Saturday, May 5, 2012

sometimes you do your best work right out of the box

That’s what happened for CUTTING CREW, a British band who went right to #1 on the BillBoard charts with their first-ever hit, “(I just) Died in your arms tonight”.

This song was all over the radio in 1987.


Early one morning in Osaka I walked right past this tiny scooter, all fitted out for the long-haul, open road.

Can you imagine how hard that little engine has to work fully loaded with a full tank of gas and a Japanese pilot? And then cruise at highway speed?
But who cares? This thing is awesome.

The wheels are so small it’s probably not even stable.

But it’s overflowing with coolass leather pouches and buttressed on each side with aluminum sidecases.

The top box and the glove box appear to match in that cocoa/pink paint and the whole thing gangs on top of a huge black tub with wooden side protecters.
There’s a leather bag stuffed in behind the seat, too.

I love this thing. lol
This probably wouldn’t even be legal here in the states.

Dennis Hopper, 1969

Friday, May 4, 2012

Tin soldiers and Nixon coming

We're finally on our own.

Today is the 42nd anniversary of the KENT STATE shootings, a marker in time for baby boomers.
May 4, 1970, we were nearing the end of our freshman year in college and looking forward to Summer. The Kent State students went out on campus to protest U.S. involvement in Vietnam. That was common at the time. Four never came home.

Imagine Washington Square filled with chanting NYU Students, and now imagine the Governor calls out the militia and:
“At 12:24 pm, according to eyewitnesses, a Sgt. Myron Pryor turned and began firing at the students with his .45 pistol. A number of guardsmen nearest the students also turned and fired their rifles at the students. In all, 29 of the 77 guardsmen claimed to have fired their weapons, using a final total of 67 rounds of ammunition. The shooting was determined to have lasted only 13 seconds, although John Kifner reported in the New York Times that "it appeared to go on, as a solid volley, for perhaps a full minute or a little longer."

Hard to believe, right? Four dead. Nine wounded. Two of the dead were in the protest and the other two were just walking to class. At the time we stood stunned and just stared. Crosby Stills recorded a protest song. The country debated it for awhile. And then it went away. That was 42 years ago today.

We were freshman.

and the rats will have moved on

This beat up old warehouse at 173rd and West Farms Road is scheduled for imminent demolition. It’s been used for hot dogs and food and it’s damp inside and there is a sense in the air of the rats who live there.

It’s also covered in graffiti so the pieces overlap and the paint has built up to noticeable thickness. The owner was known to encourage it.

There’s a Shepard Fairey peel and stick there, too, although it’s anyone’s guess if it is really his or some local knockoff.

But the building itself is cool.

Valeri Larko thinks it’s cool, too. She is painting this warehouse before they tear it down.

She’s been painting “decaying structures” since the 1990’s and has a show in a Chelsea gallery coming up in June. By then this building will be gone.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

just walk away




I love this song, this video, that waitress. And I really love that kid in the kitchen singing into his mop. lol
But mostly I love Kelly.

“I know you know I know
So what's the point in being slow?
Let's get-the-show-on-the-road today.


Kyoto early morning

I spent a lot of time reflecting.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

nighttime drive through Vegas

get into the ride.

June 10, 1975

and not fer nothin', who put her there?

This chart from Wikipedia ranks musical acts with the most consecutive hit singles. Naturally the Beatles and the BeeGee’s and Michael Jackson are here. 
I was crazy for Whitney in 1985 and the Supreme’s were the soundtrack of my North Penn High School. These names make sense to me.
Only Mariah Carey is not a personal favorite and even then, I acknowledge her enormous...talent.
then Katy Perry? Within one consecutive hit of the Beatles?


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

72 years

After years studying New York architecture, I often think I know what I’m looking at.
This Horton Ice Cream pediment in the red brick Romanesque style looked like some antique corporate headquarters and a contemporary of our ClockTower. Time to get out the camera.

But I was wrong on both counts.
First, despite the round top windows,

The terracotta inserts, and the fancy zigzag brick, all classic 1885 Romanesque.

This building went up in 1910, a full quarter century after our Victorian home. It missed the Romanesque period of our ClockTower by 25 years.

And it turns out this building never had anything to do with ice cream, either. What?

The Columbus Avenue EL, an elevated subway, ran along Columbus Avenue from 1879 through 1949.

This vintage shot from 1936 shows the 72nd street subway stop two blocks away from Horton’s. A pot bellied stove in the subway. Right.

So the Horton sign is just a billboard at subway level that has survived since 1940. Nice.

yours sincerely wasting away

Paul McCartney turns 70 June 18th. According to WikiPedia, as a performer or songwriter he was responsible for 31 number one singles on the Billboard chart. Amazing.

Monday, April 30, 2012

what we love about Williamsburg


seth speaks