Thursday, July 30, 2009

Time Off For Bad Behavior #1

That's one of our favorite songs. It's by Confederate Railroad. David Allan Coe also does a version of it and we like that one, too. But it seems like a fitting name for occasional blog posts re funny police-blotter items from our local paper. Time off from craft stuff for a little bad behavior news. We live in a small town. Not insanely small (you can talk to my sister about that kind of small) but small enough that some silly things end up in the police blotter.

Here's a short story from Tuesday's paper: First Report
Did you read it?

"Radio scanner reports indicate he was wearing a ski mask with antlers".

WHAT?? Where would one buy a ski mask with antlers? Likely nowhere, so it must be home-made. But why on earth would anyone want to attach antlers to a ski mask in the first place? And why would they choose to wear that to a robbery? Nothing inconspicuous at all about walking around in a ski mask with antlers on it right?
I laughed all day after reading this. There I am on the job, pulling nails out of plywood - hundreds of them! - and I'd suddenly just start laughing. My other-half would look at me and ask "ski mask with antlers?". Yep! It was just deliriously funny to me.

Wednesday's paper carried this front-page follow up story: Second Report
Turns out it was not a ski mask with antlers, it was ... wait for it ... a Batman mask! The paper even included a picture of the discarded mask lying on the sidewalk. This is just getting better and better!
Never mind the question of why would one wear something so conspicuous to a robbery, the bigger question is, how did the witnesses confuse antlers with bat ears?
antlers or bat ears?Antlers or bat ears? Antlers or bat ears? Only in P'burg, folks.

Frosted Sandpaper

I cut up little strips of sand paper and keep a handful of them in a baggie with a piece of cloth. Then when I have a clay piece that needs smoothing, I'll take the baggie and the clay with me in the car to make good use of my "car-time" (we often have long rides to work). Sometimes I'll sit in the living room with my baggie and clay and sand/buff as I otherwise relax, but I never sand/buff in the kitchen which does double duty as my craft "studio".
Now, my other half occasionally puts an empty glass in the freezer so he can have a nice frosty chilled "mug" o' beer. Sometimes it's in there for days before he remembers to use it. Yesterday he pulled out the glass - which had been chilling since the weekend - and found a used strip of sandpaper frozen to the inside bottom of the glass.
frost paper
I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't have been there when he pulled it out.
How on earth did that happen?!? One of life's little mysteries I guess.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

A Real Snake

Snake Eating Toad. Or, Toad-Eating Snake. (Punctuation is everything, 'ey?)

Came across this act of nature on the job site yesterday. A little Garter Snake in the process of consuming a live toad. I know this is how snakes eat but had never seen it live in the wild. Will probably never see it again, either. A little gruesome? Sure. Did we feel a little bad for the toad? Sure. But it's nature and it's simply amazing how snakes can consume prey so much larger then their own mouths & bodies.

To save the squeamish from seeing something they may not want to see, I'm posting links to the pics here rather then the pics themselves.

Close-Up #1
Close-Up #2
Close-Up #3

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Martian Beads

Martian BeadsMy first little batch of beads.

I can see how bead making might become addictive. There are no rules! They don't have to look like anything. Like, say, a snake head. They just have to be round. Or not. And you have to be able to thread something through them. I'm still working on that part. But oh yes, this is going to be fun ...

Silly Little Snake

For reasons I won't get into, I decided to make a snake as my first clay "sculpture". I had it on good authority that snakes are easy for beginners. Just roll, taper the tail end, flatten the head end, and slice open a mouth. Presto - you have a snake.
I had no problem with the rolling part and the tapering the tail part. The shaping the head part, uhm, as you can see, that part didn't go so well for me.
I worked on the head for more time than I'd like to admit but nothing looked right. Too flat. Too round. Too lumpy. Too long. Too square ...
I think if I had had a picture of a snake head, any snake head, to look at for a guide I could have done better. I wasn't sure what final look I was striving towards, just knew that nothing I was doing was resulting in anything that looked right as a snake head. I finally just baked it. I figured once cured, a coat of paint might distract from the strange head and it wouldn't be a total loss.
Maybe, maybe not.

Next time (I am going to try again!) I'll use wire inside for support so it doesn't droop like this one did.
Ya' live and ya' learn and ya' try again ...