June 12, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
SlutWalk San Diego 2011
The San Diego satellite of SlutWalk marched through the streets of downtown yesterday in a very colorful and vocal display, informing the world that victims of sexual assault should never be blamed and are never at fault, without exception. In late January of this year, a Toronto police officer stated that women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimized. There is enough stupidity in that statement to make it stand up on its own, but just below the surface, it also says something else: Why do we ask about HOW and WHY a person becomes a victim of sexual assault, rather than asking why a person becomes a perpetrator of sexual assault? That question was explored during speeches and chants at SlutWalk San Diego.
SlutWalk Rally At San Diego Civic Center Plaza
Slutwalk San Diego brought light to an area that is usually cloaked in darkness and ignorance. If a woman dresses in a sexually suggestive way, it doesn’t mean she’s suggesting she wants to have sex. I remember my parents teaching me not to judge a book by its cover. I wasn’t old enough to read when I learned that but I was still old enough to understand that this was a metaphor for people: You can’t know what someone wants just by looking at them. It’s impossible. You have to talk, ask questions, listen to answers and interact with someone in order to find out what they will and will NOT allow you to do to their body. It doesn’t matter what a person wears, how they dance, what they drink or what they did last night… A person must look you in the eye and say the word, “Yes.”
These Sluts Are Made For Walking
A group of 5 women founded SlutWalk, after hearing about what that Toronto policeman said, and decided they’d had enough. It was time to put a face to the voice that claimed victims of sexual assault invited it or even WANTED it to happen. It was time to let the world know it’s not OK to blame clothing and sexuality for sexual assaults. What they came up with is brilliant because it highlights the hypocrisy of the, “She dressed like a slut so she invited it” mentality. These 5 women realized that a group of slutty looking women, walking en masse through a city center would NEVER be blamed if a mass rape ensued. Hmm… A sexy woman alone invites assault but a GROUP of sexy women get a police escort in order to PREVENT assault. Do you get it now? Why would a group of sluts, walking down the street need police protection, unless the police thought the women were inviting trouble? SlutWalk San Diego, as it proceeded through downtown vocalized this question to the people over and over.
Slut Power In San Diego
Leaving Civic Center Plaza
Slutwalk San Diego Marches On Broadway
SlutWalk San Diego 2011 Rally At Civic Center Plaza
So, what did I take away from Slutwalk San Diego? People just won’t take shit anymore. Law enforcement and government are being made to account for not only what they do, but what they say as well, and people will organize to call them out and to make change. I think I knew that before I arrived, but had never seen it performed so passionately before. If you would like to get involved, there is a list of SlutWalk satellite cities and rally dates on their website.
June 11, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · 4 Comments
Golfing Under Blacklight
Technomania Circus held a blacklight theater at their usual in Barrio Logan venue, The Center for Performing Arts last night and I was there, right in the front row, which I think are the best seats in the house. For those of you that don’t know, San Diego has a regularly performing circus troupe that happen to be an amazing group of people we all know as Technomania Circus. Dr. Techno is the lead Technomaniac as well as the man that keeps the bacon sizzling. Yes, bacon was served during the show, cotton candy was available and there is a fine art gallery in the foyer of the bathroom. Awesome!
Technomania Circus Art Gallery
This month’s theme was, “Blaaack Liiiight,” always spoken in a deep, menacing voice. Blacklight theater is a lot of fun because it’s like a real life special effect; you don’t get to see everything and that’s what makes it special. The show started at 8pm but thanks to our perfect San Diego weather and long summer days it wasn’t dark yet so we were treated to some music, comedy, juggling and balancing as the sun slowly drifted away.
Balancing On Ladders
This summer will make it two years that I’ve been going to shows at Technomania Circus. It was way back in July of 2009 that I first went to, photographed and wrote about their show and I haven’t looked back since. The address of the circus is 2438 Commercial St. San Diego, CA 92102, right next to the 25th & Commercial St. trolley station. You are certainly welcome to bring food, drinks and cameras into the show and the venue is in an area heavy with taco shops and corner stores so you can get everything you need for the show when you arrive.
Willy Bologna About To Play The Harp
Once we got past twilight it was time for, “Blaaack Liiiight!” This is what we’d all been waiting for and it did not disappoint. They took us all over the place, as you’ll see in the photos and in the video at the bottom of the post. For you photographers out there, the sharp photos were taken at 1/45th, f/3.5, ISO 3200 while the photos that show a lot of motion blur were exposed for 1 second, f/3.5, ISO 800. Ya done good Technomaniacs, ya done real good. See you next time.
1 Second Of Time At Technomania Circus
A Blacklight Creature
Pleasing The Blacklight Gods
Technomania Circus Blacklight Theater
June 5, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
Looking South At Smuggler’s Gulch
Smuggler’s Gulch, in Border Field State Park, is a small canyon that rests a little more than a mile east of the Pacific Ocean between the border of Mexico and The United States of America. Prior to 2005, it was famous for being an area where illegal aliens and smugglers could easily cross the border into America. Natural geography has most of San Diego County’s international border perched along high ridges or bordering hills and mountains, but flow from the Tijuana River and its tributaries formed a small canyon which people used as a natural pass to smuggle just about anything through. Smuggler’s Gulch was deep enough that Border Patrol radios didn’t work and it was so dangerous that Border Patrol agents were required to patrol the area in teams of at least two.
Smuggler’s Gulch Culvert
Smuggler’s Gulch became famous after 2005 when congress, under the Bush Administration gave The Department of Homeland Security the authority to waive any and all environmental laws, litigations and lawsuits so DHS could build a giant earthen dam across the gulch, on top of which would be built a restricted access paved road, stadium lighting and a new section of border fence. Things like this really are an agitation for our nation and it really galvanized America because it forces people to pick sides that are not representative of who we are as a country or as individuals.
America As Seen From Smuggler’s Gulch
The issues of immigration, environmentalism, border security and racism are all included in this thing which sucks because we are never allowed to position ourselves on the middle ground with things like this; we are only allowed to be for it or against it. The absence of the middle ground means that people in favor of (for example) the new border wall will be perceived as environment hating racists while those opposed are seen as activists that place environmental well being above a person’s, unless that person is entering the US from Mexico illegally.
Looking North From Smuggler’s Gulch
This narrow dialogue makes people think about only one thing and turns people into single issue voters, which are just about the worst kind of voter there is. You know the type, they’re the ones that ONLY want to know one thing about you and that one thing is your position on the latest hot button issue and whether or not your view is in alignment with theirs.
Smuggler’s Gulch Earthen Levy & Mosquito Larvae
So, take all of these issues and emotions, shake them up and a giant earthen levy across a natural flowing canyon is what you get, at least this time. The same ingredients never make the same thing twice which is probably why it takes so damn long to get anything done in this country. Anyway, the video above shows the area of Smuggler’s Gulch in Border Field State Park and all the mosquito larvae that live in the stagnant water in front of it. Cheers!
June 5, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
The Moon Sets Over Coronado’s Dinosaur Cage
Coronado is a border town for me because I live right on the border between Coronado and Imperial Beach. It really is an ideal location for me because I can grab my bike, be on Bayshore Bikeway in seconds flat and then head to anywhere In South Bay San Diego, all while basking in the warm California sun. Today was a beautiful San Diego day and I took full advantage of it by riding to Border Field State Park, Silver Strand State Beach and Imperial Beach pier. After pedaling almost 30 miles, I was beat by the time I got back home so whatever San Diego had planned for this evening would have to happen without me. I was in for the night.
How lucky for me that around 9:30pm I looked out my window in response to hearing someone screaming out in pain. Some dude managed to crash himself and his bike into the metal bench that sits at the southern edge of San Diego Bay. He was fine and once I stopped laughing at him I noticed the background of the scene, and it was awesome! I tiny sliver, just a thin fingernail of a moon was setting right next to the Dinosaur Cage on Coronado. Of course I grabbed my Nikon camera and ran to the very bench that had been crashed into to take some long exposure, high ISO photos. I shot the scene above for 8 seconds, f/5.6, ISO 3200 which allowed me to pull some much needed detail from the shadows without blowing the moon’s highlights to kingdom come. It was a great way to wrap up a day that saw me riding all over Coronado and Imperial Beach. I’ve been ignoring night photography for a few months so a small event like this that has me leaping out the door to engage in a little night photography is a welcome catalyst for me because it simply reminded me how much fun night photography is. Cheers!
May 28, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · 1 Comment
San Diego Sheriff At DUI Checkpoint In Imperial Beach
In the continuing effort to keep the streets of Imperial Beach safe and free of drunk drivers, the San Diego Sheriff had a sobriety checkpoint set up at 7th St & Palm Ave last night. I suppose you can say that Memorial Day weekend officially kicks of Friday night, so this checkpoint was well timed and positioned to remind motorists not to get behind the wheel of a car if you’ve been drinking. Try to remember that these peace officers operate these checkpoints not only to nail intoxicated drivers, but to nail people driving without or under a suspended license. Think of it as a way of keeping honest people honest. If you don’t drink & drive and your license is valid then you have nothing to worry about.
Vehicle Passes Through IB Sobriety Checkpoint
According to the news release posted on the San Diego Sheriff’s website, 692 vehicles went through the checkpoint, 35 vehicles were sent through secondary screening, 11 field sobriety tests were given, 7 vehicles were impounded and 4 people were arrested for DUI. The checkpoint began actual operation at 8:15pm, not at 7:30pm as stated in the press release.
Sobriety (DUI) Checkpoint On Palm Ave In Imperial Beach
The checkpoint seemed to be a well oiled machine and all the law enforcement personnel were in a good mood. The methodology for the checkpoint was very similar to the way rides at amusement parks are loaded up. Cars were waved forward, twelve at a time to a waiting line of twelve officers, so all cars in the line get checked for compliance simultaneously. Once all the officers were done, the cars get waved through and another twelve cars took their place. Since the checkpoint was stationed on Palm Ave. between the stoplights at 9th St. and 13th St. the flow of traffic was very well regulated and caused delays no worse than having to endure an extra stoplight. Kudos to the San Diego Sheriff!
May 27, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
On The Tarmac At San Diego International Airport
For the second time in four months I was fortunate enough to go on the San Diego International Airport Terminals to Tarmac Tour. This tour is a great way for you to involve yourself with and educate yourself about the larger than life role Lindbergh Field plays for San Diego. Back in February, when I went on the Terminals to Tarmac Tour for the first time I tried to be as meticulous as possible, recording video, snapping photos and taking copious notes. This time was a little different because I just wanted to have fun. And take pictures, so that’s what I did.
When you take a tour you are, in effect, gambling because you know what the best and worst case scenarios are, agreed to them and then rolled the dice. The quality of the tour, the tour guide, the weather and your tour mates are all beyond your control and that’s what makes tours into the unknown so exciting. If you don’t know exactly where you are going then you don’t know exactly what will happen and that should add some bloody EXCITEMENT to your life! The Wright Brothers made their first flight in 1903, nine years before my grandfather was born and yet here I am, for the second time this year, learning about an industry that didn’t even exist when my dad’s dad was in elementary school! Just imagine what American citizens in 2111 will be learning about. No one knows for sure, but what I can tell you is that on this tour you will learn why San Diego Airport is a leading economic engine region for the region, get to walk onto the tarmac and stand right under the west end of the runway as planes from all over the world make their landing approach and roar past you, right over your head. There is an interactive, multimedia employee blog featuring Lindbergh Field from the perspective of front-line Airport Authority employees called, The Ambassablog that is full of “in the trenches” info about the airport. It’s a great read and is a great supplement to what you will learn on the tour. The above right photo shows my tour mates looking skyward at a plane while the above left photo shows the progress of the new addition to terminal 2.
Flower, Shadow, Sunlight, Bee, Blue Sky
It’s worth noting that my tour mates on the San Diego Airport Terminals to Tarmac Tour (besides my cousin) where a group of about a dozen home schooled kids, along with four or five of their moms. My cousin & I were the only other adults on the tour so we had a discussion or two about home schooled kids. My opinion is that home schooling is stupid because the day a kid steps out of home school is the day they realize the real world has nothing to do with their home, or their schooling. Just like saplings need wind to develop bark so they can grow into a tree, children need to know that the funny part of a joke is called a punch line, which means that in order for a joke to be funny, somebody has to take one on the chin and that person might be them. I don’t believe that’s something that can be taught, I believe that’s something you’ll only appreciate after personally giving or receiving a crack on the jaw. You can’t accurately describe a rock concert or being in love to some one that hasn’t personally and physically experienced them because these are life experiences that are personal and different for everyone, as opposed to what your mom tells you it should be. Seriously, can you imagine being turned loose on the world at the tender age of 18 with only your mother’s knowledge as a basis for how to function in society? Maybe it’s not that bad but I’ll tell you what, I needed school and I had to take some licks that were real world lessons no home-school can provide.
May 4, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · 10 Comments
Leopard Shark Caught On Imperial Beach Pier
Recently I came across an article, or maybe it was a photo-essay in IB Patch about fishermen on the Imperial Beach pier. After reading the article, my first thought was; what a boring, poorly photographed article. There was no action, no substance and no grit, just people standing on the IB pier with fishing rods & reels. I felt I could do better, so I headed down to IB pier to check out the action.
Guitar Fish On Imperial Beach
As I walked onto Imperial Beach pier, there was a fisherman that had a guitar fish on his line. The shark was much too heavy to reel 30 feet onto the pier so the angler had his friend hold the rod so he could go down to the beach to unhook and then release the shark, with everyone looking on.
Guitar Fish Held Over Imperial Beach
There is something very ugly about pulling life from the ocean for nothing more than sport. We are the only species that allows something as weird as “catch and release.” Just imagine there was a restaurant where, if you take a bite of food you’ll get dragged away from the table, pulled under the nearest body of water, photographed and then thrown back onto land. Do you think any human would tolerate that?
Guitar Fish Have Eyes & Feelings Too
The guitar fish you see above was a victim of some guy just having fun. I see eyes, a mouth, gills and a body so that tells me this shark can see, eat, breathe and feel. It’s very hard for me to watch people hurt animals in situations like what you see above and not do anything about it. If you want to be cruel and unusual, you get a free pass if you do it to any form of aquatic life, unless you do it in front of me. I’m just letting you know.
Guitar Fish About To Be Thrown Back Into The Pacific Ocean
I know there was never a point in history when it all of a sudden became OK to use this planet and other life forms on it like a commodity or as a form of recreation. What I do not know is if there will ever be a point in time when it’s not OK to do that anymore. Think about this… It’s illegal to physically harm another human (unless you’re a cop) and sometimes it’s even illegal to say hurtful words to another human. Why is it then we can do unto others what we don’t allow to be done to ourselves?
Leopard Shark On Imperial Beach Pier
Above is a small leopard shark, caught while fishing off Imperial Beach pier. Sharks are one of those survivors that outlived the dinosaurs and hopefully will outlive us as well. Our amazing intellect allows us to buy everything we need at Wal-Mart to end a shark’s life while that same intellect turns a blind eye towards what we are actually doing. Anyway, a crappy article with crappy photographs, along with a sunny San Diego day is what led me to the beach, the fishermen of Imperial Beach pier and this introspective article. I suppose it’s just one more example of the weird way things just work out.
Sharks Swarming Around Imperial Beach Pier
In the video above you’ll see the photos from this post as well as footage of dozens of sharks swimming around Imperial Beach pier. As you’ll see in the video, the sharks were everywhere, looking for food so the fisherman took advantage by merely dipping their lines in the sea below the pier. Standing on a pier holding a length of mono-filament line with food in front of hungry sea animals is a sport? OK, sure.
May 2, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
The Art Of Constantine Bautista
I recently attended an art show and charity auction held at Eden, one of the newest clubs on the Hillcrest nightlife scene. Local artist, Michele Jones produced this charity event, which raised over $10,000 for The Lois Merrill Foundation, which helps cancer patients with their medical bills. I was impressed with the layout and the amount of space the place has. Even with all the people, tables of charity auction items set up in the middle of the dance floor, 100 or so pieces of art of from world renowned artists adorning the walls and clustered mingling the art world is known for, there was a nice flow and it never felt too crowded. It never occurred to me that a nightclub would be a good venue for an art show but after being there I can say that it makes perfect sense. Actual art galleries are boxy, usually small and always have areas where congregating people will completely block the walking path of everyone, bringing all foot traffic in the building to a halt. Nightclubs, especially new ones are designed to allow people to walk around, which is what you want people to be able to do at an art show. Brilliant!
Chris, Donna & Constantine Bautista
It was while having this revelation that I met modern artist and painter, Constantine Bautista. It was my cousin that invited me to this event, Constantine being her boss from back in the days when Mr. Bautista had a day job and was not the full on artist he is today. The photo above was taken towards the end of the evening and in it we see my cousin on the left, her colleague and new friend of mine, Donna in the center and Constantine himself on the right. I didn’t hear anyone bring it up during the show so I’ll say it now; Constantine is a damn cool name to have.
Who Brings A Baby To A Club On Saturday Night?
Bear in mind this show took place on a Saturday evening which meant the art crowd folks were in a place they probably had never been before and the nightclub regulars were wondering why there was a woman, crouched over an infant, sweeping the floor with her hand. I would like to point out that if you bring a kid into an adult environment and your kid does something that necessitates cleaning a hardwood floor, everyone will flee the area, turn their backs on you and start a conversation that wonders why the Hell someone brought an infant into a nightclub on a Saturday night. It just got worse for this lady; she walked past me later on carrying the kid, who was now screaming while she herself was screaming even louder, “I need to get him some pants!” What? Sure enough, for some reason, the kid wasn’t wearing his pants.
The Art Of Sean Dietrich At Eden
The art presented were mostly paintings and drawings and a few photographs as well. The venue, Eden has three distinctly separate areas; inside, outside and a restaurant. The show was inside, and as the evening wore on, the outside patio area began to fill up with Saturday night Hillcrest party people, patiently waiting for the charity event to end so their party could begin.
Painting Inside Eden
Art was not just presented; it was created at the show as well. The artist above was working in front of a bank of mirrors, mostly oblivious to the scores of people watching, including me. The mirrors made for an interesting photo and I was even able to include myself in the reflection.
More Art From Charity Auction At Eden
I’d taken a lot of art, drawing, writing, sketching and sculpting classes in school and they always turned out to be the hardest classes for me. Creating art was something that did not come naturally for me so when I was starting out, every time I held a pencil, paintbrush, chisel or piece of charcoal in my hand I never felt like I knew what I was doing. Then I took my first photography class and guess what? I understood it, right away. Everything from the mechanics of a camera, to the science of the darkroom, photography made perfect sense to me. Game on!
Chris Callaway Reflects On Modern Art
So, what is my take on the evening, the venue and the art? All three were awesome. Hillcrest is a great place, Eden turned out to be a great venue for a charity art auction and all the art presented was first rate. Afterwards, my party & I walked along University Ave. until we found a suitable place to eat… But that’s another story. Cheers!
April 23, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · Leave a Comment
People Looking At Flowers At Imperial Beach Farmers Market
After wrapping up my third trip to the Imperial Beach Farmers Market, I’m ready to talk about it and post some photographs from my time spent there. The farmers market happens every Friday on Seacoast Dr. at the edge of the Imperial Beach Pier from 2pm – 7:30pm. The vendors at the farmers market are ever changing, which makes for both good and bad things. A good thing was that last week I had an amazing chorizo, potato and cheese tamale with jalapeño cream sauce… The bad thing was that the tamale selling vendor wasn’t around this week. That is the ever present rub with markets like this; it’s lighting in a bottle one week, amazing tamales the next and avocados on special the week after that. If you are at Imperial Beach Farmers Market and see something you want to eat or take home with you then you best buy it right then & there because next week it might not be there.
Girls At Imperial Beach Farmers Market
Imperial Beach Farmers Market is not big; you can walk through it in less than five minutes if you don’t stop to smell the roses. Realistically, you’ll need to spend about 20 minutes in the market, looking at what vendors are selling, tasting samples and just chatting with people. This is one of those uber-friendly events where sauntering, meandering and slow conversations are the norm so don’t be afraid to smile at or talk to anyone at the market.
A Lurking Man At IB Farmers Market
This market is not an outdoor version of your grocery store’s produce aisle; this is a gathering of people at the most southwestern beach in the United States with the common goals of buying & selling locally grown & created products. What does that mean to the layperson? Imperial Beach Farmers Market is a place to hang out and to see and be seen while eating some great local food, not necessarily in that order. The man above is a guy I see by the IB pier all the time, just watching people go by. Why is he here? I’ll tell you why; the wild women and the rippin’ & the tearin’.
Girls On The Imperial Beach Pier
Imperial Beach (IB) pier is the centerline thoroughfare for the farmers market, so if you go to the market, you should walk west, to the end of IB pier because it is the western most point of the continental United States. The women above were returning from this geographic Valhalla when I took this picture.
Kermit “Froggy” Brown – Wagon Man At IB Farmers Market
Kermit “Froggy” Brown is a disabled veteran that makes daily trips, back and forth (east to west) along Palm Ave. in an electric wheelchair. I’ve seen him on the news and all over Imperial Beach so it was really no surprise to find him at the farmers market with his wagons in tow, holding a munched on corn on the cob. This is a great farmers market!
April 18, 2011 by Rob Hurlbut · 2 Comments
Let’s Get Things Fired Up!
Weed is all around us. When the government forced the entire marijuana operation underground some 74 years ago it was bound to surface again somewhere, and that somewhere turned out to be California. Before, during and most likely after the legalization issue has been decided there will continue to be all manner of movies, songs, websites, books and manuals dedicated to Mary Jane. On Saturday, Technomania Circus did the world the favor of adding to that list of media by writing and presenting an entire live theater performance enthusiastically devoted to the sweet, sweet chiba. Dr. Techno and his venue, The Center for Amusing Arts played host to a show that was timed and humored perfectly while tackling some very important issues that have developed out of the war on drugs… I’m assuming that’s what they did. I really don’t remember because, uh… It was the 420 Show!
Technomania Circus is a unique venue because the theater has stadium and bleacher seating underneath a giant circus-tent shaped tarp which sits in front of a large stage, all of which is contained within the backyard of: 2438 Commercial St. San Diego, CA 92102. Don’t be scared when you realize that this is a private residence in Barrio Logan or that you’ve never been to that part of town before. Just follow your MapQuest directions and park on the street, your car will be fine. If you ride public transportation then you are really in luck because the venue is just a few paces away from the 25th & Imperial San Diego orange line trolley station. It’s one of the easiest places in the city to get to on the trolley so make no excuses! You always get to see Jon jump around a little, at the very least. Have a look at my collection of posts and photos from past Technomania Circus shows for a much better idea of what I am trying to say.
Katie Rabbit (on the left) was back after a multi-show absence as an Easter bunny with eggs that held munchies and a shirt that held Twinkies. Jon and Anton (above) amazed the Technomania Circus audience with balancing, comedy, jumping and the unbelievable feat of juggling seven pins! It’s dark in there so the photo is grainy but you can clearly see all seven pins. Awesome!
Joint Rolling Contest
There are portions of every Technomania Circus show that are interactive. This is very much a situation where the more we as audience members cheer, yell and clap the better the show will be. This is a very friendly and laid back theater. You are more than welcome to bring your own food, drinks or cameras and showing up in a costume will help you fit right in. Above we have four audience members challenging the self proclaimed joint rolling king, Jon (center) to a roll off. The dude on the left won, rolling around 6 joints in the allotted time.
I don’t know what I can use that exists in the current day to compare with Technomania Circus. They are like a group of Steampunk people that know all about electricity. They are performers that always have something new to show you and something funny to say. They are a circus that lives right here in San Diego, thanks to them the circus is always in town. So, take a look at the Technomania Circus website for their next show date and title, make yourself a sandwich, grab something cold to drink and head on down to the show, for crying out loud!
Anton Balancing A Six Foot Bong On His Face
This was not just a show about weed; it was a show for weed. In the same way watching an imitation of someone causes you to notice mannerisms or ways of speech you might have missed before, this show drew attention to some of the stupid, yet accepted things we put up with whilst enforcing the Federal ban on marijuana. Couple this with the fact that reefer is used to combat the side effects of federally regulated pharmaceutical drugs that are only taken because of the reefer ban and you have the makings of some ripe satire, and Technomania Circus dug right into it. With any luck at all, one day people will look back at this performance and wonder why it was considered satire, and I hope I’m around to see that day. Cheers!