Archive for July, 2015

Who Doesn’t Love a Sale?

I must admit that when I stumble into an unannounced 75% Off Sale at Dillard’s in Prescott, AZ that I cannot resist the urge to shop a little.  It was last year – at the end of winter that I found the Italian wool car coat and the long sleeve, travel guide orange shirt.

It was only this year when I wore that orange shirt that I began to appreciate how much much of bargain the comfortable, linen/cotton blend truly was.  So I decided to wear it out to dinner.

Guess Who’s Shirt is Coming to Dinner!

I do a lot of pro bono photography and videography work for local Yavapai College.  It’s my way of contributing to Yavapai County.  And in so doing, I have become quite fond of the people with whom I work there.  So when I was invited to dinner with a few of my foundation and marketing friends, I was thrilled to go.

It’s funny how you go through life relatively self-absorbed and believing that the rest of the world sees you just the way that you see yourself.  What an illusion that is on many levels!  But even believing that this is illusion, I was surprised when I arrived at dinner to a chorus of voices saying:

“OMG — we were WRONG — he isn’t wearing black!  Bill, that color looks good on you, you should wear more color!”

I made a perfunctory joke like:

“Everything else was clean!”

I thought that my stale attempt at humor would put an end to attentions focused in my direction and I was therefore surprised when the subject resurfaced an hour later at the dinner table:

HOSTESS (Melinda)

“That really is a good color for you!  How come you don’t wear more color?”


We always thought that he wore black because it made him look thinner!”


“It’s not working!”

Ignoring the sage wisdom that I received from aging producer Leo Taub at my first job at the ‘Old Actor’s Home’ in LA:

“Someday – when you are older, you will learn that it is enough just to say that you like it!”

I proceeded to concoct (what I thought to be) a clever response:

“I can’t imagine a professional photographer not wearing black!”

Turning to my friend, Kim, I continued to be passive/aggressive:

“If I wore a shirt like yours at a portrait session, you would see a candy cane in the subjects eyes!  The eyes will reflect whatever is in front of them and it will appear on the image.  Everyone laughs when I cover myself up in black!  I have even seen portraits where the photographer appears in the subject eyes picking his nose!  Furthermore, this orange shirt in some cases would reflect back into the image and skew the white balance!”

As I noticed Melinda’s eyes start to glaze, I thought to myself,

“I seems like they are reluctantly buying this B.S.!”

I Don’t Need No Stinking Advice!

The next day I had a portrait session scheduled with Kristy!  I felt the pangs of guilt over going too far in my technical explanation of wardrobe at dinner.  So I took the orange shirt out of the dryer and decided to wear it during Kristy’s photo session, thereby ignoring my own tutorial.  ‘What could possibly go wrong?’

When I was developing the images, I saw it.  ‘What is that interesting quality in her eyes?’  I zoomed in closer … closer.

Yep — no mistaking that orange linen shirt:

Two orange sleeves of the photographer’s shirt

I could perhaps strive harder to remember that the three most common words of advice given to actors as they attempt to become successful in Hollywood are:

“Just be yourself!”


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