She

“She was nothing special. Every head in the bar did not turn, dazzled by her length of leg, flaunt of bosom or swing of butt. But to him she was everything. He emerged from anxiety like a butterfly to the sun.”


The quote is from Larry Beinhart’s, No One Rides For Free, the first of three Tony Cassella mysteries, one of my all-time favourites. The picture is part of my Noir series, though probably not part of the narrative; this is my contribution for Paula’s Thursday’s Special – this week, it’s female.

“She was the music heard faintly on the edge of sound.”

Noir | parts 4 and 5

When I posted a couple of these pictures before, they appeared in a slightly different context. Adding a new picture today obviously changes the narrative. So I feel I can live with the repetition – and I hope you don’t mind.

Tip: Clicking on the NOIR link in the header menu will take you to a page I set up to present the pictures on a darker background, which looks more ‘cinematographic’ to me. At least, it seems to highlight the scarce lights.

Off the record (I)

The whole picture is a “trace” of the past – as everybody in the know will immediately see. So here is my entry for the photo challenge at Paula’s Lost in Translation.

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For the record: The makers of the Toy Photographers blog kindly invited me to contribute! I feel absolutely honoured. However, I do not link to my post directly because I think the whole blog is really worth a visit. And please do not miss the discussions in the comments sections – they are just as interesting!

Cum grano salis

Cum grano salis, lit. taken with a grain/pinch of salt, fig. not to be taken literally, to be understood using your wit.

Since this whole series makes use of a very specific type of contrast (you know what I mean, right?), I thought I might as well enter it into Paleica’s Magic Motto Challenge: Contrasts. Please check out her site! You’ll find some beautiful contribtions there.

Waiting For the Penny to Drop

When Paula announced Thursday’s Special was Waiting, I immediately thought, “waiting for the penny to drop.” I could not get rid of the phrase until this morning when the penny finally did drop – with a little help from my wife. She also helped me out with an Irish penny, rendering this picture a bit more ironic, though it is for you to decide if is to be seen politically.

In line with my other pictures from this series, I would just like to add that we have the same phrase in German: “Warten, dass der Groschen fällt,” a Groschen being 10 Pfennig, which was our small change before Pfennige and pennies became cents.

“That most recalcitrant of all witnesses…”

You’ll find the previous story here.

The quote is from a description of the obstacles faced by the hard boiled detective, he encounters “blocking figures of all kinds, from the professional criminals and their hit men to corrupt cops, siren women, and that most recalcitrant of all witnesses, a dead man” (Dennis Porter, The Pursuit of Crime. Art and Ideology in Detective Fiction, 1981). This is also my take for the Weekly Photo Challenge, if a somewhat ironic one. After all, “murder must advertise.”

 

Down These Mean Streets a Man Must Go

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The little guy looked like someone I knew. Someone I knew from the times when most everything I had to do was reading detective stories, and writing about them. And figuring out how we all know what detectives look like without ever having seen one (it’s not the most public or popular occupation in Germany; detectives are shabby people in department stores waiting to snatch the occasional sock thief).

Well, the hat and the coat rang a bell, and I suspected there must be a gun, too. As chance would have it, there was also a very intriguing project suggestion at 100% Stuck in Plastic: Come up with three toy photographs in a narrative sequence, or, as ME2 put it: “3 images. An introduction, a cliffhanger, and an ending.” As things go, this ending may not necessarily be where the whole story ends…

Ah, and just one more thing: I set up a page where you will be able to see the story unfold (and probably change): Down These Mean Streets a Man Must Go.

In Over Their Heads

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To be in over one’s head, lit. bis über den Kopf drinstecken, equiv. etwas wächst jemandem über den Kopf, fig. (English phrase) to be involved in a difficult situation that you cannot get out of

…and while I look at this picture, a German classic comes to mind: Der Zauberlehrling (The Sorcerer’s Apprentice) by Johann Wolfgang Goethe. It is about this magical broom not quite obeying the apprentice… Follow this link for this poem and its English translation.

Against All Odds

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This was the original idea:

Jemandem den Boden unter den Füßen wegziehen, lit. to pull the ground from under sb’s feet, equiv. to pull the rug from under sb’s feet, fig. (German phrase) to threaten someone’s existence

…but it also looks like this guy is standing up on the cobblestone against all odds, so this also seems to be an appropriate contribution for the Weekly Photo Challenge.