Tuesday, September 29, 2015

the stunted lard grease of oblivion

To that other place go I with the aid of more than just white noise. The universe heaves and bends with just the crack of a smile. The spaces between spaces are fluid with the Dark Matter repulsing and attracting the quarks and gluons that reside within mine body self.

The hiss static merges with the stunted lard grease of oblivion to heave creative warnings in my general direction. They fly fly towards the trench I have dug to protect the mind so very rare. Decipher it. You'll be glad you did.

Monday, September 14, 2015

40th birthday

November is my 40th birthday.

Mardi Gras theme party menu: Collard greens, shrimp and grits, tangerine glazed ham and biscuits, sauerkraut salad,  bacon stuffed deviled eggs, hot crackers, pinwheel sandwiches and beignets, of course!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Queen City of the Plains

The Mile High City, Denver, Colorado, is the Queen City of the Plains.

A Taste of Colorado

@ATasteofCO Celebrating it's 32nd year in 2015, Denver's Taste of Colorado is good family fun.

500,000 people make this four-day Labor Day Weekend festival jubilee the place to be in Denver. With 50 area food establishments, 275 marketplace artisans and vendors, six stages with all sorta of music and entertainment plus educational programs promoting the diverse cultural and western heritage of the region!  No admission fee!

The prices were not bad. I remember it being more expensive. You definitely get your monies worth. Even the 'taste' portions are large. The ice cream scoops were huge!

Originally named Festival of Mountain and Plain, it was established in 1895 as a carnival. Closing in 1902, and, after many years, it was brought back to Denver in 1983.

Taste of Colorado has something for everyone. And the food is amazing. The vendors selling wares are good as well. It's just great times all around.

Bring an empty stomach. You'll be glad you did. Try something exotic. You'll be really glad you did.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Colorado Cider and Beer Circus

The first ever Colorado Cider and Beer Circus was held at Copper Mountain Resort in Summit County, Colorado on Saturday August 29, 2015. It was fun.

Rocky Mountain Wild Cider, of Firestone, Colorado, was the best I had with the hard Pumpkin Cider.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Big Bone Room

It has bones and such at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.

Bear cub wanders the big city

DENVER, CO -- An amazingly rare sight in Denver, a bear cub was seen in the area of Evans Avenue and Colorado Boulevard Monday morning August 24, 2015.

It was glimpsed wandering throughout the neighborhood during the day according to police; easily climbing fences and onto shed rooftops.

Around 10pm there was a commotion in the quiet University Park neighborhood. Spotlights, police lights and people were milling about the streets.

Denver Police had responded and it was determined that the bear had hopped a fence and was hiding in the backyard brush and trees of a house on South Monroe Street.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife were called.

Russ Dale, who confirmed the location of the bear in his backyard, said, "The beastie was chilling in the fenced-in area all tired like. Our eyes met. I saw the tiredness gnawing at it's bear mind."

The bear was tranquilized with a 3 drug cocktail via a CO2 powered dart gun at approximately 11:41pm after a trap/cage arrived on scene. Since it was not a threat, had wandered out of it's habitat and not caused problems, the bear will possibly be relocated to an area around Deckers, Colorado.

It was a little bit of excitement in the city!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Pacific wildfires make for Denver poor air quality

Wildfires in western states are the cause of the smoky haze in Denver Colorado. However the smoke makes for spectacular skies.

Adieu Griff's

Griff's Hamburgers, a piece of Americana in Denver for 50 years, is permanently closed. :(

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Herbal Medicine Making. It's fun!

Call me Geppetto Wildcrafter! Weee for herbalism, botanical medicine/crude medicine! Watch out for that wily herbal alchemist! Yes yes! I have become very fascinated with the wildcrafting arts. Wildcrafting is the harvesting and collection of plants for food or medicine purposes. Herbal alchemy was used for healing purposes and I am focusing on the healing. Call me healer. Drink this tonic.

I am throwing together a medicine “bag” containing 4-ounce hexagon glass jars. Each jar will contain an herb or plant. It will be my homemade herbalist kit! I like learning.

I will get a few things for starters, as basics, a small foundation: peppermint leaf, catnip, slippery elm bark, rosehips, chili flakes, lemongrass, comfrey root, yellow mustard seed, burdock root, damiana leaf, elderberries, dandelion leaf, fennel seed, Hawthorn leaf/flower/berries, rosemary leaf, lemon balm, calendula, kava kava root, skullcap, Echinacea, saw palmetto berries, ginkgo leaf, valerian root, epimedium leaf, yohimbe bark and horse chestnut.

I’ll cure what ails ya yo. I’ll concoct herbal remedies that will relieve stress, and other things like anger and depression, including adding vitamins and nutrients to the body. I’ll whip up some herbal tinctures and salves and infusions and ointments! I’ll wrastle up some curative shit! I’ll use beeswax and lavender oil! I’ll do the practices of the ancient guilds of alchemists proud.

The kit will have the essence of the following flowers: California Wild Rose, St. John’s Wort, Scotch Broom, Scarlet Monkeyflower and Holly.

I’m not joking. I’m serious. I will become quite learned in alternative cures. It’s good stuff to know. Right? I think so. Right? Yes. Why not? Yes. Drink this tonic.

I need more stuff cluttering my brain. Call me Geppetto Wildcrafter.

Elite VIP Hour at Yelp's Merry Marrakesh

Bellies were dancing. Food and spirits were flying into bellies. Belly laughter. Henna on bellies and legs and feets and hands and faces. It was a scrum of goodness for the mind, senses, spirit and belly.

It seems as if each and every Elite Yelp event tops one another. This go around was a Yelp Elite VIP Hour at Yelp's Merry Marrakesh fantastic jubilee of awesome at Space Gallery. The venue is top notch. The perfect space for an event.

DJ Savior Breath knocked out the tunes with flair and wonder as usual.

Hopdoddy Burger Bar with Colorado beef and toasted buns made the taste buds sing. Biker Jim's Gourmet Dogs: wild boar-alicious! Americatus New-World Italian caters if you need it! My belly was full. I needed beverages and the like.

Oh my...beverage galore. The spirits were aplenty! Summer Snow Colorado Shaved Ice piña colada was yums. Not a snow cone yo. Shaved ice! Deep Eddy Lemon Vodka mixed with lemonade was a refreshing summer treat. After three or four you'd not even know the season anymore. Fall is neigh.

Each and every local food and drink provider came out to dazzle. And dazzle they did. I am filled with knowledge about each business, because I ask question after question, and will call upon them in the future whilst entertaining.

Thank you to all who made this event happen. It was truly a night to remember. It was good for the soul. And belly.

Find Summer Snow Colorado Shaved Ice and have the piña colada flavor. You'll be glad you did.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Sunday, July 26, 2015


Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory, high-altitude field station built on abandoned mining town Gothic Colorado.

Awesome 4x4 Trail

Corkscrew Gulch Trail in Colorado's Uncompahgre National Forest is so awesomely beautiful.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Grill Master

I don’t want to sound like a braggart, but I am a decent cook.  

Especially when it comes to the grill. I am a “grill master” and it says so right on the apron. Be it with charcoal, propane or wood, my grilled and smoked and baked delicacies are absolutely delicious: every time yo!

I prefer charcoal grills. For the flavor. For the challenge. A real grill master uses charcoal or wood. While the instant fire of propane is convenient, ain’t nothing substitutes the modern charcoal briquettes. I dance around modern charcoal briquettes in jubilee.

Gaze upon some splendiferous examples of why they whisper “Grill Master” at me in stunning adoration everywhere I go. My peppermint patchouli scent mixed with syrupy smoke is intoxicating to men and women alike.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Pluto Time - Denver, Colorado

530a Denver Colorado Pluto Time 07/01/15 at the State Capitol. It was the moment when the illumination matches that of high noon on Pluto.


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Deutschland in Oktober.

Hier sind meine Pläne für Oktober Deutschland Adventure. Eine unvollständige Liste.

*Kehlsteinhaus: Berchtesgaden, Deutschland
47°36′40″N 13°02′30″E

Das Kehlsteinhaus ist ein Dritte Reich Ära Gebäude errichtet oben auf dem Gipfel des Kehlstein, einem Felsvorsprung, der über dem Obersalzberg bei Berchtesgaden steigt. Es war auf seinem 50. Geburtstag als Rückzugsort und Ort, um Freunde und Würdenträger zu unterhalten, um Adolf Hitler vorgestellt.

*Dachau: Bavaria, Deutschland
48°15′37″N 11°26′3″E

Der berüchtigte KZ Dachau im Jahre 1933 von den Nazis gebaut. Zehntausende Häftlinge starben.

*Strasbourg: Elsass, Frankreich
48 ° 35'N 7 ° 45'E

Straßburgs historischem Stadtzentrum, der Grande Île (Grand Island), wurde zum Weltkulturerbe von der UNESCO im Jahr 1988 eingestuft.

*Stuttgart: Baden-Württemberg, Deutschland
48 ° 47'N 9 ° 11'e

Ausgangspunkt für das Abenteuer.

*Rheinfall: In der Nähe Schaffhausen, Schweiz

Der Rheinfall ist der größte Wasserfall Europas Ebene.

*Loreley, St. Goarshausen, Deutschland

ein Stein auf dem östlichen Ufer des Rheins in der Nähe von St. Goarshausen, Deutschland, die rund 120 Meter über der Wasserlinie steigt. Es markiert den schmalsten Teil des Flusses zwischen der Schweiz und der Nordsee, und ist der bekannteste Merkmal der Rheinschlucht.

Der Felsen und das Murmeln es schafft wurden verschiedene Geschichten inspiriert. Eine alte Legende vorgesehen Zwerge leben in Höhlen in den Felsen.

fun with drones

It's fun.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Paris on the Platte - Denver, CO

Paris on the Platte at 1553 Platte St. in Denver is closed. I miss it. It was once the oldest coffee house in Denver located in the heart of LoDo Confluence Valley.

Paris was one of my old haunts from the high school days in the early 1990s. It basically remained the same over the years, save a few minor differences.

There was always sub-par artwork for sale from paintings to sculptures to pottery displayed on the walls. The food and coffee were first-class.

I enjoyed this laid back coffee house. It was open late although I preferred to go there during the day when I was older.

Many ghosts of the past are present there. I could sense it in the air and in the walls. I could almost feel myself regressing into my former, high school nerdy self while sitting in the back room shortly before it closed permanently. I wanted to wear a beret for some odd reason. I heard Ween in my head.

Many late-night hours were spent at Paris in my stoned youth playing chess, hanging out with friends, writing stories, smoking clove cigarettes, drinking café Mexicana, café Fantasia, looking at crappy books in the bookstore and doing all of the pretentious coffee house things a wayward youth did in the early 90s.

Paris was a nice alternative to Starbucks and one cannot go wrong with supporting local businesses in lieu of corporate, on every corner, coffee slag.

I always ordered café Fantasia, grub chips and salsa (red onions and cilantro made this homemade salsa oh so good) and a Ruben sammich on marble rye.

Every time I visited I kept expecting to get accosted by black clothed/hooded Goth kids while I was trying to keep from spilling the full of chunks salsa down my front. Goth kids were rarely seen in these modern days but I dribbled the foodie stuff all over myself as usual. I try to be graceful but to no avail.

I miss Paris. It was good times.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Not-Apo Really Was

Luminiferous - transmitting, producing or yielding light

Luminiferous: An ArapaGlow Valley Ranch Art Campout in Colorado had unicorns and gnomes and more.

It was Not-Apo but it was Apogaea. It created something new that was not there before...something that really needed to happen.

It was a great event.

That which is most beautiful is you.

Taco House Not Closed Permanently

My family's favorite restaurant, Taco House at 1390 W. Littleton Blvd, has been closed since April 14. It may be closed but it's not permanently closed. That fills me with joy.

I reached out to find out what happened.

"It's a mess over there," said Taco House owner Dora D’Andre, who rents the building. A mid-April spring snowfall turned a roofing repair project in to a nightmare. The restaurant flooded with 3 inches of water. It is in the process of remodeling.

I was shocked to see it closed. Dread warshed over me. For over 50 years the family-run business has provided delicious Mexican food out of the mid-century almost historic building. Is it deemed historic yet?

The prominent yellow brick restaurant, on Littleton Blvd between Broadway and the Historic Downtown Littleton district, has fed 4 generations of my family.

What needs to be done to reopen is a large task. The City of Littleton red flagged the recognizable, old building and is requiring all of the electrical to be redone to bring it up to code.

"We will reopen," D’Andre said adamantly, "Hopefully the end of July; as soon as construction is complete."


Monday, June 1, 2015

Dixon Trail - Cheyenne Mountain State Park

What was going on in Cheyenne Mountain State Park this past weekend? Building the Dixon Trail.

A historic, 100 year old route, the Dixon Trail will connect the park's North Talon Trail to the summit of Cheyenne Mountain.

Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado have worked on the Dixon Trail for a while now. When completed it will be three miles long with an elevation gain of 2,200 feet.

Good work was done on it.

Here is a gallery of pictures: https://flic.kr/s/aHskcaZqs4

Monday, May 18, 2015

Pratt County Kansas Volcanic Ash Pit

Five deposits of volcanic ash have been located and sampled in Pratt County.
Have you ever rolled around in the dirt just because it’s there?  Ever wonder where that dirt came from?  Me too!

Greetings.  I'm Russ Dale. I’m not new to Pratt Kansas as I am “from” Pratt in a cosmic sense, as my great-great grandfather Whitney Bailey arrived in the county in 1887 at the age of 15.  He was a wheat farmer in McPherson and Saratoga Townships. 

I enjoy learning about the past. I am a history buff who is heavily interested in genealogy and geology.  And I roll around in dirt. 

I was at the Pratt County Historical Museum one day pouring over historic maps of the county.  Wallowing in a pile of old maps is how I roll.  Pratt County landmarks like Skunk Johnson’s Cave, Pilot Knob and Arrowhead Hill made my imagination whirl.  Fascinating. 

Then something called “Volcanic Ash Pit” caught my curiosity.  The tiny drawing on this aged 100-year-old map was akin to a modern orbital satellite photo of the fictional Sarlacc pit, the Great Pit of Carkoon, in “Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi!”  A nerdy rock hound from Colorado, a geologic paradise in its own right, I am in love with rocks and the stories they tell.  And, being a dirt flounderer, I immediately knew I needed to find out more about this pit.  Who doesn’t like to visit pits?  Pits are exciting.  Pits are amazing.  If I had a nickel for ever pit I’ve visited I would have a gaggle of nickels. 

I scoured over satellite imagery of Pratt County in search of the pit.  I searched the internets.  I spoke with local old-timers.  I became obsessed with this mysterious oddity.

A friend of a cousin’s cousin made me privy to an enigmatic area called the “silica pit,” a place in the county where generations of children played in the dirt.  Corroborating this first-hand knowledge with information gleaned from a 1973 Kansas Geological Survey Bulletin #205 and a thesis about the “chemical fingerprinting” of volcanic tephra found in Kansas by Brian T. David of Kansas State University, I was pointed to what I believed was the “Volcanic Ash Pit.”

I went there.  All of my pit dreams came true.
My eyes did behold the majesty of the “Volcanic Ash Pit!”  It was an old pit with layers of volcanic ash 14 feet thick along the walls!  The ash, essentially fine shards of white to grey glass spewed from a volcano, was once excavated from the site and used in concrete for roads.  Others uses for “silica” included soaking up blood at meat packing plants and in bathroom cleansers.  Long abandoned, this pit was now just a hole in the ground inhabited by animals and plants. 

Where did this “dirt” come from?  The ash, from an erupting volcano, was carried by winds over Kansas many years ago and settled to the ground.  Streams washed the ash into shallow depressions. 

Could this Pearlette ash bed be Lava Creek B Tuff of the Yellowstone Caldera, the last major eruption from the Yellowstone volcanic center 640,000 years ago?  Was it derived from the explosion of Valle Grande Caldera supervolcano in north-central New Mexico roughly 1.2 million years ago?  That was a time when humans were an endangered species!  I am filled with questions. 

The debate is still out on the origin of the ash and where it fits on the geologic time scale.  Regardless of its origin, it is a superb geologic site.  Especially for Kansas.  It is doubly superb it exists in Pratt County Kansas.

My mission complete and personal dirt quota satisfied, I prepared for another learning adventure into the surrounding area in which my ancestors, and myself, call home.


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Fun With Soppy

The Soppy, a delicious meat sauce, has been in my family for generations.  Soppy is great on steaks, chicken, fish, turkey and even pheasant. 

The Soppy ingredients are a well kept Bailey family secret.  My great-great grandfather on my mother’s side, William Rutledge Bailey, born November 10, 1846 in Knox County, Ohio, first threw down the Soppy on a massive hog he was cooking over a freakishly large fire pit at his prairie homestead in Pratt Kansas.  William slathered the hog with the Soppy and his wife Lucy and the Bailey children William, Whitney (my great grandfather) Henry, Oliver, Florella and Judson feasted on the flavorly enhanced meat. 

Whitney never forgot the Soppy ways.  Whitney grew to be a wheat farmer.  Pioneer settlers had a way of making play out of hard work.  One of the big social events of the year in Saratoga Township, Pratt County, was the time of butchering when several families helped each other as they went from farm to farm to work.  In the coldest part of the winter, neighbors gathered and several hogs were butchered, enough to supply the year’s meat.  Many of them were specialists in some phase of the work and Whit Bailey was one of the best butchers in the area and much in demand. 

With the Soppy powers on his side, he was bound to be a legend. 

Demonstrated here is Soppy use while grilling beefy kabobs and bratwurst.  Soppy glaze is still used for special occasions in my family.  Soppy. Soppy!  SOPPY!  

I will never tell the recipe.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Broken trees in Denver

Broken trees at Observatory Park due to the Mother's Day winter snow storm that brought heavy wet snow and winds to Denver.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

'Bout Those Eggs

I'm all about those eggs, 'bout those eggs. All deviled!

I'm bringing eggy back.Go ahead & tell them skinny bitches Hey!

Thursday, April 2, 2015


'It's not about what you didn't feel, it's about what you didn't show.'  ~unknown

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Motown: The Musical Hits Denver

A scrum of adventure in the Denver surrounded me on opening night of Motown: The Musical.

Impeccable timing made for a flowing chain of fun events. I departed the Colorado light rail station and rode the mass transit fantastic down to the Convention Center. From there, pre show vittles were a necessity. There was an approximate 10.23 minute walk to Yard House on the 16th Street Mall.

Happy hour jubilee awaited with great appetizer and drink specials. Moo Shu Egg Rolls and vampire taco® deliciousness ensued.

Once the belly was full it was off to The Buell Theatre, where the line seemed overwhelming. Checking with the Will Call box office, I was instructed where to go to pick up the tickets. And to achieve this I was to maneuver through the line, pushing my way stealthily to the front to retrieve my ticket. I did this swiftly, much to the dismay of people in the line. Wow. Simple. Amazing. My journey through the line was quick and painless. This truly was a Yelp Elite event and I had zero problems with gaining access. I saw a few familiar faces as I waded through the lines of humanity.

The show was great. I have seen many musicals at DCPA. This ranks up there as one of the best. The production was fantastic and it was obvious the cast and crew has this show down to a science. From the acting to the dancing to the scene changes to the lighting to the music ... all was superb. The audience seemed to enjoy it, as there was singing along, vocal grunts of joy, clapping, whoops and hollers throughout the performance.

Overall the experience was super. The vocals were sometimes drowned out by the music but if anyone had even a small knowledge of the music that didn't matter one bit. Motown: The Musical was a delight and I am sure the production will do well here in Denver.

Mar 31 - Apr 19, 2015
The Buell Theatre

Friday, March 20, 2015

RAD technical rider

This contract rider includes specifications on stage design, sound systems, lighting rigs, podium heights and styles.  It is also a wish list -- from transportation and billing to dressing room accommodations and meals.  All of this is required to make Russell A. Dale happy. 

Please do your best when trying to provide this extensive list of necessary items.  In some cases, a promoter will refuse a demand (crossing out the request on the document), and can be done.  It is, however, not recommended.

To save time and to be totally clear, please do not amend or change this rider for return.  Instead, grab a separate piece of paper and thoroughly describe you objections or concerns and fax a copy for review to a representative of Mr. Dale.






Russ Dale’s dressing room will have:

1 large white toga
1 18 1/2" x 13 5/8" stainless steel serving tray with domed lid (large enough to hold a huge turkey)
1 massive lizard (water Monitor, Varanus salvatori)
6 pair surgical gloves
1 closed circuit television camera (with complete building broadcast capability)
5 apple pie scented candles
2 63-inch PPM63H1, Samsung Plasma display televisions
1 Sony DVX-100, 10-Disc Blu-ray/CD Changer
7 Pioneer PDSP-1, 5.1-channel surround sound speakers (with 254 circular speakers built into one flat Godless panel!)
1 Sony Playstation 4 with 4 controllers and memory card
100 rated M for Mature Playstation 4 video games
1 Smoker Cooker Bar-B.Q. Grill model #84 Mobile
Wifi access

Support Staff dressing rooms will have:




1 gallon top shelf buttermilk
10 pounds of lean Austrian pot roast
2 fresh vegetable trays with Freedom onion dip (cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, celery, cucumbers, cilantro and cherry tomatoes)
24 slabs of pork ribs
40 chicken quarters
16 chicken breasts
48 Boulder Beer bratwurst
1 package of hot dogs
1 big hunk of bologna
1 whole roasting pig
3 large roasting turkeys
2 bulky hams
10 marinated salmon (with Mango-Chile Sauce)
100 bottles of bottled water (room temperature and not Evian!)


1 keg fresh Denver Beer Co Graham Cracker Porter (mixed gases, keg coupler, faucet and keg fridge provided by Mr. Dale's management)
12 frosted gray 16-ounce pint glasses with American Flag logo
2 1-liter bottles of JÄGERMEISTER (colder-than-ice at 4ºF please)
12 NASA “meatball” logo shot glasses
4 bottles of 1951 vintage Grange Hermitage (Penfolds Grange) red wine
4 six packs of Samuel Adams Cream Stout (bottled, full-bodied, coffee-like, heavily roasted, sweet finish with creamy head)
4 six packs of H.C. Berger Chocolate Stout (bottled)
1 liter Everclear (95% pure grain alcohol.  190 proof)



The bathroom should be cleanly with traditional toilet, “squat” toilet, bidet hygienic irrigator (THE BIDET IS A MUST HAVE!  This offers Mr. Dale and his guests a natural hands-off and soothing water wash in place of the irritating wiping action of toilette paper), double vanity sink and shower facilities with American Flag shower curtain. 

7 White bath towels with a red, white and blue stripe DOWN THE MIDDLE
3 Rolls of sky blue toilette tissue (Charmin Ultra)
1 Box of vanilla flavoured Dolly Madison Bakery Zingers cream filled cakes (with see-through wrapper so the golden cakes can be seen nestled sweetly inside, gleaming brilliantly like a meteor as it "zings" through the night sky)
2 15-gram packages of Original Satya Sai Baba Nag Champa incense
1 vanilla 3.5-ounce spray Ozium Deodorizer

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Footers Catering - Denver

Was there as a Yelp Elite. It was a 'Cater and Compete" event.

Footers Catering has it where it counts. Since 1981, Footers has catered countless events with great quality and service.

After a visit to Footers, to see them in action, I was struck by the culture around the business. It was exceptional! It was fun! The employees, including owner Anthony Lambatos, were knowledgeable, friendly and way beyond helpful.

The facility was clean, beautiful and expansive. The "Awesomeness" room had a popcorn machine, basketball and ping pong action.

And the food: uniquely delicious.

From the vanilla maple glazed sweet potato fries with bacon salt to campfire bites (a great take on s'mores) to cheesecake lollipops to Dr. Pepper braised beef short rib sliders to a mac & cheese station with delicious toppings like spicy buffalo chicken nuggets, crumbled bacon, fried onions, diced tomatoes and more, the menu left me stuffed beyond capacity. Each item was carefully prepared and the quality showed in both appearance and taste.

Add in Hors d'Oeuvres of bacon wrapped dates stuffed with smoked almond and bleu cheese, some salmon and goat cheese appetizer deliciousness, and it all made for a more than impressive meal.

When in need of catering services in the Denver area I will, forevermore, go to Footers Catering for all of my needs. Try them out. You'll be glad you did!

Star Wars Comic Books

I am loving on Marvel's new Star Wars comic books. They are canon. They are good!

Taco House rules

I have been going to Taco House for over 30 years.  I believe the store on Littleton Boulevard in Littleton, Colorado is the best out of all of them.  I travel quite the distance for the meal.  They have good food, friendly staff and a homey atmosphere.  The prices are reasonably priced.  The menu is filled with a large array of foodie goodness.  Taco House has been in the Denver Metro Area for over 50 years. 

I come from the old school "All You Can Eat," so I've had my fair share of this "Colorado Mex" over the years.  I get the same thing every time.  I even take my mother there for Mother's Day.  My whole family loves the Taco House.  Many forsake it.  I think those forsakers are crazy and wrong.

Support local businesses and give Taco House a try.  You'll be glad you did.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Valentine's Day Horror

'Tis time now to retell the classic elementary school Valentine’s Day horror show of my youth:

In elementary school, as my classmates were distributing their Valentines into the creatively festive and decorated shoe boxes with the little slot at the top, I was full of activity handing out my own Transformers Valentines crammed with candies and cookies and treats and trinkets abound.  I took pride and meticulous care putting each Valentine into the appropriate students box.  I made, with youngster pride, a special Optimus Prime Valentine, the Transformer leader of the Autobots, for little Sally, a classmate with whom I had a tiny elementary school crush.  I wrote her pure poetry in grade school scrawl.  She would scoff at my shy smiles.  We spent countless hours playing MASH (Mansion, Apartment, Shack, House) during journal time. 

Our special school-day party beginning, everyone sat proudly at their desks and we were instructed to open our shoeboxes and begin reading our Valentines.  The paper was flying and there were squeals of delight all around me, candy wrappers buzzing.  The clamoring in the room was deafening.  I tore my lid open to find one Valentine.  My blood froze and my under-developed mind could hardly process the smack down I had received. 

"Only one," I questioned aloud, a defeated whisper really, tears welling in my eyes.  But there were over thirty kids in my class!  Could this hefty card be from wee Sally?  I wonder what words of devotion she scrawled on the card?  IMy hands trembled in anticipation as I slashed it open, tossing the envelope over my head, to reveal a Valentine from my teacher Mrs. H. 

My peers had shafted me.  I was the fat little nerd who didn't deserve any Valentines.  I was the kid who had to wear the eye patch because of a lazy eye.  I was the poor one who ate string cheese at snack-time.  I can still hear their hateful snickering.  At least nobody put boogers on the back of my shirt like they did with filthy Mandy what’s her name!

I was made fun of mercilessly because of the eye patch.  Comments like, "Hee hee you're a pirate," as I was being kicked down the stairs and "It's Valentine's Day not Halloween, why are you wearing an eye patch fatty?" as I was being shoved to the pebbly ground in the play area and "Fat boy, you're such a geek for wearing an eye patch," asshole classmate Rudolph would say, "You don't need this burger," as he took the cheeseburger from my lunch tray and shoved it into his filthy gob.  I remember more than one lunch consisting of just mustard and a spoon. 

The pointing and laughter didn't help me adjust to the eye patch.  It only made me withdraw even more into my fantasy world in which I was lord and ruler.  My teachers would try to help me in my grief, but
they only made it worse with accidental comments, "Yes One-Eyed Russie, the answer to number 12 is 387.  Good for you pirate Bloody Russell Rackham.  You get a silver sticker star and a piece of Valentine's chocolate. Arg!"

It was mandatory that everyone got a Valentine but I didn't raise a ruckus when I got only one.  Perhaps my name was unintentionally left off the list.  I smiled through it all although inside I was brimming with suffering and torment.  Disappointed and ready to nap away my pain, my little tears soaking my custom pillowcases, it was time to beat the piñata.  I was looking forward to shoving and battling for candy.  My right!

John Paul was the brute of our class, but I was chosen as the first to try my hand at the piñata.  Blindfolded awkwardly, my to-tight hand-me-down t-shirt showing my belly embarrassingly, I used the baseball bat to swing aimlessly at the papier-mâché Pound Puppies monstrosity hanging from the asbestos ceiling tiles.  "I will now get revenge for the insult brought upon me this day," said I as my 3rd-grade mind reeled and dreamt of sweet candy falling from the air.  Taking my Valentine's Day feelings and frustrations out on the piñata, I spilt it open with a fury on the third swing.  I was alive.  Power surged through me.  Cheers echoed in the hallways.  I had gashed open the piñata like a true sportsman.  Gone were the days when I struck out in Tee Ball.  Now I could revel in the candy treats like I deserved.

I felt a rush of air.  I heard a mob of gleeful youth dive.  I felt them pushing me out of the way, my knees bending in unnatural ways, my pants splitting in the crotch.  There is nothing more sickeningly grubby than a frisk of kids scrambling for candy.

By the time I removed the blindfold and looked at the ground, all that was left was an unwrapped Tootsie Roll, a rubber band and the mangled head of Cooler the Pound Puppy piñata.  I still hear the lips of my filthy peers smacking as they shoved the candy into their greasy, ungrateful mouths, pushing me aside violently to get back to their desks.  I was beaten, my child soul stripped away without a second thought. 

Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, "Russie," screamed my twin sister, smiling uncontrollably as she entered the classroom.  She was overburdened with her Valentine shoebox overflowing with goodies and presents and electronics from all of her little boyfriends and pals.  Her hair was mussed and she had cupcake mess smeared all over her face and a separate basket filled with other lavish gifties and a new plasticy backpack crammed with stuffed animals and treasures and stickers and cookies.

I showed her my empty box and the rubber band in shame and she felt sorry for me.  She shared her loot with me, handing me a cupcake with sweet pink frosting.  We skipped home singing and laughing, which was a departure because usually bullies chased me home. 

Thankfully Valentine's Day was over for another year.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

the Star Wars

I am a born and raised Star Wars fan. I saw the original in 1977 at the age of 1 1/2 at the East drive-in theater in Pueblo, Colorado.

I grew up playing with the action figures. I grew up watching each episode come out in theaters. I’ve camped outside movie theaters to get tickets to the re-release special editions of the original trilogy. I’ve seen the prequel trilogy with friends and family, all of us gathering to see the continuation of events in a galaxy far, far away. I like the prequel trilogy. It’s all “Star Wars” in my opinion.

I am hot for the new canon. I’ve seen the Clone Wars cartoon, am currently watching Rebels, have read the new canon novels “Tarkin” and “New Dawn.” I’m gobbling up the innovative Marvel comics.

All of this is leads up to December of this year when “Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens” hits theaters. I believe this will be the biggest motion picture event of all time. It will bring magic back to the movie theater. It will be an awesome time. I can’t wait. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

Monday, January 12, 2015

I’m hot for the Paleo

Paleostatistics?  Oh yeah, I’m as giddy as a priest on Sunday! 

“Paleo” comes from the Greek adjective ‘palaios’ meaning "old."   Paleontology investigates the whole history of life on our good Earth by studying ancient living organisms through fossils. 

Micropaleontology deals with all microscopic fossil organisms. 

I love geochemical evidence yo!  I swoon at the thought of molecular phylogenetics, aka molecular systematics.  Molecular phylogenetics is the use of the structure of molecules to gain information on an organism's evolutionary relationships.  Oh such joy the paleosciences bring to my life:
Paleoecology uses data from fossils and subfossils to reconstruct the ecosystems of the past. 

Palaeohydrology deals with the study of the ancient movement, distribution and quality of water throughout the Earth. 

Paleobotany deals with the recovery and identification of plant remains from geological contexts.  And we all know how much I love the geology! 

Paleoxylology is the study of fossil wood.

Paleopalynology deals with the study of ancient pollen and spores.

Paleoclimatology deals with history of Earth's climate and the mechanisms that have changed it. 

So much ‘paleo,’ so little time!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Vogel Canyon, Colorado

Vogel Canyon Gallery

American Indians lived in the canyon 300-800 years ago and left rock art which is visible on the canyon walls. Geologically scenic Vogel Canyon is a tributary of the Purgatoire River drainage.

The sedimentary layers of rock at Vogel Canyon indicate that this was a lake basin in the past. Alternating layers of tough, light grey limestone and soft, dark grey shale. The limestones are erosion resistant while the shales are easily weathered and crumbled, allowing the river to undercut the limestone beds and causing limestone slabs to collapse into the river.

The shales represent accumulations of mud in the ancient lake itself whereas the limestones represent accumulations of coarser, sand-textured sediments along the lake shore when water levels were low. The shales contain fossilized remains of algae, snails and tiny crustaceans known as "seed shrimp" and "clam shrimp." All of these species are common in quiet, shallow lakes. In contrast, the limestones contain impressions of large plant stems, dinosaur bones, trampled clams, scattered fish bones and lots of tracks. The limestones are also marked by ripple marks (caused by wave action) and by ooids (tiny, limey spheres) caused by wave action in shallow water.

This evidence supports the conclusion that the lake level fluctuated on a seasonal basis and also on longer term cycles covering decades and even centuries. The lake itself was probably 20 to 30 miles in diameter, shallow but with potable water most (if not all) of the time, and inhabited by a large variety of healthy flora and fauna of snails, algae, crustaceans and fish. The margins of the lake were partly or totally vegetated, the mud inhabited by clams and the whole area frequented by several types of dinosaurs. All in all, there's clear evidence of at least six times when dinosaurs visited this part of the shore of that ancient lake.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Theatre bio

I pride myself on my 50 word theatre biographies:

Russell A. Dale - hopped off the plane at D.I.A. with a dream and a cardigan, this enigma-posh hobo scientist, oft dressed in shabbily best glad rags, enjoys biscuits, gravy, long walks of geology, writing, temporal experimentation and cognitive archeology. He's thrilled grateful to be surrounded by such wonderful talent on/off stage.