Recent Photo News
I recently attended the jQuery Bay Area Conference, which was held at the Microsoft Silicon Valley Campus Conference Center in Mountain View, California. I decided to go not only from a personal “want to hang out with cool people” perspective, because I know many people who are active in the jQuery community, but also from a “Director of Training at Bocoup” perspective. The former is cool because it’s always nice to interact directly (ie. drink beers) with people with whom your only typical interaction is IM or IRC. The latter is cool because on the day before the conference, Bocoup donated a full day of Beginner jQuery training to a very appreciative group of attendees, with all proceeds going directly to the jQuery Project.
Recently, Robyn and I have had the good fortune to see some truly awesome music performances.
Most recently, we saw Toots Thielemans with Kenny Werner and Oscar Castro-Neves at Scullers. This show was amazing, the trio played flawlessly.. and it was just fantastic to see not only eighty-seven year old Toots (who actually called himself a “black motherf***er from Belgium” on stage), but also Kenny and Oscar, who maintained an amazing rhythmic and harmonic counterpoint throughout the show (punctuated by amazing solos).
Before that, we got to see Buster Williams with Patrice Rushen, E.J. Strickland and Mark Gross at Scullers. Not only was it an awesome show, but I actually got to meet Patrice Rushen (!!!) which was a total thrill, since I’ve been a huge fan of hers for quite some time. Ever since I heard
Men in Black her first two albums, Prelusion and Before the Dawn (and of course, the amazing Straight from the Heart), I’ve been totally hooked.
And last month, we had a damn good time seeing Los Amigos Invisibles again, back at the Paradise. We never miss them when they come around, and it was yet another great show, lots of groovy, sexy Venezuelan dance-funk, which is awesome if you like music that kicks serious ass.
I know we have tickets to see Bobby McFerrin and Roy Haynes within the next month, so hopefully I’ll be able to take (and then actually post) photos to at least one of those shows!
The day has finally arrived! Robyn and I finally picked up our adorable ragdoll kitten today from CC Bay Rags, and as I write this, he’s exploring the living room, playing with his toys, and being a generally super-duper-adorable kitten.
He seems curious and healthy, purrs almost constantly, and is just the cutest little ball of fuzz you’ve ever seen. And he’s already used his litterbox and scratching post, taken a few naps, eaten some food, played with the aforementioned toys.. so I think we’re in good shape here. Take a look at some of the photos and also the videos if you want to see more!
Update: He cried a lot last night, because we left him alone in the living room, but it’s now “the morning after” and he’s still alive, as is our living room.. so we’re calling it a success. As I write this, Robyn is in the living room with him, in the process of being late for work, I think.
You may have noticed that I've been posting a lot of boring (if you're family) or exciting (if you're a web developer) jQuery plugins lately. If you're family, I apologize, I know it's boring. If you're a web developer, thanks for the suggestions and donations!
As you're no doubt aware, I have a lot of interests. I'm an artist, musician, photographer, web developer, husband, and all-around good guy™, among other things. But I'm not always able to focus on all of my interests at the same time. For example, I've been taking a break from music lately and focusing on the web stuff, with a little bit of photography thrown in for good measure. It goes in waves, just be patient with me!
And in case you haven't heard the good news, Robyn and I are buying a house, which has us both very excited. Once we've closed, I'll start posting photos of the place and our ongoing work there. We've already figured out pretty much all the furniture we need, so there's not too much left to be done, other than buying a grill and a few hundred pounds of red meat (yummy).
Either way, I just uploaded some photos from a recent Alman family barbecue, and in case you missed them, check out my photos from the 2009 Boston Beer Marathon. More photos (and other stuff) coming soon!
For the second year in a row, Jeremy and I took photos for the Great Boston Beer Marathon, an all-day, 26-bar Boston pub crawl starting near Fenway and ending in Allston.
It was pretty much the same as last year: beautiful weather, more beer than you could possibly drink, thousands of people wearing viking helmets.. except this year, the shirts were green. Don't believe me? Take a look at some of my photos!
Robyn scored us some tickets to see SMV (Stanley Clarke, Marcus Miller and Victor Wooten) at the House of Blues tonight. the basses were thumpin' and the music was bumpin' - everyone took at least one killer solo, including Marcus on bass clarinet and Stanley on upright.. If you get a chance to see these guys, take it!
Also, check out my photos from the show!
While visiting friends and family in and around Washington DC, Robyn and I visited the Air & Space Museum, the Natural History Museum, the Botanic Gardens, a whole bunch of memorials, and just enjoyed the beautiful weather. Check out my photos as well as Robyn's photos, if you haven't seen them already!
I know I said that I'd write about my Christmas presents, but never did. I got some great presents, really.. but, see, I decided to make myself a few pretty serious New Years' Resolutions too. The first was to revamp my website, with an updated photo gallery plus music and code sections. The second was to finally put together an album.
Well, I've been working on the web redesign pretty much non-stop (in my spare time, of course) since January 1. I completely re-architected my Movable Type templates, rewriting them all from scratch and adding a whole bunch of custom macros and nav code. Since then I've been working on a handful of jQuery plugins, including a really cool flickr photo gallery. These aren't done yet, but they will be soon.
I've also been working on a few new songs. I'm not sure that the album will come out this year, but I'm definitely going to be making a lot of progress. I already have. Once the redesign is done, I'll get some music posted here.
I have no excuse for not updating the site in the last few months, but with the whole template re-architecthing thing, I was a little bit afraid that publishing new blog posts would cause me some headaches. Well, they will, but I'll deal with that later. In the meantime, take a look at some old art and graphic design stuff I just uploaded to flickr. I'll have photos from our recent Washington, DC trip up soon!
It's not that I didn't want to update my News, it's just that I wanted to wait until I had all my photos from our recent trips to Cancun and Puerto Rico sorted, tagged and uploaded. It just took a lot longer than I thought it would, because there were so many good photos (and because I took my damn time).
Robyn and I don't have any more vacations planned until next July, so I should have no excuse in the future to keep things updated. That being said, I've been busy lately..
Let's see.. I've been collaborating on some music with musician and friend Dan Abreu, I created a small corporate website for Viewpoint Lifestyle, and I've even found some time to play Little Big Planet on PS3, which by the way, totally rocks. And of course, with the holidays coming up, there are lots of presents under the tree, so Robyn and I are both pretty excited.
If I get any good loot from Santa, I'll write about it here. I promise!
Recently, Robyn planned a little weekend trip for us to New York City. We walked around Times Square, Central Park, saw Young Frankenstein on Broadway, and Larry Carlton at the Blue Note. Robyn took some photos too, so check them out (I especially love her Trump Tower shot).
Even more recently, we saw the Red Sox of Boston take on the Indians of Cleveland. And in the end, the Red Sox triumphed by hitting a spherical ball made of leather through a big field. It was a most ripping victory. Ok, it wasn't even close to a most ripping victory, but the first inning (and maybe a few other things) were entertaining.
Last, but not least, I finally upgraded my home music studio to a brand new machine running SONAR 7. The photo I uploaded to Flickr was, ironically enough, featured in an article on optimizing SONAR 8 for Vista. I don't even run Vista.. but shh–don't tell anyone, okay? Either way, I'm working on writing and recording music again, so expect more tracks from me, soon!
Robyn and I recently attended the Newport Jazz Festival, for our third year in a row. Let's see.. this year, we got to see Sonny Rollins, Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Aretha Frankin, Ledisi, Chris Botti, Brian Blade, Charlie Haden, Bill Frisell, Chris Potter, Dave Holland, Christian Scott, Esperanza Spalding, Fred Wesley, Lettuce, Soulive.. the list goes on and on.
And for the last few years, Robyn and I just went to relax and listen to the excellent music, and maybe get a sunburn or two.. but this year we went not only to listen, but also to take a lot of photos. And we did! Check out my Newport Jazz Festival 2008 photos, and also check out Robyn's Newport photos as well.
We went to the Newport Jazz Festival again this year, for both Saturday and Sunday. It was excellent, we had a great time, heard some amazing music, and took a ton of photos (I'm still sorting through mine). I should have those up sometime next week.
I'm also trying to get back into recording some of my music as well. I've been sitting on four or five completed songs plus a ton of ideas, and just need to spend some time working out the details. Hopefully I'll be able to spend some more time collaborating with Ben Hillman, since we've been exchanging song ideas here and there for a while now.
And finally, I'm looking forward to beta testing and then playing the upcoming MMORPG Warhammer Online with Robyn and some of my crazy "online" friends. We all used to play World of Warcraft together, but got tired of the end-game loot/rep farming grind (that's MMO-speak for "repetitive, boring crap") so this might be the change of pace we're looking for. We'll see.
Not too long after that, we went to my parents' for the annual Alman family barbecue, where two 60th birthdays, a one-year wedding anniversary, and the successful migration of my parents' email accounts to google apps were celebrated.
And finally, last weekend we went up to New Hampshire to visit Nonni and Chet. It was a great visit: we relaxed, ate some of Nonni's super-tasty home-cooked food, and their dog Ollie is super cute too, so yet another win-win there. Sweet.
Robyn and I recently spent a relaxing long weekend in Kennebunkport to celebrate our first wedding anniversary (June 30). And even though the weather was overcast and rainy, we had a great time. All I can say is kudos to Robyn, who did all the planning. I just wonder where we're going next year! Check out my photos from the weekend, as well as Robyn's photos.