25 Boxes, and the Weekly Photo Challenge: Split-Second Story

I love looking at art.  Next to that, I like to watch other people looking at art. I had only a split-second to take a photo of this woman before she moved on, no longer rhyming with the Wayne Thiebold painting ‘Bikini’ and the black line of the bench in the foreground.

Wayne Thiebaud's 'Bikini' and observer. Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City MO

Wayne Thiebaud’s ‘Bikini’ and observer. Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City MO

I’ve spent the last week unpacking 25 boxes from my basement after a leak from my water heater expansion tank forced me to action. When I counted boxes down there a few months ago I thought there were 45 left, but now I see there are nearly that many remaining even after all I’ve done this week. I’m beginning to wonder if they’re multiplying behind my back.

Photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson was a master of catching the “decisive moment” in pictures. I’ve always thought of that term as applying to the visual, but now, in the midst of all my unpacking, I realize there are other decisive moments, the kind that happen all the time: every object in every box I unpack is the result of a past decision to acquire or not to acquire. Our lives are full of split-second stories, and I wonder how many it took to add up to all this stuff.

On the bright side (I hope there’s always a bright side) I’ve sorted out a big load of donations, a mega load of recylables, and only 2 bags of trash.

How many split-second stories do you have today?

For more on the Weekly Photo Challenge: Split-Second Stories, click here.


15 thoughts on “25 Boxes, and the Weekly Photo Challenge: Split-Second Story

    • Thanks! The little digital cameras with no viewfinders have such a shutter lag that it’s hard to catch a moment. Then there is my reaction-time delay. I need a camera built into my forehead — oh wait, soon we’ll all be wearing google glass.

      • I find the lag really frustrating as well, but the thought of google glass, ugh!
        Maybe I’ll get used to it in the end 🙂

      • It’s better I think with the bigger cameras that have viewfinders, but I don’t like carrying a big camera. I just noticed there are charts online showing the time lag as part of the product review… guess I’ll check that out next time I’m looking for a camera.

  1. Great analogy! Yes, that’s exactly what we have–split seconds to choose…a good thing to remember. That could be a great help against clutter!

  2. Love your take on the theme each week. You’ve got to wonder what people are thinking when you see them admire a piece of artwork…or watching a musical performance or the world around them. And you know, most of the time they don’t see you watching.

    Good luck with moving those boxes in the basement. I too always underestimate how much I have. For example, the other day I thought I could clean out my closet in two hours. I was so wrong – I could only clean out a drawer of it! 😀

    • Now I’m wondering if anyone ever watched me looking at art.
      On closets: it always amazes me when when I clean out a small area and there’s so much stuff in it that it seems to cover the entire room. I think my problem is that I get drawn into looking at each little thing and pondering. Thanks for reading —

      • Haha, now you got me thinking too if anyone has ever watched me admiring a painting or any other piece of artwork.

        Love reading your unpacking adventures at home. Yes, you never know what you can discover and each thing you find brings back memories. Looking forward to reading more.

      • Ah, and the other thing is: vacation pictures! Sometimes I look at people that accidentally end up in mine, and wonder how many have me anonomously in theirs (and if I’m behaving myself when caught). Food for thought.

      • I’ve never thought of that. I always, always try to move out of shot when I see tourists taking photos. It just feels weird being in other people’s photos, for me. Like it’s an invasion of privacy of some sort. Hope you’re having a great time cleaning your basement, and it’s not too wet down there 🙂

    • It may be in the basement!
      It’s hard for me to believe I got so many boxes out of there this last week and it STILL looks chaotic. What about a title like “Chaos in the Basement” -? “Chaos in the Garage” is not far behind.

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