Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Trying Times

Nothing tries a photog's patience like trial coverage. The Ole 'Polisher touched on the subject last week.

I missed out on the first couple of days, but the remainder of the trail seems to be my lot in life this week; or maybe it should be 'lots of lives.' At least I have my handy-dandy notebook to keep me company.

The guilt phase passed surprisingly quickly; less than five days. So what is taking so long with the penalty phase? Admittedly the court lost half a day when one of the jurors became ill, but that person was healthy enough to return the next day. They worked through the weekend, leading to today's testimony, which looks like it will lead to tomorrow's testimony, since we are still dealing with defense witnesses.

In the meantime, I've been able to acquaint myself with some of the fine establishments offering edibles in the downtown area. Live Mike and I nibbled with 'Polisher the other day at Jobe's. Monday we munched at Downtown Seafood with former Deucer Brian Davies, who was fulfilling his civic (jury) duty. Today we noshed at the Grape Leaf Cafe. If this keeps up I'll need all the overtime I can get to pay my lunch tab.

My friends at the B-Quik are probably wondering what happened to me by now. I haven't been in for my daily drink in at least a week, and I'm sure their Fudge Round counts have been out of whack. If I get too strapped for cash, I found the snack machine on the 10th floor, where the best buy has got to be the fig bars. I almost went with the Oreo's, naturally, but at 2 ounces they are half the weight, and so twice the price, of the aforementioned fruit and cake.

I'll bet you didn't expect a lesson in photog economics when you found this post, but there they are. Truthfully, I didn't expect to find them either.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Burn Out

I'm feeling the burn. In the nearly 8 years since I first took up the heavy glass, I'm seriously thinking of trading in my press pass.

I think this has also been reflected in my blogging, or lack thereof. I just haven't had the heart to pour onto these pixelated pages. It could be the feeling that I'm swimming in quicksand in my current position. All I know is that I've pretty much hit a ceiling that seems quite solid. I've also found in myself more than the usual amount of bitterness towards the job. I don't like that.

I'm not expecting to feel like I did when I first started. Everything was fresh and new and I could revel in learning everything about how the job was done. I'm not finished learning; I wouldn't presume to think that I know everything. I just think that I'm not able to apply what I know to the fullest extent, due to certain circumstances beyond my control. I'm finding other branches of knowledge from which to pluck fruit, but those avenues are dead ends unless I can apply them to my daily work.

Through the twilight under the smoke a ray of light shone through today. KD just returned from the UNITY conference and made a point of telling me about her trip. It would seem that she brought a few stories along to go critiquing. She got good marks on her writing and the way the stories were put together, but what she wanted to pass on to myself, and the other photog who worked with her on one of them, was the way everyone who saw the stories raved about how well they were shot. It's nice to know that someone, other than your friends and family, notices and appreciates good work.

It also helps that this praise comes from a news director in Philadelphia, the fourth largest market in the country.