Chuq Von Rospach is a Silicon Valley veteran doing Technical Community Management and amateur photographer with a strong interest in birds, wildlife and landscapes. My goal is to explore the Western states and working to tell you the stories of the special places I've found. You can find out more on the About Page.
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Monthly Archives: May 2010
Apologies for the radio silence recently. For once, I have a good excuse.
Two weeks ago, I decided that, since there wasn’t a hockey game on, I’d go out for a walk. First night since the playoffs started nothing was on, Laurie was on her road trip somewhere on the way back from Chicago, the weather was nice, and I hadn’t picked up a camera in days.
So off to Shoreline I go, thinking maybe i’d try to do some swallow photography and see if the cliff swallows were nesting yet (answer: just starting).
And while walking out towards adobe creek, I caught the edge of the asphalt path and went down like I’d been shot. Didn’t even have time to cuss. Suddenly I’m flat on the ground, looking like roadkill.
When you’re a “person of girth” no fall is trivial. The extra weight you carry brings with it potential for disaster, as well as completely messing up your center of gravity — I’ve always been a bit of a klutz, and despite being really aware of the potentials for taking a fall and being careful while hiking, I’m still a klutz. Â When you carry a chunk of extra weight, falls bring with it a real chance of broken bones or other damage.
I realize in retrospect I was a bit in shock. My first reaction was to see whether I was injured — somewhere in the back of my head a voice was screaming “systems check! systems check” at me). I started by moving arms and legs, flexing feed and wrists, wiggling fingers.
The good news — didn’t hit my head. Went down on my left side, got an arm out a bit to break some of the fall. I remember thinking I hadn’t heard anything crack, and as I started moving things, nothing caused me to scream in agony. That’s a good sign.
Suddenly I realize someone’s yelling at me. I’m hearing “Are you OK?” from somewhere far away. I look around and a girl I’d passed as she was headed out had come back to see what’d happened. She looked convinced I was dead or something, but god bless her for wanting to help. (cute girl, where at my age girl is anyone recognizably female and under about 30 years old; for some reason that recognition amuses me…). So I rolled over and said I thought I was okay.
She clearly believed me, because she asked again. and then again. I was still moving and flexing things and it was now clear that nothing was broken, so I decided it was okay to move, so I rolled over and sat up. Probably not exactly my most graceful moment, but honestly, I didn’t care. Still don’t.
So I’m now sitting up and madly moving fingers and rejoicing in the fact that they move as intended and I then look at her again and let her know I really am okay. And I”m not sure she really believed me, but she accepted it as proof she could stop freaking and get on with her life, and she did.
Again, dear, bless you for stopping and caring, and sorry I scare the crap out of you. It was much appreciated that you wanted to help.
And then I checked out the cameras. I was carrying both bodies, with the Tamron wide angle on the 30d and the 100-400 on the 7d. The Tamron landed first and got bodyslammed into the asphalt, while the 100-400 landed last on a nice soft cushion. Some preliminary checks seem to indicate that the poor cursed Tamron only took cosmetic damage — and it has a couple of interesting gouges on it — but I still need to do some serious testing for focus and alignment. I don’t see any sign of problems in the mechanism or some simple test shots. But to be honest, I haven’t really picked up a camera since, since picking things up has been a bit problematic.
Nothing broken, nothing dislocated. I landed left little finger first, and bent it and it’s neighbor back significantly. By all rights I should have dislocated something, but somehow, I didn’t. I did, however sprain two fingers rather seriously, the wrist less severely, and as I found out over the next day or so, basically sprained the entire hand, while hyperextending the elbow. I also whacked the right hand leaving it scraped (and sore and bruised where I think the 100-400 landed on it), and whacked both knees, fortunately, nothing beyond a bit of scrape and bruising. Â The hand swelled like a grapefruit, and I got the most interesting bruising deep inside the palm where bending things back stretched all of the ligaments and tendons in the core of the hand (did I mention I was damn lucky nothing dislocated or tore? a broken finger would have been the least of my hassles…)
So I’ve been a hurting puppy. Typing’s been — a challenge, so I haven’t any more than necessary, and what typing I could do without things spasming has been aimed at work, not play. Evenings have been mostly hanging out on the couch with body parts wrapped in ice bags. Tonight was the first night where I didn’t feel the need to haul them out and use them.
I’m still not 100%; I’m guessing another week before the arm is useful for carrying anything heaver than a soda can, but I’m finally able to do that, at least. My range of motion is about 90% of normal and improving daily, swelling is mostly gone, the hand is mostly functioning again, and I can type again with both hands — at least for a while. This is about it for the evening, though, because the little finger can only handle so much pressure on the key.
So things have been on hold for a while. Over the holiday weekend I hope to start ramping up a bit and moving things forward again. I haven’t exactly been idle — it was time I spent thinking through some projects that I’m chewing on that are getting close to surfacing where I’ll talk about them here. Some interesting stuff, and I’ve gond from researching and considering to making decisions and starting to create some plans, and so soon I can share some of it and maybe get a dialog going on it.
But until then, my hand’s telling me this is enough for now, so I’ll be off. But I had gotten a couple of people asking what happened, and I figured it was time for a quick status update.
and the quick status update is — I’m still a klutz, and fortunately, it wasn’t nearly as bad as it could have been. Which all things considered, I won’t complain about…
Via Genuinely Sarcastic:
In the end though, the Wings just didn’t want it badly enough. They weren’t as hungry, weren’t as fast, weren’t as good. I was as disgusted as all of you were with some of the calls that happened during the series, but in the end, sometimes you just have to overcome. The missed headshot on Franzen, as bad as it was – Rafalski blindly passing behind his back right onto the stick of Joe Thornton, setting up the season-ending goal by Patrick Marleau was worse. Losing a 3-1 lead in the 3rd period of Game 3 when they had to win was worse. Sometimes destiny – we like to call them the Hockey Gods – is not on your side. They were on the Red Wings’ side once before, and will be again. It just wasn’t our year.
Allow me for a minute to defend the Red Wings.
I have no voice this morning. My ears are still ringing. I was up at 5:30 this morning because I”m still wired from the game and couldn’t sleep. This wasn’t just a game. It wasn’t just a series. It may have been some of the best hockey I have ever seen played, by both teams. This was Ali-Frazier, a historic heavyweight battle.
As we were in the stands watching game five play out, it seemed to me that once the Sharks scored that Detroit knew it was over. The tone of the play changed just a bit. It wasn’t — not remotely — that the Wings didn’t want it badly enough. They did.
But the tank was empty. The sharks OUT RED-WINGED the Wings, and the Wings simply had given everything they had. The legs were dead, the energy was expended, they were simply finished. The Sharks had the energy, the Wings simply had hit the wall.
That Sharks have some strong rivalries around the league: Anaheim, Calgary, Colorado, Dallas. But this franchise made it clear, and it’s strived for this for years: it wanted to be like Detroit when it grew up. That’s an extreme compliment to the Wings — that teams feel the way to succeed is emulate them. And that process isn’t fully complete until you can challenge your mentor and win.
That has happened. Finally. When Detroit pulled Howard for the last push,what struck me was how — clinical — the Sharks defense was. Boyle took that penalty, but even so, the Sharks seemed in control and kept Detroit contained. What I’ve noticed this series is that that the Wings tended to be strong early in games, but the Sharks conditioning and youth meant that as the games went on, they got stronger, and Detroit faded a bit. It’s not a surprise to me the Sharks came won games late. Detroit was playing on fumes.
Detroit was in a situation this year it’s seen from the other side many times; had to really push to make the playoffs, they couldn’t rest players and gear up for the playoffs. For the Sharks, this was the second round, for Detroit, the third. Those extra games catch up to you, and here, they did. By the time we hit the last few minutes of the game, it just seemed to me that the Wings understood; even if they somehow came back and tied the game, it wasn’t going to go on much longer.
But they tried. But the arms were tired, the legs were tired. The student learned the skills of the master, and finally beat him. Great conditioning, cerebral, physical (and mostly clean) hockey. Patience — both teams had an almost zen-like patient concentration about them. There’s a huge amount of respect by each team for the other. This series was one of respectful hate, and now everyone gets to head out and buy each other beers…. I doubt many Sharks and Ducks buy each other beers afterwards…
So I deny that the wings didn’t want it badly enough. You couldn’t be in the arena last night and not see it. They ran their bodies to the very end of their capabilities, and somewhat past that. They had nothing left. There are a whole lot of sort, exhausted hockey players wearing ice bags this morning, pondering what else they could have done.
My answer: nothing. Detroit did not lose. They were beaten. And they showed honor and grace in defeat, and deserve a lot of recognition for what they did accomplish.
So from me: congrats to Detroit. This series is why I’m a Â hockey fan. And there’s no dishonor in losing to a team that honors you by becoming you. The Sharks learned the lessons very well.
And it’s pretty clear that starting next year, they’ll have to prove it again. I don’t see any sign that “The road to the Cup goes through Detroit” is going to change any time soon….