Rock at Mather Point

Ring In the New


Originally published Aug 2006

It cost me a new garbage disposer and a bobble, but I bought a new camera. Well, not a new camera, but a new-to-me camera. It was meant to be. Last month, I had light leaks on some of the images I shot and I took them down to the local camera store to find out why. While there, the salesman showed me a camera he had just gotten in on consignment. It stared up at me with those puppy eyes and I knew I had to take it home. It took a month to figure out how to get it in the house and past Queen Anne.

I must have been very good lately, because karma was on my side. I picked the new camera up and have already taken it out shooting. I'm still alive. Since you read this far, I suppose you'll want to know the whole story.

The garbage disposer was the first thing that fell into place. After ten years of use, a bearing seized and it simply stopped working (yes I turned it with the little zigzagged thingy and I pressed the reset button). Since Anne was the one who discovered the malfunction, it automatically became an obvious birthday present for her. For days, we had discussions like, "What kind would you like?"

"I don't want a garbage disposer for my birthday. I want a Dyson vacuum cleaner."

Do you know what kind of garbage disposer you can get for the cost of a $400 Dyson? I had to up the ante. We would get one with more horsepower (grunt, grunt, grunt - apologies to our friends overseas who never watched Tim Allen's TV show Home Improvement). The Saturday before her birthday we headed down to the Really Huge Hardware store and bought the Terminator of disposers. It was quiet, had lots of power and was the prettiest blue color. When we got home however, it sat on the dryer in the laundry room for the next three days and no one touched it.

The evening before her birthday, I stopped by the Megalow Mart and bought a little ring she'd been admiring and showing me for a year. I wanted to stash it inside the faux gift but the ring’s little box wouldn’t fit in the disposer so instead I slipped the appraisal into the disposer package.

Her friends, Tim and Yaz, came over to share margaritas and cake (essential food groups you know) and to celebrate her birthday. I urged her to open up my unwraped gift and show everyone how nice it was. I told her friends that since she claimed to be an independent woman, Anne should install it herself. Our friend Sally McCarthy did. If Sally could do it, Anne could do it. After all, she did break it. As you can imagine that started an hour-long very loud discussion (polite term), but I finally convinced her to look at the instructions.

I'm not sure, but I think she peed her pants when she finally discovered the appraisal. All three of them were chattering like hens in a fox filled chicken coup. They demanded to know where the ring was and ran out to the garage en masse when I said it was somewhere in the truck.

I'm golden. She spends most of her free time standing in the street in front of the house admireing how sparkly she is and exclaiming, "oooh, shiney." She doesn't care about the camera and fixes me nice meals when I come home. Life is good. And, by the way, so is the garbage disposer. It grinds ice so well that the refrigerator trembles and won't dispense ice cubes unless you're holding a glass.

The camera? It's a used Canham 4x5 built here in Arizona. Its workmanship is very high quality and it has some features my trade-in camera didn’t. It also weighs a couple of pounds less making it easier to lug out of canyons. I used it to shoot this month's featured image so it works well.

Inevitably, my good karma will wear off, so if you'll excuse me, I have to start meditating. I have my eye on a new printer.

Till next month.
jw