Daily Photos

Hi! I hope you had a nice start to the new year! We had a very relaxing one, just eating osechi (Japanese new years food) and watching movies.

Lately I have been reading about photography projects, and the one that caught my attention is something like a “personal documentary”. I guess it is sort of like a recording of my own daily life… just normal things that we take for granted, but if we give them attention, they can become important things. Or another way to look at it is that in 50 years, these things might be of interest. I don’t know if this is true, but I really enjoy viewing these types of photos.

So, I think 2016 will be the start of mine. I am not sure if I will take a photo every day, but I’ll try. I’ve done 365 photo projects in the past so I am confident I can keep it going! I’ve started a new category in the blog named “Personal Documentary” if you’d like to sort by these photos.

This first photo is about as everyday as I can get… it’s the pen holder on my desk at home. I’ve actually had this beer can for over 20 years. I think I cut the top off of it when I was at university and have used it to hold pens ever since.

"On the Desk" USA. Texas. Cedar Park. 2016.
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.5, 1/90 sec, ISO6400
“On the Desk” USA. Texas. Cedar Park. 2016.

This project seems like a New Year’s Resolution, doesn’t it? Well, I rarely make resolutions, so I don’t think I can call it that but it is something I’d like to make a habit.

I hope you all have a wonderful year and give it your all!

-B

The blog must go on.

Hi all! I’ve been blogging for quite a long time now (over 16 years!) but lately I wanted to start writing 📝 just a little bit every day. So, for the past week and a half you may have noticed a daily post from me. I’m trying to make it part of my daily routine, which has been difficult in the past but I am making a larger effort this time. I have a laptop set up next to the bed, so before I climb under the covers, I’ll sit at the laptop, with my cat Miki 🐱 joining me, and tap out a few words to share what has happened in my day, or a photo or two. It’s really easy and I have no excuse not to.

I’ve enjoyed blogging (even if mine is nothing special) because I find it therapeutic, and making it a daily thing gets me to think about what my priorities are, and if I am giving them enough attention. I won’t write anything profound (I don’t have the talent to put thoughts like that into words) but my mind gets an extra jolt ⚡ of activity… and that is a good thing!

To tell the truth, I have long been inspired by Tao Tsuchiya’s daily blog! She’s one of my favorite actresses and (with the help of Google Translate) I enjoy reading her blog daily. It’s inspiring to see her dedication to journaling for so long!

Over the years, I’ve seen a few of my favorite blogs get retired, and I understand the reasons why the blogger decided to stop or take a break, but for myself, I don’t think I can ever stop doing this in one form or another. I think it’s a lot of fun, and has been a completely positive experience for me ever since I started. I think the most challenging thing for me in blogging is coming up with a title for each post! 😖

Well, it’s actually Sunday morning that I am writing this, but I woke early before anyone else and felt a bit inspired. I’m sure the coffee ☕ helped too.

It looks like today will be warmer weather-wise. ⛅ Hope you have a good one!

またね!

-B

Medium

I’ve been enjoying visiting Medium and reading people’s short stories. And by short, I mean 2-10 minute reads. There’s actually an indicator for each story of how long it will take to read. How cool is that? Most of the stories are wonderful and thought-provoking, and certainly worth more than the price of admission (free!). I still don’t quite understand the organization of things (who can make a collection, can a story be in more than one collection, etc.), and it is a little difficult to find a certain story through searching. For instance, I was in the middle or reading a story about trail-running when I had to turn off the tablet. Later, I wanted to continue reading that story, but couldn’t find it. The search function didn’t find it either. I guess I need to be more liberal with my bookmarking. But there are so many interesting things to read, I find that my bookmarks list is getting long! (That’s a good thing)

On the downside, I did come across a story was less pure storytelling and more commercial-leaning. It’s a “story” about a nice new backpack and how this brand of backpack is now available in the UK. After a short description of the backpack, with very little practical information (“I’ll be doing a full review in a month or two“), there is a link to the backpack vendor’s store. That’s pretty much it. How did that story get posted? Have I been mistaken about what Medium is about? I decided to check the about page and found, “Medium is a new place on the Internet where people share ideas and stories that are longer than 140 characters and not just for friends. It’s designed for little stories that make your day better and manifestos that change the world.” It was a little strange and disheartening to find something that feels more like an advertisement than a “manifesto that changes the world”. It cheapens Medium. I just hope it’s not the direction Medium is headed, because the trend of personal blogs turning into business blogs saddens me, and I’d hate for Medium to follow that pattern.

This was a little hard for me to write because as some of you may know, I am crazy about bags and backpacks. I just don’t think that ads for them belong at Medium.

To finish up on a positive note, I’d like to recommend a few of the collections I have saved to my list. I hope you enjoy them!

  • The LYD Essays : I’ve followed Ernie Hsiung on the Internet for a few years and was happy to see his stories on Medium. Funny and entertaining.
  • Click the Shutter:  Photography-related stories. Lots of inspiration here.
  • Roaming the Earth: Great for those with wanderlust!

Bye Bye Google Reader

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Sadly Google Reader will be going away. I used it every day, so I’m pretty disappointed. But… Feedly is actually pretty cool and it looks like they will be able to save and sync feeds soon! And it works nicely in both Chrome (desktop) and Android. My blog looks pretty good with Feedly in the screenshot above, doesn’t it?