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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bow's reaction to being filmed

Uploading a video is taking longer and longer these days. For instance, that tiny snippet in yesterday's blog post took well over an hour to upload. There was a companion video that I wanted to upload with it, but I just gave up because it would have taken all day.

Today I have some other things to do on my computer, so I cannot take the time to process videos and upload them. But we did do some filming yesterday, and I want to tell you a little about Bow's reaction.

We used to film every day, but that was when we had interns, and there was a fuctioning video camera, and we had a whole routine for the interns of exactly how to go about reviewing the footage and how to index it. It's been ages since we had interns, and so the routine has changed. We are in survival mode. Bow has to be taken care of every day, and played with, and fed, and all his needs have to be seen to, research or no research. Survival comes first.

Lawrence is Bow's sitter, who comes and plays with him when I have to run errands. He is not an intern, and he doesn't have any research duties. Bow talks to him, because kids usually talk to their sitter. It's a way to communicate, but it's not a "scientific experiment".  I couldn't ask Lawrence to help me document, because there is not time or money enough for that. And our camera has gone dead, on top of everything else.

Anyway, yesterday, just for the fun of it, I showed Lawrence how to film Bow using Bow's computer's built- in webcam. The resolution on it is pretty bad, and the lighting in here is not so good. (We used to bring in extra flood lights when we were filming for real.) But Lawrence was game to try this, and he even decided to see if he could get Bow to ask for his afternoon snack while the camera was running.

Now, Bow likes the camera. He gets very excited when you turn it on. He likes to use it as a mirror, to examine parts of himself that he can't usually see. Lawrence practiced filming Bow, and Bow was fine with that. But I guess he didn't realize that Lawrence had kept the camera on. Lawrence kept trying to hint to Bow that it might be time to ask for a snack, because he wanted to show on film that it was Bow who initiated the conversation.  So there he was, muttering to himself about how nice it would be to have some apples for a snack, and there Bow sat, not taking the hint.

And then I came in for a moment, not knowing that Lawrence was trying to film, and I asked whether Bow had had his afternoon snack yet. (Sword had a friend over, and right after I had to take her to her music lesson.) Lawrence said that it might help if I just brought the apples into the pen. So I did, and then I left, and Bow got excited and asked for a green apple, and then he had the green apple and Lawrence had the yellow apple.

Lawrence kept talking to Bow about why Bow preferred the green apple, when the yellow apple was bigger. By then, Bow had finished his green apple and asked for Lawrence to give him what was left of the yellow apple Lawrence was eating. So Lawrence gave him the apple, and eventually he stopped filming.

 When Lawrence decided to watch the video he had just filmed, Bow went nuts! He started screaming, as if he were trying to articulate words, and he ran around in protest, and he looked really upset.

When I questioned him about this later, Bow said he hadn't realized he was being filmed. It upset him, because he wasn't used to it.

Next time, we'll have to ask for his permission to film!

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