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Friday Slide Show: Saint Lighting Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

12 April 2019

We almost titled today's show Friday Side Show, a slip of telling dimensions. Cities look their best at a distance, we think. Preferably with a sunset behind the skyline.

Street shooting might seem to argue against that, but the attraction there tends to be the people.

For the most part, the stuff that makes a city livable is not photogenic up close. It's probably the inspiration for the Healing Brush, which can make overhead power lines disappear in a brush stroke.

But the other day, wandering around, we thought we'd turn the tables on these nuisances and photograph them for themselves.

It takes a lot of parts to make a city.

It started with a battered fire plug whose white paint had cracked like a dry desert floor. We only had a smartphone with us, but we captured the image anyway. A handful of other shots followed.

That was barely enough for a Friday amusement so we returned a few days later and made a fuller study of the situation with the Micro Four Thirds camera we favor for street shooting. Only one of those original smartphone images remains (the fire alarm) in this set.

It takes a lot of parts to make a city. And not a few of them sport other origins. Long Beach for the fire hydrant. Oakland for a man hole cover. Just to name two.

They all have one thing in common besides their poor photographic potential. Each one has some essential function. Or it wouldn't be there.

There is the trash can with a recycle top, a bike stand, traffic cones on a break, a painted chain link fence, a brass geological marker, traffic signs of all sorts, speed bumps, crosswalk bumpers, various location signage, you name it.

But the one we most enjoy is the last one, which we noticed fondly many years ago. It looks like a grave marker for Saint Lighting, whose epitaph is "120 240 Volts Christy." Actually it's the access cover for the nearby street lighting. But many is the nephew who was schooled to think otherwise.

This may be a side show today but it is infused with the spirit of a saint.

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