(Moonrise over San Quentin Palace)
My mother-in-law (that's a strange phrase) came into town bearing gifts. She had some things for me, for my birthday. A Nikon F-801, a Nikkor 50mm f1.4 lens, and a Nikkor 24-200mm f3.5 - 5.6 lens. I have been shooting actual film all day, cellulose, silver-halide.... I will be a film snob in a matter of weeks. I will be correcting Selavy soon on technique, among other things. You'll see...
I have always wanted some "in" to become a snob but I was far too lazy to pursue anything on my own. Now it has landed in my lap. The gods are favoring me again, if only for a flash. In the future when somebody hands me their digital camera I will hold it only by its strap, contemptuously, as if it is a baby's diaper that needs to be disposed of, handing it back to them with a nonplussed look of dismissal on my face, not commenting at all on what I think about it, not needing to. Or merely stating, "Oh wow, that weighs much less than it looks like it would. Does it also take light little pictures?"
I might even move back to New York and wear black sweaters.
I tried to escape my fate for a brief moment last night. On a 15 minute break from work I went out to the edge of the parking lot, which is bordered by marshland on the east. Between San Francisco Bay and San Rafael Bay I stood looking across San Quentin Prison to where the moon would rise. I waited there with my camera and a rickety tripod, far too low in elevation to get a good picture. The moonrise would be blocked by many things, a power line and a dune covered with marsh grass most of all.
At least I wasn't working, I thought. Or, in the prison across the bay.
An older gentleman walking by bemoaned the power lines. It startled me when he spoke. I didn't hear him coming. I was beginning to worry that I had been out there too long, that somebody would notice, that I would have to answer for something. I would make an excuse, or lie. I'm far too transparent when it comes to guilt.
He apologized for having startled me. I said that I was just a little bit nervous, trying to help break my brother out of prison, across the bay. He didn't seem to think that was funny. He walked on. Fuck him, I thought. No, not that. He's probably a football coach at Penn State.
I thought of yelling after him that, "Scott Peterson was framed!!!" or "Leonard Peltier...!!!" or "Free Jerry Sandusky!!!" Something, anything...
But I didn't. I have softened in my retirement years. That twisted old carcass is probably sniffing some boy's underwear somewhere right now. I might have to start carrying mace with me again soon.
No. I just don't have anything else to say... My good friend, Angie Varona, was talking to me the other day about various photo sites. She really likes them. She says that they are really "artsy" and "neat." She wants to model for a friend of mine but she's worried that she's getting too old for it. I'll check with him and see what he says about it all.
The new moon will be on Thanksgiving this year. It tends to have odd coincidental significance for Rachel and myself. It is all just a silly noticing of the coincidence, I know. But it is comforting to have silly things to take note of. I try to explain conjunction to her and she nods and smiles at me, kissing me when I take a break from talking, quieting my mind, if only for a moment.