Gunner, the mighty blue heeler

Gunner Gunner

This is the story of a blue heeler, also known as an Australian Cattle Dog. His name is Gunner.

Late last year, I got wind that my cousin Sandy was breeding her ACD, Meg, with a friend’s ACD. We had met Sandy’s awesome little doggy, when we visited them a few years back. She was adorable, and I fell in love. She has much white, with some spots. I looked up the breed and loved what I saw. And with Oreo, our collie…er Mcnab Cattle Dog, being a shepherding dog, I knew I wanted another kind. I truly wanted a breed that was smaller though. The kind of dog I could toss in the truck and he’d sit on the center console for the ride.

When I heard about Sandy breeding Meg, I started paying better attention. Soon I got to see the daddy, and I was impressed! He’s a nice dark ACD, blue heeler. I  knew the results would be fantastic!

I got ahold of my cousin and asked about the plans for the litter, etc. She told me that there were 8 pups, and gave me the costs. Right away I started talking with Deanna about it. I just HAD to find a way for us to get one. But there was no way, with my leukemia journey. I told Sandy that it just wouldn’t work. She asked if I wanted to be on the backup list, and without asking Deanna, I said OH YEAH!

Then they were born, 2 days before Christmas. And they were adorable. All white at first. Sandy started posting photos like crazy. All it did was make me insane. I had to have one. As they grew, they started with spots everywhere, then their faces started darkening up. I commented on all the photos, “liked” them all.

Fast forward to February, and the pups have grown a bunch, and are getting ready to be picked up by their prospective new families. And out of the blue, Sandy contacts me and asks, “Hey you still interested in one of Meg’s pups?” Of course I am! But we just can’t right now.

Then she says, “How about a pup from your cousin?” It actually took me a minute to click. Then, I don’t think I was intelligible for a while. Deanna and I talked and we were excited about adding a new pup! She asked what we wanted to call him, so she could start right away. I took the better part of an hour, and decided on Gunner. We set up a plan to head up to Windsor, in NorCal, to pick him up.

Gunner Gunner Gunner

Then this happened. The days didn’t line up exactly. Our plans were squashed. We knew we’d get him eventually, but were sad about not being able get him when we planned. The next thing we knew Sandy and her man, Tony, packed Gunner up and drove him down to us! They got here just 3 days before I was readmitted.

Back in UCLA, I was texting my teenagers constantly demanding photos of the new pup. The obliged me constantly, I was building up one more motivation to get better and get home. Once I was paroled, I couldn’t wait to get home to see Gunner.

Gunner  Gunner

Since then he’s been a pill. He’s been disobedient. And we love him! He’s starting obedience training next week, and we hope for some good changes. He does nip, as most shepherds will, especially cattle dogs, and even more so heelers. Five of us have figured out how to deal with it. The Joker is having the hardest time. He just gets scared and runs, which makes Gunner pursue his herd-able small child. That’ll get nipped in the bud real soon.

Give Gunner a nice welcome to the Carpenter family!



I’ve lost all self control


I am passionate. I have strong opinions. You already knew this.

Throughout my social media existence, I’ve engaged, at various times in various levels of intensity, in many of those issues I feel strongly about; abortion, gun rights, theology, and many other things.

For those of us used to some kind of western idea of freedom, we’re accustomed to being free to engage in a discussion or debate, with at least a small amount of freedom to speak our minds. It’s codified in one of the most basic documents of our nation. However, if you’re a guest in my home, and you’re rude or I simply don’t want to hear your opinion, I’m free to ask you to leave.

In the socialwebs, that’s most often embodied in the infamous “unfriending”. Some websites allow you to do something in between, like hiding the offending party.

One area that doesn’t seem used that often, is the simple closing of comments. Bloggers and old skool media do this often. They write something they know will be offensive or bother their readers, so they close comments. Google+ allows this. Posting to this blog, allows this. Facebook, however, does not. 😦 Coupled with my love-to-hate relationship with Facebook, I wish I could just close it down for good. But there are too many actually-important-to-me family and friends whom I remain in contact with, on Facebook. Some of them live far away, and I just can’t get them to use Google+ for a better experience.

So, for now I’m going to try something new. When I post controversial stuff, just know that I’ll most likely just delete debate-worthy comments. It’s that simple. For those who can’t handle it, they can make it all go away by unfriending me. I’m more than willing, however, to take that conversation to a more private place.

First, I want to reserve my debate energy for actual people in my actual life. I cannot take upon the burden of changing the minds of every person I know, online. (Some of whom are photographically oriented friendships, of tremendous diversity.) So, rather than retort with you all, I’ll wait until we see each other in person.

Second, I will also permit any of those who genuinely want to discuss or even understand my view more, to chat with me on Facebook’s direct message center, or of course email always works.

I’m even considering going back through the past few day’s worth of heated conversations, and trimming out the contentiousness.

What do you think? Am I being unfair? Am I closed minded?

Begone nipples!

Remember back on May 5th, when I told you about this sweet new photo website called 500px? Then right away I had to amend my recommendation, because of the massive amount of NSFW content (at least 2 photos on every browsing page of photos with exposed nipples).

Well, today they announced that you can filter out the nude content now! Yippy Skippy!

I can only assume that most of the existing photos have not been labeled as nude, so most of them will probably show up until we somehow label them as such.

But this is a step in the right direction! Check out my screenshot below, and see how easy it is to make the settings change.

500px / Site settings


But what do I do if I find a nipple? Report it, of course! Look to the far right of each photo, there’s a standard set of icons for sharing the photo in question on the internets, like Twitter and Facebook. Just underneath those icons, above the cute little menu for choosing your desired language, you’ll find the words “Report photo”. Click it, duh! See below if you can’t read too well.


How can I help Japan? Send $10, to help churches…

Seriously, what’s Japan’s best hope for a blessed future? Jesus Christ.

Now, duh, there are tons of great things all sorts of well-meaning people will do to help real, tangible needs of the hurting people in Japan. Those are important things that must be done now. Thousands of people are dead; tens of thousands of people. That alone is causing tremendous suffering. Then there’s the survivors. They’re hurting because they need food and water. They need a dry place to sleep tonight, and tomorrow night.

The needs will continue. The list will grow.

Much of these needs will, albeit slowly, be met by NGOs, missions organizations, locals helping locals, and their own government. The felt needs will slowly be met. But the deep pain, sorrow, and hurting will continue. For some, it will go on for a very long time.

Only Jesus can heal this pain.

I just donated $10 to Churches Helping Churches. CHC was birthed out of two pastors who knee-jerk jumped at the chance to head down to Haiti last year, within days of their disaster. These two pastors combined their desire to connect willing people to needy churches. Now this week, they’ve committed to helping the Church in Japan too. That’s something I can get behind!

So, you should text “chc” to 20222 to donate $10 to Churches Helping Churches too. Don’t forget to reply “yes” when prompted. Wanna give to a more well known ministry? Fine, give to World Vision. Still hesitant? Or you just don’t care about the Church in Japan, fine, donate to the Japanese Red Cross, via Google.

Churches Helping Churches announced that they are supporting a local ministry that has been and is continuing to serve suffering Japanese. Perfect! What better way to make sure that donated funds are most effective, than to hook up with a ministry already serving effectively? Well done, CHC! This local ministry is called CRASH Japan. (CRASH stands for Christian Relief, Assistance, Support and Hope network)

CHC also announced that they’re encouraging churches to take a special offering this weekend, March 26 and 27, to support CRASH Japan’s efforts. Read more about that here.

Happy Halloween!

For those who haven’t caught my self-promoting via most social media outlets, I’ll tell you now. I wrote a blog post, on my church’s website. It reads…

Halloween is the one holiday we Christians can’t modify into our very own Christian bookstore supported holiday.

Do you know that we celebrate Resurrection Sunday (Easter) on an old Roman, pre-Christian pagan holiday. Do you know that we celebrate the birth of the world’s Savior (Christmas) in place of the ancient celebration of the winter solstice. In all truthfulness, Christians have been in the business of hijacking holidays for the glory of the King since we were still persecuted by the Romans.

So, in light of all that, Happy Halloween!

Go read the rest…

NRA-ILA reports on Constitutional Carry becomes the law in Arizona tomorrow

Smith & Wesson M&P 40C

NRA-ILA reports on Constitutional Carry becomes the law in Arizona tomorrow…

In less than a week, Arizona residents will be allowed to carry a gun in their pocket or purse without needing paperwork to do so. Senate Bill 1108, which allows people to carry concealed guns with no permit takes effect on July 29.

This basically means that Arizonians no longer need any paperwork to legally carry a firearm concealed on their person. As a crazy, right wing, 2nd Amendment supporting American, I totally support this new law. Law abiding citizens should NOT be infringed upon by their government in exercising ANY of their rights detailed in the US Constitution, including the 2nd Amendment.

A return to Feedburner

When Google bought up Feedburner, many people considered that this was not going to be good for Feedburner. My own knee-jerk reaction had me jumping ship, and going back to the built-in RSS in WordPress.

I’m sure that if I had actual people reading my blog, then it might have mattered. But, it didn’t.

Well, today I returned to Feedburner, begging for forgiveness.

So, if you’re one of the 4 people who subscribe to this blog, with Google Reader or something like that, then would you mind taking a moment to resubscribe to my Feedburner feed? Thanks!

Subscribe to by Email

Night Time San Francisco Photowalk

Tucked Away

When we’re in San Francisco, in September, I’d love to meet up with new and old photo friends for an evening of photowalking.

Meet us at Fog City Diner, at 7 pm on 9/12/2010. The sun will be setting around 7:23 that evening, so you’ll have some time to get there before it gets dark. See the embedded map for the whole route. We’ll head up to Coit Tower, then back towards the coastline towards Fisherman’s Wharf, and then just past into Fort Mason.

A Wet Fisherman's Wharf

That’s it. Bring your camera and a tripod! Tell us you’re coming, over on Facebook or
View SF Nighttime Photowalk in a larger map

**********Quick update**********

Oh, and all of you should go and invite 2 more people, right now!