AKA Abraham Bacoln

Maybe forever
March 30, 2007, 8:51 am
Filed under: photography

Of course I love all my photos – I’m not a monster (NO WIRE HANGERS … EVER!) – but some of them I just love a little bit more than the rest. And when one of those captivating and special ones has the prestigious spot of being the main page opener of my portfolio site then it’s hard for me to replace it.

The current index page on klophoto.com is a prime example. I’m not asking you to love this picture like I do. It just means a lot to me. It’s the herald of summer. It’s twilight as the days grow longer and we’re not all smothered in darkness at 5:00PM. The weather is getting warmer and we can be outside into the evening without freezing. The light is right, my friends are there, Matt’s bikes look absolutely killer and clean, and the warm glow of the house interior just calls to me – time to go get the dinner that I showed up for.

A picture like that makes it really hard for me to update my site – I don’t ever want it to not be the first thing people see. I hope that they see it and feel the camaraderie and coming summer and all the things I feel.

I know that in time I’ll have a new favorite and an excuse to update my site, but for now, I’m pretending like I never will. I’m going to hold on to this moment just a little longer.

Anyone need a kidney – you know, for backup or something?
March 28, 2007, 9:33 pm
Filed under: photography

I sold my bass guitar. I am officially $AMOUNT closer to being able to buy that Sigma 20mm f/1.8 lens. Now to figure out what else I can sell off that I haven’t used in years. Problem is that most of my boring unused stuff kind of bit it with the hurricane. Still! Surely I can think of something …

… because, see, if I don’t actually spend any money that’s currently in my checking or savings accounts it’s like I never spent the money at ALL, right? So as long as I can magically generate the funds from sales of pre-existing possessions then I’m all good.

I mean, it costs money to do that, right?
March 23, 2007, 9:29 am
Filed under: tidbit

ONE: When I’m carrying both my backpack full of books and my camera bag the camera bag has the place of prominence on my back by virtue of its cross-body strap design, whereas the backpack is just hanging off of one shoulder. It’s like they are, through their design or utility, expressing what my brain feels. I may be going to study in the library but I’d rather be taking pictures.

TWO: Last night while driving to the library with my windows down I passed a lawn that smelled of fresh-cut grass. I guess that means that Spring is upon us. Also, I can tell that Spring is upon us because the dogwoods are blooming. It is rather disconcerting because the dogwoods near my apartment do not smell very good this year – in fact, they smell quite a bit like some automotive product that I can not identify. Brake fluid? Transmission fluid? Something like which a pretty tree should not smell, that’s for sure.

THREE: I was touched by Todd Alcott’s discussion with his five-year-old son Sam, though maybe ‘touched’ isn’t the right word, maybe it should say something about laughter and amazement.

FOUR: My brain is shot, I think. I keep seeing people in my mind’s eye, familiar faces, and I have no idea where they’re from. New Orleans? Portland? Cookeville? Philly Nashville Boston Seattle I DON’T KNOW. They just keep appearing. I see someone in real life and think, “Oh, that girl reminds me of … that … one face … and I can’t remember who it is or how I know her … even though I can see her clear as day.” Or replace girl with guy, whatever, I’ve got quite a few of them up there. DAMN YOU NAMELESS PEOPLE! GET OUT OF MY HEAD!

AND FIVE: This morning as I left for work a new-model Volkswagen Beetle painted just like the General Lee drove by. I just looked at it and thought, “… okay, why?”

Noooo, Charles
March 9, 2007, 12:40 am
Filed under: tidbit

Every time I see or wear my What Would Tom Waits Do t-shirt I am impressed by the fact that I have never yet been in a situation where I knew the answer to that question. Say there’s a jerk in the left lane who won’t let anyone pass – just what would Tom do? Pull off the interstate and drive the back roads until he came to a barbecue shack run by a one-armed ex-shoe-salesman and his blind wife, Beulah? Or would he pull out a shotgun and blow a hole in the hood of that yellow Corvette? Hang his arm out the window and let the wind smoke his cigarette for him as he daydreams about the girl he left behind in Illinois?

I don’t think there will ever be a right answer to that question.

I do have a question, though, for which there is a right answer. Regarding the one posed in my last blog entry – the song that made me cry was “Widow’s Grove” by Tom Waits. I don’t know why. Thankfully none of you knew that answer. I’d hate to have to ask you to get out of my head.

‘Cause really, charcoal is *bad*
March 6, 2007, 10:22 pm
Filed under: tidbit


Originally uploaded by Kevin O’Mara.

I took a couple days of my Spring Break to go visit the Trey and the Megan (and the Jason and the Angela). If you’re hip you already knew that, but if you’re not, then consider yourself informed. What does it feel like to be hip?

I filled up my gas tank the instant before I left. On the way out I stopped only twice, and each time was concerned only with the meat part of the car/driver combo: once to output and once to input.

It used to be that I was not a hardcore driver. I drove several times from Cookeville to New Orleans, sure, but that was always with a driving companion. So were the trips to and from Boston or North Carolina – but on the way out to the Great Northwet I got an idea what a true road trip was like as we spent 13 days on the road. Then I proved my mettle by doing the trip from Portland, OR back to Cookeville in four days by myself. I am now officially hardcore when it comes to driving. Before that trip I thought about four hours was my max before I needed to rest or switch out. No, no, no, that’s not true at all. Next time we meet up why don’t you buy me a drink and let me tell you how awesome I am when it comes to driving.

So yes, where was I? OH the trip to Richmond. I did it in ten minutes shy of eight hours, only two stops, and didn’t have to refuel my car at ALL though the next day when I got in it the low fuel danger bus light came on instantly, so I apparently had cut it very very close. OH AND HEY I AM NOT CRAZY and I don’t drive 90 miles an hour or anything, so don’t think this is me bragging on speeding. Speeding is for suckers and people with fast cars and those two concepts are not mutually exclusive.

On the way out I listened to four artists on six CDs. I won’t bore you with the details. None of us are musicologists here. However, I will give someone … let’s see what I have in my wallet here … I will give someone TWENTY WHOLE DOLLARS if they can, in one try, name the song that made me cry while I was driving. Go!

ENOUGH ABOUT ME, more about Those People. I was totally mystified by Megan and Trey’s apartment because the Hallway Designer (that’s a specific title and if you work hard and go through the four year program you too can be Firstname Lastname, HD) apparently forgot how right angles work. It was a bit confusing at first, but now I’m very comfortable with the fact that it only has two dimensions. Their place is cute, of course, because they have some of the best Stuff that there is, which I hear is in great part thanks to the MeganMom but that is currently an unsubstantiated rumor and requires further research.

Shortly after my arrival we walked (! hooray!) to a nice restaurant called Bacchus. I looked at the menu and informed Treygan that we were going to eat there because everything sounded awesome. I got a spinach salad with a green apple vinaigrette plus goat cheese and pine nuts and that alone was enough to make me swoon. Maig and Traig got a julienned green apple and endive salad with … oh, poop, I can’t remember the cheese that was involved. Doesn’t matter, it was delicious. I’ll stop here with the food talk so that those of you who are like me and stuck in Cookeville don’t go crazy hearing about the pasta selection or the Kobe beef or the mushrooms or the cheeses or the wine or any of it. Okay sounds good! Done!

On Sunday we … what’d we do? Dang. OH YES we went all up and down Cary St. just shopping and being outside and walking. Hooray for big cities where there are actually shopping districts where the idea is not to drive your car from one Big Box Store parking lot to the next. We were all good and didn’t buy much other than wine and port and cheese and books. We also later drove all over downtown and saw the sights but there was so much that I can’t include it all here other than to mention that I love the exterior of the train station and there was also a joke about cobblestones OH and I used my cameraphone to take the picture that graces this entry.

Dinner on Sunday was DELIGHTFUL. I mentioned that I’d love to have some Vietnamese since none of the restaurants in Portland really did it for me. Jason and Angela met up with us and we drove out to Mékong somewhere in the suburbs. I got my pho and it was fantastic and the closest thing to the pho served by my favorite restaurant of all time, Pho Tau Bay in New Orleans and I really can’t begin to express how much it pleased me. OH and their nuoc cham was … I don’t know if it was correct but it tasted like I want it to, like I’m used to getting from PTB. Five stars, double thumbs up. Trey got pho as well and was impressed, and everyone came away full and happy and fat and sassy.

After that we tried to improve our fattitude and sassyness by eating a bunch of ice cream, and I think it worked. THEN we went back to Treygan’s and the manly men drank port and ate cheese while the women didn’t.

On Monday the Trey had to work, which sucked. I got up nice and early and relaxed while the Megan got ready, and then we went and visited some shops that weren’t open on Sunday (like the CAMERA SHOP and the KITCHEN GADGETS STORE and can you tell whose idea it was to visit those?) and then we drove out to more suburbs to meet Trey at his workplace and take him out for lunch. In the afternoon Maig and I went to explore the train station (excuse me, The Clock Tower if you’re a Richmonder) and just walked all over downtown taking pictures and goofing off. Then we headed back to their neighborhood, checked out two art galleries with WONDERFUL installations and I’ll have to get Megan to tell you who the artists were because I forgot to grab brochures but when you get rich by guessing the special song you go take your money to those galleries and buy some pieces, okay? Then give them to me and we’ll be even.

Trey returned, having worked a full day at making webs, and we headed down to a great sushi joint called Sticky Rice and proceeded to have the best sushi experience ever. We sat at the bar and our main sushi chef guy, Justin, was interesting and didn’t mind me bugging him and taking pictures but the best part is that he gave us a few plates of wonderful things just for fun, and that’s the kind of experience that makes you ask the waitress for some of those Sticky Rice stickers you’ve seen all over town so you can promote this wonderful restaurant.

After that? More port, more cheese.

After that? I drove home today. This time the trip took me exactly eight hours. I made only one stop, though, to empty and fill up and also to put gas in the car. I am a rock. I am a driving machine.

Actually, no, Ryan Denning is a driving machine. New York City to Cookeville in one day, one driver. Ben Schtune is the driving king, New Orleans to Philly in one day, one driver. I’m a mere apprentice to those men. But I am hardcore, and I have a bladder of iron.

I listened to one CD. Once. Then I sat in relative silence for the next seven hours. Music influences my emotions more than the silence, so this was a more peaceful and less introspective drive than the one on the way out. Also it was only relative silence because occasionally I will talk to or sing to myself. I can’t help it. Most of the time I was just announcing upcoming towns and exits using the voice of the guy who conducts the T in Boston (Chaahles MGH. Next stop Pahk St. Next stop Downtown Craahsing – switch here for th’ Orange Line).

Now I’m home. Now my cat is stuck to me, and now I’m already regretting my decision not to abandon my entire life in Cookeville and just stay in Richmond. Oh well. As long as I’m back I might as well continue my job and school and all that though I’d much rather go work in a wine shop.

And because I can not stick to just one topic and have not yet had a chance today to say “apropos of nothing” – to someone other than myself, that is – apparently the hip thing for 2007 is to drink unfiltered water. I searched three or four shops here in town for a Brita or Pur pitcher and … maybe I just have a bad case of the dumb, but I could not find a single one. Nada. Nuffink. Did I miss something or what?

Better out than in, I always say.
March 5, 2007, 11:58 pm
Filed under: tidbit

First off I have to apologize to Alison, apparently, because she doesn’t understand that I’m not a pre-blogger, I’m a post-blogger. I didn’t announce my visit to Richmond to see Trey and Megan because I’m not much of an announcement guy. Or at least that’s not how I think of myself. I do think of myself as charming, handsome, and charismatic, so there’s that.

So yeah, I’m here (still) in Richmond, VA. I’m leaving first thing in the morning though to go back home and back to WORK because by Gums that’s what one is supposed to do on Spring Break, not all this ridiculous gallivanting about, seeing new places and enjoying the company of friends.

I’ve had a lot of fun the past few days, but most of it was not really even events but simply being around the Trey and the Megan. I miss my friends. I’m glad I got to see them.

Oh, and you can see them. Not in any sort of interactive fashion, really, but … you know, see. OH HEY GUESS WHO ELSE IS THERE? If you’re already a winner at the trivia game: People That Live in Richmond, VA and With Whom Kevin is Friends then you know the answer is Jason Coleman and Angela Dyer. Or is her last name Coleman? I think it’s Dyer. I think of her as Angela Dyer so that must be right, for I am infallible. Occasionally. If you’re lucky.

Okay I should go to bed. I will probably make more words later.

The best part of today was standing in a trash can.