I am a native in this world And think in it as a native thinks

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Astronomy Tuesday

I like the question mark shape of these three galaxies, collectively known as Arp 194 (the third one is the smaller oval on the right side of the top galaxy.)

It's theorized that the bottom galaxy passed through the top galaxy sometime in the last 100 million years. The trail of gases still between them has become a star nursery, full of brand new, bright blue, baby stars.

Image Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble; Processing and License: Judy Schmidt

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Sunday bird blogging

A house finch, perched in a satisfyingly gnarly tree in Albany.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Friday, March 22, 2019

The Vessel

The center of the Hudson Yards development is this climbable piece of public art, a tower of copper-clad staircases designed by Thomas Heatherwick.

Some people are called it the Shawarma, or the Giant Wastebasket. I think it looks like an overly precious parking garage, and I haven't yet gone inside (there was a long line the first day; now there are timed tickets so not too much of a wait, but I'd rather wait until nobody cares.) It's definitely photogenic, although the owners initially tried to implement a very restrictive photo policy that allowed them to have rights to any pictures, which makes me less than eager to share my own.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Urban poetry

An abstract of facades at Hudson Yards, a new shopping/living complex built over the old rail yards west of Penn Station, which opened last week.

It's a ten-minute walk from my apartment, so I went down there Saturday despite a fierce wind that moaned across the plazas like the soundtrack to a bad horror film. I got some interesting pictures, but overall, it's not all that impressive. (One of the articles in the Times compared it to “a gated community in Singapore.”)

If you've been dying to go to Sally Hershberger for an $800 haircut but didn't feel like schlepping all the way to Barney's, or have felt that the lack of a Neiman Marcus store in Manhattan was nigh unbearable, you might feel that Hudson Yards fills a real gap. I think that most of us will find that it can comfortably be ignored.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Astronomy Tuesday

The star cluster NGC 3603 consists of hot young stars, formed perhaps a million years ago. You can see how the rapid star formation carved out the center of the gas cloud surrounding the cluster.

Credit: NASA, ESA and the Hubble Heritage (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Sunday bird blogging

A chestnut-backed chickadee in Pleasanton. You can't really see the chestnut in this picture except on the top of his head. The New York chickadees all have black heads.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Saturday reflections

As it's (finally) almost spring, here's one last snowy winter street.

All that reddish brown is actually a brick building across the street, reflected into abstraction by the slushy water.

Friday, March 15, 2019

A few more Cloisters pictures

Glass art

Closeups of some of the exquisitely detailed windows at the museum.


The view from inside the museum, looking across the Hudson.

Rockefeller purchased several hundred acres of the New Jersey Palisades and donated it to the state just to preserve this view.

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