Saturday, January 28, 2012

um diddle diddle diddle um diddle aye
Mahatma Gandhi walked barefoot most of the time, which produced an impressive set of calluses on his feet. 
He also ate very little, which made him rather frail and with his odd diet, he suffered from bad breath. So this made him what? (This is so bad, it's good.) 
A super callused fragile mystic hexed by halitosis.


at first I thought it was infatuation

In 2008, Sam Cooke was named the fourth "Greatest Singer of All Time" by Rolling Stone, with 29 hits in the U.S. top-40 between 1957 and 1964.

September 7, 1957
"You Send Me" reach #1 on the Billboard charts for a two week stay in December 1957, with sales estimated at a 1.5 million units.
Sam Cooke was shot to death in a cheap Los Angeles motel, December 11, 1964.
He was 33. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

one year ago tonight

things could be worse. :-)

passing pachyderm

Last Summer I found “Winter&Company serial #222686” left for dead by the side of the road.

You can see the resemblance here:

Winter was a contemporary of ESTEY Piano, the original factory in our ClockTower. In its day, Winter was a pretty good piano.

In 1901, Julius Winter purchased the Heller Piano Company of New York, forming the Winter Piano Company at the turn of the century, about 14 years after ESTEY. 

By 1903, a new, state-of-the-art factory was erected at 220-226 Southern Boulevard. 

That’s what Bruckner Blvd. was called in those days, “Southern”; the original ClockTower address was “Southern and Lincoln” indicating that Winter was just a few blocks from here.

The serial number places manufacture between 1941-1942

And this ad dates from 1946.

Alas, another old piano gone. And to think an elephant’s tusks were probably sacrificed for this.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

when you wish upon a star

Did you ever notice the stars on the outside of old brick buildings and wonder what they are for?

They look like decoration but they are more essential than that. They hold the building together. These two buildings are within walking distance of our ClockTower.

Brick can be stacked only so high before the walls begin to bulge out under their own weight. Build too high and the building just collapses. So 19th century architects came up with a way to hold brick buildings together. 

They ran large threaded rods through the brickwork with big washers and nuts on the outside, to keep the brick inline. Stars were a favorite motif but big rectangles work even better. Our ClockTower has these rectangular washers on the outside.

In fact, our tower goes up eight stories so it is studded with these washers.

They run through the tower itself and are visible inside, in the stairwell.

Without this reinforcement, the ClockTower couldn’t be more than a few stories high.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

if lofts get any smaller

I hate these freakin’ things

Who ever thought putting a sticker on every piece of fruit on the planet was a good idea?

Some accountant somewhere, likely. With apologies to fruit eating accountants.

But these labels are just awful. They take the skin off when you peel them and collect in the drain until it needs a plumber to take it all apart. I think these things are one of the great, worst ideas of the 20th century.

Now comes Scott Amron and Amron Experimental, with an idea so simple it’s sheer genius.

He proposes making labels out of soap. Fruit wash soap.
The barcode still functions, you can peel ‘em off if you want or splash ‘em and they soften into a gentle soap that dissolves wax and pesticides and fungicides.

A young man to watch.

Monday, January 23, 2012

you know this guy, right?

I think he’s fantastic.

125th 4-5 platform

Sunday, January 22, 2012