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Oakland Blues Alley festival.

June 23rd, 2001

Tomorrow. Right?
I ducked out briefly Saturday evening to return two video tapes and pick up some diet Coke. As I pulled out of the garage, camera on the seat beside me, I noticed the tapes were not on the seat beside it. Difficult to return video tapes when they're sitting up on the kitchen counter. I returned, why not, picked up the tapes, drove down the hill, bought my two bottles of diet Coke, returned the tapes and returned home.

You're supposed to forget things as you grow older. Names, destinations, appointments, whatever. The thought occurs, this evening, for example, as I was driving, how often does this happen and how much worse might it get and, most important, how quickly will it progress? How many more names, how many more tapes, how many more appointments, this year, next year, ten years? Not good thoughts for a Saturday afternoon, better to have them Sunday evening as I'm drifting off to sleep. Or not at all.

Now, of course, how much of this is real and how much of this is me thinking too much, a little bored, no more movies to watch, nothing on the radio? I began forgetting names, let us say occasionally forgetting names, three or four years ago. They'd come back to me soon enough and I've noticed it seems to have improved, fewer names forgotten, over this last year. I also have no idea what sort of memory I had in my twenties and thirties. It was better, but how much better? Is that the way it eventually ends? You get to the point you can't remember and the world just peters into emptiness?

The Dykes on Bikes tomorrow, the Gay Pride Parade kicking off on Market street at 10:30, giving Oakland Blues Alley festival. me a couple of good hours of shooting. They end up outside San Francisco City Hall for a big party that I've never attended before, the area in front of City Hall is large and holds a lot of people. It's all a gas, this gay thing in San Francisco, but I realize I'm more comfortable with the dykes and their bikes than I am with the guys and their show. Not an overly hip admission, but I suspect not overly unusual. San Francisco still has a very diverse culture, at least it did up until the housing costs became prohibitive. The African American community is rapidly disappearing and the Latinos and the not overly rich artists, writers and musicians have already followed. Just too damned expensive to live in one of those modest million dollar houses. Oakland, for the while, is more diverse than San Francisco, but its day is coming. Nice, this weird diverse congress of people, one interesting place to live. I wonder where they're all going and if there's any need for an older guy with a computer?

So, I'll shoot pictures while I'm still able to remember the film is stored in the refrigerator, the camera batteries have been charged and when I need to get up in the morning for the parade, which is tomorrow. It is tomorrow? Right?

The photographs were taken at the Oakland Blues Alley festival. The quote is attributed to an English professor at Ohio University.