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Here In Oakland

Art & Life


July 7, 2013

Like An Idiot
Sunday. Maybe we've read enough Maigret for a lifetime with the finishing to these last two books. The story of the one I'd seen on television came back as I was reading, so I started the sixth and last book to see, written ten years later, if I might detect a difference in character and plot. The blurbs say they've sold some eight hundred and fifty million copies of the Maigret detective books and now (I guess) they've sold an additional six. Maybe best to say six is enough.

Anyway, to sleep later than I'd have liked, up at seven-thirty feeling halfway coherent to set out and back from breakfast. Again, the Temescal Street Fair later starting at noon, we'll take the bus to take pictures as we've done in the past. Street fairs don't pony up images as easily as parades, but they're better than going out and looking for them on the street.

The great street photographers did it on the street - no parades and street fairs that I can recall - with film cameras, some large, some small, and still delivered the goods. We're a bit more laid back in our approach.

At least you haven't bought one of those little hard to see helicopter cameras yet.

Taking pictures from your armchair or from your table over ice cream and lemonade? No I haven't. Probably never or at least not yet.

Later. The bus out to Telegraph and 51st, the at the beginning (or the end?) of the Temescal Street Fair section of blocked off streets, much larger this year than last, it extending well beyond McDonald's by, well, blocks and blocks. I walked the distance (at least twice), but didn't note the street number at the far end.

And so?

Walk, walk. Shoot, shoot, Walk, walk, but obviously not enough of either as I'm short a full section of twenty-one by a good half dozen photographs. Too many photographs of the dancers, some of which turned out, not enough of the more difficult images to be found in the crowd. Fewer photographs of the performing bands this time, as they're too easy and too much like all the other pictures I've taken in the past.

And so you just pooped out, gave up and left?

After about two hours. Got off the bus at the morning café for ice cream and lemonade, adding to the slice of New York cheesecake I'd had at the fair. Better to have skipped the cheese cake as it's on the ocular to be avoided list. Not up there with sharp cheddar, but I took a short nap after downloading the pictures that had a creepy ocular aspect. We don't want our naps to have aspects, ocular or otherwise, as I got up into a world weird without rules. Weird in a way I recognized from past episodes. Too weird.

Evening. Another Annika Bengzton “Swedish reporter gets the story” at six, but another one I've seen. I didn't recall how it turned out, but that's no surprise. So, lie down and continue reading Maigret until eight to go back to the living room and see what might be playing on TV, discovered the Annika Bengzton had been followed by her counterpart, the detective Irene Huss, who's similarly drawn to lonely meets with serial killers, this one another I've recently seen, so no more television tonight.

More Maigret, one would imagine, let's hope I either finish the book at a decent hour or put off finishing it until tomorrow. It turns out the plot is another I've seen played on television and (of course) have no idea how it ends, who done the deed, how it's resolved. Feels right at home.

I entertained a brief thought of rereading an old Ross McDonald there for a minute, see if I could remember the plot of something I'd read forty years ago, although I seem to remember (for all the many McDonald's that still sit on a shelf) I was hopeless even then. All the McDonald mysteries had the same sequence of structure and discoveries: the spotlight turned on a descending ladder of suspects until you reached the guilty one at the very end.

This does wander. Wouldn't it be better if you stepped back and thought all this through before blathering on here like an idiot?

The photo up top was taken walking home from lunch along Grand yesterday afternoon with a Nikon D4 mounted with a 24-70mm f/4.0 VR Nikkor lens.