Author Archives: zongrik

Portrait of Shannon


Shannon was an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician (EOD) or in other words, part of the United States Air Force bomb squad. He was a team leader which meant that he was in charge of teams of three or four people, responsible for when they went “out and how they responded and to a certain mission.”

Previous to OED duty, Shannon was in another Air Force job, but he “wanted to do cooler stuff” so he volunteered for the “best job in the whole Air Force.”

Part of Shannon’s duty was to operate the specialized EOD robot and wear the EOD bomb suit, made famous in the movie The Hurt Locker.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Deb


Deb, from Los Angeles, California, USA. made soaps, lotions and oils and good smelling things. She enjoyed doing what she did because, “it was like was like playing mad scientist and also I get to dress as a pirate. How can you ask for more? What what more could you ask for?”

Deb was born in Newton, Massachusetts, USA and grew up in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. You may view and buy her products on The Surly Herbalist.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please

Portrait of Captain Hook


 

Captain Hook belonged to Pirates For Hire for over twelve years and participated in events such as the Ventura Pirate Festival at Ventura Harbor , county fairs, state fairs, city festivals and private parties. He said it was all a lot of fun.

Originally, Captain Hook was from the Fresno, California, USA. He moved to the Southern California area, where he acted and traveled back and forth to various event.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

 

Portrait of Heather


Heather sold LuLaRoe products though her Facebook group Blissfully LuLa Boutique~ Heather’s LuLaRoe SoCal. Heather said that a lot of the products were made in Guatemala and Mexico and that the firm was trying to help underdeveloped countries employ their residents.

“The line caters to women of all shapes and sizes.” Heather said that when she gained weight nothing was comfortable, however LuLaRoe was very comfortable. The materials were extremely soft: “like butter”.

Heather said there were so many ways that you could wear these clothes. The soft-clothes absorbed sweat very well and you could also stylize the clothes so that they looked different ways.

“The style of the prints have an Americana theme and also and also a lot of Paisley prints,” Heather said, “The Prints are pretty wild, which makes it very interesting.” She noted that once they did a print, that print would never come back, so essentially “anything you buy from this line would be one of a kind.’

Heather was born and raised in Florida. She raised her kids in West Virginia for eighteen years and then she moved to Southern California. At the time of this interview, she lived in Rosamond, California, USA.

Heather had multiple sclerosis (MS). Heather was diagnosed in 2011 after, one morning, she “woke up legally blind for no reason at all.” She had gone through scans and all was nominal but when they did the spinal tap, they found it positive. Heather’s biological father had MS.

Heather did treatments which she felt were a lot like cancer treatments; it was very hard on her. She assured me, however, that she was “a primary example that multiple sclerosis was not going to define who you were” and she kept moving. She moved as much as possible and had a really great job at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center at the IT Help Desk.

Heather customarily participated in the annual MS Walk. She said it was “very very hard” on her but she wasn’t going to let her down.

Table full of LuLaRue clothes

Look at all those original prints

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

 

Portrait of Bill-2


Bill had a 2005 X1 Ford three seat jet ski with a thousand cc’s. He kept his boat and his jet skis at the Ventura Harbor which he considered his second home.  He loved living in the nice Big Harbor and to have a second home where he kept “his favorite toys.”

Bill used to “take it (jet ski) out to Channel Islands Harbor, and to Santa Barbara and Goleta. He liked to go by the UC Santa Barbara campus and “jump some Great Waves there.”

Bill was originally from Santa Barbara, California, USA.  His home,at the time of this interview, was in Pasa Robles, California.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

 

Portrait of Portia


Portia was 11 months old and was a “boat baby who was a mascot at the harbor.” She was teething but not walking at the time of this interview. She liked words, fish, her uncle John and to get into things.

I was really lucky to get a cute smile out of Portia because as soon as I got the shot, she started with the tired baby crying.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

 

Portrait of Brian-2


Today is Father’s Day in the United States of America. In celebration of Father’s Day I shall make a portrait of a father.

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Brian was a father of four, a stepfather of two and a grandfather of five.

As you can see by the patches on his motorcycle jacket, aside from wearing multiple father hats, Brian was also a Patriot Guard Rider. These volunteers had “an unwavering respect for those who risk their very lives for America’s freedom and security including Fallen Military Heroes, First Responders and honorably discharged Veterans.” (See the website for more.)

Brian had a lot of useful everyday-survival skills. He was a trained automobile mechanic, he had some experience with plumbing, he could figure out how to troubleshoot and fix all kinds of things, and he knew an amazing amount of information about cars. For example, if you would find a car part, he could tell you exactly where it came from, that is the engine, the transmission , or any other system and what car came from and even the year.

Brian was a great person, a great friend, a true patriot, but most importantly, a very loving, devoted, concerned and giving father.

**********

One more thing, Brian is my biggest follower of this blog. He makes a comment everyday. I asked him if he thought I should put a baby or a father up today, and he, of course, said a father. So, naturally, I chose him.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

Portrait of Captain Spoodiggity


Captain Spoodiggity was the lead singer for the hard rock band The Pirates Charles which performed “adventurous and bombastic Rock Pirate songs.”

Captain Spoodiggity’s repetoire included songs such as Take a Drink, Chasing the Wind, Sailor’s Life, Whiskey in the Jar and False Mutiny. He described his songs and lyrics as “touching the ins-and-outs of being alive through the lens of a pirate.”

Captain Spoodiggity sang songs whose lyrics were “like scenes from a tremendous pirate movie.” His band created narratives of “big adventurous pirate battles, and mutiny at sea, and tragedy and war, and missing your love at home, and the days that you were broke and the days you had a lot of money and the days that you were spending it all.”

Although set in pirate culture, Captain Spoodiggity believed  that The Pirates Charles’s songs  touched “all of the different parts of life.”

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

 

Portrait of Mackenzie


Mackenzie worked at Ventura Harbor and the Ventura Pirate Festival was her event. As the lead organizer, she had to hire all the entertainment, get all the rentals, get all the privateers, such as Pirates For Hire, all the event vendors and then make sure they were all on time and in place.

Mackenzie was also in charge of social media for the event; she did all the Facebook, @Twitter and @Instagram for Ventura Harbor.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin ©2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.

 

Portrait of Liam


Liam was a sixteen-year-old from Fillmore, California, USA who attended charter school which he described was “like being in a library.” At school, he created his own curriculum and mostly liked art. He was studying art history and also created various types of art, such as drawing painting.

Liam dabbled in electronic gadgetry and was hoping that one day he could build robots.

Liam wanted to be an architect. He said that “would be fun.” Liam had a 3D pen and liked to do 3D modeling on his computer.

Liam liked running and bicycle riding. He especially liked riding on the streets and down a long road by his house which had “hills going up and down.” He was hoping he could do touring/competitive bicycle riding at some point, but he needed to save enough money to purchase a nice touring bike required for participation in such events.

Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.