Sunday, February 28, 2010


Saturday February 13, 2010/0822hrs SMS Catering in Charlotte NC proudly displays the American Flag on their property for more than 3 weeks now. I was spotted by the owner and ego of this fine local business doing what I do with my own intellectual property. When his conscious caught up to his now he confronted me and the truth I gave him resulted in his own anger and his inability to separate his thoughts from his mind. This shot is powerful, real and true as well it is telling of a proud culture. The image coveys an intrinsic attachment to our nationality, its strategy which will be defined by what the culture accepts as its reality and the outcome which it has created. Fly it high and proudly for it has presented us with our freedom to be what we are.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Like A Car Crash

Your wheels are spinning but they are upside down. You say when he hits you, you don't mind because when he hits you,you feel alive...

In the last week I have rolled upon the immediate aftermath of two different car crashes. I was riding in Monday morning when I spotted this auto carnage at Central and Reddman.
Notice that the Professional Charlotte Fire Fighter in Blue Pants, Sweatshirt and Yellow Nathan's Vest keeps his hands in his pockets for the entire shoot.
Here you can see the second car involved. One of them had a red light.
I asked if those involved lived and one of the Firefighters who did not have his hands in his pockets gave me the Holt approved thumbs up minus the verbal, "Rock on!"
Car drivers, please be careful out there. The streets are mad.
I cleaned up the side of my blog a bit and wanted to point a few things out. First, if you live in Charlotte you should start checking in daily with Cedar Posts and Barbwire Fences. I recently discovered this blog and am very impressed with its content, opinion and thought process.
Some of you who had been listed as one of My Little Friends and other Strong humans have been dropped like a hot potato for not updating since the Bush Administration. I just felt like you were cluttering up active space with your lack of activity. Do not be offended for I still consider you a friend/other strong human and if you ever get your act back together and start updating again feel free to contact me and in the words of Sara Palin your next President, "I will putcha right back up there." Get to work lackeys, find some direction with your bloggorial efforts! Once I see a productive pattern I will hook you up.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Climb Follow Up

There are some things I left unsaid about Saturday's great afternoon on the Monadnock in Gastoonia. After Ms. Arcen thoroughly enjoyed herself on her 5 climbs both Jeff and I had the chance to belay each other for one climb each on the Practice Wall's route of the Burn Crack. Climbing is fun for me and becomes during those fleeting on climb minutes the only real thing actually happening, all else is insignificant while my focus attempts to keep me from peeling off. Sometimes on up the rock I face problems that cause me to stop and think about the solution. Time passes, wind comes across the rock onto my physical form and in the embrace of my own fear I find solace just being in those minutes. Usually when I think about the impediment in front of me and move forward with strength and a solid hand hold those rock problems dissolve into the air around me. Once I am above the problem's source I feel like true progress is quantifiable by looking back at the line I came from. On this particular Climb among a long list of things, I was aware of the rock's temperature and a few hollow hand holds that identified themselves with an echo when I tapped on them just before grabbing and pulling. Ms. Arcen snatched the Nikon while both Jeff and I were on climb. All of the following images *except the 1st, 4th and last were taken by my kid with the earth colored eyes.

*Here at Ms. Arcen's Debut Wall Jeff is explaining to Ms. Arcen about how it is perfectly fine to grab anything on the rock that she can get her hands on.
Jeff looking like a champ with a high leg lift.
Ms. Arcen missed him up high on the rock here but must have been seeing something else like a crown or a tooth. Great shot indeed of the rope, sky and rock.
* Here I got off a fast snap of Jeff tossing the line down after he topped out on the Burn Crack.
Shortly before the kid made this pic, I spread wide for a foot sprawl move on the face. Just as I did the move I felt a burning bolt at the top of my leg where it meets the inside rest of my body and I thought I had just ripped my groin muscle. I had never before ever had that pain awareness of the line that is my groin. I may be getting old...
but I still have good hair. The Tonsorial Art Displayed on my brain housing group was performed by a local 1982 Graduate of 'The' Barber College in trade for 12 In God We Trust Units.
Sometimes she gets side tracked.
This shot displays the raw power of my move upwards in full Gaston Style.
The way she framed this shot of me makes me realize that she does have an eye for presentation. At this point I am faced with a problem that sends me away from the relative secure feeling of the crack to the center of the wall with faith.
The route is right a bit before the final step straight up to the tie in.
Here Ms. Arcen captures Jeff my belay, my life line and the source of my furrow riddled brow over the photo evidence of him standing on my line. Back in the Corps during some winter rappelling training in the lower French Mountains they told us to NEVER step on the rope! Jeff, what were you thinking?!?!
Again she gets side tracked but the end result is beautiful snake like art.
*On the run I took this snap of our descent back to the car.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

U.S. Marine Comes Home

Recently while on location locally I got in trouble for taking the above image of a tired display of the American Flag, the colorful banner of our Nationalism. The old creepy owner seemed unimpressed with my logical reasons for photographing 'his' flag. Well old man, I am so sorry to offend you, it was purely intended.

Without knowing Lance Corporal Noah Miles Pier I felt completely connected to his combat action death on February 16, 2010 in Marjah Afghanistan. Pier served as an infantryman with line Battalion 1/3 of the 3rd Marine Division out of Hawaii and his body returned home to his family in Charlotte yesterday. A while back I read the words of Chesty Puller who once told the U.S. Congress that the only ones who really understood the tragedy of war were the ones on the ground who were actually participating in it. Pier understood, it was obvious in his art work displayed on an easel a few feet from where his American Flag draped coffin sat silently radiating a pulsating heat from the center outward. There was no mistaking the energy of violent death.

Noah Pier's original art work was a colorful twist of confusion highlighted by movement in still imagery with a few written words that jumped out at me: Crazy, Help Me, Lord-Sin.

Last night I waited in the long line of family, friends, strangers and those wanting to take the look inside of themselves and the eyes of those who survived Noah. My base layer T was the last semi serviceable one that I own from my Marine experience and the olive drab rigger's belt holding up my four dollar linen pants was the one and very same that I wore 20 years ago in the belt loops of my cammies. The line started in the Chapel of the Funeral Home, wrapped around its wall out the door, down the hall, across the foyer and into the little room where Pier's many brothers, sisters, grandmother, fiance and parents sat or stood thanking people for their support. When it was my turn to step into that room I held the hand of Pier's aunt with both of mine and looked into her hurt eyes. I spoke briefly about why I was there and moved on down the line through all of his immediate kin that led me to his fiance and parents. Eye contact and physical hand transfer turned into an unexpected hug grab by one of his sisters when I explained to her why I was unfortunately standing before her expressing my sorrow for her loss. She held onto me and cried, I did my best to remain emotionally in check with a straight back and strong hold in return to her. Her small frame felt hollow against mine as she shook with a low vibration of pain.

I moved on down the line, held out my hands for his mom and dad all the while keeping their eyes with mine, I told them why I was saddened to be there. They thanked me from deep in their hearts then I stepped into the little parlor where Pier's flag draped casket sat being illuminated by over head lights and was guarded by two silent Marines at attention in the 'Dress Blues'. I stepped up to it as if I were being pulled by the same negative force that had destroyed the life that now sat empty in front of me. There was a rhythmic, almost pulsating heat coming from under the flag. Everyone there must have felt it even though not everyone understood what it was they were feeling. After some minutes went by I turned around and saw two easels, one with his art mentioned above and the other held two photos of Pier. The top image of him was a happy looking civilian fellow, free. The second image below the first was of LCPL Pier in full Combat kit on a sloping sparsely green hill under even taller mountains in the distance somewhere in Afghanistan. In that image a young Afghan boy tending to his family's sheep was smiling a few meters from Pier on up the slope.

I left with a friend and out in the car lot we talked about the reality check we had just experienced and received openly with awareness. A strange irony came over me. Because of the U.S. presence in the not so far away Middle East I can afford the 2.70$ a gallon to get to Pier's visitation. If the U.S. was not there propping up the House of Saud and gas flow on the Arabian Peninsula our fuel costs would be so high that oil could go to 500$ a barrel. At that point I would not be able to afford to drive to the funeral home but there would be no need to because Pier would be alive, not dead in the name of it all. There are so many things I feel like I want to say but I am not sure if I am completely ready to be able to communicate those thoughts to you my lovely audience masking yourself as my sounding board.

*Interesting side Note. "How's the synchro?", someone once asked me. Well let me tell you. When I came home last night I did a 'google search' on the death of Noah Pier and stumbled across a blog that broke the story of Pier's death last week. Cedar Posts and Barbwire Fences posted this story on Wednesday February 17, 2010. As I scanned through the layout of this site I was very surprised to see my Rock and Roll Stop the Traffic linked on the author's side bar. Cedar Post, I thank you for the considerate link and will reciprocate the gesture in the near future. Adding to the synchro, I discovered in the Cedar Posts' article that the Executive Officer of 3rdBN-6th Marines is Major Billy Moore.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Ms. Arcen Climbs On

All pictures(*except for the two that I took of her hiking across the ridge) in this post were taken by Jeff Botz. Jeff, thanks for bringing your photographic documenting skills to this trip! Figure 8 about to be threaded through her harness and traced. On Saturday morning Ms. Arcen came up with an idea that had her, Botzie and I at Crowders Mountain from mid day on. She was inspired by the two climbers we saw tie in on the practice wall a few weeks ago.

Over twenty years ago Ronnie took me to Ross' Cliffs in Old Furnace State Park just about a rolling country Stay Alive from where I grew up in North Eastern Connecticut. Some of the stuff he taught me that day will be with me for ever, the basic principles of safe top rope climbing for fun and a feeling of touch with the rock. Since then and from here back I periodically get out on to the rock and have shared that time with even more experienced climbers who have showed me their knowledge. This past Saturday it seems as if when I was anchoring our first top rope spot on an unnamed wall(lets call it Ms. Arcen Debut Wall) directly inside the Middle Finger Wall memories of that first tie in with Supe and every climb since came flooding into my brain housing group. We were on the top of a fin like 15-20ft crag that had a feel of little mountain exposure. The slopes of Crowders under us fell away roughly 1,000ft down toward the flat Gaston(not to be confused with Gaston Rebuffat) Plain. This was going to be her second experience being tied in but her first in two years. The first time was okay but she wasn't ready, now she was, this was all her idea. I went to work with her at the little ledge base and we talked while Jeff went to work with the Nikon. I quadruple checked all the quadruple checks from anchor to harnesses to knots and the gates of the biners, everything was quadruple checked. Then she said, "Climbing Dad." Climb on she did up the first easy little step. I pulled in her slack and watched her work about half way up when she wasn't sure what to do. Of course I was on belay on the ground coaching from my perspective while Jeff positioned himself safely along her side for more reassurance. She worked through it after putting her weight on the line which helped my little one understand that I was on the other end and that she would not fall down the seeming void behind her. We were in a comfortable place and time went by with each practice, struggle and upward movement.

Ms. Arcen on her Debut Wall.
Looking up towards her next hold.
Here she is feeling the solid density and cold of the rock.
The abrasiveness of the rock adds a confident feeling of contact as she pulls herself up.
Topping out with a touch of the biners.
Getting ready to be lowered with a controlled abseil.
We collectively decided that she needed another challenge. Unfortunately the next wall over to our left or north I assume was taken already by two fellows sharing turns on a top belay of a nice easy route three times the height of what we were on. It was agreed that we should walk back towards the Practice Wall and see what was happening there. After walking back across the mountain I started to anchor in on the two bolts that we watched some climbers rappel and abseil down two weeks prior. Then the climber below on Gastonia aka Burn Crack to the right said he and his friend girl were leaving and that we should take his spot. Good call, the 'rating' a better chance for the kid. Over on the top of the Crack I slung the two bolts with two biners apposing gates and then I dropped the line. More safety talk down below while she went on up the rock loving everything about a figure 8 traced back through. This was a huge challenge for her that she took on feet first(wonder where she gets that from). Shortly after she made four steps up she became stuck holding on, searching for something above her head to grab, anything. Once again she needed to counter intuitively fall back away from the rock and feel me on the other end, her life line. So she did and I lowered her to the ground for a restart. Her second attempt on this route got her up a little further then she wrestled with the problem of not being bale to move up anymore. Time passed. I lowered her down again while Jeff got ready to Climb. More on his and my vertical efforts later.

*Ms. Arcen leading across the top to the Practice Wall.
*The low ledge line to the top around the main wall.
There was some daylight left on the cooler shadowy side of the practice wall so she decided to get up on it again. Ms. Arcen's arms burned as she pulled herself up the wall. It was amazing to watch and on some level I thought for a few minutes that I was looking into a new future. What possibilities with her in the mountains still lay ahead? She fought it for more time and was able to get passed her previous height gaining efforts before she sat back with little feet on the rock and let me control her descent back to turf. Jeff stopped taking pictures long enough for him to belay my successful tie in and climb. I'll have to talk about that later because all I have in this post left is the part where I topped out, threw the line over, undid the protection, down climbed to the belay with the kid who took it upon herself to meet me up top then we packed up, hiked up over the top and back down to the lot.
Here she is on Gastonia Crack aka Burn Crack.
This kid may not know how to eat with a fork but she sure knows how to pull herself up.
Holding on to the mountain while she tries to traverse in a bit.
"Dad, I see a small cave in there."
Her final controlled descent after a good day of climbing.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Bike Music PSA!!

Here is Rachel doing what she does. I made this picture of her last May when she was riding from SC to the Jar for an interview with Mike Collins on WFAE's Charlotte Talks.
Rachel Van Slyke is needing our help! She is one of the leaders in this contest but with your help we can send her over the top!! You may remember Rachel from the summer before last as the girl who I met in the Jar as she was riding her 110lb load in a Musical Bike Tour from Florida to Canada. I received a short note from her the other day explaining that she has been selected for the Windows Artist 7 Program which will help her continue to move forward towards her musical career goals. All we have to do is down load one of her latest singles, "I'm Coming Home" for FREE by clicking the above link before the 22nd of this month. When you click it she should be the first artist you see. I first heard this song last spring at the Azalea Festival when I realized what a truly talented song writer she is. So, Please take a few minutes to down load her FREE original work and help push her in the direction of success. If you like what you hear and see feel FREE to send it to your friends and loved ones. PLEASE Get your FREE DOWN LOAD of 'I'M COMING HOME' BEFORE FEBRUARY 22 AT1100HRS EST!!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Airborne: Up, Up and Away

Yesterday afternoon I was riding around near the big buildings when I looked up and saw this little bird flying circles in the clear blue sky just above my head. The bird was beautiful unlike anything I had ever seen. Her feathers were silver like some sort of polished metal and her wings were accented in a soft white. I noticed that her beak looked like it had been dipped in chrome as she turned, broke out of the circle in a downward dive and perched up face front right on my forward moving handle bars. This little silver bird and I were weaving through traffic when she looked at me over her left wing and said with a soft Pittsburgh accent, " Would you please pass the word to your blog viewers about the Airborne Contest Give Away?" I respond over the wind, "Of course, what are the details?" Just then she let go of her grip on my bike, flew a few feet out in front of me and shouted as she climbed up and away into the blue sky, "I will send you an email when I get to my nest!"

When I got home the details were in my 'in' box:


We’re on the prowl for 10 passionate riders who want to shred their favorite trails on our new bikes and we’d be stoked if you’d share the info with your readers!

All riders have to do to enter is visit Airborne Bicycles, fill out an entry form and upload an essay and a photo or video stating why they should be chosen to be a part of The Airborne Flight Crew.

The winners will receive:

A brand spanking new Airborne bike·
Helmet cam·
Some slick Airborne gear·
A trip to the Sea Otter Classic in April.

The lucky riders selected will become official members of The Airborne Flight Crew and will be asked to test out new gear and report back on how it feels, how it rides and what it can handle by posting videos and reports on social media forums and blogs. Pretty sweet, huh?!

Yes little Bird, that is a pretty sweet contest Idea~

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Photo Logic

The cover of the latest issue of Dirt Rag, the Mountain Bike Magazine for the International Mountain Bike Community. Although colorful it is not the juicy part, just an orientating point. Now to the quanta of this post. Rich started writing for Dirt Rag recently and because of that I had a chance to contribute with a picture. I made his portrait below back in the fall as a test for the brand new 35mm DSLR that I had just purchased. When I made the image I had no idea that a few months later it would be used to introduce one of his articles. It is always an interesting feeling to see a picture of mine with credit in print because I realize that a bunch of people will look right over it but at the same time the image will be received on some level by the majority readers. I appreciate the folks at Dirt Rag for taking the time to set my picture of Rich into the article/page(it fits and is aesthetically pleasing) and of course it would not be there if it weren't for my little buddy looking out for me and writing about what he does on bikes. Click the article to make it large enough to read...

Additional Big Thanks go to Tim at the Nova PDC for helping me scan the above visuals into Tiffs and an even bigger thanks to King Jimmy for converting the Tiffs to JPegs for me.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Winter Down South

Staff photographer Todd Sumlin took this picture that made the Charlotte Observer's Sunday on line edition. Notice the folks on the top of the hill are cheering for the sledder who is none other than Ms. Arcen at the bottom of the hill. If you look closely you will see me(Blue Coat) and Zoo Zoo on the right at the bottom of the hill as well. Saturday she woke me up early saying, "Dad, it is a winter wonderland out there, lets go sledding!" We left soon after that loaded for the day and headed over to the huge hill at Cordelia Park. What a day indeed, almost six hours of watching my kid grow while she ran up and sledded down with herself and her new sledding pal Rosalyn. The rest of this post is a multi media package including three little fun to watch videos.(sorry Bastard you won't be able to see them on your phone but do look when you get home, k?)

This first one is self explanatory, just watch.

Sledding With Ms. Arcen Part I from Billy Fehr on Vimeo.

This second shorty is just one clip of Ms. Arcen running the entire middle hill and down really fast to the bottoms. It should have been edited into the video above but somehow in my haste to publish the film, I missed it.

Sledding With Ms. Arcen Part II from Billy Fehr on Vimeo.

And finally a special feature starring the former ex professional golfer Hope Edge, her friends and their kayak snow sledge.

Hope Edge and friends on Kayak Sledge from Billy Fehr on Vimeo.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Monday Book Review

Big Boy Rules by Steve Fainaru Quick...somebody pinch me, life is good after all and I have the proof. The other day I was stuck at the Courthouse with the Special Proceedings clerk who was going to slowly and methodically process nine new foreclosures of mine after she finished the 14 that were there before me. I pulled up a chair at one of the many VCAP computer terminal tables along the marble covered wall within sight of the clerk. There were only 40 pages left of the latest nonfiction work that I had been reading by Steve Fainaru, an amazing book titled Big Boy Rules.

Prior to writing Big Boy Rules which was published in 2008, Fainaru had covered our Iraq War for the Washington Post starting in 2004. With that journalism experience in the Middle East Steve came across the truth of the thriving contract business going on above the surface but below the radar of most self professed thinking Americans. The ratio of U.S.Troop to Contractor during the first openly active Gulf War in 1990-1991 was 1 to 10(In WWII that ratio was 1 to 100). Now, 2010 that troop to contractor(all contractors from mercs to those who are cooks, truck drivers, fire fighters, photographers, retail managers, plumbers, electricians, HVAC guys and pretty much any other profession that you could conjure up that would be needed for an American Occupation led reconstruction project in Mesopotamia) ratio War wide for our nation is 1 to just MORE than 1. Steve Fainaru's literary effort took me inside one of the more obscure contracted professions being out sourced by the State Department. Tens of thousands of individual human Mercenaries that are protected by CPA 17 from being prosecuted for breaking Iraqi, American or International Law are representing scores of Companies with fancy names and corporate logos stitched onto the chests of their uniform polo shirts. Framed around other real life events similar and parallel this book gave me the horrific and truthful details of just one example of only one insurgent attack against one(Crescent Security Group) of the many contractor teams that are running security for the logistics of supplying an American occupation. When I think about our now war which is pretty much everyday I want to learn as much about it as I can and this book educated me to a new level of understanding the cold reality of the business end. There are consequences for the specific actions of a collective nation and I believe we have not yet seen the true blow back result of what we are creating.

So, I opened up Big Boy Rules while the clerk worked quietly on the other side of the glass. The end is just that for the journey home of one of the main characters whose body in a steel box was unloaded from under the plane onto the tarmac in Buffalo while the rest of the passengers on that commercial flight sat in silence waiting for the hearse to drive away. I sat distracted and enthralled by what I was reading while around me courthouse business was the usual bustle of civil process. Land lords were looking to get someone out, there were small claims against each other over nothing lined three deep at one window, tears tired eyes walked by alone staring into the windows with their paper clutched trying to figure out who is summoning them with the judgement and the hurt girl in the corner was filling out her paper for a protection order against the domestic violence coming her way from the man in her life but she didn't even realize that in three days she would let him back in. The concluding pages were so filled with such emotional transfer that I began to realize how hurt I actually am. Not in the immediate physical sense, that would soon follow with a hollow heavy heart and inner body filled with cement feeling but in the core chakras one that is the receiver. I lost it in the form of looking through the H2O-NACL filters building upwards from the tops of my lower eye lids distorting and bending what my visual cortex was receiving even though no one around me noticed. Their awareness was tied up with their own local realities as I looked around quietly through two little fish bowls against my eyes. I closed the book just as the knocking on the glass from the clerk got my attention back from the place it had been. Thank you Steve Fainaru for reaffirming my thoughts on our reality with your truthful insight and cumulative experience put into words.

I highly recommend this book to each and everyone of you.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Iran in Charlotte

11 February 2010 The 31st Anniversary of the Iranian Islamic Revolution

Just after 1230hrs yesterday I was cutting through to the State Courthouse when I noticed the National flag of Iran prior to the Islamic Revolution of 1979 flying along the one way uphill 4th Street spread across almost the entire 600 block in front of the Charlotte City Government Center. In the center of that flag is a lion, sword and rising sun which is very different from the one that is being flown in Iran now and for the past 31 years which has a Sikh-like symbol in the center of it. The work in my bag was a priority but I could not resist the pull of authenticity, a rare sight in our fine Queen City. I rode across the lanes and picked my way through the friendly crowd of one voice demonstrating their freedom of thought and projection. Just on the other side of the human line I dismounted and found the eyes of Nasrin, a woman with thick black hair, light dark eyes and an air of power that was palpable just by paying attention. I introduced myself and asked her directly to tell me what I was witnessing in this peaceful proud demonstration, I had some idea but I wanted to hear Nasrin give me the details. She said with deep interpersonal eye contact and a soft Persian accent that I was seeing and hearing the voice of Iran demanding the end of the Islamic Regime in Iran that has been responsible for such atrocities against humans simply thinking and formulating opinions as to the destiny of their own nation. After thanking her I explained that with her permission I would like to come back in twenty minutes or so with my camera and a note pad to document this powerful energy. Nasrin asked me who I worked for and all I could muster was, "Myself, I write a blog and have for the last two years and roughly four months." My approval was in the form of a real smile, a nod and a firm female hand shake. I wasn't sure what I was doing but I did not see any other local media there so I figured someone had to convey this transfer. My job was done so I retrieved my camera from the stash spot and was back on location in just under the twenty minutes I had predicted. The first thing I did after locking my bike was join in the line of peaceful demonstration, it was on.

The following document is short summation of what I saw, heard, felt and learned over the 75 minutes that I spent talking to people that I had never met.

The action that caught my eye.
The mantra being chanted at this minute was, "Down with the Islamic Republic, Down with Hezbollah, Down with Ahmadinejad"
Nasrin holding a sign and symbol of a recent political murder that took place in Tehran just a few short weeks ago. Nasrin told me that last year 19 year old Arash Rahmanipour was arrested in Tehran at a demonstration in March. While Arash was in Evin Prison he was forced to sign a confession for being a representative of the Old Monarchy. His lawyer was only granted one 15 minute interview during his incarceration where he said that agents of the regime had brought his pregnant sister in front of him and threatened to arrest her unless he signed the confession. Arash walked into his punishment of execution by hanging on 28January2010 unaware that his life was about to end. Nasrin explained that Arash's family found out about his execution on the evening news brought to them by the Iranian National News Agency.
Amir explained to me the significance of this anniversary and how the majority of Iranian citizens want the regime to leave and be replaced with a more secular government. Students are being forced by the regime to go out into the streets in pro demonstration of the present Islamic Republic of Iran. If they refuse their names are being logged for potential later arrest or even worse, reprisal from the Basiji Malitias. For those of you unaware the Basijis are mercenaries hired by the government of Iran to carry out deadly work on the street. Pari told me a story about her sister Farah being arrested and physically abused in Tehran. Her nephew had been arrested as well. Pari wants all goverments and all politcial parties world wide to concentrate of the problem of crimes against humanity in Iran.
I was invited to visit Tehran after this new revolution is over by Rafat, a smiling woman who hopes the present goverment of Iran will be out sooner than later.
Mohan Afshar did not feel comfortable with me taking a picture of him and his fantastic black mustache that he has been growing for four years. He did how ever have a lot of historical information for me related to what had led to the Iranian Islamic Revolution of 1979. We discussed Iran's present place in the world under the leadership of Ahmadinejad and how he is responsible for providing explosives being used in terrorism throughout the middle east. Mohan said the voice will continue until Iran is free.

I was moved by the force of collective human spirit that I witness during this peaceful gathering of concerned American/Iranians. Their energy gave me more education about what is really happening in Iran right now, the country that is surrounded by American occupation/interest in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

36 Minute Delivery

I made this image of the sky back in June while on a ride with Ms. Arcen at McMullen Creek Greenway. I am not sure what the particulate matter in the sky actually is.
Strange clear strong wind out of the west and north.

2401 Suttle Avenue 28208

That address was clearly labeled on one of the 6 packages that I picked up on my 1030 route yesterday. I stared at the label but I could not conjure up where Suttle Ave was. I had never been there in my experience as a courier, the physical location of this delivery may as well have been somewhere in Chelmsford Massachusetts for all I was concerned.

My client fired up the Google/Maps and we located Suttle Ave's cross roads on the right hand side of West Moorehead going out in between Freedom and HWY 74/Wilkinson Blvd/Andrew Jackson HWY. My messenger brain would then be able to ride in the correct numerical direction to get to 2401. Knowledge is power even though as I got in the elevator something just did not feel right, you know that feeling. West Moorehead beyond the I77 corridor, a place couriers don't like going especially face forward in a constant wind gust out of the west. Standing on the spin up the hill towards HWY74 every road on the right that I was seeing was not Suttle.

My client's application showed it on the right across from the WBTV Building but it wasn't there and I was all the way to 74 at that point. I belled up the 411 and was quickly connected to the receptionist at my destination. After identifying myself, I got directly to the point, "Can you please tell me where Suttle Ave intersects West Moorehead?" "Right below the WBTV Building", she cheerfully replied. "On the same side of the road?", I asked against my own will. "No, across the street from it", in a happy voice my life line answered. "That's what I thought, thanks." How did I miss it? I went slowly by and looked right at every side street on the way out, maybe the wind distracted me at the exact second I crossed Suttle. Impossible.

I rode back down Moorehead looking now on my left for what should have been on my right ten minutes earlier. The wind was now at my back forcing me downwards with powerful, almost reckless force. A head wind hurts more than a tail wind helps, unless of course you are going down hill with it pushing your back then it becomes crazy. Just after passing the WBTV Building again the ubiquitous Suttle Ave at the 2000 block finally appeared on the right. According to two sources thus far in my quest to deliver this one job that was impossible.

At least I found it which now leaves me only four blocks to the destination. With an odd number the building will be on my left, I think. All the way west/south back to HWY74 at the Andrew Jackson HWY again, 5 blocks from where I stood talking to directory assistance. I walked in the main door swinging my bag to the front allowing easy access to pull out the over sized white Tyvek marked for the recipient. At the square waist high cube in the gray foyer a dark haired woman with a familiar voice politely asked without looking up, "May I help you?"

I extended the delivery her way announcing the name of the addressee exactly as it was written on the label. The woman who was dressed in various similar colors that matched her surroundings corrected me curtly, " That is DEAN xxxxx xxxxxxxx." "Oh, I'm sorry, I did not see that on the label", I responded then asked, "Are you the one who gave me directions a few minutes ago?" She smiled and nodded three times. Just before I walked out I mentioned that Suttle Avenue was on the same side of Moorehead as the WBTV Building. With another three nods she said plainly, "I guess it is."

I made my way back to town with five jobs left over from my 1030 schedule in the bag. The wind helped me on my return trip but even still by the time I made the Square 36 minutes had expired on that one job. Time warp. The rest of the day went by with funny images of buckets' ties blowing off of their chests parallel to the street. It was as if they were being led by the silk nooses around their necks, the tip of the ties pulling them in the direction that they were wanting to go.