“I yam what I yam,” exclaimed a certain working-class philosopher who burst onto America’s comic strip scene in the midst of the Great Depression.

Unfortunately, despite decades of post-Popeye discussion about—and laws belatedly protecting—diversity, modern life seems engineered to cheese-press individuals into a homogenized lump.

Now I’m not saying that society needs to give sociopaths or the discrimination-prone a pass on their behavior. However, I think it’s worth acknowledging that just as the demure appear to wither under the spotlight’s glare, those who are built for brashness often lose their verve when encouraged to tone things down.

Surely it makes the world less boring to have a mix of the reticent and the audacious, the earnest and the sarcastic, the what’s-your-rushers and the catalysts? After all, when allowed to stay true to themselves, each type does a fairly impressive job of co-existing with the other.

…there’s no denying that on many occasions a whisper’s as good as a shout—but for me the bold and the beautiful have a rather contagious exuberance…

(top to bottom: The tools of the tap beautify an Oregon brewpub; proceed-at-your-own-risk construction icons warn passerby in Venice (Italy); San Diego signals that in California, the car isn’t always king; #11 proudly declares itself a Columbia River Gorge landmark; anatomically inclined petals at the Vancouver (WA) Farmer’s Market)

11 Responses

  1. Gorgeous shots. I just adore those rusty browns.

  2. Having met you I think I know why are attracted to the bold and the beautiful. We are often attracted to things that reflect who are. You, my friend, are bold and beautiful. xo

  3. What a great declaration…..a manifesto for the 21st century!

  4. Pseu —

    Thank you! You and those rusty browns; I can tell you are ready for fall! Me, I’m staring at the sweet blue colors and pre-grieving for bright skies, ha.

    LBR and Lydia —

    I think our recent group get-together inspired this post. So many personalities and experiences, yet quite a lot of harmony!

    Though of course some of our interesting conversations MAY have filtered into the nooks and crannies of my brain only to come out at my fingers….

    [And Ms LBR, you are too kind—but aren’t we often attracted to the things we WISH to be? While I’m often mouthy, I’m afraid I have a tendency to be “under-bold” when bold-bold is what’s needed to move forward!]

  5. Great collection of photos, as usual. Ever thought of doing a coffee table book?

  6. Ms Struggler — Glad you enjoyed them.

    As to your question:

    Funny, having recently seen many, many stunningly beautiful, technically flawless photos from my pal Ms Eileen’s archives, I am definitely thinking of a coffee table book…replacing my images with hers.

    [As I choose the blog images for a “vertical” read vs a horizontal, page-to-page one, things would have to change anyway!]

    While I like to think my photos have sort of a “spirit vs the letter” thing going for them, when I open the cover of a book I expect to be WOWED. And Eileen’s pics WOW (and will hold up in print) in a way my snaps cannot.

    But many thanks for the compliment!

  7. Dear Vix! just to prove how refined our english is and how limited my skills are, I list all the words I needed to look up.

    belatedly acknowledging demure wither brashness reticent audacious

    Sometimes there is a feeling, you might guess the sense in the context. But since you chose those words I want to get the precise meaning.
    I enjoy taking advantage of your blog … refining my skills and enjoying the company around here, through your postings and the comments!

    btw: since we already had so much in common I feel like asking: did you by chance suffer from any back-pain lately? Or is it just me? >;-)
    The pain started after vacuum-cleaning the renovated appartment before presenting it to my parents. 😮

  8. [Edit: Ok, I see you LOOKED them up. Apparently I cannot comprehend the English language in which I try to write! Well, just in case I will leave my translations below, ha.]

    Paula —

    From your blog and comments, you could be *teaching* English. But I thought I made this post easy for you—none of what Mr Vix calls my “made up” words. [They aren’t usually made up, more…enhanced!]

    Hmmmm, No back pain, just a lot of pains in my arse. /joke

    Plus wrist pain from being on the computer in a bad position. Then again, no vacuuming! Sounds like you need another vacation, ha.

    My unofficial definitions / how I am using them:

    Belatedly = Delayed; late

    Acknowledging = Admitting; recognizing the truth

    Demure = [What we usually aren’t!]; modest; shy; uncomfortable being the center of attention

    Wither = Shrink up like a plant with no water; loose healthy appearance

    Brashness = Quality of being bold, loud, reckless, attention-getting

    Reticent = [Opposite of brash!]; shy; quiet; in the background

    Audacious = [Another way of saying bold!] Risk-taking; daring; adventurous; full of courage

    Exuberance = State of being lively, joyous, full of energy; enthusiasm

    *** If you made it this far, don’t worry — no quiz later! ***

  9. :-* (kiss kiss) for the lesson! :-* :-*

    returning from a night out with 3 girlfriends, well we met when we where girls, my backpain developed its reticent side. I sit here with a smile (yes, in a bad position at the couch table), reading your lines, admitting quite belatedly – at least when it comes to the order of this posting – that I will end this endles fishing for compliments since it turns out compliments is all I will ever receive from you when it comes to skills.
    I feel like turning the subject towards Mr Paula und Mr Vix. Should be fun!
    (oops, I am excited right now. should meet girlfriends more often and get back to you way more often!

    good night!

  10. Here here ms. bold and beautiful! Lovin’ those images. Fall is a comin. I can feel it in my bones. Well not MY bones (says the girl in the 90 degree weather) but YOUR bones.

  11. Ms L —

    With your near-perpetual sun and humidity, there’s no way your bones will act up as if you’re 100. Wish I could say the same!

    But you’re right…out here, we’re saying goodbye to our (extra SHORT) summer; now, you know I will be hitting up your blog for blue skies all winter, so please don’t disappoint!

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