Monday, October 31, 2016

Happy Halloween From Cranberry County Magazine!

As we await the Great Pumpkin, let's check out some Halloween decorations.

He's actually breathing fire, but my camera was frightened into blurriness.   
Witches are considerably more cheerful the further south you get from Salem.

Our Halloween special was shot in broad daylight and will be published close to the Witching Hour.

I was going to wear my twenty foot electric blue avenging angel costume, but this guy beat me to it.

Mayor McPumpkin of Wareham

They say that, during zombie apocalypses, the guys who tidy up cemeteries are the first to die.

"The line to get at them jugs on her starts at the left.... in fact, you're the first guy in it."

Let's see... a coward, a dummy, some trash, a girl leading them.... Hillary rally?

A couple o' guys wearing sheets, led by some strange orange-tinted evil creature.... Trump rally?

Some decorations get a forward lean if October is trending windy.

You can open a cemetery in your yard even if you have a small lawn, but you can only cater to midgets.

Same to you!

Yeti pretty much have to dress as Frankenstein. It's tough to play a witch or a princess when you're 8 feet tall and furry.

Most people go Scary when they decorate for Halloween, but this house went Cute.

I'd hit that...

When you're as famous as Frankenstein is, you can just grab girls by the pelvic bone,no consent needed.

That's pretty much how it works when I need a lawyer...

Sunday, October 30, 2016

South Coast Fall Foliage

A lot of people think that the South Coast isn't a Player when fall foliage in New England is discussed. You may be one of them... and don't try lying to me, because I can see you. Stop looking at me like that!

I'm here to tell you that the South Coast represents hard every Autumn. You may have to wait longer than you would with Vermont, and you may not have any mountain vistas like New Hampshire does... but you can have a nice foliage drive if you keep your expectations realistic. 

Like any Natural Beauty scenarios, it's best if you get out of the cities and into the sticks. This is pure Tree Math, folks... cities tend to not have a lot of trees. We'll discuss that a few pictures down from this one, but know that I love and respect New Bedford and Fall River. One of my favorite views in Massachusetts is when you're heading west on 195, you round the corner, and New Beddy is laid out before you. It's just not my favorite view when I'm writing Fall Foliage articles.

When whoever that guy in the Veteran grave there was earning his resting place the hard way back in 1863 or so, there was almost no chance of him knowing that- one day- his grave would end up in a look-at-that-rain-falling picture on an obscure regional website written by a stoner with a bad camera. It'd be like going back 100000 years and having a caveman say "Take the Patriots and the Over." I don't know what the people of 1863 did for fun, but I bet it didn't involve driving around taking Foliage pictures. The Internet must have sucked in the Civil War. 

I would have 100% stopped to pick blueberries if they were open... I get pulled over by the police a lot, and it'd be fun to see the cop get to my car window and be confronted by a friendly photographer with dyed-blue lips/teeth/cheeks/fingers. "Uhmmmm.... you're all set, guy... the town line is over there, why don't you go cross it?"  

Weather was all over this article. I went out during a tropical rainstorm (I think it was when Tropical Storm Nicole was getting sucked up into a trough and all of her rain hit us last Saturday), which isn't the best time to shoot pics of tree leaves... but it was when I had the free time to do so. The rain also kept people off of the roads, which makes things easier for me.  The preceding drought did me no favors, as droughts tend to hurry up the peak of the season. I'll discuss that whenever the Middleboro 4H picture comes up. It also kept me from getting out of the car for pictures, like it did here in New Bedford. Nice tree, though... especially for a city.

Fall River has trees with foliage, too... but, being Fall River, that tree appears to be incarcerated. Note that I am applying the Apocalypse Now method to my driving-in-a-car-style photography... "Never get out of the boat." My photography is better if I'm not soaked. 

I got out of the car for the Mattapoisett River shot. Mattapoisett is where the last fatal shark attack in Massachusetts went down, but I was safe this far up the river... especially because I was standing on Route 6 and shooting down from a little country-road bridge.

Not the best shot in the world, but the article needed some Red. I was impressed that I managed to crop the bank out of the picture in a snap-shot while I was driving. 

Power lines are also the bane of the in-the-car photographer. This was another shot out the window, one where I failed to crop the power lines out. You can also sort of see the sun, so I can only blame laziness. 

The basic route was out of Bourne, through Wareham into Marion, and then up Route 105 until I was more Plymouth County than South Coast. Think I'm lying? There's the 105 sign... and you can't fake that. 

I hooked down Route 79, cut through the Freetown State Forest (I drove into the 4WD part in a Dodge Stratus standing about 3 inches off the ground, passed a man in a truck with huge tires leaving that area, and briefly saw him just smiling at the about-to-get-stuck Dummy... fortunately, I grew up on a beach with 4WD-only areas, recognized his Look, and banged a U). I then made it to Route 6, and have this photo as proof. I took 6 back into Buzzards Bay.

I think this shot is from a South Shore article, and may actually be southern Pymouth. See for yourself in this South Shore foliage article, or maybe in this Early Season South Shore article. We may also do a Cape Cod foliage article, they haven't peaked yet. Ignore the dates on these pictures, my camera is funny. These pictures are from about 8 days ago. Sorry, I was busy.

The South Coast was heavy on the Orange and Yellow. I had trouble finding Red, and came to regret passing on some Wareham/Marion red foliage while being overconfident that I would find more in my travels.

This tree is a certified MVP candidate. It's a shame that I drove up on it during a Biblical downpour. Look, even the leaves fell off of it in a cool manner! I pulled off the road and blocked a side street to get this pic, and the tree was so lovely that the guy who I didn't realize I was blocking drove around me, rolled down his window and- instead of cursing me- said "She's a beauty, huh?" I think it was in Freetown... if you think otherwise, let me know. You most likely know better than I remember.

Marion, home to both this picture and the first picture in this article, was laid out by someone who was into fall foliage. Every street has a Fall Foliage canopy. I detoured into Marion because a girl at the Trowbridge Tavern heard I was shooting foliage and said "You should go into Marion, the stuff is hanging over every street." Marion, Middleboro and Halifax easily could support their own articles if I decided to go By Town instead of By Region

This one is from the Freetown State Forest, an undisputed corner of the spooky-as-f*ck Bridgewater Triangle. This was just before I ran into the 4WD guy smirking at Trish, my Dodge Stratus. If I had snapped a picture of his smirk, he'd be in a million "So, you're really about to do that?" Internet memes by this time next year. He'd be like that Willie Wonka meme pic, or the one with Kermit the Frog drinking his tea.

Gotta love this tree... it's like Paul Bunyan or Shaq took up Bonsai as a hobby.

The non-orange trees nearby are very jealous of this bright orange one that gets all of the media attention. They should stop hatin' and try to foliage harder or something.

One of the supposed benefits of living in a city is that you don't need to buy a rake... and then this happens.

I was all psyched as I pulled up on this bright red tree, which hs been the MVP of previous foliage articles. The sun even came out. However, Massachusetts had a bad drought all summer, and droughts do to foliage season what smoking does to smoker life spans... sort of shaves X amout of days off of it. I missed this tree's peak by a short enough time span that the leaves under it hadn't blown away yet. To make things worse, some carpenter was parked in front of the building!  

Working in some more red here, although there's a small chance that this might be Duxbury. I do a lot of driving, I take a lot of pictures, and misunderstandings occur.

I'm pretty sure that this is Acushnet, and is that not one spooky-looking motheruffing tree? It looks like it was used to hang witches. The homeowners- who I like already, for both the tree and the stone wall in the foreground- should have gone All In and had some Amityville Horror attic eye-windows installed. I honestly don't know if I would trick-or-treat that house.

While lacking red (red leaves may fall off earlier, I don't know), the South Coast has plenty of Orange, which is the main Autumn color anyhow.

I could have gone into the guy's yard to get a shot without the power lines, but I'm already imposing myself on him by aiming a camera into his yard. While I'm not even 5% tough, I'm not a small man, and most non-tough people would want to have a gun when confronting me... which is No Problemo on the ol' South Coast, especially in the sticks. The homeowner deserves his/her privacy, and a guy shooting pictures of Pretty Trees doesn't deserve to catch a slug... so I just snap pics out of the car window, thank you. 

I think this is just me zooming in on the same foliage from the Southern Plymouth shot, but if you've read this far... why not have some more foliage?

Here is me having some Level Horizon problems that hack photographers encounter as they learn their craft... but dude has a stockade fence, a stone wall, a foliage tree and Ol' Glory, so he's in this article, hater. He's in there like swimwear. OK, it looks like the tree has a pet house, but my man made up for that with some pure Stone Wall Patriotism.

As we have pointed out in our South Shore foliage articles, the South Coast doesn't really have any moutains that I can get those Vermont-style calendar shots from. This is Sea Level foliage, player. We're doing the best that we can for you.

This tree rocks a nice Jamaica-flag style green/yellow mix, and we'll throw it in the article.

This is either Carver or Plymouth, out in the Myles Standish State Forest area. The MSSF was a little weak for foliage, as Pine dominated. Lovely ride, though... the kind of road where you see a man walking down the street with a shotgun, and you just sort of nod hello to him. I decided not to snap a picture of him, sorry...

This is one of my Chill Spots, aka Little Sandy Pond in Southern Plymouth. Although I left my house to do this article, the true starting point was here.

I ascribe my "Never get out of the boat" theory especially hard around cemeteries. I didn't even stop the boat, let alone get out of it. I try not to f*ck around anywhere near Bridgewater Triangle cemeteries.

I had to go length-wise to get this tree.

Here's another house I won't be trick-or-treating at. Frodo Baggins might answer the door wearing the One Ring. This looks like the Shire, but it's actually Dartmouth, and the spookiness is lowered by the proximity to the Mall. You can never get too scared by a haunted house when you know that you can be at the Chuck E. Cheese in a good five minute panic run.

I'll tolerate some Blurry if it gets me some more Red, and I hope you will too.

Let's not resent a little Green as the main course for a picture in the foliage article.

I like that someone clustered these trees, you see a cool burst of color as you speed by in the Trish Stratus. I was working with poor light, but it was a nice bunch of trees, trust me.

I was gonna ask the guy if he would move his beater car out of the way so I could get me some Big Leaf/Barn House action, but that laooks like the house of a man who owns a shotgun. It adds character, I suppose...

Much love to the South Coast!