Philosophy 101

IMG_0581I was sitting there. Waiting on a perp. . . . Okay, I was standing. . . . Alone. No intern to chat up. No misanthrope from the competition to kvetch with. Not even a Public Information Officer to eyeball at me through mirrored shades.

With too many layers of clothes to comfortably gaze into my navel, and too much time to kill, what’s a photog to do but wax philosophical?

Barton, Anderson, Wertheimer, Gross, Jones, Rose; I’ve studied at the feet of the masters for literally half my life.  In one blog post, I will try to answer the questions that have plagued the photog nation since the the very first shooter SOTcrotes philosophized “No photog uses tripod willingly.” (What can I say; it was a long wait.)

If a perp walks to a police car, and there are no cameras there for him to spit at, does he make a sound? This is actually a thought experiment that challenges a photog’s powers of observation and his knowledge of reality. A houseboy may think that since there is no photog to document the lobbed lung butter that sound would be impossible. But the astute vidiot not only knows that a freshly cuffed criminal always flaps his gums, but that said shooter had better catch it in Digital Dolby Surround Sound for his reporter shall surely not write to it.

Why? The longest running of all philosophical questions has perplexed more learned minds than mine. But any photog worth his 2x extender knows the answer: Because a consultant told a producer to. Thus, even a thinking man’s shooter, finds himself standing in gale-force winds, hurtling down snow-covered interstates, hanging on the corner with Pookie and Ray-Ray, and live from dark closet.

What is the nature of photog? Plato, Socrates, Augustine, they all dealt with good and evil. As a street philosopher, I call bullshit. Photogs don’t deal in such esoteric debates. The nature of photog is reality. Producers can drone on about how great a live Christmas tree lighting or fireworks extravaganza would look at the top of their show, and send some poor schlub out to make it happen for them. A photog knows it will never happen. He also knows that if he raises the possibility of things in real life not timing out to a stacker’s carefully planned idea of how he would like reality to conform, said shooter will be tagged as an antagonist and earn more useless live shots in the future as punishment. So the photog keeps his mouth shut and quietly watches as things unravel one minute before the show.

When’s lunch? It’s truly as philosophical as a shooter gets. As a realist, he knows that philosophy is as useless on the streets as that Ken Dimplecheek’s can of hairspray is during hurricane coverage. And the answer to this question is: It aint lunch till the desk says it’s lunch.


About Rick

Writer, photographer, thinker of deep thought . . . too bad I only write about shallow ones.
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