I’m reclining in a lawn chair. Its close to 11:30pm and I am in a cabin near Lake Scroon, in upstate New York. This is the real NY. The rolling hills and great lakes, New York. The old growth forests and Niagara Falls, New York. This is the kind of NY where you place rocks in a circle to burn tall piles of birch and oak in while sitting in a circle drinking a beer, New York. That’s what I’ve been doing for four nights. Or, at least its been my favorite parts of the last four nights.

I spent the last three days photographing a wedding. The bride is a beautiful woman. A blond fitness competitor. Her husband, a beautiful man, I’m not afraid to say it; a fitness competitor and solider. They invited me to their cabin, I built epic fires. Last night’s fire lit tonight’s fire. Figure that one out.

My feet are up on the fire pit. My toes are learning how to cope with the invisible reach of the heat. My socks are dryer than they have ever been.

The air tonight is so cool. The breeze blows the fire off my toes and pulls in the scent of pine from the forest. The sounds of New York are the crackling of fire and the occasional shift of its weight. The crickets competing for love above the bristling of leaves. There are birds’ occasional conversations on the wind. And behind me a skunk is tearing apart a garbage bag.

Wait, what?

In the dark distance a white stripe slinks across the covered patio in search of a few drops of Corona mixed with Whiskey, Bud Light, and cigarette tea from the corner teet of an industrial garbage bag.

By the light of my Surefire our gazes meet. Awkwardly stunned, we both realize that we did not have a plan for this event. I yell at him like he’s my dog. “Hey! Geet” He ignores me as though he were trained in a different language. I reach for a rock and burn my hand on it. Damn I build a good fire. My cursing an thrashing send the skunk darting to the corner of porch. I find him with my light and, sure enough, I’m staring down the ass end of a rear firing canon. There are 20’ between us. I find my self wondering if its spray will light on fire like a fart does on Youtube.

I decide this would be better discovered on Youtube.

I’m inside the cabin now. Writing. A well aimed rock (at the side of cabin) granted me the knowledge of Mr’s den; right beneath the porch. I almost didn’t go back out to dowse the fire pit. I’m not afraid of nature. I’m afraid of bathing in tomato sauce.

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On a roof in NYC

I’m sitting on a roof top in NYC. The view is Manhattan from Roosevelt Island. I just threw my kindle to the table in disgust. How some people publish books is beyond me. Is it true that you really cannot unlearn something? Shame. I’ll have to wait for altheimer’s.

The woman next to meet is reading The Beach. I want to tell her to just watch the movie. The story is not compelling or complex enough to warrant wasting memory on both the movie and the book. Especially if she keeps interrupting the book with her phone.
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Sand Bar Island. Concepcion, Philippines

I arrived on the bus late in the afternoon and struggled for nearly an hour to find boat that would take me to the islets.  After some some asking around at the dock I found a gentleman named Dante who would transport me for 500 pesos each way.  I arrived with my camera bag, a tent, a few pieces of chicken and some rice for dinner, and some sweet bread for the morning.  I said a secret prayer to myself as I waved the boatman off hoping I’d be picked up in the morning.

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Bryant Park

I’m laying on my back in Bryant Park. The grass feels wet though forecasted rain has yet to fall. The sky is getting dark. The city actually seems a little bit quieter. Less sirens. My guess is people take a break from getting hurt, hurting each other, and stealing things around dinner time.

There’s less people in the park than before. Their noise replaced by Love’s Labour Lost performed over speakers at one end of the park and the two women near by made deaf by years of high decibel story telling between each other. It’s nice to hear the accents though.

Yoga is spontaneous, like yawning, in the park. Little kids do yoga next to adults. There are a few upside down people opposite the play. They shake beneath each other weight. Other people try not to look.

When people talk about others we call it gossip. When people talk about themselves we call them self-centered. What else is there to talk about I wonder. I’m hearing a lot about some woman from the two on my left. They are gossiping. I’m telling you about it; I am gossiping.

The sky is a mixture of black and the blue of a glow in the dark stick if it were almost out of energy. A little girl’s rubber band launched paper helicopter stands out against the subtle light. Her father misses ever attempt at catching it.

80% of people are wearing head phones and/or staring at their phones, like me. All of us secretly hoping to meet someone new. Someone attractive. Someone who simultaneously makes us feel good about ourselves and makes us want to be better people. If it doesn’t happen in the moments between looking at our phones and looking at our phones…

I’m no exception. I’m just waiting for the rain to force me to go home.

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