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

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Saturday reflections

White brick, in the Bronx.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Urban poetry

A roof garden, and maybe a deck, under a water tower on 18th Street.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Astronomy Tuesday

Uranus, as seen by Hubbell in 2004.

This photo was taken with filters to enhance the detail -- seen in natural light, Uranus, like its sibling Neptune, is a dim blue globe. The angle of the photograph isn't an artistic choice; Uranus actually lies on its side relative to the rest of the solar system, so its axis of rotation is where less imaginative planets have their equators.

The brightness was also enhanced so the rings and satellites can be seen more clearly. Uranus has 27 moons, mostly named for characters in Shakespeare. The bright dot in the lower right is Ariel; the two bright moons closer to the rings are Puck and Portia.

Monday, August 26, 2013


One of the vendors at the Union Square Greenmarket.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sunday bird blogging

A jackdaw, in Stockholm (hard to believe that was almost a year ago now.)

I can't help thinking of jackdaws as the birds that will peck at my heart if I'm foolish enough to wear it upon my sleeve.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Saturday reflections

Madison Avenue, looking quite monumental.

Friday, August 23, 2013


Roseanne, in Yonkers. She has such an interesting face.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Astronomy Tuesday

This one is unmistakable -- the great red spot on Jupiter, as photographed by Voyager.

Monday, August 19, 2013


This is Cynthia, in Yonkers Saturday.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Bainbridge Avenue

An abandoned house in the Bronx, across the street from Woodlawn Cemetery.


And Geraldine, who despite being the single mother of four, remains surprisingly sane.

Danielle and Dominique

Portraits from the weekend.

Summer after the fire

There have actually been several summers after the fire -- this lot, next door to my friend's house in Yonkers, has been a ruin for many years now.

It's bleak and empty in winter, but now, in the thick of summer, it looks like the setting for a romance novel or a treasure hunt. (If such things ever happen in Yonkers.)

I spent maybe ten minutes over there yesterday, wanting to capture the afternoon sun on the bricks, but that was long enough for some invisible species of greedy bloodsuckers to attack my ankles. I have several dozen bites, mostly on my lower legs, and today my ankles are twice their normal size, covered in big red lumps. Big red itchy lumps. I've tried a cold shower, calamine lotion and petroleum jelly, but nothing helps.

I tried reading. I try to distract myself. But eventually I have to give in, and once I've scratched whichever bite is itching the most at the moment, I can't stop until I've thoroughly scratched them all.

Sunday bird blogging

The vivid red of a house finch, against an even more vivid sky.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Saturday reflections

Another view of the glass partitions in new offices.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Urban poetry

Stacks of metal racks at the greenmarket.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Astronomy Tuesday

After the spooky beauty of Saturn, Mars not only is literally closer to home, but it possesses an actual surface and a sky, so it looks more like the kind of planet we're used to, more like Earth.

These gullies, huge fissures on the sides of a crater with a bed of sand far below, are a possible sign that liquid water once existed there. It's not that different from desert canyons on Earth, where water blasted the ground into curves and hollows before disappearing forever.

Monday, August 12, 2013


A fellow shopper at the Union Square Greenmarket Saturday afternoon.

Not a very good photo. I should have taken more time with the light.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Sunday bird blogging

In a perfect world, all of us would spend August at the shore. Since it isn't and we don't, here's a beachy bird blog: the avian version of Sunday brunch, on the beach at Worthing.

Saturday, August 10, 2013


Balconies on 23rd Street.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Urban poetry

A row of lamps -- one of them glowing in the middle of a sunny afternoon -- on a block of brownstones in Chelsea.

You'd expect these lush front gardens on an old narrow street in Greenwich Village (or maybe in the other Chelsea, in London) but what I've left out of this charming scene is what's just to the right: a wide crowded sidewalk and even more crowded street. 23rd Street is one of the four-lane, two-way, crosstown throughways, most of it undistinguished urban monotony, so this little bit of old-fashioned civility is a little incongruous. But delightful.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Astronomy Tuesday

I often find photographs from our own solar system to be more, well, alien than those strange Hubbell images of unimaginably huge nebulae thousands of light years away.

This is another stunning image from Cassini, taken last August: the edge of Saturn's rings, their huge shadow on the planet surface, and Titan, Saturn's largest moon, in the foreground.

As an abstraction, I love the design and colors. As a representation of something actual, it has a chilly beauty so strange and eerie it gives me goosebumps.

Monday, August 5, 2013


 The M11 bus, Ninth Avenue, Saturday afternoon.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

The filtered world

I'm doing a project for work that involves heavy photo processing and so I've been playing with filters I've never used before. I love the effect here, on what used to be ordinary vegetable stand roses.

Sunday bird blogging

Because it's been a long time since I posted one of these guys, here for your enjoyment is the adorableness that is the tufted titmouse.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Saturday reflections

Glass partitions, in new office space.

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