f-stop steve

This is my first attempt at a photoblog. I have been doing self-taught photography for most of my life. I hope you like this effort. Please click on the photos for enlargements.
"If I could tell the story in words, I wouldn't need to lug around a camera. ~Lewis Hine"

Friday, July 09, 2010

fireworks flower

I was sitting on the roof of my RV photographing the Canada Day fireworks display. I think this shot is the best of the "bunch".

Friday, December 04, 2009

Oh, How Time Flies!

Yesterday, December 3, was a major milestone in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) history in Ontario.

Two friends of mine, Dave Mokedanz and Ed McDiarmid, (along with yours truly) became the first Paramedics in the history of Ontario to have been certified as Advanced Care Paramedics for 30 years.

One other person, another friend of mine named John Wultchyn, has been certified as an Advanced Care Paramedic and as a Critical Care Flight Paramedic for an equally long time.

I counted the number of certificates on my wall the other day and came to a total of 43. This does not include the "lesser" mandatory certificates.

I have been with EMS for over 35 years now (yes, I still love it) and I am very proud of the people I work with and for.

In the posted photo (taken in 1980): right to left (Dave Mokedanz, Ed McDiarmid, Jon Newman and the cute one on the left is me) Dave Ed and I are still working and Jon moved on to get into some serious medical research.

The blue & white truck on top is just like the one I started in.
How times flies.
Good times.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Stop the evil jack o'lanterns!

Every year for as long as I can remember, on the 1st day of November (All Saints Day), there is abundant evidence that jack o'lanterns have been taken over by evil spirits.
Normally pumpkins are pretty docile. They stay passive and tame in their fields and some even sacrifice themselves to make delicious pies.
However, whenever Halloween rolls around and people start carving horrible, scary, fiendish faces in the pumpkins, something evil happens to them and they become quite aggressive. They begin to attack humans. Not just randomly either! They have learned to pick their targets and they never attack just one person at a time, they attack very specific groups.
The groups that are most at risk at are groups of teenagers. Mainly (through my very un-scientfic study) teenage boys in groups of 2 - 4.
How the evil pumpkins control these groups of unsuspecting innocent victims (probably on their home from helping at the shelters or soup kitchens or rehearsal for the church play or other worth-while efforts) and are able to draw them close enough for the evil pumpkins to attack is still a mystery.
Although I can find no evidence of human blood, torn clothing or human limbs left over, these stupid pumpkins must not realize they are no match for these groups of innocents, and yet, the lawns and porches are always littered with broken, shattered and smashed remnants of the pumpkin's fiendish attacks.
The fights must be horrible causing these young victims to fight for their lives with sticks and bats and boots, stomping and kicking these evil gourds to the death.
Several mornings have I witnessed the remains of pumpkins that have been thrown to their demise from bridges onto railroad tracks and highways.
I always wonder what kind of mental trauma is created in the minds of these young children. What can their dreams be like after vegetables attack? Does this cause them to recoil in fear at the sight of cauliflower or asparagus, brussel sprouts or broccoli? Is this why children hate all vegetables?
It's time to take action!! We can stand silent no longer!
In the U.S. call your Senator and demand an official government inquiry into these attacks before your children are injured or killed. Call Obama - Call McCain and see where they stand on the vital issue. It's not too late to make this an election issue - the safety of children is at risk.
In Canada, call your MP and demand a Royal Commission be started to protect the children. (If that fails, write a strongly worded letter to the editor of your local paper (or start a petition).

Stop the madness! Take up the fight! Protect the children! Kill the pumpkins!
Remember......keep watching those pumpkin patches.

Monday, July 21, 2008

See Steve sit.

See Steve. See Steve sit. See Steve sit in the rain. Laugh Steve Laugh. Oh Oh, Steve is not laughing. Why Steve? Why?
See Steve. See Steve sit. See Steve sit in the rain. See Steve think. Think Steve Think.
What could Steve be thinking of?
How much of his fence will he have to tear down to make a boat.
Boat Steve, boat.
Float Steve, float.

Just in case you think I have gone mad(der), there is a reason why I am sitting by the pool enjoying the liquid sunshine (while on my summer vacation) and that is because I am waiting for the pump to drain the excess water from the pool so it won't flood my neighbour's yard.
Excess water you say? Yes. More than 4 inches of excess water. This is the second day in a row that I have pumped off excess water from the pool so it won't flood my neighbour's yard.
What a good neighbour.
What a soggy vacation.
Laugh Steve, Laugh.
If I look darker than normal it's not a tan. It's rust.
Laugh Steve, Laugh.
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Monday, July 14, 2008

Highway of Heros

Whenever a Canadian soldier is killed in Afghanistan, his remains are flown to Canadian Forces Base Trenton (in Ontario). Once there, an Honour Guard, including the Governor-General of Canada and the Chief of Defense Staff meet the plane and speak with the family expressing the sympathies of not only themselves, but of Canadians in general. Then the family and the soldier take an amazing ride to Toronto and the Forensic Science Centre along a stretch of highway officially designated as "The Highway of Heroes". The Ontario Provincial Police, Military Police and Regional Police services along the way provide escorts for the convoy.
The ride is amazing for several reasons. First, every overpass on the highway (almost 100 miles) is lined with paramedic vehicles, police cars, fire trucks and ordinary people waving Canadian flags, saluting the fallen and thanking the families for their sacrifice.
The second amazing thing is that the families of the fallen are frequently seen leaning out the car windows waving to the people on the bridge.
Finally, this is Canada. The land of mediocrity and "grey faced" people known around the world as a polite but subdued people.
British newspapers recently criticised their citizens (and their police) for an appalling lack of respect towards their fallen soldiers and they used Canada as an example of how to do it properly.
It brings a tear to my eye each and every time I stand with my fellow Canadians to show some patriotism and respect for our fallen soldiers. I try not to miss any of them.
You may not agree with the war, you may not support the war, but you can always support the people who fight it for us. From any nation or any overpass.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Look who else is on vacation!

I was sitting in a restaurant at Disney World when what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a little old guy minus all his reindeer.
His eyes, how they twinkled when he looked right at me,
and me being an idiot, I jumped on his knee. His name is "Nick" and he is a Santa in Michigan and lives 30 miles from the Official Santa Training School.
He told me that he normally trims back the beard in January but with so many service men & women coming home who missed Christmas, he keeps it and shares their Christmases with them in his "uniform".
I told him that was a wonderful story and then I said, "By the way, my name is Steve". He said (and I quote), "I know." Then he and Mrs. Claus left. And they left us all with the nicest feeling of the year.
If you happen to be a service man or woman comng home from the war, from my house to yours, "MERRY CHRISTMAS!"
Welcome home.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Our Provincial Flower

This is a trillium. The "Official Flower" of the Province of Ontario. They don't last long so when you see them, grab a camera.
They come in two colours, the white variety and a reddish/purple colour.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Angle Parking - a new perspective

" Hello, Boss? It's Joe. I've got good news and bad news. The good news is that something got hoisted up pretty high and pretty quick on this last job. The bad news is that it was the crane and not the tree. "

A combination of really wet ground, a heavier than expected tree trunk and just bad luck lead to this incident in Beaverton, Ontario today.

No-one was injured but, as you might expect, the profit-margin for this job is lower than anticipated.

Officials on-scene felt that it would take two more cranes of equal size to safely lower this one to the ground .

Keeping things in perspective - How was your day at work?

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas traditions

Well, another festive season has come upon us. A time for families to get together, exchange gifts, enjoy a great meal and play games.
One of our family's favorite festive games is shown here being played by two of my relatives.
It's called "Close your eyes, count to ten and then guess where I hid my gum".

The picture kinda gives it away doesn't it?

Bet you can't wait to see what we do for New Year's Eve, can you?

Oh well,
from our family to yours - have a safe and Merry Christmas.

Take care of each other,

fstopsteve & family

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Where have I been?

It seems I am the only person on earth with a diagnosis of midas-ocularis. This is a strange phenomenon in which the afflicted person's eyes take on a golden hue, bulge sightly from their orbits and which decreases the visilibilty of said victim.
I have not been able to take many photos since I came down with this.......
I can't go on with this farce. The "eyes" are actually the containers from a Toffifee box cut to fit my stupid head.
I did this with the grandkids last Hallow'een and told them I was really an alien.
Sometimes - I think they have doubts about me.
Have a nice day......and keep watching the skies!