16-03-15 The Ides Of March

CAESAR
Who is it in the press that calls on me?
I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music,
Cry ‘Caesar!’ Speak; Caesar is turn’d to hear.
Soothsayer
Beware the ides of March.
CAESAR
What man is that?
BRUTUS
A soothsayer bids you beware the ides of March.
CAESAR
Set him before me; let me see his face.
CASSIUS
Fellow, come from the throng; look upon Caesar.
CAESAR
What say’st thou to me now? speak once again.
Soothsayer
Beware the ides of March.
CAESAR
He is a dreamer; let us leave him: pass.

A perfect sky for this day…

RSJohnson_1603131015

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3-20-13 Never Trust A Calendar

Our wills and fates do so contrary run
That our devices still are overthrown;
Our thoughts are ours, their ends none of our own.

Mr. Shakespeare sure knew how to throw down, didn’t he? Many things brought this quote to mind.  Yesterday Abigail and I left Boston and headed to Worcester, MA to visit Clark College.   It is the only college in the US visited by Sigmund Freud. He and Carl Jung came over in 1909 to deliver a series of lectures.  This article from The Chronicle of Higher Education, details a number of really interesting facts about the visit and Freud. This was most recently noted in the film “A Dangerous Method”.

In any event it snowed from Boston to Worcester and all through our visit. It continued to snow as we headed south on I-95 but as we came close to Hartford it changed to sleet, mixed with rain and snow, and the road became really slick. I slowed down to about 45.  Many others did not. As we came over a rise in the road we saw an accident about 250 yards ahead of us.  The accident had ended but two cars were totaled and at least five other vehicles were in the road in various states of damage. The crash occupied two lanes. As we got closer we saw three or four people in a circle around something and then a man in a suit running towards them.  As he knelt down we saw that there was a woman lying very still in the road. She had clearly been thrown from her car.  Many people were on their phones (I verified they had called 911) and the man in the suit who seemed to be a Doctor was checking vital signs etc.  There is always a question in this situation, do you stop or continue on.  With the knowledge that at least 20 people were already on the scene and that the Emergency personnel had been called, I chose to keep going and not add to the confusion. I believe that was the right choice, especially with Abigail in the car with me but…

What does Shakespeare have to do with this? If I had not slowed down we easily could have been in the middle of that wreck – we also could have been well past it or could have been the cause of it. Dumb luck.

What fates impose, that men must needs abide;
It boots not to resist both wind and tide.

This of course all happened less than 24 hours before the “arrival” of Spring. Well, if you say so.  Sure does not feel like Spring in New York.

However to cheer myself up I spent much of the day working on a picture I took in April of 2011.  Long time readers will have seen this shot before.

It came out of the camera looking like this…

Sunny Pilings-2

After much back and forth and push and pull with myself I have brought it to here.

Sunny Pilings-1

I need to sleep on it now to see what finishing touches it needs.

9-3-12 We Are Labor Day People – (The River Edition)

There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio

then are dreamt of in your philosophy

For a number of reasons I have been thinking about artists (in the broadest sense): who they are; what they do; and who gets to say they are artists. Does each individual get to say “I am an artist”  or is that really reserved for…the audience? the critics?, the scholars?

Naturally, sooner or later, such thoughts take me to Shakespeare. Some people may say they have no idea who he was – I think he was William Shakespeare, but that is a conversation for another day – but just about everyone seems to agree that he was the greatest artist who has ever worked in the English language.

The quote above is from Hamlet.  Once upon a time it was my favorite of the tragedies and of all his plays but as I got older that position was taken by King Lear and now the favorite tragedy would be Macbeth and the favorite play…perhaps Macbeth, perhaps The Tempest, perhaps Twelfth Night but for pure wordsmithery I have believed for many years nothing beats Mercutio‘s Queen Mab speech (for a good time follow the link) from Romeo and Juliet. There is a reason young actors ALL seem to use it in auditions.

None of the above has anything to do with the river or Labor Day except perhaps the variety of life that Shakespeare shows to us…

7-19-12 Looking At the World Through A Different Lens

“Summer’s lease hath all to short a date”

Shakespeare

I  shot with my iPhone 4 today just to change things up.

___________________________________

11/10/11 Converted

2-19-12 Solitary Togetherness

And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything.

-Shakespeare-
This is a detail of one of my favorite trees in Central Park…I think of it as Merlin’s Tree.
What attracts people most it would appear, is other people”
William H. Whyte
The rebuilt courtyard leading to The American Wing at The Metropolitan Museum
A Guest View of the Hudson River

Hudson River Scene - John Frederick Kensett - 1857

John Frederick Kensett

2-17-12 But the Hills That We Climbed Were Just Seasons Out Of time

“Let us go in together,
And still your fingers on your lips, I pray.
The time is out of joint” – Shakespeare

xxx

He likes the poor things of the world the best,
I would not, therefore, if I could be rich.
It pleases him to stoop for buttercups.
E. B. Browning—Aurora Leigh. Bk. IV.

xxx

As I went walking by the river today. I saw the flowers above…

I saw a man practicing for summer…

and at the start of a 3 day weekend, I saw the entrance to the Freedom Tunnel, just to the east of the river and the Henry Hudson Parkway and there was a long enough break in traffic in both directions simultaneously that I was able to get a clean shot.

xxx

Oh, and the Republicans want to take us back to 1950 when the only birth control a woman needed according to Foster Friess (Rick Santorum’s billionaire sugar daddy):  was?

“Back in my day, they used Bayer Aspirin for contraceptives. The gals put it between their knees and it wasn’t that costly,”

and…

 The State of Virginia goes insane

The time truly is out of joint…