Image of the Week
04-18-2020

           

Pepper's Eye View


Hi All,

Often I find Pepper sitting at my feet staring up at me with a fixed gaze for what seems like minutes. I waver between wishing I could capture her look, and yet not wanting to turn away for fear or losing it. In this case I continued to return her stare, casually reached into a pocket for my cellphone, turned it on, set it to camera, shot, slid it over an inch or so and shot again.

In stereo photography parlance, this is called a cha-cha shot. Shoot, slide, shoot. Typically this works well only for still life shots and not for live subjects, unless your live subject sits perfectly still, as did Pepper. From there I used StereoPhoto Maker on my laptop computer to auto-align the two images, and you see the result. Producing 3-D images in this way is suprisingly easy. This can also be done directly on an android tablet or cellphone with 3DSteroid Pro. Both programs were created by Masuji Suto of Japan. I'd strongly recommend you try this at home.

Pepper's not sure what to make of our current situation. In what world, she wonders, in what way could social distancing ever be right? On the one paw Betsy and I are home with her a lot more than usual, which certainly she likes. On the other paw none of our human or doggy friends come into our house, nor are we going into any of their houses, nor any of the numerous pet friendly stores in neighborhood, several of which hand out treats. She undoubtably senses something new has swept in and changed our lives, but she has a tough time placing her paw on it or sniffing its butt.

I'm still walking a lot with Pepper, and often stop stop to smell the roses or photograph them. Otherwise my own focus has shifted away from political campaigns and toward some local efforts of preparing meals for some elderly shut-ins or homeless folks.

Regarding politics I'll do what I can to support the Biden campaign, and especially efforts to make voting accessible and safe. Trump got it right recently when he commented that if vote-by-mail was expanded to the normal way to do things, never again would a republican be elected to office. I ask you, too, to please offer your own strong vocal support to the efforts to expand voting by mail and making it easier to vote. If Trump and his allies get their way, the US Post Office we always been able to depend on could cease to exist. That would truly be a tragedy.

Pepper and I are both big fans of Jennifer Rubin, an opinion writer whose articles are often published in the Washington Post. I recommend to you her recent article titled "The GOP is not a pro-life party". Briefly quoting an excerpt from it, "... right-wing groups have thrown their lot in with Trump on the issue of when and how to reopen the country. Oddly, for a party that casts itself as pro-life, the primary concern seems to be money."

Rallies egged on by Trump's tweets to "Liberate Michigan", "Liberate Minnesota", and "Liberate Virginia" are quite literally sickening. Densely packed cities have taken the biggest deadly hits so far, but unchecked by shut downs and social distancing, rural areas are showing they're far from immune to the virus. It's rippling through nursing homes like a brush fire through dry tinder. How many tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands, or even millions of deaths will become acceptable to us?

We'd all like to go back to living our normal, highly social lives, hanging out with family and friends, eating in restaurants, playing sports, going to movies and concerts, attending sporting events, shaking hands, talking face to face without masks, and even hugging each other. Getting back there is dependent on us. Us, that is, taking responsibility for our actions, and getting this "coronavirus thing" right.

Greatly dependent to a on competent government action that's entirely lacking at the federal level, regaining our previous norms can only be accomplished by vastly expanded testing capabilities and numerous thoughtful steps that don't risk lives needlessly.

Barry Rothstein

I send out a weekly email of these. If you'd like to be included, please go to the contact page and send me an email.

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