Useful Fictions

Lower Manhattan, New York City
7a.m. I rest in front of George Washington’s statue at Federal Hall at 26 Wall Street. I sit with my camera bag waiting for the light to move so I can get a good exterior shot of the New York Stock Exchange across the street. I am on assignment this morning recording a segment on the Exchange’s trading floor.

Washington’s statue tells me that he took the Nation’s first Presidential oath of office here on the balcony, the last day of April, 1789. The Stock Market across the street was formally started in May a few years later.

Continue reading Reading Virgil on the New York Stock Exchange Floor

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Now, finding my daughter hula-hooping or wearing wigs (even a man-wig) isn’t surprising. She scours thrift and costume stores for groovy wigs and is building a nice collection. She’s got a Liz Taylor wig, two Amelia Earhart wigs, a Paula Dean wig. Her Roger Daltrey wig is her only man-wig. It’s the combination of the wig and The Who and what those things meant to me in my own identity-formation that took me back a bit, equally as much as hearing my guileless pre-teen daughter belt out “we’re all wasted.”

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He was arrested on August 21 at a police checkpoint under Terrorism Act No 83 which allowed the government to detain any citizen for an indefinite period of time without trial and without the requirement to release any detainee’s name.

He was beaten repeatedly for 20 days until September 11th when, close to death, he was stripped naked and tossed into the back of a Land Rover and driven 1500km to a prison with hospital facilities.

He died on September 12.

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Science has a way of creeping up on you. It’s sneaky—like classical music can be sneaky. One day you’re thrashing to the Ramones and Nine Inch Nails and the next you find yourself in tears in the middle of your living room because you just heard Lazlo Varga play a cello in ways you never thought possible and the strings’ vibrations reached out and bent you into a kind of fetal position of perverse ecstasy.

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