Category Archives: ABC wednesday

Portrait of Wayne


Although Wayne was in a wheelchair, the Shelby Cobra Club event at Willow Springs International Raceway was a big part of his life. Wayne had been attending the Willow Springs event since the early eighties and he and his brother had been racing Hot Rods since the early sixties. The reason Wayne quit was because he could no longer handle the fast cars. Wayne was sricken with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) several years prior to our meeting, and because of that, he had to stop racing, But that didn’t keep him from attending the events with his brother, who continued to race. (ALS is the disease that affected Lou Gehrig and Stephen Hawking.)

Wayne was originally from East Los Angeles, California, but at the time of this interview, he lived in Hemet, California, USA. Wayne’s brother owned a fire sprinkler company and Wayne had been a field Foreman for him. They had many famous customers such as Sears and Disneyland. One time, Wayne flooded a Sears store because he accidentally pulled the fire sprinkler. This earned him the nickname Rainman. Wayne was forced to retire in 2002 because he required bypass surgery.

Wayne’s brother had been racing a 1966 Shelby GT350 since the early eighties, sold it to Wayne who took it to car shows until he sold it. The current owners were at Willow Springs running it (see below.)

Wayne and his brother had a lot of different cars throughout their lives: eight different Shelbies, hot rods, a Model A Roadster pickup, a 37 Ford Roush Mustang with a tubular frame and a Trans Am. Any that were racing class, Wayne ran at Willow Springs at some point in time.

Wayne’s brother bought an old David Pearson car (see below) which, at time of purchase, looked like it belonged in the junkyard. His brother recently finished restoring it, and the picture below represents the first time it came out to run. One of the places, besides Willow Springs, that his brother was planning to run was with the Historic Grand National Stockcars Group which was North of San Francisco, California; a place where several tracks could run Sportsman Class (non-NASCAR) cars.

Another interesting fact about Wayne’s cars is that when Wayne could no longer drive his 200 Shelby, he sold it to a developer from Miami, Florida, USA. Prior to selling it to him, his brother replaced the street motor with a race motor. About two and a half months prior to this interview, the new owners gave it extensive exposure by running it at Sebring International Raceway and Atlanta Motor Speedway and were planning to run it at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in June. The new owners were going to have a NASCAR famous woman driver, Sarah Fisher, driving alongside the owner at Indy.

Wayne’s motorized wheelchair moved in so many positions, I’m not sure Wayne could count them. Wayne was kind enough to move into the shade, for optimum light conditions, and then he leaned the chair back so I could have a better angle. Thank you Wayne for your time, your stories, and your efforts.

David Pearson #21 1971 Mercury Cyclone

Posted on:

W is for Wisdom

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Congratulations, graduates!!

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Randall


Randall, a native American of the Miniconjou band of the Sioux (Lakota) Nation, was in the process of setting up a teepee  (also interchangeably called a Lodge). His buddy, who was helping him set up the lodge, was for the most part Cherokee. When I got there, Randall had two lodges already set up, one was his Lakota style Lodge, and another one was a Cheyenne style Lodge.

At 65 years old, Randall left his everyday job and came down to Newhall, California, USA (part of Santa Clarita) “by special invitation, to bring the true history of the Indian peoples to the white/American public who’s only exposure to this date has been history books written by Europeans, the Anglos, and the movies that they see. This is how we live. This is how we set them up. ”

Randall was looking forward to speak to the people who would be coming to the Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival. Each year, with determination and dedication, Randall spread the true history of his people to everyone he could reach to offset what they learned incorrectly in school.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Lakota style Lodge

Lakota and Cheyenne style lodges

Randall Erects Teepee (Lodge)
“This is how we set ’em up.”

Posted on:

20-S = Signal

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Congratulations, graduates!!

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Donna


One thing that all cultures and nations have in common is paying taxes. Today is tax day in the United States of America. In honor of tax day, the person that I shall post will be my accountant, Donna.

Donna was a person who loved “getting things in ORDER,” which she practiced since she was a child. Along with the multitudinous receipts, forms, ledgers etc involved in accounting, Donna saw the legal aspects of accounting as part of the process of getting things at ORDER, “it’s challenging to set things up so that it works out best for my clients.”

Donna studied accounting at California State University, Northridge, and was a practicing Certified Public Accountant (CPA) for 35 years. At the time of this posting, she worked out of Lancaster, California, USA. At the start of her career, Donna thought that the legal aspects of accounting were going to be black and white but she ended up finding them very grey. Of course, she perceived tax law as something that needed to be put in ORDER.

Donna is a great accountant. Recently, a new friend, who moved to this area, asked me for an accountant recommendation. When I mentioned to Donna that I knew someone who wanted to retain her, she told me she was so busy that she wasn’t taking any new clients.

If countries hired accountants of Donna’s caliber to keep their finances in ORDER, geo-political systems would be much more stable in this world. Consequently, it would be a much happier, easier and more organized place to live.

BTW, Donna is so busy, she has no website or social media links, not only because she has no time, but because she doesn’t need them.

Posted on:

O is for observations about the ABC W alphabet

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Ahh… Ahhhh… Achoo!!

 

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Kendall


Kendall was a professional track and field athlete, sponsored by  Adidas, originally from Detroit, Michigan, USA. When I met her, she said it was her second year based out of California. Her first year, she practiced out of San Diego, California, USA and then the next year, Los Angeles, California, USA.

Kendall was enjoying the beautiful morning at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Bruins blue track and was about to get together with her teammates to practice and to prepare for the Texas relays. In this portrait, she was stretching up and getting in the zone.

Kendall was a graduate of the University of Texas, and also had a modeling career. I wish I could have gotten to know her better, but I appreciate the time she gave me during her warm-ups.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Posted on:

T is for TRUST

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Happy Birthday to an OLD friend!!

Portrait of Ann


I met Ann when I went to make pictures of poppies (see below), and she happened to come to the same location, at the same time, to do the same thing. However, she probably made much better pictures than I made because, as a landscape photographer, she made photographs to successfully sell at an event in Carlsbad, California, USA. She also had a much better camera.

Ann was a retired school principal from West Wind Elementary School in the Lancaster School District. She was an elementary school principal for 15 years, and prior to that, she was a teacher for 15 years. She graduated from Antelope Valley High School and San Diego State University.

At the time of this posting, Ann lived in San Diego, California, USA, but she was born and raised in Lake Hughes, California, USA. She made pictures of the poppies almost every year and came up from San Diego this year just to enjoy the magnificent harvest.

Ann’s lovely landscape photography may be seen on her website Photo’s by Ann.

Famous Poppies of Antelope Valley, California, USA

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Posted on:

P is for PLUS

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
April showers bring May flowers…

Portrait of Ryuzen


I met Ryuzen at the Koyasan Buddhist Temple, located in Little Tokyo, Downtown Los Angeles, California, USA. Ryuzen arrived at the Temple in 2012. He noted that the founder of his Temple came to Los Angeles with a group of immigrants in 1912.

Ryuzen grew up on Kyushu Island, Japan in a town near the main city of Fukuoka. Next, he went to Kyoto for university, and after graduating, Ryuzen went to priest school at the headquarters of Shingon-shu Buddhism, a denomination founded by Kukai, at Koyasan, a small mountain town located in northern Wakayama Prefecture.

In Koyasan, many temples stood and one of the temples was where Ryuzen practiced and studied for a year to be a priest. After graduating, headquarters granted Ryuzen the right to be a priest and represent his nomination anywhere, worldwide.

Ryuzen did not come to the United States until after he first graduated from Doshisha University, in Kyoto and then from priest school at Koyasan. A priest in the United States had introduced Ryuzen to the Koyasan Buddhist Temple in Los Angeles. Not only did he find it a suitable place to stay and practice, but he knew this was an excellent place to improve his English.

Posted on

O is for observations about the ABC W alphabet

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Bring on the cards and flowers…

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Victor


Victor was a model (see below) for both photography and figure art. California State Northridge, USC, Art Center College of Design, Los Angeles Art College and many more institutions of this nature.

Los Angeles Art College but he preferred modeling over construction because he liked “feeling free” with his body. He was doing construction for about 20 years. Victor liked all the people that he interacted with in the art world because they were very friendly.

Victor was originally from Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He came to the Los Angeles area many years please to this. He graduated from California State Northridge.

Posted on:

V is for vim and vigor

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Shhhhhh, LET’S GET WORDLESS!!

 

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Luke


I bumped into Luke at Big Lots as he was looking at small shovels. I asked him if he was going to buy one for a child. He proceeded to tell me the purpose shovels hold for him, and I was fascinated.

Luke went from town to town accumulating “a lot of stuff because it was pretty easy to do.” He would often collect too many items for one to posses during travel. He would take the things he could not take with him but wanted to keep, and he would bury them somewhere in the town he was about to leave, “You never knew when you were going to that place again.”

Luke was unemployed at the time I met him. He frequented stores like Big Lots, would research prices of certain items, then go to thrift stores and purchase the items for very cheap. Knowing the retail price, he would sell those items on Craigslist, or other free online venues, for lower than discount store prices, but for a profit relative to what he paid in the thrift store.

Originally from Sacramento, California, USA, he left Sacramento because, “I figured I needed a change in scenery.”

Posted on:

L is for LAPSE OF MEMORY

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Happy Start of Spring!!

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Melissa


Who works with a knight in shining armor? Okay, let me rephrase that. Who works with medieval knight’s armor? Let me add a stipulation. Who, that doesn’t work in a museum, works with knight’s armor? And let me add one more limiting condition. Who works with knight’s armor and lives in the desert?

Meet Melissa, who when we met, worked at Bob’s Army and Navy in Mojave, California, USA, where they had, of all things, medieval armor (see below.)

Melissa’s job was not only to greet  customers and perform sales, but she was also in the process of reorganizing the store. The store “was quite crowded because the store tries to have a little bit of everything, ” Melissa explained. “The store is just so cool, it’s hard to explain what they have there. It’s really worth stopping by to see it.”

Some of the things they had in the store were military and camping items you would typically see in the average Army Navy Store. However, Bob’s differed in that they also had vintage items, especially women’s vintage jewelry and clothing. “They have a lot of camping stuff,” Melissa noted, “including vintage camping stuff.”

In her portrait, Melissa modeled one of the store’s vintage hats. Before she worked at Bob’s Army & Navy, Melissa worked in gas stations. It was “quite a change” to transfer from working in the gas station to working at Bob’s.

Melissa enjoyed interacting with the “very sweet” customers.  She found them not only respectful but also interested “to talk about military stuff. So, of course, I like them.” Melissa’s fiance’s dad was a retired Marine Corps member and her fiance was going to enter the Navy, so Melissa was accustomed to having conversations about military topics.

Knight’s Armor

Native American in Circle Framed Print

Posted on:

K for F D Kilday

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Happy Start of Spring!!

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Mac


This is Mac who worked for United Parcel Service (UPS) for 16 years. He was originally from Los Angeles, California, USA. At the time of this posting, he lived in Tehachapi, California, USA, however, he did his deliveries out of Mojave.

Although I assumed Mac delivered most of my packages, I usually didn’t get to see him do the deed, so to speak, because I either was not around or, he knocked, dropped the package by my door and ran off.

My dog’s knew when he came way before I knew. They had a certain look; their ears went up; I would hear brakes in front of my house; and through the window, see the UPS truck.

At my door, smiling Mac would stand, waiting for a signature, and I would be happy to see him delivering me a package ON-TIME and to the correct domicile.

Posted on:

U is for Unity

Also posted on:

Wordless Wednesday
Lots of red, white, blue…

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.