So Fleabay turned out a mixed blessing to me. I am the…Proud? No, proud doesn’t quite cut it…Reluctant yet hopeful owner of a less-then-shiny-new Canon EOS Rebel XTI DSLR Camera. I’m sure my intro to this post has tipped you off by now as to what went down…Yea, you’d think I would have learned after my used-yet-still-shiny iPod died on me within three weeks of ownership..And after the speakers on the used laptop I’m currently typing on died within 3 months of ownership. But still…I thought 500 feedback was trustworthy! Even if it was from a pmart505 (which meant PAWNMart, I later found out)…Actually I don’t blame them overmuch; a pawn shop can’t really be a specialist in ALL electronics. Especially one with locations all over Atlanta; clearly a large business. Someone, possibly new, who didn’t know cameras clicked it on, took a few test shots, called it good and labeled it "used, but functional" and got it ready for shipping. But STILL; I’ve never owned a camera with a Compact Flash reader, and within 5 minutes of opening the box, I see that two of the pins are bent. "BENT?! Really?! How did this get past quality control? WHAT quality control," I muse…Meh. So I opt to get a CF card and pop it in. After a series of test shots, all seems normal. The camera records them, and I pull them onto my computer. Okay; guess they knew what they were talking about.
Fast forwards to last week. I went out into Smyrna-Leipsic to take some shots of the old barns and wharves to try and see what I can get out of this camera…After about 5 shots of this cool, rusty old truck, I get "CF CARD NOT READ – CHECK CARD."
…God damn it…
So I get back to "pmart505" basically saying "WTF" and though I got absolutely zero responses even after going through eBay buyer protection, I get a full refund on what I paid, including shipping. I send repeated emails asking "um…do you want your camera back? Where do I send it?" Still no responses. Too busy to do anything other than take money, ship, and refund if things go sour, just to keep their account active. Having worked at K&A Ponds, whose owner Al does exactly this during the off-season I’m not at all surprised since they’ve enough conscience NOT to try and resell a broken camera and it’s repair cost is about as much as what they were selling it for.
SO…I effectively got for free a slightly broken Canon Rebel 400D. Which is…Not entirely sucky. Check out what this camera is capable of and see why I want to pay the $170 to get it fixed by Canon. There is a Canon distribution facility in Jinan, so once I get partially settled I plan on hopping on over and seeing what I can do with this. It might even be a cheaper fix in China, and HOPEFULLY this is the only issue. I believe so, since before the CF card error I was getting pics just fine.
Man, its so painful not being able to get back into my old hobby. While I was in Smyrna-Leipsic, the day the camera actually quit on me, I came across one of the most amazing photo-subjects ever. I rolled up to an old home I’d seen back in April that I wanted to photograph. It had flaking paint, busted windows and vines all in the front…Very dark and a great B&W/Sepia subject. Well, even BETTER; as I’m slowly rolling past, I see this amazing old bus in a grassy field in the back yard just sitting there. It was rusted up, with windows missing, tires deflated…It looks so forlorn and COOL, I debated just walking up and taking my shots. But even though the house looked unkempt, I noticed fresh firewood stacked by the driveway. Someone still lives here…So I park in the driveway, get out and consider my opening gambit in my head as I walk towards the door. Halfway there, a "hello" echoes from across the road, but the sort of "hello" that has an unspoken "what are you doing?" behind it. A neighbor hails me, so I walk over and explain my case: "I’m an amateur photographer, exceedingly interested in this old bus. Who lives here? Do you think they’d mind?" Well, the old fellow explains that there’s a man, out at the moment, but still in residence whose not only old but a bit senile and might have a problem with trespassers. Poop. I tell him I’ll try back later and take my leave. But before I did, I spent a good minute eyeing that bus, imagining the shots I could be taking right now. Double poop. And now I have a broken awesome-sauce camera that won’t be fixed until I’m good and gone from here. Triple-poop.