Tag: signs

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You Do Know That Spook Day Has Come and Gone?

Call me a nasty nitpicker. Go ahead, I won’t be offended. You won’t trigger me. I won’t cower and cry: “You make me feel afraid”, like words are acts of violence. By the way, are you as bothered as I by people who do respond in such a way? The described reaction is the epitome of narcissism—of me first behavior.

Oh, and what is my nitpick? The Halloween sign in the Featured Image, which I captured on Dec. 4, 2023 about an event that occurred more than a month earlier. The poster hangs on the playground fence of Garfield Elementary, which is located in San Diego neighborhood North Park. Maybe the sign should come down, rather than taunt kids with the promise of something that ain’t happening because it already has. Hey, just saying.

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Pet Perhaps?

Who is this mysterious Pookie? I want to know. Surely the name refers to an animal. In summer 2020, I saw black cat Cocoa in the yard behind the fence where is this sign. Oh, so you aren’t confused, since San Diego is three summers long, I refer to the “mid” season. We’re in late summer now, with warmer-than-typical temperatures: 29 degrees Celsius (85 F) yesterday and 27 C (80 F) today and dry; low teens humidity.

For the Featured Image, I used Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra; today. Portrait mode produces bokeh—not sure if the blur is optical, digitally enhanced, or both. Vitals: f/1.7, ISO 10, 1/240 sec, 23mm (film equivalent); 10:21 a.m. PDT.

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Boom Button

One week ago tomorrow, Hamas terrorists launched an assault into Israel that slaughtered entire families (yes, children included), grabbed hostages, and raped women. Need I say more? As Israel prepares to invade Gaza Strip, regional tensions rise—perhaps even exceeding the raw emotional reaction among Jews and many other human beings.

My concern: Atrocities were meant to evoke such anger that Israel acts out the script of a plan meant to give Hezbollah an excuse to join Hamas in a counteroffensive that would devastate the Jewish state and lead to global war—as nations like the United States take military action for its longstanding ally and Muslim countries like Iran directly or, by proxy, indirectly intervene for the terrorist groups.

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More than a Mouthful

How hungry are you? Could you eat enough to save $20? Your answer—and appetite—could make you famous, or infamous, in San Diego neighborhood North Park. Rudford’s wants you to take the “Big Nick” challenge. As the sign suggests, your meal is free if completed within 30 minutes (don’t get sick, now).

What is this massive meal? Two pounds of beef between buns. Easy, right? Wrong. There are four eggs squeezed in, too. On the side, get ready for it: 4 ounces of hashbrowns and another four of French Fries, because you can never have enough carbs. Gravy, salsa, and four slices of American cheese complete the plate full.

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A Solitary Sign

This is different and, honestly, refreshing. In my San Diego neighborhood of University Heights, We Believe signs are almost always some variation of rainbow color text on black background professing sentiments like “love is love”; “black lives matter”; and “science is real”—among others.

Today, along Shirley Ann Place, my wife and I passed a placard seemingly meant as an antidote to the others. Given the community’s liberal leanings, and the plethora of the other signs, I must admit surprise seeing one so blatantly contrary. We live where views dissident to progressive feelings-based beliefs and values simply are not tolerated.

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Boulevard of Broken Dreams

I promise: No more photos of the iconic sign on El Cajon Blvd in San Diego neighborhood University Heights. But tonight, returning home with a gallon of organic whole milk (whoa, November 22 sell-by date), from Sprouts market, I came upon the structure from the other side of the street. Surprise! You can get closer to the thing from there. I never would have guessed.

The Featured Image is one of two captured using Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra. This one is straight from the smartphone: Composed as shot and no alterations. Vitals: f/2.4, ISO 1250, 1/40 sec, 70mm (film equivalent); 8:54 p.m. PDT.

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Galaxy S23 Ultra RAW Roars Past an Iconic Sign

This isn’t my first Featured Image of this sign—and certainly not at night. But this one is the first using Samsung’s Expert RAW app on Galaxy S23 Ultra. Results do surprise, because I didn’t expect this much character or clarity from a smartphone’s small sensor.

I chose 50 megapixels and let S23 pick the settings. They’re easily adjustable, and I will do so on another day’s test run. Vitals: f/1/7, ISO 1600, 1/25 sec, 23mm (film equivalent); 8:39 p.m. PDT, tonight.

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Behave Yourself, or Else

Unless mistaken, I never shared the Featured Image—although that was my intention and mistaken belief having done so; ages ago. But here we are with no searchable evidence that you have seen this one, which is among the last taken with iPhone 13 Pro. In mid-December 2022, I returned to Android via Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra.

The “Code of Conduct” sign was, and may still be, nearby Bloomingdales on the upper level of San Diego’s Fashion Valley Mall. “No weapons” means that I break the rules every visit—and, until now, without knowing. Yup, I carry a pocket knife. Quick, call the security guards! The tiny thing cuts paper pretty well. Occasionally.

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What’s More Inclusive Than Welcome?

On July 14, 2023, as the prideful descended upon San Diego for the annual alphabet-letter parade the next day, I stopped with my wife to gawk at the fence, along Adams Ave. in University Heights, that is subject of the Featured Image.

The “Welcome” sign and homage to the “brave”, along with an American flag out of frame, stood starkly—proudly and patriotically—in contrast to the many rainbow flags we encountered nearby along Panorama Drive. (Say, why do these banners have six colors when the real deal in the sky is seven?)

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Wash `n Drive

The prominent decoration in San Diego during June are rainbow flags. I don’t love them. There are so many, meaning is pointless. Besides, I see more cultural, political, and societal division because of them than the inclusion the colors supposedly represent.

Continuing along Adams Avenue from the clock, you will pass the self-serve car wash. The Featured Image, from Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, is a refreshing blast of colors compared to the tired and overly displayed rainbow. Hence, my stopping for a shot, on June 2, 2023. Vitals: f/1.7, ISO 10, 1/1400 sec, 23mm (film equivalent); 2:55 p.m. PDT.

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The North Pole Goes South

What odd timing is this alley find. An Arctic airmass assaults my home state this weekend—and what a shocking contrast to San Diego. As such, my wife and I watch weather forecasts more than typical. This afternoon, when our high temperature reached 19.4 degrees Celsius (67 Fahrenheit), the Caribou, Maine weather station reported -28.9 C (-20 F) with windchill of -43.9 C (-47 F).

On the Fahrenheit scale, that’s a difference of 80 degrees air temp and 100 degrees when considering windchill. The difference is as pronounced this evening. In San Diego, it’s 10 C (50 F). Caribou: -31 C (-24 F) with windchill of -46.7 C (-52 F). Brrr.

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Not Salsa

On an errand to the Target in North Park today, I passed by a sign seen, and photographed, about three weeks ago. I would have taken a fresh pic but a workman had opened the red pipes to the right, and he clearly didn’t want any interference. Besides, I already had the Featured Image.

This lonely street shot comes from Leica Q2 on Nov. 17, 2022. Vitals, aperture manually set: f/2.8, ISO 100, 1/1000 sec, 28mm; 12:13 p.m. PST. During post-production, I pumped up the dehaze setting to emphasize the clouds, which led to also adjusting contrast and shadows.