retrofocus ramblings.

by the man-in-plastic – j. kiely jr., photographer, pilot, diver and sometimes nerd

As One Photographer Says.

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There’s a rap out there that the “media” is full of bad folks.
Not true. There are some, just like anything else.

And some really good ones too.

I follow this photographer on Twitter.

This was a rough one.

Written by j.

February 16th, 2010 at 11:55 pm

Parts Honestly

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Already mentioned this on Facebook, but events of the last few hours have not dulled my annoyance at all.
Backing up a few days, Friday morning my now vintage Jeep decided it didn’t want to start. As I’ve been having intermittent starting issues here and there this was not a huge surprise.
Finally having the time to deal with it until Saturday morning I diagnosed the most likely cause, starter solenoid, and began the hunt for the $40 part.
No local parts store was left unchecked.
In the end nobody had it. It would have to be ordered and prepaid to boot. And I would have to come to the store to make payment. Great.
Anyway the guy at the local NAPA store was more helpful. He informed me that if I called back first thing Monday morning that the part could be loaded on the warehouse shuttle and I could likely pick it up Monday afternoon.
Nope, didn’t work that way.
I called this morning at 10-past-9. Different voice informed me that he didn’t have the part, but I could order it and pay over the phone.
This I did.
With any luck I can throw the Jeep back together before the rain and snow invades us Tuesday.
Fingers crossed!

Written by j.

February 15th, 2010 at 9:53 am

The Daily Walkaround

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The sky was blue and the sun was shining this afternoon. Had to take a walk around my neighborhood and it just so happens that my neighborhood includes a fancy dancy new outdoor mall which has plenty of nifty things to see. Given that the mall developers and I were basically building our businesses at the same time – I like to take daily walks at lunch to see what’s new on their side of the fence.

Looks like another new eating and drinking place is about to open!

Written by j.

February 12th, 2010 at 3:11 am

His Name is Scott Brown

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In my 16 years behind the camera for newspapers I covered more than a few local and statewide political campaigns.
That was fine with me as Political Science was my major in college.
Anyway, by now a good portion of the English-speaking world knows the name of Scott Brown. The state senator from Wrentham MA who defeated the Attorney General of Massachusetts to claim Massachusetts United States Senate seat previously held by Edward M. Kennedy.
Before Teddy held that seat his brother John held it. With a brief interlude with Benjamin A. Smith II in the middle.
There have been some pretty heavyweight political luminaries over the course of the history of the U.S. Senate that have held that seat.

All that said, I met Scott Brown for the first time in 1998. Back then he was in a three way race to take a Massachusetts state representative seat. As I was working in the bucolic hamlet of Norfolk MA at the time, this was a race that I covered.

Now I’m pretty sure I have more images than this, and as a good number of people have yet to become my Facebook friend, I figured I’d post a few shots from a long time ago in this space.

Do enjoy a small window back in time. While some have grown up in these images, there is little doubt we’ve all aged.


1998 League of Women Voters Debate

Scott Brown, center, at a League of Women Voters debate

1998 League of Women Voters Debate

Scott Brown answers questions on mic.

1998 Scott Brown Campaign

Scott Brown in shades and a leather jacket. I'd have to do more research to figure out why he is dressed as such, but Scott Brown has always be up for doing what it takes. Looks like he is having fun.

1998 Election Night With Daughter

Holding his daughter (unsure which one) and a mobile phone, Scott Brown receives polling information on election night during his run for state representative.

1998 Election Night Victory Hug

Scott Brown is hugged by his daughter (unsure which one) as his wife Gail Huff, right, joins the celebration on election night. Scott Brown was elected to serve in the State of Massachusetts House of Representatives.

That Thing With the Silly Name.

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A good, good friend of mine emailed me a whole long humor riff on the iPad name, although he claimed to have never seen the MadTV skit which basically goes in the same direction.

Okay, okay – I get it. The word ‘pad’ can only reference feminine products.

So Apple went with iPad anyway. Before the iPod, what did we all make of the work pod? Not sure where I’m really going with this.
However, I’m not ready to dismiss the iPad from Apple at first blush. In fact when I watched the streaming Quicktime version of the keynote my mind was racing with applications for the iPad. Reading books I still prefer to do the old fashioned way. As a photographer and a pilot a screen this size and weight has 1001 possibilities.

Anyway, just read this man’s take on the whole affair. He says some of what I was thinking and goes well beyond it. Much better than I could.

Frank Spiers on the iPad

Written by j.

January 30th, 2010 at 12:17 pm

And Yet More Online Video Joy.

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This is creative. Makes me want to learn Chinese.

Written by j.

January 20th, 2010 at 5:08 pm

Quick Posting Of a Link.

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The intertubes are rapidly being filled with all sorts of video clips.
Today I’m posting a link to one of those clips I saw and enjoyed. All about the history of a quite essential piece of software.

Cool to hear from the mouth of the creator.

Written by j.

January 17th, 2010 at 6:44 pm

Another Times Link.

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I admit to having a fair bit of prejudice on this one, but it is worth a look-see for yourself if you have in interest in photography, photographs and photojournalists.

David Hume Kennerly writing in the New York Times about a picture used in Newsweek.

Written by j.

September 17th, 2009 at 11:29 pm

A Sports Radio Battle in Boston.

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There’s been a battle brewing in Boston over the past few weeks. Well, it’s just one of many battles, but one that has more relevance to me now that football season has begun. *

The touchstone for Boston sports fanatics has been WEEI-AM for a long time. However, back in mid-August CBS radio killed off a historic radio station in WBCN and moved it’s “Mix” to the old ‘BCN frequency. That made room for CBS to launch a clean sheet new FM sports radio station on the old “Mix” frequency. It seemed needlessly complicated the time, but I guess the powers that be wanted the new “The Sports Hub” at 98.5 rather than 104.1. The day the switch was done was rather strange, but the new “Sports Hub” has been growing on me – primarily because of the FM signal. I admitt that. Been giving the new station a chance. Thankfully all the buttons work on my radio, so I’ve been bouncing back and forth. **

Trouble is, when I’m sitting at my desk I’d prefer to sample both stations via iTunes. WEEI, which has been around for some time has a stream published in the iTunes “radio” sidebar, but the “Sports Hub” has been missing. So I did some sniffing around and have come up with a couple streaming links for both stations. That way I can sit at my desk and flip between the two sports chat lines. Not that I don’t sample news and other music streams too, it’s just that having both sports radio stations at my fingertips is much better that fooling around with corporate webpages.

Hope these iTunes-savvy links work for you, they do for me!

WEEI-AM 850 “Sports Radio”

WBZ-FM 98.5 “The Sports Hub”

* currently Boston has a mayoral race that’s heating up, and our fair state has a big U.S. Senate race that is just warming up.
** all the radio buttons in my Jeep worked – before the heavy rains on Saturday. Radio got wet. Not working now. Although the display lights up with the evidence – 98.5 shows, just no sound. Sad.

My Alpine is Stuck

Written by j.

September 13th, 2009 at 8:33 pm