August 27th, 2008

NASA_bighead

So Sad

Link stolen from yourbob, who is in the process of doing lots of things:

The guy who wrote 100 Things To Do Before You Die is dead at age 47.Read it and weep. His dad says he did about half the things in the book.
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NASA_bighead

Michelle and Hilary

This morning I caught up on the DNC speeches (I needed to test the video captures anyway). What reminded me is as I was listening to KGO this morning the two middle-aged white guys Collapse ) who are the station's on-location talking heads were comparing Hilary's speech with Michelle Obama's. Michelle spoke two days ago, Hilary spoke yesterday. The nutshell review (which took them 10 minutes to deliver because, like most alleged journalists in broadcast media they need to say the same thing six or seven times, not necessarily using different words) is Michelle spoke the words the DNC put on the teleprompter, but Hilary gave the best speech of her life, delivering her messages and driving home every point.

So this morning I went to youtube and watched both speeches, Hilary first. But I'll review them in the order they were made.

Michelle was herself. She's relatively young, not experienced talking to large crowds, and doesn't have a lot of experience to draw from, so her speech focused on her family and the parallels between her upbringing and Barak's. She went overboard with the claim that Barak was raised by po' working-class folk (he was raised by a mother and grandparents who were college graduates) but she did well, and there is a girlish charm about her that leaks out now and then which reminded me of high school speech class where the shy girls would get up in front of the class and brave their way through "How I Spent My Summer Vacation".  She's articulate and sounds sincere. I loved how she have her big brother props, she said the kind of things my baby sister says about me. It struck a chord.

Hilary was also herself, and then some.  One thing the talking heads said which I agree with is if Hilary had delivered all her campaign speeches the way she delivered this one, it would be her name on the ticket, not Obama's. Gone was the strident tone, gone was the panic, gone was the hubris. She spoke in her best alto, and there were several downright brilliant lines in there. I especially liked the "sisterhood of the traveling pant suits". She drew on all her years of experience, especially the past year of campaigning, and she even managed to say nice things about John McCain while stapling him to the chicken. I think she could have skipped two or three instances of  "vote for Obama", especially because her speech was given before the final vote.** She is still officially a candidate, I wish they had put her speech after the vote, not before. But I digress. I was impressed. I was mostly persuaded. I may vote for BHO after all.

One thing the talking heads went on about was Hilary's outfit. She apparently had brought several colors of pant suit with her, and had her experts choose the one which played best in the Pepsi Center's lighting and on TV. It was a muted orange, just a bit more yellow than salmon. She looked both professional and attractive. I would tap that. Michelle, on the other hand, wore a simple aquamarine woven dress with a tacky little starburst pattern at the V-neck . It did not make her attractive or fashionable, and I think she could have done much better for a prime time speech on national TV in front of a huge audience. Had Hilary won and had Bubba been in the same position, he would have worn his best suit. If that's Michelle's best dress, we're in for a very dowdy four years. Id doesn't matter - if she becomes First Lady I'm sure she'll have fashion sense thrust upon her, big-time. Collapse )

I am not looking forward to the vote, as my understanding is the DNC puppeteers are going to have Hilary stop the roll call early and withdraw in favor of Obama. I don't like this because it robs me of the chance to see whether Obama really had the votes or not, and if he did, by how many. I'm just A-R that way.

**I  have a problem with delegates not voting in the first round for the candidate who got them to the convention in the first place. I don't have a problem with that being a futile gesture, and I don't think Obama not winning by acclimation would be a Bad Thing. 
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NASA_bighead

Ruby Throat


DSC_2230
Originally uploaded by how3ird.

Tonight's exercise was shooting at a low ISO rating (mostly 200) to reduce the noise I was seeing yesterday at 3200. I used my SB-800 flash set at TTL, the lens was set for its longest zoom, 200mm, and shutter at 1/250th which is the default for the D300 with the speedlight. I also severely cropped the images, except for three which are mostly of the big cedar tree with the tiny birdie perched in it. All were done with me manually adjusting the focus, and trying not to scare off the hummingbirds. As usual, click on the image to see the set.