== Photographic Intuition Leads to Cheap Booty ==

I remember going to the Swap Meet in Pomona when I was a kid. To me, the Swap Meet held the same weight as a trip to Disneyland, Knotts Berry Farm, Magic Mountain, or even Lion Country Safari (yeah, I go back that far). Among other articles there were acres and acres of other people's unwanted junk. I remember a lot of first-purchases at the Swap Meet; a metal Honda push scooter, my three first bootleg tapes, License to Ill, the Fat Boys are Back, and King of Rock, I think possibly my first camera too. I can remember a Voltron 110 camera made to look like an SLR purchased form there and the majority of my lost keychain 110 camera collection.
My mom first took me to the Swap Meet as a 6-year-old, now I'm nearly 26 and find D.C.'s Eastern Market to be another another-man's-treasure outlet. The executor of my father's estate, Paul Dodds, once tried to insult me by telling me I spend money like a woman. (He was mad because the gravestone I bought my Dad cost more than he recommended.) Maybe I inherited it from my Mom?
Some of my favorite purchases at Eastern Market have been African masks from Mali, a strange, metal feline-representation straight out of Americana, and a too-much-meat sandwich from the produce market. My most favorite purchase from Eastern Market? ... a $5 Argus Model A camera. (It sold for $12.50 new in the late '30s.) I bought it a few months ago but didn't realize its importance to photographic history until yesterday ... in fact, until then I didn't even know it was a 35mm camera. It turns out, when it was made, way back in the '30's, it was one of the first cameras to accept Kodak's new 35mm cartridge, the same 35mm film you can buy today.

[This is my Argus Model A camera. Its body was made from the popular plastic material bakelite between 1936 and 1941. It was also around this time African art and cultural artifacts were becoming more and more popular among trendy Westerners.]