Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Windows on our Worlds Windows on our Worlds

It is great to get these veiws from CambridgeBuzz readers all over the country. It really shows how such a small community like Cambridge can have a large impact on peoples lives everywhere. Please keep sending your jpeg's views to with date, time and general location that you took the picture and I will post it ASAP.

Manhattan, NY 02-27-07

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Jack's Outback Rendezvous Jack's Outback Rendezvous

Printer’s Stone
Here is an original printer’s stone with a series of advertisements on it, circa 1915 from the Troy area.

Printing on the flat surface was dependent upon the natural aversion of grease for water. The design is drawn on the grained surface of the stone with greasy inks or crayons, and the whole surface is than damped. The grained surface helps to hold the water while the ink repels it. The whole stone is then rolled up with a printing ink that sticks to the greasy drawing, but not to the wet surface of the untouched stone. The stones most often used for this process were limestone, but Jack is not sure what kind of stone this one is. He does love its weight and the quaility of the workmanship found in the engravings.

Read the fine print at Jack’s!
Go there! Visit Jack’s Outback, 30 West Main Street, Cambridge, NY 518-677-2929.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Treasures of Cambridge # 36 Treasures of Cambridge # 36

Mark Spiezo pictured in front of the vault in the former Bean Head’s Coffee House, has lived in Cambridge all of his 37 years, "I was born here, grew up here, went to school here, now I am married and am raising a family here."

Mark just loves this place, "A lot of my school friends ventured out, many came back, but I just stayed, it is a great place to be, you are close to everything, it is just a great, safe, hometown community." Mark takes the community aspect of his life here seriously as a full time member of the Cambridge Valley Rescue Squad for almost twenty years now. Mark loves the great group of people who serve the area, and sees it is a way to help people who are in need. "I try to be involved in as much as I can in the community, because there is such a wonderful, diverse group of people that you can learn so much from, and it is fun. I enjoy being with people and taking care of people and I strike a real good balance here."

Mark has a few props that he brought with him, first his sweater that was handmade by his grandmother, Janet Bennett, who still makes Cambridge her home. She too is a life-long resident of Cambridge, and Mark tells me about a knitting club she ran in town. He remembers back to when he was a child and would go to her house and learn all sorts of interesting things while everyone knitted. "One of the gifts that we all got when we became adults, was one of her sweaters. I have had this one for almost twenty years now, and it still looks as good as the day I got it."

Besides the stethoscope, which represents his passion for the Rescue Squad, Mark has a fishing pole showing one of his favorite pastimes which is to fish the many lakes, streams and ponds of the area.

Mark would like to be remembered, "as somebody who cared about the community, more than anything else; (be) good to the family, good to the community, and just did everything I could to maintain the character that the people who came before us were able to maintain."

Mark is a candidate this year for mayor of the Village of Cambridge on the Woodpecker ticket. We wish him well on his campaign, and recommend if you live in town, to give him a call and get to know him. Whatever the outcome of the election, you can be assured that Mark will be working hard to help continue to make Cambridge the wonderful place that we all know and love.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Photographer's Log Photographer's Log


February 2006-I was out chasing the snowstorm which had just started. This road has no name for me although I travel it constantly. I really like this road, enjoying all there is to see on it. I guess I’m so engrossed in what I see that I’ve never noticed a road sign or even a county road sign in time to identify it properly. I just call it “Belle Road #2" because it intersects Belle Road at the Trinkle home, goes all the way down to intersect with Morris Road at one end and lets out at Center Cambridge Road at the other end.

This particular shot was taken near Riding Right on Route 59 in Buskirk/South Cambridge. For years now I have chosen distinctive landscapes that I could manipulate with my computer creating a sense of traveling “into” the photograph. This photo was perfect for this treatment. All of the gentle lights and shadows, the delicate traceries of the unclad branches of trees and bushes, even the gentle tread marks in the light snow covering the road lend a sense of the peace and solitude I usually feel when I am out shooting our valley areas in snow storms. I developed this picture-frame technique back in 2002 or 2003 trying to bring into my presented work the sense of picture perfect intimacy that I experience in my photo-graphic travels here.
-June Mohan
Photos: (Copyright Mohan 2006) To contact the artist, please send email to:

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Artist Profile: Roderick C. Wilson Artist Profile: Roderick C. Wilson

From his "Artist Statement" for his current show "Wounds" in the Artisans Market gallery at historic Hubbard Hall, 25 East Main Street (until March 1st), Sculptor Rod Wilson writes:

“It is a process of surrender. I have an idea that leads me in, yet I cannot force myself onto or into the wood. Only when I yield and let go, as the wood yields to the chisel, can connection and collaboration emerge. I need simply to pay attention and abandon fear and hesitation.”

What makes Wilson’s art important, even transcendent, is his awareness and connection to our natural heritage and his willingness to let its life cycle unfold and bring its presence to our own. Here is a heritage and a history we pass by everyday and often take for granted even as it embodies our past, nourishes our present, and now, thanks to Wilson, helps transform our future.

“When those great old maples, which line our streets and roads, die they are brought down by the town or county crews and let to rot. The wood is gnarled and half decayed, stained dark, unpredictable and potentially laden with foreign material: steel, glass, rock, concrete. No mill with cut them.”

For Wilson, these trees and that history holds for him a devotion and curiosity that makes taking the risk to reveal their mysteries ultimately necessary.

“…I love them, as I love the living trees. I crave them. One of the greatest pleasures is to open one of these huge trunks and witness the staggering beauty of a tree’s interior life, revealed for the first time, slab after slab.”

The risks do not end for Wilson after the saw is shut down and the wood is transported to a barn behind his shop. Before he can begin his sculptures, he must let time once again, take it's course and wait for the moisture trapped inside the trees cells to equalize with the moisture in the air.

This process known as “seasoning” can take years to complete and be very tenuous, for inherent in the nature of the swirling grain and spalted surfaces the wood can cup, crack, or twist or become too punky as it dries leaving it very difficult to work.

“I too have a history of wounds and rot, scrapes and broken limbs, as well as growth and flourishing. Where these individual histories, the trees – and – mine meet is where the sculpture arises. This is the conversation. What does the wood have to say, and how do I respond? It is also a conversation with this place where I live. By this process I become native.”

Wilson’s work reflects our most human of traits, as well, the struggle the artist endures to shape meaning from that which is often discarded out of distraction or fear; those very places that hold some of the best keys for our redemption. His work mirrors that which is all too often hidden inside us, our own true nature.

“And so as I carve the wood, it carves me. I am lost. Which is the carver, which is the carved? This dissolution of self is the urge toward “God.” Ultimately these sculptures are about a search for beauty, truth, love and healing.”

Here is a sampling of work from his current show, "Wounds", at the Artisans Market Gallery that will be up until March 1, 2007. Be sure to check it out!

"One of the clearest lessons I have learned from the trees is that the wound is where the grain swirls most dynamically, the wound that is the most beautiful place. And if the wound is the very location of beauty, so too it is the place of healing."

To contact the artist, Roderick Wilson, email him at

Monday, February 19, 2007

Windows on our Worlds Windows on our Worlds

OK, go get your digital camera, look out your window and give us a view of your world by emailing your jpg to me at with date, time and general location that you took the picture and I will post it ASAP.

Woodhull, NY 02-17-07 8:15am

Treasures of Cambridge # 35 Treasures of Cambridge # 35

Kyle Spiezio pictured in front of the vault in the former Bean Head’s Coffee House, has lived in the Cambridge area for the past six years (which just happens to be all his life).

Kyle loves to "ride in the fire truck, hunt and do all different kinds of things." The son of Cambridge’s Fire Chief, he likes to call himself the "little chief," and says, that when his Dad is not around the fire station he, "sometimes, but not all the time, gets to tell people what to do." In talking with Kyle, I think he most certainly already knows the ins and outs around the fire house.

He likes tractors and is sporting a John Deere tractor as his prop, but he admits it is not his favorite one. "I got three old ones from Santa this year that I like better."

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Windows on our Worlds Windows on our Worlds

What is the view out of your window? Email your jpg to with date, time and general location that you took the picture and I will post it ASAP.

Cambridge, NY 02-14-07 10:40pm

Photographer's Log Photographer's Log

When Eyes Meet
It was a bitterly cold February 27, 2004 as I drove along in the bright afternoon sun when afar I could see that a lone deer loping through the woods was going to crest one of last year’s corn fields just around the time I would drive in front of him. I got myself into position and photographed him as he emerged at the top into the full clear sunlight, stopping dead while looking me in the eye as I sat in my car on the roadside. I clicked off a few more frames before he turned on his hind legs and sped off with his beautiful white tail flying high. I love the contrasts in this photo of the long afternoon shadows of trees in the foreground with the golden corn stalk stubs at the hill crest glowing in the sunlight on the bright white snow, all against the cloudless clear blue sky. It is all a perfect frame for one of God’s creatures poised at a moment in its lifetime. A moment come and gone; mostly unnoticed by the world, except for this one instance caught forever in time by my camera.-June Mohan
Photos: (Copyright Mohan 2004) To contact the artist, please send email to:

Monday, February 12, 2007

Treasures of Cambridge # 34 Treasures of Cambridge # 34

This is an ongoing project to document the portraits and stories of as many area residents as possible. The Cambridge area is a great place, made that way by the wonderful people who inhabit it. Life is short, and we are all to soon forgotten. So take a moment to honor yourself and your place in the history of our area. It is easy, fun and costs your nothing but about 20 minutes of your time.

Make an appointment by contacting me, John Carlson at

Ted Berndt pictured in front of the vault in the former Bean Head’s Coffee House, has lived in the Cambridge area for the past five years.

Ted grew up in central New York and tells us that a branch of his family tree originated in northern Washington County with the Van Patten’s and Wilson’s of the Whitehall area. Fate would bring him back to the area; as an employee of Pfizer pharmaceuticals, this was his territory and in the realm of the heart, the place where he would meet the woman he would marry. He sees it as kind of a “homecoming,” to come back here after seven or eight generations.

About his introduction to the area, Ted says, "The first time I rode over from Greenwich on State Route 372, I couldn’t believe it was a state highway and it opened up to this beautiful valley, and fortunately, I met my wife here, and maybe I will never leave."

Ted has been a management consultant for the past several years and now works as a per diem advanced EMT with our local rescue squad and a licensed outdoors’ guide. "I like to spend two hundred days a field, hunting and fishing and helping other tourism based businesses in the area." He loves the fishing in the area with the Battenkill, and goes on to say, "and the variety of the fishing on the Walloomsac and Owlkill is a real treasure."

Ted compares our area to where he grew up in a rural community on Lake Ontario (the place he maintains, still has his favorite fishing!). He feels that even with the economic ups and downs we have seen, that people in here are very fortunate. "I have been all over New York State, and this is a slice of Americana," true small town USA. For a small community, he marvels at its diversity, and the fact that it is within commuting distance of four cities.

Ted wants to be remembered as somebody who cared about other people. A person who "went the extra mile for neighbors, and even strangers." He goes on to say, "the first thirty-five years of my life I was a workaholic, and moving here made me see there is a community out there, there are people that are worth getting to know."

During our talk together, Ted told us he and his wife are expecting their first baby, congratulations!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Windows on our Worlds Windows on our Worlds

What is the view out of your window? Email your jpg to with date, time and general location that you took the picture and I will post it ASAP.

Hoosick Falls, NY 02-08-07

Monday, February 05, 2007

Photographer's Log Photographer's Log

After the Rainbow
While my friend, Cheryl, and I had been enjoying pizza at House of Pizza in Greenwich this past August the sky darkened to deepest greys and it began pouring huge water drops in massive sheets. The storm continued throughout our whole meal. The sky was still pretty dark when we left the eatery but it was near sundown. Just before I got into my car I looked back at the mall and saw the most magnificently colored rainbow I’d ever experienced and pointed it out to Cheryl. We stood for a few minutes taking photos and I deduced it’s other end must be somewhere over by the Washington County Fairgrounds. We climbed into the car and went rainbow chasing!

Finding a twisting road leading behind the Fairgrounds we realized, too late, we had lost the rainbow, but what we did find surely made up for our loss. This panoramic sunset at a farm on the roadside was absolutely spectacular. We parked and drank up the quiet beauty, taking photos to our hearts’ content.

While we stood in the road a car came barreling towards us and went on by. The driver, whose tail lights you can see far down the road in this photo, did not even seem to be aware of the spectacular light show God was putting on for all of our enjoyment.

It is saddening that we spend so much energy being in a hurry, focusing just within ourselves or just in front of ourselves in our lives. I wonder how many of God’s gifts we really do miss because of how we choose to focus our lives. Maybe blood pressure points might go down for some folks if we could stop now and then to watch a sunset on our way home. Instead we drive home from work swearing through traffic and tearing down lovely back roads we choose to use only as short cuts, racing to get home in order to cook dinner, do laundry, get groceries or keep appointments. Appointments we could have scheduled for 30 minutes later so we could have relaxed on our drive home, and maybe even stopped to just be still and become a part of a peaceful sunset scene.

Oh, what that passing driver missed as he sped by us. A part of me likes to think his home was just up the road and when he pulled into his driveway he then stood there for a while, somewhere in the evening along with Cheryl and me, enjoying the peace, the colors, the fresh smell of after the rain, the sounds of the animals going to bed. Yes, I’d like to think that for him. -June Mohan
Photos: (Copyright Mohan 2006) To contact the artist, please send email to: