Ok, so sometimes we need to get into a little fun around here and not all be tied up in product releases and website stats [sorry Marketing guys]. And yes, I will write about something more serious soon....perhaps on rigging.....
ETC takes care of its employees quite nicely with the periodic swag drops and I try to make use of them as often as possible. Holiday parties, Fred's 50th birthday, summer picnics, safety fairs and more all bring goodies our way. I have a closet full of shirts, pullovers and jackets [it gets cold here].
Many years ago I found what I consider to be a much better use for the ETC gym bag than carrying sweat-laden clothing back from the weight room. The gym bag folds up nicely in my roller bag and when I return from family and fun trips to North Carolina, I bring 14 pounds of Eastern NC BBQ with 2 quarts of slaw. Now, this does take a little work as I have to tightly jam a small cardboard box into the bag that my NC buddy Mark has a stack of and line it with two kitchen sized trash bags. I get the BBQ cold packed [frozen] in one pound containers and transfer the slaw to a couple of one quart ziplock screw-top containers. This allows it to survive the baggage handlers as checked baggage. I used to carry it on but the TSA gave me strange looks when x-raying 14 containers wrapped in foil.
I have been told that if at any point in time I do not come back from NC with BBQ, it will affect my employment status. You see, the BBQ is for all my cohorts back here at the factory and we indeed have a great time with a potluck meal the day I get back. Several of the execs keep me honest on my record....
For those of you with questions about, or just questioning, Eastern NC BBQ, here's a little ditty that will explain all about the different Southern BBQs and of course why NC is best.
[Note the Emerald Isle T-Shirt....the beach we went to on the weekends growing up] Each time I return from NC, all of Technical Services, and a few others, get sent an email with this video as a warning that BBQ is nigh. You may wish to start a BBQ fight below as I'm sure everyone has distinct opinions about why their region of the country is best. Yes, I said opinions. Facts prove out otherwise.
Now here's another great item from ETC that I repurposed...
A couple years ago we received some nice travel bags as part of a Holiday Party gift and I immediately put to use the toiletry kit bag for a Christmas gift I gave myself. What really is the right term; toiletry kit, shaving kit, essentials bag.... The ETC bag now became a camera bag for a new Holga camera. It works out perfectly as the bottom area is a film holder and the top cradles the camera fairly well. Since Holgas have a tendency to have light leaks, this was far better than leaving on the passenger seat and ruining more film than planned.
The Holga is quite cool but does have some rather odd flaws. To start with it runs 120 film which really can't be processed in the one hour section of Walgreens [does anyone do one hour processing anymore?]. The edges of pics are vingetted, there's really no film tensioning device [I use a piece of folded over film box lid jammed under the reel], there's no film speed setting, no shutter setting, only two aperture settings and then there's the famous light leaks. The basic Holga kit even comes with a roll of electrical tape to help you block out light if you wish.
The Holga comes in a variety of models, including the 120CFN which is a multicolored unit with a flash that has selectable color gels. To me, 120FCN stands for Camera FuN. Check these out for yourself at http://microsites.lomography.com/holga/. I'll post some pics when I can grab a better scanner. No memory sticks or USB ports for the fine plastic Holga.
So let me know what kind of fun you've had with your ETC swag. Maybe you've got a great shot of a shirt or case on tour, a Bobblehead Fred on holiday or similar repurposed swag.