Wednesday, January 28, 2009

W's Missed and Not Missed

We missed the W's at DePaul and Syracuse, but got a 78-68 gem at Notre Dame last night. B-ray and Piph delivered the goods for RU. The team should get a temporary lift from this performance, that is, until they run smack into scary-good UConn next week.

We won't miss the W who vacated the premises on 1.20.09. Perhaps, Ahmadinejad said it best. Among other statements, the BBC reported that he wished former US President George W Bush on his way: "God willing, he has gone to hell."

Still basking in Obama inaugural afterglow...

Public Flocking: Dead and Alive

I almost had a Tippi Hedren moment this afternoon. Hundreds of grackles landed in our trees and at the bird feeders during a respite from the freezing rain and sleet. They cackled and cawed and pigged out on the seed for awhile. J thought they might be a sign of spring(?)

This flock was alive. Thankfully, this was a much better experience than what the folks around my old haunt in Griggstown had this past weekend when dead European Starlings were found scattered all over yards, cars, roads, and roofs. It was neither a Hitchcock nor X-Files thing, but rather a purposeful poisoning. A local farmer benefited from the culling work done by his chemical allies in the USDA.

Getting the Red Shoulder

The other day, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a raptor land on the power lines at the end of the driveway. After a bit of fluffing and tail wagging, it plunged down into the ditch and under the mailboxes across the road. It then flew up into a nearby tree, clutching an unlucky vole or mouse and then proceeded to devour the critter. Afterwards, it went back to a power line to hang out and digest its meal in the sunshine. I grabbed the camera and clicked away. Wow!

I assumed it was a Cooper's Hawk until I uploaded the shots to my computer. Much to my chagrin, I realized it was probably a beautiful Red-shouldered Hawk! Sibley's even stated that they like to hang out on utility wires! These guys spent the summer gliding and crying above the back field, so it made sense that they stayed local for the winter. I've seen the guy a couple of times since then perched at the top of the old willow, puffing out his fine-streaked orange breast against the winter chill.

Monday, January 5, 2009

A Tale of Two Halves

Still trying to recover from the second half collapse at the RAC.

Rutgers 51 Tennessee 55

Friday, January 2, 2009

Resolution Run

We ran the 2009 Hillsborough Resolution Run yesterday. It's a 5K race on January 1. The temperature felt like 5 degrees! I had a respectable finish by doing a 9:13-minute mile pace. It doesn't compare to last year's under 9-min pace, but I was happy to finish the darned thing.