Okay, today provides a really good example of why I really, really like my job. No day is ever the same, and the day itself can be a completely polar experience depending on the assignments I get.
This afternoon I covered the Miss Flea Market pageant, a highly coveted crown for drag queens in Miami. Yep, you guessed it! tThe competition takes place at a flea market. Okay, so picture your best, most flamboyant and "completely passable as gorgeous women" drag queens snarking at each other in the dressing room. I was there shooting from the neck up (hair and makeup touch-ups, final primping, etc) and let me tell you that serious drag performers, who are really not shy, are not as much about padding as you would guess.
I really wish I were back in college, because the experience- from a woman telling me, "Honey, I don't know anything about that whole male-to-female whatever you just asked me about thingy. I am a DRAG. QUEEN. I got t!ts AND a pen!s, if that's what you're askin,'" to recognizing the choices of non-operational transgender people choosing to have some surgery (breast enhancement) but not others (not one official post-op transsexual person in sight) would have made a nice "response paper," the never-ending 2-page assignments that became the bane of my existance as I tried to be original for each one through four years of study. Wow. That was a long sentence.
My second assignment today was to shoot a Christmas Cantata, 200 children from 5 area Southern Baptist churches performing in what was essentially one enormous Christmas pageant. You know how we used to make fun of Erik Rose'n'Barker for meeting his "wife" (they divorced after, like, 2 months) in a Christian Mime group? Yeah. I saw a Christian Mime Group tonight. It wasn't that corny, actually, because the kids were really into it. They were having so much fun, and actually, it was more like a step routine than miming. (No one tried to get out of a box or anything.) Although, being the only person of my ethnicity in a room of 500+ people would have made of an interesting response paper, too, come to think of it.
I love my job.