Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Occasional Odd Crop

Several weeks ago we were sprawled out on the Bare Mattress of Love and going through some interviews that were ready for publication when we noticed that nothing in The One Eyed Man's interview matched anything we knew about him.

"Canada?" we said in unison, "We thought he lived in San Diego." We read on, "One eyed? We thought he had TWO eyes but was odd!"

It then hit us that we had confused our GITS!

We figured out what had confused is is that both titles are 4 words, start with The and have capital "O"s in them. That is enough to throw anyone. We also confused the two with The Wizard of Oz, and The Story of O.

Fortunately for us, and you, both gits are highly talented and active gits and they interview quite nicely although we can't speak for how they might clean up.

Who are you and why are you doing this to us?

I'm a print journalist, one of many editors at the big newspaper in San Diego, California. I make my living mostly by reading the news, rather than writing it. I have a lovely wife, who is a journalist and a painter and is far more interesting than I am, and a fluffy, off-white dog who is almost too joyful.

I've shot photos on and off for decades but didn't get serious about it until a couple of years ago. Once I bought a digital camera and didn't have to spend money on film or processing any more, I was off to the races. After seeing a few interesting photoblogs, Chromasia and Daily Dose of Imagery chief among them, I thought, "Hey, I could do that." So I did.

Do you know Kerrin? Do you know The One Eyed Man we are always confusing you with? ARE you The One Eyed Man We Are Always Confusing You With?

I don't know Kerrin. I've seen that question in your other interviews and have always wondered, sometimes for as long as a couple of seconds, just who Kerrin is.

I have seen The One Eyed Man's fine photoblog and am delighted that anyone would confuse us. Although no one has ever seen us in the same room, I can assure you that we *are* two different people.

What are you wearing?

The same cargo pants and brown sport shirt I wear at least once a week. A pair of sneakers that have nearly outlived their usefulness.

Where else can we see your photos? Do you have any side projects?

My handle is MarkDM in several places, including Flickr and JPG magazine. My Flickr photostream now includes a couple of videos, so some members of the site no doubt think I'm a minion of the Evil One.


What other hobbies do you enjoy or enjoy inflicting upon others?

I dabble in Web design. I designed and maintain my wife's site, It shows her paintings and some of the stories she wrote when she was a reporter, including a bunch from Iraq near the beginning of the war (I told you she was more interesting than I am).

The bathroom scale tells me that I spend less time than I should on my bicycle, a 20-year-old Cannondale, but I still like to think of myself as a cyclist. I have the ugly shoes and lycra shorts to prove it.

That's about it, unless quoting dialogue from "The West Wing" whenever possible is a hobby. (I'll do that one time later in this interview; see if you can spot it.)

What's the coolest thing you've found and kept?

When I was growing up, my mom had a tiny, plastic figure of a construction worker on her desk. I never knew where it came from. It's about an inch tall, and the little man is sitting down, breaking for lunch maybe. After Mom died in 1996, I was going through some of her stuff, and I stumbled across the little construction guy. Now I keep it at my desk.

What equipment do or have you used? Are there any manufacturers you'd like to praise or bad mouth here?

The only camera I own is a Canon PowerShot A620, and it's fantastic. It's a point-and-shoot that fits into my pocket, but you can manually set the shutter speed, aperture and focus. The viewscreen swivels, allowing me to shoot photos of people without being incredibly obvious about it, and to shoot from angles that would otherwise be impossible. Also, it shoots decent video.

What is the best photo that you missed?

Man, there have been so many. The one that leaps to mind right now is from a couple of days ago: a guy dressed like a Prohibition-era gangster (wide-pinstripe suit, white fedora) standing on a street corner in San Diego's hip Hillcrest area. Maybe he was an actor, maybe he was best man in a cool wedding, but that dude looked sharp. He also looked about 18, which added some incongruity to the sight.

Tell us your worst habit.

No, I don't think I will. I'd hate to bore you. (Too late, I know.)

Have you ever done anything heroic? (i.e. solved crimes, saved someone from a burning building or untied them from railroad tracks, fought injustice, donated organs) If not, why not? If so, please include press clippings.

Never have. Bad timing, I guess. And all of my press clippings - from my T-ball exploits in Hastings, Nebraska, in 1970 - are lost to the ages, I'm afraid.

If you weren't doing what you do now, what else WOULD you be doing? Photographer doesn't count.

Professional travel writing would be fun. Covering New York City as a travel journalist would be fantastic.

Do you wear glasses? If so, describe them, if not, why not? Don't you like glasses?

I've worn glasses since fifth grade. (Actual quote from a friend on the first day I wore my hornrims to school: "They don't look too bad. Just ... terrible.") My current frames are oval, beat-up metal and about eight years old. The lenses are about five years old; the UV coating is pretty much shot.

What did you have for breakfast?

Trader Joe's vanilla-flavored cereal and orange juice. The orange juice wasn't vanilla flavored, just the cereal.

Anything else we should know?

If you do a Google search for "odd photo blogs," my photoblog comes in at Number 5. I'll always be proud of that.

His Blog and tagline:

The Occasional Odd Crop ( Photos of whatever catches my eye

Monday, April 07, 2008

Atomische is prounounced /Atomische/

We recently sent out another interview request of a photoblogger who we used to like and damned if when we hit the little SEND button, that we didn't notice THEN that we had just emailed under our TRUE identities....aHA! You thought we would fall for that!? We will NEVER give out our true identities purposely but we WILL give you a hint that we are the joint heads of the Bill and Melinda Gates Charitable Foundations.

Anyway, after explaining to Tom Giebel of Atomische, and bribing him and then flashing him with one of those cool things we got from Tommy Lee Jones that erases your memory, we preceeded to interview one of our favorite photobloggers.

The First Interview of the era.

Who are you and why are you doing this to us?

I am Tom, a 44-year old Brooklyn-ite from Wisconsin. During my first career (Librarian) I developed an obsessive compulsion to collect, document and catalog just about everything. But now I wander the neighborhoods of New York, camera in hand, collecting nothing but images. This photography-as-therapy not only helps me satisfy the need to make order from chaos, but also provides much-needed exercise and fresh air.

How do you say your name? Mememonitor says it's pronounced Uh-tom-i-shuh, Memeshame says it's pronounced Soo-zun.

Mememonitor is correct! I get asked about the name a lot, and now it can be told: I chose a random, exotic-sounding non-English word that started with 'A' in order to appear higher in alphabetical lists. Also it had my name in it. And the domain name was available.

Do you know Kerrin? How about neene? Are you her noisy next door neighbour?

Neene has left some lovely comments on my photoblog, but alas we've never met. I don't know Kerrin either.

What are you wearing?

Boxers AND briefs.

Where else can we see your photos? Do you have any side projects?

There aren't enough days in the year to post everything on my daily blog, so overflow gets uploaded to Flickr, Picasa and elsewhere on the net. I have some photos on Wikipedia (search for "hog oiler") and sometimes get featured on blogs like Gothamist. I'm currently putting together some images for a group show here in NYC.

What other hobbies do you enjoy or enjoy inflicting upon others?

Travel, nature hikes, science fiction, electronic music.

Coke or Pepsi, McDonalds or Burger King, chromasia or Durham Township?

Neither, neither, chromasia!

What equipment do or have you used? Are there any manufacturers you'd like to praise or bad mouth here?

My first SLR was the Canon AE-1. I learned f-stops and ASA with that camera, and have stuck with Canon ever since. Recently, after getting stuck chatting with someone on the street about the merits of Canon vs. Nikon, I blacked-out the logos on my camera with electrical tape. Within minutes of emerging from the subway with my newly generified equipment, I was snagged by an excited fellow who thought he'd spotted some obscure Russian brand he'd been searching for. Go figure.

What is the best photo that you missed?

Many times I pass up interesting shots of people out of fear of getting beaten. At a construction site recently I saw a several cement-trucks, waiting in line to pour their loads. I could clearly see one of the drivers intensely studying a magazine which, curiously enough, he was holding up sideways.

If you weren't doing what you do now, what else WOULD you be doing? Photographer doesn't count.

Some day I hope to create and run my own photomeme site. Everyone will be welcome to contribute, the memes will always be unique and inspiring, and the photographers will never just be looking to generate page views.

Do you wear glasses? If so, describe them, if not, why not? Don't you like glasses?

At the moment I'm wearing some rather expensive and powerful German spectacles, which I need to see the computer screen. They aren't compatible with my camera though (I tend to mash the viewfinder right up against my eye socket) so I wear contact lenses when shooting.

What did you have for breakfast? A palmful of almonds, a glass of juice, and 10 cups of coffee.

Anything else?

No, but I'll probably have an early lunch.

So flee, Agents, and check out young Tom's site and remember to always use your Photo Meme Hall of Shame Internet Anon-e-mizers and cloaking devices so that when he sees no increase in traffic, HE'LL KNOW IT'S YOU!

Sunday, April 06, 2008


PHOTOMEME.NET Your one-stop photomeme shop, brought to you by your noisy upstairs neighbours, Memes Monitor and Shame, Esqs.

That would be us.

"Why?" You ask? Well, we made so damned much money with our PLEASE HELP/SEND MONEY link that we suddenly needed to spend it so we hired an OUTRAGEOUSLY expensive website developer and CRAZY expensive and unstable host.

That and we could never spell no no no YES

How any of you ever did it we have no idea and we're certain ONLY because it was the lengths that some go to when trying to hunt down prey... but whatever works.


Now don't go all sniffly and soft, daft gits, but one of the things we really enjoy about the Photo Meme Hall of Shame is the Interviews. We like you, we REALLY REALLY like you (Some of you anyway) and we ENJOY doing these daft little interviews. But more than once we have arranged an interview to have the interviewee say to us "WTF did you say the name of the wesbite was? HALL OF SHAME? FU Monkey Ass!!" You might think this an original or unique turn of phrase, but let us assure you, we hear it several times per day from disparate sources. YES! WE SHARE YOUR SHOCK!

In addition to Shaming, we also like praising and know we can do it with the same sort of glowing contempt you are used to us using to scorn. Praise and scorn are really so close. They might not be identical twins but they are certainly fraternal. So we will be highlighting a...brace yourselves daft gits...PHOTOBLOG THAT WE LIKE! We will try to do this weekly, there is no complicated algorithm, and it may only tajes us 3 or 4 weeks before we are tapped out, but we shall endeavour for you. Our beloved daft gits.

AND THAT IS NOT ALL! For 2 payments of 19.99... No, no...I am confused again and doing our late night infomercial. This is THAT IS NOT ALL! We will also be highlighting our favorite photo of the week which has been submitted to a photomeme.

So what is in this for you, now that you know what's in it for us?

There is, heaven help us, a forum. A place where if you are brave, and cunning, and shrewed, and wise, and merciful, and a git, you may, without intrusion or screening or editorializing from we, your noisy upstairs neighbours, again, heaven help us, post anything you like.

So go...take a look around. See if it works. See if you like it. If you do, then...good. If not....FU Monkey Ass!

This Hall of Shame will always exist in its present form, rest assured, but if we can roll it nicely into and be a LITTLE more than just other peanuts in the gallery, than so be it.