Command Control Plus/Minus

“Significant? It depends on which end of the microscope or telescope you look through. 
You can see the bigger picture with either one, even if one is in fact a smaller picture. Try Command Control Plus. Command Control Minus. Repeat. Again.”

There are thousands of acres of flowers grown in Colombia. Isabella works on one of the smaller, outdoor, rain-fed farms. Her eye catches a bud mite scurrying for cover along a stem and she ends its escape between thumb and index. The air is thick with the flowers’ scent, something often lost in the bigger greenhouses. The fuschia buds are still all closed. She looks up towards the sun and savors the warmth..

In a banquet hall, near a sun filled window with boats visible in the distance, somewhere on the north side of Chicago, Thomas stands next to the chair where his wife sits, her white gown spread out regally on the floor. Bouquets of flowers surround the happy couple, a couple baskets of fuschias hanging behind them.

He looks down. The grid of streets is filled with tiny moving specks; people. “At this distance you’d never guess they are what makes life difficult,” he thinks. And at this distance there is no way to pick her out if she is indeed down there. As he paces back and forth anxiously, a helicopter hovers a few blocks away near the Chrysler Building.

I bet this would be a lovely photo in color, she thinks; all those beautiful flowers. It was lovely for her nephew Tommy to send this. She would have liked to go to the wedding but travelling has become difficult. She places the newspaper clipping in a box where she keeps photos.

While his father sorts a box of legal documents, Aaron goes through a box of photos, examining them under the glass that was in the desk drawer. “These flowers are made up of little dots”, he says. His father comes over and looks at the paper his son is examining under a lens — a newspaper clipping of his marriage announcement. She sure kept a lot of things.

“Every one of those is some immense fire, the light traveling an unfathomable distance.”, she said looking up into the brilliant night sky. “You are some strange mixture of existentialist and romantic, Isabella.” he replied, “You see the enormous and the minuscule at the same time.”

They get into the car as the rice rains down. The car moves along Addison Avenue westward, stops at a red light on Sheridan Road (from up here I imagine the happy couple looking out the window at Wrigley Field), then goes up a bit and turns right onto Clark Street.
 Diagonals are noticeable visible exceptions on a map of this city which is so much based on a grid. The car gets smaller and smaller as it makes its way northward to Rogers Park to their new apartment.

He looks down. The grid of streets is filled with tiny moving specks; people. “At this distance you’d never guess they are what makes life difficult,” he thinks. And at this distance there is no way to pick her out if she is indeed down there. As he paces back and forth anxiously, a helicopter hovers a few blocks away near the Chrysler Building.

She knows she can’t but she tries to imagine seeing him up there. So close and yet so far away. If she were a monkey she’d climb up the side. It’s a love story you might see in a movie. “He’s so close to heaven up there.” she thinks, her eye caught by the sunlight flaring off the antenna spire, as she crosses the street.

“Please pay attention. The camera and lens work together. They change the distance of the lens from the sensor or film in order to control where the captured light converges. When the light converges precisely at the plane of the film or sensor, the image is in focus. Buildings, flowers, wed-dings, a view from a helicopter, a bubbly specimen on a slide — whatever you have captured — it is always a good idea to flip it upside down just to see it differently, in a new light, so to speak.”

“And now try Command Control Zero.”