Sunday, July 09, 2006

Freeze Frame

Tess and I took our niece to a Mariners game yesterday. They were playing the Detriot Tigers, currently the best team in baseball. They remain the best team in baseball.

We were seated in some fairly decent seats, close enough for me to snap some digital photos of Ichiro Suzuki, my favorite Mariners player. Despite the hype, I think Ichiro is a pretty impressive player and person. Regardless if he actually hits the ball, his presence on the field commands respect.

My digital camera has this annoying quality of taking a photo a split second after you click the shutter button. I've learned to compensate by anticipating movement when I shoot a photo and clicking a second early. With baseball players, this was quite a challenge. I had to focus, and then click when I thought the pitcher had released the ball and hope for the best.

I was kind of proud of the above photo because it stopped time an instant before the ball reached Ichiro. What I really like about the photo is that it illustrates very nicely the quantum physics concept I bring up every now and then about how the observer plays an important role in the outcome of any given event. Looking at this photo, you don't know whether Ichiro swings and misses, Ichiro swings and connects, Ichiro doesn't swing and it is a ball, or Ichiro doesn't swing and it is a strike. Of course, Ichiro could also get hit by the ball.

Now if I'd been doing time lapse photographer, you could watch several frames and see the outcome. As it was, I don't remember what happened next because I was focused on this one moment in time. As time dims my memory of the rest of the game and the outcome, this photo will be the reality. And the beauty of the photo is that it shows only potentialities. How perfect is that?


Alex Pendragon said...

HOW perfect is it? Well, let's quantify it. It is potential perfection. Potentially, it harbors quite a number of posibilities, not all of which could be considered perfect outcomes, depending, of course, on what outcome you are really hoping for. For instance, if you were pissed at him for some reason, like not hitting enough runs to merit his pay, in your opinion, you might want him to be beaned by the ball. Thus, even if he were to perform the otherwise perfect action of scoring a home run, in reality he dissapointed you by not being beaned by the ball, so the outcome is a mixed bag, although to some other observer he DID live up to the "perfect" potential by scoring the run. To me, the perfect outcome would have been him hitting a popup fly and the catcher and pitcher collided trying to catch it and he scored his run anyway during the confusion. It's all relative. Einstein must have been thinking baseball.

Anonymous said...

I love Ichiro too. I have a limited edition Ichiro Starbucks prepaid card. That's better than a passport for proving Seattle citizenship.

Kind of an expensive way to entertain a 13-year-old niece. You should have planned to help her make a sock monkey instead.

Time said...

THE Michael, That's an interesting way of looking at it. An odd way, too, but interesting.

Can you imagine the look of distain my niece would have given me if I'd suggested a sock monkey rather than a Mariners game. I took the easy way out.

Naughti Biscotti said...

That is a fantastic shot. At first I thought you must have pulled it off the internet. Then I thought maybe you just photoshopped the ball. So, I looked really close and NO it didn't have your face on it so I figure it's legit.

Time said...

Thanks Lights, the seats were great. I think the greatness of them were lost slightly on a 14 year old who has never been to Qwest Field and sat in the nosebleed section.

Shandi, I am hurt. I know enough about Major League Baseball not to try and steal a photo off the Internet. They have eyes everywhere. This is a totally unretouched shot captured entirely by accident. And oddly enough it never occurred to me to put my face on the baseball.

Thanks Cherish,
The visit is almost over. It has taught be that very little impresses an almost 14-year old girl. And since I have absolutely no experience interpreting various levels of indifference, I can only assume she is having a good time. :)

Time said...

Thanks Cherish, I knew you would understand!