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Archive for June, 2007
From the Wall Street Journal: I guess people are becoming more sophisticated in their approach to picking names for their children (i.e., they are freaking out). They want something snappy, not trendy, and that will give their children a “corporate edge” when time comes for them to get jobs.
This means a lot more “made-up” names. In that respect, I think some of our foreign friends have a better system than we do:
In Germany, the government still bans invented names and names that don’t clearly designate a child’s sex. Sweden and Denmark forbid names that officials think might subject a child to ridicule. Swedish authorities have rejected such names as Veranda, Ikea and Metallica.
A few that have come across my path in recent weeks: Slivy, Jenifer, Ginnifer, Raluca. Don’t forget Orange’jello and Lemon’jello . . . I’m serious. And I was helped the other day at Home Depot by a woman named Na’Stashia. As Russ said in National Lampoon’s Vacation, “Is that made up? That sounds made up.”
Seen on Craigslist:
Cannon, EOS 620 Camera – $160
Presumably, she had the camera sitting in front of her as she typed this ad . . . it bore two pictures of the said camera, after all. How some people can misspell something that’s staring them in the face is puzzling to me. Students do it with my name, even though I’ve spelled it properly for them on the syllabus. I remember as an undergrad, going to talk with my French History prof and seeing a fellow student’s essay atop a stack of papers on his desk. We had written essays on Emile Zola’s L’Assommoir, which features a character named Coupeau. The student consistently spelled it “COPEAU”. Maybe it’s time to crack the book open again?
The Craigslist ad continues:
In great condition, has wonderful flash. This Cannon is mannual and automatic.
The stuff people search for that brings them to this blog. Yesterday the search terms were typical, but the stats inordinately favored the word “decapitation”. What kind of twisted miscreants read this blog?
Last Friday I got a Canon EOS 5D, and have been going nuts taking pictures all weekend. I love this camera. Anyway, today I took it to church to show to my friends after Mass. One of them is a photographer, and the others are polite enough to humor my foibles . . .
It so happened that there was a reception afterward for a newly-ordained priest, a man I met a few years ago while he was a seminarian assigned to our parish. So I got to practice photographing an actual event, rather than the no-pressure stuff I normally shoot. Things were going well until I realized, at the end, that I’d had the lens on Manual Focus the whole time. Consequently, my subjects were all just slightly out of focus, while the backgrounds of all the pictures were razor sharp. I was majorly dejected. But it was a lesson well learned, and I can be glad that these were low-stakes photos, no money or friendships involved . . . but still. That’s so amateur!
I was thinking tonight . . . in the age of digital photography, is there any more need for a grey card? It used to be (for me, anyway) that I would take a light reading off the grey card, and set my camera accordingly. Most of the time it would give me a good exposure. But I wouldn’t know until the film was developed and prints were made. Now I can just adjust the shutter time and lens aperture on the fly, until the camera’s display shows me something that looks good.
If this means the death of the grey card, I think we should have a party some time.