Flowers and felines

Flowering camellia

This is our second camellia, the one with ruffles. It resides in the front yard, next to the house. This year it is in sync with our camellia outside our kitchen widow – just a few feet away – which seems to get all the praise. I suppose that’s because we do not have to venture outside to see the kitchen window one. If plants could talk, the one would rightly accuse us of favoritism in the third degree.

Russian Blue cat

Click the pic to see Katy, our nearly-all-Russian Blue – and more flowers at Corndancer dot-com

The camellias in our front yard are our notice that the light at the faraway end of the cold, cold tunnel is spring. It is a gesture we welcome. So notified, on an unusual, muggy 70-degree February day, I went to the front yard to document the notification.

As I went about my self-appointed duties, two of our cats, Nikon and Katy, decided to be close observers. This time, their curiosity outsmarted them.

As all cat owners can tell you, when they are the most photogenic, they immediately exit that mode, the second a camera shows up on the scene. Not so when their curiosity overrides their persnickety mode.You can see more of the cats and more flowers on the Photo of the Week page at Corndancer dot-com.

American Long Hair cat

Nikon, our giant American Longhair, joined me as I laid on my front side to photograph Spring Beauties at ground level. You can see another view with him looking in the lens on the Photo of the Week page at Corndancer dot-com.

Spring Beauty flower

This Spring Beauty is probably no larger than a quarter-inch across. Macro optics give us the opportunity to see its dazzling details up close and personal. Nikon the cat was the photo assistant for this capture.


This is a young bloom on our kitchen-window-camellia. It will continue to unfold until it peaks out and then in a few days, it will drop to Mother Earth.

White flower

I’m not sure what the identifier is for this poesy, but in this mode, it reminds me of the famous Marilyn Monroe image over the sidewalk grating.

Jonquil bloom

I thought this might be the lone jonquil in my neighbor’s yard. Then her husband stepped outside to walk the dog and told me where to find a few more. You can see those on the Photo of the Week page at  Our jonquils are not yet in turbo-mode. When they get there, they will not be difficult to spot by any stretch of the imagination.

Thanks for looking at our first spring images and tales. If you are farther north than us, what you see here gives you hope: it’s coming your way. For those of us down here in LA, it’s nearly “good riddance” to winter.

Thanks for looking,
Joe Dempsey
Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind





Goin’ to the hoop

Basketball player makes as fall away shot

Mr. 12 defies gravity as he falls back from Mr. 35’s attempt to  thwart the scoring shot. Mr. 12 prevailed and continued on his downward path until the floor stopped him. He recovered in a heartbeat and scampered down the court with a smile on his face.

Basketball player makes jump shot

Click on the player to see more hoop action at Corndancer dot-com

Basketball offers a photographic advantage provided by few other sports – the heart of the action is predictable – right under the hoop. This is not to say that there’s no action on other parts of the court, because there’s plenty. It is however, not predictable. Which is why when I shoot basketball, I generally camp out under the hoop.

Speaking of which, be sure and see our sister site, the Photo of the Week page at Corndancer dot-com where you will see more action under the hoop.

UAPB basket ball player drives to the hoop

Driving to the hoop. Mr. 22 is putting his best moves on Mr. 2 and Mr. 3 as he drives to the hoop. Writhing like a snake in a fire, he made good his trip.


Mr. 1 is making his airborne move to the hoop and was successful in evading Mr. Defender to the steel circle – but the ball ‘rimmed out.’ You can see the sequence shot just prior to this one on the Photo of the Week page at Corndancer dot-com.


UAPB player makes his move to the hoop

Mr. Offense (pale yellow) appreciates an open lane provided by the two purple clad defenders who were too little and too late to stop the successful scoring attempt.

Dollarway HIgh School basketball player makes his move to the hoop.

Mr. 4 is on his way to hoop heaven in this hard-fought game which a few minutes later was decided in the last few seconds as the Whites came from behind to prevail over the Crimsons.

UAPB player shoots basketball against two defenders

Most of the time I like wider crops but the three faces in close proximity to the bouquet of upraised arms and hands said ‘crop me please.’ Who am I to argue with Divine intervention?

It is my privilege and pleasure to provide these views of basketball otherwise not available. To those who are not sports fans, you may enjoy the intense emotions on display. If not, stick around, the flowers will return soon,  as will I next week.

Thanks for looking,

Joe Dempsey

Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind

Archival pot-pourri


This is the Arkansas Champion Gingko tree. It is alive and well on West Sixth Avenue in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, my home town. It is a male Gingko.

A wide swing

field of buttercups in front of old barn

Click on the posies to see more pictures

We’re making a swing through our archives this week – taking a look in the Arkansas Ozarks, the Arkansas Delta and the French Quarter in New Orleans – the message being that regardless of notoriety or lack thereof, if you look enough, wherever you are, you’ll find something neat, cool, and/or worthwhile. Speaking of which, this story started on the Photo of the Week page at Corndancer dot-com where you’ll see a another view of the waterfall below, an old store, and a field of buttercups.


This is Haw Creek Falls in the Arkansas Ozarks, one of the easiest falls in the state to access. The falls are less than a hundred feet from the access road via well marked trails. It is one of the most photographed falls in Arkansas and is part of a national campground.

People in Woldenberg Park in New Orleans

I shot this during the 2005 French Quarter Fest in New Orleans in Woldenberg Park which sits on the banks of the Mississippi River adjacent to the French Quarter. Thought we are seeing a group of people at a fun pubic event, they seem not be aware of each other.

Take a look at your surroundings and see if you can spot what is lurking to be seen.

Thanks for looking,

Joe Dempsey,
Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind


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