The things we find

I was doing research on the proper terminology of a certain snail in Poland as part of my backyard project. Accidentally Google gave me a link to this small article of the Polish mail system.

"A Polish IT worker has calculated the exact speed of snail mail after receiving on 3 January a letter which was sent priority mail on 20 December, Reuters reports.

Michal Szybalski whipped out his calculator and determined that the missive had spent 294 hours in transit, covering the 11.1km between sender and recipient. The letter had therefore travelled at a mean velocity of 0.03775km/h, which is slower than a Polish garden snail which can clock 0.048km/h, according to Szybalski.

We can't help feeling there's a hefty research grant out there waiting for some university team willing to calculate the average speed of mail worldwide in relation to various species of snail, and the possible repercussions on global warming."

Life is about scales of shot and gold

So today was an experience. Drove to Miami to drop a portfolio for a
major job bidding against 2 BIG time photogs and then up to Palm Beach
for a meeting to discuss images for a client that wants to use me for
their entire website.
I am excited because Anna flies in today, but after picking up our
mail found that she missed her appointment with immigration by a few
I was opening up a month's worth of mail when I got a refund check
from my insurance company for $500, but the next letter was a bill
from the doctors office for $600.
I think of all the adversities, challenges, rewards, failures and know
that this is what makes us. The SEALs have a motto, "The only easy day
was yesterday."
I look to the storm and say "bring it on!" because I know the reward
is SO much better than running and hiding.

AT$T is so full of shit

Got my new iPhone today. I totally had to wait in line for two hours.
I used to make fun of geeks that did this. Waiting in line for some
new gadget/game/StarWars.

Why? Well, because I sold my other phone in Poland for twice it's
value. AND was planning on buying another 5 phones to ship out and
sell for around a $500 profit each. And I would too, if it wasn't for
some extra greedy, monopolizing giant like AT$T.
Here is the deal.
AT$T made a deal with Apple to be the exclusive carrier of the iphone.
Each company took a big risk on this phone being popular or not.
Nobody had a clue as to HOW POPULAR!!! Well, Apple may have. You see
once the world market found out about this, everybody wanted to have
one at any cost. Hey, guess what America, we aren't the only wealthy
gadgety people who like nice things and fast food any more. In Poland,
they even published in the newspapers how to unlock your iPhone. So
then AT$T started wondering why is apple making all this money on
sales and they aren't. AT$T doesn't have service in Poland, but Apples
iphone can still be used there.

Does anybody see the blatant marketing crap AT$T is pulling now. Apple
just released the new version of IPhone (3G). They are selling it for
$100 cheaper than the older phones. BUT you cannot leave the store
without activating the AT$T plan AND AT$T just increased the MANDITORY
internet access from $20 to $30 a month. So let's do some math. Apple
lowered their price $100. AT$T upped their monthly cost by $10 a month
AND you have to sign a 2 year plan = $240 extra in AT$T pocket. But
wait, AT$T just announced how generous they will be and for people
that already had an iPhone, AT$T will take $100 off the price of a new
one. OK, so this means only an extra $140 and oh yeah, you can go
ahead and give your old phone to someone and tell them they have to
sign with AT$T.

Here is the kicker. The "Apple team" has been given all the propaganda
to put out as well. They told me that the phone will shut down if you
try to unlock the phone and connect it to any itunes. When I told them
that was Bull Shit (My brother in Poland JUST did it, called a guy,
and had his phone upgraded in a day) they then said, "No, with the NEW
3G phone, the AT$T chip will 'ping' off the network and if it sees
there is no AT$T service, it will actually break an internal part
inside rendering the phone unusable." WOW! I said. That is incredible
that AT$T be held liable for SO many people suing them because they
broke a phone that doesn't belong to them after 2 years. He gave me a
blank look. You see, I spoke to the AT$T people when I signed up for
their service and found that AT$T has exclusivity for 2 years with
Apple. After that the phone is free game. Also, even if they keep
exclusivity after 2 years, does that mean after my contract expires I
can bring the phone back in for a refund? THEN, I said, if this was
true and the phone would be so useless, and if AT$T includes their SIM
chip in every iPhone and every SIM chip is attached to THEIR OWN
iPhone, then please tell me why Apple included in the box with the new
versions this nifty key that pulls the SIM chip out, allowing me to
replace it with whatever I want???? What? An extra AT$T SIM chip?

As authentic as you get

One of my side projects has been to shoot portraits of re-enactors. Why they do it varies from studying a certain culture and wanting to experience it to just getting drunk and beating each other with swords. What ever it is, I find some of these people quick fascinating. So when I saw opportunities in Poland for various re-enactors, I jumped on it. One of my first shoots was of a young girl of 17 who actually is trained in shooting an arrow from horseback.

I will be in Poland from June 23 to July 22.
My number in Poland  011 48 - 693 79 88 85

What do you do when the airline destroys your elinchrom batteries?

After an 18 hour flight to Poland the last thing a person cares to hear is "Sorry we do not have your bags." For me, it isn't that big of a deal because I have a home here. Toothbrushes, clothes, etc. No biggie. I even hand carry my camera gear so that is fine as well. But when I try to bring my Elinchrom lights I cannot bring these big battery packs. I brought the pack and lights, but not the batteries because heaven forbid, I try to put use them to throw at somebody on a plane. Well, When I finally got my bags (3 days later) It looked like someone had tried this. There is absolutely no other way to explain how these batteries that where double wrapped and in boxes inside a separate bag can be destroyed in such a way. Good thing I am good at using my Nikon SB-800s or else I would have a really bad time here.

I will be in Poland from June 23 to July 22.
My number in Poland  011 48 - 693 79 88 85

Bee Privates

Well, as I enter the last days of my Poland trip I look at all the backlogged emails, non-blogs and hundreds of new images to go through. It has been a very productive and enlightening trip this year with tons of new experiences and images to share. I will start by talking about my first shoot with an award-winning bee keeper in Poland. Trained by his grandfather when he was a kid, he has been involved in the bee community for years. He took me step by step on the process of keeping the tens of thousands of bees that make his incredible tasting honey. The main difference between his honey and other that you may buy in the store is that his is purely organic. The bees gather their pollen in the same way we learned when we were kids. What he then explained was pretty shocking to me. It seems many bee farms just pile a big block of sugar for the bees to create their honey. One of the main reasons they are doing this is because many of the bees are dying because of the genetically altered plants that are preventing the bee larvae from maturing. Very interesting stuff. Then he showed me a male bee penis. Even better.

I will be in Poland from June 23 to July 22.
My number in Poland  011 48 - 693 79 88 85