Tag Archives: General Nonsense

What Is A ‘Kodak Moment?’

Edison. Mothers Day 2023

Our grandson Edison visited recently, and one of the books he was reading described two characters on skateboards crashing into each other as a real “Kodak moment.” Edison looked up at Kathy and said “I don’t even know what that means!” Another idiom bites the dust!

The Grammarist describes a Kodak moment:

“A Kodak moment is a moment in time that is so precious because of its sentimental value or its beauty, one wishes to preserve it on film. For instance, a baby’s first steps may be considered a Kodak moment.”

And further:

“The expression Kodak moment came from a popular advertising campaign for the American Kodak cameras in the latter half of the twentieth century, produced by Eastman Kodak. Kodak cameras such as the Brownie and Instamatic cameras were reasonably priced and easy to use, so even the most inexperienced or busy people could operate them.”

A (Nearly) Perfect Headline

Frog and Onion Pub and Restaurant. At Royal Naval Dockyard, Bermuda

I suppose if I were a Twitter-er I could post a comment about it there, but since I’m not, I’ll post it here. I love a good headline, especially in this era of meaningless “clickbait” headlines. This one is pretty tough to beat:

Clichés to Avoid Like the Plague

I kinda don’t even care what the article is about. But I love the headline!

Bill’s Tree

My next door neighbor’s tree, silhouetted against the evening sky.

One evening a few weeks ago, Kathy & I were sitting at the kitchen table after dinner, likely finishing some wine before venturing off the do the dishes. The sun had recently set, and the sky was crystal clear. As we sat there, one of us (I’ll give Kathy the credit) said something about how interesting our neighbor’s tree looked against the sky. I sat there, looked at it and at some point said “I’m going to get my camera.”

My next door neighbor’s tree, silhouetted against the evening sky.

It took me just a few minutes to drag out the camera and tripod, attach the L-bracket and set it up on the patio. There was no wind, so I didn’t have to worry about movement, and I made a couple dozen frames. They aren’t technically perfect – I could have used a little more depth of field – but they do have a bit of a zen-like look to them.

It’s another lesson in being willing to make a photograph when it presents itself, even if it is right outside our window.

My next door neighbor’s tree, silhouetted against the evening sky.

You’re Pointing Your Camera The Wrong Way

Tourists taking selfies on the Ponte della Paglia bridge, with the Bridge of Sighs in the background. Venice, Italy

This New York Times article has been shared on a number of forums already, but I thought I would add it here for anyone who might have missed it. Further discussion of the pros and cons of our “selfie society” is pointless and tiresome, but as photographers the history, as well as the ideas, in this story have special meaning. If we take the time and spend the money to go to a special place, let’s be sure to look at and take pictures of that place, and not just take pictures of ourselves!

“I keep thinking of what it might be like if we all took the time to photograph such commonplace miracles. What it would be like if all the people with cameras in their pockets transformed themselves into documentary photographers — like Dorothea Lange, like Baldwin Lee — to make a collective record of a truth about the world that most people haven’t yet troubled themselves to see?”

NYT: You’re Pointing Your Camera The Wrong Way



Happy New Year

Sunrise in Cozumel, Mexico aboard Norwegian Prima

We had dinner with neighbors last night, and during our conversation we talked about the past year. My comment was that “my weight went up, my investments went down. Let’s hope that trend reverses in 2023.

Best wishes, good health and safe travels to all. Happy New Year!

What’s The Rush?

The Prima Speedway, 3-level go kart track aboard Norwegian Prima

Everywhere we go, people are in a hurry. They blast down the highway like they are a doctor late for a baby delivery (probably not), they slam down the first drink to get to the next (possibly precipitating the previous?), rush through dinner to get off to something else (with indigestion). But for what? To just rush on to the next thing? Sheesh! How about taking the time to enjoy each experience, each moment?

Kathy & I recently came across this article that was shared by a local writer. ‘and then?’ references someone wanting to watch a movie or listen to a podcast at 2X speed because it was “too slow.” Apparently listening to music at 2X speed is a thing on TikTok. I especially liked the statement that “The whole attitude seems to be: Let me get through this thing I don’t especially enjoy so I can do another thing just like it, which I won’t enjoy either.” That doesn’t seem like much of a way to live, if you ask me.

The Prima Speedway, 3-level go kart track aboard Norwegian Prima

Just this morning I was looking at the New York Times website and saw a link that said “The Year In Pictures – 3 Minute Read” I thought, wow, only 3 minutes? It is nearly 150 pictures (I counted but lost my place once or twice – distracted by the photos). Paging through the article without even slowing down to look at the pictures took almost 3 minutes! And yes I understand that the “3 Minutes” was probably automagically calculated based on the amount of text in the article, likely not counting the photo captions, but still. I haven’t gone back through it yet but expect that it might take me 30 minutes.

The Prima Speedway, 3-level go kart track aboard Norwegian Prima

When we travel, Kathy & I enjoy taking back roads, even if it adds an hour or two to the trip. Coming home from our recent trip to Florida, we could have made it home in a freeway-filled 9 hours, but instead chose to break it up into two days, 6 hours the first and about 5 the second. All but the last 100 or so miles were on roads that pass through small towns, past interesting scenery and occasionally a new “roadside find.” Once we got onto I-77 in Columbia, it was like stepping into a cement mixer! It was nice to get home, but I often equate the freeway experience to a cross section of society. Most people go along doing their own thing, but there are always those few who either aren’t completely involved with the task of driving or are convinced that there is a prize for getting somewhere at light speed. We made it home safely, and mostly relaxed, which was the most important thing!

What Are You Taking Pictures Of?

Dining Room ceiling, Celebrity Constellation

We were sitting at breakfast one morning, waiting for our food. I was looking up at the dining room ceiling and decided to take a few pictures. A really nice man at the table next to me turned and asked, “could I see what you were taking pictures of?” I showed him the screen on my camera, and I can’t remember exactly what he said, but it was something like “fascinating” or “interesting” or “excuse me I need to go now.” Just kidding about the last one. 😉

Dining Room ceiling, Celebrity Constellation
Dining Room ceiling, Celebrity Constellation
Dining Room ceiling, Celebrity Constellation

Two Thoughts On A Similar Subject

The North Davidson (NoDa) area of Charlotte

Sometimes I just read a line that resonates with me. I came across these two over the last day:

From The Online Photographer: It’s one of the cool things about getting older…sooner or later you live in the future.

Directional sign on the Royal Promenade aboard Allure of the Seas

From Douglas Adams (Hitchiker’s Guide) via Terence Eden via Om Malik:

– Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.

– Anything that’s invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.

– Anything invented after you’re thirty-five is against the natural order of things.

Johnny Rockets diner on the Boardwalk aboard Allure of the Seas

Its interesting when you think about it. My grandmother, born in 1908, always talked about how her mother would be amazed with the microwave oven, invented, according to the Wikimonster, in 1955. Today we can’t imagine a home without one. Now, I imagine describing to my dad some of the technology we currently use. He was a “shade tree” automotive mechanic, aspiring electronic tinkerer and auto racing fan, among other things, so today’s electronic everything would be his microwave. But it seems like we have a lot more of those things today than we did 50-ish years ago. Maybe it just seems like more magic.

What will ours be?

‘Watch Your Step” signs in Cental Park aboard Allure of the Seas
Sign in front of the Westin Hotel in Charlotte

Coordinates vs. Location

Morning on the beach. Carolina Beach, North Carolina

“Knowing your latitude and longitude is not the same as knowing where you are.” From The Candy House by Jennifer Egan

I loved this statement as a stand-alone quote, but it is also interesting in the context in which it appears.

I just finished reading this fascinating book by Jennifer Egan. It is the second of hers I’ve read, the first being “A Visit From The Goon Squad.” As “alternative world/dystopian future/reality-fantasy” (my definition, strange as it is) it is outside my usual crime fiction subject matter but something I’ve been exploring more lately. It’s a lot better to me than non-fiction gloom and doom stories about failed and/or corrupt politicians, end of the world climate change or crappy economic news!

The premise of the book is a society where a huge social media corporation run by a super tech demi-god whose name everyone knows (sound familiar?) has developed a technology, “Own Your Unconscious”—that allows you access to every memory you’ve ever had, and to share every memory in exchange for access to the memories of others. Think about that. Of course not everyone chooses to participate, and whole companies are formed, both to promote and profit from and also avoid this (over)sharing of information.

Egan’s writing style can be a little hard for me to follow, as she changes characters, points of view and subject matter seemingly at random. I found it to be a good exercise of my reading and comprehension skills, as its important to pay attention to the story lines as they bob and weave.

Fun stuff, for anyone interested in this kind of writing!