Opinions Are Like Assholes

Everybody has one.

I’ve struggled mightily with the tone of today’s blog, so that I can make a point without sounding too whiny. It could be worse, I could be calling an insurance company today explaining why I had to land a plane on I-85 yesterday. 😉

Roswell Photographic Society Fail
Last night was the monthly critique for Roswell Photographic Society. The category for last night’s critique was “Graveyards and Churches.” The shot that I submitted is shown below.

I left the RPS meeting frustrated and annoyed. I was frustrated because I feel as if my photography is nowhere at the moment. There is a place in the middle of most rivers where the water runs smoothly, with no excitement; that is where I feel my photography is right now.

I was annoyed because I didn’t care for the critic. My photo received the following (paraphrased) critique.
“Well, this is a decent editorial shot.”
That’s it. Don’t get me wrong, I have no delusion that the shot below is a candidate for the Pulitzer Prize, but I thought the point of submitting a photo for “critique” was to get it “critiqued.” Had the critic also dismissed all other photos with a similar theme perhaps I could take solace in the fact that he’s seen this shot many times and just doesn’t care for them. However, not only did similarly-themed photos get critiqued, some (which I naturally believe were not as good as mine) were selected for honorable mention or better.

As you can tell, I’m still annoyed at myself and frustrated.

ITP Flickr Pic
This is the shot I submitted last night
They Gave For Their Country

Medicate And Elevate
In what will be an expensive trip to the doctor if calculated on an hourly basis, I was diagnosed with a “Well, it looks like a bite which may be slightly infected.” and ushered out with a $15 bottle medication (antibiotics) in hand. I also can’t say for certain, but I may have also paid $20 as a registration fee for having the ability to schedule doctor appointments online with this doctor.

Being a toe problem I was instructed to elevate my foot so the blood could flow easier. This sounds a lot easier than it is in real life. Sure, I can prop my foot on my desk, but typing is far more challenging. What was I supposed to do last night when I stood for three hours at a concert? And guess who forgot to place a few pillows under his foot when going to sleep?

Late Night Triple Bill
The RPS critic’s lack of critique had us out of the meeting place by 8:30pm (normally the meetings last until 9:00pm). With this early departure I was able to make it down to the EAV for the opening band of last night’s Titus Andronicus / Free Energy show at The EARL. The opener was decent, and I never did catch their band name.

Free Energy was the second band to take the stage. I’ve seen Free Energy once before at the Star Bar and really enjoyed their set there. Last night was no different. In a sea of guitar strumming bands Free Energy is a refreshing change because they play their instruments more like the guitar legends of the 1970s than the indie rockers of today.

Some time around 11:00pm Titus Andronicus took the stage. I can’t recall how I first heard about Titus Andronicus, but I remember being disappointed when their bus broke down and they were unable to perform at 529 a few months ago. It was clear that the young crowd surrounding me new much more about Titus Andronicus as the continually belted out the band’s lyrics. At 12:15am this old man decided that he needed to cash in his chips.

Also seen last night was ITP-Reader D.D.D.Dave, who I attempted to say hello to, but he must not have felt my hand grab his shoulder as he passed me.

I Think I Was Just Born On Mad Men
At the beginning of this season of Mad Men it was mentioned that they entered 1965. In the most recent episode there were multiple references to the heat, as well as upcoming vacations in August. Therefore, while I can’t say for certain that last week’s episode occurred in July 1965, the month of my birth in New York, I’m going to believe that it was and proclaim that I am now alive in Mad Men.

Stats & Goals
Current Mood – disappointed in myself
Current Music – listening to a CBC Radio3 podcast, at least until I’m done writing the blog because then I need to focus on coding
Website Of The Day – My friend Kim’s sister is part of a new online “tv” series called Once Upon A Time In Brooklyn. Go give it a watch sometime, won’t you?
Mode Of Transportation To Work – my car
Exercise (b)Log – nothing
Morning Weigh-In – don’t want to know
Pages Of 1001 Paintings You Must See Before You Die Read – 77

Foot Mileage – ~15 miles, Wheel Mileage – 0 miles
Pushups – 0, Situps – 0
Consecutive Days Of Bed-Making (Longest Streak) – 0 (2)
Vegetarian Days – 0, Carnivorous Days – 20
Marta Rides To Work – 0
Bike Rides To Work – 0

September Goals
– Not to get sick for the entire month
– Not get fired from my job
– Ride my bicycle no fewer than 250 miles
– Determine the fate of Sharpened Stone, LLC
– Complete at least one iPhone application (seriously, this needs to happen)
– lose five pounds
– eat vegetarian at least one day a week

2010 Goals
– Reduce my weight to 185 pounds (starting weight was 198 pounds) [update: On July 1 I’ve sadly gained weight; I’m at 203 pounds]
– Completely read the book 1001 Paintings You Must See Before You Die
– Earn at least $150 through photography sales in order to cover the cost for the renewal of the Sharpened Stone.
– Save $500 for the sole purpose of donating to charitable organizations of my choice
– Attend at least one professional photography workshop
– Enter no fewer than three photographic competitions / gallery showings
Get the Black Sheep stats out of Excel and online
– Ride in no fewer than two 50 mile or 50K bike rides
– Complete my Taco Mac Passport requirement of 125 beers

The Unmeasurable
– Continue backing up all data, including the off-site storage
– Become a proficient programmer in PHP and CSS Objective-C
– Do not create a solution for something which is not a problem

Paulie [eatl/ga]

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12 Responses to Opinions Are Like Assholes

  1. Barb says:

    yeah – why did that plane have to land on 85 yesterday? I didn’t watch the news last night, so I am curious.

    I can’t comment on the photo – I have no knowledge of what would be good or bad about that pic.

    We are addicted to last season’s Dexter right now, there are 4 episodes on the DVD, and it came in the mail & we watched them all last night. I think there is only 1 DVD left…… (I’ll mail today, get it on Thursday, I love the Netflix turnaround).
    I see why John Lithgow was nominated for an Emmy for his role as a serial killer- he is one creepy dude.

  2. As I understand it the plane’s engine failed. The plane was destined for PDK, but couldn’t make it that far, so the pilot made the decision to land it on I-85. The fact that no one was injured is somewhat miraculous, but I bet if I were driving a rental car on I-85 yesterday the plane would have scratched one of the car’s doors. 🙂

    I’ve never watched Dexter. I’ve heard that it’s good, but I don’t have the time to introduce another series into my life. In fact, I’m trying to get myself to downgrade my Netflix account (to one disc at a time) because I can stream video using U-Verse now.

  3. Hey Barb, I keep forgetting to ask… How’s the Garage Mahal?

  4. Barb says:

    We are at a standstill with the garage at the moment – Allan is doing the electrical himself (with some help) and until that can pass the rough inspection, the contractor can’t finish. Once that is passed (hopefully it will get all done on thursday & inspected on friday), the framing inspection takes place, then they can install the garage door & finish up. Then all the fun for us really starts.

  5. Steve says:

    I would love to hear a report from someone who was actually on 85 heading south when the plane landed in front of them… or someone who saw the plane in their mirrors… probably sending something to the cleaners this morning! Very luck all the way round.

    I like the picture, but it isn’t particularly unique.


  6. I agree that it’s not a unique photo, but it was the best I could submit. I thought the point of submitting for critique was to get feedback on what could be done to improve the shot, that’s my rub.

  7. Steve says:

    IMHO, I would have positioned the camera such that Otto wasn’t quite so prominent… maybe a little higher, then you have the same perspective from the other headstones… on and on and on…

  8. Good point. I guess that I’ve gotten into the habit of trying to shoot from a lesser-seen perspective, and I am relying on this too heavily.

    I’m trying hard to get out of my middle-of-the-road rut (in all aspects of life) that I’ve allowed myself to get into.

  9. Steve says:

    You have a unique perspective, which I like. If Otto had been, say John Smith, it would have been a different statement- the anonnimity (sp) of war- which to me is what you’re taking a picture of.

  10. That’s an even more interesting point Steve. I had some shots from different angles where you couldn’t read the names because they were engraved, but not colored black. When I chose that photo I thought it would be better to be able to read the guy’s name and the little saying (which must be multiple choice because you see about the same six sayings everywhere).

  11. Barb says:

    BTW – which graveyard is that?

  12. That is/was a National Cemetery between Rapid City, SD and Deadwood, SD. I happened to see it while driving to Deadwood and stopped as I returned to Rapid City.

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