Chrysler Building and Manhattan looking northeast from Empire State Building, New York, N.Y.
Office building from Empire State Building, New York, N.Y.
Observation Deck and tourists, Empire State Building, New York, N.Y.
Manhattan looking northwest from the Empire State Building, New York, N.Y., August 2017
Lower Manhattan and One World Trade Center from Empire State Building, New York, New York.
Flatiron Building and Flatiron District, Empire State Building, New York, N.Y., August 2017
I’m glad I made the trip to the ol’ ESB. The new(ish?) Observation Deck and museum is really nice, and well worth the $30-$60 you’ll spend for a trip to the top. I went at sunset, and I was not disappointed with the view. And of course, since I can’t take high-ground photos without tilt-shifting everything to death, I was able to process to my heart’s content. I also got to post the Flatiron photo on Facebook and post my standard gag about building a model of it on my table. Two or three of my Facebook friends always fall for it.
Museum visitors and Willamette Meteorite, American Museum of Natural History, New York, August 2017
Museum visitors viewing astronomy movie, American Museum of Natural History, New York, N.Y.
Allosaurus skeleton, New York, N.Y.
Barosaurus skeleton, American Museum of Natural History, New York, N.Y.
Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton, American Museum of Natural History, New York, N.Y.
I’ve wanted to visit the American Museum of Natural History in New York since I was 8 years old and could name for you not only the dinosaurs, but all of the periods of the Mesozoic Era and probably a few from the Paleozoic, too.
After finally getting to check it out, I learned that 1) an afternoon wasn’t enough, and 2) they need to update the astronomy exhibit. I ditched dinos for space the day after seeing Star Wars for the first time, and I’m a little disappointed that my newer love wasn’t well represented. The dinosaur skeletons were amazing. Meanwhile, the exhibits in the Hayden Planetarium look like they were last updated in the early 1990’s—relativistic jets emerging from quasars, for example, aren’t attributed to supermassive black holes, they way we now know they should be.
That’s right, Neil Degrasse Tyson, I’m calling you out! (I’m kidding! Ha ha! You’re smarter and tougher than I’ll ever be please don’t kill me.)
A beautiful day for baseball at the new Yankee Stadium.
Yankees win, Bronx, August 2017
Yankee outfielder Aaron Judge is poised to hit what will be an RBI single off Toronto’s Joe Biagini. Alas, on the throw from the outfield, Judge hesitates on his way to second and is picked off to end the inning. Bless his heart.
Yankee outfielders Aaron Hicks and Jacoby Ellsbury wait patiently for someone to hit it their way, as pitcher Masahiro Tanaka pitches five perfect innings and notches 15 strikeouts, the most ever by an Asian pitcher in the Major Leagues.
On my first full day in New York, I Ubered out to the Bronx to catch my first Yankee game. They still alive for a playoff spot, with only a couple of games left. I got to see Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka strike out 15—the most ever by an Asian pitcher in the Majors—and flirt with a perfect game until the fifth inning. The Yanks won 4-0, and even though I’m a Red Sox fan (if I’m anything at all), it was a nice day at the ballpark.
I was shooting some little stuff at the dining room table last night, using my new 100mm Canon macro lens. I didn’t want the overhead light to turn everything yellow, so I adjusted my camera’s AWB settings for indoors. I forgot to change it back, which is unfortunate for what it did to an otherwise lovely photo opportunity. I saw this tree driving to Falmouth this afternoon and made a note to try and shoot it when I was driving back.
The bad AWB setting screwed with the color. It’s kind of interesting in an off-world way, but I would have much rather just captured the light that I saw. (I tried using Photoshop to fix it, but the video tutorial went over my head; I have no idea how people figure that thing out.)
Still, the macro has some really sweet capabilities. The narrow depth of field makes it hard to focus, of course, but I like how I can blur backgrounds now without cheating on the FocusPro app.
Last night, Mrs. cpb made me open my birthday present two days early. She got me a 100mm Canon macro lens, which will allow me to take closeup photos of small objects without having to use my zoom lens. The zoom served me well, but that kind of focal length can lead to distortion and blurred images, especially if you can’t keep your hands completely still.
I knew an honest-to-God macro would improve my closeup stuff, but wow, was I unprepared for the difference. I have a lot to learn—the depth of field is about the diameter of a hydrogen atom—but even these crummy photos are light years better than the stuff I was taking before.
There are over 4,000 species of harvestman, a type of arachnid often called daddy longlegs. We spotted this individual while snow hiking around Durand Lake. He was chilling out on the crest between two cross-country ski tracks. My son nudged him a little and sure enough, he was alive and probably doing fine. We left him alone and went on our way. Any tiny black critter confident enough to hang out on a cold, white background deserves our respect.
By the way, it’s a myth that these creatures have the most poisonous bite in the arthropod phylum, but have fangs that are too weak to penetrate human skin. None of the species in this group has fangs or poison. They have to pounce on their prey and pry it apart. This is unlike their soulless cousins, the spiders, who employ more cowardly methods. Like poison, webs, and lurking in my bathtub.