Sunday, February 20, 2011

Off Topic - That Was the Week It Was - February 20, 2011

It's Sunday morning! You know what that means -- it's time for my off television topic reflection on the week gone by in both words and photographs I've taken. It has been a weird weather week here in New Jersey. On Monday, we were up to around 60 degrees. Tuesday we had bitter cold. Then we had record warmth into the sixties and even to 71 on Friday. We had a short yet vivid thunderstorm Friday night. Then Saturday had temperatures back to winter with a high winds warning.

Oy. Oh. And I should probably mention that snow/ice/sleet is expected tonight into Monday and then again the next day, too.

I tasted spring this week and I want it. I want it now. To be honest, the temperatures don't bother me all that much. It's just all of the ice and snow we've had this year. With sunshine and the few days of real warmth, much of our snow is gone. The shady areas still sport snow cover and the huge mounds are down to manageable sizes, but nasty dirty. Christmas trees, broken street benches, the debris of a gazillion litterbugs and folks who don't pick up their dog waste abound. Eww. But it's nice to walk without thinking any step could bring me down if I slip on ice.

On the home front, I guess I have new neighbors. Yes, an odd time for them to move in -- immediately after the apartment rehab and mid-month. But they seem to be there. I hear movement and voices (can't hear what they're saying, just muffled voices) at various hours. So far, they don't seem rowdy or into heavy-duty arguments. That's all I really ask from a neighbor sharing a wall. I don't need to be friends. I just want them to be considerate of others and realize they're not alone in a house.

The Survivor: Redemption Island premiere this week was an excellent start with a Tribal Council we're never going to forget. If you're watching the show, please stop by the weekly blog party. We have commentary as the show airs East Coast time and sometimes even have a contingent of West Coasters picking it up again three hours later.

The new season of The Amazing Race begins tonight. If you want to be in the blog pool, you have until 3 PM ET to email to join. At approximately 8 PM ET, I'll get that blog party post up. I'll also be writing up the review for TV Squad, but I'm not sure when that will end up getting posted as I think the editors at AOL might have a long weekend.

Enough ... onto the photos! Clicking on an image will open it larger in a new window.

New York Post Army o' Honor (Boxes)

I don't know why, but all of a sudden five new NY Post honor boxes appeared at the Bridgewater Train Station. Mind you, this is the station which still sports the January 17 copy of the NJ Star-Ledger for sale even though the snow which blocked the box for a few months is now gone. Unless they plan to put two issues in each of these boxes, I don't see a sell out. I usually read left behind NY Post copies on the train.

The Pigeon Lectures

Two pigeons lecture lesser birds on the front of the Chotola building on North Avenue in Plainfield. Okay, I made that up. The birds are huddled there trying to avoid both the wind and the cold Saturday morning.

The white pigeon reminds me of the episode on The Wire when the kids thought all white pigeons were "homers" and worth big bucks. Nope, he (she?) is a plain old pigeon. I've seen this white one hanging around that block for almost two years now. Well, I think it's the same one. It's hard to tell one pure white pigeon from another.

Winter Weed

Even in this shape, it kind of makes for a neat photo.

Stepping Back

Here's where I got the last shot -- frozen weeds against a chain link fence in front of a mound of snow.

Winter Morning at the Plainfield Train Station

Monday morning, just as dawn is about to break, my train arrives. On day, later in the week on my way home, I had to explain to a fellow passenger the difference between the Devils and Rangers fans on the train and what sport it was. Hockey, Devils fans wear red. Rangers fans wear red, white and blue with the major color being white. They don't like each other and they're all obnoxious on the trains. They should have their own cars while normal human beings are seated separately.

The passenger was an intern at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in Manhattan and was heading to Newark to catch a plane home to Ohio for a long weekend. She had just put in over a hundred hours working Fashion Week in the city and was questioning her own career aspirations. Poor kid. But she'll bounce back. If she wants a career in fashion, she's definitely on a solid path as an intern there!

Sure, wait until the temperature is expected to be 60!

This was early Monday morning on East Front and Watchung Avenue in Plainfield. Oh, they're finally taking down some of the shoulder-high snow mounds? Now that they started to melt and are dwindling on their own? Why bother now when pedestrians have had treacherous sidewalks for two months?

Most of my shortcuts are back! Yes!

No, I don't walk across lawns and such. But I do often cut through the U-Haul lot and it's been blocked by snowbanks on the sidewalk and monster snow mounds blocking the lot. While this is still sizable (it's less now as I took this Monday morning), I can cut through the lot once again. Yay! East Front and Roosevelt, Plainfield.

Monarch Before Dawn

This was also Monday morning before the sunrise. That snow is now all gone, too. East Front Street, Plainfield.


This is the section of North Avenue sidewalk in front of the Plainfield Train Station I've groused about all winter. NO ONE TAKES OWNERSHIP AND NO ONE SHOVELS IT. Now what's left over is pure ice. If the sun comes out, it's water on ice. Yes, that's extremely dangerous. I took this Tuesday, but as of Saturday morning there was still a fifteen or twenty foot section of ice down by the corner necessitating a walk into the street to pass.

Winter took its toll on the streets

This pothole is at the entrance to Union County College on Church Street. Under that water, the hole goes down about four inches. I noticed they tried filling it with rocks on Friday. Yeah, that'll work!

Look! The wall of snow behind the bench is gone!

Oh yeah ... because those guys were breaking it up and throwing it in the street to damage passing cars. Church Street.

Methinks time for a new box

This is one of those mailbox but not a mailbox doohickeys that the mailmen ... er, mail people, are in and out of throughout the day. It's definitely seen better days. The corner of East Front and Roosevelt, Plainfield.

Stop in the name of love

Before you break my heart. Think it oh-oh-ver ... (The Supremes). I couldn't resist, but you really don't want to hear me sing it. Only Vincent should suffer that much! Valentine's Day on East Front Street. I edited it to leave the crossing guard's stop sign and the balloons in color while the rest went black and white.

Take time to smell the rose

A teen waits for his train in Bound Brook holding a single flower on Valentine's Day. His girl? His Mom? Either one makes it a touching scene. Also edited to leave him in color.

Bird on a wire

His throat is all fluffed out because he was holding an animated discussion aimed at um, I don't know. But he certainly was noisy! He's probably talking about the bird takeover of the world.

Historic Home

In the Crescent Area Historic District on Crescent Avenue in Plainfield, this home sports well-kept original detail. So many of the homes through there are absolutely stunning.

Then there's this one across the street

What the heck is that gook they've put on the sides? Not only that, but the turret is in shambles. Obviously cut into apartments, I can't help but wonder what it looked like when it was a single family home.

The Plainfield Library

I renewed my books twice because I didn't feel up to fighting the snow and ice to get there. But with the nice weather on Thursday, I finally returned them. No, these aren't the steps to the entrance. I'm pretty sure this snow is probably gone or near gone after Friday's warmth. I edited the shot to leave the library flags in color. Park Avenue, Plainfield.

Design and Texture

A boarded up window surrounded by brick. East Fourth Street, Plainfield.

But can you get there from here?

Signs at the intersection of West Eighth Street and Park Avenue in Plainfield. No, don't ask me what exit we are off the NJ Turnpike. I can tell you how to get on the NJ Parkway, though.

Excuse me

Can you get that camera ANY closer to my face?

But, Vincent ... you're such a good subject!

How was your week?


RyzandShyn said...

Good Morning!
Friday was glorious! I couldn't get enough of that spring air smell. I wonder how long this Christmas snow will remain. I can't wait until it's gone and we have a good rain to wash the filth away and green things up.
I love the detailing on that blue house. It immediately makes me wonder about it's original owners and what life was like for them. The house next to the library looks interesting too.
Glad your new neighbors seem cool.
I'm loving my three day weekend. I'll have a short class week since we have an inservice day on Friday. It's been a long cold crazy winter and I'm glad for a little break.
vw: rationa - like teacher me right now, just a little short of rational :)

Delee said...

We left the house around 930a yesterday came home about 345p. Power was out called power co not to be fixed until 8p, we hung around for a bit then left early for a happy hour and dinner meet up. No fun sitting with not elec. Then found out it had gone out around 10a. Glad I had company to be out and about or would have lost my mind with nothing to do.
Came home around 745p-heat and refrig was running YEAH! Darn winds!

Saw on tv somewhere in NJ they piled the snow so high people were sno-boarding down it! Now that's alot of snow!

Do not have time to read all about the pics now and comment. But I really liked the pigeons and birds with the old sytle tiles. See ya tonight!

Lifeguard Laurie said...

As always,great pictures and interesting story. I wonder if this is the last of the snow for the season. Is that possible?

Here are the current pool people for TAR:
Deb A.
Donna in AL
Donna in FL
Karen in CA
Monty 924
Nana in the NW
PDX Granny
Terry in PA

Sally said...

We're in the middle of another snowstorm here, expecting about 12 inches. It seems like a mean joke after we had melting snow and warmer weather last week.

The colors in the winter morning at the train station photo are beautiful, and I love the photo/concept of the teenage boy with his single flower.

Vincent is a very good photo subject--week after week of cute poses.