Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A funny thing happened on the top of Middling City's City Hall yesterday morning.
Yours Truly wished to make some snap-happy images from the observation deck so rode the rickety (absolutely no exaggeration, my fingers were already motioning over the numbers 9-1-1 just in case) elevators to the toppermost floor and then ascended the extra stairs to the pinnacle of this Art Deco marvel.
Once at deck level (it should be noted that the stairwell is painted that institutional colour that is sort of a pastel or icy light turquoise that nobody would ever, in their right mind, use in a house.
And the paint gave off that leaded vibe.
And, as most of the building is tragically unkempt, the question arises as to who in hell is sweeping these stairs and keeping this stairwell reasonably free from graffiti and such. And then thoughts ramble over to the trip to the tip of Empire State Building, how equally dismal that is, in a dismal Shiney Apple way that cannot rival this cross-state dismality.
*sidebar: Ascended the top of ESB for a try-out gig to write scripts for a co. that has those handy cellphone warbles about key things in cities. After the long lines, the badly-faded photos in showcases, the crabby staffers, the shake-down to try to get tourists to purchase packages to ascend AND see some hoaky 3-D movie, decided the ESB script of YT would be just non-glowing. So skipped that idea.
So up there, the big metal door with one-key locked situ is totally not allowing for stepping out onto the deck.
Spotted some open metal windows, open about one foot, enough to squeeze through to shoot through the thick plexi. As YT was stepping through the window and then noting the five-foot drop, glanced over to see, for the first time, one of those little casino-worthy surveillance cams.
I calculated.
Rickety elevator to floor - what was it, 28 - then steps, security thugs should be arriving in about fifteen minutes, if they're even truly manning these cams.
So finished up my photo matters at hand and then descended down and then another floors more.
Found an office and requested that YT stand at a window and make some happy images from a window in appropriate direction.
Was there thwarted by some locked doors.
Went down one more floor and found an incredible office with a very-bored secretary at a giant p.c. who did say Fine, about me stepping into a vacated executive suite (replete with empty shelves, a vintage vacuum, and more) to shoot through the windows. Maneuvered my cam around the splattered, aged pigeon poop to get some fantastic shots of the buildings.
Did this at several other downtown locations.
Hi, I'm here to photograph buildings over to the (east/west/north/south). Would you mind if I stationed myself at a window and shot away for a few minutes. Thanks.
More profuse thanks upon completion and slip out office door.
A grand day all in all.
Went to hear Literal Harold later very same day, as in yesterday, read from the serial killer tome.
Was fab.
Was in Cheektowaga.
Was in vintage 60s library under ultra-fluorescence.
Was oso appropriate.

More buildings, more shooting now.

More now, Love.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Yours Truly planned one fine & fab First Annual Old First Ward Pub Stroll this past Friday night with 25 people meandering from joint to joint.
Highlights, pictured, top to bottom: the group on the prowl (Leica was on multi-burst shooting and didn't have the wherewithal to do anything but work with It); Paul and Harold in McCarthy's (note memorabilia behind); Molly and Lisa in adorable outfits with Dougie and Bob (in midst of dissecting his classical fish fry); Dougie, mid-jump & flash; Annie and Brucey mid-talk; and what I lovingly dubbed Team Pub Stroll.

Handed out maps and we walked from McCarthy's down South Street for a nice view of Industry, then up Louisiana and then across Miami Street which spooked even the guys but, as I pointed out, once we passed the little dog leg the next destination, McBride's, is in sight and all is swell. McBride's was wonderful with a patio with bar on that. From there a quick jaunt to Swannie House which is always good but they were in a state of discombobulation and had run out of a few basics, like Labatt, for those who drink beer. A delivery was en route, we were told, and it came. In cans. Had a helpful barmaid make the Team Pub Stroll image, instructing her to please stand on a bendy plastic chair to do so. Went the short distance to Malamute and, after sniffing the stale beer farts aroma in there, made executive decision that we were not staying. It's an alright joint if it is near-empty, with a side room. But that air. We attempted an extra-OFW meander to Cobblestone but it was teeming with disgruntled Sabres fans so back to McBride's it was.

Oso many more details to follow for life is one big sensual banquet.
As Oscar W. and many others through the ages have noted.

All You Can Eat, Love.