Experiment with Corot

I was working to see if I could turn Corot’s woman with a pearl to a cover image.

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Would somebody turn out the lights when we’re all gone?

I heard on NPR today that Tuttle’s Farm in Dover NH is closing. It was a kind of upscale farm store that they tried to pass off as a mom and pop operation. It went on sale on Tuesday for 3.35 million dollars. That’s no mom and pop farm but there’s no denying the Tuttles have been around a long time, the farm was founded in 1632. That’s eleven generations starting with John Tuttle who only had his father’s axe and two pewter candle holders after a hurricane sank the ship he arrived on.

The Tuttles can answer the questions: Who are we? How long have we lived in this place? What do we value? Well they could until last Tuesday. Now they’ve joined the rest of us. After three hundred and fifty years of hardship and struggles I finally gave up too. It was a few years before the Tuttles but since my family was already here when John arrived I figure we had an even run. It’s just that NPR and the New York Times didn’t do Sunday fluff pieces on my departure. Maybe I’ll take over from where Ben Ames Williams left off and write the rest of the story myself and get a spot on NPR too.  It’s a changing world folks and someone has to remember what it was like because it was good even if it was hard in a lot of places.

I think I’ll just let the Tuttles speak for all of us that have been displaced. Just remember to take off a couple of zeros when you read about the price of the family heritage.

.Forty years ago, “Life” magazine did an article on the Tuttle Farm that many of you may remember having seen.  The title of the article was “300 Years on the Same Piece of Land”. The ten-page article featured lots of great pictures and a story compelling enough to bring Will and Lucy home to the farm where we felt we belonged, where we have made our lives.

Over the past several years, we have been wrestling mightily with a decision that we have now most reluctantly but realistically taken: to put the business, the farm and the farmhouse up for sale.  Accordingly, it has been listed with LandVest, a real estate broker affiliated with Christie’s and other multi-listing companies, that deals with large estates, farms, orchards, vineyards and the like.

There are many reasons for our decision, all having to do with exhaustion of resources:  our bodies, our minds, our hearts, our imagination, our equipment and machinery, our finances.  Our area has been hit very hard by the current economic crisis.  Many people are out of work, while a good number of our older customers have lost much of their investment income.  Over the past several years, customers have gone from using shopping carts to using shopping baskets to using just their hands to gather what they can afford to purchase.

There is a large part of both of us that wishes things were different, but there is also a part that is ready to take off the harness and let ourselves out to pasture, to visit family and play with friends, to pursue whatever dreams we might have, to sleep in…. or even to sleep!   The land is protected by the conservancy so it cannot be made to grow houses.  We are comforted by that, and feel sure that you are too.

We hope that we have your best wishes as we undertake the process of letting go.  It might take some time, although we have our fingers crossed  for a speedy transition now that our decision has been made.  We shall do our best to keep you up to date.

The Kid’s book Tuttle’s Red Barn

There’s a book about my family too Ben Ames Williams based Come Spring on the adventures of Mima Robbins and her husband Joel Adams

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Swedish Action Movies

For some reason the recommendation analytics of various web sites have developed a schizophrenic reaction to what they think I like. Take Amazon for example. Somehow they have decided I like romance novels with Fabio on the cover. Now I’m not really sure because I don’t read romance novels but wasn’t Fabio big in the nineties? Does that mean that Amazon thinks I’ll like old romance novels or that Fabio has some reverse Dorian Grey thing going on where he’s perpetually young on book covers? I don’t even think he’s still hawking I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter. Maybe Amazon thinks I like these books because I looked up what they put in the yellow glop that’s not butter?

Netflix is no exception to this rule. Because I watched the Girl With the Dragon Tattoo they decided I liked foreign action films. Some of them are pretty cool, in Ong-Bak: Muay Thai Warrior Tony Jaa stomps his way through the Thai scenery without any wires or CGI. It’s the kind of movie you can watch with the sound off. The French got in on the action bonanza with District B-13 in which David Belle the Parkour expert bounces his way through an Escape From Paris. Apparently the French government hasn’t mastered the art of blackmailing Snake Plisskin yet because aside from the French it looks like every other Escape From movie I’ve ever seen.

The crux of this meandering story is that Netflix has now decided that my absolute favorite movies are Scandinavian action movies. I wasn’t even aware that there were enough Scandinavian action movies to be a category by themselves. Ingmar Bergman move your dreary self over it’s time for Vikings and Private Eyes and Nazi Zombies all speaking like the Swedish Chef from the Muppets. Roon! Zeere-a ere-a Nezee Zumbeees in zee snoo thet hefe-a cume-a tu iet oooor breeens. Um gesh dee bork, bork!   That’s Død Snø (Dead Snow) – the Norwegian Nazi-zombie-action-comedy was chosen for Sundance 2009.

I think I’ll go watch some more strange movies made in distant lands. Which one do you think I should watch first?

Let the Right One In
Head- On (german film)
Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love
The Beat That My Heart Skipped
Pan’s Labyrinth
The Motorcycle Diaries
Y Tu Mama Tambien
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
8 1/2
Goldfish Memory
Chungking Express
City of God
House of Flying Daggers
Black Book
The Lives of Others
Run Lola Run
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Russian Dolls
Brotherhood of the Wolf
Dans Paris
La Dolce Vita

Memories of Murder
Lady Vengeance
City of the Lost Children
Maria Full of Grace
Three Colors Trilogy
Infernal Affairs
Memory of a Killer
The Orphanage
Gooodbye Lenin!
High Tension
Breaking News
The Proposition
Le Vie en Rose

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Poser Problems

Just in case you were thinking I could do anything I offer up this horrible experiment in Poser Pro. Blue Man Group or something. I’m going to have to tackle the learning curve on this one. Maybe when I can sit for longer than five minutes at a stretch.

My experiments with Blue Mice worked out better. This one got thrown.

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Beautiful Things

Ah the best laid plans of mice and men…..   Well I’ve manage to post something every day even with the back problem but some of them have been on Superficial Gallery which has a bit more adult content. What have I been working on standing up? Thanks to Jenny Hudock who kicks me into gear every once in a while I’ve started rebuilding my graphics capability. I’m sure Kim will be happy to hear I’m not going to have to send her stuff for minor tweaks anymore.

But considering I’ve forgotten how half the layering functions work and can’t sit for longer than fifteen minutes I think this work in progress is coming out well.

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Everyone be happy because I’ve got cookies

Like any child that prefers to play with the box Charlotte’s favorite toy is the stick she picked out from the woodpile as a puppy. Her second favorite is a milk bottle with a ball in it. The expensive toys from Petco just sit around gathering dust. The problem I have is that she thinks like a dog and anything she likes has to be hidden because SOMEONE ELSE MIGHT GET THEM. This is all very logical according to canine thinking but irritating when she’s looking for something to play with and everything is hidden. So weekly I have to go around and retrieve dog toys and put them in the Chinese urn where they belong.

This of course causes a great deal of anxiety because SOMEONE IS GETTING THEM. You’ve never seen such a sad dog when my ex tried to throw away stick and milk bottle. I had to secretly retrieve stick from the trash. Milk bottle gets replaced every time it gets too chewed up. Charlotte thinks it’s magic but before I digress too far into dog toys I’ll tell you I dropped stick squarely on Charlottes head.

CLONK it went and Charlotte did the don’t whip me no more daddy thing. Before you call the SPCA please be aware that the stick was dropped because somebody was jumping up and trying to get her dog toys. We have had discussions about jumping especially when I’m not feeling well, it’s like a forty five pound slab of muscle being thrown at you full force. Poor Charlotte she knows she’s been BAD for the jumping and I’ve thrown a stick at her. Her tail is between her legs and she’s looking to see If I’m going to throw hockey puck on a rope too. Well I have to fix this right away.

We have varying grades of dog cookies in the house. There are small biscuits for every day treats, beefy biscuits for special treats, peanut butter biscuits for extra good dog and peanut butter biscuits with actual peanut butter on them for those what the hell would I do without you moments. Going for the peanut butter biscuit box gets me a tail wag. Getting out the jar of peanut butter gets preemptive sitting, lying down and speaking so she’ll have all her commands done and I can give her the cookie right away. Cookies fix everything.

It got me to thinking. I wish I could fix people with cookies. Nikki and Jenny definitely need a peanut butter biscuit with peanut butter on it. Bill needs a whole soup bone at the moment. Ryan could do with a beefy stick. Katt would have to get one of the special organic biscuits from Bark Harbor for putting up with the Navy moving crew. If I’m giving out cookies I’m going to make everyone happy. Can’t give a cookie to Jenny and forget James and Devon. Penny and Purrdey deserve cookies for always cheering me up and the same for Kammi and Telltale. Patrick needs some snausages for reminding me that I have Jazz in the house. Chuck needs a bacon strip for always being there to help and Vickie for volunteering Chuck. I’m not sure where Becki and Kim are right now but I’m pretty sure Kim’s  Bailey, Tyson and Portia would take some. Heck I’m going to give cookies to everyone and get tails wagging from Germany to Idaho

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Impossible Bottle

You’ve all seen a ship in the bottle. Some old geezer spent hour figuring out how to get the hull into the bottle then very carefully used a string to raise the masts and rigging before sealing the bottle.  Today they call them impossible bottles. How did they get a deck of cards in there? I can figure it out when there’s no cellophane on there. Breaking a seal on a pack of cards just requires a hair dryer. Then it’s just a matter of slipping the empty box, slipping the cards back in one by one, and putting that seal back on. I’m sure there’s a trick for the cellophane too. Same thing with the tennis ball. It’s just a matter of using an inflation needle from a sports ball and sucking the air out then re-inflating it once it’s inside. Part of the whole trick of these things is they’re inside the bottle which makes it hard to examine a tennis ball for tiny holes especially when they’ve been arranged so you can’t see them.

Those bottles are like bar bets. Never take the bet that someone else can put more in a bottle than you can because there’s a trick that makes you a sucker. You have to go a long way to find a real Impossible bottle. They exist it’s called a Klein bottle. It’s simple just follow the math.

The “figure 8” immersion (Klein bagel) of the Klein bottle has a particularly simple parameterization. It is that of a “figure-8” torus with a 180 degree “Mobius” twist inserted:

The parameterization of the 3-dimensional immersion of the bottle itself is much more complicated. Here is a simplified version:


for 0 ≤ u < 2π and 0 ≤ v < 2π.

Is your head hurting by now? Mine too. Even the words hurt. It’s a non-orientable surface with no identifiable “inner” and “outer” sides. a closed surface with only one side; formed by passing one end of a tube through the side of the tube and joining it with the other end. It’s a Möbius strip in three dimesnions. Basically if an ant starts crawling on the outer part of the bottle it will eventually get back to the outer part again only upside down. It’s a real Impossible Bottle and you can get them in beer steins now too.

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