Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Simple Pleasures: The National Parks

Yes, it’s true, I’m a big old National Parks dork. I read all of Nevada Barr’s Ranger Anna Pidgeon mystery novels. I’ve got the handy-dandy little passport book that I can have stamped at every park I visit. I’m kinda proud of this fact, which probably makes me an even bigger dork. So imagine my glee for the premiere of Ken Burns’ 6 part documentary series: The National Parks: America’s Best Idea on PBS this week (all episodes are also available online as well). Oh how excited a NPS dork like myself is. Say what you want about Burns’ style (that it never changes, that he only seems to interview old white male writers for their opinions, that he’s a narcissist for having his name attached to the title of all his documentaries), he does spin a damn good narrative. And there’s something about his technique of taking photographs that are well over a century old and making them more beautiful than anything the most current and most expensive equipment could take.

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