March 30, 2009

Madison Avenue: Closed for Business

Originally uploaded by missavictoria
I have a lust/hate relationship with Madison Avenue. I always have. To me, walking down Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side is like walking through a living issue of the September Vogue, each store window another glossy advertisement for something I want but can't afford, that I wish I could tear out and look at forever.

From 86th Street down to Barney's @ 60th Street (which I consider the cut-off point between Upper East Side elegance and Midtown exhaust fumes) just FEELS like Manhattan; the Manhattan that I dreamed of living in since I was a kid playing MASH; the Manhattan that made me so excited to move here that I think of my apartment's location in terms of its proximity to the shops of Madison Ave. (20 minute walk to the Louboutin boutique!)

Luxury, beauty, decadence...excess, waste, pretense....Can't notice the beauty without noticing the prohibitive price tags, bad face-lifts, and the sad juxtaposition of the Bronx-bound express buses driving by. But still, I love(d) it!

Now, Madison Avenue is closed for business...

Sometimes to treat myself, I take the bus home up Madison instead of taking the 6 train and I noticed a lot of stores for rent. I decided to take a walk this weekend and see just how many places have been affected by the recession. I took pictures of all the "Store for Rent" signs as a way to mourn the loss of my street, my American dream.

26 stores closed in 25 blocks. From the Sharper Image, whose name they tried to blur out to galleries whose names I never knew--closed. Even in the shadow of the Plaza Hotel, below 60th Street, huge retail spaces are empty and up for grabs. Someone had to document these sad empty store fronts. Sigh.

March 16, 2009

Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring

Goodbye frozen Jackie O Reservoir and frozen birdies (above) and hello Spring! How do I know it's spring despite the never-ending cold and overcast skies? Well, I'm 99.9% certain I witnessed some pigeon sex outside my kitchen window last weekend. It was loud and pretty insane. I caught the tail end (pun intended) of it with my camera.

Unfortunately I'm having issues posting the video but didn't want to abandon this post. Grrrrrr, blogger...

I assure you it was a very steamy 46 seconds of Pigeon S&M. And some nice background audio of Rob and I freaking out, including Rob shouting "He's givin' it to her in the wing."

Love is in the air, so hopefully that means that full-blown spring is on its way.
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