March 2009 Updates

Geese in Flight (by StarbuckGuy)

Whew, where does the time go? I intended to post more frequently but got busy with a number of things and, also, I didn’t have a focused essay topic that I felt like working on, so I got a little lazy about blogging. Lots of things have been happening, so this will be another ‘misc’.


Last weekend I sold my Nikon D300 DSLR to my friend Geeyen. The D300 is easily the nicest and most professional digital camera I’ve owned, and I loved the way it could meter with my old manual Nikon lenses, plus record the focal length and aperture setting in the EXIF data. I had only one problem with it, and it was major: it was too heavy for me. It wouldn’t be too heavy for most people — sensitivity to weight is a byproduct of my cardio recovery.

I really like my lightweight D40 because it can work, though not meter with, all my old Nikon lenses, including the pre-AI ones I enjoy using for their unique signature. Six megapixels is good most of the time, but I’d like a few more pixels to work with, for cropping purposes. My current thinking is that I’ll buy a D60 which is mostly an upgrade to the D40 but with 10 rather than 6 megapixels. It too offers a nearly universal Nikon F mount.

The Nikon F80 film camera I picked up from my friend Peter came through with flying colours on the test roll I shot. I posted one of the shots at the top of the blog. Peter and I continued with some trading and he has taken my Nikon F3HP — another great model that has proven too heavy for me.


A short while back I finished and submitted the article I was writing for Here’s How on Canadians who have developed a following on YouTube. It should be in print in a day or two. This morning the editor called me to see if I could do a roundup of superzoom (‘vacation’) lenses. I said OK and have about 3-4 weeks to do the testing and writing.

I’m working on a short story that was triggered by a sentence that popped into my head: “She was the Miss Marple of wiccas.”  It’s going well, I think. I’m such a newbie at fiction writing I can’t be certain.

I posted two short pieces in the March writing challenge on Creative NonFiction Writing Forums. Nonfiction infused with the techniques of fiction appeals to me highly, both as writer and reader.

I’ve been journalling regularly, on whatever device I carry with me. Most of it is done in Starbucks, where, when it’s not too crowded and noisy, provides a good setting for freeflow writing.


I’m very happy to say that my health appears to have improved very much in March. The iron supplements seem to be overcoming the iron deficiency, and the hemoglobins are bigger and back into the normal range. My energy has returned to near-normal levels and I can feel my heart pumping well and efficiently when I’m walking up hills. It’s taken the better part of a year for my heart to feel strong again. Perhaps I’m a slow healer.

Because of the low iron count, I’m heading into hospital on April 1 (ha, ha) for a gastroscopy and endoscopy. I’m being scoped from top to bottom. Perhaps it will reveal that I’ve rusted out.


Tony Hanik is organizing another song circle and I’m looking forward to some picking and singing. Kirsten has lent me a Tori Amos album — I’m unfamiliar with her work. I’m reading lots of Pratchett at bedtime, and listening to many podcasts during the day.  Marion is in Salt Lake City researching family history but will be back in time to whisk me to hospital for the scoping. I’m rewatching season three of Buffy, usually at the pace of two episodes in the evening, after dinner. As an exercise in brain plasticity, I’ve moved the mouse from the right side of my computer to the left.

Oh, and I’m decluttering my office. Ugh.

2 thoughts on “March 2009 Updates

  1. Gene, as usual a well written acount of “what’s up with Gene”, you know the old saying it’s better to wear out than rust out, so once the “scoping” is over and you catch your breath, let’s get out and shoot some spring in Port Credit..take good care

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