Sunday, December 30, 2007

Meet Ruggles

I went to Denise & Barb's to meet their new pup. She's a yorkie mix & really cute. I couldn't believe how she kept jumping up on top of the back of the couch. I don't know how she got up there ... she's pretty small!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Weston Home Repairs Part Deux

At 9am I had 3 different maintenance people show up at once. A roofer came for an estimate, Terminix came to spray for drywood termites & a spa guy came to fix the Jacuzzi in the master bath. Everybody was done before 10am.

At 11am another roofer showed up. My mom wanted me to go up on the roof to take some pictures since that's what the insurance adjuster did last week. How many mothers would ask their daughters to go up on a steep roof? The view was nice, but the pictures don't show that some of the tiles are loose.

I'm not afraid of heights, but getting down off the roof was a little scary. Luckily the roofer went down first & steadied the ladder. At 2pm Tex came back to work on the sprinkler system.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Vacation? ... not really!

THE TOUR is closed from Christmas thru New Years, but this has NOT been a vacation for me. I drove down to Weston to take care of fixing everything at my house that didn't pass inspection. I made calls all day yesterday & surprisingly got a lot done. I just didn't have much time to take blog pix.

Today "Tex" the handyman showed up first. He had a lot to repair so he spent the whole day here. After 2 trips to Home Depot, he fixed a leaky kitchen sink supply valve, a toilet flow valve, wired in 2 new smoke detectors, replaced 2 garage coach light fixtures + 2 corner floodlight fixtures, rescreened 3 sliding door panels & replaced/primed/painted a 2" section of garage door trim that had wood rot.

Shortly after Tex arrived, the electrician came to replace 4 GFI outlets that were not tripping, figure out why the office's east outlets were not functional (the last electrician I hired to remove a lot of outlets apparently cut the wire to 2 others) & see why the inspector claimed 2 out of 7 ceiling fans were not grounded (they were actually all grounded).

I also managed to fit in 2 roofing estimates & 2 termite estimates. The inspector claimed he saw drywood termite droppings in a pocket door in between the guest bedroom & guest bathroom. I asked what termite droppings look like (since 2 other estimators could not find any termite evidence) & he said ground pepper or coffee. I said it probably was ground coffee. In any event, I had to treat it since it was on the inspection report.

Terminix sent 2 guys (one was a termite expert). He was the first to actually thoroughly examine things like insulation with a powerful lighted microscope. He was in the studio admiring the lightstand storage cabinet when I mentioned that we tried to remove the strips that the super industrial drawer rails were screwed into, but 4 of 12 screws were completely inaccessible. Mr Termite Expert climbed into the cabinet & continually knocked the custom built heavy-duty sliding insert gently until it extended past the screws. Voila ... he was pretty jazzed he was able to unscrew the rails & remove the insert (he still had to loosen 6 door hinges to get it out of the cabinet.

Later in the afternoon "Two Men in a Truck" came to move Mary's furniture into her townhouse. They were great movers. We loved the giant rubber bands they used to keep the dresser drawers closed.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Party Week

Work ended at 4:30 today for a Communications Department holiday party at Ty's house. There has been a full week of parties at THE TOUR. Last Friday was the staff holiday party at the clubhouse. It started at 12:30pm then we had the rest of the day off. Saturday was THE TOUR family holiday party (see screaming Santa pix). Tomorrow we have the Creative & Photographic Services party in our office & Thursday we have Rob & Evanne's birthday lunch.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Saturday with Santa & some pups

Not everyone is lucky enough to see their boss dressed up in a Santa suit. I get that opportunity every year when I shoot the family holiday party. Nobody knows that I'm really there to work on my ongoing personal project of Santa screamers. We had some good ones today.

Some kids don't even want to get close ...

some kids really scream ... and others really don't seem to care.

The older siblings are thinking, "Oh no, here we go again!"

Lola is well on her way to replacing Stan. To protect his job security, Stan will never tell her about his graduated orange filter.

I didn't even have to show up. Logan had the party covered.

He even took some pix of me at work. Not bad for a four-year-old.

After Santa, I went to photograph Sofie & Lily at the beach. Lily went bonkers flying thru the surf.

Friday, December 14, 2007

First Golf Club

I bought my first club tonight ... an Odyssey White Hot XG 2-Ball putter. I wasn't shopping for clubs. I was looking for a new pair of Gore-Tex Merrell low hiking shoes for shooting golf. I went to Dick's Sporting Goods at St John's Town Center. Sandy & Larry wanted to buy me an Odyssey 2-Ball, so I figured I'd try them out. They had about 5 different versions. I was putting for about an hour repeatedly trying each one from about 15 feet. I sunk every putt with the one I bought. I had trouble putting with the other models, so my decision was clear. Since Dick's is a sponsor of the PGA TOUR, I had a 20% off coupon from work that was about to expire. I was pretty happy I saved about $35.

Monday, December 10, 2007

"Dump the Garbage Day"

"Remember, it is easier to move forward when you are not carrying the past on your back." (Roy Spence, President & Founder, GSD&M Idea City)

Today was THE TOUR's first annual "Dump the Garbage Day." We were allowed to wear casual clothes (including jeans). I just wish it wasn't during media guide deadlines.

Last December, at our inaugural Employee Summit, Roy Spence from GSD&M, told us about a tradition they began to help their company prepare for each upcoming year. They named it "Dump the Garbage Day." It's an opportunity to get rid of any "garbage" that has accumulated during the year.

We should also dump the figurative garbage; let go of any grudges, resentments and jealousies that may be impeding our productivity & think about how to mend/renew relationships with co-workers to help one another succeed.

Today was also "TOUR (Umbrella) Amnesty Day," when you can return any TOUR umbrellas that may have found their way to your car or house with no questions asked.

I can't believe I didn't take any pictures, but I was too busy throwing stuff out!

Garbage dumping final stats:

Iron Mountain shredded 61 containers of paper for a total of about 7000 lbs. That's 3 1/2 tons of paper!! We collected about 1500 cubic feet of office supplies, miscellaneous equipment, etc, which will be repurposed, donated, recycled or discarded.

Regarding Amnesty Day ... the umbrella stands are full again!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Photo Op!

Today Bob stopped by our office so I could shoot his media guide headshot. He didn't want to leave until I posed for a blog photo on Chris' new motorcycle. How could I say no? It was a pretty reasonable request & Bob knows I'll do anything for a blog photo. I know ... I should be wearing a helmet, but I really wasn't going that fast.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Here's Spike ... Thanks Jan!

This is Spike, an awesome whirlygig that Janet gave me for a housewarming present. He happened to be in beautiful light in my backyard today.

Friday, November 23, 2007

3:30am on Black Friday at Starbucks

The things I won't do for a blog photo! I never would have done this in a million years, but my blog fans are waiting.

It all started out very innocently. I mentioned to John that Mary wanted me to go to Starbucks with her when they open at 3:30am on Black Friday. When he talked to her on Wednesday, he said how much I was looking forward to it. Well that set off a huge chain reaction. Mary talked to Jeff & they decided I would dress up like a giant latte & Jeff would shine a flashlight on me while I alerted sleepy shoppers driving by, that Starbucks is open. My hat was a giant lid. What the hell ... I figured it would be fun. After all, I was working out-of-town on Halloween & wasn't in the office when everyone dressed up. Mostly, I just needed something to blog about.

When I got tired, Jeff stepped in & had a great time. He said he should have done this months ago. He especially liked it when cars honked at him. At one point, Mary called his cell & said, "May I speak to the cup please?" When I left the store at 8am, he was still out there. I think he secretly wants to be a mascot!

The media coverage was unprecedented! It's a good thing "the cup" had a camera too.

Mary has some Alphalams from her Roadtrip & Summertime series hanging on the wall at Starbucks.

In the past, I would have shopped (not because I needed anything, but as a sport) on Black Friday, usually being done by noon. There's nothing I really need & I'm not into that whole "frenzy" anymore.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Wednesday in Weston

I picked up Tally in my swanky rental car for a quick visit. It was a brand spankin' new 2008 Toyota Avalon Touring Edition with 312 miles on the odometer & the telltale new car smell. It was pretty sweet ... but then again, so is Tally.

Mary & I went to the new Ikea near Sawgrass Mills mall.

After I returned my rental car at the Ft Lauderdale airport, I was intrigued by these textured walls on the way to the terminal. I was waiting for somebody from the Department of Homeland Security to ask me why I was taking pictures of the wall, but nobody bothered me.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Goodbye Orange Bowl 1937-2007

I'm in South Florida for Champions Tour Q-School. It was perfect timing to see some old friends & colleagues at the last Hurricane football game before the Orange Bowl is demolished. A lot of former players came out for the occasion. Some I hadn't seen since I was the team photographer over 20 years ago (1981-1985).

Ahhh ... the good old days!


I was on the field with David, Carol & Karl pregame.

We watched the game from the press box.

Unfortunately, the Hurricanes last game in the Orange Bowl will go down in the record books as the worst shutout ever in the stadium's history.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Reality Check

There was a good series on the perception of being a self-employed photographer on What the Duck this week. Here they are ...

Sunday, November 04, 2007

On the Range

It was another beautiful day, so Sandy, Larry & I went to hit some balls on the range. I did pretty well considering I haven't hit a golf ball in over a year.

Sandy relaxes while I try her Odyssey putter.

Afterwards, we had lunch in the clubhouse. I can't wait to back to work so I can relax. It's been an exhausting weekend!

Saturday, November 03, 2007


Sandy & Larry are in town & staying with me for a few days on their way to Pompano. They drove JR & me to the JAX Sea & Sky Spectacular so we wouldn't have a problem parking. It was a beautiful day with a perfect blue sky.

Everybody loved the heart.

There's a woman standing on top of the wing. She actually climbed up there while the plane was flying. Crazy!

The Blue Angels were very impressive.

We were a bit concerned since the website said you couldn't bring a lens over 6 inches long. I told JR we'd reverse our lens hoods until we got on the beach & nobody would probably bother us. I was wrong. With our hoods reversed, John's was 8 inches & mine was 7 inches. Once we started shooting, we put them on properly (which adds about 3 inches). The cop on the left approached John & said, "excuse me sir ... you're bigger than 6 inches. Lenses over 6 inches are not allowed." I was waiting for him to get a tape measure out of his pocket. He was smiling & sort of cracking up. For a second I thought he knew John, but he said he was just busting on us.

This guy buzzed the fisherman on the pier.

Tonight was Chris' birthday party and Dial-9 reunion jam at Spare Time Tavern in Jax Beach.