Pretty things

By Mir
September 2, 2006

Today, in honor of my having left all my liquids and gels at home but having packed up some of that good ol’ fashioned New England cold front, Georgia forgot to be sweltering and instead dawned cool and pleasant. We can now conclude that I make everything better, even the weather. Yay me!

In honor of this turn of events, Otto took me to visit the State Botanical Gardens. “Maybe we can shoot some pictures,” said he.

“Okay!” Said I, doodling his name in puffy letters. “But I didn’t bring my camera. You know, because it sucks.”

“No problem,” said he. “You can borrow one of mine. Which one would you like?”

I picked one. Because it was sitting next to me. He looked at it and then gave me a different one. Then he asked me which lens I wanted, and my eyes glazed over.

Sometimes I’m amazed that he talks to me at all.

See, I figure, Otto (a photographer) dating me (not a photographer; in fact, a really bad photographer) is sort of like if I decided to date someone who was completely illiterate. And you know, I’ve ended relationships over run-on sentences. So how he tolerates my complete stupidity when it comes to holding a camera up to my face, I have NO IDEA. I suspect he just stares at my ass while I’m shooting. That may be enough to distract him from my pitiful results.

Anyway, off to the Botanical Gardens we went. Me with… ummm… one of his smaller cameras (which meant that I could actually lift it and hold it steady, as opposed to most of his cameras and lenses which I am afraid to touch), and him with some big honkin’ camera approximately the size of my purse.

We had a lovely afternoon, and I snapped about eleventy billion pictures. Most of them caused Otto to say, “Hmmmm.” This is why he’s an excellent teacher, because he never points and laughs and says, “MY GOD THAT SUCKS.” At least not in front of me. Anyway, of all the shots I took, these are the ones which didn’t make him cry.

A very large leaf. Because, um, it was green. And leafy.

A smaller leaf, that looks like it was carved from wood. This plant sort of gave me the willies.

A palm frond thing with a neat shadow pattern. Otto actually complimented me on noticing this, and for a fleeting moment I didn’t feel like the world’s most visually retarded person.

Pretty little flowers. Awwwwwww. I feel like such a girl.

Pretty little flowers with a visitor. Now I feel even more girly.

Later in the afternoon, I attempted to take a picture of a lilypad in a fountain and came very close to dropping Otto’s expensive camera into the water. And then I decided I was maybe all done with taking pictures for the day. The end.


  1. Vicky

    I threw our expensive digital camera from the top of the bleachers at my daughter’s field hockey game, because I jumped up to scream excitedly at a goal she scored…and I didn’t have the damned strap over my wrist. My husband has scowled at me every day since, for the entire summer. Sigh.

    I loved the pretty little flowers. I would have photographed them a lot too.

  2. Daisy

    I like the butterfly. My beginning-photog daughter takes a lot of pix of bees. They’re alwasy so busy with the pollen that she’s never been stung.

  3. Suebob

    Because I am a plant geek, I could name all the botanical names of the plants, except the second one…the pretty flowers are Lantana. My great-grandmother Janes had them growing outside her house in Santa Barbara and I spent hours as a child watching the butterflies on them…because Grandma Janes had the most boring house on earth for a child (though I so wish I owned it now…It is probably worth about 1.1 mil because it is in SANTA BARBARA.

  4. Amber

    I like your botanical nomenclature. Reminds me of my own plant savvy. ;-)

  5. Mary Tsao

    What’s wrong with butterflies?! Beautiful pictures. Sounds like you’re having fun. Ahhh, the joys of dating. Me and the DH only do yardwork together at this point.

  6. Carol

    Well apparently a good camera makes a good photographer because those were fabulous! Thanks for sharing!

  7. Aubri

    Oh Mir, you silly goose! Those pictures are wonderful! For someone who thinks she isn’t a great photographer, you certainly do have the eye! That’s 99.9% what it is to be a good photographer. Really.

  8. DebR

    I love the palm front and shadow pic!

  9. Marvo

    I really liked that photo with the shadows. It’s definitely better than something I could take. But I do take decent pictures of products. Maybe I should buy a Digital SLR.

  10. Pieces

    Great photos! I’m impressed.

  11. Fold My Laundry Please

    Nice photos! By the way, why no butterflies? I got some great pics of a butterfly on some kind of flowering plant (I’m not exactly a botany major) and one of my son reaching out and crushing it. Poor butterfly, all it ever wanted to do in life was to model for me!

  12. TrudyJ

    I love your butterfly picture. I mean, I can see why Otto might be prejudiced against butterfly pix but I think it’s great. I shot about 50 shots in the butterfly house at the London Zoo trying to get ONE good butterfly pic and never did (darn things keep fluttering around). Of course that was the same trip where I dropped the digital camera in Kensington Gardens, so that’s about where I am as a photographer.

  13. Cele

    Okay, first off. Photography and the end result is relative. It’s all Beauty is in the eye of the beholder thingie. Mir Webshots is waiting for pictures 3, 4, & 5. Gosh, I’d take 3 & 5 for desktops. They are very lovely. Very nice composition. Does he have diopters? You would love them, they are great for flower, butterfly, and bee pictures.

  14. Neil

    Hey, even a guy sometimes likes girly flower photos. Nice.

  15. rachel

    gorgeous shots. that leaf is kinda creepy, though. I love the swiss cheese leaf myself.

    We took a ton of shots of butterflies at The Butterfly Place in MA. The girls are having fun identifying them and drawing them.

  16. MMM

    Cool pics!!

  17. Lisa

    As someone who has a very good friend that I feel is a very good photographer, I undertand where you are coming from. I feel like an utter photography moron around him!

    BUT, your pictures were fabulous! I loved them!

  18. shannon

    I really loved all three leaf pictures. The “wooden” one was so unreal, the detail. And the pattern within the pattern…I loves me some patterns so, fabulous! Makes me want to take the camera where ever we end up going today (if my lazy arse husband gets out of bed before it becomes eleventy billion degrees out today).

  19. Marti

    Very nice! Hope you’re having a lovely Labor Day weekend!

  20. Jennifer Morgan

    My favorite thing about the lantana (pretty little flowers) is how the flowers change color as they age. I’ve never seen one in those shades though — usually they’re red/orange/yellow, and I put aside my warm-colors aversion to buy them and plant them in my garden. Beautiful pictures.

  21. Susan

    Am I the only one who was hoping the “visitor” was Otto?

  22. MzAriez

    Great pictures. I switched to digital this year. I took some great pictures and then the camera turned up missing. I guess it wasn’t meant to be. LOL.

  23. NothingButBonfires

    I’ve ended relationships over split infinitives myself.

  24. Kendra

    Great pics…hopefully we make it down there one day and my monster children will allow us to marvel at the beauty of a botanical garden (though I know they’ll hate it as much as I hated the Cincinnati Conservatory when I was a kid).
    (as an aside, I somehow feel incredibly honored to be one of the only ones who actually know Otto…)

  25. Amy-Go

    Great pictures! And a cool date! My husband thinks playing WoW with me for an hour counts as quality time…but why no butterflies, Otto?

  26. Ben

    Wait, there were pictures? I’m still thinking about your (smokin’) ass.

    Happy weekend, Mir!

  27. Juliness

    I get sort of squidgy myself when faced with (what I consider) obvious grammatical errors.

    You take lovely photos, Mir. Don’t sell yourself short, lady.

    Hope you had a nice time away!

  28. pamela hornik

    wow- dating sounds like fun. Love reading about your adventures.

  29. Niki

    Hmm – reminds me of the time I dropped our new and expensive digital camera at our daughter’s 5th grade graduation dance. Yes, I cha-cha’d – and at the 3-hops-this-time part, the camera hopped right out of my dress pocket and on to the floor (I think it even made 3 hops!) and broke the slide-y part that turned the camera on. Not a cheap fix, and boy did I feel stupid. I think that was the last time I danced, too! Great pics Mir – I think your eye is better than you think it is.

  30. Heather

    Dang girl, those are great! I *love* the shadowy one.

  31. Allanna

    So pretty!! (Just like YOU!)

    I’m so tempted to copy them to my pictures and pass them off as my own. And I’m still drooling over your picture of the blue orchids.

  32. Shiz

    Did I tell you my hubby is also a photographer? I TOTALLY understand. Just wait till he talks to OTHER photographers. DEAR. LORD. It’s like they’re speaking an entirely different (booooring) language. Bring a book.

    Oh, and “walks” with his camera? Those are loooong walks. :)

    You can, by the way, find D’s pics at:

  33. leandra

    We lived in Athens for five years and the State Botanical Gardens was one of our favorite spots. Glad you enjoyed it!

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