Mittwoch, 29. Februar 2012

Trail Dog

Just because every boy needs a dog to follow him around

Samstag, 25. Februar 2012

Heidelberg at Night

More photos from the Fatherland. This blog's selection comes from a midnight excursion into my neighboring city of Heidelberg. This city is fun. Not only to photograph, but to simply walk around in. It dates back to before the time of Karl der Grosse (Charlemagne), and it the location of one of the three original Universities created during his reign. Needless to say, this city is old, like staircases and houses that're 2-3 times older than our constitution, old. It's also a really photographed/painted city and after looking at a few displays by local photographers I figured I'd give it a shot. I didn't get anything near as good as what I was trying to emulate, but I was really happy with my results. My favorites shot down below. Feel free to leave a comment as to which one is your favorite.(If this page ends up in German the link to the comments section is "kommentare" down where you normally find the comments link.)

This one isn't all that arsty, but the story behind it makes me laugh. So basically I was in the process of setting up this shot when a gaggle of drunk gals walks by. The see someone standing in the middle of the plaza with a tripod and camera and they obviously think he's setting up to take a photo of them. So in a fit of giggles and drunken hiccups they came running over begging for a picture. I tried to ignore them at first. But after ten minutes of them shouting for me to take a picture, and me remaining stoically silent it was clear they weren't going anywhere. I tried to appease them with one word answers like "Ja", "Monnem", and "Na klar" but that only made them more interested. Finally I consented and set my camera to stun, and after a couple of photos of appeasement they decided they wanted me in the photo as well. Well as the evidence clearly suggests working with drunks is a slippery slope, but finally after they felt significantly photographed and I'd declined to join them in their weekend escapades they went their way and I went mine. It was probably one of the weirdest things I've ever experienced but in the end entertaining.

The pathway that follows the Neckar to the Old City

The Center Market Plaza, complete with Cathedral

This staircase is older than Columbus and is one of the many paths up to the Castle. If you look carefully you can see an outline of one of the walls in the background.

Still playing with my Panorama Software, but here's the Bridge and Castle lit up at night.

A Panorama of the Bridge

This one is actually in Mannheim and may look familiar. My final tram home wasn't coming for another hour so I hustled down to the Watertower to try this shot I'd had in my mind for awhile. It's roughly 330 degrees around, and I need to go back for a second try because some of the shots didn't line up too perfectly, but I figured I'd show off the trial.

Well that's it. I hope you enjoyed this photos and maybe felt like you spent an evening walking the streets of Heidelberg with me.

Mittwoch, 8. Februar 2012

Why I'm a lit major.

I'm sure all of you have heard of Harry Potter. Maybe even watched a movie or read a book or two about him. I've never been a Harry Potter trivia buff, and have only ever stood in line once for a midnight Harry Potter showing, but one thing I do love are books, and making connections and patterns with the characters in them. Some of you may have seen this floating around lately.

If you've read the books you'll know what I'm talking about. And I've seen some of friends say to themselves "Wow that blows my mind", and honestly it's really cool, and I feel like a late night infomercial salesman when I say this, "but wait there's more!" The following comments are a conversation between a buddy and I as my brain started going literary crazy. 30 min later this is what we had.

  • Braden Karl LeSueur remind me....what is this meaning
    53 minutes ago ·
  • Jenny Porritt There are no words that express my love for Harry Potter.
    50 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas I wonder if Dumbledore is supposed to be death then? In the final book Voldemort gets the Elder Wand from Dumbledore. Snape becomes loyal to Dumbledore after Lillies death, and he despises Harry(brought back to the wizard world by Dumbledore) who is a part of Lilly that lived on past death. Harry gets the cloak from Dumbledore, and who else does he meet after he dies.. Mr. Dumbledore.
    45 minutes ago ·
  • Jared Keetch Yeah. Dumbledore could indeed be the one who died for power. However, because of the way he died (arranging his death with Snape), I think that Dumbledore mended his ways BEFORE he met death, and, like Harry, eventually greeted death like an old friend. Therefore, I do like Voldemort as a representation of the first Peverell brother better.
    42 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas no.. I mean Dumbledore is DEATH. The one who gives each wizard in the myth his object
    39 minutes ago · · 1
  • Seth Thomas he's also the only person other than harry who possesses each item at least once in his life.
    38 minutes ago ·
  • Jared Keetch AhAh.
    38 minutes ago ·
  • Jared Keetch I understand now. I actually think that theory is pretty cool.
    38 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas makes me wonder what the river, and bridge mean?
    38 minutes ago ·
  • Jared Keetch You're the Lit. major. :). I'm just a kid who likes books.
    37 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas ‎:P Well it's fun
    37 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas also wasn't snape an orpan as well?
    37 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas if so then voldemort, snape, and harry all grew up without family
    36 minutes ago ·
  • Jared Keetch Yep. They indeed were all orphans, who took refuge at Hogwarts, finding their "home" there
    35 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas and all were under Dumbledore's tutelage there.. so basically we have symbolically the same individual with the same nurturing and surroundings who all grew into different people depending in their choices...
    33 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas a point that's shown very clearly in the very first book in which Harry chooses not to be in Slytherin, unlike his previous counterparts.
    32 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas I think I feel an essay coming on :)
    32 minutes ago ·
  • Jared Keetch This book is SO brilliant. And all those people who say that the 7th book was written with no thought. Ha.
    31 minutes ago ·
  • Seth Thomas
    If you want to go gospel on it, you also get the plan of salvation... Harry= Celestial(Has all the Deathly Hallows(Covenants), and uses them correctly(Virtuous living)), Snape=Terrestial(He's good but can never allow himself to be free of the mistakes of his past), Voldemort=Telestial(No remorse or willingness to better himself). Hogwarts= The World. Dumbledore=Christ/God. Each one is placed into the 'World' and always have access to "God", and each one is allowed to make their own choices. Choices that in the end result in who that person becomes. Voldemort rejects Dumbledore, Snape is on terms with Dumbledore but often disagrees with him, and Harry accepts Dumbledore as a tutor and mentor.
    23 minutes ago · · 1
  • Seth Thomas
    Only Harry however is able to overcome the evil inside him (the horcrux), and this happens only after he dies. Strangely enough he's met by Dumbledore in a very heavenly looking train station, and it is there that he is freed from the evil inside him. This also fits into the Hallows Myth in the fact that Dumbledore/Christ/Death are all symbolically holding the keys of death, and even though all die only Harry lives on. Given that the series ends there we never experience Harry's death, and so symbolically speaking Harry is immortalized. This is done primarily through the epilogue in which Harry is not only shown as having a happy life, but is also immortalized with his Wife, Friends, and Children. Who are also now being sent off on their own to Hogwarts *cough**cough* The World.
    15 minutes ago · · 1

I highly doubt J.K. Rowling meant all of this when she wrote the stories, but as humans we actually understand everything through symbols, and we use them consciously and subconsciously to communicate, and ever since mankind first learned to communicate we have been drawn to telling stories with symbols. There's alot more to it, but I just couldn't help but smile when I saw what came out. This is why I'm a Literary Analysis Major. It's just so FREAKING FUN, and in my opinion stories are a direct link to what the science calls the subconscious, and religion calls the soul. This is why poetry, books, movies, video games and whatever story telling medium that gets invented next seem to become a part of us, and we apart of them (Be careful you don't get too far drawn in or else you end up being someone dressed up as an overweight Batman at comicon). Just remember though... It's never 'just' a story.

This literary geek out is now over. You may now return your attention to whatever important task you were just doing.

Sonntag, 5. Februar 2012

Sunday Dinner

The Broos. For those of you who've endured me whenever I got that glazed look in my eye and the irrepressible urge to daydream of Germany, you most likely have heard of this family. Truth be told not many people haven't heard of this family. And not just from me. Open and friendly The Broos seem to have a soft spot of skinny lads in suits, and if you look especially hungry or just too thin for their liking, odds are you'll be invited to dinner very soon. Every other Sunday at 18:00 to be exact, and it doesn't pay to be late.
I don't know if it's because I was once a missionary here, or if it's because I tend to resemble a scarecrow more days than not, but ever since my return to Germany I've spent my Sunday evenings eating, laughing, crying (the laughing gets that good), and just having an all round good time with these guys. With seven of us there are generally about eight conversations going on simultaneously and if you're quick with your tongue and are capable of using your hands to tell a story it all turns out well.
This shot is stitched together from three photos to give you what I get to see every week. From left to right we have Elder Krieger (He met his girlfriend at BYU-ID on World of Warcraft, She lived across the street), Elder Larsen (The only person with a nametag whose name no one can remember), Bishop Jurgen Broo (The only Bishop I've ever met who you'll find giggling to himself halfway through sacrament), Deije Broo ( I couldn't spell her name to save my life, but if you ever need someone to round up "volunteers" for choir she's your gal), Carolin (Caro) Broo (Don't let that sweet face fool you, it doesn't end well.. I'm serious.. If you don't believe me ask her about the Bunny that got in her way.), and last but certainly not least. Oma Broo (Rumor has it her kitchen is framed and hanging somewhere in the MTC.)
Anyway, if I look fatter when I get back here's your culprit.

PS. Click the image to see the full-sized version