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The Trips That Trap – Engage Brain Before Speaking
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The Trips That Trap – Engage Brain Before Speaking

Now here's an article addressed to myself, a reminder to watch what I say. These days my fingers far to fast, hitting the enter button. I was recently invited to join a group on Face Book, that encourages you to upload photos taken at Rietvlei Dam, a five thousand hectare plot of land, managed by the Game Department and stocked with wild life.

This dam forms part of the water supply for Pretoria, the Administrative Capital of my country South Africa. It is a haven for a variety of birds and these are the photos most published on the site. As I am staying a mere three kilometres away from the dam I often pop in early morning, when it's best for bird photos. A few days ago when I went to the park, a favourite spot been occupied by a VW Combi bus, with a large fellow behind the steering wheel. It's on a bridge and either he or I had to reverse so that the other could pass. Felt a bit like Friar Tuck and Robin fame, but he was most obliging.

As I passed, I gave a greeting and got one in return, so I couldn't have upset a photo shot, my biggest fear. In passing I noticed his camera kit, a lens as long as my arm and as thick as my leg, and I'm no small fry either, so this was serious stuff taking place. I proceeded on to my second spot of choice, got some good shots and returned hoping he had moved on. He hadn't, and as I crept upon his rear he spotted me and once more moved.

I waved a hand of greeting and thanks, and took another extended ride, finding the Rhino and other antelope which I took photos of. I returned and he was gone, my luck, a Giant King fisher pop down in front of me as I stopped and posed for the camera. I took about 10 frames and it dived down and returned to the same spot with a crab, a big one. How lucky could I be? The camera screamed as I held the shutter button taking three frames per second. I realised that some would be blurred from my excitement and hand shake, but knew many would be perfect.

Little thought was given to camera settings, I'd be able to manipulated them later with computer programs. The Kingfisher beat the crab to death on the ground and kept smashing till all the legs came off, then swallowed it whole. I charged off and found a spot to stop and check the shots, Oh they were so good. Returning to the spot I found this man again, I had to tell some one of my luck and he was handily placed. Explaining my luck, he told me he was there for the Malachite Kingfisher, the smallest that you get, yet the most colourful.

I rushed home leaving him with words of luck in his quest, to down load and check my photos. They were good and I posted on the site for all to see. Two hours later a photo of a Malachite appeared. I had to comment and asked if he was the man in the VW Combi. Someone else came up, who obviously knew him, and commented that he did own one. In my excitement, I asked if the owner was a big lad, that looked like “one of the seven dwarfs that had eaten the other six?” The commenter came back immediately, a laugh or those squiggles that tell you so, with a retort that yes and a dog or two also.

This made no sense to me till I reread my post, how could I have been so insensitive with a comment like that, and now there an answer, I could hardly cut it. This guy was big and if he had no sense of humour I'm in trouble, I thought. It was not long before he appeared with a comment on my photo, he said he realised who I was now from my photo. Was this good news or not? His comment read “greetings, from one big lad to another” thank God for that, he had not taken umbrage at my insensitive referral to him eating six dwarfs. Did I look that big to him? my thought.

It taught me once more to engage my brain before my mouth as well as before my fingers commenting. A change of foot would help the cause, it's merely the speed by which I change them.


Street Talk

Nice work rob

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Thanks Bud.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Golfspice  

Like the article and your blog photos!!

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Thanks Golfspice, keep watching.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Lemuel  

You have just met another funny big lad who thinks you are big, too. Nice rare picture you got there. What are the chances of being able to take a picture like that in the wild (Giant King fisher trying to eat a big crab)? Very good shot - you were in the right place at the right time.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Thanks Lemuel, yep two big boys both thinking the other is bigger than themselves.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
C4rmen  

Your intent was pure and you were only looking to connect with another fellow artist. LOL Well done on the pic, its great and just as you described.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

You want to see more pics click on the link, I blog photos nearly everyday, got some beauts there have a look.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Joan S  

Funny. Love it. He'll get over it. These things just pop out spontaneously. It's not malicious.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Thanks Joan the problem when we met up, we're more or less the same size, Linda is always telling me I under estimate my size and how I appear to others. I certainly don't feel that big.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I cannot say I would have the clackers to speak of ones size in those terms ...yet I'm laughing...I think you got a free pass on that...he did poke back a little though eh?

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Oh yes when we met face to face he pulled my leg as well, it was just he appeared so much bigger than I pictured myself, we are actually almost of the same size, But he has a sense of humour, just Face Book not the best place to say what I did, got a laugh so what the hell.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

[laughing!] Thanks! [if not humor guy? can always apologize...]

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Hi Cynthia, big blokes frighten me, that's why I'm scared of myself. No its a joke. It was just Face Book not the best place to do it.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Ahh.. I just meant, if you gaffe and someone does not find a way to humor... you can apologize. Yep. Face Book is not the best place to gaffe.

  
  about 1 decade ago

Rob do you know the delightful children's story called "The Wide Mouth Frog"? How many times I've published and paused before wishing I'd paused before publishing. I seriously hope I've never offended anyone with my offbeat humour that doesn't always translate to the written word amongst strangers. The problem can be when sarcasm pops in as a form of wit. Having said this, I'm worse in 'real life' (what is that, anyway?) My husband gets this funny look and shakes his head but I know he loves me all the more for my flexibility that allows me to hop through life with one foot in my mouth and a great grin on my face!

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Some how I could picture that in you, I would not have worried except Face Book is a little public specially when in a group of people that you don't know. All we have in common is we take photos, and then there seems to be a competition as to who has the best shot. A kind of mine is bigger than yours type thing, it does however give me a great laugh when those with the sixty thousand rand cameras, complement me with the three thousand rand job. Then I naturally (you know me ) rub it in, they will probably kick me off soon.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
joe witt  

nice article Rob, you got to have a sense of humor to get through life in my opinion

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I agree just Face Book is maybe not the place to go a bit over board.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
Barbara9  

interesting article

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

Thanks Barbara

Reply
  about 1 decade ago
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