New York

A Video Essay: The NYC Subway System - The Conductor's View

One can't think of NYC without thinking of the MTA Subway system.  Next month, on Oct 27th, the NYC Subway turns 110 years old. This old lady is a vital part of the city carrying over 1.7 billion riders to their destination in 2013.

The NYC Subway has its pluses and minuses. It's largest plus in my opinion is its reach and the extensive network of stops especially compared to smaller systems such as DC, LA, and Atlanta. Sadly there are many minuses including the stops can be very hot during the summer with terrible odors, the trains overfill especially during peak travel hours on weekday mornings, and for some reason people feel it is okay to throw trash on the tracks. I thought the trash issue was a byproduct of living in a large city with a large subway system, but one could almost eat off the tracks on the London Underground system... not a sign of trash or rats anywhere on the tracks.

In my 10 years of living in NYC, I've never seen the underworld of NYC like I did a few weeks ago. Typically, there is a semi-transparent window at the front of the first car, however this time I had a clear window and my camera. So... Here's the conductor's view on the NYC Subway system.

I've sped up the portions in between subway stops by 2x.

A Photo Essay: Roof Garden Cáfe and Martini Bar at The Met

It is sad to admit, but it took me 9 long years as a New Yorker before I finally went to the Roof Garden Cáfe and Martini Bar at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met). Visiting the Roof Garden was always on my to-do list, but it just never happened. 

Imran Qureshi's Roof Garden Installation in 2013

In August of 2013, after reading about the Roof Garden Installation by Imran Qureshi, I decided I had waited long enough. I stopped by the museum on an overcast weekday and I was delighted to find that I was one of only 10 people up on the expansive roof top that afternoon.

The position of the Roof Garden within the perimeter of Central Park is truly unique and special. As an artist, can you imagine the opportunity to have the Roof Garden as your canvas with one of the most famous parks in one of the most famous cities on this planet framing your work? A very special opportunity to say the least.

Imran's installation was sublime especially given the contrasting green hue of the trees reaching up toward the Roof Garden and the towering cityscape beyond. The installation represented Imran's emotional response to decades of global violence and his hope for lasting peace and regeneration. On the day of my visit, when the place was quiet and mostly void of people, the roof top eerily felt like a murder scene surrounded by a still and silent city whose residents had fled the city streets for a safe haven.

Beyond the emotions triggered by the installation, the Roof Garden was an amazing way to take in the breathtaking view of the tree tops of Central Park and the city beyond the park's perimeter. I kicked myself for waiting so long and I knew I won't wait another 9 years before my next visit.

More pictures of Imran's installation from August 2013:

This August, I went back on a gorgeous Friday evening for drinks with visiting relatives. It was something I wanted to share with them as the views of NYC are second-to-none. I was hopeful that a good sunset was in store for us. 

The installation on the Roof Garden had changed (Dan Graham) as well as the size of the crowd. This time, I was one of two hundred plus. The weather was perfect, the mood was upbeat and festive, and the views were priceless. The energy of the crowd was only matched by the fiery colors of the sun and the sky as the sun approached the horizon.

August of 2014

Old Glory flying in front of the sunset

I will certainly be back as fall takes hold and transforms the color palette of Central Park.

An Amazing Last Minute Weekend in New Paltz, NY

A blog entry with photos from my weekend in New Paltz, NY with friends. We stayed at La Luna Farm. This blog entry includes my review of several restaurants including The Huguenot, A Tavola Trattoria, Café Mio, and Swoon Kitchenbar. Additionally, I review antique stories such as the Antiques Barn at Water Street Market and the many antique shops on Warren St in Hudson, NY.