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Here In Oakland

Art & Life

Today at the pump

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December 4, 2010

Probably So

Saturday. Maybe the mood, or the moon, or the holidays, who knows, but last evening went well and this morning was as clear as a, well..., just slightly out of tune bell. We need to be honest here, but slightly out of tune is not something to be overly concerned about I'm thinkin’. If I'm thinkin’. It being the holidays and all.

To breakfast and back at the usual place, the sky overcast. They're saying it might rain, but maybe we'll get lucky for the Oakland Holiday Parade kicking off later today at two. That means I'll be there by noon to scout for photographs. Be nice to get another page for artandlife, but you can never be sure how these things may turn out. I'm getting better at “seeing” at these things, I've done a bunch of them by now. It's not unlike practicing the guitar. One day you step up to another plateau and, well, there you are, never to look back except for the occasional bone headed stumble. (Hup!)

Later. I arrived at the bus stop down the hill about two minutes late and decided to walk downtown rather than wait to cover the parade. Overcast, a little dark, but no rain. Packed a camera with a long lens in the backpack and carried another with a medium zoom over the shoulder. My standard setup. I was thinking, as I was walking, maybe not good to walk all this way before things started. Two miles in and then two hours of scooting around shooting will probably tire an old fart out. I was surprised. Four hours total, walking down and back, lots of miles carrying the cameras without complaint from any of the still working parts.

You want a gold star or what?

I caught myself thinking about an hour in, maybe this parade wasn't going to cough up any pictures and I should just, you know, find a bus and go home. Plenty to do without adding another parade to the list. And then I thought, what a wuss. I mean really. What kind of photographer does that, gives up before the thing has even started? Those old original dudes, packing their view cameras and tripods along city streets and such, getting it done. (Hup!) You can't even get your head in gear carrying this light weight modern crap?

The one thing that came out of those thoughts - there's nothing here, pack it in - was it loosened me up a bit in the sense of going places I might have otherwise avoided because I thought they might not produce pictures. I've photographed this parade often enough now to fall into a routine, much of which I followed this afternoon, but then, thinking it was probably going to be a disaster and it didn't matter, I did a little experimenting, took a dogleg or two that turned out fine. Nothing too radical or striking, but I was clearly aware of loosening up and changing my pattern. A lesson learned and relearned and then learned again.

Anyway, going through them quickly, I did get enough for another couple of sections on artandlife, some forty or so photographs, I just need to prepare them and get them posted, something I should be able to complete sometime tomorrow. Back now after four at the apartment, pretty damned dark outside. Always surprises me, doesn't matter how many winters I've experienced: it's dark outside! Well, yes it is. Clever of you to point it out.

Whatever Guinness I drank last night, and I drank my share, hasn't affected the day. Feel pretty good, felt pretty good this morning. Some slight vision issues like those I've had in the past, brought on by this one particular inhaler. The slight slowing in my ability to focus doesn't really get in the way, but it's disconcerting, and I'm thinking of stopping the damned thing right now. See if the two other inhalers can hold the fort. Drugs and parades. What more is there to life? Well, yes. There are those. Another idiotic statement to add to the list.

You are in a good mood.

Because I'm babbling like an idiot? Probably so.

The photograph was taken sitting out at a sidewalk table in front of Coffee With A Beat with a Nikon D3s mounted with a 24 - 120mm f 4.0 Nikkor VR lens.