THREW Mikes EyEz

Original Writings, Images, Video and Artworks of Mike Hartley

1 Comment

Left out

I don’t have much in the tank today. A busy work week and starting physical therapy, but then got my wife’s bug and I was horizontal most of the free minutes I had today. It’s kind of strange when you kind of lose a day. The feeling of things missed. Knowing I haven’t lived to the fullest today. The weight of having the same to do list plus more for tomorrow.

Hell I just hope I feel better. It has been a brutal season. One thing most of us have had in common this year is we all have been sick at some point. I got to taking the flu for granted, not having had it in many years. I have the respect now. I’ve been getting the flu shot for a number of years now and will continue but knowing its a crap shoot each year I think I’ll take some additional precautions.

Anyway, was searching through some images and almost trashed this one till I saw that one unplugged wire in the lower left. I said that is a fitting photo for the day for me. Because I feel left out.

Photo by Mike Hartley

Random Thoughts of the Day

Tylenol is good for headaches.

Rest is good for the body and mind.

Physical therapy is working. Now if I can just listen to their teachings long-term and keep the exercises going.

I have no idea what I wrote yesterday.

I think that arming teachers is a bad idea. Are police going to know each teacher in each school and what is going to set them apart when they enter the building and see them with a gun? Oh yeah, I forgot, the thing that separates the teacher is the handgun. The shooter will have a rifle and more ammo and maybe explosives. We already expect far too much from our teachers. Sending them to a gunfight with a knife seems to be asking a bit much. Of course parents might address teachers with more respect if the teacher has a 45 strapped to their side? Plus how many do you have to arm to cover a school. What happens if a kid gets pissed off and goes for a teachers gun? Should we arm each of them also with a taser also so they don’t have to use lethal force on a student going for their gun? I guess you should order a lot of bullet proof vest also if you expect a teacher to run into battle. I mean you do supply your officers that safety. Lets try to come up with some better solutions please. Teachers great courage has already been on display far too often and far too many have been lost along with those many children we mourn.

I love to shoot. I shot a lot of skeet when I was younger. I’ve joined a range a few years ago and enjoy shooting handguns every 5-6 weeks. I see no reason to own a AR15 or any military weapon. I’m not saying they don’t have an application. I’m not saying they might be a blast to shoot. I’ve never shot one myself. There are parts of this country that a weapon like that may be needed. But it should be highly regulated. And I mean to highly responsible people for very specific purposes. And I can’t for the life of me understand how its harder to get a handgun by far, than to get one of these military weapons.

We shouldn’t be surprised we have a gun problem. We have been licensing people for decades that should never have a driver’s license and that is a weapon. I’m not surprise that we would sell them guns without a license at all.

I hope I feel better tomorrow and be less sarcastic.

Leave a comment


The art or skill of writing by hand. I wonder if this is even taught in schools anymore. Well I had it and you probably would never know. I wonder if the field of handwriting recognition is drying up? I wonder how many people will aspire to become a calligrapher?

You see I got on this thought by my PT appointment, where they sent me a number of forms to fill out by email  by hand. I find it long periods now to where I put the pen to paper more than to jot down a number or quick thought. This was about 7 pages of forms. Each time I write now for any time I usually print because my cursive is getting a bit shaky.

Photo by Mike Hartley

So I’m thinking about the lost art of writing. But I say, how can that be, I write people all the time. More writing than I’ve ever done. Maybe more people would be comfortable if I returned to writing on the paper pad and then they wouldn’t be able to read all the useless dribble I write.

Anyway I’m always impressed by handwritten notes. Cards and thoughts at special times. Something that I can sit on my dresser or tack to the wall over or beside my desk. I keep the little notes my better half sneaks in my lunch pail from time to time.

I still keep a legal pad and pen beside my desk. Sometimes its comfortable to lay back in the chair and jot down a few thoughts.

I never thought about becoming a writer till very late in life and it’s still not an objective. I’m just discovering it late in life and enjoying it. But I don’t write, I type. I would never have started writing if I had to use pen and paper. You see my thoughts come too fast and if I can’t get them down on paper (computer screen) quickly they are gone. And I can type much faster than I can write with pen so now all of a sudden something that was intimidating and impractical is now easily possible.

And just as I start enjoying this I start having issues with my left hand screwing with my speed and accuracy. I guess that is age talking to me and the punishment I’ve put my hands through. Such is life. I will adapt and hopefully some PT will help teach and fix this nerve problem.

Random Thoughts of the Day

Sometime children make a lot of sense. Today was one of them.

Now I remember why I get the leaf blower out to sweep. I grabbed a broom today by mistake.

It would be nice to be consulted when things like schedule changes are communicated the same day.

People saying “please and thank you” is a lost art form of communication.

Pain is in the mind of the beholder.

1 Comment

Sun on Skin is a win

No this isn’t about the harmful effects or medically related in any way. This is more of a spiritual thing with me. I was taking some recycling out and paused for a good while just to feel the warmth of the sun on my skin. It’s the first time in a great while I’ve worn shorts outside for any period of time comfortably. A thin short sleeve shirt and no socks.

I would have gotten the flip-flops out but this heat wave is short-lived I hear. And it looks like a stretch of wet weather but we all know weather forecasting beyond 24 hours is like betting in Vegas.

But that warmth today brought back my inspiration for my favorite seasons (anything else but winter). Oh the days where I can wake, pull on a pair of shorts and wander outside, soak up some sun sitting on the porch chair or in the hammock in the afternoon. Oh how I’m looking forward to that.

Come on Sun
Photo by Mike Hartley

Well I guess I can cope a bit longer. I do get another day (Wednesday) to enjoy some warm sun and then I’ll just hope for the best till I can return to where the bodies of water meet the shores.

Random Thoughts of the Day

Well, I hear the closest city (Baltimore) and one I’ve enjoyed going to for decades is the most dangerous city in the country says USA Today. Well, that doesn’t lead to the most comforting feeling.

My favorite leftover food it pizza. At least it was this evening.

I hope the PT I’ve started helps. If the first visit was an indication, I think it will.

There is a lot to do when your better half is under the weather.

Leave a comment

Simple Sunday

The sun in Sunday did appear today and melted that white stuff. Well for the most part, there are some large patches of ground still covered but you can see it won’t be long with the warm temps coming. The snow was pretty to see, we haven’t had that much this year. No time to just burn a day or two or four shoveling and sitting around the house getting cabin fever.

Coffee Table
Photo by Mike Hartley

But again we dodge the snow bullet. Lucky us. Seems like the kids certainly have registered some time off despite little accumulation. Safety first is always a good motto but its hard not to reflect on the days waiting at the bus stop in 3-4 inches of snow with more coming down. Such is life, time change, usually for the better but not always.

Dish reflection
Photo by Mike Hartley

We are more in charge of this than we like to think. I’m starting to realize everyone can make that difference. And I’m going to get started on doing my part. Well, maybe a little each day as time allows.

The first thing I changed today is not getting enraged on the road. Had two people almost cause accidents today cutting people off at high speeds. I have no idea how one guy missed me but he got a car about a mile up the road that slowed his roll. Going to just try to survive on the road from now on and that means staying away from traffic.

I can’t wait till I have a few minutes to set up that dash cam. Should be fun capturing some of that action.

Also on Monday I hope to get over to the shelter to make a donation to our furry friends. Maybe I’ll grab a few frames while I’m there. I’m having withdraw because my Son was over with his dog on Friday.

And hopefully by the afternoon a little sun will peak out and I’ll have a few minutes to grab some fresh frames to share.

So here’s to a flying start to the week filled with good intentions, positive vibes and plans with friends and family.

Random Thoughts of the Day

I still like using a viewfinder instead of the LED display. Maybe its just habit though?

How does Monday come around several times a week?

Time to turn things the right direction and get photographing again.

Leave a comment

Starchy Saturday

When I think of starchy, I think of food that sticks to your ribs. Well today I’m sticking to my better half who is under the weather. Its my chance to step up and return the favor she did caring for me last month. Of course I’m nowhere near as talented at it as she is. And we all know how men need much more care because we get sicker and for longer periods. Or is that we are sick and we don’t have periods. Well one of those.

Anyway early signs look like the flu but I’m not sure yet. It would be about time, being she works in the health care industry and we all know they are exposed all day long. Speaking of which I express my props for those who are health workers. You must be beat already and the season isn’t over. My respect and admiration to all those people.

Stick to ME.
Photo by MIke Hartley

But back to being there for someone. I’m not going to dwell on the wonderful job I will do in helping her mend. I’d like to say how important it is to be there for each other as we grow older. I got hit with at few things in my 50’s that came at me hard. I think it shook both of us. It did many good and some wonderful things for us. The first is we got our wills and medical directives all laid out.

It got us a picture into where we stood now but also got us thinking about a number of different futures. It got us talking about retirement and options. About how long we were going to work. When we would start our Social Security. Also the wonderful options available for health care and long-term care. And a few years later we are still talking about that. Of course I’m still a young 60 and healthy today so there is no retirement in sight for at least a handful of years.

But I don’t care because I have the best thing anyone can have. I have a family and friends that care about me. Yeah I love spending time together on the weekends but working during the week just makes me miss everyone and when we do get the chance to be together its all that more special. I feel that each visit is this special treat I’m getting. A oportunity to share and love. As I age I’ve noticed the many hugs I share getting stronger. And words of love, appreciation and thanks being shared more often and very meaningful.

Of course health changes every thought and option people have for the future. It changes how you look at life. Each day I try to remind myself to use it wisely. To appreciate it. To appreciate those you share it with. And maybe do something special big or small each day. But having that one person who has proved they are there for you in sickness and health is a calming thing for my heart. I hope she feels the same.

A little snow

Then the snow started. Took this just before dark tonight. I should go out this evening and try a few frames. It will have to be after the Terps game. Looks like a good snow for photos because it was sticking to the trees. Didn’t get much from the looks of it. Maybe 2-3 inches. In Buffalo it probably wouldn’t even register as measurable snowfall.

Back yard in snow.
Photo by MIke Hartley

Here I’ve let a day of the weekend slip by. Now I’m going have to try to do double timing it on Sunday.

Random Thoughts of the Day

Good thing I don’t think out loud.

It was nice to laugh and to be able to make people laugh and smile today.

Sometimes the best thing isn’t as good as it’s cracked up to be.

Environmental change needed in my office.

I’m so tired I can’t describe it.

1 Comment

Feeling blue

Just feeling a little blue this day. Couldn’t seem to get the engine started fully till now and this is when I should be getting some rest. Torn between the desire to wind down and relax and utilizing every minute to accomplish something or another. Running late on a lot of things. Worried about a lot of people. Can’t seem to come to a point where I can breathe easy about anything it seems.

Such is life, I had a good stretch and now I have to tighten up and power through as some say. Got some tough weeks coming up but looking forward to some challenges also. While doing this might seem like pressure, its kind of a release. I’m trying to use it to help stay positive in difficult times. Its easy to slip back into sweating the small stuff. This reminds me of the basics. Does the family have its health, do we all have a roof and food. Then life is good.

Feeling the blue.
Photo by Mike Hartley

So I’m going to make like the reflection at the waterline and smile like this boat is and really get rolling on Saturday.

Random Thoughts of the Day

Did you ever have a bad week at work and then go by a lotto ticket with that specifically in mind and walk out the door saying to yourself “come on baby?”

I wish I could remember what my last thought was. It was a really good one. I lost it between the kitchen and the basement. I will probably have to stub my toe to remember it though.

A wise friend of mine said the other day that he is looking for more “win win” situations in work and life. I think that is good advice for all of us. The days of “win-lose” should be looked at with disrespect. Greed should not be idolized. One can be very successful but not greedy.

Leave a comment

School thoughts and Missing someone

I’d like to go back to the day, before people went to schools and started shooting. Days where we didn’t have to train our children what to do for CODE X emergencies or whatever terms the administrators determine and use. I’d like to return when the only expression you saw from a parent running to a school with, was a huge smile.

Where did we lose control as a society that this is the norm and not the exception? It’s not our law enforcement, they are the reactionary unit. Its our families and health profession and each and every one of us. We have huge numbers of people falling through the cracks. Our disposable society has now extended to its people in large numbers.

Lets all make school a place for children and apple a day, not for bullets and our nightly newscast. 
Photo by Mike Hartley

It’s not just the disturbed student who become disassociated and or outcast and get lost in delusional worlds of fantasy. Its your disturbed co-worker, who’s combination of financial troubles or marital issues or an endless list of the days stresses just snap. Is it the abandoned veteran with no support in dealing with horrific events. Its anyone who doesn’t have a close friend or family member to send up that flag, or catch them writing something disturbing or going down a path that leads to a tragic event.

Tragic events are nothing new. The volume of them indicates a deeper problem. As we all are deeply touched by such senseless carnage, we all need to look out for each other more. Metal detectors, more gun laws and arming teachers isn’t going to stop this. Only taking each person, making sure they are ok, and if not helping them get the help they need not to hurt anyone. And that falls on all of us.

Missing the abuse

Ah the beginning of spring training. The time of year I would reconnect with one of my best friends from my early youth. We were both big baseball nuts. Both playing in our neighborhood fields and in leagues. We also had a love of supporting our professional teams. Those just happened to be different, while we usually played on the same team growing up. We were very close in our youth. We lived in the same neighborhood, went to the same school. Worked a few jobs together and would kill days on end playing sports together.

But right after high school we went different directions and lost touch for a while. In the last decade we really reconnected but because of our distance it was just email but those mails were something that felt very close like our youth. Like we picked up where we left off as we always had done over the years, because we knew the time in our neighborhood days was special.

Anyway I miss the high level abuse and giving it right back. We would go back and forth with ruthless digs and slights. It was war. There was no quarter given on either side. And it was fun, very fun because we knew we were always on the same team, no matter where our favorites played or resided.

So in that spirit but a G rated version to my friend. I hope you’re listening and if you can’t hear I’ve provided a picture because the YANKEES are going to tee off on the Birds this year.

Yankees Rule
Photo by Mike Hartley

Random Thoughts of the Day

I find I have fewer random thoughts on tragic days like today.

I don’t know why, but I feel the need for pizza.

A happy Valentines day to all.