Apple, what have you done for me lately?

It was 2007 and I was in class wiping drool off my computer desk. No, I hadn’t just roused from a sleepy stupor moon struck over Johnny Depp. The iPhone had been unveiled. Its lightweight construction, touch screen and revolutionary operating system had never been seen before. It had an iPod built in? This can’t be; I must still be dreaming. But I wasn’t. Fast forward a little bit…

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I got one.

Then I suddenly became the Empress of the Universe. Yes, that was my official title. There wasn’t anything I couldn’t do. So, this feeling of empowerment persisted for the years to follow. I learned how to jailbreak the phone early on, crashing through the walls of containment Apple had put in place to display their dominance over the fan club of users that flock to the store year after year to pay hundreds of dollars for the next iPhone with a few new features that all the other smartphones have already been implementing for years….<insert breath here>

I’m still waiting on my commission and bonus checks for all the cellphone users I converted over to the happy, delusional, state of Apple.

I’ve been eligible for an upgrade through my carrier since July of this year. You may have guessed by now that I was holding out out for the newest and greatest iPhone yet…”The biggest thing to happen to iPhone since iPhone,” right Tim Cook? Yeah.

So the phone was unveiled, the frenzy was unleashed, I’m forever unimpressed…and now suddenly “un-empressed.”

So one week ago I did the unthinkable. I strolled into the AT&T store with a grimace on my face, trembling with fear and uncertainty, mumbling and stuttering the words “I’d like a G-g-galaxy S-s-s-3…p-p-please.”

Here are a couple of reasons why I continue to rationalize, justify and reconcile my decision to make the switch…

You know all those peripherals like, um, Bose docking stations, home theaters, items of the like? Yeah, they all came with built in connections to connect iPods and iPhones. Now that Apple has switched to the “Lightning” connector, NONE OF THOSE THINGS CONNECT. Unless, of course, you want to pay the $30 for an adapter and carry that around…which ironically, is about the same size as my iPod Nano, so I may as well carry that around in the event I want to listen to music on any of my  other no-longer-Apple-friendly products. So, if there was ever a time to cross over to the dark side, it is now.

My chances of getting struck by lightning are greater than my chances of caving into buying Lightning adapters.

The screen? Still smaller than that of its main competitor, the Galaxy S3. Of course, Apple will have an answer for that, just like they blamed the iPhone 4 antenna problem on the way we held the phone to our faces. Why do we tolerate this degree of insolence and come back year after year to buy a new product from them? Where is our free will? I’ve been using my Galaxy S3 for about a week and there is NOTHING the iPhone does that it can’t do. In fact, I can do the same things with my S3 out of the box that I could do only with a jailbroken iPhone.

Speed? Lightning fast (no pun intended.) Yes, it’s faster than the iPhone.

NFC? Stands for Near Field Communication, and I’ll never use it, but it’s the coolest option ever and iPhone users don’t have it. Ha.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I am no exception to being a creature of habit, and it has taken some adjusting, and I am far from a pro…and after iOS for umpteen years, there is a bit of a learning curve…but darn you Apple, you are not the greatest thing since sliced bread.

So now it comes down to the age-old question, “Is the grass really greener on the other side?” Well, if the grass is bigger, better, faster and less inhibiting, then yes. I rest my case. And thank you to my S3, I feel like an empress…again.

An Artist Never Makes A Mistake.

It’s true.

Many moons ago (even more than I’d like to admit, since the recent blue moon) an art teacher once placated my anguish as I agonized over an absurd error that I felt ruined my art FOREVER. Forever seems to be fairly permanent, so I was devastated. On the bright side, her consolation has stuck with me ever since. She said, “An artist never makes a mistake, just as a dancer on stage takes the wrong step and nobody but the dancer is aware.” And man did I take that to heart; I’ve made all kinds of mistakes since then! Mistakes I know about, mistakes I know I don’t know about and mistakes I don’t know I don’t know about. How liberating.

I consider myself to be an artist–I know, a ‘self-proclaimed’ artist, la dee da; but truly, aren’t we all? Every day we wake up and weave another thread into the tapestries of our lives. Every decision we make is a fiber of a different color. The speed at which we work through our lives, one 24 hour chunk of gossamer at a time. Alas, I am not here to guide anyone through some philosophical epiphany that leads them through the congested arteries of fact vs fiction that will eventually illuminate their purpose in life…I’m still looking for mine. I’m here to admit the mistakes I made the other night. I made some huge ones. Grandiose. Irreversible. Unthinkable. And I will gladly show case them right here:

You see, I had the grand opportunity to watch a flamenco show recently, and it was enchanting. I’ve also recently acquired a Nikon D3100, so, every day is a phantastic photographic opportunity. Did anyone know how impossible action shots in low light settings could be? Since I am an ‘artist,’ I intended all the shots to come out just the way they did…

In this photo, please take a moment to find secret flamenco man’s face…coming out of the darkness.

This image took hours of post processing to make them look like that…Nah, they really were spinning at warp speed.

If I hadn’t purposely made these ladies slightly blurry, you’d have thought they were statues. Clearly I had to give the illusion of movement…

This shot was originally too perfect, so I messed it up just a little bit to showcase the essence of the human element….

Their hands were way too pretty–so I gave them flesh-colored lead pipes.

In this move, she literally gets wound like a top. The image was originally so crisp that I had to add a motion blur…

Don’t mess with this gang of mischief makers.

So there you have it. A showcase of all my mistakes from the other night. All jokes aside, it’s pretty evident my skills are in need of a little work when it comes to the low light action shots, but stay tuned for take two.

Prepping for the Day of Reckoning—or Isaac.“Nothing comes with out a price.” Well, that’s what we’ve heard our entire lives. That smart phone with more multi tasking ability than you could muster up in a week? It came with an equally adept price tag, enabling you to feel a melange of emotions all at once—from pride and superiority all the way down the rungs to guilt and exploitation. Those sexy pumps that double as bayonets? Sure, they look good, but you won’t notice the irreparable damage they’ve caused your posture till you’re on Celebrex and Methocarbomol.

What does any of this have to do with Doomsday or Isaac the hurricane? Well, if you live anywhere worth living with a temperate climate, sunshine and a mass of warm, crystalline water near you at all times, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you live somewhere landlocked or bombarded with snow, your only concern is waiting for the penguin to cross the street before you can drag your tires (complete with chains) over to your next destination.

Every you look there’s a “Prepare for Hurricane Isaac” checklist. Here’s what I’ve gathered:

  • Water. Duh.
  • Batteries. For your flashlights, and, uh-well that’s all I can think of…
  • Crackers. You will be bored, you will get munchies.

Ok well that’s it. No really, there’s a few more things you should probably do, and I’ve concocted a list for that as well.

Since you’re going to be losing power, aside from flashlights, you’ll want to think of these things, too:

  • Lower your AC to 50. Don’t ask, just do it now. You’ll have a few days sans power to make up for the cost on your power bill, don’t fret.
  • Empty your fridge of the science projects. If they haven’t already grown appendages, they will in that incubator.
  • Load up on shot gun shells. If you live in a gated community, your HOA will take the precaution of leaving the gates open so no one gets trapped…This also means hoodlums can get in. Better safe than sorry.
  • Charge that over priced smart phone. If you have back ups from previous versions, charge those, too.
  • Take your valuables and stick ’em in the dishwater. Don’t turn it on.
  • Fill your tubs with water. It’ll be nice to take a bath on the 3rd day with out power.
  • Sit down and do yoga. Just kidding, I hate yoga…but if you like it, have at it. You’ll be extra limber to fit through the crawl spaces in the event your roof caves in on you.

Now it’s time to relax and remember why you chose to live in a place that’s constantly assaulted with cantankerous gangs of hydrogen and oxygen.

Pretty Lights & Mosquito Bites

So it took a day or two for the mosquito bites on all my fingers to heal up well enough that I would actually have enough movement in my joints to write a post. It’s been an awfully long time since I’ve written, but if meteors and space debris don’t offer inspiration, then I don’t know what would. NASA mentioned that some of the best times to view Perseids meteor shower would be the twilight hours before morning on Sunday and Monday, so in theory, Saturday and Sunday nights. My viewing location was nowhere near the city or any light pollution, so it must have been a spectacular show, right? Wrong. From what I’ve read, it seems that when one sits beneath the stars, there’s a slight possibility oneth also siteth beneath the clouds…

And that’s how it happened. A calm morning painted with the glow from Citronella candles, the music from my Pandora “Pretty Lights” station (I know, how appropriate) and two Starbuck’s double espresso’s later, the grand tally was 8. Yes ladies and gentlemen, 8 separate occasions of space debris. And I’d have evidence of this, had I received a warning from the divine, 10 seconds prior to a shooting star. Maybe just a light whisper or a change in wind direction? Ha, had there been any wind, I wouldn’t have had mosquitos using me as a landing strip, buffet line and beach bazaar. The only warning I got was this sign here, clearly suggesting I stop my failed attempts at catching an eluding star and go home.

A sign from the divine to stop with all the madness.

It was enjoyable, none the less. And I fibbed earlier, there was actually 9. On my way home, still listening to Pretty Lights, I actually managed to catch the most fantastic flash of light from my peripheral. I turned my head just in time to see a shooting star, larger than any I had seen earlier, make its way across the sky. It was fiery and ambitious, and a perfect way to end the night.

Cajun Cafe Spring Beerfest 2012

They say a picture is worth a thousand words and I didn’t feel like typing that much, so here’s what you missed summed up in a few pictures.

There were lots of ales…

…Lots of brewing companies….

…Plenty of cold ones….

…Tons of new brews to try…

…Many you’ll never forget….

…Lots of water bottles…

…Way too much bread pudding…

…And not enough restrooms.

Look! No hands!

Remember when riding your bike sans hands was the ultimate declaration of control, balance and determination? No? Maybe it was just me. I remember my bicycle, laden with sparkly pink tassles billowing from the handlebars and bright white tires. The neighborhood cul-de-sac was my hamster wheel. If only I could master the suitable speed, the accurate angle and the required rhythm; I could let go of the bars. I eventually conquered that cul-de-sac. Although, ever since, I feel like I’ve been trying to conquer the cul-de-sac in every neighborhood my life has brought me to, however brief the stay. At times I’ve had great success. At times my gears got stuck, my tires went flat or my seat needed to be readjusted. I’m still on the same bike, we all are. It’s not the same pink one I had as a child, or the same neighborhood I grew to know like the back of my hand, but in some shape or form, that bike becomes your life. How you maneuver it, maintain it and manage it determines everything. At times I’ve tried to let go of the handlebars when I thought I was ready, only to find out that I needed more time. At times when going down hill I’ve forgotten how to apply the brakes. At times a slight moment of indecisiveness caused an accident. The truth is, I’m still learning how to ride that thing and I don’t think we ever stop learning; and yes, training wheels aren’t so bad after all.


I recently witnessed the thought process of one of my cats and was privileged enough to capture each moment with my iPhone. Please excuse the poor image quality, but click here if you’d like to behold the organization, paranoia and ownership felt by one feline in the course of 10 minutes.