Distress Signal

We shape our tools, and then our tools shape us.


In the Middle with Middleman and Frameless

I love Middleman. It's simple, powerful, and fast. I've been playing with Rails and Rails prototyping for a while, mostly with Serve—and with static site generators like Jekyll and Octopress for about just as long. I think Middleman is the best of all of them.

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Winter Crow Roosts

It’s March, and the arrival of Springtime means the end of the large crow roosts. I’d never known about crow roosts before I moved into my current apartment, but apparently during the Winter crows gather in large numbers in the evening hours and then fly off to spend the whole night gathered together in one spot as a roost. Roosts can range in size from a hundered crows to hundereds of thousands of crows.

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24 Hours in Shenandoah: Marshall Mountain

Another weekend and another chance to spend 24 hours in Shenandoah. This time I was up on Marshall Mountain in the Northern section of the park. The loop starts at the Jenkins Gap overlook around the 12 mile mark on Skyline Drive. I’ve gone both ways around on this loop and I definitely think coming back on the Appalachian Trail is the way to go. That section of the loop has the best views and there are some real choice spots for pitching a shelter up on the ridge.

Find the trailhead for the Mount Marshall trail just south of the Jenkins Gap overlook on the left. This part of the loop to Bluff Trail follows an old fire road, it’s broad, generally level, and perfect for quickly putting a couple miles behind you. I was lucky enough this morning to have a deer keeping pace about 20 yards ahead of me for the first mile or so, generously breaking the trail of all those annoying early morning spiderwebs I normally take right in the face. Eventually though, I guess I got to close and he scrambled up the hill to the right of the trail and was out of sight.

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Quicksilver

To be a European Christian (the rest of the world might be forgiven for thinking) was to build ships and sail them to any and all coasts not already a-bristle with cannons, make landfall at river’s mouth, kiss the dirt, plant a cross for a flag, scare the hell out of any indigenes with a musketry demo’, and - having come so far, and suffered and risked so much - unpack a shallow basin and scoop up some muck from the river-bottom.

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