Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Carnival at Pima and Wilmot

I spotted some fun flashing lights a block from my apartment complex last night.  They were still there tonight.

My guess is that a church up the street from where I live had a carnival in their parking lot.

I bet it was the safest carnival ever.  After all, God wouldn't let a member of his flock die on a carnival ride in the parking lot of his house!

They were starting to take it down when I was able to get a photo tonight.  But, there still were some pretty lights to see.

Half a ferris wheel can be fun.
As long as you ride on the right half.

Ghoul Atchley delivers the news

As the floor crew was resetting the studio from the Morning Blend to news, I had a creative moment with a Halloween decoration we used on the Blend side of the set.

I put it in the chair that Guy Atchley normally sits in during KGUN 9 news to take the photo you see below.

I nicknamed him "Ghoul Atchley".

Ghoul Atchley is On Your Side!
In Ghoul's hand, a Kit Kat bar.
A pick me up before the news.

Big Al Your Traffic Pal from Good Morning Tucson in a traffic cone costume

Double bonus:
My co-worker Leslie hung this fake spider in front of the stairway door to try and scare unsuspecting people.
I was disappointed I didn't hear screaming.

Which side am I on?

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know that I'm always searching for unique photo opportunities.

I found one in my own apartment.

I promised I wouldn't reveal the answer... because its better to keep the mystery in our relationship.

Which side do you think I sleep on?

Both sides get used at night.
Which side do I sleep on?
Its a mystery.

Stuffed toy dinner at Target

On a recent visit to Target, I noticed they were quickly stocking up for Christmas.  That included items for dogs.

If you want to give your dog a Christmas feast, you might try a stuffed toy dinner.

I didn't buy one.  But, I was tempted.  The stuffed corn on the cob did look delicious.  And, it squeaked.

Chicken or lobster?

Muddy shoe, warm heart

I posted a few days ago about the little wiring project that the Ridgepointe maintenance staff was doing to fix the sidewalk lights.

While walking Lucky, he zigged when I thought he would zag, and I had a little accident.

The was the little project they were doing and the piles of dirt.

This is what ends up on the bottom of my shoe when Lucky makes a wrong turn.
The good news is:  It wasn't poo, it was mud.

Arizona basketball vs Humboldt State

I had a new experience tonight:  I attended my first University of Arizona basketball game at the McKale Center in Tucson.

Shelley, who had co-hosted a bunch of Morning Blend shows over the summer, was kind enough to give me tickets to the game.  Her and her husband have seats at center court second row from the floor.  So, I had an awesome view.  It was a bit of a flashback to my years working as the public address announcer at University of the Pacific in Stockton.  I sat at the scorers table for all of the men's and women's basketball and volleyball games at Pacific (and got paid for talking into a microphone).  Now that I think about it, I never attended any of the games there as a spectator.  So, the Arizona game was an even more unusual experience.

Arizona played Humboldt State in a 'preseason' game.  It amazes me how every sport played in America has a preseason.  I suppose its like foreplay before sex.  (Spectacular analogy isn't it?)

Arizona won 108-67.  And a big thank you to Shelley for being so generous.  I KENjoyed myself!

Here are a few photos I took (click on any photo for a larger view):

Here's the inside of the McKale Center from the walkway that goes around the arena.
See where the top of the 'A' is on the basketball floor and those players standing near it?
My seat was just to the left of those players in the second row.

Here's the view from my seat:  Section 3, Row 2, Seat 3

The Arizona bench off to my left

Game action:
#44 Solomon Hill goes for a layup but was fouled.

Hello ladies.

Humboldt State passing the ball in bounds

Solomon Hill shooting a foul shot

A Humboldt State player shooting the ball off the backboard.
That player (#44) would later foul out.

Wider shot of game play to show what my view was like

Halloween costume contest.
The guy on the right was the winner.

Team huddle during a time out.

He shoots, he scores!

Basketball bouncing off of the rim.

Final score:  Arizona 108 Humboldt State 67

Monday, October 29, 2012

How to make a hurricane

Hurricane Sandy is dominating the news today.

In case you're in an area of the country (like Tucson, Arizona where I am) that isn't being affected by the hurricane, you can still get a taste of it.  By making a hurricane cocktail drink.

Here's the recipe:

The ingredients:
2 ounces of light rum
2 ounces of dark rum
2 ounces of passion juice
1 ounce of orange juice
Juice of half a lime
1 tablespoon of simple syrup
1 tablespoon of grenadine
An orange slice and a cherry for garnish

How you prepare a hurricane:
Squeeze juice from half a lime into a cocktail shaker over ice.  Pour the remaining ingredients into the cocktail shaker.  Shake well.  Strain into a hurricane glass and garnish with a cherry and orange slice.

If you decide to make and drink a hurricane during a hurricane, you'll probably feel better.  It beats being in a hurricane sober.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

How Hurricane Sandy is affecting Tucson, Arizona

Hurricane Sandy (or as some people are calling it, Frankenstorm) is hours away from making landfall in the northeast coastal area of the U.S.

I have never experienced a hurricane.  It seems like its the biggest, nastiest, longest thunderstorm I could imagine.

I saw posts today from a few Facebook and Twitter friends from that region that are making preparations.  One person took a picture at a Target store where there wasn't one bottle of water available.

I always wish for excitement and adventure (of which my life rarely has either) but I can't imagine the experience.  I am hopeful that if you are one of the people in this storm's path you stay safe.

It hit 87 today in Tucson with crystal clear blue skies and light wind.  We're about as far removed from hurricane weather as one could imagine.

I took a photo this afternoon to show that this is the closest we usually experience to hurricane conditions:

These sprinklers put off a spray and actually hit the sidewalk.
Now we have a taste in Tucson of what a hurricane is really like.
Although the sunny 87 degree conditions with no wind may have been a bit deceiving.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Arizona vs Washington football game: The video

As I mentioned in my Sunday October 21 blog entry, I went to the Arizona vs Washington college football game at Arizona Stadium here in Tucson.

I shot video at the game.  I still feel like a very amateur video shooter and editor, but there's only one way to get better and that's to keep trying and practicing.  Eventually I'll figure out that either I'm not half bad or I'll give up and take up needlepoint, or farting in crowded elevators as a hobby instead.

I bought a light for my video camera and realized after I shot the intro that I should have been farther away from the wall so I didn't get that annoying shadow (I tried to light the wall behind with a light from the ceiling but obviously that didn't work too well).  Its all part of learning how to do this.  A whole lot of trial and error.  Mostly error.

Anyhoooo, here's the video:

The direct link to see it on YouTube (if you are on a device that doesn't allow you to watch it embedded on my blog):  Click here

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Another year at Ridgepointe

The lease on my apartment is up at the end of the year and the offer to sign for another year was extended by Ridgepointe management.  We had to sign now to get a discount on the lease.

Anthony and I debated the issue.  I didn't think it was affordable to move right now.  He was kind enough to listen to the rustle of the tumbleweeds blowing through my empty wallet.  We're staying one more year.

I didn't want to tell Anthony this, but the real reason I want to stay is that I get a great deal of enjoyment out of making fun of the place on this blog.  Who am I to deny myself a little pleasure?

The complex is an endless source of material to write jokes about.  For example...

This is a hole that is being dug near the stairs leading up to my apartment.
There is an attempt being made to fix the malfunctioning (as in non-functioning) sidewalk lights.
What it really looks like to me:  That they're trying to start digging a hole to China.

Not too long ago I told you that the sprinklers had been shut off and all the grass died.
Then, a weird thing happened.
The sprinklers were turned back on, grass seed was spread, and there is grass again.
It seems like they could have saved themselves a lot of work and just left the sprinklers on...
but what do I know?

Here's what it looked like when they shut off the sprinklers and the grass died.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Arizona vs Washington college football game

I did something last night that I hadn't done in seven years:  Attended a football game.  And, I watched from the comfort of a suite / luxury box.

The whole thing was pretty amazing.  (On a side note, I have not attended many sporting events in my lifetime and thanks to my career in media I have had the privilege to watch games in suites / luxury boxes a few times including twice at Arizona Stadium where I was for this game, and twice at Chase Field where the Arizona Diamondbacks play).  I entered the stadium through a special gate where there was popcorn and drinks outside of a private elevator.  The elevator took me up to the floor where the suites were.  The suite itself was very nice including a wet bar and refrigerators with drinks (I had a beer and a soda).  It was also air conditioned (kind of cold actually) and soundproof (it was kind of weird not being able to hear the roar of the crowd except through a speaker in the ceiling where it was piped in).  There was catered food including Asian cuisine and bacon wrapped hot dogs.  The Asian food part wasn't too exciting but the hot dogs were freakin' awesome.

I shot video which I will post when I get it edited later today.  I also took some still photos which are below. (Click on any of the photos for a larger view).

Arizona won by the way, beating Washington 52-17.  I'd like to take credit for the win but I suppose the players had something to do with it.

Here's a sunset view of the stadium from a block east as I was walking to the game.
I shot this at 5th Street and Campbell Avenue.

The view I had of the field while the stands were filling before the game.

Another field view including the giant TV at the south end of the stadium

The technical stuff next to the field for coaches headsets and on-field announcements.

The Arizona Marching Band performing before the game.

More of the Arizona Marching Band

Inside the suite... a view of the under construction north stands in the background.

Another view of the inside of the suite.

One of the plays during the game (when Washington was on offense).

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Another amazing Tucson sunset

There was a stunning sunset a couple of nights ago over Tucson.

I have lived in cities across the country in my lifetime.  I think Tucson has some of the most stunning sunsets in the U.S.

Red and purple make a beautiful exit.

Pretty... oh so pretty... pretty and purple and gay...

Arizona Yacht Club

I was at QuikTrip this morning getting gas for the Ken Carr car and I spotted this trailer and jet ski.

I thought it was unusual that there is an "Arizona Yacht Club".

This is the smallest yacht I've ever seen.  Its a tough economy.  Even yachts are being downsized.

Sign fall down go boom

These signs in a hallway at work have struggled to stay on the wall since they were first erected.

If you stand on your head, it's easy to read.

They don't make glue like they used to

Anthony's homemade pizza

Anthony loves it when a picture is taken of food that he makes.

I rarely can get him to pose for a photo... but he's all about photos of his food creations.

This is homemade pizza that he made.  It was pretty good.

Round pizza is soooo not cool anymore.

A pumpkin that just can't look

Another trip to Walmart Neighborhood Market over the weekend gave me the opportunity to take another fun photo.

I noticed that one of these pumpkin pails was turned around.  It looked like it just couldn't bear to look forward.

Poor thing.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Lucky in a doggy fashion show

Today's adventure with Lucky was unlike any other I had tried before:  I took him to a local mall and he was part of a doggy fashion show.

We were asked at the tv/radio building if anyone wanted to volunteer to be in the show at the Women's Spa and Wellness Showcase yesterday.  The event is held twice each year (and I attended it numerous times when I was on 106.3 and 104.1).  But, now that I'm working in television I was able to go as a guest and this was the first one that has been held since getting Lucky.

Lucky was a delight.  He trembled the entire time but he let everyone pet him (and there were dozens of people who asked), he got along well with the many dogs that were at La Encantada, and didn't cower or freak out at all.

Anthony got him a skeleton shirt to wear and it was a huge hit.  It was an awesome choice and $6 well spent at Target.

I couldn't walk Lucky and shoot video at the same time.  So, I asked one of my co-workers to do the camera work and she was great.  Thanks Kelly for helping me out.

Here's the video piece I put together:

(If you want the direct link to YouTube, click here.)

Monday, October 8, 2012

My first Vlog

I've been told by a few people (they may or may not have been drunk) that I should start Vlogging.  If you're not familiar... Vlog is short for Video Blog.  It seems to be getting more popular these days on YouTube.  And, I need a hobby.

I debated for a long time about trying it.  I don't have the expectation that it will turn me into a giant internet star.  But, if anyone is going to bother to watch, I have the hope that it won't be the most boring thing they've seen on YouTube.  I set the bar high.

Like most types of creative content it'll evolve into something that will hopefully be worth watching.

Now that I've given you low expectations, here is my first Vlog.  My current goal is to produce a new one each week.

If you need it, here's the direct link to the video on YouTube  --  Click here.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Mrs Arizona Kirin Christianson

I met Mrs. Arizona Kirin Christianson today when she visited the Morning Blend.

She held my hand.  I'm never going to wash it again.

I lead such a rough life.

I should have worn my crown in the photo, too.

Ridgepointe Apartments is down with brown

For some bizarre reason, the Ridgepointe Apartments staff has decided to stop watering the grass.  They stopped in mid-September.  Its been several weeks of continuing 95-100 degree temperatures.  And, as a result, the grass has died and turned brown.  In a hilarious moment, the landscapers that come every week were here on Wednesday and mowed non-growing dead grass.  I assume they had to do something or they wouldn't get paid.

Today I got a letter offering reminding me that my lease is ending at the end of December and I'm being encouraged to renew.  WITH A MONTHLY $30 INCREASE IN RENT!  This is right after all of the grass has turned brown and dead and it still feels like summer outside.

I will have spent $20,000 in rent in the two years I've lived here to get a roof leak that took four months to fix, peeling paint on my stairwell, broken or non-functioning lights along the sidewalks, and brown dead grass.

I have yet to decide if I'm going to renew.  I could end up somewhere worse... its always a gamble.

Dead grass... but at least the bushes are still green... for now.
In the middle of this photo, the wires hanging out from the light pole that broke early this summer but was never replaced.

A new neighbor is moving in.
Or, at least their mattress is.