Saturday, April 24, 2010


I took a short walk downtown today.  Took some interesting shots, there was some kind of organized town day and every one was out.  For the life of me, I cannot figure out why everyone looks at you with strange suspicion when you have a camera around your neck.  I might as well have been walking around town with a gun on my belt.

I headed home and when I was almost home I saw an old stump between two hedges.  I thought, to myself inside my head, that might be an interesting shot if I get the angle and depth of field right.  So I proceeded to find that perfect shot.  I was squatting on the side of the road holding my camera almost on the ground when I notice a car coming up the road.  I pay no notice, thinking they'll be quickly out of my way but it slowed and rolled to a stop, blocking my shot.

I stand and give the driver a may I help you? look.
She is a prison guard.  I live next to a prison and my lovely stump is in front of the parking lot (not one building, fence, or even a car was in my shot.  Just stump, bushes, grass, and sky). 

Guard: "What are you doing?"
Me: "Taking a picture."
Me:"Because I'm a photographer."

Me: (awkward pause) "uhh...because I'm an artist(?)"
Guard:"You do know that video and photos of the facility are prohibited."
Me:"I was taking a picture of that stump."
Guard:(uncomfortable and unable to maintain eye contact due to the inner knowledge she's being trite and bitchy)
Me:"I'll be done if that's okay."
Guard: "okay"

These are the same guards that are busy cleaning the gutters on the superintendent's roof while a dozen prisoners are raking and mowing the lawn below.  The same guards that stand at the entrance to the main building of the prison smoking and chatting while the prisoners they are "supervising" are 100 yards away IN MY YARD mowing because they don't friggin' know where the property line is!!

Apparently I happened to find one of the few guards that take their job (too?) seriously!  Maybe she should be on groundskeeping/maintenance duty.

At any rate, no stump picture but here's some others around town.