Thursday, September 30, 2010

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Capital Improvement, Upper West Side, Manhattan

They milled our street in the middle of the night. I don't know the names for most of the equipment, but let's just call them tractors, grinders and crushers. And, of course, there was a huge dump truck to capture the debris. In any event, it was a noisy and long operation. Did I mention it was the middle of the night? And that our bedroom overlooks the street? We closed windows and turned on the air conditioning to keep out the dust and mask (not very successfully) the sounds. OK, I know I sound grumpy but I was actually more surprised than annoyed that such loud work is scheduled for the middle of the night in the a crowded New York neighborhood. And it was a chance to appreciate the fact that taxes serve an important purpose, i.e., they pay for important public investments like roads.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Lunch in Tokyo (Except We Were Really in Herald Square)

FoodParc, a sleek modern food mall, opened off Herald Square, and my friend Robyn and I celebrated her birthday there. Customers place their order (with help from green t-shirted staff, as in the photo) with three different food stands via a touch screen and check their orders' progress via large flat-screen TVs. We ordered from all three places, as you can see in the photo below (our order is third from the bottom). I felt like we were in Tokyo.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Garment District, Manhattan

Gray's Papaya at 37th & 8th.

Making salad at Dean & Deluca in the New York Times Building.

Cool old roof at 38th & 8th.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Garment District, Manhattan

Trying out the "secret camera" app on my Iphone, which takes pictures while I pretend to do something else. 

Friday, September 17, 2010

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Not Your Father's Blackboard (TriBeCa, Manhattan)

Zago, a design firm in TriBeCa, uses its large windows overlooking Broadway as a blackboard.

Storm Window (Garment District, Manhattan)

Lights in the office across from mine glow through the sudden severe storm that sweeps across the city.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Community Restitution (12th Avenue, Manhattan)

On our second day of filming, we spent part of the morning with offenders participating in restitution projects, like cleaning sidewalks and repainting hydrants.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Not Very Quiet on the Set (Midtown, Manhattan)

I'm directing a video for work. Here Niki mikes 
the director of a business association while Juan Carlos sets up the tripod.
It was noisy on Broadway but the perfect atmosphere for an interview about the revitalization of Times Square.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Peaceful Abiding (22nd St., Manhattan)

My husband and I spent our weekend in a meditation workshop at the Shambala Meditation Center of New York. A good deal of time we stared at this corner of floor. This an instance where a picture is not worth a thousand words since the experience was far richer than the photo suggests. For one thing, the image doesn't capture the sounds, the breeze, the myriad other textures of the experience. More importantly, it doesn't capture what was going on in my head, including the (brief) moments of tranquility and insight. It's something a person must experience for themselves to understand.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Columbus Circle, Manhattan

Workers from Whole Foods gave away gift cards to passersby who correctly guessed the value of the five items (instant noodles, vitamin water, apple sauce & nut bar) on the tray. I guessed $5.25. The correct answer was $5, so no gift card for me.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Near Port Authority, Manhattan

It was impossible to ignore this glowing t-shirt, or the irony of seeing a William Shatner or a prone homeless-looking man (two phenomenon that all the "yes we can"s in the world can't seem to make go away) in the same frame.

As paper books give way to e-books and billboards give way to Google Adwords, the last vestiges of old-fashioned marketing fade away. There are lots of articles and blog posts on the internet about hand-painted billboards. Check out signs in Queens, Raleigh and Portland. This article from Great Britain gives them the fitting name "ghost signs".

"Dad, I'm tired of standing." "Sorry son, but you can't stop. Don't you see the sign?"

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Red Hook, Brooklyn

Red Hook Park, which abutts an abandoned grain factory, bustled today (as it does every summer weekend) with baseball and soccer games, picnics, and food vendors.
Lines are long at the most popular vendors.
Only when I got home did I learn (via Google) that Fernando and Yolanda Martinez, the owners of the Country Boys taco truck, where I ordered huaraches, were named the city's best vendors last year at the Vendy Awards. A constant flow of customers kept everyone on the truck, (in three above photos), very busy.
We took the Ikea ferry to Red Hook, at the wise suggestion of our friend Carolien after nixing plans to visit Governors Island (the line for that ferry was blocks long!) While we waited at South Street Seaport, we tossed coins onto metal faces suspended over the water. Most of the pennies disappeared into the deep but Sammy nailed this one on a face that we agreed looks vaguely like Obama's.

After returning to Manhattan, we came across this photo op. I thought the image above was interesting, not because this couple looked so pleased to be photographed on the site of George Washington's inauguration but because they seemed to have no idea that a dude in a pharaoh headdress was watching them.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Ditmas Park, Brooklyn

The Brooklyn sky, as seen from the garden of The Farm on Adderley, a restaurant on Cortelyou Road.
The houses in Ditmas Park are sooo cool, especially their roofs, including ones with fake Canadian geese grazing on the shingles.
The crumbling cornices reminded me that a home can be a pain to maintain.
What do dahlias and beer have in common? Sycamore Bar & Flowershop, also on Cortelyou Road.