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Here In Oakland

Art & Life


June 29, 2013

Old Man's Adventures
Saturday. To bed last night after reading most of The Yellow Dog, the third of the three Maigret novellas I'd bought, thinking, if something was drawing me more so than most, maybe the books would be interesting as well. And so I got to sleep after midnight. No complaints, be did the deed with a straight face.

Up easily enough forty-five minutes after the alarm, off to breakfast and back on another going to be hotter than hell (in California hell is slightly cooler than in other areas) sunny day to come home, finish yesterday's entry and take a nap. Best to take the nap.

Awake later to read what remained of The Yellow Dog (they're short, around a hundred or so pages, novellas, really rather than books or short stories) and contemplate the rest of the day. Mr. K is having an combination birthday and jazz photograph opening party and exhibit nearby at a local club, The Sound Room, at six, so I'll drop by.

Maybe now go through the farmers market for a walk, take a picture or two whether the eye finds one or not and have lunch at the usual place. And work on the guitar. A good session yesterday, the inside of the ring finger is still raw and ringing as I write.

Later. It is warm out there. Not bad in a t-shirt, if you're sitting in the shade, as there's a nice little cooling breeze along by the lake, but otherwise I'm staying inside.

Over to the lake and then on to the usual place for lunch, a BLT, ice cream and a lemonade out under an umbrella by the sidewalk. Lots of people on the sidewalks, lots of people at the farmers market. One or two photographs of the Women in Black, a walk on to the lake curious to see if I could see signs of the fireworks that were set off by the pergola around midnight last night. I saw them exploding just over the apartment roofs that lie between mine and the lake. Big bright loud things that ascended and exploded into flowers and then exploded again in the sky. No signs of powder burns or such that I could see, but then I only checked from a distance.

The sax player happened along, as he's done may times in the past, so an excuse for a picture, this fellow walking down to and silently addressing the lake. I wasn't able to get a photograph with his arms properly outstretched, so this one will have to be enough. I often see him along the lake. I've never seen him say anything to anyone in passing, often find him sleeping during the day on the lawn near the lake. I'm sure there's a story of some kind, one of many too many untold out on the street.

Home now, ready for another nap, another lie down and be quiet with the eyes closed for as long as it feels right, before facing the guitar. The side of the ring finger that lays against the guitar strings when playing a barre chord is still sore, but will toughen up soon enough with more work.

Evening. What to wear? I needed pockets to put the sun glasses in, if nothing else, not to mention the cell phone, so a light jacket over a t-shirt, the temperature getting down low enough now to feel comfortable in the shade as it approached six, even more so later when I returned.

I wasn't altogether clear on the timing of the thing. There's a bus stop right beside The Sound Room on Broadway at Grand, one going back in the other direction just across the street making it an easy trip, so I got off the bus with a camera and the 50mm f/1.4 lens, figuring it would be the best compromise for taking pictures if pictures were allowed inside. It's also small, which was important.

Said hello to Mr. K who was standing at the entrance with an iced drink in his hand, bought a ticket and a Mexican soda over ice in a glass and sat for a while and listened to the set. None of the members of the opening trio looked old enough to buy a drink, but I can't tell anymore and we'd managed bands way back when that faced the same problem. Not that some of the members looked too young, they were too young, but as long as there was no too obvious drinking on stage it was allowed. When you've got an 18 year old guitar player who plays near to god, you make adjustments: club owners, band managers both.

Listened to the set, took a picture of the cake and headed home. I'd said hello, checked for any others I knew and felt I'd done enough. I'll see if they'd run another of the Swedish reporter episodes on television again at six when it plays again at nine and maybe eat some dinner while I play the guitar. Right. Such are this old man's Saturday night adventures. No complaints, since the head is straight, here in Oakland.

The photo up top was taken at Lake Merritt with a Nikon D4 mounted with a 135mm f/2.0 DC AF Nikkor lens.