Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Merrily engaging in Pixel Management whilst off the grid so to speak.
Yesterday's rollicking gigs included ports made of a scientist, an official, real-life entomologist.
One who relishes all things bug.
Said scientist, upon the prodding of Yours Truly, brought out the goods.
Amongst the collection on hand was a giant water bug, caught by this entomologist in Peru, as in way way down south.
Where bugs grow in an el grande fashion for muy authentico terror.
Then the entomologist waltzed YT over to a freezer, your garden variety freezer atop a frigerator, to show, amongst other items, a centipede that grows up to a foot long (down down south in Peru I am certain that this creature would be measured in a metric fashion, so let us say the centipede would be approximately one-third of a meter fercrissakes).
This centipede, dig this, lunges off a cave wall to strike a poor, unsuspecting bat and kill it in a flash.
The entomologist pulled this specimen out of ethanol and, upon my serious photographic urging, is holding it out at me - a beautiful orange and yellow circle.

Now it is time for you to sit back and let YT tell one of her small handful of water bug tales.

The Giant Water Bug Tale: Itabashi-Ku, Tokyo.
V. Express
By: Yours Truly
For six weeks Tokyo had been explored by me, wending through its streets, subways, galleries, parks, temples, markets, stores, with a camera and a smattering of money. After working for four days with a Japanese man who was marketing manager for a food import corporation, and his treat of a, as he called it, traditional twelve-course Japanese dinner, had enough dough to take me and my pal to the resort town Nikko in the mountains.
Eventually, it was time to leave Japan.
This was sad, but it was time to jet back to the United States of America and resume the art teaching post in the woods of Maine.
Good byes were said.
Tears were shed.
A camera was nearly left behind on a train seat but, being Japan, filled with Japanese people who are Buddhists, the camera was turned in to a lost and found office.
The pal went to retrieve the camera and there was suspicion. Please describe the camera, the contents of the camera bag, and on.
Rejoined with camera, Yours Truly explained to pal that the camera could have been vaporized, it was the exposed film that would have been the tragic loss. The black & white film which would be hand-processed in a few days.
The colour film had all been exposed, processed, printed. And, as is Japanese custom, all the 4x6 proof prints were placed by some worker in adorable little folders with red covers.
It should be mentioned that in all these six weeks there were no tremors of the earthly sort, no earthquakes had bumped up the land on this volcanic island of mystery and gorgeousness.
Packing the one suitcase was a feat as, as is travel custom, goods had been acquired.
Gifts had been accepted.
At some point in the packing of the bag a gigantic water bug emerged, about four inches in length. In Japan, which also favours the metric system, this is approximately twenty centimeters. Or so. Or not.
Seeing the water bug move with insectual certainty, knowing he would remain on this island as I departed, having won his place in this spot, I screamed a primal scream that not only startled and disturbed the pal deeply, but froze the bug in its tracks.
The End.

Love of good bug tales.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Today is a tripartite holiday in the calendar/heart/mind of Yours Truly for it is the b-days of Liz and Polly, and also World Kindness Day which Lennon would have doubly-stamped his approval stamp upon.
World Kindness Day began in, of course, Tokyo.

Recently learned of a Perfect Japanese word, kaizen, which seems is an appropriate one to glom onto on a day such as WKD.
Kaizen is a state of continuous improvement, always reaching for the Perfect.
Japan thought: Tokyo (one of the few cities that, upon landing, YT said - not in Japanese, not even in English - I could live here) is a masterful city, absolutely L.A. gigantic but with pockets of thematic areas, a bit like the Shiney Apple.
Ueno, Ueno des indeed.

One of yesterday's several engagements was to document another surprise fete, this one for a doc discovering that a friend of his and benefactor created an endowed chair in his honor.

Was at Heady's new digs yesterday, the nouveau vet offices, and hung most of the pet portraits in the waiting room. Big 16x20s of contemplative animals, the little love machines around us. While there saw some pals, and spoke to a phone installer who told me that I photographed him years ago for my former photo column, when he'd written a music history book of a portion of the Middling City, which I recalled Perfectly. It happened at the old Tap Room, upstairs at the former Masonic Lodge, and Gary Malaber et al performed and he not only broke, but presented YT with, a drumstick.
You just never know what tales and stumbles down into memory await.

Awaiting Love.