That’s right!!! 2clicksaway is 1 year old today! And to celebrate, here is a photo of your squinty eyed, snowbound author with some of his favorite snow removal equipment. For those uninitiated in the art of snow removal, let me explain what we need here in Webster (Where Life is Worth Living – except in winter) to clear snow from driveways and walkways. The big gas powered orange thing is a “snowblower” though it really doesn’t blow any snow but actually throws the snow, up to 20 feet. I only use it when there is too much snow to shovel, which is most days that it snows. The big blue shove is use to just push the snow around and the black scoop is used to remove the snow the blue shovel pushed around. The small gray shovel is used in tight spaces such as walkways and around the mailbox.
You need some warm, heavy duty cloths to operate this equipment, especially when the temperatures have been in the single digits every day as they have been. You need to wear snow pants, which fit over your regular pants, a face mask, scarf, two pairs of gloves, down jacket, hat and waterproof, heavy duty boots with good tread. It takes me almost as much time to get dressed as it does to clear the driveway, which can fit 6 Ford Focuses like mine or two normal sized cars.
Because there are only very limited number of places to put the snow you are removing, technique is very important once you are ready to start. After several years of experience, I have developed a technique that is easy, time efficient and effective. It involves all pieces of equipment and a lot of brute force. I start out by revving the snow blower engine as loud as it can in an effort to scare the snow away. This is fun but it seldom works. That’s where the brute force comes in. Once you start there are no breaks because it takes too long to take the outerwear off and put it back on again. When you’re finished you get a feeling of satisfaction for doing a good job. And then you get to do it all over again the next day because it’s been snowing every day.
mc # 0362
The “half battery” indicator is flashing on my Timex watch so I’m thinking about replacing it. The watch, not the battery. I could have a jeweler replace the battery for $18 (US) or I could replace it myself if I had access to jewelers tools such as eyeglasses, screwdrivers, tweezers and $18 (US). But then I’d still have an old watch with a “genuine faux leather” band that Emo likes to chew on and is barely able to hold the weight of the watch with a new battery.
One of my “stupid ideas” was the invention of a solar powered watch. The prototype consisted of two separate pieces; the watch and a baseball cap with photovoltaic cells on the lid and wires that ran down the side, through the sleeve of your shirt and onto the watch to charge it. It worked fine but it wasn’t very practical because we only get 62 days of sunshine a year here in Webster (Where Life is Worth Living) and the cells couldn’t produce enough electricity to run the watch.
Photographers are obsessed with time. Some photographers want to keep track of the “premium” times for outdoor photography; the golden hour or the blue hour. Some may time long exposures of flowing water to get that creamy smooth look. Timing is critical in every phase of darkroom work, too. Every photograph is an instant in time so it can’t be underestimated.
mc # 0431
…to be continued.
On this day, in 1970, the number one song in the USA (according to Billboard) was “Bridge over Troubled Waters” by Simon and Garfunkel. Having not heard this song in quite a while I listened to it again and it still is as fresh and beautiful as it was back then. A piece of pop art that has endured for over 43 years (and counting). It’s a nice idea to think that our own work will be appreciated over a long period of time but I don’t think it’s the case for many of us. I’m not convinced blog posts are a good way of keeping records and neither is passing these files down to our descendants. Archival prints (stored properly) is probably the best way to maintain photos but printing and storing would probably fill an entire file cabinet (at least in my case) and cost a small fortune. I could fill a couple of 4T hard drive, too, but who wants that. And who will be able to read it 20 years from now? They would be like the old floppy disks from a bygone era.
I’ve decided to donate all of my work, both physical and virtual, to a Museum. What museum would want it? A museum that collected nothing but personal art from families that want it preserved. A museum that would take care of it and display the best, probably on a site available to all, free of charge. A museum for the people that appreciate good works from those that never became famous for those works. A museum for painters, photographers, sculptors, writers, musicians, dancers, actors, magicians and any artist that has a record that needs to be preserved. A museum that does not exist today but should in the future.
I haven’t filed this under “stupid ideas” yet, but maybe I should. I like pie even if it’s in the sky.
side note: the song that replaced “Bridge over Troubled Waters” as No. 1 was “Let it Be” by the Beatles.