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Under Construction
San Francisco Carnaval parade

June 18th, 2005

Joseph McCarthy?
Saturday. Out of the office early on Friday to PCB to get a leg up on the evening with Mr. S and the ever reliable Mr. Guinness before the rest of the crew arrived. They undoubtedly continued far into the evening after I left for home to see if my iPod was sitting on my doorstep. It was. It seems to work or, at least, it seemed to work last night when I loaded some music before failing today after returning from the Apple store to buy a “skin” (Apple “precious” for a case) and a cable to attach it to the car stereo. My computer no longer recognizes it when the iPod is attached. It plays, but I can't add more music. That pretty much completes my last open item with the car, though, broken or not.

The Element has a power connector that works with an iPod located right beside a mini-plug socket that allows you to pipe it through the sound system. It works (after hooking up the cable I bought at Apple). Would I have bought an iPod had the car not had this particular piece of hardware built into the dashboard radiating subliminal messages? I wonder. Another way to lose yourself inside your head walking down the sidewalk listening to music, shutting out the “real” world and folding yourself further into your imagined existence. I'm not sure this is good. Comfortable, yes, albeit occasionally disconcerting. I like the ear plug design, though, it allows you to hear conversations, car horns and pit bulls approaching from behind. Gotta think about these on the street: pit bulls, skate boards, drive bys.

We are living inside our head?

Big time. I don't mind it so much, but it makes me pause when the internal story begins to fuzz and I forget, for example, why it was I walked into a room. To get something, obviously, but what? I'd gotten up to get whatever it was and drifted off into some foggy aside and woke up to find myself standing in the living room or the bed room or the bath room, blinking. I do finally remember, but usually after I've returned to where I started only to turn around and retrace my steps.

Is this a phase? Part of the funky headed thing I've had going these last several years or just, you know, turning sixty? I heard stories when I was younger, half heard stories - who has the time to listen? - about turning sixty. Gives me great pause about turning seventy. Never thought I'd turn seventy. Never thought in the sense of even grappling with the concept. Probably best to not grapple with it here. Just get on with it, shoot pictures, if that continues to make sense, blather on in the journal. Do whatever I'm doing while I can still do it and worry where it's going later.

We all know where it's going.

Not when you're in denial. Many things can pass you by when you're in denial. Besides, ultimately, we only have rumors: stories and pictures in the paper, friends who keeled over and just disappeared, people gone, parents and relations. Could be, when our time comes, the little green men in the saucer ships we've read about will beam us up to inject us with the thousand year enzyme (patent pending). Or we could wake up in a comfortable bed having dreamed our entire existence. Or it could be we'll be the one in a billion who keeps on going, unnoticed. like Lazarus, only with a house and a garden. Could be, if we get far enough down into our own internal conversation we won't notice the cessation of our corporal existence. Maybe that was Mr. Thompson's thought as he arranged for his heirs to shoot his ash out of a canon.

Are you really obsessing?

I'm in a rut and these half attempts to break out have me curious over what spills out when I've locked up my editor. If I still haven an editor. Maybe not a bad simile for 21st century living: things changing ever more rapidly, the old rules (editors) changing in stride: the new generation practicing weird rituals right out there in the open, except at my age, there are by now three or four “new” generations, all doing their Voo Doo-dee-do tricks to freak out the oldsters.

Such as?

Such as electing George Bush president. George by himself isn't enough to generate nostalgia for, say, Richard Nixon or Joseph McCarthy - one must be honest here - but it's, you know, disconcerting.

Joseph McCarthy?

Who's Joe McCarthy? Now I am feeling old.

The photograph was taken at the San Francisco Carnaval parade with a Nikon D2x mounted with a 70-200mm f 2.8 VR Nikkor lens at 1/750th second at f 5.6 at ISO 100.