Exiting the BART

The Downtown Berkeley BART stop was about to be closed for renovation when I last visited Berkeley. Have those changes been brought to fruition? Does that mean the end of the weathered bright entrances and weirdly sharp stairs? I know a quick search could answer these questions, but for just a moment I’m embracing the mystery.

Exiting the BART

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Standard Berkeley Street Scenes

The title of today’s post is somewhat sarcastic: there is such an incredible variety of vehicles and homes visible on any Berkeley street that a “standard” is impossible. This Volvo wagon and turreted home both seemed like prime examples of classic Berkeley engineering.

Standard Berkeley Chariot

Standard Berkeley Home

200,000

Our 11-year-old car just passed the 200,000-mile mark on the odometer. It’s been with us for multiple transcontinental drives and a lot of smaller road-trips in between. This is our unicorn: a combination of manual transmission, smooth straight-six engine, all-wheel drive, and cavernous station wagon that’s simply no longer available from any manufacturer. What will we do when this car is ready for retirement? That’s a tough question.

200,000

Wachtmeister in the Wilderness

St. Lawrence’s campus includes far more natural settings (and transitions far more quickly to them) than any place I’ve previously experienced. The Wachtmeister Field Station is a field laboratory that feels like a “candle in the wilderness,” despite being within (drone) sight of campus.

Wachtmeister in the Wilderness

Train and Storm

Chicago’s suburbs are filled with older train stations like this one. In an area where quaint, older homes are often knocked down to make way for McMansions, these stations are sometimes an area’s only link with the past. (Luckily, Hinsdale is better than most areas in this respect.) On a particularly dramatic and thunderstorm-ready afternoon, this particular train platform feels like it could be unstuck in time.

Hinsdale_12_16x9

The Loneliest Hydroelectric Station

Today’s post is a particularly old photograph of mine–so old, in fact, that you’ll have to pardon the fact that it was taken before I owned a DSLR. I happened upon it the other night, and it was so lovely that I just couldn’t resist processing and posting it.

Above Bridal Veil Falls, in the box canyon cliffs surrounding Telluride, CO, is this building. At first, it looks to be a lonely house, but the truth is far more fascinating: it is the second AC hydroelectric power station in the United States. The facility was restored in the 1980’s, and still provides 1/4 of the power to the little town of Telluride in the distance.

The Loneliest Hydroelectric Station

KALX: the Catalogue

Berkeley’s college radio station, KALX, recently had me in the studio for an interview about one of my other projects, the Berkeley Science Review. While I was there, I snapped a few shots of their mammoth 100,000 record collection. The size of it really was staggering; it’s sort of amusing to remember that it could all fit on a couple of cheap hard drives. What would be missing, of course, would be the gorgeous, enormous album art and the feeling of vinyl in your hands.

KALX: the Catalogue