One Second Every Day

year in the lifeMy band mate Kirk used to come to practices and gigs and discreetly whip out his phone for a bit of filming. Then on FB I saw that he was sharing short videos. “What Ho?” I asked myself. Kirk clued me in about One Second Every Day. Kirk’s been at it for a couple of years now. Cesar Kuriyama’s story is totally inspiring, so go read it (here), make sure to watch the TED talk and read about how it came to be. Nerdvana!

The plan is pretty simple: take one second of footage every day and then assemble it all into a super-cut after a month, quarter, or in my case a year. After a year, your film is six minutes long.

I found that having to film every day made me more aware of what I was doing: “was it interesting, fun, worthwhile?” It also made me much more alive to the inherently interesting things that flit in front of our eyelids every day. I found I did not care very much what ‘other people’ would think about the film, it was simply something that was interesting to me. It also fascinates me how some circadian trends emerged: dogs, cats, my awesome wife, beer, birthdays! The passing of the seasons (a New England special dish) becomes quite beautiful.

A few technical notes. I was running the app on on an iPhone 4s, and found it to be pretty buggy, but I heard from Kirk that he had no such trouble on a later model phone. The editing interface on the phone is primitive, but effective. I actually delayed upgrading my phone because I didn’t want to worry about discontinuity in the middle of the year, although my actual upgrade later was flawless, so I needn’t have worried. Apple is great at upgrades, in my experience.

Two months into the project, my father temporarily died. He was then resuscitated and stayed in a coma for almost a month, and even when he came out of it (which was a miracle!) he was practically a vegetable. Filming my life at that point, felt more than a little weird, so I shot some circumspect footage of the hospital, me, my brother, my uncle at the hospital, footage of the many walks I took around Beacon Hill at that time. I also captured the non-tragic parts of life, since we must go on! But then when he miraculously recovered, I had some documentation of him slowly rejoining the compos mentis. Please check out his fantastic TEDxBeaconStreet talk about the experience.

A few days in the year, I just didn’t remember to film. Whoops!

I filmed for a year from August 2013. Enjoy!