Tuesday, March 31, 2009

All aboard, Get on the A train

photo by thirdrail

One of the things I have been missing since my move to Israel is the subway. Living in New York, I really took its efficiency for granted. Over the past couple of days I have been getting out, going to some events, networking; but getting to and from these places by public transportation was a nightmare. Even intercity buses are lacking. I bailed on one event in Tel Aviv this morning partly because the traveling gave me nightmares. (Also, going to so many events in as many days is exhausting, getting there is just half the battle!)
But while I am on the subject of what I find lacking in public transportation in Israel, let me give people a few rules in some behavior.

-When forming a queue to board a bus, it is normal practice to remain in said queue until actually seated on the bus. What is with the pushing and shoving? And 18 year old soldiers, I have all the respect for you, you know, serving the country and all, but you're young and strong, give the almost middle-aged woman with fibromyalgia a break, and let her get on the bus. And if you see there are no seats, and she is shlepping a bunch of bags, be a dear and give the poor lady a seat.

-Also, what's with the getting off in the front of the bus? Unless you are over 70 and have a cane, repeat this mantra: "On in the front, off in the back. On in the front, off in the back. On in the front, off in the back."

-When on an escalator, please do not stand so your body takes up the entire stair. Please stand to the right and allow those with patience issues to walk past you. If you are with a buddy, you don't need to be standing on the same step. This also applies to sidewalks. What's with people walking 4 abreast at snails' pace?

-When waiting for an elevator, it is customary to allow those passengers already on to exit before entering. I cannot tell you how many near head-on collisions I have almost had while trying to get off an elevator. Back to my beloved subway, to quote any conductor "LET 'EM OFF FIRST! LET 'EM OFF! LET 'EM OFF!"

Those are just a few of my rules I would like to see implemented. Please feel free to distribute, add your own, and I'll keep you posted with new ones as my misanthropic self gets annoyed by stupid people.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

future's so bright, gotta wear shades...

The presentation went well. The jury liked my interpretation of what Thoreau might want in his urban Walden, right down to the Macbook on his desk. For the presentation itself, I enlarged random parts of the book and pasted them to the boards next to the drafts and sketches. We presented in pairs and what was the juxtaposition of our two designs. She designed a space for Karl Lagerfeld and they could not have been more different. Whereas my boards were deliberately sparse, simple and in black and white, hers were filled color, Chanel symbols and fashion images.
It's been quite a ride, these past 15 weeks. I had a great teacher, great classmates (with whom I hope to keep in touch). It was a small group and I was lucky to have had such talented women as my classmates. We were each given the same apartment, and everyone came up with such different and fantastic designs. What a great experience! An advanced course may be offered in September, as well as an AutoCAD class, both of which I plan on taking.
But until then, anything can happen. Continue looking for work and "Mr. Right" or maybe get lucky and find myself a sugardaddy. I certainly hope to get a cat (black) and/or dog (golden). Such lofty goals, I know ;)
It may be a bumpy ride at times, at others, smooth sailing, but I hope you'll all stick around and enjoy the trip. It reminds me of this corny clip on my parents' wedding reel; this is not the end, it's just the beginning. fade to black.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Even the sailor on the Atlantic...

I finally came up with an idea on how to present Thoreau's apartment. Tell you? And ruin the surprise? You'll just have to wait... And I still have to conquer the 2 point perspective. Yikes.
Now that that's settled, what's next for me come Tuesday at noon? Who knows. I'll keep you all posted, of course. In the meantime, you'll just have settle for my silly ramblings and random images. One thing I've learned, is that one little instant can cause a drastic turn in one's life. In the meantime, I'm still looking for work, trying to get my photography shown (and sold *fingers crossed*), and hopefully meet someone soon. Oh, and adopt a kitten, and/or golden retriever. So let's see where my next little adventure leads...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Artists must be sacrificed to their art. Like bees, they must put their lives into the sting they give

Well, we are entering into the home stretch. I have my final presentation on Tuesday, and I have so much to do! I need to finish my model, do my perspective drawing (2 point!), prepare the boards. Yikes! It kind of crept up on me, and now here it is, the final reckoning. I am at such a loss as how to present the boards. Like Archimedes, I took a bath to see if something would hit me. Nothing. Looking at the blank boards to see if something comes to me. Nada. This is kind of how I am envisioning the apartment itself. Trying to glean inspiration from this photo. Maybe I am forcing myself too much. I should just let it go. So here I am going on with the rest of my day... (but if anyone has any ideas, please don't keep them from me!)

Monday, March 16, 2009

Céad Míle Fáilte

Tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day. Now, I'm not Irish, nor have I ever even been to Ireland, so by any right, I shouldn't even be celebrating. But for some reason, I have an affinity toward all things Irish. Whether it be their single-malt whiskey or their breathtaking castles, the Clancy Brothers and all the other Irish drinking songs, not to mention the literature. June 16 is the second day of the year I feel Irish.
Maybe not as much as Boston, New York is steeped in Irish tradition. The Fire and Police Departments are traditionally Irish. And then there are the pubs, my favorite haunts while living in New York were those small, dark, seedy Irish dives. The ones with the friendly bartenders, where the strangers sitting next to you are suddenly your friends because the Yankees just scored another home run. New York may not dye the East River green like they do in Chicago, they sure do throw a good parade. So I'll be thinking of those bagpipes and those shamrocks here in Israel.
And though I may not be too fond of Guinness, I raise my glass to you:

May green be the grass you walk on,
May blue be the skies above you,
May pure be the joys that surround you,
May true be the hearts that love you.

May your home be bright with cheer,
May your cares all disappear,
May contentment come your way,
And may laughter fill your day.

Friday, March 13, 2009

because the only people for me are the mad ones

the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes "Awww!"

Yesterday was Jack Kerouac's birthday so I dedicate this post to him. Like many in their teens, On the Road was one of those books that made a huge impact on me. I still remember my copy: I underlined, wrote notes in the margins. But many years back, I stupidly lent it to some guy I had been dating. Neither to be seen again; I don't miss the guy, but I certainly miss that beat up old copy of On the Road.

...So in America when the sun goes down and I sit on the old broken-down river pier watching the long, long skies over New Jersey and sense all that raw land that rolls in one unbelievable huge bulge over to the West Coast, and all that road going, all the people dreaming in the immensity of it, and in Iowa I know by now the children must be crying in the land where they let the children cry, and tonight the stars'll be out, and don't you know that God is Pooh Bear? the evening star must be drooping and shedding her sparkler dims on the prairie, which is just before the coming of complete night that blesses the earth, darkens all rivers, cups the peaks and folds the final shore in, and nobody, nobody knows what's going to happen to anybody besides the forlorn rags of growing old, I think of Dean Moriarty, I even think of Old Dean Moriarty the father we never found, I think of Dean Moriarty, I think of Dean Moriarty.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Society is a masked ball, where every one hides his real character, and reveals it by hiding

Yesterday was Purim in Jerusalem. The Jewish holiday which celebrates Queen Esther's heroism in saving the Jews against Haman. It is traditional for people to dress up in costumes; I went as Holly Golightly. In that sense I guess it can be described as the Jewish Halloween. So, I just wanted to share a couple of images I captured of the day. Now it is back to reality; I must complete the electrical plan for Thoreau's apartment...

Monday, March 9, 2009

There is more day to dawn. The sun is but a morning star.

As part of my class, we visited a lighting store to learn about new trends in lighting. I saw many different styles ranging from ultra-modern to retro. The store offered everything from locally made custom pieces to high end Italian models. (More images from my trip can be seen flickr page and at tchochkes.com)
While I didn't find anything that would necessarily fit into the aesthetic of Walden Two, I think Thoreau would be pleased to learn of the advances made in the technical aspect of lighting. There is a global movement to phase out halogen and incandescent bulbs for the more energy efficient fluorescent bulbs. Thoreau may like that, but I have to say, I do not. I have an aversion to fluorescent lighting. I find it cold, harsh and green (it may be ecologically sound, but I am referring to the color it emits). I did see some effort to make the energy-saving bulbs "warmer," but not enough to be convinced. They still emit this horrid coldness. Don't get me wrong, I am all for anything that is earth-friendly, but please can someone design a bulb that is more pleasant and doesn't make me want to leave the room?

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Must be out-of-doors enough to get experience of wholesome reality, as a ballast to thought and sentiment. Health requires this relaxation...

..this aimless life

I find myself back at home after a couple of weeks away, cat-sitting. I'll miss 'em! I've been busy these past couple of weeks. That is not to say I've accomplished much, just been busy. I had one exciting day where I picked my niece up from nursery, took her the park, and ended up at the zoo. I didn't have a good camera with me, but nonetheless felt compelled to share a couple of images from my little outing.
In other news, the specs of the final presentation of Thoreau's apartment has been announced and I learned about lighting, so look out for those upcoming posts!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

City life - millions of people being lonesome together

This was taken during a stormy afternoon out of my office window, facing south, in the summer of 2002. I thought of it because it has been raining pretty much non-stop in Jerusalem for a few days, and it's been kind of dreary. The photo was taken when I was playing around with Spectra black & white slide film. I wonder if it even exists anymore!
I also have been reminded of those dismal winter days back when I lived in New York because I've been cat-sitting over the past couple of weeks, so once again I'm alone with a couple of furry friends. Today has been one of those days, like the ones I had in New York, when you spend the day in bed, balancing a kitty and a laptop, maybe the TV is turned on, napping on and off, devoid of human contact. I miss those rainy, New York days!
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