Photography And Half-Thoughts By Mitchell Hegman

...because some of it is pretty and some of it is not.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Trust Ignorance

Trust in ignorance, it has gotten all of us this far.
--Mitchell Hegman

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Monday, February 27, 2012


Undoubtedly, communicating with the dead is a possibility, but getting them to help you move a refrigerator might be tricky.
--Mitchell Hegman

Sunday, February 26, 2012


Certainty is far too often wielded as a spear where it is more rightly a shield.
--Mitchell Hegman

Friday, February 24, 2012


This is a picture I snapped of the shadow behind a metal shelving unit in my office at work.  I snapped the picture to show someone how dramatic a picture can become when you set to shoot without the flash to fill-in shadows.  I adjusted the contrast to enhance the shadow a bit. 
I actually like this photograph.
--Mitchell Hegman

Thursday, February 23, 2012

After (Open and Closed)

All day, the sky remained closed and gray.  A chill rain fell on the noon hour.  I drove to Butte and back again through a mix of snow and rain.  The mountains opened and closed around me.  After work, I drove back home in rain that gradually swung into slanting flurries of snow.
Eventually, I came upon the place in the road where, last week, a car collided with a mule deer.  This week, the ravens and magpies have rent open the rib cage of the deer carcass still flung there alongside the road.  As I drove by, I saw ravens feeding inside the red and snow ribcage.  Just last week that deer jumped the nearby fence.
This week, scavengers are jumping in and out of the deer’s open belly.
--Mitchell Hegman

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Monday, February 20, 2012


If love was a machine, you could stuff a crowbar in one end and a glass of fine Merlot wine would emerge from the other.
If hate was a machine, you might shove a fluffy white bunny in one end and a one-eyed rat with bad breath would scuttle out the opposite end.
If greed was a machine, you could load anything you wish in the business end and always get the same result on the other end…nothing would come back out again.
If jealousy was a machine, a winsome actress loaded in on one end would appear as a pile of dust on the other.

--Mitchell Hegman

Sunday, February 19, 2012


The truth is finicky.  The truth, on occasion, might be downright meaningless without some form of appropriate context.  I can easily illustrate this with a simple example.
Imagine that I walk into a classroom filled with students who are very nervous about an exam they are about to take.  For the sake of argument, we will say the exam is about trigonometry and the questions are multiple-choice.  As I walk up to the whiteboard in the front of the classroom I say:  “Okay, to ease your minds a bit, I have decided to give you the answer for several of the questions on this exam.”
Naturally, the students will find a bit of relief in this.  They watch quite intently as I find a black marker and then write “d” on the board.  “There you go,” I announce.  I leave the room again.
If more than one question should have “d” marked for the correct response, I have been completely truthful.  I might even go so far as to say that I was not deceptive.  But where is the value in this truth?
--Mitchell Hegman   

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Basic Flaw

The problem with American politics is that we are always looking toward the future that is behind us.
--Mitchell Hegman

Friday, February 17, 2012

Be Alive

Until such time as tracks learn how to stitch themselves across the meadows of freshly fallen snow, we need to get our asses out there with the deer and rabbits and make them for ourselves.
--Mitchell Hegman

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Causeway

I took this photograph several years ago on my way into Helena from my country home.  The green buildings on the left attracted my attention initially.  Winter landscapes often take on otherworldly aspects to such a degree that they exclude human presence.  This photograph is centered on human presence in the winter.
--Mitchell Hegman

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Appliance Repair

Female Appliance Store Clerk (Answering the phone with a pleasant tone):  “Good morning!  So-and-So Appliance and Repair.  How may I help you?”
Woman Customer Calling In: “I need to have one of your technicians repair my clothes dryer, but I have a few questions about that.” 
Clerk: “I would be happy to answer your questions.”
Woman Caller:  “First, is there any possibility that I might get my dryer fixed this week?”
Clerk: (After browsing through the work schedule): “I think we can schedule you in as soon as tomorrow afternoon.”
Woman Caller: “Great!  You never understand how much you need something until it stops working.  My next question is about method of payment.   What if someone else wants to pay for the repair?”
Clerk: “As long as we can get the payment sorted-out before the repairman goes on the call, we can do that.”
Woman Caller: “It is a Valentine’s gift from my boyfriend.”
Clerk: “What?”
Woman Caller: “For Valentine’s day, my boyfriend said he would have my dryer fixed.”
Clerk: “Weird.  Are you going to break up with him after he pays for the repair?”
Woman Caller: “No.  I am really happy.”
Clerk: “But we are talking about repairing your dryer.”
Woman Caller: “Are you kidding?   I love it.”
Clerk: “I would slug my boyfriend if he did that to me.”
Woman Caller: “I appreciate practical gifts.  I think this one is very sweet.  I am thinking about giving my boyfriend a big kiss.”
Clerk: “All-righty, then.  I will need to get billing information from your…ummm…boyfriend.  He will need to call us and authorize payment.”
Woman Caller: “Maybe we will start a new trend in modern romance with this.”
Clerk: “You know what?  I really don’t think so.”

--Mitchell Hegman


Tuesday, February 14, 2012


High clouds are dancing casually between the uplifted moon and the sprinkling of lights across the valley floor.  From my bay window I watch the clouds cross the face of the moon, wondering why I always find myself standing at the bay window, alone, watching clouds.
--Mitchell Hegman

Monday, February 13, 2012


Curious about what I might learn about Monday, I conducted an internet search using only “Monday” as the key in my search engine.  Here is the important thing I discovered: Monday is the day between Sunday and Tuesday.
Thank you, Wikipedia!
--Mitchell Hegman

Sunday, February 12, 2012


Not until this morning when—for the umpteenth time this week,  just like every week preceding—I reached for a paper towel to dab some coffee from my kitchen counter after filling my cup, did I finally recognize the conspiracy we have faced as consumers.  I am now convinced that the manufacturers of coffee makers for home use have been receiving payoffs from the manufacturers of paper towels. 
Goes like this. 
The people making the coffee makers purposefully mal-design the carafe so that no matter how you try to pour coffee into your cup, some of the coffee will escape and dribble all over the place.  I don’t care how fast, slow, or cautiously you try to pour—you are certain to make a mess.  To maintain the poor carafe design in some form of perpetuity (and bolster sales of paper towels) the people making the towels provide kickbacks to the folks producing the coffee makers.
Simple.  Difficult to prove.  Lucrative.
--Mitchell Hegman

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Saturday Morning

New fluffy snow

New fluffy snow over everything.

--Mitchell Hegman

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Job Analysis

There are two sides to every story…well…three sides if an apprentice electrician and a raise in pay are involved.
--Mitchell Hegman

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A Single Stone

Somewhere amid all of this science, nesting there in a thatch of numbers, surrounded by the immutable laws governing blood and the roving stars and the very sound of a single stone dropped in water, dies a pretty pink bird thought surely to survive a broken spirit. 
--Mitchell Hegman

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Our Uncommon Moon

While 150 moons presently loiter around at various corners of our solar system, most of them beg for little or no attention.   Jupiter, the largest planet in our system, has trapped over 60 of these moons in her gravitational shell.  Moons orbit the giant planet in a variety of paths that weave a somewhat nonsensical basket in the space surrounding.  And while these moons might impose a great deal of influence on one another as they swish about, they little affect the great planet acting as their benefactor.   The largest moon orbiting Jupiter is Lo and is the most volcanically active body in our solar system.  The gravitational forces exerted by Jupiter are such that 300 foot “tides” are pulled on the solid surface of Lo.  Another moon, Europa, is covered with watery oceans and is thought to provide great potential for simple forms of life.  And, no, I am not making reference to Jersey Shores again in the last sentence I wrote.   Some of the moons held in orbit around Jupiter are “provisional” in status, which means we have not fully interpreted their orbits and their importance in the scheme of things.
And so, Jupiter spins away, seemingly oblivious of her flock of stony and gaseous moons. 
Our Moon, contrarily, is accountable for a host of mostly fortuitous Earthly behaviors.  The gravitational dance into which we have engaged with our Moon is the very reason we have 4 stable seasons.  The Moon, as if a mother with open hands against the cheeks of a child’s face and holding the child’s head back, holds our planet tilted back on its axis, allowing us spring, summer, fall, and winter.  These same gravitational forces pull our ocean tides.  In some places the Moon will wrench back the oceans as much as 50 feet.
Moonlight brightens our nights.  What decent love song is complete without the Moon?  By interesting coincidence, our Moon is 400 times smaller than the Sun and, at the same time, the sun is 400 times more distant than the Moon, which makes them appear the same size as we observe them from our lawnchairs and verandas here on Earth.     
The Moon is a mere 234,000 miles distant, which easily puts it within the driving range of an automobile.  Something less than 6 months of steady driving would get you there, unless you routed through Los Angeles, in which case you might need to allow for heavy traffic.  Sadly, there is not much to do on the Moon at this point.  The few folks, who have visited the Moon to this date, have done little more than collect a few rocks.
The rocks were not all that pretty, either.
The Moon is entirely without an atmosphere which creates wild temperature fluctuations that can range from 270 degrees F where sunlight feeds energy into objects down to -240 degrees below in the darkness.  Without an atmosphere, any hope of populating the moon will rest upon colonies encapsulated in protective chambers.  Recent discoveries of water in deep craters and at the Moon’s north pole suggest that some basics for life may be provided.  Maybe someday, the Moon.
Someday, yes.      
Because the Moon is phase locked with the Earth, we see only one face of the sphere.  We never see the back side of the Moon, which make ironic the statement that someone pulling down their britches and wagging their backside is mooning you.
But there she is: our Moon.  Pretty as ever.  Pure silver on a wintery night.  Everywhere we look at night, we see the pewter reflection of the Moon melting into the surface of anything willing to hold it.  But as certainly as dreams fade when we come awake, the Moon gradually draws away from us, receding at a rate of about 1½ inch per year, even as we try to hold her.
Ever leaving us, our Moon.
Our most uncommon Love.
--Mitchell Hegman

Monday, February 6, 2012


If you don’t like something, change it.  If you can’t change it, change your attitude.
--Maya Angelou

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Long Pine Shadows on Snow

Photo taken from the Wild West chairlift at Great Divide Ski Resort, February 4, 2012.

-Mitchell Hegman

Friday, February 3, 2012

One Line of Thought

In one line of thought, everything said or done has meaning.  If you are someone who subscribes to this thinking, will you please explain the meaning of the reality show Jersey Shore on MTV?
--Mitchell Hegman

Thursday, February 2, 2012


Wrapped in a ribbon of thin red cloth that, when held to light,
turned translucent as a pomegranate seed,
the dead white rabbit became a kind of seed as well.
He planted the red bundle deep in the cool clay
where once stood the oldest oak tree in the valley.
Touched only once by lightning, the tree set itself free as fire, smoke, and ash.
The smoke from the tree fell up against the blank sky in knots and billows for two days.

As he swept soil over the dead rabbit he wondered,
In what other ways can the dead or even the living be set free?

--Mitchell Hegman