Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Three Beautiful Things 04/04/16: Routines, Assassination Anniversary, Darkness in Photographs

1.  I started the day with routines.  First, I had my monthly blood draw done for the transplant center and a blood draw done for my next kidney doctor appointment in a week. Later in the morning, I flopped and splashed around in the swimming pool at my weekly water aerobics class and left feeling tingly and refreshed and a little bit tired.  

2. Today marks the 48th anniversary of the day Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. That fact means much more to me now that I live near Washington, D. C. because I can go to National Mall and stand on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and fill in the space that stretches east toward the Capitol Building with all the pictures I've seen of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Moreover, when I drive to Union Station, I turn right off of Bladensburg Road onto H Street NE.  H Street was destroyed by fire during the riots that followed the assassination of King and for over thirty years hardly anything happened to revive or restore it. Now it's in better shape. New restaurants. A new Giant grocery store. The streetcar just began to run on H Street. I spent time today searching for pictures online of the fires and their aftermath. Later, I found an hour long documentary produced by WETA called Washington in the 60s. It helped me understand a great deal about this area where I now live and if you'd like to watch it, just go here.

3. Soon after I watched Washington in the 60s, a link to article in The Washingtonian entitled "All the President's Men: An Oral History" popped up on my Twitter feed.  I read it. I watched clips from the movie. I remembered back to the spring of 1976 when I saw All the President's Men and the thrill it gave me then and continues to give me all these forty years later. It's funny -- in many ways what I enjoy most about the movie is Gordon Willis' work as the Director of Photography. I watched one of the Deep Throat scenes, filmed in a dark parking garage and marveled at the half lit face of Hal Holbrook and how masterfully Willis made the darkness of the whole story come alive with his cinematography. I know that his work here and in Godfather and Godfather II helped shape my own predilection for the dark in the pictures I take and the way I edit my pictures.

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