That Man From Rio Is Still Good

Belmondo, just an ordinary good looking guy, and a babe, chase stolen art. Spielberg used this movie to make Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Belmondo still lives, despite being debilitated by a stroke. He did several of the stunts. The babe is dead. Karen Allen character based on her. There is also a Short Round character.

Lovers of French Cinema, Hitch and Tintin will love this movie.

Movies are an antidote to Trumpitis.

John G Morris, Dead at 100

In 2015, I attended a photo workshop in Paris with Peter Turnley. We went to John Morris’s apartment, looked at his images and books, listened to his stories. Then we went to dinner at a cute place on rue St. Louis. Nobody knew who he was.

Through his work, John G. Morris allowed us to see places and get close to people we would not have otherwise known. In doing this, he taught us to see. Think about all the great photographers he knew: Chim, Cappa, Cartier-Bresson, all the giants.

A debt is owed to all photojournalists, especially the ones who gave their lives to help us understand man’s humanity to man, apologies to those who would find this politically incorrect.

Never Forget, Don’t Pay To Remember

This statue in Pere Lachaise doesn’t cost a cent to see. It’s haunting memory brings sights and smells of the Holocaust to your senses without charge. To make visits to the shrines of dead jews the equivalent of paying to ride at an amusement park devalues the debt humanity owes the dead.

With all the money in the world spent on campaigns to elect people or to promote international sports or to get people to fritter their money away at gambling casinos, one might think that some things are too deserving of veneration to be commercialized. Not if you are Trumpian.

Charging to see the artifacts of death from Aushwitz and making a profit offends me. No charge to see the memorial in Miami. No charge in Berlin. No charge in Berlin. And, when we went to Stutthoff, a work camp in Poland, we went in free. October, we are going to Terezin. I will let you know.

I don’t do fund raising, but give to the cause of preserving the memories of the dead for all, especially those without the funds. Some of these financially challenged might be dissuaded from turning to killing to earn a living.

PURLIFE

What I really need to do is stick to a fitness plan. When I travel or shoot, I am moving. To keep abreast of the worlds of photography, US Government and art, including movies, books and museums, I sit. While my knowledge grows, my health suffers. Mmmmm.

This guy works at PURLIFE, a gym for the healthy in Del Ray. Too far to drive. 1/2 hour in the car for exercise leads to more sitting, even though NPR or a podcast is on the radio which defeats ignorance. Tough choices. I will go for a walk.

ANYBODY HOME

 

 

George Romero died. He taught me to be scared of the dark. Hell, I am old, which means I don’t carry heavy things and I get tired earlier. But age, the early age of television, let me watch Bela Lugosi while my parents were in the other room doing whatever.

Dracula didn’t scare me, because Zacherly was there to intercept them.

But, no one helped me with George. He made me believe in zombies.

“They’re coming to get you, Barbara.”

Shelly Isaacs, Cafe Cinématique

Not much good to say about where I live. Lots of ill-mannered New Yorker/New Jerseans who rush everywhere, drive madly and think they know it all. Arts and crafts. Cards. Golf. Restaurants, especially early bird specials. Lots of lines, people who talk about grandkids and coupons.

Not a lot of culture, even though we have several museums, nature walks and a plethora of movie theaters. People who watch MSNBC and CNN talk like they have a seat at the table, never mind the ones who watch Fox who control foreign policy. One day in the gym, three televisions had Fox news on, entertaining people on treadmills and stationary bikes.

But, we do have Shelly and his movies. He introduces movies you might not go to see and leads discussions at their conclusion. Always upbeat and tolerant of dumb comments, he increases awareness of cinematic art.

Now, remember, I am a photographic artist, a cult that people know little about, despite the democratization of cameras and photo making. I constantly strive to see better. Shelly’s incisive comments help me to watch movies more critically, though he’s more reviewer than critic. Going to his movies makes life a little more bearable down here.

Nonsensical Judges

Damn, I would have settled for nonsensical, instead of incompetent and unethical. I might have ended up not being reviled and hated, the subject of scorn and recrimination. I might still be living  in Brooklyn and be part of a community I loved. I could still be relevant. Ah, too bad.

May it never happen to another Judge, regardless of how right wing and conservative they are.

Prospect Park Carousel and Lorin Duckman

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So, several years ago when I was still a person and not an object of scorn and derision. I lived in a wonderful neighborhood in Brooklyn, Prospect Lefferts Gardens in our dream house. We lost it and more when I was removed.

The brownstone sat on Maple Street near Prospect Park, Olmsted’s gem. The park offered a zoo, with animals who needed more modern environs, a carosel, which didn’t work, and the Vale of Cashmere, an area featured in a Barbara Streisand movie. Sharon ran with the Prospect Park Track Club. I rode my bike. We were volunteers.

The neighborhood was rough then. A group of Alleged Revolutionaries held drills on rooftops. We had a car service to and from the subway. No place to buy much of anything except for a cold beer. It was the scene of the Crown Heights Riots. And one of the best ethnic mixes you could ever imagine.

In the Park, Tucker Thomas and Dicki Graff were our friends. Tucker got people to care about the place. Dicki wrote a book on the park. She’s dead.

Dicki, Sharon and I, and a few other people from the Central Park Conservancy, fixed up the Vale of Cashmere. Sharon and I were married there on July 10, 1983 or 1984, I cannot remember, by Justice Archie Garfinkel, a wonderful man and lover of justice. He’s dead, too.

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As members of the Prospect Park Alliance, we worked on work crews, cleaning debris and rehabbing failed buildings, tunnels and water routes. We organized for “You gotta have Park” when people didn’t give a damn. And, we raised money to restore two horses on the carousel.

I was on trial in the SDNY in the case of USA v Anthony Gaggi, et, al. It was a case that involved some organized crime figures and some wonderful lawyers. It lasted 18 months and most of the charges were sustained. Rudy was the US Atty at the time. I represented a lesser man whose conviction was ultimately reversed.

During the trial, I solicited money from the lawyers and defendants and families and whomever I could find around court to restore horses on the carousel. People thought I was nuts, raising money for wooden horses in a drug riddled part of the park. But I told them it would build community and bring safety to a desolate part of one of the brightest jewels in the world. Raising enough, I got the honor of naming two horses. I named one. Sharon named the other.

Sharon named hers, “Woodstock Nation.” It was an homage to all of us who grew up in the age of acquarius. She went to Woodstock.

Me. I named mine the 6th Amendment. Now, I don’t have the park, my house, any friends and I don’t practice law. But I hope some kids or people enjoyed riding on our horses. It could be the last good thing I ever did.