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December 26, 2011

Open The Manual

Monday. I watched a Scandinavian police procedural on television last night that wound up at ten-thirty, so I got to bed a little late, justifying it by saying, in order to read the subtitles, I needed to sit in front of the screen where I would more easily practice the guitar. And I did, going over and over a four chord sequence for an hour an a half. Which is good, unless my upstairs neighbors weren't amused. I can almost bring the sequence off, one chord to the next on the beat, might actually make it happen when I pick it up again later today.

Up this morning at six, to breakfast and back by eight; I, the only breakfast customer inside at a table. They sell a lot of coffee and the occasional pastry at their front register to people who pop in and pop out, but there wasn't a lot of popping in and popping out this morning either, not after a Christmas holiday. Which is to be expected, I guess. Plenty of parking, though. I will say that.

Overcast with high fog, I'm assuming the sun will break through later this morning. Given the nature of the day I should think of an area to take my walk, deserted streets can make for interesting photographs, although nothing for the moment appeals. Plenty of places out there, just none strike my fancy. Of course it's still early, I'm lucky to be conscious let alone hyped on places to shoot.

We've lost our rudder here. None of this is of any interest.

Conscious or not, it has some small moment to me. Deedle-dee-dee. Without the walk I'm stuck here with that four chord sequence on the guitar. You understand.

Later. A walk out into the fog. Low lying, some of it, an overall grey morning, the birds out in force, the lake placid with the ducks and gulls sitting like decoys waiting on the sun. Still, worth a couple of pictures.

Down to the ATM to deposit a check this time, Medicare having sent me a reimbursement. I have no idea if they're on top of things, whether or not I'm paying more than I should or paying less. I suspect things are in order, but my record keeping is less than wonderful and their's is, well, sometimes difficult to correlate and understand. Such is the nature of America. Muddled, with opportunities to over charge the idiots (like I).

Where's this going?

I have no idea.

Anyway, a walk then back around the loop to the morning café to sit outside with a cup of coffee, still overcast, suffering from what I call the late morning dry mouth, aching palate and sinuses. A bit of the old double vision, but not enough really to count. Sitting at the table I practiced focusing on their lattice fence along the sidewalk, bringing it in and out of focus. Hard to say, exactly, what I was seeing (or not seeing), if it depended on whether I was looking up or down or left or right. Seemed to be acting up right at the center of things this time. Variety, evidently, giving spice to a life.

Anyway, a picture of two with the 85mm f 1.4 lens, the now older one since they've introduced the new model G. Sharp as a tack this lens. I forget what sharp as a tack is using the zooms. The 70-200mm is legendary for sharpness, as is the 24-70mm, but both are put in their place by the old 85mm f 1.4 prime. Not sure that means anything in this world, but something I notice, taking pictures all the time.

Back now after noon feeling better, the dry mouth pretty much gone, the sinuses and palate drawing back to wherever they hang out in their hole, the sun coming in through the balcony glass door. Still foggy out there, but that will be gone in another hour now that the sun has reached the ground. Evaporation our friend here in Oakland.

I don't think your brain has quite meshed yet.

Details, details.

Later still. A good over an hour or so's crack at that chord sequence. Still impossible, glad to see you can count on some things never changing. Another month, I'd guess. Still, once you have them down you have them down, just go over them now and again to keep them in shape, but getting them down is indeed progress and I can see being able to play this thing in another, oh, thirty months.

Thirty months is forever.

I know, I know.

Evening. More time on the guitar. What am I doing? Going through a George Harrison song on my own. I'd think his other students do that. Why learn the guitar if you don't want to play? Sneak in a couple of unassigned notes on the side?

A break taking some self portraits. Not sure why, but I'm one of my more understanding and pliable subjects. I don't throw rocks or charge by the hour. Then, again, you get what you get.

I evidently left one of the PocketWizards set up on a umbrella tripod (tucked out of the way in the corner) running, totally draining the batteries, one of its AA batteries actually leaking a bit, so I spent some time cleaning it up. Still doesn't work quite right, will have to see what's what. I suspect it's because I haven't used them recently enough and I've forgotten how to throw the switches that make them spark. Not good to leave your equipment on (for a month). I'd think. Unfortunately, I suspect I may (ouch!) have to open the manual.

Downtown San Francisco late afternoon on Friday taken with a Nikon D3S mounted with a 50mm f 1.4 Nikkor G lens.