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The Rare Candlestick Moth

I few days ago we spotted a rare Candlestick Moss sitting on one of the Amanita Chipbowlius mushrooms in the front yard. Over the weekend, it’s been hanging around by the entrance to the house.

IMG_4232See other mosaics…

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The Left Overs….not just digital any more

Those of you who are connected to me on facebook as well as here, know that my partner Sheila Gregory has been working on a photo series called The Left Overs since February of this year, and publishing the results on a blog just called Sheila Gregory.

She has been looking into having some of these images printed up using UV resistant inks on 100% rag paper. She’s testing this out by printing three of them at 24″ X 18″.IMG_4226Early tests are promising. She’s found someone locally in Long Branch – Silver Lion Framing – who has this kind of printing capability and can handle framing as well. Sheila plans to make images from the series available on demand, sold either framed or unframed. Anyone interested can contact Sheila at or through me. Each image is identified by the date it was shot.

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Walking in the Parlor

I learned the tune Walking in the Parlor last week at the banjo workshop I attended, led by Bruce Molskey. I like this deceptively simple, hypnotic tune a lot and I’ve been playing it quite a bit since the workshop, trying to get it right. Here are a few versions of Walking in the Parlor I found on the YouTube.

Let’s start with Dwight Diller. This tune likely comes from the Hammons family, and Diller learned from them.

Here is Steve Jeter, doing a great version on a gourd banjo…

Now check out this 1927 version played on a Jew’s harp by Obed “Dad” Pickard

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The 27th Street Book Box loves you!

IMG_4199Just a few days ago the book box was looking sad and half empty, an unusual circumstance as normally it maintains a happy equilibrium. I put out the call for a few good books the other day via this blog and Twitter and the Instagram machine. When I arrived  home from work today, I noticed a few new ones in the box. I added a couple from my shelves, and then settled down on the porch to play the banjo. A wonderful reader pulled up with a big bag of books. Not just any books, but excellent current titles. She saw the call on Twitter, bagged some up and came over. How fantastic is that?

Featured today in the box is a Dilbert book that comes from my shelves: Cubes and Punishment. Those of you who work in a cube in Corporate Canada will laugh yourselves silly because Scott Adams simply nails it.

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Chicken of the Woods & Pepperoni Pizza

IMG_4197Chicken of the Woods can be cooked in many ways. Today I sauteed up a generous quantity, then put them aside while I prepared the rest of my pizza. After spreading some sauce, I loaded up the dough with the wild mushrooms, sprinkled on some grated mozzarella, added some sliced pepperoni, a sprinkle of oregano and that’s it.

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27th Street Book Box needs your help!

Normally people take books and people drop books off at just about the same rate, but over the past couple weeks, it’s started to look a little sad….

IMG_4184So I’m putting the call out to Book Box fans in Long Branch. That doesn’t mean I’m asking you to drop off bags of books nobody wants to read….no no no. I’m asking you to check out your shelves and pick out one or two choice books for the community. I know I can count on you! That’s why Long Branch rocks!

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Meanwhile, somewhere north of St. Clair

While Tuffy P was at the CNE last night, I was at a banjo workshop, learning from Bruce Molsky, one of the best old time banjo players, fiddle players and guitar pickers around. I heard about the workshops through the Toronto Stringband email list.

The workshop was done by ear. Bruce would show us a phrase, we’d try to play it, we’d repeat it a few times, try another phrase, put them together and so on. I found stringing all these phrases together and keeping them from draining out of my little brain – and doing it in a group setting – was both challenging and exciting.

We worked on a couple different tunes РWalking in the Parlor and more briefly, Mississippi Sawyer.  For me, Mississippi Sawyer was easier because I knew the melody well and already played a version of it. Overall it was a very worthwhile experience. It was fantastic to meet Bruce Molsky and learn from him and it was great to meet the other participants as well.

Bruce Molsky played the Summerfolk Festival up in Owen Sound on the weekend, and tonight he’s playing at Hugh’s Room here in Toronto. My brother the trout, Salvelinas Fontinalis is venturing out of farm country for this one and is joining me. He’s bringing his dog Vibe down to visit with Georgie and Memphis and Tuffy P for the evening. I’m looking forward to a rare evening out with my brother, and to the show which promises to be fantastic.

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CNE by Tuffy P

The Ex takes the cake for me every year – crazy food, guess your age, midway colours, spinning sound of the crown and anchor game, choosing fudge, best in show flowers, the Bandshell shows, moving through the strollers, the dating couples, the seniors, the ‘Sweepas’, the ribs, looking for an open Tiny Tom’s on the way out. Tonight delivered me from evil- and Chubby Checker Twisted us crazy in the cool breezy night.