Saturday, April 5, 2008

Finding lost memory, digital style

I admit it — I’m a loser.

Not in the sense of not being good at my job or my life. I think I’m a good person. I’m also proud of being a community reporter and think I do it well … although I’ll never be in the same financial league as Oprah, J.K. Rowling or Rachael Ray, fersure.

I’m a loser because I lose things.

My car-key misplacing abilities are legendary. I’ll misfile crucial sheets of notes. I’ve put the portable phone in the freezer and the clean pillowcases by the phone stand. Fortunately, I didn’t put the ice cream in the linen closet. No, I left it sitting on the counter.

Just imagine the trouble my digital camera could give me.

Not the camera, itself, at least not yet. But have you taken a good look at the “film” for digital photography?

If I can lose a 5,000-pound mini-van in the parking lot or a 200-pound husband in our very own home, just imagine how fast I can mislay a miniscule digital-media disk.

I take some vitamins that are bigger than that!

Of course I never lose the old, slow, worn-out cards, oh no. It’s always the brand new, expensive, faster-than-the-speed-of-light disks that disappear.

It’s worst when I lose a card that I’ve just filled with photos during a crucial, never-to-be-repeated event.

On deadline.

To say that my bosses wouldn’t be very happy when that happens would be an understatement, like declaring that Mt. Everest is a sizeable hill.

And then there was a recent parade at Cambria's annual Pinedorado festival.

I’d taken with me a little case that holds backup AA batteries and a couple of spare photo cards. Digital media and pockets don’t get along, so I always have the case with me because it snaps right around my camera strap.

During the parade, I dashed up and down the street, taking pictures of floats and bands, little kids and clowns, just like I always do.

I think I log more miles than the marchers.

There were frustrations, too.

My Stetson flew off, and almost got crushed by a Clydesdale.

I missed some great shots because so many parade-watchers weren’t staying put, but were instead walking around, right in front of my lens. And I’m not tall enough to shoot over their heads.

I kept myself together, though, even when someone reached over and slapped a sticker-badge on my fringed, Western jacket and I couldn’t peel it off the suede.

Then I lost it. First the little case and the digital cards inside ... and then my cool, in part because there were wonderful parade pictures on one of those disks, I just knew it.

Husband Richard and I looked everywhere, obvious or not. We searched our van, gutters, trash cans. We asked everybody within a mile. We left “please call” notes all over town.

Eventually, photos from the other disks were used. Husband Richard ordered some expensive new digital cards. And I sulked.

But recently, I got around to taking my Western jacket to the dry cleaners so they could remove the stick-um from that doggone badge.

Did you know it costs more to clean that suede jacket than it would to replace it? Absurd.

As I flung the jacket back on the car seat in disgust, something thunked my knee. I reached into the pocket, rummaged around and surprise! I found the little case with the digital cards in it!

Sometime during the parade, I must have taken the case off my camera strap and stuck it in the fabric pocket of my jacket … not knowing that the pocket had a well-camouflaged hole in it.

As I scurried about taking photos, the lightweight little case must have slid down between the suede and the lining, ending up near the jacket’s already-bulky bottom hem.

Of course, I had checked the pockets way back when. But not the hem!

I suppose if I were more prone to wearing a fringed suede jacket around the house, I might have found the case and those three expensive photo cards much sooner.

But even months later, let me tell you, it’s a whole lot nicer to be a finder than a loser. I admit it.

E-mail Kathe Tanner at ktanner@thetribune news.com.

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Anne said...

Geez, Kathe, your articles are such fun to read. Laughed myself silly with this one (was able to laugh heartily since I go bra-less at home). Also your Easter Egg hunt comes to mind. What fun. Great to see some people still enjoy life. The lost/found money one was also a wonderful read.
Keep it up--you're awesome.