26 February 2009

Beautiful days, old friends, and driving to Houston...

Tuesday was a good day for me to catch my breath... I started the day by having a cup of tea while sitting on Justin's deck... Looking out over the water. After a while, I drove into town and met up with Justin for a Cajun lunch to celebrate Mardi Gras.

The food wasn't great, but a good time. After lunch, I stopped by Town Lake, parked, and walked around a bit. Between the people watching and the phone calls, time flew by. From there I decided that no trip to Austin would be complete without a trip to Waterloo Records. I picked up a couple of CD's, a tee shirt, and a hat.

From there, it was back to the lake. Justin and Janelle were due home around 6:00 for a little impromptu photo shoot (for their engagement portrait)... So, I had a little time and decided to try my hand at fishing. I had a few bites and one successful catch :)

I photographed Justin and Janelle for 20 min or so... They selected this one to run in the newspapers.
About 7:15 (or 1hr 45min late), Kris Goodman arrived at casa Demerath. After he cleaned up his act a bit, we made our way to Ranch 616 for dinner. They served a killer chicken fried fillet medallion... Simply awesome.

After the meal, Janelle took her leave... She had a big hearing on Wednesday morning. Kris, Justin, and I moved on to The Ranch for some drinks, stories, and lies. We spent a couple hours there reminiscing.

Around 1:00am, we made our way back to the lake. It was then decided that we should go out on the boat for a bit... So, we cruised around for a bit, drifted a bit, and continued the merriment until 2:30 or so.

Wednesday morning Kris and I drove over to Houston. We played a quick round of golf with Ryan Webber, Grabbed some dinner, and hit the sack early.

24 February 2009

Clogging arteries in style...

So, Monday I got to hang out with my buddy Sarah Wilson. She had the grand idea of driving to Lockhart, TX (home of the best BBQ in Texas), for a day of artery clogging. We decided to sample 3 of the local BBQ restaurants and determine which is the best BBQ in Lockhart.

Our first stop was Kreuz BBQ. No Sauce. No Utensils.

Sarah took care of the ordering... We got a 1/2 pound of Brisket, 2 sausage links, 4 pieces of bread, and a some cheese.

Our second stop was Smitty's BBQ. Same order minus the cheese and bread. We also decided to try some ribs.

Our third and final stop was Black's BBQ. By this time we were a getting a little full. We each rocked some mac n' cheese and potato salad... Then we ordered a 1/4 pound of brisket and 1 sausage link. Black's was the only restaurant that had sauce and utensils.

The Verdict... Smitty's was by far #1. Kreuz was a solid #2. Black's was a very distant #3, although they did have a pretty solid looking peach cobbler. Too bad we were WAY too full to sample it.

We made out way back to Austin and decided to get some coffee/tea @ Jo's and sit by the pool at the San Jose Hotel. Very relaxing.

It was a beautiful day and a great adventure. I can feel my arteries hardening!

23 February 2009

Lazy Sundays and firepower...

So Sunday in Austin was a laid back type of day... Just my style. Started out the day helping JD with a little bass habitat project he has been working on. Then JD, Janelle, and I hit the Grove for some tasty pizza. It was a nice day so we were able to sit outside...

Although Janelle did appreciate the propane heater :)

After lunch, they drove me around to some of the other neighborhood around Lake Austin. Some really nice places!

JD and I dropped Janelle off and headed out for man activities... Walmart and the shooting range.

First off, the Walmart experience was not the best one I have ever had... They didn't have most of the stuff that we wanted. However, they did have Beetle Spin fishing lours, which I had been singing the praises of, shooting muffs, shooting glasses, gun oil, and targets.

From Walmart, we made our way to Red's gun range and popped off a couple hundred rounds. Good fun.

When we returned to the lake, Janelle had prepared a nice meal... Chicken with artichokes, olives, and tomatoes. Very nice.

We finished out the evening with a viewing of Pineapple Express off of PPV. I wasn't impressed, neither were JD or Janelle.

21 February 2009

Boat Rides, Burritos, Boots, Shrimp, and a Few Tunes

Our day started off with some breakfast burritos and a quick ride up the lake to Justin's friend's place to drop off a saw. Nice ride but the wind proved to be a little much from Janelle.

After out AM boat ride we all hopped into Justin's 1976 International Scout and made our way into Austin for
Janelle Selected Guero's Taco Bar for our lunch... Great Food!

After lunch, I decided that every man needs a pair of cowboy boots, so they took me over to Allen's Boots (on South Congress) to peruse their selection. After 30 minutes or so, I bit the bullet and purchased a black pair of Ariat boots. I had to pass on the awesome Old Gringo boots that I tried on... Too much $$$. Maybe next time :)

After picking up a bunch of food from the supermarket and a few canisters of propane from 711, we made made our way back to the lake to prepare for the small dinner party that Justin and Janelle decided to have.

The guest list included our friends' Sarah Wilson and Keith Maitland. Also invited where Mooke Mayrath and his girlfriend April.

Justin and Janelle decided to boil up a bunch of Gulf shrimp, potatoes, sausage, and corn. Takes me back to New Orleans!

Around midnight, Justin, Mooke, April, and I made our way over to the Saxton Pub to see their buddy Shawn Nelson play a set. Good times... I even purchased a CD.

Another fine day on the road!

20 February 2009

80's metal, wrestling, planes, trains, and automobiles.

So, it has been an eventful couple of days... Yesterday I had an hour plus conversation with my web guy, where we laid out a battle plan for my new websites. Then had a 30 minute conversation with one of my clients... Bid out a nice corporate portrait job... Lost said job.

Shit happens.

From there, the day got infinitely better. I picked up Mr. Tyler (my ex-wife's teenage nephew) and made tracks for the local movie house. We decided to check out The Wrestler.

Mickey Rourke is fricken amazing in this film!

So was Marisa Tomei!
The evening was spent doing laundry, talking to a few people on the phone, and packing for my trip to Austin, TX.

I finally got to sleep around 2:00am... Someone kept me on the damn phone. I was rudely awakened by the alarm @ 4:40, which really blew. Jumped in the shower, got dressed, fed Dottie B., packed my computer and hit the ground running.

Roommate Jennifer was good enough to drive me to the train. I will spare you the details, but NJ transit was not on its game today... not by a long shot. I almost missed my flight because of it.

But I made the flight (after doing my best OJ Simpson imitation through Newark airport). I even scored an entire row of seats for myself. BONUS!

I spent the time being productive... Working on content for one of my new websites. After seeing The Wrestler, I was feeling a bit nostalgic for 80's metal. So, a steady diet of Ratt, Slaughter, Quiet Riot, and Guns n' Roses was just what the Dr. ordered.

My buddy Keith was good enough to fetch me from the airport when I got to Austin... From the airport, we went and grabbed some pretty solid tex-mex food @ Polvo's.

After a great meal, we met up with my old high school friend, Austin, Texas lawyer, Justin Demerath. After hanging out at Justin's office for a while, Justin and I made our way back to his place on Lake Austin. He showed me my room and the lay of the land. We then thought it would be a good idea to take advantage of the day and go fishing for a while. Off we went.

We fished for an hour or so and then made our way back to Austin for happy hour and dinner. We met up with Justin's fiancee, Janelle at the happy hour. We went on to have a nice Italian dinner with four other people and a few post dinner cocktails.

I was able to meet up with one of my fraternity brothers, Aaron Boehm at one of the bars... Hadn't seen him since 1997.

It's been a long day, but a good one!

18 February 2009

Thinking about working on getting more work...

Today was balancing act: Brainstorming on my new website(s), scanning images for an old friend, and updating my Facebook page. Guess which activity received the most attention...? You guessed it, Facebook. But, after uploading 100+ old images, writing captions, and tagging friends, it is time to sign out and do some more work on my website.

Tomorrow at 10:00 I am supposed to have a telephone conversation with my web guy... This conversation has been a long time coming. But, as most know, web guys are a bit unreliable. My current boggle is what URL to register for a new site I am putting together.

I have been beating my head against the wall over this one for a few days now.
Any suggestions?

17 February 2009

Another day... Another dollar.

So, today was just another day in the life of this struggling photographer. Today I had a booking with another photographer whom I work with from time-to-time. So, at 8:00 it was off to the rotten apple on the #165 express bus.

Most people take the time to read or catch a few extra zzzz's... I usually spend it listening to tunes, staring out the window, and process the thoughts of the moment.

The day ended without incident and I returned to the garbage state with check in hand (always a plus). All-in-all a good day.

Today's tunes consisted of a few 90's songs from my "high school" playlist, followed by Tool's 10,000 Days and later Anemia.

16 February 2009

First Blog... First Post

So, here goes... My first crack at blogging. It should go without saying that I am new at this and therefore it will take a little while to get used to this whole process.

My goal here is to combine my personal work, my professional work, and my interests in one location.

My plan is to post daily/weekly/monthly written updates along with outtakes from shoots, behind-the-scenes shots, and snap shots from my day to day life.