Magic and Spells Quotations

The Quippery

A book that should be written: “The Secret Behind Magic Tricks” by Howe D. Dewitt.
– Author Unknown –

Did you hear about the magical tractor?
It turned into a field!
– Author Unknown –

…disbelief in magic can force a poor soul into believing in government and business….
– Tom Robbins, Even Cowgirls Get the Blues –

For my next amazing act, I will correctly plug in a USB on the first try.
– the Internet Scavengers –

Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.
– W. Clement Stone –

I do believe in an everyday sort of magic — the inexplicable connectedness we sometimes experience with places, people, works of art and the like; the eerie appropriateness of moments of synchronicity; the whispered voice, the hidden presence, when we think we’re alone.
― Charles de Lint –

I was fired from my job as a children’s magician today… Apparently, when I make the kids disappear, I also have to make them re-appear.
– Author Unknown –

Magic exists. Who can doubt it, when there are rainbows and wildflowers, the music of the wind and the silence of the stars? Anyone who has loved has been touched by magic. It is such a simple and such an extraordinary part of the lives we live.
– Nora Roberts –

Sandra’s seen a leprechaun,
Eddie touched a troll,
Laurie danced with witches once,
Charlie found some goblins gold.
Donald heard a mermaid sing,
Susy spied an elf,
But all the magic I have known
I’ve had to make myself.
– Shel Silverstein, Where the Sidewalk Ends –

Magnus raised his hands above his head and clapped once. The room flooded with light. “You see? You think that would be possible without magic?”
“Actually,” replied Simon, “It is. If you watched infomercials you’d know that.”
― Cassandra Clare –

Magic Spells that Harry Potter didn’t use, but we would like them:
Textus Retractus – the spell we need to take back a text we regret we sent.
Internetus Universalus – provides free, uninterrupted WIFI wherever you are.
Pupem Permanentum – turns your dog back into a cute puppy.
Laundrus Completem – finishes all the laundry for you.
Porcuso – produces a plate of crispy bacon.
Mortificus Deletum – erases the memory of something you did that was terribly embarrassing.
Fatus Deletus – makes food calorie free.
Restorus Fortuna – replenishes your bank account.
Snottus Unblockus – cure for a cold.
Remembrus – retrieves lost thoughts.
Scourgify – does the dishes.

The magician and the politician have much in common: they both have to draw our attention away from what they are really doing.
– Ben Okri –

Which dog breed is great at magic tricks?
The Lab-racadab-rador.
– Author Unknown –

What do you call incantations conjured up by a sorcerer who discovered spells inscribed on an antique tablet?
Old plaque magic.
– Author Unknown –

Bee Fly – a Pollinator and a Predator

Did you know that over 925,000 species of insects have been identified? Entomologists believe this is only 20% of the total number of insect species in the world. While all insects play in important role in the life cycle of something, the most prolific ones seem to be the ones that are simply a pain to have around. Ants, fleas, hornets, mosquitoes, cockroaches – you can probably add to this list with the ones that invade your home or garden!

Some flies and gnats were sitting on my paper and this disturbed me; I breathed on them to make them go, then blew harder and harder, but it did no good. The tiny beasts lowered their behinds, made themselves heavy, and struggled against the wind until their thin legs were bent. They were absolutely not going to leave the place. They would always find something to get hold of, bracing their heels against a comma or an unevenness in the paper, and they intended to stay exactly where they were until they themselves decided it was the right time to go.
– Knut Hamsun, Hunger –

The Bee Fly is one of those insects that has a good side and a bad side – it is a Pollinator but it is also a Bee Predator.

This Bee Fly was drinking nectar from the flowers of a Spiraea Bush. From a distance, it was just a small black fly. The story changed with the macro lens – two tone wings and big buggy eyes!

Bug Bits
Name:  Bee Fly
Family:  Bombyliidae
Native to:  The Bombyliidae Family of insects are found throughout much of the world. Little is known about them due to lack of research. They are flower pollinators.
Date Seen:  June 2019
Location:  North of Calgary, Alberta
Notes:  Bee Flies have two membrane-like wings, often with interesting patterns on them. They spread their wings out when they rest. Their bodies are usually covered with fine gray, yellow, brown and/or black hairs. The dark side of it’s life cycle is – bee fly eggs are laid in underground bee nests. The resulting larva feeds on bee stored pollen and also eat bee larvae.

Digital Magic
I ran the Bee Fly through Topaz Studio filters and this is what I got:

Topaz Studio Cartoon Filter
Topaz Studio Kaleidoscope Filter
Topaz Studio Painter filter
Topaz Studio Telb014 filter

What is your tolerance level for insects when a fly lands on your kitchen counter, an ant tries to make off with a crumb from your picnic plate, a mosquito makes a withdrawal from your blood bank or a flea makes your dog itch?

Photographs and the Right to Privacy

When you snap a picture of another person, two fundamental rights often come into play: the right of the photographer to free expression and the right of the subject to privacy (the right to be left alone).
– Lien Verbauwhede, 2006 –

On my blogs, the right of personal privacy always outweighs my right as a photographer. It is my personal preference and has nothing to do with the law of the land. This does pose a dilemma (which I always thought was spelled dilemna) for me, because sometimes the story I am telling is best illustrated with a photo of people.

I use two solutions – sometimes I crop the photo to remove faces, in addition to using filters to alter the photo. This was an effective way to treat this photo, because the topic was hands, and the photo was called ‘Card Sharks’.

The second solution is to simply experiment with filters until I find one that disguises the faces. This photo of the ‘Card Sharks’ was not as effective as the first photo, though it did a good job of ensuring privacy.

Sometimes, the photo is so old that identification isn’t an issue. This was a photo of my 5th birthday party. I’ve aged about *&#@ years since then and my mom passed away many years ago – but  I thought the cross-hatch effect improved the photo!

If you take photographs of people and publish them on your blog, do you get their permission to do so?

How Truthful are Photos? My Altered Cars

The Age of Information. The internet has given us the keys to an almost limitless resource. Bias is unlimited too, making the search for something resembling the truth almost as difficult as finding the proverbial needle in a haystack.

Of course, the manipulation of words and photos is not new. History shows that photojournalists have been doctoring images and altering the story for a long time. Altered Images: 150 Years of Posed and Manipulated Documentary Photography  shows “images that broke the basic rules of photojournalism.”

Objective journalism and an opinion column are about as similar as the Bible and Playboy magazine.
– Walter Cronkite –

While it is easy to digitally doctor images, it is hard to do it really well. I found that out when I altered these Car Photos!

I created these ‘Toy Cars’ with the photo editing program GIMP (a program that lets you work with layers.) I started with a Corvette that the The Car Guy owned for a few years.

Basically it involves cutting the photo of the car into five vertical strips that extend from the top to the bottom of the photo, making a layer out of each strip. Then, starting at the front of the car, some of the strips are left full width (the front and back wheel sections), while the rest of them are made narrower (highlight the layer, and drag the arrow from the front to the back or use whatever method your program uses).

I did this several times until I had reduced the front, middle and back strips by about 50%. When the strips are moved into place, the car is shortened into a ‘Toy’ car. If you want to include some landscape on either end of the car, cut those into strips too, but don’t alter them.

This all sounds much easier than it is… it is tricky to get the narrowed strips to match up properly with the unaltered ones. This technique worked very well with the Corvette, since it is such a long car.

I also shortened my PT Cruiser.


PT Cruiser

If you saw either of these photos in an article about, say, customized cars, would you be able to tell they had been digitally altered?

The truth is out there. Anyone know the URL?
– Author Unknown –

Ogden Nash Quotations and Poems

The Quippery

A husband is a guy who tells you when you’ve got on too much lipstick
And helps you with your girdle when your hips stick.

A jolly young fellow from Yuma
Told an elephant joke to a puma;
now his skeleton lies
beneath hot western skies-
the puma had no sense of huma

All husbands are alike, but they have different faces so you can tell them apart.

Beneath this slab John Brown is stowed. He watched the ads, And not the road.

Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker.

God in His wisdom made the fly
And then forgot to tell us why.

If called by a panther, don’t anther.

I test my bath before I sit,
And I’m always moved to wonderment
That what chills the finger not a bit
Is so frigid upon the fundament.

I think that I shall never see
A billboard lovely as a tree.
Perhaps, unless the billboards fall,
I’ll never see a tree at all.

I would live all my life in nonchalance and insouciance,
were it not for making living, which is rather a nouciance.

Marriage is the only known example of the happy meeting of the immovable object and the irresistible force.

Oh, what a tangled web do parents weave,
When they think that their children are naive.

Senescence begins
And middle-age ends
The day your descendants
Outnumber your friends

Some debts are fun while you are acquiring them, But none are fun when you set about retiring them.

Some primal termite knocked on wood.
And tasted it, and found it good.
And that is why your Cousin May
Fell through the parlor floor today.

Some tortures are physical
And some are mental,
But the one that is both
Is dental.

Sure deck your lower limbs in pants;
Yours are the limbs, my sweeting.
You look divine as you advance–
Have you seen yourself retreating?

The ant has made herself illustrious
By constant industry industrious.
So what? Would you be calm and placid
If you were full of formic acid?

The camel has a single hump,
The dromedary, two;
Or else the other way around;
I’m never sure. Are you?

There is something about a martini,
Ere the dining and dancing begin,
And to tell you the truth,
It is not the vermouth-
I think that perhaps it’s the gin.

Too much Chablis can make you whablis.

When I ponder my mind
I consistently find
It is glued
On food.

Green and Yellow with a Blanket of White

We had 10 inches (25 cm) of early season snow last week. The best thing about this is that it is the wake-up call for what is going to come when winter arrives for good.

Winter Morning Poem – By Ogden Nash

Winter is the king of showmen,
Turning tree stumps into snow men
And houses into birthday cakes
And spreading sugar over lakes.
Smooth and clean and frosty white,
The world looks good enough to bite.
That’s the season to be young,
Catching snowflakes on your tongue!
Snow is snowy when it’s snowing.
I’m sorry it’s slushy when it’s going.

Ten inches of snow looked like this:

Topaz Studio HDR filter
Abstraction filter
Telbarion Filter
Impasto filter

Frederic Ogden Nash (August 19, 1902 – May 19, 1971) was an American poet who wrote over 500 pieces of light verse. He used unconventional rhyming schemes and was declared the country’s best-known producer of humorous poetry!

Do you know any other Ogden Nash poems?

I Found my Pizza Crust

Before the ‘Pizza Crust’

In the big scheme of things, it was a little blip. I logged onto my WordPress blog a few days ago, and instead of being greeted with my WP Admin page, I was looking at the contents of the WordPress Feed Reader. Instead of seeing my personal Dashboard, I was seeing the endless list of what other people had posted and what WordPress thought I should read, etc, etc.

I was not amused. Granted, I could still get to my WP Admin page in a few clicks, but that wasn’t the point. When I log on to this account, I want my information to be the priority.

I won’t go into great detail about the discussion I had online with three WordPress ‘Happiness Engineers’; the rating I gave them when I got a cheerful email asking me to rate my help experience; or the message I posted in the WordPress Forums.

That’s now water under the bridge because this morning when I logged on, life was back to normal. My WP Admin page was the first thing I saw. That wretched Reader was back where it belonged – a tab at the top of the page.

The ‘Pizza Crust’

The ‘pizza crust on the sidewalk’ was the email that I got from WordPress (in response to my message thanking them for fixing my problem).

Isn’t that just a hoot!? They changed something in order to fix something which then broke something else, which when they fixed that, it also fixed something that they didn’t know they had broken.

Refreshing honesty and a good outcome for all. Life is Good.

What Say You – have you found any ‘pizza crusts on the sidewalk’ lately?

The Piano Guys and DoodleChaos Line Riders – Something Just Like Liszt (Video)

A new Line Rider video by DoodleChaos  with music from The Piano GuysSomething Just Like This / Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2

How hard is it to create a Line Rider sequence? Well, I tried it (and crashed a lot.) Just visit this post to see my results and then follow the link to the Line Riders program so you can try it too.
Line Riders – Blue Danube.

House and Home Quotations

quip card

A great composer once called music an “interior adventure.” This, for me, defines what the word home means: an interior adventure; the place where we first cultivate our secret gardens – under the staircase, amid the trees in the backyard, in the treasures of our own room.
– Author Unknown –

A house without a mortgage… probably isn’t yours.
– Author Unknown –

And they say once you leave you can’t go home.
Well now, I disagree, though at times I might be a rolling stone.
But there’s something so special about the places you know.
Oh, there’s no place like home.
– Colleen Peterson, Work of the Heart, Quartette –

Garage Sale: A technique for distributing all the junk in your garage among all the other garages in the neighborhood.
– Author Unknown –

Husbands choosing paint colors must have a note from their wives.
– Sign in a Paint Store –

Home is a place you grow up wanting to leave, and grow old wanting to get back to.
– John Ed Pearce –

Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in.
– Robert Frost –

Home Renovator’s Serenity Prayer: Higher Power (internet, Home Depot, library, family) – Grant me the courage (balls) to fix the things I can, the humility to call in the pros when I’m in over my head, and the wisdom to know the difference.
– –

Homesick is the worst kind of sick.
– Cynthia Copeland Lewis’ Really Important Stuff My Kids have Taught Me –

Hospitality is making your guests feel at home, even if you wish they were.
– Author Unknown –

I am grateful for the lawn that needs mowing, windows that need cleaning, and floors that need waxing because it means I have a home.
– Author Unknown –

If God had wanted us to spend all our time fretting about the problems of home ownership, He would never have created beer. This is not to say that I am recommending that you totally ignore your responsibilities as a homeowner and just sit around all day with a can of beer in your hand. No indeed, I have long been a believer in purchasing bottled beer, and pouring it into a chilled glass.
– Dave Barry –

I noticed the ‘For Sale By Owner’ sign in your yard. I too like to live dangerously.
– –

Ladies – if a man says he will fix it, he will. There is no need to remind him about it every 6 months.
– Author Unknown –

Maintenance free means when it breaks, it cannot be fixed.
– Author Unknown –

My friend just got home from a business trip. Her family greeted her at the airport with a big sign: “Welcome home from prison, Mom!”
– Author Unknown –

OK. So this isn’t exactly home sweet home. Adjust.
– Author Unknown –

One does not simply go to Home Depot once…
– Author Unknown –

People are living longer than ever before, a phenomenon undoubtedly made necessary by the 30-year mortgage.
– Doug Larson –

People say ‘go big or go home’ as if going home is a bad thing? Hell yeah, I wanna go home, and I’m gonna take a nap when I get there.
-Author Unknown –

The fellow who owns his own home is always just coming out of a hardware store.
– Frank McKinney Hubbard, Readers Digest, February 1956 –

There’s nothing to match curling up with a good book when there’s a repair job to be done around the house.
– Joe Ryan –

…the truth is that the home is the only place of liberty, the only spot on earth where a man can alter arrangements suddenly, make an experiment on indulging in a whim. The home is not the one tame place in a world of adventure; it is the one wild place in a world of rules and set tasks.
– G.K. Chesterton –

The two greatest problems with living in the country, I have often thought, are getting water into the house and getting water out of the house.
– Wayne Grady, Harrowsmith –

When I am an Old Man…I’ll fix broken stuff however I want to. (By the time they reach 45, most men feel they have either performed enough household repairs or watched enough Bob Vila to fix or build just about anything without benefit of instructions. Consequently, 87% of all printed instructions reach the wastebasket without ever being read.
– Tony Dierckens; Tim Nyberg, When i am an Old Man I’ll Wear Mixed Plaids –

We repair what your husband fixed.
– Handyman Slogan –