Project Mining

The pile that has developed on my dresser just kept getting bigger. All those stories and all those images. What to do with them? There were different ideas that came to mind but none of them felt feasible or satisfactory. Anything that I did would require time and effort. 

Waking up on Saturday morning I felt pretty good even though I was out the night before. As I drank my morning cup of coffee and made breakfast with whatever was left in the fridge a plan developed in my mind. 

It seemed wise to get some provisions first before settling down to work. From my prior attempts at figuring out what to do with all this material I knew that it was going to take some time to do it right. I went and sat at a cafe. The sun played hide and seek behind the moving clouds. It was a nice Saturday morning as I sat thinking about what I had to do. 

There is only so much food I can buy  and since a new guy moved into the other room there is even less room in the fridge. The fridge that we have is bloody tiny. How are three people supposed to fit anything in there? The new guy has some large containersof food. He told me that his family is living at the in-laws while he continues here at some factory. I’ll let it slide now but I told him that he is taking up way too much space. My big shopping day is on Sunday and his volume will have to be taken into consideration. It’s easier to buy two or three days worth of food on that day. Then I go to the shop on Wednesday to top up for the rest of the week. 

It was time to get down to business. I set up with a bin bag taped to the edge of my desk for easy disposal of the used newsprint. I put the sports section on top of the desk to protect the surface from errant cuts. I don’t want to damage the surface of the desk. There is a damage deposit to think about. This project is costing me time don’t want it to cost me money too. 

I started off with the oldest pile of newspapers that I had. I already removed some pages when I first started collecting them. These were pages that had something interesting in them probably some article that I thought was insightful. That was then now I had made the decision to just collect images. Whatever had a tug was cut out. It helped me make a decision when there were images on each side of the page. I even cut out the little images of the writers. A lot of little squares, medium squares and rectangles as well as ovals et cetera. 

This collection of material stretches from March until the present. Pictures were chosen by some editor that captured some aspect of the story that they wanted to convey. Some images are stock but most of them were taken live during or in the immediate aftermath of some event. I tended to stay away from the sports section images. There are too many but I still cut some out if they had something interesting like a contorted expression. 

Having said all of that it’s amazing that all these events have happened. The way the world has changed by those events and how things like terrorist acts happen with such random regularity. There is a lot of intrigue in the stories as exemplified by the accompanying images. Once the name and the caption is removed however it becomes more anonymous. The faces of shock, pain and anguish are the similar wherever tragedy happens. The look of joy and happiness likewise is recognizable wherever the story occurs. 

Exotic locations are presented very well in the travel sections. What is happening in those countries is not. The lurid bedroom antics of stars is presented in a tawdry fashion. Starlets like harlots provocatively posed elicit the response they aimed to. There are lessons for the rest of us in their stories both cautionary and inspirational. This is the media though and they have become good at triggering a response with subtle twists and shocking headlines. They have slants on the story but they also report some facts and try to summarize events into paragraphs for us to digest. That’s their job or at least it was until consolidation and the Internet happened. 

Small little squares a lot of little heads. All kinds of different shapes. Some puzzles as well as expressions and different places. There were graphs and maps, war and terror, laughter and joy amongst other things. The scraps so far filled a bin bag and what I kept fit into a couple of folders that I bought specifically to house all that I want to keep. I still need to fit all of my things into a suitcase when I leave. This is a process of consolidation in order to get raw materials for whatever will be created from this. 

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