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Today at the pump

The Sole Prop's Sister?


Under here.

May 31, 2010

Go Figure
Monday. To bed last night about an hour or so earlier than usual, up a half hour earlier than I'd normally like, so I'm assuming whatever sleep I got last night was the right amount. The general attitude and physical being are fine, the weather is clear, the sun is out, the day ahead.

I did go through the photographs I took yesterday at the Carnaval parade feeling upbeat and then down at various times as I sifted through them. Probably the way I now look at my photographs, a wrinkled nose more prominent than in the past. Maybe it means I'm showing progress. If you're down, the mature (wink! wink!) photographer doesn't let it throw him, doesn't allow it to let him quit or go hide in his little bed with the covers pulled up. He understands there's rhythm and rhyme to this monkey and his only allowed choice is to hang on and go for the ride. Just something I wish I'd known or believed when I was young. Sounds good anyway. No complaints. (Hup! Hup!)

It is May 31st. After all these many years I automatically remember that May has thirty-one days, although there's still a small voice at the back of my head that wants to say it has thirty. In the past I've had to go through “thirty days hath September; April, June and November....” to confirm the fact. What's it about May that tells me it has thirty days? I don't know. I'm not sure it matters, although it would probably make a nice doctoral thesis in the appropriate discipline at one of our universities. Unless I'm the only one who stumbles over it. May. Thirty days.

You really down on your Carnaval pictures?

No. Some are nice, all of them talk to me at some level. I'm just realizing I'm shooting the same way every year. Nothing wrong with that, I would guess. Again, the formation of a parade lends itself much too well to shooting candid portraits for candid portrait shooter me to stop. Still, why not try a parade from a different location, see what can be found from a different angle? I'd have to skip shooting the formation, as it would outrun me or I'd be too pooped to run, catch up and set up.

Carnaval is a two day street festival in San Francisco, the parade but just one part. Maybe go to the street festival the day before and let that be the solution for shutting me up. Anyway, as always, some thinking out loud. Just thoughts. There aren't many major parades I have access to, maybe half a dozen, a half dozen days out of a year that I can take these particular candid photographs. Just find something else in all those other days, 365 less 6, leave the parades as they are, right?

Later. I won't call it a walk. A bus ride downtown to find. Peet's on Broadway was closed. The pizza place in the City Center was open, but everything else was shuttered, some of the outside tables in the City Center still in place, but all of the chairs stacked and pushed to the side, a security guard watching. So I walked along a bit and ran into this fellow again out in front of City Hall, snapping a couple of pictures. I'm sure he's aware I was photographing him, aware that I've photographed him in the past, but he pays no obvious attention, an aspect, perhaps, of his discipline. Mr. Miyagi in Oakland.

Otherwise a very short walk farther on down Broadway before catching a bus. The only other photograph was taken, I guess, in order to note the lack of people in usually congested areas, hardly unusual before ten in the morning on a Memorial Day you'd think. Most real people are still in bed with their hangovers. Or getting ready for barbecues. Or something. Somewhere.

The rest of the morning was spent finishing up what turned out to be two pages of Carnaval photos that I then added to artandlife. I'm happy I was able to manage two pages out of the group, I'm never sure until they're actually done. Very easy to be, say, five photographs short and talk yourself into adding five that really shouldn't be allowed to see the light of day, but I got there, we got there. Good.

Surprisingly, I found I had a page (21 photographs) I'd been putting together some time back of older, somehow previously overlooked photographs, that I somehow never got around to spending the three minutes it would have taken to finish and add to artandlife. I obviously need to spend time to clean up poor old Carnaval, at least get the years each picture was taken sorted out. Culling some, adding others. But they're up. Which is good.

What to do with the rest of the day? It is Memorial Day, I'm not sure if you're supposed to pretend you've done or are planning to do something properly entertaining. Nothing appeals in the way of food, nothing new there, although I'll get hungrier as the day goes on. Well, we've both heard this before. Poor me. I'm getting skinny. Even I'm ready to say “stuff it!”.

Wherever I go on the next walk, and I'd be willing to bet I get out the door right after I finish this, I'm carrying a lighter camera. Well, all the cameras weigh the same, but one with a lighter lens. The arm still aches a little after yesterday and it occurred to me, with all of this Photoshopping, maybe it wasn't the weight, but I was actually getting mouse pains in my wrist. Don't want no mouse pains in my wrist. Just a matter of watching it (he said), no big deal, but it would be funny to get carpal only after I'd quite working in an office. Go figure.

The photograph was taken at the 19th Street Station with a Nikon D3s mounted with a 50mm f 1.4 Nikkor D AF lens at f 2.8 at 1/200th second, ISO 2000.