I like taking pictures of people -- then there's the problem about whether they would want their photos in the blog or not.
This is Conan Carpenter and Robert Valin from the dog park with Benny. Flash was busy running round with other dogs. These are people I actually know.
I haven't the least idea what this man's name is, but he was quite happy to have his photo taken. (You would be too if you'd spent the time cultivating such a remarkable mustache).
The young man in the cap in Eataly was busy explaining to the assembled oldies the finer points of baking bread-- how the yeast is imported from somewhere east of Turin etc etc. What was good about his chat (which I overheard while waiting for my foccacia to cool) is how passionate he was about his theme.
The people on the right are eating free samples. These are people I saw for an instant.
I saw Claude Rolls every day. Unofficial custodian of 22nd Street, ex-military man, a great dog lover (notice the treats on the ledge),and beloved by all. He spent much of his time in his slightly dilapidated black van keeping an eye on the world (or anyway his little corner of it). Yesterday morning he was cheerful -- he'd just got a spanking new red van; in the afternoon he died sitting in it. He was 78. RIP, dear Claude.
"At this festive season of the year, Mr. Scrooge," said the gentleman, taking up a pen, "it is more than usually desirable that we should make some slight provision for the Poor and Destitute, who suffer greatly at the present time. Many thousands are in want of common necessaries; hundreds of thousands are in want of common comforts, sir."
"Are there no prisons?" asked Scrooge.
"Plenty of prisons," said the gentleman, laying down the pen again.
"And the Union workhouses?" demanded Scrooge. "Are they still in operation?"
"They are. Still," returned the gentleman, "I wish I could say they were not."
"The Treadmill and the Poor Law are in full vigour, then?" said Scrooge.
"Both very busy, sir."
"Oh! I was afraid, from what you said at first, that something had occurred to stop them in their useful course," said Scrooge. "I'm very glad to hear it."
"Under the impression that they scarcely furnish Christian cheer of mind or body to the multitude," returned the gentleman, "a few of us are endeavouring to raise a fund to buy the Poor some meat and drink and means of warmth. We choose this time, because it is a time, of all others, when Want is keenly felt, and Abundance rejoices. What shall I put you down for?"
"Nothing!" Scrooge replied.
"You wish to be anonymous?"
"I wish to be left alone," said Scrooge. "Since you ask me what I wish, gentlemen, that is my answer. I don't make merry myself at Christmas and I can't afford to make idle people merry. I help to support the establishments I have mentioned -- they cost enough; and those who are badly off must go there."
"Many can't go there; and many would rather die."
"If they would rather die," said Scrooge, "they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population."
Now I know who Newt Ginrich's idol is!
the sky above Macy's
and the little garden next to our building.
Lenten rose at Union Square green market.
My friend Susanna Gordon, the brilliant photographer and all around nice person, has a much kinder take on the season HERE