"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice
Category: Arts and Culture

Morning Art

modig

“Portrait of Lunia Czechowska” By Amedeo Modigliani (1919)

She Works Hard for the Money

humans

Here’s a treat from Longform, an excerpt from Studs Turkel’s 1974 book, Working:

You get up at six, you fix breakfast for the kids, you get them ready to go on to school. Leave home about eight. Most of the time I make biscuits for my kids, cornbread you gotta make. I don’t mean the canned kind. This I don’t call cookin’, when you go in that refrigerator and get some beans and drop ‘em in a pot. And TV dinners, they go stick ‘em in the stove and she say she cooked. This is not cookin’.

When I work, only thing I be worryin’ about is my kids. I just don’t like to leave ‘em too long. Wlien they get out of school, you wonder if they out on the street. The only thing I worry is if they had a place to play in easy. I always call two, three times. When she don’t like you to call, I’m in a hurry to get out of there. (Laughs.) My mind is gettin’ home, what are you gonna find to cook before the stores close.

They want you to get in a uniform. You take me and my mother, she work in what she wear. She tells you, “If that place so dirty where I can’t wear my dress, I won’t do the job.” You can’t go to work dressed like they do, ‘cause they think you’re not working—like you should get dirty, at least. They don’t say what kind of uniform, just say uniform. This is in case anybody come in, the black be workin’. They don’t want you walkin’ around dressed up, lookin’ like them. They asks you sometimes, “Don’t you have somethin’ else to put on?” I say, “No, ‘cause I’m not gettin’ on my knees.”

I had them put money down and pretend they can’t find it and have me look for it. I worked for one, she had dropped ten dollars on the floor, and I was sweepin’ and I’m glad I seen it, because if I had put that sweeper on it, she coulda said I got it. I had to push the couch back and the ten dollars was there. Oh, I had ‘em, when you go to dust, they put something . . . to test you.

You know what I wanted to do all my life? I wanted to play piano. And I’d want to write songs and things, that’s what I really wanted to do. If I could just get myself enough to buy a piano … And I’d like to write about my life, if I could sit long enough.”

[Photo Credit: Brandon Stanton/Humans of New York]

Beat of the Day

floatss

More than you know:

[Picture by Eric Petersen]

Afternoon Art

upandaway

Illustration by Eric Petersen.

New York Minute

cabbie

Mr. Cab Driver…from Pete Hamill:

Taxi drivers are the most enduring oppressed minority in New York City history. Race, ethnicity and religion are not sources of the oppression. It lies entirely in the nature of the work. Trapped for about 12 hours each day in the worst traffic in the United States, taxi drivers must suffer the savage frustrations of jammed streets, double-parked cars, immense trucks, drivers from New Jersey — and they can’t succumb to the explosive therapy of road rage. Their living depends on self-control.

At the same time, they face many other hazards: drunks behind them in the cab, fare beaters, stickup men, Knicks fans filled with biblical despair, out-of-town conventioneers who think the drivers are mobile pimps. Some seal themselves off from the back seat with the radio, an iPod or a cellphone. All pray that the next passenger doesn’t want to go from Midtown to the far reaches of Brooklyn or Queens. They hope for a decent tip. They hope to stay alive until the next fare waves from under a midnight streetlamp.

[Photo Credit: Matt Draper]

Million Dollar Movie

Ron-Galella-Dustin-Hoffman

More goodness from Cinephilia and Beyond:

[Photo Credit: Ron Galella]

Taster’s Cherce

PB-J-Ice-Cream-Sandwiches-HonestlyYUM1

Back to school special: PB & J ice cream sandwiches.

Beat of the Day

mashout

Mash Out Posse.

Afternoon Art

SAULS

Saul. 

Afternoon Art

usa

Painting by Patrick Kramer. 

Taster’s Cherce

peachmelba

Saveur gives Peach Melba Pie.

[Photo Credit: Todd Coleman]

Beat of the Day

rainstorm

Don’t you worry.

[Photo Credit: Mustafah Abdulaziz via Snowce]

Million Dollar Movie

sally

From Black Book:

Bob Balaban: Altman-esque means never having to say you’re sorry. Bob did what he wanted in the face of tremendous obstacles and he really was programmed that way. I suspect as a child he was pretty stubborn all his life. What was he like as a child Kathryn, did you ever hear stories about him?

Kathryn Altman: Yeah, I can’t believe them!

BB: But to me, the whole key to Robert in everything, was that he was someone who followed his own beat and listened to his own drum. You couldn’t dissuade him from that path, and that was one of his great strengths as a filmmaker, and possibly as a human being as well. So that’s Altman-esque to me.

KA: Right off the top of my head, my synonym for Altman is having the world’s greatest sense of humor—I mean, just the world’s greatest, the best. And that’s something that shows in all his pictures in so many different ways and always comes up at some point.

BB: One of the greatest secrets of writing and directing is that people with senses of a humor really understand that there’s no difference between comedy and tragedy, it’s all mixed in there together just as in life. And most filmmakers say, this is going to be a funny movie or this is going to be a serious movie, but for Robert, I don’t think there was any dividing line between. It was life, it wasn’t serious, it wasn’t funny, it was life.

 

I Gotta Rash, Man

briddude

Starting at the 9:00 minute mark, I gab about my Big Lebowski story.

Dig:

Afternoon Art

Autosave-File vom d-lab2/3 der AgfaPhoto GmbH

Photograph Annelie Vandendael via MPD.

Taster’s Cherce

tomatoesss

Summer Pasta with tomato water, basil, and garlic. Oh, yes.

Taster’s Cherce

peachjam

Grace’s spicy peach jam. Mmmm.

Beat of the Day

glimmer

Much too complex:

[Painting by Philip Barlow via This Isn't Happiness]

Morning Art

parksg

Picture by Gordon Parks. 

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver