Photo Shoots are Back

I passed this photo shoot on my walk the other day. The first thing I noticed was an assistant carrying an armful of flowers. “Damn my cats! I want flowers,” was my first thought. My cats go immediately after vases full of flowers so I can’t have flowers in my house. Bastards. Anyway, back to the shoot. I guess the assistant was holding back-up flowers in case this one wilted.

Outdoor Dining

Restaurants in New York City have really embraced outdoor dining. For now, it’s the only way to eat out. New York City hasn’t okayed indoor dining yet. We’ve always had sidewalk cafes, but restaurants are adopting various methods of getting people to pull up a chair.

I liked this one because of the shade it offers. If you’re having a meal during the day, it would be unbearable to sit in the sun. But the table is essentially in the street. It may be hard to tell in this photograph, but they’ve set up this table in a section of the street normally reserved for parking.

I was taking a picture of this set-up because it’s very old-world fancy, which made me nostalgic, when the waiter jumped into the picture. It was very cute and I thanked him.

This place is just a few doors down from where I live and I could hear the music coming in my window, which was fabulous. So I went down to listen. This is a brand new restaurant and I think last night might have been their opening night, but I’m not entirely sure about that. It’s called Dante West Village and it’s on the corner of Perry and Hudson.

This is the set-up at the White Horse Tavern, where I will never go again as long as it’s owned by slum landlord Steve Croman. Croman went to jail for mortgage and tax fraud, and he is the reason my beloved Golden Rabbit is going out of business. The White Horse also set up tables out in the street. There’s another view below.

I think this gives a better idea of where they are putting people. There’s the sidewalk, the bike lane, and these people are in the parking section.

City Hall Park Occupation

Protestors have started occupying City Hall Park. I believe today is day four. I went by on my walk today to take a look, and to take some pictures. That beautiful building in the background is the Surrogate’s Courthouse, which also houses the Municipal Archives. As readers of my blog know, this is one of my favorite places to spend time.

I took this picture of some police coming out of the subway because they were wearing masks. The police aren’t wearing masks so much. It seemed like they were for a while, but now many of the police I come across are not wearing masks.

George Floyd and the Municipal Archives building. I should have talked to the protestors. Their position is extreme. But maybe they have a new vision for law enforcement. By the way, I wish these protests would include the courts, the DAs, and the Department of Correction. They are all pieces of the criminal justice system puzzle (and if you step back, there are bigger pieces that also need to be addressed) and all these pieces need major reforms.

The protestor’s setup reminded me of St. Paul’s Chapel and 9/11. We had stations all along the walls, ringing the pews, and each station had medical supplies, food, beverages, and so on. All the workers and volunteers could come to St. Paul’s, and they usually could find what they needed. Same here.

This really reminded me of St. Paul’s and 9/11. Every day we got donations from all over the world and we had to organize all the boxes and put them away.

City Hall Park Occupation 2020

Another shot of the supplies. I wish I had gotten a better shot of the sign with the name Eleanor Bumpurs. Decades ago I saw an interview with Spike Lee and he was talking about Eleanor Bumpurs. I’d heard the story when it happened, but I hadn’t given it any thought at the time. But the way Spike Lee talked about it made me research her story. It was the beginning of having my eyes opened to the fact that we weren’t handling situations like hers well, which led to a gradual awakening to many other problems.

The protestors are camped out at the park, and this is where they sleep.

What are you reading?

Below is a list of my pandemic reading so far. It’s not a long list because I’ve turned into a slow reader. There’s also a lot more fiction than usual for me, I see. That’s interesting. I’m currently reading The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton.

– Fire in Paradise: An American Tragedy by Alastair Gee and Dani Anguiano.
– The End of October by Lawrence Wright.
– Race for Profit: How Banks and the Real Estate Industry Undermined Black Homeownership by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor.
– The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro.
– The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel.
– The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn.

Here is Bali about to climb into my lap. As any cat owner knows, open books are preferred resting spots for cats.

Make Music

I didn’t feel like going for a walk the other day, but I made myself and I was rewarded. It was Make Music day and even though it wasn’t as active years past, I was lucky to catch a renaissance singing group, and this guy playing piano in Washington Square Park. It was just so nice to see live performances again. And to sit among the human race. (The pianist invited people to lay underneath the piano for the sound, and people took turns trying it out.)

When I got home I listened to what was one of my favorite pieces to play when I had a piano and regularly played (this was WAY back in the 1970s): Beethoven’s Sonata Pathetique.