Wednesday, June 20, 2012


I keep about one out of ten of the pictures I take of Mabel Watson Payne, but that tenth still amounts to a lot of pictures. I put about 6,000 of these reasonably good ones (the earliest) onto a high-capacity flash drive recently, for safekeeping.

My usual practice, after about a week, is to discard the original unedited picture folder that included everything I took on a particular day (the ten percent to save having already been transferred to the current Mabel Save folder). But before discarding I go through each big raw set one more time to make sure there are no fugitives I wish to save among the many I am about to trash.

The picture above was never, however, in danger of discard. It had been lodged safely in Save since the moment  I first laid eyes on it. Because every now and then (by some fortunate confluence of accidents) I take a picture that strikes me as essentially Mabel. This was one of those few, and I actually intended to have used it here along with the best of its neighbors several days ago. But it got set aside and forgotten.

The time was last Friday, early in the evening. While receiving a boinger-pigtail hairdo at her mother's hands, Mabel was decorating her arms with spare hair-boingers. Of course. They make perfect bracelets if you are 22 months old.