Thursday, January 31, 2008


Mrs. Snave and I went and watched "Cloverfield" this afternoon. Overall, it isn't necessarily a movie I would go to the theater to see, but since I did, I decided it just wouldn't be a good one to watch on a TV screen. So if you're curious, by all means go check it out.

When I heard this was an all hand-held camera thing, I thought "Well, it's been long enough since "Blair Witch Project" that something like this should seem novel once again." However, whereas the "Blair Witch" film had a lot of shaky up-and-down camera shots, "Cloverfield"'s camera doesn't jiggle nearly as much when the camera guy is running, which is a relief. The motion consisted more of fast sweeps and jarring shots, like when the camera was dropped. It wasn't nearly as nausea-inducing for me as "Blair Witch", so if you haven't gone to see "Cloverfield" because you tend to succumb to motion sickness, just take some Dramamine or something similar first and you will probably be o.k.

The story is very basic. The special effects are good. It is a fairly fast, noisy film. I would give it three out of four stars except that I didn't like the ending, so I'll go with a two and three-quarters out of four.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Every Wednesday my work takes me to a small rural community 97 miles from La Grande. I have been meaning to take some pictures to share with you for some time now, and today I finally remembered my camera! Here are some nice pictures of NE Oregon winter scenery for you to enjoy. I think you can click on them to enlarge them.

This was shot looking south from I-84 near the town of North Powder, Oregon, at about 7:30 a.m. The early morning sunlight is on the Elkhorn Range, home to Anthony Lakes Ski Area and a lot of good hiking trails.

This is a view of the Wallowa Mountains, looking north from about milepost 17 of Oregon State Highway 86. The Wallowas are in the center of the Eagle Cap Wilderness Area, which has an area of over 500,000 acres.

Looking northwest, down into Pine Valley from Halfway Hill. At this time of year, there is usually a lot of fog in the valley in the morning. The mountains in the distance are the east end of the Wallowas as well as mountains in Hells Canyon country.

Hills with wisps of fog in beautiful Pine Valley just west of Halfway, Oregon.

Looking north on Main Street, Halfway, Oregon, population about 400. This is a very friendly town, and it is a nice place to work on Wednesdays. Halfway is so far away from anything that many people in NE Oregon call it "Halfway to Nowhere".

Looking north at the Wallowa Mountains from Cornucopia highway, just outside Halfway. I took this from inside my company's van, and the black spot in the sky is not a UFO, but rather a chip on the windshield.

Here is a picture of the school where I work each Wednesday. I am there from about 9:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. serving students with speech-language therapy needs. When I got there this morning the temperature was about 1o degrees F.

This is on the way back to La Grande, looking to the southwest down Halfway Hill along Oregon highway 86, toward the Eagle Valley and Richland, OR.

Wide open spaces along Oregon State Highway 86 near Keating, Oregon looking west. There are a LOT of wide open spaces in NE Oregon. Along this highway, I usually see another vehicle only every couple of minutes.

Looking north into the Grande Ronde Valley from Interstate 84 about five miles southeast of La Grande. The picturesque mountain is Mt. Emily, which was a landmark for pioneers who traveled along the Oregon Trail.

Here is an elk herd near Interstate 84. This is part of a group of about 75 elk that were roughly 100 yards from the road. This view is looking east in the Grande Ronde Valley, toward Mt. Fanny and the small towns of Cove and Union.

I will take more pictures in late May when the snow is gone and everything is nice and green! Cheers!

Saturday, January 12, 2008


I can't handle being Henry Spencer from "Eraserhead" any longer.

I have decided to change my "avatar" or whatever the damned thing is called. At least for a while now, my "blog persona" will be represented by this wonderful picture of a truly insane-looking pileated woodpecker.


ALSO, of even more importance, please go check out Jen's excellent blog "Little Country Lost" at . This young writer takes some fairly in-depth looks at a number of things we might not be aware of, things to which we ought to be paying some attention.