Saturday, September 20, 2008

Dick Clark?

The very last picture I took during my trip to New York was this mosaic in the Times Square subway station. I thought at the time it was supposed to be Dick Clark, but now I'm not so sure. There were quite a few of these merry New Year's revelers along the wall in the Times Square Station, and it being Dick Clark would make some sense, since he's been hosting the New Year's festivities there for as long as I've been alive. But looking at it now, I think that's just a horn of some sort in his hand, and not the microphone I imagined at first. The sign on the ground is one of dozens that some group had spread along the wall, trying to bring people over to their view of the Bible. I, of course, was more interested in Dick Clark.

Update: The Web is, of course, an amazing place. Go visit this excellent site all about the New York City subway system, where I learned that my non-Dick-Clark mosaic is part of an installation called The Revelers by Jane Dickson.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Looking South

Here are three pictures I took from the observation deck of the Empire State Building on September 11th. Each one is a little bit closer to Ground Zero, which is where they are shining the spotlights from. It's tough to get shots like this in the dark without them being blurry, but I think these are fairly good. Just to orient you a little, in the shot above, you can see the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges at the left of the picture, reaching over the East River. To the right is the Hudson River. The bridge in the shot below is the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, linking Brooklyn to Staten Island. And that means that most of the lights in the background are actually on Staten Island. Somewhere out there is the Statue of Liberty, but I don't think it's visible too clearly in any of these pictures. Wait, it's a tall green object in the right of center in the picture up top. I think I've gotten much better as a photographer since the last time I tried to take pictures from this spot.

In this last shot, you can see where the lights shine right up out of the hole that used to be the World Trade Center towers. More about that hole later.

Road Block

I don't know why, I just thought this picture of four sandhill cranes walking down the driveway to my parent's house was hilarious. I suppose you had to be there. The ones with their beaks open were making their loud cry, telling me to quit following them around and taking their picture. Sorry, guys, I couldn't resist.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Wake Up To This

I keep forgetting to post this. Last time I was working over in Daytona Beach, these giant stick insects were mating on the window sill out side the office I was in. That big one, which I think is the female, is about four inches long, not including the antennae or legs. The little male is only about two inches long. The only time I ever see these creatures is mating season, and even then I don't see two many of them. They seem to like to crawl up walls while mating for some reason unbeknowst to me. Biggest one I've ever seen was almost six inches, but that was back before I was an avid photographer, so I never got a picture. But maybe someday...

I love the internet! This is a muskmare (the big girl) and the little guy is her stallion. Scientific name is anisomorpha buprestoides, commonly called two-striped walkingsticks. How's that for info?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A Lighthouse In New Jersey

Imagine my surprise when I spotted this cute little lighthouse while on the Staten Island Ferry. Imagine my surprise when I tried walking towards it and after a mile or so I was no closer. Turns out that it's in New Jersey, and not actually on Staten Island. And if you look close at the shot below, you'll see it's got an airport nearby. I shot this on 9/11, so it concerned me at first, but the second or third time it happened, I figured out what was going on. Turns out it's Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) behind there.

PS-This was not the first lighthouse I saw on my trip. More about that other one later.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Was It Something I Said?

Hmmmm... I leave New York, and the financial markets tumble. You'd think they could have paid me to stay in town a few more days... Anyhow, that's the New York Stock Exchange above, before the big tumble. After the Dow Jones Industrial Average looses 500 points today, I suspect that flag looks quite a bit smaller now.

Good Bye New York

Add JFK to the list of airports that are kind enough to offer free wireless. I'm sitting here waiting for the flight back to Sarasota, and I wanted to say that I had a great time here in the Big Apple. They aren't kidding when they say it's big, but I never figured out the apple part. I'm happy to say that I made it to almost all of the spots on my list, including all five boroughs (Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and The Bronx), the tops of both the Empire State Building and Rockefeller Center (Top Of The Rock), Coney Island (blech!), the Statue of Liberty (it's actually called Liberty Enlightening the World, by the way) and I even walked the entire length of Central Park. But more on all that later, after I've slept for about a week. Shame I have to be back at work tomorrow.

Sunday, September 14, 2008


After several tries, we finally located the Imagine mosaic in the Strawberry Fields section of Central Park. I'm not sure how we missed it the first few times, but we finally got to the right path. It's across Central Park West and just slightly south of the Dakota building, where Lennon lived at the time of his death, and where Yoko Ono lives to this day. There was a guy there playing Lennon songs on a guitar, and plenty of people quietly showing their respects to their favorite Beatle. I don't know if you get the flower petals every day, or just on the weekends.

I was a little shocked to be a thousand miles from home and see a bumper sticker for a Tampa radio station on a guitar laid near the Imagine memorial. But there is was. Maybe I should send them this picture. WMNF, are you listening?

You Never Know What You'll Find

One of the more surprising things I've seen here in NYC is this statue. Nothing too exciting when you spot it, until you read the story behind it. This sculpture was 2.5 kilometers from the atomic blast at Hiroshima in 1945. It was brought to New York ten years later and now sits in front of a Buddhist temple on Riverside Drive. Impressive, huh?