Saturday, March 8, 2014

The Coolest Museum. Ever.

There are times when friends, colleagues or perhaps chatty strangers compliment me on my photos. I love that. I've always wanted to take a photography class, but that- along with those French and sushi-making classes- tend to get pushed aside to some vague undefined future date. In the meantime, those pictures aren't going to take themselves, so I have to make do. In order to get maximum results with minimum training, there are a couple of tricks that I employ.

First of all, I carry a camera, a Canon Powershot SX20is. This should seem fairly obvious but we now live in an era where Apple, Samsung et al have convinced people that phones= cameras. They don't. A phone will do when you absolutely positively have to get a photo of your Spaghetti Bolognese because, man oh man, that Olive Garden is off the chain but if you are in the middle of the Serengeti, trying to capture the majesty of a pride of lions with your iPhone5s, I am going to mock you two ways. Loudly and often.

Secondly, and this may be even more obvious, I go to really cool places. I can't really take credit for this one. My job and very flexible schedule allow to me to do this.  But when I do get one of these opportunities, I photograph the shit out of it.  I go at it as if I were being paid by the pixel.  Case in point, the Neon Museum in Las Vegas.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

How this bricks pant'ed man managed to make Salt Lake City even weirder than it already is.

I have always had mixed feelings about Salt Lake City. In my very limited experience, I have found it to be an interesting study in contrast.  One look around and you find a city with magnificent mountain vistas and a proximity to some of the country's most spectacular national parks but to get to them you have to run the gauntlet of all these seemingly lobotomized women who refer to each other as Sister-so-and-so and are very intent on getting your home address. It would be easy to infer that they were escaped inmates from a nearby asylum, but they are not.  They are Mormons and they want to make more Mormons.

Salt Lake City is a beautiful place but the heavy hand of the Mormon Church always manages to creep me out a bit. How heavy is the hand? The city itself is built around the well-maintained yet still slightly off-putting Temple Square (home to the largest concentration of loboto-sisters)... but like literally built around it.  If someone gives you the address 31 E 400 S, you know that the place (in this case, the Green Pig Pub) is located 3 blocks east and 4 blocks south of the temple.  Try to get a drink at the Pub and you will be met with all these byzantine liquor laws intent on keeping the flock from having to be exposed to the evils of alcohol (although to be fair, it does seem like this has changed a bit since my last visit, as I did not encounter the private club thing, where a member has to "vouch" for you in order for you to enter a bar).