I was looking at the website of the San Diego History Center yesterday when I noticed a cool project they’ve undertaken.
The History Center is looking for San Diego residents to document their personal stories regarding the coronavirus pandemic.
The recorded experiences–in writing, video or audio–will be preserved by the San Diego History Center and become part of their permanent collection. Years from now, when people want to understand what this unusual moment in history was like, they’ll be able to refer back to your own unique story.
Questions you might answer include “How has COVID-19 changed your daily life?” and “How is your neighborhood/social circle responding to the crisis?” and “Has COVID-19 changed your perspective about living in San Diego?”
If this project piques your interest and you have something to say, go to the History Happening Now! website and Share Your Story by clicking here!
This coming Sunday, Cool San Diego Sights turns seven years old.
Seven years doing this? Unbelievable.
Starting a blog and watching it grow very, very slowly over many years has taught me an important lesson about life. Patience and perseverance might be the two most important keys to success.
While having fun and doing things that I love–walking and writing–I have spent literally thousands of hours working on Cool San Diego Sights. A good chunk of my life has been spent taking and selecting photos, cropping and adjusting them, doing research, being a detective, plotting out future blogs, making corrections, being obsessive/compulsive, providing updates, pulling out my hair (what’s left of it), periodically wondering if I should quit this sometimes tedious exercise…
And now, to my complete surprise, I find myself getting traffic from Google News, News Break, Chrome’s suggested articles, and a remarkable variety of major websites.
As a result of Cool San Diego Sights’ growing success, one of my other websites, Short Stories by Richard, is being visited by students from classrooms around the world. Most are reading my little story One Thousand Likes, which I’m told might be used in an upcoming twelfth grade textbook produced by one of the world’s most prestigious publishers.
Is this real?
To think this thing started on a whim. I’ve always walked. I had an unused little camera. I created a simple, easy WordPress blog. I figured I’d post a photo and a few words once in a while.
So if you’re a blogger or writer out there in a ridiculously enormous world that contains billions of web pages, and you’ve begun to wonder if it’s really worth the effort–keep at it! Don’t give up! Do your best! Stay passionate! Write well, be truthful, be original, be creative, be smart, be curious, understand and appeal to your readers’ humanity, and remember to always maintain your sense of humor!
Creating a work of art presents the artist with a dilemma. How does one know the artwork is finished?
Suppose you’re a painter. You add brushstroke after brushstroke to your canvas, continually changing it. You alter a line here, blend a color there, add touches of light or dark, then stand back every so often for another critical examination. Which brushstroke makes your painting exactly right?
There is almost infinite potential in a canvas, brush and paint. But a painter must decide when to stop.
Does the artist finally stop because their creation “feels” right?
Does the artist finally surrender? Does creativity meet a wall? Can the artist proceed no farther?
Human imagination is limitless.
Yes, your painting at this stage is beautiful. But why do you decide to now place it in a frame and say it’s done?
I just finished writing a short story about this artistic dilemma. And about other mysterious things. It’s titled The Wheel.
The main character in this small story is a potter.
Will I ever make changes to this work of fiction? Who knows?
I finished writing another short story. This once has the simple title Twinkle.
Once upon a time I studied physics in college. Back then I learned that the elements composing you and I and the entire world were forged in the furnaces of stars. (Mostly, that is.)
A month or so ago I was out on one of my walks, moving through a poorer neighborhood, when I saw flowering weeds in the bare dirt of a front yard. And the seed for a philosophical story entered my mind.
The short story that finally grew and matured you can read here.
California is now under a stay-at-home order due to the coronavirus pandemic. The streets are almost empty as people remain safely in their homes to slow the rapid spread of COVID-19.
Obviously, this will affect my photography around San Diego. Until the situation improves, I’m going to curtail my outdoor walking, except to grab groceries and perhaps briefly exercise while avoiding close human contact. It’s a terrible situation. But we all need to look out for one another and do our best to minimize the impact of this very nasty virus.
What is an idle photoblogger to do?
Cool San Diego Sights already features thousands of photos–so I’ve decided to pick out past images and add them on a daily basis to my Instagram page, which is instagram.com/coolsandiegophotos.
I’m afraid I haven’t been very active on Instagram, but if you want to be cheered by colorful photos of the city, click the above link and perhaps give me a follow!
In the following days I will also concentrate on writing fiction. I have another short story in progress that concerns gratitude. Hopefully I’ll finish it soon.