Meanwhile, back to the New Jersey marsh ...
EXT NEW JERSEY MARSH - SHACK
Frank wanders back to where the shack is sitting. His remote beeps as he steps up, but it is ignored by the depressed photographer. Frank kneels down, begins to help adjust his tripod, then stops and shakes his head dejectedly.
FRANK: I can't do it. I can't do this alone.
RYAN (OS): Don will always be with you.
Frank looks up to see the shimmering image of DR4GON.
FRANK: Ryan! Why didn't you tell me?
The ghost of DR4GON approaches him through the muck of the marsh.
FRANK: You told me Panorama’s were simple and uncomplicated.
RYAN: Your A100 can only do so much. It suffers from the dark side of the ISO-FARCE. An A700 offers a much higher ISO and with version 4, it can offer excellent HDR opportunities with a shot like this. When that happens, a good shot will occur. So what I have told you is true... from a certain point of view.
FRANK (turning away, derisive): A certain point of view!
RYAN: Frank, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.
Frank is unresponsive. Ryan studies him in silence for a moment.
RYAN: I don't blame you for being angry. If I was wrong in what I said, it certainly wouldn't have been for the first time. You see, what happens with your A100 is SONY’s fault.
Ryan pauses sadly.
RYAN: The Minolta 5D was a good camera.
Frank turns with interest at this. As Ryan speaks, Frank settles on a guardrail, overlooking the marsh, mesmerized.
RYAN: When I first knew saw a Minolta 5D, it was already a great camera. But, I was amazed how strongly the FARCE of its creation swirled about it. I took it upon myself to try and deal with Minolta’s failing business. I thought that I could hang on, and wait for SONY to make it better. Well, I was wrong. My pride has had terrible consequences for the Photoworld.
Frank is entranced.
FRANK: It's still a good camera.
RYAN: I also thought as you do. Unfortunately, it couldn't be done. The A100 is more prototype than legitimate camera. It simply lacks all the features.
FRANK: I can't do it, Ryan.
RYAN: You cannot escape your destiny.
FRANK: I tried to buy an A700, once. I just couldn't do it.
RYAN: The salesman humbled you when first you tried it, Frank ... but, that experience was part of your training. It taught you, among other things, the value of patience. Had you not been so impatient to replace the A100 then, you could have finished your training here with Don. You would have been prepared.
FRANK: But, I had to provide for my family.
RYAN (grinning at Luke's indignation): And did you help them? It is their love that supports you, too. You achieved little by rushing back to the camera store, prematurely, I fear.
FRANK (with sadness): I found out the A100 and the A700 are miles apart in ISO performance.
RYAN: To be a good photographer, Frank, you must confront and then go beyond the dark side - the side your A100 couldn't get past. Impatience is the easiest door - for you. The A700 is enticing.
The A700 is a powerful solution, but you have held firm to the A100. You're no longer so reckless now, Frank. You are strong and patient. And now, you must attempt to get the A700, again!
FRANK: I can't buy the A700.
RYAN: Then, the dark side has already won. Your having that camera was your only hope.
FRANK: Don spoke of another.
RYAN: The other he spoke of is the SONY A900.
FRANK: But, I have no need of a full frame camera.
RYAN: Hmm. To provide adequate ISO support against the dark side of photography, these cameras were ignored when they were introduced. SONY knew, as I did, if A100 were to have any improvements, they would be difficult to price properly. That is the reason why the A900 remains safely over-priced.
FRANK: Wait … $2,000 might be fair!
RYAN: Your insight serves you well. Bury your feelings deep down, Frank. They do you credit. But, they could be made to serve SONY.
Frank looks into the distance, trying to comprehend all this.
RYAN (continuing his narrative): When your A100 was created, SONY didn't know if or what Minolta’s A-mount would do in the market. Your fellow Minolta users and I knew they would find out, eventually, but we wanted to keep Minolta alive as long as possible. SONY's DSLR sales are currently climbing in marketshare and is right around 9-percent, while Nikon and Canon have dropped to 39% each. So, I told you that the A100 was good enough ... and we all watched as others picked up the A900 for evaluation.
Frank is overwhelmed by the truth, and is suddenly intrigued by the lure of the A900.
FRANK: But, I can't get that camera, now, Ryan. My budget will not permit it.
RYAN: The A900 is a quantum leap forward in your photography, Frank ... but the FARCE of it all is that it is a strong move in your craft, as it is with all of the Minolta/SONY family. There is no avoiding this need. You must rework your budget and get either an A700 or the A900!
(This is all meant with humorous intent and none of it is to be taken seriously.)