Monday, November 20, 2017

B&W Challenge, Day One

So there's this meme going around where somebody challenges somebody else to post black and white pictures for seven days, no people, no words. Nobody challenged me (sniff) but I don't have any better ideas so I'm just gonna do it. 

We start in Citygarden with Tom Claasen's Two Rabbits. They look passive enough but those of us of a certain age cannot forget another apparently innocent bunny

I may have to hit the archives to finish this exercise but I'm interested in shooting some dead empty shopping malls on Thursday, Thanksgiving in the United States. 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

It Would Be An improvement

We took Ellie to STL's wonderful children's museum, The Magic House. (Yes, she is officially Madeleine but we all call her Ellie and I'm changing my usage.) I had not been there since our kids were young. It's been greatly expanded and improved. Ellie had a ball. 
There was an area devoted to American government. To my surprise, there was a mock-up of the Oval Office. The children could pretend to sit at the president's desk and Ellie took her turn. I think she was taking a call from Putin.

The Constitution requires that the president be at least 35 years of age. A video system lets the kids find out how long they have to wait. I hope it won't be nearly that long (months preferred to years) for a major improvement on the incumbent. 

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Times Square 2

The hordes. I don't think I've ever been there when it wasn't busy. And if you are a New Yorker, the sign in the first picture will resonate. 

Note Olivier in the right of the third picture.         

Friday, November 17, 2017

Times Square 1

Everyone has seen pictures of Times Square and many of us have walked through it. It used to be rather tawdry but the city cleaned it up, after a fashion. Now it's all megawatt advertising glitz and family friendly if your eyes aren't too sensitive. During my recent visit, many of the blinding signs were advertising movies. Incongruously, the display on Walgreens pharmacy was rotating beautiful black and white photos of African people. It was packed during a damp, chilly autumn evening.

Tomorrow, some of the people in the swirling scene.       

Thursday, November 16, 2017

9/11 Museum

Beneath the plaza of the World Trade Center is a museum about the devastating events of September 11, 2001, and the thousands of people who died that day. I've been there once before and I still find it a very difficult place. The horror and suffering it depicts are overwhelming, almost too much to bear for the living sixteen years later.

Olivier and I visited it on the last afternoon of our meet-up in New York. I took a lot of pictures on my first visit. but could not make more than a few this time. It was just too hard. As you descend the escalator into the cavernous space you are met with the sign in the first picture and wonder if it will literally be true. Just beyond is the mangled fire truck. The blue escalator in the last picture is the exit back upstairs. Stairway to heaven? The color could not have been accidental.     

Wednesday, November 15, 2017


One dictionary defines oculus as a circular or oval window or a circular opening at the top of a dome.  I do not know how this new building at the World Trade Center got its name.  It has ribs that flare in like a cathedral ceiling and then back out like wings. The general shape, seen from above, is something like a football; maybe sort of oval. The eye reference may be that it contains a major transit hub, completely reformed after the tragedy of September 11, 2001. Then throw in an upscale shopping mall (there are Apple, Kate Spade and Hugo Boss stores). The name doesn't exactly work, other than it is memorable.

But it is such an eyeful! Every angle, every view has something uniquely interesting. Sometimes, like in the second picture, you get the tower of One World Trade Center in the frame.   

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Legos In Rockefeller Center

If you've been to New York, you can imagine how expensive ground-level retail space is in Rockefeller Center. Some companies will pay up, though, to show off their stuff in a spectacular, high-traffic location.

There is a big Lego store on the concourse leading west from Fifth Avenue to the central plaza and skating rink. The picture above is a model of just that, all made from Legos.  The second photo looks like a giant Lego insect buzzing the entrance to Radio City Music Hall.