what's up?

light sprinkles

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not my usual shot my better half said. not a car i typically bother with is what he meant.

it caught my eye at the time, and i still like the picture months later, so whatever. probably was the pinstriping on the hood that got me.

———-

rained last night. still sprinkly and drab out—love this weather. hate summer heat.

feeling out of sorts lately and suddenly very busy at work. my younger brother has been in town visiting mom, so i’ve been trying to juggle my time to spend some with him before he leaves on tuesday.

i’ve missed a lot of car shows i’d normally be all over, but it’s beyond my control…

stood up

1950 cadillac

1950 cadillac

instead of going to dino’s cinco de mayo show at lincoln park, i ended up out in long beach, at a little car show in a church parking lot. no idea what types of cars would show up. my reason for going there is that my daughter is living out there somewhere with her boyfriend and her dog. in a room at his grandmother’s house. her stuff lives in my condo, which at this point is just an expensive storage unit that smells of stale dog piss. but that’s another rant for another day.

i figured since i was over there, we could do lunch. talked to her the day before and she said she’d “be down for that.” 

got a text message that morning saying they’d been up late, she couldn’t sleep and was too tired to come over. sort of typical. 

made the best of the situation. not knowing what to expect, and show hours said starting at nine a.m., i was there about an hour or so early, so i could get parking. thought cars would already be arriving for roll-in, as you do. nope. bunch of vendors setting up, but no old cars. 

and did i mention it was a sunday? church was holding mass. nah, didn’t go in, but did splash some holy water on my forehead. very least religion i can do.

i wandered around until i found a bathroom. walked through the little garden area and looked at the various altars and statues. went back to my car and listened to music.

about the time i said i’d give it five more minutes, an old chevy truck showed up. told myself i’d at least get a picture of that one. by the time i found him parked he’d already popped the hood. shit.  

then an old ford galaxie pulled up, so i settled for that. by the time i was down with that one, i noticed the owner of the truck and his daughter were going to walk away, and they closed the hood. got that one too. 

closer to ten cars finally started showing up. but there was only a small area coned off for them. who plans a car show at a church on a sunday? so as mass ended, they started shufling cars and casually pushing cones further out.

sun was already high, and i figured i’d never find parking at lincoln park, so i stayed for a couple of hours and shot all the cars i liked. 

seen this cadillac before, at an xmas toy drive late one evening in december.  it was dark, and it wasn’t the best location. here it is again, in a circle, center of attention. interesting use of pinstriping and painted on “cadillac,” as well as metal flake paint. liked it well enough.

did i also mention there was a stage? when the live “band” (i only remember seeing a singer and a guitarist) started screeching out some zz top lyrics, i totally laughed at the dichotomy of the harpy belting out rock tunes and knowing the mass was going, with the side door open. no way the priest and parishoners couldn’t hear the profanity as they got their dose of gospel. 

i couldn’t take the singer’s voice any longer, and just had to leave. headed over to the together car club picnic, since it was close to home.

magnet

1950 lincoln zephyr

1950 lincoln zephyr

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was slowly easing my way around cars at the front sight show a few weeks ago. run into tudy, who asks if i’d shot his friend’s zephyr yet, as they are about to head out to another show.

nope, i was starting at the back of the show and working to the front, which happens to be where that car is parked. so i finished the car i was focused on and headed on over.

sure it is a beautiful car. beautiful cars attract people, which were surrounding it like metal to a magnet. i guess it could be a chick magnet, but i’ll just be crude and also call it a dick magnet, there were so many guys admiring it.

the owner was following behind me slowly, so i set up to shoot a few of whatever i could get before he got there to drive away.

the other shots are ok, cliche even. i sort of just like the front here for now. that’s the owner, there, just about ready to get in and disappear.

my shady side

1942 chevy special deluxe

1942 chevy special deluxe

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i’ve shot this car before. it’s really a beautiful car. owner has a long story about the paint color if you ask, but it ends up being some year of honda and some year of nissan greens, with a bit of pearlescent thrown in. really catches the light.

as i listened to him telling the tale of the paint to another random photographer/spectator and myself, the sun hit it just so, and it really was glowing.

unfortunately, i was busy listening, and not set up to take a shot then.

i’d already been by and found it earlier (above), and it just isn’t doing it justice. i mean i like the angle, the sky, the everything…it just isn’t catching the color. maybe the yellow car next to it is reflecting too much, and i’m on the shady side, (he was parked under the overpass but you can’t tell from this angle) but it just isn’t there.

oh well. posting this, and hoping maybe i’ll see it again sometime this summer. there’s always next year at chicano park…

hammered

1956 chevy bel air

1956 chevy bel air

sorry i’ve been away from home for a while, and away from my computer. finally had a chance to go home for a night on wednesday. got dishes washed (better half has been sick and some had piled up), and had my dinner. packed my bag for the next day or two away.

finally, i was able to get to my computer. the power button is failing, but it started. had to do some tweaks to some artwork for my boy, who has quit his job and has decided to partner up with a fellow grad to start their own law firm. lemme know if you need an attorney or two—they specialize in personal injury and taxes, but can also do the usual contracts, wills, etc. that need legal attention.

that took some time out of the evening, but finally i could get back to my pictures.

i’d been to chicano park a couple of weeks ago, and took a couple thousand pics in the five hours that i was there. still sifting through those, and have only posted a couple.

last weekend, while most people were at the la puente kiwanis show, i was out at the front sight car show in diamond bar. apart from enjoying smaller shows because they aren’t as crowded, i was mostly there because the owner of this here car asked me to stop by. it was for a good cause…in honor of a veteran who had committed suicide, and to offer help to other veterans to prevent more joining him in the afterlife.

actually, most of the people i did talk to said they were there because tudy had asked them, or otherwise twisted their arms to be there. he’s a good guy, they were happy to stop by, but generally all were on their way to other shows shortly thereafter—la puente or one of several high school fundraisers.

back to the picture…let me explain. i’d spent almost a couple of hours fiddling with this car, getting the color as i liked it, spit shining the chrome, and adding my copyright to it. i saved the file, and had started an export so i could post it…

we live in an older place in whittier. his mother gets cold, so there’s a space heater near her bed. then the tvs are on in her room and the front room. i’m working at my computer with a fan running next to me, cuz i just overheat all the time. better half probably had his computer on, even though i think he had been napping.

his mom gave up coffee, and is now a big tea drinker. she sips at the same cup of tea for several hours, requiring multiple reheats through the day. not my cup of tea but whatever.

in the back of my mind i register the buttons on the microwave beeping as he punches in the time. he hits start and wanders off into the laundry room. thought nothing of it, as i’m overheating as usual. did not realize his mom had gotten chilled again, and had cranked up the heater.

yet again, the perfect storm of me saving out a picture and him overloading the circuits, and boom blows a fuse, and the lights go out.

he ain’t no dummy, that man o’mine. my computer has a battery backup. but either i’ve got the plugs on the wrong sockets, or it isn’t working, and my computer crashes. it used to happen so often, and the profuse profanity that would come out of me at high volume would make any sailor proud. now i just shrug, wait for him to reset the breaker, and turn the thing back on.

yup the file wasn’t done exporting, and both the export and the file i’d just spent precious time polishing were corrupted. the export wouldn’t open at all, and my source file was now flattened and only three-fourths there. just black at the bottom. so here it is, with a little embellishment, of what would have been a lovely picture of tudy’s chevy. not sure if i’ll rework it from scratch. i have so many other cars to look forward to sharing. oh well.

gotta kick that battery backup this weekend. one good thing i noticed though, was that the power switch seemed to be working properly again. maybe it got hammered the last time the system crashed, and this one cleared the problem up.

dammit anyway.

xman

1961 chevy impala

1961 chevy impala

made it to san diego on my own. took a train. it’s really difficult dragging two bags up and down the stairs on a moving train. my weak ass arms did ok on the way there, and getting them into the overhead bin.

today coming back, after yesterday’s carrying a tripod and camera for five hours, i just couldn’t do it. the conductor helped me get my bags on-board. i sat on the lower level, reserved for disabled peeps. figured i’d move if they made me. they left me alone, and no one sat next to me either.

arrived on friday afternoon, rode the little red city train to my hotel, and got settled. got an upgrade to a better room, but being on my own, i didn’t get the bigger room i had last year. was so missing the big bath tub, but then, i worried that i would have had a hard time getting out of it.

the sun was still up after i had some dinner, so i took the red train down to barrio logan, to see if anything was going on. pretty much the last few years, nothing happens, as the cops are there making sure nothing happens. as it was, there was only one old chevy truck there, and only because there was a family having a picnic.

i wandered around the park, took a few shots of the murals, and headed back to the train. usually, i’d get some carnitas over at the northgate market, but i’d already eaten, so oh well.

i got up before the sun on saturday. typically, i’d be at the park before the sun, but this year i was a little unsure. i don’t know why. last year i took the train. had to switch to another train to the park. lots of homeless people on whatever poison of their choice mill about that early. better half insisted i take an uber this time. so i waited until just after sunrise this year.

cars were already rolling in by the time i turned the corner to the park. early this year. overall, it was organized a little different than past years as far as roll-in. so many beautiful cars.

i decided to start up on the far street, by the imperials club house. found this car up there. the owner chatted a bit. he’d hung a banner advertising his podcast on the club fence, but wondered if it would be better on another bit of fence. he asked my opinion. i thought the club might not want it on their fence. he thought maybe it would be in more pictures on the other bit. i took my couple of shots of his car, and saw he was already chatting up the owner of the car now in front of his banner.

no idea if his podcast is any good, but since he took the time to chat, shout out to him and go check out xmanradio.com.

pardon the delay

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here’s a beauty from the azalea festival car show out in south gate. sun still going up, shadows filtering through the trees.


a week ago today, i was set to be taking pictures at the bombs on the bay show in san diego. i had a three-day weekend scheduled, hotel booked.

instead, saturday morning, i hear my name being called. i roll over and instead of bedsheets, i see carpet. i turn over and see my better half coming toward me quickly, looming over me. it’s a weird, worms-eye view of the world…how did i get here? i’d gotten up to use the bathroom, and remember standing in the doorway, but don’t remember how i ended up on the floor.

i get sick, explosively, a couple of times. apparently i passed out again, eyes rolling up, turning whiter than i already am, foaming at the mouth. i don’t remember that. i remember seeing my reflection in a mirror, and thinking i look kind of pasty, like maybe the light bulb has a bad color cast.

i get walked down the hall to the bed. better half is calling my son, asking him to come take me to the hospital. kid is forty minute drive away with no traffic; he is there within thirty. better half has been checking my o2 and pulse. o2 is low, pulse is racing.

i have a dream with the bright light, and shadowy figures in the distance. better half wakes me up, an ambulance has been called.

emergency personnel are concerned, and question everyone. stupidly ask me questions, that i can’t recall; apparently i was still being a smart ass with some of my answers–my own kid said it wasn’t the time for that–i don’t remember him saying that or being a smart ass. nice to know i’m consistent, normal or fucked up.

ambulance crew decide to carry me out the front door and down the steps instead of listening to one their own, who have been there before, saying out the back, a ramp, no stairs. a female officer has me under the arms, around my chest, and a male has my thighs. by the time they get me to the stairs, my boobs are being pinched by her arms, her strength is slipping, and the guy is pinching my leg with his grip. i’m saying, just let me walk. by the time we are at the bottom, on the sidewalk, the girl is almost dropping me, but the guy has let my legs go, so i can stand and get on the gurney.

i’ve only been in ambulance once, but not as a patient. let me just say, whittier has some bumpy roads, as the guy tries to insert an iv in my arm. turns out to be a crap iv, and the hospital can’t use it, but it is left in for the balance of the day.

better half can’t leave his mom, and is left helpless on the doorstep. my son is sent to sit with me in the emergency room, which ends up being about ten hours, before they admit me for the night.

after all the tests, they still didn’t know what happened. all the doctors stopped by the room for a minute, so they could bill me for their time, guessing stomach flu or dehydration. sent home the next day, late afternoon. arrive at home, with a fever i didn’t have at the hospital. took a pill, it went away and didn’t come back. very weird.

took a couple of additional days off past what was my three-day weekend. saw my own doc, so i have more tests scheduled. i’m guessing dehydration, but why so suddenly and grossly violently, is the question. i did go to work for a couple of days, and other than tiring, was ok.

i’d meant to go to chino yesterday for the corn fed run, but frankly, i’m a little scared to go too far. i went to covina instead, where i expected some friendly faces, just in case anything happened. i wasn’t disappointed, and saw several people i knew. they would keep an eye on me.

i’ve got a second trip planned for chicano park this weekend. hoping all will be good to go. will try to talk my mom into going with me. better half is worried. he’s a worrier. if i don’t feel good, i won’t go. simple.

at least my kid got the hotel to refund one night on my reservation.

short and sweet

1948 chevrolet stylemaster

1948 chevrolet stylemaster

late. gotta get to bed but wanted to get something posted from the azalea festival car show.

used to be packed at this show, with cars parked in the lot in the dark waiting for the gates to open.

this year and last year, not so much. just me, a cop car and the groundsmen sitting out there before sunrise. then some little kid baseball/softball people started arriving. briefly thought about taking pictures of them practicing, for old times sake, but my kid is all grown up and i didn’t want to be the creepy stranger with a camera.

at least i got my car parked in the lot and not down the street.

a few show cars arrived a little after seven. a few impalas and some year suburban.

then this veteranos’ car shows up and alls well. getting to know the owners more, since i’ve chatted with them at several shows now. not the first time i’ve posted the car here, and not the last.

since it was a bit away from the other cars, i had a little room to play. they just recently had some pinstriping added too.

had to use my better half’s cameras. he loaned me three different wide-angle lenses to use, since mine wasn’t meant for a full frame camera.

his were all prime lenses, so i needed room to move, since there was no zoom at all with them. i took a few shots with the one he said was best, then tried the one he said was similar to mine. never did try the third lens. didn’t want to get dust on the sensor anyway.

whole point of getting there early is to catch that low light, but since it was already over an hour into sunrise, best i could do was work with where the sun was at the time. got a lot of pictures with sun flares testing these lenses. sharp, but flares are octogons instead of circles.

this one came out ok. i have others from when it was parked on the grass later, but this was pretty satisfying.

greeter

lafayette

lafayette

strange car i saw once at a weekly evening show they used to have at a sonic in anaheim. not even sure it still happens in that location now; i want to say i saw a flyer for a different spot recently.

shame it was parked under the walmart signage, where it welcomed cars into the lot by the entrance, though the sporting goods sign might be more appropriate with a car like this.


walked uptown today. totally wasn’t thinking, or i’d have gone to the little museum, where there was a small car show and an exhibit unveiling. walked to lunch, and was just a couple of blocks away, but didn’t notice any strange activity down the street. usual couple of cars cruising through on greenleaf; there’s always a couple of cars cruising through.

in fact, i didn’t remember the show until about three pm, and figured it’s too late, people leave after trophies are given, and it’s too hot today. yesterday was in the sixties, today over eighty. tomorrow the same.

going to south gate tomorrow morning early. last couple of years, i was there before anyone, and though maybe i’d gotten the date wrong. some years, they let me in before show time, other times, there is some stickler for rules at the check-in table, and i’m stuck outside the gate, shooting video clips of cars driving in. sometimes wonder why none of the people i know don’t offer to let me hop in their car to get in the gate. i’ll get you a free print…ah well, don’t want to crush your upholstery.

going to use better half’s cameras, the big heavy things. don’t think i’ll use the battery grip, makes it too damn big for my hands, but just right for his big hands. i suppose the wide angle lens will also be one i’m unfamiliar with, or will be that big heavy chunk of glass he used to use. nice pics, but my arms will be screaming by the time i leave after hauling it around. it will probably kick my butt into gear about looking to get my own cameras fixed and/or buying something else.

failed

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not quite the last shot from this particular camera, but close, shot into the sun. sun fucks with the colors, makes flares, screws the sensor; break that rule often, and shoot right into it.

not that it had any part of the failure, but now i’m calling this second camera out of service. the motor inside makes noise, and if i shoot enough, i’m sure i’d get the dreaded “camera error” again.

these last two cameras i only got a couple of years ago, so they shouldn’t have failed. better half points out that i do take an excessive number of shutter activations, and use the hell out of them, so he’s not so surprised.

so, now i really will need to either junk them or pay to have them shipped to a repair shop and fixed. bad timing though, with big shows coming up. should i only get those two fixed, or also my original two a700s?

better half is taking the opportunity to push me toward full-frame cameras, but offering to let me use a couple of his, as he isn’t going anywhere shooting anymore. i think he may regret letting me use them long-term. i’ll kill them too. he’s not worried.

he is also pushing me toward a sony 7rii. ugh, i hate the small body style, but he says it’s a way better camera than what i currently use.

earlier, i’d been working on tudy’s fifty-six bel air. was about three-quarters done. hadn’t saved the file. better half uses the microwave, while forgetting he was also heating up his mother’s dinner in the toaster oven. old house. fuse blown. apparently i haven’t got my computer plugged into the proper sockets on my backup battery, and the computer goes down, the file with it.

the backup file that opens is fried, so i’ll have to start over some other day.

strange that i didn’t break out with a flood of expletives that sailors would be proud of. just rebooted, and picked another picture to work on. so here it is.