A Bad Day With A Camera

16th Ave Redux

My intention was to walk along a good stretch of 16th Avenue in Calgary, Alberta, today with camera in hand. I invited my wife to join me and we set out, but she didn’t look like she was enjoying it that much. It was a bit chilly with the wind and she hadn’t eaten a proper lunch before we left. Not much ground was covered as a result, which was okay. Nothing wrong with saving some for later.

Full frontal, Pai Yun Temple, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-28
You shall not pass, Pai Yuin Temple, 16th Avenue,
Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27
Entrance, Pai Yuin Temple, 16th Avenue,
Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27

I have been curious about the Pai Yuin Buddhist Temple on Center Street just north of 16th Avenue since I was a kid. I have yet to poke my nose inside of it, but it is definitely a neat building to look at from the outside. Harder to photograph, as it is kind of busy in terms of crowding and backgrounds.

Dirty sew and sew, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27

I love eccentric looking businesses and the sewing machine shops fit the bill. The wheelchair ramp at International Sewing Machines may be legal, but it certainly doesn’t look practical. Not something you’d ever want to use when it is icy out.

Boom Boom Ramen House, 16th Avenue,
Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27
Chicking Ramen, 16th Avenue, Calgary,
AB, 2024-04-27

As to the restaurant, well, I have a theory. I believe there is an inverse relationship between the quality of the name of a restaurant and the spelling/grammar in it’s promo materials and the quality of the food itself. Going by my theory, Boom Boom Ramen House will have killer noodles. I am waiting for my daughter to return home from university so we can do a test run and see how well my theory fits.

That old house, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27
It was a different time, 16th Avenue, Calgary,
AB, 2024-04-27
1820B, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB,
2024-04-27

I remember walking past That Old House when I was in my twenties and thinking it looked like crap. I can tell you that it hasn’t improved over three decades. I don’t think I would want to sneeze hard near it in case it collapses on its occupants. We passed an ugly brick building and some ugly fences. The building stood out to me because you normally see that kind of tile work inside a swimming pool. And painting house numbers on your fence like that is just trashy.

Mopac Performance, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27

Speaking of trashy, Mopac Auto Supply has gotten run down over the years along with the rest of the neighbourhood. A large concrete barrier sits in front of the front entrance, telling you they have been victims of smash and grabs in the past. There is a whiff of desperation in the air as you walk past it.

King Kong, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27

King Kong is a local fixture on 16th Avenue now. He used to adorn a movie poster shop, if memory serves. That business is now long gone and a dance studio has taken over the space, thus Kong wearing a dance tutu.

Royal Tattoo, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27
Shortcut, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27
Choose wisely, 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27
Getting the word out 16th Avenue, Calgary, AB, 2024-04-27

We ended the short walk with a trip past an alley behind the Braithwaite Boyle building with some nice lines and colours, Royal Tattoo whose signage I like, and Joker’s Tattoo, which looks like a great place to catch something from a dirty needle if the exterior is anything to go by. I was curious if the massage place was legit, or a way to put your happy ending on your health spending account. Not that I’m going in there to find out, heh.

And that was that. We finished the trip by winding our way through a long line-up at Peter’s Drive in for a couple of large shakes and headed back home to Strathmore. It’s always nice to go out for a walk with the Missus and come home with some pixels in the bag.

Today‚Äôs images made using a Canon EOS 50D with my Canon 17-40mm EF L USM f4-5.6 lens. The good news is that I set the camera to RAW image quality this time. The bad news is that I accidentally had the date set a day ahead, and I also turned on the auto exposure bracketing by accident. I lost a few of the first images I took because I didn’t notice I had done this until partway through the walk. The 50Ds RAW files are good, but not good enough to pull back three stops of overexposure.

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© 2024 Sean D. McCormick

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