Debate #1

Recorded on September 27th, 2016

Well, in the end, the joke really is on us. No matter how presidential Hillary looked and sounded tonight — and she did — Donald most likely only emboldened his supporters. Nothing he said, none of the facts he got wrong, none of his misdirections, would have changed the minds of his core voters. We all had a grand time live-Tweeting and live-Facebooking it (including me), and the thumbs-ups are still rolling in even after it ended, but we have to know that we were part of the spectacle. This is what televised debates have become. A massively multiplayer online game where the two prospective leaders of the U.S. are the avatars and we’re all nudging them here and there. Except one of them is grounded in reality and one of them is grounded in reality TV.

Shooting Film

Recorded on September 25th, 2016

Today, using Dad’s old Nikon/Nikomat FT from 1967 or so, I shot 16 frames of Kodak Tri-X 400 film. I have 20 left on that roll before I send it to Photoworks SF to process and scan. I can’t remember the last time I loaded film into a camera. It may have been when we used medium format Holgas at our wedding in 2007. It is fun! Knowing that I had only 36 exposures on a roll and that it costs real money to press the shutter release makes me way more choosy about the shots I take. We’ll see how they look. Sadly, Photoworks will probably be faster at film processing than I am at digital processing in Lightroom.

The Nikon’s meter is acting funny after all these years. I was going to just use the Sunny 16 method to set exposure, but I’m not confident enough for that yet and I needed to be quicker because we were out with friends, so I used the myLightMeter iOS app. I think it works well, but the processed photos will have the final say.

The Nikomat FT is a solid, heavy camera, but it’s so simple to use, and the viewfinder is so bright and big and easy to focus with that it feels fast. If you have one hanging around up in the attic, pull it down and get some Tri-X from Amazon for $5/roll and see what you can do.

Do Not Screw This Up, America

Recorded on September 25th, 2016

Yes, I’m getting fired up. Especially after reading “Why Donald Trump Should Not Be President” in the New York Times.

Hillary Clinton is unambiguously the right choice. She’s not even the “lesser of two evils”, which I am beyond tired of hearing. She is qualified, rational, diplomatic, intelligent, and experienced. That we are even debating this is just beyond me. It’s time to stop being afraid of offending peoples’ delicate sensibilities and just put it out there: Register to vote, vote for Clinton, be proud of it, and understand that you’re lucky you can do it.

If you agree that this is urgent, no messing around, beyond-cutesy-internet-memes, DEFCON 2-level seriousness, then donate to her campaign like we did tonight. Do something. I don’t spout a lot of opinions on Facebook about anything other than lossless audio encoding, but this is different (I did tonight). I’m petrified. Do not fall for Trump’s “I’m gonna shake things up” claims. He has no plan — for anything. Go with Clinton’s experience and level head. There is no margin for anything else. Do not screw this up, America.

P.S. As in, this is real. Like, “Mr. McKittrick, Joshua is still playing the game!”