Year 13 Wasn’t So Lucky

Intrigued Blog Summary 2020

Well, it was the year 2020 but if anyone had perfect vision for what the world would be put through, they should immediately make their way to Vegas and find an open Roulette table – should not be hard to find an empty seat these days. It is the small achievements along the way that get us through the bad times. One such example is the completion of the 13th year of blogging here at Intrigued – at least for the mothership, this wildlife side is a little younger as this offshoot was created a number of years later. Adding to that is a self-pat on the back for once again hitting the 6 post a month self-imposed minimum. It was touch and go there a couple of times during the year, but we fought through it. Definitely had a huge gaping hole in the running posts this year. With the exception of the one virtual race recollected a couple of posts ago, the year was a complete bust. This made hitting my yearly goal of logging at least 1,100 miles a lonely journey. Toeing the line on race day is a huge motivation for me – with every race last year canceled due to that ass Covid, keeping on track and hauling myself out to the trails every other day tested the mental toughness. Fought through two injuries to the back and a ridiculous last month of miles to get that check again this year (1,200+ actually).

2020 also brought with it some big changes related to our careers. Linda officially retired February 1, 2020 giving her some badly needed stress relief after her large operation the year before. Thanks to the pandemic, she really didn’t get to enjoy her first year of freedom as much as she deserved. By November I had convinced myself to hang up the corporate life as well and went on permanent vacation until the official retirement on February 1st of this year. Definitely looking forward to all the extra cycles available to spend on blog material – in between the extra training runs of course ha!

One of my goals last year (come to think of it … every year) has been to increase awareness of the Intrigued blogs. Over the last year I’ve been able to keep in touch with many of my long time readers and had the privilege of gaining additional followers that apparently enjoy my musings. For the existing fans as well as the new followers, I am truly thankful and honored you are willing to spend the one thing that is the most valuable in our lives – ‘time’. A unique possession that is perpetually consumed yet never replaceable. I am also thankful for the other members of the blogsphere that educate me on a daily basis, give me hours of enjoyment and continue to expand my thinking/perspectives along with pushing me to get better at my craft.

A few quick shout outs. One to my brother Ron who is a big part of the behind the scenes operations as birding companion, ID confirmer and all around fact checker – not to mention invaluable help with all the Halloween projects that go on around here year round. To CJ (link here) and B. in the UK (link here) who keep me informed on what is going on across the pond and then there’s my personal editor Brad M. who keeps the pages mostly free of the egregious syntax errors – sorry for all the errors that make it through – In my defense, I graduated from the University of Illinois’ Engineering College which makes bits and bytes my first language (then married someone with a similar background so we could communicate hehehe).

Keeping with tradition, it’s time to look back at the year’s output and self-evaluate. One noticeable improvement is the number of followers. Few things bring a smile to my day more than a comment or like on one of my posts. If you are curious about the details, hit the jump to see the individual stats and accomplishments.

Thanks again to all my readers and here’s to the new year of fun and adventures that will assuredly find their way onto these pages.

Hit the jump for the details on the 2020 Life Intrigued blogs summary.

Continue reading Year 13 Wasn’t So Lucky

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Merry Christmas 2020

Just wanted to extend best wishes to everyone during this holiday season. Myself, Linda, Benji, Raven and all the hardworking staff here at Intrigued (marketing, accounting, publishing, human resources and of course the cadre of lawyers) are truly grateful for all of our readers. There is nothing more precious than a person’s time and to spend that to consume our musings is absolutely heartfelt.

Merry Christmas 2020

Be safe and most of all keep your hopes up that 2021 will bring us back to happier times. To all a virtual hearty handshake and a pat on the back for all are friends that help us get through this thing called life. Remember to live and not just exist, to experience and not simply watch and most of all to cherish the bright days and not dwell on the dim ones.

Thank You!

The Doerflers

What’s Better than One Flaming Pumpkin

Happy Halloween Everyone!!!

Happy Halloween 2020

My favorite holiday has arrived. Following the tradition from last year (carried over from our Haunted Trail feature introduced by my partner in haunt Paul several years back… it was time to slice into some pumpkin and grab the kerosene. Except this year we amped it up a bit because if there is one thing better than one flaming pumpkin.. .well, clearly it is TWO flaming pumpkins. Unfortunately, we didn’t anticipate the increased light would bring out the creatures of the night. Happy haunting, see you in November.

You looking at Me !?!

It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but the reduction in days in this month has a tendency to cause stress in my blogging activities. Those precious days between the 28th and say 30/31st is often my “get down to business” days. That’s when I take out my trusty TI60 calculator, punch in 6 for my self-imposed quota of posts per month (note, that includes post on the mothership Intrigued site, not just the wildlife blog), count up each of the posts made in the current month, hit the minus button and then insert the recently summed number of posts and hit equals button. After a burst of electrons through an array of ands/ors/nands/nors logic gates the liquid crystal is signaled to delivers the painful blow. Then the scramble begins to address the missing posts. Granted, this year, gives me an extra day this month.. but that has already been earmarked for birding (need to keep the hopper full for the 2025 posts hehehe). Linda enjoys teasing me while I am trying to stay focused on the posts – I shall let the Great-Tailed Grackle demonstrate the look I give her.

Great-Tailed Grackle found at Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge, Texas, December 2016\

That pretty much sums it up! I will admit, this has absolutely zero impact on my wife’s behavior beyond extra volume to her laugh. Then she’ll start touching my stuff and moving it just enough to cause my OCD to fire – evil woman! The good news is I wasn’t far off this month and was able to close the gap pretty quickly – for the record this is the 6th so all is good. I might feel better, but this rather torqued looking creature is likely still holding a grudge against me. In fact, every time I come in contact with the Great-Tailed Grackle I get the feeling I wronged its ancestors in some way and it’s taken a lifelong blood oath to extract a compensating revenge. Is it just me or do others have this same experience with this disgruntled bird? – Ron you don’t count as all birds basically hate you.

Great-Tailed Grackle found at Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge, Texas, December 2016

Hit the jump if this Grackle hasn’t already scared you too much.

Continue reading You looking at Me !?!

Merry Christmas to All

Merry Christmas to all my friends across the blogsphere! Was waiting all day for Linda to get the shots taken and worked up in the darkroom. Raven (black) and Benji (white) may look cute to the untrained eye, but these two become little demons when you are trying to get them set for a portrait. Now that Santa has come they know we are unable to hold that over them – last I looked Raven was chewing up the year’s naughty list ha!

Raven and Eddie - Christmas 2019

Linda and I along with the boys hope your individual celebrations were joyous and filled with family, good friends and scrumptious food. It has been an interesting year around the headquarters of Intrigued to say the least. Good times, healing times and unfortunately a time of loss that can now only be filled by our heartfelt memories. As we look to what Christmas future brings we can be thankful for those that helped us through Christmas past and those that we lean on in Christmas present.

Raven and Eddie - Christmas 2019

To all those readers of my muses here and to all those that enlighten, educate and entertain me with your own writings – may your holidays be bright and your thoughts be happy.

Raven and Eddie - Christmas 2019

In case I don’t get back here in time, Happy New Year. Take care and be safe in your travels!

… The Doerflers

 

Happy Hauntings!

It’s that time of the year…

Halloween 2019

Yep, my favorite time of the year. What evils shall lurk in the darkest hours? Witches and warlocks, black cats and things that are left unnamed. Perhaps, even the Galloping Hessian of the Hollow in search of Ichabob Crane!

Halloween 2019

Whatever scares come your way, may your heart be strong and your feet be fast for nightmares await the one unfortunate to be last.

Hit the jump to see a few more pictures in celebration of the Day of the Dead – if you dare {evil laugh}

Continue reading Happy Hauntings!

Merry Christmas!

Extending some holiday cheer from myself, Linda and our furry boys (Rizzi, Raven and Benji) . This year has been full of many ups and a few downs, but one thing for sure, it has gone by way too quick. Looking forward to seeing and sharing what the New Year will bring. A big thank you to all of you that have supported my blogging efforts this year and grateful to have made some good friends as a result.

Christmas 2018

Best wishes for a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year! – stay safe in your travels.

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas Everyone and Best Wishes for a New Year!

Just wanted to extend some holiday cheer from my wife Linda, our boys (the poodles) and of course myself. It has been an exciting year and looking forward to what the next has in store for us. Hoping to get a few more posts in before the end of the year yet – need to pad those blog stats ha! Stay tuned and most of all if you happen to be spending the season in the Midwest, stay warm.

Christmas 2017

… well that is what our tree looked like last night before we went to bed. Raven woke us this morning and said a green Santa crawled through our fireplace and informed him “there’s a light on the tree that won’t light on one side. So I’m taking it home to my workshop, my dear puppy. I’ll fix it up there, then I’ll bring it back here.” WHAAAAAaaattt!?!

Christmas 2017

RAVEN!!!!!!