Digital Gallery SONY DSC“The state of affairs is that combination of circumstances applying within a society or group at a particular time. The current state of affairs may be considered acceptable by many observers, but not necessarily by all. The state of affairs may present a challenge, or be complicated, or contain a conflict of interest. The status quo represents the existing state of affairs. Unresolved difficulties or disagreements concerning the state of affairs can provoke a crisis. Dispute resolution is naturally desired, and naturally provided, by forms of inclusive social interaction, such as consensus decision-making, which adapt, but not conveniently, from a family or tribal model to encompass a global scope. Current knowledge and discussion about the state of affairs is communicated through the media.” from wikipedia. We talk about moving forward as if it’s a choice. As if we are in control of our “progression”. To an extent perhaps, but when we have our problems being thrown at us and we speak of walking past them, when we talk about dodging the bullet, reaching for more, we’re only lying. I mean if we were to look down we’d see we weren’t the ones walking at all. It’s more like we’re on a giant conveyor belt, and while we can hop from one belt to another, the forward motion, the dodging and reaching, it’s all due to an unstoppable force, this conveyor belt of time. You walk through. You’ve been here before. It’s all the same but different. It’s all the same but different. It’s a 35mm cctv camera lens with a smooth wide open aperture fitted onto a sony nex-5n. We determine the scope of our future inevitabilities. All over, all over.I feel as though I’m on the verge of a big change in my life. The last year and a half has been particularly formative for me. My interest in a wide range of things have deepened. While this has left me stretched thin at times, I think it has been very beneficial. I’m growing, but accelerating to the next chapter (I think that’s what people like to call it). Soon my college years will begin to drift into the past. Between now and then though a lot of pieces will fall into place. I’m hoping they fall into the right places. Hope alone doesn’t get you far though. Home stretch. Until tomorrows home stretch. I drove to work today, the view of the yellow road lines popped more than usual. They had just painted them. The lines were solid and bold, cutting the countryside in half. The lighting too, had achieved perfection. Endlessly dark rolling clouds, and the sun at my back, created a contrasty saturated image before me. When I entered town my vision was treated to another odd sight. Cars. Cars parked everywhere. Then it hit me, it was homecoming. How could I have forgotten? I somehow managed to push the endless photos and reminders I saw on facebook that morning from my mind. Those fall colors though? I should have remembered. Homecoming is a most peculiar day. People, people everywhere. All out of context. All looking confused. I parked far away from work and now had to travel through the campus. Northside was deserted. I walked for minutes without seeing a soul. It wasn’t until I saw a guy in his 40s or 50s with a big mustache and dark glasses did I noticed I was in some sort of ghost town. As we passed I said, “Hello.” He looked at me but simply kept walking. I noticed the awkward manner in which I said hello. It stuck out since no one else was around and I hadn’t received a response from him. I sounded like one robot sending out beeps to communicate to another. I felt my soul hang like a flabby gel over my mechanical skeleton. It made me happy. I felt relaxed. I felt at home in my body. I stopped by the library to pick up a book. “The Reasons of Love”, by Frankfurt. I was learning about human love. As I approached the middle of campus I saw huge, cartoonish, buses. I remembered, later that night I was helping with a loadout for, “Chance the Rapper”. I wasn’t too familiar with him. As I passed through the tour busses a group of guys, among them what I presumed to be Mr. Chance,looked at me in a most bizarre way. Some, as though I was doing something wrong. Perhaps threatening their existence. Others as though I might be interested in talking to Mr. Chance and asking for an autograph, they seemed almost hopeful. I passed by without a word exchanged. Swarming nearby were pockets of production crew members smoking and/or using their phones. The most active were those who seemed as though this was an average day for them. Another day on the job, everything oddly in place. As I crossed the street from the north to south side of campus, a pickup truck rounded the corner. From it I heard stereotypical indian calls, the kind you hear on old cartoons, and it grew louder and louder. A pickup truck filled to the brim in guys chanted. They were approaching an event. They were all approaching an event. Well, they thought they were. This was homecoming. They were expecting to finally find home. South campus was littered with people. All of them trying desperately to fit in while straining their necks searching. All of them looking so strange. Their smiles appeared awfully painful. With the hope from summer dwindling, they desperately tried to embrace the falling leaves. Pumpkin flavor, “We love it! We love it!”, they tried to convince themselves. They think maybe this is the year they finally find home. As the people frantically make adjustments to their attire and their posture, the football game roars from the stadium. It’s been slowly increasing in volume since I’ve been walking. I see two kids, both under 10. They look odd, but only because the world around them is trying so hard that their organic-ness pops out at you. The game will go on, the events will run into the night. As the hours pass they’ll somehow become both more lucid and confused. At some point they will have a substance assisted existential break down beneath a single 25 watt bulb on their friends porch. They’ll transcend their manic urge to be human and define a home, and for a moment they’ll see it all. They’ll understand why the road lines popped so well this morning.“Not all new tactics in combating terrorism in the United States were based on existing laws. “In electronic surveillance, you did have a big change,” said John C. Yoo, a law professor at the University of California, Berkeley, who became known for his aggressive legal advice and expansive view of executive power as a Justice Department official in the Bush administration. In 2002, for instance, a special federal appeals court, the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review, granted the Justice Department broad new powers to use wiretaps obtained for intelligence operations in criminal cases. “This revolutionizes our ability to investigate terrorists and prosecute terrorist acts,” Mr. Ashcroft said at the time. After revelations concerning the warrantless wiretapping of international communications, Congress largely endorsed the program. Those legal changes, joined with striking advances in technology, have allowed the government broad ability to gather information. “The Fourth Amendment has been seriously diluted,” said Professor Herman, who teaches at Brooklyn Law School. She added that she was struck by “the amount of surveillance that’s been unleashed with less and less judicial review and less and less individualized suspicion.” Both the Bush and Obama administrations have been criticized by liberals as employing excessive secrecy and, in particular, for invoking the state secrets privilege to shut down civil litigation challenging things like rendition and surveillance programs. By international standards, though, the public has learned a great deal about secret government activities. “That so many of the abuses committed by the executive in the wake of 9/11 have come to light is another sign of American exceptionalism,” Professor Roach wrote, “as manifested by the activities of a free press that is unrestrained by official secrets acts found in most other democracies.” Opinions vary about whether efforts to fight terrorism in the United States have inflicted collateral damage on political dissent, religious liberty and the freedom of association. “If you look at it historically,” said Professor Yoo, “you might say, ‘I can’t believe we’re at war,’ when you see how much speech is going on. Civil liberties are far more protected than what we’ve seen in past wars.” Professor Cole was less sanguine. “Since 9/11, the criminal law has expanded, ensnaring as ‘terrorists’ people who have done no more than provide humanitarian aid to needy families, while privacy and political freedoms have contracted, especially for those in Muslim communities,” he said. “On the one hand, the past 10 years have shown that criminal law can be used effectively to fight terrorism; on the other, it has also demonstrated that the demand for prevention can all too quickly lead to the abuse of innocents.” https://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/07/us/sept-11-reckoning/civil.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 I don’t think we appreciate the Industrial Revolution enough. You hear it over and over again, but you need a global and historic perspective to understand the ludicrously rapid advancements that took place during that time. So much of the foundation of our daily lives began to take shape at the turn of the 20th century. Europe has ancient cathedrals and medieval castles. America has rusted factories with blown out windows. We don’t pay these sites very much attention. I think in part because of the sadness that they hold. These places are reminders of the horrible unregulated working conditions and also the fact that “we used to make shit in this country”. Sometimes it’s easier to look away until we can stare and realize the significance. I will soon be re-watching The Wire – Frank Sobotka: You know what the trouble is, Brucey? We used to make shit in this country, build shit. Now we just put our hand in the next guy’s pocket. Frank Sobotka: For 25 years we’ve been dying slow down there. Dry docks rusting and piers standing empty. My friends and their kids like we got the cancer. No life line got thrown all that time. Nothing from nobody. And now you want to help us? Help me? Moving to a new place can do great things for your mind. Constantly seeing new things creates connections in your brain you wouldn’t make otherwise. You become inspired. You connect ideas and understand more of the world around you and how all the puzzle pieces fit together. 1) Having to wake up to an alarm. 2) Forgetting. 3) Not knowing. 4) Not being able to communicate an idea effectively. We’ve created extremely complex modes of transportation. We have systems that facilitate the movement of thousands of people 24/7. And for a few bucks, you too, can complain about it not being good enough. “A person who is true blue is loyal and dependable, someone who can be relied on in all circumstances.” “Of human life the time is a point, and the substance is in a flux, and the perception dull, and the composition of the whole body subject to putrefaction, and the soul a whirl, and fortune hard to divine, and fame a thing devoid of judgment. And, to say all in a word, everything which belongs to the body is a stream, and what belongs to the soul is a dream and vapour, and life is a warfare and a stranger’s sojourn, and after-fame is oblivion. What then is that which is able to conduct a man? One thing and only one, philosophy. But this consists in keeping the daemon within a man free from violence and unharmed, superior to pains and pleasures, doing nothing without a purpose, nor yet falsely and with hypocrisy, not feeling the need of another man’s doing or not doing anything; and besides, accepting all that happens, and all that is allotted, as coming from thence, wherever it is, from whence he himself came; and, finally, waiting for death with a cheerful mind, as being nothing else than a dissolution of the elements of which every living being is compounded. But if there is no harm to the elements themselves in each continually changing into another, why should a man have any apprehension about the change and dissolution of all the elements? For it is according to nature, and nothing is evil which is according to nature. This in Carnuntum.” – Marcus Aurelius My camera will allow me to preview everything in black and white. I shoot RAW, meaning the color information is always kept. It’s the best of both worlds. I can shoot as though I’m shooting black and white (allowing me to focus more on light/shadows) without having to commit to the photo actually being black and white. This allows me to focus on composition etc at the moment and think about color in post. The females have stingers but won’t mess with you unless you threaten it. Despite looking huge and evil they keep to themselves. Shot with pentax k-mount 50mm and a doubler.The foot of a giant extends into oblivion. A 682 sqare foot apartment cost over 1.5 million dollars. That’s over $2,000 for a square foot. These people must have some very fancy feet. Located in Chelsea, a 799 square foot apartment will set you back about 1.3 million dollars. Bricks courtesy of 1985. Two dogs meeting at Seamore’s on 8th ave. Shot with pentax k-mount 50mm. Wide open. For almost two years I drove up the turnpike to get to work in Secaucus, New Jersey. Every day I would get to see the sun rise over Manhattan. Right before the exit there was a cliff. This cliff seemed to be the highest point for miles. I always thought it would be great to be able to watch the sunrise from the top. Over the last year there has been a lot of construction around the base of this giant rock. They are putting in condos (700-900 sq. ft. = ~$2,000 a month) mostly for people who work in Manhattan and take the train in. Because of this construction, the fact that the top is 150ft above the ground, and the no trespassing signs, I thought it best not to bother. This morning I woke up at 5:20 so I could try to make it to the top. It took me about half an hour but I made it just in time to watch the sun peak up behind the buildings around central park. The whole area is fenced off but the top most point, being just large rock, is unable to be fenced in. So I had a narrow but unobstructed view . Below cars whizzed by, trains approached Secaucus junction, overhead airplanes approached Newark, and the sun climbed above New York City. “Snake Hill (known officially as Laurel Hill) is an igneous rock intrusion jutting up from the floor of the Meadowlands in southern Secaucus, New Jersey, USA, at a bend in the Hackensack River. It was largely obliterated in the 1960s by quarrying that reduced the height of some sections by one-quarter and the area of its base by four fifths. The diabase rock was used as building material in growing areas like Jersey City. The remnant of the hill is the defining feature of Laurel Hill County Park. The high point, a 203-foot (62 m) graffiti-covered inselberg rock formation, is a familiar landmark to travelers on the New Jersey Turnpike’s Eastern Spur, which skirts the hill’s southern edge. The crest of the hill’s unusual, sloping ridge is about 150 feet (46 m) high.” – Wikipedia – en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snake_Hill Dat color contrast. Tis the season. This was shot on a Sony a6000, pentax 70-150mm with 2x extender. Nighttime beaches always have a dreamy feel. “Look out now it’s all new Those colors are fading Outside the wind is howlin’ Stop talkin’, listen to me I’ll tell you of every dream” – Brandy Alexander, The WalkmenI take lots o pictures of spiders.Pentax 50mm f1.4“In One Dimensions, did not a moving Point produce a Line with two terminal points? In two Dimensions, did not a moving Line produce a Square with four terminal points? In Three Dimensions, did not a moving Square produce – did not the eyes of mine behold it – that blessed being, a Cube, with eight terminal points? And in Four Dimensions, shall not a moving Cube – alas, for Analogy, and alas for the Progress of Truth if it be not so – shall not, I say the motion of a divine Cube result in a still more divine organization with sixteen terminal points? Behold the infallible confirmation of the Series, 2, 4, 8, 16: is not this a Geometrical Progression? Is not this – if I might qupte my Lord’s own words – “Strictly according to Analogy”? Again, was I not taught by my Lord that as in a Line there are two bonding points, and in a Square there are four bounding Lines, so in a Cube there must be six bounding Squares? Behold once more the confirming Series: 2, 4, 6: is not this an Arithmetical Progression? And consequently does it not of necessity follow that the more divine offspring of the divine Cube in the Land of Four Dimensions, must have eight bounding Cubes: and is not this also, as my Lord has taught me to believe, “strictly according to analogy”?” ― Edwin A. Abbott, Flatland: A Romance of Many DimensionsI got a new LED light. Composite of tow long exposures.Shot off a reflective plate mounted to a wall in lower Manhattan.I took a walk through the woods this afternoon. The snowy silence broke when a goose flapped about on the ice in the stream nearby. I had gone out to take photos of wildlife after seeing a bird out my window. I pulled my camera from my jacket and squatted among the sparse bushes and twigs. After a few moments I realized the goose was in bad shape. I sat for a long while watching and photographing. I didn’t want to retreat back to my warm apartment knowing the goose was experiencing its last bit of life. I watched it drag itself to the edge of the frozen stream and under some branches, as if to hide. It tucked its head under its wing and passed. I’ve heard before that animals will hide away to die alone. Maybe it’s a sense of not wanting to get in the way. Of making your passing as convenient as possible. I believe people behave in a similar way. As I get older I see more and more people closing themselves off to the world. It seems like a naturally occurring thing. Slowly, people go out less and exert less energy on relationships. There’s nothing bad with keeping to yourself. However, left unchecked, isolation is a dangerous thing. I’m not sure if our seclusion is driven by the same intention as an animal who is dying. Even if we do retreat from one another, in an attempt to protect each other from our inevitable mortality, I think it is a mistake. We are social creatures. While accepting that we may die alone is important, we should take every opportunity to surround ourselves with others until the day we die. Enjoy this beautiful world. Today is someone’s last.Greatest Of All Time. of Dweller.Ali Brodbeck and some fashionFound growing on the side of a tree. Reminds me of clown fish.A close up of small knot on the bark of a tree.Fungus growing on a tree stump in Rahway Park. Taken with a6000, Voss 75mm enlarger lens, 50mm Pentax lens.