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San Francisco 2008 How Weird Street Faire.

Under here.

August 18, 2008

Often For, Lunch
Monday. I did walk the lake yesterday. Slowly, yes, taking a couple of breaks to watch an interesting mix of people puff on by, some obviously in good shape, some, well, taking their time. Some years ago when I was working at the shipping company in downtown Oakland we'd walk the lake during lunch and it took somewhat over an hour walking briskly, but not so briskly you couldn't keep a conversation as you were walking. It took me two hours yesterday with the two fairly long breaks, so I have work to do if I'm ever to get to where I was.

And you're going to do that?

Probably not, but I was thinking last night if I don't - not so much get back to where I was, but make a move in that direction - then what's the use? You're either going in a good direction or you're not and if you're not, why not? To give in to feeling crappier during the rest of your life? We're not talking about training for the Olympics, here, just, you know, the ability to step out on that last hundred yards up my hill without standing huffing and puffing in the lobby as I'm waiting for the elevator.

The elevator?

I know. Back then I took the stairs. We're talking real world for the moment, one step at a time.

But, speaking of the moment, back now from breakfast (having walked, I might add), another two cents off the price of gas, the sky overcast, the high for the day projected to be seventy degrees (21 Centigrade), my thought, in addition to more walking, was to begin preparing for this journey to Seattle today as my departure date is coming pretty quick. My cousin's daughter, the lovely Ms. P, is getting married and I'll be there as the backup (candid) photographer.

I used this as an excuse to order a new Nikon speed light designed to work better with the current digital camera and a Kirk Enterprises flash bracket to tie them all together. What does this mean, really, in this photographer's world? It means I have more money than brains. Although they're really nice items, someone in my situation, an amateur on a much reduced budget now that I'm retired, really has little to no use for them, particularly since I already have earlier but perfectly good speed lights and flash brackets in the closet. But an excuse is an excuse and, as Mr. E often will say: do you expect to live forever, my bucko? Do you want to die with money in the bank? Do you really think skipping that extra helping of prime rib (with the good horseradish) is going to help you live forever? My bucko?

Well, he doesn't say it in exactly those words, but you get the drift. Sometimes even I get the drift, so I have an SB-900 in the mail at the moment arriving before I head for Seattle. The flash bracket arrived a month ago.

The New York Times has a long front page story analyzing the administration's handling of the run up to the invasion of Georgia this morning, pretty much laying out what I would think everyone suspected when Russia sent in the troops: our brain dead government plans to maintain their totally incompetent foreign policy to the very end. I mentioned former Secretary of State Madeline Albright had said on a news broadcast just after the invasion that it could have been avoided by acting months ago except evidently no one in the administration had the vaguest clue as to what was going on.

It's easy to think the Bush administration is history in January so they can't do any more damage than they've already done, but it's clear they're capable of stupidity in any given minute while they remain in power. You still hear all these rumors as to what they're going to drop on our heads before they leave office, irrevocable idiocies possibly useful in the coming election, but disastrous to the nation. People say we're going to bomb Iran. “Bomb! Bomb! Bomb Iran!” I hope they're wrong. I hope I'm wrong. I hope somebody's wrong. Bombing seems so impossibly stupid given what seems to be the realities on the ground, but how many impossibly stupid ideas no person in their right mind would ever entertain have dropped still born out of this White House? I feel as if I were debating how many stupid ideas you can fit on the head of a pin and then, awaking in a sweat, I remember there are so many many months before this administration's term is finished.

You're sounding more like a one note kazoo than a one man band. Besides, I happen to know you sleep like a rock. You, wake up in a sweat?

Well, yes. I save these moments of distress for the journal. Most people who keep journals, unless they're doing a political blog, don't, for good reason, go into politics, but I suspect you can understand that a sometimes good left coaster like me is watching all this with horror. Our Republican governor is a flaming leftie compared to his current Republican brothers in Washington.

There was once something called a Rockefeller Republican when I was going through my teenage years in Yonkers. Rockefeller Republicans spent their weekends at the country club, worked long six hour days in the brokerage business and sent their kids to prep schools and Ivy League colleges such as Harvard where they made friends with others of their kind who had similar connections in the securities business. The debates of the time were generally limited to the tragedies of Keynesian economics and whatever it was the droll Mr. Buckley, Jr, might be saying in sixty syllable sentences, subscribing as many of them did to the National Review. Faggots, for example, were a French something with which you started a fire, not someone you threw on a fire, and, in any case, never discussed at the club over dinner.

I take it you miss the Rockefeller Republicans?

I liked the six hour days at a brokerage company. Of course, the alternative, as a Democrat, was to do your six hour day at an advertising agency. Both camps, of course, indulged their god given right to a properly chilled Martini with, or more often for, lunch.

The photograph was taken at the San Francisco 2008 How Weird Street Faire with a Nikon D3 mounted with a 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR lens at 1/800th second, f 3.2, ISO 200.