Sunday, December 20, 2009

Off Topic - That Was The Week It Was 12/20/09

It's Sunday and time to take a look back at the past week in words and photographs I've taken. The biggest news of the week actually happened yesterday and into the overnight hours. Yeah, it's a freakin' winter wonderland here. But I don't anyplace to go, so let it snow, let it snow, let it snow. Then clean it up so I can get to work tomorrow!

To be honest, we didn't get hit that bad. It's hard to tell how much snow is out there because the wind has been blowing it all around. There are drifts, then almost to the ground. I'd say maybe six to eight inches? I could be way off, though. I'm not going out there to find out. My own street is plowed as it's a county road. I don't know about the side streets. I can predict right now some jerks won't shovel their sidewalks. (Grr.)

The snow has stopped as I get this written up. Last night, coming home from work, it was a different story. But I had on my not-fashion yet very functional winter boots. I did not slip, nor did I slide. I did cheat and took a cab home from the train station instead of walking. He slipped, he slid. Ho ho ho.

Other than that, my week has been rather unremarkable. Work is very busy and thus, so am I. I haven't had the chance on weather-cooperating days to go into the city to photo-stomp the lights this year. Perhaps after Christmas, but before New Year's I'll get there.

Anyway ... onto the week ...

Snow? Cold? Not MY problem!

Vincent is as snug as a bug in a rug. My gosh, that's a horrible saying! I, to clarify, have no bugs in my rugs. And, if I did have a bug in my rug, he wouldn't be snug! He would be in fear of doom from either me or Vincent, Paws of Death!

Lesson learned - turn off the flash on snowflakes

It looks like we're getting hit with tiny bubbles. This is last night as I arrived home from work. They had already shoveled the platform. But the snow just wouldn't stay away. Plainfield Train Station, NJ.

Without the flash

Much better. My train line doesn't have too many problems in bad weather. We're diesel (which is why I have to transfer to another train to go into Manhattan) and even our electric lines on NJ Transit have overhead wires, not the electrified third rail which causes the issues in bad weather in the city and on Long Island (or Lawn Guyland for any locals).

Long Island and southern NJ got the brunt of this storm with over 20 inches of snow. I heard a report that an LIRR train was stuck in Ronkonkoma for over four hours with 150 passengers. I just like to say Ronkonkoma. It's not as much fun to type.

Watchung and East Second intersection

Looking over at Pete's Fish Market as the snow came down last night. The snow picked up steam in the overnight hours. Well, not steam, per se. That would be like how they melt the snow in Times Square. It picked up inches. Much better.

Get my drift?

The stairs coming out of the tunnel at the Plainfield (NJ) Train Station last night. This so violates my habit of going up on the right side of the right side! Yes, I'll admit I'm a bit OCD about some things. I felt out of place going up the right side of the left side.

The NJ Transit tunnel under the Plainfield Station again

Someone else goes up the right side of the left side.

A Tale of Two Trees

Both inner-city, both third floor. One is festive, the other is silent. I wonder what psychological ramifications are involved here?

Okay, that darn train is late!

Two pigeons wait for the train in Plainfield, NJ. When we see them start driving the train, we know it's the end of mankind as we know it.

The calm before the storm

Yesterday morning at the Plainfield Train Station.

Who you gonna call?

Nope, Ghostbusters won't stop the impending snowstorm! It's a shame he wasn't wearing more colorful clothes as I made the background of this photo black and white, leaving him in color.

Yes, I was bored waiting for the train

I used GIMP's "old photo" filter to make this photo sepia with faded edges. I didn't use its defocus function. If people want to see it defocused, alcohol will do the trick. But don't drive!

Downtown Westfield (before the snow)

This is the view up Elm Street Friday evening as I did a Trader Joe's grocery run. The big tree in the background is one of two on either side of the train station there. I came from the train after work. But I take the bus home as the bus stops right in front of my apartment building and, since they come from the city during evening rush hour, one passes every twenty minutes or so. I never have to wait long.

A Sea of Festivity

A close-up of the lights on one of the Westfield (NJ) trees.

There's been a crime!

Oh my! The whole top half of the Westfield Train Station tree on the eastbound side is missing! Call the authorities! Call the FBI! Who could have done such a dastardly deed the week before Christmas?

Wait, is that the missing tree top?

Nope. It's the tree on the other side of the station. I took this from the tunnel under the tracks. Oh. And I seem to have created a stir over nothing. Apparently just the lights were out on the top part of the other tree. Never mind. Cancel the FBI.

Fair weather clouds over the Plainfield Train Station

Obviously, I took this earlier in the week before yesterday's weather brouhaha.

Those clouds

I've looked at clouds from both sides now.

Reefs 4 Sale

When two languages collide, you get some interesting spellings. I was tempted to go in and ask how much they charge for a coral reef. I always wanted my own! I get the feeling they really mean "wreaths" as there's a wreath right above the sign. North Street in Plainfield, NJ.

Ho Ho Ho

This home at the corner of East Front and Richmond in Plainfield is a joy every season. They're heavy into all kinds of holiday decorations at this time of the year. In other seasons, it's a wonderful world of flowers.

Plainfield Train Station as dawn breaks

The skies looked a bit threatening, but this wasn't our storm coming in. I took this shot earlier in the week and it was just very, very cold.

That was my week. How was yours? Don't forget to return tonight for the big Survivor finale blog party! Bring snacks and beverages ... no cover charge!


Delee said...

Marvelous as always. Vincent and you are lucky...with me I am standing in the snow while I await Starry doing her business...UGH

We had maybe 6 inches of snow but no wind. Thankfully since it is light and fluffy.

Matthew started to DC Friday. His flight was cancelled from Co Springs so he drove to Denver. Spent the night there and now sits in downtown Milwaukee. Hopefully his flight at 1:20p E leaves today. So our trip to NYC is delayed at least one day.So Mon to Thurs may end up Tues to Thurs. If he does not get to DC today...guess trip is off.

I am wondering here how Survivor may be affected as some games have been moved from a 1p start until a 4p start? Say it will not happen to us!!! Think Ravens-Bills have had that happen and they do not play each other...

Delee said...

Just heard Eagles is a 4p start also...

Jackie said...

Argh. I hope Survivor isn't delayed too much. I have to get up before five tomorrow morning for work. Plus, after the three-hour show ends tonight, I have to do the write-up for TV Squad. Plus, I'll have to leave here a bit earlier tomorrow as I'm sure the walking to the station will be slower due to unshoveled sidewalks. No way I'm just staying on the train into the city tomorrow after work! I'll just want to collapse and sleep.

joy n said...

We escaped this storm upstate, it's just cold.

Vincent has the right idea. Hunker down and take a nap. Let the snow fall and dream of what Santa may bring.

You have some beautiful pictures this week of wintery scenes and the Christmas season. LOVE the decorated palm tree.

I had no idea there was such a thing as a camera filter that took "old photo" sepia shots. How cool is that? I just figured you had to fool with them during development somehow.

Also very much enjoy the humor you add to Sunday mornings.

I thought we were going to escape the programming delays for the finale tonight. Oh, well.

joy n said...

Jackie, for your sake, I hope it doesn't run late. Your plate is always so full. Don't know how you manage.

Donna in AL said...

Wonderful pictures Jackie, per your usual!
I am with you on the right side of the right side. If there are two pairs of doors entering a store, I think entering should be the ones on the right. Some WalMart stores here have the Enter sign above the left pair. I still will use the right side if there is not a bunch of people exiting.
See you later (hopefully not a lot later) for Survivor finale.

Donna in AL said...

I downloaded GIMP back when you told us about it. I have played with it a little but have not figured out the layering part. I want to do that black and white background with only one thing in color. I will get it when I have more time to sit and play (maybe even read the help section!)

Sally said...

I really chuckled at some of your captions and comments this week: Get my drift? I've looked at clouds from both sides now. Very clever!

I agree that "snug as a bug in a rug" is an awful saying. Think of the poor child being tucked in at night, who's told. "There! Snug as a bug in a rug. Sleep tight--don't let the bed bugs bite." Then the child hears a lullaby (..and if the bough breaks and the cradle should fall), followed by a prayer (...and if I die before I wake). It's no wonder kids want to crawl in bed with Mom and Dad.

I think the tendency to stay to the right with stairs, doorways, sidewalks,etc., might be based on driving on the right side. When I was in Australia, people tended to stay to the left--I had a few near collisons on sidewalks before I adjusted.

Can you and Vincent should curl up for a cozy nap this afternoon. It'd be nice if you could score a couple of hours of sleep before Survivor, because it doesn't sound like you'll be getting much after.

~~Silk said...

I downloaded GIMP after Jackie mentioned it, too. It has a lot of function. I'm not good at learning about things by playing with them (no time to fool around), and I don't do well with online help (no margins to write in, no pages to stick a finger in while I look at another page)and I get lost. So I printed off the interesting parts of the online help, which came to about 2/3 of a ream of paper! Now I haven't had time to read it.


~~Silk said...

The game started on time here (New England at Buffalo). Doesn't mean it'll end on time, but at least it won't be hours late.

joy n said...

I must have missed the GIMP thing awhile back. I'm so tech-deficient, it wouldn't do much good if I had seen it. I received a KODAK Easy Share for Xmas two years ago and still haven't figured out all the features on that yet.

Becky said...

Another week of terrific pictures. I think the suggestion that you catch a nap this afternoon is a terrific one.

Sizzie said...

I am glad I stopped by Jackie, the photos are terrific, as always, and I agree with Sally about the captions. Thanks, Jackie, and know we are all sending you safe walking wishes early Monday morning.

Maria Pellum, Plainfield Resident said...


What a joy to see Plainfield from your point of view, a lot more lighter, and a whole lot much fun, than what I am used to. Thanks!