Mobile Uploads

Jinx sputters and roars to life.  The sound always makes me smile, although the neighbors might just hate me.  I pull my gloves on as I stroll over to the gate.  I push the decaying wooden portal open and kick the loose pavestone into the bottom.  I go back under the porch awning and mount up.  Jinx rocks back and forth as I do the awkward backward walk that is a motorcycle reverse.  I dial off the choke, and her idle calms down.  She’s a hard-starter in the morning, but then so am I.  I ease off the clutch and we roll forward through the gate.  I lean hard to the right so as to dip my mirror under the gate latch.  The mirrors stick out so that they would touch either side of the fenceposts, but it’s no real hazard as long as one is paying proper attention.  I dismount, close the gate, then re-mount.  I stand on my pegs as we roll down over the curb, then shoot off into the streets. 

This was a day where I had no destination in mind.  I took the path of least resistance, letting green lights and traffic density tell me when and where I was turning.  I wandered westward, ending up in Golden.  I sat at a traffic light, and Lookout Mountain loomed and beckoned.  There were dark clouds nearby, but it wouldn’t be the first time I rode in the rain.  Game on, I thought.  As I rode between the stone pillars on either side of the street that marked the beginning of the winding ascent, I thought, “I should take a picture of that.”  Then I wondered why.  I mean, I could come back and see it again anytime.  It wasn’t my first time there.  The place was preserved and the moment wasn’t special.  Weren’t those things what made a picture worthwhile?  My attention returned to the road; I wasn’t so familiar with the curves that I could let my mind wander. 

As I went up the mountain, I saw the bird’s eye view of Mines and Downtown in the distance.  I know that photography can be art, but such oft-pictured landscapes through the shallow aperture of a phone…  Such is the Colorado version of Instagram pics of food.  I have seen my facebook news feed awash in such blah-inspiring pictures.  I didn’t want to be that guy.  I kept riding. 

Soon enough, the road leveled out.  I pulled into Buffalo Bill’s museum and parked.  I wandered to the patio overlook and finally did snap a picture of downtown through the trees.  The single photograph did not do the scenery justice.  It couldn’t.  I’m told a picture is worth a thousand words, and this one is worth however much I end up writing here.

The contents of the picture were mostly a personal realization.  I should have fucking called someone.  The moment on top of Lookout Mountain should have been shared.  I have a friend who rides.  I know others who would have gladly sat on the back of my bike.  Sure, the conversation would have been next to nil, but the human connection would have been there. 

I guess the truth of it is this: Any picture I take that doesn’t have someone in it should have.  I don’t take pictures for me.  I can remember shit just fine.  If I feel the need to photograph something, it’s because I failed to share the original moment with you.Image

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