Bus Driver by occupation,pro photographer, businessman in the making, wannabe musician, amateur designer/artist/writer/poet, a native of Detroit now living in Suburbia. Here is where I pretty much unwind whatever's on the brain.

New Year, New Chapter!


No, one of that “New Year, New Me” nonsense, but more of a new beginning.  Seeing that I’m beginning to approach the autumn phase of my life, and I’ve seized many opportunities in life, but I have many more to accomplish.  Jobs, relationships, business ventures, and many other things.  At 40, soon to be 41, I’m at the halfway point in my life (Biblically speaking).  I’ve noticed that the longer I live, the past has very little, if any relevance at all.

What can I expect other than the unexpected?

A question that I ask myself often.

Everything that I’ve gone through these past four decades of life, just like the picture you see above (yes, it’s mine), to quote Humphrey Bogart “…lots of water under the bridge”.

Now in more recent times, I’ve made a career change working in the transportation business, and I have a few DOT cards, as well as a Class B CDL (commercial driver license) that’s also enhanced-meaning that I can travel to Canada as well as Mexico without the hassle of a passport.  I’ve started my third consecutive 365 photo journal (I’ve done five altogether so far), and with the convenience of a smartphone, I can simultaneously post them on various social media with just a touch/click of a button.

I’ve gotten bitten by the photography bug, and I’ve come across some areas that I’d like to expand in.  Seeing that I’ve gotten back on my feet these past five months, I still have a lot of catching up to do.

With this new year in tow, and being (nearly) in my 40’s, I’m doing my utmost to make every second that I have count!  If I have a few seconds to spare, I’ll do something constructive/creative to pass up the limited time that I have.  At my age, I just want to add value not just to myself, but those around me, if circumstances permit.

Just ramblin’ about, hopefully I’ll be applying this by the time (somebody) reads this…


Day 365 of 365!

Ribbet collage New Year's Eve 2015-watermarked.

I could get used to these daily photo journals seeing that I take pictures everyday as it is-most of the time, anyway.  In case anyone’s curious as to what these pics are/were and where they’re located here goes!

From the L-R:

January-Spirit of Detroit Statue w/ Lions jersey.

February-Snow sculpture of a bonfire.  Warren, MI.

March-Frozen raindrops.

April-HDR clouds over Lake St Clair.

May-Lakeshore Drive.  Chicago, IL.

June-Phoenix Theater.  Pontiac, MI

July-Fishbone’s Rhythm Cafe.  Greektown, Detroit, MI.

August-Historic home for sale.  West Village, Detroit, MI.

Sepetmeber-Detroit vs. Everbody Shop.  Eastern Market, Detroit, MI.

October-Extension of the Dequindre Cut.  Detroit, MI.

November-Detroit at dusk.

December-Sinnlig Candle courtesy of IKEA.

This is now the fourth 365 that I’ve done, and the second consecutive one I’ve done, and will do a third consecutive 365 photo journal totaling five altogether.  So if anyone wishes to see the previous ones I’ve done including the current one(s), here are the website(s):  (Search of album Project 365 2015) (search for album Project 365 2014)

www. (search for albums Project 365 2008, and 2010).  I will be taking this website down this year.

And of course, check me out on Twitter.  Of course, my tweet name is JVLIVS.

This new project, more than likely will be my last one.  And like last year’s 365, this one will be used on my smartphone (hopefully I’ll have another iPhone this year as well) and posted simultaneously of social media.

And hopefully you have enjoyed this as much as I have.


Lighting up the candles…


I didn’t think I was gonna like this, but I’m not a big coconut person, but I will make an exception of this candle.  Heck, I’ve even had coconut rum (Malibu) in recent years.  But thanks to my faithful DSLR, ribbet, and some killer fonts (I heard that IKEA had changed theirs recently-to the one you see in the pic), and natural darkness that really made this image pop.

And the bouquet (as in smell, that is) was stupendous!

Try it out one day…


One of The World’s DEADLIEST Poisons…!

gossip hurts

One of the most silent killers in the world, nearly 100% of us have at one point in time have been guilty of it from time to time, this silent killer is more deadly than a stroke, heart attack, and aneurysm combined, that six-letter word is GOSSIP!

Some folks-even senior citizens-thrive on it.  I won’t even lie about it, I’m just as guilty as the next person.  It’s all around us.  Gossip is as poisonous as venomous snakes.  Here’s why I’m writing this:  As you well know, I drive a school bus, and you are also well-aware that it has its good points and bad points.  One day, one of my students was telling me about a former student and some issues that his family is going through. Disturbed though I was by a nine year-old being exposed to exposing the dirty laundry of other people, I asked her what was the purpose of her revealing that information, and her answer shocked me even more!

“Because it’s juicy!”

I immediately told her that she should not gossip about other people-let alone their personal problems.  Bad enough my former student is going through some things right now, last thing he needs is his blabbermouth neighbour telling everything.  I took to heart right after that-especially being a God-fearing individual-I should never talk about other people, even if I have a valid reason.

Again, I told the little girl that “gossip hurts!”  It’s damaging to one’s reputation, character, and well-being.  Not to speak ill of the dead, let alone a family member (and no, I’m not spreading gossip), but my grandmother thrived on that kind of negative energy, and I’ll leave it right there.

More to come!  For now, some scriptural counsel for those who are having this issue and wish to stop!  Hope it helps.

“…make it your aim to live quietly and mind your own business…”             -1 Thessalonians 4:11

“Like someone grabbing hold of a dog’s ears, Is the one passing by who becomes furious about a quarrel that is not his.” -Proverbs 26:17

“…they (old women-as well as men) learn to be unoccupied, going around from one house to another… also gossipers and meddlers in other people’s affairs, talking about things they ought not.”  -1 Timothy 5:13

“…let none of you suffer… as a busybody in other people’s matters.”  -1 Peter 4:15




Practicing my long exposures-sans tripod-in the brisk cold after work, but as always.  One of my favourite shots to take downtown is that of the People Mover.  I forgot the exact settings that I had on my camera, but the outcome of this nice image was the reward for it.  The warp speed effect is always the fun part of long exposure photography.

Ask any photographer-any photographer, and they’ll tell ya no different.

Then I added the captions courtesy of Ribbet (for those who can’t afford Photoshop for the time being).

Only thing that put a damper on this evening was the weather, but it’s the end of the year, so complaining is useless at this point.


How I Spent my Thanksgiving…

First of all, I do not celebrate Thanksgiving, or any other holiday (as I’ve made clear many time in the past), but normally this time of year, I’d cook a turkey for family.  Sadly, over the years, some family members have passed away in recent years, so with that in mind, I’ve fed my parents and some of the elderly friends in the congregation.  Sufficient to say, everybody was satisfied with the food.


First picture of this set.  I don’t drink pop like I used to. I quit for a hot minute, and I plan to eventually quit for good (lots of sugar).  But this mix of Amarito liquer and Dr.Pepper had made the effort worthwhile.  1-2 shots of the liquer and the rest with Dr.P and some ice, and you’re on your way!

DSC_9899-watermarkedNow the bird.  Long story short, I rinsed the bird (BTW, it was given to me from my job), and put it in a turkey bag, added my spices and poured God knows how many teaspoons of Olive Oil, smothered it, put the bird in it, tied the bag up, and shook it.  Then I opened the bag, and poured a tall boy of Steel Reserve along to about 3/4 of a fifth of Amarito.  Tied up the bag, shook it, and well, you see the final outcome of it.  Apparently the bird went much faster than anything else!


Now, the coup de gras.  Everything you see here I made, except the cranberry sauce.  And get this;  I could not get greens to save my life!  Almost bought some kale, but I settled for some mixed veggies instead. The dressing I made, the mac-n-cheese, on the other hand, due to a lack of time (in truth, a lack of patience), instead of doing the old-fashioned way (which is the custom for most families), I bought the kits instead and added some shredded cheese.  And the turkey?  Let’s just say that the beer and the liquer together did an excellent job.  I was happy, and everybody else was happy as well.


Now, the good stuff!  Courtesy of Trader Joe’s.  If I’m not mistaken, this is sold exclusively during the holiday season-I hope that it sells year-round one day.  If anyone remembers how Vernors tasted some thirty plus years ago, that’s what this is!  Goes well with bourbon whiskey, along with cranberry juice.

All these come from my 365 photo journal.  So this was how I spent my holiday off, even though I don’t celebrate them.  Hopefully this moved you as much as it has for me.


4-Cheese Pizza w/ Apple Chicken Sausage


Every you see here is courtesy of Aldi’s!

Good, delicious, tasty.

Bon appetit`!


Brioche Cheeseburgers!


Ground Beef c/o Aldi,

Brioche Buns c/o Kroger’s Private Selections,

Shredded Cheddar c/o Aldi,

Curry Powder, Basil, and Smoked Paprika c/o Trader Joe’s,

Miracle Whip, Heinz 57, and Trader Joe’s Dijon on the top bun,

Burgers were between medium rare and well done,

Sauteed with Extra Virgin Olive Oil,

Good Eatin’,

Washed down with Guiness Stout with a shot of Royal Canadian Whiskey (yep, I made a boilermaker),

Ain’t ate this good in a long time let alone, cook something this good before.


Gentleman Jack!


The title says it all, baby!  Now I’m more of a Scotch man, but every now and then I’ll switch up, be it Kentucky Bourbon, Irish, Tennessee (like the picture posted above), and BTW, Canadian whisky ain’t no slouch, either!

On the rocks, or with a slice of lime/lemon, or even a martini mixed with this lovely spirit, either way, you won’t be disappointed.

A huge thanks to Kevin for winning me over to try out the Tennesse Spirits.  I still prefer Scotch, but that’s just me, tho.

I’ve gotten into tequila as of late, but that’s a whole ‘nother story!

We’ll get into that later (but sooner than you think, God willing)…

Gentleman Jack on Facebook.

Check them both out!


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