This is Rocky. He owns the barber shop in the bottom of the office building at 17th and G Sts NW. He is in the middle of remodeling the shop. He is one of the older residents of the block, complete with regular customers. I'm not a regular customer but I stop in and say "Hi" at least once a week. I cut my own hair. Buzz, buzz ... it's gone.
I went to the Watergate Safeway today. It's the supermarket in the bottom of the historic Watergate Hotel. I never ended up buying anything because the line was so long. I don't know how its frequent shoppers like Condi Rice and Ben Stein can stand waiting in those long lines.
I have been doing a lot of fun assignments lately for Photo Edit Inc. Most of the photos are for text books. One of the assignments I'm doing now is photos of small business owners for a college text called Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management. An assignments I have been working on for the past couple days has been the inside of toaster and microwave ovens for a college math book. Before I left Andrew and Maris's place I went to photograph the inside of their microwave and found warmed asparagus. A forgotten part of an already eaten dinner.
My friend M.E. Sprengelmeyer gets a thumbs-up review from a passer-by who has just sat through Michael Moore's new film Fahrenheit 911. Even though I had drank my entire slush and ate my box on Raisinettes just waiting in line, I thought the movie was great. I wish I could have participated in the making of it. In a way I did. My friend Sprengelmeyer also had a hand in reporting from both Afghanistan and Iraq for Scripps Howard News Service. We both liked the movie a lot. I was impressed by Michael Moore and not annoyed by his monolog. I thought it was better than Bowling for Columbine from an entertainment standpoint. My friend Sprengelmeyer might disagree with me. He was also a reporter for the Denver Rocky Mountain News during the Columbine incident.
This is my friend Andrew's xylephone. This is a mallet from France.
This is the toaster oven at Swing's Coffee Shop. It's suppose to be toasty this weekend, low-80s. I guess that's not actually toasty for DC. It could be toasty somewhere else in the low-80s. Somewhere like Phoenix or Reno, some place sunny and arid.
My sister Patti and my niece Carol started their drive back to Florida today. This is Carol taking a break at the final stop on our three-day tour of DC, St Matthew's Cathedral. Carol has been limping around all day, probably a stress injury. Neither Patti nor Carol had any further desire to visit St Matthew's Cathedral after their tiring stay. However, I had placed St Matthew's on the list at request yesterday, and it had to be the end of their vacation here ... for some reason. The cathedral was, of course, closed. We stayed on the steps for a few minutes, and then headed to the bus stop. I need some rest too.
Walking around touring DC takes a lot of work. Being a tourist takes a lot of work. My niece's feet hurt and my sister developed possible shin splints over the past few days of walking around. Today we took the car everywhere. The majority of our up-hill walking was done when we went to go see the animals sleeping at the National Zoo. One of the pandas was actually passed out in a tree. After the National Cathedral, The Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, and the FDR and Jefferson Memorials we headed to get a close-up look at the Capitol. On the way back we were tailed by the Weinermobile. I hopped out at the red light and gave them my card. Now all I have to do is sit back and wait for the free hot dogs to start rolling in!
I took this photo at the zoo.
Today was another perfect vacation day in DC, warm humid weather and a torrential downpour. My sister Patti, my niece Carol and I went to see the Woman's Memorial, JFK's Eternal Flame, and The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, all at Arlington National Cemetery. Luckily the downpour didn't start until we were back on the Cemetery's Tourmobile. The Tourmobile attendants pulled clear plastic screens down to protect its cargo of tourists from the rain, but the storm was too much. It showered in every place possible, half-soaking everyone. No one got off at the following stop because everyone wanted to get back to the Visitors' Center. When the attendant at the Visitors' Center opened the gate on the side of the Tourmobile it must have looked like the start of a very wet horse race. Women and children, men and retirees, were all running with maps and pamphlets over their heads for the crowded overhang of the Visitors' Center. The stampede turned up a casualty. While running, Patti dropped her phone in a puddle. Carol, who was running along side her pointed, "Mom! There goes your phone!" And kept running. Before my sister could rescue it, it had been trampled by the soggy mob.
This is one of the many awesome photos I shot today with the help of the Humane Society of the United States. They have an very clean and organized mailroom. With great examples of internal, postal, and package mailing systems.
My sister Patti and my niece Carol came to visit from Florida today. Patti drove all the way, leaving at 4:30 this morning. When they arrived we went to Tunnicliff's Tavern, a good restaurant and on Capitol Hill. Then we walked around after dinner and saw the White House, the Washington Monument, the brand new WWII Memorial (where the card in the picture was placed), the Korean War Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Vietnam Wall and Memorial. It was a good walk for Father's Day. My sister, my niece, and me have all lost our fathers. My two older sisters and older brother lost their father on my birthday the year before I was born. My Dad died while I was in the Marine Corps stationed at Camp Lejeune, NC, but deployed on a two-month training exercise in California's Mojave Desert. My niece Carol lost her Dad when she was pretty young. I am her godfather though.
I covered a wedding at the Torpedo Factory in Old Town Alexandria last night. It is a large multi-level galleria of artists' workshops right on the waterfront. When I received the contract to cover the job over two months ago I made the important decision to freelance all summer. The wedding was great with many very interesting, happy, laughing, and dancing guests. Toward the end of the night, I finally gave into the bartender's drink offers which worked out better for everyone. I think I stuck around for an extra hour drinking "Rocket Fuel," talking, and taking photos.
Today'sWashington Times critique of the "slap-stick" comedy Dodge Ball was a lot nicer and more grandiose than the Washington Post's disappointed review. I cut out the Times' banner photo of Ben Stiller who received as much coverage today as President Reagan did in last week's "Reagan Edition." Ben Stiller was on every page of the Times. Now he hangs in the bathroom closet of Swing's Coffee Shop, a neo-cultural symbol of some lay-out designer's spiritual expression, a less-traditional, less-obvious hex. I have become over-entertained and forget that there might be something more important, so I am boycotting the entertainment industry.
The hot, humid, heavy air hung in a haze. Then it rained as the sun blazed. This is the only rainbow I saw all day.
My friend Don introduced me to something new, pork roast on the grill. It was some of the best grilled meat I have eaten. Crispy on the outside. Juicy on the inside. And the marinade included bourbon and garlic.
If there's no meat on it, is it still a sandwich? This is the aged-old Veggie Delight from Subway. I call it aged old because I remember ordering them at the subway across the street from my house off Marguerite Pkwy when I lived in Mission Viejo, Ca. It was 1991 and I was in 5th grade and the veggie delight was the cheapest thing on the menu. It was 1997 by the time I had a job at the Craig Street Subway between Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh. It was way back when they use to cut the triangle piece out of the top and use it as the top bun. Whose Idea was that?! I would let my friends clean up the place for free subs. I use to close the shop up to three hours early, depending on how I felt. It's funny how this stuff was only brought up by the manager about a month later, after I announced I was quitting and had a new job at a party supply store.
One of the best things about the Metro Transit is that the buses still take pennies. Tonight my $1.20 for the bus consisted of 10 pennies, one quarter, and dimes and nickels. With the devaluation of the dollar there are few remaining uses for the common penny (and even fewer uses for Canadian pennies). You can't buy candy with them, a shave, nor a hair cut ... but they can get you from point A to point B if used on the bus, and can either be a wish or a fine if used in the WWII Memorial's fountain.
This is a ring I bought a long time ago in Jacksonville, NC. I bought it in a pawn shop. I like it because of it's classic crown ring design. I think I've only ever seen design like this in plastic and costume jewelry before. Why are the plastic cases for CDs called "jewel cases?" Today I burnt six sets of three CDs. The three CD set contains 555 images that I am sending to a couple stock photo agencies on Monday.
I think because of it's layered qualities, the onion is the perfect metaphor food. You can compare it to life, years, seasons, etc. This onion has been growing in my fridge door for a while. Seeing its green sprouts reminded me to go to the grocery store every time I opened the door for iced tea. I kept ignoring the sprouts. Eventually, a whole new onion had grown in the fridge door and I didn't have to go to the grocery store. Just kidding.
This is my friend Matt getting his picture taken by Texan photographer Michael J. Madsen. Me and Matt were leaving the National Gallery when we ran into this guy. He said he came up here from Texas to do a project taking photos of people in DC and asking them what they remember about Ronald Reagan. He said it was a spur-of-the-moment idea and he hopes he gets some good material out of it. As a fellow photographer I hope he gets some good material too.
I guess this guy voted for Reagan a while ago. He showed up again today to show his support.
Reagan's Funeral Procession
This is as close as I could get the the funeral procession. Good thing I'm tall, have long arms, and good aim. I am glad I got to see the coffin with my own eyes. They were near the Washington Monument on Constitution Ave below the White House. They got there about 6pm and were off parading by 6:15.
This is my friend Andrew working in the office at Swing's Coffee Shop on 17th and G Sts NW. The company is around 80 years old, so is this typewriter. Swing's is a traditional kind of place and also an old area business. This Tower Typewriter requires no electricity, and is streamline designed leaving out the 1 key for less drag. "It isn't made with one. You have to type the lowercase "L" key for a one," Andrew told me. That typewriter is the closest thing to a computer (aside from the copy machine, stereo, telephone and cell phones, and the occasional Nintendo Game Boy) in Swing's office.
This is my favorite meal in the neighborhood. Half a chicken, rice or french fries, and a cup of lettuce and dressing for $7 even, at El Pollo Sabroso on Mt Pleasant St. The only bank close isn't mine, so I had to buy a 2 liter at 7-Eleven with my card and get $10 cash back. Now I have a full stomach and bus money.
Over the past week I have been noticing the Ronald Regan Building and National Trade Center while passing it on the bus. Yesterday, I specifically remember thinking they could have done a better job of carving the building's title into its rotunda (and caused the letters to look less cramped) had they used a smaller font for "and." I was at my friend Andrew's and his brother Matt was using the internet. Andrew looked over at the screen and said, "Ronald Regan is dead!" I guess I felt relieved. Ronald Regan is the first president I remember as a child. It was a safer time ... the end of the Cold War. Even democrats can mourn the death of this jelly bean eating movie cowboy. I remember I first learned of Ronald Regan from a MAD Magazine and my mom.
I went out with a bunch of new friends tonight. Well, I've met them before, I just forgot their names. We walked up and down 18th St in Adams-Morgan. It's great to see that much activity from time to time. The thing is, I don't live far away and I'm usually annoyed with the activity. The sidewalks are impossible to walk on. Most of the time I see 18th St as a club-filled tourist trap, but tonight it was fun. This is Ian trying to pick up the "CitiBank chick" during a routine ATM stop. Turned down dude? Oh well, she had a mustache anyway.
I was down at the WWII Monument again today. There are a lot of photographers down there. I saw all kinds of cameras, large and medium format, 35mm, digital point-and-shoots and SLRs. It's a regular photographers' convention. I saw this bird down there this evening taking a bath, the same type of bird that was stuck in my chimney for a few days.
I remember when the WWII Memorial was still under construction. I remember the cranes lifting the towers and stone before I even realized what they were building. I make it down to the WWII Memorial as often as I can, about once every three days. I didn't make it very close to the memorial this Memorial Day Weekend though, no ticket for the opening ceremony. One of the side effects to all this "remembering" and Memorial Day is a lot of talk on the bus and at the sidewalk, mostly pertaining to WWII. If some dude had a great uncle that served in WWII they have recently become battlefield experts. I couldn't help overhearing two middle-aged men on the bus loudly going over details of the First World War under the impression they were discussing WWII! God save our country, we're morons!
The rat that I thought was in my chimney pipe a couple days ago turned out to be a bird. I took the chimney pipe apart today, after realizing that my feathered friend had been held captive by my heating apparatus for at least two days. I used my laundry bag and a Mag-Lite to help get the bird out. Then it flew around my house for a while before I let it out the front door.
Every time I pass this Sun Trust Building on 15th St and New York Ave NW I am amazed by its brass rotunda. Every time I see brass I think of sailors polishing it. Really ... every time. I pass by this building a lot but never get a photo. Today, before we passed the building, I reached in front of me and opened up the bus window, then hopped into the seat in front of me and shot back at the building as we passed by. I hopped back into my seat and closed the window. I heard some lady on the bus say I was probably "some kind of secret agent."