Kicked to the Curb: Picky, Picky

Description: I don’t know if you have looked down at the roads and parking lots when you travel, but there are some very interesting items being discarded in these areas. I decided they were worth recording and perhaps discussing a bit. It seems that our current culture is leaving some interesting finds for future anthropologists.


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I am going out on a limb here and make an assumption that you know what the item is that appears inside the yellow oval below although it is somewhat broken.



If you haven’t guessed, it is a dental flossing pick.

A bit more than a year ago, my wife pointed out an interesting phenomenon that I hadn’t noticed. She told me that she finds many flossing picks discarded in parking lots or along the roadside.

I am one who flosses with a pick on a more or less regular basis and as hard as I try, I can’t imagine how people “floss on the go.” I usually initiate this routine over my bathroom sink with water running and occasionally lubricating the pick with the water.

Once I was made aware of this unusual occurrence, I began to notice that there were many flossing picks discarded in parking areas.



I am wondering if perhaps I am unaware of alternate uses for these devices. If you can offer some insight, please leave a comment below.


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All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross – 2018


 

Birds of Arizona: Glendale Recharge Ponds – Pt. 1

We had heard about the Glendale Recharge Ponds and the variety of birds they attract. As hikers and explorers, we decided we would head out that way to see what birds we could find. We started our jaunt early to have the best chance at seeing the most birds and while we thought it might be a bit tricky to find, the directions were actually quite good (see Part 2 for directions).

Right away we saw the discharge for which the ponds were named.


water being reclaimed

The facility is located west of and in a direct line with the University of Phoenix Stadium, home of the Arizona Cardinals football team.


University of Phoenix Stadium

Along the access road leading to the ponds and along the sides of the waterways, there was a variety of farms and stables.


Small farms and ranches abut the ponds


Very quickly we noticed something very, very annoying – – flies. Loads and loads of flies. Perhaps gnats would be more accurate! This might be very good for the birds, but not so pleasant for us.


Gnats were abundant and annoying

Can you see all those light brown specs in the picture above? Those are some of the flies that were flitting around as soon as we left the confines of our car. Let me circle (in red) a couple for you.


Gnats circled for reference
Only five were circled, but there were hundreds upon hundreds!

We traveled for about an hour to get to our destination so we were not be deterred. A move perhaps we would later regret.

Only a few short steps along the pathways we saw what I identified as a Cattle Egret. If you look closely on the neck you can see flies on the bird. Other gnats are also clearly visible on the bird.


Gnats on the Egret

We hadn’t planned on most of the wildlife to be so far away. As we walked, the waterbirds swam to the far side of the large pond to seek safety and therefore escape our gaze. While I had three cameras with me, the only camera that was useful was the Canon SX50 HS with a large zoom lens.


As we walked, most birds fled
Those specks in the distance are numerous waterbirds

A more intrepid pair of birds, Black-necked Stilts, weren’t as quick to run away. They were busy searching the shallow depths for food. These are very interesting birds not only because of their somewhat whimsical black and white coloration…


Black-necked Stilts looking for food

but because of their long legs! Now we know how they got their name!


Long legs of the Black-necked Stilts

Lurking farther down the path and around the bend was an alert and somewhat wary Great Blue Heron.


A wary Great Blue Heron keeping an eye on us

In several locations there were warnings about no fishing! I have since learned that people do fish there even with the signs posted.


No Fishing sign

There were many, many Coots in the ponds, but also in the group were several other water birds. The male Northern Shoveler Duck was quite handsome.


Northern Shoveler Duck among the Coots

A Killdeer looked on with interest probably wondering what we were doing out-and-about with all these bugs in the air.


Watchfull Killdeer

To read the other JBRish posts about our Killdeer visitors:

Birds of Arizona – Killdeer ( Charadrius vociferus )

Killdeer Eggs in Our Yard; Oh My!

Killdeer’s Empty Nest in our Front Yard

For more information about the Killdeer’s rearing process, you can read The Precocious Killdeer.

Unfortunately, wherever people go, there are bound to be traces that they were there. Whether intentional or not, we found a floating flip-flop and this football.


Floating lost football left behind at the ponds

Overall, however, there wasn’t too much debris. We continued to walk a while longer to complete the circuit around the one large pond nearest our car. We were becoming a bit uncomfortable trying to “chase down” the birds with all the bugs buzzing around.

Read Birds of Arizona: Glendale Recharge Ponds – Pt. 2

See previous JBRish posts about birds HERE


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All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website.

©Jeffrey B. Ross – 2018


Kicked to the Curb: Razor Blade Runner

Description: I don’t know if you have looked down at the roads and parking lots when you travel, but there are some very unusual items being discarded in these areas. I decided they were worth recording and perhaps discussing a bit.

It seems that our current culture is leaving interesting finds for future anthropologists.


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While parking at our local grocery store, I saw a broken razor blade just off to the side of my front tire. It was curious to find this artifact at this location and it raised several questions in my mind.

  • Why was the razor there?
  • What was it used for at this location?
  • Did it fall?
  • Was it discarded on purpose?
  • Why wasn’t it picked up after being dropped and discarded properly?

It is truly a puzzle.

**NOTE ** the white line is the dirver’s side parking lot stripe. The car’s tire was less than six inches to the right of the razor blade.




Looking Sharp – Razor Blade Near Front Tire in Parking Lot

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JBRish.com originally published this post

All original content on this blog is copyrighted by Jeffrey B. Ross with ALL Rights Reserved. While reference links back to JBRish.com are appreciated and encouraged, please acquire approval for any reproduction of original content from this website. – ©Jeffrey B. Ross – 2018


 

Year of Yosemite (YOY) – Day 96 (Beauty Among the Debris)

Beauty among nature's debrisEven among the debris, nature leaves behind, beauty stands out!

What I like about this photograph is that even among the debris left behind by nature, the inherent beauty shines through. There are dead trees, debris in the pond left by recent rains and branches dying on nearby growth. Yet the beauty in the background was breathtaking!

The sapling to the left of the water (foreground) should serve to remind all that nature rejuvenates our world when left to her own devices. Yes, Half Dome peering out above the distant mountain watches over the lush, green valley; joy to the world!

 
Do you have a question about our visit to Yosemite? Ask it in the comment section.

 

JBRish.com originally published this post
*All photographs Copyright by Jeffrey B. Ross with all rights reserved.

 
See previous Year of Yosemite (YOY) posts HERE. If you want to read the introduction to the YOY series, CLICK HERE.

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Meta Data – Day 96 YOY – Year of Yosemite

File Name: 0290.NEF
Capture time: 10:00:14 AM
Capture date: June 8, 2016
Exposure: 1/340 sec @ f/25
Focal Length: 24mm
ISO 100
Nikon D3300