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Dress Appropriately

By Mike Pasini, Editor
Imaging Resource Newsletter

The story that follows is, we have been assured by reliable sources, true. And someone (we can't say who) has the pictures to prove it. So we've changed a detail here and there to protect them.

"Not far from that corner, there was a certain nameless photo lab technician who had a hopeless attachment to balls and strikes. . ."

We retell it here, not to encourage others to follow suit (so to speak), but because we think it illustrates a valuable lesson -- and it falls somewhat under the category of Easter bonnets.

For the last two years (plus a few months), one small corner of San Francisco has gradually been remade into a modern baseball facility, with echoes of a simpler time. Not far from that corner, there was a certain nameless photo lab technician who had a hopeless attachment to balls and strikes, and he knew this was his turn at bat.

Every now and then he'd take a later than usual lunch break and walk the mile or so to the construction site with his camera slung over his shoulder. Jeans and a t-shirt were his wardrobe. Without his steel toe boots he felt barefoot, but the hard hat he wore on his walk to the park was strictly in deference to the site.

In fact, it was his ticket to the construction site. And on his regular visits he was able to document the building of Pac Bell Park.

They were brief visits, the walk to and from work consuming most of his lunch time, but they were productive. He assembled a rare collection of images that has received some interest from investors.

Surely, you think, it wasn't as simple as that. He must have been challenged. Thrown out. Maybe the police were called. Well, you can change one or two details, but you can't edit the moral.

In fact he did confess to one occasion when he was challenged. It was near the end of the project, close to opening day (construction had to be completed a month earlier than projected, after an early delay, and there was a rush). "Hey you down there!" someone yelled to him. He spun around and looked up, like a batter who, having checked his swing, looks to see if the ump bought it. "Get back to work!"

And he did just that.

This article is reprinted from The Imaging Resource Digital Photography Newsletter,
Advanced Mode Column, published April 21, 2000