Monday, October 26, 2009

Two Chiefs and One Indian

Last week I was asked to attend an American Lit meeting. The American literature department at my high school has five teachers. Two of the five teachers share the position of level lead. I was the only teacher to show up to the meeting who is not a level lead. There I was sitting in a desk, while the two level leads delivered their presentation to me. I sat in that desk and absolutely laughed my ass off. I couldn’t help it.

“What’s so funny, buddy?” asked one of the department leads who is a year younger than my oldest daughter and always calls me buddy.

“Am I the only one that sees the humor in this?” I asked in between snorts.

The two of them stared at me like I was dancing naked with my hair on fire.

“Humor?” the kid asked.

“Don’t you guys think it’s funny that it’s just me?”

Again, they hit me with the dancing naked with my hair on fire look.

“Don’t you guys think it’s funny that there are two level leads for a level that has just five people?”

The crickets were chirping and the forty percent of the level that were level leads continued to stare blankly.

“You guys really don’t see the humor in this?”

The woman looked like she was trying to catch flies while the kid cocked his head and said, “You remind me of my dad.”

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Technology Wars Continue

I guess you could say I’m effectively losing my ongoing war with technology. My desktop computer crashed and burned a couple of weeks ago and I’ve been trying to function on an old computer a thoughtful relative lent to the family. The borrowed Dell is incredibly slow. I’ve been told it has just 50 goats or rams or gigabytes or maybe it was flux capacitors. If you're one of my fellow bloggers and you’ve noticed I haven’t been leaving responses on your postings, it’s because it now takes me approximately seven hours to leave a response. Ok, it doesn’t really take seven hours but the bottom line is it takes a lot longer to do anything on this computer but I’m not bitter. Not e. Oh yeah, the m doesn’t always work on the keyboard.

So I’m dealing with the computer situation. But another technology snafu manifested itself this week. My cell phone stopped working a couple of days ago. Now my cell phone is a standard source of ridicule at the hands of friends, family and coworkers. It’s very a basic cell phone, no camera, no internet access, nothing slides out for texting, no snappy whistle, no secret decoder ring; it’s just a phone One of my students got a look at y phone and said to me, “Hey Mr. Snyder, the year 2000 called, they want their cell phone back.” I get it. The kid nailed me with a witty line. I’ll give him that. At any rate, it was a busy week and I didn’t get a chance to stop by the cell phone store. I mentioned that my cell phone was out to one of my classes. One of my more tech savvy students offered to take a look at it. I handed it over to him and the kid flipped it over and turned it on. I didn’t tell the kid that I didn’t realize the phone had been turned off. Yep, I didn’t think to check to see if the phone was turned on. Yep, I’m feeling like a complete technological moron about right now.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Clif the Lawyer has a Blog and Arizona Justice League of Photographers Rides - the Train II

I'd like to take this opportinity to blatantly plug fellow Arizona Justice Leaguer, Clif the Lawyer's new blog. Check him out at :

Clif the Lawyer is one of the smartest guys I've ever known. And he's got an unstoppable left handed hook shot.

Here are a few of my shots from the Arizoona Justice League's train shoot.

Artsy, huh?

It's alive.

At some point hanging out with talented photographers like Eric the actual professional photographer, Clif the Lawyer and Mario the Chef will start to rub off on me.
Or not.

Here is another of my failed attempts at a group shot.

I fully intend to post a few of Mario the Chef and Eric the Photographer's shots this week.
What did one hat say to the other?

You stay right here, I'll go on a head.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Arizona Justice League of Photographers Rides... The Train

On Saturday, October 10th the Arizona Justice League of Photographers rode the light rail to downtown Phoenix. We purchased our all day passes for 3.50 and waited. The 10:15 train slowed down a bit ahead of the stop. As we jogged ahead to make the train the heartless bastard left us in the dust. Eric the Photographer noticed the driver giving us a hand signal that must have meant we were number one in his heart.

We caught the next train where I attempted to get a group photo. It’s not as easy as you’d think, not if you’re technological nincompoop like me.
As I was trying to get the shot, I mentioned to the guys, that I had made up a joke that had already been made up by someone else.
"Hey fellas." I said, "What did the governor of California say when he wanted to become a composer? I'll be Bach."
Clif the Lawyer (behind the camera) proceeded o ask, "What did the governor of California say when he wanted to become a chicken? I'll be bach, bach, bach, bach."
I should point out that he sounded very much like a chicken.
I might also point out that I laughed - very hard. It's inprtant that I include this kind of thing so you can get the real feel of an Arizona Justice League of Photographers shoot.
After 27 failed attempts, I was able to get a shot of all four of us. (left to right) That's Mario the Chef, Clif the Lawyer, Eic the Photographer and yours truly. By the way, no one checked our passes. We could have ridden for free - if we weren't the ethical types.

Downtown Phoenix was pretty much deserted.

There was an awful lot of construction going on. I thought everybody was broke.

Here's a shot of Mario the Chef trying to keep up with Eric the Photographer. It's not the Mario walks so slow, it's just that Eric is the fastestwalker I've ever seen.

Hungry from all of that fast walking we ducked into a joint called the Coney Island Grill.

This joint had some serious atmosphere. That's Marge and Hank and they run the place.
We spent a half hour or so enjoying hot dogs, burgers and sodas.
I don't remember hearing Hank speak. But Marge, she was the Energizer bunny, baby. She went on for 30 minutes without stopping.

Hank and Marge are from Chicago, but they've been in Phoeniz for 30 years. She's a former legal secretary and back in the day, she ran a tight ship. Marge told us stories about Phoenix power brokers like Phil Gordon, Fife Simington, and Janet Napolitano.
The food was good, but it was Marge that really made the experience.
If you're ever in downtown Phoenix you're missing out if you don't stop in to have hot dog with Marge and Hank ant the Coney Island Grill.

I like this shot. It was taken right after we left the Coney Island Grill. I forgot I was still holding half a cup of Diet Coke when I raised the camera to shoot this magnificent picture. Drenched myself. Anything to provide a little entertainment for my fellow Justice Leaguers.

This picture had to be taken. There's got to be a story behind the pink rose with a broken stem.

There are more photos to post and stories to tell. Eric sent me some beautiful photos. I just have to figure out how to load them up. Look for The Arizona Justice League of Photographers Rides - The Light Rail Part II later this week.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

An Exerpt from The Eight-Fingered Criminal's Son

An exerpt from The Eight-Fingered Criminal's Son “Surfer Girl"
by W.Z Snyder
© 2008 William Snyder

The Eight-Fingered Criminal's Son can be downloaded for just 5 dollars. Click on the link below...