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January 24, 2011

Comes And Goes

Monday. To bed at eleven, up at eight-thirty, the head coming to consciousness one slow little bit at a time, but coming together as one's head will in the mornings; off then to breakfast and the papers, back before eleven. I could go on and on, as I often do, but the day has started well, plenty of sleep, the sky is clear, the sun is out and this is the first day of another week in our march toward summer. Best not to waste the first day of another week on the march toward summer. None of us know how many summers we may have remaining.

Which means?

Well, for one thing it evidently doesn't mean I'm going to suddenly jump up and do any of the long delayed things on my dust covered to do list from the look of it, but there's nothing wrong with feeling good, intact, sitting comfortably in the late morning, listening to the old fart's rock station on XM, still under the influence of a good breakfast. Might even pick up the guitar in another minute and strum, diddle-dee-dum.

I was trying to set up a drum beat yesterday on my guitar amp. It has all kinds of features - drum beats, instrumentals sans guitar to play along with and record if you like, amplifier effects (Want to sound like you're pumping through a tube driven Marshall amp? Just twist the dial.) - none of which I've figured out yet how to use yet; none of which, from the look of it, I'm willing to sit down long enough with the manual and figure out. Another victory for sloth.

I've looked through that manual. I'm with you on hopeless.

Shouldn't be that hard. Small children whip through it like fish through water, get it to do whatever they want. As an old techie I have no excuse.

Later. OK, not a bad day, but again, little or no ambition. A walk down to the ATM, a look-in at the book store, a cup of coffee and a bagel at my breakfast place, sitting out at a table in the sun. I'm realizing sitting out at a table in the sun has its attractions. I see why old farts eventually take to their chairs. Brought along a camera, didn't see a single scene that called out to be photographed.

Still, time on the guitar earlier, more coming up soon I suspect. You can play while you're sitting, although I find it difficult to position the guitar properly when I'm lying back. They say it's good to spend time practicing while standing too, teach yourself how that's done in front of a crowd. Interesting thing, the guitar, has many music and life lessons to impart.

Some prints now I think. Take another crack at moving more of last year's files onto DVD, two copies, one just in case. You're supposed to keep the one set off site and one day I will, but not today. You can sit while you make prints, probably half the attraction.

I mentioned I have some PocketWizards on the way, the standard device for radio controlled strobe lights that everyone uses to reliably pop lights at a distance without getting tangled up with other peoples' lights or photographers operating their lights on other radio channels.

I'd just read a nice short piece on a photographer's blog about using fill flash in bright daylight, how to light up a dark background when you're shooting a close by subject indoors and other such fascinating stuff, told in a way that actually made some sense. Caused the little light bulb to pop, got the blood pumping, made me think I might actually use these pocket things when they arrive, added another rationale to the list urging the purchase. Can you fire them while you're sitting? Well, of course. We're paying attention.

Later still. More time on the guitar, more time futzing with photographs, scanning and printing a few I found taken at the office in 2002. An enjoyable afternoon. We'll do the rest of the day in good humor. We're well into the late afternoon now, the time of day the optical migraines like to visit, but no sign they're around. I mostly forget about them when they're gone, think about them too much then when they decide to arrive. I finally have the appointment with the ocular neurologist at Stanford Hospital scheduled for early March, the soonest she had available, which is good, as the double vision still comes and goes, here in Oakland.

The photograph was taken at the Oakland Chinese Cultural Center with a Nikon D2Xs mounted with a 70 - 300mm f 4.5 - 5.6 Nikkor VR lens.