Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Dusty day in southern Arizona

The mountains north of Tucson are usually clearly visible.  A windy day in the desert almost obscured the view of them entirely.  I took a picture:

View looking north from Ridgepointe at dusty mountains.
Dusty mountains are NOT the same as dusty muffins.

White is the new red

An odd sight when I got home from work tonight at Ridgepointe:  For some mysterious reason, crews painted a part of one of the two buildings over from mine a bright white.  It's odd because this was the first building that painting crews worked on in the ongoing project of repainting all of the complex and it appeared until today that they were done with painting it.

I find it ironic that the white part of the building is over the three apartments responsible for the greatest amount of late night party noise in the entire complex.  Coincidence?  Oh, of course it is.

It'll be interesting to see why this was done and if it is painted over with red again.

Maybe this is what happens when white out explodes on an apartment building.
It's a mystery.

No longer stumped

It's the end of the end for the tree next to my balcony at the Ken Carr World Headquarters.  I wrote about the tree getting cut down a few weeks ago which you can read about by clicking here.

All that was left was the stump... until today.  When I came home from work, the stump had been ground down / removed.

No longer stumped at Ridgepointe.  Last I checked, a mound of dirt doesn't have the ability to provide shade except to an ant.

The stump is gone and it's nothing but dirt.
It's going to be a long hot summer on that side of the apartment.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Payton, purple stuff from Sunny D, and Laxatives

Anthony and I had a guest join us for our usual Sunday dinner and shopping excursion.  Our house guest Payton came along.

We went to dinner at Culver's on Broadway at Prudence.  Payton and I had sandwiches and fries and Anthony ate a Concrete Mixer, which is ice cream but with high butter cream content.  The good news that a day later, Anthony isn't showing signs of the diabeeeetus.  Yaay for small favors.

The three of us went to Walmart Neighborhood Market at Broadway and Camino Seco for groceries after dinner.  Even though the cart didn't seem very full, we managed to blow $135 bucks.  I've decided to investigate growing my own Diet Cokes, Pop Tarts, and Oreos.  That would be a wonderful and cheap garden if I could figure out how to do it.

Anthony and Payton at Culver's on Broadway.
Om nom nom.

Walmart Neighborhood Market at Broadway and Camino Seco
where you can help yourself to a Sammich.

After years of commercials with Sunny D making fun of purple stuff...
it turns out they now make their own.

Fun Pops... Tastes like Fun!
So do a lot of other things, but this is a family show.

Bosco.  Holy crap!
I haven't seen Bosco in a store in years.  If you don't know,
it's ice cream or milk syrup and it's freakin' awesome.

New Ritz Bacon flavored crackers
No need to put the bacon on 'em anymore, they put it right in.

Cheez-It Zingz
A rare occasion where they actually show a broken cracker on the box
instead of making you wait to find them when you open it.

Hey Anthony!  I have something for you....
and it's the shit!

Spring Saturday windy wet storm in Tucson April 26, 2014

Since we've had Payton as a house guest the last few days, the distraction has caused me to briefly fall behind on posting photos on this blog.  Don't worry, I'll kick my ass later.

We had a spring wind and rain storm roll through on Saturday (it's now Monday, so see? I'm slow and blaming Payton even though he really has nothing to do with it).  There were some pretty gusty winds and even a few little rain showers.

I was going to write today about how crazy the storm was... mostly to make fun of it.  We don't get crazy weather in Tucson much.  A wind storm with a few sprinkles turns into an event.  Then, there has been a major tornado outbreak in the Midwest and southern part of the United States the last few days with tons of destruction and multiple deaths.  As I write this, the Birmingham, Alabama area is under a tornado warning.  So, it doesn't seem quite so funny anymore writing about a branch falling down in Tucson.

But, since I'm usually the butthead in the room, I'm doing it anyway.  A moment of best wishes to those living in areas affected by violent weather.  May you stay safe.

An empty plastic planter pot blew off a neighbor's porch during
the windy showery storm in Tucson on Saturday April 26, 2014.
It was so strong it landed on it's side.

A palm frond bites the dust

Enough rain to cause speckles on the sidewalk next to my apartment

Rain rain go away come again some other day.
Little Kenny wants to play.

A few leaves on the ground and wet sidewalks.
Call in the National Guard.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Payton the house guest

Anthony and I have a house guest.  His name is Payton.

Anthony has known him for a while.  They became friends when Anthony worked at the corrections officer job he had at juvenile detention.  Payton was in there for some minor thing and they stayed in contact after.  He apparently needed a place to sack out for a short time and we have a functional floor.

Payton took out the garbage today without even asking.  I like him already.  Lucky has surprised us by being pretty low key about him being here.  The dog has typically been a nervous wreck when we have visitors but he's doing pretty well.  It might help that I've been bribing him with French fries, a little chunk of scrambled eggs, and a piece of a biscuit.

One thing that sucks though.... is that Payton likes the same kind of freaky scary movies that Anthony does.  While I'm writing this, they're in the living room watching some sort of flick that has freaky sound effects and screaming.  I assume it's the movie.  (It must be pretty scary, I just heard Payton yell "Oh f**k!")

Ken doesn't do scary.  I get enough scary seeing myself naked in the shower every morning.
Here's Payton about to dig into a plate of nachos at El Taco Tote.

Nachos at El Taco Tote

I ate tacos, beans and rice.
Look how civil I am with a plastic fork and knife.

Sneaky photo of Anthony:
He shows love for Payton and I on his way into our kitchen.
(He's flipping us off... thanks Anthony)

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Silver thing update

I posted a couple of photos last Friday of a yellow forklift removing a mast from a TV live truck that is essentially being decommissioned.  To see that post and the photos, click here.

I noticed that the mast, which I had nicknamed "the silver thing" in the previous blog post, had been neatly wrapped and stored for whatever it's next use is going to be and was just waiting for the Kenparazzi to take it's picture.

As is usually the case, I found the amusing thing in what was not designed to be an amusing thing.  I decided in my own twisted mind that it now looks like either:  1.)  A giant condom wrapped pleasure device 2.)  A missile waiting to be launched  3.)  Neither of those, and I have a little too much imagination.

You be the judge.

A TV live truck mast neatly wrapped and stored,
waiting for it's next mission.

Folklorico dancers on the TV show

We had Folklorico dancers perform on the TV show today.

I've mentioned before that I find it a fun challenge to figure out how to freeze motion using shutter speed adjustments on my DSLR camera.  I find proper shutter speed a constant struggle with the studio lighting because the faster I crank up the setting, the larger challenge my Nikon D5100 seems to have with making the photos too dark.  It's not uncommon with cameras to have this happen, but my fanciest camera struggles more with it than it should.  I increased the exposure setting which seemed to help somewhat, but the photos still feel a bit dark to me.

These pictures came out alright.  Not spectacular, but alright.  I suppose this is why I'm still an amateur photographer.  I thought the dresses were pretty, though.

Folklorico dancers shot at a 1/250 shutter speed

Another freeze motion photo

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

"So you're telling me you're a lazy piece of shit"

Dear diary, today was an odd day. Love, Ken.

Here's an example of how the day went:  I had a conversation with a guy on Facebook tonight that I've known for years.  We used to work together at one of the radio groups here in Tucson.  He lives in another state now and isn't in the radio business anymore.

Here's part of the Facebook message he sent me:  "I recently invested in a marketing software company. We launched the company in January and only 3000 people in the world know about this software. I'm building support teams all over the country and I'm looking for competitive driven leaders. I think that fits your profile. Watch this 5 min video and then let's get on the phone together so I can get your thoughts."

Red alert red alert.  Danger danger.  Ugh.  MLM.  Multi Level Marketing.  It's an invention of some sort of evil force.  It was easy to identify that it's one of these kinds of companies with the "I'm looking for competitive driven leaders" line.  I do not care for these types of companies and the people who are involved with them.  They are too cult-like for my taste.  Hey, if that's your thing then good for you.  I just want nothing to do with it.

I remember when I was a kid, my parents had some people over who did this presentation on what turned out to be Amway.  That's a multi level marketing company that has been around since dirt was invented.  They have stuff like laundry detergent and household products and you're supposed to sign up your friends and then when everyone that you've signed up buys stuff, you get a commission.  The more people signed up and the more stuff they buy, the more money you make (in theory, anyway).  I was probably ten years old at the time and I thought it was awful.  And I didn't even know any better.

So, with the Facebook software guy I was joking around and saying things like "I've never been called a competitive driven leader before" and "I suck at selling stuff".  It was quite obvious that the tone of the conversation was only lighthearted on my end.  I got replies from him like, "so you're telling me you're a lazy piece of shit" and "I guess I was wrong about you".  Really?  Because I'm not kissing your butt to buy into this scheme I deserve to be called "a lazy piece of shit?"

He ended the conversation rather quickly when he realized that I wasn't the "competitive driven leader" (sucker) he was hoping for.

I didn't fare well with some other people today, either.  Crabby co-workers, an angry guest who cancelled their show segment after I wouldn't agree to put way too large of a music group on the show for what we have room for in the studio, and then Anthony was in a bad mood tonight as well.  He even came out to the living room when I was watching TV to chew me out for Lucky going into his bathroom while he was in there peeing.  Lucky isn't allowed in that room.

I'm glass half full 99% of the time.  I'm grateful to be alive.  I think I was sad more than anything that I encountered an all day string of people who weren't having a good day.

I did have an amusing moment today when I left for work.  Someone at Ridgepointe had their car windows written on for their birthday.  I took a Kenparazzi photo because this sort of thing amuses me.

Happy Birthday random unknown neighbor.  From your "so you're telling me you're a lazy piece of shit" neighbor.  Party hard!

Unknown random neighbor's car with "party hard" written on the window.
Turned out to be the highlight of my day.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter dinner at Sonic and Kracker Nuts

Today is Easter.  But, that didn't stop Anthony and I from our usual Sunday dinner and grocery shopping mission.  The one thing that was a surprise (to me) bonus was that hardly anyone was out.  It never occurs to me that Easter is a major family kind of deal for a lot of people.  Easter egg hunting and hanging out with the Easter bunny must keep people at home.

Dinner tonight was at Sonic Drive-In at Broadway and Harrison on Tucson's far east side.  I've eaten at Sonic numerous times in my life but never with Anthony.  He did something I've rarely seen him do:  Ordered a hot dog.  He had them put it on a pretzel bun and make it Chicago style.  Personally, I'm a bun, weiner, and ketchup hot dog eater who once in a great while will add a little bit of honey mustard.  His had a ton of vegetables.  A young girl on roller skates brought us the food and I tipped her five bucks.  She didn't seem to know what to do with the money, it was kind of cute.

In a not so unusual moment while eating dinner (outside on a patio table, it was like camping... sort of) we ate in a virtually deserted restaurant as you'll see in a photo below.

We did our grocery shopping at Walmart Neighborhood Market at Broadway and Camino Seco and it was also very slow.  An empty store doesn't make for good people watching but it makes Anthony happy when we have the aisles to ourselves.  He doesn't care for crowds very much.

I hope you had a Happy Easter and the bunny person brought you some chocolate (one less creepy looking than the one you see here).

Ken Carr photoshopped into an Easter bunny costume.
Show intern Alex sent this to me today.
Silly part is, I'd probably volunteer to wear a costume like this if I had the chance.

Dinner at Sonic - Broadway and Harrison in Tucson

Another dinner at an empty restaurant...
it amazes me every time and yet, it happens often when I eat out.

We ate at these tables outside at Sonic.
Finally, a car rolled through the drive thru (on the left).

"Hi, I'm Anthony, and I get tired of the Kenparazzi"

I ordered a chicken toaster sandwich, tater tots, and a soda

Anthony's Chicago style hot dog on a pretzel bun

Shopping in a nearly deserted Walmart Neighborhood Market on Easter Sunday
at Broadway and Camino Seco.

Unsold Easter basket at Walmart Market.
Some lucky kid is going to get candy and a squirt gun on sale tomorrow.

Marley's Mellow Mood decaffeinated relaxation drink
I wonder if anyone has tried to smoke this.

Lunchables ka-bob-bles
Stick your food on a pretzel stick, like chicken nuggets and cheese.
I've done this sort of thing... when I was too poor to afford silverware.

Cacique Prune with Cereal Yogurt Smoothie
What it really should say on the bottle:  Laxitive

An abandoned orange peel on a shelf in the bread aisle.
This is one way to make your oranges cheaper, remove the peel before
you get to the checkout counter and they'll weigh less.

Kracker Nuts - "Bursting with Flavor"
I'll bet they are.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Chipoltle now serves tofu

I made a dinner run tonight for Anthony and I.  He likes Chipoltle so I went there to get his dinner, and I stopped at Paco's at Grant and Swan to get myself a California burrito.  I've tried eating Chipoltle more than once and there is something in their food that gives me a raging case of the shits.  So, I get him food there and go find myself something else to bring home.

I noticed when I was there getting Anthony his chicken bowl that there was a sign highlighting their featured item:  "Sofritas".  According to the sign, Sofritas is tofu with chiles, poblano peppers, and spices.  Tofu is sooooo disgusting in my opinion.  If I've had trouble digesting their food with meat in it, I can't imagine the explosive nature of a Sofritas burrito on my tender little digestive system.  No thank you.

After I got home, we ate dinner on the couch watching Cops on TV.  He's now watching The Little Mermaid movie, and I'm writing this.  It's probably a tie as to which one of us is being more productive with our Saturday night.

Waiting in line at Chipoltle at Grant and Swan to buy Anthony's dinner.
The back of this woman's head on the left is now internet famous.

A penis in the kitchen sink

I've read stories over the years of people seeing an image of Jesus in their toast.  I always thought it was a bit ridiculous.

Today, I spotted an image in my kitchen sink:  A penis.  Maybe there is something to seeing images in inanimate objects.

There are several faucets that have a little drip in our apartment.  The kitchen sink has been a newer one that's popped up (pardon the pun) and it's caused a pattern that has a rather phallic appearance.

Anthony despises the smell of cleaning chemicals, so I have to pick a time when he won't get too angry if I spray some Lime Away in the sink to get rid of the penis.

In the meantime, there's no disputing which gender the sink is.  It's a man, baby!

An image of a penis in the kitchen sink at the Ken Carr World Headquarters.
If the faucet dripped hot water instead of cold, it would be larger.

Sprouts are sprouting April 19 update

It turns out that Anthony really does have a green thumb.

I took a picture of the plants today and they're growing nicely.  The marigold flower plant that Jennifer at Ridgepointe gave us is into it's second cycle of flower buds, and the little flower seeds that Anthony planted have all been growing nicely.

He waters them and talks to them.  It's cute.  Now, I just need to have him do the same thing with Lucky and it'll mean less work for me.

Anthony's flower plants on April 19, 2014.
I took this picture right after he spritzed them with water.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Cool and cloudy in Tucson today

I'm feeling a little bit jealous.

I started this blog in 2009 as an extension of my branding as a radio dj.  I liked taking pictures at events I was at and thought a blog might offer people (who were interested) a chance to get a little 'behind the scenes' of my work as a dj and what happens at events I attended.  I'm no longer on the radio but I still enjoy taking pictures and telling stories to anyone who gives a crap.  If you're one of those people, I offer a huge hug of thanks for reading what my imagination drums up and checking out the visuals.

I've always been a little bit critical of my own writing skills despite using them constantly at my job.  I have a high school education.  I didn't learn the fancy way of writing that most college students learned when writing papers.  I pretty much write how I speak.  Despite this, I write more than most people while working at my job (and for fun, too).

I've had the opportunity to read a couple of things recently that Anthony has written for job related things.  He inserts big words that never occur to me should be used and has a remarkably fluid way of putting his writing together.  He's a fantastic writer.  I don't have that capability.  I write a thousand times more stuff than he does in a given year and he's got the skills.  I can't do a thing about it and maybe I don't need to.  But I can't help but be a bit jealous.  Who doesn't want to be a rock star at everything they do?

I've put a much greater effort into this blog in the last year than I ever have.  I'm writing more and posting more photos.  I decided it was a good creative outlet for me (I consider myself kind of creative) plus it gives me purpose outside of work, and the result has been it's slowly grown in page views and visits.  It's been a good experience to learn a little bit about how the internet works and what people respond to and search for.  I've forced myself to find things to post even if I've felt uninspired.  I'm not magically gifted or talented at anything but I make up for some of my shortcomings by putting in long hours of work on my projects and that includes this blog, photography, the occasional video, and whatever other creative endeavors I've taken a shot at.  I believe that it's a lot more effort for me than most people to keep from completely sucking!

Anthony's current job doesn't give him the opportunity to write much of anything.  That's too bad.  I've tried to talk him into starting his own blog so he can put that amazing skill to good use but he hasn't really had any interest.  But, I understand.  Writing a blog is a rather big undertaking.  It requires constant maintenance and new material if there is a desire to have people visit regularly plus putting yourself out to the world for everyone to see what you've created.  I've realized that it's not for everyone to do successfully.  I have seen hundreds of blogs on the internet that were started, have some regular posts, and abandoned.  I saw one the other day that stopped in 2010.  I don't know the person who wrote it, I hope they aren't dead.

If you're wondering why I thought about all of this today, it's because I took a picture of the cloudy weather.  When I downloaded it from my camera, I was thinking about what to write to go with it.  Then I started wondering what Anthony would write to describe the photo.  It would probably be something fancy and eloquent that would be about 500 words and 5000 syllables long that could be nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, and I was just going to write "Cool and cloudy day in Tucson today".  There's the difference between he and I.

It also occurred to me that I took the photo and wrote something about it and he didn't.  It made me feel a little bit better and also like I suck a little less.

I'll take it.

Cool and cloudy in Tucson today.
This was the grey view facing east of the TV station this morning.

A yellow thing removes a silver thing

I arrived at work this morning and the engineering crew was dismantling equipment from one of the live TV trucks.  It's not a sight I've ever seen, so I took a couple of photos.

They were using a yellow thing to remove the silver mast thing from the truck.  (Now you know why I'm not an engineer, I don't know the technical terms for these contraptions).

This truck had a fire at the end of March 2013.  I'm not sure what caused it except there was some sort of voltage overload involving equipment inside and a security guard that keeps an eye on a parking lot next door spotted the flames and smoke and called the fire department.  I was secretly disappointed because it happened in the evening when I wasn't at work so I didn't get a chance to get photos of the fire department at the station.  I live for excitement of any kind, you know.  It's very rare to have this sort of drama at work.

You'll see below that I did take a picture of a part of the burned electronic equipment the day after it happened.  It's taken over a year after the fire until they're finally at the point of taking what equipment they can salvage off of the truck and the remaining hulk will be towed away.

Goodbye live TV truck.  You gave us good television at places other than the station and went down in flames.... literally.

The yellow thing takes the silver thing out of that old live TV truck

This somehow reminds me of a date I've had

Part of the burned up equipment inside of the live truck.
This photo was taken on March 27, 2013 shortly after the fire.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Midnight photo art at the Ken Carr World Headquarters

My favorite camera out of the half dozen I own is my Nikon J1.  It's photos are not quite as good as my DSLR but has the fastest focusing of any camera I've ever touched (and can literally focus on a practically dark scene).  It's also cool looking (I have the white one) and easy to transport.

I was messing around with it a bit before I went to bed last night and took it outside.  I shot a few photos using a setting I had not tried before.  It was very dark except for the light of the sidewalk lamps, neighbor's porch lights, and the moon.

These came out a bit artsy looking.  I thought I'd share.

Ken Carr Photo Art:
I call this "Moon over Ridgepointe"

Ken Carr Photo Art:
I call this "One of the rare nights lately where a bunch of college age
students are not at the hot tub late soaking in the bubbles and smoking weed"

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Potato salad selfie

One of the guests (Mia from the Arizona International Film Festival) on today's TV show brought along a tub of potato salad as a gift.  I do love the potato salad, and thought it was a nice gesture.

I thought I'd commemorate the occasion with a potato salad selfie.  It had to be done.

Thanks Mia for the potato salad.
It's a potato salad selfie!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Under a blood red moon - the April 14, 2014 lunar eclipse

I made the crazy decision to stay up late last night (on a school... I mean work, night) to capture some photos of the lunar eclipse.  The shadow of the Earth is cast upon the moon when the alignment works between the sun, Earth and moon.  It's also known as a "blood moon" because when its mostly obscured by the shadow it turns a reddish color.  It's like the moon becomes a ginger for a couple of hours.

I used my Canon SX50, the camera with the crazy zoom lens, to score the photos.  One of them even ended up on KGUN 9 TV this morning.  That's a pretty awesome thing for a barely amateur photographer like me.  It may have helped that the show the photo was on happens to be the same show that I manage, but we'll pretend that's not part of the equation.

It was a clear night and a pretty spectacular view.

The start of the lunar eclipse on April 14, 2014
as seen from the balcony of the Ken Carr World Headquarters
at 11:20 p.m.

11:40 p.m. and the shadow continues to creep across the moon.

12:15 a.m. and the shadow is now 90 percent across.
You can see the reddish color that the shadow causes.

The last Kenparazzi photo of the blood moon / lunar eclipse I shot at 12:35 a.m.
That little bright thing down to the lower right is Mars.
This is the photo that was shown today on KGUN 9.