After a slow first five months, I'm back to blogging in earnest. In the forthcoming few months I plan to keep on tracking the blooming of wildflowers, the activities of bugs and reptiles and any other critters I'm quick enough or lucky enough to photograph, and to comment on ecological relationships. Since there is an increasing sense of ecological crisis among many people and more vigorous denial of such on the part of others, I will inevitably comment on the social and political dimensions of survival as I see them.
I am still an adjunct instructor in the English Department at Feather River College, but time permitting, I am available for hire as a nature guide in the region in and around Plumas County. A brochure describing my usual kinds of natural history adventures is in development. Email me c/o firstname.lastname@example.org with your mailing address and a statement of interests, and I'll send you a rough draft.
I have been teaching since 1965 and have recently joined the English Department as an Associate Faculty member at Feather River College. Recently taught Nature Literature in America and am currently teaching Interpersonal Communication and Basic Reading and Writing.
My photographer friend Spencer Dykstra [Spencer Dykstra Photography] has just posted on his Expressions Blog what he calls the Human Shadow Project. Please check out his site for some outstanding photos as well as an important message. His collection of photos reminded me that I had a folder on my computer in which I've been saving photos with a similar idea in mind. I titled the folder 'Symptoms.' Imagine an archaeologist from another galaxy visiting Earth and formulating a description of our species based on the artifacts in my photos and Spencer's.
One of the many ironies I see in these collections is that each 'product' or human fabrication pictured must have involved an artist somewhere along the line. Certainly the labels, at least, were meant to be beautiful. And look where they end up!
Even shotgun shells are meant to be beautiful in some way, or else why would they come in so many colors?
I'm pretty sure this catfish didn't get to this spot unaided. Someone must have considered it to be ugly.
Becoming obsolete. At least some artists are cleaning them up and turning them into interesting sculptures.
I titled this photo 'oxidation.' It'll eventually return to the soil whence it came.
I call this one 'the worm,' but that's just a euphemism for 'crap at the side of the road.' So, does the title 'symptoms' seem appropriate?