Mildly Amusing Musings & Some Photographs

Proof of my insanity

Flava in Ya Ear – May 15, 2012

I just uploaded my pictures to ADAY.ORG for their worldwide photo project.  The goal was to capture your daily life in ten photos shot on May 15, 2012.  I worked that day but I also had to to take Big Papi to Mini to have his power steering replaced.

My loaner was a 2012 Mini Countryman.  I loved the color & the SiriusXM.  I didn’t have anyone with me to take advantage of the extra roomy backseats but they looked really nice.   There was a sunroof for the front & a moon roof for the rear but I still prefer the full convertible.

Most of the day was grey & rainy & my workload was so spread out that I didn’t have much time during work to shoot anything outside of my route.  Around noon, I decided to take advantage of the loaner Mini’s SiriusXM radio & I started shooting what I was listening to as well as a photo of what was outside at that time.  Syncing the photos to the radio photos was a task I would never complete in a timely fashion & I couldn’t find just ten that worked well for the project.   This made me miss SiriusXM & it also made me want a radio that displayed all the titles of what I listen to.  I suppose an iPod would work too but I liked the idea of selecting from 100+ stations that I didn’t control.  I did take a break from the radio for a little bit to re-take the “There’s A Law” shot I missed last time I had a loaner.

Subsequently, I tested some of the other CDs I had with me to see which would register the song titles.  Besides those few, here is what I listened to May 15 between 11:57am & 6:13pm when I returned the loaner.

I wound up not getting the power steering repaired because they saw my brakes & tires as a bigger safety issue & I just couldn’t afford both.  Big Papi & I are in a very abusive relationship.  Whenever something breaks, I feel like I should sell him & get something cheaper to fix but then I see him & drop his top & our love affair continues…

I really love my expensive, little buddy. His brakes, two tires, a belt and an oil change came to $1100.  The power steering & new related hoses will be in excess of $1500 but they said I can’t damage it anymore than it already is & I can continue to drive him without power steering.  K turns are now Super Triple W turns but otherwise I almost prefer the tighter steering & my arms really could use the workout.  Already the driving muscles I used to have from driving the Dart are coming back.  I wish the Dart would come back too.


Waiting for Godot…

… or waiting for the coffee to brew.  Same thing? 


(C) Conn! conni Freestone

tea pot robot

pill bottle robot on the moon

(C) Conn! conni Freestone

(C) Conn! conni Freestone

robot (C) Conn! conni Freestone

(C) Conn! conni Freestone

(C) Conn! conni Freestone

ps SAPCC #39 – Obstructed

I am actually quite behind in my photo editing & I fear that after I post this, I will find better images to fit the theme but I do not want to fall behind again so here are the best of what I have so far.

On Monday, we visited the Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia.  It is known for being a photographer’s paradise.  It is also supposed to be haunted.  Many ghost hunters have noticed strange orbs in their pictures.  I think most of these orbs are simply dust but, nevertheless, I have meticulously searched my images for these anamolies.  I am sure this is probably lens flare, but I present it as a ghostly obstruction.


It has been at least two weeks since I have shared some Liberty Humane photos with you.  For the past few weeks, I have been focussing primarily on the felines there.  One of the volunteers who works on the petfinder site went to a symposium that mentioned how much more appealling the photos without cage bars are.  Hence, while this cat is adorable, those bars are an obstruction.  They are also obstructing his freedom.


I actually forgot what the theme was until I started editing.  On Friday, I went to the Today Show to see Dave Matthews Band.  Wow.  While I was not close enough to the stage to get the kinds of concert photos I enjoy, the music sounded incredible.  I arrived at 6:45am & they were already playing.  I stood behind the stage while they played for almost an hour before they were even on the televised portion.  Then, I walked around the block in hopes of using the 300mm to get a better shot.  Here is when I should tell you that it was raining.  When it rains in New York City, many people like to use umbrellas.  Short people, in particular, love to use umbrellas (even when they are wearing flip flops to slosh through the dirty NYC puddles).  Besides having my eyes nearly poked out a few times & having umbrella tines knotted into my hair, the umbrellas were difficult to shoot through.  It is also difficult to shoot through foam guitars that are shaped like penises, posterboard signs & camera lifts.  To say my view was obstructed would be an understatement.  I did manage to get two decent shots through all of this.  I will post it later.  Oh yeah, it is also difficult to keep a camera dry when it is raining.  I gave up on my Ziploc bags when they started fogging up.  I also changed lenses in the rain… Confessions of a careless photographer…


The above image is through the Ziploc bag.


These SAPCC participants were also obstructed:



Rene AKA Sweetie

SAPCC #8 – Self Portrait

My week was comprised of Halloween, post-Halloween slump, pre-election nerves and now… hmmm… a sort of disbelief that it was all a dream. 


None of these are my favorite self portraits.  I was too busy preoccupied to get out a tripod so these are all arm stretched out selfies taken with the hopes that I had the focus sensor pointed in the right place.  My favorite one is probably the one I posted yesterday but that could have been any one of 60+million hands* making a vote.  

My original thought for self portrait week was Halloween so let’s go with it.  I never turn down the opportunity to get dressed in costume.  Having something to hide behind gives me a sense of unrivaled confidence.  People are no longer judging me.  They are judging whatever character I am hiding behind. 



The above shot is technically better but the one I chose as my entry is the following, altered shot.   Hopefully, you have seen “The Dark Knight” and know what I was going for by adding the lame explosions.  I did not intentionally visit a hospital though.  My mom went in for pneumonia the night before Halloween so I wanted to visit her before I went out.  I don’t like the hospital.  I particularly don’t like this hospital.   I have spent too much of the last three and a half years there for her or my dad.  Consider this entry my attempt to blast away the bad memories of that place and embrace the new hope that was ushered in last evening.  


* Actually, since this was the NJ ballot, that number is far less.

Fellow SAPCCers:


SAPCC #6 – Phobias

Phobias… My first thought was to look up phobias and find a few funny ones to capture.  However, I was internet-less this weekend so I was forced to find my own phobias.

I don’t really fear anything in this picture.  I just wanted to know what an “imaginary remodeling corp.” does.  In a way, the fear could be that the economy will get so bad that we will all have to rely on imaginary things to bring us a sense of wealth and fulfillment.

I do have a fear of mediocrity so what better way to express it than to take a subpar photo of a store that sells “o.k” fruits & vegetables?

I do not have a fear of bridges but I know it is a real phobia for some.  I didn’t get a good shot but I liked that in this smaller version, it appears as if the car in front of me is headed towards me.  That would make me scared.

I also do not have a fear of black cats but, since I was too lazy to take a picture of a calendar highlighting a Friday the 13th and, since I was visiting my brother and his black cat, I thought I would further creep Pat out with this shot of a black cat.

Another phobia I do not have is the fear of electrical lines.  This one is quite intimidating though.

I am now moving on to some of my phobias.  I did not look up the true definition of “phobia,” but I equate it with irrational fears or weird fears… I am afraid of fire, dying & being maimed by a drunk driver but I think these are rational fears… maybe not that last one.  The following, however, are some of my more irrational fears. 

I am often afraid that a construction crane will drop something on me.  This one is not too scary.

Ever since I saw the preview for the movie “Daylight,” I am afraid that whilst driving through a tunnel a massive gush of water will engulf me or there willbe a big fireball or accident & I will be forced to choose between running forward or turning around.  I try to pay attention to which side I am closest to.  I liked this shot because it was dirty and there is a weird reflection of that cab.

I HATE walking over subway grates like this.  Even taking the picture scared me.  I think I am going to fall through.

I am not afraid of the dark per se but I am afraid that someone will jump out of the darkness and kill me so  I shot several different versions of myself as a shadow in the walkway.  I couldn’t get the arms scary enough to make this my entry and I was afraid to bring a knife or fake gun outside because I hate the upstairs neighbors.

Ok, so heights are not a fear of mine, but I really liked this shot & did not want to put it in the beginning.  This was a Citi building in Queens.  I have a few other shots but this week’s need for an assistant was my inability to remember to adjust the white balance setting and change back to auto-focus.  Just after taking this picture, the security guard shooed me away.  Clearly I was not casing the joint.  Dick.  I really liked the reflections and symmetry.

Ok, my most irrational fear is that Big Papi will be hit by another car or shopping carts in a parking lot.  I intentionally park away from other cars & remove all carts that may be near him.  I am increasingly annoyed by the lazy people who do not return their carts to the proper receptacles.  My last car was ruined by careless door opening and my mom’s car was attacked by carts on several occasions.  There have been a few times when I felt the carts were after me so I thought it would be funny to set up a shot in which Big Papi was surrounded by mean shopping carts SOOOOO  imagine my surprise when I went out to my car and saw this:

I was parked in a residential, suburban neighborhood that is about 18 blocks from the grocery store.  I have never seen a shopping cart on our street before and I did not reposition the cart to be staring down Big Papi.  To make matters worse, when we got back from the store, the cart had been moved into my parking spot!  They are totally out to get me.  I wished the light were better so this could have been my entry.

After all of that, my entry is really my ladder phobia.  While it does not shout “phobia,” it is a reminder to me that if I had gotten over my fear of ladders like this one, I could have climbed onto the roof at my boyfriend’s job and taken some really cool pictures.  I think the shadow in the walkway better expresses phobia but this is a better picture.  Hmmmm… That always gets me.  The better shot or the better representation of the theme?  I like themes like this one.

I will link to everyone after work!







Math Is Hard

Having very much on my mind, I was having trouble falling back to sleep the other morning so I figured I would try counting.  That was too easy so I started with one and began squaring the numbers.  By the time I got to 15, I figured something out.  I am sure this is already a documented equation of some sort and I do not know how it would save anyone much time or effort, but here it is anyway. 
16-9=7 which is (4X2)-1
I wish I knew how to enter this better… Sorry I am bad with characters.  Math is apparently my strong point.
x^2 = (x-1)^2 + (2x-1)
So, if you needed to know 21^2, you could just start at 20^2 =400 and add 41 ((2X21) -1) to get 241 or you could just get out a calculator.  Also, I am pretty sure this is the first step towards my being clinically insane.

In other news, does Fox News need a live camera feed outside Brett Favre’s house at 10pm??? Are his whereabouts really that important?  Am I wrong in thinking that maybe they could be investigating any one of the numerous assaults on freedom that are more commonly known as the Beijing Olympics?

In other, other news, I thought that I heard on the radio that southern Los Angeles was trying to ban toys in kids’ meals at fast food restaurants.  Well, I got the story wrong.  They are banning any new fast food restaurants from being built in the next year because residents are obese and diabetic.  The fast food restaurants already there can stay, however, and there did not seem to be any talk about healthy, cheap restaurants being built.  If I had a bit of capital and a desire to work with food for the rest of my life, I would start a fast food restaurant that serves only healthy food.  Tofu burgers for all.  OH, the toy part of what I heard is actually taking place in Liverpool.  They are trying to stop fast food chains from marketing to children via those plastic movie of the month toys.  While I am informed enough to understand why this does make sense, the little kid in me is a little sad.  Going to McDonald’s was a treat for me when I was growing up.  All the pestering in the world would not change my parents’ minds if it was leftover night.  End of story.  Maybe parents today need to put their feet down and stop caving into the whims of their children.