Sunday, December 11, 2016

Off Topic: That Was the Week It Was - December 11, 2016

Good morning! Since it's Sunday, it's time for my weekly off television topic reflection on the week gone by in both words and photographs I've taken along the way. This is a regular Sunday part of this blog in addition to the television posts. 

If you're a fan of Survivor, please stop in Wednesday night for the big two-hour season finale blog party! The show (and blog party) start at 8pm ET. I'll be live-blogging the major happenings as they air here.

I really have very little to report on this week and even but a few photos. It's not really my favorite time of year and my health pain-wise has been rough. Plus, it's been cold! Supposedly, we're expecting snow this afternoon and evening, but it's supposed to turn to rain and warm up overnight.

Despite my pain issues, I'm going to arm myself with some ibuprofen, go into work early tomorrow, then head into the city after work. I haven't been going into Manhattan because I haven't been feeling all that well lately. But I now have a reason to go and a purpose. An online friend of more than 20 years from Glasgow (Scotland) is visiting the city. It's one of those odd nowadays tales of knowing someone so well and so long, but never actually meeting in person. He's much younger than I am. I recall he was an older teenager when we first met in a CompuServe forum circa 1995. At that time, he was barred from flying here due to some sort of marijuana issue.  

Now, fast forward twenty years -- he got married in his kilt a year or so back and he and his wife are passing though after visiting her home town of Ottawa. While I'm meeting them on the Lower East Side for dinner, I'll be arriving at Penn Station, walking over to Herald Square to catch the subway down there and taking a different route back up through the city and returning home by bus from Port Authority at the edge of Times Square. So, I'll definitely be taking some photos even though I won't hit Rockefeller Center and such. To be honest, they do look the same year after year anyway although if you haven't been there during the holidays, you need to get there sometime! The bus home drops me off across the street from my apartment.  

That's it. Here are the few photos I took this week. Clicking on an image will open it in a larger version. 

Holidays at the Plainfield Police

"Darn it, Jim. I'm a cop, not a tree lighting design engineer!" But the sentiment is there! The green lanterns by the entrance to the police department aren't holiday related. When I lived in CT or upstate NY, I never saw green lanterns by police department entrances. I noticed that NYC police stations had the lights, though ... as does Plainfield which is much closer to the city. So, I looked up the meaning behind them. I found this reference -- "According to the NYPD website, "It is believed that the Rattle Watchmen, who patrolled New Amsterdam in the 1650's, carried lanterns at night with green glass sides in them as a means of identification. When the Watchmen returned to the watch house after patrol, they hung their lantern on a hook by the front door to show people seeking the watchman that he was in the watch house. Today, green lights are hung outside the entrances of Police Precincts as a symbol that the "Watch" is present and vigilant." Huh. Interesting. The original Green Lantern(s)!

Here, then gone. Here, then gone.

The struggle is real. I fear the dandelions will lose the war; winter will win it soon.

Maria's is all decked out

Although I was surprised to see the restaurant on North Avenue closed when I returned home from work around 9pm last night, the holiday lights were pretty! 

Later in the week

It's the moon. Yes. Really. On a cold and clear night. If memory serves, it was Thursday evening. Hmm. Maybe Friday.

More belongings than many with homes

The baby carriage homeless contingent is getting way out of hand downtown. There are probably some folks who keep a roof over their heads owning less bulk. Sure, many (probably most) of these folks have substance abuse or mental issues. But there are services available to them that many don't want to use. One I spoke to claims she doesn't like to live by rules. Um. Neither do I, particularly. But I've always worked to have a roof over my head even while fighting demons of my own decades ago. After my own personal struggles through the years, I know you have to choose your own path in life. But that doesn't mean you need to line up fifteen feet of baby carriages on a downtown street!

Oh my!

Aha! At least Plainfield Train Station rats are clean and dressed nicely! Nothing like those MTA subway rats in the city! I caught this sad sight at the Plainfield Station one morning heading into work. Someone has to be missing their Chuck E. Cheese.

Old train, older locomotive engine

The train sitting up there on the tracks is one of the few single level constructs (I think that's what they call them) on the NJ Transit Raritan Valley Line with an even older and weathered locomotive car leading the way. On another note ... this is where, if I take the bus from near my apartment to the train station, I end up. On the left you can see the lamps of the Plainfield Train Station platform. Because I usually get there early, sometimes I like to sit on the bench under the overpass. I don't want to sit under said bridge because one of the many baby carriage street people have parked their belongings there. They've kicked all of the baby carriages of stuff abandoned for hours/days at the train station itself. Now they park and leave them on the city streets. 

I do feel for the plight of the homeless. BUT ... these are nasty eyesores. If left unattended on city streets, they should be removed. While they might contain "treasures" to the owners of them, they're full of trash -- newspapers, food remnants, etc. If the belongings are such a treasure to them ... don't leave them sitting around all over the downtown streets. Sheesh!

Early this week

The moon looked like this Monday evening. That is, when fine clouds didn't obscure it!

Vincent! Hey, Vincent!

Open your eyes, Vincent! I want to take a photo! What? How dare you refuse. You're such a cat!


Laurie said...

I thought I recognized those station lights! Nice to see them from a different perspective.
The history of the green lantern is interesting. I like knowing someone is on watch.
I know you will enjoy your visit with your friend and his wife. Some of my best times have been with my "imaginary friends" (as my daughters used to call my online community). It's so interesting to meet them in person. You are both strangers and yet you know each other better than you do your everyday contacts.

Palmaltas said...

How wonderful that you get to meet an online friend. I have met several over the years and the meetings were always enjoyable.