[Journal Menu]

[Home Page]


[100 Books]

[Other Sites]

Here In Oakland

Art & Life

Today at the pump

My sister!


Under here.

January 21, 2011

Reality Check

Friday. Up without an alarm just after seven, off to breakfast and the papers before eight, back now at the apartment (the sun blasting through the sliding glass doors) just after nine feeling pretty damned good. Yes, the sinus-upper palate thing aches a bit, as it always aches (sometimes more than a bit), but when it's there all on its lonesome there's nothing much to think about. Like a scraped knee two days after the event, you know it's there, you'd rather it wasn't, but no big deal after all has been said. The difference is the clear head, the non-bifucated vision and the attitude. All that to say it's a good morning, better than many recent mornings.

No hup! hup!'s?

Well, one or two, but in celebration more than in encouraging me to believe in an upbeat outcome. (hup hup)

Later. A clear headed ride downtown on the bus, a cup of coffee and a chocolate bar at Peet's, a bus then back to the apartment: eyes sharp, none of the double vision crap; the head good; the weather close to perfect. My, my. How do you spin a story on that?

As an aside, a company called PocketWizard that makes radio slaves used in triggering multiple strobe lights at a distance has been about to release their new “better than sex” Nikon unit now for longer than I can remember. They released a first unit for Canons over a year ago and evidently, since they had a lot of trouble making the Canon unit work properly after it was released, this experience caused them to pull back and work out all the bugs before releasing the Nikon unit.

Well, as you may have guessed, I've been watching the B&H web site to see if they're ever going to arrive and this morning they did. Available for purchase. So I have some on the way. Will I use them? Really? Will I learn to light a space with some small sense of intelligence and get decent pictures when I venture out into the forest? Maybe. Maybe not. But the equipment I've got.

Anyway, I've recharged the strobe light batteries (AA batteries, lots of them) I used Sunday and packed them into a camera bag along with their various external battery kits, light diffusers and such with just enough room left for PocketWizards. We'll see. I'm thinking a roll of duct tape and I'm ready.

See what happens on a morning when I appear to have awakened with a clear head? Not much, from the look of it. Still ordering equipment I may well let sit in a corner gathering dust with every other outdated thing I've accumulated. At least they're small. Won't take up much room. Plenty of space left for the next big whiz bang must have gizmo.

Are we bitter?

We are going to learn how to use these damned camera lights. (hup! hup!)

Later still. Late afternoon, no sign of an ocular migraine (cross the fingers, cross the toes). It's been a good day with a load of clothes in the washer as I write. For me an indicative sign. Normally I'd wait another two weeks, go through everything I have that's clean before lugging them to the laundry room. Much easier to run but two loads: thirty minutes in the washer, another hour in the drier, psychologically easier than doing six loads at once, nothing to wear the next morning. Or am I grasping at straws just to have something to write? It's what I've done, this afternoon, that and practicing one the guitar. And surf the web, following the usual political blogs, puttering about.

Oh, and I ran through Turbo Tax to take a first look. I've still got information coming, but I wanted to see what it might look like if I entered some approximate numbers. Ouch! Dumb! At the least. I could have avoided what I'm seeing with but a little foresight and effort. We'll do better next year and we won't stew over it between now and April, but I hate to think how really far off the track I'd go with my various habits without the occasional reality check. Death and taxes.

The photograph was taken at the San Francisco 2006 Cherry Blossom Festival Parade with a Nikon D2Xs mounted with a 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR lens.