Sunday, June 11, 2006

8.43 am

Last year as I walked the last few steps to work I decided to keep a photographic record of what I saw everday at 8.43 am. The original idea had been to do it throughout the year, but eventually as the winter months began to bite food replaced my camera; my experiment lasted all of six weeks. During those six weeks I had hoped to catch at least once the cyclist who I had almost cannoned into one morning as I wandered along planning this exercise. Towards the end of the six weeks I realised that he was purposefully stopping out of shot to let me take the pictures.




9 comments:

Cath J said...

Just out of interest, was your idea inspired by Smoke? ie. the Harvey Keitel/William Hurt film scripted by Paul Auster (1995). If not, can I recommend the film to you? I somehow think you'd like it.

Verilion said...

Now that you mention it I did see the film a fairly long time ago on video. Maybe the idea did come from the film and it hid in my head waiting for the opportunity to come out. I seem to recall that the William Hurt's photos were probably more interesting.

Minx said...

I love picture two (from the top), I have a thing for skies. The Tower is pretty amazing too but do you notice it anymore?

Verilion said...

Yep, I notice the tower everyday and the doozers who make Trocedero Gardens beautiful for me to walk through every morning. In May there were these beautiful lilac parasol type flowers that floated off the trees everyday creating a purple carpet. I was loathe to walk over them. I also love it when I walk over the grass and the dew tickles my toes. It's the best bit about going to work everyday. About 8.51 every day reality hits! Oh and I also look for the mallard duck, he seems to have lost his mate at the moment.

Minx said...

A true writer!

Cath J said...

Yes. The way I remember it is: the William Hurt character (a widowed writer) calls in on Keitel's local shop every day, for a newspaper and tobacco. So they know each other, but don't, if you get my drift.

Then one day (I can't recall why) K invites H into the back room of his shop for coffee where H discovers that, for many years, K has taken a photo of his neighbourhood (from his shop) every day at the exact same time. As H turns the pages of K's album, he chances upon photos of his own wife - the best kind of photos, unposed, just everyday snaps of his wife on her way to work.

H is somewhat taken aback. Essentially, K is a stranger; but here he is, in possession of photos of H's wife that are so natural they are almost intimate. It is a deeply moving moment.

The irony of this is that H is the writer, the professional 'observer'; but it is K, the everyday retailer, who really 'sees' the people in his neighbourhood, and knows what's truly going on.

Verilion said...

Yeah I remembered the photos of the wife. I liked the film and I also like Paul Auster's work a lot. I like his voice, the way his characters are so banal yet incredible things happen within his stories. The French really like Auster too, there's stuff that has come out here in French before it's English european imprint. Still I have been rather neglecting him lately, someone else to add to my ever growing pile of books to read.

Cath J said...

Yes, he's an intriguing writer. Have you ever read anything by his wife, Siri Hustvedt? A couple of years ago I read What I Loved - dry as dust!

Verilion said...

I won't add her to my pile of books to read then.

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