July 2002


New Orleans. . .  #

New Orleans.

. . .

Mark Eitzel, formerly of the band American Music Club, has built his own Web site with lots of random links (including one that goes here). "I'm going to make changes to it constantly so if anyone out there has any ideas or cool links please let me know and I'll try them out!" More rock stars should be like this.


Upper West Side, Manhattan.  #

Upper West Side, Manhattan.

On the 1 train, Manhattan.

Park Slope, Brooklyn.


Upper West Side, Manhattan.  #

Upper West Side, Manhattan.
Under Riverside Park...

...is a tunnel.

It was once inhabited. (Update: Thomas says it "was also a notorious gay cruising spot.")

. . .

I wrote a brief item for today's NYT on Salon's new blogging service.


Park Slope, Brooklyn. Some  #

Park Slope, Brooklyn.
Some pigeons built a nest next to my air conditioner. As I was clearing away the twigs, an egg rolled out. Freaky.

I threw away the egg (they are, after all, flying rats). The pigeons came back to look for it a few times. Now they're plotting revenge.

. . .

Witold on reflections and memorials.


Greenwich Village, Manhattan. .  #

Greenwich Village, Manhattan.

. . .

Geoff of Macrostate launches PhotoForums, "a pixel picture community."

. . .

Jed.com Photo Gallery. Photos of people named Jed.


East Chatham, N.Y., October  #

East Chatham, N.Y., October 1999.
George Rickey died last week. His kinetic sculptures are like playground equipment for the eyes.

. . .

I agree with Red's analysis of the Apple store.


See-through stairs at the  #

See-through stairs at the new Apple store in Soho.

. . .

Photos from the Mainichi Daily News: The Wacky World of Japanese Ice Cream. Mmmmm. Via Daypop.

. . .

Nutty genius Las Vegas photo log: suejon.com.


Upper West Side, Manhattan.  #

Upper West Side, Manhattan.

Park Slope, Brooklyn.
See also 1.23.

Soho, Manhattan.

. . .

I wrote a story for today's Circuits section in the NYT: Plastic Gold: Recyclers Find Profit in Printer Ink Cartridges. The story wasn't my idea but turned out to be more interesting than I thought it would be. The people who make inkjet cartridges don't want you to know that your empties are actually worth something. Thanks to those of you who answered my query about your cartridge disposal practices.

. . .

Metacritic is a good idea -- roundups of music, movie, game reviews.


On the 7 line,  #

On the 7 line, Queens.

. . .

(2:57 PM): Did I ever tell you about the faded sign on the side of a building on court street that says:
Eat Healthy
Dial Hot-Bird

(3:03 PM):
i've seen one of those in park slope!
(3:03 PM):
(3:08 PM):
Have you ever dialed it?
(3:08 PM):
no. why don't you try it
(3:09 PM):
Dialing now...
(3:10 PM):
I dialed 718-hot-bird and got an answering machine with a lady with an indian accent saying she was not home.
(3:10 PM):
Do you think she is the hot bird?


Warm Up at PS1,  #

Warm Up at PS1, Long Island City, Queens.

. . .

Wong Kar-Wai directs a DJ Shadow video. Via Missy.


The Lemon Ice King  #

The Lemon Ice King of Corona, Corona, Queens.

Eat your lemon ice in the park across the street and watch people play bocce.

. . .

Natural car alarms, a migrating public art project by Nina Katchadourian. Via NPR, which has audio samples.


Rockaway Beach, Queens. .  #

Rockaway Beach, Queens.

. . .

The L.A. Times has a story today on one of the last remaining wigwam motels (with video). I've been to the one in Holbrook, Ariz., and almost stayed at this one on a trip out West last fall, but a friend talked me out of it, citing the risk of drive-by shootings.


Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge,  #

Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, Queens.
Lots of birds. Wish I had a telephoto lens.

. . .

Mr. Mildew's Journal.


Broad Channel, Queens. Even  #

Broad Channel, Queens.
Even in its more remote neighborhoods, New York is a competitive town. Grandparents who don't promote their services aggressively may find themselves shut out of Broad Channel's grandparenting market.

. . .

A New York rock band called Run Like Hell asked me if they could use the second photo from my 2.9 entry on the cover of their demo CD. I've always wanted to do an album cover, so I said yes. The CD, which is called "Ghosts," is available from the band's site. I asked band member Rob to describe their music:

time out new york called us "semi-sincere post hardcore with big hooks." or you could just call us a loud rock band.
It's not really my kind of thing, but they do get bonus points for this song title: "That's a Compelling Story, Mr. Jackass."

. . .

In other photo news, I put together a gallery of photos for a friend who was interested in using one on the cover of a textbook. (He picked this one.) Many of these photos have been seen here before. Many of them are pretty, and none are gritty. You have been warned.


On the A train  #

On the A train crossing Jamaica Bay, Queens.
Left side of train.

Right side of train.

Sure beats a dark tunnel. (Aerial view.)

Accordion man and friends.

Not a natural subway habitat.

. . .

As long as you have to get new stamps, you might as well get these: Masters of American Photography. Details here. Via slower.net.


Izmir, Turkey, May 2001.  #

Izmir, Turkey, May 2001.

For various reasons my story about Mahir 'I Kiss You' Cagri in today's NYT has been a long time coming. It's based on an interview I did with him during a trip to Turkey more than a year ago and follow-up e-mail correspondence in recent months.

The interview was one of the more bizarre episodes in my journalistic career. We agreed to meet at a cafe on the promenade along the harbor, which had an odd purple tinge and a dizzying odor. Mahir came with two friends. One of them translated (see photo above). The other was a travel agent who would later try to push some of his services on me.

When I got to the cafe, Mahir announced that he had invited a cameraman from a Turkish news agency to document his high-level summit with an important foreign correspondent (me). The camera had a very bright light on top, and people started coming by to see what all the fuss was about. Then a newspaper vendor popped into camera range. ("Can you read the Turkish, sir? What's your country? Arizona?") I noted that I was having severe media overload.

Eventually the cameraman left, but not before I got some minor revenge by taking his picture. I wonder what happened to that videotape.

Some links and odds and ends:

-- Early on I thought this story was going to be a big think piece about online fame, so I solicited comments on the topic. There were some thoughtful responses. I still hope to write that story someday.

-- More photos from Izmir are here and here.

-- Some anonymous individual made $1,400 off of their Mahir-inspired tunes at MP3.com. (This one is classic.) Mahir wasn't happy about this.

-- He also wasn't happy when I told him about the Lee Jeans campaign he inspired. And he complained to Adidas about their "I Kiss Football" ads, which ran all over Europe last summer.

-- The Mahir Eurodisco video seemed quite revolutionary at the time, but it now looks awfully primitive.

-- Mahir's latest site is IKissYou.org. How do you say "banner overload" in Turkish?


UPDATE: From tomorrow's Circuits section  #

UPDATE: From tomorrow's Circuits section in the NYT: Star of 'I Kiss You' Site Moves From Farce to Folklore. More on this later... UPDATE 2: See above!

. . .

Upper West Side, Manhattan.

Park Slope, Brooklyn.
"Waterbaloons already filled" is a great idea.

Astoria, Queens.

. . .

Moonmilk has photos of the rainbow of fireworks that celebrated MOMA's move to Queens last weekend.

. . .

Brooklynkid.com: Sunbather.


Union Square, Manhattan, 11  #

Union Square, Manhattan, 11 p.m. Sunday.
A man on the downtown platform appeared to be trying to hide behind a huge string of balloons. He was backed up against the elevator so as to be less conspicuous.

Every once in a while he poked his head out and looked around nervously. He was largely ignored.

I wanted to see how he was going to maneuver his cargo onto a train. But he let two trains pass him by and was on the platform alone when my train pulled out.

. . .

I think it's time to give David Gallagher a hand. No, not me, I mean the other David Gallagher. One reason it wasn't all that hard to trounce him on Google was that his official fan site is pretty awful, and has been for some time. I'm not saying my site is all that great. It's just that a teen heartthrob deserves so much better. A more professional site would pull in a ton of fans and probably help out David's search engine rankings as well. I'm concerned that when AOL starts using Google this summer, my site is going to get swamped by "7th Heaven" fans, so we've got to get David back on top soon.

Please post your suggestions for improvements to David's dgnews.net site on this bulletin board. I'll pass them on to David in a few days. Thanks!

. . .

I wrote a story for the business section of today's NYT: U.S. Warns Web Sites to Label Sponsorships. The Federal Trade Commission is telling search engines to be less sneaky about mixing paid listings in with their search results. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that "Products and Services" is not a terribly intuitive way to designate advertisements.


Top of the Heap  #

As mentioned earlier, I wrote a story for Business 2.0 magazine about my campaign to become the #1 David Gallagher on Google. It's finally on the Web: Top of the Heap. (Update: Here's a local copy.)

The print version includes a picture of me Photoshopped onto a couch next to the other David Gallagher. A photographer and his assistant came to my apartment with a few hundred pounds of equipment and spent a good two hours setting up and taking some shots (see above). I was told to look competitive and mean, but I ended up looking really ill. You'll have to pick up the magazine to see the photo because I refuse to post it here.

Thanks again to those who supported the quest and made this all possible. You know who you are. (In case you forgot, you are Itchy Robot, Kip, Catherine, Obscurantist, Airnie, Spoom, The Bellona Times, Candace, New Things, Jerry, Julen, James (twice), Janet, Aaron, Andrew, Vardaman, dangerousmeta, bump, gmtPlus9, Creosote, Steve, Todd, Rebecca, BlahBlog, Retroglobe, mikel, Struat, Witold, Anil, CrankReport, Dean, The Morning News, Brian, Rich, Heiferman, Jason, Scott, Vanderwal, Neille, Neale, Neal, Funkyorange, Hunkabutta, Rion, bgirl, Julie, Kat, Toast, Introspekt, Bill, Nutlog, Inimitable, Andreas, Newstrolls, Greysweater, Lia and Ten15. Did I miss anybody?)

Some relevant links:

-- The quest started here and ended here.

-- Some historical info on weblogs and Google bombing was left on the editing-room floor. For background see Uber.nu: Google Bombing, Microcontent News: Google Time Bomb and Search Engine Watch: Google Bombs Aren't So Scary. (Just noticed that someone bought ads on Google tied to the keywords "talentless hack.")

-- If you want to see an example of a "domain farm," you could start at www.holidays-site.com and follow the links into infinity. I'm not linking to it because Google can punish sites just for linking to spam-infested "bad neighborhoods."

-- As you may know if you haven't just tuned in for the first time, the other David Gallagher and I go back a long way: So Sorry David Gallagher.

-- The part about my new quest to be the #1 David is just a joke. I know it would be impossible to beat the David Rumsey Historical Map Collection.

. . .