Monday, November 29, 2010

Beer of the Month - November

The Beer of the Month for November is New Belgium Brewery's (NBB) Fat Tire {5.2% abv}. Looking back to this past July, I'd have to say trying out NBB's Trippel was the beginning of great future beer enjoyment. There was something outstanding about that beer that I couldn't put a finger on, but I did get a taste bud around the unusually clean finish, following bold flavor. Looking into NBB's history gives a great story; a 32 year old professional goes on a beer sabbatical of sorts in Belgium, riding from village to famous beer village, gathering inspiration and ingredients. He returned home to his self-made brewery kit and made two beers, one of which was Fat Tire, named as such due to the tires on his cruiser bike he rode through the countryside with. Fat Tire as a brew put NBB on the map and they went public with the company in 1991.

Fat Tire is an Amber ale with rich flavor and a hoppy soundtrack. Oh and news flash, it's outstanding with hard pretzels. This is a solid all rounder that can be drank in any situation or time of year. It's a great way to get introduced to what NBB is all about. 3 stars.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Toys for Tots.

Along with the inevitable self-indulgence that comes with the automotive enthusiast lifestyle, there are opportunities to turn that energy elsewhere in a positive manner. A lot of you are probably familiar with Toys for Tots (T4T), the U.S. Marine Corps run toy collection campaign with offices and local supporting organizations in all 50 states. This past Saturday I attended a T4T gathering at FDR Park in Philadelphia (PA), organized by DCI VW, a worldwide-known/active VW Enthusiast club also known as Dubsquad. The goal of this event was getting auto enthusiasts to not only get together in late November, but also contribute gifts (or money for gifts) for the many underprivileged children in the U.S. who don't have a real Christmas ahead of them.

While there are cars and the typical action you'd get from a larger Automotive gathering, the biggest difference is that it's no longer show season. Also, there's a skate park under the overpass where this event takes place, so along with auto enthusiasts you also get local skaters and bmxer's all sharing a square acre or two worth of space for an afternoon. It was initially a sunny day, but turned to overcast as time went along. That and the fact we were under a bridge, hampering ambient light, encouraged me to go B&W for most of this set.
It's was a surprisingly good time, mainly because friends from all over the east coast drove down (and up) to hang out all day. My buddy Dan panini'd up some tasty grilled cheeses we all bs'd for a couple hours before heading out for the day. 

For more information on how to donate locally to Toys for Tots, please visit the USMC Toys for Tots site here. Have a great Thanksgiving week everyone.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Pic of the day - Friday

It's been a great few days. Along with following our smartphone GPS navigation to the wrong places, we got to meet up with some old friends down here which really tied the week together. Now if you'll excuse me, I have a date with Northern Virginia traffic on I-95.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Pic of the day - Thursday

I didn't go as crazy shooting in Myrtle Beach as I did in California, because I actually wanted to do nothing. It was awesome ha. However, it's hard for me to pass on photo opportunities when I see them so I tried some new techniques on for size. I'd take one general shot over and over again, different times of the day over the course of the week, in the same places, to push my skills a bit further. Taming daylight outside of golden hour isn't for everyone, but I enjoy challenges and am admittedly hard headed on process. If I want to accomplish something that's outside of Photography 101, because I like what my eyes see, then I'll work at it until I can pull off what most don't attempt. Great thing is it's only digital, developing shots takes minutes and any success is well worth the effort. Then it's rinse and repeat until the desired effect is achieved and reproducible.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Pic of the night - Wednesday

The only bad thing about the weather being so nice last week was the fact that daylight savings time (and the time of year) robbed me of a couple hours of sunlight to play with compared to summer. While it felt like June out there while the sun was shining, it felt like early March after the sun dropped. We ended up finding a nice Thai food joint off Kings Highway not long after this shot and ate like...Kings. Damn hell ass Kings!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pic of the day - Tuesday

There's nothing better than turning back the clock psychologically and wearing shorts/flip flops in the warm sun did the was this past June all over again. The thing that comes to mind most when I visit areas that have sweet scenery within minutes, is if the locals know how good they have it; or does their norm, great to outsiders, become boring to the regulars? I can't answer for them, but I like leaving my norm for varieties sake.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Pic of the day - Monday

I was finally able to ditch the daily grind for a few days and take a short trip down south this past week. Drove down to Myrtle Beach for a couple of days and was thankfully able to eek out one more set from a lovely locale for the year. 70 degrees and cloudless for five days straight; you couldn't have asked for better. Here's the fullsize wallpaper/pic of the day, retroactive edition.

FYI, all of my 'Pic of the day' posts going forward will have a fullsize shot (~1300x800) you can throw on your computer at work or at home; if you're late to the party, the last series was in July. If you're one of those techies with a screen bigger than 19" (higher resolution) and need a bigger shot to fit, just drop me an email using the logo at the bottom of my page or my service inquiry link above. Simply link the post in question and I'll be happy to set ya up.

Capturing Life's Fabric with Technology.