Sunday, April 24, 2022

Il Sorpasso, Revisited (Plus Detail)

24 April 2017

I remember being interested in the interpersonal dynamics of the above image when I took it, and originally posted it, but somewhere along the way of the last 5 years I'd forgotten all about it. 

The above is a newly re-cropped and slightly reprocessed image, and the below is a tight crop that I haven't posted before.  

Whatever, if anything, is to be made of the image I happily leave entirely to the viewer.


Tuesday, April 19, 2022

In Pursuit of Moeche (Soft Shell Crabs) at the Arsenale

27 April 2014: With just a length of twine tied around a rock (to weight it down into the water) these fishermen were more dependent upon the misbegotten curiosity of overly-grabby crabs than the bits of fried calamari or french fries with which they tried to allure them. There weren't a lot of crustaceans who went for the bait (when it didn't simply come untethered), but just enough to keep the kids enthralled for hours, with even near misses (crabs clearly visible beneath the surface who never quite clamped onto the string, some who had the good sense to let go as soon as they were hauled into the air) eliciting thrilled exclamations. "Che gigante!" they'd yelp about one particular crab about the size of their own palms--but of course it's all relative. At such times I could imagine no better place in the world to be a kid than Venice.

Sunday, April 10, 2022

Children, As Opposed to People

22 January 2018

The above sign, posted in the large courtyard/play area (called a giardino) of my son's old elementary school just a stone's throw from the Church of San Zaccaria, displays the hazards of writing in a second language, even for those who might know the language pretty well. 

Significant nuances go unnoticed, and an innocent sign intended (I guess) to remind the parents who mill about the giardino twice daily to leave off or pick up their children from school that the basketball hoops and soccer net are not there for their use (not that I ever saw any parent acting as if they thought they were) seems to suggest a darkly comic distinction between people and the creatures known as children. 

At least I think this distinction was unintended... 

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

Ponte Fuseri: Walking Home from School

6 April 2016, Sestiere San Marco (near the palazzo where Goethe stayed): It would be impossible to overstate how compelling were the logistical challenges of Venice to our son, and how much he admired the people who moved goods and people through the maze of a city, both with boats and hand carts. Venetian life, insofar as it is still lived, consists at least as much of such movement and labor as anything you might find in a tourist guide, and is, I dare say, just as interesting to observe.

Friday, April 1, 2022

Conversation On the Grand Canal

1 April 2017: A water colorist afloat on the Grand Canal in a sandolo makes a point to a friend in a motorboat