Friday, May 29, 2015

It's true.

The first thing I noticed...

One point for the Nikon F5 over the EOS-1N: I was pedaling through Broad Ripple yesterday after lunch, getting a workout with the big Canon on a strap around my neck, shooting a test roll through the camera. The test roll was some FujiFilm 200 that Amazon sells cheap in 4-packs of 24-exposure rolls.

Out in front of Broad Ripple Vintage, I snapped a photo of some interesting colored neon and *WHIRRRRRR*. That was it. That was exposure number 24. You're done with this roll, kiddo.

The Canon reads the DX code on DX coded film and, if it says it's a 24-exposure roll, then 24 exposures is what you're gonna get. There might be some way to override this in the camera's profusion of custom submenus, but I haven't checked in the camera's 120-page instruction manual to see. I think there was a hack we used to do with tape, too, but it was so long ago that I used to do this stuff...

The F5, on the other hand, will let the starving artist eke out those extra couple frames you can usually get on any film roll. Further, at the end of a roll, it merely flashes "End", and gives you the choice of either initiating the motorized rewind by pushing the right combination of buttons, or saving the electrons and noise and using the classic manual rewind crank atop the camera.

Because the Canon cut me off at shot number twenty-four, when I pedaled around the corner, I had to paw my Nikon P7000 out of my pocket, stab the "ON" button, listen as it warbled its musical bootup chime and whirred its little servo-powered lens out and opened its little lens cover, in time for...

Drove right out of frame as the camera sluggishly responded to my frantic "YOU TAKE PICTURE NOW!" commands.
Which is not a slam on the little P7000; it comes to life pretty quickly for a digicam; if I'd had it in hand instead of starting with it in the pocket, I'd have gotten the shot. But if I'd still had that couple of bonus frames in the camera around my neck...

Thursday, May 28, 2015


I look at this picture and can't help but see the price tag from 1995, which was decent new car money back then. Now the total value of everything in the frame is hardly even a good weekend vacation for two, unless your car gets good highway mileage and  you're willing to book a twin at the Bedbug Suites.
The penultimate film bodies from Canon and Nikon. In Nikon's case, it's the last one marketed directly at the globetrotting pro photog. Canon had one more evolution with the EOS-1v. Fifteen or twenty years ago, the edges of every sports field or fashion runway would have been crowded with these things, blazing away.

For casual snapshooting around the neighborhood, these are like getting your groceries in an M1 Abrams, or taking a Group B rally car to to the post office. Only a fool would do that... and I am that fool.

Oops, fell into the internet...

Googling something up on the Nikon D1x, I stumbled across this blog and have fallen into the archives. Love his writing and his eye.

I'll have the free ice cream machine turned on soon, I swear.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Ugh, pollen.

Spent yesterday with the bones in my skull creaking and squeaking like the hull of the sub near the end of Das Boot, when it was sitting on the bottom.

Spent most of my life in Atlanta and Knoxville, two of the most pollen-y cities around, and not a problem at all, but there's something around here that's got my number. Looking back over older posts, it's sometime in April or May that my throat closes up and my head fills with mucus and I start coughing up lungs.

I need to go re-stock on Claritin. Whatever it is, it seems to have hit later this year, but it's worse than usual, as if to make up for its tardiness.

I need to save this as a text-file... I can copypasta it every time Indiana's weird deer regs get brought up in conversation:

Here's an interesting .pdf of a PowerPoint presentation on deer overpopulation and its impact, on page five of which is a map showing the estimated deer range in the US in 1947.

Note that in the crosshatched "scarce or extinct" area, you can see the borders in Michigan and Minnesota that are currently the demarcation lines of where rifle hunting is legal and where in those states it's shotgun-only to this day. Ask any Bubba in MN or MI why the south half of his state is shotgun-only, and $5 says he'll give you something about how its "flat and densely populated".

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

"Stop Touching It!", Part the Whateverth.

Don’t take the gun out of the holster. Problem solved; problem staying solved.

Also… Stop Touching It!

(Seriously, the single most dangerous thing most people ever do with a loaded handgun is put it in a holster. Why would you not want to cut down on the times you have to do that?)

Tab Clearing, Iraq Edition...

Some links I had open for a post that's just not gelling yet...

Automotif LXXXIX...

Does that look like the vehicle of a person with any f***s to give? No. No it does not.

Monday, May 25, 2015

UnMemorable Day...

Go read...

Right here.


Drove up to Public Greens with Bobbi for lunch today. Despite the drizzle outside, the joint was jumpin'.

Across the table, Bobbi had the
Bahn Mi Lettuce Wraps
Pork Loin, Pork Pate, Pickled Carrot & Radish, Scallions & Cilantro, Chiles, Maggi Sauce
In front of me are (clockwise from top):
Pimento Toast
Olive Oil Drizzle, Roasted Peppers
1st of the Season Basil 
Dank Pesto, Chick Peas, Carrots, Radish, Scallions, Quinoa
...and the pièce de résistance...
Pork Nuggets
Deep Fried Bacon, Pickled Scallions, Rhubarb Chipotle BBQ
On sampling one of the pork nuggets,which were cubes of some rich bacon deep-fried w/o batter (so it's gluten free, if that's your thing!) Bobbi declared "I've found a new religion..." as her eyes practically rolled back in her head. The rhubarb-chipotle BBQ sauce was delish. That was a big ol' bowl brim-lippin' full of umame right there.

Truthfully, either of the two bottom bowls would have made a dandy meal in its own right for me, especially given how rich the pork nuggets were. Needless to say, a takeout container was required.

Automotif LXXXVIII...

1969 Corvette Stingray spotted in the drive-through line at the local Steak 'n Shake. I was two cars behind him, sitting in the Zed Drei with the top down, but pulled out of line to grab a couple shots with the D1x. We exchanged smiles, waves, and thumbs-ups, and then I pulled around and got back in line. I'd lost a spot in line in the interim, but who cares?

Memorial Day 2015


Sunday, May 24, 2015


L to R: Canon EOS Rebel XTi, Canon EOS 20D, Nikon D1x

SLRs from the big Japanese manufacturers have come in three distinct size/price classes for years and years now.

There are your basic consumer-grade cameras, with polymer bodies and pentamirrors instead of pentaprisms. The next step up are your "prosumer"-grade cameras, which are usually more ruggedly constructed, feature-rich, and offer some other benefits, such as powering up faster. On the downside, they're bigger and heavier, but not terribly much.

Then are the "pro-grade" cameras. These are big, heavy things, packed with batteries and usually with a built-in vertical grip. They've got pretty good sealing against rain and dust, although you wouldn't want to jump in the pool with one, and are built to take a beating.

My first DSLR was a Canon Rebel XTi (400D overseas) and it was your pretty typical consumer DSLR. It takes nice pictures and is actually my newest DSLR, and has the most megapixels and autofocus zones and what-have-you. However, when I was visiting with Marko a couple years ago and got to coonfinger his Canon EOS 10D that was a hand-me-down from Oleg, I got sold on the idea of a prosumer camera and ordered a used 20D from KEH.

Although the 20D is two years older and has a sensor that gives up a couple megapixels to the one in the Rebel XTi, it powers on slightly quicker and has a confidence-inspiring heft in the hands. I know these are just machines, but they're also conduits for inspiration, and so seemingly woo-woo factors like being inspired by the camera can matter. There are cameras I don't mind leaving on a shelf to collect dust, and then there are cameras that I can't keep my hands off of, that I want to pick up and paw and play with, that make me want to get out there and make photos: Which one do you think will give better results?

That brings me to the really honkin' big pro cameras. A kind reader sent me a Nikon F5, gratis. Now, the F5 may be a completely superseded 35mm film camera, but I remember when it was the mack daddy of them all. I am so madly, passionately in love with this thing, so unable to keep my paws off it, that I ordered its digital stepchild, just because, even though it's a totally outclassed camera in this day and age.

All this is a roundabout way of saying that, when I needed to do some macro photography of the Glock the other day, I pulled out the Rebel XTi, because that's where I keep the 60mm macro lens parked these days. After more than a year with the EOS 20D and my recent dabbling with the big Nikons, that Rebel felt so tiny and light! I want to put a little 40mm pancake lens on it and go walkabout in Broad Ripple!