Judge Me Not For I Am A Teapot - A Tempest In A StormnFriday, August 18, 2006
The Vancouver Rose Society has asked me to judge a competition of rose photographs this fall. They instructed me me to submit a photo of myself. Here you see me with Rosa 'Eglantyne'. Being asked to be a judge is one of the pitfalls of being a photographer although sometimes, as I will relate below, it can be a decided pleasure. I hate rose slides and the prospect of being invited to someone's home to view 100 slides of roses is my theological proof for the existence of hell. For the Vancouver Rose Society I will have to judge prints. Perhaps it will not be as bad.
Some years ago, photographer and custom photographic printer, Trevor Martin and I were asked to judge a photography contest at Vancouver's St George's private school. We silently looked at each other and we made three piles. On one pile we put the cat photos. On the second we relegated all the sunset pictures. We then only judged the photos that made the third pile!
But it was in 1983 when I really cashed in. I was asked to judge the Golden G-String competition in Las Vegas for what was the first ever stripper's convention. As a judge I was given an unlimited bar tab even though I only drank soda water. One of my fellow judges was a Las Vegas mafioso whose underarm bulge made me lean in the direction of my other fellow judge, who was the legendary burlesque queen, Tempest Storm (above, second from left). I was so in awe that I had few words with her and concentrated on judging the performances. When we declared our very own Tarren from Vancouver the winner, the hood gave me a look that suggested I make myself scarce. I did. But I will never forget the pleasure of being able to take photographs backstage. I remember, specially, the poised Laura Faye (right) who hailed from Peoria. She was a readhead, 23 and had danced since she was 19.
My grandmother often repeated, "Judge me not for I am a teapot," when I was critical but I never asked her where she had learned the expression. I wonder what she would have said about judging photos of roses?