Category: Aspiration

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A Moment for Bruce

Seven years ago today, I shot the Featured Image, using Leica Q. Bruce, who shared residence with Guido and Little, waited for his owner. The previous week, I got a glimpse of the woman walking her dog (Dakota), and the short-legged kitty ambling along with them. What a wonderful sight, and I had to know more. Scouting about led me to one of the neighborhood’s handsomest—and most beloved—cats.

A few years later, over the Christmas holidays, Dakota passed away, That put an end to the dog-cat walks, until some months later when Bruce’s owner—now one of our favorite neighbors—rescued the amicable Apple. In some dictionary somewhere, sweetness is defined by a description of that dog. Sigh. She suddenly passed away last week, as was explained yesterday. Bruce is gone, too; he vanished over Memorial Day weekend 2023.

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Daughter and Mother

Why wait for Mother’s Day (May 12, 2024) to celebrate mom? While rummaging through Google Photos, I happened upon a portrait of my sister Nan with our most beloved parent. Date and locale is unknown to me, but presumably sis could identify both.

I had some fun with the Featured Image. One of Google Photo’s mischievous editing options is something called “Color Pop”. You can see how everything around the women becomes monochrome. But not without imperfections. Look at mom’s left hand and some fingers on her right hand. Color is gone.

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The Beachcomber

We return to Mission Beach for a final time, from my April 29, 2024 quickie visit. Subject of the Featured Image is the person working the sand with a metal detector, as two other folks stop their walk to watch.

Once again, I pulled out Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra to make the moment. Vitals: f/3.4, ISO 32, 1/1900 sec, (synthetic) 230mm (digital and optical zoom); 10:39 a.m. PDT. In post-production, I started to lighten up the dark areas, but instead decided to leave the photo as shot. Moody is better, and everyone is considerable distance away.

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Let’s Play in the Sand

We aren’t yet done with Mission Beach, which is about a 14-kilometer (8.7-mile) drive from my apartment. San Diego has no shortage of coastal jaunts, and I admit to taking them for granted more than taking advantage of them.

The Featured Image is a dumb, fun shot. I don’t know why the sand toys were on that wall. They didn’t appear to belong to anyone, but a nearby shop had more outside. Purpose: Unknown.

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The Duck Walk

A time not so long ago, Fuji’s single-lens compact camera series delighted photographers who wanted something smaller and capable—with creative extras, like the hybrid digital-optical viewfinder or fun film simulations.

Then TikTokers and Instagramers went, ah, quackers for retro-styling and the image—not that’s produced by the device but how they look carrying it. Suddenly, the X100V was in hot demand and available nowhere. Fuji’s answer to that problem was development of the X100VI, which started shipping two months ago.

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Why Not the Cat Tree?

The Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio is among the best computers that I have owned. One compelling feature/benefit: Construction. The Magnesium and Aluminum case is super sturdy—and today our cat Neko put it to the test. Unfortunately.

I plugged in to charge during a time in the afternoon when sunlight blankets the desk in my office. To reduce heat, I covered the Laptop Studio, an action that should have been recognized as an invitation to the cat; warm spot on a rectangular shape.

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Lily Pads No More

What makes a place historical? I ask because of the Featured Image, showing a sign which you can read and then try to answer. If the frog pond still existed, still stocked more than 120 years later, now that would be noteworthy. But, as you can see, stone wall is all that really remains—dirt filled, covered with grass. Remove the signage and who would ever guess what was?

Often enough, I have walked by this thing, here in my neighborhood of University Heights, and had assumed it to be a deliberately designed structure to slow traffic along a very residential street. I never imagined that the thing predated cars and had other meaning.

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Server @Work

Only one unopened @Work Android Collectible remains, after today’s unveiling: Café Worker / Barista / Roaster. The box is nearly empty. What disappointment that is, too. Maybe I can share some other past purchases from Dead Zebra.

In the real world, this fine fella could either be unemployed or object of customer complaint. On April 1. 2024, California raised the minimum wage for fast food workers to $20 an hour, which oddly is four bucks more than the mandate set for everyone else. Cost-cutting layoffs are rampant at burger joints, pizza, places, and the like—as are increased prices (hence, those disgruntled customers).

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Color Me Orange

Chill. Don’t complain about more flowers. Appreciate them—as do I. Walking along an alley today, I passed by clinging-vine Nasturtium that had taken over  a backyard gate and fence.

The simple, cheerful scene charmed me enough to pull out Leica Q2 and take a single shot. Vitals for the Featured Image, aperture manually set: f/4, ISO 100, 1/500 sec, 28mm; 3:17 p.m. PDT. I reduced orange saturation during post production.

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Pretty Poppy

The calendar hanging on our refrigerator correctly designates April 22 as Earth Day. I consider the celebration to be a year-long event. Our celestial home deserves more than 24 hours out of the 8,760 during a typical year.

So, commemorating today before you do tomorrow, I present the Featured Image, taken because of the California Poppy’s color. Unfortunately, breeze blew by just as I clicked the camera’s shutter, so point of focus isn’t exactly where intended but close enough.

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This is No Fairy Tale

Third weekend of the month means the book sale room is open at my local San Diego Public Library branch (University Heights). My wife and I stopped briefly by, but we didn’t stay long. The crazies, as I call them, are all over the place on Saturday mornings, loading up massive amounts of books into bags and boxes.

Based on the choices, such as physical condition, the early birds appear to be buying books to resell. (Can you say Amazon?) We checked out with two DVDs for Annie and one Aesop’s Fables for me behind some dude paying more than $90—at standard price of buck-a-book, the number is obvious.