Thursday, July 03, 2008

Random New York Photos

I wrote a couple days ago about my photo blog and my dilemma on what to do with it. Well, a solution has been found! I've decided to merge it with this blog, or vice versa. Not sure which. But one way or another, there will be a fight to the death, and in the end only one blog shall remain.

It may take a little while. Merging blogs is neither easy nor much fun. But I'll figure it out. If anyone's got any tips on the best way to do this with a Blogger blog, please let me know.

In the meantime, here are some random photos of New York City - my hometown, the city of my birth - that just weren't good enough to make it onto the photo blog for one reason or another.

This should have been a great photo, but I messed it up a little bit. It's blurry and dark. I didn't have a tripod; I was hand-holding in the dark. I "pushed" the exposure in Photoshop and it got really grainy in addition to being blurry, but that was the only way to get the bridge to be more than a faint outline. It looks pretty good sized down like this, though.

I had planned to do a full New York pizza tour here originally (I ended up just doing one post on New York pizza, focusing on Lombardi's), and I wanted to show the ever-present line of people waiting outside Grimaldi's in Brooklyn. Well, I was so disappointed in the pizza that I really didn't think it was worth writing about. I don't understand why these idiots wait outside like this. Brooklyn hipsters are such weirdos; they all do the same things so they can talk amongst themselves about how cool they are.

This is the feast of San Gennaro in Little Italy. I just wanted to capture how crazy crowded it gets. It's really not that much fun. Again, do it once and you're good forever.

This is almost a great photo but the sky is way too flat. Nothing I could do about that, really; I didn't have either a cloud-making machine or a priest along with me. There's a little wedding party going on there, though. If there were even just a few clouds, I could have fixed this up real nice.

Museum of Natural History. I like the composition for the most part but it's just kind of common (everyone takes this photo), I don't really like the crowd there and I don't like the way the column intersects the dinosaur's jaw. It's still cool, though, I mean who doesn't like dinosaurs?? (I have a bunch of photos from the museum that day, and I like a lot of them. But most are pretty touristy.)

I like sort of street photography like this, but it came out too blurry. It's too bad, I really like it otherwise. That's my wife with me, not that you can see her (and not that she'd want you to).

This was actually a lens test of my new 50mm lens, and this particular angle is not common at all because it was taken from a speeding Acela Express train. The interesting thing about this photo is that the lens was defective! The aperture wouldn't open and close properly; it was a strange problem. This is one of the only shots I ever took with it that came out somewhat sharp and properly exposed, although if you open it up you might see that even though it was probably focused to infinity, objects about 1 mile away are in focus while objects 4-5 miles away are not. Most shots I took were completely over-exposed and out of focus. I returned the lens and got another one, which has been fine.

This is Time Warner Center. I think I took this with my wife's little compact camera. I like the photo but it just seems a little random and touristy. I actually have a lot of photos of buildings like this. Sometimes, I am a tourist in my own city.

This is a photo of the site of the 1911 Triangle Factory Fire, which killed 148 young women and girls. Most New Yorkers know nothing of this fire today, and I was pretty shocked myself when I learned about it, because this building is now owned by New York University. I had classes right next door.

It was a horrendous fire that spread quickly through a sweatshop that obviously had no sprinklers or other firefighting equipment - many of the girls died as they jumped from the 10th floor windows. On a positive note, it did lead to various labor laws and pretty much ended the sweatshop era in New York.

New York is filled with history. It just doesn't celebrate or commemorate it very well, a fact being made obvious again now with what's going on at the World Trade Center, which is really a national disgrace. But this is one of the oldest cities in the United States, dating back nearly 400 years - Boston is no older, neither is Philadelphia, and Washington, DC is much newer. Many of New York's historical sites still exist; they're just either neglected or unmentioned in any official guidebook. It's a shame.

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About This Blog

This is increasingly not a blog about Alphabet City, New York. I used to live in the East Village and work on Avenue B, but I no longer do. Why don't I change the name if I'm writing about Japan and video games and guitars? Because New Yorkers are well-rounded people with varied interests, and mine have gone increasingly off the rails over the years. And I don't feel like changing the name. I do still write about New York City sometimes.


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