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Million Mom March

May 21st, 2000

In checking with my local computer store, I discover what I had already begun to suspect: My new Intel 820 motherboard has the defective chip set that has been in the news recently, Intel right now in the process of recalling it because it causes things to happen that are similar to the things that have been happening to mine. They will give me credit and replace it with another motherboard of my choice.

Actually, that's OK. Now that I've saved a ton of money buying a "cheap with a chancy transmission but otherwise seems OK used car", I am now going to spend some of it on more RAM and one of those super fast 10,000 RPM IBM 18 gig hard drives that serves up photographs so fast you can hardly hold your water. That and a CD burner. And a decent mouse. And some M & M's. And a blankie (Small soft pastel colored blanket that you can clutch close at night to keep the Boogie Man away.).

OK, OK. It's warm today. Eighty-five degrees. The gene thing. We talked about that yesterday.

Sunday. Up at 5:00 AM, get to the BART station at 6:00. They had people checking in the runners as they entered the station, so this must have been going on all the way up the line. Should have checked the schedule. Train arrived at 6:30 (or was it later?) and it was packed, standing room only, so we all sat down in the isles. The train was delayed in Oakland, something about a fire on the train in front of us, and we finally got to San Francisco around 7:30, half an hour before the race started. Lots of people streaming toward the starting line jamming the street, shoulder to shoulder, sidewalk to sidewalk. Good shooting conditions.

I took up a position behind a parking meter to break the flow of the crowd around me and shot people's faces as they approached. Ordinary not dressed to the nines people wondered why I was shooting pictures of them instead of the people in costumes. Well, I shot them both. People with interesting faces and, of course, attractive women. Women I found attractive, anyway. I guess I really don't have to explain any of this.

Anyway, long day, arrive back at the BART station in the old neighborhood around eleven, have a hot just Million Moms March out of the oven bagel with cream cheese and a 20 oz. bottle of Coke at the Kosher deli because it's Sunday and I don't give a shit, drive back home to drop off the camera gear, get back into the car and drive down to have a coffee and read the paper at the usual place. And it's not quite noon. And I am wondering what to do now, so I go have a late lunch and see the 3:15 showing of the The Gladiator and now I'm sitting here finishing up this paragraph and thinking I really need those Bay to Breakers pictures to turn out if I'm going to have anything to run next week. Sounds like many another Sunday around here.

People have discussed The Gladiator in other journals. Yes, it's a bit bloody, but not all that bloody, and the battle scenes and gladiatorial combat are well staged and interesting. Nice acting, great special effects, Rome at the height of its power, and a plot that is truly stupid. Truly stupid stumbling to insulting. A fifty million dollar budget and a 27 cent plot. Or a sixty million dollar budget or a forty million dollar budget, I don't know about budgets, but the plot was a 27 cent clinker with an ending that was truly embarrassing.

The photographs were taken Sunday at the local Lake Merritt Million Moms March. My decision to shoot these at ISO 320 instead of 400 was wrong. Should have been 400. The Million Moms was overexposed.