First Time at the WHITE HOUSE

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This was my first time to go to the White House. Snow covered the ground that day. — Age: 29. Feb. 1980.  As I recall it was a Sunday afternoon. President Carter was not on the grounds that day. I remember going into the Press Room (which was nothing like it is today, with the movie theater style seating).   I  picked up a phone on the wall and called my grandMother in East Texas. When I told her where her grandson was calling from she was of course beside herself.  I went back many times after this….but some years later when I was asked if I wanted additional assignments at the  White House,  I declined.  It may be the White House, but for a photographer, it’s mostly “talking heads”.  Not my style.

Photo of the White House Spring 2017

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Keynes Hayek The Clash That Defined Modern Economics by Nicholas Wapshott

What I am reading:

It took me 6 years to complete my undergraduate degree.  One of the reasons was the study of “Economics”. I stumbled into the classic  macro-economics  course at the University of Texas.  It was taught by a Rock Star Professor though I was unaware at the time of registration.  He was Harvard trained economist Dr. Clifton Grubbs an AAUP  teaching Professor of the Year. — Dr. Grubbs  and Paul Samuelson’s famous undergraduate textbook “Economics”  changed my world view!  — So take this recommendation!! Wapshott makes the “dismal science” fun! Oh and I took 4 more Economics department courses.  None counted toward my degree!

Keynes Hayek the Clash That Defined Modern Economics by Nicholas Wapshott

Magnetic Loop: SWL Antenna

Antenna Pix Mag Loop

Great Swl Antenna. Pricey but excellent HF performance (Below 15mhz)

 

We were living in Pasadena, Ca.  One day a realtor knocked on our door. He said, “I have a client who wants to buy your house”  !!!! That’s Southern Calif. for you. It wasn’t even for sale.

So, we sold it and moved to an apartment complex that was previously a Seminary. The buildings were beautiful, but the electrical system was terrible. With a random wire hanging off my balcony HF signals were near impossible to hear. The AC was “dirty” and made for miserable short wave listening.

I starting researching  and decided I’d try a Magnetic Loop.  I bought the Pixel Sat Magnetic Loop in hopes of a solution. It was outstanding. I put it out on our balcony.  The electrical  Noise reduction was near 40 db.  I was skeptical about the rotator doing much good…but a couple of hams said to get it. They were right. It is less about directional gain, than noise and interference reduction when turned just a few degrees.

Fun antenna. I still use it for SWL. (Pixel Sat was sold to DX Engineering)

Career Flash-Back: “Special Event Station” at trial of would-be Presidential assassin John Hinckley

 

1982 Hinckley Beach

In June 1982 as a Cameraman for NBC News based in Washington D.C. every Saturday for a month I was assigned to stake out the U.S. Federal Courthouse where the trial of attempted Presidential assassin John Hinckley was underway. All the networks and the print media set up on the front lawn of the courthouse. (This was back when Federal Courthouse security was waaaay more lax than it is today.) Our job was to await new developments and the lawyers would periodically come out and stand in front of the microphones and update the press.  We in the Press Corps called the setting, “Hinckley Beach” since it was summer and little happened until the end of the trial.  We’d bring lawn chairs, coolers and umbrellas to beat the DC summer heat and humidity.

One weekend, I threw my Kenwood TS-130 HF rig in the microwave truck and and a Hustler Mobile Whip that I mounted on an upside down trash can (a faux ground) and set it up on the roof of the van. A Washington Post photographer thought my radio set up was interesting and shot the photo above. It didn’t make it into the paper, but he sent me a copy.

My recollection is, I worked alot of DX on 15 meters that day. Foreign Hams would express surprise when I told them where I was operating from. Surely operating from the courthouse would be prohibited!  I was on the air, MC-60 mic in hand when this photo taken. It was fun.

NOTE: Some years later (mid 90’s)  I would see Hinckley up close and photograph him thanks to (Bearcat Scanners)….but that’s another story for another time(and video too!)

“Strange News” Career Photos:Tammy Faye in the final days of her reign. Year-1989

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YEAR:  1989   You have to be of a certain age to recall the PTL Club and the saga of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker.  I shot  the still photos above of Tammy during Jim’s trial in Charlotte, NC.  The setting was just outside her home. Tammy Faye would come out and talk to the press each afternoon.  Though the charges were serious, the atmosphere was casual. I was runnng the NBC Sat Truck for several days.  What was supposed to be Just an 8 hour day turned into 15 hour days. Today Show/ Affiliate Feeds/ O+O feeds and NBC Nightly News.

They were selling  T-Shirts with Tammy’s face on the front at a Mall nearby. I bought one.  It’s been in a plastic bag for 28 years. Never worn. (Took it out just to shoot this image) —Oh!  And Jim Bakker  did 5 years.

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