Thursday, February 26, 2015

Just Remember


I found this book of photographs buried in a forgotten box in my basement. They were given to me at a flea market by an elderly lady. We had many friendly conversations of her reminiscence of the past. She told me stories about what it was like to be Black in America during 1930's through the 1960's.
She couldn't remember who's pictures these were. Memories get fuzzy that way over time. She would point to a few different pictures and say "that's her" but could not remember the ladies name.
"They all gone now." "Nobody wants these pictures." She told me that she tried to find someone who might of known her. "People come and go." "Seen a lot of that." "I kept the book for years."
It was as if she was letting go of the past and passing them on to me. She told me, "Take care of them." "I know you will." I kept my word that I would.
I saw her only one time after that and she gave another picture. I'll present that at another time. It was after a time that other vendors told me that they hadn't seen her in a long time.
"They call me Lizzy." "But that 'aint my name." "You can call be Lizzy." "That's alright." "I like your name."
Thank you Lizzy.
"Just Remember"
That's her bottom right picture

This is the lady up close.
Sweet dreams

as told by roman blazic_all rights reserved    

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Fishtown: Razing a Church

Things change.

My Fishtown and surrounding neighborhoods are changing. Much new construction took place and many proposals for additional construction, most of all houses and a few defined businesses, continue to surface for community approval or disapproval. The effect of this has produced overwhelming favorable approval but it has also had a harsh impact on those with lesser financial means and stability which displaced many: renters and ballooning property taxes.These unfortunate people were not, in general, actively considered by the community and it's organizations. Community development loss sight of the human condition with a very narrow view of what improvement means; especially inclusion for all.
Resistance to such inclusion is strong as evident by a city wide gross lack of planning for low income housing and healthful social service. The cry includes rants and scare tactics about having so called undesirable people in the community and the lowering of property value. Views of inclusion and development compromise is near routinely marginalized or dismissed.
It's an insult. It discourages the community to foster actionable proactive planning in the community.
I was also moved by the related action of razing the former Pilgrim Congregational United Church of Christ at Marlborough and Belgrade streets for new house construction. A lack of patience is so subtle to try to preserve such an unique 1841 architectural design from being demolished.
It's probably one of the earliest examples of Italianate architecture for a church in Philadelphia (most other churches from that era were neo-classical or late federalist style).*
Now it's much too late. A (prima facie) historic neighborhood landmark structure will be lost and also a part of our heritage. I'm very concerned that there's more to follow in the name of progress.

point of view opinion and photos by roman blazic_all rights reserved

Friday, February 6, 2015

Перетягування каната

Tug of War

Люби свого ближнього, або хтось ще буде

hope and peace from roman blazic