Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Stump

There is a stump that's almost three feet in diameter just off our back deck. A giant sweet gum tree once stood there. Each fall it dropped what seemed like millions of Tootsie Pop sized seed pods around the base of the tree. The balls have sharp spines jutting out which makes them the closest thing the tree family has to a porcupine. They cause havoc with lawnmowers and bare feet.
We became concerned last year when a strong thunder storm blew the top out of the tree and it barely missed falling on the roof.
We made the decision to cut the tree down before if fell on the house. As it turns out, this happened to be a perfect spot to place the BBQ grill I bought earlier in the summer. I love it when things work out well.
The stump serves as a utility table for the grill. I can set plates on it, vegetables that are awaiting their grill time, and as I learned yesterday, it's a perfect prop for shooting a picture of a glass of red wine highlighted by the setting sun.
It's been too hot to grill for the last month, but Jilda and I were craving a little steak, so I fired that baby up.  
As I sat waiting for the steaks to cook, the sun slowly dropped low enough for this photograph. I used a screen filter to add a little interest and this is the result.
Oh yes, the steaks were very good too!


  1. Isn't that the wonderful thing about nature. Even a dead tree stump is useful. I love the photo.

  2. Lovely picture.

    Did you use a digital or a film camera?

  3. Thanks y'all.
    Charlene, I used my iPhone. I also have an app that lets me apply filters on pictures that need fixing.
    Most of the time the pictures look great with just the iPhone camera but sometimes they need a little adjustment.
    I used to do this with film cameras in the darkroom.
    I actually learned more about photography in the darkroom developing crappy pictures than anywhere else.

  4. Ken Owens12:57 PM

    Our Sunday afternoon seems to have gone much as yours did. Steak, stump, and snake. You didn't mention snake however. Kayren and Brooke brought home the grill items although I felt it was still a little too hot for grilling. We did have some delicious steak kabobs, strip steak, grilled veggies and roasted corn. I didn't take a photo of our stump. It had the rat snake draped across it. Not very pretty. It was hanging out in our garage in the most heavily traveled route in to the house. I'm not a snake hater but I whacked it. I don't want one getting comfortable in the house. We did enjoy the meal until Brooke's dachshund "Bubba" brushed my leg with his tail under the table. We hope you all enjoyed your dining also.

  5. Hey Ken, snakes are fine as long as I seem them first.
    If a dog's tail brushed my leg under the table after having seen a snake, I would have to change my britches!
    We did enjoy the supper.

  6. For somebody deeply rooted in the urban jungle, all of this is ever so amazingly endearing...


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