An artist’s interlude…

In which I self-promote

Big news: five photographs of mine are part of a virtual exhibit by The Holy Art Gallery in London—all for sale—as of tonight!

This was my first time submitting to a gallery, and I expected nothing of it, so to have received a positive response is wonderfully affirming. When I said 2022 would be my year for photography, I admit I didn’t know what I was predicting!

The exhibit runs through next Monday. Be sure to check out the many accomplished artists with work on display.

This project also prompted me to create an Instagram specifically dedicated to my art: even if you just wanted to give it a browse, that would mean a little bit to me.

Love & saturation levels—Cecilia

Image: the poster (check out your girl in the first column)

Teen Tropes: A Cease-and-Desist List

“YOUTHS.” : Schmidt, New Girl

Hello, suckers. Welcome back. (That’s how Velma Kelly opens Act II of Chicago, for all you theatre freaks.)

After racking up an array of shows and movies and also YouTube takedowns of the shows and movies, I have reached the limit of my tolerance for almost all visual media revolving around people under 21. I mean, mostly 18, but even 21 is pushing it. (Especially since those people are usually around 25 anyway.) I’m of course talking about new media, not the shows and movies of my past that appeal to my nostalgia, though I’m awakened to their bothersome aspects when I revisit them.

Even within the whole genre, there are certain components that spoil the rest—either they’re plain silly or they ring distinctly outdated.

Here follow some things I kindly ask never to see ever again:

  • One person walking down the hall and everyone else turning to stare at them (in my neck of the woods you got that kind of attention only with a fight)
  • Really, any number of people walking down the hall and everyone turning to stare at them (does your school have a population of 50 what is going on)
  • The Most Popular Girl/Guy in School (what even is this? popular with whom?)
  • A social hierarchy in general (makes me feel like we never left the John Hughes era—just because those films have a timelessness to them doesn’t mean we’re still there as a culture)
  • Teens behaving and/or being treated simply like miniature adults (there should be no content about underage people with a rating of 18+, this is contradictory and creepy)
  • Teens not behaving—especially not speaking—like actual human beings (I’m looking head-on at you, The Fault in Our Stars)
  • Student/teacher romances (no no no no no no no no n—)
  • And don’t get me started on teen girls in particular

As I’ve said in reference to Mark Twain, young people have problems which hold weight in their lives and deserve to be taken seriously. I just can’t bring myself to care anymore, far enough removed as I am from that chapter of my life.

I’ll still watch Mean Girls, though. I’ll always watch Mean Girls.

Image: from Flickr

Film Review: DON’T LOOK UP

Or, an encapsulation

*WARNING: SPOILERS*

I went into Netflix’s Don’t Look Up expecting to be made very angry. I knew what it was about, and I knew what it was meant to represent.

Instead, as I watched, I experienced a mix of déjà vu and deep fatigue. This was an only slightly factionalized version of what was playing out before the eyes of all human beings every day at this point. This was a documentary, with the usually-antithetical advantage that it could be viewed in real time.

Almost everyone who’s anyone is in this movie. Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence play, respectively, an astronomer and PhD candidate who find that the trajectory of a certain comet coincides directly with the Earth’s coordinates, and that it is set to hit in just over six months. And that’s at the beginning. (Last I checked, we had five years, not six months. Not that that’s any more time.) Their subsequent catapult onto the world stage in an attempt to convey the direness of the circumstances brings them onto their own collision course with President Meryl Streep, Anarchist Stoner Timothée Chalamet, and Even-More-of-a-Pop-Star Ariana Grande, among others. As in life, some take the news seriously from the start, others resist—you can guess which side takes up the titular rallying cry—and there are dramatic reactions and memes galore; but no amount of belief or disbelief alters the fact (yes, the fact) that the comet is coming.

And it does. The end of the film is the planet and all life on it being obliterated by the comet, with two exceptions: 1) a ship ushering the billionaire class to safety light-years away; and 2) the unfortunate survival of the character I most wanted to kill the whole time, the president’s son/chief of staff, played by Jonah Hill (who, might I add, is very good at playing characters you want to kill).

People sense the end coming. It’s a bit like Titanic: there comes a point where the inevitable is just impossible to ignore. Interesting, fascinating even, and then terrifying. At first it’s a streak across the sky that compels drivers to leave their cars for a better glimpse, then not too long afterward it’s a rumbling in the table settings as those same people pray to a God they don’t know.

What writer-director Adam McKay wants to communicate to us—aside from “What the fuck is going on?”, the question to which he famously dedicated 2015’s The Big Short and 2018’s Vice, and to which this film is arguably the long-awaited threequel—is that we, in our age of climate crisis and political deaf-blindness, are somewhere between a streak across the sky and a seismic breach of the atmosphere. In all likelihood, closer to the latter.

Just go watch it. If for no other reason than to hear Ariana croon “listen to the goddamn qualified scientists” in her velvety low register. That alone makes it worthwhile. And, you know, the world.

Image: Leo & J-Law, Niko Tavernise/AP

“Hello, it’s the past”

In a good way!

Well, I don’t know about anybody else, but I can safely say this is the best year-beginning I’ve had in a while.

I spent New Year’s Eve and much of New Year’s Day with a dear friend, walking around her neighborhood, meeting other friends of hers, counting lessons from the year past and hopes for the one ahead. She was once a college acquaintance who reached out when I got to Berlin, as she had been here some time already, and thence blossomed a friendship I grow more grateful for ever since. Proof enough of the smallness of the world.

Then on Monday, the world shrank as if I’d tossed it into the dryer (the what? we don’t have those here, there isn’t room) when an even earlier school friend and his girlfriend dropped into the city during their holiday travels through Germany. This friend and I had spent seven years in school together—since both our birthdays occur in the latter half of the calendar year, from the time we were nearly eleven to nearly eighteen. Not an uneventful era in young lives. And our paths hadn’t crossed in the nearly nine years following graduation.

I soon heard about the many places life had taken him in those intervening years (between him and his girlfriend, whose family moved around in her youth, they’ve been almost everywhere, like Cathy on The Patty Duke Show). We reminisced on our high-school music careers—we were both deeply involved in the group I mention here—and on the people we knew, some of whom we’ve kept in touch with and some of whom we haven’t. We exchanged book and TV and podcast recommendations. We talked about…poems and prayers and promises, and things that we believe in. And not work, because the cultural premium placed on work is too damn high!

We covered the city center pretty thoroughly, hitting all the spots on their list, several of which I hadn’t seen since first arriving myself. We stayed up late and drank wine and looked at one another on more than one occasion like, is this really happening?

The memory of those few days will, I expect, keep me warm throughout the whole of 2022. My guests made me out to be more useful than I probably was; I was happy just to see them and recoup even a small amount of lost time. Only the time wasn’t lost, because it gave us what we had to share: it seemed as though we were telling a single unending story, constantly segueing, a conversation that needed no steering.

They also managed, despite the shortness of the visit, to teach me a thing or two about the wider world. My friend’s girlfriend revealed herself to be the most knowledgeable amateur botanist I’ve ever met, and I mean amateur in the true, love-based sense of the word. It was a delight to witness her pointing out the plants we passed, and we didn’t even make it to the parks and forests and green spaces. As I’ve said, off-the-cuff TED talks about niche pastimes or interests number among my favorite things.

Something that struck me about this friend in particular was that, while we were privy to a swath of each other’s formative years, full of struggles with labels and expectations and shifting senses of self, he still did not make assumptions about the life I was living now. The questions he asked, the genuine thought behind his comments, let me know he entertained no preconceived notions about the adult I had become and how different or similar she was to the teenager I had been. I remember there always being this genuineness about him. After we parted ways the last night I deeply wished I could finagle for the two of them to stay longer, because I felt very safe and understood with them.

Over the course of our 36-hour conversation it hit me just how chaotic adolescence is. Not even our adolescences specifically, though of course we each had a unique set of things to juggle. But in general: how little control we have over our attentions, how our desires ping-pong from one person or perception to the next with hardly any prompting, how hyper-aware we are of others’ movements and responses. It takes distance, and often the reflection of another experience, to get perspective. I hope everyone has the chance to reconnect with someone and gain that perspective.

For my part, until I see these friends again, I have a host of local friends—who happen to hail from all over the world—to remind me repeatedly of my great good fortune. I have a lot of thanks to give for the past, present, and future.

The title of this post is what I said when I answered the door first thing Monday morning. You never know when life will send people (back) around to you. Receive them with joy when you can. Or, at the very least, point them in the direction of a good coffeeshop.

Dedicated to Ben, Lauren, and Anya. May 2022 bring you only the best.

Image: just some gate I took a picture of near our meeting point

David Bowie at 75

In which I *am* the young American

Happy what would be three-quarters of a century to the one and only Starman. Though the ‘man’ part of that portmanteau, I think, belies his enormous contributions to bringing gender weirdness to the fore of the music industry and mainstream media.

Hunky Dory has been on heavy rotation this winter (it celebrated 50 years last month), my new favorite track being “Andy Warhol,” which is sequenced right before my longtime favorite “Song for Bob Dylan.” The opening clip of studio chatter—“It’s War-hol, actually”—the sound of his voice—couldn’t you just die?

Fun fact: in “Song for Bob Dylan,” the chorus lyric “here she comes, here she comes, here she comes again” is rumored to be a specific reference. To whom? Why, to the girl who links Dylan to the aforementioned Warhol…

I happen to be surrounded by his aura in the city I live in, a city he too chose once upon a time. But regardless of where on this planet I find myself, I, and everybody else, will be hearing and singing his songs for the next 75 million years. Or however long it takes for us to catch up to him.

Image: The Man Who Sold the World, his third studio album, released 4 September 1970

Stop what you’re doing and read THE BODY IS NOT AN APOLOGY. Right now.

In which I am not kidding

Many of us have just wrapped the first workday of the new Gregorian calendar year, post-holiday. Congratulations. Whatever you did, you did it, and I’m proud of you.

I’m now going to order you to leave off even thinking about work and go read Sonya Renee Taylor’s The Body is Not an Apology. I read it between 31 December and 1 January, and I’m not the fastest reader.

Taylor, a renowned activist and workshop leader, first published the book in early 2018; it’s only taken on new and more urgent dimensions of significance in the wake of a pandemic that has isolated us with ourselves and from one another. The tract’s guiding principle is what she calls radical self-love: a process of self-liberation—because the first and crucial freeing occurs within the self—from the body shame we encounter in intimate settings and the body terrorism we’re subjected to (some much more blatantly than others) in society.

The important distinction she makes is that this is not self-confidence or self-esteem. It is self-love. Love is radical, and it radicalizes from the inside out. Through the act of extending the compassion, attention, and priority to ourselves that we hope others will extend to us (and that we already seek in structures like religion), she argues, we can create a world in which racism, misogyny, and other social ills have no place, a world in which all human beings have access to the highest version of themselves. Radical self-love begins with the self, then continues, and really comes to fruition, with the community. Which, naturally, makes it anti-capitalist as well.

Sound like a lot? It’s really not. I’d had the title in the back of my mind for probably a year or so, and when I finally arrived at it, its message was simpler and more revolutionary than I could have anticipated. Everybody from Kimberlé Crenshaw (coiner of the term intersectionality) to Alicia Garza (co-founder of the Black Lives Matter organization alongside Patrisse Cullors and Opal Tometi) has endorsed it, which is not necessarily the reason you should read it, but certainly doesn’t hurt. Taylor herself, a queer fat Black woman, has a voice you instantly trust. I believed from the start that she spoke from a lifetime of experience, and by the end I saw that she had been proven right: radical self-love consists not of embarking on some journey but on tapping into what is already inside you. You, personally. Everything that makes you who you are.

Please read this book. Not in any new-year-new-you sense (God, no) but maybe in a new-year-new-way-of-looking-at-you sense. Above all in an awareness sense. We can’t make provisions to guard against the onslaught of media or uproot the internalized self-hatred meant to keep us subservient if we can’t recognize those attacks for what they are as they happen. Nor can we recognize the dangers of transphobia- and homophobia-related violence (including measures like anti-trans legislation) without knowing their causes.

As has been said in many iterations, none of us is free until the most marginalized and oppressed people among us are free. Taylor’s book addresses this matter on an individual and a collective level. It’s more than worth the little time you will spend.

Happy 2022, all. If Britney got free, so can we. ⭐️

Image: first edition from Barrett-Koehler, February 2018

My Year in Song

In which I do just what I did last year

Songs either that I listened to a lot or that represented my state of mind that month. Spotify can do its best, but to wrap me up? Can’t be done.

January: “De Noite na Cama,” Erasmo Carlos

February: “Cruel Sexuality,” La Roux

March: “I Know There’s An Answer,” The Beach Boys

April: “So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings,” Caroline Polachek

May: “Never Let You Go,” Third Eye Blind

June: “From a Buick 6,” Bob Dylan

July: “Cherry Wine,” Hozier

August: “Hair Body Face,” Lady Gaga

September: “I Think We’re Alone Now,” The Rubinoos

October: “You Oughta Know,” Alanis Morissette

November: “High Horse,” Kacey Musgraves

December: “Águas de Março,” Elis Regina & Antônio Carlos Jobim

Album of My Year: (do I really need to say it?) Pet Sounds

Image: Christmas vibes, 21 December

My Favorite Christmas Songs (Hymns & Carols Edition)

Or, part 2

Yesterday I covered the pop stuff, but I must say, I feel the carols and/or hymns are where the portrayals of the holiday really get interesting. A much wider range of artistic license is taken. “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” for example, is about harassing people into handing over their figgy pudding, while “The Twelve Days of Christmas” endorses the idea of flooding your significant other’s house with (mostly) birds.

Christmas cheer as coercion tactic aside, here are twelve of the traditional tunes and sacred songs I’ve loved most over the years.

“O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”

Technically an Advent song, sue me. Each verse is structured around one of the antiphons referring to Jesus (Dayspring, Rod of Jesse, Key of David, etc.), which, although the hymn was composed in Latin, I think makes more sense in English translation. It’s beautiful, and it also evokes the genealogy of people and events that brought about the birth of Jesus. It takes a village, right?

“Personent hodie”

The text of this chant first appeared in 1582 and is thought, ironically, to have been a parody of an earlier chant celebrating the 6 December feast day of the Russian gift-giver St. Nicholas. So it seems it was always destined for Christmas as we know it. It’s a good old-fashioned church-Latin chant, one I was only introduced to in college, but which quickly became dear to my heart.

“Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming”

Another atypical time signature, and a melody that doesn’t shy away from switching between major and minor modes. The melody is lovely, really befitting the rose metaphor; the harmony lines, especially the alto, might be lovelier.

“There is No Rose of Such Virtue”

No pastime more beloved to early Catholics than personifying the Virgin Mary with flowers. This Middle English carol has been arranged many different ways over the centuries, and I’ve yet to hear one I don’t like. (Okay, I’ve heard like two, but that’s an RBI of 1.0 right there.)

“The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)”

Yeah, I’m throwing in another contemporary one. It’s just the epitome of timelessness. Have you ever roasted chestnuts? Have I ever roasted chestnuts? Maybe?? Who cares! You’re overcome with nostalgia even for memories you might not actually have.

The “Coventry Carol”

This is the one that goes “lully-lullay thou little tiny child,” although if it still doesn’t ring a bell I won’t be surprised. It’s not the most festive of carols—it describes the slaughter of the innocents, on King Herod’s orders, in hopes of preventing the child Jesus from growing up and assuming whatever kingship he was rumored to possess—but that’s precisely what I admire about it. The way the haunting melody complements the violent lyric reminds us that there is some darkness inherent even to Christmas.

“Christmas is Coming” (sometimes known, according to my research, as “The Goose is Getting Fat”)

The most important thing about this one, of course, is the ha’penny. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t had one of those in about two hundred years. Specifically in my past life as a chimney sweep in Victorian London. It could only be an English children’s rhyme; America would never accept a currency equivalent to 1/480 of a pound sterling. What even is that exchange rate?

“Here We Come a-Wassailing”

The particular kind of merrymaking known as wassailing is something I believe humans will always do in some way, shape, or form, but the gerund wassailing adds a lot of romance to what is essentially going around greeting people and drinking. Wassail can also refer to the drink itself, usually a mulled cider—there is another carol dedicated to it, which I like even more, but which isn’t quite as season-specific and sounds a bit out of place outside, oh, certain places I haunted as a teenager. I’ll tell you about it sometime.

“How Great Our Joy”

Remember the shepherds? Yeah, they’re a part of *gestures to everything* too! This hymn, I was delighted to discover, is a translation of an old German carol. It has a baroque feel to it, reminiscent of the Messiah, with another very nice modal mix. It’s also one, chorally speaking, that you need a bit of skill to conduct well, and I do love a challenge.

“Every valley shall be exalted”

Speaking of the Messiah, this recitative from the oratorio, originally written for solo tenor, is some of my bestie George Händel’s finest work. Not only is it melodically virtuosic, it’s immensely entertaining to watch a vocalist tackle—particularly on the word crooked, not oft-used in classical texts.

“Stille Nacht / Silent Night”

And speaking of German carols, this is one I’ve taken to singing exclusively in German, because, being the language of origin, the text is more singable. It’s got range, it’s got enough verses to last a while but a short enough structure to make its point if you’re only going to sing one. A pretty perfect carol.

“O Holy Night”

A contender for my favorite religious Christmas song. I’m moved whenever I hear it, let alone sing it. It began life as an abolitionist anthem, an origin referenced most directly in the “Truly he taught us to love one another” verse. So although the refrain may be “O night divine,” it’s even more a meditation on what it means to be human, and how the message of Christ’s birth can empower us to make a better, kinder world. The divinity of humanity, if you will. (The text is also in iambic pentameter, which never hurts.)

What are your favorite Christmas musical moments, secular or sacred?

Image: another local tree, this one in a barbershop

My Favorite Christmas Songs

Or, FS for CS (if ya know ya know)

It’s that time of year when the world outside of my bloodline suddenly cares about Bing Crosby again. Christmas music has a special power; there’s a reason some people don’t reserve it solely for the season (definitely not me though haha). Here are just a few of my faves to put you in the spirit—we’ll call this the pop edition, and I’ll dedicate another post to more traditional carols.

“Jingle Bells?”, Barbra Streisand

A Christmas Album (1967) is unquestionably one of the great Christmas albums—further proof that no one does Christmas better than the Jews. Babs makes the most that I think could possibly be made of a relatively simple song. When she’s on, she’s really on, like the light at the top of the tree. Or whatever you use to top your tree.

“The Christmas Waltz,” Frank Sinatra

Famously written by Jule Styne and Sammy Cahn to fill the waltz-shaped hole in the Christmas songbook. I’m thinking of the version on A Jolly Christmas from Frank Sinatra (1957), featuring a choir bookending the song with “Merry Christmas, merry Christmas / may your every New Year dream come true.” The musical effect that those practically whispered a cappella chords create is something I have yet to describe adequately. The emotional effect is just that I cry really hard, particularly in the third holiday season I’ve spent apart from my family.

“The Christmas Waltz,” Jane Krakowski & Cheyenne Jackson

As performed on 30 Rock. Danny (Cheyenne) is the newest cast member on TGS, and he’s paired up with the always-performance-ready Jenna (Jane) to do the song. Jenna is used to being the star, and Danny’s got a gorgeous voice—so she makes him sing off-key to accentuate her talent. Great stuff.

“Little Saint Nick,” The Beach Boys

My BFF Brian based this one on a piano part he’d originally written for Phil Spector’s compilation A Christmas Gift for You from Phil Spector. We’re lucky it was left on the proverbial cutting-room floor. And it manages to sound so Christmassy without the use of sleigh bells.

“Talking Christmas Goodwill Blues,” John Wesley Harding/Wesley Stace

It makes total sense to have a Christmas-themed talking blues. It also makes sense, in retrospect, that we didn’t have one until Stace revived the tradition, because the last person to do talking blues on a regular basis was named Zimmerman, and he hadn’t found Jesus yet. You’ll be cleaning up pine needles in July!! (In the house I grew up in, we took that line literally.)

“Sleigh Ride,” The Boston Pops, conducted by John Williams

Yes, this version specifically. I always go for the orchestral composition, as Leroy Anderson and God intended, sans dumb lyrics, but the video of the performance says more than I ever could.

“Merry Christmas (I Don’t Wanna Fight Tonight),” Ramones

Joey sings a song it sounds like the ghost of Buddy Holly helped him write. And it’s longer than most Ramones songs. Didn’t see that coming, huh?

“Christmas,” Leslie Odom, Jr.

Notably okay tunesmith Pete Townshend wrote this one for Tommy, and you’ll recognize Leslie’s golden tones—he made his Christmas album in 2016, likely while recuperating from the back surgery he needed after carrying the Broadway production of Hamilton. The arrangement suits the understated, relaxed atmosphere of the album; but because it’s a musical number with dramatic tension, part of a larger plot, there’s more heft and urgency to it.

“Santa Baby,” Eartha Kitt

As I have said before, Eartha’s version is the only version allowed. I will not be taking questions at this time.

“Close Your Mouth (It’s Christmas),” The Free Design

This is one of those late-‘60s bands I  know nothing about, except for their fine Christmas tune in an unusual time signature. “Get to know the people in your house / You might like them!”

“Feliz Navidad,” José Feliciano

And a prospero año! Obviously.

“What Christmas Means to Me,” Stevie Wonder

I’ve met people (in Europe) who don’t know this one, and I wonder what they even call Christmas. The spirit of the season is captured here more completely than in just about any other single song, right from that wonderfully layered intro.

“Christmas All Over Again,” Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers

A pop contribution that’s come to be an adulthood favorite of mine. The chord structure is a little different from what you’re used to, and the melody is lots of fun.

“The Christmas Can-Can,” Straight No Chaser

Not even sorry. Offenbach is proud. I’m gonna go grab some Chinese food.

“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” Judy Garland

I go for the Medium Sad one—that is, the first rewrite, which doesn’t make you want to die but also isn’t the farthest removed into everything’s-dandy-ville. Either way, I think it exists apart from the Christmas canon as one of the highlights of the Great American Songbook in general.

“Mele Kalikimaka,” Bing Crosby & the Andrews Sisters

An underrated classic.

+ everything the Vince Guaraldi Trio did (but you already heard that from me)

Image: one of the many storefront Tannenbäume on the main street adjacent to my neighborhood

Notes on Photography

Or, look at me all Susan Sontag with my titles 🥰

There is a difference between taking photographs and making photographs.

I’d picked up on photographers saying something to this effect across years of reading—photographers were inevitable in the nonfiction I read—but I truly understood it this past Sunday when I was thrust into the role.

I’m not sure if the kindly host of the event (2G+, meaning we were all vaccinated AND recently tested) asked me to step in for the original no-show photographer because she had seen my growing interest—proficiency, even?—in the medium on my socials, or because I was the only attendee she knew personally besides the performers she’d booked. Either way I was glad to be trusted with the responsibility, and took full advantage of it.

Most of my aforementioned reading concerned the early days of Rock & Roll As Industry: a DIY culture which basically consisted of people wandering around with cameras snapping pictures until they were offered money for one of them and thus commenced their Official Careers, just as the people playing the music had wandered around noodling on their instruments until somehow becoming the Elder Statespeople we know today. I thought, I can do that.

The evening in question was a variety show featuring musicians, comedians, slam poets, and dancers—plus a DJ at the end—and I knew my job would be to capture not only human forms but the spirit of the gathering. Nothing was off-limits as a subject: the audience, the stage, the venue, the bar, the afterparty, even the lighting. Each component deserved its moment, and I would do my best to create a worthy one.

It was strange to be mobile, sometimes the only moving thing besides the performers, over the next three hours. After all, I’d been steeped in Mahler’s rule that all attention be focused solely on the performance, and that anything less was not only distraction but detraction. The experience pushed me beyond the limits of this rule in many ways: one musician even asked the crowd to talk through one of his songs to establish atmosphere. Needless to say, the more possibilities I saw, the more eager I became to shoot whatever I could.

Once I had the snapshots, the images I wanted, the process of editing and styling began. First I had to take them; now I had to make them. What level of exposure best suited the scene? What filter? Would something about the moment come through more strikingly in black and white? What about the contrast between shades? What tweaks and tricks would best convey the particular truth I was seeking to get across? What were those truths, anyway?

Bear in mind I was shooting on an iPhone: as excited as I am about all this, I was given a German camera a while back that I have yet to learn how to use. If I’m going to level up, I might just have to embrace my full potential and accept the fact that I am capable of wielding an Actual Camera. Hello, New Year.*

Meanwhile, I like to think the results turned out well. I absolutely intend to shoot more events in 2022, in addition to the cityscapes I’m used to, and maybe even get into portraits. These people were great subjects; they gave me a lot to work with. My favorite part of the night, in hindsight, was mingling with them and being asked why I hadn’t performed. I’m the photographer, honey, I almost said. I was performing the WHOLE TIME.

*to be read as Jerry says “Hello, Newman” on Seinfeld

Image: taken while waiting on a train home late Sunday night