Discussions (225)

augmented illusions - intimacy and emptiness - january

alert chicken [deleted] says:

Last
Originally posted at 3:32AM, 20 December 2006 PDT (permalink)
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Glow* says:

You know you can already post a selfportrait ;-)
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

i know maia, but i don't have any. i'll start of with one though, on january 1!
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

so, almost the last day of 2006, and a "self portrait" of sorts.

061231 - m6

I haven't been home for 2 months. Or you could say I took a circuitous route through Europe and my own home town to get here. I acquired a spinal cord injury as a result of my cancer treatment, and that is something I'm dealing with now. My starting position, on january 1st is/will be:

rehab centre
getting off methadone (pain medication)
coming to grips.

i don't know where it will all lead, in 2007. I've had a taste of what it's like in 2006; it's a tough place to be in.

however...forward in every direction!
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Glow* says:

I'm trying to send you good vibes from Paris....hope you get them!
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

:) !!!
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Loca.... says:

Good vibes from Portugal as well, all the best to you.
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allegory in red says:

...and texas
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 1st 2007: thank you all for your thoughts, the vibes, the best wishes.

I'll apologize beforehand for the fact that I'm still holed up (bad skin condition causes me to be in bed until it clears) so my photographs lack scenery and people, if only because I'm not allowed to photograph much in hospital. I'm not mobile, being forbidden use of the wheelchair (see above, and file under skin problems) So this might be a bore to read and watch.
There's a terrific thunderstorm on at the moment. People are lighting what remains of their fireworks (it rained heavily last night, in the Netherlands, people spill out on to the streets to light their own fireworks)

As I wrote above, the pain that remained after my injury provoked treating me with methadone to manage it. Soon enough the methadone was managing me. So, two monumental decisions were in order, first: make my injury more manageable, which ironically meant making it worse; second: come off the methadone. Which is what I've been doing for the last eight days. As any drug rehab veteran will tell you, methadone is one of the hardest habits to kick. And it's true. But it's also true I've come through.

this was yesterday (7th day off methadone, around the 6th day is supposed to be the hardest)

061231 - m7

and this was this morning, the 8th day, and I think I've seen it through:

070101 - awake

I still feel very tired and very sore, but I don't want to die anymore, so that's a plus :)

Other than that, my family, my friends, life, work, it's all been going through my mind. The last few days were hell, and I thought I had been through much already. Well, there's always something to learn!
I have been thinking too, about this group, and its project and about why I (apparently) so jumped at the chance to chronicle 07. The point is, in some ways, this is a very interesting and important stage in my life. So I want to keep notes, but I also want to share.

I have received so much support from my closest friends, it almost makes me ashamed (I don't deserve this). I'm eternally grateful to each and everyone of them. But I have the overwhelming feeling that now it's my turn. The door is open, I only need go through it.

Every day is a good day.
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Glow* says:

You make me speechless...it's strange how lonely you can feel when we're having bad moments...and it's even weirder to think that we are a lot having bad moments at the same time for different reasons...
'Happy you managed to stop methadone, you must (and you can!!) be proud of you! :)))
Happy new year :)
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Patrícia Raimond says:

I hope, everything goes for the best. It's difficult to say anything, but we are here. A big hug, and be strong, you are not alone. Happy New Year
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PutYourFlareOn says:

Thank you for sharing, this made me tear up. I'm so happy to hear that you've made through the hardest part of quitting Methadone. There's pain in your words but I see hope in your eyes. This will be a good year for you because you are taking control of things.

Thank you for sharing... Here's to a new year!

((hugs)) from Paris....
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hervcha says:

Good vibes and best wishes from Paris
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

wow, i'm overwhelmed by your reactions. 06 was the year I closed in on myself; I needed to concentrate hard to accomplish the difficult stuff. But I did, and I am indeed very hopeful. This will work out, and 07 will be full of connections! I can't wait to start!
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dda1605 says:

Happy new year and a lot of great pictures
And by the way, tomorrow will always be your best day.........

(2007 Didier )
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

haha, that might be right, dda1605, however, i rather prefer to think that today is all I need to deal with today. on the advice of a good friend...
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Innamorata Crush says:

xoxox- there is a beautiful gentleness in your face
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Osbornb says:

Beautiful portraits -- my best to you in 2007!
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chibi_butterfly says:

Happy new year! And get well!
Hope, they'll let you wander around very soon. :)
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

working on it. there's stuff that needs doing...
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AliThinks says:

Happy New Year to you...may it be an excellent one!
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Blandine Géneau says:

Happy New Year!
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 2nd 2007, fragile

I did decide to just describe my daily life, and not sugar coat it too much, or bury it under a display of "grit and determination" where, in reality, there is just hanging on for dear life. I received some flickr mails yesterday that touched me deeply and were all very welcome. There's grief associated with having my friendships managed for me, as it were, by time and circumstances...but also joy.

070102 - decorative

Far be it from me to make this journal into a daily session of moaning and complaining. I'm still prone (on my stomach) at least while sleeping and during much of the day, because of my skin and its care. Going to sleep is now a daily ritual of arranging many, many foam supports to allow me to lie comfortably... However, there's now no need to wake up a least twice in the middle of the night to turn over and it stretches my hips and back nicely.

Stuff like this continuously shows me how fragile the balance really is (but then, isn't it for everyone?) and that kind of scares me: because of the methadone withdrawal I got sick (really sick, really, really sick, we're talking about heavy-duty throwing up). So, I lost weight. That was one pillar destroyed (much of the muscle I gained with working out and nerve stimulation is now gone exactly where it counts: my butt) Got a bit de-hydrated; the second pillar. (thin skin) Problems with continence, the third. (friction) With only one pillar left standing, the discipline drilled into me of caring for my skin, I finally took matters into my own hands, called a dermatologist I'm acquainted with and let him prescribe anti bacterial honey. The prevailing notion still seems to be: pressure sore: stay off it and take antibiotics, which in my case means: stay in bed and get physically inactive. Absolutely the worst way to go about healing this, to my mind, so I've started standing for up for an hour at least, daily, in the standing frame (aren't you a little bit too weak for that?), to get the blood flowing again.

It's difficult to regain a notion of physical robustness now that my body has started to work so very differently. As J.M. said yesterday: not being able to walk is the very least of my worries.

Thought I'd include a tattoo shot (they were done by Richard from Raw Tattoo) as it always cheers me up to look at them: my own design, based on Siberian tattoos from the Bronze Age. I like the decorative aspect of tattoos, and the fact that they've been placed and inked so beautifully by Richard. He and I have collaborated through many sessions, and are still working on extending the design. Interesting tattoo fact: they were also used for medical reasons: for instance, it's been found that a bronze age body found in the Alps had tattoos over arthritic joints and along malformed sections of his spine. These are in the form of dots or strokes: almost like permanent acupuncture, for it is conceivable that the ink's iron actually impacts the pressurepoints and meridians directly underneath the mark. And of course, a tattoo is a subcutaneous scar. Richard and I were discussing this, in the way you discuss "faits divers", but he immediately offered to come over and do some on my spine. And I've started to think about this, not in terms of healing, but in terms of decoration, a way of marking...battle wounds, I suppose....
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

tats in situ

070102 - tats
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zesty house [deleted] says:

My first time through, I had a fair bit written about attitude and struggle. And then I realized that was the unimportant part. The important part is telling you that, although I've only just read about you ten minutes ago, I care about your well-being and will be sending good energy for you.

I wish you the 100% best in this year to come and hope to hear your story the whole way through.

-Sontra (A Day In My Life)
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PutYourFlareOn says:

The tattoo shots are great, I'd never had the courage to do that. You are a strong person from what I can tell from what you are writing. You're willingness to share shows a certain kind of strength that many of us do not have.

Keep that chin up... keep writing.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

@pyfo`; I will, now that Philippe is my (and our) guru, i'll simply have to :) :) :) I'm committed...

@sontra: I do mean to write this story for the entire year. I myself do not know where it will take me, and in this sense, it is a terrrific adventure. And you're right: attitude and struggle are not the most important things, although they do count. It's in the connections, the friendships, the relationships that things start to count. So does your gift of energy. Much needed, much appreciated!
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cautious range [deleted] says:

All my best wishes for a good 2007 from a neighbor in Hungary :)!
Not much else to say right now - but I'm looking forward to read more of your story!
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

thanks! well, it will write itself, I suppose...
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

It's kind of a slow time at the moment; I'm watching Startrek Enterprise. Don't really like it, although nothing's wrong with it...I guess...
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sunshinecity says:

What to say that hasn't already been said or that isn't redundant or cliche?
You are able portray a different side of life that too many of us decide not to ponder on. You are an example for many.

The tattoo shot is awsome

~ sunshinecity - www.flickr.com/groups/2007/discuss/72157594425326657/
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

yes, I've been thinking about that. i was amazed myself, that it is such a different "country", in a sense of having crossed a boundary. well, I guess I'm not the only one familiar with this kind of feeling.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 3rd 2007: good morning

Good morning everyone. The other day I realized that most of my writing either happens late at night or in the morning. Which is purely a matter of expedience: more energy in the morning, lots of stuff to take care of during the day, and then, finally, after about 10PM relative peace and quiet around here, after the night shift has arrived. I have really started to appreciate the night...
To continue yesterday's train of thought: it is amazing to me, that for me nothing about me has changed much, strange though that may sound. And that is the interesting part: other people, close friends, cannot see past the obvious changes. Being in hospital with something serious is a messy business. In the sense that it's a total engagement with those aspects of our bodies we would rather like to forget in our day to day lives.

"Be gentle to your body" someone said to me, not long ago. Very good advice, which I'm applying even now.

070103 - listening

I'm listening to music an awful lot, using headphones for civility's sake. My blog must be the only one on the net combining buddhist philosophy and eurotrash music from the seventies, yet I think it's a totally viable combination. My love for the weird and wonderful in music was helped enormously by my Beloved, whose tastes in music are even more weird and wonderful than my own. Thank Gd for iPods, by the way: it's such a luxury to have all my music in one place. D. updates it every few days and so it expands as well. I rely on her taste totally ;)

Not much going on. My return home (i.e. rehab) now totally depends on first healing the one pressure sore I have. Which is something that is now progressing. It turned to be caused by a seam of my left back trouser pocket. I've already ripped off those pockets, something I should have done earlier with all my trousers...

One clarification: I am learning that the "grind" of spinal cord injuries is not about the "paralysis" at all, but about spasticity, managing self care and pain. The "not being able to walk" is secondary to that. I've got a comfortably low injury (T12/L1 in the correct terminology) so there is not much I cannot do, even in the "leg department". If I support myself, I can stand, I can even pull myself up, do standing transfers. That is the fruit of my decision to make my injury "worse", strange though that may sound.

I've enrolled in a rather tough exercise program, called "Project Walk". An awful name, but indicative of a tremendous optimism. In fact, despite their literature, few people with complete SCI do walk, on the project, but my goal is to be able to use my entire body to the fullest extent possible. Which means using the spasms in my legs too. It's one of the reasons why I wanted to be drug-free, absolutely. The medical rehab model turns you into a paraplegic, which is a medical creation. I've seen this in others around me: most people are drugged, at least partly. Against pain, against spasticity. Make them "manageable".
Well not me. The only people I encountered who functioned on a high level were people off drugs, who worked with their entire body. At first I felt an enormous separation between my body above my navel and below. And there was, of course, every night, my legs were so spastic my knees ended up beside my ears! And so I developed a heavy baclofen habit. Now, although there is still pain and spasticity it is at least useful pain and spasticity, that can be used to my advantage. That was the starting point I wanted and needed.

A good friend gifted 9 swan feathers, sinew and a hide of beautiful brain-tan leather. I'm still deciding what to do with such wealth, but I'm forming ideas already....

A good day to each and everyone of you.
May all beings benefit.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

my first look at the dreaded spot since yesterday, and it's going well. even the regular bandage-changing-nurse was smiling (she's of the poker face variety, she has to be, in her line of work)

I'm sitting on my hands, sort of...mustn't get carried away now, but See This Through.

I also want to add, that this group is really taking off. So much great stuff to see and read. All hail to the guru! (must...get...more...guru-points...)
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oddityinabox says:

I love your black & white-ness... Are you going to keep it up for the whole year?

_ravi | *life through pictures
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

uhm yes, I'm going to use my favorite camera, a Leica Digilux2, and in B/W. Although a Leica M8 is supposed to materialize at the end of this week (revelations from Leica Camera a.g., Solms)... I do intend to stick to the 16:9 format too, because I love it.
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BellaGaia says:

Thank you for sharing your story -- nice to meet you -- good vibes headed your way from California :-) in case you didn't know we're known for our Good Vibrations ;-)

BellaGaia (Living with BellaGaia)
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PutYourFlareOn says:

Lots of optimism and honesty in this entry. Makes me smile.

Keep up the black and white, I really like it.

--
PutYourFlareOn's 2007 Daily Photo Diary
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

BellaGaia wrote:

Thank you for sharing your story -- nice to meet you -- good vibes headed your way from California :-) in case you didn't know we're known for our Good Vibrations ;-)

BellaGaia (Living with BellaGaia)


Yes I know. I may be going over there soon, (keep fingers crossed) It's all still unsure at the moment, but I do have a chance...we'll see.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 4th, 2007: waking up

In keeping with the theme until the 15th, here's my view when I wake up.

070104 - details

note the comforting presence of my wonderful Canon G7, close at hand. There's more stuff in that bag: spare inner tubes for my wheels, a bicycle pump, gloves, a woolly hat, my phone and my keys.

I also want to say something about the decor of my room and its environs: beautifully done. I'm in the wing that's just had the interior designers in (hospital make-over) and so everything is brand new, and hotel-ish.

perhaps more updates later today, but this is all for now.
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Loca.... says:

You have to show us your room one of this days. Nice pic you have for today.
My thoughts go to you today, hope you're feeling ok.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

I would like to, but I'm not really allowed, for privacy reasons. I have been shooting, on the sly, and that was a neuro ward, when I was first in hospital. (sounds obsessive, I know). I'll see what I can get you from more public areas, where privacy is less of a concern.

medical update: the honey worked: everyone is very pleased. next on my shopping list: seamless trousers! :)

I'm plugging in to the hospital's wireless network: one of the residents was kind enough to give me the settings he uses to access the internet on his night shifts. I don't want to rock that boat by too much illegal photography. (although I did warn everyone around me: I'm a photographer...)
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'stee says:

gorgeous photos. i especially love the ones of your tattoos.

i hope this year is good to you.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 5th: spending my time wisely

My gift of swan feathers has already been made into a fan. I use them for smudging, when I'm firekeeping. I made one before I went to hospital to have the operation on my back... And now I've made an other one. It was great to make my hands dirty and create something. So, an afternoon well spent.

070105- swan feather fan

More good news: My Leica M8 arrived, and D. brought it, with a couple of lenses. Don't have much to point the camera at, but the test shots are gorgeous. This is one hell of a camera!

More more good news: I'm moving back to the rehab centre. I've got 15 minutes before I'm sent packing :) So that's all for now.
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Sandra.Pi says:

love your tatoos!!! love you and i join the rest of the people sending you lots of energy and lots of strenght from all the corners of the world (in my case from Colombia)

Sandrapi
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dda1605 says:

Have a safe landing in the rehab centre and looking forward for you Leica M8 new pictures.
Feel good.

(Didier 2007 )
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 6th - oooooooooh!

Finally:

070106 - finally

I have an irrational, but profound love of rangefinder cameras and a dislike of (d) slr photography. I've got an entire year to go into this, so I'm saving it for later.

Last night I got "home", and I never thought a rehab centre would be so like "home" to me, but it was. Just in time for beer and darts, so that worked out well too. I am getting back to a "normal" day. It's such a luxury, being able to make your own breakfast, eat with people I know so well (there are units here, like "semi appartments" with 4 or 6 people to a unit, mixed abilities, so people can help each other out: this functions like an ersatz family)

Still, there's not much more this place can give me. So we'll see about making it home entirely next week.
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dda1605 says:

Keep faith. Home is the place you want it to be.

(Didier 2007 )
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

true enough, but it's very strange not being able to go home, in the sense of "not being able to inhabit that space". it's as if I'm exiled, in a way. On the other hand: the social aspect of rehab: it's a bit like being in the army, I suppose. The physical side to it: PT, workig outm obstacle courses for wheelchair training. The way you learn to survive with your body I mean. Now I only need to survive in my body, hehehe.

On the whole (sans the housing and money issues) I find it interesting and stimulating to be here. There is a "can do" atmosphere around that's infectious. The quality of care is very high here, and compared to many countries, assistive devices are available on state support. But there are injustices too, and the net is tightening, not in a nice way. But that's not the stuff that makes the news, but the determination of everyone around here is a remarkable thing to witness.

so, yeah... :)

I went out today for a bit of shutter-pressing. It's my fix, I suppose. I felt more vulnerable than before, also as there is still a limit to the time I can spend in my wheelchair. So I was like Cinderella: had to back by midnight, so to speak. I had fun nonetheless. Coffee with D. who picked me up from rehab. It actually felt like eloping hahaha. Shot some pics at the market too. So all in all a very good day.
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fabulous legs [deleted] says:

I'm glad things seem to be going well for you, Alex.
Hope you enjoy your M8 as much as I would.
:)

Take care.
(The Void)
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sunshinecity says:

your M8 is very sexy!!!
; )

~ sunshinecity
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sotonrich says:

What a gorgeous camera, I hope it brings you a lot of joy and I can't wait to see the results!

Breathed Upon
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satrina* says:

I know lots have said it before I do but when it comes to good things one more is not too many. I'm sending you all my good vibes.

Oh, and congratulations on your Leica!

Satrina: av meg
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

:) alright!

it'll take some time figuring this camera out, but it all feels very easy and smooth. i've missed rangefinder shooting.
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PutYourFlareOn says:

DSLR is so easy now, it took me a long time to make the switch. I don't think I could ever go back to fiim again unless it's to play with my old Lomos.

I look forward to seeing the photos you take with your rangfinder.

--
Aimee, PutYourFlareOn's 2007 Daily Photo Diary
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

Just a little advance posting: I do have some time this afternoon to shoot outside, so I'm going for it. Fortunately, we're next to

www.kunsthal.nl/english/index.html

(a beatutiful museum/expo building by Rem Koolhaas), so that seems a perfect destination.

I can see dinosaurs, a Henry Moore exhibition, and a Kessels Kramer retrospective (i've had dealings with them)

I think I'l let the sundaymorning breakfast go, but it's a nice idea for a next sunday. Let's see what I can catch...
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 7th: first shots

Alright, here we are:

070107 - first shots

I did go to the Kunsthal, a wonderful and completely useless building, designed by Rem Koolhaas. The architectural concept is that it is all volumes and slopes. Very steep slopes. Someone has dared me to go off the ramp in the skatepark on Westblaak, and this was good practice. And I got to improve my upper body strength going up hill. (there are more shots in my stream).

On to the shooting. I'm having a hard time using the viewlines on the M8, so my framing was erratic, more misses than hits. But rangefinder shooting per se was liberating, as it always is, for me. I've gone against my own promise and posted these in colour. It's because I wanted to show how the M8 handles capturing its files. It's got very good metering, that's obvious at a glance, and the sensor renders beautiful files, even at ISO 1250, like in these shots. The noise looks like grain, an effect that's even more beautiful in B/W.

Most striking to me was that I'm now at child's height, so I notice children a lot. I can get very close to the action, but the smaller crop factor meant that I had to rethink using a 35mm lens. I'm too far off in most shots. The crop isn't tight enough.

I've decided to go for the outside edge of the viewlines, to be on the safe side when composing.

Apart from that it's a very rugged camera, solidly built, but small enough to carry around fairly unobtrusively. and you can stuff the lenses in your pockets, so that's ideal for me. I couldn't handle an SLR with some lenses without someone assisting me. Very fluid shooting. But that's true for all rangefinders. It's very easy to get into a groove, if you use one. At least, that's true for me.
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'stee says:

you've captured this little guy's art gallery moment nicely.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 8 - metros and trains

training day: getting in and out of metros and trains...

070108 - trains
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leroyer says:

Hehe, funny...

I like your pictures, by the way... and texts.
Don't have time to comment often... so it's one time here, one time there, but I read it all.
Keep on the good images and words.
:)

[philippe leroyer - the milky bald guru on a day by day basis : too much pleasure for all !]
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

Thanks, oh guru. Really appreciate it. I think you're a genius for having started this. Gd only knows how we'll be on december 31st 2007... onwards to:

january 9th: to the market

My Cinderella time. Three hours. Negotiation got me two taxis with a discount...to maximise my time. I'm really investing, as you see.

Shot with the leica, with an 28 mm elmarit. Did all in b/w, bar one.

070109 - to the market

link to a set:

flickr.com/photos/urbandiscount/sets/72157594469906616/
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zesty house [deleted] says:

re: Thursday, January 4

You're a cyclist? That's pretty awesome. I, myself, am a casual one myself. The weather in British Columbia can make it one hell of a pain in the ass to bike. Wind + Rain = Scary to share roads with cars.

Nice click.

EDIT: I just realized. That pump probably isn't for a bike is it?

re: Friday, January 5

The feathers look very... deep? Wrong word entirely. That photo is invoking a lot of strong feelings from me, but I can't quite place what or how or why.

I guess that means a good photo, right?

re: Saturday, January 6

I have very little to say other than, "I'm. Damn. Jealous."

Nice camera.

I'm glad you're getting the pleasantness of sociality.

re: Sunday, January 7

That kid seems so unhappy to be there. And for some reason, it's only him and the girl in the pink shirt in the back that I see in this photo. Everyone else doesn't strike me much.

re: Monday, January 8

It's not often that I take a metro, living in Victoria, BC. But that image sums up my entire experiences with them.

re: Tuesday, January 9

I know enough women who would be terribly pleased with all those shoes. I, on the other hand, only ever have two pairs. Quality over quanity. ;)

I think you were right for choosing that one, although the coffee cups stuck in my mind.

-Sontra (A Day In My Life)
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PutYourFlareOn says:

Shooting from a childs vantage. That's an interesting point of view... Kinda makes me think of the Lomo shoot from the hip but I'd like to see what I'm looking at though.

I really like what you're doing with your photos lately...

--
Aimee, PutYourFlareOn's 2007 Daily Photo Diary


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Loca.... says:

Like these shoes....
:))

Loca
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

Hello all, just a short interjective post before I go on to the proper journal post

@sontra: thanks for the comments! I used to be into cycling big time; I even rode recumbents, there's still one in the shack. So I've got good bicycle repair stuff that comes in very handy now. There are cool handbikes that are recumbents, and I've ordered a tracker for daily use, so I'll be biking again in no time.

the feathers are symbolic too: swan feathers - healing the soul: that's what those fans are for, if I make them, in any case.

As a general remark to your comment about that museum photo: I photograph people a lot and it always strikes me how unhappy everyone looks when they're unobserved, by themselves. Is that our "natural expression"? I hope not!

@PYFO: yes, child's vantage point: you're right. I notice children more now, and legs! It is more difficult to "look over" things: I have less height. So my naural frame is now lower, at child's height indeed. A few days ago my son said to me: don't you hate it when electric doors don't open for you because you're too small?

As a shared experience.

Thanks! I like the street, the people in it. If I could I'd do street photography all the time.

@Loca-Bandoca: so did I, markets are such great places: connections, people, buying, selling,: the market is life itself. That's why I like them so much.
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Ladybadtiming is a group administrator Ladybadtiming says:

hi there !
I do enjoy your topic
and will be back
we have to find a way to keep that DPD under control
its too addictive
don't you think ?

[LadyBadTiming / snapshooting my life away, day after day, after day, after day]
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

Oh man, I have a meta post in the planning stage, where I want to go into the experience of keeping a DPD. It's all very fresh now, but I suspect that will wear off and boredom will set in. That's the stage I'm most interested in, if truth be told.

And you're right, it is addictive. I also starts filling a substantial part of my day, not the writing, but the reading and the commenting.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 10th: a movie

If the MBG insists, I will post a photograph today, but I really only made a movie for you:

(the MBG insisted and so):

chairs

scanr.net/index.php/2007/01/10/move/
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satrina* says:

Looks great, that music suits it perfectly

Satrina: av meg
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

I had fun making it, so thanks!

the meta-post, as promised. I 've noticed we don't have meta threads in this group. Only "official" threads and then the journal threads of course. So I may have missed discussion on this going on in threads I didn't read well enough.

So (I must admit I often seem like my own thread-killer): want to tell me about your experiences of doing this thing? I'll tell you what I'm experiencing, and I suspect Samrag will have light to shed on this, being at least 5 months ahead of the rest of us.

So far, no problem in keeping to the one post a day, with a daily photo post, although yeserday I did cheat, by linking to a movie and by not posting a photograph (shame on me). I'm writing for three separate blogs now, this one included (apologies for calling he MBG's domain a "blog"), all represent a different piece of the puzzle. So far, I've offered a glimpse of my daily life, but of course that glimpse can never be a fair representation: there's always editing involved. I'm noticing that I'm starting to think about subject matter more, about excursions, stuff I can show you, more interactivity. Also, I appear to separate the posts from the photos now...

It's a unique occasion: it's so mind-blowing to get all this insight into the life you all lead. Enlightening, to say the least. So far, I'm keeping myself to the 24 hours immediately ahead of me, to curb my tendency to worry.

There's a gale warning at the moment, for a force 10 gale, so I don't know if I'll get out: I'm wondering what I'll be posting tonight.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 11th - wheelchairs

070111 - maintenance

Beastly weather, and so there's time for maintenance. Checking tires, checking alignment of the back wheels, getting rid of all the hair (yech) that accumulates around the axles of the front wheels. Suspension would be nice, I'm thinking, because every cobble translates to vibration in my spine. Not a nice thing. This wheelchair was custom made, so fitted to my body. And that's a good thing, but costly, so scores of people just can't afford a good wheelchair, or they're not being diffused because of money issues. And that's a shame, because I'm discovering that it pays off to have the best wheelchair available for your body and circumstances. We're in $3000 territory here, but it was one investment I wanted to make and so paid for it, in the realization that 70% of my colleagues aren't so lucky. This chair is made primarily for dancers and that suited me very well: I'm quite small and light, and the wheelchair is starting to feel like an extension of my body. It's pretty tight (38 cm seat width, 40 cm is often the minimum you can get from the likes of Invacare (yech) and incredibly light (titanium) There are some things that can be adjusted: I avoided a completely custom-built chair, because you need to change the entire chair if your body changes too much. It's rigid, so it doesn't fold: always a shock to people. "You mean it doesn't fold". No brakes: brakes are for whimps, as H. keeps telling me.

Compromises...

if you want to contribute to mobility:

www.whirlwindwheelchair.org/

Whirlwind designs wheelchairs for production and use in developing countries to empower people with disabilities through independent mobility and sustainable economic development.
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zesty house [deleted] says:

The video was great!

In my opinion, you didn't cheat at all.

This project, while headed by The Big Cheese, is about you. Each day of your life, however you want to show it. Some people were talking early on about "editted" shots. And then my first few photos were almost entirely photoshopped. I decided that I'd be giving a glimpse into my life, however I felt like doing that day. Nature shots. Edits. People. Whatever. If it's with a video, I think that's totally cool.

Now, if the video wasn't as fun to watch as yours was, I might call veto. ;)

-Sontra (A Day In My Life)
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

thanks for the encouragement. I didn't dream of this project and its guru yet, but I guess I'll reach that stage too, we all will...lol... You call the MBG "The Big Cheese"? :)

When I finished editing it with the music clip in place I laughed so much....I do go fast, but not that fast!

Nice of you to stop by. Thanks!
ages ago (permalink)

zesty house [deleted] says:

Pssh. Stop by?

I'm practically setting up a tent in your photostream.

*grins*

-Sontra (A Day In My Life)
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

hahaha. you're welcome to camp out in any case!
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leroyer says:

I got my eye on Sontra, do believe me...
Hehe.

About the movie... let's say that the purpose of this project is to have, here, a representation of your days. So, some might draw, but the image is still posted here. Which is not doable with a movie.
So you might take a screen shot of it, or else and post it...
... while keeping your topic as interesting as it already is.
Great reading.
:)

[philippe leroyer - the milky bald guru on a day by day basis : too much pleasure for all !]
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

alright wise guru. I'll edit the post. thanks for pointing out.
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sunshinecity says:

... the video is awsome, even if not exactly complacent to "Da Boss' " rules....
I figured you sped up the movie abit, unless you have a motor on your chair!!

I'm glad I managed to find your thread!! I'd been meaning to come back and visit, but I hadn't added your thread to my favs, and couldn't for the life of me remember its name!!!
= P

Make sure you add a URL to your signature when commenting in people's threads, so it's easy to come back to yours!!!
= )


~ sunshinecity,
a picture, a story

ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

an update on the weather...

they're guarding dikes up in Groningen

"water management" over here means being able to keep the sea out (dikes, dams, things like this.

and being able to pump the water that's inside NL, out. Keeping dry feet. A science we've been perfecting since the middle ages and that has shaped dutch culture, even the special kind of democracy we have today...

I've been listening to the shortwave scanner on and off today. As a family, we have fairly close links to the island of Terschelling, which is our farthest North. My brother went to school there to be a naval officer, and we jointly own a summer house on the island, so we go there a lot. When there is a storm like this, ships may lose some of their deck cargo (like, 40ft containers), which then ends up on the Terschelling beach. So, people start listening to the shipping messages, and messages from ship to shore. If it's clear that they've lost cargo, people from all over the island will go to the beach for a spot of beachcombing (everybody has landrovers or similar here, we've got an unimog) to try to haul off as much as possible. Wood is always a prized catch: our entire garden fence and part of our shed was made from wood we got off the beach. Here's a beauiful flickr set by Gerrit Bart about beachcombing:

www.flickr.com/photos/vliegerfototerschelling/sets/721575...

It's even better if this takes place at night. It's semi-illegal, and very much part of island culture (there are very specific local
customs here, that people like us are only partly involved with, because we're not "from the island".)
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

@sunshinecity: you're right. I should have done that; I'll start signing with links....

Yeah I sped it up some. I needed to match the BPM of the track, match some sections of the track to sections in the clips, so it was a bit of a puzzle.
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sunshinecity says:

... maybe a puzzle, but excellent turnout! And the music was the shit, as they say in the US (that means it was good!)



~ sunshinecity,
a picture, a story

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leroyer says:

All the "piracy" thing is really interesting.
I really wish I could witness that one day.
:)

[philippe leroyer - the milky bald guru on a day by day basis : too much pleasure for all !]
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

yeah, good stuff!
ages ago (permalink)

cautious range [deleted] says:

I love your Spirit!
Reminds me of my Dad, if I may say so.
He always had the highest repair bills for his wheel chair in the whole place, being one of the only ones outside all the time :)
I can't wait to see the rest of your 2007.
Very inspiring to my mood - thanks!

NicoleB
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

hey Nicole, thanks for commenting! Life's too short to be indoors... :)
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satrina* says:

I think this should be the line I have to keep in mind this days and I agree, your thread is inspiring

Satrina: av meg
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sarahwoo says:

So weird...I thought I had left a comment and now it appears I didn't...hmm

Anyway, I loved the video and you could definitely feel how well suited the chair is to your body through your movements. Really natural...though I'm sorry about the cobblestones.

Are you still at the rehab center? How long do you stay there?

Sarah
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ILIGHT says:

I've enjoyed your entries very much! They have given me some ideas to play with, so I thank you. I'll be checking back.
~images& words: 2007
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ILIGHT says:

P.S. Awesome Calvin sticker!!!
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

the name is cool too. caused quite a controversy when they started marketing these. The "in your face" attitude, you might call it.

Anyway, when will I be Out Of Here.

Aswer: depends on when my house will be ready. Now this is complicated, because we live in a duplex, so we have stairs. The shower is upstairs, and the bedrooms too. So, I'll have to learn rock climbing.

You understand the dilemma. We live in a cool area of town. Safe, L.s school is down the road, everything within walking distance, 3 types of public transport around the corner from us, the library across the road, the hip bars, the vibe this neighbourhood is starting to have... I could go on. My fear is, that we'll end up in a fully adapted house, where it's difficult for me to be outside, or get to a different part of town, because it isn't served by accessible public transport for instance. All too likely that that will happen. The housing market is crazy over here (but isn't it everywhere), and I'm talking about adaptations...

It's this sort of thing that gets me down, not the things about my body.

My other thought is to just make do...but there is the physical fact of our house, with stairs...
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sunshinecity says:

... you probably said, and I missed... where do you live??

~ sunshinecity,
a picture, a story
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Gypsy Flores Photography says:

Courage dear soul. I will keep checking in on you, you are an inspiration.
( A Gypsy Outdoors)
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

An inspiration: just what I don't want to be. Can I be a bad example instead?

Continuing....

Reader, I did not forget (this is part of my literary allusion disorder)

I got back about an hour ago and the photos are uploading.  I will and I shall tell you about today, photo included. Honest.

@sunshinecity: oops: I live in Rotterdam, but today I had business in "the devil's lair" ....
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 12th: amsterdam

Let us go then, you and I ...I'm taking you on a trip around the red light district, at least, the area where the red light district is located. But I hope I can show you another side of it. Well, we'll see. Here's a photo I took today, if you go to my stream, you can see the series, with descriptions...

070112 - amsterdam


I must say, I found it difficult. My perspective is competely different: if I frame to high, I get all kinds of distortion. And the bottom frame completely blocks a way into the photo... That changes the instant I photograph on my eye level. I wonder whether you'll be able to tell. I was enormously frustrated, not feeling happy in my shooting at all. Until I got to Warmoesstraat and stopped moving around. I'm of the type that seeks action. I thrive on it, so I hunt for it, in a way. But that is not a viable strategy anymore, so I have to hang around, for a long time, in one place. And aim low...:)
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glucozze says:

lol why this man have a flower-box on the head ?
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

you have to click on the photo to see. He also told me that the fowerpot he had yesterday was better.
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alert chicken [deleted] says:

january 13th: hanging around

And for all this, nature is never spent

070113 - opgelegd

I was hanging around today, full of black thoughts. Mainly, I was taken aback by how difficult yesterday was, looking back on it. I managed, only just. That is taking some thought. I've sort of calmed down now, and I'm peacefully watching Ray Mears knap flint (he's the bushcraft guy on BBC2). So all is well.

I was very tired (no surprises there) so I did a lot of catching up on the news, read the paper, did weekend-type things, listened to music and watched a DVD (After Life) I couldn't venture far today, a trip to the supermarket across the road to buy some stuff for lunch was all I managed.

I'm finding the thought of having to produce one photograph quite stimulating. I'm not afraid to post shots like these, which are a bit like service messages. I don't mind if you don't mind :)
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fabulous legs [deleted] says:

Keep your spirits up, Alex.
Sun always end up shining your way. Always.

The Void – Stefendlabise’s lair
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

thank you
ages ago (permalink)

alert chicken [deleted] says:

Well, what do you know? Fewer black thoughts and the prospect of a week of companionship with D. (i.e. being in each other's presence for an entire week) next week, because L. is away on an extended school trip. We need to learn how to be around each other again, I suppose. We've been separate before, the longest period was three years, the time of my retreat ( a real one, this is not a code word for "being in prison", mind you) . This is a tad different of course, because this wasn't an option, but was thrust upon us. The three of us are having dinner tonight, so I hope I'll get some shots from that.
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satrina* says:

Hope you have a nice dinner. and I love the natural expression on that man's face.

Satrina: av meg
ages ago (permalink)

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