Random.

CTA sign shoved behind a kiosk at the Rockwell Brown Line Stop in Chicago.

When Earl is working an evening game at Wrigley Field I end up with some time on my hands. In the summer I don’t feel much like going outside but I’m not really a fan of driving the car all over creation while living here in the city. Yes, I went to school to be a Traffic Engineer but I believe urban areas such as Chicago have much better options in the way of public transit. I love the ‘L’ here in Chicago and I ride it almost every day.

Wanting to get a walk in during this beautiful weather I’ll jump on the ‘L’ and get on whatever train is first to appear at the station. I’ll ride a random number of stops and then I’ll walk back home. Today I walked two miles back to the house and I loved every step of it. You could almost feel the sigh of relief that the Monday workday was over and people were enjoying a drink or a meal with a spouse or friends on the sidewalk.

I love that energy. I love the vibe. One of the things I’ve noticed lately is that people of a certain age seem to be on their phones less while seated at a table. I’ve always been sensitive to the use of technology in social situations, but I don’t know if it’s because we live in a different socioeconomic situation than when we did a few years ago or if the pendulum of smartphone use is starting to swing back the other way, but it’s rare to hear someone having a conversation on their phone in a restaurant or at a bar. Back in Utica we’d hear about custody battles and people making doctor’s appointments and fights with a bank. I don’t notice it nearly as much in Chicago.

Maybe I’m just better natured since we’ve moved here.

I do love the vibe of happy people enjoying life with friends and/or family. It’s energizing.

And we all need good energy.

Storms.

http://blog.jpnearl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/img_3600.mov

I chased some storms on Saturday. I was downstate around Pontiac and Kankakee and found some dark clouds, strong winds, and moderate downpours. At one time it was dark enough to resemble early evening.

One of the things I love about living in Illinois is that out on the prairie it’s easy to see storms in the distance.

I was able to drive around this rain shower in the photo above and come at it from the backside. It was just a bunch of rain.

This last picture is the cell that’s in the video at the beginning of this post as it approach the rest area on I-55 south of Pontiac.

When I’m on the ground I do enjoy Mother Nature’s “punch”.

Energy.

Words can not describe how much I love the energy of this Fleetwood Mac performance of “Rhiannon”. Raw. Honest. Moving. Ethereal.

Filmed at a rehearsal in 1976.

PixMob.

So last night the family went to Allstate Arena to see Shawn Mendes. He is touring on “The Tour” and puts on a good show. I’m not a huge fan of his music but he exhibits a decent amount of talent, has a good voice that doesn’t sound electronically modified too much, and puts a lot of energy into his performance.

When we were entering the arena we were all given white wrist bands with little LED lights in them. I thought these were to be used in place of lighters of the old days, but it turns out they didn’t turn on when we removed the battery protector. There were no switches.

Made by PixMob, these little bracelets lit up as Shawn took the stage and for the next 90+ minutes, our bracelets were part of the performance’s light show. They twinkled. They flashed. Waves of color danced over the crowd for the entire performance.

I was captivated by this technology.

According to Wikipedia, the bracelets are controlled by infrared signals, much like the remote control on your television.

It’s not the most productive use of technology in the world but it was impressive and it contributed to the positive energy of the show. And these days we need all the positive energy we can get.

Neighbors.

The lights and ambience of the rooftop patio across the alley from us. The Sears Tower in the distance.

Leaped.

So the longest day of this year is Friday, June 21. Regardless of what the clock says, we will have the most time between sunrise and sunset. I’ve griped plenty about Daylight Saving Time and my disdain for it, but this is the time of year when I really feel the effects of it.

I strive to get up early in the morning and get some exercise in before starting the workday. It’s remarkably easy for me to do this during standard time because I feel like my body is in sync with the planet’s “clock”, even though I know that time is really a human construct. Getting up at 6:00 a.m., when my body screams it’s 5:00 a.m., is a struggle for me. Going to be at 10:00 p.m., when my body screams it’s 9:00 p.m., is even harder for me. I end up taking a nap during my lunch break, which slows down my metabolism.

I finally gave in and slept until 7:00 a.m. and did my workout in the evening while Earl was at work. I’ll do the same tomorrow. Today was the most productive day I’ve had this month, and there wasn’t anything remarkable about my work day or my meeting calendar or my workload, other than the fact that I had shifted my exercise from morning to evening.

I know I’m not a morning person. I’ve never been a morning person. But Daylight Saving Time exacerbates that fact and I’m tired of trying to play the game. Mind you, I like it when it’s light outside in the evening, but I don’t like it light outside when I’m going to bed, especially when it doesn’t have to be.

With the insanity that has gripped this country Daylight Saving Time will probably defended as have been documented in the Bible before the end of This Age of Insanity comes to a close.

In the meanwhile, I’ll just do the best I can.

Video.

So I’m thinking of starting to make flight videos again. I love sharing my enthusiasm of aviation in any way possible, and since I’m actively learning new skills as a pilot this year, it might be fun to share the experience through video again.

I’ve spent the past two hours building a new version of my “Intro Sequence”. There’s a little bit of old and a little bit of new in this clip, but I’m happy with the way it turned out.

Final Cut Pro X has some bugs in it, though. You have to cajole the application to add simple transitions at random times. I don’t know why that remains a difficulty in video editing software in 2019.

Perhaps I like quick transitions too much.