Archive for the ‘We Live Like Kings’ Category

Soy Dracula

Tuesday, October 31st, 2017

Rochester skyline from Cobbs Hill Reservoir

We made a special stop at Wegman’s to buy Halloween candy, just in case. We used to get a handful of trick or treaters but those kids have grown up and the for the last few years we haven’t gotten any at all. When we lived in the city we had an an army of them. So tonight we had Snickers for dessert.

Matthew and Louise let us borrow their 75 Anniversary edition of Bela Lugosi’s Dracula about three months ago. It is packaged with a 1931 Spanish language version, one that was shot simultaneously with the Lugosi version and one that is reportedly “sexier.” I don’t know what took us so long to get to it but I can’t think of a better night than Halloween.

Multi-Media

Wednesday, October 25th, 2017

Autumn weeds in the marsh on Hoffman Road

We’re so proud of our friend and neighbor. Just her second competition and she brings home a medal from the USA Power Lifting Championship in Florida. Go Sierra!

Still haven’t got over to the MAG to see the Bill Viola piece in the Media Art room but we were thrilled to hear the Memorial Art Gallery plans to commission three works by international artists inspired by the City of Rochester, New York. “Reflections on Place” will feature Javier Téllez (Venezuela, b. 1969), Isaac Julien (U.K., b. 1960) and Dara Birnbaum, (U.S., b. 1946). We’ll have to wait til April 2018 for the first of those exhibitions.

Tonight marks Phil Marshall’s fourth performance as a Margaret Explosion member. We are thrilled to have him in the band working his magic. Before he joined he sat in with us on many occasions. Here he is on live track from the Little Theatre Café in 2009.

Margaret Explosion - Rain Dance

Margaret Explosion – Rain Dance

Courage

Saturday, October 14th, 2017

Budweiser football display at Wegmans on East Ridge Road

There’s a big difference between American football and the European sport but I don’t want to sound snotty. My namesake is or was England’s Number One Football Hooligan. The sport has more than its share of louts. We watched a string of matches as the US Mens team played their way right out of the World Cup qualifying North, Central America and Caribbean conference. It was getting increasingly hard to root for them so it is probably for the best that they lost to Trinidad and Tobago and will sit out the World Cup in Russia next year. The team needs to get it together, kind of like the country needs to suffer through Trump to get itself on the right course.

Tonight the North Carolina Courage of the Women’s National Soccer League play the Portland Thorns in Orlando. The Courage is our team. They were the Western New York Flash up until last season when the franchise moved south. I plan to climb up in this chair and scream at the tv.

Animated Violence Mild

Wednesday, September 6th, 2017

Deer Hunting Game at MacGregor's on Empire Boulevard in Rochester, New York

I know someone that would love this video game. We were sitting next to it at MacGregor’s overlooking the Irondequoit Bay. The place didn’t come up when I searched for nearby “sports bars” in my map program but I remember coming out here with Matthew and Louise to see a match during some other tournament. We were looking for someone who had the BeIn network so we could watch the US Men’s team play Honduras in a near must-win qualifying match for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

The US is still relatively new to the sport but we are lucky to be in Concacaf, the North, Central American and Caribbean confederation. Other than tough competition from Mexico it should be pretty easy for the US to finish in the top three of these 35 nations yet we’re getting right down to the wire. We watched the US lose to Casta Rico again a few nights ago and they barely squeaked out a tie via Honduras last night.

I still hold a grudge against MacGregors for leaving their original location in the South Wedge but the guy that manages this location was pretty accommodating. He told us he was a soccer player for thirty five years and he said he has arthritis so bad he has to stretch before getting out of bed. He said his team won the sectionals. Webster went to the sectional finals in my senior year so I asked where he played. He said Wayne County and I asked what year. I had him pegged for “older than me” but he was seven years behind. He was probably thinking the same thing of me.

East Main Street

Thursday, August 31st, 2017

1111 East Main Street store window, Rochester, New York

East Main is looking up. There was a time when I’d get propositioned by hookers while riding my bike home from New Math rehearsal on my bike. I’ve been spending a lot of time at Warren Philip’s frame shop at Main and Goodman. He’s helping me frame work for the show. He’s making birch wood frames for my father’s watercolors and I’ve order matts, glass and metal section frame champs from him for my work.

They’re re-working the intersection out in front of his shop but there is construction going on up and down the street with some buildings getting gutted and a whole block of new housing going up. It was pretty bleak twenty five years ago. The Hungerford Building by Warren’s, mostly artist’s studios and illegal lofts, is always busy. I took this photo of the new store in front of that building.

Mid Century Thugs

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

Nonchalant after questioning: Robert J.  DeMay, Charles F. Guldenshuh, Edward B. Lanagan, Robert G. Mental Jr., from left, booked in connection with assault on Julius Morrison, who thwarted robbery by wrecking truck against tree.

When I was growing up on the east side the neighborhood was dotted with small grocery stores. There were two near our house, one on Humboldt and one on Atlantic and then there was an early behemoth, Star Market, at Merchants and Main. Peggi and I lived in that same neighborhood for twenty-six years and there were still a few small stores nearby. Bertha’s was only open at night. There was no fresh food in the place. She mostly sold six packs and magazines. Fleckenstein’s was a great meat market. But Fred’s, on the corner of Main and Wisconsin was the best small grocery. Fred’s nephew, Sam, a recent East High graduate, opened the first Salvatore’s Pizza across the street in 1978.

In 1940, long before my two stints in the neighborhood, a group of thugs robbed the owner of a grocery store at 2121 East Main, a few blocks down from Fred’s, where State Farm is located today. The owner of that store was robbed by these four thugs. Peggi found the article while tracking down a tip from a reader of her site, DonHershey.com. We knew nothing about Don Hershey when we lived on the east side and never really noticed this cute little place on Melville Street, just off Culver by Nino’s Pizzeria.

Don Hershey, Rochester’s foremost mid-century modern architect, designed the house on Melville for Julius Morrison in the late thirties and the shopkeeper had just moved in in 1940 when this event took place.

Gideon Cobb Days

Saturday, June 10th, 2017

Sandy Franklel accepting Leo Dodd Historic Preservation Award at Gideon Cobb days in Brighton, New York

My father was one of the founding members of Historic Brighton and during his time as president he came up with the idea of celebrating Gideon Cobb, an early pioneer and brick maker. Gideon Cobb Day was usually celebrated with a lunch at Mario’s and, of course, Cobb Salad was on the menu. My cousin, Ray Tierney is on the board now and he has renewed the celebration.

We gathered yesterday in a tent behind the Buckland House, an early farmstead home on Westfall Road that was preserved through the efforts of Historic Brighton. The supervisor of Brighton was there and many of the club members and Jerry Ludwig, the guy who writes the home improvement column in Saturday’s paper. My family was there as well because Historic Brighton has decided to give an annual “Leo Dodd Historic Preservation Award” award to someone in the community who worked toward those ends. This year’s recipient was Sandra Frankel and Ray asked if I would say something about Leo.

I talked about how my father was into photography, painting, engineering, history, genealogy and family and how these interests all overlapped. He painted portraits of these early Brighton residents when no photos existed and he reconstructed the brick making kilns and factories in a CAD drawing program. He was able to bring history to life. And he shared his enthusiasm. This made Brighton a better town.

Peggi and I provided technical support with the websites, newsletters, presentations and his Brighton Brick book production. Historic Brighton made us honorary members and that is nice but what Historic Brighton needs is someone with the desire to dig through the past, willing to attend the meetings, lobby the politicians to preserve the remnants, someone who likes taking pictures and illustrating a story and someone who likes to share what they have found. They need someone as enthusiastic as my father was.

Speak Easy

Monday, April 17th, 2017

Ford Flex in big puddle behind the old Vic & Irv's

We met Matthew and Louise for a drink down on the beach behind Margie’s, a speakeasy during Prohibition. It was a beautiful night but the signs of a rough winter were plentiful. Huge sand dunes hand reshaped the beach. They’re going to need a piece of heavy equipment to make it look all civilized again.

I took this photo on the way in. I wasn’t the only one taking photos. This Ford Flex was abandoned in three feet of water right where the parking lot used to be for Vic & Irv’s. Ben, who lives across the street on the beach wasn’t taking photos, he was calling 911. He told us they call 911 all the time. Boats gets stranded in front of their house and all sorts of crazy stuff happens down there. He surmised someone was “hammered.” If I’m remembering this right, Greg Prevost told me Irv died in this same puddle when he was trying to hook up a pump to drain the parking lot. This car was gone when we came out of Margie’s.

Speak Easy

Saturday, February 18th, 2017

Cheshire Cocktail Lounge on South Avenue in Rochester, New York

I was talking to Martin about a reoccurring dream I had and he told me he had the same dream and it was was one of his favorites. Well, he didn’t have exactly the same dream but it was the same concept. In the dream we discover a really cool section of the city, somewhere we never knew existed, and it was exhilarating. It was almost like we fell asleep to look for this elusive place. It is a very comfortable destination.

We picked up Louise last night and met Matthew downtown when he got off work. They suggested Swillburger Playhouse for dinner, a place we had never been. We hadn’t been there since it became Swillburger but we did play there in the eighties when it was called the Community Playhouse. After dinner they took us to Cheshire Cocktail Lounge, another place we had never been. I hadn’t had a cocktail since Peggi’s mom died but when in Rome. . . This place is something like a speakeasy. There is no signage and you gain access by going up a staircase inside Solera Wine Bar. My grandfather was a bootlegger and he owned a bar on the west side when booze became legal. He would have loved this place.

Armchair Shrink

Monday, January 30th, 2017

Carey HouseI in Sodus Point, New York

Our friends, Jeff and Mary Kaye, hosted a wine tasting at their house last night. Each of us brought some wine and Jeff put it in paper bags, wino style, so we couldn’t see the label. There were ten of us and apparently none of us have a very sophisticated palette because the eighteen dollar bottle of Spanish wine that Peggi picked out won the most votes followed closely by a six dollar bottle of Gnarly Head place second.

Jeff brought a dusty bottle of Chateau Mouton Rothschild out of a back room and passed it around for us to look at. He didn’t plan to open it but told us it was given to him by an old girlfriend. Sue, who was sitting next to me, scanned the label with her wine scanner app and determined the bottle was worth about 1200 dollars. I was intrigued by the label, a watercolor painting of a ram, that was signed by someone named John Houston. Sure enough, the director of Chinatown was also an artist and this label is said to be his last painting.

Another Jeff, sitting across the table from me, asked Jeff the host what his off-the-record, off-duty,professional diagnosis of the president was. Jeff said he thinks Trump is a narcissist of such proportions that he believes he is telling the truth even when he when he lies. In this morning’s paper Maureen Dowd asked a Trump biographer about the orange one and he said, ““Donald’s manic without being depressive.” Having known a few manic/depressives I would say this one fits but is the condition even possible?

Red Hats

Monday, November 28th, 2016

Our neighbor, Larry, with his Trump hat and dog, Topher.

We never talk politics with our neighbor. We don’t have to. His hat sums the subject up. There are plenty of other things to talk about. His dog. The weather. The neighbors who don’t bring their trash receptacle back after pick-up.

Listen to Pete LaBonne’s “We Live Like Kings”
Pete LaBonne – We Live Like Kings

Moving Images

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

Marsh off Hoffman Road in Rochester, New York

The Memorial Art Gallery has an exciting new Media Arts space, a gallery devoted to the moving image, a three year project that will feature different work every three months, work by major artists. They even plan to commission three pieces for an upcoming show. The inaugural exhibition, “Bodies in Space,” features work Nam June Paik (“Experiments with David Atwood, 1969″) and Bruce Nauman, key artists from the early years of video art, alongside more recent work by Sondra Perry and Takeshi Murata. The gallery plans to purchase the work and eventually assimilate it in their collection.

On Sunday afternoon John Hanhardt, MAG’s new Curator of Media Arts, gave a lecture on the work and media arts in general. Hanhardt worked in the department of film and video at the Museum of Modern Art, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis and from 1974 to 1996 he was curator of the film and video department at the Whitney Museum of American Art. He was the senior curator of film and media arts at the Guggenheim from 1996 to 2006 and he joined the Smithsonian Museum’s staff in 2006 as a senior curator of film and media arts.

Hanhardt curated both the Whitney and Guggenheim retrospectives of Nam June Paik. He recently arranged for the Smitsonian to house the Nam June Paik archive, eight tractor trailer trucks worth. Hanhardt convinced Warhol, when he was still alive, to let him preserve his film archive. He knows his stuff. He is a Rochester native and we are glad to have him back.

Iron Lady

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

Kale in the garden 2016

Peggi and I stopped by the Red Cross on Prince Street to donate and two young women came in while we were still reading the disclaimers. They were intending to give blood but one them had a low iron level so she was refused. She sat with her friend while the three of us pumped our fists in the reclining chairs. The nurse told the young woman that she eats raisons everyday to keep her iron levels up and she asked the long woman if she ate red meat. I looked up “good sources of iron” and found spinach at the top of the list. She said she loved spinach.

I imagine kale is up there too. We planted six small plants in the Spring and we’ve been eating it all summer. It is so hardy. It holds its own in greens and beans and we do that quite a bit. Tonight Peggi found a recipe called “Tuscan Kale” with plums and goat cheese.” She made a dressing with olive oil, honey, lemon and Tamari sauce and added some walnuts and dried cherries. You don’t even cook the kale. We complimented this dish with leftover fresh corn. We cut the kernels off the cobs and bake the corn with a little olive oil and diced jalapeño peppers. We have a bumper crop of peppers this year. If you are picturing these two dishes next to one another on a plate you’re probably thinking “red.” And it goes without saying this time of year. Every meal comes with a few wedges of fresh tomatoes and basil leaves.

Sunday Outing

Friday, July 22nd, 2016

Diane Arbus Two Teenage Girls at the Met Breuer

We practiced a lot when we were in Personal Effects. Margaret Explosion, on the other hand, never practices. Our old rehearsal space had a Diane Arbus poster on the wall with a large reproduction of “A young Brooklyn family going for a Sunday outing, NYC 1966.” I like to think she had an influence on the band.

The Met Breuer, the old Whitney, has mounted a show of her early work. Called, “In the Beginning,” it features a hundred photos from 1956 to 1962, work that’s not been seen for the most part. The museum notes she was influenced by the great August Sandler and they displayed one of his photos at the beginning of the show and then her “Sunday Outing” photo at the end of the show.

The ingenious way the curator hung the Diane Arbus show, with narrow grey columns displaying one of her relatively small photos on each side, draws you in to each photo but leaves you surrounded by people, people as strange as the ones she photographed.

Personal Effects - Nothing Lasts Forever
Personal Effects – Nothing Lasts Forever

We Are The Champions

Sunday, June 12th, 2016

Real Madrid Champions League T-shirts

We watched three Euro Cup soccer games yesterday, an activity just my speed with only one working leg. We watched Switzerland and Wales win and then the upset, Russia over England. And then we headed out to the stadium to watch the WNY Flash play Alex Morgan’s team, the Orlando Pride. Morgan hardly got the ball and when she did she was shut down by the Flash’s Hinkle/Eddy/Erceg/Dahlkemper superb back line.

I was really worried when I saw that D’Angelo, our first string goalie (as well as Canada’s national team goalie), was injured but the Flash scored early and held on for the 90 to move into first place in the NWSL. It is so much fun to watch this team get better and better as we get to know them. The US Women have the best team in the world and our city has the best team in the league. It was even fun watching Orlando, the newest team in the league. They have Spencer, Edmonds, Edwards and even Morgan, who all previously played for the Flash.

New Leaves

Sunday, May 22nd, 2016

Young oak leaves in trees out front

Jill Ellis, the women’s national team coach, was in the house last night. She was introduced before the game and then we spotted her at halftime hanging over the railing in front of her box seat while talking to Abby Wambach’s parents (who just happened to be sitting next to us.) She’s here to study the Flash players, Jaedene Hinkle and Sam Mewis in particular. She’ll be gong to the Olympics in Rio with only eighteen players (there were 21 on last year’s World Cup roster). Of course, she could still be evaluating Sky Blue’s Christie Rampone and Kelley O’Hara. But the way Hinkle played last night I wouldn’t be surprised if Ellis left town with Hinkle in the back seat.

We got to the game early, as we usually do,to watch the warm-ups from behind the goal. You have to keep your eye on the ball because you can get clobbered back there. And I was already injured. I was hoping to get a chance to talk to the Flash trainer about my injury. I’d ask him what he would do to get a player back on the pitch asap after an injury like mine. But that was only a pipe dream.

I was soaking my leg in the tub this afternoon, reading my John Baldessari book, and the room was getting all steamed up. I gave up reading and just relaxed but in a few minutes our smoke alarm went off, loud as hell. So I hobbled over to the damn thing and pulled the battery out. Why would a smoke alarm go off with steam?

Flash Update

Thursday, April 21st, 2016

The Italian American Club in Rochester, New York

We had never been to the Italian American Club out on Buffalo Road so it was a real treat to be invited there to meet the 2016 Western New York Flash. This club is where all the original support for the Rochester Lancers came from and the reason we were able to see the great Pelé play here. Since we went to every home game last season we bought season tickets holders this year and thus were invited here to meet the team. Each table of fans, there were eight at our table, had a Flash player joining them for dinner. Sabrina D’Angelo’s name was printed on tent card at our table but it was crossed out and Liz Eddy’s name was written in. Sabrina is Canada’s national goalie and one of our favorites but midfielder, Liz Eddy, is one of the hardest working players on the team. Liz was the first call sub last year for the Flash and started last week’s season premier where the Flash beat the the two-time league champion, FC Kansas City. We watched that game on YouTube and Eddy was in top form.

We had a chance to chat with the new head coach, Paul Riley. He’s from Liverpool, and had coached Hope Solo’s team in Portland for the last few years. He was just hired here so he didn’t have much to do with the draft pick but he told us he was really pleased with the team he found here. He was just beaming about the way his team played in Kansas City.

We bought raffle tickets from Samantha Mewis. She is is currently on the cusp of being chosen for the eighteen player US Olympic rooster. She is five eleven and she was wearing tall heels. I sort of hope she doesn’t make the cut so we won’t lose her for a month or so. We watched a soccer game going on behind the building and the players, all men, were old, as in my age. Last time I played summer soccer was with some Italian pick up group that played at East High. Just a block from house I would crawl home and lay on the floor for an hour or so after the games.

I told Eddy we liked routing for her last year and were happy to see her starting. I told her the way she hustled reminded me of Heather O’Reily. She liked that a lot and told me she liked my hair. She asked if I played and I told her I did, for Indiana, a long time ago. She said, “You must have been really good.” I just let that go. The whole Flash team posed for a shot after dinner.

I’m try to think of some promotional gimmick or something I could do to get more people out for the Flash’s opening game on April 29th. As they say, this is such a great product.

Whiter Whites

Saturday, April 9th, 2016

Tea pot and coffee maker at Pete and Shelley's

My current camera, a Sony RX100, has all sorts of options, ones I really use. But I am glad I have them. The auto mode is so good I have been spoiled. I hardly leave it but I know I should. If only to control the background focus. Duane tells me he runs around town with his ISO set to 1600. There is an advantage there that I can only imagine. I remember when that speed was twice what was possible with fast, grainy Kodak black and white film.

I recently photographed the a batch of oil paintings on wood panels. The ground was most white but you would never know it looking at my photos. I came up with maybe a 5 on the grey scale where it should have been white. I knew I should have been setting the white point and shooting with manual mode but I knocked off the shots in auto mode. They paintings are currently hanging in a show but next time I will do it right and I have a pile of my father’s watercolors that I would like to photograph next.

I called Duane for instructions. He worked for Lowel, a lighting company, and I use four Lowel brand Tota lights. We started with my bulbs. A couple are high quality Quartzand the others are Home Depot tungsten lamps which can change color spectrum as they age. I got on Amazon and ordered 5 EIKO FCZ 120V/500W R7s Base Stage and Studio Lamp from Barndoor Lighting Outfitters.

Not only were my whites not white, they were wildly uneven. Most likely the lights were too close to the subject. He suggested I step two feet to the sides of the paintings and then step back at least six feet from the surface of the painting to set the four lights. Two lamps on each side, barn doors set open about 45 degrees. As for aiming Duane recommended that I cross light the paintings so the the lights on the left side of the painting should be lighting the right side of the painting.

To set the white balance Duane suggested I frame a shot in auto made so it is full white, the same same white as ground on the paintings, and take note of the readings (iso, Fstop and shutter speed). Then use the same settings in manual mode (where my camera allows me to capture and store that white balance).

Finally, still in Manual mode, I will try an ISO of 400, an F stop at 8 and then get the M.M. setting to zero out by selecting the appropriate shutter speed. I will report back.

Unsurpassed Quality

Tuesday, March 15th, 2016

Orange fountain in Cobbs Hill Reservoir , Rochester, NY

We stopped up to see my mom and took her down to the coffee shop. She asked if we were swimming in our outdoor pool yet. it was good to hear her ask about the outside world.

We had lunch at Magnolia’s on Park Avenue. Peggi sat in the chair Obama sat in and she ordered what he had, a cup of soup and a grilled cheese sandwich. It dawned on me that this was the old Red & White grocery store when we lived in an apartment in this part of town. Henry ran the place. He used to work in my uncle’s store. We sat near the window looking out at KrudCo’s new place. Doesn’t seem right on Park Avenue. And I realized why they call this place Magnolia’s, so close to Oxford Street with the meridian lined with the flowering trees only a few weeks from full bloom.

We stopped at Washington Grove near the top of Nunda Boulevard and we walked through the woods up to the reservoir. My parents used to take us up here. They’d open the car doors and let us run. My mom and dad used to walk laps here just a few years ago. High on a hill, 640 feet above sea level, it’s one of the most beautiful spots in Rochester. The sign in front of the 1908 building reads, “Of unsurpassed quality, the water in this reservoir flows by gravity from Lakes Hemlock and Canadice located 30 miles south.” Peggi and I hadn’t been up here in years.

The Alligator Purse

Monday, March 7th, 2016

Woman Hula-Hooping on sidewalk in Rochester, New York. View from the bus as we toured the city.

Writers & Books sponsored Sunday’s “Bus Tour with Sonja,” an event coinciding with the selection of Sonja Livingston’s “Queen of the Fall” as this year’s “If All of Rochester Reads the Same Book.” Sonya planned the tour to coincide with locations from her fabulous memoir, “Ghostbread,” and this book. “It was five minutes past our departure time and Sonya had not yet boarded, setting the stage for a dramatic entry. We heard the bus driver had already run into a car in the parking lot before we arrived. We buckled up.

Our first stop was just around the corner from Writer & Books at the Barrel of Dolls. We had just parked in front of this place on Friday night when we visited Axom Gallery across the street. Sonya read an exquisite excerpt from “Queen of the Fall” about a girl she grew up with who wound up working in the Barrel. Sonja visited the Barrel for research reasons and said it was much cleaner than she pictured.

Second stop was East High where Sonja went to school. She pointed out that less than half of the students graduate and she read a piece as we gazed out the window at our old neighborhood. Peggi and I lived a short block away from this school for twenty seven years and I grew up about eight streets away but I went to Catholic schools. My family situation was 180 degrees away from Sonya’s but the settings were all within reach.

Our third stop was Savoia Bakery on Clifford Avenue, a location mentioned in all three of Sonja’s books. We had just driven by the place on our way to this tour. My family’s haunt was Elite Bakery behind East High on Atlantic but Savoia’s has outlasted them. Our next stop was 33 School, across the street from the Playground Tavern. Sonja read another excerpt from “Queen of the Fall,” one that references Savioa Bakery, Italians (who shape the character of Rochester) and being one of seven children (like I was.)

Lamont Place, off Webster Avenue was our fifth stop. We parked in front of the house where she grew up, or the spot where the house once stood. A man cut through the empty lot headed toward Goodman Plaza with a big plastic bag filled with empty beer cans. A reading from “Ghostbread” was especially poignant.

We motored down East Main to Corpus Christi where I was baptized some twenty years before Sonja. It is now called “Our Lady of the Americas.” My parents lived in apartment around the corner on Alexander Street. Sonja read a piece about a Hispanic wedding that took place here and another about living in the church’s rectory when Father Jim Callan moved out to be closer to the community he served.

The bus driver drove over the curb as we pulled into an official tourist stop, the Susan B. Anthony House, where we sat down for tea while Sonja read from her upcoming book, “Ladies Night at the Dreamland, a combination of research and imagination.” The title refers to the dancehall, amusement park in Sea Breeze near our current home. A guide took us through the house, a beautiful place, one of those mid eighteen hundred houses where the windows in the front room go all the way down to the floor. The tour was inspiring. “Failure is Impossible.”

Our final stop was Mount Hope Cemetery. The bus passengers cheered when the driver made it through the iron gates. Sonja read from a story she wrote about a grave stone here that reads, “Here lies a white slave girl.” She died at fifteen in 1857 and is buried a stone’s throw away from Frederick Douglas’s grave. Sonja is a keen observer. Her observations coupled wth her imagination is a marvel. I hope all of Rochester does read this book.

Margaret Explosion - Playground Tavern
Margaret Explosion – Playground Tavern