Monday, October 26, 2009


Gothic, American.
Sidewalk, Graduation Night.
Ventuckey, Calif.

Champagne; Giggles y Butters.

Devil's Canyon

Devil's Canyon
Ventura River Bottom

Helianthorum silvae animalia.

Dahlia, Arabian Night.

Days End

Days End
Emma Wood State Beach
Ventura, Calif.

Splintered Sunlight.


Indian Creek

Thousand Oaks, CA

Valle Conejo.

Opuntia Littoralis.

Opuntia Ficus-Indica.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Rally Monkey

Rally Monkey
After the ALDS Massacre
Ventuckey, Calif. 2009

In hindsight it looks like Tessie didn't take the piss poor performance of the Boston Red Sox in their limited post-season appearance. The Red Sox backed into the playoffs lackadaisically without really having to fight for the spot. Anytime the team was remotely close to challenging the Yankees for the division, the Sawx would drop for or five straight and fall further and further behind. Everyone said they were taking it easy for the playoffs. Everyone said they were built for October. Everyone said they would wake up from their summer slump as soon as the ALDS began. Well that turned out to be hooky.

Big Papi and company faced off against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for game one and two in Anaheim. The grand ole' BoSox sleep-walked through the first two games in Anaheim notching one impotent run in 18 innings. The Angel's sickly sweet and not too lovable mascot, the Rally Monkey, was going crazy with postseason victory bliss. The Monkey's Angels were a game away from the championship series. This is nothing new for the Sox. They are the only team to bounce back from a 3-0 deficit and a 3-1 deficit (twice) to go on and win the series. Everyone fully expected the team to explode once the series returned to Fenway. Home field advantage is huge for the Sawx. Well they did turn it up a notch but inconsistency in their bullpen ultimately doomed their comeback hopes. With two outs in the 9th, a multiple run lead, and he best closer in MLB on the mound the Sawx collapsed in true Beantown fashion. Game three was lost and with it any sense of respectability in the division. The Rally Monkey was throwing poop on the disheartened Boston faithful.

That seems to have been too much for poor Tessie-- her being a tried and true, Sweet Caroline singing, YOUK chanting, card carrying member of Red Sox Nation. After all her namesake song Tessie has been the de facto postseason rally cry of the Fenway faithful since the turn of the last century. I turned my back for just one second I swear. When I looked back she had torn the poor Angels Rally Monkey to shreds. As she pulled every last fuzzy morsel from its head she grinned without remorse. Game three left a bad taste in her mouth. The Rally Monkey did not. It was a small consolation I imagine to eat the Rally Monkey. Hey, I can't find any fault in that. If I could I would eat a rally monkey too. There is always next year...

Rally. Monkey.

Lost his head...

No remorse.

Monday, October 5, 2009

6 Months

6 Month Anniversary

Its been a journey so far and hopefully just the start.

Tessie's butt then and now-- April 6th (a day after bringing her home)
on the left, October 5th on the right. Almost 30 pounds later and still eating.

Friday, October 2, 2009


Ventura River Bottom
September 2009

Usually two or so nights a week and the occasional weekend I head out into the wild blue in an attempt to flesh out this documentary. The last few weeks I have been trying to spend many nights in the river bottom poking about. Despite the rapid change in weather as of late, it is slowly paying dividends.

Wednesday we packed up the gear and headed out yet again. Everything was rather mundane for the most part of the evening. I sat next to a bulimic fire quietly shivering as the fog screwed up my star photo yet again. Despite the fog I decided to let the camera roll all night to see what would turn up. As best as I could we settled in for a long soggy night.

The dog usually ignores me when we are down in the river bottom or out camping. As soon as the sun sets she is content to burrow into the blankets and chase dreams. Tonight Tessie pretty much did the same. Every now and again she would give me this pitiful look telling me it was time for bed and scolding me for keeping her up so late. We have an understanding though so usually it works. I do my thing all night long and she silently judges me until she guilts me into rubbing her belly.

Tonight was par for the course when out of no where Tessie exploded out of her nest and disappeared into the bush. I was a little perturbed that she would tear off w/o warning but didn't think much. The next second the brush exploded with boxer growls and scurrying. I took off running, well okay it was pitch black and I could barely see through the underbrush. I took off stumbling and cussing. A few yards into the hills there she was. Her tail was going like crazy and her butt was dancing a boxer wiggle jig. As I got closer I saw she had something under her paws. She had the biggest grin on her face as she jumped around and pounced back down. As I got closer I could barely make out a bushy white strip shooting around Tessie's goofy neck. It was a dang skunk! More accurately as it turns out, it was one very perturbeb Mephitis Mephitis. As cute as little Mephi was, she was not in the modd to have her evening stroll in the moonlight disturbed by an over rambunctious Boxer pup. Sure enough when Tessie pounced again cute little Mephi let loose. Tessie caught the skunk's annoyance full bore, right in the teeth.

Now for those of us who don't speak Latin, Mephitis Mephitis is short for noxious vapor, translated literally of course. Noxious vapor is quite the understatement, take it from me. What you smell when you pass road kill on the side of the highway is nothing compared to the freshness of skunk butt five feet away. It is rancid. You can feel the oily stench coating your tongue as you breathe through the mouth. When the folks with all the academic learning behind them say this species has the best known defense system of any mammal, I for one will certainly agree.

Before the odoriferous mist had completely settled in the back of my throat, Tessie shot out of the bush like Satan himself had spat in hear eye. She tore back to the camp fire leaving a fading trail of stinky whimpers in her wake. By the time I caught back up the poor pupper was busy trying to bury her skunk soaked face in the sand. She was salivating like leaky faucet. Scratch that, she wasn't drooling she was gushing! She was trying so hard to get away from the stench she woulda' turned herself into a pretzel digging her way to China.

I poured her a HUGE bowl of water and she literally dove in. As she was crying to herself I quickly packed up camp and the camera. After a short hike to the river we dove in. By now I was smelling rather rancid myself. Usually Tessie is a tad timid of water but not tonight. She jumped right in and gladly let me wash her down. We hiked out sopping wet, freezing cold, and still quite smelly. I made it to a local liquor store just after closing. Thankfully they let me in after a few minutes of pounding on the window ( maybe it does pay to be a drunk...). A couple liters of tomato juice and we were on our way.

Giving the D-O-G a tomato juice bath at half past 2 in the bloody AM was not exactly what I had in mind for the evening. Thankfully most of the scent washed out fairly quickly. Dumb dog, at least I got a story out of it. Admittedly a few days later though it does makes me grin, ahhh silly puppers.

Don't let that look fool you, she was only sorry after she got skunk butt blasted all over her face.

Tomato, tomatoe.

The Aftermath.