Monday, May 31, 2010


This was on Hudson Street. There were two benches flanking the entrance to some bakery. I used the other one to reload the YashMat. She hadn't said anything about the camera, but I decided to ask her for a picture.

"Don't use it for anything dirty," she said.

That made me smile, knowing that young or old, everybody who lives in the Village — young or old, gay or straight, is a fucking PERVERT.

At least that's the way it should be.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Jen and Brian

"This might sound weird..." she said to me in the middle of what had already been a pleasant conversation.


"but, I like the way you're standing," she said, motioning to my feet.

During our talk I had settled into a manner of standing with all of my weight on my left foot while crossing my right foot in front of it to the left as far as I could.

"It's not some ballet thing, just more like a bad habit," I replied. She told me that she was fond of standing in the same way and that her coworkers thought it was weird.

It was the first time anybody had ever complimented me simply for my resting posture. Or maybe it was just some kind of nerves that had me twisted up like that (more likely). Yet I don't know why I had to feel nervous. They were such nice people, and a great conversation to end the day.

Saturday, May 29, 2010


Some of you might know of Maine as a state. I recently discovered that it can also be a woman's name, this woman, namely Maine.

She also works at the Limelight Marketplace, but it's not her dream to spend her days in a former club standing in front of colored bottles. She's a performer whose talents can best be seen on her site, where she is the "Maine" attraction.

Hope you dig the pic well enough.

Friday, May 28, 2010


I was still somewhat in shock when Angel complimented me on my camera. She was working at a place called "It's Sugar," a little nook in a larger marketplace. And what a marketplace it's The Limelight.

About a month ago my father told me they were turning the Limelight into a market, but it didn't really register with me. Maybe I didn't really believe him. Sure, a market. After all the semen that flew around in that joint who would ever want to buy anything there, let alone something edible? But sure enough, it's now three levels of candy, fancy bakeries, clothing joints...Like a church-encased Chelsea Market.

I didn't take any film pictures of the new setup inside. The last time I was there was Labor Day weekend 2006 and I was seeing The Cramps at one of the last Motherfucker parties. Now the loss of the Limelight as a club didn't hit me hard or anything. I didn't have an emotional connection to it like I did with CBs, which I refuse to walk in. John Varvatos can eat a dick, even if it was time for CBs to move on (for me, at least).

I knew this shot would be somewhat underexposed, and I hope I saved it enough in photoshop so that it doesn't look entirely awful. Though I should have known better to trust the capabilities of 100ISO film even in "good" indoor lighting conditions. This is what happens when you leave the house without a light meter.

But Angel was very nice. She told me "Just Sugar" was a venture by the dude that helped Dylan What'sherface open up her joint, but she said that Just Sugar was more of an "adult" candy store. Being that I had just met Angel, I didn't want to explore just what "adult" actually meant, lest she thought I was some creep with a camera.

Well, I am a creep with a camera, but I don't want people to see through me that quickly.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


It's good to see that there are still some old-style hockshops still hanging around NYC:

I looked inside but Rod Steiger was nowhere to be found. Speaking of movies...

Does it make me a hater that I'm reveling in the awful reviews of Sex and the City 2, Electric Boogaloo? It's not just that the reviews are negative, but the reviewers are really getting creative to describe what most of them agree is an affront to cinema, women, Islam, and anything that resembles good taste. Of course I'm not going to see the movie. I never even saw the first one and I refuse to watch it on cable, even though I did watch the series when it originally aired. Though I can always use the excuse that I was looking for myself onscreen.

I don't know if I've mentioned this in any of the 279 previous posts, but one of my former lives was doing extra work in films and TV shows. It was just background work, no lines or anything. God forbid you get a line and they have to pay you a bunch more than even a SAG extra makes. I mention this because I probably worked SATC more than any other production in town. And this is coming from someone who was kicked off the set the very first time he worked on the show! But I'll save that story for another time, or sooner if there's a demand.

Watching the show disgusted me, but I couldn't stop. Maybe I'm just one of those people that likes to imbibe in some self-induced aggravation every so often. Harmless enough, just watching a TV show for half an hour on a Sunday night.

And it's not like I can even say anything bad about the four stars. I never saw them engage in any true "diva" behavior, though it wasn't like they were hanging at craft with the rest of us bums. They all were nice enough, and that Kristen Davis I talked to a little bit when we had to do this thing where I was crossing the street walking next to her over and over again and she was pleasant alright. But still...I can't deny myself a chuckle or two when their blown-up faces pass me on a city bus and all I can think of is all the Photoshop work that had to be done on those gals trying to pass themselves off as something they're not. Then again, they're not the ones doing the passing, they're just picking up a paycheck and someone else is passing them.

Hell, the Real Housewives of (your town here) have more integrity, and a lesser budget for flattering lighting.

I should have some people up tomorrow. And yes, I know that there might be two very nice people I met on the street almost two weeks ago and had a very nice conversation with that just might be wondering where their pictures are. I have no excuses, I just haven't done them yet. But I'm so damned close!

You can always reach out and bother me. That's a good motivator.

"Reach out, reach out and touch someone..."

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Truman Capote is Alive and Well

From behind, at least:

I had almost forgotten about it until I heard someone mention it on the TV last night:

"Fleet Week begins tomorrow!"

The horror.

In addition to all of the usual drunken yahoos that choke the streets on any given night, now we have to deal with shore leave in NYC, and it isn't quite as wholesome as Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelly, and Jules Munshin singing and dancing their way through town. It's more like drunken fat chicks with sloppy tits wearing some sailor's hat as she digs her fingernails into his meaty forearm to keep what little balance she has left. She'll get her brains fucked out later on, though she probably won't remember much or any of it, waking up the next day and asking, "What's your name," followed by, "did we have sex?" That is, if there's even someone in the bed at all when she gets up the following afternoon.

This goes on for a week.

God bless America.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

He's Got the Whole World...

Right in front of him:

Looking at this shot, all I can think about is that stupid Goodburger. I finally tried it about a month ago. The burger wasn't that great. Actually, it wasn't even that good. The milkshake was good, but it was way too expensive for the size that they give you.

But burger or no burger, the world just keeps rolling along:

Maybe this dude was Atlas, and just got tired carrying the world on this shoulders day in and day out. I don't see any harm in taking a break every now and again.

But I never got the chance to ask him if he was Atlas or not as he took his world with him:

Some of us are just more worldly than others...

Monday, May 24, 2010

Jonathan and Victoria

I was worried about this one. I had just put a fresh roll into the YashMat when Jonathan (I think it was Jonathan) noticed the camera. I really don't remember much of the encounter. I didn't get to ask much about them beyond their names. Though we did discuss cameras ever so briefly.

I'm actually shocked this came out as well-exposed as it did. Of course you can see some serious brightness on Jonathan's arm and face, as well as Victoria's hand, but hell, when I realized afterwards that I hadn't changed the settings from trying to take some artsy fartsy black and white photos of a statue of the Virgin Mary, well, I expected these shots to be a literal washout.

There was one other shot that was more portraity (yes, "portraity." You wants to make something of it?), but I felt compelled to use the action shot.

I hope you guys are fine with the choice.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Reflecting in the Park

I really need to start broadening my horizons I think:

Well, I do have some people shots ready to go. Well, they're ready in the sense that they're encased in film rolled up in my fridge and not even loaded into developing cans yet, but they're ready. I guess you can say I've been a bit lazy about developing this week.

I'll pick up tomorrow. You know "tomorrow," that day that never comes...

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Guest Programming From the Past

Here's the story of a roll of film, as I best I can piece it together with all the skills I learned watching Quincy.

I purchased the roll of exposed Plus-X, so I have no idea what kind of camera it was in, other than it being a 6x9. Judging by the thick paper I figured it was from the 40s or 50s.

Here's the first shot:

I think I attract snow. This is like the third vintage exposed roll I've developed and had it end up being a snow scene. I had to really push the contrast to get some detail in the mother's (presumably) face. It's like the center of the film is brighter overall. I'm not sure if that's aging, or maybe the way the film was curved in the metal spool. Oh and that line up above is because I screwed up loading the film. Luckily it was virtually right between frames. I've been having trouble loading up my steel reels lately. I've lost the magic touch (that almost sounds like it could be a song...).

Next we have mother holding up child for all to see:

The mother really is pretty. I'm wondering if she isn't pregnant underneath all that overcoat.

I'm not sure the woman in this shot is the same one (if it was taken on the same day), since she's clearly wearing different shoes:

The car is a 1950 DeSoto Custom, so we know this photo isn't any older than that. I don't know who the man is in the picture, but he's pretty hardy, with his coat off and his shirtsleeves rolled up in the snow. Maybe he had worked up a sweat shoveling and took a break to pose with child. Or maybe grandchild. We may never know.

And then we lose the trail along with their heads. Who knows where the camera was stored, or why the film was never exposed, and we don't have any images until many years later:

After years of disuse, the camera was picked up and this man's picture was taken. Is he related to anybody in the previous pictures? Is he the little child all growed up when this picture was taken? I'm guessing this might be the 80s with the "surf" shirt.

And then they decided to finish out the roll in that ancient camera:

And then it was forgotten about once again, never to be taken in to be developed, until I decided it was worth the risk to buy this loose exposed roll of film, to give an end to its journey through time ("journey through time?").

Now the only way to truly put an end to the story would be to identify the players in the pictures, though that would take a heaping of circumstance. But until then...

Friday, May 21, 2010

Grove Court

No trespassing:

I was reminded of his smile tonight.

It's a smile I've thought about so many times, a smile so vivid, yet as I walk around and "write" in my head, I can never figure out how to describe it.

It was a smile of sadness, of being completely overtired physically and emotionally, of having endured the unimaginable. A smile of someone who had no more tears to give, when the act of crying was beyond pointless. It was a loose-jawed smile, but not slack. He breathed in deep the night air, standing in the arched, empty firehouse doorway. Fourteen responded that morning, only four came back. Who knows if he was one of the four, wondering why he was so lucky, but having to live with the grief that comes with such an unimaginable loss from such an unimaginable event.

"Surreal" is maybe an overused term, or one that isn't used correctly in these types of situations, but those times can only be summed up as surreal. I walked around that afternoon thinking how odd it was that the same thing was on everybody's mind. Not odd, but surreal. Surreal, but not unexpected. Can the expected be surreal by definition? Je ne sais pas.

I don't want to get too much into details about how things were back then, not just that day, but in the days following that day. Not yet. Perhaps another time I'll write more of those times, but not tonight.

I just want to find the right way to convey that smile, though maybe it's best left unconveyed, or maybe it was never meant to be conveyed in the first place.

And yet it will remain in my mind an unforgettable artifact from that unforgettable day.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

On the Waterfront

But you won't find Terry Malloy here, or Karl Malden saying, "Now I'm just a potato eater," but you will find water:

Tomorrow I will be a prisoner of the deliverymen, for I am expecting packages that will be arriving from UPS and FedEx. Oh lucky me. At least I can get this nonsense out of the way in one day.

Yes, my prose tonight is tired and uninspired. Well, I guess it's a reflection of the man typing these words this evening. But why should I be uninspired? I just watched A Clockwork Orange for the god knows how manynth time! Who doesn't smile every time Alex comes through the door with a, "Hi hi hi there!" And who can't fail to hum along to Ludwig Van, since we certainly ain't singing along with Mitch.

I never sang along with Mitch.

Okay, so I just came back from YouTube where I sang along with Mitch.

"Lookie Lookie Lookie, here comes Cookie...."

The horror.
The horror.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Le Yoga

Le Yoga dans Washington Square Park:

I came across this group of French people doing yoga in the park last week. But once again, I'm making assumptions.

Just because they were all speaking French, does that mean they're from France?

Maybe they're from Belgium or Quebec. Hell, they might even be from Haiti or Senegal.

Or maybe they're an American French class that just decided to break out some yoga moves, or perhaps each person is actually two midgets — wait, I think I've gone down this road before...

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

In My Eyes

That's the name of her business. "In My Eyes Photography." That's what it says on her business card. I was hoping her name would be on the card because of course, silly me didn't write it down, or even enter it into the "memo" application in my superphone.

This was in the West Village. They had shut down a bunch of streets for some yearly art fair which I just stumbled upon by accident. She was one of the many artists gracing the streets that day. She grew up in the neighborhood, but makes her home in New Hampshire. She said that she grew up going to this fair (and why not, it was practically on her block) and finally decided to show her work which was a mix of the city and country.

This was the last shot of four I took with the YashMat. I got the focus just right on this one, and it's her best expression too.

I'm sorry I forgot your name.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Waiting for Basquiat

I've been trying to really get a good shot of 57 Great Jones Street, especially without a car in front of it. I had a window of time last week and tried to make the most of it:

It was Basquiat's home and studio. I wonder if the people there even know that, let alone that he died upstairs. Every so often there will be a familiar looking crown drawn on the door, or even just two simple words:


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Columbus Circle

I much like the way Scorcese incorporated this statue/sculpture into the Palantine campaign speech scene in Taxi Driver:

Not much to say today, other that I'm jamming Dio in various guises to mark his passing. I mean, it's not like he doesn't get regular play around here, but today especially.

If only that little guy up there were throwing up horns instead of fists...

Goodnight Ronnie James Dio, wherever you are.

Saturday, May 15, 2010


It was a cold blustery day a few Wednesdays ago in Washington Square Park (where else?) when my friend said, "Take their picture." I hadn't been planning on capturing their kiss but who was I to argue:

Now while the above picture was taken a few weeks ago, the encounter described below happened just a few hours ago...

I spent much of the day sending film through the YashMat in the West Village and wanted to load up just one more roll before heading home. It was crowded in Washington Square Park, and bench space was at a premium, until I noticed one that was completely free and saw a man in the adjoining bench yell something that I wasn’t sure I heard right at first. It sounded like:


He was maybe in his early thirties with olive skin and a full head of black wavy hair. Again he shouted, “A VAGINA NEVER AGES!”

I knew where I was going to sit.

Next to him sat a weathered black man. They were denizens, neighborhood people who seem to be just on the border of homelessness and are almost always in the park. As I began to load up a fresh roll of Ektachrome VS he engaged in a new mantra.


He turned to me and said, “Isn’t cunt a great word?”

“Yeah, it’s short and to the point.”


As a pretty blond girl was walking by, he yelled out a short quick, “CUNT,” and she turned her head. “You see, she looked! You know she’s been called a cunt before. CUUUUUUUUUUNNNNNNNNNNNNNT!!!!” He then turned to me and said, “What is that, a Hasselblad? I studied photography.”

“No, it’s a Yashica-Mat, the Japanese knock-off of the Rolleiflex.”

“But it’s still got a decent lens right?”

“Yeah, it gets the job done.” As I was saying that, another man came over. He was probably in his forties with long salt and pepper hair. He looked at me with a devious smile and said, “I want you to give me lessons in style.”

“No no, he’s cool,” the first guy said. I was flattered that he thought so, even though I hardly said much beyond talking a bit about the camera and agreeing on the efficacy of cunt (the word, that is).

“I don’t think I’m qualified,” I said.

“No, look at you, you’ve got the old camera, the hat, the sunglasses,” he said as he sidled up next to me. He put his hand on my back and I could smell the booze on his breath as he leaned in to sweat me further, even as the first gentleman kept protesting that I was “cool.”

“No,” the second man said, “I mean I want lessons on how to be stylish. Once a week we can meet and you can tell me how to do it,” he said with a casual yet intense southern California drawl.

“I don’t think I’m qualified,” I repeated. “This is just the way I dress.”

The first man then jumped up and said to me, “Have you ever taken a picture of an asshole?”

“A person, or the body part?” I responded.

“I’m talking about the human sphincter, because I’ll drop my pants right here and spread my cheeks and you can take a picture of my asshole. I’ll really do it. I bet you don’t have any pictures of any assholes.”

“Did you ever hear of GG Allin?” I asked him, as he started laughing.

The man who had been putting the squeeze on me leaned back. “I knew GG Allin!” he said.

“So did I. I went on tour with him.”

The man then went to tell me how he used to live down the hall from GG in Atlanta god knows how many years ago. He said that to make money, GG would let people hit him over the head with a whiskey bottle for five bucks a pop.

“Fortunately, I knew him after those days,” I said. I never know what might happen when I play the GG card. In this case it worked, but you never know. You might mention it and someone will say, “GG Allin? He beat up my sister!” Then things might get a bit dicey.

But with GG smoothing things over almost 17 years after his death, we went on to chat about how Washington Square Park was the coolest place in the coolest city in the world, “And we’re right at the center of it,” he further explained. I did not (and do not) disagree. After I told him I was originally from New Jersey, he told me about how in California he heard how people from NJ were always mean and hard, and how NYC was full of people acting like they were from New Jersey! But he went on to say how glad he was to be wrong. After some more small talk he said, “Listen, I’m a bit hard up…Can you spare five bucks for a drink?”

“I’m sorry, I can’t.” I said. The last and worst thing I could have done at that moment was to feel charitable. If a denizen knows you’re a soft touch, then it’s over. It’s all about keeping that certain distance where you’re close enough to chitchat, yet not stepping over that fine line of them knowing they can get more from you, or them just thinking they can get more from you, which is potentially more dangerous.

He didn’t seem too disappointed after my denial and said, “It’s okay, I’m resourceful.”

That I don’t doubt.

“Check this out,” the first guy jumped in. “This is from a fight I got in three weeks ago,” he said as he showed off a right fist with scabbed knuckles. “This one got dislocated,” he said, indicating the middle knuckle.

The second gentleman said, “Look at this,” as he produced both fists, each row of knuckles barely visible under a dense strata of scar tissue. I kept my pristine knuckles to myself (though every so often they get really chapped and I have to use that Neutrogena cream to get them back to their usual notpunchingpeopleintheface softness).

The rest of my visit with them was pleasant enough, and I even let the second gentleman examine and take a picture with the YashMat (while I kept a close eye, of course). But soon enough I bade my farewell and left their world of comparative scar study and discreetly consuming alcohol in public to my own Fortress of Solitude (apologies to Kal-El) and my world of worrying about making my next post to this site, talking to a lizard (perfectly normal, right?), and pondering the possibility of taking my old scanner in to be repaired if I can’t figure a way to get a decent high quality scan out of my newer one.

Aren’t you disappointed that I had to mention the scanner situation after all that?

I am too.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Playing Post Office

I took a picture at these rails before. There's something about this view that I just like:

You never realize how much of a creature of habit you really are until you start looking at a map of your neighborhood every time you leave the house. It's one thing to know that you literally have a routine, yet it's another thing to actually see it in black Sharpie lines. It's a reminder of how few of us actually take the time to force ourselves out of convention to see the world in a new light.

What the fuck kind of bullshit was that last sentence? "force ourselves out of convention to see the world in a new light?" Yecch.

But it's true. And it's not about going on lavish trips and seeing the world. Hell, I used to meet chicks and they'd say, "oh I've been here and there and blah blah blah...." I don't give a shit where you've been, I just want you to smile at me.

I know it's not possible for a lot of people to go outside their routine. I don't mean like some kind of mental not possible, but out of necessity. People are busting their asses to get by and can't take the time to wander around and mark streets off on a map.

My god. Have I just written a long form version of taking time to stop and smell the roses?

Double yecch.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


I think the guy on the right dropped his paper:

I could take this opportunity to bitch about my scanner, but aren't you sick of that already?

I could say that I'm a bit miffed that my 16 pass scans at 2400dpi are more blurrier (yes, "more blurrier") than 16x pass scans at 1200dpi.

I could say I'm even more miffed that I already threw out the packaging for the replacement scanner so I'm stuck with this thing.

Of course, I could remedy all this by doing my own prints, yet that would be quite a logistical feat considering the size of my bathroom.

It's time for bed.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bridgehead Revisited

Okay, so the automatic spell checker didn't give the red dotted underline to the word, "Brideghead," to which I ask, what the hell is a bridgehead? And yes, I'm too lazy to go to the OED2 site for an answer. Sometimes I'll just stay ignorant. I like the dude in the foreground. I think he adds something to what would have been a typical Brooklyn Bridge shot. And it's also off-center, though that's proabaly not on purpose:

Trying to push myself here. Stupid fatigue.

Yesterday some drunken woman was trying to tell me that my legs were too skinny for a supposedly healthy person and she was convinced that I must be diseased. "Are you a heroin addict?"


"Do you have AIDS?"


"Are you HIV positive?"


"Well you must be hep-something!"

"No, you'll just have to accept my physiology for what it is."

They say you're the most desirable when you're not looking, yet I can't understand how these people find me. And yes, I know I'm cutting to the chase of this story without providing a greater context, but I'm tired and have things to do here.

And no, I didn't indulge her desires.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Detail from a statue of Harriet Tubman up in Harlem:

If the statue is to be believed all those runaway slaves were hiding in her dress. Where she put the railroad I'm not even going to dignify with an inquiry.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Brooklyn Bridge Roadway

Cars and people, separate but equal:

Then again, there are people in the cars, but we can't see them.

But then again, if we can't see the driver of a car, can we rightly assume that there is actually someone behind the wheel doing the driving?

And if we see someone behind the wheel, can we rightly assume that it's a flesh and blood human being and not an automaton?

And if we see an automaton behind the wheel, can we rightly assume it's a robot of sorts, and not two midgets in an overcoat?

I wonder what Descartes would say about all of this. Then again, I've never actually seen Descartes, so how do I know he even existed. Je pense, donc je suis? Are you sure?

I'd like to think there were two midgets named René and Descartes that shared an overcoat and a quill pen. In fact, I do think that. Je pense, donc je sais.

Sais sais sais, what you will....

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Well, maybe it's more of a grassnap, or a dirty man napping. At least I think he was napping. He was rather motionless, but I wasn't going to be the one to poke him with a stick just to make sure:

I learned a valuable lesson earlier this evening. Well, it's not so much a lesson, but just a reminder of what not to do when your allergies flare up in a Mexican restaurant.

Always remember to be sure your index finger is completely free of hot sauce before you stick it in your eye because it's been itching so much. Then again, the burning pain and uncontrollable tears made me forget in that moment just how much my eyes really had been itching. Actually, no. My left eye was still itching while my right eye was trying to abdicate from my skull.

And then there was this nose in the middle saying, "What do you want from me?"

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Brooklyn Bridge Pier

Brooklyn side:

Got an Asnco Panda and a Brownie #3 box camera from the same seller at a reasonable price. I didn't realize the Panda was so small! But it's pretty darned cute, and in good shape with the original leather case too.

The #3 had a roll of film in it. 124 film, and I have no idea how to go about developing it. Also, while the film was on the takeup reel, when I pulled it out it was at the beginning of the roll, and not side advertising it as "Exposed." So what to do? Do I risk developing this thing (in a way I've yet to figure out, but I'm sure I will eventually), and getting nothing, or do I shoot it and potentially end up double exposing modern shots of the arch in Washington Square Park over images of Hitler hosting a seder.

Yes, my life is fraught with such problems. I mean, why worry about the economy, the war, inept car bombers when I have a roll of 124 film on my hands!

What decadence.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Typical Shot

I think this is the ultimate in DUMBO hipsterism, but I guess I'm a sucker when it comes to the obvious:

I remember when they first started calling it DUMBO. Thus began the neighborhoodization of NYC by the real estate mongers. Going beyond just the traditional names for neighborhoods, they had to invent stranger names to sell them apartment. SOuth of HOuston was around for a long time, though I can't say when it first got that name. Then there was the TRIangle BElow CAnal. Then by 1995 I started hearing about Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass.

Then somewhere in there came NOrth of HOuston. And since that was too encompassing, NOorth of LIttle ITAly was chiseled off into independence. Though what really gave me douche chills was when I heard about (the) MEatPAcking District.

And this doesn't even cover things like them calling Hell's Kitchen "Clinton," or trying to rebrand Bushwick as "East Williamsburg."

I have a little name for my neighborhood, my block, hell, just my apartment, but I'm keeping that to myself. Well, until I plan to develop...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Gay Street

It's one of my favorite crooked little streets in this city:

It's in the West Village, and contrary to popular belief, it is not named Gay Street because the neighborhood is famous for the free exchange (though sometimes people pay) of semen between a couple of (or perhaps several) men. It's named after some dude. And even though I have the internet at my fingertips, and a whole book on the history of NYC street names, I leave it to you, the reader, to investigate further if you so desire.

One of the nice things about Gay Street is its characteristic bend, which I'm not sure I quite successfully captured in this shot, though as I looked into the Yashmat's viewfinder I noticed the man and the dog and thought it added a bit of quaintness to the scene. Another thing about Gay Street is that it's just one block, and is infrequented by cars (infrequented?)

I lined up another, slightly different shot and the man and I exchanged a pleasant nod as he passed. I then headed up the middle of the street, turning around and walking backwards to see if I could do something with the reverse view. I turned back around and saw that I was two steps away from plunging my sandaled foot into a fresh pile of dogshit.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Once Upon A Time...

It's a nice little scene, right? It's looking into Central Park from CPW, maybe in the 90s or 80s. I don't remember where exactly:

I finally did it. I killed my scanner.

Today I went to my local around the corner independent Apple repair shop/store and got some of that fancy compressed air in a bottle with the little red straw taped to the side. I got home, inserted the straw into the hole above the trigger, took off the top of the scanner, removed the middle insert and pushed the red straw through the access holes (what I'm calling them) so I could blow air directly onto the other side of the glass.

Well....apparently I wasn't paying too close attention to the instructions on the bottle that said something about not tilting it more than 45 degrees. So all of that super-cold fluid propellant stuff came gushing out and onto the glass. Even though it evaporated, the damage has been done. The scanner, she is finished. C'est fin. I definitely have to get a new scanner. And with all the choices I'm faced with, I'm going to stick with the same model, the Hewlett-Packard G4050. I mean, why fix something if it ain't broke? Come to think of it I tried to fix something that wasn't quite broken, just a little dirty on the inside and then went on to not quite break it but render it useless for my purposes, so I guess why replace it with something else when I can get the same thing and know what to expect (I hope. Please god I hope...).

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


This was a single shot of the ceiling that ended up making an accidental double exposure that I posted like over a week ago:

But let's get down to what we've all been waiting for...

So I performed some minor surgery on my scanner last night, but I don't think anybody is going to be mistaking me for Vince Edwards anytime soon. I couldn't get directly at the other side of the lid glass of the scanner, so I tried to blow the dust away as best I could. It turns out I sucked at blowing. Or maybe I should get one of those high-powered blowers and not the little hand dealy that I'm using now. That'll be the last gasp, my last ditch attempt before buying another scanner.

But in case you're wondering exactly what I'm talking about, I'll post some evidence. This pic was taken last summer, and posted pretty early on in this blog:

Now here's last night's scan of the same image:

Now if you hadn't seen the first one, the shmutz in question might barely have been noticeable. But what cinched it for me was a scan I did of a Brooklyn Bridge slide, and it was like the whole sky was filled with the crap. I deleted it in disgust, hence the lack of it being, "Exhibit B."

Oddly enough (or maybe not), the stuff is virtually invisible when I do black and white scans. I'm sure there's some explanation that I'm not quite ready to grasp, but I don't limit myself to just black and white pictures. But even then, in some of my black and white scans have some white spots on them and I'm guessing that might be the same dust.

Will this nonsense ever end?

ps: I couldn't help myself with the "OMG" and "WTF." Maybe I should have put a picture of a cat in there with a bunch of misspelled, phonetically spelled out words to further liven the situation.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Reflected in Squares

I think this came out pretty darn okay:


It's a funny thing. For the past few days, things with the scanner have been really cruising along (but not like Cruising with Al Pacino). No bizarre colors or weird lines, things were just like old times with me and my gal. Today I scanned some slide stuff, actually some re-scans of stuff that I wanted to do at a higher dpi, and I noticed dirt, or as the Jews say, shmutz on the image. It was especially visible in areas of sky. Perplexed, I examined the film and found it was clan as was the scanner bed — as well it should have since I was diligently blowing it (Maybe this is more like Cruising with Al Pacino than I realized). I mean, squeezing the ball in my hand to force out the....I mean...oh, you know what I mean.

Yes, the bed was clean, but when I took a look at the clear glass under the lid of the scanner...Oh my...(in my best George Takei).

You see, living in NYC, dust just gets EVERYWHERE and in everything, no matter how much you vacuum or run your fancy Swedish air purifier (though it does help), and the lid of the scanner isn't a one piece deal. It's designed in such a way that it has an inner center panel, and apparently where the center panel meets the rest of the lid isn't dust-proof, so I got some shit going on in there and all the blowing in the world ain't going to satisfy it. So I'm going to have to do some old-fashioned home surgery on this, and it ain't gonna be pretty. Think the liver extraction in Monty Python's The Meaning of Life.

So tomorrow you'll either be reading about a success story with me making comparisons between myself and Ben Casey, or you'll be reading about a brand new purchase that I made at J&R Music World.

Oh goody. I can't wait, yet I really really can.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

That Was Me

A few weeks ago, after having finished a, "Brendan Burger" (3 kinds of cheese, I don't know what kind), at Connelly's (I think that's what it's called. there seem to be a whole bunch of chain Irish bar/restaurants that don't come off as chains but they really are) up on 40somethingth and Madison:

It must have been around 10:30 last night when I got out of the subway at 14th and 1st. Yes, I was coming from Fortress Hipster aka Williamsburg. Yes, the person I was visiting was white, yet she moved in 14 years ago (and farther east than the ground zero of Bedford Ave) when standard greeting on the street was, "Yo Nigga," and has since been replaced by, "I don't think my pants are tight enough." But this post is not about Williamsburg-bashing (even though I do find it an enjoyable pastime).

The scene played out on 1st Avenue. A young man was dropping off a lady at her front door. They both looked to be in their early 20s. She was casually dressed while he had somewhat of a preppie look. He said goodnight to her and then turned away and walked up 1st. At that moment I wanted to scream, "KISS HER, STUPID," but instead I just watched. She stood at her door and looked in his direction. He turned back and looked at her while he kept walking away. She then looked back in his direction, not once, but twice, before she smiled and opened up the door.

God, he had it in the bag. She wanted him to kiss her, and likely more. I wonder what what she was thinking when she smiled. Did she know that maybe she'd give him another shot at making a move, or did she put him aside, knowing that a pretty young woman in this down doesn't have to go far to find someone interested in her — for whatever reason.

Maybe I should have raced after that dude and let him know how much that chick liked him. I definitely should have gone after him and said, "Listen Stupid, you better go back to that girl because she wants you to put your penis inside her vagina or rectum if you're lucky and move it around until not a single spermatozoa is left in your testes, and if you don't fuck her, I will." That last bit is wishful thinking on my part.

I feel weird thinking about what I saw last night, mostly because I understood. That was me. I was that kid — minus the Le Tigre shirt or whatever he was wearing — but that was me. And even though I'd like to think I've come a long ways since I was at a girl's door wondering what to do next, sometimes those old feelings re-emerge, and I'm fighting shyness all over again.

Maybe I should vocally implored him to kiss her. Maybe I could have been the crazy old guy on the street that acts as a catalyst for them to get grooving ("grooving?" what decade is this?), you know like out of an 80s movie or something. But no. He didn't make his move, and neither did I.

I hope they figure it out.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Tree & ESB

Who says you need the very top of the antenna in the shot:

Though if this were earlier times, before the antenna was up there, I think it would have looked pretty darn great, tree and all. Then again, that tree wouldn't have been in the shot in the pre-antenna days (I think it went up in 1955, you can do the looking up on the internet if you feel so inclined. I'll be staying right here).

And yes, no extended musings for today. I think I just realized something, that the best time for me to write something extended on this thing is like between 8-10 at night. It's at that time that I'm tired enough to let my guard down to actually write something that I might ordinarily decide against if I were fully awake, yet not too tired so I'm not just writing, "Boy am I tired," and leaving it at that.

Boy am I awake !