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05-14-2002 @ 10:13 p.m.
A Great Day

I am flat-out exhausted. I got up at 7am, as usual, but didn't go back to sleep after Joey left for the bus (yay me!). Instead, I logged on and checked my messages and left a few myself, talked to my sister on the phone and then got ready and high-tailed it out the door to drop off my film from yesterday and then headed downtown to go to the photo supply store. They looked at my camera and replaced the battery but still the mirror was sticking. Arrggh! He thought it might be the lens because it didn't stick when the lens was off so we tried a different lens on and it worked fine. I put my own lens back on and it worked fine, too. What the hell? So I have a new lithium battery in my camera which I didn't need (but now I have an 80% spare--woo hoo!) and my mirror works fine but who knows when it will get all persnickety again? Irritating!

I bought some film and photo paper and then headed to school. I had arranged for Joey to visit a friend after school so I had until 5pm to work in the darkroom. That's six hours in a dark cave of a place on hard hard hard cement. My dogs are barking, let me tell you! My feet, ankles, knees and hips are all so very tired. I didn't think I'd be able to run through the grocery store tonight and then cook dinner (it was my night to do the Good Neighbor dinner).

Anyway, back to the darkroom--I printed pix of Grandma and they turned out great. She has such a textured face, being almost 90 and having lived 20 years in Hawaii where she spent a lot of time in the sun, that the photos were so cool to look at. They wouldn't be as great in color, I believe, because the texture wouldn't be as noticeable. I'm sure she doesn't love all those wonderful wrinkles but I do. They're marvelous. Badges of honor. Would that I will live as long and as healthily as she and bear the wrinkles to prove it. My teacher gave me a 'wow' which he doesn't do often. I was very excited by his response.

There were took freaking many idiots in the darkroom during lab time, though. I've turned into the Darkroom Nazi Bitch Bad Ass. When people are showing blatant disregard for other people's photos--bending them, denting them, rubbing the emulsion side with tongs or poking at the emulsion side with tongs or doing any number of other rude and annoying things, I call them on it. Hey, stop doing that. Do you see how you dented that photo there? Feel free to pick up your own photos like that but don't touch anyone else's that way--pick them up gently from the corner. Don't twist the edge of the photo to see what is on the other side--just gently lift it up or push it aside. Stop! Don't do that! You're ruining the pictures in there. Can you move your photos out of the Fixer? They've been in there for a half hour. People are rude. Rude and stupid. Rude and stupid and careless. Rude and stupid and careless and annoying as hell. This has been the bane of my existence since I took my first photography class last fall--bad darkroome etiquette. I set up my own trays sometimes when I'm doing final quality pictures and there are idiots about (which is entirely too often for my taste).

I didn't get home until 6:20 and I was supposed to have dinner to the neighbors at 6:30. Fortunately, they weren't home yet. I whipped together a delicious chicken-green chili-corn enchilada casserole in about 10 minutes and put it in the oven to warm through. It was really delicious, too. Easy peasy, as Jamie Oliver (of N@ked Chef fame) is wont to say. But the best part is that we were sitting down and eating a cooked-from-scratch dinner by about 6:50. Sometimes I impress the hell out of myself. :-)

Then I got to relax, put my poor aching dogs up and watch Gilmore Girls. Ah, the finest hour of TV. And it can be viewed when my daughter is in the room. She even watches it on occasion when we let her stay up. All in all, a very productive and pleasant day. I hear it was even a little sunny today. I couldn't vouch for it myself, having turned into a mushroom from lack of light today, but I'll take the meteorologist's word for it.

Now it's time to have a slice of chocolate chip-pecan-banana bread. Just one slice. Lightly toasted in the broiler oven. With a cup of chamomile tea. That warms the cockles of my heart.

Oh, speaking of warmed cockles, there is a neighborhood girl who has been bothering Joey--kicking her, giving her noogies, saying rude things about her, etc.--and I asked the neighbors if she was bothering Ashley as well. For some reason, Bully Girl likes Ashley and doesn't do mean stuff to her. So anyway, Diana talks with Ashley about keeping her eye out for Bully Girl's bad behavior toward Joey and suggests that she be an advocate for her if it happens again. Ashley decided to take matters into her own hands. Today she goes up to Bully Girl and says "I don't want you to be mean to my friend. Don't kick her or give her noogies on the bus." Bully Girl says, "I didn't do those things to Joey. It must be someone else." Ashley says, "How did you know it was Joey, then. I didn't say her name." Bully Girl was speechless. Ashley went on, "Just leave her alone and be nice. Joey's my friend and I don't want anything bad to happen to her." I thought that was so sweet and brave of Ashley to be confrontational and assertive like that. We certainly didn't ask her to do that--she just didn't want to see her friend bothered by anyone. Ashley is such a nice and polite little girl--she is one of my very favorite little people in the whole world. This is just one more reason to adore her.

--L

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