by sam on 10/23/2016

marquee for the Joyce Theater in Chelsea.

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by sam on 10/10/2016

I was just amused by the juxtaposition of these two police cars. And wondering who gets stuck driving the tiny car.

Also, yes, they’re totally parked in the new bike lane on Amsterdam.

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30th street station

by sam on 10/8/2016

I don’t think my distaste for New York’s Penn Station is any secret, but it only gets emphasized when I get to spend time in other train stations that are more beautiful. Obviously, here in NYC, Grand Central and the new Oculus are great spaces (and vastly different to each other), but other cities still have beautiful Amtrak stations.

I took a short trip to Philly this summer to visit friends, the weekend before the DNC, and so 30th street was at its shiniest, spiffiest best. This is one of my favorite stations – sure Amtrak does its best to muck things up with its standardized modern signage that makes zero effort to blend with the classic art deco building, but it’s still OK.

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by sam on 09/29/2016

Pete’s tavern. They’re very subtle about the fact that O’Henry used to write here.

(I actually love this bar and on the rare occasion that I have gotten my act together to celebrate my birthday, this has been one of my more favored locations)

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by sam on 09/28/2016

The most common definition for corruption has to do with grift and dishonesty. But corruption can also mean decay and rot.

Both variations of the word are appropriate here.

When people learn about late 19th and early 20th-century New York City political corruption, one person (Boss Tweed) and his machine, Tammany Hall are at the heart of the story. But what people generally don’t realize is that Tammany Hall was an actual, physical…hall. It had a few locations, and this was the last.

The building has spent the last few decades operating as the union square theater, and is now vacant and being gut renovated.

If you get up close, you can see the inscriptions to the old order of Tammany along the side. My favorite though, is the discovery of grift never ends – they’re attempting to preserve some of the friezes on the building, and they’re basically disintegrating to the touch because it turns out that they’re just something like plaster of Paris instead of proper building-grade materials. Heh.

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screaming spot

by sam on 09/24/2016

Union square. These days, I think maybe we all need one of these.

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by sam on 09/23/2016

School doors. Upper west side. Very red.

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no filter

by sam on 09/21/2016

Last night I was crossing Columbus and the sky was so remarkable that I stopped in the middle of the street (I know, I’m going to get hurt one of these days) hurriedly grabbed my “real” camera out of my bag to snap one photo before the light could change.

Downloaded it today. I actually started making some color corrections as one does with all raw images, and then dumped them all because the original was just so, well…

And this is why I always carry my camera. No matter how good the phones get, they just don’t get this.

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love one another

by sam on 09/18/2016

Chalk sidewalk art with a fitting message for today. And everyday.

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by sam on 09/13/2016

A little more going on downtown before I return to the normal. Friday night, I went downtown for an appointment, and I was there a bit early, so I was able to walk over to the oculus, which had opened right around the same time I left for my trip. I had seen photos of the interior, and I’ve seen the exterior construction over the years, and…of course, I had been somewhat deflated by its transformation from imaginary bird with open wings to somewhat more grounded…dinosaur with massive spiky exoskeleton…

But upon walking inside the massive space, it really did take my breath away.

And yes, you can criticize the commercialism, but you know what? It replaces a much less beautiful shopping plaza that was destroyed. I spent a few minutes talking to one of the concierges (yes, it has concierges), and he seemed genuinely enthusiastic about everything that was going on. Every time we go through a travesty like Penn Station we should be reminded that we can (and do) do better with our public spaces. Even if this isn’t everyone’s taste, it’s grand and ambitious.

Then, of course, when I finished up my evening, they were testing out the tribute in lights. Always beautiful.

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