

The Mustang stable is full. I bought a 1966 Caspian Blue Convertible with 63,000 original miles. That bring my stable up to eight including the fastback we are building up in Texas. This convertible is one sexy gal and is a keeper. I don't plan on any fancy drive train for her. Just the nice 289 and automatic transmission she has. She is a perfect summer cruiser for breezing around town but capable of long drives as well.

The 1993 SVT Cobra "Black Rat" is on the road. Brad, my mechanic at Willows Automotive, finished the build. Even with the fire-breathing 330 HP Central Coast engine, she easily passed emissions. As a final touch, we upgraded the A/C to the modern CFC free R134A refrigerant and fixed the heater core. This one should become my prime non-doggie car driver. What a project.

New people. New projects. New opportunities. Peace.

August 7, 2005

Just a quick "hello" from New Hampshire with Denajoy. Denajoy flew in from Houston to join me and enjoy the beautiful New Hampshire summer. We plan on doing some photography with the New Hampshire machine gun collection as well. She had a blast trying out a Tommy gun for the first time and wants to play more. (Click on the image to see the full picture.)

Last week, I got a nice new lens implanted in my right eye. On September 7th, they will do a second vitrectomy to my left eye with another lens implant to follow in order to fix my vision. This is pretty miraculous stuff. Right now, I am wearing my glasses with the right lens missing. The new lens is crystal clear being of a recently introduced type that is known for its clarity of color and contrast. I am a happy camper.

June 18, 2005

Small miracles and long days

Some six years ago, we planted a lilac in the garden in front of my house. Year after year, I fed, trimmed, and preened the lilac waiting patiently for her to decide to flower. This year, my patience running thin, I made plans to remove her and replace with something that would flower. Perhaps she knew. For the first time, she has numerous flowers starting to bloom in the most remarkable color combination I could imagine.

( Click on the thumbnail to see the full size image)

The longest days in ones life start innocently enough. Turning on the TV on September 11, 2001, for example. All so much routine. And then BAM. Other long days begin slowly. Mine started with a little ache in the right knee while walking and running with the doggies. Slowly but surely, the pain increased until on a certain Tuesday and Wednesday, I could barely make it back home on my night walks we do. The next day, I couldn't walk them at all. Ice and aspirin had no real effect.  Sleep? Not much. The usual inclination, run to Boston, didn't cut the mustard. Time was of the essence. After consulting my primary doc, I wound up in the office of Dr. Peter Mandt in Bellevue. He diagnosed the problem as being in the knee joint.  As Dr. Mandt had an opening the following Monday, we went ahead and scheduled arthroscopic knee surgery to both accurately diagnose what the problem is and fix it at the same time. Alas. Knee surgery on April 11, 2005 is just the beginning.

( Click on the thumbnail to see the full size image)


For weeks the knee owned me outright. No walking. Intense pain. Yet right in front of me exploded a beautiful spring of color and light.  The incorrect use of heat made the pain much worse. I had "pain attacks" of such intensity that strong pain killers seemed to have little impact. The pain made me sweat and shake.

The lilac is my birth flower. It is a flower that reminds me of my mother. I recall a particular glass vase with a crazed crackle making it look like it was broken glass pieced together. How I puzzled over it. How did they make it? Every spring, right around my birthday, my mother and I filled the vase with a giant display of fresh lilacs. The lilacs scented the room. I fell in love with them.

Many times while living in Boston, Kathie, Phoebe dog, and I went to the Arnold Arboretum on "Lilac Sunday" in May. Hillsides festooned with beautifully maintained Lilacs in a myriad of varieties and colors dazzled the eye and filled the nose with sweetness.

Was this blooming a message from my now departed mother? Ah! The mysteries of life.

Doggie walk at last. How long ago? Another life flashes in front of my eyes. Wow. Slow and sure I find myself returning. How sweet it is.

Mustangs: The stable grows. Much progress in grooming the herd. Now to prepare the "as new" Blue '93 SVT Cobra for car show. Car show? Doggie show? What next? Easy. GUN show! :-)  The supercharged 88 GT, the Black Beauty, is running well, to say the least. At some future time, I will post pictures of the herd for you to enjoy.

February 1, 2005

I finally made the jump and bought a digital single lens reflex body, a 12.3 megapixel Fuji Nikon-compatible S3. This body takes my Nikon lenses, flashes and is built on a Nikon body outfitted by Fuji. As I have had good luck with Fuji's digital sensors, I am looking forward to seeing how well I do using this rig.

Back in 1996, I bought a used 1988 white Mustang 5.0 convertible instead of updating my kitchen.  The vehicle delivers lots of pleasure. During the summer, I love putting one of the setters in the front seat with me and zooming around with the top down.

After leaving Microsoft, I saw an ad for a perfect low-mileage black 1988 GT hatchback on eBay. One thing led to another, and I bought her. After re-naming her the black beauty, I embarked on a journey to make her into a comfortable good looking full blown street rod. So far, I have changed the tail lights, wheels and tires, shifter, front end treatment, cooling system, and have a Kenne-Bell supercharger and fuel control system ready to install. A set of Autometer gauges in a window pillar pod let me monitor fuel pressure, manifold absolute pressure, and the fuel/air ratio.

After learning more about this series of Mustang, I learned that the ultimate vehicle of the 1979 - 1993 Mustang is the 1993 SVT Cobra. Once again, as the result of finding one with only 4000 miles on eBay, I bought her and am having her shipped out to me. This one will stay original as both a collector and show car.

Elliott Gamson, R.I.P.

Last October, shortly before my mother's passing, I learned that my dear old friend Elliott Gamson had passed away. Elliott had many demons that eventually let him to his untimely end. Elliott was funny, eccentric, and wonderful to travel and celebrate life with. Elliott had wonderful taste in many areas and is a key influence on me. We went to Thailand and Hong Kong together. I took many wonderful pictures of Elliott and hope to dig some of them up and post them. He deserves to be remembered and his life celebrated.

After my wife Kathie died in 1990, Elliott came up and spent time with me. I can never forget his kindness in doing this. Here is photograph of Elliott with my dear departed James dog.

(Click on the thumbnail to see the large image)  

January 24, 2005

My bad right eye is fixed and healing from the surgery I had in Boston. Details in writings.

This web site is now hosted on Lunar Pages as Green-bean, our old server, is going away.

October 16, 2004

So much life.

More sad news. After a long period of declining health, my 93 year old mother has passed away. What a wonderful life she led. A long happy marriage of 67 years to my departed father, three adult children, two grand children, and one great-grand child. Like my father, my mother just did not know how to be dishonest. I suppose of the assumptions that got me into trouble during my life was a false belief that most people would be like they were. Just thinking about it now makes me laugh. And it makes me smile with the glory of having two parents made of such metal. For all the things any child and find "wrong" with their parents, this gift of honesty rings true and brings me to a place in my life where independence and security are more than just words. Thanks you. God bless you. Rest in Peace.

More to follow and many more pictures.

May 22, 2004

I am in New Hampshire. The first leg of the trip took me to the New York City area. In New Rochelle, I stayed with my sister and her husband David and thank them for their warm fun hospitality. During my time in New York, I had a chance to meet with Charles Wang and his wife Nancy Li. I became friendly with Charles and Nancy while at Microsoft during a long time when I owned the relationship with Computer Associates. Charles founded the company and left before the recent accounting scandals in which he isn't involved. Getting to know Charles back then convinced me that besides the gift of having enormous financial success, there was a special spark within him that marked him a great man. Seeing him again confirmed my belief. Charles now is the owner of the New York Islanders hockey team and the founder and owner of the New York Dragons arena football team. Wishing Charles success in his sports endeavors is easy. I can just imagine how much his players and staff respect and admire their boss. Enough said.

Today, for the first time, I got to see the entire NFA (National Firearms Act) collection of legal transferable machine guns that we now own. It is an impressive collection and one that will deliver many years of pleasure. Transferable machine guns have proven to be an excellent investment as well. Due to changes in the law, there are a limited amount of them available and the demand is not going down. For the first time, I got to shoot one of  my Thompson Submachine Guns. What a treat! You see so many in gangster movies but to actually legally own one and shoot it. And the best part,  no one is shooting back! Here is a photo of me shooting my first magazine. We also have two large capacity drums, one holds 50 rounds and the other 100.

(Click on the thumbnail to see the full image.)

 Sad news, Ida Moya, a grand lady I got to know all too briefly in Albuquerque New Mexico passed away on Easter Sunday. I savored the time with her and absorbed as much of her unique American culture as I could. There was something of a song in the way she spoke.  She painted and cooked from her heart. It was a gift knowing her. May she rest in peace and her spirit receive the kind of warmth, love, and acceptance she showed me in my all too brief time with her. Her quiet spirit spoke of another time and the special culture of the Southwest Native Americans we can all admire and respect. Her attitude toward nature, her art, her cooking, and her spiritual radiance will remain with me forever. Rest in Peace and may your spirit fly with the wind. To Ida's family, my deepest sympathy. I can only imagine your loss.

Monday it's meeting with a another old friend I haven't seen for years. Tuesday it's home sweet home! Wednesday I fetch the critters from the kennel and resume my regular life. Perhaps I will have the chance to post my pictures and stories.

Life is good!

May 5, 2004

Living in an independent experiential manner is proving satisfying. Is the wind finally caught and tamed?

Heater Dog is home. While on the road, an injury forced surgery that shortened his tail to a point he can't be shown any longer. What a magnificent show career Heater gave us. Two specialty wins, best of opposite sex at the English Setter National in 2002. Multiple group placements. He is a tribute to his noble breed. May his spirit continue to the pups he sires as it has in my Indy.

Having all three dogs vibrant and full of energy is a challenge. I love it. Going out and prancing around with all three in tow on these beautiful Puget Sound spring days.  And sleeping in with fluffy Indy snuggled next to me with Dodger and Heater at my feet. Yikes. The good old days . . . again.

Exploring opportunities is fun. My ideal is to do some executive consulting mixed in with photo journalism.

April 10, 2004

I have left my job at Microsoft after 11.5 years.

What a run.

Is this retirement? Peace reins.

Now that I am a free man, the urge to learn more about photographic lighting and makeup finds its reality. Let's hope a local institution features what is needed. 

Heater remains in Ontario, CA with Carlos and Shirley. I haven't seen Heater, Carlos, or Shirley in quite some time and am looking forward to the trip to pick him up.

Today Hayes, Kay, and Shannon graciously fed delicious foods to me and a great bunch of other friends. They all went to another event after dinner. As much as I loved everybody there, getting ready for the trip dominated my thoughts. At the last minute, I decided to head home and get on with the packing to reduce the stress and strain. Finding joy in my solitude is a new experience. I relish it.

Tomorrow it is to Portland for friends and a good time.

Life is good.

October 25, 2003

It's been a long time since I have updated the site.

Sometimes life is so good it demands to be lived and not written about. I suppose over time all the various wonderful experiences in my life can still be documented.  New fantastic people keep entering my life. Old relationships age, face challenges, and go in different directions. New influences on my spirituality too.

I met Rev. Denajoy Gilman at the 2nd meeting of the North American Conference on Bisexuality in San Diego. The first time she walked by me,  a flash of energy captured me before I saw her face. After the conference, Denajoy came and spent the Labor Day weekend with me. Following that, I went to the CMA Sanhain gathering outside of Houston, Texas to meet with Denajoy and her family. What great times. What great people. What a gift. Once again, the dreams I seek are the dreams I live.

July 5, 2003

One of the goods things about being with my ex-wife was her introducing me to the Institute for the Advanced Study of Human Sexuality in San Francisco where I had taken some courses and appeared on two panels. Two years ago, I very much wanted to do their so-called "SAR," Sexual Attitude Readjustment program, but my ex-wife discouraged me from doing it with her. As conditions aligned to make it possible for me to do the SAR this year, I pondered whether or not I could or wanted to deal with the emotional baggage and go. My decision was to face my fear and go. I did.

The SAR is a wonderful experience for anyone interested in exploring their sexuality and developing a special bond with the Institute, its staff, and your fellow students. I am ecstatic to have done this and remain on course to get my own PhD from the Institute.

November 17, 2002

Many good things are happening in my life. New friends and new lovers. My psychic restructuring continues at a breath-taking pace as I find my core self, fully establish my self-esteem, and find my ultimate happiness. I continue to run virtually every day, and can now do a fast mile without muscle soreness. This amazes me.

I have progressed from the emotional dependence on my X  to find my own freedom both in my relationships and in my expression. Its exhilarating. The renaissance of the soul comes in many ways. Death. Divorce. Events. And so it is with me.

From November 4th to November 12th, I traveled to Japan with my wonderful friend and gifted Japanese language translator, Maiyim Baron as part of the Seattle/Kobe sister city delegation. I acted as official photographer for the delegation and wrote many short poems during the trip. See more in Trip to Japan.

October 5, 2002

After six years, Cynde Moya. and I have broken up.

December 22, 2001

I have been putting some photo albums up on an MSN community:

 http://communities.msn.com/MarshalGPhotographs/shoebox.msnw

Through Classmates, I have made contact with several folks from my high school days. Neat! 

This year's holiday doggie picture has been sent. You can see the picture we used at Holiday Card 2001. Added a nice picture of Heatie seated and Dodger lying down in front of our fireplace.

Changed the Dodger and Heater Together page to a FrontPage 2002 Photo Gallery and added Holiday Card 2001 and Heater and Dodger Seated.

September 14, 2001 

The events of the 11th put our lives in a new perspective. 

August 25, 2001

Heater won the 2001 Puget Sound English Setter Club  Specialty show for his first Best In Specialty Show. For me, it is dream come true. A truly unique experience to have one's beloved pet win such a prestigious event. We look forward to Heatie siring more liters helping to keep the best qualities of the English Setter. A bit "Thank You!' to everyone that made this possible, and in loving memory to my first wife, Kathie Chellel, as I know somewhere out there she was as excited as I when Heatie won.

April 14, 2001

Dodger finished his championship in a resounding way. We sent him to a cluster of shows with his co-breeder, Shirley Hoeflinger. She won the class with him at the first show and lost for the points. Shirley thought he was too much dog for her and hired the fabulous Bruce Schultz to take him in the next shows. Dodger won the first time Bruce showed him and finished his championship with a second major in two days. Today the championship certificate arrived from the AKC.

December 18, 2000

Much has happened since my last update. As a result of my conversations with Marshall Briain, the guru of www.howstuffworks.com, he wrote a series of articles on his fantastic website about diets, calories, and fat. I appreciate his scientific outlook and verification of my observations about the nature of diet and our attitudes about food. Keeping my weight down while being a terrible compulsive eater is not easy but using the science makes it possible. 

Sad to say, my late wife's mother, Dorothy Chellel, passed away from lung cancer at age 80 on November 2nd. 

October 9, 2000

Cynde and I took the introductory class in human sexuality at The Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality in San Francisco. On the way out, the folks let me take a class picture with my little Fuji MX2700. (This was a time I really wished I had my trusty Nikon.) The class was a diverse group of smart interesting people attending for a variety of reasons. They added wonderful insights to those of our instructors. This was an experience we will always treasure, not just for the content and materials, but for the people we met and interacted with.

September 21, 2000 - Minor auto accident in newly bought '99 Windstar. 

While driving toward Bellevue on the Avondale Road, I swerved to avoid smashing into driver that didn't see me and turned into the road with no warning. Aimed between parked GMC van and ditch. Did about as good as one can do in these situations. No apparent internal damage to the Windstar. I am OK. Just a little achy and shaken up. Driver that caused the accident proved to be a real gentlemen. Took his responsibility seriously to the point of having his own insurance company repair my car and accepting his causing the accident to the police. Made a down incident into something positive.

Windstar in the ditch

Windstar hooked to GMC van

Windstar at LM Body Shop

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