Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Are those flying monkeys? And what are you doing to my sister?


Sorry for the delay this week.  As many of you know the Eastern Seaboard of the US was hit with some severe weather resulting in a number of tornados this last week.  Our community was one of those affected.  My house and studio were both left virtually unharmed…however a small community very nearby was completely devastated.  My wife’s hometown was very nearly erased by a EF3 tornado that was about 3/4s of a mile wide. 


AP photo

We chose to relocate to this area because of…well…everything.  Great schools, virtually no crime, cultural significances,  low cost of living, and it’s charm had gone largely undiscovered by the nation as a whole.   This region in Virginia was also inland enough to never have a Hurricane issue or major flooding…in fact most residents that were injured would tell you that despite the warnings, no one imagined that this could even happen here.  Imagine a tornado in…say, Nantucket?  It just isn’t on the radar…except last Wednesday, it quite literally was. 

The American Red Cross is accepting donations.


I had a epiphany while helping in the cleanup and relief.  As I was leaving my house to go help some friends cleanup, I grabbed my innocuous little rangefinder and went to the disaster area…(literally a federal disaster area).  On the way I looked over into the passenger seat and saw my M8 sitting neatly on top of my work gloves….I decided the camera would stay in the car.  When I arrived, the task ahead was unbelievable…I have never seen the aftermath of a tornado before…but people were in one spirit helping each other…children were still playing.

While helping out I noticed a photog roaming the area…two pro bodies, white lens on one…vest and all.  He aimed his Canon at me and fired away.  I was a little pissed about it.   I have been planning to blog about the Pulitzers soon, and I thought about the expressions on the faces of the Haitian people after the earthquake.  I recalled the indignity of  those poor souls leering into our lens…Or maybe I just disliked him because I ‘m in the “Biz” too…I can’t say…I was nearly motivated to run to the car, get mine and shoot back….I know it’s just a job and I have been on the other side of that lens…I don’t even know why it bothered me.  If something like this has happened to you let me know…I ‘m curious if I am really just a lone jackass out here.   

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