Tag Archives: Photograph

Man, A Tee Sure Would Be Nice Or See Cows

There’s something to be said for ugly.

Mostly that something sounds like, “Eeeeewwwwwww!”

manatees_mother_calf_brandon_coleHowever, there also is something that goes along the lines of so ugly it’s cute. For exhibit 1 in this category, may I present the West Indian Manatee, a resident of many places, including Florida.

Yes, these are the manatees. They are slow moving, ugly and yet graceful in a ponderous roly-poly sense.

Because of their lassitude when it comes to motion (they sometimes will float in the same place for hours, barely moving) and their camouflage that allows them to fade into the water, many manatees are covered in scars all up and down their backs.

These scars come from boat propellers. Captains who aren’t looking out for manatees or who speed through manatee slow zones can zoom right over one of the peaceful sea cows, doing little damage to the boat, but severely hurting the peaceful creature.

Because they are a threatened species, manatee sightings are a rare and precious thing along the Intercoastal Waterway south of St. Augustine, FL, where my family vacations.

Bela Mar manateeWhich makes our latest two sightings all the more exciting.

I saw and photographed a manatee and her calf floating peacefully amongst the shore reeds at a local marina. Then, the next day, my dad caught a snap of this sea cow.

Apparently it has taken up residence beneath a boat dock near where my dad lives and has been seen swimming around in the river shallows several days running.

What a wonderful animal to have nearby.

One of the most-retold stories concerning the Intercoastal Waterway in our family is the time I and my brother-in-law The Teaching Dutchman took my young dudes, Sarcasmo and Zippy the Travelin’ Boy, fishing on the river in a small john boat.

We didn’t catch anything other than a small oyster (long story full of ineptitude), but we did have an amazing manatee sighting. As we were sitting in the boat, a large manatee surfaced less than ten feet away from us. We stopped all activity and watched as the manatee floated there and watched us.

The four of us must have been especially boring because it soon blinked and then drifted below the surface. Only to continue swimming closer, going directly under the boat, its backside bumping into the bottom of the hull, and then surfacing on the other side of the boat. It turned around for one last look and I swear it was smirking at us before it dropped below the surface again and swam away.

Getting an up-close look at the manatee, I came to a rather quick conclusion. If these things really were the basis for mermaid sighting, then either the old-time sailors were appallingly nearsighted or pleasantly size-diverse in their physical appreciation spectrum.

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If It’s Tuesday, This Must Be mumblemumblesomethingsomething

Will I get in trouble if I say this is my time of the week?

No, probably not. Not enough people reading this thing* to worry about anyone getting on my case. Most of you folks are either nice, know me well enough to know I’m harmless or are family and, in that last case, I know about you, too, so don’t even try.

Anyway, I wanted to point you in the direction of, yet again, the Charlotte Parent Magazine community blogs Stay-At-Home Dudes site where I’ve written a little bit for them. In other words, this is the day of the week where I put in some time over there. This time I’m talking about surviving a torture most cruel and unusual and me doing the most amazing thing ever.

Small taste for when you go there: I Punked The Batman!**

I’ll be back here with more good stuff. That was a promise, not a threat. I’ve been told that people often have a hard time distinguishing between the two when I’m saying them. Not sure I understand, but there you go.

Footnotes and Errata

* Except for the 160-odd of you dudes who decided on Sunday to start reading a four-year-old post about horrifying members of class insecta called Palmetto Bugs. No, I don’t get it either, but I’m certainly glad you (or they) visited. I might have to start writing more about cockroaches and the rest of those types.
** Not kidding, either. I’ve got photographic evidence. Go there now and read all about it.

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Sexist Selfie Suggestions

Selfie is the new  chad.*

And provides the televised talking heads with the latest social shaming technique aimed at the ladies out there.

For those of you dudes with real lives who might have missed this massively important news, the Oxford Dictionaries recently declared selfie, “a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website,” as the Word of the Year for 2013.

Yes, really.

According to Oxford research, the use of the word selfie has increased by 17,000% since this time last year. Judy Pearsall, the Editorial Director for Oxford Dictionaries, further explains their decision in a press release: “Using the Oxford Dictionaries language research program, which collects around 150 million words of current English in use each month, we can see a phenomenal upward trend in the use ofselfie in 2013, and this helped to cement its selection as Word of the Year.”

There have also been lots of plays on this word, such as welfie (workout selfie), drelfie(drunken selfie), and even, for you book lovers out there, bookshelfie (shelfie in front of your bookshelves).

Interestingly, even though Oxford Dictionaries named selfie as the word of the year and gave it a pretty thorough definition, it isn’t yet included in the Oxford Dictionary. Yet. I’m sure. Other words that were shortlisted (for 2013’s word of the year) include bedroom tax, binge-watch, bitcoin, olinguito, shmeat, showrooming and twerk (thanks, Miley).

I told you that story (with massive apologies to Bill Cosby) so I could tell you this one.

On CNN’s Headline News, an male anchor, a female guest commentator and a male actor (Dean Cain) all got together to talk about the 2013 word of the year and to show some celebrity selfies and try to decide which selfies belonged in the Selfie Hall of Shame. Watch the embedded video below and then come back. I’ll be waiting.

So. You’ve seen it, yeah, dudes?

First there was Kim Kardashian’s mostly full-body selfie showing off her post-baby physique. Then a shirtless, 70-year-old Geraldo Rivera in a locker room. Then Miley Cyrus wearing a bra and panties in a mirror asking about her hair. Then a shirtless Justin Bieber.

All four selfies were deliberately provocative. All four showed a bit more skin than would normally be associated with a photograph going out in public. (Unless you’re a celebrity, of course. Then, I guess, the normal rules don’t apply.) And, yet, it was the two female selfies that were immediately inducted into the Hall of Shame.

Geraldo got a “pass” because he looked so good at 70, while Bieber’s shirtless selfie simply was a case of “giving the fans what they want.”

So, let’s look at the equation here: Female celebrity skin = bad and salacious. Male celebrity skin = good for them.

Does anyone see the disconnect here or is it just this dude?

Honestly, at this point, I really don’t know what to say. We all know Americans have an unhealthy obsession with sex. Not that sex is bad, understand, but that we obsess over it, but also obsess over making sure it’s never seen, talked about or thought about by anyone but us. We all know there are different standards for men and different standards for women. A woman doing exactly the same thing as a man will be shamed, while the man is celebrated.

But to see it so blatant, so out in the open and to have no one comment on it. . .

Dudes. . . Dudettes. . . This just isn’t right. Isn’t it about time we did something about this? Do we really want our children growing up into such a sick culture?


*If you’re not old enough to know what a chad (and it’s cousin the hanging chad, and the second cousin the dimpled chad) is, then count yourself lucky.

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