Tag: people

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I Could Have Saved Nine Dollars

Posting resumes, following an unplanned hiatus. Dad is in a state of physical decline, and concern grows about how long he will be with us. One of my sisters asked me to join her—she from Florida, me from California—for a Presidents’ Day holiday weekend trip home, which is Aroostook County, Maine. I logged 2,950 air miles each way.

My trip started in San Diego and first stopped in Los Angeles, following a 22-minute flight with connection to Newark and onward to final destination Presque Isle. Hungry, I grabbed a burger while at LAX. I shot the Featured Image, using Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, while waiting for my $20.25 beef patty.

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Brushing University Heights

Some San Diego stoplights take so long to turn that they present unexpected opportunities—like taking the Featured Image. At Madison and Texas, I observed an artist painting the village’s name on a utility box. My wife and I were in the car headed to Costco.

We sat so long at the Red that I could claw Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra out of my snug jeans pocket; unlock the device; launch the camera app; roll down the window; tap 5x zoom; and (finally) compose three shots. Whew. And still there was time to spare!

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When Comic-Con was Fun

San Diego Comic-Con is still six months away (July 25-28). Late last year, I missed the first chance for a 2024 pass and skipped the second opportunity. My attendance days long ago ended when the convention chose not to renew my press credentials (and when I was still a working journalist). Subsequently, I wasn’t (supposedly) randomly chosen to purchase a pass.

On this fine Thursday evening, for no particular reason, let’s peek at what was SDCC before the culturally woke put to sleep my interests in participating. The Con is gone, or at least as I remember it.

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When We Wed

Thirty-five years ago, today, Annie and I joined 1,274 other couples in our blessed marriage ceremony. We drank holy wine, signifying change of lineage; marched in procession for sprinkling of holy water; and acknowledged our wedding vows.

As explained in the three previous installments, between Jan. 9-12, 1989, we were matched by the True Parent, became acquainted, and got to know one another—all in Yongin, Korea.

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Where We Posed

The third of four installments for our 35th blessed marriage anniversary is a bit out of sequence. Annie wears a ring in the Featured Image, so the ceremony already had taken place. The official wedding photo, she in her gown, comes tomorrow.

We were matched, became acquainted, and were wed in Yongin, Korea, which is about 43 km (26 miles) south of Seoul. I don’t much remember the locale.

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When We Were Acquainted

Annie smiles for the camera in a portrait probably taken by me. You do remember when film shooting was the only option—not the nostalgia thing that it is today, yes?

We were a newly matched couple in Yongin, Korea. My guess on the date for the Featured Image: Jan. 10, 1989, maybe the 11th. We would be blessed in marriage with 1,274 other couples on January 12. I will share more about that event, and our 35th wedding anniversary, in two days.

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When We Met

Today, Annie and I celebrate 35 years since our matching during a religious gathering in Yongin, Korea. We were no more than a few hours together when someone shot the Featured Image for us.

The companion capture is a day or two later, possible Jan. 10, 1989 or the 11th. We each hold a bottle of McCol, a carbonated barley drink that, honestly, I disliked. The photographer is unknown for both pictures, although he and/or she used one of our film cameras (no digital shooters back then).

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Bearded Me

The year ends with an unexpected post. Today, my cousin Dan emailed a couple older photos, both likely taken by his dad (my Uncle Glenn). Date and my age are uncertain as I write. If Dan can answer my question where, then time is something I can add later on.

I probably started the beard around age 16, definitely by 17—but age 18 or 19 is possible, too, in the Featured Image. Seventeen is my guess. If correct, location likely would be my Nana’s apartment in Lewiston, Maine. Same would be true if a year or two older.

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The Shopper and the Vendor

Artisans set up outside Mystic Mocha on Dec. 10, 2023. The boutique breakfast and coffee shop is located in San Diego neighborhood University Heights, where streets Alabama, Mission, and Monroe meet. I happened by, turned about, returned home, and grabbed Leica Q2 Monochrom. I then walked back for some stealth shooting from the hip.

What a mess made. Among the half-dozen photos, the Featured Image is the only one where people are somewhat clear. Next time, I will try zone focusing instead, rather than let the camera choose (wrongly). Vitals, aperture manually set: f/5.6, ISO 200, 1/500 sec, 28mm; 1:41 p.m. PST.

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Finally, Somebody Uses the Bike Lanes

Dec. 9, 2023, as I stopped to photograph someone’s life belongings heaped onto four shopping carts, suddenly, and rapidly, riders roared by along University Ave. in Hillcrest. San Diego’s panache for tearing up parking spaces and replacing them with kilometers-upon-kilometers of bike lanes is controversial among businesses and many residents but unapologetic policy public.

On any normal day, bikers are few, and their numbers are next to meaningless compared to the volume of buses, cars, SUVs, and trucks, among other vehicles. So I was rather surprised seeing such mass of riders, who vastly spilled out of the bike lane into traffic.

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A Life Reduced

For Dec. 9, 2023—before encountering the problem delaying new posts—I had planned to share some sightings in Hillcrest that same day. I had ventured there to drop off at FedEx a box containing my wife’s Galaxy Tab S8. For holiday sales, Samsung offered insanely generous $600 trade-in against the S9 Ultra, which I ordered for me and Annie happily inherited my S8 Plus. Expect a future first-impression about the larger tablet.

The homeless are prominent fixtures along University Avenue in, ah, Hellcrest. Used to be that street dwellers had crusty, weathered appearances; many had problems with alcohol, drugs, or mental illness—perhaps all three. But during the past 12 months or so, particularly, more of San Diego’s homeless appear to be new to the streets, older in age, or both. Many of them cart along more belongings—shopping carts carrying real possessions, not the debris collected hunter-gather style by long-time wanderers.

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Waiting to Cross

From the same North Park corner as yesterday’s jaywalker, we regard a woman looking at her smartphone while waiting to cross 30th Street at University Ave. She wasn’t the target of the shot; I cropped him away for her.

This neighborhood is considered one of the more desirable ones closer to downtown San Diego. I passed a dozen (or more) homeless folks from Meade to University. Streets are dirty, and stinky, but nowhere near as ripe as Hillcrest. Yep, desirable.