Tuesday, May 31, 2005


And, so this it the destination. The glass walled office block, aptly named because it resembles more than anything else just that: a block. Like the kind you may have played with as a small child, stacking one on top of another to make a city, a fortress, an obstacle course. Washington DC, being a city of small tasks, is filled with these office "blocks". Many look quite like the others in their utilitarian starkness. Their blandness. The way they fight each other for anonymity. Their windows look out on reflections of themselves, and their only real saving grace is that there is a mandated limit as to how high they can be built so that they don't quite block out the clouded sky. So that they don't quite block us in.

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Monday, May 30, 2005


It's raining! Life gets harder when it rains. The feet get wetter. The street traffic gets more despirate. But, afterward, everything seems better. Smells fresher. Cleaner. Less grey. More bright.
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Sunday, May 29, 2005


After the adventure of getting into Washington DC, there is the further adventure of getting to the office. This is usually done on foot.
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Friday, May 27, 2005


Subway rider
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Thursday, May 26, 2005


The Universe is made up symmetrically. This is an example to support that fact. Attention should be directed to the right feet.
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Wednesday, May 25, 2005


They're faceless, they are. The people we pass on the way to somewhere else. They're all, or mostly all, faceless.
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Tuesday, May 24, 2005


Everyone seemed like they had a place to go. Or, rather, a place that they were going to. A destination. They appeared like a curtain in motion: waves of people moving in a prescribed direction; moving out of the subway system, through the exit barriers, out into the light, and up the escalators, toward their unique destinations. They, none of them, appeared to notice the others. To each of them, they were alone and unique, closed off and silent, yet moving with purpose toward the light.

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The whole morning had been a blur. For some reason her alarm didn't go off, so she woke up late. That meant that her son was late getting up as well, so she had to rush to get them both up, teeth brushed, clean clothes located and put on, breakfast thrown on the table to be gobbled up before putting the cat out, dropping the boy off at the bus stop, then speeding off to catch the subway train into town. She hated days that started like this. But, now that she was near the office, she couldn't shake an uncomfortable feeling, a nagging really, that was pulling at her just developing composure. What was it? What was something trying to tell her? Had she turned the gas burner on the stove off after she had cooked the oatmeal and set it on low to keep it warm? Could she remember doing that? Was the burner off before she locked the front door? Had she done that?

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Monday, May 23, 2005


Pool steps
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I used to go see shows at the National Theatre when I was in High School. Some of my buds and I would take the bus from suburban Virginia in to DC to see something by Edward Albee or "Oliver" or whatever looked good. It was an adventure every time. We always got Orchestra seats. I don't know where the money came from but it never seemed to be a problem. At intermission, we'd go to have an orange juice and a smoke. It was so sophisticated to smoke. No one worried about cancer because that was something that happened to old people. Not us. The National is still there on Pennsylvania Avenue. It doesn't program much that is exciting. I haven't been there in years, but pass it every day and remember.

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Friday, May 20, 2005


There is something inherently mysterious about swimming pools. Particularly indoor swimming pools. The way the water forms a mirror reflecting everything around it. The "blueness" of the water, even inside a pool house. Nicki and I took the "Swimming Pool" tour of San Simeon in California, the palace that once housed the Hearst fortune. It was an incredible experience. These were swimming pools unlike any I had ever seen before. The were the stuff that legends are made of, and, indeed, there are legends about the Hearst pools. The one that says that Johnny Weissmuller swam there, for example. These swimming pools were much too grand to be used for lap swimming. They were, I'm sure, designed to set off the humans lounging there to their best advantage. They were Temples of Water. But, I have a recurring dream wherein there is a Jazzercise class of elderly ladies that I am leading in the Hearst swimming pool that is outside, overlooking the Coastal range. It is a brilliantly sunny day and the air is clear. The ladies are bouncing in the water to 70's Disco music by Kool and The Gang and I am pushing them on to greater heights of cardiovascular heath. I have no idea what this can mean. I don't even think I want to know. Some things are best least as mysteries.
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Wednesday, May 18, 2005


How stark. How black and white. The sunlight bleaching out all color. How devoid of decoration. How cold. How empty of people or things. How modern.
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Tuesday, May 17, 2005


This here is what you'd have to call a Really Old Tree. It's growing, or at least it was growning, in Buzzard's Bay, MA. I thought that it would be an excellent tree to climb. But I didn't. I just took its picture.
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He liked to be near water and he liked to know people who had boats. It was better to be on a boat that was owned by someone else than to be the owner yourself. Boats take a lot of time. Boats take a lot of money. He liked the smells and the sounds that were common around marinas. The calls of sea birds. The slapping sound the water made against the side of boats or against the pier. He liked the wooden walkways and the strong smell of pitch. He liked the way the water moved and reflected back the sky to itself. He supposed that in another life he might have been a sailor. He supposed that he might have also been a fish. That was why, he told himself, that he liked to be near the sea.

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Monday, May 16, 2005


DC office building with flag.
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Sunday, May 15, 2005


Back to the White House. It's an image well known throughout the world. That may be because of the fact that it's an image that's on our money and up until very recently, our money was a collectible item all over the world. The lawns are well tended at the White House. Lots of folks, mostly out-of-towners, stop by for a look. It's not possible anymore to see the prez. They got him, and it's always a him, under wraps. But you can always admire the lawn. And the pretty flowers. You can't fly over it because recent of security issues, but you can still ride a bike by it and you can still walk by it and have yourself a look. The next time you find yourself in Washington, DC, come on by and say "Howdy".

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Friday, May 13, 2005


Here is the 2nd part (see below) The walker has jumped back in time, just a little. When you scroll down, she will have moved forward in time and in space. Just by a little. But enough to make a difference.
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It's interesting, I think, that while I am building this blog from the bottom, up, you, the viewer, experience it from the top, down. So, the farther down you look, the deeper the history of the images and words becomes and at the very end, that is to say, the very beginning there is a message waiting, perhaps, that will give you a clue that can be used to find "the man who squats behind the man who works the soft machine", as Mick Jagger sang in "Memo from Turner". This image is the second of two parts. The first part is still developing and will be posted later today. Taken together, they tell a very short story about connectivity and travel and how, in the blink of an eye, things change. Even when working backward.

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Thursday, May 12, 2005


Life goes on down there. It's all about shadows down there. Shadows and light. Down there.
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It's like the dude in Plato's cave. The one who can only see the shadows, not the things that create the shadows. It's the layer that's under the layer that can be seen. In Pop terms, it's the Matrix. The thing we can't see or experience but is there as a reality. It's the truth hidden beneath the image. The Second Sight. The rumor that turns out to be true. The lie that is the foundation of a collective assumption. It's the reflection in the glass.

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Wednesday, May 11, 2005


Down there, there is a tree waking up to Spring. It's growing in a small rectangle of dirt. It's amazing that it grows at all. Down there there are long long shadows in the morning. Down there it's pretty quiet. It's a long way down there.
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A sunny day and a mid afternoon stroll on what used to be Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House. It was re-made in the last year and has become a pedestrian plaza that, on a hot day, becomes a frying pan. On the left you can see Riggs bank, recently in the news because of some funny business with third-world despots. And above it all, a blue, blue sky.
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Tuesday, May 10, 2005


Two sides of the same, or at least similar, story. Two town houses across from the White House where unknown "staff" work on "things" relating to "stuff" like security, presumably, and people inside and outside of these United States. And outside, two very strange trees, Two sides of a coin. We have the white side on the right and the red side on the left. A bisected image of two very strange trees.
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Monday, May 09, 2005


Not a pole (see below), but a tree bisects this image. It kind of gives you a place to start reading the image. After a brief break or rest stop at the tree, a viewer then gets two choices of where to look next. The HIV poster? The graffiti? Back and forth, like an eye exam? Back to the tree? Which image looks best? Left? Right? Center? HIV or graffiti?
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The pole that bisects the image is a metaphore of sorts. It's not unusual to find an obstacle that prevents one from seeing the whole picture. It's not unusual to have to get beyond a part of a debate or conversation that is obstructing a resolution of differences. There's always something holding us back from achieving our goals. There's often some "crap" floating in the pond. Also, you can clearly see the pole in this image. The people up closer can't. But they can clearly see the iron gate that surrounds the white house grounds. They have to look though this fence to see the house and grounds. Same metaphor, different perspective.
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Friday, May 06, 2005


Sometimes it's almost blinding, the way the sun light bounces off of the office building windows. Sometimes it's disorienting. It can seem like the eye of God boring right through you, buring a hole where your vision is.
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There is quite a bit of architectural diversity in downtown Washington, DC. There is still some of the old that hasn't been torn down yet. There is still quite a bit of the ugly left over from the building boom in the 70s, and there is an increasing amount of the new. Somehow they all manage to co-exist together, sometimes in the same block. I guess there's a lesson in that somewhere.

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There are quite a few immigrants from Mexico. They pretty much all come from the same area of Mexico, but I don't know what part of Mexico that is. There are enough Mexican immigrants for them to have their own stores and restaurants. This is one of the stores. This is my 'hood.

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Thursday, May 05, 2005


First, it looked like this. (See below)
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Then, it looked like this: A cloud came in front of the sun. (See above). This is my 'hood.
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What we found inside this shed was a pile of childrenÂ’s clothes and toys (plastic dolls, vinyl Barbie backpack, play feeding bottle) and lots of empty, opened, rusting cans of Cat Food. Also a lot of trash. No one seemed to have been around for awhile. This wasn't evidence of recent habitation. But to see a child's toys and empty cat food cans in the same small place was a little unsettling. This is my 'hood.
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The vines growing up the side of this whitewashed building almost look like veins. Everything else here is up/down or east/west. The vines go their own way. This is my 'hood.
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You know a place hasn't been used in a while when vegetation begins to grow over the doors and windows. Rust adds to the patina of time as well. This is a part of the AerCo building. This is my 'hood.
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Wednesday, May 04, 2005


This is part of a closed down industrial facility that, at one time long ago, manufactured flying cars. The AerCo Factory. I don't know who might have invested in flying cars, but they surely lost their shirts. The building, vast and spread out, is interesting though. This is my 'hood.
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It must have been a grand home at one time. I have no idea how old it is, but it's not new. It's now a boarding house across from the railroad tracks. This is my 'hood.
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Tuesday, May 03, 2005


It's OK to have a pink house. Especially if you have a pickup truck and a 'cycle parked outside! This is my 'hood.
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These ladies were waiting to be cleaned up in Berlin. They were taken down from the top of the Old Museum while WWII damage to the buildings on the Museum Island was being completed. They, in truth, didn't look so good, but I haven't been back to take an "after" shot yet so can't testify as to any improvements that might have been made.

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Monday, May 02, 2005


It was a great day for a bike ride through College Park, MD. So I went for one. Near some new building that they are putting up across from the subway stop, I stopped for a rest. I laid down on some newly mown grass and I looked up. This is what I saw.
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They wanted to put a gigantic shiny new office building where the Mosque stood. So, they took the Mosque apart, piece by piece and moved it further West on the same block and then put it back together, piece by piece. From all appearances, they did a pretty good job.

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