Extremes enrich an abundant life…
In my chosen profession there are extremes which exist outside of me and are mine (or yours) to take or leave. The world is ugly, and the world is beautiful, and I personally wouldn’t feel comfortable calling myself a photojournalist if I wasn’t willing to embrace how wonderful and horrible the world can be. You got to love the hate and hate the love, so to speak.
Scholars & Rogues has given me a forum to show you, our faithful readers, the weird bits of pathos, promise, and pain that I encounter as I wander in and around San Francisco, California and its suburbs. I do this to show you that we are not just a collective of progressive thinkers, critics, and college professors. We are also no strangers to the street. We have been in, and sometimes slept in, the gutters and found within ourselves the strength to take a realistic but also an humane and compassionate view of American life and how our country fits into the world.
So on the tenth anniversary of Scholars & Rogues, I want to make you feel good. And I want to make you feel bad. And I want to give you hope. Because that’s what life does to all of us on a regular basis. And to start here’s my kitten Kuro-chan grooming himself at my house in Brisbane, California…
This is our country now, this is our lives.
I saw a flag on a house
that does not usually fly one.
An elected official lives there.
I voted for her, hell yes.
The game doesn’t matter, people do…
I’m not a fan of the Pokémon franchise, I don’t play the mobile game, and don’t intend to start doing so. Still, without even trying at all I encountered a lively, free-range Pokémon whilst he was buying afterschool snacks at my local grocery store…
(Midtown Market, Brisbane, California 2016)
A dad with grace and humor for #HopeTuesday…
She was chewing on a French pastry, he had her pacifier in his mouth. I’m not a dad so I don’t know how these things work, but the incongruity of it was surprising and delightful. I also think this man showed a lot of humor and grace by keeping his kid’s chew toy in his mouth so some stranger could snap a picture of him in public.
I figure if I had ever decided to be a father, I’d have wanted to be this guy instead of the tight-ass my own dad was…
(Midtown Market, Brisbane, California 2016. See more of my work here.)
I am broken
and I have been for many years.
I’m not some toy
you can take back to Hasbro
and say “This fucking thing is fucking fucked up.”
They would laugh at you
and I would too.
I am not a toy.
I am a man.
And I hurt,
and I love,
(I love more than you know),
and I rage.
And I love you all, you are my life,
you are my Jesus,
but I am broken.
And I don’t know how to fix me.
bear with me.
The doctors are coming in
with long, sharp stainless-steel tools
and they will probe me
and figure out what’s wrong.
There might be blood.
(Brisbane, California 2016)