Stone Faces

A few more petroglyphs and a view of the Sandias from on top of the escarpment below the volcanoes. These petroglyphs look recent to me, but what do I really know. It’s interesting how the holes in the rock are used to form the mouth. I assume the bird represents a turkey.

The forecast for Friday is for snow. UNM’s hanging of the greens is scheduled for Friday. If the forecast holds, the hanging of the greens will be interesting.

Feds Up & Plumbed Out

Two things that are guaranteed to ruin your day are 1) reading about the latest idiotic rules the BTAF has imposed, and 2) repairing plumbing.

I had one of those visions of water leaking, so I went down to the old pump house and found a brass shutoff had cracked and was spraying water.  I shut off the water at the pump, strained and struggled to loosen connections that are at least as old as, and possible even more crusty than I am. After finally getting all the pipes apart and the main water line capped in the old pump house, I turned the water back on and all seemed well.  Later this afternoon Laurie said she could hear water dripping under the sink in the bathroom, but could not see or feel any water. I checked, and way back under the middle shelf a T-connector had cracked at the connection. I ran out to Lowe’s, bought a new T-connection, and after much trouble sawing pipe in tight quarters, I got the second leak of the day fixed.

Late this afternoon I got an email about some of the stupid rules the BATF have imposed over the past few years. If you have enough steel wool or copper cleaning pads in your pantry to make a silencer, then you are in violation of federal law (see sound/gas absorbing materials defined in 18 U.S.C 921(a)(24)). The problem is since few people know how many shredded metal cleaning pads it takes to make a silencer, I’m guessing only a few packages, and federal agents are able to pretty much decide on the spot how many it takes, then most Americans who have any variation of steel wool or copper cleaning pads in their kitchens are most likely criminals by BATF rules. If you want to come clean, you can register your stockpile of brillo pads with the BATF for $200. You will also have to submit a “no markings” variance since they don’t have serial numbers, which may cost you an additional $200.  BTW If you have any misdemeanor or felony convictions — go straight to jail.

Have you ever had a need to cut a shoestring to 14 inches? Don’t do it. You will have a machine gun by BATF rules. Never mind that you may not even own a gun, because the BATF classifies any single part used in a machine gun, or anything that can be used to make a weapon fire like a machine gun, a machine gun (see 26 U.S.C. 5845(b)). Isn’t it nice to know that you can be arrested for gun violations even if you don’t own a gun!

And doesn’t it make you feel wooly all over, and sleep better knowing the BATF is getting all those dangerous brillo pads and shortened shoe laces off the streets and out of the kitchens of we irresponsible Americans? Remember, this is the same agency that runs guns to Mexico!

The photos today are of blooms on our Christmas cactus and a backlit fading rose.

Green Eyes

Pepik has very green eyes and looks like a crazy Russian to me. He was playing for my camera, poking his head out from under the coffee table just long enough for me to snap a photo before disappearing under the table again. Our cat and camera game was fun, but when Pepik got tired of it he simply laid on the floor and stared at me.

Among some of the petroglyphs that looked more recent to me, was a kitty. Indians did not have domestic cats before the Spanish arrived, and the petroglyph looks more like a kitty than a puma or bobcat. I would guess the kitty petroglyph was done sometime in the last 500 years.


I’ve never paid close attention to petroglyphs, but while hiking around in the Petroglyph National Monument I came across several in different places. The problem is many looked modern and faked to me, but, since I’m not an expert, I can’t really say. The petroglyphs in the first photo I suspect are old because of the the patina. They are on an almost flat, high surface so they were pretty subtle. I found the petroglyphs in the second photo just plain interesting and included the view to the south to give them a sense of place. The last photo is a yucca seed pod still on the stem.

My cold was worse this morning, and I really had to work to drag myself up to take Stretch in for his monthly blood work. They said his BUN and creatinine are the same, but he’s looking really good, otherwise. We will continue on the same regimen, and take him in again next month.

Animal Day

Tristan’s and David’s birds and fish were in the mood to pose today. Guildenstern fetched himself a beer this morning before we left the house in preparation for lounging on the couch all day. Tristan prepared the Thanksgiving menu from Fine Cooking for Thanksgiving dinner, which was quite ambitious, and turned out really well.

Silly Kitties

As some may recall, I won a giant 55″ HDTV and blu ray player in June. We’ve not even watched a dozen movies on it so far, but Guildenstern likes to zone out in front of the big screen. I was doing photos of Romeo the other night and he finally got mad at me for sticking my camera in his face, but before that he was a great model.



A lady at Costco was putting out chanterelle mushrooms in the refrigerated fruit and vegetable section on Saturday. I thought they looked interesting both for eating and photographing. I looked up recipes on Fine Cooking’s website and found a recipe for Mushroom & Asparagus Shepherd’s Pie that called for a variety of mushrooms, including chanterelle. The last photo is the resulting shepherd’s pie I made from the recipe tonight. I made the mashed potatoes yesterday, so all-in-all it took three and a half hours to prepare and  40 minutes to bake. Although one could boil the potatoes while preparing other ingredients and mash them while cooking the mushrooms. That could cut an hour out of the prep time.

The Sandias had interesting clouds on them tonight. While they went through their pink phase as the sun set, this photo shows the clouds at their most interesting point.



Mushroom and Asparagus Shepherd's Pie