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San Francisco 2007 Carnaval Parade.

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September 17, 2008

This Foolishness
Wednesday. It's noon, still overcast, breakfast at the usual place early this morning, the usual Wednesday morning breakfast group of realtors listening to advice from a lawyer on how to testify in court at a table in the far back of the room. Harder to read the papers when they're talking. I wonder what that's about, testifying in court? Local brokers who sold people big commission sub-prime mortgages on their houses who should have been sold smaller commission prime mortgages and now they're being sued? One can only hope.

A run to an Office Max for photograph and CD mailers, they were out of the photograph mailers I wanted, then on to Animal Farm for cat food. Emmy's been eating, but boy is she picky, picky, picky.

Later. A run to Safeway to buy crackers, tuna fish and sake. Just enough sake to make it interesting this evening, not so much as to require any thoughts on the subject tomorrow morning. Sounds like a rationalization, doesn't it? Two flasks though, each in its own little smoked white Ozeki bottle, one, come to think of it, sitting right beside me now as I write.

I bought a copy of Clockers and started reading it Monday. The author, Richard Price, is the co-writer of The Wire that I've just finished watching for the first time and its characters are, indeed, wired with an internal pressure you can uncomfortably feel yet, it being so well written, you don't seem to mind.

In the fifties, my fifties, in high school, it was West Side Story: zip guns, knives and the like in popular culture. If Clockers is how people really live in the projects, well, how do any survive? The writer, of course, is driving the narrative, setting the boundaries, piling on the pressure beyond (perhaps) any sense of reason but-boy howdy it's intense. Just the thing to read after watching the news today, the market melting, people who don't have a clue explaining the world in front of a camera. Madness all around. Maybe a little more of that sake later, smooth some of the edges.

Still, all in all, intense or no, it's given me a boost - my, my, an old reader actually reading - and I ordered a copy of Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace, the fellow who hanged himself recently at the ripe old age of forty-six, buying it on the recommendation of two writers who's opinions I'm willing to trust. Some of the descriptions of the book remind me of descriptions of Look Homeward Angel by Thomas Wolfe, another fellow who died young, but not at his own hand. I say similar in that the book is described as big, messy, discursive (and long) and that's the comparison I'm making, not for their style or narrative. We'll find out. If I crap out and it remains unread up on the shelf, well, I'll stop this foolishness until the next one comes along.

The photograph was taken at San Francisco 2007 Carnaval Parade with a Nikon D2Xs mounted with an 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR lens at 1/2500th second, f 2.8, ISO 640.