Saturday, December 12, 2009

Visions of the Golden Gate Bridge

"Visions of the Golden Gate Bridge"

"To pass through the portals of the Golden Gate is to cross the threshold of adventure." -Allan Dunn

Nothings conveys the beauty of the Bay Area than the Golden Gate Bridge. It is the most recognized symbol of San Francisco and some consider it one of the seven wonders of the modern world. As a result, the Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most photographed icons in the world and draws photographers from all over the globe.

The most popular view is to head out of San Francisco via the Golden Gate toward the Marin Headlands. From here they are many viewpoints but my favorite, along with many other photographers, is from the Battery Spencer viewpoint. It is here you can get a close up view of the north tower.

I am sure you have seen countless photographs of the Golden Gate and I have taken countless numbers of photographs of the bridge over many years. So there I was on Battery Spencer with my face was stuck behind my camera taking my 999,999 photo of the bridge when I pulled away to see other photographers engaged in the same activity. I wondered to myself what do they see? We are all shooting the same static subject but what is their creative vision? Who will they share their creative art / snapshot with? What is their creative inspiration?

Yes, crossing the "Golden Gate Bridge is to cross the threshold of adventure."

So what is your creative vision when you look through the lens? I love to hear your thoughts...

Merry Christmas!

Text and photo copyright by ©Sam Antonio Photography

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Saturday, November 7, 2009

Friends, Romans, Gamblers! Caesars Palace Casino - Las Vegas, Nevada

On December 31, 1967 daredevil Evel Knievel made his famous, or infamous, motorcycle jump over the fountains at Caesars Palace. As usual, he landed with a spectacular crash in which Knievel suffered a crushed pelvis and femur, fractures to his hip, wrist and both ankles and a concussion that kept him in a coma for 29 days. Hardcore!

Caesars Palace was one of the first theme casinos in Las Vegas. It's here you can party with Caesar but always remember you'll walk out of the casino as poor as a Roman slave.

Canon EOS 5D, Tamron SP AF 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di LD IF


Las Vegas, Nevada - Sin City, the adult Disneyland, Lost Wages, the City of Lights. You have the whole world at your disposal in Las Vegas. Only here can you go from Asia, Egypt, Old England, New York, Hollywood, Paris, Italy and ancient Rome all in one street. With the U.S. dollar in the tank, there's no need to travel overseas just head to the world famous Las Vegas Strip!

I have traveled to Las Vegas more than any other U.S. city (more times than I can count or remember), whether for a convention, bachelor party, weekend holiday getaway, family trip or simply one of those all the bars are closed in Los Angeles let's go to Vegas nights.

It's here in Las Vegas where the hotels are the major attractions and are an integral part of the landscape. 19 of the world's 25 largest hotels are located in Las Vegas.

Las Vegas is where everybody comes as a winner and leaves as a loser. Leave you credit card at the front desk, your cash at the blackjack table and your financial dreams in the toilet.

Happy Travels!

Text and photo copyright by ©Sam Antonio Photography

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Friday, October 9, 2009

Before there was email...

There was the Pony Express!

The Pony Express mail service operated for only 18 months from April 1860 to October 1861 before it fell victim to the transcontinental telegraph.

Riders would gallop along a 1,966 mile route from St. Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento, California where upon the mail would be taken upon a steamer to be sent down to San Francisco. Because the mail was delivered by riders on horseback rather than stagecoaches mail could be delivered between the Pacific and Atlantic coasts by ten days.

The Pony Express Monument in Old Sacramento, California commemorates the first Eastbound ride which started at this exact spot at 2:46 a.m. on April 4,1860, when Sam Hamilton started his first lap of the 1,966 mile trip to St. Joseph, Missouri.

Old Sacramento, California is located on the Sacramento River and is minutes from the State Capitol. It has the highest collection of "Gold Rush" era buildings and is registered as a National and California Historic Landmark.

Kudos to the young men of the Pony Express who endured inclement weather and treacherous terrain to deliver mail, while today I sit at my computer and send electronic email to thousands of people all over the world in a blink of an eye!

Text and photo copyright by Sam Antonio

Canon 50D, Canon 10-22 f/3.5-4.5 Lens

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Friday, October 2, 2009

"Little Church, Big Faith"

My friend, Denmark, and I took a quick day trip to Yuma, Arizona which is just right over the California state border. I had read about this church before our trip and mentioned we should stop by to take a look. I spotted it on our way to the U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground along Highway 95 and we decided to photograph it on our way back.

Our timing couldn't have been more perfect as we came back to photograph the church right at a spectacular sunset. The church sits in the middle of a field away from the highway down a dirt road. I only noticed it because there is a sign off the highway that reads, "Stop, Rest, Worship."

The story behind the small church (it seats about 12 people) is that a local farmer built it to honor his wife and its only official service is during Easter. It's open to the public and there is a guest register you can sign.

Roadside lists it as one of the smallest churches in the world. I see it as a refuge for the world's problems and a resting place from the hot Arizona weather. A tiny gift from a farmer with a huge heart.

Text and photo copyright by Sam Antonio

Canon 50D, Canon 10-22 f/3.5-4.5 Lens

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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Another Perspective on Bosque del Apache!

Get ready for an experience of a lifetime! Arriving 40 minutes before sunrise, I waited in the cold pre-dawn for the daily ritual of the fly-out of the snow geese. The geese roost in the ponds overnight to protect themselves from predators and then fly-out in mass in the morning just as the sun rises to go to their feeding areas.

Canon EOS 5D, Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM


Mention the word "Bosque" to any bird photographer and they will instantly know you are talking about the mecca for bird photography in the United States. Every year from November to February, Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge is home to thousands of migrating sandhill cranes and snow geese for the winter. Located in San Antonio, New Mexico and a little over an hour drive south of Albuquerque, Bosque del Apache will enliven your senses and put your photography skills to the test.

It is also home to professional and well-funded amateurs photographers who migrate to Bosque for unique photo opportunities. In particular, the breathtaking experience of the predawn fly-out of tens of thousands snow geese.

As primarily a landscape and cityscape photographer I chose to go to Bosque to challenge and expand my photography skills. After my first day of shooting it became apparent I had some shortcomings. Bosque is one place where your camera equipment is as important as the person behind it. This is where top-notch professional camera bodies and fast super telephoto lens dominate. While the Canon 600mm f/4 lens is a popular lens with bird photographers, most photographers I talked with used the Canon 500mm f/4 lens because of its lighter weight and ease of use on the credit card (for the price of one Canon 600mm f/4 lens one can buy 18 iPhones).

The longest lens I was shooting with was with my Canon 100-400mm, but with limitations comes creativity. Most photos you see of Bosque del Apache are sharp portraits of the wildlife. My approach was to portray more environmental portraits of not only the wildlife but also man and nature.

Overall, I had a great time shooting at Bosque minus the cold weather (at dawn it was in the mid-teens). Now if Santa would kindly deliver the Canon 600mm f/4 lens for Christmas I would consider going back and braving the cold!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

"Monumental Moonrise"

Monument Valley (or as the Navajos call it Tseí Biií Ndzisgaii) conjures up images of iconic western films namely because it was made famous by Hollywood director John Ford's films such as "Stagecoach" and "The Searchers" and his mainstay actor John Wayne. Even if you have never ventured to Monument Valley you would instantly recognize it due to the numerous movies, television commercials, music videos and print advertisements that have used this Navajo Tribal Park as a background. As a result, it is difficult to come away with some great photographs without having it be a cliche.

I always dreamed of making a pilgrimage to Monument Valley because I am a huge fan of the Western genre. Also, from a photographic point of view it is the apex symbol of the American Southwest.

Since this is a Navajo Tribal Park access is limited to a 17-mile self-drive circuit. The road is a bit rough in some areas but I drove it over the course of two days with a small compact rental car with ice in some places. My recommendation would be to take a guided tour to get an overview of the park and then come back later to do the valley drive to shoot in the best light. I stayed at Goulding's Lodge just outside the park boundary. It's a little more expensive than accommodations in Mexican Hat or Kayenta but every room has a private balcony with superb views of the valley.

I captured this photo with my amazing Canon Powershot G9 compact camera! It was very windy that day but I knew there was going to be a spectacular moonrise that evening. I was shooting with my Canon 5D on a tripod but the wind was kicking up so much that I called it quits and went back to my car. Once inside I saw this image and quickly grabbed the G9 and rolled down my window to capture this moment in time.

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Friday, August 7, 2009

It's Time for a Beer Summit!

"Great Taste....Less Filling!"

In light of President Obama's "Beer Summit," I decided to have a beer summit of my own by making a pilgrimage to the Samuel Adams Brewery in Boston, Massachusetts. Yes, the mecca of American craft brewery beer!

Dave and I share a drink with our tour guide

This was perhaps the best brewery tour I have ever taken due to two reasons. One, it's located not too far from the Boston subway or "The T," so that means no getting behind the wheel which is great for obvious public safety concerns. Two, the guided tours are FREE! They do ask for a donation to help with local charities, but I figured for all the years I have been an ardent patron of Samuel Adams beer I have done my share funding the coffers (i.e. drinking beer) of Mr. Jim Koch's company.

Along with my sister, Diane, her husband, Dave, and her three boys we endured the hot and muggy Boston weather only to be rewarded by some great beer.

Dave and Diane at the Sam Adams Beer Garden

Once at the brewery we lined up to get our tour tickets and then proceeded to the beer garden to wait for our appointed tour time. To our great surprise and relief they were handing out two samples of beers. These two unreleased beers (a pilsener and an ale) were available for tasting and we were to vote on which one would available to the public next year. I gladly volunteered myself for the task at hand.

Sam Antonio, not Sam Adams, Master Brewer

Upon embarking on the one hour tour, we spent about 10 minutes learning about the brewing process and a brief history of Sam Adams' founder Jim Koch. We spent the remaining 50 minutes in the beer tasting room. Did I tell you this was one of the best brewery tours I have taken!

We sampled about four different beers: their staple beer Sam Adams Lager, a seasonal beer, a summer ale, and a cherry wheat ale. All the while our tour guide was educating us on how to appreciate a Sam Adams by giving kind attention to: taste, aroma, complexity, body, smoothness, finish, and balance. Actually, I just pulled that list from their website because I was too busy drinking rather than listening but I think that's what he said.

Dave and I have our own "Beer Summit"

In the end my "Beer Summit" proved to be a success (not much can be said for President Obama's "Beer Summit"). Maybe on my next trip to Boston I'll have a beer with Sgt. James Crowley.

All photos (with the exception of the Obama "Beer Summit" photo) taken with my Canon 50D and Canon EF-s 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM Lens.

See more of my Boston trip (I'll be updating it periodically):

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Over The Line or Over the Top?

Welcome to the 56th Annual World Championship Over-The-Line (OTL) Tournament 2009. A San Diego original, OTL is a form of beach softball, with 1,200 three-member teams competing in almost 2,400 games leading up to the final match.

With free flowing beer, outrageous team names and bikini clad women some may ask if this is a sporting event or one huge beach party. Well, it's a combination of both satisfying players and gawkers. In addition, it was a good use of my Canon "L" lenses -- if I'm going to photograph anything why not beautiful women?

The World Championship Over-The-Line is held every year in July at Fiesta Island on Mission Bay in San Diego, California. It was on the beaches of San Diego where OTL was founded. Admission is free but the host organization, The Old Mission Bay Athletic Club (OMBAC), requires all guests abide by the "Five B Rules." No bottles, babies, bowsers (dogs), birds and Boa Constrictors.

OTL teams are comprised of three players on each side. Many teams wear outrageous uniforms, or skimpy bikinis, and sport adult theme team names that either leave you laughing or nauseated. Where OTL differs from softball is that the pitcher and batter are on the same team and there is no base running.

OTL requires more precision than power from the batter as their objective is to hit the ball into fair territory without the opposing team fielder catching the ball.

I have been photographing OTL for the past couple of years and I have found the best camera outfit to have is two camera bodies - one body with a wide angle zoom and other camera body with a telephoto lens. My Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS lens mounted on my Canon 50D provided the tight portrait action shots. I used both my Canon Powershot SX1 IS and a Canon 20D with a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di II lens for my wide and medium range shots.

Its gets windy on the playing field and sand blows everywhere. I use a micro fiber cloth to wipe off the sand and shower caps (yes, one of the secrets of travel photography I learned is that shower caps from motel rooms come in handy to cover your SLR camera in the event of inclement weather) to protect my cameras from the sand. One sand grain lodged in your camera will put you in camera hell!

So it is Over-The-Line or over the top? Well one thing is for sure that The Over-The-Line Tournament provides over the top photo opportunities!

All photos and text copyright Sam Antonio Photography.

Be sure to view more photos from The Over The Line Tournament over at my Flickr site:

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Splash Dogs - Wags for Wishes 2009

Wags for Wishes began in 2003 and is a festival and doggie extravaganza. This year it was held at the Otay Ranch Town Center Mall in Chula Vista, CA from July 10-12, 2009. I know that most of my readers are dog owners, but I have to admit that I'm not a big dog lover. But I couldn't pass up a great photo opportunity that was free to the public, close to my home and besides flying dogs always make compelling photographs.

Wags for Wishes includes dog competitions, dog events for everyone to try, vendors, pet adoptions, and entertainment. I photographed this one particular event called Splash Dogs where the dogs compete to see who jumps the longest (thankfully not the dog owners).

Be sure you have a UV filter on your camera lens and a micro fiber cloth because you and your camera will get wet upon landing! They are called splash dogs for a reason.

I captured all photos of the Splash Dog competition with my Canon Powershot SX1 IS. I meant to bring my Canon 50D with my Canon 100-400 IS lens but I got tired from carrying it the day before at the Over the Line Tournament (that's another blog entry).

The Canon Powershot SX1 IS is a camera I have been looking for in quite some time. It has most of the features of a DSLR camera but in a compact body. The two features why I went with this camera were HD movie shooting and a CMOS sensor (Canon's first in a non DSLR camera) that allows you to shoot 4 frames a second. I was amazed of the action photos I was able to capture and more importantly the accurate focusing. Obviously, not as sharp if I shot with my Canon 50D and Canon "L" lens but the weight was much easier on my shoulders!

The problem with compact cameras has always been the shutter lag, but with the Canon Powershot SX1 IS I was able to capture that "decisive moment," such as the photograph above.

I guess that was my fill of dog photography for the year. Feel free to leave a comment and for you dog owners let me know what kind of dog you have and why you are such an avid dog lover. You can even leave a comment on why I should own a dog!

Stay tuned for my next blog on a true San Diego original -- World Championship Over the Line Tournament!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Danny is Back in Town!

My nephew Danny and his girlfriend Lisa are visiting San Diego for a week. They are staying with me at my luxurious and humble abode. I picked them up at the airport after a direct flight from Chicago, Il and then took them to lunch at the Red Sails Inn in Shelter Island. Afterwards, we drove to Cabrillo National Monument in Point Loma.

I'm sure they are happy to be in San Diego (that's why they are smiling) rather than spend another summer in Palatine with the humidity and mosquitoes. Also, for Danny, who's from San Diego originally, he's glad to be back in his hometown of Sun Diego!

I took this photo of them with my trusty Canon Powershot G9 near Cabrillo Point (cloudy WB, vivid color setting, -2/3 fill flash exposure compensation).
Cabrillo National Monument commemorates explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo discovery of San Diego Bay in 1542. It was on that trip that he led the first European expedition to discover the west coast of the United States. A statue of Cabrillo looks out over the bay and toward the skyline of downtown San Diego.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Getting to the Summit is Optional

Into thin air

I was going to entitle this blog “Hiking Humphreys and Haunted Hotels” because I liked the letter “H” in the title but I wisely reconsidered. The title comes from a quote from Ed Viesturs who once stated, "Getting to the summit is optional. Getting down is mandatory.”

Who is Ed Viesturs?

Ed Viesturs is America's, and perhaps the world’s, leading high altitude mountaineer. He has climbed all 14 of the world's highest mountains (above 8,000 meters) without the use of supplemental oxygen. In doing so, he became the first American and the 5th person in the world to accomplish this. He has also summited Mount Everest seven times. In other words, this guy is a mountaineer God (okay Reinhold Messner still takes the title). In all those feats Ed Viesturs has climbed some incredible mountain peaks and has always returned. A lot of other mountaineers have summited the same peaks but have never returned. A key lesson to be learned here is that wisdom and not physical strength, bravado, nor the latest and greatest hiking gear is what is needed on the mountain.

A couple of years ago I used to call myself an avid hiker until a very dangerous bug called photography infected me.

Half Dome Trek

Into in Thin Air: Mt. San Jacinto

Into the Wild: Sequoia Backpacking

Grand Time in the Grand Canyon

Hiking "Old Greyback"

Hanging with the Supai!

Now I wake up two hours before sunrise not to be at the trailhead but to set up my tripod to capture nature’s light. My home office floor is filled with so many camera bags, camera bodies and lenses that the only hiking I do is around this garbled mess to get to my computer.

So when I got a call from my friend, Vince Puccio (of The Heart Attack Grill fame –see previous blog), to go hike Mount Humphrey in Arizona I was definitely onboard. The depressing part was going to my garage and dusting away the cobwebs from my Camelbak and trekking poles.

After picking up Vince at his home in the Coachella Valley we sped toward the California/Arizona border to have lunch in the historic town of Prescott, AZ and eventually rest our heads in the new age town of Sedona. We spent the next day wandering around Sedona hoping their famed vortexes would energize us for our upcoming hike. Before leaving Sedona we had lunch at the Oak Creek Brewery (great food and even better award-winning micro brewed beer). I wouldn’t recommend drinking and driving (or rather drinking then driving) but if you had to then indulge in a pint of the Oak Creek Nut Brown Ale and drive the scenic highway 89A that connects Sedona to Flagstaff.

While the fresh mountain air of Flagstaff was invigorating, we didn’t take too much in since we spent the better part of that evening indoors. Partaking in adult beverages (i.e. micro-brewed beer) is not the most optimal way to prepare for a hike the next day. At least on our part we were contributing to the local economy. We ended the evening in the Monte Vista Lounge, which was convenient since it was in the same building of the historic Hotel Monte Vista in downtown Flagstaff in which we called our temporary home.

Age and dehydration welcomed us in the morning. Our goal was to be at the trailhead by 7:00 AM and we promptly delivered ourselves sometime after 10:00 AM to start the hike. Not a great beginning.

The trailhead is located in the Arizona Snowbowl just outside of Flagstaff. At 12,637 feet (3,852 meters for the rest of the world) Mount Humphrey is the highest point in the state of Arizona. Although in my dilapidated state my body screamed go back to bed, my mind said to forge on. I’m an addict for hiking any peak but to bag the highest one in Arizona was an added incentive.

Vince and I left the trailhead and hiked across an open meadow and under a ski lift. It was a nice easy beginning for our weary bodies. Once in the woods it was a slight ascent among some switchbacks. Thankfully with every step and the ever-increasing altitude I was beginning to feel better.

I'm at the Agassiz Saddle and being beat up by the high winds

As we approached the Humphreys/Agassiz saddle the whipping winds made life difficult for us. We talked with a couple of hikers who made their way down from the summit and just by their attire I could tell we would be in for one hell of a ride. Their hiking gear resembled a team on a Himalayan expedition. They informed us that the winds at the top were about 80-90 miles per hour. They described how some other hikers were literally climbing on all fours on the summit ridge to avoid being blown off the mountain. Well if I was going to be blown off the mountain at least I got my drinking in the night before.

A view from from the inner basin. Mount Humphrey's peak is on the left outside the frame. This was our last view before we turned around and headed back down.

We persevered toward the summit ridge all the while we were blasted with such powerful winds I felt like I was being pounded by a heavyweight boxer. Actually, at times the wind was at our backs that a huge gust would literally carry us up the trail. After all that fun, we reached the inner basin and twice I nearly lost my balance due to the fierce gusts of wind (or maybe I was still in a discombobulated state from the previous night’s wild activities). Either way, Vince and I stumbled around like we were in a drunken state.

As the “old” saying goes, “With age comes wisdom,” and wisdom dictated we turn around and head back to the friendly confines of Flagstaff. But the competitive side of me screamed to go for the summit and wisdom be damned. After another slap in the face by a gust of wind that brought me back to reality, I remembered reading in Ed Viesturs’ book “No Shortcuts to the Top” that, "Getting to the summit is optional. Getting down is mandatory.” At nearly 12,000 feet with 90 mile per hour wind, Vince and I decided for the mandatory rather than the optional.

All good things (in this case windy things) must come to an end so we decided to turn around head down the mountain. Vince perhaps was suffering more than me since he didn’t have any gloves, proper headgear, and proper eyewear (he later said that his eyes were irritated from the wind). I popped in my Apple earphones, powered up my iPod and marched on down toward the car.

Downtown Flagstaff at sunset.
View from our hotel room #305. It's also the same view from the infamous "rocking chair."

Back in Flagstaff I powered down what looked like a hamburger from Jack in the Box since I all I had to eat the whole day were two fiber bars. We then took our weary bones back to our room at the Hotel Monte Vista where Vince and I pondered the haunted past of the hotel. I googled the hotel on the world’s greatest hand held computer, my iPhone, and I read aloud the Monte Vista’s haunted past.

We found out that we were staying in the most haunted corner of the hotel. Next door to us in room 306 two prostitutes were thrown out of the third floor window back in the 1940’s (talk about a quickie). Male guests have claimed that while sleeping at night in room 306 they feel as if someone is choking them. Doesn’t this happen to any married man who annoys his wife with his snoring?

Seen any ghosts lately?

In room 305, where we were staying, the hotel website claimed that the room is the “most active” in regards to ghost activities. In fact, the TV show “Unsolved Mysteries” filmed a segment here. They stated an elderly lady, who was a long time renter, would sit in a rocking chair staring out of the window for hours on end. To this day, employees and guests have asserted to seeing an apparition of an elderly lady sitting in the rocking chair. Hotel housekeeping claims that if you remove the rocking chair from the window it will reappear again in the same spot.

We decided to put this claim to the test so before we called it an evening we moved the rocking chair to the center of the room. Upon waking up the next morning the chair was still in the same position. Either Grandma Ghost was on vacation or she was present and was too old to move it back to the window.

We checked out of the hotel and started our drive back to California. No summit and no ghosts. Considering I wasn’t in the best condition the day of hike (and my aging body), I still had a great time. No blisters, throbbing knees, bodies blown off mountain, and no ill effects from the altitude. Yes, the summit is optional but on my next trip to Mount Humphrey it will be a requirement. When I do reach the summit I’ll celebrate back in Flagstaff at the Hotel Monte Vista with a beer, Grandma Ghost and the rocking chair.

Friday, June 12, 2009

A Visit from the "Doctor"

Photo courtesy of The Heart Attack Grill

I got am email today from "Dr." Jon Basso, owner of The Heart Attack Grill, after I submitted my photos to their website. Looks like they are having a photo contest that pays decent money! Who wants to join me for another trip to The Heart Attack Grill!

Here's a copy of the email:

Hey Sam, GREAT pictures!! Thank you very much.

Please take a look at this: later today. I'm still building it. It'll lay out the new photo contest rules. It'll include a $5000 cash prize for the best photo.

Next week, keep an eye on this link once I've transfered to the new server.
Thank you,

         "Dr" Jon Basso
         Chief Surgeon
         Heart Attack Grill

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Babes, Burgers & Beers = Heart Attack!

In light of these bleak economics times, many American households are tightening their belts, cutting back on their budget and watching what they eat (who can afford to go to the hospital). But in true American fashion one man, one restaurant has broken away from the norm. The Heart Attack Grill, owned and operated by “Dr. Jon,” advertises itself as an establishment with food that has a “taste worth dying for!” So instead of tightening belts, they are expanding it.

Here’s a description from their website:

The Heart Attack Grill is a hospital themed restaurant in Chandler Arizona, which has become internationally famous for embracing and promoting an unhealthy diet of incredibly large hamburgers. Customers are referred to as "patients," orders as "prescriptions," and the waitresses as "nurses."

The menu includes the Single Bypass Burger, Double Bypass Burger, Triple Bypass Burger, and the Quadruple Bypass Burger, ranging from half a pound to two pounds of beef. Also on the menu are "Flatliner Fries" (cooked in pure lard), no filter cigarettes, hard liquor, beer, and full sugar coke.

The menu names imply coronary artery bypass surgery, and refer to the danger of developing atherosclerosis from the food's high proportion of saturated fat and excessive caloric content. The Quadruple Bypass Burger has been quoted at around 8,000 calories!

As customary, my friend, Vince, suggests such offbeat places for us to indulge in. Last year it was the Loser’s Lounge in Laughlin, Nevada where the evening’s entertainment was a wet t-shirt contest. This year it was the Heart Attack Grill in Chandler, Arizona.

The salty fries cooked in lard, greasy hamburgers and the naughty nurses definitely kept my heart working overtime.  I would “heartily” recommend a trip here but make sure your health insurance is up to date because after a meal here you will need a trip to a real hospital!

All photos taken with my Apple iPhone, another reason why your camera doesn’t matter.

See more of my trip to the Heart Attack Grill at:

Monday, June 8, 2009

Why Your Camera Doesn't Matter

I met this little girl just outside the fish market in Ensenada, Mexico. She was very photogenic and happily posed for a couple of photos. The funny thing was I had my Canon 5D SLR camera slung over my left shoulder while I took this photo with my Canon Powershot G9 compact camera. Great photos don't come from expensive cameras but rather from the ability of the photographer and the communication with your subject matter.