I'd like to share some of my recent purchases with you. Some of them are more interesting than others, but all if them serve some sort of a purpose, and they bring me some form of joy. 

1 - Takumar 50mm f1.4 m42 lens  This is an old screw mount Pentax lens. It was made in an era when build quality was high, and things were more awesome. It doesn't have any auto focus bells or whistles, but its focus ring is smooth and buttery. Also, it was made at a time when Pentax was competing with Zeiss for 35mm superiority. I read somewhere that they sold these lenses at a loss so they could get their brand out there. I'm not sure that was the best business plan, but it made it easier for lots of people to get some kick ass lenses. I purchased it to use for shooting video on my Canon 5d MKII. I've done a few tests, and so far it is nice. Very nice. One funny thing about some old Takumar lenses is that they used a radioactive coating on some elements to reduce flaring. Over time that made the glass turn yellow. You can see the yellowing in the picture below. I read that you could remove this yellowing by setting the lens in direct sunlight or under a UV bulb. I bought a UV bulb, and after 5 days under the light you can see the improvement. Shit is crazy. 

2 - Pie server  I have been know to make pies on occasion. I also make quiche. When I make these delightful treats I often have trouble removing them from their dishes. For some reason I never acquired a pie server. That reminds me of one night when our friends Esme and Tomasz were over, and we were making some sort of ginger cookies. I needed to roll out the dough, and I used a wine bottle. I always use a wine bottle because I never bothered to buy a rolling pin. Esme has been know to make and bake on occasion, and she was appalled that I didn't have a rolling pin. I still don't have one, but I think about buying one whenever I see one in the store.
Anyway, my new pie server is awesome. It is both simple and high quality. You can see quiche residue stuck to it in the picture below. 

3 - L.L. Bean back pack  It is nice. It is strong. It is a good size, though I wish it were at tiny bit bigger. I can easily drop a camera, a change of clothing, and several other essentials for a weekend or otherwise short trip. Also, it's super comfortable and convenient for biking. I plan on using it extensively. 

4 - Rubber ice tray  Sometimes I get fired up about pretty simple things. A couple of weekends ago we went to Enschede to celebrate Marleen's grandma's 90th birthday. That was lovely, but imagine how pleased I was when I got some ice from the freezer, and found this!!! I easily popped a few cubes out without disturbing the others. Also, I believe that this ice tray makes better use of space than every ice tray I've ever seen. That might not seem like a big deal, but if your freezer is full of frozen baby meals and ice cream like mine is, you need all the spatial economy you can get. Also, I tend to break normal ice trays. I'm not saying I'm super strong, but I tend to break plastic ice trays. I do it all the time. On a slightly related note, I also break aluminum chainring bolts on my bike. I need to buy the steel ones, or I'll crack them right off. I've done it more than once. It is not pretty. 

5 - Raspberry Pi  I don't think I need to tell you how cool a credit card sized Linux computer is. If I do need to tell you, I can only suggest you Google it. It is super cool. I haven't done much playing with it yet, but I'd like to try making a media player with it, or a MAME arcade, or something else that is awesome. 

I know that stuff is only stuff and it can't really make me happy. Still, this stuff is pretty cool, right? 



This is not my image. I used it without the permission of posters dot ws.

A couple of weeks ago I was thinking about how the theme of lots of movies is to seize the day, or something like that. Often, seizing the day is depicted as neglecting your responsibilities. As appealing as that can be, I've got stuff to do. I also have a child to take care of. If I blow off work or my other responsibilities to go sky diving, or if I buy a new Tesla, who is going to pay for everything? In my case, Marleen would pay for everything, though she would have to return the Tesla. She would most likely lose interest in tolerating me if I were always frivolously spending or absent, so she would be removed from the picture rather quickly. Shortly after her departure, living for today would become unfeasible, or at least less exciting, because I would be evicted for non-payment. Then what would I do? The occupy Rotterdam guys have already shown us that camping in Rotterdam is not a viable long term solution. It would also not be great if food became unaffordable due to the seizure of too many days. I like food. I like not having struggle to find it. Seizing anything would become increasingly difficult without food. Living every day as if it were your last would definitely lose its appeal quickly without limitless cash flow, and I am poor (by some standards). Perhaps it is best if we all just settle and go through the motions.

Anyway, one of the ways I try to make my life richer is by attempting fun. In one of my recent attempts at fun I made all the children at Ruby's daycare cry (except for Ruby). I know you're all thinking that me making people/family/children/strangers/the pizza delivery man cry is not so much of a stretch. If you are thinking that, you are wrong. Stop laughing, I almost never make people cry.
I'm getting off track.

I do this thing with Ruby.

I did that in the doorway as I was leaving the daycare facility. Ruby smiled, and ALL of the other children began crying. Before you say, "Of course you made the all the children cry. That is terrifying," let me tell you that Ruby loves it. Also, I may have mentioned before, most kids like me. How was I supposed to know that other children don't like Gollum sounds. I don't know what kids like. I only know what one kid likes. Well, now I know what a handful of Dutch kids don't like.

Hi. If you look at this blog through NetworkedBlogs, I'm afraid you won't be able to do that anymore. I  don't like the way NB posts things on Facebook, so I'm deleting my account with them. From not on, it will take me an extra 20 or 30 extra seconds to paste the URL of my blog in a Facebook update, but at least it won't say NetworkedBlogs all over it. 
Okay. I'm just letting you know.



B and I were just looking at books we traded for copies of Rally. I am really excited about the trades I made with Andrew Warren and Bill Burke. You should get in on this action. Let's trade something.

Vacation went by too fast.
I accomplished most of my goals while I was back in the USA. Many of my goals were food based, and they were easily accomplished, but others required meticulous planning and the alignment of stars. For instance, on our first night I ate Blue Ribbon Barbecue, ate my first (and second, and third, and...) cake pop, and we spent time with Scott and Alicia. That was three goals in one night. The first night. That level of efficiency is not easily attained. I was not able to connect with everyone on my list, but I will try harder next time.

I saw my family in Winsted. That proved to be far more stressful than it should have been, but that's what happens when you come from a family of boneheads. I'd comment more on the matter, but someone might get offended. Oh wait, is calling someone a bonehead offensive if it is true?

While in Boston we saw Alex Katz prints at the MFA. I had incredibly low expectations, but I ended up liking quite a bit of the work. My favorite piece was a collaboration between Mr. Katz and a fellow named Ron Padgett. It looked quite like a story board for a boring movie. I am intrigued by the dramatization of generally uninteresting things, and I always thought I should read more poetry. Maybe I'll start that tomorrow. 

Anyway, I still managed to have a decent time despite the achterlijk family feud. I took pictures, went fishing with my nephew, and I ate some delicious beef. I swam even though I was embarrassed of my current physical condition (baby weight?), and the highlight was sitting in my parents' backyard in the morning. It was windy, and all I could hear was the sound of wind in trees. It make me want to live in the woods. Well, it makes me want to live closer to the woods. You know what else makes me want to live in the woods? Pan's Labyrinth. Is that weird? That really has nothing to do with anything else, but I threw it in there anyway because  I'm a shitty blogger.

Other highlights included the hospitality of friends, a trip to New Hampshire, and the purchase of several items that are either too expensive or hard to find in good old Nederland. I got two pairs of sneakers, a pie server, and an expensive glass thing that you touch to look at the internet. All of these things are super awesome. 

As a follow up to my last blog about the high price of using large format film in Nederland I offer you this. I dropped off some film in Needham, MA on Friday. It was at my house in Rotterdam on Tuesday, and it cost less. FOUR DAYS, NOT SEVEN! It cost less even though I had to FedEx it. Shit is crazy. 

My thoughts are starting to unravel. I will compose myself and post again in the future.



There used to be a pro photo lab 5 minutes away from my house. They relocated to an area that is only accessible by car. I don't have a car. Now I am forced to send my film out via mail. I sent four sheets of 4x5 and one roll of 120 c-41 out on Monday, and I haven't gotten it back yet. The lab I sent it to is in Amsterdam, and that is only an hour away. I should have had that shit on Wednesday, Thursday at the latest.

This drives me fucking nuts. 

What makes is worse is that it cost me €48.49 for that tiny order. That's like $60! Shit is wrong. I realize that only 3 or 4 people reading this might understand my outrage, but believe me; it is outrageous.

Other than that, things are cool.
Have a nice weekend.




I've been working on my back up plan.  I figure that if all else fails, I can always spend my time scaring children.  Clearly I'm not very good at it yet.  Someday, after I lose more hair, and ramp up my crotchetiness, I may be able to make little ones run in fear.  I'm already pretty crotchety, so it shouldn't be too much work.  Despite my semi-crotchety nature, the smallest of people seem to find me quite amusing.  It's not just Ruby.  Kids stare at me, and I think they want to be friends.  Maybe it's the beard.  I look kind of like Chewbacca, or Fozzy Bear.  My looks comfort them.

Adults do not look at me the same way.  They look at me and think Unabomber.  That's probably because we have the same basic haircut and beard.  My disheveled visage is not charming to adults.  It worked for awhile when I was younger and more attractive, but now instead of fuzzy or warm feelings, it makes people think I am  dirty and undesirable.  Whenever I walk into the day care place to pick up Ruby, I feel like I don't belong there.  Granted, I often stroll in after having gone for a run, so I look totally crazy when I arrive.  Sweaty, hairy, out of breath.  The fancy moms and dads are clearly unimpressed, but what is one to do?  I seriously can't be bothered getting haircuts more than a few times a year, and I strongly dislike shaving.  I, like the Unabomber, have a penchant for wearing hooded sweatshirts, and thus I never look like a proper man of my age.  Occasionally I wear real shirts, and it feels funny.  I'll be sitting at the computer, and I reach for my hood, but it's not there, and I have a miniature freak out in my head.
I think I might be stunted.

Anyway, as I write this, it occurs to me that adults and children may think of me the same way, but their bias is skewed by perspective.  Both parties think of me as a dog.  Children look at me and see an amazing and fun hairy guy who they want to play with.  Adults look at me and see a hairy subordinate who needs grooming, and can't be trusted with unattended food.
I do like food.

On an entirely unrelated note, I just made my first Blurb book.  It's called Rally, and it features pictures of Dave's van from our crazy road trip last year.  We spent so much time in and with the van during the trip that it became the main player.  Everything we did revolved around the van and its health.  I came to admire Rally quite a lot, and I'm glad I finally got my shit together enough to make the book.

You can preview the book in the Blurb store, but I think their preview is slow, and the quality is underwhelming.  I made a small promo page that you can see at http://turbert.com/rally.  I think you will find the quality is significantly higher at my promo page.

I think that's all I've got for you right now.  I think I'm going to get a haircut this week, and I may even pay someone else for their services instead of doing it myself.  That is a very unstunted decision, wouldn't you say?



The problem with not writing a blog post for 6 months is that there is too much to say.  So many blog worthy things have happened, I don't know where to start.  It's not quite overwhelming, but it is certainly not easy to begin again.  I have decided that I will make no effort to bring you up to speed with me.  You wouldn't find it interesting, anyway.  I had a beverage and a snack in town with a chum of mine yesterday, and I realized that I didn't have anything to talk about besides child rearing and my job.  Unless you are talking to a co-worker or a fellow parent, no one wants to hear that shit.  They may tell you that they do, but they are lying.  I'm not saying that they won't smile and nod as you regale them with tales of all the wondrous and rainbow coated details of your precious baby, but not so deep down inside, they don't really care.  So, I guess I need to find something else to talk about, or something else to think about.  Maybe I'll write a post about Mitt Romney's hair this weekend.  Everyone loves Mitt Romney's hair, don't they?

I just read my last post, and I see that I never posted a baby picture.  Boy, do I feel stupid.  Now I have to post a baby picture after my spiel about how nobody cares.  I'm conflicted, but I do love showing pictures of my baby, so here's a recent one.  Ruby is the one on the left.

If I have any interesting thoughts, I will share them with you.  Right now I must go to bed.  You can't stop me.