Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Victory Is Sweet

There has been much talk in the last few days about Red Sox fans having an identity crisis, and how we don't know what to do when we have a winning team. It is a little different to not be the underdogs anymore, but come on people, identity crisis? I can still find plenty of things to complain about, but I will just do that while I am gloating right in your face about how ridiculously awesome my team is. I can multi task. I know very well how to handle myself when my team is the very best ever assembled...I am a Patriots fan, duh.

Tek, I couldn't agree with you more

Monday, October 29, 2007

The best team in baseball

Yaaaaaahooooooooo!!! The Sox won the Series AND I got to see it!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Rookie Rockies

I am watching the pre-game right now, and everything the Rockies are doing seems so JV to me. Those towels waving? Lame gimic. Carrie Underwood singing the national anthem? I don't even know who that is. I do know she is no John Williams, or James Taylor for that matter. As much as I hate the Yankees, and their fans, they know how to put on a big game. Watching the post season in Denver would be like watching NASCAR in New England. It just isn't a good fit.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Can't stop the Buck, Can't stop the Buck

Make it stop. Can someone please make the Joe Buck/Tim McCarver madness end? Please? TBS did such a better job covering the games. The final straw for me tonight was when McCarver said that before game four of the 2004 ALCS there were Red Sox players wishing Yankees players good luck against the Cardinals. Does anyone believe this crap?? Does anyone who watches baseball need to be told that you couldn't always sit on top of the Green Monster? Aaagghhhh!! I feel like I am taking crazy pills.

I do find peace in the fact that I am not the only one who can't stand these boneheads. There is a petition you can sign to stop Joe Buck. There is also a Shut Up Tim McCarver site. My personal favorite is the Onion article, "Americans Wondering What They Did To Deserve This Much Joe Buck." We need a revolt people. An organized effort to rid our sporting events of this insanity. Who is with me?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The story that my future offspring will one day be tired of hearing

Did anyone ever read "All Summer In A Day" by Ray Bradbury? You can read about it in more detail on wikipedia, but I can give you the version I remember. Basically, at some point in the future, when people live on another planet, they rarely ever get to see the sun. It is always raining, and the sun only comes around every seven years, and when it does come out, it stays for mere minutes. The story follows a little girl, who along with all the other kids at school is very excited to see then sun. They are anticipating it for weeks, and the teachers are going to bring them outside to play when it finally happens. All the kids are super pumped, they have never seen the sun before, it is going to be bigger than Elvis. When the big day finally comes, and everyone can't believe how unbelievable awesome seeing the sun is going to be, the other kids lock the main girl in a cabinet. In the cabinet! They all go outside and play, but she misses it! Awful right? This story haunted me for years. I couldn't think about that girl without feeling unbelievably sad. Just think about having to listen to the other kids talk about how awesome the sun was. Devastating.

I was talking to my friend Ann the other day about the Red Sox, and she mentioned that she tells people all the time about how I missed the World Series in 2004. I blogged about it before, so I won't rehash the whole thing again. I am sure you can see where I am going with this. I finally realized that while everyone I know was watching the sun, I mean the Sox winning the World Series for the first time in EIGHTY-SIX YEARS!, I was stuck in the Frankfurt airport. It was much bigger than a cabinet, but just as confining. So even though the Sox are in the Series again, and I am extremely excited, I will never be able to experience what happened three years ago. I missed it, and it ain't happening again. Not even in another seven years.

So while the rest of you Red Sox fans out there can fully enjoy what has turned into a new wave of successful teams, I am still the bitter Sox fan or yore. Whaaaaa.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Downright Autumnal

Late afternoon, autumn

There was some fabulous fall weather this past weekend in the Nations Capitol. Saturday Ms. Clarkson and I headed out to Virginia's horse country for an event that involved free food, drinks and lots of horses.
Yesterday Dave I hiked Catoctin Mountain, and it could not have been more beautiful outside. Between the clear blue sky and the changing leaves, we couldn't have asked for a better day. I have been taking so many pictures lately, but they are for school, and not really blog or flickr appropriate. There are lots of people pictures, but I doubt the subjects want to find themselves online, you know? This weekend I finally took some shots that are post-able.
Catoctin Mountain

The hike was major. Dave and I sat on the rocks at this overlook for a while just talking, planning, and plotting. After the scenery, isn't half the fun of a good hike the company?

Sox Win! Sox Win!

The Sox are going to the World Series and I am not in Germany!!!! Yeeehaawwwww!! I actually got to see the final out this time too, I didn't have to get in a phone booth in the Munich train station and call home. Gee, I wonder what Johnny Damon is doing right now......mmmwwwaaahhhhhh!!!!!!

I don't know how I expected to sleep tonight, I'm all sorts of jazzed up. Dave told me in about the 7th inning that he felt like he was watching the game with Rain Man. I got a little into it. The only thing that could make this night better is if we beat the Yankees...I am not complaining though.

I am so ready to try and break that Rockies winning streak, bring it on.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Oh, Boston You're My Home!!!!

Game 7 baby!!!!! Oh man, oh man, oh man. The last time the Sox were in a game 6 ALCS I did not get to watch the game. That was the Curt Schilling and the bloody sock game, and I have never, ever seen it. I have the whole playoff series from 2004 on DVD, in fact I can see it from where I am sitting, but I can't bring myself to watch it. I have issues, but it makes me too sad to think about watching it...sad because I missed it the first time. Not tonight though, tonight I watched my boys slug it out. I am reconsidering my nickname for J.D. Useless, that is how good I feel.

So Game 7. Man, it feels good to be a Red Sox fan today. Let's hope the $100 million Japanese dream boy can keep it together. Go Sox!

Friday, October 19, 2007

We're shipping up to Boston!!

Why can't we always play like that? For reals. Beckett was on fire. Guys were hitting the ball well against their number one starter...let's keep it up boys. I don't want to see men left on base anymore. You hear me?

Schill needs to step up on Saturday. J.D. Useless needs to start hitting. As does Coco "Mayor of Sucktown" Crisp (Thanks for that Neil). Youk, Justin, D.O., Manny and Lowelly, just keep doing what you've been doing. K?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

One down, twenty-four to go

I finished my first class tonight, and the program is still as exciting as it was way back in the beginning...you know, a month ago. I have learned so much in these past few weeks about my camera, and shooting, and using the computer to make my life easier. I think the biggest lessons though have been completely internal. In the middle of a shoot last week I was having a really hard time with my camera, and wanted to launch the stupid thing across the room. After I had a moment with myself, I was able to make the adjustments I needed and get some great shots. Accepting the fact that I am way too much of a perfectionist, and allowing myself to make some mistakes is not an easy thing to do, but I am trying.

I also learned that being a female photographer has may upsides. Yes, sometimes crazy people want to throw things at you, but that isn't always the case. Being a woman gives me the advantage of not automatically thought of as a creep. Think about it, man on the street asking to take your photo for a class=sketch city. A woman doing the same thing is so much less threatening. I can shoot women, men, and people with children and there is no initial assumption that I have bad intentions. Score one for the ladies.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

WTF?!? Gagne???

Clearly Terry Francona does not read my blog. He should start.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Dear Terry,

I realize that the game was in the bag by the 5th inning, so I support the decision to put Gagne in at the end of the game. We were up by seven runs, it seemed like it would be OK. However, watching him load the bases in the ninth was not the type of excitement I wanted this evening. No runs scored, so I guess it was a no harm, no foul situation.

But Terry, if I see his mug on the mount in a tight game, I'm coming for you.



P.S. Otherwise, keep up the good work

Hey Jealousy

My sister Jenn, her good friend (who I have known for over 20 years and is practically another sister...Hi Alyssa!), and both of my brothers are going to the first game of the ALCS tonight. Sox v. Indians, at the greatest venue in baseball. Sigh. Somehow sitting at home, five hundred miles away, and screaming at my television just doesn't compare.

I am a teensy bit jealous guys. Bring home a win for me.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Ants in my pants

I feel like Veruca Salt, the girl, not the band. No matter how much I do with photography right now, I want to be doing more. Right NOW! Ten times faster please, thank you. I am still shooting for the paper, I just found out that I will have my first photo exhibit, the live and in person kind, in April, and classes are going very well. I keep thinking of new avenues to try, new projects I want to work on, new ways to make this profitable for me, but these things take time. I don't want them to take time!

Do you remember Small Wonder? Think back, don't fight it, you've seen it. Well there were times when creepy robot girl Vicki would malfunction and speed up with her arms flying around. That is how I feel, except without the red dress. I need to be slow and steady with this process...learning takes time, and I shouldn't rush past this part. But does it have to take this long?

It's a bird...It's a plane...

Jack Flying

We took care of Jack again this past weekend, and we taught him how to fly.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Thank You Manny

There have been times where I have taken slight risks when out shooting with my camera. Not major risks, I do not harbor dreams of becoming James Nachtwey and spend my time dodging bullets, but minor risks. Shooting alone at night would probably be the biggest risk I have ever taken. At these times I am ultra aware of my surroundings. Who is near me? What was that sound? Where is the nearest crowd of people? How fast can I get out of here if I need to? The same things you think about being anywhere alone at night, especially if you are a woman. I have been very lucky, and had no problems. No creepy people leering at me, no one trying to rob me, nothing. Like I said, I have been lucky.

Today was not a big risk day. Today was not even a low risk day. I had class all day, so during our lunch break we were asked to go out and do a little shooting. It has been on the hot side here in D.C., so like any warm day, there were crowds of people outside. Our class is in Georgetown, the neighborhood not the university, which is considered one of the safest neighborhoods in the city. Some people teamed off into groups, but I wanted to go alone, and not copy other people. I find it hard to be unique and creative with someone looking over my shoulder, and vice versa. I headed over to the canal because I thought I could get some good shots of the water and maybe even a biker or two on the path.

There were lots of people around, in fact I had a short conversation with an elderly man who was also walking the canal. I approached a large stone wall that is adjacent to the Mall at Georgetown Park. There are some stones that jet out of the wall that I thought would be great for some shallow depth of field images. I love me some shallow depth of field, and the texture of the stone drew me in. As I put my camera to my eye I heard a man walking the canal start yelling. He wasn't saying any words, he was just yelling. I looked at him for a second, deemed that he was yelling for someone else, and went back to my camera and the wall. Well, I was wrong. Very wrong. As I placed the camera to my eye a second time he started screaming again, and a half full bottle of Aquafina water flew into the side of my face. I don't even like Aquafina. Shocked, and in pain, I realized that he just threw the bottle at my head, and he was approaching me fast. He was also screaming something about how "He has rights too." I immediately went up the steps and into the mall. Thank God the mall was right there. He followed me. I flipped out. I grabbed my phone and started dialing 9-1-1, but as I got further into the mall I saw a security guard. I started telling her the story, but I could barely talk and I was shaking. The man was still in the mall, a distance away, but staring me down. After a very brief, and very useless, conversation with the security guard I realized that she had no idea what to do. I wanted to get away, far, far away from the crazy man, so she escorted me out to the street. He was still staring at me, and I was afraid he was going to follow, but I knew I couldn't stay in the mall. Once outside I walked/ran over to M street where I did what everyone else would do in a situation where they just felt that their safety was, and maybe still is, at risk, I called my husband and started crying. I can't think of a better reason to have a husband.

During the walk back to school, I calmed down some. Dave stayed on the phone with me and helped talk me through what happened. He asked me if I wanted him to come get me, but I said no because I didn't want this man to interrupt my class any more than he already had. I sat down in our director's office, recounted the story for her, and she called the police. I was pretty upset, and it took me a few minutes to be able to talk without shaking. The police came and were very, very nice, but I doubt that they will find the guy. The whole situation is so bizarre. In the 200 or so times that I have gone through it in my head, there is nothing that I would have done differently. I was not in a situation to raise any sort of internal alarms. I was hit by a crazy person, for no reason, in a crowded area, during lunch time on a beautiful day. I am not implying that anyone that is attacked is asking for it, but the odds of it happening at that time, at that place, must be pretty low. I am lucky I got away. I am lucky that I only had a red mark and sore face for a few hours, and a case of the jitters. It could have been much worse. I got away.

As the police interviewed me, they asked for a description of the guy. I recalled a lot about him, dark long sleeved shirt, long dark pants, sunglasses, long dreadlocks, height, weight, etc. When it came time to describe his skin tone I couldn't think of the right word. He was a lighter skinned black man, but I felt that was a very vague description. So what did I say to the cop? Yep, this is how my mind works. I told the policeman that he had the same skin tone as Manny Ramirez. Oh yeah, welcome to my mind. The best part is that as he told his fellow policemen who they should be looking for, he recycled my Manny line. Awesome. May this be my lesson to you. When attacked, remember which major league baseball player your assailant looks like. The cops find it helpful.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Welcome to your life

Thirty was a great year for me, probably one of my best. There has been little to no angst about turning 31. It is what it is.

Many awesome things happened this past year...

The Red Sox had one of the best regular seasons of my lifetime.

I got off my butt and started strongly pursuing the career I have always wanted, but have been afraid to try. I was reminded yesterday about how much support I have in this endeavor. Not one person in my life has questioned this decision, and the backup I have been getting is pretty darn nifty. I appreciate it more than you know.

I watched the first four seasons of the Sopranos on Netflix. This major accomplishment alone could be enough for a great year.

I went to the Caribbean for the first time. It was way more awesome then I expected it to be, and I will return.

Derek Jeter showed me his true colors, and I am pretty sure he has a strong reading on how I really feel about him.

I feel like I am forgetting something. Hmmmm. What could it be? Oh right, sealing the deal that sticks me with Dave for all eternity! How could I forget that? But seriously, being married is awesome. I make fun of him a lot here, but I got real lucky. Real lucky. Seriously, not every girl has a man who will sit on the couch and play in photobooth with her now does she? Try not to be too jealous.

Life is good!

Monday, October 01, 2007

There might actually be an old man trapped in my body

My Red Sox have had a fantastic regular season. We took first place in the AL East in April, and never let go of it. Having been a Red Sox fan my entire life, this was not something that I took for granted, or to the bank before the season ended. I would have been gutted if the Sox blew it in the last week of the season and did not even make the playoffs. What I would not have been is shocked. Growing up with Red Sox heartache means that I have learned to expect the worst, and be happy when the outcome of events is in my favor. This also means that I have turned into my father. No matter how good the Sox are this season, and they are really, really well balanced and solid, I am guarded with my enthusiasm.

This brings me to my point, and yes there is a point. I need to vent about faux Red Sox fans. Living outside of Boston means that I come into contact with this increasingly common form of cretin on a fairly regular basis. Yes, there are many Bostonians living throughout the lower 48, but that is not who I am talking about. If you grew up in Boston watching the Sox, chances are that this is why you root for the boys from Fenway. However, being a New Englander is not the only criteria for being a real fan, and in fact there are probably many people in Boston who fall under the faux distinction. For example, you could have grown up on Mars and if you were always a Sox fan, followed the team in good times and bad, then you are not a faux fan. Faux fans are those lovely people who buy Red Sox gear in bulk because it is fashionable. Faux fans come to watch the team play on the road and don't stay for the whole game because the Sox are losing. Faux fans don't watch the game, they come to socialize. Faux fans cannot tell you the names of any of the players, past or present. Faux fans show up for a Red Sox game in 2007 wearing a Red Sox Johnny Damon shirt! How I did not jump that guy in the parking lot may be one of the greatest unanswered questions of our time. These faux fans will not be around when the Sox are not as strong as they are now, which is what really makes me so angry. My fellow Sox fans and I have earned the right to be happy about or team. We struggled for this joy. There were many, many dark days, that have been burned into my soul. This is a valuable lesson that the fine ladies from the Facts of Life taught me a long time ago, "You take the good, you take the bad, you take 'em both." You cannot just come along and cheer for the team when they are good and not expect me to mock you in public. Band wagoners.

I should be clear that you don't have to know everything about the team to be a real fan. There is no need to get into a battle of who is the bigger fan, this isn't my purpose. You either are, or aren't, I don't care about levels of intensity. To make it easy for you fellow fans, I developed a short test. Feel free to print this out and carry it in your pocket, ready to whip out at a moments notice. These are questions that the average fan should be able to answer, but are challenging enough to rule out the posers. Basically, I kept my Mom in mind with these questions. My Mom may not be able to to quote you stats, but she is a lifelong fan. I have faith that she could pass this test.

1. Who plays second base for the Red Sox? And for the Yankees?

2. Describe in detail where you were in 2003 when the Red Sox and Yankees played game 7 of the ALCS. Who won the game? What was the controversy? Who hit the final home run? What did you do after the game?

3. What, and where is the Pesky Pole?

4. What team did Roger Clemens play for when he left Boston? Who was the general manager that traded him, and what were the words he used to justify Roger leaving?

5. Name the current manager. Who was the last manager?

6. What year did the "Impossible Dream Team" play?

7. What is Davis Ortiz's nickname? Who did he play with before coming to Boston? What country is he from?

8. Name five former Red Sox players. Can you name 10? 20?

9. Name one Red Sox announcer, TV or radio.

10. Who are the Sox playing in the first round of the playoffs?

So if you find someone covered in Sox gear, screaming about how much the love the team, and they cannot pass this test, I highly recommend public stoning. OK, fine, I will settle for public mockery. Just point and laugh a lot. Then call me and tell me about it.

Air Force Memorial

Playing with my new lens
I have been meaning to go over and shoot the Air Force Memorial for a while. I took my new lens for a test drive this weekend, and she worked her magic for me. Some people think this memorial is an eye sore, but I think those people are dumb. That's right, dumb. It is late, and I am too tired to think of a better word than dumb, so there it is for all eternity, dumb.
Air Force Memorial

The colors of the memorial change depending on the time of day, and the intensity of the light. I love the simplicity of it, but maybe it is best if I let my images talk for me tonight.
My Rothko
Rothko anyone?