Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bushwick storm clean-up continues

Two weeks after two tornadoes and a macroburst tore through Brooklyn, Staten Island and Queens, Maria Hernandez Park remains closed. Crews, however, have made significant progress in clearing the trees that fell during the Sept. 16 storm.

Here are some pictures I took late yesterday afternoon.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Tuesday night on the subway

Here is a list of some of those who rode the subway from 125th Street in West Harlem to Jefferson Street in Brooklyn between 8 – 8:45 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 28.

- Two butch-femme couples of color
- A man with a waxed moustache who had a tattoo on his chest
- A father and his 20-something son, wearing yarmulkes
- A journalist who needs to stop feeling sorry for himself
- A middle aged white woman with curly red hair, wearing shin-high black boots with two straps
- An Asian man with a Whole Foods bag
- A young woman wearing a Leukemia and Lymphoma Society t-shirt and black stretch pants
- A young Latino man cruising for sex

Just another Tuesday night on the New York City subway…

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Marriage equality supporters march across the Brooklyn Bridge

I truly never thought I would see the day when paparazzi would cover a marriage equality march, but it was quite a sight to see "Real Housewives of New York" cast members marching over the Brooklyn Bridge in wedding gowns.

Congressman Jerrold Nadler, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, City Councilmember Letitia James [D-Fort Greene], state Sen. Tom Duane [D-Chelsea], Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, Miss New York 2010 Claire Buffie and radio personality Blake Hayes were among the hundreds who rallied in Foley Square in lower Manhattan before the march earlier today.

Blake Hayes

City Councilmember Letitia James [D-Fort Greene]

In Foley Square

In Foley Square

A late September day on Fire Island

Shot shortly before 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 25.

Shot shortly before sunset on Saturday, Sept. 25.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

GetEQUAL demands accountability

GetEQUAL's latest YouTube video speaks for itself.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A not-so-civil debate over "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"

Is this what a so-called civil debate looks like?


A brother of a very good friend posted the above tirade to his Facebook page yesterday in response to Lady Gaga’s appearance at a Portland, Maine, rally on Monday, Sept. 20, in support of the repeal of "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell". And while my friend’s brother is in the military, I cannot help but wonder aloud whether U.S. Sen. John McCain [R-Ariz.] had a version of this rant in mind when he said “we need to know he views of the men and women who are serving in uniform” as he successfully filibustered a measure that would have allowed debate of the measure on the Senate floor. I would like to conclude even McCain would strongly caution against expletive-filled outbursts from those who serve their country, but I will allow others to offer a more definitive—and hopefully more civilized—conclusion.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Storm aftermath in Bushwick

Today's beautiful weather makes it even more hard to believe two tornadoes and a macroburst tore through Brooklyn and Queens only four days ago.

My two flower boxes were among the storm's casualties--they were in the trash when I came home from Washington, D.C., earlier this afternoon. A tree came down further down the block, siding peeled off of two buildings along Knickerbocker Avenue between Jefferson and Troutman Streets, several awnings ripped and were left in tatters, but the storm devastated Maria Hernandez Park. It remains closed, but here is a video and some pictures of the damage I shot earlier this evening.

Looking inside Maria Hernandez Park from the corner of Irving Avenue and Starr Street.

Maria Hernandez Park along Irving Avenue.

A storefront church on the corner of Irving and Willoughby Avenues.

A street light remains on the sidewalk along Irving Avenue.

Maria Hernandez Park near the corner of Irving Avenue and Suydam Street.

Maria Hernandez Park near the corner of Irving Avenue and Suydam Street.

Maria Hernandez Park near the corner of Irving Avenue and Suydam Street.

Tattered banners along Wyckoff Avenue Wyckoff Heights Medical Center.

A fallen tree along Hart Street between Irving and Knickerbocker Avenues.

Approaching Maria Hernandez Park near the intersection of Suydam Street and Knickerbocker Avenue.

Maria Hernandez Park from Knickerbocker Avenue.

Maria Hernandez Park from Knickerbocker Avenue.

Maria Hernandez Park from Knickerbocker Avenue.

Maria Hernandez Park from Knickerbocker Avenue.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Friday, September 17, 2010

Storms from a different mother

I was in Washington, D.C., when yesterday’s storm pummeled the five boroughs, but a different tempest of sorts continues to brew in Delaware in the wake of Christine O’Donnell’s victory in the First State’s Republican Senate primary.

My boyfriend and I are heading out to Rehoboth Beach tomorrow morning, but I am sure Delaware Pride attendees will drop more than a few teabagger jokes and masturbation-inspired sound bites in their O’Donnell reflections. For the record, however, I heard none of these while at the rest area outside of Wilmington on Interstate 95 on Wednesday, Sept. 15.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

New Yorkers throw the bums out

Both the Daily News and the Post yesterday urged New Yorkers to go to the polls and ‘throw the bums out,’ and they did just that.

Gustavo Rivera trounced scandal-plagued Senate Majority Leader Pedro Espada, Jr. [D-Bronx] by a 67 to 28 percent margin. Espada remained defiant after he conceded to Rivera. “Understand I am not quitting anything,” he told supporters at a Bronx bar as the New York Times reported. “As I go to sleep and wake up re-energized, I am ready for a new fight.”

Espada’s ‘new fight’ may very well come separate courtrooms as he continues to defend himself against allegations he siphoned $14 million from the Soundview Health Center and questions about whether he actually lives in the district he represents in Albany. He is not the only politician, however, New Yorkers sent packing last night.

Francisco Moya easily defeated disgraced former state Sen. Hiram Monserrate [D-Jackson Heights] in a race to fill a vacant Queens Assembly seat. Tim Kennedy defeated incumbent state Sen. Bill Stachowski [D-Lake View]. And in arguably the most surprising result of the night, Buffalo developer Carl Paladino trounced former Congressman Rick Lazio to secure the Republican gubernatorial nomination. The insurgent will square off against Attorney General Andrew Cuomo in November.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Primary Day 2010

Aside from finding my new polling place, voting this morning was a relatively painless experience. The new paper ballots and electronic voting machines were quite straight-forward. And I was on my way after less than five minutes.

Here are a handful of snapshots from the neighborhood on this Primary Day.

In the 'privacy booth' in the basement of the Noll Street Apartments on Central Avenue.

Last minute politicking on the sidewalk along George Street in Bushwick.

The Daily News captures a common sentiment among New York voters.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Sept. 11, 2010

Even though the weeks leading up to today's Sept. 11 anniversary featured controversy the proposed Islamic cultural center near Ground Zero, a fringe Florida pastor (and the media circus that increasingly surrounded him) who had planned to ban copies of the Quran and growing anti-Muslim sentiments, today must remain a day to remember those who lost their lives on that horrible Tuesday morning nine years ago.

I spent part of this morning at St. Paul's Chapel, which is across the street from where the World Trade Center once stood, and along Broadway in lower Manhattan. Below is a clip of the Rev. Dr. James Herbert Cooper commemorating the moment American Airlines Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower.

Snapshots of Sept. 11, 2010:

On my way to lower Manhattan early this morning.

Protest sign in the Union Square subway station as I made my way to lower Manhattan.

New York police officers cordon off the block of Park Place where the proposed Cordoba Center would be built.

The debate over the proposed Cordoba Center continues in writing near Ground Zero.

The debate over the proposed Cordoba Center continues in writing near Ground Zero.

The World Trade Center cross outside St. Peter's Catholic Church on Church Street.

Looking south towards Ground Zero from Church Street.

Looking towards Ground Zero from outside St. Paul's Chapel.

A Sept. 11 altar inside St. Paul's Chapel.

Inside St. Paul's Chapel.

Sept. 11 artifacts inside St. Paul's Chapel.

A child's depiction of the attacks hangs inside St. Paul's Chapel.

A Sept. 11 artifact inside St. Paul's Chapel.

Outside St. Paul's Chapel on Fulton Street.

Ground Zero from Vesey Street between Church Street and Broadway.

Anti-Islamic sentiments on display directly across from Ground Zero on Church Street.

An anti-Cordoba Center protester stands outside St. Paul's Chapel on Church Street.

An interesting juxtaposition in front of the Millenium Hilton on Church Street.

Ground Zero from the Millenium Hilton's facade on Church Street.

The debate over the proposed Cordoba Center continues in writing directly across Church Street from Ground Zero.

A Sept. 11 tribute along Broadway in lower Manhattan.

A New Yorker commemorates Sept. 11 on Broadway in lower Manhattan.

Looking towards Ground Zero from the intersection of Nassau and Ann Streets in lower Manhattan.