Saturday, August 19, 2017

Wake Up Number 47!

2017 The Destination is There!

Bloody Skies over Chicago
June 21, 2017
Adler's Front Porch

We have an eclipse on Monday, but what really is happening in Chicago, and does next Wednesday have anything to do with it? #mothman #eclipse #blacksky

Continue reading at your own risk and if you dare...

I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies. And everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. John 11:25
Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed — in an instant, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. I Corinthians 15:51-52

Stay off the bridges in Chicago.

Ever since May, I've had a feeling of dread and felt a strange heaviness in the air here in Chicago. I originally had started composing a Summer blog for this year but I put that on hold after May when I just started feeling off!  I remember plainly telling a friend how I felt back in May and I tried so hard shirking it off. I wrote a similar blog back in 2015 after the Super Blood Moon in September. So, now, with an oncoming of an solar eclipse event on Monday, I just had to get this off my mind.  Plus, in the previous blogs I did for this year, I referenced some kind of cataclysmic event in each blog.

• The Destination Is There! (February 4, 2017) it was an asteroid. This was Happy New Year blog.
• Head in the Clouds! (March 12, 2017) it was a CME from the Sun. This was my Spring blog.

Here we are nearing Summer's end. My Mom and Dad came and visited me on July 21 and 22. On that Saturday, we spent the day downtown. We went up to my office in the Merchandise Mart, explored the Bean, Grant Park, had lunch at The Gage, and a nice boat cruise on Wendella Boats. It was a lot of fun and I had a great time with them, even having a very tearful departure that Saturday night. Like me, my love of photography comes from my Dad, so he was taking pictures just as I was. Well, it wasn't until later when reviewing my photos where I came across this in one of my photos...

Yeah, I like X-Files too, but this photo had me scratching my head. Why? Well let me explain. I took 3 shots of the same thing -- in a row. My lens/sensor wasn't dirty; if it were an airliner, it would show up in the other shots; instead, it appears out of nowhere. Each shot was less than a second from the next. It just so happened THIS shot revealed this. So what did I do? I contacted MUFON and Lon Strickler. Here is the E-mail I sent to MUFON on July 29th and it's still being substantiated by them. This photo here is zoomed in to its fullest (from the original raw photo on my camera).

MUFON Sighting Report (85470): 7/29/2017

I live in Chicago. I don’t know if there were any reports of UFOs over or near Chicago on Saturday, July 22, 2017, but I was out on the Chicago River (at the crook of the N/S branches) before sunset and I captured something in one of my photos. I’ve never reported anything like this before but I am curious to know if there might’ve been others that witnessed something in the skies over Chicago around 17:40 CDT. I am attaching the photos to this so you can see that near the building in the middle (300 N. LaSalle) near Trump Tower, there is a black object there that I can’t describe. I didn’t notice it until I reviewed my photos later. I usually take multiple shots in a row and in the previous two, it’s not there. Unfortunately this object is in the last burst shot (for 1/400sec). It’s not a dirty lens/sensor, because I would’ve seen that in the previous shot. Upon zooming in the photo, it doesn't look like a jet, helicopter or even a dirigible; it's nothing identifiable. It has a cone shaped top and bottom. Please can you help me identify this object? After I reviewed my photos and saw this, I was at a loss of words. I didn't notice this outside of the photos, just after I reviewed my photos. The “object” doesn’t behave or look like a normal airplane or drone I know of. There is no evidence of the object in the other photos. If it were an airplane or drone, you’d see it appear from behind the other buildings in the other photos. Instead it appears out of nowhere. I submitted a case to MUFON a week after the photos but it’s not been substantiated yet. 
I attached the two photos; however, here is a screen shot of the one photo zoomed in. The 2 photos are converted to JPG from the original Raw files of my camera (which I have).  PLEASE let me know if you get the two photos ok? I would like to remain anonymous if you investigate or share my story.
Thank you,

This was the e-mail I sent to MUFON. So what happened after I submitted the case? I was led to MUFON's website where I started reading these: MOTHMAN-TYPE CREATURE REPORTED OVER CHICAGO

"...In Case 83325, the witness was out on Lake Michigan with her husband and two other couples celebrating a friend’s birthday. 

“We were about two miles out on the lake, just off of Montrose at about 10 p.m.,” the witness stated. “We were enjoying ourselves when I happen to look up and saw what looked like a giant bat, and not like a fox bat (which I looked up and saw was the biggest bat). This bat was as tall as my husband, who is 6-foot, 4-inches, or even bigger.”

The witness described the creature. 
“It was solid black with eyes that seemed to reflect the moonlight. This bat was blacker than the surrounding night sky and was perfectly silhouetted against the moonlit sky. This bat circled the boat three times in complete silence before heading off towards Montrose. It quickly blended into the night sky and was gone in seconds.”

And this from a woman jogger and her dog at Oz Park, Lincoln Park...

As we rounded the sidewalk to head south with the garden to my left, I heard what could only be described as the flapping of wings. I really didn’t give it a second thought as I assumed it would be some passing Canadian Geese that I’ve seen in the park recently. As we came toward the clearing where you would find the Baseball fields, something caught my eye and what I saw still scares the crap out of me. I saw a large man, probably 7 feet or taller standing on the ground. It was solid black, but what really stood out were the large, and I do mean large pair of wings that were folded behind him. These wings stood taller than the man by at least a foot and a half and jutted out of his back. I could not see it’s face as it had its face turned away from me and probably didn’t notice me at first. It finally turned and noticed me and I saw the bright, ruby red eyes that appeared to glow from within. It was at this time that it turned and faced me and I got to see what it really looked like 
So as I started reading the articles from MUFON's website, the "strange heavy feeling in the air" started to make sense. Bear in mind, that starting on July 29th, I found out all the other stuff so how I felt in May seems to correlate with the strange sightings here.

Wake up number 47! 

Ok, I'm not a doomsayer but Chicago area residents have reported at least 20 sightings of this mothman creature since April. I don't expect anyone to even pay attention to this, but it's my wall and my timeline. The last sighting of this creature was on August 9 near LSD and Schiller. Sometimes you ask yourself, "what does it all mean?" I think it's human nature to try and solve mysterious cryptids. I don't expect anyone to react to this (let alone even read it) but I've had a very "bad" feeling since May before even learning about this stuff. I know of one friend I told this to and it was just before the Manchester terrorist attack in England. I thought maybe that was it but the feeling persisted beyond that. Then, I photograph what appears to be a UFO a couple weekends ago. One other known place in American history experienced the same type of phenomena; UFOs, Men in Black, Grinning man, and of course, Mothman. It ended in catastrophe with the collapse of a bridge. Point Pleasant W.Va. Since 1966, there have been multiple sightings of this creature like at Chernobyl, 9/11, Freiburg Germany, and even the I-35 bridge collapse in Minnesota. none of these events had a good outcoming.

You see these things, you wonder, and you try to understand its meanings. WHY? We have an Air Show next week which coincides with an Eclipse. There was also a solar eclipse on November 12, 1966. You start thinking about things, and as humans, we shrug it off. "Nah, it'll be ok." Will it? I have learned over the years to listen to my "gut." And when I started feeling a "strange heaviness" in the air in May, it bothered me to the point it was upsetting me, trying to shirk it off as just nothing. However, more and more now, I'm starting to wonder what this all means with recent events. I didn't hear about the creature sightings until AFTER I filed a case with MUFON on 7/29 regarding my UFO photo and it was the first time I made a connection to how I started feeling in May. So, ya, just sayin and I don't expect anyone to understand. Some of you know about these "strange feelings and dreams" I get. So, some of you might understand.

Wikipedia: "On November 12, 1966, five men who were digging a grave at a cemetery near Clendenin, West Virginia, claimed to see a man-like figure fly low from the trees over their heads. This is often identified as the first known sighting of what became known as the Mothman.

Shortly thereafter, on November 15, 1966, two young couples from Point Pleasant, Roger and Linda Scarberry and Steve and Mary Mallette, told police they saw a large black creature whose eyes "glowed red" when the car headlights picked it up. They described it as a "large flying man with ten-foot wings", following their car while they were driving in an area outside of town known as "the TNT area", the site of a former World War II munitions plant."

And, yeah, I noted the dates here too so I'm a little more creeped out. I wrote about this thing in my stories once and it was a foreboding messenger of a coming cataclysm where evil rules and the sun was dispelled -- literally. That realm was Arden; albeit, a fantastical realm, but the "winged prophet" or mothman makes an appearance before the coming "black sleep," a period of that realm's darkness and where life was oppressed by evil and ruled by the night. The good news there is that life does prevail in the end but at a cost. Ourias the Warrior of Sri conquers the darkness and meets the Faceless God on an Altar, referred to as the Concordant Summit.

The day in the story which the creature first appears is Nissan 1 or September 1st (or New Year's Day by the elves of Arden -- when the Virgin is at maximum and aligns with Exiv). I wrote this back in the Summer of 2004 and I think it probably had to do with the fascination of the movie with Richard Gere in it. Who knows though? In the story, the only way this creature is appeased by a lock of red hair from a Lady. Her vanity keeps the creature in the realm and because of her vanity, the creature puts a curse on her and on the realm. Just a story here but it's what I wrote. In that same story, the sun "dies" on October 31, and it begins the dark, evil time. In the mean time, the Lady is pregnant with Ourias, the one who will restore Arden to its grandeur. Bear in mind as well but the realm fictionally exists between Genesis 1:1, 2. The Gap.

"The creature first came upon her on September 1st, the first day of the first month (that is, Níssan 1), the day she conceived the two children of King Iórdh III. The creature came down from the Celeste from the memory of Áish, the Red Elfin-Warrior of Casóimhar. “Terror from the skies, terror from the air, terror from this Arden will haunt this world and all who exist in it. Terror of the Wraiths will bring Black Sleep to the dwellers of this world,” the Winged Prophet whispered and spoke as a chant to the Lady in her ear. “Two children, one from the herb and one who will seal the realm and gates of the heavenly places, so that all who dwell in this world will not despair or fail.” The Winged Creature unfolded his wings to reveal a sudden doom to the Lady in her dreams. “You will see the Rock of Beauty in time. I will meet you there in that day, when it is built. It will stand against the terror from the skies, the terror of the air, and the terror of Black Sleep in this Arden. The Terror of the Wraiths will fear the fire that falls on the Beautiful Rock.”

The Lady was full of fear, seeing the blackness of the creature, his staring red eyes and the images under his wings. Immediately she blinked her eyes out of meditation, and focused upon a bleak, redness swelling around the black creature. She was awakened and quickened. “What realm is yours, vile thing, that you come to me as I meditate out of this realm?” The Lady gasped. “You fill me full of fear and distress. What do you desire from me? Do you desire my children, which I have conceived on this day?"


The creature came upon her, forcing her back onto her bed. Her chamber was filled with the eerie, red glow from the creature. “Give me a lock of your red hair, Lady.” He urged her, looking deeply into her eyes. “I will not harm or appear to you again. Give me a lock of your red hair that I may have safe passage to Elliós, which is of the Celeste.” He whispered and spoke at once. “Darkness is nigh.”"

You know what? It's probably nothing...

...however I can't help to wonder and pray about it. I can't also stop thinking about the line from the movie Mothman too: "Whatever brought you there, brought you there to die." Then, I look at the dates again. Man! November 15. So, to be honest, I'm a bit creeped out. I don't expect anyone to understand either. I know of maybe one or two people whom can relate. I've never gone wrong with my gut feelings...

Some interesting links:
Episode #004 | Chicago Mothman | Mythic Radio, paranormal, unexplained (made with Spreaker)
• Episode #005 - The Mothman | paranormal, unexplained, podcast (made with Spreaker)

My stories:
Omen of the Winged Prophet
The Birth of Twins

Latest Encounter:
Winged Humanoid Confronts Shocked Chicago Witnesses

• Interactive Google Map of Mothman. Number 25 was a couple blocks from my apartment!

"Whatever brought you there, brought you there to die."

The day to really be concerned about I guess is the Wednesday August 23, and the possibility of a "Black Sky Event." According to EIS council's website, there is going to be an exercise that day.

August 23: Emergency All-sector Response Transnational Hazard Exercise.

Remember the mass power outage in August 2003? Our government is rather underhanded and when I see FEMA attached to things like that, it's not good. Whatever this "exercise" entails, Black Sky events are listed on that same website: "events to bring society to its knees." This indeed very well may be a conspiracy theory but this somehow sums up that foreboding feeling I've had ALL summer long. With this information, on top of how I've been feeling AND these weird Mothman sightings all over the city, it's hard not to feel something bad is going to happen here. Sorry if this scares anyone but I just had to get this off my chest. So, bottom line ya maybe it's overreacting but maybe it's not. I am not going to the air show this weekend. Instead gonna gas up the car, do some shopping, and take some money out. I put this out there. Read, ignore, scoff, whatever. Bottom line is we're not told everything.. We have hope in Jesus Christ, the sacrifice for our sin and His glorious resurrection! He asks us to believe Him.

Remember this as well. The media and world is really hyping up the American Solar Eclipse on Monday. 1918 was the last time the US had one. So while out viewing it, let's remember to show a little humility and reverence for this. Too many times we don't consider how big things really are. We forget. So I'm just saying let's have a little respect for the sign but also have fun. Ok? I plan on taking some pictures, fitting my camera with a nice ND Filter to block out the rays of the sun. Just remember to be kind to others.

Chicago: "The eclipse begins at 11:54 a.m., reaching a maximum at 1:19 p.m. and ends at 2:42 p.m."

Total Eclipse of the Mart (added later)
Monday, August 21, 2017
Merchandise Mart

So if I were to conclude this blog, I guess it all sums up to being extra vigilant. I don't know what the next week'll bring here. I just pray that I'm worthy to face the Lord in whatever time is mine to face Him...

2 Timothy 2:19-24. This is what I reflected on today (with all the hype being spread with the Charlottesville incident):

Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.” 
In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for special purposes and some for common use. Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work. 
Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful.

The Forgotten
Thursday, August 24, 2017
The Chicago Spire

Connect to me elsewhere at your own risk.

My Life starts at the Chicago Water Tower!
Mark 0, 0, 0, 0. The last 0 is for the time parameter
Keeping a train of thought and keeping on track.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Head in the Clouds

The Destination is There.

Mystical Pond
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve
Darien IL
February 18, 2017

To Serenade A Rainbow by PM Dawn.
Rock the Shamrock.

Hello everyone! Welcome to a new month. The destination is there. I hope you all are enjoying the new year. So far, the new year has started off rather well, but there is still plenty to accomplish by the end of it all. I have been going back to my goals for this year and looking at what I've been doing to keep those goals moving along. February was a busy month and a lot of the "routine" things I do for fun in February/March changed. I normally go the the Chicago Auto Show, Chiditarod and the River Dyeing. I've done these the last four years. I think this year it was time to take a break from those. I don't have to do this every year. I'm hoping to achieve some life-changing goals for this year, like owning a home, traveling outside the US, and career! After all, the name of this blog is "Eric Failing Deletions," which as some of you might have figured out by now is an anagram for "Life Altering Decision!" 

Chicago Auto Show
McCormick Place
February 12, 2017

This year has started out with a lot of challenges, a lot of late hours and weekend warrior work for my job, which actually I am NOT complaining about. It's a great feeling to make something work though! March was that month. So, a lot of that tough after hour weekend warrior work has paid off, especially in March. In March 2 of my friends started NEW JOBS! This is probably the greatest news I've seen from my friends! Getting or starting a new job supersedes any Kid photo, Spouse/SO photo, Pet photo or whatever. I have another friend who is going to an interview soon, so I'm hoping THREE friends start new jobs this month. I can truly relate with friends trying to find work and how tough it really it is! I've been there and I truly empathize with people that WORK HARD to earn respect. Getting a job is the best feeling in the world. You have a great feeling of worth and dignity! I also talked my friend Dena in Cleveland too, and I'm really hoping for her too as she has struggled forever with career choices. I hope this year is good to her too! She DESERVES a new change in her life!

Wolcott and Hubbard
March 4, 2017

This month was a very tough month as I stated. I had been working on a hybrid project at work and finally this month that hard work paid off.  You might be wondering about the headline for this section, "To Serenade A Rainbow by PM Dawn." Not only was the first-ever CD album of mine to own, it was also the name of my project at work! Our office was upgrading its environment to the Cloud, Azure and Office 365! We made it to to the cloud ala #theflyingjalopy! This one is a "Mad Max Beyond Thunder Dome" reference lol.

Things are looking a little brighter this year on the financial horizon as well! I paid my car off, renewed my AAA membership (and approved for AAA Credit Card). I am also close to paying off one off my student loans. Next destination will be owning my first home! I also had some good news with health and doctors this month as well.  As most of you know, I suffer from an Autoimmune Disease and I've faced many challenges with overcoming the worst of it. I wish there were a cure for this, but like other incurable diseases, we have to learn to be our own coach.  This means diet, exercise, mental state of mind, and other environmental variables.

Chicago River Dyeing
Streeterville, Chicago IL
March 11, 2017

I'm also thankful that I have friends and family (though a lot of them distant, including my folks) that support me and my decisions. This month, I planned a trip to visit my folks for my Mom's birthday! The PTO has been approved! The last time I saw my folks was for Thanksgiving. I didn't see them Christmas -- I went on a date here in Chicago in Chinatown. Each passing day, I love them more and more and I try to call them each weekend. I regularly text my Mom! Never take granted your parents! Mine live in Cleveland and they're not around the corner, so it will be a tremendous blessing to see them again.

• 2017 Goal: Find a new home! Yep, as much as I like my neighborhood (Albany Park), the apartment I live in has several faults, including kids that don't care about other neighbors in the building. 401k. Pre-Approval on mortgage.

Another great thing I plan on doing soon with my DynDNS and DuoCircle renewal is upgrade to Office 365 Azure at home! I've had my computer network running since 2008 with Active Directory, ESXi, Exchange Server, my own website, and other goodies ala Oakbrook 17-102. With all the efforts done at work, I think it's time to do the upgrade at home too. Ever since I started my home network, it's been a basic sandbox for testing things at work. Actually, by having the home sandbox, I've used it for projects at work and it's really helped me do my job better! With my Microsoft account, I did manage to sign up for Azure last year. I just haven't added anything to it. So, hopefully when I renew my DynDNS and DuoCircle subscriptions, I'll add Azure. With that, I hope my goal is to setup a backup server in the Cloud for backing up to. My backups at home don't go off site. It will also be cool to setup AD Connect and sync my Active Directory to the Cloud!!!

Room information for my Apartment
Via Draco Argenteus

So, this year I'm hoping to be pre-approved for a mortgage so I can buy my own home! The destination is there! I'm hoping that very soon, I'll pay off one of my student loans and some (very little debt). If there is one thing I remember the most is the year 2007 when I worked myself to death with THREE jobs, while going to school, AND PAYING MY OWN BILLS! I truly empathize with people that work very hard to make a living in life, and yes, even those Single Moms that still manage to find time to take their kids to soccer practice. We're not meant to coast by with ease! This goes back to the 2 friends this year that got jobs!!! Anyone who gets a job deserves the utmost praise and attention! Those that think getting a boyfriend/girlfriend, engaged, married, having a baby or whatever is! Not in my mind! When you get a job, it's the greatest achievement done by anyone. You have a feeling of self-respect, dignity, and worth! You feel that even more when you get that first paycheck! People have marriages, engagements, kids everyday, but when you get a job, it's a whole different kind of world! In a world of unemployment, lack of jobs, and people struggling to get by, getting a job changes all that! I didn't come into this world with rich parents! My brothers and I had to earn that respect, earn that self-respect and we had tough love. Generation X all the way! So, when I look at the kids now (even my folks have remarked on the upbringing of Millennials now), it's entirely different kind of world. My lease is up in August. I just hope and pray I have different living arrangements by then. I'll tell you that it's not been easy getting on the train each night worrying if my building is going to be quiet. I go to bed at night. My building USED to be quiet when I moved here in January 2014. It's time to own a home! Ever since I moved back to first shift, I get up at 7am now and go to bed by 10pm. I shouldn't have to feel guilty about that. I've watched people in my building; we all have jobs to go to!

Avebury, England
A place I hope to see!
I did not take this picture.
October 13, 2017???

Silent Running by Mike and the Mechanics
Skype Hybridization Project at Velocity

Another thing I'm trying to do this year is travel to the United Kingdom hopefully around my birthday this year. My birthday also falls on Friday the 13th this year, lol! Getting a US Passport for the first time is something I've never done and I didn't know you could get one without travelling. The destination is there! My friend Chris Johnson is from England and he's been a tremendous help to me planning my UK trip. I told him I've never been outside the US more than a day lol. Back when my family camped every weekend with the Maple Heights Camper's Club (Maple Heights OH), we went to some interesting placed to camp. I'm not sure that club is around anymore, but we did a lot of camping with my family when I was a kid. One of those camping excursions took us to New York near Buffalo. My Dad drove us into Canada that day to Niagara Falls. We spent the evening there, BUT we were there only for an hour or so ha! So, that sums up my travel outside the United States.

Chris has been helping plan places to see in England like the "Cliffs of Dover," Stonehenge, London, Nottingham (Sherwood Forest), etc. I have a lot of family history in the United Kingdom and Ireland. So, when it came down to planning trips, the UK stood out the most. I'd love to visit China next! No, not just because of my weakness with Asian women lol! It just looks like a very interesting place to visit and experience the culture! So, UK is the destination! Nottingham is where the Chathams came from in the early 1900s, when the name was Cheetham. Before that it was Inverness, Scotland when the name was MacCeattannach (Clan Chattan). Ireland predominates my Mom's side, so that would be another location to visit especially Co. Dublin, where my Mom's family hails from.

My favorite Winter Constellation, Orion.
Front stoop of my apartment building with Chicago light pollution
Albany Park, Chicago IL
March 10, 2017

I told Chris that I'd love to visit Avebury in England too. He asked me why. I admitted to him that it was due to a childhood dream! When I was a kid in the early 80s when Nickelodeon first aired, at the birth of Cable TV, there was a series that aired called "The Third Eye." It aired before "You Can't Do That On Television." If you're Gen X like me, then you might remember when Nickelodeon first aired, it shared network space with the A&E channel! Then, Nickelodeon had its own channel later. In the "Third Eye" sci/fi show, there was a series called Children of the Stones! Watching that as a kid, I didn't understand it but I was fascinated by it because the town of Avebury, England was used in the plot. This is also where my love of stargazing began (not just with my Uncle) but they featured the Big Dipper as part of the plot in this series. Since that time, I always wanted to visit that town they used in the series. The stone circle supposedly sits on a "ley line," shared with the Pyramids of Giza.

• 2017 Goal: "Happy Now? Happy Later?" Happy Now! Todd, if you're reading this, you remember when you said this to me 10 years ago, and I said Happy Later? I'm making it a goal in 2017. I still don't know to this day why you asked me this, but it has made me think about my own happiness lately.

This month, I started the process for filling out form "DS 11" for a US Passport. This is the first time I've done this, and I should've done it earlier had I known I could have a passport without travel plans. Nonetheless, I'll finally get that done. I visited AAA on Michigan Avenue on a lunch break to get my photos done. When I visit my folks, I'll get my birth certificate and by then, I'll be able to go to the post office and submit my application! This is really exciting, and the bonus? I was approved for an AAA Credit Card which I can use OUTSIDE THE US internationally!!! This will definitely help me plan my trip better and I'm looking at trip pricing to the UK. Chris has told me to fly into Manchester instead of Heathrow London to help save money. And, if I'm planning my trip, he recommended around my birthday in October. Fares will be cheaper!

VelocityEHS IT Family (Merchandise Mart)
Employee Appreciation Day
March 3, 2017

Striking Matches by Squeeze. 
Striking matches with explosives so near...

Ok by now you're probably reading this and asking why the song titles, lol? I have my job to thank for this.  Our work projects and meetings are done by song title sand album names. As I mentioned, the beginning of this year was very busy with work and projects. It's good to know that this month we've had some success! "Silent Running by Mike and the Mechanics" was specifically chosen for my Skype for Business hybrid project. If you're a dork, you'll get the meaning ha! Last year, I joined the team of VelocityEHS and it's been a great experience. The destination is there! Sometimes, a job just chooses you; and, you don't. This was Velocity.

• 2017 Goal: I want love and it's out there. Love and acceptance have been areas of my life I've battled with.

This year started off great with them and it's still going well! It is a great feeling to complete projects with success and learn later you are eligible for a pay raise and some of the bonus from the previous year. I wasn't expecting anything like this for the first year of employment, let alone the first couple months! When I discovered how important I was to the team, it was a joyful, tearful moment.  Tearful moment? Well, I finally understood what that meant on Employee Appreciation Day at the Shamrock Club! After work that day, our team had drinks there and had a great night together. I learned that night how valuable I was on the team from my other teammates. I also learned that night how my "drink to drunk ratio" has decreased. Losing weight, I get drunk easier lol. In fact, something good came out of that night. The last time I was actually drunk was my 40th birthday. I don't drink like this often, but that night something happened. 

Tonia's last picture in my wallet finally went up in flames! The destination is there! Thank you, Sarah!

Mind you, in an age before digital photography spun-off, I have no pictures of her on my computer! Backstory on love: In 2001, just after September 11th, I fell in love with a woman. Her name was Tonia. We met, planned on an exciting future together. She had kids from a previous marriage; I was ok with that. However, in that relationship, I wanted to have my own as well. You don't always understand things in your life, and this was the first time I fell head over heels for a woman; the first time I was so lost and deeply in love! It ended. In 2002, I learned something out of that which broke my heart. She was not able to have children anymore. She never shared this with me while we were in the relationship. It hit me hard! For the next 15 years, I built walls up around my heart after that. We broke it off completely by 2003. In that short of time, I was hurt. I have written many fantasy stories. "She" was written about in one of those stories [The Birth of Twins]. Well, that night, while in a "weakened" state, her picture went up in Flames! For the longest time, I had been meaning to burn it, but just couldn't.

"Oooh I'm striking matches it's morning again
I look in the mirror I still look the same
I'm striking matches it's morning again
I look in the mirror I go up in flames

Striking matches getting a flame on the stove
There's some of her in the teeth of my comb
Dirty clothes piled up on the bathroom floor
She's silently sleeping, I half close the door
I see her beauty laying on my bed
I'm warm from within me with what she has said
Her love is my balloon, I won't let it down
For ever and ever I'll always be proud."

Striking Matches by Squeeze
Babylon and On

That song was specifically chosen for this event before I joined Velocity IT; however, I have Velocity IT to thank for helping me out of this pit! The only thing I really remember from that night is pulling that picture from wallet and showing it to my teammate. 

She grabbed it from me and she said, "I'll be right back." I had no idea she was going to go outside the pub to light it on fire! She came back in and said, "...I took care of it."

"What do you mean?" I said.

"She's gone. It's time for you to move on. You can't do this to yourself anymore." She stated this in the sincerest and gentlest way. Her picture was finally was gone...up in flames. At the moment when I was my weakest, I was my strongest. It was a tearful moment. I can't believe she was finally gone after all those years! It took help for this. So, when I say "tearful moment," this is it. Up in smoke. Recently, I've learned much from this group and I can't thank Chris Johnson enough for leading my path into Velocity last year. The destination is there.

• 2917 Goal: Stop being snubbed or ignored! You may think this is a selfish goal, but really it isn't. I never stand out and I'm often brushed aside, ignored and forgotten.  Far too often in my life, this has been a serious problem, and I never do anything about it.  Some people in my life get FAR too much praise, attention and adoration than they actually deserve, including cohorts, friends and family. So, meekly stand out.

I woke up Saturday morning to this!
Velocity Slack
March 11, 2017

Hard work pays off! This month, I'm also wrapping an intense project involving Exchange/Skype Hybridization at work. This was one of my projects for 2017 at Velocity. There is still a lot to test and a lot to expand on; it's only the beginning but the destination is there. It was nice to get some attention from the teammate I was working on the project with. Admittedly, I woke up in the morning and saw this in one of the the slack channels we use for work. Going back to that goal about being "snubbed or ignored," it's not a selfish goal. It's good to "meekly stand out." Speaking of which, I recently e-mailed my former boss Sergey Galchenko from Broadvox and told him all the good news with the new job, telling him that my new manager reminds me of the good in you, and that the new job has brought back so many fond memories of working at Broadvox.

Kimball Station (Kimball/Lawrence) 07:47
Mornings, going to work on the Brown Line
The destination is Merchandise Mart

Tubthumping by Chumbawamba.
Password Resetting at home

The month of February and March had me doing a lot of "resetting." What I mean by this is not only due to my "lost phone" at Kimball at the beginning of the year, but in life. I've been striving to keep positive in my life. Might I also add, but I think I finally figured out the trains in the morning for work. If I get on the 07:47 departing train at Kimball, I make it to work with no "bumps" or "snags" in my commute. My phone was never recovered here either after I lost it running to the train one morning. I just felt like that needed to be stated ha, but back on topic of resetting. Up til now, not only have I been resetting all my passwords (since my phone had a copy of my KeePass pwd file on it), I've been doing this in my life too with people and situations. The destination is there. Unfortunately, I've learned that my personality type has me absorb a lot (being an INFJ). I've looked at several of the greatest friendships I have are still in Cleveland. I've lived in Chicago for some time now and I have not met anyone yet that truly lives up to my "Cleveland friends." NEVER take your folks or your friends for granted! I've learned this over the course of my time living in Chicago -- not only in 1994, but when I moved back here! I celebrate those friendships, the friends that inspire, the friends that I hold dear, the friends I worry about when I go to bed at night (yes, this happens). The friends I think about when I wake up! Never take your friends for granted.

• 2017 Goal: If there is one thing Chicago has taught me is resilience and a certain kind of stubbornness. So, continuing on to not be a door mat and have a little dignity is not a bad thing either. Thank you, Karen Sobolewski for always being supportive of my decisions and pointing me in a self-respectful lifestyle!

Michigan Avenue
Mag Mile, Chicago IL
February 11, 2017

Chicago has taught me a lot about resilience. Actually, my favorite structure in Chicago is the Water Tower at Michigan Avenue and Pearson. In fact, Karen Sobolewski's name is attributed to this 2017 goal. If there is one friendship I hold dear, it's hers. We crossed paths at Broadvox in Cleveland in 2008, almost 1 decade of friendship and she's been an inspiration to my lifestyle here in Chicago. "Stop letting people walk over you. Have a little respect for yourself." I remember her telling me that one year. At first, it hurt, but when I moved back to Chicago, it made sense! Thank you, Karen. The most recent time I thought about this was recently with noisy neighbors. I have had enough knocking on a neighbor's door to turn off the bass notes at midnight. "Show a little self respect." I've done enough calling the landlord about it. So, the next step was calling the police. At first I felt guilty about it (taking the police from real issues like actual crime and not mitigating noisy neighbors), but I stopped and thought. I pay rent here too. If I'm not getting what I pay for, and I'm unhappy, I need to do something about it. Yeah. Sounds mean, you think? It's not. "Stop letting people walk over you." I don't put up with crap anymore. I'm getting too old for it. I'm a nice and forgiving person, but I have my limits just like the next person. Loud bass notes in the middle of the night is crossing my limit!

• 2017 Goal: Grace, mercy, kindness, generosity and charity. Continue to put friends first when the situation arises.

Speaking of forgiveness, I had a tender moment this past month with one of my friends. Shannon Kuehn is an amazing friend, very professional and kind! I interacted with her recently at one of her meetups on Azure Site Recovery, which she hosted at the Civic Opera House Building. We worked together at IPsoft on 155 N. Wacker for awhile and I always valued her knowledge and experience in IT. She was a positive influence at IPsoft on our team, and I still feel to this day that she should've been our Team Lead but then we have Office politics! Shannon currently works with 10th Magnitude and has many success stories with Azure, Cloud Solutions and much more. She recently gave me some tips and pointers for my hybrid project at work.

We met for lunch at Naf Naf Grill on W. Washington Boulevard for lunch one day. We agreed to meet up half way from our offices! Little did we know but that would put us near 155 N. Wacker lol. During lunch, I was blessed to learn the true meaning of forgiveness. When we both worked together at IPsoft, we worked with a couple teammates that were very negative, snide, spiteful and hurtful. As many times, I tried working on my shift with these team members, life was sucked out the room when they were there. It was hard to focus, concentrate and do my job. I never said anything about it. The team members would make fun of me and belittle me or my experience. It really hurt! How does this fit in with Shannon? I explained this to her and she thought I was overacting and jealous -- at first. I told her that wasn't it all and she didn't see how I really felt about, still thinking I was being jealous of them.

We met for lunch and she revealed to me something that made my heart sink!!! The same two teammates I had encountered a problem with also had hurt her! They hurt her in pretty much the same way they hurt me. She revealed this to me privately before we met for lunch. Hearing that news really upset my day to say the least and it was hard to work that day, because I felt really bad for her. That pain came back. In the "gap" we had in our friendship, it bothered me how she was treated, since I had already been there. So, I was ready to listen to her and how she felt at lunch. "I am sorry I didn't understand how you really felt," she admitted. "I understand now how you felt."

Shannon Kuehn
"It's all good."
February 15, 2017

It felt good to say to her, "it's all good." That's colloquial for saying I forgave her, because at that point, I did. I saw how much she felt sorry! There, it hit me about real forgiveness! People might do us harm, but it's NOT UNTIL THEY ARE TRULY SORRY FOR WHAT THEY DID AND ASK YOU TO FORGIVE THEM where the real forgiveness is at. My friend Jeff Korhorn and I have had this discussion many times, and now I truly see what that means. That's Christianity right there -- in a nutshell! Jesus commanded us to forgive "...70 times 7." It's the same as when we are sorry for our sin and ask God to forgive us. Being truly sorry. That means indefinitely. People often misunderstand what real forgiveness is. Although Shannon and I were meeting to discuss Azure at lunch, I mainly met for HER, for her to "let it out." I listened to her, and I truly empathized how she felt and how she was a victim of "emotional bullying." I reassured her not to feel guilty about her success and to keep on being her!  Keep on succeeding I told her. I reassured her that I never felt ill-well with her and always had nothing but positive things to say when she wasn't near. She needed to hear that for herself. Since then, we've been talking more professionally and personally.

This month has had me refocusing on the GOOD in my friendships, and never to take them for granted. Next week, I'll get to visit some of those close friends again when I go and visit my folks in Cleveland for the week. Friends like Richard Trigg  [An Epiphany of Sorts] with whom our families were linked before our births unknowingly. Some of my friends want me to take pictures for them too haha. One friend asked me how much I charge. I said, "You? You're a friend. I don't." I'm sure that tune might change in the future but I'm not a professional photographer. Several of my Cleveland friends took a long time to make. I don't just make friends right away. Until you really know who I am and understand who I am, then I make friends fine. That's been really difficult here in Chicago. There are a lot of people here, but I have managed to make some trusting ones. Oddly, I just found out that my friend Chris is also an INFJ. We discussed it over lunch last month. He admitted it to me, and said that is why we are probably friends. INFJ is a rare personality type and even more rare in MEN! I've learned to be who I am though and keep true to myself, a lot more lately.

John Hancock's South Porch Window
Streeterville, Chicago IL
February 11, 2017

True Faith by New Order
Life altering decision

This month was a tough month with being sick! Three times already this year, I've gotten sick, and I've had two migraines. This weather is part of the problem (too extreme hot/cold), but the medicine I take for my Autoimmune Disease is the other. I watch out for sick people for the most part, because the medicine inhibits immune function in my system. I am one of those people that after I hop of the train in the morning, the first thing I do is WASH MY HANDS with hot water and soap at work! I watch for people that sneeze and cough on me too, especially on the train. The train is literally like a moving petri dish! I am again getting over being sick at this very moment. It's not been easy, but 3 other team members have both come down with the same sickness at work. I found out that "Patient Zero" was probably a bad bottle of whiskey we all shared! The good news? I'm still losing weight, and once again, I'll have to drill another hole in my belt! Very soon!
• 2017 Goal: Continue on with the diet and exercise and maybe join a gym next year. So far, I've been doing stuff at home and getting off at Damen instead of Kimball for cardio (2 extra miles of walking). I'm at a weight I was at in my early 20s now. That's the first time I've been at this weight since.
I went to the doctor in Februrary for a check up. I go to Advocate Medical Ravenswood. I asked the doctor about my migraines and my Psoriasis. It's starting to come back. He told me that I will need a new agent. For the migraines, he said since they're not frequent, to keep taking Advil or Motrin BEFORE the headache ensues. I've pinned the migraines to extreme change in the weather from warm to cold. Event this week, we're expecting snow in the forecast, and we had a warm period last week. I also got new prescription for contact lenses recently too. I ventured back to my old stomping grounds in Darien to spend the day there.

The last time I drove my car anywhere was back in November when I last saw my folks. I don't normally drive around in the city. I rely on walking, public transportation, and Uber. In fact, last night I used Uber to get around. Parking on my street is awful and it's probably the main reason I don't do a lot of driving. The yearly parking permit is worth it though. So, driving to the 'burbs in February was nice to do. We had nice weather that one Saturday. The Saturday I spent in Darien, I got my car repairs and vision taken care of. I usually take my car into Continental Honda on S. LaGrange Road, and since I was waiting for my car, I walked over to Walmart Vision to get my eye exam.

Car Repairs and Doctors
Countryside IL
February 18, 2017

This year was a change of guard for me. The general things I've done the past years here in Chicago, I stopped. After the Chinese New Year Parade this year, I stepped down as head organizer in "1001 Things To See In Chicago Before You Die." I have stayed on as a member, but I'm doing what I want this year and I've joined and attended several photography events in Chicago. I think stepping down was an eye-opener to several, and a lot of people support me, but a lot of people were disappointed I did that. I felt it was time to make that change in favor towards more photography this year. I am striving to go out on photo shoots and do more portrait photography. For the time being, my co-workers and some friends have been a help with being "subject matter" in my shots, and I'm learning a lot, especially with my new lenses. Meetup organizers struggle with one thing; I've seen this in other meetups. It's attendance and no-shows. This was the major factor for me stepping down as head organizer. It's hard to plan an event when you need head counts and only a handful of the people show up. It's the "meetup syndrome." Other organizers have the same problem. Rather than wasting my time with it, it was time to step down.

• 2017 Goal: More portrait photography in my portfolio next year. There is still a lot to learn. First item on my list to purchase is a lens with faster glass. Thank you, James Baranski.

Lensflare Photography at Bauwerks Studio
Bucktown, Chicago IL
March 11, 2017

Since then, I've had more freedom to explore my photography and practice more. In fact, I've been meeting with a new startup group called Lensflare that meets in Bucktown! So far, the organizer has been really thorough with his information and provides us with enough to operate our cameras. I never has anyone show me how to clean my camera. This group has! Down to the sensor itself! Fascinating! I've attended a couple of the courses and you get to interact with each other and demonstrate with our cameras. The meetup is done right in a photography studio, so it exposes us to equipment, different types of lighting and more. I plan to do more with the meetup especially when Spring finally arrives. 

Lensflare Photography Group
Bauwerks Studios in Bucktown
March 11, 2017

I also booked a meetup with Naperville Photography Group called "Fantasy Photoshoot At Fabyan Forest Preserve." I can't wait to go. I already told the organizer that I'm practicing with my new portrait lenses, although having some problems with chromatic aberration. I'm hoping there isn't a problem with the lenses. They're brand new. I'll tell you what though, I'm learning really fast about Depth of Field and to be very careful with how shallow it is. I was shooting co-workers and noticed a few shots where one co-worker was standing behind the others and he was out of focus. Luckily, I DID think about that problem while I was shooting them and fixed that by closing the aperture a little more.

I feel so extraordinary
Something's got a hold on me
I get this feeling I'm in motion
A sudden sense of liberty
The chances are we've gone too far
You took my time and you took my money
Now I fear you've left me standing
In a world that's so demanding
I used to think that the day would never come
I'd see delight in the shade of the morning sun
My morning sun is the drug that brings me near
To the childhood I lost, replaced by fear
I used to think that the day would never come
That my life would depend on the morning sun...

True Faith by New Order

Dogwood Estate
One of the first homes of the Chathams
908 Mattingly Road
Hinckley OH

Final Song by MØ
3rd Generation American. Chathams

I am offspring of legal immigrants. My family, on both sides, have come over to the United States as legal, documented immigrants. That's how it should be done. That's my stance on it. The Chathams come from Nottigham, England. The name was changed to Chatham by my family for a more professional touch. It was Cheetham in the UK. It was changed in the 1920s here in the States. My Mom's side comes from Ireland. I recently learned though from a Great, great Aunt before her passing of our Ashkenazi Jewish heritage from her family. I wish I got more detail on that, but her family fled Ukraine and went to England before WWI. That is all that is known beyond that. The name was changed in England and there is nothing more than that. My Great, great Aunt lived a long life, had a very sound and clear mind, and was a tough woman. She could recall every detail of her childhood and every story and nuance in our family. Unfortunately she passed in 1994, and I never did get to ask her any more of our Jewish ancestry from her side of the family.

"EE isn't just one person." John Koestler
Everyone else...

October 2016 – SPACE – Solar storms threaten Earth about every 100 years and experts warn we are overdue. Now, researchers have released the first ever map that shows which areas of the US are at high risk of being hit by the next intense storm. The map was built using geomagnetic storm measurements and data from magnetic materials beneath the Earth – revealing Minnesota is particularly at risk of being blasted by solar material.

Solar storms have the ability to disrupt Earth’s magnetic field and wreak havoc on our electric power grids. Officials warn that the massive electromagnetic pulse (EMP) from solar flares could cause $2.6 trillion in damages across the globe and bring an end to modern civilization as we know it. Solar Storms are eruptions of magnetic energy from the sun’s surface. Hot gases are accelerated when this magnetic energy is suddenly released and travels quickly towards the Earth. A solar flare’s killer electrons’ can travel at up to several million miles per hour towards Earth...

One massive CME ends the Information Age.
It's not global warming!

Laugh and scoff all you want. Last month, I posted a "news event" related to comets striking the earth, but we should never under-estimate our own universe. We see the and enjoy the sun here on Earth -- its warmth and brightness, but our own sun can be our worst enemy. According to the research in this article, we are due for an intense CME from the Sun. I'm not a doomsayer, but we all should wake up and think of the things we take for granted especially with the technology we have today. One massive CME from the sun ends that! The Information Age ends!  An EMP with great magnitude has that ability.

It's not global warming! The sun has had unusual activity which is driving this odd weather. We haven't had a "normal" solar maximum (11 year sunspot cycle). Brace yourself for solar flares. I've read several articles about the unusual solar activity and the lack of intensity in recent 11 year sunspot cycles.

Secret Meeting of Sol
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve
February 18, 2917

My favorite photography subject is the Sun, but we take it for granted.  We see it here as a small orb from a distance. It's not. It's a raging ball of furious gases, fierce and strong enough to destroy us. Funny but the movie "Knowing" (starring Nicholas Cage and Rose Byrne) popped in my Netflix queue and I watched it last night. Bear in mind, but one huge CME from the sun has the power to knock us right out of the Information Age! We rely on technology so much. Think about that. 1859 was the last time Earth experienced this as a solar flare knocked out Telegraph. Think about it. This article was merely something to think about. We are not the center of the universe.

Well, thank you all again for taking a moment to read my blog for this month. I do hope that you all continue to have a great new year. I am going to try to do this same thing again in a month. So, until next time, take care...

Day 1778.

Be glad it doesn't look like this for this year.

Waterfall Glen Apartments
Darien IL
February 25, 2013

So don't let this be our final song
So hear me out before you say the night is over
I want you to know that we gotta, gotta carry on
So don't let this be our final song

Final Song.

Connect to me elsewhere at your own risk.

My Life starts at the Chicago Water Tower!
Mark 0, 0, 0, 0. The last 0 is for the time parameter
Keeping a train of thought and keeping on track.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

The Destination Is There!

Happy New Year 2017 Everyone!

North Avenue Beach Deep Freeze
January 15, 2017

A rough start to the new year.

Hello to all. Happy New Year! It's the year of the Rooster! Time to wake up! I hope each of you had a great new year. It's a brand new year. We have a new president and change is in the air. How did I spend my new year's? Well, I got hit with a nasty flu that had me laid out sick on my couch. Whatever it was took a long time to shake off too. By the the end of the month, I was feeling better up until the last couple days, when I got hit with an awful migraine which had me down for the count for a few days. Yeah, I get those, usually when the weather makes a dramatic change. The worst part of migraines is trying to stand up without puking!

Can I have a ping Vsiliy? One ping only please...

I chose "The destination is there" for my theme this year. What does that encompass? Each year, we set goals, but do we ever follow through with them the entire year? Usually no, with myself included. I make goals, but I fail to follow through as well. Since 2011, I've given a theme to my new year.

2011: DIBS! 2011 was one of my worst years on record, and it came due to career path and other choices. Late in the year, I had chosen an entirely different journey which brought me back to Chicago. In 2011, I was living in Brunswick OH (south of Cleveland). I worked downtown at a company called Broadvox but, just as we all do, I learned from my mistake switching jobs in August of that year. The company I went with does not even deserve to be mentioned here. Even though it was a pitfall in my life, it also became a shining light at the end of the tunnel. November 15 is celebrated as my Chicago-versary. Luckily, that light at the end of the tunnel was not an oncoming train, but I did stay on track after my 38th birthday on October 13. By NYE 2011, I was hoping for a different journey in life and I called out DIBS as the ball dropped to usher in 2012. No one in the room knew what that meant, only I did. I didn't belong in Cleveland anymore. The destination was not there.

My regular commute to Downtown Cleveland

2012: Welcome home. In 2012, I visited Chicago for the first time since 1996 when I last lived here. I was here for job interviews. In April 2012, I packed up my place in Brunswick OH and moved. I started my Chicago Journey by moving to Darien IL for a couple years before moving back into the City. 2012 was a brand new start and a fresh start to pick up the pieces from 15 broken years of my life. 

Sears Tower with our Daytime Star
August 4, 2016

2013: A Resolution in High Definition. I picked this theme in 2013 to represent all the new changes and exciting things happening in my life. That year, I was part of a meetup group called Venture Around and it allowed me to explore Chicago and meet new people in the city. I also picked that theme because the Sears Tower is the tallest building in Chicago and I once wrote about towers and prayer. Towers allow us to see down the road further and to see what lies ahead. If you want to capture the world in High Definition, climb a tower.

2014: It's Time. The year started out with a very foreboding feeling and it really felt like the year was off and time was short.  Since then, each year, I've gotten this ill-foreboding year including this one. In 2014, I moved into the city to Albany Park, where I am currently residing now. 2014 was not an uppity year. Work took me away to different parts of the country each week, and it was a depressing year.

2015: Twelve Moons. In January, I started with IPsoft. It started off great and got me back into the swing of things and there wasn't weekly travel, so it was nice to enjoy life in Chicago again and be put in charge of the meetup group called "1001 Things to See in Chicago before You Die." 2015 was a very positive year! I got out more.  The only blog I wrote in 2015 was about the Blood Moon. I took a lot of photos that year and I composed a YouTube video of my work.

2016: A Letter from the Front. The theme for this year came from a Mylon and Broken Heart song, which I heard on my MP3 player on NYE 2015 as I was riding home on the Brown Line one night after work. The year was a challenging one.  I fought many battles, mainly with health and career. I overcame some of the health issues and I overcame the career change late in the year in September. The chorus of the song reminds us to "keep the home fires burning."

The Destination is there

This year, I hope to reach my destination with many of the goals I set forth.  Already, I've gotten things in motion including trying to get a Pre-Approval on a house (my first one). I paid my car off last month. I hope to continue with the photography and the blogging (more) too this year.  Last year, I nailed my weight loss goals as well.  I'm at a weight I was last at in my early 20s. I'm hoping to continue that goal with diet and exercise. For photography, I hope to do move portrait photography this year. So, already, this soon, I've gotten some things going for the new year.  Like I said before, the new year started off sick on my couch and actually the last couple days of the month are the same as I have battled a migraine for 3 days in a row.

The new job has taken off too. I got my first job review this month with room for a raise, bonus, and room to grow. I thank my friend Chris Johnson (former IPsofter too) that got me when I did. It's brought back so many fond memories I had working for Broadvox in Cleveland (thank you Sergey Galchenko).

Catching Brown Line to Kimball
Fullerton Station
January 21, 2017

2017 Goals:

• "Happy Now? Happy Later?" Happy Now! Todd, if you're reading this, you remember when you said this to me 10 years ago, and I said Happy Later? I'm making it a goal in 2017. I still don't know to this day why you asked me this, but it has made me think about my own happiness lately. Thank you, Todd E. Florian

• Landmark Chicago. I was introduced to this by a friend. I'm making this a goal. I'm still finding my purpose here in Chicago.Thank you, Therie Yi-Shin Lai. That November 15th date has a special meaning for me, being my Chicago-versary, but I'm yet to find my place and purpose here.

• I want love and it's out there. Love and acceptance have been areas of my life I've battled with. Dating.

• More portrait photography in my portfolio next year. There is still a lot to learn. First item on my list to purchase is a lens with faster glass. Thank you, James Baranski.

• Build my faith stronger and filled with the Spirit. Accountability. Destination Church in Wrigleyville. Thank you, Michael K. Lawrence II.

• Continue on with the diet and exercise and maybe join a gym next year. So far, I've been doing stuff at home and getting off at Damen instead of Kimball for cardio (2 extra miles of walking). I'm at a weight I was at in my early 20s now. That's the first time I've been at this weight since.

• If there is one thing Chicago has taught me is resilience and a certain kind of stubbornness. So, continuing on to not be a door mat and have a little dignity is not a bad thing either. Thank you, Karen Sobolewski for always being supportive of my decisions and pointing me in a self-respectful lifestyle!

• Find a new home! Yep, as much as I like my neighborhood (Albany Park), the apartment I live in has several faults, including kids that don't care about other neighbors in the building. 401k. Pre-Approval on mortgage.

• Grace, mercy, kindness, generosity and charity. Continue to put friends first when the situation arises.

• Stop being snubbed or ignored! You may think this is a selfish goal, but really it isn't. I never stand out and I'm often brushed aside, ignored and forgotten.  Far too often in my life, this has been a serious problem, and I never do anything about it.  Some people in my life get FAR too much praise, attention and adoration than they actually deserve, including cohorts, friends and family. So, meekly stand out.

These were goals that I came up with last year at the close of 2016.  The last one was added at the end of January.

My daily commute on the Brown Line
Packed in like sardines

"Welcome to Brown Line run 402. Kedzie is next. In the direction of travel, doors open on the left at Kedzie."

CTA Kimball.

I start my day each day at CTA Kimball at Lawrence and Kimball.  I've started my day like this for the past two years actually. This is my regular commute downtown to work and other things. In 2015, I worked 2nd shift, so I'd get on the train by 1:30.  After September last year, I get on the train by 8am. When I worked 2nd shift, the trip was 40 minutes. Now that I work 1st shift, that changes daily since there are more delays in the morning. The nice thing about Kimball is that it's the terminus, so I can find a seat pretty easily. By the time the train gets to Diversey, you can see commuters struggling to get on board the train.  Sometimes, boarding at Kimball isn't all that good. 3x times I had an issue with my phone here, and the 3rd time, I actually lost my phone. This month has started out with several snags. Losing my phone here was one of those. My daily commute takes me to Merchandise Mart. I used to get off at Washington/Wells for IPsoft, one stop after Merchandise Mart. I've noted to myself to wrap my phone in bubble-wrap at Kimball.

"Merchandise Mart is next. Doors open on the right. Transfer to Purple Line trains at Merchandise Mart."

My train passing in front of Merchandise Mart.
February 2, 2017


I board at Kimball and deboard at Merchandise Mart each day for work. The company I work for is inside the Merchandise Mart. It's called VelocityEHS. I joined this company with a friend and colleague on September 12, 2016. This was one major milestone goal I succeeded with last year when looking back over the year. My friend Chris and I worked together at IPsoft on 155 N. Wacker. He left the company first and went over to Velocity. Having worked there for a couple months, he contacted me and told me that he was trying to bring me in too. This was late in 2015. He said, "sit tight," because the company was moving its location into the Merchandise Mart early this year. I was struggling with my career choices as early as January of 2016. I felt I was directionless and going nowhere at IPsoft. I tried to move to another department there to no satisfaction. Only I would understand that battle! I don't expect others to. In August of 2016, Chris contacted me and told me to APPLY NOW. Actually, he invited me out to dinner to discuss the proposal and talk about VelocityEHS. We had dinner at Monk's Pub on Lake & Wells. I remember it. I got the offer in September and I was overjoyed. I put notice in at IPsoft. You really start to learn about people after you leave a company as well. I was glad to be out of that negativity. I felt held back and I was never allowed to shine there.

In the 6 months I've been with VelocityEHS, I've done much and even done some new things I can readily put on a resume. That's all in 6 months. The challenge was back and the freedom to be creative in my job was also back. I have told Chris on many occasions, THANK YOU for helping me get in when I did! I love it! It's still taking some time to fit in, but I work in a positive atmosphere and the team morale is superb! CJ, if you're reading, THANK YOU AGAIN!

By the end of the year last year, I've done much including learning new technologies including vSAN and Microsoft Azure. This past Friday, my boss sat me down and reviewed my performance. To my surprise, I was given a 1.5% increase and included in with some of the bonus from last year even though I started late in the year. I didn't expect any of it. I told this to my boss. He commended me for "killing it" and getting projects done and meeting our deadlines. In fact, at our first Team Meeting this year, our department manager said that "we finished several items on our team, that were stale in 2016 for awhile. With thanks to our team pulling together and making our deadlines happen, we finished those items." It was the greatest thing I heard in that meeting from my boss' manager even. In the back of my mind, I knew I had a hand in that. This past week, a woman I sit next to at work in our department said she told my manager I was a great addition and my manager shared this in front of directors. That really made my day!

Our department on 17 in the southeast pinnacle
Merchandise Mart
February 2, 2017

VelocityEHS brings back so many fond memories of Sergey Galchenko and Broadvox. Why? Sergey was a manager that assigned you a project, expected YOU to keep to manage the project yourself, do the research, make it work and complete the goal. He never told you how to get there. He gave you the independence and freedom to make it happen. Thank you Sergey. My current manager is the same. We have weekly meetings (just like at Broadvox) where we discuss our projects, the dos and don'ts, the gotchas, the best practices, etc, managed by my boss and his boss. These help everyone on our team work with each other, help, and contribute! This year it will be "serenading a rainbow by PM Dawn" with Azure Cloud Computing, my biggest project this year -- as we gain presence in the cloud.

You're on the Wrong Floor

Our team does some cheeky things, including this short video lol. We're nerds. In what I mean, one of those things we do is name our meetings after songs or album names. So, we've had meetings for David Bowie, Pink Floyd, Michael Jackson, Fifth Dimension, U2, and as I mentioned previously PM Dawn (which is specific for Azure lol). Our server names are also cheeky with a lot of the named for Motown singers. Love this group! 

Practicing Portrait Photography
West Loop Photo Shoot
January 22, 2017

• More portrait photography in my portfolio next year. There is still a lot to learn. First item on my list to purchase is a lens with faster glass. Thank you, James Baranski.

Portrait Photography with Jim Baranski.

On January 22, 2017, my friend Jim called me up and volunteered me to help with a photo shoot which would expose me (no pun intended) to more portrait photography. Ultimately, my main goal for 2017 is to get more practice in portrait photography. This is an entirely different kind of art than landscape photography. It requires a lot more to attention to detail. You are shooting a picture of a person, an individual that lives and breathes, has feelings and emotions, and is sentient. It different type of life you capture. The art of light a big factor in this.

Jim picked me up at my place and we drove over to the West Loop to meet with the models and the beauticians. There, we discussed our plan for the shoot. We decided on doing an L photo shoot. Jim and I had some knowledge of the L and where some good places would be to shoot. I proposed Merchandise Mart, being well lit, and with plenty of platform space. Having been a frequent commuter and in use of the platform, I thought this would be great for our L shoot.

Sriram Parthasarathy
January 22, 2017

While the models were getting ready, Jim taught me some technique for shooting models and how controlling the Aperture affects the light on the subject, while the Shutter Speed affects the light in the background. This made some sense even having shot landscapes. The narrower the aperture on the camera, the more sharp the image is.  The faster the shutter speed the darker the background and the slower the shutter speed, the brighter the background.and so on. Aperture controls the light on the subject while the shutter speed controls the background lighting. This photo was taken by Jim Baranski and Chicago Protography.

Model: Sriram Parthasarathy
Makeup Artist: Laurel Bast/ Samantha Christiansen
Photographer: James Baranski
Key Lighting Grip: Eric R Chatham
Canon 5DMark III 
Canon F1.8 50mm @ F4.0 — with Sriram Parthasarathy.
January 22, 2017 at Clark and Lake subway tunnel

Riding the L. After the models were ready, we left and parked on Hubbard Street near the Mart. We unloaded our gear. I already knew that I wasn't be using my camera for this one, since we had to be quick. I put money on my Ventra Card in the Mart and allowed everyone to piggyback on me. Little did I know then, but I was the only one there with any knowledge of the trains and the routes. Ha! We boarded at Merchandise Mart, and I told the gang, "I'll be back here tomorrow for work." Nearly getting unpacked, CTA approached us and told me that we could not shoot without a permit. Oh boy! They were friendly with us as we were with them. We boarded the train and got off at Quincy. Again, CTA saw what we were doing but emphasized "no tripods." So we took that as a good sign we could still shoot without any tripods. I was designated to handle the key lighting for the shoot and Jim directed me what to do, where to stand and how to direct the light. CTA also told us that if a train stopped at the station, to put the equipment out of sight. So we complied and we were swift and intrepid for the shoot. We did some shooting at Quincy and in the Blue Line subway tunnel at Clark & Lake. 

Co-Worker Pablo Gutierrez
VelocityEHS IT
January 19, 2017

This was very fun learning experience and it helped me see things in action, get familiar with the lighting, the model posing and the type of equipment. I purchased two new Nikkor lenses this year for portrait photography: A 50mm 1.8G AF-S and a 35mm 1.8G AF-S. I was able to test and experiment with those during the night, mainly before the actual shoot.  As the year progresses, I hope I can gain more experience.

Chicago Sunrise
Albany Park, Chicago IL
February 4, 2017

• Find a new home! Yep, as much as I like my neighborhood (Albany Park), the apartment I live in has several faults, including kids that don't care about other neighbors in the building.

Wintrust Mortgage with Ryan Barouth in Lincoln Square.

On January 21, 2017, I ventured over to Wintrust Lincoln Square to meet with Ryan, a loan officer with the bank.  This was an exciting appointment and it was also a beautiful day weather-wise, so naturally, I took my camera for the trip.  The meeting was early in the morning.  After missing my stop and getting off at WRONG train stop -- Damen instead of Western, I jogged back a half a mile to Western.  It was a nice day and barely jacket weather, so it was nice to jog. Getting back to Lawrence and Western, I met with Ryan. We discussed my intentions trying to get a pre-approval on a mortgage, so we went over the fine details of that. He talked about the options and then he generated my credit report. I was shocked and overjoyed. 

Credit score 787. Fixing little debt to income. Little debtors. Next steps for home ownership!

That was the run down of the report. I paid off my car last December. He stressed a few things in the meeting. One, get the lowest amortized rate on my student loans (try to consolidate) and pay off a little credit card debt.  He said it should bring down your debt to income ratio, making it better. I should be fine and once those are handled, we would meet again. He said I'm VERY close to getting a pre-approval and just need to clean up a little to make it look nicer and more appealing.  With that, I can officially enter the final step into the world of adulthood. Ha!

Chicago Sunrise seen from Living Room 
My Apartment on N. Drake & W. Ainslie
Albany Park, Chicago IL

I would love to own a home of my home, having to live in apartments most of my life. This push to get a pre-approval went full steam late of last year after my limits with neighbor problems arose and construction flaws compromised the SAFETY in my own apartment. I have sprung TWO leaks in my ceiling, one in the hallway and well the other one IN A CIRCUIT BREAKER PANEL. Yeah! I was very scared too. The water from rain and snow was dripping down into the panel and shorting out the breakers. I called the fire department once then immediately the landlord.

Both these problems, including the inconsiderate kids in the building have pushed my patience limit and my unfriendliness factor. I'm an easy going, nice guy, but I have limits like the next person. I've had it and I don't think it's entirely safe to keep living where I'm at now with the water leaks, especially with no real assurance from the landlord or bldg management. So, I really hope I can finally own a home this year before my lease is up.

Beautiful Winter Weather
Diversey Harbor
January 21, 2017

After I met with Ryan, I had lunch in Lincoln Square at Potbelly, got my haircut on Diversey, then walked over to Diversey Harbor to take some pictures with my new portrait lens. It was a fun day and the weather was awesome! Earlier in the month, I resumed my apartment search as well, looking at locations in Albany Park, Irving Park, Lincoln Square and Ravenswood. Time to make that move again.

Chicago River
August 13, 2016

Ok this goes without saying. I didn't vote for the guy either, and time will tell just like our last president. We're Americans. Let's not forget what we do have that other countries do not. We're not whiners and complainers. We're over-comers and we make the best of what we can each day, yes even if that includes fighting for what's right. Ask yourself. Could it be worse? The best attitude starts with ourselves --- not our leaders. You want to change the world? It starts with your own hands and feet. It doesn't start with your hatred and anger --- a good attitude. The Golden Rule. Speaking of golden -- I know a lot of people dislike him and his name, but stop here and smell the colors and appreciate the beauty we do have.

Third hole drilled into my belt
January 25, 2017

• Continue on with the diet and exercise and maybe join a gym next year. So far, I've been doing stuff at home and getting off at Damen instead of Kimball for cardio (2 extra miles of walking). I'm at a weight I was at in my early 20s now. That's the first time I've been at this weight since.

I feel like I might've hit a plateau with this, but maybe it has to do with the weather being cold and dry. On January 25, 2017, I went to work with an awful headache. I tried to block out any noise or whatever and focus on my job. It was tough. I woke up the next few days with a full blown migraine headache which carried over into the weekend. The worst part of having one is standing up or moving suddenly. Your stomach gets really queasy, aside from the throbbing pain in your head AND neck. I sought out my doctor about these and I've pegged it to dramatic change to a colder climate.  It got cold quick after the warm weather we had. I see the doctor again next month and I'm going to ask him if there is something else I can take for them, even asking about CBD (Hemp oil).  I'm hoping when the weather gets nice, I'll be a bit more active with jogging and exercise. This last migraine headache had me down for the count though.

Thankfully, on January 25, I had another hole drilled into my belt (three altogether since last July). Someone said to me, "why not just go get another belt?" I said, "well, then there's no challenge." I'm at a weight I once was at in my 20s. If I can keep this up, I want to be at 190 pounds. I've considered also joining a gym this year (first one since 2001). I also thought about taking up swimming again as a form of exercise. I learned to swim when I was kid at the urging of my parents. Ha! I shunned away from swimming mainly due to my auto-immune disease. Since I've been on the new medication though, that has been a major improvement to  general character and appearance. I need to get off at Damen again! Lately, I've been so tired and this was an awful start to the year as far as my health. It took me weeks to kick the flu out of my system and it caused some setback.

Del Mar Beach
San Diego Vacation 2016
July 10, 2016

• "Happy Now? Happy Later?" Happy Now! Todd, if you're reading this, you remember when you said this to me 10 years ago, and I said Happy Later? I'm making it a goal in 2017. I still don't know to this day why you asked me this, but it has made me think about my own happiness lately. Thank you, Todd E. Florian

This year, just like last, I'm striving to be happier with my life. It's had its moments though and a lot of the negative stems from people.  I remember back to when I had tons of debt, owing a lot of money, working three jobs, going to school and paying bills. That would be 2005-2007 I refer to. It was a lot of pain and a lot of work. I would continue like this for awhile and I truly empathize with friends and others that live a similar lifestyle like that. I've been there. I don't come from a wealthy family and we had tough love growing up. You want something, you earn it. We worked hard to earn, not only respect, but building a life.  I have two wonderful parents in Cleveland that just celebrated their 45th Wedding Anniversary on January 15. They have been my constant, and though, they live 360 miles away, I love them more and more with each passing day after I moved BACK to Chicago. In that distance though I constantly worry about them now -- along with a few dear friends back in Cleveland.  Karen Sobolewski, if you're reading, you are one those dear friends.

My friend Todd asked me in 2007 when I was working myself to death with no break,  "Why are you doing this? Happy now? Happy later?" To this day, I have no reason why he propounded that statement and he never admitted to me why, but it made me reassert myself. I remember telling him, "happy later." I recently called him and asked him about this. He said he remembered saying it but never said why. He went on to say, "look what you did for yourself after that. You made yourself happier and you took a new journey in that happiness." This year I intend to enroll with Landmark Chicago once I take care of getting my 401k back in order. My friend Therie introduced me to this last December and encouraged me to sign up -- not because I needed help but to find purpose.

I moved BACK to Chicago (lived here in 1994 before), but it wasn't because of determination or wanting to change. In my personality type, I'm phlegmatic and an INFJ. I hate change. I needed this new life though. I have told people I regard November 15 (my Chicago-versary) more than October 13 (my birthday), because it was a day that really stood out for me and opened my eyes to something I feared the most (other than death) which was change. It took me to lose everything I built myself up to and learn how to overcome a mercurial point in my life. I had encouraging friends that put me straight and to show a little self-dignity.

American Heart Association
VelocityEHS IT Team
Go Red for Women Day
February 3, 2017

I thank God that I have crossed paths with these people.  Even yesterday for Go Red for Women Day, I remember and honor two special women in my life: Karen Sobolewski and my Mother -- both suffer from a heart disease. Yesterday was a great day to remember them both and keep them in my heart -- the things they taught, the love the shared, and their kindness.  Karen has an amazing story of her life too, "a miracle of sorts." We had the pleasure of working together at Broadvox in Cleveland in 2008-2011. There we became friends.

So, with this new year ahead, I really hope I can achieve that happiness I was so long looking for. I was off to a good start last September when I joined VelocityEHS with my friend Chris Johnson. There is a lot to do this year. I hope you all make it great one. Don't forget, it's the year of the Rooster. It's time to wake up!!!!

Friday the 13th.  There are two this year.

Something about January 13th and more specifically, the number 13 in my life. It's never been misfortune, having been born on October 13!

• Five years today in 2012, Cleveland, I packed up my Honda for the week to spend in Chicago for the first time since I moved away from there in 1996. I was visiting here for job interviews for a week. 2011 was the worst year for me ever, and my new year's resolution in 2012 was simply DIBS, since I said, "I call dibs" on NYE 2011 while watching the ball drop. I gave 2011 year theme name as "Dibs."

• Four years ago today in 2013, I was living in Darien IL. I drove up to my old stomping grounds in East Troy Wisconsin for the weekend. On January 13, I visited the house I stayed at while I lived there. I met the new neighbors dwelling there. I stood on the very spot where I believe TIME froze in my life back on November 15, 1996, when I "ran away." In 2013, my New Year's resolution was "A resolution in High Definition." November 15 is also my Chicago-versary (November 15, 2011 was an epiphany for me).

• Three years ago today in 2014, I did something I didn't think I would find myself doing for someone that's lived in the suburbs or exurbs all his life. I packed up my place in the Chicago suburbs and moved into the city into Albany Park. This by far was one of the toughest decisions I made, but with the help with several friends, it made things a little smoother. Still today, I am finding new challenges by living in the city and it's not been easy. My New Year's resolution in 2014 was "It's time" for many reasons. The year started off with an ill foreboding feeling. Plus, I was living outside my comfort zone -- still am to some degree!!!

• Two years ago, today, I received a phone call saying I was hired at IPsoft. This was an exciting year for me all around, one of my best years ever! For once, I started enjoying my life and the new challenges I was encountering. It was a year of breaking comfort zones and going beyond myself in many ways. Again, with the help of friends and new coworkers, 2015 turned into one of my best years. My New Year's resolution was more or less "Tabula Rasa" for me.

• Last year, nothing extraordinary happened on that day. I was battling with life decisions.

• This year, again, nothing extraordinary, but I am glad to be part of a new team and being valued. I was recently told that I've been valuable with helping goals being met. However, I was able to share one of my photos on ABC7 (through my favorite weekend newsperson, Stacey Baca)...

Wrigley Building, Chicago
Photo was shared on ABC7
January 15, 2017

On this year.


* 45 years ago, my Mom and Dad were married in Bedford OH at Lutheran Church of the Master (January 15)
* 40 years ago, I think I was living in Hilo, Hawaii with my Mom and Dad and 1977 was my first time moving to Cleveland, Ohio with family. I was born in NC.
* 35 years ago, moved to Maple Heights OH from Lakewood OH. Went to McKinley Elementary in Lakewood then to Stafford in Maple. 2nd grade. Ms. Micelli.
* 30 years ago, I was in 7th grade (Team 7-II) at Milkovich Middle School (Maple Heights OH). Mr. Vincent, Mr. Milkovich, Mr. Stephens, Mr. White, Mr. Wuznuk, to name a few teachers...
* 25 years ago, graduated from Maple Heights High School.
* 20 years ago, I had moved from E. Troy, Wisconsin and living in my first Ohio apartment (Pinewood Apartments) in Brunswick on S. Carpenter Road. Year before, lived in Chicago.
* 15 years ago, fell in love with a woman. Still at Pinewood in Brunswick. Shift Coordinator at Ponderosa. Writing.
* 10 years ago, I was living in N. Royalton OH at Oakbrook Gardens (how I got the name of my home computer network btw). I was working at Broadvox (Downtown Cleveland), Tony Roma's and just left LifeBanc (Shaker Heights OH) at the end of the 2006.
* 5 years ago this week was my first trip to Chicago (returning to Chicago) for job interviews. Living at Cross Creek in Brunswick. Unemployment.


In other news...

2016 WF9 to Strike Earth.
Russian scientist warns.
February 16, 2017

Day after Payday
February 16, 2017

This is for all you conspiracy theorists out there (including myself):

"NASA has confirmed that the 2016 WF9 is approaching Earth and we should be able to see it orbit the planet next month. Spotted in late November, the giant rock is in the middle of its nine year orbit between Jupiter and Earth. It is scheduled to approach us on February 25, flying by at a distance of 32 million miles from the planet, they claimed.

Experts at the space agency believe the 2016 WF9 asteroid is between 0.3 and 0.6 miles across. If correct, it would be likely to burn up on entry to our planet. But the wilder minds of the internet are spreading claims from an apparently non-existent astronomer called Dr Dyomin Damir Zakharovich. 

The doctor has allegedly accused the space agency of a cover up and suggested the space rock is a fragment of fabled planet Nibiru which is headed straight for us, according to reports. Nibiru is a fictional planet predicted to bring about the end of the world, according to doomsday theorists. It’s believed it will rain asteroids on the planet causing mass devastation."

Deep Impact event on Feb 16
Planet Earth

If we are struck by an asteroid on February 16, I won't have to go to the doctor on that day...

Fullerton Beach
Give thanks!
January 21, 2017

• Build my faith stronger and filled with the Spirit. Accountability. Destination Church in Wrigleyville. Thank you, Michael K. Lawrence II.

The ultimate destination is there!

It is the year of the Rooster. This very well may be Earth's wake up call! In any event, always remember Jesus Saves! John 3:16. I am a whosoever.  If the inevitable on February 16 does happen, and we are struck by NEO 2016 WF9, we are assured of eternal life through his sacrifice. Jesus' mission on Earth was not only to teach us. His Word also teaches us he came to save sinners by dying for our sins -- yours and mine. He asks us to trust Him and to follow him. I hope and pray those reading or following my blog will seek Him with an open Heart this year! Jesus does LOVE you!  He proved it by dying for your sin on a Cross and taking your punishment -- yours and mine.  We all sin and fall short of the mark (Romans 3:23).  We all have sinned and fallen short of His glory.  This year's theme will be II Corinthians 6:2.  The Time is Now; it is immanent.

II Corinthians 6:2 (KJV)
"For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation."

John 3:16
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Romans 3:23 (KJV)
For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.
"It was the end to a very long day"
February 2, 2017
Groundhog Day

This has been my life verse ever since I first lived in Chicago back in 1994.

Hebrews 12:1, 2 (KJV)
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;

Remember these verses and pray today.

A Very Special Happy 45th Anniversary to my Mom and Dad.

January 15, 1972

January 15th. This day deserves much appreciation and recognition. In a world of divorce and unfaithfulness, it shines strongly and brightly. It is a very special day! It happens once a year and it has since 1972 in Bedford OH. It celebrates two people in my life that I'm very proud to call Mom and Dad. Today they celebrate their 45th Anniversary! Mom and Dad, I am proud to be your son and I love you both very much. Thank you for being the best parents you are. Many blessing on your joyous day of days. No one is perfect but you have both demonstrated a very lasting, enduring and persevering relationship of honesty, trust and love. You make it work. I love you!

I hope this year is a good one to you all.  Thank you for reading. The pictures in this blog were all done by me (except the graphic of 2016 WF9 and my folks).  If you would like to see more or connect with me, I have a public photography page on Facebook and discovered the wonders of Instagram. I also maintain my own website (the server sits in my apartment).

Find Me:
• Instagram (treikayan)
• Eric Chatham Photography

CTA Kimball
Albany Park, Chicago IL

"This is Kimball, as far as this train goes. All passengers must leave the train. Thank you for riding the CTA Brown Line."

Thank you all that took a moment to read my blog. I hope to do more of these this year. I was told recently to start doing this again actually. I hope you all have a great year!!!

Chinese New Year Lunar Parade
Chinatown, Chicago IL
Year of the Rooster!!!

From the desk of...
Yes, the PC wallpaper was a picture I took
Day 1743

Connect to me elsewhere at your own risk.

My Life starts at the Chicago Water Tower!
Mark 0, 0, 0, 0. The last 0 is for the time parameter
Keeping a train of thought and keeping on track.