Friday, January 1, 2010

Spare Changes

Today is not only New Years Day, but Theme Day for participating City Daily Photo bloggers. This month's theme is Changes.

My house was built in 1900. The windows here have provided a view of many changes over the years. Outside these windows carriages gave way to cars, saplings grew into heritage trees and a western outpost transformed into a booming, metropolitan city. When I sit at my laptop I often imagine how others once occupied the same place in my home. Perhaps someone sat at a typewriter, or an inkwell, pondering the changing world or wondering about their place in history. Or maybe just jotting down dreams the way we always do when we try to pin them down and make them real.

It's 2010 -- a year that must have been hard to envision by the original owner of this house. It's a fantastical, futuristic number even by my own born-in-the-sixties standards. Changes have come fast and furious in my own lifetime. When I first decided to be a writer, I figured it out by scribbling a journal in a spiral notebook. When I first tried to imitate Henri Cartier Bresson's street photography, it was with an old Polaroid. Now I have three computers, two digital cameras and a cell phone with both a keyboard and a camera. Could I have imagined it all when I was a kid? Probably not. No more than I can really imagine the hovercraft/shrinking ray/internet-wired-int0-your-brain inventions of the coming years.

It's strange how moments that feel so modern slip into the past before we've quite realized it. I remember once, sometime in college, chuckling over the clothes and hairstyles in my mother's high school yearbook. "Didn't you all realize how silly you looked?" I asked Mom... while sporting my own AquaNet-sprayed big bangs, spandex miniskirt and ripped fishnets. Changes find all of us. Eventually.

I've stopped trying to guess the future or predict what may happen next. I learned my lesson back on New Years Eve in 1979 when, tipsy off a bottle of warm Asti Spumante, I spoke passionately to my high school friends about how I just knew from the deepest fathoms of my very bone marrow that the 1980s were going to bring about a new decade of selflessness, philanthropy and altruism. Yeah, well, I never claimed to be a futurist. But whatever changes are rolling in on this year's turning wheel, may they bring you wonder and delight. The future is now. Here's to a great view. Happy New Year, everyone.

For even more interpretations of today's theme, check out the talented group of worldwide bloggers who joined in the fun. Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

25 comments:

Gunn White said...

Interesting to read, and a nice atmospheric b/w photo to illustrate the text.
Happy New Year!

Jilly said...

What a gorgeous photograph to illustrate a beautifully written commentary. You know one of the few things I feel about getting older is the technology I'll miss when I'm dead. Everything is so exciting and quite beyond imagination and so long as we remember we are human beings who need to relate to each other, to talk, to play, to love, it's all just fine.

Wishing you and your family all the very best for 2010, health, happiness, peace xxx

Yakpate said...

LA: Your window to the digital world... reflecting your window to the real world. If ever a photo were a poem, it's this one.

I predict that in the year 2010:

A major breakthrough in cancer treatment will have the world saying, "cure."

More of us will BE the positive change that transcends technology.

And LA: your unfailing light will shine even brighter.

Judy Williams said...

The future IS now. I loved the Aqua Net reference. I'd forgotten about that turquoise and black harlequin marked spray cane!!

As we reorganize our resolutions and think of what we didn't quite accomplish last year, let's do make Laurie's 1979 prediction a bit truer with philanthropy and altruism.

Happy and Healthy 2010 everyone!!

Brenda's Arizona said...

Thinking here that selflessness, philanthropy and altruism is possible in this decade. I am damn sure gonna try! Love this, Laurie. More, more, more.

Happy New Year, and write on.

altadenahiker said...

What a great way to start the year. This is one of my favorite pieces of yours ever, Laurie. And I find such peace in that beautiful photograph.

(And gosh, don't get me started on my own criminal abuse of AquaNet and Mousse)

WV: Foamicap. Honest.

Virginia said...

The photograph is wonderful. I had to spend a few minutes just looking around. May all of the changes in our lives be for the better. I hope I can always be at the front of the pack instead of bringing up the rear!
V

Halcyon said...

Happy New Year!! May the changes that come in 2010 be good ones.

Clueless in Boston said...

Very nice take on the theme for the day. Your monochrome photo really sets the tone for your little essay. Happy New Year to you and your family.

Petrea said...

Words and picture: true and clear, as always. Happy New Year.

LSaeta said...

I love this photo and the words you have written to go with it. Happy New Year and thanks for inspiring my art with your photos.

Judy Williams said...

Foamicap: HAHAHA

(or maybe it's the half a bottle of champagne I've drunk while preparing NY dinner)

Randy said...

Nice photo. I love it in Black and White. Happy New Year.

In Three Rivers, Michigan said...

I wonder what happened to my fishnet stockings... :-) but could you imagine going back to old technology? Calculating on a slide rule, writing with a quill or pencil or typewriter? Looking up trivia in the World Book instead of Wikipedia? Alas, there's no going back.

I enjoyed your post. Happy New Year!

Three Rivers Daily Photo

Julie ScottsdaleDailyPhoto.com said...

very interesting retrospective. your writing is wonderful. Your photo today is excellent and a great choice for theme day. Happy New Year and I wish you many good photos in your future in 2010!

Kim said...

Laurie, I could sit by your windows for hours, if allowed. Your writing and photos are a special joy and I hope to spend more time visiting now that my school program is finished and the new year begins. I've missed a lot and will enjoy catching up with you.
All the best of health and happiness to you and your family in 2010!
-Kim

R said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mister Earl said...

Great, great, great, Laurie. When I was a kid, things were a certain way. There was the NFL with its Championship Game and there was this weird, funky thing called the AFL. Somehow they merged. There were only 8 baseball teams in each league. The league winners played each other in the World Series. People bought 45 rpm singles. Only rich people had color TVs. All these changes happened when I was between 10 and 20, but somehow it seems like there was the world before and the world after, with a line dividing the two.

dbdubya said...

This is a perfect post to start off the new year. One of your best ever. Love the photo and the commentary that follows.

Laurie said...

Thank you so much, everyone. Your kind words mean so much to me. It's such a joy to maintain this blog, especially with all of you reading and commenting. Happy New Year!

Til tomorrow...

TheChieftess said...

Ditto, ditto, ditto!!!! Jilly...I almost choked laughing at the thought of missing the technology we'll miss when we're dead!!! And Laurie...I wore yellow fishnet stockings (with no holes) in the late 60's!!! With a magenta and yellow paisley dress...and probably a fair amount of aqua net!!! (I have photographic proof of the above!!!)
Thank the dear Lord fashion changes...but does it have to change even before I've brought something home from the store???
I live in a home that was built by my hubby's grandparents the year he was born...he has spoken many times of the some of the times he was here visiting as a child...and the Deodor tree in our front yard? Planted that same year, and now about 250 feet high!!!
My techno change this year was from pc to iMac!!! But I do remember the days of the typewriter, both manual and the fabulous Selectric!!! But what about party lines...does anyone else remember picking up the phone and hearing somebody unknown having a conversation on their phone???
Thank you Laurie for a delightful and thought provoking post!
Happy New Year!!!

Kaori said...

Happy New Year Laurie! I'm always loving your random poems, dreamy photos, and your quirky thoughts on this blog. Hope you and your family have a wonderful year in 2010 :D

Laurie said...

Chieftess, I'd love to see pics of you in your paisley!

Kaori, thanks! I love visiting your blog, too, and seeing the way you filter the world through your lovely lens.

IamMBB said...

What a beautiful rumination on change accompanied by such an introspective image. Very nice.

Laurie said...

Welcome IAMmbb! Thank you so much for the kind words.