THREW Mikes EyEz

Original Writings, Images, Video and Artworks of Mike Hartley

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Around the Block

I’m feeling good about this week in some ways and others I’m very stressed about. But that is another post. Today I’m excited to keep the streak going of posting some new shots and thoughts. And today’s thoughts drift towards this coming weekend. It marks another year of my Mom’s passing and of course Memorial Day where I think and respect my families service. So a trip to Arlington is on the agenda for Sunday morning.

This is a period of time I usually try not to much to think about. There was a 12 day period where my Mom was in hospice that was gut wrenching. I never will forget that even though I remember many good times, much more often.

I think I’ll spend a few hours they’re doing some shooting after my visit. I’m also going to do some walking this weekend around the railroad tracks trail near my home for some nature shots. I’ve done enough building/city for a little bit.

The Block
Photo by Mike Hartley

Life is lived one blood test to the next.

It’s what you do that counts each day.

Fun is taking things off your to do list. Well not really but it does feel good.

I think I slept 5 hours in a row. Can’t remember doing that in some time. Of course staying up 26 hours straight helps make that easy.

Do you remember? No.

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My daughters favorite color. One of these days when I strike it rich, I’ll have to buy her one of those yellow VW Beetles. Or any car she wants. But until then she’s on her own. I thought I’d start out with something bright today being the sun is again refusing to make much of an appearance today. And they just gave the long-term forecast and it looks like Friday before it comes around again. That’s a depressing thought.

Photo by Mike Hartley

Had another wonderful meal at Stella Notte in Ellicott City Friday night. Also had the entertainment of it being a prom night with all the young’ins out for dinner in the best dresses and suits/tux’s before the dance. I enjoy watching that interaction and thinking back. What an awkward mess I was back then. Some might say nothing has changed. And then again, everything has changed. I have confidence (not always a lot) but enough to be comfortable in my skin now without getting so toasted that I can’t remember enjoying myself.

You see, I didn’t have a lot of discipline as a youth. I avoided dealing with feelings by numbing them. Not the best of ideas I’ve had. But I lacked the skills needed to deal with some things. Of course nobody is truly ready for what life can throw at them. That is why we need mentors and parents and good leaders and coaches and teachers and a community that does the right things.

Being it’s graduation season also, I offer this advice. Be yourself, don’t be afraid of being yourself, being yourself is the best fun in life and when you get older you won’t regret trying to be someone else. And get a ride when you need one.

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I think I found the Ice Cream Scoop I’ve been looking for all my life. Actually a sculpture called “the Cardinal.”

Scoop this.
Photo by Mike Hartley

I should get moving this morning, but its Saturday and after traveling last weekend, I find it relaxing to be at home again. And its fun getting time to write and post a few things. My better half’s sister is in town from across the country. It’s special seeing someone you only get to see once or twice a year at best. Those times are remembered and not taken for granted.

Got a special test coming up. Need to find my next good luck charm. I think I have an idea for that and I think I’ll make it myself.

It’s time to crank up the tractor and clean up some of the homestead today. So I bid farewell for a bit.

Two scoops.
Photo by Mike Hartley

Did you ever? Well yeah!

I discovered they make a matching color cover for my oil cap for my car. Now that’s vain but I’m still interested.

If there were any cross I could bear for my children, I would.

The older I get the less I Facebook. That is probably good news for the younger folk.

Trying to define sane and insane is insanity.

Do you ever wonder? Not since this administration took over.

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Shouldn’t the rider be the one wearing the helmet? Sort of like the way this country is going. Everything seems to be ass backwards. Instead of moving ahead we are paralyzed. Instead of taking care of serious problems, we are focused on new ones of our own creation. Instead of getting spending under control, we’re pissing all over the place.

Photo by Mike Hartley

Things lately seem to be very split in perception. And each side thinks the other is totally biased and corrupt and bad for America. I wish I saw a way out of this before now. In some ways freedom of the press is exactly what is being used against each other. Selective news, extreme statements not substantiated with a factual base, personal assaults based on gender or race.

For every Republican that thinks Trump is draining the Washington swamp is a Democrat thinking the swamp is now covering the country. I really don’t see a way, such a divided country can continue. Even if Trump has done something illegal and is impeached then that will galvanize the Republican base that thinks he was unfairly run out-of-town. And this is exactly what our adversaries love to see. A fractured country. An economically weakened country. A country without strong leadership.

It’s really a sin. People on both sides failing to stay fully educated. People not willing to listen to each other. People always having to talk or yell over each other. Hell we might as well line up on two sides and get it over with because I still think its coming to that unless someone who is seen as having everyone’s interest at heart, who is SMART, Articulate, has Character (not a character) and can rally the people without a war to back it up, can save us. Of course no one person can save us and if anyone is proving that right, the character in office now is proving that. For in his own words “I ALONE, can fix this”. Well, you can’t and it’s very evident. It’s a strong team of people under a strong leader and communicator. And you will never wake up to that fact either.

So in the mean time its back to the range and getting my HQL and stocking up for a rainy day. Don’t worry, I look at shooting as a sport. And I hope that day never comes where I look at it as something else.

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Going in

Can you dig it? It’s the start of my weekend and we are off and running. Well it would actually be good if I we’re running but I’ll start off by walking each day. And the walk today will be a few long ones I hope. For I must get this body in better shape for the beach. I guess some yard work that needs to be done will help in that cause also.

Photo by Mike Hartley

Well, the news cycle seems to have slowed at least a little bit from that breakneck speed it was traveling at. Good thing, I don’t plan on watching much tube this weekend with maybe a few minutes of some NBA action. Now the finals, that is something I’ll watch more than a few minutes of.  That tube is an addictive little beast. If I’m not careful I find myself in front of it more and more. Very bad for the physical health. And bad for the mental health depending on your viewing habits.

If I’m lucky enough to get out for a drive today it’s certainly a top down type of day. And you can’t ask for more than that. Well maybe a supercharger would be nice but I’ll settle for a sunny day, the convertible and my health.

I believe that Slim (our resident black snake) thinks he is our pet or something. He has been very friendly the last few days making constant appearances, even on the front porch and under our cars and by the trash cans and on the steps. I’m not going to mess with him, he is the rodent defense and he does a fine job.

Well, time to get outside and take the cameras with me. Will check in with another post later today. Got a few things to get off my mind, so to speak.

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Hump day

Another great day ahead. The weekend is on the horizon and the plans are laid. Friends, family and fun. So let the show begin. The first step today is to put the hammock outside and my backside in it for a short bit. For the SUMMER temps are here in a big way. And that means getting OUTSIDE. But I’ve been listening about skin cancer and knowing someone with it, I think I’ll be at least careful enough to wear some sunscreen, after decades of ignoring proper skin care. And I hope you all use the same logic. Never to late to start behaving responsibly. Well everything in moderation also.

Photo by Mike Hartley

I see the market is making an adjustment today. Won’t be the last one. Surprised it took this long. Then again if I were financially smart I wouldn’t still be working for someone else. So go with your gut. Very wise people have lost money in the markets.

Maybe we as a country are going to be forced to come together shortly to govern ourselves, but together in a peaceful way and through wise decisions hammered out by getting the best ideas and people to implement them. Obviously our experiment with one person or one party who has all the right ideas to fix everything isn’t panning out as many had hoped for. And those on both side need to know that listening, not screaming is what is needed.

OK enough soapbox for the day. Oh yeah, I’ve been meaning to apologize for my lack of following my favorite blogs the past few weeks and sending my likes. But I’m looking forward to getting back to my regular browsing and reading and enjoying the special work you do that inspires or just makes me smile or think. I hope you all are well.

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Tuesday thoughts

The kind of day that has me totally unfocused. A brutal news cycle of disturbing events. The blood test coming up for my cancer check. Still not sleeping well and in the middle of the work week. So the effort to regain direction and positive spirit has begun. Actually I did something on the way in today that made me feel great. The top down on the car is a great thing to pick up ones spirits.

Photo by Mike Hartley

So I’m going to BUILD on that start and go flying into the weekend on a roll. I did some shooting last weekend and it felt great. Hope to keep that momentum up and do some local shooting.

Interesting to see the difference in coverage. No wonder our country is so divided.

I’m so proud of all my children. They are GOOD people.

There is magic in travel. But there is peace at home.

Now I know why I write things down often.

Looked at the weather report for tomorrow. Just made a reservation to hit the Snowball Stand for relief.