Friday, September 30, 2011

One Good Shot. One Darned Good Shot.

I’m a visual person. So, as many people know – I’m a picture taker. I love taking pictures. That should be love with a capital L, O, V and E. Whether it’s with my big digital Rebel or with my fairly old PowerShot (my religion is Canon as my friend Lasse taught me that they say in Denmark). Or, even if it’s taking pictures with my cell phone. It’s amazing that my little Droid has almost more mega pixels than my other two combined. I’m happy with the quality that they all produce though.

I like to think that I have a good eye for taking a picture and that they come out good because of my design background. Many people insist that it’s because of the camera. Both help. But, just taking a zillion pictures is apt to catch a good one. And with the beauty of digital, you don’t have to worry about “wasting” film. You just delete what you don’t want or what is blurry. I remember the days of SLRs and film. I used to buy rolls and rolls of film with 36 exposures. I’d be so much more careful though in what I shot because developing was downright expensive. I was usually thrilled if I got one good shot for every 3 rolls.

Nowadays, I just shoot away. Rarely does an event or weekend (especially with my girls) slip away without me having taken dozens of pictures. My girls are so good about the picture taking too. They know that if they pose and smile decently that the tortuous length of the photo shoots is lessened. My problem is that I think they are so darned beautiful that I just want to keep snapping pictures.

I’ve been known to go on an adventure such as a hike with a friend (Scarborough Mom and Pad Thai especially can confirm this) and literally take hundreds and hundreds more pictures than they did on the same trip. Yea, that’s just me.

A dear friend was simulating my cell phone picture taking recently to my Sweet-Smelling Girlfriend. Yes, obviously she has been a victim of numerous adventures with me and my photo shooting. I did have to laugh though because, well, she was right.

All these photos remind me of good times. I put my favorites up on my screensaver on my desktop and smile as they scroll through. I frame a few of my favorites or just print them out and hang them on the wall by my desk at work. I share them with family and I put them up on Facebook. I rejoice in the memories and feelings they bring up when I look at them.

Just last weekend, I snapped a shot that I just can’t stop looking at. It’s of me and my Sweet-Smelling Girlfriend on the beach. But, you don’t see the beach. You actually really only see a bit of my face with hers leaning into me. It’s more of the expression that is on each of our faces that makes the picture so wonderful. I’ve got a double-dimple, closed-mouth profile smile going on and she has the most intense look in her eyes – looking directly into the camera. Looking into my soul. And it’s not intense in a bad way, but intense as in being at home in my arms. It’s new love, but it’s comfortable love. It’s love without words. It’s a picture that makes taking thousands of pictures so worthwhile. It’s one of those pictures that doesn’t happen very often. It’s one good shot. One darned good shot.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Me and Elmo: We’ve Got Our Own Little Worlds

As my relationship with my Sweet-Smelling Girlfriend is developing (and is going so very well by the way), so many conversations come up. I find myself rediscovering or reanalyzing myself as I try to explain and show who I am to her.

One of the basics that I know for certain about myself is that I have an odd trust in mankind. I will admit it to be naïve on a certain level. I tend to always see the good in everyone. I guess I live in my own little world. Like Elmo’s World as my girlfriend says.

A well-worn and well-loved Elmo.

When you put your deepest trust in people, you expect them to keep what you’ve shared, to hold your thoughts, your secrets. You assume that they would do this. You assume they won’t ever try to hurt you…especially using the knowledge about you that you’d given them. What is the reason that they would choose to hurt you? Isn’t everyone just born good?

This way of thinking, obviously, has its drawbacks. Mostly in the name of hurt or broken hearts. Yea, as you know, I’ve gotten my heart broken by people like this. On numerous occasions. But, you know what? My hurt heals. My heart heals. It is strong. I am strong. I won’t give these people that kind of power over me.

I’d still rather go through life seeing people as good. And focusing on their good sides (everyone has one of these, don’t they?) instead of always putting people down or not choosing to ever fully open up. Why worry about what could happen? Worrying about what hurtful things they could do to you? To me?

Some people don’t even realize they are putting out bad or saying things that will come back to hurt you. Gosh, to say that they do it for their own twisted motivation seems so foreign to me. But, maybe that’s my naïveté again?

Yea, so maybe Barbara’s World is full of sunshine and fluffy bunnies. Full of smiley people all holding hands. Full of people with warm hearts looking out for one another. Baking cookies. Laughing. Hugging. Is that a bad thing? I don't think so. I sure like living in Barbara’s World. Wanna join me?

How do you like to live? Do you live with worry or do you go head-in to situations and relationships believing everything will be good? I'd love to hear your comments below!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Dim Sum and PDAs for Lunch

So, Friday, I went out for lunch with my Sweet-Smelling Girlfriend. Dim Sum. My first time having that.  Besides the shrimp dumplings, the steamed greens were my favorite. Bok choy? Broccorabi? Not sure what it was exactly but with the sweet, thick soy drizzled on them they were scrumptious. So were the kisses I gave my Sweet-Smelling Girlfriend the moment we got back in her car in the parking lot.
“We’re being watched,” she announced after looking out of the corner of her eye. I paused and pulled away from my amorous advances. Sure enough, kiddy corner from us, were three pairs of eyes. A mother and a young son (about 9ish) in the front seat of their van, and a young girl¸ I’d put her at 14 or 15 tops, smoking a cigarette and leaning on the hood of their van. Obviously, not old enough to be legally smoking. But that wasn’t stopping her and neither was her mom. My gaydar immediately went off with her though.
The Young Cigarette Lesbian yelled something. I sure as heck wish we had heard her. We did hear the mother yell back, “Don’t mind her, she’s being fresh.” We just smiled and I waved. I was not embarrassed or ashamed of our behavior one bit. What we were doing did not require a room (which is a possible shout out that she may have said, though I’m hoping it was a ‘you go girls!’). I gave my Sweet-Smelling Girlfriend one more kiss in the open and we left so she could get back to work. Our dim sum and kissing lunch break was over.

Dim Sum sampling.

Maybe I’m different than most people. Okay, strike that maybe. I am different. I so know I am. I believe that people should show their affections for others openly. I’m all about public displays of affection (aka PDAs). I enjoy seeing the physical connection two people are sharing. Whether it be new love or mature love holding hands while walking or touching an arm during sweet conversation. Yes, there is an over-the-top amount that should not be shown in public. I think what most people think is appropriate though is so Walt Disney.
My choice would be to push these PDAs to another limit. I use Italy as a gauge. When I was in Italy, I was struck by all the times I saw couples totally entranced with each other. The passion of their kisses, their embraces, their looking at one another and smiling or laughing between the affection (which is really all part of the affection), made such an impression on me. It was how I always believed love should be and shown between two people. Of course, the back drop of the amazing cliff sides descending down to the sea and the quality of light of Naples didn’t hurt either.
So, why are people not as affectionate out in public as they may be in their own homes? Are they affectionate in their own homes? Do we take enough time out of our lives to show our affections? Are we worried about what the children may think? What if the children could see that there is a possibility that love does exist between two people? Divorce rates are so high and I think people and kids especially lose faith in the possibility of love. What do they think about with their own futures? Do they think that relationships and love are not permanent?
Today, people don’t seem to stay in relationships as long. I’m not sure if they are always thinking there is something better or different out there, especially during trying or difficult times. Sometimes, there are reasons why relationships shouldn’t last and that is okay too. But, if there is a good connection, a scary thought for me is that people aren’t physically showing each other the love they have by being affectionate in their own homes.
If couples were allowed, or more open, to show their affections freely throughout each and every day, maybe things would be different? I don’t care if they are gay or straight. (I was in a gay marriage legal state by the way). They would be constantly reminding their partner of the love they have for them. They would be showing the world their commitment. They would be putting out good vibrational energy to the universe. They would be making their lunch breaks from work all that much more interesting than just dim sum.