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The Internet Ramblings of Matt & Lori Knowles

February 2003

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Sat, Feb. 1, 2003 - Bill's guitar

Bill's guitar

This is a very expensive guitar that a local guitar player asked me to take pictures of so he can sell it on E-bay. The low blue book for this vintage Gibson "Johnny Smith" jazz guitar is $8K. The owner is hoping to get $10k for his. I'll let you know how the auction goes once it is set up.

Sun, Feb. 2, 2003 - Blithe Spirits

Blithe Spirits

The current production of the Ferndale Repertory Theatre is Blithe Spirits, and this is the publicity shot that I did for them. If it's not obvious from the photo, Bithe Spirits is a ghost story. Lori and I went and saw the play Friday night and it was very funny. I also took a portrait of the leading lady and turned it into a painting with Photoshop. It is used as part of the set, as a portrait that comes crashing off the wall at the end of the play. I hope it makes it through the whole run of the play. We saw the play on opening night and the frame had already taken a beating.

Mon, Feb. 3, 2003 - Selling Underwear

Selling Underwear

One of the projects that Lori has been working on lately in addition to her book is reproducing some of the vintage lingerie that we own for another photographer. He saw some of my work on the web and wanted to know where he could buy some reproductions. Good thing I knew a source. Then a few weeks after that photographer emailed us, we got another order placed from someone in England.

Thu, Feb. 6, 2003 - Sweet Gal

Sweet Gal

With Valentine's Day approaching, I thought it would be good to have some hi-key photos in my portfolio. Hi key meaning that the photo is mainly composed of highlights, versus low key which is what I tend to shoot more of in the studio. So using a roll of white paper for the backgound, and a bolt of tull fabric for the foreground, and more lights than I've ever used for a photo (5 total) here is the result.

Fri, Feb. 7, 2003 - Tough Chick

Tough Chick

It has been fabulous weather all week long, a bit chilly in the morning but beautiful blue skies from dawn to dusk. So this afternoon, Jessica and I took our practice session out doors, to the old Van Duzen bridge.

Sat, Feb. 8, 2003 - Clear Skies

Clear Skies

Ok that was three pictures of Jessica in a row, so time for something completely different. Yesterday as I arrived home from work we had a very pretty sky, even though there weren't any clouds in it. As the trees are just beginning to leaf out, we'll soon lose this view in our backyard, but it is one of the few things I look forward to in winter. The bare trees near the creek make for a beautiful way to watch the sun come up in the morning.

Today was mostly spent doing chores around the house since I didn't go in to work. Finally got around to fixing the toilet that broke just after Christmas. Yeah, I'm a bit behind in my chores. I'm sure if we still had a one bathroom house it would have gotten fixed earlier.

Sun, Feb. 9, 2003 - Barn Raising

Barn Raising

Another day that I should have been out enjoying the spectacular weather on my motorcycle, but the fire department scheduled a work day for the barn at the fairgrounds. This little barn is where the antique fire engine is stored. Its foundation was too low and so a lot of water was seeping into it during the winter. So today was spent lifting it up 8" so later this week they can pour another slab on top of the existing one. From the lessons learned on this garage, it should be much easier to do the same thing on ours when the time comes.

Tue, Feb. 11, 2003 - Home In Time

Home In Time

One of the biggest things that I hate about working 10-12 hour days is that I'm not at home to watch the beautiful sunsets we have. Fortunately, the last few nights, due to later sunsets, and a decreased work schedule, I've made it home in time to actually watch the sunset. And they've been just as gorgeous as I remember them. Tonight's reminded me a lot of the Lost Coast Sunset picture that I took last a while back.

Wed, Feb. 12, 2003 - Let's be friends

Let's be friends

I finally found my old digital camera and I will be making an attempt to keep it with me and bring it home so I can document more happenings. I took this picture of Galen and Trevor last week, but after finding the camera, it took me a bit longer to locate the download cable. Now that everything has been located, maybe there will be more frequent updates to my section of Knowlesville. Trevor pays us one or two visits every day, but he still prefers to be an outdoor cat, even when it is freezing cold or raining. He's getting along with Galen and Ricky, but Meg still isn't sure she wants this strange male in her house. Galen, on the other hand, after an initial disliking, has taken to Trevor as he did to Fred. Since Galen gets pounded by Ricky and Meg on a regular basis, I guess he likes any cat that is content to just ignore him.

Fri, Feb. 14, 2003 - The Flapper

The Flapper

This week for our Friday afternoon practice session, we dressed Jessica up as a 1920s flapper gal. She wasn't too excited about the wig until Lori added the headband. I thought the whole outfit looked pretty good. I've added more pictures of this dress on the vintage fashion web site.

Sat, Feb. 15, 2003 - Blue Velvet

Blue Velvet

Didn't mean to dissapoint you David Lynch fans, regarding the title of today's picture. Yesterday, we also photographed Lori in a blue velvet bodice which dates to around 1892. This garment has also been added to her web site, and you'll find it in the Victorian bodice section.

Sun, Feb. 16, 2003 - Fireman's Games

Fireman's Games

Today was the annual Ferndale Volunteer Fire Dept's Firemen Games, held on Main Street. Like all the recent Main Street events, this one was held in the rain. We had moments of warm sun, and moments of cold rain through out the day. I'll be featuring pictures from the event throughout the week, since this year not only did I photograph it (with the help of Greg) I also got to participate in it.

The first and most important event is the hose lay. Each company does three runs where 5 members must assemble 5 lengths of hose, hook it up to the engine, add a siamese coupling and two more hoses and finally two nozzles. Then they have to shoot two ducks off of the barrels. This event is the most important, because the loser of the event ends up with the dubious honor of cooking lunch for the rest of the department after the games are over.

Company One's first two runs weren't setting any records, but we were still in the running to not finish last. However, on our last run we outdid ourselves. The best run of the day by any team was 37 seconds. Our first two runs were nearly identical at 44 seconds each. On the final run one of our members fumbled the nozzle on his hose, and we ended up with the only over minute time, at 1:07. Needless to say, we cooked a lot of hamburgers today.

Mon, Feb. 17, 2003 - Bucket Brigade

Bucket Brigade

The second event is the bucket brigade, where the company has to fill up a large tub, bucket by bucket. I wish I had video for this one, because when done right, it really looks pretty cool. When the tub reaches a certain level, a little orange ball pops out of the tube at the top. If you look closely, you can see the ball dropping in the picture. This is Company One at work. I didn't have to participate in this one, which was good because I'm not sure my back would have liked it.

I had been warned that all rookie firemen would be dunked in the large tank, and at the end of our turn when Will asked to see my camera I knew it was my turn. Even expecting it, I had no idea how cold the water would be. I felt a bit like a soda bobbing in an ice bucket. At least knowing ahead of time, I came prepared with an extra change of clothes. I'm not sure how we did in this event, since I was changing into my dry clothes when it ended.

Tue, Feb. 18, 2003 - Emptying the Boots

Emptying the Boots

Here I am emptying the water out of my boots. Even after emptying them, they were quite squishy inside. So once again they are at home drying out. Hopefully the cats won't be leaving me any presents this time, but I'll check them just in case.

Wed, Feb. 19, 2003 - Jousting


I found out that we also came in last in the bucket brigade. The final "official" event is the jousting, which is really more like a tug of war in the air. Valley Lumber provides two forklifts, and a beer keg is suspended from a wire strung between them. Then two companies try to push the keg by aiming a stream of water at it. Sounds easy enough, except that the keg usually starts swinging wildy from side to side. Some battles ended up being pretty evenly matched and lasted quite awhile, which is really hard on the guys holding the nozzle for each team. We won our first match, but lost our second, so we ended up in second place in this event. In the picture, I am holding the hose on the far left.

We then fulfilled our obligation of cooking lunch, and after lunch was over there was one more event, which consisted of the whole department and various wives and others marching single file down the middle of Brown street, looping around the manhole cover, then continuing down Main Street, doing another loop, and then proceeding into the Palace for a round of drinks. This basic procedure is then repeated for rounds at the Ivanhoe, followed by Curley's. It all had a certain Monty Python feel to it, even when you weren't drinking.

Thu, Feb. 20, 2003 - Dunked


Caroline Titus of the Ferndale Enterprise captured my dunking quite well. On the front page of the Enterprise there is a Quote of the Week which is usually quite funny, especially when you know the person involved, which in Ferndale, is quite often. This week's quote came from Terry O'Reilly, who was inducted into the fire department the month before I was. Terry was quoted shortly before his dunking, "My company really likes me. I don't think they will dunk me." Nice try Terry.