Wednesday, July 29, 2009

UPDATED: Last Saturday.

We went to see the waves. And so did eight million of our closest friends. And by "closest friends" I, of course, mean random, irritating strangers who should have realized they had more important things to do. No such luck.

I'd love to share all the specifics, the why's and how's... but I don't pay enough attention myself. All I know is that there was a storm. Like, a month ago. Maybe in Mexico. Maybe somewhere else. And, eventually, the waves here reacted. And everybody showed up to see Mother Nature at work. The end.

Well, I was hoping I'd be able to capture some images, but... they got in my way. I may have, quietly, growled at them.

Seriously, people. How do you expect me to do anything with all of you standing around, doing nothing but block my view?

I felt bad for the lifeguards who not only had to keep an eye on the undoubtedly angry surfers, but keep the crowds back, too. And I'm not sure if you've realized this before, but people are rude, especially when they realize they outnumber the authority figure.

Then I noticed them.

Photographers. Why can't I take my eyes off 'em? I'm only sharing this one photo, but I took dozens while standing a few feet away wondering who they were, what equipment they were using, how they were using it, why. They're just so fascinating, don't you think?


These guys were on the other side of me. I was surrounded. And it was awesome.

I totally forgot why we were there. I just wanted to take pictures of these guys taking pictures.

And that's right. Guys. All men photographers, no women. Interesting.

There was one photographer in a wheelchair. As I watched him and three others struggle to wheel him through the sand and get him back on solid ground later, I couldn't help but hope he got the shot. Otherwise... all that effort for...? I didn't take a picture of him.

There was another kind of photographer at the beach that day.

The cell phone photographer.

Hey, I'm not knockin' it. I take pictures with my phone all the time, but not scenic pictures. Cell phones can barely capture the detail in a person's face three feet away. How can they expect it to capture the detail and beauty of the ocean at thirty feet away?

This guy caused quite the uproar with his contraption. I'm not sure if you can tell, but atop that pole there? Two cameras strapped in. He moved all around the crowd, propping that thing up and taking pictures. I'm not sure what he captured, but it was interesting to watch.

You know what I admired most about him? He was fearless. People around him were pointing and staring, all their attention temporarily focused completely on him... and he didn't bat an eye. I wish I could be more like that.

Speaking of fearless...


Here's a glimpse of what he went running into:

Need a little perspective? Here's a very grainy close up:

Imagine body-surfing that.

Update: I just received an e-mail from The Husband. And it went: "The storm was in Tahiti only 4 days prior to the waves arriving. They travel 400 miles a day because of the winds. You're killing me. Jeez." So, there.


  1. I'm a cell phone photographer. And that was totally hilarious the picture of the guy heading out into the water with the things on his feet. Can't remember what they are called right now. But funny.

  2. The fellow in the Speedo is brave just to wear that thing to the beach let alone walk down to the water with his flippers on!And don't you just get "lens envy" when you hang with some of those photographers. I do at least. I have been know to exclaim, "Now that's a nice piece of equipment!" and mean the camera lens and not the person. HHBL just shakes his head.

  3. You and Dad Gone Mad must live near the same beach. Maybe you took pictures of him! get lens envy, until I think about lugging around all those heavy lenses. Then I'm happy with my little G9.

  4. beautiful! you live in a lovely place it seems...

  5. I love how everyone else is taking pictures of the ocean and you are taking pictures of them. Your pictures tell a story, do theirs? I'm thinking - not so much.All those people standing around, watching the water...I have never seem anything like that. Wild.

  6. OK, this is freaking me out just a little bit. I went to see the waves last Saturday, too...only I didn't know that's what I was doing. Well, sorta. I visited a friend in the LA area last week and drove myself to the beach Sat morning while she was working. Seal Beach, to be specific. It's the first time I had been near the Pacific Ocean in 22 years and I was NOT going to miss seeing it up close and in person. I left my camera in my purse, in the trunk of her car, so I took a couple of cell phone pics...which will be posted on my blog whenever I get over the writer's block/jet lag that has plagued me all week.But whole point here is that you and I were on a beach in California on the same day! I could squee!

  7. AnonymousJuly 30, 2009

    I like the body surfer IN the wave in the up close picture...he looks like he is going to eat it!

  8. Debbie, yes, tons and tons of lens envy. I just sit there and sigh and imagine the possibilities. Theresa, I saw that post a few days ago and thought that was so cool that DGM and I were at the same beach on the same day! I've been thinking more often about how close I come to other bloggers without realizing it. I wonder if I'd be brave enough to actually approach one if I did.small town small times, it was wild. I've never seen anything like it, either. I've seen crowds at the beach, sure, but not just standing around watching the waves. Violet, that's so funny! If only you'd come a bit farther south, maybe we would have run into each other. I can't wait to see your pictures and hear about your trip back to LA.

  9. Anonymous, he did eat it on that one. I have the pictures. Don't worry, they'll get posted eventually.

  10. Hey, even though those stupid people are in your way, the photos come out great with them anyway. All colorful and fat and lazy looking. Was anyone trying to surf these gigantic things??

  11. OH THE ZOOM LENSES, total lens envy and I have yet to get my new camera. I understand your fascination though. I'd totally be taking pics of the people. Then again I would also be asking all the photographers questions. Tons and tons of questions. I'm such a noob....

  12. Wow.Awesomely amazing waves and it's incredible how everyone in California turned out to watch them.

  13. Love your blog. Just discovered it last week. These pics are great.

  14. Wow those are some really big waves! I would totally be doing the same thing. Taking picture of the guys taking pictures and looking to see what they were shooting with :) Cool!

  15. I came across your blog thru Just Had to do it. You are incredibly funny. I was reading about the Melissa phone number thingy and can relate but when I was much younger. I'm glad you finally figured it out w/o having to ask hubby. Trust can be a very difficult thing.

  16. I'm catching up on everyone today! Wow, those waves are amazing! That crowd is, too! That's weird that there were no women photographers, other than you! I wonder why not.