Monday, September 11, 2006

A Pit Stop On The Way To National Geographic And Beyond

Back in the 1960's donuts weren't the fat laden evil monster that they're considered today. Dunkin' Donuts had major competition from Mister Donut. Both chains offered a similar line up of mostly cake donuts, and donut shops were everyplace. Back then this was a Mister Donut. Actually I liked the coffee better than Dunkin' Donuts' coffee, and it was less than half a mile from my house. I was a frequent visitor!

I had a few friends that used to use my darkroom back then. Al Olme had an Omega D-2V XL enlarger set up for 4x5 which he kept in my darkroom, along with his Omega B-22 XL just like mine so we could leave one set up for 120 negatives and the other for 35mm. Nathan Benn was the kid at North Miami Sr. High who used my darkroom. He went on to the U. of Miami and did a bit of work for the Associated Press and the old Miami News, then he left town to take a job with National Geographic before taking over as head of the New York office of the international picture agency Magnum. Now he's on the west coast. I still have one of his B&W prints framed and hanging on my wall that he made in 1968. I probably have a few more of his prints tucked away someplace.

Those were the days of real paper, not the resin coated stuff that's so common now. The paper took an hour to wash. While the prints were washing we'd go out for coffee and donuts. Now it's the Sunnyside Cafe, the best eggs, sausage and grits around, but the donuts are long gone. Whenever I go there, even just driving by the place, it brings back memories. The closest donut shot is three miles away.


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