Photo/Video

The Luxor Hotel – Las Vegas

It is HOT here! Renee was outside for less than 3 seconds before declaring that she would not be setting foot outside during the entire trip, particularly as her family is distantly related to polar bears and as such were not partial to temperatures over 100 degrees. Of course, there’s plenty to see inside too!

We’re staying at the Luxor.  It looks like a giant 30 storey black pyramid with giant sphinx out front, it’s supposedly one of the city’s first fully-themed mega-resorts.   It’s right between Mandalay Bay (where the wedding will be) and Excalibur (where some other members of our group are staying).  AND it is all connected by tunnels and walkways and a tram.  (Renee is much relieved). 

Karen, the bell hop was telling us about how MGM had bought out the Luxor and it was now in the midst of renovations to make it a little less “egypty” and attract a “younger clientelle.”  I thought that kind of sad.  The old egypt-themed restaurants, the Isis and the Sacred Sea Room are gone. In their place…CatHouse.  <insert sigh here> 

As you may know, I love ghost stories about various places we visit.  Previously, the Luxor had a Nile River Tour with a boat and a winding river inside the pyramid.  It was removed as a part of the renovation but one of the rumors is that it was removed because guests kept seeing ghosts of the three workers killed during the Luxor’s construction whenever the river passed through dark tunnels.  Cool, eh?  Unfortunately, (or perhaps fortunately) no ghosts were seen by us.

But some of the original design is still very prevalent so I’m glad we were able to go and experience it before things change too much more. 

 

Obelisk and Sphinx inside the Luxor pyramid

Obelisk and Sphinx inside the Luxor pyramid

More Video Work (a.k.a. I get to call myself an executive producer now!)

I had a great time working on the political video and now it looks like I will have an opportunity to do something similar, only this time I’ll be paid!  Yay!  I am now a PAID executive producer.  Actually, it is more of an honorarium but regardless, I’m very excited about this new project.  Don’t expect it until about November and I can’t really say anything, but I’m excited about all the possibilities.

Political Video and Expanding “Day in Washington”

In November of last year I had made the journal comment that I would like to expand the Day in Washington Disability Policy Podcast.  In December, I received a video camera and committed myself to trying out video work.

On July 26 of this year, a number of the big disability groups put together a Presidential Disability Forum and invited both Presidential candidates to attend to discuss their vision for the future as it applied to people with disabilities.  To help advertize the event and encourage attendance (from both people with disabilities and the candidates themselves), I thought it would be interesting to put together a video.

Ohio Disability Forum – 2008

It had a few issues, but considering it was put together in about a week using every ounce of free time I could find, I think it turned out pretty well and it definitely spoke to what I originally intended.  So there it is, the first video produced by Day In Washington

Stress Relief and Legos

One of the things that I really find meditative is working with Legos.  There is something infinitely satisfying about building the tiny model sets.  One of the latest additions to this form of stress relief has been combining it with stop-motion animation.  The slow, take-a-photo, move-a-minifig, take-a-photo steady work is really soothing.  And at the end, I have a neat little stop-motion film.

I recently completed the first episode in a series of small shorts, “Rapunzel – The Outtakes.”  The first one “Ooops!” is about a minute long.  It was a lot of fun to do and was a great way to destress after a VERY rough week.

I know that there are some lighting issues that I couldn’t see while I was working on it and a couple of times I bumped the set/camera while working and didn’t quite realize it, but overall, I’m pretty proud of my first Lego-attempt.  Renee set up the camera and let me go…

Anyway,  below is the film clip which I shall now send out far and wide.

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YB5NAhGyD4g]