That Old Feeling - Northwest passages: riding out the storm - CycleBlaze

June 14, 2020

That Old Feeling

Today’s title comes to us from Frank, who forwarded this 1956 take on an old standard to me a few days ago, featuring Zoot Zims on tenor sax:

I’m familiar with the song of course, but haven’t heard this version before.  As much as anything though, I especially like it what I learned about the pianist.  It’s Johnny Williams, in his early days when he was starting out as a jazz pianist in New York.  You probably know him best though as the renowned composer John Williams, who wrote the score for such films as Star Wars, Schindler’s List, Valley of the Dolls, and many others.  He’s been nominated for an Academy Award 51 times, more than any other living person.

It’s a fine song, but also an apt lead-in to today’s sorry tale.  It’s another improbable story of objects lost, and reminds us of the time last summer when I lost my iPad at the start of a tour and assumed it had been stolen in Seattle while we were waiting to board the train.  I was lucky to be able to buy a new one the next day in Mount Vernon, but was dumbstruck ten days later when I found it in my pannier  where it had apparently been all along.

Today’s revolting senior moment horror show is more of the same.   There’s no biking involved, so you might want to turn the page.  Unless you’re of a certain age and want to read in knowing sympathy.  Or if you’re younger and have a morbid curiosity about what may lie in wait for you yourself someday.

Some background

To step back a bit, this story began last fall, when the lens cover for my zoom camera began sticking.  This is a chronic problem with this line of Panasonic cameras that I otherwise find perfect for my needs.  Eventually, they always start sticking - the lens cover won’t fully open or close without pushing it in position with your finger; and eventually, the lens itself starts failing to extend or retract.  Inevitably, after a few years of abuse and tens of thousands of photos later, they tend to look like this:

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I’m sure it’s the result of a character defect.  A more careful person would be better at keeping the camera protected from dust and moisture, but that doesn’t seem to be in my nature.  Good at some things, terrible at others.

Anyway.  When I realized the camera was starting to fail, I ordered a new one and had it shipped to Elizabeth so it would be there when we returned home in February.  In the meantime I continued to work with the camera I have, nursing it along and getting all the mileage out of it that I could.

I picked up the new camera in February.   The older one was still functional, so I’ve continued to use it and just packed the new one away until it’s really needed.  When we evacuated Portland at the end of March, I intended to take the new one along with me to switch over when the time came.

The time came about three weeks later, in John Day.  The older camera started having serious issues and showed evidence of water damage after I took it out in the rain.  Unfortunately, when I got back to the room I did an exhaustive search but couldn’t find the new one.  I apparently made a packing error and left it back in storage in Portland.  Fortunately, the fog cleared up overnight on the lens of the old one and it continued to function well enough until we got back to Portland; and in fact I’m still using this camera exclusively today.

When we returned to Portland a few weeks ago I searched everywhere for the new camera, but still without success.  Very discouraging.  Finally, on the day before we moved down to Corvallis I made one last shot in the storage unit, and this time found it.  Wonderful!  I packed it away to bring with us.

Yesterday

I’ve taken the old camera out in the rain a few times since we’ve been in Corvallis, and unsurprisingly it is finally giving up the ghost.  I got the new one out and was set back to see this: 

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I couldn’t believe it.  A brand new camera, and it’s defective out of the box (well, actually I unboxed it when I first got it).  I cursed a bit, then looked at the camera more closely.  It’s not even the right model!  It’s  ZS50, the predecessor to the one I now use and the new one I purchased a few months ago.  I looked up the order on our Amazon history, verified that I had ordered the correct camera, and was preparing to call Amazon’s customer service to see about having their error corrected, when the obvious explanation sunk in.  This isn’t the new camera.  It’s an old camera that I stuffed in storage three years ago when I bought the one I’m using now.  In other words, I still haven’t found the new camera, and have no other ideas of where to look.

Over dinner, I have a painful discussion with Rachael and finally get her to agree that I don’t really have any choice but to buy another new camera.  If we ever find the other one, which I seriously doubt will happen, we’ll use it as another backup for some time in the future.

She doesn’t much like it though, and isn’t comforted when I tell her that it’s really a bargain price (only $247) because it’s now an out of date model.  And she isn’t impressed either when I point out that it’s a lot less than a new set of glasses, and that I haven’t lost a pair of them for quite a while now.  She wants to know if I’m past my return date.

Rachael blends in well with her surroundings at Mazama Brewery. She looks happy because she’s anticipating a steelhead dinner, and because I haven’t started the camera discussion yet.
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Today

I’m just leaving New Morning Bakery to head home for the day’s ride.  I reach back for the seat belt and hear a faint snap.  It’s my glasses, which are in my shirt pocket.  In turning around I apparently leaned on them, and the frame broke in half.  They look like this now.

Crap. I knew I shouldn’t have pointed out last night that a pair of glasses is a lot more expensive than a camera. Jinxed myself.
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Very frustrating, especially because this is a new set that I just bought in February to replace a pair I broke in Spain.  Back at the apartment I look for the backup pair but can’t find it anywhere.  There’s compensation though.  In the top of one of my panniers, I find the new camera!  It’s been with me all along for the last four months.  I’ve thoroughly searched through these panniers at least four times now for this camera, so I really can’t believe it’s here now.  It’s as baffling as it was to finally find my lost iPad last summer.

So that’s excellent news.  It’s too bad we just bought a new one last night, because I don’t need it now.  We look up this Amazon order and see that it’s too late to cancel it, but we can return it when it arrives.

It feels like I’m stuck in some deranged loop, because next we look through old credit card statements for the glasses purchase.  I can’t remember where I bought them, and I want to find out so I can call them up to see if the glasses are still under warranty or if they’ll replace them.  Finally, I find the charge and remember the purchase.  And then remember the fact that this isn’t my new pair.  I’m still wearing the old pair, which I’ve had for several years.  I make one last attempt to find the new ones, and this time I’m successful.

So, to summarize.   On the positive side, I don’t need a new camera because I didn’t actually lose the new one I already had.  And I didn’t break my new set of glasses, I broke the old set.  On the flip side, I do unfortunately need a back-up pair of glasses now, and obviously also a new brain.  So far at least though I don’t need a new wife.  She’s pretty disgusted, but not giving up quite yet.

New glasses! New camera! New haircut! Same old head though unfortunately.
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Comment on this entry Comment 17
Mike AylingMaybe you have too much stuff in your panniers?
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3 weeks ago
Steve Miller/GrampiesToo bad that the editing bar has not yet been implemented for use in these comments. I would have liked to post a photo of one or more of my touring cameras with the same lens cover problem that you illustrated. My crime with these is probably the same as yours - cycling and shooting in the rain, plus making thousands of shots. I have killed six cameras like this by the latest count.

But we share others of your "failings". One time we put a stash of Canadian money in our panniers on a trip to Europe, so as to have it when we landed back in Canada. Just how big can a pannier be? Big enough that despite lots of searching, we did not find this stash until two trips later!

It sure is fun reading your accounts, and learning that cyclists share a lot of these bugaboos!
Reply to this comment
3 weeks ago
Steve Miller/GrampiesToo bad that the editing bar has not yet been implemented for use in these comments. I would have liked to post a photo of one or more of my touring cameras with the same lens cover problem that you illustrated. My crime with these is probably the same as yours - cycling and shooting in the rain, plus making thousands of shots. I have killed six cameras like this by the latest count.

But we share others of your "failings". One time we put a stash of Canadian money in our panniers on a trip to Europe, so as to have it when we landed back in Canada. Just how big can a pannier be? Big enough that despite lots of searching, we did not find this stash until two trips later!

It sure is fun reading your accounts, and learning that cyclists share a lot of these bugaboos!
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3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Mike AylingThoreau would agree. Simplify, simplify!
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3 weeks ago
Suzanne GibsonI had a good laugh, Scott! For the occasion I have written you a little haiku:
glasses cameras
they break they stray where are they
oh the eyes see not
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3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Suzanne GibsonNot bad! You and Ms. Grumby should start a poetry corner for the website. We should ask Jeff to set up a new tab for it, or just open up a poetry topic in the forum.
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3 weeks ago
Jen Grumby"Senior moment horror show" ...

It may be revolting to you, but I'm sitting here laughing .. while I can.

I have e few stories of misplaced objects already. I'm sure I'll be able to one-up you soon enough.

Here's to the found camera!
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3 weeks ago
frank jellisonThis is one of your funniest posts yet. Julie and I are sitting here laughing. When I lose things I always have that backup "I'm not as bad as Scott"
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3 weeks ago
Jeanna & Kerry SmithI have found that the joy of finding something long missing is almost worth the pain of believing it to have been gone forever.
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3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo frank jellisonIn fact, that’s a pathetically low bar. Don’t give yourselves too much credit.
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3 weeks ago
Ron SuchanekCan't...stop...laughing!

https://youtu.be/_CQr32oSgoU
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3 weeks ago
Scott AndersonTo Ron SuchanekThanks for the reminder. Great song!
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3 weeks ago
Kathleen ClassenI read in knowing sympathy, but laughing all the way through. I hide some important things whenever we head out on a bike tour, mindfully, carefully and certain I will remember where I put them when we get home. Nope, I don’t. It baffles me but I have been forced to accept it. Now I put notes in my phone I can refer to when the inevitable happens. CRAFT disease. Can’t remember a f#$&ing thing 😳.
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3 weeks ago
Bruce LellmanTo frank jellisonFrank,
I used a version of your saying several times on our last bike trip. When I would misplace something for awhile but then find it I would say to Andrea, "I'm getting to be like Scott!."
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3 weeks ago
Bruce LellmanSad to say, but, one of your best posts, Scott! I haven't laughed that hard in a long time.

Maybe you could modify the saying - Spectacles, Testicles, Wallet, Watch - every time you go out the door.
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3 weeks ago
frank jellisonTo Bruce LellmanAs bad as I am when it comes to losing things Scott is always there to one up me. :)
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2 weeks ago
frank jellisonTo Scott AndersonLike George W Bush anad Donald Trump
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2 weeks ago