Sunday, January 14, 2007

Investigative Journalism

The reputation of the Holla is quickly spreading. While on my way to buy milk this morning, the staff photographer made a quick detour to snap some shots of the red, yellow, and blue seating area at the nearest American Doughnuts location. The results were fair at best. The staff photog is now well accustomed to getting odd looks when he takes pictures, as the idea that you might use a camera for more than family snapshots is a bit foreign to many Guatemalans. On this particular morning, the sole employee of the doughnut shop stared curiously for some time, as she set up the morning's doughnuts. Just as the photographer was packing the camera up again, the employee recognized her responsibility to the store, and confronted him. "Are you with the press?" she demanded. He contemplated for a moment, but in the end admitted to himself that the Holla is more of a literary journal than a bona fide organ of investigative inquiry, and attempted to explain to her that he just thought the light on the colorfully painted metal tables might make nice artistic pictures. She looked confused, and repeated everything back -- "Not with the press, huh?" "Artistic pictures, huh?" She seemed genuinely concerned that there was going to be a damaging exposé in the paper on how badly the chairs at American Doughnuts in Zone 13 need to be repainted. Fortunately, the staff photographer convinced her that these pictures were not for publication. So, if you happen to run into her, please don't mention that you saw the above photo in this internationally recognized journal.

No comments: