Tag Archives: old wood

Boxed

_MG_7722

One of the things that I like best about going to the flea market that I wrote about yesterday is the old wood that is there. Sometimes, they are just old barn boards or slices of trees and at other times it is wood that has been painted or stained to look old or antique. I have to admit that I’m not an aficionado of antiques so I could be easily duped. But I know what I like to see and try to take photos of the old (or old-looking) wood when I get the chance.

Today’s photo was shot at that flea market. I liked the way these old wooden boxes looked and how they were stacked atop each other in a non-symmetrical way. I even liked the color that had been applied to them.

Oh, and just in case you are wondering, I didn’t buy them!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 2002, the defense rested in the trial of Andrea Yates, a 37-year-old Texas woman who confessed to killing her five young children by drowning them in a bathtub. Less than a week later, on March 13, Yates was convicted and sentenced to life in prison; however, her conviction was later reversed.

Andrea Pia Kennedy was born July 2, 1964, in Houston, Texas, and married Russell Yates on April 17, 1993. The couple’s first child, Noah, was born in February 1994. Three more boys followed, in 1995, 1997 and February 1999. Later that year, Yates attempted suicide twice and was diagnosed with psychosis and postpartum depression. She was also advised not to have any more children; however, in November 2000, she gave birth to a daughter. Several months later, she had another breakdown and was hospitalized.

After her husband, a NASA employee, left for work on the morning of June 20, 2001, Andrea Yates drowned her five children in the bathtub of the family’s suburban Houston home. Afterward, she called 911 and then phoned her husband to tell him he needed to return home immediately. Police found the body of the Yates’ oldest son Noah, age 7, face-down in the tub. Yates had placed the bodies of her four younger children—John, 5, Luke, 3, Paul, 2, and Mary, 6 months—next to each other on a bed and covered them with a sheet. She confessed her actions to police and later made statements that she heard voices and believed she was saving her children’s souls by killing them.

At her 2002 trial, Yates’ attorneys argued that she was insane, while the prosecution charged she failed to meet Texas’s definition of insanity because she was able to tell right from wrong. After deliberating for less than four hours, a jury found Yates guilty, rejecting her insanity defense, and she was sentenced to life in prison. In 2005, a Texas appeals court reversed the conviction and granted Yates a new trial after it was learned that prosecution witness Dr. Park Dietz, a forensic psychiatrist, gave erroneous testimony that had influenced the jury. On July 26, 2006, a jury found Yates not guilty by reason of insanity. Since that time, she has been committed to a state mental hospital in Texas.

Russell Yates was supportive of his wife in the aftermath of the murders, blaming her behavior on severe mental illness and also criticizing her doctors for failing to properly treat her condition. In turn, he was criticized for being controlling and for leaving his wife unsupervised at the time she killed their children, when he had been advised not to do so. Russell Yates filed for divorce in 2004 and remarried two years later.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: Charles Manson

Wood, Wire, Faces, Life

Old wood is one of my favorite things to photograph.  It takes on new life as it ages, new visual clues appear and tell of the times it has witnessed, the stresses it has endured and the way it has weathered the storms in its time.  The stains each bear testimony to some struggle, some assault, and some victory.  Wood, old wood in particular, has character!

Wire, on the other hand, being made out of metal, doesn’t show age as much.  It is much more resistant to the ravages of time and the elements, especially if it is covered with insulation, paint or some protective layer of some kind.

Each has their advantages, but as for me, I’ll take the wood any day.  It reminds me of life, my life and the life of those I know and love and meet along life’s pathway.  Human faces are a lot like word – they, too, reflect the storms and are weathered by the elements.  But look at the eyes, listen to the voices, and you’ll also see the victories that were won and celebrated along the way.

_MG_5029ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1946, on this day in 1946, the man who the world would come to know as Steven Spielberg, one of the most successful directors in movie history with such blockbusters as Jaws, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Schindler’s List and Saving Private Ryan, was born in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Spielberg’s first full-length feature, the 1971 thriller Duel, starred Dennis Weaver and ran on TV.  Spielberg’s first big-screen directorial effort was 1974’s The Sugarland Express, starring Goldie Hawn, but it was his next film that caught the world’s attention, when Jaws was released in 1975 and became the first movie in history to gross over $100 million.

Spielberg’s next film, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, achieved similar box-office success. This was followed by another massive hit, 1981’s Raiders of the Lost Ark, which was nominated for eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director. It became a hugely successful movie franchise.

Spielberg’s Midas touch continued in the 1982 sci-fi drama E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial.  The movie was an enormous commercial and critical success, earning nine Oscar nominations. Spielberg turned from action thrillers and special effects with 1985’s The Color Purple, which received 11 Oscar nominations.

Spielberg’s 1991 film Hook did well at the box office, but received mixed reviews.  1993’s Jurassic Park, about cloned dinosaurs, featured cutting-edge special effects and became one of the top-grossing movies in history. Also that year, Spielberg directed the Holocaust drama Schindler’s List, starring Liam Neeson in the title role and earned Spielberg his first Best Director Oscar. He earned his second Best Director Oscar for 1998’s World War II drama Saving Private Ryan

Spielberg went on to direct such films as A.I.: Artificial Intelligence (2001), Minority Report (2002), with Tom Cruise; Catch Me if You Can (2002), with Leonardo DiCaprio; and Munich (2005), which earned Spielberg another Best Director Oscar nomination.

In addition to writing and directing, Spielberg has served as a producer on a variety of television and film projects, including the 2001 HBO series Band of Brothers and Clint Eastwood’s Flags of our Fathers (2006) and Letters from Iwo Jima (2006). Spielberg was married to the actress Amy Irving (Crossing Delancey) from 1985 to 1989 and has been married to the actress Kate Capshaw (Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom) since 1991.

Not bad for a rookie, eh?

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: In the blockbuster hit, E.T., the Extra Terrestrial (1982), Harrison Ford was cast as the school principal, but his only scene was cut. Director Steven Spielberg decided his presence in the film would be too distracting. Ford’s wife Melissa Mathison wrote E.T.’s screenplay.