Musings from Southern New Mexico

Month: April 2012 (Page 2 of 2)

I’m Sincerely Glad Romney Won

I know a lot of Obama fans that would be appalled to hear this. Unlike any of his colleagues in the GOP Kandidate Klown Kar, Romney is electable. I have said it before, and I will continue to say it. An elected Romney would do less damage to this country than anyone else vying for (or flirting with vying for) the nomination.

Romney may have the charisma of styrofoam, the personality of a park bench, and a rapport with the peasants rivaled by that of the last kings of the Capetian Dynasty. He may represent both the end result of unearned wealth and the nonchalance of predatory capitalism. But mostly he has a more positive meaning to me. He is sane. I mean that literally. I may not have any credentials in mental health. I can say with as much certainty as it’s possible to have absent said credentials, though, that those of his vanquished rivals and would-be rivals that weren’t grifters (Palin, Cain, Gingrich, Trump) were certifiable. People still giggle about Romney’s handful of tone-deaf or downright dumb statements (google Romney dog roof). But how does that compare to Santorum’s disturbing story about his actions after a stillbirth? How does Romney’s slightly-quirkier-than-most religion compare to the gay-obsessed evangelical mission of Marcus Bachmann? How does he stack up to Rick Perry’s Mr. Rogers-on-goofballs performance in New Hampshire?

While Bush, Jr. lowered the Presidency’s intellectual bar to entry a bit, the entry of a literally crazy person would have essentially removed all bars altogether. We survived two Bush, Jr. terms. I would be interested to find if anyone disagrees with this premise: a Romney presidency would not be as bad for this country as the Bush, Jr. presidency was. To be honest, I’m not sure he would be much (perhaps even any) worse than the Obama presidency. Obama’s first reaction to any Republican challenge is to immediately capitulate on all but one or two mostly symbolic points. On the other hand, any principled stand made by Romney would actually raise his esteem in the world at large.

My Drive to Work, Part 2

I proceeded over the San Augustine Pass. I tried to capture what I could of the mountains and the flora.

The restricted area signs are an interesting contrast to the vast fields of desert poppies as they open up in the morning light.

This area was the site of a fire last year or the year before. Except for a few plants like this one, it is hardly noticeable.

This should give you an idea of how vast the poppy fields are.

So after a long day at the job (where photography is not allowed), I headed home. The desert poppies were a bit more open then they had been in the morning, but not quite as vibrant as they are around noontime.

The poppies were more open in the afternoon, but not as impressive as at midday.

My sister and I once stopped here on our way back from a Fabulous Thunderbirds concert before our vehicle broke down.

Here is a fuller view of the store I had photographed in the morning. The crumbling roof part had collapsed recently. In fact, that was what interested me in photographing the abandoned buildings.

The glass in this building was fairly intact until the last year or so.

And so ends my description my daily commute. I only wish I had photographic skills to capture the incredible sunrises I usually see, but I also lack the hardware for that.

My Drive to Work, Part 1

For the past several days, each afternoon has witnessed vast sheets of yellow blooming across the desert floor. I decided to take a camera with me.

1) El Camino Real

I began my morning as usual, taking my son to school. I noticed a couple of great photo opportunities only as I passed them. Instead, I had to settle for these:

Sun rising over St. Augustine Pass on El Camino Real.

Unfortunately, the sun beat me and I wasn’t able to get a clean picture of a freshly planted field without the obscuring feature of Sol rendering all a mere shadow:

The downtown area was marred by construction, so I opted to leave that out. Instead, I began the long commute and didn’t stop until I reached the ghost town. Organ, New Mexico is a peculiar place. Once a mining town, it has existed for the last half century as little more than the only stopping point between Las Cruces and Alamogordo or White Sands. With the eastward expansion of Las Cruces, the town was reduced to a residential area. It recently occurred to me that the abandoned buildings left along the highway gave it the appearance of a ghost town. I thought to take some pictures to share my daily ghost town experience. My wife, however, thought that I should wait until Spring, as the new growth in the flora would provide a contrast to the lifelessness of each edifice.

So I began my regular Friday drive. Unfortunately, there isn’t a safe place to pull off of the highway to get a good picture before Organ. It really is rather nice in places. I was able to stop at Organ along the way.

This building has both doors open, so you can see all the way through.

This was actually a functioning business when I first moved to Las Cruces some twenty years ago.

From another angle, you can see this is actually an interesting old building. And they once sold "Sandwitches."

The state of the Organ Mountain Lodge motel exemplifies the area. Note the contrast of the active traffic in the background.

I'm not sure when this was last a functioning garage, but it's been at least twenty years.

I think that pretty well describes the first part of my drive.

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