Tag: Leica Q2

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‘Kiss Me on the Bus’

A few weeks ago, I spotted this green bus seen again today. Then, I was sheepish about photographing the thing. But with clearer line of site from my eyes, and no obstructions, out came Leica Q2 to take the Featured Image. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/400 sec, 28mm; 1:10 p.m. PST.

Converted school buses aren’t rare sightings, but they’re uncommon enough to rouse my attention—particularly when an air conditioner hangs out the back window. Now that’s something new. Someone clearly lives in the vehicle, which bears New York plates (I obliterated the numerals in post-production). Welcome to San Diego!

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Fit to Survive

Hard to imagine that a year ago, Californians freaked about rising SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)/COVID-19 infections, with Governor Gavin Newsom imposing additional lockdown restrictions that essentially cancelled Christmas. Thanksgiving already was collateral damage.

Some small businesses, like Boulevard Fitness, resisted closure and defied threats of fines—or worse. The city (or county) could pull permits, particularly related to public health. For eateries and pubs, liquor license could be yanked instead or as well.

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Pedal the Pacific

Is it irony that an organization that cycles for its cause advertises on the side of a van? Maybe somebody will get the message about “trafficking” when stuck in rush-hour traffic beside the vehicle—or perhaps consider that an unmarked, white, windowless van could be carrying sex-trafficked men, women, or kids. Shiver the thought.

The group explains its mission: “Pedal the Pacific exists to educate all people about sex trafficking. We use bikes as a platform to raise awareness, educate peers, fundraise for leading nonprofits, and develop leaders who believe that no voice is too small to make a difference”.

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Have a Seat, Bring Books and Friends

Whether or not intentionally done, these giveaways are arranged like an outdoor living room. Comfy chair is the centerpiece, with stool and fold-up seating for entertaining guests. The bookcase could occupy real reading material—and surely one of the nearby lending libraries could provide a novel for personal perusal or perhaps poetry to share with the group. The other standing shelf would be place to put out food and drinks. The orange cones could cordon space for the gathering.

The setup is exactly how I found it yesterday in the alley separating Alabama and Florida Streets. Seen nearby and previously profiled in my “Cats of University Heights” series: Boxer, Pixie, and Spry.

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It’s Fake!

My wife and I came upon this sign, affixed to a utility pole, today, along Mission Avenue between Louisiana and Mississippi streets. Call me surprised, for having seen no other in our San Diego neighborhood of University Heights. So I got to wondering if a resident attempted a little scare tactic to get dog owners to clean up after their mutts. More effective: Place the notice higherand above, out of reach, a mock surveillance camera.

I walked about several streets inspecting every sign of every kind and all others shared in common: Tiny print somewhere indicating that the thing is the property of the city. By comparison, this one’s credit is “SmartSign.com”, which sells the warning, with a stake kit, for 27 bucks on the website.

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Abandoned Homeless Shelter

On Nov. 3, 2021, alongside the Adams Substation (e.g. electrical hub) in University Heights, my wife and I passed by the makeshift refuge that you see in the Featured Image. For concern someone might be sleeping inside, I shot Leica Q2 from the hip, seeking not to disturb the resident. The first companion, taken the next day, looks towards the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses on the alley behind Alabama Street and across from Old Trolley Barn Park.

Vitals, aperture manually set for all: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/400 sec, 28mm; 11:39 a.m. PDT. The other: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/250 sec, 28mm; 11:15 a.m., the next day. In the second photo you can see a bicycle behind the utility box. The entire setup was cleverly constructed but surprising for the busy location.

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Whoa, What’s That?

Mental note: Pay attention. Observe. Don’t assume. Now for an admission: I made a misidentification. On Nov. 25, 2020, I used a commercial sign to illustrate an analysis about SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)/COVID-19 lockdowns precipitating permanent pub and restaurant closures in San Diego. I thought an “a” had dropped off from “Eat’s”, on signage pointing to a presumedly closed eatery down an industrial alley/street in Hillcrest.

As the Featured Image reveals, looking from the other side, the correct spelling is “Eli’s”, referring to Eli Vigderson’s European Car Repairs. Part of the “l” has fallen away. What I thought was a “t” is instead a full letter and part of another. I got to wondering about the sign, after posting “Got Mini?” two days ago; the roadster was parked at an auto shop.

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A Rose by Any Other Name is Gone

Following “The Tree Tragedy” that destroyed the provider of shade (for us) and food and refuge (for birds and squirrels), I was ready to give notice and move out of our apartment. One problem: In December 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom essentially closed down the state for the entire month in response to a reported surge in SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)/COVID-19 cases (e.g., positive tests for infection).

But Spring (e.g., Early Summer in San Diego parlance) brought more birds than any other year—many flocking to a hedge nearby our assigned parking space. Across the street, they, and other animals, used the mighty date palm as a majestic habitat. But South American Palm Weevils infested the tree, which the city destroyed in late July. The bugs are not indigenous and removal of infected palms seeks to slow their spread.

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Juicy Fruit

I frequently see Loki, who was profiled in my “Cats of University Heights” series, jump onto a fence and into a yard where he doesn’t live. Two catio captives, nicknamed Jester and King, call home the place right next door. Today, while walking by, my wife and I saw something else on the fence—the owner’s generosity. Don’t you want one? C`mon, confess! The persimmons sure look delicious.

What I initially missed, and Annie pointed out, is the tree bearing the fruit. It towers in the blurred background of the Featured Image. The companion provides context, by focusing on the leaves and hanging persimmons, but would be meaningless without the first photo.

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Bell Weather

Santa Ana winds brought unseasonable heat to San Diego on this Thursday. By contrast, elsewhere: Parts of Minnesota and North Dakota are hunkering down for blizzard conditions. The high in my neighborhood of University Heights reached 30 degrees Celsius (86 F). By contrast, where white-out conditions are forecast: Watertown, SD is 0 C (32 F); as I write.

This morning, searing sunlight purged the frigid memory of living one winter in Minneapolis (decades ago). While walking along the Campus-North alley, between Adams and Madison, I came upon the discarded bicycle helmet that is the Featured Image. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/2.8, ISO 100, 1/400 sec, 28mm; 9:42 p.m. PDT; Leica Q2. Consider the photo, composed as shot, as homage to the warm weather.