Editors Note:


EDITOR'S NOTE: Fresh off a three year managerial stint, your friendly neighborhood lenslinger is back on the street and under heavy deadline. As the numbing effects of his self-imposed containment wear off, vexing reflections and pithy epistles are sure to follow...

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

City Council Catatonia

Assignment from Hell
Behold - I give you every photojournalist's worst nightmare: the protracted city council meeting! Actually, any static gathering of policy wonks is enough to make the average news shooter yearn for a Bigfoot sighting to run on. It's not that we behind the lens don't appreciate the machinations of our democracy - it just makes for lousy television! Still, one can make art of assembled bureaucrats, if there are enough reflective surfaces in the boardroom. In today's case, the desktop was buffed to a dull finish, forcing me to search for obsessive paper-shuffling and contorted facial expressions to fill the aesthetic gap - not an easy task when your eyes are glazing over. Luckily, these civil servants kept on target and hammered out the city budget just before I resorted to making shadow puppets with my camera's top-light. Whew! Remind me next time to grab that tattered paperback out of Unit 4 before I allow myself to be sequestered with the City Council. After all, these fine folks aren't nearly as scary or entertaining as the County Commisioners' monthly tantrum-fests. Those people are whack!

7 comments:

Sandy Carmany said...

Yeah, I could tell from your facial expressions this morning that this was not exactly the most thrilling assignment you've ever had. Just think -- we "assembled bureaucrats" get to sit through these exciting meetings multiple times every week and sift through all those minute details. What fun!{smile}

Smitty said...

You got that right, brother. Damn, your writing amazes me. I think I've said that before.. Oh well, it's worth repeating, just like the city council roll call.

HockeyPat said...

Welcome to my life.

Carolyn said...

Sorry, Stu. I know your pain - both from the news side and the "city official" side. I'd rather shave my head with a cheese grater.

jw said...

Hey, you know you could get lucky. Eventually one of those guys is going to flip and try to take out the others. Be creative. Try to guess which one and over which issue. Or you could reinvent their dialogue, like, "Well, Mr. Mayor, the dynamics of this particular demography [drone, drone] is that in every other house within that district lives a hooker who services 10 clients a day, 7 of whom are in City government."

See? Play with it. It works.

Anonymous said...

You can always turn it into a Sergio Leone western and shoot ultra closeups of faces and hands......I can almost guarantee you'll get some response.

in a trance said...

Sounds tougher than a no-tv-watching treadmill workout. In a situation like that, wish I could create the commotion myself. Maybe "accidentally" drop a Mentos chew into a bottle of diet Coke. :D

Nonetheless, I must say, what you do for a living is pretty cool. :D