Saturday, September 29, 2007

Did I mention I like lenses?

Camera bowling fire.

I hate cameras. Really. That may sound strange coming from someone who just wants to take pictures 24 hours a day, but it's true. If we could eliminate that camera from the chain of actions that results in a pictures hanging on your wall, I would be okay with that world. I do, however, like lenses.

I tried to prove my theory about how the better bowlers grew up outside a major metropolitan area, but apparently there were enough bowling alleys in NYC to prove me wrong. I do, however, think the pool sharks are born and bred.

I broke a camera that night. I picked it up off my couch, but the strap was caught, and catapulted the camera out of my hand, and straight down into the floor, lens first. The lens seemed fine, as did the camera, so I loaded and packed it for the trip to the bowling alley. Once out of the subway, I found the meter didn't work. I still used it, and everything on the one roll I developed came out fine.

But I was disappointed in the bowling alley. I love the clean bright look and all the geometry of bowling alleys. That is until someone had the bright idea to make it really dark, add disco lights and florescent UV tubes, and blast dance hits of the 70s. I forgot how to bowl, so I lurked around the other lanes to get a few pointers. Everyone sucked,

About ten minutes after getting home from tonight's late night post-work debriefing, the fire engines showed up. I'm sure it was a jumpy new tenant who called, as I knew exactly what it was, and so did the mom in 22 who's been here longer than I. The heat came on for the first time since last winter, and the contractors working in 12 left a radiator off a pipe, making a sauna, making it look like smoke was billowing from the windows. I went down to confirm the firemen's suspicions of it being steam, and see if I could help answer any questions. They broke through the door and turned off the open valve. We exchanged thank yous and good nights.

Monday, September 17, 2007

D.C. 9/15/07

The speeches went on much longer than we expected. The protesters were getting restless, and started to chant about stopping the speeches, and starting the march. In the end, they actually started the march before the speeches were done. But first, after the vets against the war stood together on the stage and spoke of their opposition to the war, a guy in a white shirt and backpack took over the podium, and began explaining that he wasn't scheduled to speak. Before he could really complete a thought, other than mentioning he was a conservative, he was cut off. At first, the crowd seemed like thy wanted him out of there, but then something interesting happened; after all the talk of exemplifying democracy in action, the protesters started chanting for the organizers to turn the PA back on. They turned on his mic, and another ten seconds later, when he explained how sometimes a war can be fought for a good reason, he was resoundingly booed off the stage. It was a perfect example of democracy in action. He was allowed to make his point, and the masses voted with their voices. One of the vets, hobbling around on crutches, brought the man back up to the podium, and with their arms around each others shoulders, they respectfully agreed to disagree.

But it's not always that easy. Not always that respectful. Once past the White House, and the Treasury building, the barricades were lined with pro-war zealots armed with misspelled signs and right-wing radio slogans, hurling baffling insults. We were told to go live somewhere else if we didn't like it here, even though we were the embodiment of the rights and duties of the proud american citizen. We were called smelly hippies, and commies, which was all about their own ignorant stereotypes. One of our group was told "why don't YOU go over there!?!" Our friend was puzzled by that logic since we were clearly against ANYONE going over there. It's hard to argue with people so willfully blind. I have a line that, when crossed, all I can do is laugh. They crossed that line very quickly. But these clowns are voters, and that's not funny at all.

The Capital Building is quite beautiful, and the scene there was a strange dichotomy of anger and lazing around. The line between people lying down in the protest die-in, and people taking a nap in the lush green grass on a beautiful day, was really hard to find. The very organized arrests were a little strange as well. People would jump over a wall, get cuffed, and get walked up the steps. All kinds of people. A 14 year old girl. An elderly woman (they didn't even cuff her). A few vets got sprayed, and that caused people to start throwing things. I thought the police showed considerable restraint, though maybe I'm just used to the police here in New York. I witnessed a few incidents throughout the day that would have been handled with a much heavier hand by the NYPD.

We walked the mall to the Washington Monument. A tourist couple asked me to take their picture with the Capital building behind them. I wondered what it was like to visit that city only to find protests and mass arrests going on. I guess I could have asked. We finished our time in DC at an Ethiopian restaurant discussing how we don't see any advantage to the Electoral College. I am sunburned and still sore, but so glad I went. Thanks to Sebastian, Natasha, Beckah, Mary, Claudia, and our ringleader, Bill. Sorry all I have to show now are video stills. It may take a while to develop the film.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


I have a cocktail napkin on my desk with a phone number written in black sharpie. There is no name. I remember writing down this number, but I have no idea who relayed it to me.

I seem to be forgetting my size. I keep banging my knees on things. I used to be much better at knowing my physical boundaries.

I now run errands. When I was little, my mother always seemed to be running errands.

Looking at these three above points together for the first time, I'm thinking they are all age related.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


I worked about 80 hours in the last seven days. I don't think it's quite a record for me, but I was much younger in the days when I would work an 18 hour session at the studio, sleep on a couch in one of the control rooms, and wake up to work the next session in the morning. Hank Shocklee called me "night of the living Josh." Chuck thought that was hilarious. Sleeping in the studio took on a certain amount of risk after that Python got loose down there and didn't turn up for a few months. I kept waiting for the morning when I would wake up with a snake wrapped around me, no one able to hear my calls for help through the soundproofed walls.

But what was once going to be a three day recovery period is now turning out to be a bit shorter. Once I got sick, and came to terms with the random nature of chronic disease, I decided that I would work whenever I was healthy enough to do so. I guess I'm starting to realize that approach applies to more than just work. I'm healthy enough to do a lot of things.

Monday, September 03, 2007

That email really sucked.

Yeah, sorry about that.
I did a lot of stuff on my days off last week. Now I just need to figure out what to do on the days I work. Man, that boomin system rollin by sounds really buzzy. Like the whole car is about to come apart like the Bluesmobile. Halloween was fucking hilarious. I still don't know if it was supposed to be.