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Mermaids are truly political, as you will see in the next few photos.  The partially obscured sign between the two large puppets says:  Manhattan, Next Atlantis.  Frightening!  Their intent to invade and annex coastal cities is nothing short of a land grab.  Would they reef buildings like those in the background?

Even advancing coral appeared this year, arriving with its own entourage, all looking quite healthy and diverse.

 

Some mermaids seem to have very terrestrial concerns, while others

just want to dance to the music, taking advantage of their single day of land-appendage exchange.

Other sea critters have rights on their minds . . .

like these surfsurfsurfragettes.

But mostly this parade is about music, marching, dancing, and welcoming the longest day the year, a leg stretching day.

These photos may capture the color but do not begin to suggest the volume.

Between the buildings, these drums are thunderous.

Green light, red light . . .  they just keep pouring through the intersection.  And remember yesterday’s tuba?  That tuba–like the trumpet–has found its tribe.

 

 

 

Pirates also come ashore, like this band made up of scalawags banned from every continent of dry ground.

A reporter wanting to interview a dancer . . . just has to dance.

 

 

 

We leave it here.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who is counting the days until the mermaids re-emerge from the deep for their next long day in the sun.

 

 

On the first full day of summer, a trumpet-toting parrot and a tuba-entwined starfish meet on Surf Avenue and 21st.  That can only mean one thing:  mermaids!!  You’d guess that maybe even if the title had been summer solstice at Coney Island.

The unlikely pair–a psittacine gigantus and a forcipulatida musicus– talk and then set off in search of their kin.

I stayed at my location, figuring it might be a portal between the worlds where other fanciful sights would materialize.  And sure enough . . . this wave-energized police car vintage 2910 glided past.

Predictably . . .  Dick “the mayor” Zigun showed to key to welcome all at the portal to his stretch of beach, but is this the first time he’s not beating a bass drum?

 

The parade is many things, but it’s as much music and marching and dancing as anything else.   And all, this is the best shot of Arlo, Coney Island native.  See him in the beach cart just to the left of the staff guy in pink?  Here’s a short song of his you might like.

Some mermaids hitch rides in motorized vehicles.

This amusement park ride–sometimes in the background of my Narrows photos, eg, here and scroll to third photo–is way beyond antique.

More parader pictures tomorrow, and for now I’m out enjoying the second whole day of summer 2019. Know the symbol below on the green flag?

All photos by Will Van Dorp, whose favorite year at the parade might be illustrated here and here.

Oh . . . the psittacine aka macaw found the trumpet section

 

Local government boats  . . .  NYPD actually are out all year ’round training, patrolling, for whatever purpose.  If I were differently ambitious, I’d develop a crime fighter television series based on the lives and work of the marine unit of the NYPD.  But one impediment to fulfilling that goal is that I know very little about the marine unit.

This blog is not so much an end result of content research as a starting point for me, so besides putting up recent photos of NYPD boats, here are some facts that I just located:  NYPD employs 55, 304   people, of whom 38,422 were officers in 2018.  They operate 9624 cars.

Here is info on some of the boats in the harbor unit.

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The harbor unit, established in 1858, is made up of 150 officers today, of whom 31 specialize in scuba operations.

Since they cover the 576 miles of water’s edge as well as the 146 square miles of NYC navigable water, I’d call them the sixth boro police.

Here’s a previous government boats post I did.

For more historical info, click here.

Doing this post has given me some ideas for some sort of project.  To be continued . . .

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

Many thanks to you all who reached out about yesterday’s post.  Let me recap what I’ve learned since taking the photos on Sunday and posting them on Monday.  First, the dock has been returned to Pier 66 on the North River, where it seems to have broken loose Friday.  Sunday in the wee hours it was reported–as an unseen but substantial piece of debris– in the wee hours off Caddells on the ebbing KVK, which is even farther west than where I saw it Sunday soon after dawn.  This means it was shuttling with the tides west and east in the KVK.  Since being retrieved by Driftmaster, it was claimed by owners over near Pier 66 and towed back there, reportedly, and not by USACE.

Ironically, I walked past Pier 66 yesterday midmorning, but didn’t notice an absence.  I’ve walked there only twice in the past three months.  Here’s a post I did from one of the walks in late January under the Whatzit title.

There’s that other Vessel along the west side of Midtown, one which seems to be commanding attention and controversy, as here.

I first became aware of the planned structure in April 2017, when I caught and posted this photo of Sarah Ann and barge  under the title Whatzit 36.

Here’s October 2017.

And here’s March 25, 2019.  If we zoom in on the top of the “Vessel,” you’ll see

people who are standing there.

You can offer a new name . . . I’d go with Hudson Yards Carapace, as it reminds me of a metallic carapace of a sea turtle, but I’ll bet you have your own ideas.

 

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who thinks the name “vessel” has to go.

Click here for the 43 previous posts if you don’t understand the title.  If your thoughts on being the image below were of high heels sans the rest of the impractical shoe, mine were the same.  Of course, you can read Weeks 526 clear as day, so  . . . whatzit?

Here’s a bit more context.  That’s the Hudson River, old pilings for old Pier 55, I believe, just north of old Pier 54.

Piers of Manhattan once welcomed ships and ferries, cargo and passengers transitioned between land and water there.   Then people patterns changed and these piers little by little have transformed.

So what is it?!@#@!!

Come back in a few years and hang out at new Pier 55, the on–then off–then on again park idea funded for $250 million by Barry Diller.   The project reminds me of the vessel, another Heatherwick Studio creation.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, with a cell phone.   I’ve been losing a grip on patterns these days myself.

Before I started blogging, Pier 54 hosted the Nomadic Museum, for a half year or so.  I loved it.

 

I blamed Christina Sun aka bowsprite for starting permutations of “tugster,” but I’m not revealing any great secret to say I’m glad for her influence.  Unrelated to that and her, I went to a new part of the “terrest boros” the other day, of course a boat was involved . . .

but more on that later . . .

stopped at a stop light, looked to my right, thought . . .  “funny, I’d been talking to my son about Utagawa Kuniyoshi just the other day . . .

and decided immediately to pull over and enjoy this version of masks on buildings.  I took this batch in four minutes flat!!  I stayed in the neighborhood for about an hour.

 

Every direction I walked,

 

and

every which way I looked . . . there were more.

Let me know if you’re interested in seeing more . . .

All photos by Will Van Dorp.

I’ll get back to my homeward bound series tomorrow, but this photo Ashley Hutto sent along Wednesday just astounds me.  It would be a perfect base for a horror movie poster.

Thanks much, Ashley.  That’s a moody photo!

You can find many previous posts featuring Ashley’s photos here.

 

It’s been a while since the first in this series . . . and to convince you to look at that link, here’s another photo I took the same day below. See the Seatow with a dead houseboat? Midsummer is a state of mind that resists mustering up and focusing energy.  Janis Joplin’s “Summertime” comes to mind.  The photo below I took on June 10, 2011, and yes that’s Blue Marlin in the distance with its cargo of equipment formerly operated by Reinauer.

I recalled midsummer of 2011 when I saw the photo below on Birk Thomas’ FB feed.  Since this triggers today’s post, I’ll let you ponder that shanty boat a bit, and tell more about it at the end of the post.  But if you’re downstream from Kingston NY, you’ll see this vessel head downstream at some point soon.  It’s currently in the Rondout.

Earlier this summer, I was walking along the west side of the island, and I spotted two stone cows’ heads!

Walking in the midsummer zone, I figured a rational explanation existed, it wouldn’t be Bordens, and I’d not panic.  Encounters like these are one of the joys of living in this city, and one of the reasons I usually carry a camera.  Here’s the background story, and here’s a story from June 2018 about incorporating these heads into a post-modern park monument.

So then there are these . . . an army of re-enacters?  A tent revival featuring a successor to Charles G. Finney?

Scouts with only white tents?  A cult?

Nomads?   An apolitical movement? A set for one of the many movies shot in the lands around the sixth boro?

Nope.  It’s actually a glampground.  You know . . . a place to go glamping, a business catering to folks who want to tent out differently, I guess.

So . . . the shanty boat is the vehicle for Wes Modes’ adventures, some of which he records here.

A brief story about an incident from 2004, I think, a day I didn’t carry a camera.  Midmorning I arrived at Pier 16 to see five law-enforcement helicopters circling the Brooklyn Bridge, a dozen of so emergency boats closing in on the Manhattan side bridge pier.  Then a small rowboat broke out of the cordon and made for Pier 17, surrounded by police.  Once tied to the pier, as many police as could board his boat without sinking it, handcuffed the kid in the boat, and started searching the contents of the boat, not much . . . a tarp and some large plastic bags. After grilling him for the better part of an hour, the police undid the cuffs and left him to his boat.

Later I asked him–maybe 20 years old if that– what that had been about.  He said he was from Albany, had built a small dory himself–and it looked it– with a tarp for a sail and wanted to  take it down to the big city and then return, a variation of Huck Finn.  He’d turned in at Spuyten Duyvil, taken the Harlem River to the East River, and as the tide was pushing him under theWilliamsburg and Manhattan Bridges, he decided he was going too fast and thought to tie up to the next bridge if he saw any protrusions.  He noticed some bent steel rods and  . . . grabbed one and tied his boat off to it.  And then the excitement started.  It was 2004 after all.  The theme of the interrogation was terrorism, understandably.

Still, I think he was just a contemporary of Huck Finn, definitely naive and maybe stupid.  It wasn’t, but it could have been my grandkid .  . or my friend’s son.  I wonder whatever became of him.  I wish I’d had a camera that day, but even if I had, the drama might have been elusive.

It’s summertime.  Enjoy it.  And make the world a friendlier place in the process.  Smile at the unfriendly person, but never smirk. I said smile.

One photo here by Birk Thomas;  the others by Will Van Dorp.

 

 

 

As we leave the cold of the past months, we see more crew of all vessels out on deck just to enjoy the balmy weather and sun, like these crew taking photos of the northern side of Staten Island.  I’ve often wondered what they say about this port of the US;  of course they see the skyline of Manhattan as they enter and depart the port, but I wonder what they say about the borders of the KVK.

I’m not “developing” it, however, maybe just taking advantage the “educational” opportunity it offers, to create a space as they have designated in Port Huron as the Great Lakes Maritime Center.  The assemblage of containers there is attractive and functional. Click here and scroll for a post I did back in 2012 about this Center on a brownfield.  NYC is failing to recognize the KVK for the tourist destination it could be.

Pilots boarding in windy frigid months must find this part of spring part of the joy of the profession.

Crew heading back out to sea . . . do they compare ports?

The deckhand needs to stay on station, a much easier task from temperature perspective.

Another crewman headed for sea . . . is this the last port departure of his hitch or his first?

Ditto the crew indicted by the red arrow, what do they talk about?

 

These boom boats, they work all year round on these utilitarian vessels.

This was a coup, I thought.  The USCG had come aboard during cargo transfer to take the crew through a life boat drill.

Again . . . crew entering the port from sea . . .

 

And finally, nobody has time to enjoy these seats right now, but when work is done, I’m guessing they are enjoyed.

All photos by Will Van Dorp, who is currently headed west again.

 

Here was the previous 2017 return, before the venerable vessel was called out for extraordinary duty in early September assisting in relief efforts after the devastating hurricanes in Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico.

I caught these photos of the classic 565′ steamer–launched in 1962 as SS Oregon–from Roosevelt Island on a rainy blustery morning.

She ran eastward

 

 

 

 

before disappearing around the bend at Hell Gate.

All photos here by Will Van Dorp.  Click here for a press release from SUNY Maritime.  For more info, click here to read the workboat.com article.

 

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