The Time I Was in a Children’s Book

Pre-iPhone years, my pocket-sized camera of choice was a 3.2 megapixel Sony CyberShot point-and-shoot, manufactured by the Japanese in 2002. Pocket-sized is a probably stretch – it was more like the size of a rectangular Rubik’s Cube. The one advantage the Rubik’s Cube allowed that the iPhone does not, was the ability to prop it on top of something – a backpack, a fence post, a statue of Woodrow Wilson – turn on the timer and sprint to get in the photo. I guess I could do that now with the iPhone, but it seems harder and riskier and I’m not as fast.

I recently rediscovered this album of Rubik’s Cube photos from band-touring in 2006-07 (see this master list of dates).  With no Instagram to brag about our travels, these were purely for our own entertainment. But rather than let them sit on my hard drive unseen for another 6 years, I’m posting a few here and now. Thank you for humoring me.

Backstory:

At the time, our band was called Jetpack. Through a strange series of events, we were featured in a loosely-educational children’s book. A month or two before the book was printed, we were made aware that another band named Jetpack already had a copyright on the name or, at least, better lawyers. So we temporarily called ourselves Jetpack UK so the book could be printed, while we figured out something more permanent. After the book release, a rad Michigander librarian named Bill Harmer helped us put together a tour of full-volume rock shows in libraries, elementary school cafetoriums and smoky rock clubs.

It’s worth noting that all full-band photos – minus one or two – were self-portraits involving the ‘camera timer and wind sprints’ technique, hence the lack of performance shots.

 

This is the book, one in a series marketed towards girls age 7 to 10 (not a joke). Other titles by this publisher include (also not a joke):

Be a Better Babysitter

Good Dog! Dog Care for Kids

– The Pony Guide

– Secrets of the Dolphins

Racer Girls

– Women in Space

I still have copies of ‘Inside a Rock Band’ if you want to buy one for your pre-adolescent daughters.

By mid-2007, our name officially became The Nobility.

It still is.

 

Liverpudlians

In honour of Olympic fever, I’d like to show-and-tell a few photos from the spring of 1980, when I was a young English boy living in Liverpool. My family was there while my dad did some post-doctoral training at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital.

Alder Hey and its’ nurses in May of 1980:

A Google Map street view today shows a change in car/hubcap technology:

We spent a few days as model tourists in London (I’m the one in the blue jacket):

And lastly, one of my favorite photographs of all time, at Urquhart Castle in north Scotland, on the banks of Loch Ness. I can assure you there’s pure Loch Ness Monster terror hiding behind that smile