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Author Topic: Nadav Kander Interview and Images  (Read 3364 times)
N Walker
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« on: July 28, 2012, 05:48:01 AM »
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http://anthonylukephotography.blogspot.co.uk/2012/03/photographer-nadav-kander-discusses-his.html




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Rob C
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« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2012, 03:48:57 PM »
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Nick,

I've just come across your post again and managed to catch the link.

It's a very, very interesting interview - well, monologue, but none the worse for that. I was also tickled to hear him describe his feelings (towards the end of the video) regarding the differences in technique between digital and film capture and, like him, have long abondoned the chimping in favour of maintaining the uncertainty.

Also like him, I find it difficult to shoot people that I know well, especially family; I can't shoot males to save my life, but with women it's very easy and I think that's because of the interest/excitement that a new personality brings to the table.

As I feel I'm almost starting to paraphrase the video, I'll quit whilst possibly still ahead, so thanks again for giving us this great link.

Rob C
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WalterEG
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« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2012, 06:07:20 PM »
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What is it with South Africans that they attain such recognition in London?  Haskins, Arrowsmith and now Kander to name but a few.

So many of us have such coincidentally parallel experiences on our journey as photographers irrespective of location, age and status.

Cheers,

W
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Rob C
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« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2012, 04:11:37 AM »
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What is it with South Africans that they attain such recognition in London?  Haskins, Arrowsmith and now Kander to name but a few.

So many of us have such coincidentally parallel experiences on our journey as photographers irrespective of location, age and status.

Cheers,

W


Another of the famous few: Barry Lategan!

Parallel Lives

I’d put that down to the psychology we often seem to share: we can’t do much about it, but it certainly has an early impact upon our younger lives. I guess that there’s some tendency to think more about the hidden or less obvious things in life – maybe we don’t much care for group sports and clubs, perhaps we tend to enjoy our own company more than crowds, it could even be that we don’t entirely feel this great compassion for the world and its brother. It could even be that that’s a purely personal take and one not shared by many of us, but I’m not so sure. I think it takes something different, not better, just different, to make images rather than simply to accept what’s already around us as being all there is. Perhaps we truly are spiritual where others are not?

If there’s another common experience, then it’s probably born of the insecurity that I’m sure exists even in the minds of the superstars – everything’s probably relative – and though life for them might never touch the bottom, it can still have its extreme ups and downs within its own banding.

It’s also difficult to generalize because of the diversity of fields we touch, but I wouldn’t be surprised if all of those fields contained broadly similar characters. It must lie in the original mindset, I guess. So, in a real sense, we do reap what we sow, and when we sow much the same seed it can seem strange that some of that seed flourishes where much does not. That clearly being very much the case, I could imagine that the difference isn’t so much with us, but with the ground where we do our sowing.

Copycats. I’m fairly convinced that imitation of what we imagine out heroes have done casts its own colour over us as a group. Like it or not, we are all influenced to some degree by those whose trajectory we admire and even envy; that must surely have its effect too, if ever so slightly pushing us into a certain kind of mould…

Anyway, I’d rather spend time chatting with an old photographer than with an old accountant, if only because I wouldn’t fear the arrival of a bill at the end of it.

Rob C


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Ray
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« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2012, 11:39:47 PM »
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I've had a look of those portraits of from Nadav Kander. I'm not impressed. They range from ordinary to atrociously bad, in my opinion. In other words, Kitsch art.

I emphasise, that's my opinion. That someone may be successful in producing what are, in my opinion, lousy portraits, is a fact of reality I have to accept.

As an example, the world of pop music seems to me to be full of the most horrendously bad, simplistic and unintellible crap that the human mind can envisage, yet its popular.

I've never been one to change my deeply felt opinions on the basis that something is popular.

On the other hand, lest anyone think I'm being dogmatic and old-fashioned, I'm very receptive to any insightful explanations that I may have missed, of any so-called work of art. If a modern pop singer whose lyrics are largely unintellible, with the exception of perhaps one phrase which is repeated a hundred times, and who confines himself to the expression of just two chords, and shouts in an agonising, unmusical fashion, instead of singing, is really trying to convey that his experience of life is lousy, meaningless and a load of crap, then I can sympathise.

However, when I look at art, either visual or auditory, I want to be either uplifted or provoked into thinking about new issues or matters that I consider meaningful.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2012, 12:08:22 AM by Ray » Logged
Rob C
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« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2012, 05:42:41 AM »
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I've had a look of those portraits of from Nadav Kander. I'm not impressed. They range from ordinary to atrociously bad, in my opinion. In other words, Kitsch art.

I emphasise, that's my opinion. That someone may be successful in producing what are, in my opinion, lousy portraits, is a fact of reality I have to accept.

As an example, the world of pop music seems to me to be full of the most horrendously bad, simplistic and unintellible crap that the human mind can envisage, yet its popular.

I've never been one to change my deeply felt opinions on the basis that something is popular.

On the other hand, lest anyone think I'm being dogmatic and old-fashioned, I'm very receptive to any insightful explanations that I may have missed, of any so-called work of art. If a modern pop singer whose lyrics are largely unintellible, with the exception of perhaps one phrase which is repeated a hundred times, and who confines himself to the expression of just two chords, and shouts in an agonising, unmusical fashion, instead of singing, is really trying to convey that his experience of life is lousy, meaningless and a load of crap, then I can sympathise.

However, when I look at art, either visual or auditory, I want to be either uplifted or provoked into thinking about new issues or matters that I consider meaningful.

Ray

I have not always been a Kander fan, and I’m still doubtful about his style. What I’m not doubtful about is his success.

Whether one likes his work or not, those who matter certainly seem to find it attractive. I also find, as I’ve mentioned in this thread already, that I share many of his feelings about the business of dealing with sitters and also interfacing (who’d have used such an expression pre-digi?) with equipment: there is simply an impossibility factor between love of digital cameras and myself, as, apparently, with Kander and modern machines. I have come across several people who feel exactly the same way: it isn’t anything to do with the world of the dinosaur or an affinity with Mr Ned Ludd, it’s about an appreciation and joy with fine engineering and feel. Nothing in the camera world, other than my F and then, better yet, F2 came anywhere close to the feeling of my first 500C in my hands. I don’t believe any other machine ever will.

Unlike your stated position, I’m not particularly open to anyone offering me advice about anything in the ‘art’ part of life; if I like something I do, and if I don’t well that’s just how I feel and why should I change my ideas?

Neither do I share your sentiment in your final sentence: I see no reason at all why any image outwith advertising, public information or organized religion should provoke me in any way at all; I just want to be able to enjoy it for what it is, without any sort of intellectualizing about it; I’m happy to allow personal instinct to dictate

With both pictures and music there is usually an escape route, though music, when you’re trapped in a room with some you don’t like, is hell. It’s even worse when you’d also rather be able to escape the persons with you, but you feel obliged to remain polite and yawn-free despite the series of macho jokes and football references.

;-) Happy days!

Rob C

« Last Edit: August 07, 2012, 05:45:15 AM by Rob C » Logged

Ray
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« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2012, 08:28:30 AM »
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... there is simply an impossibility factor between love of digital cameras and myself, as, apparently, with Kander and modern machines. I have come across several people who feel exactly the same way: it isn’t anything to do with the world of the dinosaur or an affinity with Mr Ned Ludd, it’s about an appreciation and joy with fine engineering and feel. Nothing in the camera world, other than my F and then, better yet, F2 came anywhere close to the feeling of my first 500C in my hands. I don’t believe any other machine ever will.

I just can't understand that sentiment, Rob. A camera is merely a tool. If it's a good tool, one is impressed. For many years I owned a 12 volt Panasonic Electric Drill that came with two batteries. Eventually both batteries came to the end of their life and needed replacing. Unfortunately, the hardware shops no longer stocked replacement batteries for this model of drill. I would have had to order one specially, at great expense, so I bought a new drill and threw away the old drill. The new drill is much, much better in all respects, that is, it's more powerful, has greater torque and longer battery life.

Does it have better balancing in the hand and a nicer feel? Not an issue. As long as it doesn't have any annoying quirks which interfere with the job, there's nothing to fuss about. My new, lithium-battery-operated electric drill is like a D800E compared with a 6mp Canon 60D. Do I yearn after my 60D which I gave away to a poor relative years ago? Of course not. Do I yearn after my Pentax Spotmatic, which was the first advanced SLR I owned about 48 years ago? Of course not.

All my sentiments are directed towards the images that I produced through the use of the camera, and the memories and feelings such images provoke. I don't recall ever being moved by any sentimental thoughts about the camera that I used to take the shot.

Sometimes I can't even remember the camera that was used for a particular shot, but I sure remember the circumstances of the scene captured, as in the attached shot of me holding the skin of a bear in Kashmir, which I'd shot (literally with a gun) about 50 years ago. Apologies to animal lovers, but bears were a nuisance in those days, in Kashmir. They would frequently attack the sheep and the shepherds looking after the sheep. My guide on the right of the photo was one such shepherd who suffered a permanently mangled hand trying to protect his flock from a bear attack. You can see how gleeful he is after having persuaded a young Englishman to execute his revenge on bears.

Any criticisms of this photo should be directed at the person who took the shot. I can only take responsibility for the fact that it was my camera. However, I can't even remember the model of the camera, but I do remember I was there. That's me in the middle, literally 50 years ago without exaggeration.

Modern digital cameras, on balance, are light years ahead of the old-fashioned film cameras.

Quote
Neither do I share your sentiment in your final sentence: I see no reason at all why any image outwith advertising, public information or organized religion should provoke me in any way at all; I just want to be able to enjoy it for what it is, without any sort of intellectualizing about it; I’m happy to allow personal instinct to dictate.

What! You mean enjoy photos and art like a nice Capuccino, or Pizza, or any tasty meal. Is that all art is about?

PS. I have a vague memory that the camera was a fixed-lens Canon 35mm film format rangefinder. Not an SLR.
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2012, 09:04:53 AM »
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Ray,

If that's a picture of you, then who are the three guys holding you up?   Grin

Eric

P.S. As another old geezer, I find my self in agreement with most everything you said in your earlier curmudgeonly post.
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Rob C
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« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2012, 10:11:09 AM »
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I don't expect anyone to love the cameras that I did; that some others do is also fine by me. The appeal, as I wrote, was in the feel, the using, the build and the very beauty of design. That those weaned on digital cameras don't share my affection for the old stuff is totally understandable; they are at the same place in their lives as am I now, post film cameras: comparing digital to digital as they must, it's horrid, so why would they feel any affection for any current camera beyond the status one of reflected bankbooks?

Pictures or coffee? Yep, they share about the same relevance to life, especially when the one is not the means to the other. The problem with 'art' starts in the minds of the 'artists' who are given to this idea that it renders them superhuman when, in reality, it's just another natural, inborn (or absent) knack. It's this overinflated sense of self that leads to the creation of pecking orders, gear snobbery and all the rest of it. I've been trying to fly the flag about photography being a very simple thing to do, with the major skills today lying in the mastery of Photoshop. I clearly annoy a lot of wannabe gurus etc. in this process, but that's just their uncomfortable awareness of the shallow waters in which they seek to exist.

I look at hundreds of images on this site and frankly, I remember very few. Is this, then, a collection of lousy snappers? No, not at all, it just means that snaps, which definition encompasses mostly everything outside of commissioned work, has very little intrinsic value. You can admire a painting, be in awe at the pure beauty of the skill that is displayed in its creation or, alternatively, wonder at the brazen cheek and rip-off values of some painters and galleries. What, exactly, does photograhy bring to the table beyond simple camera technique, good or bad? (And no, camera technique and brush technique are not comparable as skills.) Huge prints are just huge; they come out of a machine and are no more works of art than when they were on a monitor screen. They are product.

To me, photography means something when you are paid to do it, the client's taking you on trust that you'll deliver something good, and the guy footing the bill is pleased enough to ask you back to do some more. That's real proof that you're doing something right, that what you have done has value. The rest? A bit of fun and a form of aide-memoire, and that's about it. Beyond that, and I think one is having a little attack of delusion.

I can pretty much remember every shot and its camera, except for the F and F2 which I always ran in tandem 'just in case'. Perhaps that's just some form of differentiation between photographers: those who associate these things and those who don't, but not in my mind. In my mind, it's like having fond memories of a friend in a given time and place where you were having a good time together. I suppose a camera used to be a friendly sort of thing...

Rob C
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Ray
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« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2012, 11:28:58 AM »
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I don't expect anyone to love the cameras that I did; that some others do is also fine by me. The appeal, as I wrote, was in the feel, the using, the build and the very beauty of design. That those weaned on digital cameras don't share my affection for the old stuff is totally understandable; they are at the same place in their lives as am I now, post film cameras: comparing digital to digital as they must, it's horrid, so why would they feel any affection for any current camera beyond the status one of reflected bankbooks?


Rob, I would call this attitude of yours inverted cynicism. I've never felt any particularly strong attachment to material objects of any kind. The design and feel of a camera, or the shape and style of an automobile are not directly related to their performance, although a car or a building can have an artistic expression which may appeal to the eye. The Sydney Opera House evokes a certain sense of poetry, but I believe its functional aspect as an auditorium is pretty ordinary. Its acoustics are not that great.

I'm currently interested in the Panasonic FZ200 and have been searching for sample images on the internet. There are a few images available, taken with pre-production prototypes. But what's really annoying are sites that claim to have pictures, but don't make it clear that the pictures are of the camera, not from the camera. Who on earth is interested in pictures of a camera. It's just a bloody camera, no more interesting than an electric drill. It's the camera's performance that counts.
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Ray
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« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2012, 11:39:55 AM »
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Ray,

If that's a picture of you, then who are the three guys holding you up?   Grin

The guy in the middle is a reincarnation of the bear, greatly sped up in time.  Wink  The guy on the right is someone who has some animosity towards bears, and the guy on the left (of the photo) is someone who was involved in the skinning of the bear.

Hope I've clarified that for you, Eric.  Grin
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2012, 01:09:30 PM »
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Thanks, Ray. I had thought the guy on the left might have been a kangaroo.
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WalterEG
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« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2012, 01:27:23 PM »
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Another of the famous few: Barry Lategan!
Rob C


Rob,

My bad.  I think it was Lategan that I meant and not Arrowsmith.

In checking out Clive Arrowsmith it was revealed that he is the only snapper who did two consecutive Pirelli calendars.

Cheers,

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Rob C
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« Reply #13 on: August 08, 2012, 09:13:33 AM »
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Arrowsmith's 'people' lied:

1968   Hari Pecinotti ................................ Tunisia
1969   Hari Pecinotti ................................ Big Sur

1970   Francis Giacobetti .......................... Paradise Island, Bahamas
1971   Francis Giacobetti .......................... Jamaica

1991   Clive Arrowsmith ............................ France
1992   Clive Arrowsmith ............................ Almeria, Spain

;-)

Rob C

P.S. Avedon did two, spaced a year apart, as I recall, and some of the later guys also did several (I think) but I sort of lost my pro interest when my own little market died at my feet; thank you, feminists, you screwed me as well as a helluva lot of pretty girls who were doing you no harm whatsoever.
 
« Last Edit: August 08, 2012, 09:17:57 AM by Rob C » Logged

WalterEG
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« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2012, 05:49:58 PM »
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I must confess Rob,

CA does not strike me as the sort of chap who would allow facts to hamper the beat of a solid drum.

I do recall back in the day that he was one of the chaps whose work did impress me to a point.

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Rob C
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« Reply #15 on: August 09, 2012, 04:34:27 AM »
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I must confess Rob,

CA does not strike me as the sort of chap who would allow facts to hamper the beat of a solid drum.

I do recall back in the day that he was one of the chaps whose work did impress me to a point.




I remember once working with a girl who said she knew him; I think she though him a bit odd: supposedly he would play a flute in the studio. On the other hand, I seem to remember reading that he came from an art school in Wales and so it shouldn't surprise anyone if he has a (musical) bent somewhere. I have bent much music, but as with so much else, it's a tale (and sound) best left untold.

I did like his photography in the fashion mags, though, and his Pirelli in Almeria's desert really does display wonderful use of colour, but at the same time, I feel the entire product is too art-directed, far too strictly themed, almost to the point of endless repetition of the same idea, much like the French one he did the year before. I wouldn't blame him, though: I am more inclined to imagine that the art director might have been fighting for his pro life or, at least, to hang on to the client by attempting to show how big an input he had on the results. It's always hard to know the truth of these things, but making the call from memory of what I took to be his free-flight work in fashion, I give Arrowsmith the benefit of the doubt. It seems to me as if the Pirelli cal is a bit of a mixed blessing to any snapper's career: one of the world's best showcases but, at the same time, perhaps there are too many inputs from above... I don't know, I just feel it. I would have gladly sacrificed the rest of my own career to have had a single opportunity to do one, though. What a number for a big goodbye!

;-)

Rob C
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Riaan van Wyk
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« Reply #16 on: August 09, 2012, 01:19:25 PM »
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Rob, I recently discovered Giacobetti's work ( Harry's library again) in a book on the first 25 years of the Pirelli calender. The stuff he did in the Seychelles has me speechless.

I also borrowed two books dealing with Lichfield's Unipart calenders- which I'm not so fond of. I constantly get a "too staged/ planned" feeling from his work.

Thank you again for the links to Sam Haskin's site, been spending the last week reading every bit on there- passed them on to Harry too.
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Rob C
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« Reply #17 on: August 10, 2012, 08:31:51 AM »
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Rob, I recently discovered Giacobetti's work ( Harry's library again) in a book on the first 25 years of the Pirelli calender. The stuff he did in the Seychelles has me speechless.

I also borrowed two books dealing with Lichfield's Unipart calenders- which I'm not so fond of. I constantly get a "too staged/ planned" feeling from his work.

Thank you again for the links to Sam Haskin's site, been spending the last week reading every bit on there- passed them on to Harry too.


Riaan,

Okay, definitive listing of Pirelli Calendars from ’64 until ’97 inclusive.
(Information via their own calendar book.)

1964   Robert Freeman …………..  Mallorca
1965   Brian Duffy         ………….  South of France
1966   Peter Knapp       ………….  Al Hoceima, Morocco
1967   Void
1968   Hari Peccinotti    ………….  Tunisia
1969   Hari Peccinotti    ………….  Big Sur, California
1970   Francis Giacobetti  ……….  Paradise Island, Bahamas
1971   Francis Giacobetti  ……….  Jamaica
1972   Sarah Moon  ……………...…  Paris, Villa les Tilleuls
1973   Allen Jones/Duffy (who later requested his name removed)  …  London
1974   Hans Feurer  ………….…....  Seychelles

1975  to 1983  Void

1984   Uwe Ommer  ………………...  Bahamas
1985   Norman Parkinson  ….…….  Edinburgh
1986   Bert Stern   ………………...… England
1987   Terence Donovan  ………... England
1988   Barry Lategan   ………….…. London
1989   Joyce Tenneson  ………….. New York
1990   Arthur Elgort   …………….… Seville
1991   Clive Arrowsmith …………..  France
1992   Clive Arrowsmith  …………. Almeria, Spain
1993   John Claridge     …………… Seychelles
1994   Herb Ritts        ………..…… Bahamas
1995   Richard Avedon  ………….… New York
1996   Peter Lindbergh  ……….…… El Mirage, California
1997   Richard Avedon   …………... New York


After that, I sort of lost interest and motivation to care, and would certainly no longer buy a further update in book form. Given the choice of owning one again, it would be vintage ’72.

Perhaps a better series, after all, was the Pentax one which for a long time alternated between Sam Haskins and Hans Feurer.

“Golden dreams, before they end now…” – according to Big O.

Rob C
« Last Edit: August 10, 2012, 01:14:02 PM by Rob C » Logged

WalterEG
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« Reply #18 on: August 10, 2012, 05:23:04 PM »
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1975 to 1983 was a winner for me, with 1967 coming a close second.

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Rob C
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« Reply #19 on: August 11, 2012, 03:28:27 AM »
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That's a position of true privilege: you got to see those that the rest of us were denied!

I always thought it was an unfair world.

;-)

Rob C
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