Category: Photography

Days 3 and 4: Texas

Day 3 also included Louisiana and Mississippi, but even before I left Alabama, Taylor and her friend Cheryl were mocking my car for its filthy appearance. When I took a closer look, I discovered something intriguing: that wasn’t dirt on it at all! It was pollen! My poor little Fit was encased entirely in a light, even coating of tree jizz.

Like heaven sprinkles from unicorn flowers. See, a flower is a kind of penis.

Man, you know what’s going to be great? Not living in the South.

But after that: Texas! Things do not seem to be bigger in Texas, but Texas is definitely bigger than anywhere else. This photo should give you some sense of scale:

See, it’s like the star is Texas, and Hugner is Earth.

Kris and Erica were kind enough to put me up for the night, even under the stress of their still-in-progress move and its pipe-related disasters. While there I got to meet Oxford, who demonstrated that it wasn’t just Hugner, but all Jinxlets who make dogs want to chomp them. And snuggle.

Like heaven kisses from unidog peepee.

Like kissy kisses from kissface kiss.

That latter shot features not just Kris and Hugner, but the original Hieronymous B’Gosh himself. I’d label them but come on, they’re pretty easy to tell apart. (NO Kris is in the MIDDLE)

I spent the remainder of the day and most of the night trying to get out the other side of Texas. I made it just barely over the border before collapsing in Las Cruces, which is a little pilgrimage to me for Anacrusis-related reasons. Hugner was tired of the whole thing a mere five hours out.

You have to kind of work to make him look sad.

After that he went over to the fence and peed because there was not so much as a gas station for two hours either way on I-20. Bad Hugner! But how can you even try to yell at that face?

Day 2: Birmingham

Let’s out with it: in a blatant bid to grab some of that hot, sexy Starslip traffic, I am taking my new Jinxlet, Hugner, with me on the road across America. Now instead of trying awkwardly to take pictures of myself in different places, I can take pictures of the stuffed animal instead! No one has ever thought of this before.

Hugner passenging.

Hugner was delivered to Louisville, so I don’t have any pictures of him from Day 0 (Winston-Salem), but there he is the passenging position which was once my purview on Day 1. Pretty cute, right! Except after that I had to stuff him in the back so I could put my giant backpack where he is.

The next two pictures are going to seem similar, but only until I explain that Hugner has a clever defense mechanism that makes all dogs think he is a chew toy. I’m… I’m not sure how the defense works. Up top he’s with the famous Brenna, and on the bottom he’s with my friend Taylor’s dog, Lizzie.

Hugner and Brenna.

Hugner and Lizzie.

Once the trip is over I’ll put together a Flickr gallery of these, but even by tomorrow we should have a VERY SPECIAL Hugner road trip update! It’s a surprise, but I will say this: the next stop on our trip involves his home planet.

Of Texas.

Fortunately London says it was just a flesh wound

On Saturday, Kevan, Holly, their friend Ramesh and I shot London in an event put together by Shoot Experience. As with Hide and Seek Fest the weekend before (only a week? Gosh), this was something that one of my housemates discovered through arcane metainternet means. This used to say that the discoverer was Kevan, but I am hereby correcting it: it was Holly. I was a liar before! I will burn.

We got ten “clues” related to London, water and the area around the Tate Modern; these were pretty obscure to me but much, much less so to my teammates. Our memory card was due in at 5:00, and they sent us out at around noon. That seems like a lot of time, but we were one of 66 teams, all of whom were trying to come up with unusual ideas for the same ten things and get to them on foot. The walking took longer than any clue, and our best shots took almost an hour apiece.

We spent the last hour in increasingly desperate attempts to get anything at all for the last four clues, and ended up frantically paring 232 shots down to the required 10 on-camera, while speedwalking back to the venue. We were lucky to have time to back up some of the better extraneous shots onto my iPod before the culling was complete, which is why there are 24 pictures in the Flickr set (half mine, half Holly’s or Kevan’s). If we did it again, we agreed, we’d concentrate on getting really good shots for half the clues and not bother with those that didn’t strike us–there was no completion requirement, as long as you didn’t have more than one shot per clue. (Nobody else knew that either, which is why there were fifty hasty pictures of toilets for Waterloo.)

Those striking clues really did yield the best results. We won the category prize for clue A, about the Tower-Bridge-leaping bus, for which I think everybody did exactly the same thing–but ours was the prettiest.

We got some Norton software we didn’t actually need as a prize, but the peer recognition was nicer; there were only thirteen prizes awarded, and Tiny Richard Dawkins and His Komodo Dragon Band got one of them. (Holly will be glad to explain our team name.) There’s an multiple-city Shoot Experience gallery show in August, so I won’t be here for it, but I’ll make my housemates blog about whether we make it into that too.

Speaking of Flickr, Maria wants me to mention that I’ve been slowly, disjointedly editing and posting some of the twelve mojillion pictures I’ve taken this year; recent additions include touristy ventures to the Tower of London, Kent and the British Museum.

I’ve been here for a week! This morning Holly made baby pancakes (which she called something much nicer that I can’t remember) and we ate them on the back porch, and the rest of the house failed to vote me out. I’m glad. This is a pretty great house!

I’ve been to Battersea Park repeatedly, and to the Science and Natural History Museums, and on a Tube Walk (pictures), and today I tried to go to a scheduled pickup Frisbee game at Hyde Park but it turned out not to exist. But still! I navigated to Hyde Park and back all by myself! I also managed to get to Victoria Station and back, twice, to pick up and drop off Caitlan when she visited.

Keen-eyed readers of this blog will note that normally I don’t go outside that much in a month, and will probably guess further that I am deliberately overcompensating to fight culture shock / homesickness / loneliness et cetera. Good guess, keen readers. But it’s working! And given my only other experience outside the country, I think overcompensation is entirely in order.

London is awfully big, but awfully neat too.

Update 03.07.2007 1243 hrs: Pikelets! They were called pikelets.

So this is the room into which we checked, late Monday night.

The room is small.

And this is the room we were in three hours later.

The room is big!

So are the chairs!

So my advice is, always complain about the air conditioning.

These images brought to you by my new wide-angle lens, which is the second-sexiest thing I own, second only to my new Bose Wave WHY DO I KEEP BUYING SHIT SOMEONE PLEASE MAKE ME STOP

As seen camwise, the dog has ceased to destroy my copies of Halo 2 (I bought the one with the aluminum case) and occupies most of her days now staring out the window. Eventually she will evolve wings, and yea, the people will learn fear of the Hawkpuppy of Broadway.