"Place, with a trace of humanity" Photography/Photo of the Day/Pittsburgh

Posts tagged “photoblog

Did You Ever Wear a Toe Sock?

One of the Kindergarten teachers wore rainbow toe socks and colorful flip flops for Wacky Wednesday, celebrating Dr. Seuss’ birthday.  I had this same pair in 1972 (approximately). Well, a pair just like them.   And Mrs. D said exactly what I remember, how it feels thick in between your toes and they are humorous looking but not something you want to wear all the time.  The floor is the cafeteria linoleum.  Friday afternoon it’s going to be GREEN EGGS and HAM in the cafeteria and if anyone drops green eggs they will blend in with the flooring.  I guess they’ll leave the ham pink?

I wouldn't want to knit a toe sock!


What a First Grader Gave Me as a Little Present Today

It’s Girl Scout Cookie season.  A wonderful student gave me a little present today.  I can’t tell you how it touched me.  Two Trefoil Girl Scout Cookies, held together by pink Silly Bandz. One cookie looks like there might be a  little bite out of it.  As you all know I am trying to watch what I eat ( forget the burger, pizza and milkshake posts) I am back on track. So I didn’t eat them.  But I held them in my hand a long time and thought about the heartfelt gift.  When I took it across the hall to Ms. P’s  room to show her, she was touched by the sight of the two little cookies bound together by the Silly Bandz.  We both said “awwwww. sweet.”   Good to have nice neighbors  at school to share these moments –thanks to everyone for looking today!

Presentation

The end of the week
and you’re whipped.
Happy to turn off the alarm for Saturday.
You review the week–
it can wear you out
but sweet moments come to mind.
There’s satisfaction.
To know a child was moved
to go to her locker and
bring a little offering to the art room.

p.s.   If you get a minute, go and vote on my Keep or Pitch blog post to help me downsize. 


Find the Mantel in the Remains of the House Demolished on Centre Ave.

At first I thought it was an upright piano on top of the pile.   M-a-n-t-l-e is usually a cloak. M-a-n-t-e-l is the fireplace one. Although it seems they are interchanged frequently. I try to spell correctly on this blog but sometimes it’s tricky.

Driving to school I saw this pile of rubble which was a house last week. An abandoned, boarded-up house but still standing. Webb Construction guys were nice to let me take the photo. I asked them how they do it and he said you start at the top and work your way down.  Oh, and I met a contractor who restores houses and is looking for worthy pieces to salvage for the homes he restores.  What a contrast.

When It Is Too Far Gone to be Repaired or Restored

It gets torn down.
No one has the money to fix it up.
Houses stand boarded up a long time.
Sometimes there are occupied homes right next door.
Seems the city is demolishing abandoned homes at breakneck speed.
No archeological digs as in Philadelphia sites.

You wonder who lived here and the stories of their lives.


By Special Request- A Tulip Bouquet

Spring for 4.99Seems the perfect follow up
to yesterday’s snow post.
At least the snow isn’t staying too long this time.
Stick to the shovel kind.
So until the bulbs push up from the ground
and bring some blooms,
I took matters into my own hands
at the grocery store.

Opening slowly but surely a sign of Spring!


The Newspaper said “Little to no accumulation…” but-

A friend called and invited me for a slice of cherry pie for President’s Day. Hot tea.  I walked down the hill wrapped up in hats and scarves and boots.  A good thing-  I couldn’t believe it when I came out of her front door two  hours later and the snow had accumulated and was piling up.  That 60 degree weather on Saturday and now this? YIKES.  I trudged home, shoveled the walk and it’s blowing and snowing and really cold.  The snow was wet and heavy and a 2 hour delay has been called already for school.  How they will clear all the streets before the school buses head out is a puzzle to me.   (edit 5:30 AM.  All schools are CLOSED!  At least they didn’t wait to call it at 7 when everyone is already there.  My friend just called, teaches instrumental music  and gave me the news auf Deautsch singing Schnee Tag )

Not Spring Yet!

It isn’t that we aren’t ready for the crocus
and blossoms.
We got an unexpected snowstorm.
Shoveling again. And again.
Burrowing in the flannel sheets.
Florida friends, I am thinking of you!

Back to bed.

View from my friend's front porch as I started my walk home up the hill.

Heard from many friends and family who knew and loved Lori today.  And from friends who didn’t know her but were touched by her story and loving image with Fredi.  I tried to write back little notes of thank you to those who emailed or posted and I told her sister Sara about the overwhelming response but she can’t bear to look at it right now, understandably. A sad day.


Windy With a Chance of Sunlight

A beautiful day. And though inside from 7:30-4:00 I was able to catch the unfurled flag from the second floor window AND the flag shadow on the asphalt during lunch.  Right through the glass.

The Cathedral of Learning in the distance, the light fluctuating as clouds rolled across the sky.  Had to tilt the camera to get both the flag and the shadow-  the angle a technique I don’t use often.

Windy

In the daytime look out the windows.
Branches bend, papers blow across the yard.
Ripples or waves on water.
A pile of leaves caught up in a whirl.
You can tell it’s windy.
At night, listen.
A train along the river whistles.
Calm, a burst, a roar.
Earlier in my car on the bridge.
Wait for the light.
Feel it. Vibrate.
Bounce bounce bounce
right up through the tires.

Eye level to the top of a flag pole- a cool perspective.


What You Should Never Eat- But Tastes Great!

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Hungry

Sometimes you are hungry
for something that is just not good for you.
And you eat it.

And regret doing so.

Or not!

Wednesday nights I take a class at Manchester Craftsmen’s and eat an early dinner on the South Side, driving down the slopes from Arlington.   The last two weeks it was Carson Street Deli sandwiches but then I started thinking French fries. Undoing all the work at the gym yesterday.

So I crossed at 16th St and went into Mario’s, the only patron at that off hour but not for long.  Cory was hosting and tending bar and took my order for an Alpine burger (don’t ask) and their house cut fries. A tall ginger ale.      I asked if I could photograph the stained glass windows.  Designed by Williams Stained Glass of Bethel Park. It was a good time to photograph the architectural details.  Woshner’s was once “haberdashery” and is now Mario’s.  I was too early for Karaoke night. Had to get to class.


Zenith Radio Model 12-S-370, 1939

Tonight at the book club meeting I sat at the table with this radio in front of me for the evening. I knew it had a story and the hostess just wrote to tell me I left my notebook where I had jotted down what I needed to know about the radio’s history.  I remembered the location of Beaconsfield Street in Detroit.   Here is what Lisa B. wrote to me just now about this radio  from her husband’s family.  Zenith Radio Model 12-s-370. found online Antique Radio Museum.

Here is what Lisa wrote in an email tonight-  So here you go: The radio belonged originally to neighbors of Virginia and Joseph Belloli who lived on Beaconsfield Street or Holcumb Street in Detroit. During WWII the neighbors were German nationals and as German nationals they could not own the radio because it had short wave capabilities. The neighbors sold the radio to “Granny” and “Grampa”.       Joseph was born 1895 in Cuggiono Italy and Virginia in 1896 in the US, though her family was from Cuggiono as well. And just to make things complicated, three Oldani sisters married three Belloli brothers. You just have to accept if you were born Belloli and you meet another Belloli in Detroit or St. Louis, yes, somehow in some convoluted way, you are related.”

You can see more about this model in a video a guy made on youtube with one  he found at the curb in Peoria IL



Michael Jumps Off the Board into 12′

Saturday afternoon with the family .  We checked out the indoor pools, one a leisure pool with a lazy river.  Everyone had a good time.  How to ward off cabin fever? Enter the balmy Westerville Community Center pool. We skipped the climbing wall. Note the little drips of water off the back of his suit as he jumped. Mark took the two oldest back on Sunday afternoon.

Practicing my sports photography, stop action!


School Chairs & Chain Link Shadows in the Snow

Someone left the chairs out in the snow. Today the sun came out.  I photographed these a couple of weeks ago and they just looked uninteresting to me.  So not the whole chair, just a part. It was the shadows that attracted me today.

This morning I saw my first sundog*.
I was unable to photograph it properly.
It was a stunning sunrise from the Birmingham Bridge.
I didn’t even know what a sundog was until Joanne
sent me a photo of one.
It was clear and cold, blue sky and a magnificent sun.
It is amazing how you can feel when it is light.
The view of the sundog from the school parking lot seemed less dramatic.
I was trying to show our librarian.  Definition below.
*from good old wikipedia
A sun dog or sundog (scientific name parhelion, plural parhelia, from Greek parēlion, (παρήλιον), παρά(beside) + ήλιος(sun), “beside the sun”; also called a mock sun or a phantom sun) is an atmospheric phenomenon that creates bright spots of light in the sky, often on a luminous ring or halo on either side of the sun.[1]

Sundogs may appear as a colored patch of light to the left or right of the sun, 22° distant and at the same distance above the horizon as the sun, and in ice halos. They can be seen anywhere in the world during any season, but they are not always obvious or bright. Sundogs are best seen and are most conspicuous when the sun is low.

A classic assignment for beginning photographers- Capture the shadow!


Button, Button, Whose Got the Button? ( & Bridal Veils, too!)

1700 Carson Street is the home of a great button store.  It fascinates me-  Parker Button. Boxes and boxes stacked from floor to ceiling.   All colors, shapes and sizes.  Like an artist’s palette.  Shank or flat. Frogs and belt buckles. Ribbon and trim. Spools of thread to sew them all on for utility or ornamentation. My mother had a glass jar full of buttons.  My sister made me the coolest necklace from vintage mother-of-pearl shirt buttons, strung onto embroidery floss. Do you have any clothing missing a button?

The other half of  the shop is Clarissa’s Boutique .   One word to describe the bridal veils, jewelry and accessories for custom headpieces and wedding necessities-  exquisite? lovely? classic? ethereal?  They will create a custom headpiece for you but allow three months.  Feathers, flowers, jewels, or pearls.       Voted the Best of the Knot for weddings 2011.

These Days Buttons are Often a Part of Web Design

Or people push our buttons.
Press the button to call the elevator
or select your floor.
Today’s post is the old fashioned kind.
Two-hole, four-hole or shank.
Metal, plastic, shell or bone.
Beatrix Potter shapes of rabbits.
When was the last time you sewed on a button?

Today marks 500 blog posts and counting!

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Growing up we had a record with the song ( these lyrics are from 1929)

Button up your overcoat, When the wind is free, Oh, take good care of yourself, You belong to me! Eat an apple every day, Get to bed by three, Oh, take good care of yourself, You belong to me! Be careful crossing streets, ooh-ooh, Cut out sweets, ooh-ooh, Lay off meat, ooh-ooh, You'll get a pain and ruin your tum-tum! 

The Carnegie Museum Fountains in Winter

Shooting a color photo that looks black and white is fun.  These pods looked chilly and the sounds of the water splashing gave a shiver right under my wool coat and scarf.

Ever watch kids play in fountains
in the summer months?
Not the day I shot this photograph/
and I doubt kids play in these
or if they do, I’m sure not for long.
Vigilant museum guards would
come out and put a halt to any splashing

February 1st after lunch on Professional Development Day.

Check out Keep or Pitch and vote today!


Steelers’ Family Preparations- Pittsburgh and Beyond

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See Maura two years ago dressed for Super Bowl 43 and now at two years + @ the piano bench,  Steelers hat by her side, ready for Super Bowl 45.              Not my house- the mansion of Fifth Ave. with the huge gold and black banners on the porch at night.

And a friend at work, Ann and I, decided to knit  obsessively and make four Steelers hats. Used a double strand of Cascade Superwash 220.  I mailed mine to the grandchildren but forget trying to get a photo. We had fun trying.  I think.

Sue B made the yellow pepper black olive topped salad for the AFC championship game and the cake was as Black and Gold as I could get it.  No one would eat a licorice cake.  A Brown Mountain cake (recipe) from Farm Journal with classic buttercream icing.    No buttermilk in the house so I soured the milk with a T of vinegar and it tasted fine.

Smiley Cookies are from Eat ‘n Park and they were on the sign-in counter so weren’t consumed by me.

Mark has a Steelers flag to fly in the daylight and a blanket to keep warm and an Official Terrible Towel.

The last shot is the snowfall today.  Hear there has been snow in Texas too. Thanks everyone near and far for the well wishes. And for putting up with the hoopla if you are a diehard Packers’ fan. (luv ya Rob)

A Longest Day

Sunday. Some things to cook.
We’ll wait for the game to begin.
Today a snowfall and weather reports.
I think I’ll knit one more hat!
The act of knitting reduces anxiety.


‘Twas the Night Before Superbowl, Fans Asleep in Their Beds-Visions of a 7th Ring, Float in Their Heads

But not overconfident. Just hopeful.  And the Packers fans are dreaming the same vision I’m sure.  (Actually photographed Thursday night Feb 3rd.)

Settling Down for a Long Winter’s Nap

And then you turn on the TV-
warm up
for the big game.
Have to wait all weekend long.
A two hour delay for Monday–
school, already called!

View of Homestead Over the Mon

Heard Giant Eagle was packed and fans are loading up their carts with salsa, ribs and Tostitos and chips.   Iron City and Yuengling, some Penn Pilsner at the Beer Distributor– you can’t purchase beer in the grocery store in Pennsylvania.  Fans are careful to follow rituals and are aware that their actions might jinx the outcome. Some can’t stand to watch.


By the (Ominous) Dawn’s Early Light

On the way to school, a bus stops. Traffic stops. I take a photo of the scene. One streetlight on, one streetlight off.

A massive cloud–
a golden light
The school bus’s red lights
Everyone stops.
The dawn reflected
in street signs.


Groundhog Sports Black and Gold Beads

Happy Groundhog’s Day. A friend sent an email of a groundhog finding a Lombardi trophy as a shadow.

You can click here for all the serious information from the official website in Punxsutawney PA.

I hear there are some competitors around the country but Phil lives close by ….   “If Candlemas be fair and clear, there’ll be two winters in the year.”       or this poem from Wikipedia “In Scotland the tradition may also derive from an English poem:

As the light grows longer
The cold grows stronger
If Candlemas be fair and bright
Winter will have another flight
If Candlemas be cloud and rain
Winter will be gone and not come again
A farmer should on Candlemas day
Have half his corn and half his hay
On Candlemas day if thorns hang a drop
You can be sure of a good pea crop

not sure about the shadow. Will find out in the morning. Spring or more winter?

One year(1990) my sister and I went to Punxsutawney to see Phil the groundhog. Pre-Groundhog Day movie.


Nike the Service Dog, Named For Greek Goddess of Strength, Speed & Victory

A gentle spirit, kind eyes.
She travels to nursing homes
makes people smile. Feel better.
Especially Ms. P’s first grade Friday!
Ms. P’s class had a visitor today.  The Art Room is just across the hall. Lucky me!

Email Kirk Sciarretti to arrange a visit- kasciarretti@live.com


Whose Chairs?

A recurring theme around the city as I travel between schools-  I see chairs.  The chairs make me wonder about the owners, their usual occupants.  Somewhere in my hard drive I’ve a photo of a high chair near the curb, waiting for pick-up.  Chairs have a personality of their own. I love to hear the names of different types of chairs, each evoke an image- wing chair, ladderback, Windsor or Eames. Lawn chair, rocking chair, lounge or arm.  High chair, club chair, captain chair, molded plastic, patio or kitchen chair.  School chairs are not particularly comfortable. Kids love the rolling ones on wheels. Folding, stackable, side chair or throne.  Where do you sit?

Everyone has a chair.
Some more comfortable than others.
What kind of chair do you prefer?
As always,

Two yellow chairs and a gray one on Evaline Street. Yellow curb peeking through the snow.


Peter King to Open for Jeffrey Gaines-Feb 26th-7 PM-Club Cafe Pittsburgh

Peter King on guitar at the coffee/ice cream shop on Saturday afternoon.

Aspinwall Beans “N” Cream was the scene last Saturday.  Cool decor, lots of record album covers and posters and photos and Beatles memorabilia adorn the walls of the coffee house. Fun to watch a lava lamp in the corner.  Peter added an expertly played instrumental combining three classic jig and reel tunes, complete with an occasional foot tap that made one want to get up and dance along to the beat. Peter invited harmonica player Marc Reisman to join him onstage for a few numbers and the two paired nicely.  Peter will open for singer-songwriter Jeffrey Gaines, whom the Chicago Tribune calls “extraordinary and timeless,” at Club Cafe on Feb. 26 at 7 pm. Check out  Peter King website and see the photos I shot for his latest CD cover.   For tickets write to info@peterkingmusic.com ($13 in advance). If you live locally, Peter teaches guitar lessons privately and at Chatam University. You can contact him and sign up now to learn to play away the winter blues.


How About this House for Steelers Madness?

Some dedicated fans live here for sure!

Sunday night’s game was a nail biter.  On the way to Cj’s house to watch the game I saw this house across the street.  Monday morning everyone will be happy at work.  The excitement will build over the next couple of weeks.  Many will be superstitious about a wide range of rituals-not shaving, items of clothing worn, with many fans feeling responsible for the final outcome dependent on their action or inaction.  It is quite a phenomenon.  Thanks for all the good wishes from friends far and wide.

And congratulations again to Dr Beth P. who won the Blog Giveaway of the photo print of her choice, which she is going to donate to the    National Kidney Foundation’s Annual Gift of Life Gala!


HERE WE GO! Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Jets Playoff Game- Single Digits on the Thermometer Predicted

Pittsburgh Steelers Spirit 20

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Reporting from Pittsburgh- I put myself on assignment.       Saturday morning I was thinking about a post for Sunday’s game.  It was all blue sky and about ten degrees.  Got out of bed and drove through the Strip District on my way down to Heinz Field.  The guy who sold me the Croatian STEELERSFan T-shirts last year agreed to a shot. Fans lined up for breakfast outside DeLuca’s.   Dumptrucks were being filled with snow from the stadium parking lots. Rows of Porta-Potties stood empty, waiting for the Sunday tailgaters. Up in the stands I saw an army spreading salt left and right.  Went for coffee in Aspinwall afterwards and ended in the J & W Variety Store (EST. 1969)  where I purchased a tiny 99 cents pencil sharpener. Lots of STEELERS gear and accessories for sale. I asked if it would be okay if I photographed the display and the proprietor said – Sure!      Handed me a complimentary HERE WE GO button as I left.  Everyone’s pumped!  I read a letter to the editor (5th one down)in the Post-Gazette from the guy in the New England End Zone Militia asking us to drown out the JETS fans and win!   Similar to the players message to the fans click here- BE LOUD!!


My Answer to 9 Degrees Temperature? Homemade French Onion Soup

A bowl of onions on the kitchen table has been talking to me saying “Onion rings in the cast iron skillet, onion rings in the cast iron skillet.” But I came to my senses and sliced them up and sauteed them in butter and olive oil to carmelize them.  Toasted a slice of Allegro Hearth Farmgrain Bread and thin parings of Parmesan. Ladled the hot broth over the toast and cheese. Used my Grandmother Hendricks’ silver soup spoon with just the right bowl of a spoon for the soup. Found a wealth of information and recipes for Onion Soup. Click the link to read the history and simple directions on how to make it perfectly.  And the birthday pasta bowls from V make a lovely soup plate for this winter meal.

the kitchen smelled so inviting. I wouldn't make this in July.


Red Sky in Morning from the Birmingham Bridge

Left the house a bit earlier to get to the other side of the city this morning. As I hit the Birmingham Bridge I saw the sunrise.  I pulled to the edge, hit the flashers again and sat quietly, and shot the sky over a few minutes time.  The other direction I could see cars on the Parkway with their headlights on.  A nice way to start the day. But the Red Sky,Sailors Take Warning turned out true as it is snowing (about 3 inches so far) and already they have called for a two hour delay at school.  The dark band along the bottom of the photo is the Jersey Barrier. Unretouched photograph!

Red Sky in Morning, Sailors Take Warning

Finding more beauty in winter.


Steelers Inflatable in a Silver Pick-Up

Arlington Avenue.  Driving down the curvy slope, slick tracks under your tires make a distinctive sound.  Note the trolley tracks and wires. They still run!  I had to turn around and get this inflatable.  From the rear. Drove up the hill again and came down, took a shot of him from the front.  It was the unexpected sight of a huge Black and Gold inflatable, leaning over the cab of the silver pick-up.  This view was the better one.  Playoff fever mounts as Sunday night’s game with the Jets is on everyone’s minds.  Well, most everyone.  It helps us make it through the winter.  And if you want to purchase one of these blow up football friends, get down to Mike Feinberg Company”The Party King” in the Strip on Penn Ave.   Fans have a variety of ways to express team spirit and I know everyone will sport Black and Gold at school on Friday.  Throughout the city!  I find team allegiance an interesting study.  Where you are born, where you live, family traditions, civic pride. There are photographers who photograph the Steelers Fans for years.

What determines the level of team pride?

My headlights reflect on the truck, the headlights from the oncoming car on the wet street...


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