Happy birthday to my friend Nick, seen here playing peek-a-boo at Topkapi Palace.
September 29, 2016
Less than three hours by bus from Istanbul lies Edirne, the former Adrianople and the country's capital before it was moved to Constantinople. I went there one day to see the famed mosques, to see what Turkey looked like outside Istanbul, to have a scrub and a massage in a real Turkish hamam. On my hike out of the center of town to see that mosque in the distance, I had not gone two blocks before the surroundings turned mighty rural, as you can see here.
September 28, 2016
A short distance from the city center is the neighborhood of Edirnekapı, home to the Chora Church (and its remarkably preserved mosaics) and, right next door, the restaurant Asitane. Graced with a leafy garden, the perfect setting for a lazy June afternoon lunch, Asitane specializes in historic recipes from the records of royal kitchens stretching back over centuries. This little tray of welcoming spreads was just the beginning.
September 27, 2016
September 26, 2016
Friends in Turkey advise that this might not be the best time to visit their beautiful country. A failed coup. A bloody purge. Fatal bombings...including a recent one on Istanbul's famed mile-long pedestrian street, the Istiklal Caddesi, "Victory Street." This week, some memories from my first visit to the City of the World's Desire, including this "sweets on parade" at Saray, located right in the middle of the Istiklal.
September 25, 2016
September 24, 2016
A beautifully lit wall panel of divers (inspired by the famed divers of Acapulco) graces the dining room of a popular Mexican restaurant in Manhattan. (It shall remain nameless because it did a friend of mine dirty, withholding royalties after using his recipes.)
September 23, 2016
On the day that I took an early flight from Boston to Chicago, my later-departing colleagues never made it to the Windy City. Tiles on the ceiling of the Ted Williams tunnel crashed down and Logan Airport access from the city was held up for hours. No problem. I had the day to myself. A dinner at the bar at Topolobambo. A classical music concert in a beautiful church. Oh, and a brief stop here at the Nokia store to see their display of Bose headphones, the purpose of our planned visit.
September 22, 2016
Remember the automat, one of my favorite memories from childhood? Although the original Horn & Hardart never looked glitzy like this. A Japanese company decided to "reinvent" (one of my least favorite words) an automat experience in NYC's East Village, and this is what they came up with. Their primary customer base, it was said, consisted of stoners with the late-night munchies, many unable to negotiate the proper coins into the slots. It didn't last very long. Just long enough for me to snap this picture.
September 21, 2016
I never take for granted the view from our home overlooking the harbor, especially beautiful in autumn, my favorite season that begins today. Quiet and peaceful, the town calms down after a busy summer and exhales for a few heavenly months.
September 20, 2016
September 19, 2016
September 18, 2016
I love visual clichés, when things in real life behave they way they do in cartoons. I remember laughing on my first trip to Ireland when I saw how very green it was. And when I visited NJ's Trailside Museum and an owl actually said, "Who." Here, a butterfly on my backyard's Butterfly Bush.
September 17, 2016
Why was I so gaga about Twiggy when she burst on the fashion scene in the mid-1960s? Probably a lot of reasons: my age, her age, her boyish looks, her haircut, Swinging London, the fact that she was everywhere you looked. I remember being in New Haven with an Emerson College friend for some theater festival (Emerson's entry was an original piece about the Donner Party, featuring a young undergraduate named Henry Winkler) and Twiggy was also in town. I was determined to cross paths with her. Instead, I went to a cast party, met a young woman named Honey Angel (seriously), got drunk (seriously), woke up the next morning with the worst hangover I'd ever had (at least until then.)
September 16, 2016
Two of the great pleasures of my time at the most respected name in sound were: 1. Working with smart and talented designer Mike Hoffman, and 2. Working with and for smart and talented clients in the Noise Reduction Technology Group (aka Headphones.) Here's one of the concepts we all created together to launch Bose's entry into the non-noise-reduction headphones market. Quite a change from the calmer print ads the company was known for. A lot of work and a lot of fun those days. (The model, whose name I forget, went on to appear on some TV show called Fear Factor. From what my colleagues told me, that could easily have been the name of the department I worked for soon after I escaped.)
September 15, 2016
Though oil is the most common medium in which to blend pigment, wax can also be used, resulting in a technique called encaustic. My friend Miles is a recognized leader in this field, teaching classes and workshops on encaustic, selling equipment and related products. Here's a work of his on the left, seen during an exhibit at his Tucson gallery, the Conrad-Wilde.
September 14, 2016
I'm always frustrated when I visit markets in my travels. Why? Because I have no kitchen at my disposal to prepare the beautiful produce on display. Fortunately, enjoying cheese requires no kitchen. Seen here, some local cheeses offered for sale at the city's Bastille market.
September 13, 2016
September 12, 2016
September 11, 2016
September 8, 2016
September 6, 2016
September 5, 2016
I love the town in which I live. Today, I brought my iPhone along with me so I could take some pictures as I walked the two miles to the library and back. Over the next few days, I'll show you some of the things I saw. Like this car. Did Buddha really say that? Would you take the word of someone who drove a car like this one?
September 4, 2016
September 3, 2016
I've just finished reading two books by Jeffrey Toobin that both take place largely in Los Angeles. One, American Heiress, is about the adventures of Patty Hearst. The other, The Run of His Life: The People v. O. J. Simpson, is about, well, you know what it's about. My connection with the Southern California city has been somewhat a charmed one. I've either visited on expense-account business trips. Or I've spent the night at the home of a friend, a movie star. Recently, a good friend has moved there from Boston, so maybe I'll be heading back for a visit.
September 2, 2016
September 1, 2016
My friend Eileen, my colleague when we both worked at Bose, sent me this photo a few days ago. Ah, yes, the team-building department outing at Kimball Farms. I seem to recall that both Eileen and I avoided the softball games and such in favor of the ceramics tent and the ice cream offerings. Neither she nor I work at the most respected name in sound any longer. So much for team building. I do like this shirt that I bought earlier that month in Istanbul.