Saturday, June 20, 2009

Rainy Weekend Banter

I was putting away my ties a few days ago. During the school year I typically take a new one from my closet and then toss it onto the growing mound of them on my dresser when I change into my play clothes at the end of the work day. Buried under the pile was the very first toy I ever had - Bow Wow. I don't know if he was there waiting for me when I came home from the hospital all of three days old, but I do know that he was the very first toy ever bought for me. He's been with me all my life and if they put him in my casket it'll be a fitting gesture of finality on the ride of my life.

When I found Bow Wow under the tie pile, my thoughts drifted to how my toys have changed through the years. I criticize today's kids for not being able to entertain themselves without pricey things, but I'm not a whole lot better.

With tomorrow being Fathers' Day Bow Wow makes an appropriate appearance here. I don't remember the circumstances at all but old Bow Wow lost an arm somewhere through his 51 years. My mom's an expert seamstress, but for some reason it was my daddy who whip stitched his arm back onto his body. I can only imagine that my mom was out somewhere when the unthinkable happened and that my dad had to fix him to appease me. That would be my dad!

Downtown Wilkes-Barre is prone to occasional but significant flooding and according to today's paper the earthen dike with which all of her residents were very familiar cut off the city from the river for the past quarter century. Yesterday the fruits of years' worth of labor were made manifest when the ribbon was cut on the new River Commons featuring two huge portals that now open River Street to the Susquehanna itself and the amphitheater and walking paths that were constructed along the eastern bank. In the event of potential flooding there are doors that roll out to close the gateways through the dike. I posed the BV at the foot of one of the ramps that lead up to the top of the dike itself. The rotunda of the Luzerne County Courthouse can be seen at the very top of the path.

My trek through the downtown during the early morning hours before the oddities of humanity who give Public Square its flavor were up and about brought me to this colorful scene painted on the side of a brick building.

I vowed to figure out a way to set the camera up quickly to include me in many of my shots of the scooter, but in spite of some hearty brainstorming I haven't worked up a good prototype yet. I carry a full tripod on the back of the BV, but setting it up and then posing myself is conspicuous and I don't like appearing in public as "the geek who's taking pictures of himself on his scooter." I adapted an old walkie-talkie antenna with a weighted base and a quarter inch screw mount, but there's too much swaying and leaning to one side at the top to make it viable. I'll keep thinking.

I spied this QLink tethered to a hitching post. I don't know if it's legal, but none of Wilkes-Barre's finest had slapped a ticket on it yet when I was passing by. (Okay, I confess. When I got back to the house with the original picture I was mortified to discover that I had a finger covering most of the shot. I had to go back to snap it again. The botched original was a consequence of my haste in not wanting to be "that dorky guy on a scooter taking a picture of another scooter" - a corollary of "the geek who's taking pictures of himself on his scooter.")

That was all early yesterday when we had a much too brief respite from the rains. Mid week looks promising so far, but I'm not holding my breath. I'll ride when I can and keep trying to think pleasant thoughts till the gloom and associated precipitation lift.

1 comment:

Paul said...

Seems there's a lot of flip flop with scooter parking here in PA. I am fairly certain it's not really legal to park them on a sidewalk, but it's also pretty obvious that most police officers have more pressing matters with which to concern themselves.

I too suffer from the geeky impulse to photograph myself on my scooter and other peoples' scooters as well. I get a few odd looks, but then, I'm accustomed to odd looks since I'm a bit off from the norm anyway.